Tuesday, May 31, 2011

from ugly capris

... to a smoking hot pair of shorts!

Like them?  I-so-very-very-much-DO :)

It all started with the hunt for a nice pair of navy blue shorts. 
I didn't think I was hunting for the moon, but apparently this summer if you want blue, you either go denim or nada de nada.
... And I didn't want denim, I said navy blue, and lighter fabric.

Racks after racks, 
I stumbled on the ugliest navy blue pair of capris. 
In a very soft 100% cotton fabric.
In my size. 
On sale @ 4$. 
No brainer.
They came home with me.

* First of all, I ripped off the belt loops, since they have a tie waist, and I won't wear a belt with them in any case.
* Then, I chopped off some leg length.
* For some reason, I don't like when the waist tie ends up inside, so I marked an X right after the button holes in the inside and punched an eyelet (grommet). much better.
* Tried them on and decided the length, double folded inside, pinned and hemmed.

... And I thought I could be happy with that.
But those eyelets (grommets) were pick-a-boing on my table and I thought: "heck yes!"
...and pulled out also the leftovers eyelets (grommets) from the t-shirt refashion that I made a while ago.

I followed the same criteria that I did for the t-shirt:
* marking my shorts in random order,
* then glue a bit of tacky glue onto the marked spots, 
* let dry, 
* cut the holes and hammered the big eyelets (grommets) (those come in two parts) and used my pliers for the smaller ones. 

Now, these are the shorts I was looking for!

xox, d.

wearing them with my striped and zipped refashioned shirt that I made awhile ago !

will link to these parties *<:)

Monday, May 30, 2011

in my home town

Saturday afternoon I left NYC to come to my hometown in Italy!

It's refreshing coming home, and being surrounded by these...

open the windows in the morning and smell the jasmine in the air...

All of this because my dad has the ultimate green thumb. Mine gone lost somewhere in the DNA :(

and, of course... them, my heinz57 pack :)

I am having indeed the most wonderful Memorial week-end!

Hope that yours was as happy as mine!
What did you do?

xox, d.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

leather bow ring

If you aren't new here, you know that I have a thing for bows.
Bows previously seen: herehere, and here... just in case you've missed the 'bow saga'.

So while I was pinteresting around, (like I needed another addiction, right?) I found on Asos the perfect quick fix for a ring that I had in the bottom of my drawer for ages.
... and transformed my old ring, into a brand new one that now I'm going to actually wear.

...and here's the side by side with the inspiration one from Asos:

--> This is what you need:
* a flat band ring
* a piece of leather
* your trusty glue
* scissors - ruler - matching thread and needle


--> This is the 15 minutes "how-to":

* measure the width of the ring and cut three pieces of leather of the same width
   1st slightly longer than the circumference of your ring
   2nd about 4" long
   3rd about 5" long
* glue the 1st piece onto the ring overlapping the edge of about 1/8"
* take the 5" long piece and glue the edges together, making a loop
* flat the loop with the glued parts in the middle, and squeeze it while wrapping few times around with the thread and knot the thread
* take the 4" long piece and make a knot over the squeezed part.
* cut the tails of the bow into a 45 degrees angle
* glue the bow onto your ring
* wrap it with a tissue and place a binder clip to keep it in place
* ... and because you're a good girl, you're waiting until is really well dried :)

xox, d.

will link to these parties *<:)

Friday, May 27, 2011

Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty

Yesterday I've got my acts together and despite the fact that I have a tons of things to do before my departure to go to Italy, I didn't want to the chance to miss Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty at the Metropolitan Museum.

If you're in New York, or planning a visit, don't miss it. 
It's a one of a kind exhibition that takes you hand by hand with the genius.
mission accomplished... R.I.P.

It's not about the clothes, the shoes, nor the head pieces.
It's not the show on a catwalk. 
It's the the intensity of emotions that gives you and will stay with you.
Plus, of course, you'll see some of the most amazing pieces of clothing ever created.

And in case you can't make it, this is the video:

I snapped some pictures (even if I've got my butt kicked), and couldn't resist to buy the book on my way out... here's some of my favorites in no particular order...

xox, d.

keep in touch! 

facebook * bloglovin * pinterest

Thursday, May 26, 2011

rope & silver

... what's not to like?

I was monitor shopping the other night , and I stumbled upon these bracelet by Orly Genger and Jaclyn Mayer for VPL...

image Refinery29.com - collage by me

So I started from something like this, added an old silver bracelet that hasn't been worn for the past xxx years, ... et voilà.
(and made a couple few more, since two is better than one, and three is the perfect number, you know!)

...and since I don't wear yellow gold, 
and I'm not big on tie dye, 
... I like my version better. 


--> Make one? (or more...)

* about 6" of silky rope (let's say 50 cents at the very most - but if you ask and smile, could be free ;) )
* a bracelet or a chain just about 1/2" longer than your rope (again, 50 c)
* two end caps with ring (I buy these in bigger quantities, but even if you get two of these... 50c)
* a clasp (50 c)
* jumprings (2 or 3 depend if you're adding an existing bracelet or a piece of chain) (20 c)

* glue the rope into the caps
* fix the chain with a jumpring on one end  
* twist it around
* another jumpring on the other end...

xox, d.

will link to these parties *<:)

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

w-w-w... W

What I Wore Wednesday is a big thing on the blogosphere. 

In my case is more of a 4 "W" affair:  What I Wore the Whole Week ... 
One word: SWEATPANTS ;) !!!

This is why WWW doesn't work for me:

First off all: looking at the various pictures on my blog, you can realized that if there is a part of my body in the shot to show the "product of my work" wether is a t-shirt, or a knit sweater, or a ring, or bracelets.... usually I'm always wearing some sweatpants! 

Second: I don't like take photos of myself. Either I don't like it or doesn't work, whatever. Any picture I attempt to take comes out awkward, so might as well just skip this step.
If I have to, I just "decapitate" myself, easier.

Add 1st and 2nd together, and comes out I'm the sloppiest blogger/diyer ever! :)

I do wear other clothes than sweatpants and sweatshirts, really!
As a matter of fact, you saw many of my self made or self-adjusted clothes here.

But nothing is comfortable as a pair of 
gently oversize, slightly unflattering, mostly unshaped, but oh so soft: ...  sweatpants.

It's my "at home" uniform (sometimes is also my "it's a quick errand, hopefully there's nobody around to notice me" uniform).

I thought I should give a tribute to my most worn outfits. (and most hated by my husband)

But now I really curious: are you really all that put together and looking fabulous, all matchy-matchy when you're at home minding your own business?
(if the answer is YES.... chapeau to you, but don't tell my husband!!)

xox, d.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

DIY Red Valentino bow on the back t-shirt

Would you like a great "wow-factor" t-shirt 

with about 20 minutes of work?
You've been served!

I made it last year and sure enough I'm going to wear it 
over and over again this summer :)

It all begun with some internet browsing, and when I look for t-shirt inspiration,
the  Red Valentino label is a great source. ... 
Yeah, a bit excessive price tags, agreed.
This shirt was 255$... now on sale @ 178.50 on net-a-porter.com.

left pic: net a porter - collage by moi

I had everything on hand:

Sheer Stretch Mesh Fabric in Black (1/2 yard will be more than enough)
* a sewing machine (but can be sewn by hand since it's really not much)

* cut the back of the t-shirt in the middle, leaving about 3" at the top uncut
* round the edges (optional, the original doesn't have round edges)
* cut a piece of black mesh in a sort of triangular shape with a round base (the two extra parts sticking out at the bottom won't be necessary if you don't round the edges)
* place the mesh inside the shirt and pin the sides onto the side of the cut 
* trim the excess mesh underneath 
* make a bow and pin it with a safety pin (so you can easily remove it to wash your shirt)

... probably even less then 20 minutes, right?

xox, d.

keep in touch! 

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Monday, May 23, 2011

trasformation of a pair of pants

A professional organizer would tell you 
that after you haven't worn a piece of clothing for an year, 
you should get rid of.

In theory, I agree.
In reality... I never do it. 

I get attached to things, and even if they go out of style, either they could make a comeback at some point, or I could make something out of it, at some point.
This was the case with a pair of pants that I have purchased in year 2000 (yes, laugh!)... and they haven't been worn since... about 2002, I believe.

Well, in my "to-do-list" and inspiration folder on my computer I have a pair of tied to the ankles pants since last summer, but I never got around to actually make it happens.
Until the light bulb went on when I've got in my inbox the new J. Crew line in collaboration with Prabal Gurung.
Two hours later, I had a brand-new-look pair of pants. 
Which I L.O.V.E.

It all started from this:

--> Make it happens!

* You need... pants, of course
* Contrasting 3/4" grosgrain  (your leg length X 2 + your waistline + 100" + few inches extra just in case )

* If you have a pair of skinny pants to begin with, good for you!
* I had to make mine smaller, so I traced a line on the inside seam, bast it, tried them on to make sure they fit well.
* Open the inside seams of the legs.
* Bast the grosgrain on the outside seam.
* Sew the grosgrain on both sides on both legs.
* Do the same on the waistline.
* Press the legs, sew back the inside seams, cut off the extra fabric, hem the pants, ... and press them again with a crispy crease :)
* Take 2 pieces of 50" of grosgrain, fray check the edges, find the middle part and stitch at about 2-1/2" from the hem line.
* Tie a bow around your ankles, and you're done!

... and the moral of the story is: before going out shopping, shop in your closet! 

xox, d.

will link to these parties *<:)

Sunday, May 22, 2011

the beading loom

I'm sharing another piece of history here, be aware!
If you're wandering why I'm such a crafty person, well the answer is: it's in the DNA.

If you want to see my dad happy... take him to hardware store. The bigger, the better (because yes, size does matter sometimes).

Today I'm proudly showing the beading loom that my dad made in 1977 :)
Exactly 3 pieces of wood, 6 nails, 2 screws, 4 bolts, and wood glue.
(btw, I looked up online and looms retail for about 38$?? are you serious??)

This loom has traveled with me for so many summers and has seen lots of different styles beaded into itself, and I know it feels weird, but brings back so much memories... yes, it's beaten up, not high tech, but you know what?

It still meets the standards!

When I was little, loom bracelets were very popular.
Yes: just like today.
Because fashion is just about that thermodynamic law: 
energy can neither be created nor destroyed: it can only be transformed.

The come backs of the 50's, 60's, 70's, 80's... if you have some wrinkles around your eyes you know it's nothing new under the sun.

A bit of beading-fashion recap:
- there was the summer when the IT thing was a beaded bracelet with your name,
- then the summer when it was all about the neon colors (yes, nothing new, again),
- and the summer that you were nobody if you didn't have the bracelet with flowers,
- and the tribal native american patterns,
- and next yes, you are hearing this well there it was, the summer of chevron stripes (that of course wasn't call chevron in Italy - it was just zig-zag)

See that? Looks like I started being OCD quite early!
It says:
bracelets 45 columns
necklaces 93 columns
rings 21 columns

So... if you like Chan Luu bracelets, well I made these first, because yes, I'm older than he.

Looks like I'll get this "antique" baby to work again :)

Thanks for reading another piece of history!

xox, d.

will link to these parties *<:)

Saturday, May 21, 2011

flamingo beach tote

You follow my facebook page, right?
So you knew already that this was a work in process!
Because when I stumbled upon the Kate Spade Flamingo Tote two weeks ago I got the DIY bug right away.
The bag retails at the not very friendly price of 275$.
I'm all over being stylish on the beach.
Not on board for the number, it's a canvas tote. 
Give me a break.
Fabric and paint...Voilà.
My version: suited for my needs.
--> I want to be able to carry the bag on my shoulder... check 
--> I want it much cheaper... duh... check 
--> I want it machine washable... check 
--> Most of all: I had everything except for the pink paint... triple check 
--> Last, but not least: total cost of paint : 3.98 $ ... can you beat that?

picture from www.saksfifthavenue.com - collage by me
The tote itself is a regular, rectangular piece of fabric (44-1/2" x 20-1/2"), folded in the middle with the 45 degrees corners stitched at the bottom to create the flat base.
Same process for the lining inside, where I added a pocket.

--> The straps, errr... the flamingoes' heads: length from beak to base: 28"
* I printed out a picture of the tote with scale 560%, (and only printed page 2 where the flamingo head was, I really didn't need the other 35 pages!!!)
* Cut the shape ad used as my template
* With the strip of fabric left, I folded in half and draw the flamingo at one end of the fabric, end the neck a.k.a. the strap of a 1" 1/4 all the way down
* repeat on the other side of the fabric, only the template of the flamingo must be face down this time
* now I decided to bast the straps because the stitch that I wanted to use pulls the fabric a lot and didn't want the two layers to move around. (btw, I hate basting)

* Set my machine on zigzag and length one click after 0.
* After it's done, cut slowly at the very edge of the stitching.

* I cut the flamingo template in three parts: the black beak, the white mask, and the pink head, using the three parts again, as a template.
* ... and painted pink and black

*** tip: If you're trying to do this stitch, try on a sample first. The fabric moves extremely slowly, you need to pull it, and the result is neat (well, I like it!)

* In the meantime, I hand drawn (using always a water soluble marker) the flamingo body on one side of the tote, folded in the middle, set it on my glass desk with the light underneath to match the lines on the other side.
* ... Lots of pink paint later, I was done.
* Done with the body, done with the straps, let dry (most.annoying.part. e-v-e-r)

--> Construction of the tote
* Sew the sides of the bag and the bottom corners
* Folded the top part twice and insert the lining
* Sew the top hem about 2-1/2" down
* Sew the straps in the way that the two flamingo's heads will be on the same side

Wash it to remove all the marker lines, let dry, press.

Flamingoes are happier to the beach! (and so am I)

xox, d.

keep in touch! 

facebook * bloglovin * pinterest

Friday, May 20, 2011

through the window

Our bedroom has five (FIVE) windows.
It's a heck of a lot of windows, if you ask me.
But anyway: it is what it is (we're are renting).

In the one facing east I placed this tall glass vase with husband's marbles from when he was little (yes, he still had his marbles indeed - along with many other toys from when he was little) and a white candle.

Here's the simple equation:


In the morning, when the light comes through, it reflects the colors.
... A nice way to wake up.
Just remember, ... never give away your kids' toys, you never know...

xox, d.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

you made it :)

It makes me feel so proud when you make something after my tutorials.
Even better, some that is a "Donatella original" in these cases, and not a fancy designer that i knocked off :)

Since "Imitation is the most sincere form of flattery", 
I am thanking you so very much!!!

Very talented Dani  made her own version of the agate pendant. After seeing her blue version, I'm thinking to make another one in blue too!! she has some other great DIY tutorials too!

And if you want a good laugh... you can't miss the post on  Janlynn's version of the dog bed!!
Puppy in full attack action :) pictures are blurry... why am I not surprised?!?!!!
This girl can sew! Check out her whole blog, it's worth it!


If you are going to make something that you saw on my blog, please please let me know! I would love to share it here!!

xox, d.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

DIY wrap wire: this star is mine

Summer: light weight fabrics, tan skin, sandals and... what's missing?
... A cool, sparkly, big jewelry piece around your neck.
... And if it's shaped like a star, even better :) !

I made my own.

--> You need:
* glass beads
* natural pearls
* 6mm Swarovski Crystal Beads in different shades
* moon stone beads 

--> How-to / tutorial:

* start by drawing a star on a piece of paper, including a ring on the top, this will be the pattern you'll be using to bend the 18 gauge HH wire in shape
* once the star and the ring on top (to make it as a pendant) is done, twist one end of the wire around the next part of the star few times so it won't get undone
* cut the wire and eventually twist it again so it won't pinch you, nor your clothes ;)

* take the 28 DS wire and wrap it in one of the junction of the star
* start beading the big stones first, scattered around (this will give you a sort of spider-web so you will have plenty of wrapping spots for the smaller stones and the beads)
* bead some of the small glass beads on the 28 DS wire (5 or 6 at the time), wrap it onto the structure of the star, bead some more, until you'll be happy with the result!

This is how the back of my star looks like!
... and if you'll make one, you know to snap a picture and send it over here, right?

enjoy the summer!
xox, d.

keep in touch! 

Monday, May 16, 2011

i don't lie

Now you know, that when I choose the necklaces for my very first giveaway, I put something that I really liked.
As a matter of fact, I was pretty upset to wrap and mail the "ocd-2 necklace" to the lucky winner! (just kidding!)

But I was really picturing myself sporting that baby in the summer!

I HAD to make another one, and since I didn't have the rope, I came up with a different option -don't  buy, DIY;) - making my own rope with my spool knitter, and rather than coil it (it would be too thick) i made a loose braid.

Also used more plumbing supplies: two end pipe caps as end caps (and drilled a hole in the middle) to add the clasp.

Now, you know. I don't lie :)

xox, d.

will link to these parties *<:)
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