Thursday, June 20, 2019

re-fashioning a wide pant leg to a slimmer leg (shown on a jumpsuit)

It took me a reeeeaaaaaaalllllyyyy long time to warm up to jumpsuits. Well... that's not entirely true. I have always loved the look of military or work-wear type jumpers:

image 0
Rosie the Riveter anyone????

 but somehow can't seem to pull those off without looking like Mario or Luigi the plumber cousins (yes the Nintendo ones)...I basically was disgusted by the more feminine ones I kept seeing pop up, but then I saw these one day browsing some nerdy fashion history website:

Image result for vintage jumpsuit 40s 50s
Image result for vintage jumpsuit 1940s

and I started to change my mind. You see, the issue I think, is that all the modern jumpsuits I was seeing didn't have these amazing vintage silhouettes. The modern versions tend to have wide legs, which are actually also slowly growing on me, but unfortunately I don't feel like my body type is best complimented by those shapes.

SO. when I stumbled across a very inexpensive Target jumpsuit on a clearance rack in my size, with a floral print, colors , and buttons, I just couldn't pass it up. 

I mean...look at it!!!

I acknowledge my vertical challenged-ness, which once again, doesn't look all that great with this silhouette, and my little mind went to work thinking of how I could make my treasure even better, and look more like a vintage jumpsuit. 

I quickly realized it was all in the legs...this jumpsuit already had the upper silhouette of the 40s-50s ones I loved so much in the bodice, and I didn't want to mess with the buttons either. So I set out to work. 

At first I thought maybe I could just put elastic in the hems of the legs to make it tighter around my calves...I ended up just looking like an extra from Aladdin (yikes...) so I removed the elastics and went back to the drawing board.

After some serious racking in my brain I remember I had once taken in a pair of skinny jeans when I was in college, and vaguely remembered the process. I figured that really might work for the lower portion of this jumpsuit. After some trial and error, I got to work on taking in the legs of my jumpsuit. Below is a sketch of the process with numbered directions, keeping in mind, I am by no means an expert seamstress...this is perfect for the lazy and the beginner sewer :D

1. turn your pantalons of choice inside out

2. tear out the hems from the bottom

3. wear the pantalons inside out, and play around with the fabric to figure out how tight you want it, you definitely don't want to make it skin tight depending on your fabric content because your foot is still going to need to fit through the hem opening...once you have a good idea of what you want your new leg to look like, start pinning. Make sure you are pinching excess fabric and pinning on the INNER seam. Stop pinning when you reach the crotch seam. Don't mess with that...unless you want to do extra work later HA

4. remove the pants and get yourself some chalk in a color you can easily see against the fabric

5. chalk along the interior of the pins (between the pins and the original inner seam)

6. sew along your chalk line, removing pins as you go

7. try on your pants right side out, to see what the fit is like, you can go back and pick out seams and re-sew if stuff looks wonky at this point, but once you feel happy with the new fit...

8. turn the pants back to their inside out form, and cut off all the excess fabric on that original inner seam...unless you like the bunched up look and feel of all that extra fabric, then by all means skip this step :p

9. While in their inside out state, re-hem the pants. I'm ultra lazy and on my lightweight cotton jumpsuit saw no reason to actually sew the hem so I used heat n' bond hem tape and an iron lolz...but obviously you can sew the hems back on as well.

10. Enjoy your newly tapered pants!

PS: I used the excess fabric to make a long ribbon type thing...which could be worn as a waist tie or headband! I felt pretty clever

Hope you enjoyed this tutorial! How do you feel about wide leg jumpsuits? Do you feel like you might try to taper some pants with this method? Let me know in the comments :)


Monday, June 17, 2019

styling hacks for when you don't feel like going sleeveless

Picture this: you've got a tank or sleeveless dress that is begging to be worn...and you can't quite bring yourself to wear it as-is. There are many reasons why you might not want to go sleeveless this summer. Maybe the weather in your neck of the woods really isn't all that summery (side eye at Texas...), maybe you just don't like to bare your shoulders, maybe the occasion calls for more modesty, maybe you got a bad sunburn or other injury you want to personal reasons are religious but I realize that doesn't necessarily apply to everyone so here is a quick little styling guide on how to transform that sleeveless stunner into one with a little more coverage. 

Between the pictures of me awkwardly walking away on train tracks are the 5 key things to consider when styling sleeveless to go sleeve-ful (? lol)

similar dress/similar blouse/similar shoes






I ranked the categories in what I consider, order of importance. Let's dive in...


This is honestly a personal preference...I think in a majority of cases you can't really go wrong with layering something over your main item. It just tends to look better in most cases, simply because there are so many choices ...cardigans, blazers, jackets, boleros, button down shirts, shawls, you get the picture. Layering under can prove to be a little trickier, but can be very cute when done correctly. The key I think is to consider the other factors when making your decision.

*as a general rule I don't recommend putting plain t-shirts under things, it harks back to the early 2000's styles for me and most sleeveless things deserve something a little nicer to elevate the style when adding coverage*


Consider the following when thinking of how to alter your dress or tank or whatever sleeveless item...
Some consider a cap-sleeve to be sleeveless, there are flutter sleeve/pinafore type sleeveless, there are spaghetti straps all the way to muscle-tank type straps.

 Next, the shape and length of the item. Is the dress flared? Fitted? Loose? Does it have buttons or a tie waist? Where is the waist? How long is the dress? These are all things to take into account because that will determine what type of coverage to add. For instance, I wouldn't put a blouse under a cap sleeve or thicker tank sleeve; too much bulk and similarity in cut of the sleeves.  

With the cherry dress, it has an adorable bustier top, and a nipped in waist with a tie back that leads to a flared skirt. I didn't want to interfere with or hide those features with either way I styled it.  I could have just as easily paired it with a cropped jean jacket or biker jacket if I wanted to add a bit of an edge to the outfit, but I chose to go with "period" appropriate layering pieces. The cherry print dress is very retro, 40s-50s, and so I chose a vintage velvet bolero in a coordinating green hue below, and a vintage reproduction silky blouse to go under the dress above. 
similar bolero (this is a one-of-a-kind vintage item)

I'm going to lump together color and print between the two sleeveless dresses I chose to feature. Colors of items should coordinate (they don't necessarily have to match). Beyond pulling inspiration from the existing colors of the main item it is usually safe to pair neutrals as your layering pieces, while considering the tones of the sleeveless item: cool tones will look better with navy and grey pairing items, warm tones with browns and tans, white and black tend to go with nearly everything. 

If the print is already loud on your main item, try to tone down the print you mix it with, small prints very neutral colors like tiny polka dots, or stripes, or keep it solid. And vice versa, if your main item is solid or subtly printed, go a little bolder with your color or print. 

I had two pretty bold prints and color palettes to start with. Hence me sticking to solid colored items... 

similar dress/espadrille wedges/similar shawl


 The last thing to consider is the style you're going for. Like I mentioned earlier, the cherry dress could have been paired with so many options, but I chose to go full retro, because that was my mood that day. The second dress is much more casual and bohemian. Which is why I went a little more boho casual with the styling. I'm all for mixing styles however, and there is absolutely nothing wrong with pairing ultra-sweet feminine dresses with tough leather jackets, or super structured dresses with flowy cardigans. 

The last styling tip I have is if you like a dress, but maybe not necessarily the top of the dress...or if you want to expand your wardrobe in ways you didn't think possible, look below. You can pull a closed or buttoning top over the top of the dress to disguise the top of the dress completely and make it look like  a top and skirt. Bada-boom new outfit! I recommend putting a belt with it too, to add structure to the whole thing and accentuate the waistline. 

olive green blouse/similar belt

Sunday, January 27, 2019

Creative color-blocking: goldenrod and fuchsia

dress/t-strap leather clogs/tights
You know it's a good outfit when your husband begs you not to curse his family for not carrying your old little frail self up a mountain...(if you haven't seen the movie Holes or read the book of the same name, I apologize for you missing the reference to the fabulous Madame Zeroni)

similar headband/similar earrings
 This color combination is one that was initially a huge step out of my comfort zone. I love goldenrod yellow, but I would never have thought to pair it with fuchsia (even though they're complementary colors so IDK why I never thought about it before???). I was in a huge rush to get ready today so this whole look was kind of a gamble. Having to teach on Sundays for 9 AM church is a brutal learning curve I am adjusting to, but I *think* I made it work, and managed to come out with my rat's nest hair being well hidden by the Madame Zeroni-esque velvet turban headband. 

Now that I am seeing how this dress photographed I realize that I should probably (who am I kidding...definitely) iron it if I ever plan to get it photographed again hahaha. Today was a beautiful respite from some of the cooler temperatures we have been experiencing in the DFW area. Which means I was able to wear my beloved Lotta clogs (linked above) and this whole ensemble without having ice-cubes for eyeballs and frostbite all over. 

What are some color combinations that you would like to see featured or that you've tried and were surprised that you liked? I'd love to hear from you guys!