“Let us dance in the sun, wearing wild flowers in our hair...”

this is...

Sunday, February 24, 2008

me taking a picture of myself in the mirror with my favourite accessory.

this is...

At the moment, I wear these boots everywhere. With every outfit, whether it's jeans, skirts, dresses, you name it.

Happy Sunday. Think I'm going to take that 20 min nap and catch up from the late Friday where I stayed up waaaaaaaay too late. It can get annoying when I lose track of time. It's easy to do. Then get more sewing done and maybe even get in some reading. Tomorrow is Monday and guess what we have in the forecast? Snow. Ice. Snow. ugh. Well, it's not over yet! We've still got more snow on the way and I refuse to stop dreaming of summer...

dude, i am so ready for summer

Friday, February 22, 2008

Thanks guys for your comments on my hair-rant post. :) Keep the suggestions coming! In the meantime, I've sorta fixed my hair. It's alright. And it will grow. I think it's good I got it cut now rather than later. This way it will look better in the summer.

Speaking of summer...I couldn't resist uploading these pictures. Believe me, I'm not that into myself. (I don't think...) I am just trying to figure out what clothes I have and how I can wear them so they do not die in my closet. I'm trying to be a good person and resist the urge to purchase stuff I don't need and instead wear the stuff I already have. So I figured it's going to be a lot easier for me to figure that out if I take a picture of everything I have and then find out what actually looks good on me and what doesn't. (I imagine this is gonna be a long process...yikes) Yeah yeah, I'm obsessed with clothing. Call me a clothes whore. I don't mind. Really. :)

dude, i am so ready for summer

IMG_8162

will i ever learn?

Thursday, February 21, 2008

So I did it again. I got my haircut at a local, cheap salon. I thought perhaps it would be nice to get something a little edgy while my hair grows. And I always seem to come home feeling the exact same way I did the last time I decided to get my hair cut. They have no idea what I want. I think they are all taught to cut hair the same way every one's hair is cut. So boring. I think it has something to do with the idea that they all want to look like movie stars and I hate hate hate most hairstyles on movie stars. Yuck. I always think I'm going to get lucky and find someone who actually knows exactly what I want. I should have gotten the clue when I walked in the place. Everyone has straightened, highlighted, poofy hair that looks ridiculous. All of the women wear their make-up pretty much the same way. Caked on, eyeliner, lipstick, blush...the works. For all you make-up loving people, my opinion is that too much of it just makes a person look plastic and fake. Gross me out. I do wear make-up, but I will usually keep it to a minimum. And frankly, it doesn't kill me if I go out without it on once in awhile.

So I had this hairstyle in mind; shorter in the back and long in the front. Jagged on the ends, not clean cut. I have wavy hair (bordering on curly if I don't wash it wish shampoo for a week) so I prefer my hair to be uneven. Hairstylists around here do not know what that means. They just do not comprehend uneven hair. I like it! I like the natural state; how things aren't always perfect and symmetrical. But hairstylists are taught that everything should be equal. Everything should be straight, even if you use those jagged scissors. They still cut in a straight line. Not what I want! aghhh. I am getting to the point where I have reached a dead end. It's hard to cut my hair because I can't reach the back of my head very easily. I think I could probably cut my own hair the way I want it if I could just remove my head. Not likely to happen. Plus I'm not trained in hairstyling, so I would still probably hack off more inches than I intended.

Here I am with this hair that isn't unmanageable, but it will probably take several weeks to grow out before I really can do anything with it. The bangs are WRETCHED. Luckily I can just stick them back as I usually do. But it's still kind of annoying that I seem to go through this every year. I'm still in search for a better hairstylist. I have a feeling someone who carries organic products and cares about natural beauty would be someone who would understand my style. I don't know of any place like that around here. ANYone have ideas for me?? I'm definitely in the desperate stage. And while we're at it, even if you don't live in Iowa, do you have any favorite hairstylists that cut your hair and that you are continually happy with? You never know, I may find myself in that part of the country.

let's keep a schedule!

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

I just discovered this nifty little tool simple called, remember the milk. Downloaded it for freeee and am starting to add tasks. I think I'm going to really love this little tool. Especially since I have gmail and it's viewable on any of my three* email accounts! Yeah baby!










*Yes. Three. It helps to keep business, personal and all of those random e-lists I read separate from each other. So chill already. :)

mug shots

Sometimes I can be such a procrastinator. It sucks. I know it's just something I need to work in and get better at, but man, sometimes it's just really hard to actually DO. This is what happens when I'm nearing a deadline. I sort of panic and then I start to go through everything that needs to get done and I figure I can still make the deadline if I work like non-stop. So then I end up staying up late or working on weekends when I could be doing something else. You know, one of these days I'm going to actually tell myself to buck up and stop worrying about everything. I think I would be so much happier.

mug shot

On an entirely different subject, I am attempting to figure out my wardrobe. I wake up every day literally a little stressed out about trying to figure what the heck to put on. I end up hating everything I have and then just put on a black shirt or something because for me, you can never go wrong with a black top. It's just simple and classy. This probably won't work, but it's worth a try. Here's one shot. Most of them make me look rotten, so this is the only one I'm sharing with the world at present. Here's to a more productive week (at least the remaining part of it).

current awesome

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Probably a more appropriate title would be "currently coveting" or something like that, but I prefer "current awesome." I felt the need to document these items on my blog and perhaps I will add to the "current awesome" list. It's not that I *need* anything, I just like to talk about things I like or things that make me smile. I suppose I'm a bit of a clothes whore or maybe just a lover of all things materialistic. yeah.


This, in my opinion, would make the perfect casual-every-day, t-shirt-wearing, brighten-my-life, fun-loving, all-around-happy skirt. Like that top that makes you feel really good about yourself every time you put it on? This is the skirt version of that top. So I did what all clothes whores do when faced with a decision, I got it. I went back and forth back and forth. I finally came to the decision that if I didn't get it, I would be hitting myself upside the head with a mallet come summertime when I am seriously lacking in the comfy-feel-good-skirt department. And then I thought, what if every time I got the urge to spend a little bit of money ($2 here, $5 there) I would resist that urge and instead, save that money to go into "the frickin' sweet skirt" fund? So that is what I'm a doin'. Btw, if you are feeling the same way about this skirt and just HAVE to have one yourself, check it out on etsy. Looks like there aren't too many left.


I was wasting my time one day awhile back when I spied this woman wearing an awesome pair of turquoise and black adidas shoes. I love the fact that they *pop* out with the bright turquoise. So needless to say, I've been looking for a pair like them. So far no luck in finding those shoes, but I did find these Onitsuka Tiger shoes by Asics. Not bad. My sister has a pair of these in yellow. What can I say? I'm a jealous sister. These babies will have to wait, though. Perhaps I will see about getting them as a birthday present or just save my pennies. I don't need them right now anyways. We've still got loads of snow coming down and my trusty rusty boots have been awesome.

this is...what makes me laugh out loud

friends

So there are lots of things that will make me laugh out loud, but one thing I could capture was this scene of two of my favorite girls being completely themselves. Of course they would hate me if they knew I put this picture for all to see, but I don't seem to care. :) We've had way too much fun together and I imagine we'll have loads more in the future.

Have a nice Sunday! And keep warm! It's snowing buckets out here.

hey guys!

Saturday, February 16, 2008

I've been a bit side-tracked this week, so didn't get much of a chance to blog. Thank you all for your encouraging responses to my leather bag! I had no idea it would turn out the way it did. And honestly, it wasn't as challenging as I thought. Perhaps because I've got this amazing sewing machine that will practically sew through anything. I've also done a bit of leather work while making shoes, so I suppose that has given me a bit of experience on leather. I was also surprised at how much ::fun:: I had making the bag. Sometimes certain projects will bore me to tears. But I really didn't get bored once on this one. Yesterday I ordered some leather and will be making a few more bags and will post them for sale for anyone who is interested. I'm not sure yet how I want to sell them, if on my site or in another venue. I need to think about that a little more. If you are interested, feel free to drop me a line (gracefullady@gmail.com) and I'll let you know when I have some available.

I know everyone has been posting a bunch about Valentine's Day. I usually don't get into it much. I don't really see any reason to get depressed over it, but it is kind of a silly holiday in my book. Although I do rather like all the sweets and pretty cards that celebrate the day. But otherwise, it's just 'another day.' This year, though, I was invited to my friend's birthday party. Imagine having a birthday on the 14th! I don't think I'd like it, but she says she's never had a bad Valentine's Day. We had fun dancing to music by Chromeo, Justice, M.I.A. (I do love good dance music) and eating lots of red velvet cake. While at the party, a friend I've met at the coffee shop mentioned how she has never seen my hair down. So yesterday I tried wearing it down for the first time in months. You see, I am trying to grow the stuff out and well, every time I try I just want to chop it off again. Because there are SO MANY cute short hairstyles (I especially love this one) I keep seeing and once you cut it really short, it's amazingly hard to grow it back. Believe me, I've been trying for two years. But this year I am determined. So after seeing how horrible my hair looked down (due to not having a trim in months) I decided to take the problem and deal with it myself...

trim

I probably didn't take off more than an inch all around. I also trimmed my bangs a bit, because when I cut them first I made them look really choppy (fashion statement, yo!). I'm trying to let them grow now, so I'm sweeping them to the side. I realize this talk of hair is probably extremely boring to most of you, but I figure if I post about it then maybe it will encourage me to continue to let it grow. So yeah, enough of that. Hope everyone is having a lovely weekend. Think I'm gonna go sew. yeah.

this is...sunday lunch

Sunday, February 10, 2008

sunday lunch at cono

This is Cono Christian school and Bible Presbyterian church. I have recently been attending this church and as it's also a boarding school, they have lunch after the Sunday morning service. This place is transformed from church sanctuary to dining room to school theatricals to who knows what else. This is the spot where stuff happens most at this school. I really enjoy my time there and the wonderful and unique people I continually meet. So that's where I eat on Sunday noon. And the food is actually really really good. :)

leather bag::completed

leather handbag

other side

inside of bag

I finished it! It's bigger than I'm used to carrying around, but I think I'll get used to its size with time. On the plus side, now I can carry around one bag instead of two when I decide to bring knitting with me. :) Usually I'll stuff all my knitting junk in another canvas tote. Actually, now I can go to the library and not worry about forgetting to bring a book bag and I can also stick a bottle of water in there to keep with me at all times. yeahhh. So many things I can do with the extra space.

ALSO, I've been scheming lately. I'm thinking of making these bags for sale. Possibly in leather, possibly in other types of fabric with embroidery. I've been pouring over an old embroidery book my mom had when she was in high school, and there are so many ideas I am coming up with. So we'll see what comes out of that. Sometimes I get a little bit too inspired after my two cups of French press in the morning. But I do think this would be a fun project to take on. I'd also LOVE to come out with a few summer garments to sell. I haven't figured out what exactly I'm thinking of yet, so this is probably premature to be mentioning it on my blog. We'll just have to see. Oh how I love to scheme. :)

this is how i feel::

Friday, February 8, 2008



And this makes me extremely happy. Katie, this is for you 'cause I know how much you love Kings of Convenience (me too :).

Video found via hanne::

::leather handbag

Thursday, February 7, 2008

all cut out

Tuesday night I drafted a pattern while watching The Thin Man. It wasn't too difficult. I had a purse that I used as a guide, though it was easier to just wing it rather than try to trace off the purse. Plus I wanted to make it slightly larger than the original.

partially finished

Wednesday I cut it out and then last night I began sewing it. So far, so good. We'll see how it turns out. The fabric is leather (my sister gave me a bag of left over pieces of leather she didn't want to use from her book making). The lining is a striped linen I've had forever. Yay, new handbag! I think the handle is about to come off of my old one...

snow::

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

playing in the snow

Oh the joys of a wet + white snowy evening. There's nothing quite like slipping around in the snow as the sun sets. It had rained yesterday and the ground was still a bit wet, but that just made it all the more fun. Enjoy the snow while it's here. It won't be long before warm weather sets in!

Also, I want to thank Casey for being such a sweetie and nominating me for the "You Make My Day" blog award! This is actually kind of a fun little game. Once you are nominated, you pass on the love and nominate ten blogs that make your day. There are quite a few that make my day actually, but since I can only pick ten, here are my nominations...

Brae, Elly, Lena, Jenny, Jen, Mav, Camilla, Astrid, hel-looks, hyena-in-petticoats

I am thinking of sewing something for myself this evening. In any case, I think I'll go boil some water and make tea or hot chocolate. Then maybe watch this while I draft that pattern...

let me just say

I'm in LOVE with the spring collection from Built by Wendy.

this is...my collection

Monday, February 4, 2008

1930s vintage patterns.

my '30s pattern collection

I love pretty much all vintage patterns, but I'm drawn mostly towards the '30s. Of course these are the hardest to find for a reasonable price anymore. Occasionally I'll come across a few at an antique store for a few bucks, though. I especially love the rare patterns like the sailor pants, bathing or 'play' suits and the evening gowns. I swiped the bathing suit pattern off of eBay a few years back. I was so pleased when I won that auction. I still haven't gotten around to making it up, but that's a project I'd like to tackle this year. Can you imagine how much fun it would be to swim in a bathing suit made of wool jersey?? I CAN! That evening gown to the left of the bathing suit pattern is kind of my pride and joy. I grabbed that baby off eBay around the same time I got the suit. (A lot of these patterns I got around the same time and from the same seller - if you couldn't tell...) I paid more than I wanted to pay for that pattern, but it was worth it. I've made it once and I just love the wide bias-cut skirt. It's tricky to cut (especially if you choose silk chiffon as your fabric!!) but sews up heavenly. I personally think the 1930s translates quite well to modern apparel.

Sorry for the delay on posting my picture for the week. Some things came up today that were very unexpected. My dear friend was hit by a semi this morning and although I think she will be alright, as far as I know she's still in critical condition. I don't mean to end this post with a sad note, but would appreciate any prayers if you happen to think of it. She and I always like to dream up pretty vintage dresses to make and we both share a lot of the same passions. I do have faith that she'll get through this, if it's in God's plan.

um.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Haven't had time to take a picture of "this is...my collection" so I'm going to have to take it tomorrow and post it then. Sorry peeps. I tried to take a picture late this afternoon, but the lighting just wasn't good enough.

Hope everyone had a lovely weekend anyway! Mine was nice. Sundays are always so rejuvenating. Someday maybe I'll write about my Sundays a little more in detail. Tonight is Jane Austen. Last night was Wait Until Dark. Night before was R.G. Books and a bottle of Heineken and a very very late night movie at the theater. (We watched Atonement. Was better than I thought, but not something I'd watch again. Filmed beautifully, but otherwise slow and kinda boring at parts. Plus I hate Kiera Knightley. I think she's a bad actress, but that's just my humble opinion...ehem.)

That's my weekend in a nutshell. More like my Friday and Saturday nights. Otherwise I couldn't tell you what I accomplished during the day. Oh wait, I made myself a plaid top using a 1950's pattern. Only it's not quite finished yet and I'm not sure I will like it. Ooohh and I got a bunch of fabric on my way home today. Bad idea to stop and "pick up a FEW things." I made the mistake of checking out the remnant table which was all on sale 50% off today only. Bad Anna. Bad. But now I have some freakishly awesome denim (which really doesn't look like your typical denim - thus why it's freakishly awesome) that I plan to use to make a sort of 1930s styled wide leg pants. Only I can't decide if I want them long or short. Anyways, they'll have cuffs and maybe even tucks (which will be top stitched) at the waist. Hm...more to think about on that. Then I got some awesome patterned fabric that will most likely be turned into tote bags either for friends or to bring along for shopping purposes. I think I love fabric. a lot.

Ok. Enough rambling for tonight. If you're watching the Super Bowl, have fun with that. I, on the other hand, will be watching Jane Austen and enjoying every minute of it. And no, I do not feel guilty about that. Later toots.



1. Pip-Squeak Chapeau Inspired Neck Warmer Pattern by Me!, 2. Untitled, 3. Carrying on, 4. campers dancing to wireless music 1939, 5. Window, 6. notebook, 7. the alphabet, 8. My first! Thank you Christina!, 9. something i tryed out., 10. something I tryed out., 11. Looking fabulous, 12. Colour Splash, 13. finally, i shipped it, 14. remainings, 15. Untitled, 16. a foggy day, 17. Me and Myrna Loy :), 18. No Known Restrictions: Tap Dancing Class in Ames, Iowa by Jack Delano, 1942 (LOC), 19. making stuff, 20. Sia's walk in closet, 21. café lef in amsterdam, 22. IMG_3452, 23. backlog, 24. liberty print and selvedge ordered from purl soho, 25. ISBN4-579-11025-0, 26. ISBN4-579-11025-0, 27. Japanese Craft Bag, 28. solovki4, 29. summer dresses, 30. zenya1, 31. ME and YOU, 32. ISBN 4277113753, 33. Untitled, 34. Untitled, 35. sou sou, 36. green & green

in 3 easy steps

Friday, February 1, 2008

1.
one.

2.
two.

3.
three.

Much too easy.

they stole my idea!

Okay, so maybe they didn't technically steal MY idea. But I feel like they did. For years I've wanted to recreate this one particular dress that I fell in love with which Ginger Rogers wears in the film Carefree. It's one of the reasons I love that movie so much. (I know, silly reason to like a movie, but that's me for ya.) So the other day I was perusing Karen Walker's fall line when I noticed THIS...


Is it just me or does it look terribly similar to the dress Ginger wears in the 1938 movie? (Sorry I couldn't find a better image.)


Well, it doesn't stop me from making it. Although way back in my head I've always dreamed of making a line of clothing somewhat similar to vintage styles from the past. And well, this dress was thinking of finding its way in there. Then again, the idea wouldn't have been mine in the first place. So in a sense I'd also be stealing it too. I still like the original dress design better than the knock-off, though.