Tag Archives: diy

Day 291. 74 days and $76 left to go.

OK, so all summer long, I’ve been hiding something from you guys.  I love me some Mad Men and Friday Night Lights makes me swoon, but there is another show that I can’t get enough of.  Yes, I’m opening up my Pandora’s Box to share with you that I’m wholly addicted to Big Brother.

I know, I know…I just had to come clean because my night tonight is fully wrapped around this show and it’s finale.

To the wardrobe…

Day 291 - Before

Day 291 - Before

The fabric was flowy and had a blend of different animal prints – a little bit alligator, a little bit zebra and a little bit leopard to top it off.  Perhaps I was rooting for the “Meow Meow” – Enzo and I share some East Coast roots subconsciously 🙂 (Sorry, for those of you who have no clue what that last sentence means, totally disregard and we’ll continue along…)

Pads out!!

Clearly these are coming out...

Clearly these are coming out...

And taking in time, here we come…it needed a lot of work.  I took in the sleeves, the body, and the waist with a little help from my sewing machine.  My first go ended up still being too big, so I tried again and took it in even more.

Second time's the charm!!

Second time's the charm!!

After we got the proper sizing figured out, I added a big red belt, rolled up the sleeves a bit, and posed in front of JMT’s zebra print covered table to blend in. Had to get my photo taken before curtain time…

Day 291 - After

Day 291 - After

I gathered with my little BRA-GADE (one final shout out to BB fans…I think they really thought that brigade was spelled like that.  Thoughts?!)…

Big Brother Finale!!

Big Brother Finale...I know, I know

…and watched excitedly to see which fella took home the half million buckaroos.

The finger biting was clearly for photo op purposes :)

The finger biting was solely for photo-op purposes...

So, I’m not always proud of my TV viewing choices, however this one gets me every year…feels good to come clean 🙂

Day 290. 75 days and $77 left to go.

The weather has been so glorious out that I have to keep up the sundress for as long as I possibly can. (Cue angel voice ahh-ing here.)

This one was a winner…

Day 290 - Before

Day 290 - Before

A house dress for sure, pretty silky-ish fabric. but the best part was this…

It's sewed shut!!

It's sewed shut!!

The button neckline was sans buttons and was sewed together!!  I guess that’s one way to tackle the fact that there are no buttons!! Not sure if I’m going to replace them at all, but I’m definitely not going to stay stitched up.

I first began by taking the dress in on each side a few inches to give it a bit more shape.  Because there’s no zipper, I couldn’t make it as fitted as I would have liked, however we’ll take care of that soon.

Taking it in!!

Taking it in!!

The neckline came next and I grabbed my seam rippers and unstitched about three inches (and two button holes) to open it up a bit.  Not going to add buttons and am just going to keep the rest of it stitched too!

Unstitching the stitches!

Unstitching the stitches!

Now to really bring it in at the waist, I decided that I was going to use a little assistance.  I actually did this when it was on me, however for photo purposes it was easier doing it in my hands.

I gathered a bit of the fabric like an accordion around the small of my back, took a vintage brooch from my collection, and pinned it.

A little extra cinch!

A little extra cinch!

This was going to take care of the extra bit of looseness that the dress had.

Heart the vintage pin!

Heart the vintage pin!

My final outfit for the day…

Day 290 - After

Day 290 - After

Loved my new dress!! Paired with some flat brown boots, my dress was just the thing to wear on this summer-esque day!!

For a little close up, this is what the back turned out like with the help of my golden accessory.

Extra cinching

Extra cinching

House dress-turned-business casual work gear?!  Love it. I only had my ivory cardi on once this morning, then it was mild cap sleeve from the dress for the rest of the day to enjoy the warmth.

Day 288. 77 days and $79 left to go.

Hello long-sleeved, long length’ed, high-necked dress!!  Definitely some Little House on the Prairie business happening today for sure!

Day 288 - Before

Day 288 - Before

I had a little birthday brunch to attend and I definitely couldn’t leave my house looking like this!

I grabbed my scissors and got chopping!

This won't be hitting my ankles anymore...

This won't be hitting my ankles anymore...

Now that the length was tweaked, I got to chopping off the sleeves…

Sleeveless!!

Sleeveless!!

…and the top of the dress…

Mock neck-less!!

Mock neck-less!!

…because I’m going all the way strapless!!  Everything got trimmed but there was some pinning to be done before the sewing machine made an appearance.

Here we go!

Here we go!

We just got pinned…

Pinned and Prepped!!

Pinned and Prepped!!

…and now we’re getting sewing!  I took care of the top of the dress and got a new hem taken care of.

Going strapless and hemming!

Going strapless and hemming!

All in a morning’s work…got on my new dress and headed over to the Smoke House to celebrate the birthin’ of my pal JMT!!

Day 288 - After

Day 288 - After

Let’s just say we got there at 10:30 and stayed until close to 3.

Cheers to JMT!!

Cheers to JMT!!

They had a fabu omelet station, crab legs for the grabbing,  crepes made on the fly doused with Grand Marnier for some flame action, and the below…

Fountain of Dreams!!

Fountain of Dreams!!

I mean.  You really can’t go wrong with chocolate fountains.  Ever.  We covered strawberries, marshmallows, rice krispie treats, and even…wait for it…BACON!!

BACON!!!

BACON!!!

I know, I know…don’t hate until you try it!  I think I may have mentioned it before, but I took a page from the saliva inducing Vosges Chocolate who brought the bacon/chocolate combo into my vernacular (my mother tongue…pun intended)!

We cheersed, caught up, grubbed and ended it with a little celebration, World Cup style!!

I stole the bday gift!!

I stole the bday gift!!

Vuvuzela has returned!!  JMT received this legit South Africa-purchased vuvu for the bday and I couldn’t resist.

Day 287. 78 days and $80 left to go.

It’s Saturday! Sun is out, college football has arrived, you couldn’t put a bigger smile on my face if you tried 🙂

My dress for today had a mix of pleats and ruffles.  I loved the print of the fabric too – I really liked the flowery business going on, but that ruffle at the bottom was trouble.

Day 287 - Before

Day 287 - Before

It was taking care of business time…got my seam ripper and began detaching the ruffle at the bottom.

Goodbye trim!

Goodbye trim!

The trim that I was left with could have made a bed skirt.  We’ll bring it back somewhere though, just wait.

Two pieces!!

Two pieces!!

So, before I was ready to wear this, I got out my machine and took it in.  I brought in the sleeves and took in about three inches on each side.

Bringing it in...

Bringing it in...

Because the neck was collared and had a deep V, there were no buttons and after taking it in, it opened a bit more in front.  Couldn’t really get away with wearing it as it was, so I paired it with a black cami underneath and added a belt to break up the pattern a little.

Day 287 - After

Day 287 - After

Not completely the same but after scoping Anthropologie’s site (like you do…) I found this dress that had similar aesthetics.  The collar, the pleats, the V…

Heart Anthropologie's Version

Heart Anthropologie's "Sugar Coated" $128 Version

I was very happy with my outcome.

ECU! (Extreme Close Up!!)

ECU! (Extreme Close Up!!)

Perfect dress to enjoy the sun, the footy, and a little reflection this September 11th.

Day 286. 79 days and $81 left to go.

My Friday piece is all about the excess!  I’m going with leftovers today!  Anyone remember this lovely piece from Day 275??

Day 286 - Before

Day 286 - Before

This was the lovely top that was made…

Day 275 - After

Day 275 - After

…and these were my leftovers…

Layout leftovers

Layout leftovers

The second half of the dress was my doggie bag today.  What to do with these leftovers?  There was a lot of fabric left and right off the bat, my head was going in one direction.  Maybe it was because I woke up sweating this morning (I love nights where I forget to turn the fans on) or that I looked at the strapless bra that was sitting on the floor of my bedroom when I got up today?  Whatever it was, I was going to make this another top…a strapless one.  I didn’t have a whole lot of time this am before work to prep, so I quickly gave the top of the piece a new seam.

Layout leftovers

Layout leftovers

Next, I was trying to figure out if I wanted ribbon straps or something cute to hold it up, but ended up going the vintage brooch route.

I pulled up my newly seamed fabric in place to where I wanted it and then pinned the brooch.

Adding the flair!!

Adding the flair!!

I gathered the material to the perfect fit and pinned down.

Pinning down!!

Pinning down!!

This was just the quick and easy fix that was going to allow me to jet out the door at 8:23 this am. (I have my cutoff time down to the exact minute to get to work exactly on time…)

I took a belt and belted the top at my waist…

Day 286 - After

Day 286 - After

…and did a little bit of ungathering to give it some flounce.

ECU!! (Extreme Close Up!!)

ECU!! (Extreme Close Up!!)

I must say…for the amount of time this took and the usage of the excess material in construction, it was just the thing to get me started on my way to a complete non-stress Friday!  Ooh and did I mention that I saved a bit of moolah too?? Woo hoo – this was a total savvy Friday in my book!

TGIF!  Happy weekend friends:)

Day 285. 80 days and $81 left to go.

I LOVE the bold and busy prints and bringing them from a “no way” state to a “sign me up” one!!

Day 284 - Before

Day 284 - Before

I was feeling just like Lucille Ball in this…

Lucille!!

Lucille!!

There were lots o’dots on the fabric itself and I really disliked this blend of dainty, Victorian (in the collar) that went along with the dots.  So, hello adios time, you’ve arrived!!

Starting to take off the collar!

Starting to take off the collar!

I grabbed my seam ripper and began to unstitch the piece at the collar.  In just a few minutes, one side was completely removed.  I continued and got rid of the entire thing.

One side done...

One side done...

I wasn’t loving this as a dress either.  There was just too much going on here so I got my scissors and trimmed right at where the “skirt area” (the little mini skirt that fell at my waist) was.

Trimming the skirt!

Trimming the skirt!

After going from dress to top I wanted to tweak one last thing.  Now these sleeves as they were, were a bit big.  I thought it would be fun to try this out…instead of cutting and reseaming, I pulled out my “Crafty MacGyver-ness” and made them shorter with a little trick.

I just grabbed a hair tie (a bigger, more elasticked one) and put it in the area between my elbow and hand…

Sleeve Trick!!

Sleeve Trick!!

Make sure the hair tie doesn’t cut off your circulation, first and foremost 🙂  I then literally started rolling the piece around until it looked like this…

Roll Bounce!

Roll Bounce!

The rubber band kept it in place which was great – quick and easy!!

My new top was good to go with the addition of a white tank underneath and the pairing of another polka-dotted piece.

Day 284 - After

Day 284 - After

A close up of my fave part of the piece – the mixed nature of the dots on the top along with the smaller ones on the fabu belt is what I really loved.

Mix 'n Match!

Mix 'n Match!

The top turned out super chic and I must say I was getting polka-dotted compliments all night!!

Sunny day!!

Sunny day!!

Day 282. 83 days and $84 left to go.

Stars and stripes forever??  Kind of with today’s piece…

Day 282 - Before

Day 282 - Before

This was one of the goodies I snagged at the Goodwill Outlet in Queens when I was just in NY.  It was priced per pound and actually weighed less that one lb, so I’m just going to round-up to an easy $1.

It was a dress, but it fit really strange.  It was big on top and then came together at the knees, but it just looked too awkward.  I am going the top route to get rid of the tightness at the knees.

Cutting it short!!

Cutting it short!!

I trimmed off the bottom of the dress first – already I was happy with this first, big step!

Next I wanted to give the neckline a little extra vavoom, so I began turning it into a V.  I trimmed a slit down the center of the top, pinned the edges under…

V time!!

V time!!

…and sewed them into place!

I next wanted to take off the long sleeves.  It was warm out and I didn’t really want to look just like my friend…

Where are you Waldo??

Where are you Waldo??

I took my seam rippers and began taking the sleeves off at the seam.

Taking off the sleeves!

Taking off the sleeves!

Now that I was without the long sleeves and going for more of a cap look, I took in the top a few inches…

Sleeveless!!

Sleeveless!!

…paired it with jeans and a belt and had an outfit perfect for some vegging.

Vegging or ice cream cone-ing…whatever tickles your fancy.

Day 282 - After

Day 282 - After

Sugar cones with cappuccino chunk froyo??  Sign me up…  I think that I was in sugar overload as I passed out on the couch just minutes later.

Zzzz...

Zzzz...

Didn’t get to catch the last few minutes of the Boise State/Virginia Tech game due to my slight narcolepsy.  Thanks to my kind and adoring sibling for taking the shot of me in action.  Just lovely waking up to a flash in your face.

Day 281. 84 days and $85 left to go.

Los Angeles is in the middle of some serious warmth this weekend, probably to make up for the lack of it this past June, July and August.  If Labor Day is all about saying goodbye to summer, this is the best way to do it.  Gimme some rays. Gimme some sun.  Loving this hot. Hot. Heat!!

Day 281 - Before

Day 281 - Before

This muumuu was just the piece that was going to get me feeling cool while still channeling the summer at an afternoon BBQ.

Clearly we’re not going to attend looking as is, so let’s get to fixing it!

Can’t do sleeves, so we’re going to take them off!!

Early stages of total detachment!

Early stages of total detachment!

Out came the seam ripper and stitches were getting undone!  Off with the sleeves!!

One almost down, one to go!!

One almost down, one to go!!

I wanted to go short, so I trimmed off a good foot of material from the bottom of the muumuu.

Length trim!

Length trim!

Now we’re really going places!!  My new dress was sleeveless and shorter and getting closer to a wearable end point!!

Sleeveless!!!

Sleeveless!!!

I got out my sewing machine to create new seams around the arm holes which now had no sleeves attached.

Fixing Sleeves!!

Fixing Sleeves!!

I trimmed an extra bit of fabric (about two inches from the bottom)…

One last trim!

One last trim!

…which I’m going to be tying around the back of the dress.

View from behind...

View from behind...

I cut the material so there was two ends, gathered the material, and tied a bow in the back.

Bow time!!

Bow time!!

My dress was now complete for the day!!

Day 281 - After

Day 281 - After

It was just the thing to wear on this warm and lovely Sunday afternoon at the S’s.

From the back!!

From the back!!

The back of the dress was my favorite part and even as it got later on into the evening and began to cool down, I tried my best to go without my cardigan cover up.  Ooh, the price we pay (and warmth we feel) for fashion 🙂

Master of the grill RS was wheeling and dealing an assortment of divine and delicious meats throughout the day.

RS and his grill!!

RS and his grill!!

I mean, get a load of this pork that had been simmering for over 12 hours.

Pork!!!

Pork!!!

I’ve never tasted a pulled pork sandwich that was this amazing outside of Charlotte, NC.

We ate. We sat. We cleaned…

Clean Up Time...

Clean Up Time...

We couldn’t hit the dessert table just quite yet, so we did a little bottle gathering and dishwasher filling to work up an appetite.

After a little tidying up, we pulled out the desserts to find that the apple pie had a visitor already.  A small finger scoop of this delish treat was what we found missing and everyone was mum about who did it.  In a group of 20 people, everyone had poker faces.

Pie Bandit!!

Pie Bandit!!

My guess is Colonel Mustard with the lead pipe in the kitchen.

Day 278. 87 days and $88 left to go.

Today’s dress began as a zip front nightgown!!

Before - Day 278

Before - Day 278

I would have passed over this piece but I ended up taking it mostly because of the below…

Embroidery!!

Embroidery!!

I loved the embroidery (and the color in general) so I threw it in my bag of gear I found at the pile sale for a buck!!

I wanted to take this down the top road, so I had to get rid of the zipper.

Unzip and Pin!

Unzip and Pin!

I unzipped the top and pinned it together as this is where I was going to actually stitch the two halves in place.

Stitching down!

Stitching down!

After stitching this down, I cut out the zipper!!

Giddint rid of the zipper

Getting rid of the zipper

After the zipper was out, I cut the nightgown short, cut a strip of fabric from the excess that was going to work as my belt…

Cutting it short!

Cutting it short!

…and cut the sleeves so that they were shorter.

I headed back to my sewing machine to take in the new top a few inches as well  to make it a bit more fitted.

More sewing!!

More sewing!!

Belted, paired with a headband, and worn with some jeans my new top was less for sleepytime and more for hanging time and watching football time!

Day 278 - After

Day 278 - After

Got to see my fab gal JM…

We like posing for the cameras...

We like posing for the cameras...

…while I watched my team (USC) beat Hawaii on their first game this season.

Touchdown!!!

Touchdown!!!

I know we’re without a bowl game these next two years because of some shady activity by some folks…

Argh Reggie Bush!!

Argh Reggie Bush!! Gets a Super Bowl ring & loses a Heisman in a year...muy frustrante!!

…but I’m not saying any names, Reggie Bush.  I’ll still root just as hard.  And you can make sure that I’ll have some themed gear to accompany games over the next few months as well 🙂

Day 276. 89 days and $90 left to go.

Today was a bold and bright one!  I’m just warning you as this piece is literally fluorescent orange.  No joke. Fluorescent. Orange.  Ooh, and PS…it’s a muumuu too!!

Day 276 - Before

Day 276 - Before

Slightly blinding but exactly the wakeup call…this and my cup of Folgers 🙂

Holy Sleeves!

Holy Sleeves!

I grabbed my seam rippers and started undoing the seams right around the sleeves…

Clip the pits!

Clip the pits!

…until I got them completely off!!

No Mo!!

No Mo!!

I didn’t cut the length of the dress but just grabbed a braided belt, put it around my waist, ungathered it a bunch and had a new dress for my day!!

Day 276 - After

Day 276 - After

Went to grab a little Mexican with some friends and literally enjoyed a carne asada, chicken, and pulled pork trio for $3!!

Taco Tuesday!!

Taco Tuesday!!

Some tacos, margaritas, and fun company equals the best way to spend a pre-holiday weekend Tuesday night.  Now, this gal loves her some Taco Bell, however tonight’s dinner was cheaper than fast food!!

Margie time!!

Margie time!!

I mean, a mid-week margie?  Sign me up…Mexican food is the key to my heart.