Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Lita & Disco

So for my birthday I had been on the hunt for a vintage sweater like you would see in the 1980s and early 1990s. With the popularity of the Coogi sweaters (the ones that look like the knitting machine blew up), they were a staple, but also very expensive. Some of the original sweaters are still selling for $150 and up second hand. 

I love the crazy colors, brightness and individual personality each of these sweaters have. The only thing is I wish they would make more of them for women. A lot of them are made for men, and if there is one designed for women I feel like I have to watch it like a hawk at the store because I know there are others that will jump at the opportunity to have one. It's a shame that they are so difficult to find or they are crazy expensive. I am glad I was able to find this Tundra sweater from a vintage store from eBay. I was quite shocked at only paying about $50.00 USD for this bad boy and the previous owner took very good care of this sweater.

At one point because of how it looked on the site, I debated whether or not to alter it's shape - taking in the sides or shortening the sleeves. The more I wear it, I realize that I really like it just the way it is. When buying vintage pieces, I find myself airing out each piece. Just as my black top, I hung this in my bathroom and let it air out for about a week or so. I even helped it out a little by throwing it in a Dryel bag, which did it some good. I wanted to take extra care of this to make sure I could wear it as soon as possible. 

The colors blend so beautifully with my Oil Slick Litas. They tie this outfit together, especially in the sun.

Enjoy the beautiful view. You night need shades if you look directly into the sweater. Lol

|| Sweater: Tundra/Vintage | PVC Leggings: Express | Boots: Jeffrey Campbell Litas | Necklace: Vintage | Earrings: Island Passage | Sunglasses: Urban Outfitters ||

This sweater is truly a show stopper!

Monday, December 15, 2014

DIY: Painted Pumpkin Ornaments

Wow! How time has flown! Thanksgiving came and went and now it is time for holiday season. I must say November was very busy for me. I did a lot of cooking and I am still recovering from it all. With that being said, since pumpkins hang around for only one season I'd like to share with all of you what I usually do. Because it stays warm here during this time of year, I like re-purposing items from one holiday to the next. Since they are already round, pumpkins for fall make great indoor and outdoor ornaments. All you need is spray paint and ribbon!

Spray paint comes in about a thousand different colors so the possibilities are endless. If you really wanted to get fancy you could hand paint them. It's so easy that it takes the paint longer to dry than it is to spray them.

I picked out colors that I liked, (here I ended up using the silver and gold), and started to spray away! The key thing is to not overload the pumpkin with paint or spray it too close to the pumpkin. This can cause your paint to take much longer to dry and even cause it to run down the sides. About 8 inches is a good distance, depending on the size. But don't limit your painting to just pumpkins! I included leaves and even Christmas tree trimmings to dazzle up!

Here is what I did to transform my pumpkins:

I love how all of these turned out. I arranged them in various ways inside and out.

How do you decorate for this holiday season?

Friday, October 31, 2014

Fall Friday

Since it is Friday, I thought I'd show you guys how I relax. I know the outfit itself doesn't look like sweatpants or lounge wear, but if you don't have a pair, American Apparel Disco Pants are such a great investment. They are shiny and comfortable. Nothing screams comfy like a cozy cardigan so it is included in my everyday fall style. I live in the land of the still-warm-until-November/December so cropped tops are still okay without catching cold. I really love this outfit because it is effortless style without trying so hard work to hard.

There is not much to say about this outfit other than I love it and it will be in repeat throughout the remainder of the fall season...well until it gets too chilly!

|| Sweater: Apt 9 - Kohl's | Crop Tank: Forever 21 | Necklace: Forever 21 | Disco Pants: American Apparel | Boots: Steven Madden "Troopa" ||

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Pink and Splattered

So I found these pleather leggings at Forever 21 and have been trying, (as usual), to find ways to wear it instead of my just my staple giant sweater. So I added a button up shirt underneath to add some variation, A bright pink sweater can be tricky to style, but never be afraid to try out every combination because the more you try the more outfits you'll come up with without even realizing it! 

To pump the volume on this outfit I added my Splatter Paint boots to give it some balance. 

Get your sunglasses ready, this is going to be a bright one!

|| Gray Button Up: Old Navy | Sweater: Forever 21 | Pleather Leggings: Forever 21 | Necklace: Forever 21 | Earrings: Island Passage | Shoes: DIY ||

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Food Fun! - Apple Cider Muffins With Honeycrisp Apples

I love this time of year - as if I had not said it enough, but it is the only time of year I can find my favorite type of apple, the Honeycrisp. It tastes exactly like it sounds and it is perfect in just about everything apple-related! Since they are so huge I like to incorporate them in cooking. They are a very sturdy apple if you need them to hold their shape. Sometimes when you bake with apples, they can get very mushy. These do not. But if you need them to create things like applesauce, apple butters, etc they are perfect!

There is not much to this recipe since I used a store bought muffin mix in Apple Cider. If you want to cut this recipe in half, you can do that too. Here is whst I used:

2 packages of Martha White Apple Cider Muffin Mix
1 cup of milk (mine lactose-free of course, but you can use what you have)
2 Honeycrisp apples, diced (the ones I used were fairly large so I'd say an apple per pack used)

Yield: 12 Cupcake size muffins

Equipment Neeeded:

Mixing Bowl
Spoon (for mixing & measuring batter into the cups)
Muffin Pan (One that holds 12)
Muffin Cups 

Here we go! It's so simple!

!. Preheat your oven to the temperature according to the package.( Different places may require various temperatures.) Arrange your muffin cups in the pan.

2. Chop up your apples and empty the muffin mix into your mixing bowl. Add the apples into the mix. No need to worry about your apples turning colors when cutting them. Since they are being baked, presentation here doesn't matter too much.

3. Mix in apples and milk. Spoon the batter into the baking cups evenly (about 2/3 full). Bake according to your oven. Enjoy! Look at all of those nooks and crannies!

So delicious!

Monday, October 27, 2014

Farmer's Market Style

I love going to the farmer's market especially in the fall. Who says you can't be stylish in the process. It's really in how you layer that makes a difference. Since it is not too hot and not freezing just yet I love wearing sweatshirts this time of year. But plain sweatshirts can be boring so I jazzed it up with a bright colorful print underneath. I found this sweatshirt at of all places Walmart. I've had it for a while now (like a few years), and it is still holding strong. The shirt I am wearing is actually a sleeveless floral top I made some time ago, but I love how the two compliment each other. 

To twist this outfit even more, instead of using a normal jean, I went with a dark acid wash jegging that appears like a jean and is dark enough that you can see the wash, but it flows with the rest of the outfit. Normally I am not a fan of wearing heels to a market, (having to keep from getting my heels clipped by baby strollers should be a sport!), a kitten heel is still functional as long as you keep your load light - unless you are a boss - then I say go for it! For me I usually wear flats or boots to the market, but the pink heels I coordinated with outfit keep it feminine but functional.

Here we go!

|| Sweatshirt: Hanes Brand - Walmart | Floral Shirt: Made By Me! | Chain Necklace: Vintage  | Jeggings: Forever 21 | Heels: Chelsea Crew - Island Passage ||

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Fall at the Farmer's Market

One of the best things about this time of the year is the harvest of fall crops. The colors of fall are so vibrant and eye-catching. Anyone that doesn't like this time of year is insane. I find myself visiting the market more and more this time of year. Between the apples, pumpkins, sweet potatoes, snap peas, and greens, the list goes on and on. Mums are also a prevalent fall flower that enhances the landscape. Here are snapshots of the latest visit to the market.

So this is what fresh ginger looks like before the root turns brown. I looks a little like fingers, but smells amazing!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Anthropologie Birthday Party

Earlier this month I was invited to an invitation only birthday party hosted at a local Anthropologie store. They combined September and October birthdays so it made for a fairly large guest list. I was not sure exactly what happened at one of these parties so I searched to see if any other bloggers had mentioned attending one of these. Pleasantly surprised I sent in my RSVP and when the time finally came, I got myself dolled up a little and headed there.

Luckily for me they finally opened a store closer to where I live. Before I had to drive about an hour to get to the closest one, so this gave me more motivation to go. For those of you who may not be familiar Anthropologie is a store that sells women's apparel and housewares. They are a sister store to Free People which are both owned by Urban Outfitters. I like to call Anthropologie the cool middle sister of the three.

Any who onto the party...

The snack table was full of treats. From white wine sparklers with blackberries to hackberry and rosemary infused water, there were plenty of goodies. 

Delectable treats that I had to resist. I would have taken the risk if they were cupcakes, but with these rich petit fours and macaroons, I had to say no. 

Photo backdrop for pictures!

The name tags were adorable and they spelled my name right!

So here is me being silly in front of the camera. The dressing rooms are spacious. Since it is that time of year where fashion is transitioning from warm to chilly, much of the store was still full of summer and early fall pieces. (You guys know I love my sweaters!) I did find a teal, black and white shirt (pictured behind me), but it was way too short - I like tunic length shirts. The dressing room attendant informed me that this particular brand usually cut their tops short, so I didn't find any clothing that interested me. I ended up buy a couple of decorative hooks to hang on my wall and some crazy amazing smelling soap - I just might have to go back for more.

I enjoyed walking around the store getting inspired at every turn. Once it gets a little colder I stop back in the store to see their fall/winter collections.

Such a fun time!

Oh yeah and for my birthday I bought the OtterBox case for my phone. It was in desperate need of one.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Fall is Here!

I am so excited fall is here! I love this time of year. As the leaves begin to change and it starts to get cold, I find myself spending a lot of time at the farmer's market. It is so important to support local farmers and businesses. Capturing all of the colors of fall is so much fun and especially at the market, it makes me so hungry! Here are some snapshots from my most recent trip:

As fall continues to arrive I'll be sharing more pictures of the market that captures everything fall! 

What is your favorite season?

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Birthday Wrap Up

My birthday was this past Saturday but I feel like I've been celebrating since the week before and am still celebrating. It never seems to last for only one day. With all of the coupons and freebies I am still enjoying the fruits of my birthday month! I have to give a shout out to my big sister Eva for my Bella slow cooker. It's so fantastic and when I use it for the first time you guys will get to see it!

People always ask me how I am able to get all of this free stuff. I simply let them know they can have it too simply by signing up for emails and rewards programs. It's just that easy. Having to redeem a free birthday gift from both Sephora and Ulta, I decided to find a facial mask that would help exfoliate my skin. Here is what I ended up with:

|| L to R || Sephora Anti-Fatigue & Energizing Mask | CK One Mascara in Black | Makeup Set with Eyeliner, Lipstick and Mascara | Origins Charcoal Mask ||

The CK One was my free birthday gift from Ulta (it's a full size tube!) and the makeup set was my free gift from Sephora. You can never have enough mascara! I have tried out the CK One and it is perfect for daily wear. It goes on quick and easy, but my favorite element is you can adjust the mascara brush to maximize your look. 

I have also tried the Origins Charcoal Mask and it left my skin feeling so smooth. I instantly noticed a difference in my face. It felt moisturized but not oily. I used it Sunday and a few days later it still feels like I just used it yesterday. It is my new weekly mask. 

I look forward to trying to my other goodies. Of course I didn't just go on the hunt for beauty items, but I found some fun pieces for fall that I cannot wait to wear:

|| Cardigan, Jeans, & Sweaters - Forever 21 | T-Shirts - H&M | Traveling Sketch pad - Birthday gift from my friend Julia ||

|| Boots - Aldo "Serinna" | Necklace & Ring - Forever 21 |Scarf - Birthday gift | Michael Kors bag & key chain - Birthday gift from my other older sister De'Adra ||

There were a few other gifts I received but I think the best part of my birthday was being able to relax and be thankful for seeing another birthday.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Sew In Love: New Sewing Project! - Tapestry Coat

Sometime I can get a little too inspired and end up with so many ideas I have to chip at them one by one. Whenever I sew, I take particular interest in jackets and dress. I don't know what it is that draws me to both, but I'll put together a crazy jacket or a dress with tons of pieces before I will sew a pair of pants or shorts (leggings are my exception because they take less than an hour for me to make start to finish).  

Unique pieces can come from complex construction with simple fabrics or simple construction with a stand-out fabric. In this case my sewing project, a winter jacket, lies somewhere in between the two. The fabric is unconventional, but the jacket has elements that make it one-of-a-kind. Last fall/winter tapestry fabric was huge and in everything. Some of that trend is still lingering in different places. 

I started my hunt for the fabric first, hoping it would inspire the actual jacket, I went to a local fabric that sold all types of fabric hoping to find what I was looking for, only to come up empty. Even with all of the fabrics and looking in all sections of the store, nothing grabbed my attention. So I figured the only way I can find what I needed was to step outside the box and head to an upholstery store that had a wide variety of tapestry fabric. I found a lot of fabric choices there (and then some) and ended up settling with fabric below. 

The more I look at this fabric the more inspired I get. The process of designing a look for this fabric took some time. Although it looks very "old" the key is in the construction elements and how I make this fabric come to life. There were a few requirements I wanted to include with this jacket: 1) an over-sized hood, 2) a fitted waistline, 3) to feel modern, yet Victorian, and 4) some type of lacing, (like you see on a corset), either on the sides or back. Taking this into account, I sketched up a jacket and came up with this:

At some point I will add color to the final sketch, but this is a great starting point. For this style jacket, I will be creating my pattern from my slopers, so this will be completely custom.  Slopers for my non-sewers are basically patterns created from my measurements that are used to create everything from pants, coats, dresses, shirts, etc. These are the starting points I use for any home sewing that I do. Sometimes I'll manipulate an existing pattern if it is along the lines of what I'm creating. It's easier using that method sometimes because pattern creation can take awhile to develop. I'm not worried with this jacket because for me it is pretty straightforward. I'll spend most of my time adding buttons more than anything else.

I plan on documenting my progress to show you all my process for creating patterns. Being The Couture Butterfly I think it is important to share with you all my sewing adventures. Some are easier than others. Many take quite a bit of time. I hope you all will enjoy this journey with me as I sew and create another fantastic creation. 

Do you all have any projects you would like to accomplish?

Monday, September 15, 2014

DIY: 3-Tier Wall Sorter for Mail Storage

I have been on a fierce quest to get organized. It's not that I wasn't before, but it makes life so much easier the more organized things are. One of my bigger tasks was to redo my fabric area. The cube storage system I have by ClosetMaid has made all the difference in the world. Not only does my sewing room look neater, but I can efficiently find what I'm looking for without wasting time figuring out where I stored it in the first place. My other creative area I store the rest of my fabrics and paint supplies are in a bookshelf-turned-clothing-storage-turned-TV-shelf-turned-creative station - yes I know it had been many things. It is a very versatile and transformable piece of furniture.

Mail can be a pain when you get it but don't have time to look at it right away. I prefer to be able to have a place to keep my mail - like coupons and magazines. Sometimes there are not enough hours in the day to do everything and that includes reading mail. It started piling up on my dresser to the point where it was about to topple over. Instead of leaving it there to turn into a mountain of mail, the best way to keep it in line was to sort and stack.

I searched the Internet for ways to organize and I stumbled across this shelf storage from The Container Store. This 3-Tier Mesh Wall Sorter has been a huge help with maximizing some of my unused wall space and holding all of my mail. I headed to my local store to see how it looked and it fit perfectly for what I needed.

(The direct link to this item is here.)

White is a very polished look, but for me it is a little too polished and needs more color.  A lot more color. So what did I do? I grabbed my cans of spray paint and had a colorful time. 

My work space was outside - which is the best ventilation. There is an old bench in the backyard, so it has become my painting station. If you want to spray paint and don't have a spare bench, a large piece of cardboard is just as good.

I started with lavender, then neon yellow, black, and later I added pink. The color possibilities are endless. When involving color, it is completely up to you to determine what you want. I know most of are thinking why not add in teal to my shelf? You will see why I decided to switch it up.

So this is how it ended up. I love the pop of color all over. This sorter came with all the hardware required to mount it. I recommend using a power screwdriver to help. It makes a world of difference and will save your arms, (I speak from personal experience).  Here is the final result.

I mounted it right by the door, which is optimal so it won't find its way to any other part of my room without me moving it. The color combination compliments the wall very well and my coupons, letters, and magazine appreciate not being in a giant pile but organized for easy access.

How do you store you mail?