Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Flip Flops

Bubblegum Fairy

Flip Flops, oh, flip flops
I don't understand your appeal
The smack, sucking sound
As you beat me on the heel.

As a shoe, you should
beautify and protect my feet
Instead you make them dirty
as I walk down the street.

As an item of clothing
you should enhance my look
Instead you detract from it,
like a petty crook.

Curse you, oh, flip flops
Cashing in on the heat
A true sandle you are not;
You are full of deceit.

I've never hated flip flops more than I do now.* In highschool, I adored them for a while. Soemthing about freedom, ease, and them being against school rules, but everyone wore them anyways until the school was forced to allow them. But being on a college campus, and seeing them rain or shine. Hearing them all day and then all night. (Dorms suck.) It was so (whiny, vally girl voice here) annoying when one of my professors wore flip flops to class. As she walked about lecturing, the pop-pop was annoying the shiznit out of me. (That's right. I'm wit it.) What annoys me more is when I see a cute dress and then the wearer has to wear flip flops. Ugly flip flops. Ugly rubber flip flops. Just ruins the look.

But, I know I'm in a minority. Nothing beats flip flops in the casual/summer department. Really, you can at least some nice looking slip on sandles. They look so much better! I'm really into anklestraps now. Since I have tiny ankles, I have no worries about them and they are invaluable at securing shoes on my feet. And look how sweet those sandles look with my new dress. "My new" as in "I made it myself" my new. Just imagine if I had worn a pair of these. Yeah, makes me shiver too. If you must buy your shoes from Old Navy, why not buy any of these? Any of those would look adorable with a sweet dress. My favorite gold espadrilles, which I wear all the time, are from Old Navy last year, so I actually think their shoes are quite cute. Aside from the $2/$3/$5 flip flops, which I probably wouldn't even wear on the beach. I sport something more like this on the beach.

Outfit Specs: Click piccy to be taken to flickr page for details. You'll porobably get a better post on this dress once I add pockets.

For Sandles,
Ivy Frozen

* This bout of anger has nothing to do with the fact that my favorite (and only) pair of flip flops now rub irritatingly between my toes and my favorite pair of sandles in a flip flop style now stab me (they draw blood!) in the toes.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

From the Blogasphere Number Equix

GTO Outlaw3

So, one of my favorite bloggers, The Bargain Queen, has posted the first ever Fabulous! Festival. It's like the Carnival of Couture, for those who remember that, except this one doesn't have a weekly theme. I totally want a weekly theme or question, but the bloggers hosting it for the week can decide to do that if they want, so yay! I try to participate one week... After finals are over....

But on point, through the Fabulous! Festival line up of posts, I found College Fashion.net College fashion! I thought. I'm a college student! It should be good for me! I totally ignored the fact that most campus fashion involves flip flops, pajama bottoms, and a college sweatshirt. Really though, fashion magazines tend to go from teen to professional woman, totally skipping those cellege years. It's like being a tween all over again. The kid's section or the junior's? The junior's or the misses'?

Anywho, I went through the posts and discovered their Tips for style and fashion. Oh! I thought. Let's see what they have to say. Maybe I'll find something useful. You can never have too many tips... While I'll second the first two, but tips three and four leave me cold.

Number four just really perplexes me:

Fashion and Style Tip #4:
How much money should you spend on a dress?

Since dresses are complete outfits in themselves, add up what you would normally spend on an entire outfit (minus shoes and accessories) to figure out about what you should spend on a dress. For example: jeans + tank + cardigan = dress.

What??? Am I the only one lost? It's kind of like those dictionary entries where you look up a word to find its meaning and then have to look up the words used in the definition of it. Really, the cost of a dress should depend mostly on the dress in question and yourself.
a) How often do you plan to wear the dress?
b) How nice is the dress? Special occasion or casual? Handmade, machine made, or mass made?
c) The craftmanship/construction of the dress. Material, design, stitching.
d) How much is the dress worth to you/How much do you love it?
e) What's your budget? i.e. how much can you spend and still be able to afford food, pay your rent, anything else you want to do, etc.

All those should be considered when deciding how much to spend on a dress. Unless you plan on buying jeans/a tank/a cardi to wear with the dress, I don't see what they have to do with buying a dress. Plus, adding together what you would "normally" spend on an outfit makes no sense to me, since I have no "normal" amount spent and my daily outfits vary heavily. Though hey, if you understand this system and it works for you, far be it from me to stop you. Apparently, I'm the one out of four who thinks that is one of the strangest things she has ever heard.

But then, Shoewawa quipped in with a similar thing, the "two for the price of one" philosophy. I also think that is BS since almost any item of clothing I own should be "two for the price of one" at least, or I won't buy it no matter the price. Items that can only be worn one way are rarly worn in my closet, and therefore it's basically junk preventing me from getting something I'll wear more often.

My problem with tip Number three is that it's not a universal tip.

Fashion and Style Tip #3:Buy your heels 1/2 size too big!

This is one of the first rules of high-heel buying. Since your feet naturally slide forward in heels, buying them a half size larger will make them fit correctly.
Wearing heels that are comfortable and correctly fitted will make you look a
thousand times better while walking in them.

Buying a half size up for me does not equal more comfortable. It equals shoes falling off my feet and possibly me tripping when the shoes do this. Like comenter Ann, I find going a half-size down works better for my feet. My feet then do not slip and slide in the first place and instead fit inside the shoe as if it's a second skin. Really, my actual size, 8N, fits the best, but 7 1/2 M fits a close second. Also not that I don't do pointy toeed shoes; round or almond is my pfreference.

My correction of this tip is to just try on shoes in various sizes. Every shoe and foot is different. Try your normal size plus a size up and a size down. Walk around the store at your normal speed to get a a good feel for how each pair feels on your feet, and buy the size that fits you best and is the most comfortable. Frankly, if shoes cause you a lot of pain, I advicate against buying them. Shoes should be pretty and comfortable, or at least not unbearably painful. I wholeheartedly agree with the last sentence of that tip though.

All the blogs linked to in the post are liked enough by me to:

a) read them
b) post about them
c) link to them

Outfit Specs: Click piccy to be taken to it's flickr page for more information.

The Outlaw,
Ivy Frozen

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

The Novice Dress Post

Cinco de Mayo

What you've all been waiting for, all the dresses I've made together in one post for the first time. Five dresses you know plus one new creation! This post certainly has nothing to do with my sister wanting me to make her a dress. Certainly not so she could see what I've done.

I've been wanting to learn how to sew my own clothing for a while.

A) I could get what I want! My tastes often do not follow that of what is on, and my meager budget limits what I can afford to basically whatever the masses are feeling at the moment.

B) I do love being different. I despise wearing the same thing as someone else at the same event. I'm a spoiled youngest child and a territorial creature. I'm often the odd one out, so I made it my pride.

C) It seems more cost effective. In practice, it's not always.

All the people who sew say the best way to learn is to do it, so I jumped in!

Dress #1

The first dress I created and probably my fav of the bunch. I got the idea from seeing all those trapeze dresses on the runway, and thinking $160 dollars was a lot to pay for something so simple. My version cost about $6 and is so versatile!

It was probably my best fabric find. Clearance aisle, how I love thee! I love the movement of this dress. And to think how inadequate I felt going into the fabric store and being asked about what I was making by all the experienced sewers.

Turning the Volume Up

Extreme! Pinned back bustle and belted to emphasize that waist.

Das Tier in Mier Apple A Day

Layered for the fall and winter, and belted or not for spring and summer.

This dress is basically a circle skirt with straps and buttons sewn on.

Dress #2:

Flowers and Butterflies

An a line dress that looks best belted like so on me. On this one, I took time to add pockets. This fabric was free, so this dress simply cost the price of the thread I used. And, I still have lots more left over, of both the thread and fabric. It was also my first attempt at a zipper, which was successful for the most time. I cut the slit for it curved so the zipper curves a bit.

Dress #3:

Same fabric, very different dress.

Spider Lady

It's still versatile, though, with where I choose to belt it.

drop waist

Drop waist working on me! Iit's a miracle!

Dress #4 and #5:


I'm Batman! Part 2
My Batman dresses, included into his post for the sake of completeness. They're also mosre complex dresses I tackled. They're both fitted, unlike my previous dresses, and the first completed one features puff sleeves, a cowl hood. They also show how I've improved with putting zippers in.

Dress #6

Bouncing off of Clouds2

My lucky number dress. This dress was actually started either third or forth, but got put on hold for the other dresses, since I was having difficulty with it. This look was inspired by Tori Amos's Bouncing of Clouds--the shoe's model name is in fact "cloud"-- and Father's Son, which I choose to think of as a girl being her father's son since she has no brothers, and thus conjures up images a sporty but sweet girl. I love how she always manages to inspire me, since I like mess up the lyrics to some of her songs to work for me. Mishearings that I refuse to correct, in this case, "So it ends so it begins/I'm my father's son./Plant another seed of hate/in a trusting virgin gun [girl]." I switched "gun" from the original lyrics with "girl" and refuse to switch back since it would ruin all my lovly images of the song, and I'd have to create new ones. Probably why I tend to sing the most depressing songs with the hugest smile on my face... (Come on people, you didn't think I was through obsessing over Tori so soon?) And oo! Linkin Park has a new album coming out on the fifteenth. The snips on their website sound different from their previous albums, but it still sounds like it's Linkin Park. This is officially the best ambiguously defined period of consecutive time ever! I fear the backlash of the worst ambiguously defined period of consecutive time ever, but shall ignore said fear until said backlash occurs.

Back on topic, this fabric features little golf icons. I totally need to go miniture golfing this. It was thrifted, and I think it might be from the '60s since it since it says it's copyright "Custom Fabrics Inc. 1966." I made sure to include that on the hem, even if it's upside down.

I'm not sure if I'm quite happy with this dress. It might get altered again...

Reconstruction number 3...

pictured at top. It started off as a boring forever 21 empire waist dress that made my hips look big and showed EVERY line, and then I cut it at the waist, and took it up there to make it a baby doll. I used elastic thread, which gave the seam a scalloped edge I rather like. Black fabric paint for the design on the dress's left and the author of the book from whence the phrase came. Yes, I'm a nerd, but a pretty cute one, if do say so myself.

Outfit Specs: Click the images to be taken to their flickr pages where the info is and you can also see larger versions.


Ivy Frozen

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

I'm Batman!

Yes! This big post on super hero style! The batman dresses are complete!


The Batman has always been my favorite super hero because he's not really a super hero. He has no super powers, other than his keen intellect and powerful drive. Plus, he doesn't whine all the time about how about how hard it is to be loved worldwide, unlike some other superheroes. Despite his lack of superhuman powers, Batman is not only able to keep pace with the Man of Steel and other guys who shoot deathrays from their eyes, but he's at the top of the pack, featured with Wonder Woman and Superman as one of D.C.'s big three. Plus, Batman's costume is just plain cool. See what he's upto now on his D.C. site.

This dress was finished first, although I started the other one first. I might take in the band at the bottom a little bit. I used this as a reference and inspiration, but this dress was still pretty much made the same way as my others: make it up as I go along. I know what I want the dress to look like and use educated guessing to assemble it. The tutorial for that dress was pretty much figure it out for yourself, but it is pretty straightforward to make. I didn't use stretchy fabric, so my version has a zipper. The images on the dress are from Batman: The Animated series, and it features Batman, the Joker, and the Penguin. Picture taken at a MiniCon at my school. That's Asagi from Category Freaks beside me (cosplay).

I'm Batman! Part 2

This is the dress I started first, but finished second since I got frustrated that I sewed the top on upside down, and this had to rip out the seam and start again. I also ended up cutting off part of the top from the original design when I sewed it on upside down. So, I altered the design a bit and came up with it as it is now. I still have a bit of work to do on it when I get home, and hence have a sewing machine. That's right people: all the dresses I've made have been sewn by hand as in no machine. Those of you who sew or have attempted such must truly understand my bitter frustration over the upside down top now. Once again, this dress this dress was made patturnless and made up as I went along. The skirt part utilized variation one of the circle skirt tutorial from What the Craft, which I can't direct link to since it uses frames. I didn't use elastic and therefore ruching was horrible!

The secrets of this dress:

The white panel on the bodice was added because I cut the bodice too tight.

Ruching was horrible because for some reason I always cut the hole for my body too big.

The straps are too big, hence their hanging on the side. I decided to leave them like that because they look better that way than up. Although I might just make tie straps...

I performed my first darts on this dress!

Also note that I'm sporting a batman watch that you probably can't see in both pictures.

I'll probably save the hooded dress for funner occasions, but the grey one I shall wear more often!

Look out for another completed dress soon, and a post displaying my sewed creations! (Really, I forget which dress number I'm on yet... I really need a dress form.) Maybe I'll include why the grey Batman dress needs a bear and crossbones patch on it... Really ambiguous hint.

Specs: you can clicky these photos to be carried to their flickr page, which has the goods

I'm Batman,

Ivy Frozen

Saturday, May 05, 2007

American Doll Posse

Rox! Hard. & yes, this is another Tori Amos Rules! Nerdy, fan-girl post, so consider yourself warned.

I don't understand why some people are insinuating that fans are forcing themselves to like certain albums or songs. What is considered one of her weaker albums, Scarlet's Walk, is the album that first introduced me Tori and made me want to hear more from her. This is music, not math. People's likes and dislikes and appreciations vary. Big Wheel is a catchy tune that wormed itself inside my head and I must confess to rather liking it and thinking that it's the perfect song to start the album. I wouldn't say it's the best song on the album, but the first single and first song rarly are. If they were, it usually means the album stinks.

As for American Doll Posse as a whole, it is a return to hardcore, angry Tori and reminds me of Boys for Pele's and From the Choirgirl Hotel's hard rocking child. Ths album seems to have heard American women's cries and given them new voice. Well, she did say she was sparked by two women who told her to tell it like it is.

My Track Picks:

Big Wheel- catchy, upbeat, interesting and quirky. Sets mood for album
Bouncing off Clouds- on of her pretty songs but with a good beat and somewhat harder sound and fantastic images
You Can Bring Your Dog- dig the tune and randomness of this line.
Body and Soul- awesome lyrics and song!
Velvet Revolution- Hilarious! A little fun ditty, like Hello, Mr. Zebra but with more great and relevant lyrics
Dark Side of the Sun- fantastic lyrics! On war, specifically that of Iraq
Smokey Joe- more of and interesting, quirky song, again with Tori-licious lyrics. Imagine Tori doing a cover of Fergilicious. Yeah, I can't either.
Devils and Gods-great lyrics
Mr. Bad Man-the lyrics coupled with the tune

9 out of 23 is not a bad initial favorites or listening trak for me. Typically, I only like around three songs at first, and those are the singles I heard on the radio to prep me for liking them. Tori's always the exception. When I first listen the majority of songs, I'm like "Wtf is this?" Then, I listen a few more times and I'm like, "Genius! That's wtf it is!"

Reasons I love Tori:

Her voice sounds the same on album and live.
She has taken up the habit of including lyrics.
She packs her albums.
She does what she wants/her own thing.
Her songs don't ever sound all the same.
Neither do her albums.
Songs and lyrics seem made for each other, and can induce chicken or the egg type arguments.
Those Tori-licious lyrics.

BTW, I need that image at the top there poster size and hung in my future living room.

I bought the album yesterday, and it's already effecting me...

Today's outift inspired by Big Wheel. Note that I do adore misinterpreting Miss Tori's lyrics and imposing my own image and story over hers. It's more the sound of the song that gave me the colors, pieces, and pattern.

My Outift Specks: jacket- old so I forget, shirt- mom (70s/80s), shorts- kohls, belt- LuLu's fashion Lounge, tights- also forget, shoes- Old Navy, headband- Ross

The Links: The first link is to Tori Amos's official website. The second links to her myspace where you can listen to some songs, including Big Wheel.

I'm not an M-I-L-F; don't you forget,

Ivy Frozen