Thursday, August 30, 2012

Gibson Gal

I'll save you the speech on Charles Dana Gibson and the Gibson Girl, and you can look them if you don't already know and are interested. Suffice it to say that the image below is one of Gibson's Girls, and the images after that are me, doing my very best to emulate one of Gibson's Gals.

Homemade 1970s pseudo-Victorian/Edwardian blouse, presumably made from a Gunne Sax pattern. I got it for $15 at the PCC Swap Meet in Pasadena, California. I'm absolutely crazy about it, despite my mother saying "Aren't you just horribly offended by the ZIPPER showing in the back?"

Um, no, I'm not. I mean, I wouldn't reenact in this, but it's too turn-of-the-century for the Civil War, anyway, so no worries there.

I find it entertaining that this next one looks like I'm green-screened onto the background, when I can guarantee you I was actually there. It's just my college campus, after all.

The enameled teaset ring is Betsey Johnson, but I got it cheap on eBay. :)

The bronze-tone teaset ring, however, I ordered online from Forever21 about a year ago. I've since repaired it incorrectly, so the teapot is not facing the wrong way, but I'm not too miffed about that.

I picked up the pseudo-Victorian/Edwardian boots in Tombstone, AZ, a couple years back. They're probably my favorite shoes that I own.

The cotton skirt was my grandmother's, given to me a few Christmases back. I LOVE this one. It's extremely comfortable (although honestly comfort was not a factor today, I'll talk more about that later) and cute.

This is the pose that reminds me most of an actual Gibson Girl.
So what happened is this: Last night, I thought it'd be chill to lounge around in Victorian-esque lingerie (namely split-panel drawers, which I made; a reproduction corset from eBay; and an ankle-length chemise), which I just happen to have kind of laying around my closet, so I did. I ended up sleeping in that (yes, even the corset, and no, that's probably not a good idea), and so this morning it seemed like an even better idea to go out in full pseudo-Gibson Girl regalia, so I did.
In other words, I went out into a late-August Texas morning/afternoon wearing 1) Bloomers, 2) a Corset, 3) a Chemise, 4) Socks, 5) leather Boots, 6) a long-sleeved Blouse, 7) a heavy cotton Skirt, and 8) Jewelry. Thank the gods I at least had my hair up, and the weather was more manageable than usual (not terribly humid and a somewhat reasonable temperature in the shade).
But, seriously, I'm not complaining. This is something I legitimately enjoy, and I brought it entirely upon myself. I knew what I was getting into, and I enjoyed it thoroughly, and I haven't changed yet, so that's that.

OMG I'm showing leg. Send Godey's a telegram, quick, this is a serious offense.

Wishing you all the very best,
<3 Lovely Wednesday

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Je ne sais quoi

Alice in Wonderland is absolutely a fashion inspiration to me, and always has been. I should do a compilation post about that. I think I will. When I wear headbands, especially headbands with bows, I tend to think about that, especially when there's something blue in my outfit. Today, it's a blue headband with a bow, blue and gold eyeshadow, and blue/green/yellow hair.

I got these soaring sparrow earrings on clearance in a shop in the mall that houses the train station in Utrecht. That was kind of a long sentence, but that's that. I really like them, and they were really cheap. I hope I don't develop an allergy to cheap jewelry, because I do love it so.

This picture seems especially evocative of Alice to me.

The dress is either from Ross or Marshalls or TJ Maxx, and I got it in Carson City around Christmastime last year because the sleeves reminded me vaguely of Morticia Addams. The Addams Family is kind of close to my heart (hence my alias Lovely Wednesday).

There's something about overexposed and oversaturated images that I can't resist.

<3 Lovely Wednesday

Monday, August 27, 2012


Dear Readers,
I did my hair!!!
I was going to do the roots blue, so I bleached my roots first... and then I like it so much that I decided to put the blue on the bottom instead. I used Splat! Blue Envy, and did it myself in the bathroom between 12am and 2am Saturday night. I am in love with my hair right now. In LOVE. Maybe platonic, maybe heavily sexual. :P You decide.

Both the shirt and the sandals are beautiful hand-me-downs from Queen Maryjean, circa 1980s I think.

The lace skirt I made myself, without a pattern, on the spur of the moment because I was motivated to sew and the fabric I wanted to use for a shirt needed to be washed first. My Bernina wouldn't take to one layer of the lace, so the gathering had to be done by hand. The raw edges are finished with a zig-zag, but it's polyester and I'm not really worried about fraying. The scallops were on both selvedges, the fabric was 60" wide, and I had 2 yards of it, so I cut it in half lengthwise and sewed it together to make 4 yards of fullness, gathered the raw edge by hand, and top-stitched it to a crushed velvet waistband--not the best choice without interfacing, but it was what I had laying around, and it works fine. Plus, it's super comfy and has stretch. I sewed in a flat hook and eye on the waistband, and a set of snaps on the opening in the lace. It could use another snap, but it's not a huge deal. I mean... it's a lace skirt, I'm not exactly worried about people seeing through a tiny opening.

Locket ring from Starlight Jewelry (I think?) on Etsy.

Lying on a fake beach
You'll never get a tan
Baby I'm gonna leave you drowning until you reach for my hand.

In the night your heart is full and by the morning empty
But baby I'm the one who left you, you're not the one who left me.

I love the yellow-blonde of my roots. However, trust me, blonde looks terrible on me as an all-over thing. 
I look crazy pink in the worst of ways. With blue ends? Not so!

When you're around me, I'm radioactive
My blood is burning, radioactive
I'm turning radioactive
My blood is radioactive
My heart is nuclear
Love is all that I fear
I'm turning radioactive
My blood is radioactive

This beautiful black velvet blouse zips up the back, and the neckline is decorated with hand-sewn imitation pearls and rhinestones. I feel like a princess going around in this!

Waiting for the nightfall, for my heart to light up
Oh baby I want you to die for, for you to die for my love.

Thank you for reading, mes amis. 
The lyrics (captions that are not my commentary) are taken from Marina and the Diamonds' song Radioactive. Marina is a wonderful beautiful artist and woman, and that's all I have to say. An added note, don't worry, the lyrics are not descriptive of my relationship right now, although I have in the past connected with this song. Right now, I just really admire her as an artist, and Radioactive seemed an appropriate name for this hair-based outfit post separate from the song. <3

All my love,
Lovely Wednesday

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Back to Birds and Flowers

Oh, how I have missed my wardrobe.
Feel free to give me the sarcastic "Oh, poor you, you only had HALF your oversize collection of wearables for the last 9 months. I FEEL SO SORRY FOR YOU."  I get it. I have no right to have missed dressing like this when it's not like I didn't have enough to wear, but I missed it anyway.
In any case, sarcasm or no sarcasm, I'm now back at college and reunited with my more fun clothes, including my bird collection and my socks and tights collection. I may or may not have taken serious advantage of that situation today. Check it out:

A note on tomatoes, since they're in the background here. My roommate keeps putting my tomatoes in the fridge, which is not where they belong. If your wonderful, delicious tomatoes keep going pale and mealy on the inside, it's because you're keeping them in the fridge.

My old birds!!

Got these princessy earrings at the Pasadena City College Swap Meet a few weeks ago for a dollar. This is why I love swap meets.

So the Japanese girls have this nifty trick, this thing called sock glue (or sock-tachi), to keep socks from falling down. I think it was invented specifically for the loose socks trend there, but I need it for when I convert tights into socks, like I did here by meticulously cutting the top of the tights off.

Just kidding, it wasn't meticulous. I was like, SNIP, done.

I don't have sock-tachi, though. What I do have is first-aid tape, so I wrapped the first aid tape (non-sticky side down) real tight around my leg above my calves and below my knees and stuck it to itself, pulled my socks (née tights) up, and pressed it against the tape's sticky side. I didn't know if it would work, but (surprise!) it did.

Ring purchased on etsy. I think it was Starlight Jewelry or something like that.

A bunch of polishes I don't remember under Sally Hansen white crackle. I was not really happy with the white crackle, as it's somewhat transparent (and two coats are not an option), and it separated more into strings/strands than chips. Oh well. :P

I'll see y'all later, I'ma go catch up on Project Runway with my friend Ethan. Yay!
<3 LW

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Nailed It!

The following are some of the more recent nail designs I have done. Two are on my stepmom (who always comes up with the most interesting suggestions--in the past she's requested salad, Jewish fish, and Lady Slippers, for example), one is on my friend the Fairy Girl, and one is on my stepsister.

Hummingbird Nails

This hummingbird design was requested by my stepmom a week or two ago, and we kept just barely running out of time to do it. Last night, I was finally able to do her hummingbird nails. This is probably the most difficult design I've ever done on someone else, because hummingbirds need a lot of detail to be recognizable as hummingbirds and not some other unidentified flying object, and because they need to be pretty small to fit on a nail (sometimes two to a nail). I painted out a lot of really bad hummingbirds on paper before I finally found a way to do one that I was happy with, and then came the pressure of painting twenty-something of them on someone else's moving body parts (no matter how still you think you're being, I promise you that you are moving), and we actually did half of them before dinner and the other hand after dinner because it was so time-consuming. Hand Two, though, went much faster as I had kind of gotten into a groove with it. I was actually really amazed with myself that I was happy with all the hummingbirds when it was done (I did do an experiment with a lily flower on one of the nails in white, but wiped it off with nail polish remover and patched the pink polish right after I decided I hated it).

This design is painted with red, black, and white acrylic paint on top of a weirdly cool pink polish that I don't know the name of (I think it says Paris on it and came from Marshall's, but no guarantees) from some set I know nothing about except that it was a good deal and had three awesome colors in it (a pastel pink, a pale blue, and a black/red metallic kind of thing).

Pink Leopard 

This design was for Fairy Girl (Can you see why we call her that? She's aDORable!!), and while kind of time consuming because of the crazy amount of layers involved was actually really easy. I've done this before in blue without glitter, which makes this one of only two designs I've ever done twice (although I've actually done this one now three times as Fairy Girl requested this exact thing done to her again two weeks later for a party; the other design I did twice was an under the sea sort of thing, although the two versions were pretty different from each other and the first version was, in my opinion, better). She couldn't possibly have been happier with it. Seriously, you should have seen her face. Oh, wait--it's right there, you can see it. :D

Seriously, that's the best part of doing these, is seeing how thrilled people are to have little artworks on their fingernails. People are fascinated and impressed and excited, and it thrills me to make them feel that way, which is why, although I request a donation to do the nails of people I don't really know and offer nail jobs as trades for rides and cooking ingredients, I also paint the nails of anyone who'll sit still long enough when I'm inspired.

The Pink Leopard is two coats of a color called Zippy by who-knows-who-made-it, a coat of purple glitter by some-company-or-other (Sorry, I should write this sort of thing when my nail polish and I are in the same house!), a 99-cent topcoat, silver foil from (applied with their foil glue), and black acrylic paint, plus two more topcoats.

Habanero Nails

My stepmom requested these because she and my dad (and myself, for that matter, and my brother's assimilating) are crazy about hot peppers. We basically buy Albertson's out of their habanero stock whenever we go there, and our front porch is now a jungle of exotic hot peppers (you can see them in Voldemort Can't Stop the Rock). Point being, habaneros are a big, important thing at our house (we cut up four or five of them each night for dinner between us), so I was expecting her to request habanero nails sooner or later. :)

These pictures were taken almost a week and a half after the nails were painted, so there has been some chipping at the tips, but they held up quite well overall. The gray is I think called "concrete," and it's by NYC if my memory serves me well. The silver overlay on the ring fingers is by Sinful Colors, and I don't know what it's called. Sorry. The yellow-and-green vines and the orange-and yellow peppers are mixed from my yellow, blue, and red acrylic paints. I topcoated twice, of course.

Graduation Flower Fix

My stepsister had regular French acrylics done at a nail salon near her boarding school in Arizona the day before her graduation, and despite her being very clear with the nail tech about precisely what she did and did not want, the nail tech did pretty much exactly what she didn't want. While I don't have the supplies or the know-how to do or fix acrylics, I could at least do some patchwork to distract from the too-low tip-placement. I tried two other simple black designs on her nails before I came up with something she was happy with. I cannot tell you how relieved I was that she loved the flowers idea as much as I did, because it turns out I'm much better at nail art than I am at customer service. In any case, we finally came up with a solution everyone was happy with, and she was thrilled with how it looked, and how well it distracted from the shitty acrylics (pardon my French).

Lest I sound disrespectful to the nail tech, I'd like to elaborate: even if the aesthetics of the tip placement, the too-shirt filing job, and the use of white tips instead of clear ones (clear tips with a more natural-looking French paint job were explicitly requested) were satisfactory and in accordance with my sister's requests, the acrylics were simply done wrong. The tips used were too big for her nails, so were painful when everything dried. The nail tech cut my sister's nails too short so that the nail glue attached to her fingers instead of just her nails, causing more discomfort. Furthermore, too much acrylic was applied on top of the nails and tips, and it was applied unevenly and overly thickly, so instead of looking like part of her nail they looked like they were sitting on top of her nails. My sister did still pay the full price, although, to be honest, I would not have.

My patch was just black acrylic paint and topcoat. To be fair, though, it is still looking good a week later. :)

Woo! Now you're up-to-date on all my nail adventures (how did you ever manage without knowing?)! :P

That's all for now.
<3 Lovely