Meet El Ombre!

#1-3 Remember this bag? It is a $25 Marc Jacobs I picked up at the flea market. It had really been used and abused! I think there was even gum stuck to the bottom, and no amount of cleaning would even make a dent in the stains. I first posted about it here, where you all voted to turn it citron...

... which I did. Sort of. Inspiration struck, and now it is lime/citron ombre! The colors are more like pic 1, but it is not that shiny. The shine is more like 5-7. I'm beyond happy with it, and even DH likes it a LOT. I can always nitpick at my work, and there are some spots where the fade is not seamless if you look close, but I keep hearing an old teacher's voice saying that half of art is knowing when to stop before you ruin it... lol.

For any of you Tarrago Dye users out there wondering about how they mix: they mix beautifully. I did not have to add anything to combine the dyes - just put 'em both in a bottle and shook it up. They do separate after a time, but re-shaking combines them again and gives a perfectly even color - no streaks.


Go to the full post to see all of the pictures →


Just for Fun: Fashion Memo from 1967

"Mod fashions are NOT appropriate business attire."

I just came back from my last staff meeting, where the big bosses shared some fun tidbits they found in the archives. Among them was the above quote from a memo reminding employees to be mindful of their personal grooming. Standing about in our Friday jeans, we all had a good laugh!

We were also read a letter from 1983 in which a client questioned an employee's pedal pushers. This client was so upset that he took his deposit eslewhere. So remember, ladies: you never know who is out there recording your fashio foibles for posterity. ;)


PSA: Beware Woolite Dry Cleaner's Secret!

So many of you know that I love love love Dryel and use it to dry clean my precious items at home.

Last weekend, I went to Walmart to buy a new pack, but all they had on offer was Woolite Dry Cleaner's Secret - looked like the same thing, just a different brand. All the instructions were the same, except this one doesn't say you have to use a special dry-cleaning bag.

Well, cut to the end of the process, and TWO items came out with gigantic OIL STAINS on them. I was horrified and didn't know what could have happened - was my dryer broken and leaking lubricant? Had someone in my complex thrown chap stick in the dryer by accident?

Nope. I Googled a bit and it turns out Dry Cleaner's Secret is OIL BASED and a few others have had clothes ruined by oil stains as well. The oil in the cloths allows you to use the cloths to spot treat oily stains on clothes. However, as I unfortunately witnessed with a BB shirt and Calypso dress, the oil can also leave massive stains. My husband is going to call the company for me while I'm at work today. :T

P.S. Dryel, on the other hand, is water based and does not do this.


OT: New Bemular Video & Free Download

Exciting news! At least for me. ;)

Those who have known me for a while know that my husband and I recently formed a band, Bemular, with another couple. Todd just finished our latest music video and uploaded it today, and we're super tickled to have gotten a link and short review over at On the Level Gaming. The song was called "excellent and catchy" - squee!

Why a gaming blog, you ask? The song was inspired by much-beloved video game "Half-Life 2" - yes, DH and I get our inspiration from all over the place.

The song, "Paging Gordon Freeman," is available for free on our sound cloud (warning: I believe there is one explicit lyric in the song).


Thoughts on Emotional Shopping

I've been really edgy lately, for a number of reasons, and thus much more likely to "buy to try" - i.e. order things that I'm not certain about to see if they work. I even get a weird enjoyment out of returning the things that didn't work, which isn't always the case.

Now, shopping is my favorite thing, and clothes are my hobby of choice, so I get the usual enjoyment just based on that. But it seems like browsing, inspecting, deciding, rejecting... all these things make me feel extra calm, active, and in control when I'm otherwise a mess. I hate limbo, and I suppose this gives me the illusion of progress when I need it.

The question is: is emotional shopping necessarily a bad thing? I would say yes if I was buying everything just because, but the *decision* to keep or return is an integral part of the process. On one hand, it is a waste of time - "spinning the wheels" a bit. But on the other hand, it's a big comfort when I have to be patient and time other things correctly rather than doing what I want now now now. In that respect, it's not a waste of time but more of a theraputic process.

What do you think? Is emotional shopping always bad? Does it have its place? How is it different from other hobbies like... whittling or... boating... that others use to relieve stress?


OT: Rant about LA cyclists

I know many of you commute via bicycle, so this is not directed at *everyone* on a bike. But geez, I don't have that many pet peeves, but two things that make me rage with the fire of a thousand suns are rude service and cyclists. in. Los. Angeles.

Just for the record, if you are insterested in incurring rage and ill will wherever you go, please do the following:

- Take up an entire lane of traffic on a street that only *has* one lane. During rush hour.

- Bike on the wrong side of the road so that you come flying at people with little warning - especially when you round a corner and appear on top of someone turning right.

- Cut off cars in the left turn lane, again during rush hour, and then go through the turn as slowly as possible, fiddling with your handlebars and gears the whole way, so that only one car may make the turn in time and all the others have to wait an extra ten minutes to go thirty feet.

- Slow or stop in front of vital driveways and areas, like those to gas stations, post offices, metered parking spots, the emergency room...

- Cut across four lanes, without signaling, and without checking for oncoming traffic.

- Ride your black bike in a black hoodie and black jeans without any lights or reflectors in the middle of the night.

- Make sure to speed up when riding on the sidewalk with your girlfriend on the handlebars, so that you can cut in front of that car that's been waiting to turn for five minutes (instead of going behind, or pausing for a second so the car can go on its merry way). If you don't beat this car to the punch, you will look like such an unmanly fool!

- Ride in groups, but never in single file. Make sure to take up as many lanes as possible, so that you may chitchat and ride even slower while the road piles up behind you.

- Above all, when cars try to go around you, pass you, or otherwise circumvent the delay you're causing, scream and swear like it's bloody murder. You own the road, and how dare anyone else try to use it!


Ok. I think I'm done and can move on with my day now that I let that out... but dude, seriously, in any vehicle, if you think you deserve consideration on the road, be considerate yourself.


Manspiration Scheduling Update

I know there are a couple people from outside YLF who are mainly checking in on the blog to see the Superhero outfits... Due to wardrobe and dress code restrictions, I'm going to go ahead and implement a schedule change. I will now have:

- Fantasy Fridays
- Superhero Saturdays

Easier to do well, and increased alliteration!


It must not be a good time of year for yellow jackets...

Angie's citron blazer was attacked by ink, my citron trench is yet to be, and now I can't find my cropped yellow jacket.

I fear I may have donated it, because it was all polyester and made me sweat a lot... but that all seems so silly now that it matches my yellow tiger jeans! Yaaaarg. And of course I can't find anything similar online in my size. :_(

If you have a piece of yellow outerwear, hide it in the bomb shelter!


Mini Rant on Inconsistent Quality

I'm pretty darned happy with everything I've allowed myself to buy new this season... except a few things are already falling apart. As someone used to thrifing used and discarded items, I'm really shocked. My hand-me-downs never wear out this fast!

In review:
Mossimo cardigan - developed a hole on the shoulder seam
F21 orange blazer - pilling all over
Anne Taylor sweater - pilling significantly

I don't even put any "outside" clothes into the washing machine anymore - everything gets Dryel-ed or frozen. Sheesh. As much as I like and wear those items, I can't help but hear a little voice in my head saying, "Haha! This is what you get for paying more than $1!"


Sharing a dye failure! Jacquard iDye Blended Fabric Review

Oof. Ouch, this one hurts.

I dyed my beige trench last night, and the color did not come out right at ALL. Having seen the strength of the colors I'd used before, I was sure they would overpower the beige of the fabric, but the citron *barely* made a dent in it at all - what I'm left with is now a warm beige that looks terrible against my skin. BOO!

I used iDye Poly in yellow and iDye for natural fibers in chartreuse on a poly/cotton blend. The weird thing is that the chartreuse didn't seem to take at all, even though the lining color (100% poly) appears unchanged. I threw a cotton dress into the dye bath afterward, and it came out yellow, even though the cotton *should* have only picked up the charteuse color. Maybe my charteuse dye packet was a dud?

The good news is that I've only spent $40 so far, but now I'm in foreign territory. I'm not at all confident about using color remover, since the coat is too large to simmer stovetop. I'm now researching soft-touch, opaque fabric paints too see if I can still save it. :(