24/06/2013

Monday Amusements 11

I hope your Monday is treating you well! Mine has me ill for the second week in a row so I apologise for the shortness of this list!

As Google Reader is about to load its last I've been spring cleaning my RSS subscriptions and finding some new blogs to follow. It's been a while since I've subscribed to any new (at least to me) fashion blogs and it's been a lot of fun exploring new sites. I've scrolled through several pages of Undercover Dress-Up Lover, and my favourite post so far is Lolita without online shopping, even though I am too tall for a lolita dress, there are some amazing boots in that post that are actually still available in my size! I am doing all the online surveys the internet sends with the goal of being able to afford them.

I've also been catching up on The Girl Who Looks Like a Cake, I've loved her DIY: Make your own collar and A Guide to Fabric Shopping In London posts.

I'm obsessed with eyeliner tutorial videos. Here are my current favourites, which show how to achieve three quite different effects:


Cat-Eye Tutorial from Rookie on Vimeo.


A tip for the last one - if you find it impossible to do this with an eyeliner brush and eyeshadow - ie if you're a contact lens wearer and can't risk getting powder in your eye - try it with a pen eyeliner instead, I did today and it looks great!

Finally, Mad About Dachshunds is the Facebook page to like if you want your news feed to be filled with all manner of cute sausage dog things.

22/06/2013

this dyeing obsession

After my successful shirt-dyeing session last year, I became obsessed with Dylon Intense Violet and started to plot further dye-based adventures. I went through my wardrobe and picked out all the things that I liked, but didn't love because they were white, pale pink, a pale shade of grey, or otherwise Not Purple Enough.

I wrote down the fabric composition of each item, and then I loaded up the Dylon website and added to my list the best type of dye to use for each item. I decided to start my quest for purplefication with three items. This was mostly because Hobbycraft only had one box of Intense Violet machine dye left, and after the tedium of stirring last time, I decided that I would avoid future hand dyeing whenever possible, so I picked out the items that would get better results from hand dye and resolved to do the rest in the machine.

I checked the weight of the fabric by putting it into a jug on top of electronic kitchen scales. Do not attempt to use bathroom scales to weigh your fabric. They are too imprecise. The first item I chose, along with the scales and jug:


This cardigan was a faded pale pink hand-me-up from my sister and had quite a few random yellow or brownish stains. It's a really good fit though, so I didn't want to throw it away. Perfect candidate for purplefication, and 100% cotton so ideal for machine dye. The other two items I forgot to photograph before I'd already put them into the bowl, but I did take a picture before adding the dye. 


The grey angora/wool/nylon blend cardigan, according to my research, was better suited to hand dye because of the natural fibres. I had no idea how it would come out, because of the nylon content. The other item was a white leotard, or as Topshop (and other brands) insist on calling them, 'body'. Come now. A body is the thing that goes inside the leotard. As you would expect, the leotard had lycra in it, and apparently lycra does not get on well with high temperatures and agitation, so hand dye was again the best option.

So onto the results! The cotton cardigan came out beautifully.


In the photo it looks like the middle section is pinker, that's just my camera. It's actually the same fabulous shade all over. All the stains have disappeared and the whole thing looks refreshed and ready for many more years of wear. A+++ would dye again.


The grey cardigan turned out much better than I was hoping. It's came out more of a pinkish shade, but it's still pretty uniform.



Again, the glowy pinky section in the middle is down to my camera.


The leotard did not come out as well. It's quite patchy, especially by the seams, and the thread it was sown together with didn't take the dye (it's probably polyester), so now it stands out, white as before.


This time the colour variations are not down to my camera. It actually looks like this.


I'm not really concerned though because a) I was never going to wear it as-was, there were too many stains and b) I'll probably wear it under a cardigan or another top, which should hide the imperfections.

All in all, I'd say that this session was very successful, and I look forward to even more adventures with dye! I'm going to write a post with all my fabric dye tips, so if you have any questions, leave a comment or tweet me!

10/06/2013

Monday Amusements 10

A little preview from an upcoming post about afternoon tea!

It's that time again! This week's post is a bit make-up blog heavy, cosmetics have been on my mind even more than usual as there are a couple of products I've nearly used up (!!!), which means that I can almost justify buying more!

I've also felt encouraged by Lipglossiping's 'Starting out? Build your stash without splashing the cash! post. The part about looking at what you already own and thinking about what you use the most has really stuck in my head. I used to feel alternately excited and guilty about all my make-up purchases, but hang on, I really do wear all those purple eyeshadows, and I have nowhere near enough to bury myself in. That said, I think it's time to face up to the fact that I prefer bright over dark for lid shades and to either stop buying so many pretty dark eyeshadows or wear them more often. I'm going to make an effort to get more use out of them and if I can't manage it within a couple of months, that's it. I'm not buying any more, no matter how pretty they might be, I know they'll just sit in my stash, mostly used to darken the outside of an occasional crease, and only rarely taking on a starring role. The ones I already have will last me forever at this rate. The same goes for blues, greens, and pinks. Although I've yet to find the properly pigmented bright blue of my dreams (I thought it was NARS Outremer but I swatched it in Selfridges and it is not true to pan!) I probably have enough of the others.

I enjoyed reading Part 1 and Part 2 of Makeup Savvy's 10 Things I Hate About Makeup, I agree with everything she's written in those posts, especially with her point about the increasingly high prices of High Street brands. Why are so many mascaras so expensive now? We all know that the profit margins on cosmetics are huge, even when they're made in the UK. There are a lot of special offers in Superdrug and Boots, but they never seem to come at the right time, so I've resigned myself to stocking up when I find them cheap. My last five mascaras were free with magazines, or from the Boots bargain bin.

Meanwhile, this look on Glitter is my crack... is really making me want to get out The Only Orange Eyeshadow That Doesn't Look Terrible On Me (the matte orange from the Sleek Circus palette) and do a sunset look again! The first time I tried it was for a gig and I loved the results at first but got a bit tired of seeing the orange every time I looked in the mirror! Maybe I need to tweak it so that there's only a tiny bit of orange visible!

Though I'm going through a pastel obsession at the moment, I expect that I'll be back to my usual black-loving self in time for summer (that's if we get one, it's been warm lately but it's looking drab again outside my window now)! There's something about wearing black in the sunshine, especially with hot pink. I'm going to keep in mind Hellcandy's Glitter goth tips NOTD for when I want to wear black nails with all my pretty summer dresses.

On the subject of goth, as usual I've been enjoying Sophistique Noir's Red and Black Week. I didn't take part this year for two reasons, a) I forgot about it til part way through and b) I haven't bought anything new to show off since the last time! I was on a hunt for red things to wear to a party a couple of months ago, but everything in the shops was too orange. Oh well, I'm sure blue-red's time will come again!

While we're on clothes, I loved Debutante Clothing's photos of the 1920s-style Sue Wong‘s Fall 2013 collection preview. They make me itch to go to Prohibition again.

Lipglossiping's post about the first day of her recent trip to Paris has got me craving steak frites. I'm not sure that I've even had steak frites before, though I used to love Wetherspoons' steak and chips! They're basically the same thing, except French and therefore probably less cooked and in a yummy sauce, right?

Finally, a pile of corgi puppies! Ahhhhhhhh too cute!

07/06/2013

Pastel Purple, Hot Pink and...Neutrals? May Favourites

I thought I'd succumb to blogger cliché today and share with you my recent clothing and make-up obsessions! I'm almost always obsessed with items in shades of purple and hot pink, but last month I stepped outside my colourful comfort zone and explored the possibilities of neutral eyeshadow!

I normally only wear neutral eyeshadow when I'm meeting new people and feeling shy, or when I'm attending an event where I want to look professional, so it felt kind of weird to wear the champagne-y Midnight 15, from the Urban Decay 15th Anniversary Palette, to a close friend's birthday party! I didn't want to be my usual garish self, because we were going to a fancy hotel for afternoon tea, and I wanted to look elegant. Don't worry, I'm still me, I was wearing a bright pink dress, and Midnight 15 is glittery. It's not as massively glittery as a certain other UD eyeshadow with Midnight in the name, but it's still glittery enough to require Pixie Epoxy to stop fallout. I also made it a bit more interesting by putting a little Half Truth (a blackened purple, if you can't see it clearly) in my crease, and I also wore thick black eyeliner, though it was a little thinner than I usually apply it.


This is fast becoming my favourite Urban Decay palette. Also this month, I was getting ready for work one day and feeling experimental, so I used Flow on the lid and M.I.A. in the crease. I loved it, and my manager said I looked really nice, so I will definitely try that again. More typically for me, I wore Omen a couple of times with a little Blackout in the crease. The only colours I haven't tried yet in this palette are Chase, Evidence and Deep End - I think the last two look stunning but I don't have many clothes in those colours. I'm hopelessly obsessed with matching my make-up to my clothes.


Of course, I couldn't wear neutral eyeshadow without some sort of colour on my lips, and this month I've been all about shades of pink. For work, I've been wearing this ancient Maybelline Watershine lipstick in Raspberry Cream in an attempt to finally use it up, but I've started to genuinely like it! My lips are so pigmented that Raspberry Cream is almost a 'my lips but better' shade.

Outside of work, I've also been wearing the brighter lipsticks pictured, Revlon's Cherries in the Snow (a very bright pink), and Lush's Decisive (definitely a pinkish red on me, but your mileage may very as lots of people describe it as a cool red). Both of these are really long lasting and high quality.


I've been obsessed with lilac nails, mostly thanks to this little bottle that I got in a Colour Unlimited set at Christmas. It's a beautiful shade and I'm afraid I'm going to use it up soon as I've been wearing it so much. I was a bit disappointed when I first tried L.A. Colors' Flurry, because the lilacy base colour barely shows up. But it makes a great glittery top coat, especially over the Colour Unlimited lilac. Another lilac that I've been loving is Aromaleigh's Penelope eyeshadow, an absolutely gorgeous and pigmented product.


Finally from the make-up favourites, Clinique Redness Solutions Daily Protective Base. This is a green coloured primer that I find too thick to use all over the face, but it works really well applied to the skin by my nose, though it took a lot of practice to get it right!


Onto clothes: I've been wearing this skirt to work a lot as it's long and office-appropriate, but also quite light and floaty, great for the warm weather that we're currently enjoying here in London. It's a hand-me-down from my Mum, retro M&S. It's probably from the 1980s going on the tininess of this size "14".


This jacket was a hand-me-up from my sister. It's funny that I've taken to wearing it so much because she used to practically live in it, though she styled it in a completely different way. I find that it works really well over pretty dresses, top and skirts, and I pin badges and brooches to the lapels to match my outfit. It's also a lot easier to photograph than that skirt, as you might have guessed!


To be honest, I was wearing all of these quite regularly during most of April too! Should probably wash that jacket. What colours have you been loving lately?
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...