Wednesday, 1 December 2010

snow and red lipstick on the first of december

 I love snowy days. Even in February when I am sick unto death of the cold and the snow the sight of snowflakes tumbling through the air is still a beautiful one: and the sweet snows of December are magical. Today I have been curled up with sweater and guitar and my favourite tea and some beautiful choral music, welcoming the winter.


T-shirt: Kyra, from Hot Topic / sweater: Mum picked it up for thirty cents at Goodwill, but it is originally from J. Crew / skirt: Goodwill, originally from Target / stockings: Goodwill / gloves and necklace: Claire's.


I recently purchased some red matte lipstick with which I am very pleased this far. I've never been able to find a shade of red that wasn't too pink or too orange till now. Also it stays well and doesn't come off all over my teacup.


Why yes, I am wearing a Hogwarts t-shirt. 

And with all of this loveliness, I believe that my Christmas spirit has bloomed brighter than ever.

Tuesday, 30 November 2010

braving the weather

Alas, dear readers, the onset of winter is a very awkward time to try to keep up a fashion blog, especially when one has a rather sub-par camera and a dark house: I can only get decent pictures in natural daylight, and of late there isn't much. I start thinking "oh, I like what I'm wearing today; I'll take a picture when I'm finished with this other thing", but when I have done that it is getting dark. The nerve of this planet! Ugh. But I persevere, as I will stubbornly show you: today it is raining, but I still ducked outside to get a photograph, for it is high time.

My mother found me a lot of these little Elvish-y blouses that lace up the front and back at Goodwill for a dollar or less -- I have four now, in ivory, burgundy, and two shades of pink (the burgundy one above is shaped a bit differently from the others, however), and they are most excellent at dressing up an outfit. 
Blouses and boots are thrifted; socks from Kyra last winter; dress from Ross Dress For Less; belt and earrings from Rue 21; gloves from Claire's (a dollar!).

Notice: I am freezing. I love rain, and in the summer I quite like being out in the rain (Dad and I always laugh at people at music festivals who huddle under tarps and plastic bags when it rains: you guys, it's summer and humid; the rain isn't going to hurt you), but it is cold and blustery and I cannot fashion under these conditions. Also I am trying red lipstick out, largely thanks to repeat watches of Moulin Rouge!

Saturday, 13 November 2010

trying mori-girl fashion on for size

I have a massive file of fashion inspiration on my computer, filled with everything from Buffy, Veronica Mars, and Legend of the Seeker screencaps to gothwear to rockabilly to 1940s high fashion to my favourite fashion bloggers to pictures of Amanda Palmer and Joanna Newsom. One fashion subculture that keeps turning up is mori-girl, a somewhat recent style out of Japan. The name means "forest girl", and the style is largely comprised of layers of soft, comfortable, loose-fitting clothes in naturalistic, rich colours, with a lot of quirky details and natural materials. A lot of mori-girl outfits are very folklore-y in aesthetic, which definitely appeals to me, and I also see a lot of asymmetrical layers and uneven hems, yay! (For a nice visual overview, check out this mori-girl Tumblr -- lots of gorgeous photographs.) I've fallen quite in love, and finally decided to have my first go at putting together a mori-girl inspired outfit. I'm sure I haven't got it exactly right, but I like the result.

These are largely things that have been in my closet for some time, though I'd bought the skirt at Goodwill when we had family visiting and apparently forgot about it because I don't think I've worn it more than once, which is shameful, because look how gorgeous!

Leaf earrings from a Rue 21 clearance rack; they were just a little too neat, so I bent them up a bit and like them ever so much better now. Hat from Rue 21, several years ago. And my Hot Topic fur collar, which is probably the best three dollars I've ever spent on myself, the amount of use it's getting.

I bought myself two warm pairs of knitted fingerless gloves at Ross Dress For Less recently (three dollars each for gloves that originally retailed for eighteen; not bad, I say!), as while I have lots of fingerless gloves, my only really warm ones are orange, and clash with a lot of things. So I've these lovely long purple ones (I may sew some buttons onto them later), and a grey pair with bows which will undoubtedly be seen later. The ring was twenty-five cents at a yard sale.

The first ring is from Rue 21, and the other, which I wear all the time, is my great-grandmother's engagement ring, from the 1920s. It's extremely beautiful and intricate with a tiny chip of diamond; I'll have to take some proper pictures of it someday.

My owl necklace from Kyra, and a lovely jumble-of-keys necklace from Rue 21. 

 Cosy purple socks! And yes, I do wear these boots almost every other day.

As I type this, my hair is up in a shower cap and full of dye, so I'll be a new(ish) me tomorrow, good heavens.

Monday, 8 November 2010

and after this, five hundred words

November, being the month I spend all my days hunched over my desk writing frantically (happy NaNoWriMo, everybody; it's my third year), tends to be a year of a) cardigans, and b) story-appropriate clothing. Last year I wore my Vampires Beware t-shirt rather a lot, as well as long elegant dresses; this year it would seem there will be a great deal of boots and cardigans and flat caps, for I am writing about a 1940s English village (and also werewolves, and the Wild Hunt). Alas, we ran out of batteries all throughout the house, so I haven't been able to get very many photographs in between writing frantically, entertaining family company, and attempting to teach myself how to sleep again.

 My mother has a rather agreeable habit of snatching up inexpensive items for me when she's trawling Goodwill on her lonesome: I came home from a two-day excursion to Pittsburgh to find this beautiful crimson lambswool J. Crew cardigan folded on my bed, which my mother acquired for thirty cents. If I had all the money, I would buy a lot of basics from J. Crew, especially cardigans, but this is so perfect and cosy and right that it tempers the longing a good deal. Red sweaters are The Thing, you guys; they are in my perfect imagining of autumn and winter, and for whatever reason I can never find any that fit properly, but this is glorious (and so warm). 

I was feeling a bit bleh that day, so I simply layered it with my little white dress, a black skirt for length, and my cosy striped knee socks.


Closeup on the lovely cableing, and my beloved skeleton key necklace (by which I mean 'the key that goes to my door on an old chain'; it looks very storybookish, I think). 

I think brown may well be my favourite colour for shoes. These are wonderfully comfortable.

Mum thought me very 1890s in the above outfit, which was a sight better than some of her comparisons (street urchin, her mother, mystic she saw on the streets of Pakistan in the 1980s).I'm wearing a rather floaty grey polka dot dress under the red dress, again mostly for length. All items thrifted, save my fur collar from Hot Topic, which is swiftly becoming one of my favourite purchases ever.

I managed, after quite a lot of tries, to get the key tied prettily onto the collar (I tried to wear a necklace with this outfit and could not; either the fur or the buttons got in the way, so I thought I'd try this instead), but look, I did it! Earrings are from Rue 21.

Thursday, 28 October 2010

why yes, i am dressing for my eyeliner

I HAVE GOT MY CONTACTS BACK. This is a source of great and unending joy, as much as I heart my crimson geekspecs -- not only do I prefer my face without glasses, but I also no longer twitch my nose constantly to keep glasses from sliding off my face, and I can wash my face, shower, put on makeup, open hot ovens, and don turtlenecks without undue discomfort. And wear dramatic eye makeup. 

Anyway, I've been wearing favourite dresses of late -- it is definitely the weather for long dresses that will flow nicely in the wind. I've had this one for three years or so and I love how I don't even have to wear much with it to look very impressive. The pattern on this dress, guys. My oh my.

All items thrifted, save the cameo necklace, which is from a pendant I bought at Michael's and the cord to another necklace.

 This next dress has been my favourite item of clothing this autumn. For whatever reason I tend to latch onto a particular outfit every autumn, and this seems to be this year's -- I'd passed it up at Goodwill several times, thinking it was too large and not very fitted, but I love vintage floral housedresses, so I finally tried it on and it fit like a dream. Also, by then it was twenty-nine cents. \o/

I've probably worn it about ten to fifteen times since I bought it about two months ago. It is cosy and pretty and suits multiple aesthetics! Somehow, it has always resisted being blogged, however. No more!

I've been wearing it in a sort of rural, New England-gothic way mostly, although with my heavy brown boots and a cardigan it passes for something cosy and gentle as well. 

Dramatic eyeliner (how I've missed you!!) + Forever 21 Celtic-esque headwrap, hooray!

You've seen this necklace before, but I do, in fact, love it incredibly. Bonus close-up on dress pattern.

 And yes, I'm still highly enamoured of my wee Hot Topic bat necklace. And my lovely owl ring, which is beginning to be a bit tarnished. Perhaps absurdly, I tend to like my jewellery more when it no longer looks new.

It was actually quite chilly outside when I took the last set of pictures, but it's been cosy in the house all day, really! I didn't want to hunt for a jacket that I hadn't even been wearing! It would be disingenuous.

Friday, 22 October 2010

pretty things from last week

 Backlog tiiiime! A slightly grainy photograph -- taken on the way home from a shopping trip as the sun was going down -- of an outfit which greatly pleased me. So many autumn favourites coming back to play! That brown sweater with its very distinguished buttons was a mainstay of my wardrobe-of-ultimate-cosy last winter. The stockings I must have bought at some point, but I found them in my drawer last week with no memory of how or when they arrived there, and have been wearing them almost incessantly since. Skirt thrifted by way of Rue 21 two autumns ago -- I have the same skirt in a different, softer-and-darker-coloured pattern which I bought on clearance, but I missed this one and was pleased to see it turn up later. It has pockets! And large buttons showing you wear the pockets are, although both of them are off at the moment, as one fell off and I can't find it, so I cut the other one off so I can actually wear this very lovely skirt.

Autumnal gothic streak activate! I found this lovely blouse with corset lacing up both sides at Goodwill (of course) and can finally bring myself to throw out my former little black blouse which has holes in the lace at the neck. (I... get very sentimentally attached to my clothing.) All things thrifted, save accessories (Hot Topic, Rue 21, Claire's).

And once more, with my lovely long red jacket! I wore this to my weekly open mic session at the local coffee shop, although I hadn't remembered it was That Day when I was dressing. When I show up tonight in a slightly oversized cable-knit sweater, dark jeans, brogues, and a flat cap, the other denizens may be confused.

GLOVES OF MY DREAMS. From Claire's, ring from Rue 21. 

 The true root of the outfit was, of course, this exquisite little fur collar from Hot Topic -- my best friend alerted me to an online clearance sale by linking me to things I might like. Usually I say "ooooh" and then hide my wallet from myself, but. But! I have wanted a detachable fur collar for an age! And had no idea where to get one, though I keep seeing them on blogs. It ties with a little ribbon! Also it was less than three dollars. It kept slipping, so I fastened it with a cameo brooch my mother bought for me on eBay two Christmasses ago.

There are no Hot Topic stores near me at all. This is a source of great sadness.

 The root of this next outfit? I HAVE BROGUES. I HAVE BROGUES AT LAST. Real proper cosy leather ones, which I will never, ever take off. I was so close to spending irrational amounts of money to snatch some very similar ones up on eBay, but a pair finally turned up at Goodwill -- you can find anything at Goodwill eventually, but rarely when you actually specifically want it -- and I am over the moon.

They have a very slight heel, but not so much that a day of walking in them bothers me overmuch. I also ordered a lace scarf from Hot Topic with my fur collar (it made the shipping charge count for more, okay -- and it was approximately two dollars), and it was very entertaining digging around for the right sort of girl!Englishman pieces to suit everything. 

 Cosy button-down sweater, a staple of two winters ago; stripey shirt (I have a weakness for stripes), beloved peacoat, lovely lovely brogues: thrifted. Scarf: Hot Topic. Gloves and hat: Claire's. (The hat I just bought at full price omg because I have been eyeing it for months and there was ONLY ONE LEFT, HORRORS. I adore flat caps, but for whatever reason a lot of them do not fit me properly, and this one did. My father used to wear these all the time, and I've been rather cross that I could never find girl ones in the nifty patterns his came in -- no more!) Trousers: Ross Dress For Less.

Cameo bracelet, below: Walmart, from back when I occasionally found wearable jewellery there -- three years ago? Four? One of the bits fell out and it's sat in my jewellery box for several years until I suddenly remembered a) it and b) the existence of super glue and fixed it.


Thursday, 21 October 2010

holidaying in the woods

This last weekend Dad took leave of work, we packed up the car, and drove far far away (well, three hours) to have a little autumnal oasis of a holiday in the woods. I read four books in two days, collected several hundred acorn caps, went hiking in a dress, sang old ballads around the campfire, and made tea every day.

Also I became a wizard.


Current favourite boots, my already-beloved winter coat, favourite autumn dress -- yes, all thrifted. (Someday I will get decent outfit pictures of this dress. I have worn it about ten times already, it is my very favourite thing for this autumn, and yet it resists being blogged!) 

I actually made an effort to get an outfit picture on Tuesday. Still all thrifty goodness! Except for my belt, from Rue 21, which is so useful and lovely that I have three in different colours. (I missed snatching up a white one, boo.) And I spent a lovely evening drinking Earl Grey and reading The Last Unicorn perched on a flat rock amidst autumnal bracken.

(I have a backlog of outfit posts, all edited and ready to be posted, thanks to my procrastination and not managing to post before running away on holiday, so expect those soon!)

Monday, 11 October 2010

bright bright bright

October does not always mean that I flitter about, dark and fey. Crisp weather and copious amounts of tea occasionally call for brighter colours.

I've usually styled this little dress more elegantly, with lace blouses and lace stockings and mary janes, but I was looking for something-not-pants to wear a new blouse with and decided to stretch my self-created rules a bit. Then I found some extremely cosy stockings my mother found for me last year, hooray! (I've wanted cheerful, colourful, absurd stripey stockings since I was little, but by the time I was old enough to even afford them, I couldn't find any that weren't in children's sizes, especially in the days of yore before I had a debit card and could order things off the internet without a go-between. Fie!)

dress, stockings, boots, blouse, beret: Goodwill.
bat and owl necklaces: Kyra, Hot Topic and Forever 21, respectively.

Thursday, 7 October 2010

wild wind, take me home to the mists of down below

My acre-wide goth streak isn't exactly buried: but it is especially prevalent in October. It is windy and fey and dead leaves skitter eerily across the road! It is high time I pretended to be a gothic heroine! 

Yes, it's another case of having stored away a summer-bought dress till cooler weather permitted the wearing of it: I have always wanted an old-fashioned black dress with a white Peter Pan collar, and Goodwill discount racks always have what you are looking for: you know, eventually. (Sometimes it takes a few years, but hey! Surprises are fun!)

I have been having difficulty not wearing my little bat necklace every day this month. Kyra got it for me at Hot Topic, and my new hobby is wearing it with otherwise very non-gothy things and seeing if it suits (and it often does). Today it was just right and nestled neatly under my collar like a brooch. And yes, I have removed my spectacles for Exciting Eyeliner Action! (Of course when I am stuck wearing my glasses for a month is the time to finally buy and try out liquid eyeliner. The application is going to require more practise, but I am liking what I can do.)

I wanted to wear my black button earrings, actually, but could only find one; and anyway I just snatched up a set of multiple earrings from a Rue 21 clearance rack, including these pretty, elegant little crosses.

I try never to be without striped stockings of some kind: these are thigh-highs, as they were about a dollar at Rue 21 and my trusty old black and white stockings are/were in tatters. The problem is that these keep rolling themselves down. Ah well. And my beloved granny boots, thrifted by my beloveder Kyra.

 And while I've shown off my little skull-and-crossbones owl (Rue 21) before, I quite liked how this picture turned out, and I quite like the lace on these sleeves.