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Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Manicure Time!

I haven't posted in 2 days because I couldn't think of anything to blog about. I painted my nails last night with some new polish I hadn't used yet so I figured I would blog/review about those polishes.

Unlike my good friend, Fiberluxe, who reviews some awesome polishes, I am lazy and cheap so I choose to review cheap $1-2 polishes. I figured, "Hey. Someone's gotta review the cheap polishes too, eh?" Don't get me wrong, I do have some more pricey polishes in my collection like Essie and some new Zoya polishes (Wednesday and Myrta from the Beach and Surf Summer 2012 Collection) I bought on the Zoya site the other day that I CANNOT wait to try!

Saturday, July 28, 2012

[TUTORIAL] Removable Shoe Wings

Some of you may know the Greek messenger god, Hermes. He's best known for his winged sandals that allowed him to move quickly and even fly. I am a fan of anything with wings. Birds, angels, bats, you name it. (Well, maybe not bugs.) I've always been fascinated with how birds and bats fly and been trying to draw them for years.

I saw these shoes on eBay last night and I remember pinning The Dainty Squid's removable shoe fringe tutorial and an amazing idea formed in my jumbled mind...


GENIUS! I haven't had an original idea in awhile (crafting wise) so I immediately dropped everything I was doing (aka making more cigarette ankle pants) and dug through my fabric stash for some faux leather and grabbed my black oxford ankle booties from the closet. And thus, these were born:

I love them so much. I might even make bat wing ones for Halloween.

Here's the tutorial (and pattern) for it!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

[TUTORIAL] Hooked on Fishtail Skirts

I'm at it again! Ever since I made that fishtail skirt the other day, I've wanted a lighter, flow-y one that would flutter behind me as I walked.

Outfits I devised to go with my new fishtail skirt. I like the far left and far right best.
So, I decided to use some vintage floral lightweight fabric I found in my stash that I inherited from my grandmother. I have devised a mini-tutorial of sorts on how I made it.

There was a lot of flying-by-the-seat-of-my-pants in this post. I made up stuff on the fly and nearly literally set my skirt on fire. We'll get to that part in the tutorial....

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Comforting Tuna Casserole

As a Southern girl, I love comfort food. My husband and I have lived most of our lives in the South so we grew up with awesome dishes like casseroles, real barbecue, fried chicken, fried catfish, grits, and corn bread. In reality, I never took a liking to either grits or cornbread, but my husband loves all of the above.

Today's post is about a casserole. No, not green bean casserole, mind you. I won't post that recipe until closer to the holidays along with my infamous sausage balls recipe. I present to you...... tuna casserole!

As usual, I've made variations of this tuna casserole through the years so there is no definite recipe. The one I made last night was as close to the original as I hoped to get.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Hmmm.... Doughnuts!

You guys! My air conditioning is working again! Hooray!!!

So, my nonexistent sweet tooth got the better of me. You can ask my husband because I rarely crave anything sweet. He, on the other hand, LOVES sweets. His ideal desserts would be cakes, pie, cookies, ice cream, and candy. My mom usually gave me fresh fruit for dessert as I was growing up. We rarely got ice cream or cake for dessert and that was only a few times a year.

I saw this amazing pin on Pinterest a few days ago and I had to make it. I used this recipe by Christy Jordan from Southern Plate. It is AMAZING!

Monday, July 23, 2012

Fishy Fishtail Skirts

You guys. It's freaking HOT! So my air conditioning has been broken for over 24 hours now and our landlord won't send anyone to fix it till Monday morning! UGGGH... I know I grew up without A/C, but I'm now spoiled by it's goodness. I would like it back, plz. :(

My craft room is sweltering but I shall keep on crafting!!!! I have managed to make one using Morning by Morning's maxi skirt tutorial.

I didn't want one maxi length so I made a shorter version above the knee length that tapered to right above my calves in the back

Saturday, July 21, 2012

JWo's Super Awesome Spaghetti Sauce

Hello everyone! Let me start today's post with a moment of silence for the victims and families affected by the Aurora, Colorado movie theater shooting.

Today's post is going to be a recipe of my infamous spaghetti sauce. I've made this sauce for about 6 years now for many friends and family and they LOVE it. I've had people request it even though I haven't seen them in years.

The problem with me and recipe blog posts is that I am a cook. Not a baker. For those of you that are confused, cooks don't measure ingredients, but bakers do. I NEVER measure anything. I just throw in about how much I think it needs and hope to God that it tastes good. So far, I haven't messed up......... much.

Also, another problem is that about every time I make this spaghetti sauce it tastes different because I add different spices every time. I actually don't remember what the real recipe is so..... yeah. So, today I am going to make the basic sauce! Let's begin!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

[TUTORIAL] Dress Pants to Skinny Ankle (Cigarette) Pants

Woah! I've been up FOREVER! Well, since 1pm yesterday, took a small nap, but I've been up since! I even ran this morning at 6am!

So, this post is about what I've done all night. I'm a little slow on fashion trends, but I LOVE those ankle length skinny pants, otherwise known as "cigarette" pants. While I was studying abroad in London in June 2007, these were already in style and I saw them EVERYWHERE in Camden Town. The one thing that's different with these new pants are that they're more sleek and office-approved than the skin tight cigarettes of the UK.

MONTHS ago, I bought 3 pairs of dress slacks at the thrift store: navy, black, and grey. I had the intention of making these into cigarette pants, but I FINALLY got around to trying one this morning. I found Miss Allie Jane's tutorial and was inspired! Don't get me wrong, I love her tutorial, but it didn't seem to go into deep detail so I decided to make my own tutorial covering all the little things.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Nail Fail: Scalloped French Manicures

I'm sorry everyone. I didn't post yesterday and this post will explain why. Today's post is not what you expect. Well, I would hope by now you could guess by the title.

So, I tried to do a nail polish manicure tutorial with something I had not really seen done. I was attempting a scalloped-edge French manicure. It took me 4 TRIES and I finally gave up. First time, I didn't wait long enough for the base color to try before putting on the scotch tape and it pulled up ALL of the base polish. :(

Second try, I let the base polish dry for 1 1/2 hours! And it STILL pulled up the polish when I pulled the tape off!!!!!!!! ARRRGHHHHH. The other 2 tries? Me just smearing the crap out of the polish and having to redo them. So, I just gave up and painted my nails neon yellow.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Tattoo Your Heart On My Shoulder

Today's post is a little different from most that I do. This one is a little more on the personal side of things. I saw a post on Twitter from a friend of mine asking for opinions on a tattoo she wanted to get. So I tweeted back with a few suggestions. She popped up online and we ran through a few things and I took out a 3x5 index card and started sketching away...

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Sweltering Summer Days: Lemon (or Lime!) Mint Tea Recipe

I don't know about you guys, but it's HOT here in Mississippi. Who am I kidding? It's ALWAYS hot (and FREAKING HUMID) every summer in the South. Ugh.

In order to stay cool on these horrendously hot days, I make iced tea! Being the southerner that I am, it's gotta be sweetened, of course! To tell you the truth, I got out of drinking sweet tea for over a year since I moved out of my old place. My old roommates used to drink (VERY) sweet tea like water! I would watch my roommate brew sweet tea and pour an ENTIRE highball glass (12 ounces!!!!) of sugar in the pitcher.

I've been experimenting with different tea concoctions the last few weeks and my favorite is to brew green (or black) tea with peppermint tea since it adds a nice hint of minty-ness and refreshing taste. My husband HATES tea (he only drinks milk and water and very rarely some juices) so I get the entire pitcher to myself!

Alright! Let's get started!

Saturday, July 14, 2012

DIY Sweetheart Bandeau Top [with link to tutorial]

Strapless tops were never one of my favorite pieces of apparel. I was a bit self conscious about my shoulders and since most of them were tight fitting, it made me dread my lower stomach pooch.

This summer, I've been looking for new pieces to wear and I found this tutorial by fake-leather via Pinterest. It looked pretty simple and I tried it out on a spaghetti strap tank I already owned but never wore.

The verdict?

I LOVE it! I've made 5 of them in different colors! The tops look especially cute with skirts and a big belt so it hides my stomach pooch quite well.

There are a few steps not covered in the tutorial that I'm going to run through.

I started with this coral colored tank:

In fake-leather's tutorial, it doesn't seem like her top had a built-in shelf bra. I really hate shelf bras with a passion and despite looking high and low for a tank that DID NOT have one, all I found were ones WITH shelf bras.

So, I'm going to show you how to cut out that shelf bra and take off the straps! All you need is a pair of sharp scissors, a steady hand, and patience. 

First, find the side seams and pick which ever side to start cutting.

Next, start cutting from the bottom where the elastic is. Cut along the seam and then veer off either left or right. Your preference.

From here, just cut carefully around the upper part near the top elastic all the way around. Be careful and try not to cut the fabric on the back side or you'll have holes show up when you wear it. A good way to prevent is to take it slow and keep your hand under the bra to make sure the scissors are between the shelf bra and tank fabric. 

After you've finished that, you can cut straight across on the front of the tank (see fake-leather's tutorial) but don't cut the back straps yet! I've found if you just cut it off, it's left with these irritating "nubs" that will dig into your backside when you wear it and makes it 100x hard to sew through on your machine or by hand.

So, take your seam ripper or your scissors and carefully find the threads that hold down your straps and snip them ONE AT A TIME. 

Do this for both straps and now you're just left with the strapless tank body to finish! Follow the rest of fake-leather's [tutorial] and you're on your way to a cute sweetheart bandeau top for summer!!!

Here's how mine turned out! (Disregard the dusty mirror and stomach pooch.)

Friday, July 13, 2012

Thrift Shopping 101

Hey guys! Today's post is about thrift shopping! It's one of my favorite things to do besides napping and crafting. I was going through my closet the other day to look for things to donate and I realized that about 70% of my clothes and over half of my shoes were from some form of thrift store. 

I'm not a professional at thrifting, but I believe I've gotten pretty good at it. I wasn't always such a big fan of thrift stores, believe it or not. Don't get me wrong, I've always been cheap and I try to buy everything on sale. Before my mom passed away in 2004, she taught me that thrift stores were places where only poor people shopped and even said, "Why would you want to buy that stuff? Someone's died in it." So, before ever setting foot into a thrift store, that was my general belief of them. It's not like she taught us to blow money or spend extravagantly. My mother taught my siblings and I to be frugal and buy EVERYTHING on sale (or try very hard to). After my mom passed, my family and I went through and donated a lot of her clothes to the local Salvation Army. That was the first time I had actually ever set foot into a thrift store and took interest in buying anything. I was enthralled at the mix of interesting and weird things. While some stuff was icky and old, some was pretty fashionable.

My thrifting habits didn't really kick in until I got into college in 2006 when my friends and I got into a reconing clothes phase. Since then, I rather shop at thrift stores than retail! My husband is still iffy about thrift clothing but he enjoys looking for interesting thrift furniture and books. On our honeymoon to Flagstaff, AZ (big hipster city), instead of going shopping at the retail stores, we went thrift store shopping!

Some of my thrifted goodies! Many name brands like Gap, Old Navy, Banana Republic, Anne Taylor Loft, J. Jill, Patagonia, Fossil, Coach, Ellemeno, Anne Klein, H&;M... to name a few. Even the frame for that dry erase calendar was thrifted!

Okay, enough about me! I'm going to give you a rundown on the general beliefs, pros/cons, and then end with thrifting tips with links to sources and good blogs on thrifting! If you're a veteran at thrifting, you may already know most of these tips. These are mainly for those starting up in thrifting and beginners. Get ready to READ!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

[TUTORIAL] How to Add a Sash/Bow Tie to a Button-up

Hey guys! You may have seen my other tutorial on how to enlarge a button-up and make it into a removable bow tie shirt. In this short tutorial, I will show you guys how to add a bow tie/sash to the collar of a shirt.

A few considerations before you begin:

-The collar on my button-up is a mandarin-style collar so this tutorial only explains how to add a sash to that type of collar.
-If you have a shirt with an actual fold over, pointed collar (like any normal button up), I would recommend just using my tutorial linked above to make a removeable sash.
-Here is a no-sew tutorial on how to make your collared shirt into a mandarin collar shirt. Attaching a sash will be a bit different than my method since this isn't a true mandarin collar.

Let's begin!

[TUTORIAL] Removable Bowtie Shirt & How to Enlarge A Shirt

Hey guys! It's Tutorial-Tuesday! (Not really. I am not motivated enough to post a self-made tutorial every week.) Today, I'm going to show you guys how to ENLARGE a shirt that's too small and how to alter a long-sleeved button-up into a sleeveless bow-tie button-up.

I was inspired by Extra Petite's tutorial on how to transform a button-up to sleeveless bow-tie top except the shirt I had was TOO SMALL for my busty Asian self. I may be petite, but I was unfortunately (hehe not) blessed with my grandmother's Amazonian Asian genes of bustiness.

So, I shall show you the ways of enlarging a shirt!

Sunday, July 8, 2012

***UPDATE*** Nude but not naked! Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure - Café Au Lait Polish Review!

In order to keep my blog updated more than once every 2 years, I have decided to write posts on subjects other than crafts and my Etsy store. This one is a nail polish review!

To tell you the truth, I am terrible at painting my nails and other people's nails. I'm that girl at the slumber party that can't paint your nails and makes the other girls do it for her. I get polish EVERYWHERE. Cuticles, hands, carpet, you name it. Before 2012, I believe that that last time my nails were painted (other than the french manicure Ashlei did for my wedding) was my sophomore year of college for "Emo Day" when my friends Ashlei and Lauren and I decided to dress emo and stroll about campus trolling folks.

This year, Ashlei got into a big nail polish kick and I joined in. Being a nurse, it's nearly impossible to have nice nails, but I tried it out anyway. Since I'm currently a housewife, I can have the nicest nails ever! (jk NOT) I wanted nude colored nails and Ashlei and I had the discussion of how cool it would be to have a nude polish that would match your skin tone.

So, today I went to CVS on a hunt for Burt's Bees Blemish Stick and somehow ended up in the nail polish aisle and found Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure in "Café Au Lait.

Since I'm Asian and have yellowish undertones, I figured this color would look close to my skin tone.