More from last summer

These are the last What I Wore to Work Today pictures taken on my apartment balcony before I moved into the house.

2015_07_28 smiling 2015_07_28

What I Wore to Work Today: July 28, 2015
Shirt and skirt: Ann Taylor
Shoes: Payless
Belt: Target

2015_07_312015_07_31 hands on hips2015_07_31 dog

What I Wore to Work Today: July 31, 2015
Blouse: Ann Taylor
Jeans: American Eagle
Shoes: Payless

2015_08_03

What I Wore to Work Today: August 3, 2015
Top: Ross
Pants: Limited
Belt: Target
Shoes: Payless

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January 31, 2016. Tags: , , , , . Dog, Pictures, What I Wore to Work Today, Words. Leave a comment.

Quilt Design Wall: Before and After

design wall after

After

design wall before

Before

When I moved at the end of last summer, the sewing+office room in my apartment changed to separate sewing room + office room in my house, smaller individually than the previous space with more square footage altogether. I rarely use the office, though, which also functions as a guest bedroom when I have overnight guests. (The one weekend I had one overnight guest.) (Maybe more will visit sometime?) The largest benefit was being able to keep a full sewing room wall free to turn into a quilt design wall.

I browsed assorted tutorials online, bought 4′ x 8′ x 3/4″ foam insulation boards from Lowe’s and gray flannel from Joann Fabric, and buckled down one night during my week of at-home vacation to make it happen. My version started in a similar manner to this one at Sew Can She, except I attached the individual pieces to the wall. I started attaching the first large board to the wall with removable tape (I’m renting), said “yeah no that’s not going to happen”, and happily went at it with a hammer and nails. The flannel ended up being just the right amount and the last piece of foam is on the opposite wall holding my rulers.

Fabric sticks to the flannel on its own and I use retired pins for security with bigger pieces (the foam board pins easily and protects the wall). I took the photo above the morning after I finished the board – it varies depending on active projects while the blue and green nine patch blocks multiply.

January 25, 2016. Tags: , , , . Links, Pictures, Projects, Words. 1 comment.

Style Imitating Art – Aspens, Northern New Mexico

2016_01_22

Another Style Imitating Art post and it’s something I actually wore to work on Friday! Animated Cardigan chose this week’s piece: Aspens, Northern New Mexico by Ansel Adams.

Just the other day a style blog told me “You probably will look drab if your all black outfit consists of all cotton” and then I wore an all black cotton-based outfit anyway. For shame, self, for shame.

2016_01_22-001

What I Wore to Work Today: January 22, 2016
Blazer: Goodwill
Tshirt: Target
Jeans: American Eagle
Necklace: Ann Taylor
Shoes: Payless

January 24, 2016. Tags: , , , , , . Links, Pictures, What I Wore to Work Today, Words. 6 comments.

Style Imitating Art – Sunrise

 

2016_01_10 SIA-002

I’ve been following Style Imitating Art from Animated Cardigan, 14 Shades of Grey, and Librarian for Life and Style for awhile. And now I am actually participating and submitting in time!

Ok, fine, so I haven’t worn this to work yet. The rain all week got in the way of pictures outside, and I worked from home a couple days while I was sick.

I was excited that my usual photo spot includes the fuchsia bougainvillea background as a nod to O’Keeffe’s flower paintings. Unfortunately, the bright magenta color looks red in my old camera’s pictures — in real life there’s a difference between my red pants and the pink flowers. My belt is a touch of gold sun.

2016_01_10 SIA Sunrise

Sunrise – Georgia O’Keeffe 1916

2016_01_10 SIA

What I Am Going to Wear to Work One Day: January 10, 2016
Blouse: Banana Republic
Pants: Old Navy
Belt: My mom mailed it to me randomly, I think she picked it up from a garage sale
Shoes: Wal-Mart when I unexpectedly wanted dress shoes in Hawaii to attend a concert

2016_01_10 SIA Georgia O'Keefe

2016_01_10 SIA-001

January 10, 2016. Tags: , , . Links, Pictures, What I Wore to Work Today, Words. 2 comments.

A whole new year!

Oh look it’s suddenly 2016 and I’m back in the ol’ blogarooni and WordPress is all different stuff again. I’ll figure it out later, as I always say…

It’s a whole new year, a brand new world.

My middle school was two houses away from my grandparents’ house and I went through a phase of walking over after school and hanging out for awhile. I’d read the paper, talk to Grandma and Grandpa, eat snacks, tinker on the piano from an old hymnal. (Grandma and Grandpa, did you guys buy a hymnal or did you just… borrow one from the church??) I got to the point where I could play my grandfather’s favorite hymn, “God of Grace and God of Glory”, including all the chords on both hands. I’ve always had big hands for somebody my size and enjoyed reaching the bigger chords. (Aww, that post from October 2010 hints at the clearly-absurd idea I had had at some point that maybe I’d get married in September 2011. Haha that’s cute. Marriage isn’t in your future, my young friend.)

When I was in a particularly cheerful mood I’d sing little songs in the tiny bathroom on the opposite side of the living room wall, often A Whole New World from “Aladdin”, or the hymns I was playing earlier. I later learned that the bathroom was not soundproof — why did I ever think it was?? — and I was retroactively mortified about all my bathroom singing. If my grandparents heard me they were polite enough, kind enough, to refrain from letting on.

It’s a new year and I’ll start it by throwing old photos on the blog.

2015_07_10
July 10, 2015
Blouse: Target
Jeans: American Eagle
Shoes: Payless
Security badge: My employer, god bless them

2015_07_132015_07_13 hand on hip

July 13, 2015
Dress: Uh, Macy’s maybe?
Shoes: Payless

2015_07_21

July 21, 2015
Blouse: Loft
Skirt: Ann Taylor
Shoes: Payless

January 6, 2016. Tags: , , , , . Links, What I Wore to Work Today, Words. Leave a comment.

34!

2015_10_23

Happy 34th birthday to me! Now that 34 sounds even older than 33 (it’s almost into the next age bracket of 35-55 on surveys!), I’ll get to enjoy even more conversations like this one at the fabric store cutting counter last week:

Me: 1 yard of these two, and half a yard of the batiks, please.
50-something Clerk: Ok. What are you working on?
Me: A project with my quilt guild.
Clerk: [pause] So you’re learning to quilt, huh?
Me: Well, not really, I’ve been doing it about 8 years. I do consider myself a beginner, though, definitely not an expert or anything.
Clerk: You must have been really small when you started then!
Me: I was in my mid-twenties.
Clerk: Oh! I thought you were still in your teens!

My new response when somebody tells me that I look 15, or they thought I was 23, or there’s no way I’m 34 haha stop lying now tell us your real age for real this time, is going to be silence. Nothing. I’m not agreeing with them (“Haha I know”) or apologizing (“Yeah, I’m sorry, everybody says that”) or pretending like they’re the first person to say it (“what?? that’s weird, everybody always thinks I’m older than my age”) or responding as though it’s a compliment, which can go on awhile (“thank you, that’s so kind of you to say!” “You really do though!” “How nice, thank you!” “No, I’m not trying to be nice, I really thought you were in college” “Aw, thank you, I’m flattered!” “I’m not trying to flatter you, I’m just saying the truth, you look really young” “You’re too sweet, thank you!”).

Instead, it will be nothing.
“Oh my god no way I thought you were 20!”
“….”

Happy birthday to me!

What I Wore to Work Today: Friday, October 23, 2015
Blouse: Ann Taylor
Camisole: Target
Pants: Banana Republic
Shoes: Payless, new

2015_10_23 hand in hair 2015_10_23-001  2015_10_23 hands up

November 2, 2015. Tags: , , , , . Pictures, What I Wore to Work Today, Words. 2 comments.

Banoffee pie with raspberries

banoffee pie slice

I recently learned that I can make dulce de leche by boiling an unopened can of sweetened condensed milk for two hours and my life was forever changed. I ate a lot of dulce de leche during my semester in Uruguay (after gaining 10 pounds I was told “Now you look like an American!”) and ever since then I’ve wanted to recreate some of the fancy cakes that had many layers including cake, crispy meringue, dulce de leche, whipped buttercream, berries or chocolate, and by now a lot of nostalgia that will make the dessert extra delicious. Extra delicious, or disappointing because it’s not how I remembered it. As they say, you can’t go home again or eat a perfect slice of cake again from the Disco supermarket bakery down the street from your student housing in Montevideo.

I first saw this magic technique on ktmade’s banoffee pie post and I said out loud at my desk to nobody in particular “wait, really? That’s so cool!”

My pot was only deep enough to cover the can by three quarters of an inch so I set an alarm to go off every ten minutes to remind me to check the water level, adding more as necessary. I wouldn’t want this explosion to happen to me. I simmered the can for 2.5 hours and it turned out excellent. I ate some with a spoon throughout the next day and turned most of the rest into a banoffee pie.

Premade graham cracker crust baked for 5 minutes at 350, most of the dulce de leche, two bananas, a package of fresh raspberries, and quite a bit of Albertsons store-brand whipped topping, that completely processed confection made from hydrogenated soybean oil, corn syrup, and 1960s American dreams.

banoffee pie banana layer  banoffee pie raspberry layer

banoffee pie finished

October 26, 2015. Tags: , . Links, Pictures, Recipes, Words. 1 comment.

Front yard mulch: Before and after

Front bed before and after

I decided to add mulch to the old not-actually-flower beds in front of my house that were now mostly dirt, old bark, weeds, and a sprinkling of cat poop. I walked into the closest big box store nursery section and asked the stocker to point me to the mulch section.

“It’s back in that corner. Or I have a few bags up here on clearance for a dollar-fifty,” he said.

“Sold!” I replied. There were three bags of red mulch sitting on a cart, exactly the number I needed in a red color that was just fine, marked down because of holes in the bag. A few minutes later and my house looked much nicer.

front side bed before and after

front house after

October 23, 2015. Tags: , , . Pictures, Projects, Words. 2 comments.

Doggie dinner station: Before & After

doggie dinner station before doggie dinner station after

My dog is a sloppy drinker. She splashes water and doesn’t have the excuse of prodigious jowls or floofy ears getting in the way or youthful enthusiasm that cannot be restrained. She’s just messy.

More than a year after getting the little weasel I finally made a doggie dinner station placement using a piece of this home dec fabric roll I got at Goodwill. I also moved it to a dedicated spot in the dining room so it’s not directly next to the garbage and recycle anymore. Same floor, just different lighting for a different appearance.

Doggie Dinner is the magic phrase and soon she’ll probably learn “supper” too, which is what I say when I want to talk about dinner without drawing her attention.

blue and white goodwill home dec fabric

October 22, 2015. Tags: , , . Dog, Pictures, Projects, Words. 1 comment.

1966 vs. 2015: Party Dress

Mom's bright blue and white dress 1966 - single picture

When I was a small child I would play dress-up with my mom’s vintage fancy dresses, swallowed by what seemed like yards of material. Sometime around middle school I stopped playing dress-up in the same way. Years went by and one day I opened the box of old, creased dresses to find that instead of them being much too big I suddenly couldn’t even fit into some of them.

In my mid-twenties my mom shipped half a dozen boxes to me, stuff that had been left behind when I moved out after college. She felt confident that I wasn’t returning to the nest and instead of tossing my boxes into the garbage she sent them to me halfway across the country, which was generous.(Thanks Mom!) One of the boxes was full of her old dresses, now mine.

I moved into a house this summer after 5+ years in an apartment. While packing the dresses for the move I eyeballed one, estimated that I might have a chance at zipping it up, and tried it on. Success! Somewhat constricted breathing in the very tight bodice, still success?

I wore it to a Hummingbird Society gala in Sedona, AZ when I knew it would be for just a couple hours. My mom designed and sewed this dress herself when she was in college in 1966.

Sedona, AZMom's bright blue and white dress 1966 - two pictures

mom dress blue and cream

October 4, 2015. Tags: , , . Pictures, Words. 1 comment.

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