Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Finally knitting again

 I wore this over the weekend, and everyone looked at me like I was crazy.  Who wears short dresses on cold winter Saturdays?  I do.  I spent most of the day holed up in my room doing homework, so the weather really didn't matter that much.  I bought this dress sometime last year from Forever 21.  It fits perfectly, except for one obvious thing- it's several inches too short for me.  This dress is what I traced to come up with the pattern for this dress, and consequentially this one, too.   This one has pretty piping on it, that someday I intend to copy in another version of this dress.  But it'll have a longer hemline.  

 I had the urge to knit last week.  The winter hat that I whipped up last year has been pilling really badly, and I've been wanting to try this sort of cable pattern for ages.  I picked up my needles and cast on, and worked on it while I caught up on Ouron High.  I worked on it for an hour or so every night since then, and finally finished it Friday night.  

 I'm completely happy with this hat.  The color is great, it's soft, and it's slouchy but not so much that it looks like it ate my head.  I didn't take it off all Saturday.  Please, don't ask me what that means for my hair, though! 

Outfit Details
Dress: Forever 21
Sweater: Forever 21
Hat: self made
Tights: Hue
Socks: Kohl's
Boots: madden girl

Monday, January 30, 2012

Sleeping In

Yesterday while at the hair salon I read an article in Allure about how apparently it's fashionable to wear your pajamas out and about.  I don't believe a word of it, but it's a tempting concept.  Especially now, as I'm managed to pick up whatever it is that's been going around.  I look like rudolf, and all I want to do is go back to bed!  Fortunately, this is my easy day, and I only have 2 classes and 3 hours of work.

Doesn't this look like the perfect I-have-to-go-out-but-I-don't-want-to outfit?  Comfortable pants and a pajama shirt, a warm sweater, cute shoes, and a bag that's big enough to hold a box of tissues.  Perfection!
Sleeping In

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Does the season matter?


For the past few weeks I've been moaning about how winter hasn't been wintery enough.  Instead of complaining about our lack of snow and dreary darkness, I think it's time to embrace the warm.  Let's have some premature spring feelings!  There's no reason that we should be relegated to dark colors and frumpy layers, just because it's January.  Bring on the brights, the bold colors!

I redesigned my blog yesterday.  While I like it more than I did the old layout, I'm not sure that I'm completely happy with it.  Keep an eye out for more changes!

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Good show, my friend

 This is an outfit from earlier this week.  I've taken a 180 from a semester long pants rut; I just don't want to wear them anymore!  This means that I may be more motivated to take some outfit photos, since outfits without pants are almost always more interesting.  

Last night I went to a late night theater-department performance with my roommate.  It was called Gender-Benders, and was a collection of short skits and songs.  The whole thing didn't go over an hour, but was hilarious.  Some highlights were the guy dressed in a skirt singing as Hermione, a girl who sang Dr. Horrible, a guy in a dress who did a monologue about tampons, one of my suitemates, who sang a song titled "Have Sex With Me", and the ten or so guys barely dressed who sang and danced to "Hey, Big Spender".  The whole show was fantastic.  We laughed so much!  Good job, guys.

 I think that this is one of my favorite skirts that I've ever made.  It's shorter than I intended it to be, but that's what you get when you only buy one yard and expect to be able to make things out of it.  This was made sometime last year, I believe.  I definitely plan on making this again.  Also, I cut that string off right after I took pictures.  Oops.  

 These are my favorite shoes ever.  I bought them from Delia's last December and wore them every day until March.  That's when the bottom started to crack.  Despite the fact that the original crack is now a complete hole, I can't stop wearing them.  I ought to buy new boots, but I can't part with these ones.  They are just too perfect.  

Outfit Details
Sweater: thrifted
Skirt: self made
Tights: Forever 21
Socks: Kohl's
Boots: Wanted
Necklace: Forever 21
Watch: Walmart

Friday, January 27, 2012

Octopus Sweater

I finally finished my sweater!  I think I started this in sometime in September.  I wrote about wanting to make it in May, so it's been on my mind for a while.  The pattern was originally from Vogue Knitting's Early Fall 2011.  

This sweater felt like it took forever.  I worked on it on the marching band bus, over thanksgiving break, and over winter break.  It would have gone much faster had I worked on it consistently.  The body was done on size 11 needles, and the sleeves on 9s.  I made a size small, but it's still huge.  I wanted huge and cozy, but I didn't realize exactly how big this thing was going to turn out until it was all pieced together.  That was when I realized that the armpits are nearly to my elbows.  

In the magazine where I got this pattern, the sweater is pictured with a lacy cowl.  I made that same cowl before I started the sweater.  I really liked the lace pattern, so I added it to the sweater.  The sweater pattern didn't have any sort of edging on it, and I don't like rolled stockinette, so I added the lace pattern to the edges, and along the sleeves.  I imagined that it would be more dramatic, but I'm not displeased with how it turned out.  

The pattern also called for leaving the neckline free to roll, and I didn't like that so much.  I picked up stitches after to add ribbing.  I don't have much experience with that, so it looks pretty loose.  At first I thought it was kind of bad, and planned on fixing it.  However, I got a few complements on the lacy neckline, so now I'm telling people that I did it on purpose.  Hehe.

I'm calling this the octopus sweater because since it's so large, it tends  to billow out around me strangely, in a way that reminds me of tentacles.  This pattern was easy to work with, but I don't think I would ever remake this.  It's simple enough that I could have made my own pattern easily, and not had to worry about my changes screwing with the existing pattern.  It's soft and cozy, though, and I plan on living in it this winter, if it ever gets cold again.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Happy Thoughts for Thursday


Pretty nails.  My roommate painted them for me this weekend, and she did such a nice job! They're so pretty, and they haven't chipped to pieces yet!

Getting back in to knitting.  Since I've been busy with school, I haven't really taken time to make anything fun.  This week I've been working on a simple hat.  Fun!  Also, I can knit while watching Ouran High School Host Club.

The trombone is pretty cool.


So I bought a bunch of David Maslanka music after the Boyfriend made me listen to a song on youtube.  I've been listening to Garden of Dreams for the past few days straight.  It didn't really sound familiar, and I could not pick out any overlap between it and the youtube clip.  I realized yesterday that the clip was of Symphony 4.  My bad.  Maybe someday I should learn how to read.

Reading is fun! Maybe I will finish the book that I've been reading for the past 2 months soon.  I have tons more that I want to read, but I don't want to complicate my life any more by reading multiple books.
 
My sister's birthday is this week!  I wrote her a letter.  Don't tell!  She's going to be 11!

Despite my addiction to politics, none of my friends hate me yet.  Really, this is pretty surprising.  I'm not always the best at knowing when to drop a subject.  But then, I have my one new friend who also loves politics and who agrees with me, so we can rant together without offending anyone else.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

SOTU made me want to dress nicely



My friends and I watched the State of the Union Address last night.  I was pleased with how it went.  Unlike the lovely republican hopefuls, Mr. Obama didn't say anything that made me roll me eyes or glare at the computer.  I agree with most of what he said, and I hope that he can make it happen.  The list of things he wants to accomplish in the next year is long, but I hope that he will be able to hold congress to it.  I think that he has a lot of good ideas, and I want to give him more time to see them through.   Also, I'm still trying to decide whether this statement is an intentional dig at Romney, or if they just use similar phrases to talk about similar topics.
When Americans talk about folks like me paying my fair share of taxes, it's not because they envy the rich. It's because they understand that when I get tax breaks I don't need and the country can't afford, it either adds to the deficit, or somebody else has to make up the difference - like a senior on a fixed income; or a student trying to get through school; or a family trying to make ends meet. That's not right. Americans know it's not right. -Obama, SOTU 
There are a lot of words in English, and it makes sense that sometimes they would overlap.  But this is politics we're talking about, so I don't know.

Moving on from politics, I'm looking forward to today.  I only have 2 classes, then 3 hours of work.  There's a basketball game tonight, so I get to play the trombone!  Honestly, I get so excited about that, still.  I hope the thrill never wears off.

Outfit Details
Blazer: thrifted
Shirt: thrifted
Skirt: Forever21
Tights: Hanes
Socks: Kohl's
Shoes: Wanted

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Obsession: Ouran High School Host Club

My roommate got me hooked on Ouran High School Host Club.  I watched 10 episodes on Sunday, and now I'm all caught up to my roommate, so we can watch together.  The show is about Haruhi, a scholarship student at Ouran High, who accidentally breaks a vase belonging to the host club.  In order to pay for it, she must pretend to be a boy and join the host club to work for them.  


I am in love with Haruhi.  She's a really strong character, but not in the way that people usually use that term; she doesn't get angry and fight for herself, she doesn't yell.  She's calm and rational and smart, and despite the fact that she uses her brain and doesn't get caught up in fits of girly passion, the other characters can't help but fall for her.  

She's slightly androgynous, but still adorable.  And, she's screwing with my hair plan.  I was going to grow my hair out until the end of the semester, and then cut it really short.  However, Haruhi makes me want to cut it now.  Oh, decisions!


I find it really interesting that there is so much discussion of gender-bending in this show.  I wonder if an American show could ever involve so many androgynous, transgendered, or homosexual characters.  Those characters are dropped in without a fuss, and the story continues.  No one cares.  I've read in other places that this gender-fluidity is a lot more accepted in other parts of the world.  I wonder why, and what can be done to fix our culture here.  



Back to Haruhi: this is me dressing a little like her.  I found this shirt in the men's section of the Village Discount, and it is the softest, comfiest shirt ever.  I am so happy, I want to wear it forever!  Also, my hair was perfectly curly here, but by the end of the day was a fluffy, frizzy mess, which has become a regular occurrence.  It's adding to my desire to chop it all off again.  

Outfit Details
Shirt: thrifted
Shorts: Forever 21
Tights: Hanes
Shoes: Wanted
Watch: Walmart

Have you ever fallen in love with a character?

Monday, January 23, 2012

Garden of Dreams

This clip is the end of David Maslanka's 4th symphony.  It is wonderful.  Give it a listen, but don't expect to be able to speak for a few minutes afterwards.  It's that impressive.

I'm not really sure that this outfit "matches" today's music.  They usually don't.  I feel like I just use music monday as an excuse to play around on polyvore.  I can try to say that this outfit goes with with music, that the prints and the shapes are slightly childish and innocent.  Or, I can just admit that I like music and I like clothes, and I'll take any reason to share the love.
Maslankablouse, blazer, skirt, tight, socks, shoes, bag, hat

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Neutrals with Flavor


There's no such thing as a boring color.  However, sometimes some colors can use a little kick.  That's what sparkly things and little dashes of print are for.  Liven up those neutral colors!  Pick pieces with interesting details!

This particular set makes me want to go play around in my closet and see what interesting things I could do with "boring" colors.  Unfortunately, there's a basketball game today that the band is playing for, so I'm relegated to a uniform.  I can plan for tomorrow though...

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Sponsored Post: GlassesUSA


I’ve had glasses since I was 7 years old.  For a long time my eyewear was relegated to what my mother chose for me.  There are 2 reasons for this.  The first, and most obvious, was financial.  The second is that in order to buy glasses, you need someone you trust to tell you how they look on you.  My eyesight is so bad that even with my face pressed up close against the mirror, I can’t see my face.  Glasses are expensive, and so you have to pick a pair that you’ll want to wear every day.  This inability to see while shopping for glasses has always been an issue.  

With technology as it is these days, it was only a matter of time before somebody made an effort to fix this.  On GlassesUSA.com you can upload a picture of yourself, and then try glasses on to the picture!  I think this is a brilliant idea.  To be able to actually see what you look like, before you shell out tons of money for glasses, is an idea that I can get behind.  

This website offers eyeglasses online for low prices, compared to store-front vendors.  Plus, they have a discount going on now for 20% off of everything, plus free shipping!   You can also get 10% off of prescription glasses with the code Blog10.  

I just got my glasses from Sears a year ago, and while I do love them, sometimes I wish that I could have more options.  I like the idea of being able to buy glasses online, instead of having to go to a store.  Just like every other industry, glasses are moving online!  

After finding this site, I think I may save up some money to buy a pair of prescription sunglasses for the summer.  I’ve always been jealous of my friends who could find cute sunglasses for the sunny months.  Wearing a pair of sunglasses over my normal glasses just doesn’t have the same effect!  Cheap sunglasses that I could actually see out of would be a blessing.  
 See, normal sunglasses just don't work...

A pair of eyeglasses can change your whole face.  That is why it is so important to be able to see what you’re buying before you pay for it!  This company seems like a great way to both be able to see what you are purchasing, and to do so easily.  

Friday, January 20, 2012

HRC: Collar

Read more about this project: inspiration, making the ruboff, and tailoring the front
 This was the next to last step for making the blazer, and the last one that I have photographic evidence of!  Woohoo, almost done.  Still following the directions in the Tailoring book from the library, I drew on my lines and pad-stitched over all of them.  You can see how the collar is bent in the middle, which was the object of the stitching.  
 Look, ma, no stitches!  This side won't be visible anyway, as it is the undercollar, but I am still proud of the fact that there are no visible stitches.  Once I sewed the collar to the jacket body I folded it over, and look, it's even, and it looks like a jacket!  So much excitement.  
Post steaming, it looked even better.  I can't wait to show the finished project!  Also, please don't look at my sloppy cutting skills and gross seams.  Please.  

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Happy Thoughts for Thursday

Coffee is delicious.

Speaking spanish with my friends is a lot of fun, and it's educational!  "Kayla has a dog, four cats, and two cowboys".  Hahaha.

I've practically been living on skype for the past few days.  The whole computer aspect of that kind of sucks, but the Boyfriend and I have had a lot of interesting conversations.  Its good to be able to talk to him, even if it is until 1am.  Who needs sleep?

Planning on sleeping in on Saturday.  Since I've been up until 1 every night this week.

New internet friends! Here and here.

Hahaha.

Anime.  When I was in grade school the only tv shows that I loved were Sailor Moon and Gundam Wing.  However, I could never watch them because my mom worked and I was stuck at school until 6pm every night.  Then, in middle school I started watching Fruits Basket with a friend who owned the DVDs.  Since then, I've fallen off the Anime bandwagon.  I always wished I could watch some, but they're so expensive! My roommate has a Fruits Basket poster, and yesterday I was looking at it and feeling nostalgic.  I told her that I wished I could re-watch it, and we talked about seeing if we could find it in the library.  The conversation changed, and she told me that I should watch Ouron High School Host Club in the meantime.  I found it online, and watched the first episode.  It's so cute!  I don't love it yet, but it's pretty good.  Then I had a realization: I can probably find Fruits Basket online too.  Why did I never think of that before??

Talking about politics.  With Boyfriend, with Roommate, with my new friend from my social work classes.  I just love it.  Let's do it more, ok?  Allison posted something related here that you should check out!

This dress:

 Let me explain a litte.  My Grandma picked this dress out for me for Christmas.  I love the shape of this, I love the collar and the cuffs.  But.  Look.  At.  The.  Print.  I think they're supposed to be tulips, but they look more like...guy stuff.  MY GRANDMA BOUGHT ME A PENIS DRESS.  I can't get over it.  Hilarious!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

New and unnoticed


Yesterday was Martin Luther King Jr. day, and so we had the day off.  We had the whole day off, so I did something that I have wanted to do for a very long time.  I dyed my hair blue!  Or I attempted to, at least.  It didn't really go very well.  I only dyed the bottom layer, but I wore it up so it was visible, and no one said anything all day.  What a disappointment!  Not that drawing attention was my goal.  People say that you get treated differently with brightly colored hair, and I didn't notice anything at all.  

I had the bleach in for an hour, and my hair was barely past orange.  My guess is that I didn't put it in properly, as I've never done this before and also can't see behind my head.  Since my hair wasn't bleached all the way, the blue didn't have as much space to sink it.  So I have purple-ish gray hair, if you look at it closely.  Depending on how it fades out, I may try to re-dye it again in a few weeks.  The only problem is that I don't have any more bleach, and I don't know if that's important.  We'll see how this goes.  This is an experiment with going with it.  I like to have things planned out, and now I can't do that.  I'm forcing myself to wait and see how things play out.  I don't like it.  

 There was a speaker on campus today as part of Unity Week.  Her name was Michelle Barnard, and she's kind of awesome.  She works for mnsbc, so you know she's smart.  I really wanted to go listen to her, but unfortunately I had a night class at the same time.  I was all psyched up to sit through 3 hours of class (ha) when it was announced that we were going to listen to her as a class!  So I got to go, and it was great.  She spoke about the importance of voting, which is an issue that is close to my heart, and about why paying attention to politics is important.  She also made little jabs at the joke that we call our republican candidates, which I thought was ballsy (this is central Indiana) and fantastic.  During the Q&A section when someone asked her to defend what she'd said, her response was for them to do their own homework, which was kind of the whole point of her presentation.  Some people expect answers on a platter, and this isn't that simple.  She made a great point about that relating to Obama, that "he can't do it alone".  So many people are disappointed with him because he hasn't accomplished everything that he had promised; but he's fighting for every step forwards.  He can't even count on the democrats in congress.  People have unrealistic expectations of what one person can do, especially when so many people want him to fail.  All I know is that if we end up with Romney, Paul, Gingrich, or Santorum for president I will cry.  Political tangent aside, I enjoyed myself, and I'm glad I got to go to the event.  


Outfit Details
Sweater: Jcrew, thrifted
Shirt: thrifted
Pants: Delias
Shoes: Wanted
Pin: my mother's

Monday, January 16, 2012

Electric Twist

A Fine Frenzy is my newest addiction.  Alison reminds me a little of Paloma Faith, but that may just be the red hair.  She graduated from high school when she was 16 and took some time off to explore music, and ended up doing pretty well!   She's smart, pretty, and a great song writer and singer.  This song is something fun to brighten up your monday!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Breather


Today has been really relaxing and nice, the perfect weekend day.  I slept in until nearly noon, which never happens, ever.  Usually sleeping in for me means 8:30 or 9.  Then, I had two whole cups of coffee, and they were both the Best Cup of Coffee Ever.  We rearranged our kitchen space yesterday, so this morning I was able to use my new coffee pot for the first time.  Also today, I realized that most of my hair is long enough to make a ponytail!  The bottom needs a few pins, but for the most part it all stays up.  I simultaneously want my short hair back, and also for it all to fit into a ponytail; for me this is classically indecisive.  


I finally got around to playing around with my camera in my favorite outfit picture space.  I thought that I wouldn't be able to fit, but it all worked out!  I actually found a new space in the process, which is where the top picture is.  (Ooh, variety.)  Since this is a 3 day weekend, campus has been pretty dead, so it was easier than usual to take pictures.  At least, I felt less paranoid about someone walking into my pictures.   I thought it was interesting how much the pictures changed with the direction that I was facing.  One set was done in shadows, and the other in the fading sunlight, and they look completely different.  I couldn't pick just one set, though.  I was pleased with how they both turned out.


We celebrated 3 of the suitemate's birthdays today too, and Kayla and Tory made coffee flavored cupcakes.  As much as I love coffee, I didn't really like them.  They were pretty, though.  While we ate them we played the Game of Things, which was new for me.  There were lots of jokes about "Sea men".  Ha. 

Outfit Details
Shirt: cousin's from a decade ago, found in my garage
Shorts: Forever 21
Tights: Hue
Shoes: Wanted

Bundletime


I made this collage at the beginning of December with the idea of sharing it once winter hit.  It is now the middle of January, and we had our first snow this week.  The snow fell for two whole days; the grass is barely covered.  This lack of snow is a real disappointment.  I don't miss the frozen toes and the slipperiness of winter, but I want an excuse to bundle up in cozy layers.  Oh, wait.  I don't need an excuse.  Hello, comfy sweaters.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Happy Thoughts for Thursday: Restart


To me, the start of the semester marks the beginning of the new year moreso than the ball dropping on new year's.  The week before classes start is a time for relaxing, not starting up new projects and making new rules.  This week I've been enjoying:

School supplies.  I really love new notebooks and folders.  Even better, I love organizing them.  All my classes are color coded.  My textbooks have been slowly arriving by mail.  As painful as it was to pay for them, I love seeing a stack of unfamiliar books, and wondering what I'm going to learn from them.

Books.

The nightly spanish hour that my roommate and I are establishing for the semester.  We both need practice, and now we can get it.  On a similar note, I talked to my mom about study abroad over break, and she said that as long as I work on getting scholarships and things, I should be able to do it.

Trombone!  I really missed playing over break.  We had our first game last night for the basketball band, and I had a blast.  I kind of pulled a muscle in my back cheering too enthusiastically... but playing was fun. I can't wait for rehearsal on Friday!

My roommate, who is awesome.  So happy.

New friend!  I was talking to a girl in one of my social work classes, and we had one of those instant best friend moments.  We're the only two social work majors in our grade who are also in the honors college.  Nothing against "normal" people, but sometimes it's nice to be among my own.  New Friend and I walked back from class and gushed about politics and social policy and made plans to go see a political speaker who's coming next week.  Finally, someone who's just as excited as I am to learn about these things!

Rachel Maddow.  New Friend told me I had to look her up.  I did, and I'm in love.  I'm not a tv person, but I may have to make an effort to watch this show.  She's hilarious!  And brilliant!  Also, she came to campus last semester, and I didn't go because I didn't know who she was, and now I'm calling myself ten kinds of idiot.  Next time, do your research, kid.

Time for relaxing.  Last semester I had class from 9 to 5 every day, and then homework after.  This semester I only have class from 10 to 3 on MWF.  Tuesday and Thursday I have 11.5 hours of straight class, but Monday, Wednesday, and Friday are nice.  I can do all my homework for the next day and still have time to watch Avatar with my friends.

The internet!  Ok, so I have a friend from home and a friend here that I've thought for a while would be really good friends if they met in real life.  Well, they both have a tumblr, and the other day one of them reblogged the other!  I know that's not anything extremely epic, since they do run in some of the same internet circles, but I thought it was really cool.  I hope they can be real friends too.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Jason Wu for Target

Yes, please!  Sadly, it's only available for one month, from February 5th to March 6th.  I happen to like Jason Wu a lot, and I'm excited for this, even though I probably won't be able to shop it at all.  So pretty!  So classy!  Oh!