31 October 2009

Cantaloupe Dress

A dress Carrie wore in the final series of Sex And The City, Oscar De La Renta's Cantaloupe dress, ran off with (the fashion side of) my heart the moment I saw it. This dress I would love for my wedding's reception but whatever the design I have now committed to making myself two dresses! I do now have a possible back-up wedding dress though, in case something happens to my adventurous plans.

So, back to the Cantaloupe dress, until yesterday I never found images of it apart from a photo of Carrie wearing it in SATC. I have, off and on, searched online for photos in more detail to see how it was constructed then, last night, finally thought to watch the episode the dress featured in. Fifteen minutes of freeze-frames later, voila! Turns out it was a Spring '04 design, and came in quite a few different fabrics, which made the dresses look rather different.

To be honest, I wouldn't really have looked twice at the above versions (though it's interesting to see it in white as a wedding dress possibility), but the pink version with patent leather belt is the bees knees. The black patent leather against the pink adds an edge to it that is missing in the above versions.

Carrie read from the magazine, with Vogue describing it as a full-skirted dress with patent leather belt. I really do think if I am going to attempt this dress (which will pale in comparison to the designer's), I really should search for that same colour. I wonder if Brendan will allow me to push back the wedding for the sake of a dress?

25 October 2009

Shoe help please!

Does anyone recognise this style of Christian Dior shoe (and know where to find it online)?  Is it even current (sometimes shops here can fool us into thinking they are new season when they aren't)?

I am seriously thinking of this pair for my wedding day and I think I'll be able to wear them after too. I can't abide cheap shoes to serve a purpose, nor can I bring myself to splash out on a decent pair to wear for one day only.   I am now thinking of making my wedding dress and buying fancy shoes instead.  I have been very uninspired by the dresses on offer in NZ.  Very simple looking things going for $3,000.  Come on!  And if not simple and overpriced, they are over-the-top (sorry to be harsh) ugly - frou frou, bows, harsh white fabrics.

I am going to sew a mockup of a dress I've designed/sketched, and if it works out, great!  Then I can justify buying the above shoes, or at least something great like them.

22 October 2009

bubble dresses

Two bubble dresses, one 18m size and the other 5T.  This photo probably doesn't show just how tiny the 18m size is; trust me, it's the dinkiest little thing.  The deep charcoal bubble dress is a custom order, made of a silk/wool blend.  It's interesting making the same garment out of different fabrics, as each looks a little different.  The linen creases a little, yet the silk/wool drapes without a fuss. I appreciate the look each fabric brings to this dress.

For Priscilla and Audrey (not she who lives here).

20 October 2009

seven random things

I have received a few blog-related awards and tags and I do apologise to those who did so and didn't see anything here in response. I must seem awfully slack in that regard, but honestly I don't know where I can find more hours in the day. Some post responses I attempted but then they got buried and forgotten, most likely when Audrey beckoned me or Lucy came in wafting of French perfume) so here is my own attempt to thank those who thought of me (thatgirl, Emily, Sara, and thesurlyseamstress).

1. Something I haven’t done for far too long - riding the 1964 Triumph Speedtwin my father keeps stored in his shed at home (I pray it never falls over when I am required to stop as it must weigh half a tonne). When I do get the thrill of a ride, we venture down the desolate and picturesque back roads of Havelock North, Dad on his Harley. Maybe this Christmas we’ll get the chance again? A leather-clad vegetarian is rather ironic though, don’t you think? Or maybe a different word came to mind..?

2. I ate rocket and parmesan salad almost every day for the past two or so years, only stopping a few months ago. Whatever it was in the leaves that I needed, I am now replenished. I think my rocket supplier will be crying into his plants as he notices a drop in income. At least now when people come over for dinner they won't have to feign surprise and delight - 'oh, rocket and parmesan salad, what a lovely surprise...!'.

3. I once dressed up in a chicken suit to make a stand against caged-egg farming. For those interested, I am always on offer to put my pride on the shelf/play the fool for our furred and feathered friends. I guess, in my 80's, I will be one of those eccentric old women, probably dubbed 'birdwoman' (...it's been said before).

4. I have a real addiction to glossy fashion magazines. The day I find someone has discarded my Vogue UK and Gap Press collections will be a day they will never, ever forget. Read this and be warned dear Brendan…

5. Conversations within my family (usually between my mother and sister and I) often include a line out of a movie or tv programme, Seinfeld being one of them. I couldn’t count how many times we’ve off-handedly said to one other ‘I mentioned the bisque’, or ‘she was a low talker’… If you don’t know what I am talking about you obviously haven’t watched the entire Seinfeld series over and over. Another favourite is ‘Pivot! Pivot! Pivot!’ (Ross of Friends).

6. My sister and brother and I are very close, and this is probably one of the main reasons I did not want to have only one child. My parents must like the fact that we are close and all living in the same city. I know I would like it for Lucy and Audrey (and any other siblings) to enjoy each other’s company and have each other for support when I am older (or not around).

7. Like my sister, I just love collecting information. If I spy a sewing-related manual or hand-craft book I am always very tempted to buy it. Luckily the thrift shops here often have some real goodies for next to nothing. Remember those Golden Hands books? I picked up the whole hard-back set for $4. Bargain! I think in the year I have had them I have looked at one of the books out of the set once, but I love that they are there waiting for me if ever I want to learn a new skill.

14 October 2009

little kitchen

Lucy's 'insta-smile'

Lucy and I bought this super little cookbook the other day. Though kids cookbooks aren't anything new, this one is rather good, with plenty of healthful and tasty recipes just perfect for little people but also, which is unexpected in such a genre, appealing to me. The photographs are cool too, though I guess they have to be considering the intended audience.

The author, Sabrina Parrini, started an organic cooking school for children which is what this cookbook is based upon.

A few years back I cooked dinners from Cuisine magazine for Brendan and I every night for I don't know how many months (cue Julie and Julia?). The thought utterly exhausts me now and I don't know how I managed all the preparation. I guess that's what having two kids does to one's mindset. Though I still follow recipes often, I simplify things now. Last night Lucy had fish, agria potatoes and vegetables and I had olive-oil pan fried eggplant with sundried tomato-feta, asparagus and rocket leaves alongside the agria potatoes. It was so easy and tasted divine.

So back to Little Kitchen - so far Lucy and I have cooked a pasta bake (Lucy - tuna, moi - beans) and we've also baked Gingerbread biscuits. Both were delicious and I would certainly cook both again (though I admit I spiced mine up a little with feta and rocket tumbled, as Nigella would say, atop). I do believe this book's gingerbread recipe has knocked my current favourite off its perch. Next up is a lovely scone recipe I am eager to try. Sabrina says the key to a great scone is in the flour, and she recommends something fine such as Italian flour Tipo 00. Can't wait to see the difference it makes!

12 October 2009

wool to the rescue!

Here's Audrey for you; the almost-eight month old hasn't had a blog airing for awhile. This is what she wore yesterday (well, one of the outfits); yes, it is October, so what's up with our weather?

11 October 2009

reformed skirt wearer

I think I will be wearing alot more skirts from now on. I've always been a jeans/pants girl, and have never minded spending good money on denim seeing as I wear them pretty much every day. But lately I have been really into skirts. I think before making this skirt pattern I never found one that suited my predominantly day-living, kid-centric lifestyle. I made this one from Ksubi denim, which has an almost rubbery feel to it. It's the coolest fabric and I wish, wish, wish I was able to get more. The colour, the visible texture, the way it wears (I made Lucy a pair of jeans from it which have subtly whiskered, and are wearing in all the cutest places). It is panelled and has pockets, and I particularly like that it also has belt loops. It's shapely yet forgiving, and is designed to be worn more on the hips than the waist, which makes it so comfortable to wear. I am making an orange version for me for our approaching spring/summer. And once I've graded more sizes I will offer them in my shop in various fabrics.

A little bit of trivia - did you know that during a recession skirt hems get much longer?

6 October 2009

eternally stylish

I just caught a snippet of an episode of Top Gear where Jeremy Clarkson (one of my comedic heroes) was speaking with Dame Helen Mirren about her track time trial. Seriously, I couldn’t take my eyes off of her (nor could the audience). She was captivating, charming, funny, everything one would hope to be, at any age. Too often, magazines focus on a certain demographic (one which I am aware I am getting further and further removed from), almost dismissing anything anyone older might have to offer. If only more and more people got to see and hear these inspirational women, surely we’d all have a far more balanced perspective. In salute of the older woman! It makes me ready to embrace my advancing years.

3 October 2009