Saturday, April 27, 2013

Friday Fashion: How I Would Wear Stripes with Florals

What I love about mixing floral prints with stripes is that it's pretty foolproof.  Pretty much any combination of stripes and florals will look good together (as long as the stripes are black-and-white).  I saw these two images awhile ago and completely fell in love with the look of stripes and floral prints together.

via Sunday Crossbow

via Life Unsweetened, which is a blog that I highly recommend

So then I created my own outfits with stripes and floral print.  I made them in Polyvore, of course, since I still haven't bought a black and white striped shirt or black and white striped jeans.

This is the super bold version:

I feel like if you're going to go this bold with your prints, you should stick to neutral colored shoes and accessories, in similar shades.  I think this would be a super cute outfit for date night or even for work, depending on where you work.  And each piece in this outfit is under $50! (Okay, the dress is $51, but it's close.)  You can recreate this look even more affordably if you already own some similar pieces or if you shop at thrift stores.

This is a more subtle way of mixing your stripes and florals (as subtle as you can be with black and white striped jeans, anyway!)  You could make it even more subtle with light grey and white striped jeans.

I couldn't really decide on one floral top, so I made an outfit for three different tops.  I would definitely wear all three of these outfits.  I think the brown bags and shoes that match the top add a fun touch while still keeping it more subtle.  I would add a blazer, cardigan, or jacket with each, because I live in Seattle, but I ran out of space, so you can use your imagination.

I think that mixing florals with stripes is a really cute and fun idea for spring.

Friday, April 26, 2013


I had every intention of actually posting the Friday Fashion today that I had postponed from last week. I swear that I did.  But then I ended up working today.  And instead of the 4 hours I normally work, I worked 9 hours and 40 minutes.  It was fun; I got to help my boss design some really cool new jewelry, but I am tired.  And I am going to hang out with my friend soon, and make (and eat!) gluten-free brownies and watch movies.  It's for my birthday.  You know, the one that I had on January 28th?  We haven't had free time at the same time to celebrate until tonight, so I will not cancel.  I'll post the Friday Fashion tomorrow.  For reals this time, hopefully.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

On Being Content

Lately I've been finding myself trudging through certain parts of life and waiting for others.  Working during the week and longing for the weekend.  Wishing the weekend lasted longer.  And I guess that's pretty normal, but when have I ever been normal?  So starting today, I am making a decision to enjoy every part of my life, every day, every minute, every second.  I will find something to be happy about.  Because I don't want to spend my life waiting to live it.

Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass...positive #11 by mary.fran
via mary.fran on Flickr

Enjoy the little things by Matthew Sanzone
via Matthew Sanzone on Flickr
via workisnotajob
via Jessica Hische
via piece of cake/peace of mind (which is a fantastic blog, by the way)

Monday, April 22, 2013

Happy Earth Day: 40 Ways to Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle

Whether your motivation is being kind to the planet or just saving some money, finding ways to reduce, reuse, and recycle will help you to achieve your goal.  Here are my favorite five ways to save both money and the planet.  You can see the other 35+ on my Reduce, Reuse, Recycle Pinterest board.

via Family Handyman
I found this one in a blog post about Holiday Decorating Tips, but it is useful year-round.  Use a paper towel holder to store supplies such as tape (of the washi, Scotch, and duct variety), ribbon, trim, twine, lace, and more.  This is especially helpful for those of us who have small spaces instead of a whole separate room for crafting.

via Craft and Creativity
For your thinner ribbons and trims, Tic Tac containers are a great storage solution.  This recycling idea is originally from Instructables, but I like the photos on the Craft and Creativity post about it much better.  It's pretty self-explanatory. Just roll up your ribbons and trims and put them in empty Tic Tac containers.  This will keep them from getting tangled together and make them easier to keep organized.

via Apartment Therapy
This is one of my favorite things.  It is by Dutch designer Isabel Quiroga and I found it on Apartment Therapy.  You can make your own by either using old furniture that you no longer use, buying some inexpensive furniture from a thrift store, garage sale, or estate sale, or (if you're really lucky) finding it being given away for free by the sidewalk (usually in June and September in college towns, when students are most likely moving).  As you collect your furniture treasures, clean them up (if necessary), then paint them all the same color, or contrasting colors, or whatever you feel like.  Then stack them up however you would like.  They can work as desks, dressers, shelves, and probably a lot more.  The only limit is your creativity (well, and your ceiling height, I suppose)!  I love how you can make it so unique and personalized to your own tastes.

via my blog
I like this one because as a jewelry maker, I constantly need more and more jewelry storage solutions.  I have already bought all of the jewelry boxes at my new favorite thrift store (true story), so I had to think outside the box.  And in this case, outside the box meant inside the bottle.  If you don't drink wine, like me, you can either get n empty wine bottle from a friend, use a sparkling cider bottle, or use something else, like a vase.  To see how to make your own, check out my post.

via Wrapped Up in Rainbows
I am so in love with cute satchels right now.  I don't have one of my own yet.  For now I am content with browsing dozens of pictures of them on the web.  I love this satchel redo on Wrapped Up in Rainbows.  She took a plain tan colored satchel and made it into the beauty you see in the photo above.  You can do the same if you have a satchel, or any other bag made of the same material, lurking in your wardrobe somewhere.  Maybe you don't use it anymore because it's so plain, but if you give it a makeover, it will be ready in time for Summer!

So whether you're into saving money or saving the planet (or both!), I urge you to try these DIYs ranging from super simple to rather time-consuming.  And if you want more, be sure to check out my Reduce, Reuse, Recycle Pinterest board.  Right now there are 43 pins, including these 5, and I am always adding more.  Have a great Earth Day.  And if the weather where you are is anywhere near as nice as it is here in Seattle today, go enjoy the outdoors!

Friday, April 19, 2013

Today's Friday Fashion is Postponed

I had an eye doctor appointment today.  They dilated my eyes with eye drops, so now it's hard to see clearly, which makes it hard to type.  It will wear off in the next three or four hours.  But I am going to do the post that I had planned as today's Friday Fashion next week.  It will be worth the wait though. It involves print mixing.

I am happy because the eye doctor didn't do the two tests that I hate the most, the air puff and taking photos of my eyes.  I need new glasses, which I already knew.  I will be buying them online again.  I'm really excited because lots of sites have at-home try-on options now, where you can pick your favorite five or so frames and they'll send them to you for free to try on.  You are allowed a certain amount of time and then you send them all back and order your favorite pair(s).

I think my eyes look kind of cool dilated, but they don't see well at all.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Game Review: Blue Toad Murder Files

Image via Adventure Corner

You should know by now that I love free stuff, so it should as no surprise that I enjoy downloading free video games from the Playstation Network.  I downloaded the game Blue Toad Murder Files the other day because as you'll recall I enjoy murder stuff.  I also really enjoy games where I get to play a detective and solve mysteries, so this seemed right up my alley. 

I'll go ahead and tell you right now that I didn't enjoy the game.  I think that I'm older than the target audience or something.  Most of the puzzles are ridiculously easy.  And then there's this one puzzle where you're supposed to remember exactly what an old lady you talked to earlier looked like.  Instead of staring at her face when I was talking to her, I was waiting for her to stop babbling.

one of the more enjoyable puzzles, image via Adventure Corner

So basically your character is a detective on vacation in the town of Little Riddle.  He arrives just in time for a murder to happen.  Then he has to solve it.  He does this by solving puzzles.

I'm sure that there are people who will enjoy this game, but there isn't enough exploring and investigating in it for me.  When I'm playing a detective game, I like to have to look around and spot small details.  This game basically makes you follow a set path, and I don't like such rigid structure in games.

This game is available as an app.  I think it makes more sense as a smart phone game.  It doesn't take a whole lot of brain power, but it isn't too repetitive.  But if you are going to play this game, you need to be observant in order to pass the pop quizzes throughout it.

The one thing that I liked about this game is that one guy voiced all of the characters.  I thought that was pretty cool.

I give Blue Toad Murder Files 1.5 stars out of 5.  It wasn't my favorite, but it was alright to play for about a half hour.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Where to Go in Seattle: Olympic Sculpture Park

A couple of weeks ago we had really nice Spring-like weather here in Seattle.  (It didn't last long though.)  While it was still nice, G and I went to Olympic Sculpture Park on the weekend.  I have wanted to go there ever since I learned of its existence.  And also it's completely free to go there, so if you're strapped for cash or on a budget, it's a great place to go to.  I took about a bajillion photos of the sculptures from all sorts of different angles and will be selling prints of some of the photos in my shop before too long.  Here are a few of my favorites, and I'll share more in the future.  I'm pretty sure I'll have a whole post full of them called "These Photos are Blurry but I Like Them Anyway".  I'll save the sunset sculpture silhouette ones for a separate post too, and make another post for my beloved "spot the Space Needle" photos.

This sculpture looked really cool from every single angle, but this was one of my favorite angles to shoot it at.  It's also a great sculpture for taking (in my case accidental) self-shots, though I'm not in this photo.

It took so long for all of the people to clear out so I could take this photo.

This was my favorite sculpture to photograph.

This one sort of resembled a shipwreck.

And here's one more of this sculpture.

Friday, April 12, 2013

Friday Favorites: Flowers

If you know me at all, you'll know that I absolutely love things that are different from the ordinary.  So it should be no surprise to you that one of my favorite kinds of flowers is the anemone  They're like if you took a photo of a poppy and inverted the colors, sort of.  Here in Seattle, we had one week of sunshine and then it went back to rain.  It was enough sunshine to make the flowers bloom though.  And I'm pretty conflicted because the flowers are so pretty, but they drive my allergies crazy, even with allergy medicine.

So I've been getting my flower fix online, where they don't make my eyes water and my nose run.  I even have a whole board full of lovely flowers (and flower crafts) on Pinterest.  It's here if you want to see it.

via Indecora

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Where to Shop in Seattle: Assistance League Thrift Store

My bus goes past this thrift store every day on my way to work and every day on my way home, and you guys know how much I love thrifting, so it was really only a matter of time until I checked it out.  I stopped by for the first time two weeks ago on Thursday, which is the last day of my work week.  Unfortunately that day they had to close early because one of the volunteers who work there wasn't able to come in.  I did have enough time to find and try on a really cute blazer which fit me perfectly, so I bought it.

I went back to the thrift store last week, again on Thursday.  I asked the lady working there that day if I could take some photos for my blog.  She let me take some photos and then she shared information with me about the wonderful organization that runs the thrift store.  The thrift store is called Bargain Fair Thrift Shop.  It is located in the Wallingford neighborhood of Seattle at 1415 N 45th St
Seattle, WA 98103.  It is run by volunteers who work for The Assistance League of Seattle.  (The Assistance League has branches in many other major U.S. cities.)  The Assistance League is a really great organization.  The Seattle branch of this organization provides new school clothes for underprivileged children, provides enrichment scholarships for kids who couldn't otherwise afford extracurricular classes, and awards community college scholarships to adults who may not qualify for traditional scholarships.

And if a great cause isn't enough to convince you to shop there, maybe the great prices will.  When I was there they were having a half off sale on all of the black clothing or clothing that had any black in it.  But enough words, it's picture time!

so many lovely teacups and saucers!

This dress is so pretty!

racks of clothing just waiting to be browsed for treasures

a pretty good selection of dishes and vases
And now I would like to share with you all of the things that I bought.  Keep in mind that I hadn't thrifted for quite a few months while I was sick and not working, so I had to make up for all of those months without any thrifting.

I bought two jewelry boxes, a gold-rimmed saucer, a flower print mug, a little dish for jewelry, a pretty orange top

a ring holder, a cookbook for G, next year's winter coat, a Forever 21 floral top, a black lace top,

a black dress, a ruffly grey dress, and a floral scarf, all for the grand total of $57!
So if you live in Seattle or are planning to visit Seattle, you should definitely visit Bargain Fair Thrift Shop.  There is lots of vintage clothing, modern clothing, and housewares, all for unbelievably great prices.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Blog and Shop of the Month: Perfect Mode

I discovered a lot of really great shops and blogs in the past month, but once I saw Minimal Mode and The Perfect Pear, I easily made my decision about who would be my Blog and Shop of the Month this month.

Minimal Mode is a really cool Etsy shop that has only been open since November 2012.  They have some really unique and interesting sort of modern-meets-punk jewelry, as well as some really cool wire crochet necklaces.  (I can't even crochet yarn!)  I am personally wishing for this bracelet from Minimal Mode to grace my wrist.  To see all of the jewelry that Minimal Mode has to offer (most, if not all, with free shipping), check out their shop.

some of the jewelry made and sold by Minimal Mode

Lauren is the lovely lady behind The Perfect Pear.  To be honest, her lovely header drew me in, but then I stuck around for the content and the personality.  Lauren writes about projects, recipes, photography, and beauty.  She always takes really great photos and shares some really pretty things (including her outfits!).  You should check out Lauren's blog here whether you want to learn something, look at pretty things, or be inspired.  And check out this DIY post she wrote about how to make a Mini Book Necklace. So cute!

Exhibit A: blogger with personality

Friday, April 5, 2013

Fashion Friday: In My Perfect Wardrobe

I would love a purple studded "leather" jacket, and these boots (along with the ability to walk in them and not get them dirty, because white shoes are so hard to keep clean and pristine).  Lately I've been wearing more bright colors because it's Spring (and I went on a thrift store shopping spree yesterday at a thrift store that I'll share with you next week and thrifted some very cute springy clothing), but sometimes I'm just drawn to neutrals.  I really love neutrals that aren't so neutral, because of studs or sparkle or cute details.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

A Strange Fascination

I have this strange fascination with murderers, especially serial killers.  I'm not really sure how else to say it.  I think that there are a couple of different reasons why.  First of all, I just can't understand how anyone can be so cruel to another human being.  Second, while supposedly scary movies make me laugh my head off, movies with serial killers actually scare me, because they could actually happen, to some extent.  And for some reason, watching a lot of those types of movies makes me have fewer nightmares than I do when I don't watch them.  Maybe it gets it out of my system somehow?  Thrillers are my favorite kinds of books and one of my favorite kinds of movies.  I always used to watch The First 48 on Friday nights with my mom when I was growing up.  I've watched Bones, NCIS, Monk, CSI, and countless movies with the same theme.  And I love the new show The Following.

There's not really a point to this post.  I just felt like sharing.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Easter Sleepover

This weekend I went over to my aunt's house, which is only about a half hour away from me.  Almost all of my cousins from my dad's side came up, as well as my aunts and uncles from my dad's side.  Everyone slept over Saturday night.  We played a whole bunch  of fun and crazy games.  Then we watched Bridesmaids and then all of the people my age except two slept on couches and air mattresses in the finished basement.  I ended up unknowingly getting the air mattress that had a slow leak.  I found out when I woke up in the night and I was laying on the floor.

On Easter we had a big breakfast, of which I could only eat the scrambled eggs and the strawberries.  The Easter Bunny brought all of us cousins a chocolate bunny, but I couldn't eat mine because it was made in a facility that also processes wheat.  After that we started cooking.  We also tried to have a Peeps joust in the microwave but that didn't work very well.  The Peeps got really puffed up but then they deflated.  They looked really funny at the end.  And then they tasted like toasted marshmallows, only covered in sugar.

We also made deviled egg chicks, which was interesting.  We didn't have any olives, so we used peppercorns as eyes.  Then we had to tell everyone not to eat the eyes.

The one I made was the first one on the left in the middle row that looks like it has wings.
The only thing about making these adorable little deviled eggs is that it's hard to eat them without feeling bad, especially since they're too big to eat in just one bite.

After that we had a big dinner with lots of food that I couldn't eat.  I could eat the deviled eggs and ham though, and they were good.  Then there were a whole bunch of desserts that I couldn't eat at all, including two cakes and a cheesecake.

Then all of the girls got free facials, because my cousin has started selling skincare products and needed to practice.  Well actually we only got free half-facials, because we only got to do it on one side of our face so we could see the difference.  The products worked really well, but they are way too expensive for me to be able to buy any.  After that everyone went home, because we all had to work today.