Sunday, September 30, 2012

Cover Reveal!

Hybrid, House of Slide, my much anticipated sequel (by me anyway) is coming out December, 1st 2012. So much work for the launch, but here's the cover, and I think it's kind of great. PHEW! I can always do another one if I don't like it. But I think I DO like it. Woot!

Anyway, it'll be something like this. But we're getting closer to the launch date. I am so EXCITED!

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Sew Saturday; Falling leaves jacket

Wow! I am posting on the making of my awesome fall jacket today. I will admit that it's exciting for me to blog about this, because it was one of those blood, sweat, tears kinds of projects.

As my inspiration, about two years ago I bought a back issue of Burday, November, 2009 for the quilted jacket the woman is wearing in the bohemian section. I don't buy whole issues for one pattern, well, I guess I do, actually. For my other inspiration I've been reading the Alabama Chanin books, drooling over her online store, and wanted to incorporate some of that into my jacket. So, are you ready for pictures?

This is a picture of my stencil. My fingers were bruised for weeks from using my exacto knife to cut this sucker out. Weeks. Alabama Chanin does stenciling on most of her projects, and the stencil making was way more work than I expected. Good thing or I probably wouldn't have done it and I LOVE the results. Still. I'm thinking twice about making another stencil. I just used posterboard because it's what I had on hand and I made this compulsively. It's how all my really big projects start out.

Stenciling is not as easy as it looks. You have to add the right amount of water so it flows, and you can't accidentally stencil the wrong side of the fabric, and it probably helps if you have a stencil brush, which I didn't, because you know, that's what people who plan projects have. It took me a long time to stencil. You have to glue the stencil down, wait for the paint to dry, then move the stencil. Can't believe how long this took me, but hey, I wasn't writing, so may as well make a coat, right? Right. 

 This is me pinning the pieces together on my body form to make sure the thing fit. That is baby helping me because it's what she does.

The pattern calls for quilted material but I didn't have quilted material. I had an old London Fog coat I thrifted because it was such a fantastic pecan color, and a linen/silk suit I thrifted because it was such a nice chocolate color. I also had chocolate fabric paint from the fabric store. I put thinsulate between the layers and quilted it on my machine, following the contours of the body except on the chocolate brown trim which I made in falling leaves designs. The pattern calls for two buttons, but with this extra large one I liked it better with just one. Also. I only had one.

I'm kind of proud of the way that I reused things to create a beautiful new treasure. Also, I'm making a dent in my projects list. Huzzah!
It's something between the wicked queen and a marshmallow coat. I really really love it. Now I'll be sure to have a toasty warm winter. Are you guys ready for winter? Any insane projects you tackled recently?

Friday, September 28, 2012

Fashion Friday: Monochrome

Okay. So, does anyone else notice that the way to look chic and photoshoot worthy is to don the same color from cap to toe-cap (the lastest shoe trend that I'm waiting to go away)? How do you look good in a tan bomber? Wear a tan flippy skirt with tan heels and tan tights, oh, and it helps if you're a blonde. Need to wear something outrageous? Make sure the rest of your outfit is the same color as that tutu, and you'll look AMAZING.

So, it's boring, so what? You'll look chic and that's what it's about.

Pause here while I rant for a second.

How you look isn't real. I know. That makes no sense, but seriously, after you get dressed, how much time do you spend looking at yourself? Checking in the mirror to make sure you're not gapping or whatever, but the rest of the day? It's how OTHER people see you that's going on, and that's interesting. Because how you look affects how other people think that they look, which is why I'd rather go to a party where I'm the worst dressed person than the best, as in, everyone's in t shirts and jeans which feels nothing like a party, not that there's anything wrong with t shirts and jeans, but still, if I'm there, it's what I see, so whatever amazing sequinned or studded thing I'm wearing, I'll feel like I'm wearing jeans and T's.

Does this make any sense? Probably not. Anyway. Back to monochromatic.

I've been wearing burgundy a lot. Like, head to toe, lot with burgundy skinny velvet jeans (which turned out amazing and I LOVE) and burgundy origami shirt (feel a little bit pretentious when I wear it, but who cares?) and my lace hoodie (lace has never been so cozy). I lurve it. To death. And I look so plum fantastic, AHA!!! I caught myself there, acting like how I look is actually something that I can be impressed by. How I think I look? Hm. Well, it's fantastic!

Anybody wear monochrome and look/feel super elegant or just boring?

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Theatrical Thursdays: Zac Efron, the good, the bad and the cheesy

Zac Efron

 Bad photo, but you get the idea. This is the guy who was in High School Musical, the show that was so cheesy and ridiculous from a distance that I avoided all the stuff with him in it, but then I accidentally watched Charlie St. Cloud, (in the bathtub which I do not recommend because it has creepy water scenes which you don't need when you're in the bathtub. Shiver.) and I really liked him. So, I rented all three HIgh school musicals and had a marathon. It's true, I was fast forwarding tons of the last movie, but I got some actual entertainment out of the song and dance stuff, not a whole lot of plot, but the basketball dancers? Fabulous! Like Glee only without the annoying trops (who am I kidding? High school musical invented the trops. Anyway). So I was excited to see the new movie, the one by the Notebook guy, The Lucky One, yeah. Here he is below, a 'serious' actor.
Man. I did not like him in this movie, except when he's wrestling with the kid, he's good wrestling with kids. I was convinced the girl was totally smitten but him? He's all, 'I am so gorgeous, you can't help yourself, so I'll have pity on you and let you touch me'. Not attractive. Oh well.

So, what's the verdict? Good, bad or cheesy?

Charlie St. Cloud: Above average
Highschool musical: Actually entertaining
The Lucky One: You're lucky if you miss this one.

Anyone see anything else with Zac Efron in it?

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

What I read Wednesdays: Bad Taste in Boys

So... This was a funny book. The only bone I have to pick (hehe) is that there's a part in the book (zombie book) where she throws a zombie's foot at it to stop it from coming at her. She threw the foot. At the zombie. The next chapter she's looking everywhere for the foot which she finds in her car. Small thing, maybe, but I think we need to keep track of missing zombie limbs, otherwise we have a hard time taking the genius (who has issues with common sense) saving the day. I mean seriously. Keep track of the body parts.

Other than that, wow! It was seriously funny, and the hero had seizures! I really liked that. The hero guy was a brainy football player, my favorite kind of hero, and their relationship while short, was definitely sweet.

Bad Taste in Boys

That is where it is at Goodreads, but I got mine at the library. Definitely worth a read if you're looking for a casual relationship with a zombie book.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Music Monday: pink muffins and cellophane

Cellophane is the song I listen to on repeat right now. No idea if it's the beat or the title, (there are hundreds of songs out there with the same title, weird, no?) but it's totally addictive.

Something that isn't addictive? My last batch of pink muffins. Pink muffins, what could possibly not be amazing about pink muffins? I juice veggies in mornings because I need energy and I don't do caffeine, so I have tons of pulp that I usually compost, but last week I made muffins out of the pulp that were really surprisingly great, but this time, maybe because I didn't actually follow the recipe, they turned out harder than cardboard and tasted like, well, cardboard. I don't like cardboard. So that sucked. Ah well, you win some, you lose some, and I can still compost the muffins, so we're all good!

Have you had any exciting cooking failures lately you'd like to share?

Friday, September 21, 2012

Project Run and Play

Hello! I meant to do this, but frankly, I'm too busy blowing my nose to really get obsessive about sewing projects.

It's just so fun. And the flickr group! You have to see the flickr group. I was going to be part of the flickr group but alas. It was the first project actually, I was completely stumped, and unwilling to sit and sew a billion ruffles although I thought it would be cute to do a ruffled samba panty for the baby. Maybe I'll get around to it this week! So... it's Fashion Friday, and we need some photos!

Okay. This is someone I don't know, some prime minister's wife or something, but that hat! The black swiss overlay on her dress! It's Burtonesque only espanole! I love it. Yep. Love. It reminds me of a flamingo, an emo flamingo.

Olivia Palermo. I don't even know who this is but Two birds did a fashion inspiration of her once. Is she a model? An actor? A civil rights activist? Daughter to a hotel franchise? No idea, but I love the fur scarf, the boots, the camel with burgundy accents. Oh no! I have no burgundy bags! What am I going to do? Oh well. There's no way in this whole wide wonderful world I have enough hands to use one to hold a purse. No strap, no way. Who walks a dog holding a purse without a strap anyway? She must be a fictional character. I LOVE fictional characters. Anyway, Happy Friday! Any new fashion inspirations going on?

Friday, September 7, 2012

Fashion Friday: Writing my Wardrobe

First thing I knew I was facing off with my closet, one foot in a sophisticated kitten heel, the other bare on the wood floor tapping in time to my alarming song, . Try to not tap your foot, bare or not.

Second thing, slipping into the silver sleek vroommobile on my way to the Woldemort bazaar for my first spectacle. Wrap skirt of an exceptional singular gorgeousness....

Hold on a minute! What's going on here?

Um. Apparently I crave writing a fashion blog so much I'm starting to fictionalize it. Sad really. Fine. I'll do a fashion blog post but only because my psyche is completely out of control and no one wants a dramatized version of me getting dressed (particularly when I'm doing weird stuff like giving alternative names to Walmart that imbue the evil nature of a certain Harry Potter villain which is also an evil franchise (lots of levels there, don't you think?))

Where was I? Right. Fashion post. I've found the BESTEST (It's cuter when other people use it) blog called, the vivienne files which has the capsule stuff, the 4x4 stuff, which I've never heard of but is most useful particularly when you're starting to go insane about hot pink or ox blood, and you have to do something about it, keeps you from having to do an 8x8, gasp. Or you can do the 2x2. You know I'm doing a 4x4 in burgundy for the sewing competition. You people have no idea what I'm ranting about but it's AWESOME! and I'M GOING TO PARIS!!!! I really shouldn't be so excited but I totally am! So whew! Fashion post out of my system I can go back to being a calm, introverted writerly sewist.

Have you got a favorite fashion blog?

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Writerly Wednesday! Is there writing going on here?

This summer has been CRAZY, or maybe I should say, last summer. Sigh. I'm not ready for fall, however pretty the trees and clothes are. I finished writing up a novel I've had simmering for two years, WATERGIRL and it's fun. That's it, not deep, emotive, or anything else, but sometimes fun is exactly what I'm in the mood for. It will come out next spring after the usual rounds of painful editing, and we will have a beach party at one of the lakes round about.

So. That was four weeks ago that I wrapped up Watergirl. A month. Since then I've been spinning around in circles with different ideas, you know, the usual, vampire twilike musical set in New Zealand (youtube post coming maybe in the future) steam punk goblins, dystopian ninjas, you know, normal stuff like that. For some reason none of it has truly captured my obsessive nature, which is a pity because summer is when I do the explosive lots of writing that actually moves my stuff along. Oh well.

Hybrid is coming out December 1st, mark it on your calendars (if you do that kind of thing) and the party will be... I actually have no idea. There is a distinct lack of tangoing. Maybe we could have a hair party! Ooooh! I like that! We could have a best hair competition, (weirdest hair actually) or a wig party! Oh, that sounds even funner! (not a word) Anyway, I will have to think on it. If you have an idea, I'd be ever so happy to hear it!

Write on! (yes. I do think puns are HILARIOUS!)

Monday, September 3, 2012

Mmmmm Monday

Dishing out the dough today, you know, the make-a-man type. I do bread the way my mama taught me, only 5 loaves instead of 7. I still make enough dough for 7 though. Oh! Picture!

Everyone is DYING to find out what I do with the extra dough, so I will start by telling a long, convoluted tale about Chaucer, ready? OK! So, there's this medieval cookbook that I stumbled upon at some point in my life, and I made a good deal of Chaucer inspired pasties and meat pies, although honestly, everything else in the book was absolutely VILE but back to pasties. I feel positively medieval when I make a pie that isn't sweet, after all, no one says, "As American as a meat pie", but I think they shoulde. (yes. I added that e on purpose!) And now I'm going to the theatre! You see how great this cooking thing can be? It automatically makes you multicultural, and multi-time-dimensional... anyway.

So... for music Monday I have my Favorite station on Pandora, "Via Con Me" radio, which brings up the loveliest mix of tango, spanish,  jazz that I've ever heard. It makes me weep nightly to hear it. That's a good thing. Have a great week! Do you have a great Pandora station I should try?

Saturday, September 1, 2012

It's a CONTEST!!! I'm totally going to win

One of my favorite sites for sewing is They have pattern reviews that are so detailed and thoughtful, plus I get to see how stylish and awesome real people are. Sewer people. Like me. Some of my favorite wardrobe/capsules have come from their site because the people there sew because they know what they want and you can't always buy what is in your head, but you can make it. That's where I'm at.

So, they're having a mini wardrobe contest. I have a button!

Mini Wardrobe

I have problems with buttons, particularly the square ones. Just a thought--there should definitely be more round buttons. Anyway, I'm kind of getting psychotic about burgundy this fall, ever since the Vogue origami incident. So, basically it's burgundy with black, which is so awesome, only for all the chic fashionistas we have to call it (ew) oxblood. Burgundy and maroon are so passe.

This is my inspiration board.

The central dress is how the lace will look like, but it will be in a cascade cardigan as seen top left. No taupe here. This is me doing Polyvore pretty boringly. The skirt... well, I love it. But, I'm not sure if it won't morph into something a little less time intensive. 

The contest runs from September 1- 31st. Four items that are supposed to work with one key item. The key item would be my last month's masterpiece, the origami blouse. So... wish me sewing luck, which I need because school is in, and my time is suddenly consumed with that homeschool thing. Today was the first day. Actually, it was marvelous because I have this book about all the days of the year and what exciting thing happened that day... so September is sewing month and Breakfast month. This morning I had all the children make breakfast, and they LOVED it. I mean, if you're going to teach something, it may as well be how to make a nice three course breakfast;)

Happy September everybody!!!