sunshine on a cloudy day

candy-striped belt over a yellow sundress

I never imagined I’d use the word “belt” as a verb, but look at me now.

yellow dress, coral cardigan, striped belt

I wore some of the brightest pieces in my closet on one of the dreariest days, hoping my style sunshine could counteract the blah of clouds above.  For most of the day I wore a couple of my favorite orange bead bracelets with two bangles: one skinny and yellow, one chunky and green.

green, yellow, orange bracelets

By the time of the outfit photo I had taken them off.  And by the time I realized they didn’t make the photo it was too dark for a Round Two to include them.  Recreating the look the next day was also out of the question because I don’t like putting on clothes again after I’ve tossed them in the hamper.  Not even for fashion’s sake.  So you’ll just have to use your imagination.  I’m sure you’re capable.

M at the flower shop with roses

What have you belted recently?  Any tips for how to manage the dangling end?

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this coral coil

If you’ve spent much time in the craft department of the internet, you’ve surely discovered the many uses for old T-shirts: bracelets, ruffles, and, um, underwear?  One of my favorites is the basic T-shirt scarf, the simplest hip creation I’ve discovered in–well, probably forever, now that I think about it.  I ask you: could one swipe with scissors create anything cooler than this?

You just take a T-shirt–the bigger the better–and hack it off under the arm holes.  (i.e. one horizontal cut across the chest)  The resulting loop of fabric makes a perfect jersey scarf, whether worn long or looped tighter as a cozy cowl.  If you want visuals, look here.  I made one by cutting the body of the shirt into strands that I pulled for a loopy look like the ones in the linked photos, but actually I prefer just using the large, unfringed piece as a scarf unto itself.

But what to do with the scraps?  I decided since this was such a sweet, girly color, and I have a sweet, girly new niece, I would make a diminutive headband.

coral-colored jersey material braided and knotted to form a circle

The only problem was deciding how to finish the ends.  They were a bit all over the place!

ends of jersey braid sticking out in different directions

A rosette would look cute there, I thought, but I didn’t know how to make a rosette…yet.  A quick search turned up this tutorial, and away I went, measuring…

scissors, ruler, and jersey material in front of laptop showing rosette tutorial

knotting…

long strip of jersey material folded in half and knotted at one end

and twisting my way to a little fabric flower.

jersey material rosette

There was only one problem.  It didn’t turn out as tiny as I expected!  Whoa, Nellie–that flower could bring the whole headband crashing down.  Not such a balanced look.

small braided circle of jersey material and rosette that's large in comparison

So I started over, made a much smaller version, and secured it in place.

circle of braided jersey material and small jersey rosette attached

In case you’re wondering how I managed the frayed ends, I folded them one at a time toward the center to create a little “platform” for the rosette.  Then I ran a threaded needle through all the layers of folded fabric to hold them in position.  This assured that the braid cannot come undone, and at the same time created a flat place to glue the flower.

frayed ends folded toward center with needle and thread going through all the layers

I don’t have a resident baby to try this on, so hopefully it works!  I think it would look sweet with the rosette positioned near her little ear, like she had the blossom tucked into her (non-existent) hair.  That’s it for now–I have to go scrounge up ideas for the rest of the remnants!

purdy on pinterest

I wish I could say my desk is cleaner thanks to Pinterest, but it’s still a mess. Despite not being able to immunize my physical space from entropy, I do enjoy finding tools that help me organize and, what’s better, visualize my projects.  This spring I compiled a personal lookbook that mixes trends with the tried-and-true.

As you can tell at a glance, I’m crazy about a few things this season: stripes, florals, yellows and corals.  (I couldn’t resist that chance to rhyme.)  I’ve always liked the shorts-with-long-sleeves look, so some of these photos grabbed my attention right away.  Especially the one of the gal with the navy shorts and yellow anorak–so fun!

This board is guiding my thrift shopping for the warm weather.  I haven’t found any colored pants to love yet–they’ve got to be skinny but not second-skin-y.  (I’m young but I’m not 12.)  So here’s to a patient search, all you who are now mapping your fashion quests via Pinterest.  May it go well with you!

P.S. Pantone’s official color of the year is “Tangerine Tango.”  Are you feeling bold enough for this color?!

P.P.S. Want to know how to put a Pinterest board on your blog? I use the free version of WordPress, and this is what I did:

1. Use the Function and Print Screen keys together to take a screenshot of your Pinterest board.  (I took two: one of the top half and one of the bottom half.)

2. Paste your screenshot (or two, one at time) into Microsoft Publisher.  If you have two, change the view to major percentage–I used 500%–to make sure you can see well enough to line things up just right.  After that you have to draw a box that encompasses both screenshots, then group them so they become one object.

3. Right click and choose “Save as Picture.”  I saved mine as a JPEG.

4. Upload as you would any photo.

5. For extra fun, once the photo is inserted into your blog post, click on it and then click the link button.  In the URL field, copy and paste the URL of your actual Pinterest board.  Then, when anyone clicks on your image, they get swept away on a magic carpet ride to the actual board. Ta da!