Friday, March 30, 2012

Happy Friday!

Dress by Madewell, coloured leather flats by J.Crew

I'm sure you've already seen this but there's a 2nd Marcel the Shell short that I didn't know about until this week.  I think I like this one even better than the first!

My real life AND blogger pal, Erin of Bows and Sparrows, has been doing a Then and Now feature on her Closet Case ladies.  Mine was part of today's feature.  

In the "then" photo I'm getting ready to walk the runway for our high school fashion show.  My fashion show date and I both wore sunglasses to look cool which, as you can tell by this photo, was totally effective.  I decided to buy the dress (99$ on sale!) to wear for grad a few months later.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Zou Bisou Bisou

I finally watched the first episode of Mad Men last night.  Thank goodness for friends with cable.

Don had better adjust his attitude or his new lady is going to kick him to the curb.  It's almost the 70s after all.  I liked her sassy "cleaning up after the party scene."

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Cover that up.

What about this dress?  Va-va-voom! The material might be a little chintzy but I like the idea of it.  The first photo is the fancypants version and the 2nd is the cheapskate version.  I'm drawn to the expensive one since the model's chest is sort of (read: exactly like) mine whereas the cheapie one is definitely nothing like it.

On the completely opposite fashion spectrum here is a funny video for Pringle of London by David Shrigley in case you didn't see it on my fb yesterday.  It's a couple of years old but so good.  I have a couple of his albums and they are funny and creepy.  

If I was a millionaire I would wear this sweater from their 2012 collection on rainy days like today.

WELL GEEZ.  I just looked up one of the Shrigley albums I have and it's going for a pretty penny on amazon.  

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

In the mumps

I try not to whine online too much but gosh, yesterday was a bummer, wasn't it?  I felt bleh and didn't want to do anything at all.  I thought it was just me but then I looked on facebook and saw that a handful of other people were moaning about what a horrible Monday they were having.  That made me feel slightly better.

What made me feel a lot better (seriously) was eating what I'm assuming was a disgusting burger for dinner at Downtown's Kitchen BBQ vs. Vegan.  I'm assuming it was disgusting because the "restaurant" is inside the Round Corner so it was pretty dark when I was stuffing it in my face and I couldn't really see what I was eating.  I got a bacon burger that had onion rings on it and what I think was some sort of cheese sauce.  I loved it.  Everyone on yelp raved about the fries but they were dry and disappointing.  Also disappointing was the quinoa patty that the Mr. got for his burger.

Why did we eat here?  A Groupon, of course!  When we got home V did some stand-up for me and had some really good jokes about groupons expiring.  I laughed so hard I almost threw up my disgusing/delicious burger.  Do you buy groupons?  We have one for a dental cleaning and one for the dive bar that are both expired.  Sorry teeth and mermaids!

Monday, March 26, 2012

Stick em up

These USA seals would be cute to use to address a letter to a friend and they're reasonably priced too!  12 seals for 4$.

I like these colourful ones on the far right too.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Get your paint on

Day 55

I stumbled across Lisa Congdon's blog again yesterday to browse the images of her project "365 days of hand lettering".  The first time I saw her art was in the SF shop Doe (sadly, now closed) where they had really pretty cards, housewares, jewelry and clothes.

I love looking at daily projects like this but never really do a little art project on a daily basis myself.  Do you?

Day 79

She and her friend are offering an online painting class and it's 100$!  I don't have a lot of cash to spare but thought that 100$ was a reasonable price for a 5 week online "class".  Each week you're given an assignment and then you post it to flickr.  It sounds like there are a couple relaxed online discussions too.  I think I'm going to sign up even though I can't paint.

I was trying to decide if 100$ on an online class was something that was reasonable for me right now and thought of what else I could frivolously spend 100$ on.  I scribbled a short list before falling asleep last night.


1. A painting class.
2. A fancy dinner at home for 6 friends.
3. A really cute dress.
4. An overnight stay in a beach cottage.
5. A pair of concert tickets.

If you had 100$ to spend on something fun and frivolous, what would it be?

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Hot Chip

I bought tickets to the Hot Chip show in Oakland this morning.  It's 5 months away, in September!

On the work front, I'm averaging 4 job applications a day.  Still no bites.  Maybe I need some more vitamins.

Did you see these vintage ads?

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Eyes glazing over

What is a glazing technician?  I thought my eyes were playing tricks on me but it's a real job posted on craigslist.  There is also an opening for a hot dog cart operator.  Slim pickins.

Maybe I could become a hotdog glazing technician and make this decadent meal.  
It's Weight Watchers so it must be healthy!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Good luck

This paper crane wedding cake is amazing!


This dress, covered in cats, EXISTS and it is on sale for only 500$.  Someone please hire me!  I seriously love this dress.

Silk and covered in cats.  BOING!
Had I known of this before my wedding it would have been my wedding dress.  Just kidding (maybe.)

Mad cat, hungry dog.

The original drawing/design by Swedish artist Miriam Ivanoff

If that's not really your style, how about this more reasonably priced frock?

And if cats aren't your thing, perhaps a comfortable dog tutu?

Monday, March 19, 2012

Lovely lace

I feel bad for anyone who doesn't like lace and/or stripes.  I went to the mall last week and these trends are on every store mannequin... but I'm not complaining.  I have at least 5 stripey items in my closet right now and am searching for the perfect lace top.

I'd like one that isn't see through, too tight, too boxy, or too 90s (Victoria Secret online has a lot of all 4 of these "styles").  I saw a pretty top in the new Nordstrom catalogue (the one in the casual date night panel below) that looked great in print and online but in the store it was a dull ivory, not the white I was hoping for.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Sunny beaches and blue skies

It's pouring outside, I've arranged buckets in the back room to catch drips and now I am picturing myself on a sunny beach, preferably in the South of France.

Dress and swimsuit from anthropologie, royal blue bag from Marc Jacobs, shoes by Chie Mihara



Almost two years ago (!) I was STRANDED in Nice for an extra day because of a train strike.  I stressed for a bit trying to get another hotel to stay in and re-book my train ticket but then enjoyed my extra day on the beach.

Train strike notice at the bus stop

Vive les chats!

I can't leave the country while my legal status change is being reviewed and that makes me itch to go somewhere even more.  Once I'm working again and we save some money, the plan is to go on a honeymoon somewhere beachy and warm.  Maybe Hawaii?  Neither of us have been.

Stay dry this weekend!  Tonight I'm making pizza for some lady friends and having some wine.  Cozy times.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Job hunting

There isn't anything much worse than job hunting and tailoring several cover letters to the job I'm applying for which basically say, "PLEASE CALL ME I'M THE BEST".

I applied for 5 jobs yesterday and am still waiting to (possibly, hopefully) hear something back from my old job, which was actually a really great place to work.  I had my own office with a door, a window, had speakers so I could listen to my own music and almost had art of my own choosing up on the wall (I had to leave because of my expired work permit right after they ordered my art prints) and my boss and supervisor were really great.

Ocean Park #10, Diebenkorn

I hope I get some calls for interviews.  I like to get something new for my interview outfit whenever I'm on the prowl for a paycheque.  It makes me feel a little more confident when I'm wearing something brand new.  I think a bright silk blouse might be nice with a tweed skirt and heels.

I am really into blouses right now.  I'm an old marm.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Flippity flop

Flip flops always feel too casual for me unless I'm at the beach or in the backyard.  My casual California lifestyle transformation is not quite complete.


I like sandals that have a heel strap for summer bike rides and the ones I've worn for the past few summers are starting to fall apart.  I'd been browsing online for a new pair for a few months but then I got bad blisters from getting sand in my black flats at the beach last weekend and had to wear flip flops IN PUBLIC because I couldn't wear real shoes.  Now I am getting more serious about my search.

(Side note to husband and family members: I have also been spending equal time in my job search.)

All these styles look the same, I know.  I like them because they're secure but look a little dressier than flip flops.

Fossil makes shoes?  I like this neutral style but the ankle strap might be too thick.  I like the little lift in the heel.

I like this style and the variety of colours available in this sandal.  I think if I wait a little bit longer there will be something like this at the Rack soon.

I like the metallic and neon combo in these shoes but I'm not too sure about the heavy heel cover.  

Do you shop for shoes online?  When I do, I like to shop at zappos.  They ship for free both ways on their regular site and have free returns for up to a year.  You can also request a vip membership for free and get next day shipping.  I bought my silver wedding shoes from zappos a week before our wedding. (awww)

In other fashion news, I love, love LOVE this polka dot top from J.Crew.  88$ though?  For a cotton blouse?!  Please let nobody else love this so it goes on super sale.  This model has me rethinking coloured jeans.  Again.

I took a break from sewing the bird wraps for V last night to watch J.Simp on Fashion Star.  What a weird show.  All the designs are boring and kind of trashy.  Kind of like the show.  The winner of each (?) episode has their designs in either H&M, Macy's or Saks the next day.  It would be an interesting concept if the designs were better.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

These were the days

My Mum knitted us those sweaters.  Aren't they great?

I wonder if those older women who walk around with glittery cat purses, and cat t-shirts used to wear things like this?  Or maybe they were deprived and that's why they're going overboard now.  

V bought a wall hanging like this to display at work for only 45 cents at a Vallejo thrift store.

Since I do still like actual cats I sometimes get cat-themed gifts.  I received a blanket once that had cats sleeping on a book-filled bookcase and each of the book names had been changed to incorporate the word cat.  Have you read Caterbury tales or Lord of the Fleas?  The blanket is at a Sacramento thrift store somewhere if you're interested.

Some cat themed gifts are actually pretty cute.  Like these.

This sad little cat hanky has an equally sad product description

Monday, March 12, 2012

Pins and needles

That would describe the weekend.  I did some more work on the wraps and had some crummy movies on in the background.  Side note: Quarantine 2 is so bad I had to turn it off.

Pinning and cutting 

You must be dying to know the status of my immigration paperwork.  My work permit came on Friday!  There is a scary looking black and white photo of me that looks like it's from the 1900s and one of my fingerprints on the front of the card.  My name and birthday are written like they're on a flag that's blowing in the wind, all squiggly like but there's no flag in the back.  It's a weird looking card. Maybe they could hire me as a designer.  Seriously, the jobs out there look bleak.

One of my friends (who is also going through the same process with her husband) on fb commented that my immigration paperwork was moving along very quickly.  I suppose based on some of the comments in the immigration forums out there that it is.  This morning I got another letter from the government.  Our interview is April 16th!  Submit your practice questions here and I will attempt to answer them.

And now, a  giant cat watching water drip in a bathtub.  It's all I've got today.

Friday, March 9, 2012

One man band

I mean, one lady factory.  It's a mess over here.

V is going to a conference next week where he and his wildlife rehabilitation group will be speaking and offering their ideas on rehabilitation.  I've been busy making fabric wraps to help wrap injured birds and mini sock-type things to protect their feet.

The wraps have flaps that need velcro sewn on and my wimpy plastic 90s Singer isn't heavy duty enough to sew through it so I'm using two machines to complete the job.

My first sewing machine, still going strong for light duty jobs

A neighbour gave me this vintage Singer when it didn't sell in a garage sale she had a few years ago. It can only do a straight stitch but is super powerful, can sew through anything, and doesn't have a finger guard. 

I've made 12 wraps so far and need to make a total of 40!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Trending now

Looks like I was a few months behind on the lip stickers trend I mentioned in this post.  I read an old Glamour magazine from December and they had a whole article on leopard print, glitter, and flag lip stickers.

I am WAY ahead of the trend on coloured jeans though.  I've been going through some old photos because a friend is working on a blog project and needs some oldies.  I have been uncovering some real gems.

Here I am at 12 in my sassy red jeans.  These might have been my introduction to "designer" labels.  They were Guess brand and I felt very, very cool when I wore them (which was exciting because I was not cool at all - look at those bangs!).  I am pretty sure these jeans had a hand in getting me invited to a Valentine's day party in grade 7 where we played spin the bottle and listened to Right Said Fred.   The hostess said, "come to my party, and wear your red jeans".  I didn't wear the oversized white and neon windbreaker to the party but most likely an over sized Esprit shirt.

This photo was in my horse riding days*, 2 years before my tragic skiing accident when I broke my tailbone and could never ride again.  I say tragic because I had to bring a pillow to school to sit on in class for three months.  I wanted crutches and a cast at a bare minimum! Nobody can sign "get well soon" on a pillow with a straight face.

*Full disclosure: I am pretty sure I have only ridden a horse once.

Twenty years (!!!) and three months or so later I tried on some coloured pants at the Rack but couldn't quite get on board. I think it was the pants though, they were more like leggings and bunched in the wrong place.  You know where.  THE KNEES.

Purple sausage legs

I also tried on some green cords that V spotted on the sale rack at anthro last month.  I really liked them (fit and colour) but thought they wouldn't transition well in the summer being cords and all.  This outfit was cute but I felt too Urban Outfitters in it.

I really liked that scarf.

Also trending, men playing with remote control cars.  Is this just in my neighbourhood?  I've seen four different grown men in different areas of Tahoe Park playing with their mini cars.  It's odd.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Rare ingredients

Don't these look delicious?

Well, they weren't!  Suckered again.  Thanks SF supermarket!  I was expecting some cake-like treats with sweet filling but these were dry rice-flour-y things with the driest, barely sweet filling I've ever had.  I was worried for the whole drive home that they would get crushed under all the other groceries too.  All that worry for nothing.  The green one on the left  is coconut and the yellow one is durian.  They're two of my favourite fruits but these "treats" didn't taste like anything.  They were $1.75 EACH so I can't justify throwing them away yet.  Maybe I'll give them another chance or bring them to a potluck.

We did get lucky with some dehydrated veggie pieces that look like a cross between croutons and chips in the package. At first I thought they were chips but you add water to hydrate and cook them like meat.  And surprisingly they taste just like meat!  Just kidding.  V made his famous Cuban arroz con pollo with an extremely rare and delicious Cuban spice.  Well, it's not that rare but sort of hard to find unless you're in Cuba, or Miami, which I think is where we got our last packet.

According to the Bijol website it's a MIRACLE SEASONING and I'd have to agree because it made dehydrated veggie protein taste delicious.

We also bought this boxed cake mix which needs SIX eggs.  I thought, because the photo shows a green cake, that it was pistachio flavoured.  It's pandan flavoured.  V looked it up and told me pandan is a leaf.  I might need to add some miracle seasoning to the cake.


I got a phonecall yesterday from Strikes bowling alley because someone wanted to let me know about the family reunion that was being planned at the bowling alley.  All this time I've had family in Sacramento and didn't even know it.