Sunday, November 28, 2010

Just My Luck

Cardigan: Forever 21
Belt: Nordstrom
White shirt underneath: Nordstrom
Jeggings: Target
Boots: Steve Madden

Confession time: I wore this outfit yesterday. And I wore it today... right down to the same underwear and socks. Gross, huh? Well, it's only because I was locked out of my house, and I had no choice. I wouldn't have been locked out if the power didn't go out last night when I came home and the garage door wouldn't let me in. I just happened to be driving my husband's car, which meant his keychain did not have a front door key. And because he was off at work, so there was no one to let me in. Not that I wanted to go in, because, you see, our furnace broke right after Thanksgiving. AND our hot water heater. So, it was FREEZING COLD inside. Plus, our in-laws' furnace broke a few days ago (I know, right?) so we had lent them our space heater. Not like that would have done any good with the power out.

So, I spent the night at my parents house and had to wear the same outfit two days in a row. The baby was spending the night at the in-law's where they had electricity and two space heaters, so he was fine.

My sister took this picture at the mall before we went to see Tangled. Tangled is seriously my new favorite movie. It's SOOOO GOOD (if you are a girl and love Disney movies.. which I do.) LOVE LOVE LOVE. I have always been a big fan of Zachary Levi (but as Chuck Bartowski, he's getting kind of whiney and annoying) but now I think I'm in love. If I wasn't married already, I'd probably go stalk Zac and force him to marry me.

Anyway, on to the outfit. I bought these jeggings two years ago when I didn't know what jeggings were. I was at Target in the clearance section, looking for elastic-waisted maternity pants and I saw these on super clearance. First, I thought, "These are the UGLIEST pants in the entire world. Super tight, elastic waist, and no pockets. Gross." But I bought them anyway because they were stretchy and super cheap. After having the baby, I put them away with my maternity clothes box, and didn't think twice. Pretty recently, I was on the hunt for my "first" pair of jeggings, when I thought of these. I owned a pair without even realizing it! They were all stretched out from when I was super pregnant and looked like a balloon, but thank goodness there's little belt loops on it, so I can just wear them super high with a belt, and no one can tell... I hope.

Another confession: I'm not wearing this outfit right now. I'm wearing layers of sweat pants and sweatshirts, wrapped in my snuggie, sitting 2 inches away from my fireplace. I look awesome.

Tutorial: Hemming your own jeans

I love jean shopping.... but the worst part of buying jeans has got to be having to take them to the tailor to get hemmed... It takes forever to get them back (I'm more for instant gratification. WANT TO WEAR NOW.) and then it usually costs $20+ for the original hem.

I was complaining one day to my crafty friend about having to find time to get my jeans hemmed, and she was like, "Oh! Want me to do them for you? I can totally hem your jeans. AND, there's no cutting involved, so if you don't like it, you can just take it out. It looks nice!"

I was thinking, "yeah, right. It's going to look like when I was in middle school, and we used to staple our JNCO jeans at the bottom." (don't hate. it was cool back then)

But no, I was wrong. Close up, you can see the stitching, but it's practically the same thing as the tailor's "original hem," and really, no one will be the wiser.

Here's why this hemming method is awesome:
  1. It's super easy to do, anyone with a sewing machine can do it.
  2. There's no cutting or permanent altering of your jeans, so if you end up not liking the length, you can take it out and re-do it.
  3. Only takes about an hour to pin, iron, and hem. So fast!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Christmas Stocking-Stuffer Wishlist

Dear Santa (aka husband),

I know I already have a pair of boots that I purchased myself last week as my Christmas present, but don't forget about my stocking stuffers! In case you don't know what I want, here are some suggestions :)

1. Long Ruched Glove - Pewter (Target -$18)

2. Nail polish in camel (Forever 21 - $2.80)

3. Antique Rhinestone Ring (Forever 21 - $4.80)

4. Satin bow headband (Forever 21 - $1.50)

5. Black bow stretch belt (The Limited - $20)

6. Riley white silicone multifunction boyfriend watch (Fossil - $95)

7. Cozy plaid scarf (Gap - $29.50)

8. Stephan & Co. Jeweled Leaf Ring (Nordstrom - $12)

kthxbai :)

Snowflake Lane

Shirt: Hand-me-down (orig. H&M)
Blazer: Thrifted (orig. Anthro)
Jeans: Hudson
Booties: Payless
Scarf: Gifted (from India)

I wore this out to dinner on Black Friday. We weren't planning on going shopping, but since we ate really close to the mall, we just walked over to take a peek in Crate and Barrel. I love holiday time, when they put up the "snowflake lane" and have nightly shows of drummers, lights, and music all along the busy street. So festive!

I was on the hunt for the perfect blazer for the longest time, and decided to go check my neighborhood Goodwill one day. I found this little gem, which happened to be perfect. My size, cute shape, (ugh, so many ugly blazers at Goodwill!), good material (twill), and it happened to be 50% off! Then, with my 20% off coupon, it came out to be $3.50. SO AWESOME. Plus, it was in great condition, so after a trip to the dry cleaners, I was so excited to bust it out for the first time yesterday. I had never heard of the brand (Elevenses) so I Googled it and I *think* it's an Anthro brand. I have no idea because I've never stepped foot into an Anthro store or looked at their website. Not because I don't like their clothes, but because I know I'll like something and not be able to afford it.

I've had these jeans for a few months now but have only worn them a handful of times because they were hemmed to the wrong length. I finally re-hemmed them last weekend, so now I can wear them with my regular shoes. I'll be putting up a jeans hemming tutorial sometime soon (like, tomorrow?), just in case you're interested :) It's super easy!

Friday, November 26, 2010

DIY Bow Belt Tutorial

Yay! My first tutorial. Let's make bow belts today, per request from my first outfit post. Here it goes!

What you'll need:

Fabric: For this belt, I used a 30"x30" square of fabric, since I wanted to cut the belt along the diagonal so it'd stretch better. For my original purple belt, I used a scrap piece, so it was only a strip of fabric, about 5 inches wide, and I just cut it along the straight edge, and it wasn't stretchy at all. It's best to use something with a bit of weight instead of just a plain cotton, so you don't need to use interfacing.

1 set of sew-on hook and eye closures

matching thread, needle, sewing machine, ruler, blah blah blah

Instructions are after the jump.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Closet Need: Mustard Cardigan

image via j.crew
My husband was trying to get me to understand the difference between "wants" and "needs" and I think I pretty much got it down.

I WANT a pair of black boots.
I NEED a pair of black flats.

I WANT a grey cardigan.
I NEED a mustard cardigan.

I WANT a skinny red belt.
I NEED a skinny black belt.

My husband seems to think I've gotten it wrong. "You don't NEED any of those things. You need food and water, but you don't need clothes." Uh... actually, yes. I would prefer not to walk around nekkid, thanks.

I think I'm pretty good. I only have it narrowed down to 3 things I absolutely NEED right now.

One is a mustard or yellow cardigan. I stupidly passed over the perfect mustard cardigan in the clearance section of Target a few months ago, in favor of a cream one.. and totally regret it. I remember thinking at the time, "I don't know what I'd wear with this mustard color... and plus, I'm Asian with a yellowish skin tone, so wearing any shade of yellow cannot be good."

After I passed it over (with regret), I began to notice when people wore that color, and even more so if they were Asian or had a similar skin tone. It actually complimented the color of their skin, and looked SO GOOD. See examples below:

via Adored Austin

via In Pursuit of Pretty Things

via cute and little

22 September 2010
via Academichic

Love love love! Now I'm on the hunt for the perfect mustard cardigan. Watch out, Black Friday sales!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Snow Day

Tank: Banana Republic Factory Store
Cardigan: Zac Posen for Target
Jeans: Paige
Boots: UGG
Necklace: Forever 21

First day of snow, and everyone in Seattle is freaking out. We only get a few days of snow every year, so the people around here are usually ill-prepared. Traffic was a mess this morning, with buses all delayed or canceled, and my facebook news feed was taken over with annoying "OMG IT'S SNOWING!!!!" statuses. It was getting pretty bad in the afternoon and since my commute is an hour long, I left work 3 hours early... and I ended up getting home right on time. Most of the commute wasn't too bad, it was the last 4 miles to my house that took seriously an hour and a half. It was stop and go, and it was along really hilly roads, which resulted in multiple cars stuck in the middle of the road with their blinkers on, and like a parking lot on the side of the hill to my house. I was really lucky I made it home in one piece!

The snow also thwarted my plans for wearing my cute boots, and I wore my Uggs instead. These Uggs were dangerously close to my donate/try-to-sell pile, but my husband was like "gross, who would want to wear used Uggs? They're like sponges." Very true. I will spare the supposed-future-wearer of these the grossness and keep them for myself. My toes thanked me while waiting outside for the super-delayed bus.

Oh, and these skinny jeans? I got them at Goodwill for $10. And there was a $5 bill in the back pocket. Yessss..... (BTW, did you guys know that there's a supposed Napoleon Dynamite cartoon in the works? A few years too late, but still I'm flippin' excited.)

PS... I'm working from home tomorrow, and I'm not working Wednesday... so I might not have any more outfit posts until next week. Unless you want to see me in my sweats. (You don't. Trust me.)

Introducing: Blue Paper Lanterns Blog Design

Okay guys, I have a problem. I already mentioned that I'm down to $44 left for the rest of the year to buy clothes. No good. Really, it's more than enough money IF I were to only need to buy one or two things for the rest of the year, but with Black Friday coming up and Christmas sales... gosh, I'm a sucker for those.

My husband and I have agreed that any extra income we receive can go towards our clothing budgets. This means, work bonuses (which I have not gotten, sad face), selling stuff on Craigslist (I had to part with my beloved aqua blue paper lanterns I used in our wedding... extra sad face), my annual credit card bonuses, or any other means of getting money in my pockets.

Well, what can I do to make a few extra bucks?  By doing what I love doing, which is web and graphic design. So, from now on out, I will be offering custom blog designs!

So far, I've only worked on a few blogs so far.... if you don't count a bunch of template layouts that I did for some fansites awhile ago (think: Paris Hilton, Avril Lavigne, Hayden Panettiere, and a bunch of other teeny-bopper sites.. too bad they all got shut down due to some idiot.. so I can't get screenshots)

I can create a new header and background, then give you CSS to insert into the blogger template designer that will overwrite all your custom settings. Pretty simple and straight-forward.

Find out more here »

ps. If you post my button on your blog, I'll even give you a discount :)

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Black and Teal

Cardigan: Nordstrom Rack
Dress: Hand-me-down (orig. F21)
Belt: Love Culture
Boots: Frye

No one told me that my belt and boots don't match... but are they supposed to? Is it okay if the shade of brown is off? I have no clue, and I don't really care. What I do care about though, is that my husband did not tell me that my belt was all crooked. Boo.

Today, I was inspired by Dotty's outfit.  She mixed a black dress with a turquoise belt and scarf, and brown boots. Very simple combination, but I loved the colors. Since I do not own a turquoise belt and scarf, I decided I'd sub in this super super old cardigan that I haven't worn in years.

These boots are the most expensive pair of shoes I own... and I love them to death. Usually when I buy expensive things (ie., costing more than $20), I regret it almost immediately (like my Lululemon workout pants I just picked up yesterday from getting hemmed... but all sales are final so I'm kind of stuck with them)... but with these boots, I have not regretted it one bit. Maybe because Shopbop had an after-Thanksgiving promo, AND I had a gift certificate, so I got a pretty darn good deal on them. Happy almost one-year birthday to my boots!

Nerd Alert: Battlestar Galactica Exhibit

Um... this isn't about fashion... so if you aren't geeky like me, you can probably just move along now.

It was my birthday last week, and since my husband was working on the actual night of my birthday, we decided we'd drop the baby off at the in-law's and go out to a nice dinner on Saturday. Since we had some time in the afternoon, we were trying to think of things to do, and my husband suggested going to either the Battlestar Galactica exhibit at the Science Fiction Museum or the Harry Potter Exhibit at the Pacific Science Center (both are right next to each other in the Seattle Center, a.k.a. where the Space Needle is.

I really really wanted to go to both, but I decided to be nice and go to the one my husband wanted to go to first. (He thinks Harry Potter is lame. I beg to differ.) After we were done with the BSG exhibit, we walked over to the Harry Potter one, but it was freaking $26 PER PERSON. Geez. We only had an hour left on the parking meter, so we decided to pass.

It was our first time at the EMP/SFM (Experience Music Project and Science Fiction Museum) since it opened in 2000 and it was pretty cool inside. We don't care much about music, but the Sci Fi section was pretty neat.

At the BSG exhibit, they had three of the spaceships from the show, a handful of props, and some costumes (from both the old BSG and the reimagined series). I really wish they could have gotten their hands on more items, it wasn't very big or very much to look at. A few cool things, but really, after 4 seasons on TV, they couldn't get any more props than that?! Sad face. If you have not seen Battlestar Galactica, you must. It's soooo good.

And um... I would taken more pictures without me mugging for the camera (eg., pictures of cool spaceships) but I didn't have a blog at the time and didn't know I'd be posting a recap. Please forgive me. Also, if I had known I'd be posting these pictures on the world wide web, I'd do something about that frizzy hair. Oh well, too late now!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Bows make everything better

Cardigan: The Limited
Belt: made it myself
Skirt: Old Navy
Boots: Steve Madden

My very first outfit picture! I was getting so nervous last night, it felt like the first day of school, where you want to pick out a cute outfit that will impress your friends without looking like you're trying too hard.

My husband took the pictures and he was actually a good sport about it and didn't even crack any jokes or make fun of me. I was impressed! I had asked him last night if he'd take my outfit pictures for me in the morning and he was like "why don't you get one of those photographer boyfriends that everyone has" LOL.

My skirt was only $4! I love good deals like this, where its a super cute item, on clearance, and my size. I think the only times I ever shop at Old Navy is when they have the additional 50% off clearance items sale. And I only shop in the clearance section of Target, too. Um, actually.. I only shop in the clearance section of any store (except Forever 21. The clothes in their clearance section is usually butt-ugly.)

I made this bow belt for a floral dress I was sewing. Of course, the dress turned out horrible (ugh, so horrible. I don't even want to think about all the hours I spent on it.) I decided that I'd keep the bow belt for something else, and I'm glad I did. Isn't it cute? It was super easy, too. I want to make another one, so maybe I'll put up a tutorial for it. Anyone interested?

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Seeing Red

For the longest time, I refused to shop at Forever 21. I remember thinking it was for college kids, and I would make fun of my sister because she liked shopping there way past being 21 years old. For Christmas one year, I gave her a gift card and crossed out the "21" part, and wrote "Forever 28" as a joke. Funny, right? (not really.)

After awhile, I realized that F21 had evolved beyond polyester clubbing clothes, and some of it was actually pretty cute! Plus, bloggers like Chloe, Tiffany, and Phi-Style all wore F21, mixing high-end and low-end and making the cheapy clothes look A LOT more expensive than they were. I finally embraced the store last year... and now I'm addicted.

This year, for my birthday (which was last week! Happy birthday to me!!!), my super generous sister gave me a Forever 21 gift card, and I was soooo excited. I had some time yesterday to do a little shopping, so I spent waaay too much time (and gift card money) shopping for a few new things. Yay new clothes! Right after I spent all my birthday money on new clothes last weekend!!! (Sarcasm right there. Most of it I splurged on a pair of lululemon workout pants for the 2 times a month that I work out. sigh.)

You know how they say, you shouldn't buy something unless you can incorporate it into x number of outfits with pieces already in your closet? Well, I ignored that rule and bought this cute red skirt:

I generally stay far away from bold colors, and red is no exception. And every outfit I plan around the skirt involves something I don't have yet (still on the hunt for the perfect black or navy striped tee!). I'm almost regretting not getting its navy colored counterpart instead, since I could incorporate that more easily into my existing wardrobe. But the red- so bold! so out-of-my-comfort-zone! branching out and trying something new! (yes, you can laugh at me now). What would you do? Keep the red? Exchange it for the blue? I need to decide within 21 days, LOL. :)

PS, I was planning on doing my very first outfit post today (eeeeek, so awkward) but I was running late for work this morning, too embarrassed to ask my husband to take my outfit pic (he'll laugh at me), and didn't really know how to go about taking it myself... and plus I was having a bad hair day. Excuses, excuses. I promise I'll try harder tomorrow. I'd probably be a pro at taking my self-portrait in the office restroom, but that's just not cool.

PPS, Seriously? Did I just type this huge long post about a freaking $12 skirt?!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Introducing Myself

Hi! I'm Kimmie. I love reading fashion blogs (and craft blogs, and cooking blogs, and baby blogs... and I guess any type of blog actually) and have always felt like reading blogs was a one-way conversation, since I wasn't part of the "blogging community." I maintain a baby blog for my son (who is 18 months old and the cutest baby EVAR), but that doesn't count, since frankly, it was meant more for family and friends, and I get weirded out when random people find it. SO, I started this spiffy little blog, not because I'm out for world domination, or gaining a million followers. I just want to put myself out there in case you are interested, so you can find out a little more about me!

I've never considered myself stylish at all, so starting a fashion blog is a bit strange (and my friends IRL would probably find it strange too), so please bear with me. I pride myself on my superb bargain-hunting skills, and just need an outlet to talk about my clothes, since my husband doesn't care about womens fashion... unless it pertains to me going over my allotted clothing budget. Which, by the way, is $600 for the year. I'm down to $31.62 for the rest of the year, and this is AFTER my birthday money and my cash back bonuses from my credit card and Bing (lame-o).

I was introduced to fashion blogging in 2008 by Tiffany, who seriously has the most amazing wardrobe in the world. I've known her since college (we did go to the same high school too, but she was part of the popular clique and could probably care less about some nerdy underclassman) when we were in the same sorority (she's actually my great-grand-sis), and I always felt so awkward and unstylish next to her fabulousness. So with her being my sole glimpse into fashion blogging, I thought for the longest time that fashion bloggers must have the latest fashions, designer shoes, and expensive labels. After awhile, I found bloggers like Kendi, Tania, and Steph, who prove that being fashionable doesn't always mean spending big bucks, and that thrifting isn't as lame as I thought it to be.

I have always been a jeans and t-shirt kind of girl, but lately, I've been inspired to branch out and try new things. Skinny jeans! Blazers! Tucked-in shirts! Things, that, a year ago, would have never crossed my mind. I used to live in t-shirts, hoodies (I had one in every single color), designer jeans, and flip flops or Chucks. In the beginning of 2010, my new years resolution was to cut out hoodies and flip flops from my work wardrobe, and I've been successful so far.

So there you have it. Hope you can stick around! :)