Showing posts with label what I wore. Show all posts
Showing posts with label what I wore. Show all posts

Saturday, April 2, 2016

What the Art Teacher Wore #158

What's a "Monday"?: I've not been to school or seen the likes of a Monday in almost two weeks due to some art teacher conventionin  and spring breakerin . It was hard gettin' my Monday-on but with the help of my new most favorite sweater in the world, I did aight. head scarf, blouse and skirt: thrifted; sweater: Buffalo Exchange; belt: Amazon; tights: Target; boots: Anthropologie

I'm not even gonna sugar coat it for y'all: This was the best/worst week I've seen in a long time. I sprouted more gray hairs and counted down to summer/retirement more times than I'm proud to admit. But the happy highlights like an amazing visiting artist and a happy write-up in the Tennessean balanced out the cray. Thank goodness. Cuz it turns out I got a whole lotta years before I can start slingin' back the Metamucil and hangin' in my pj's all day (which is how I plan to spend my retirement. Don't judge). 
Let's talk about the good stuff, shall we? A coupla weeks ago, our local newspaper, The Tennessean sent photographer Shelley Mays and reporter Melanie Balakit to my art room to snap some pics and do some interviewing. Melanie and I chatted at length about my love for creating artist-inspired clothing that I wear in my art room. You can read the article here. Shelley even came to my house and visited my sewing room (pictured above) which was so fun AND meant that I spent a good part of my Saturday frantically cleaning my otherwise disturbingly messy abode before she arrived. It was such a wonderful opportunity to chat and share what I love. Special thanks to Shelley, Melanie and The Tennessean for making me look and sound less crazy than I truly am! 
 Murphy's Law Tuesday: Y'all. If it was gonna go wrong, it most certainly did on this day.  Between an assembly, a fire drill and a visit from the Fire Marshall herself, the day pretty much imploded after the first bell. I just kept applying more red lipstick and attempted to smile thru the trauma. In other news, CAN YOU BELIEVE HOW FREAKISHLY PERFECT MY ART TEACHERIN' DRESS IS?! sweater and scarf: thrifted; dress: vintage, etsy; belt: Pin Up Girl Clothing; tights: Targs; shoes: Fluevog 
Wednesday, Whatever: After Tuesday, I was all, it can't get ANY worse. Brang it, Wednesday. sweater and headscarf: Anthro, thrifted; skirt: Anthro, not-thrifted; belt: Amazon; tights: ya know, Targs; shoes: aren't they the best thing everz? Aldo
 Thursday, I Always Did Like You: As a kid, Thursdays were always my fave because that's when the Cosby Show aired. Not gonna lie: highlight of that show was seeing what wild outfit Lisa Bonet (aka Denise) would be wearing. She was always my fave. splatter paint dress: made by me! DIY here; sweater: thrifted; shoes: Clarks; palette hair clip: DIY here
 A big part of what made my Thursday awesome was a visit from artist Richard Heinsohn! He's an abstract artist from Nashville who had plenty to share with a third grade class. The absolutely loved him! I mean, check out these smiles...
 After learning about Richard's style of abstract painting, the kids got a taste of their own. I can't wait to share with you what they created. This is the second time my artists have had the chance to learn from a local contemporary artist and I'm so happy that they've had the opportunity. I can tell it's going to have a lasting impact. 
Fri-YAY: Thank goodness. I love my Fridays as they allow me to really catch up. I've started sorting, stacking and framing student work for our GIANT annual art show which is gonna go down in a lil over a month. Routine panic attacks have already set it. Awesome! pencil dress: made by me, DIY here; pencil sweater: needle felted, more here; giant pencil: made by fourth grade, blog post to come!

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Sunday, February 14, 2016

DIY: A Mondrian Coat

So I'm currently reading this great self-help book called Better than Before by Gretchen Rubin. It's all about forming habits to help you become the person you wanna be (which, in my case, means less lazy and more do-y with a splash of grown-up like.) But before she gets into the habit-forming department, she explains that you gotta know what kind of tendencies you have to aide in developing habits best suited for you. She's decided (and I totes agree) that there are four kinds of habit-y folks in the universe: Upholders (who uphold both their own obligations and those they've made to others), Obligers (who uphold obligations to others but not to themselves), Quesioners (those who question what is being asked of them and follow through if they find it legit) and Rebels (those who can't be held accountable for internal or external obligations because they don't like being told what to do). 

So. With EXACTLY one million obligations to others (presentations, papers, writing, you name it) and EXACTLY one million new habits I've promised myself I'd form (exercising, eating better, getting more sleep), guess who decided to throw all that out the window and make this here needle-felted Mondrian coat?! 

That's right. This rebel. 
 Hey. It's all good. Draper approves. 
Did I mention that I'm currently on a Mad Men marathon bender? The hubs watched it all when it first came out and I kinda fell off the wagon when the show slipped into the mid-60's (let's be real, I was only in it for the fifties fashions). But with our onslaught of snow days, I'm now polyester-shift-dresses deep which is totes perfect cuz this coat is all kinds of Mad Mod 1960's. AND it also allows me to get all Mad Men gif-happy in this here post! 
Yep. I've already gotten this look when I wore the coat out today. I'm rather used to it. Joannie, don't hate. 
But before we go any further, I suppose we should give a big fat hairy shout out to the man who inspired my coat: Piet Mondrian. Born in 1906, this Dutch dude began fiddling with this grid style of painting with primary colors after the World War I while living in Paris. 
In 1940, Mondrian moved to New York City where he really seems to explore his ideas of simple abstraction. It's interesting to me that a little over 20 years later, his artwork became a part of the mod movement with it's strong lines and bold colors. His work looks every bit of arts and crafts movement as it does mid-century mod.
I love this dress by Yves Saint Laurent. Has anyone watched the movie about YSL's life? I think I'll have to check it out after I'm done drooling over Don Draper, er, watching Mad Men. You can find patterns for this dress in etsy-land and ebay-ville for a pretty penny. It's been on my dress-makerin' list for a while. Tho the closest I've gotten is this...
I found the fabric online and busted out this bad boy last year when it was Snow Day Central in these parts. I love the fabric but the styling is not mod. I mean, I'm no Marge, 'kay?
I suppose a girl can dream. BTW, I need those shoes, Marge. NEED. 
So I think I told you on Wednesday when I shared with you my needle-felted paint-splatter coat that I snagged this coat at the thrift store with the intent of artsifying it. Knowing that I'll be at an art teacherin' convention in Chicago in March (and knowing that I'm freakishly cold-natured), I can only assume I'll spend 99% of my time coat swaddled. When I realized that, I decided I'd better set to work on some super cute coat-ness. Because, again, I'm a rebel. All obligations were kicked, shoved and bootie-bumped out the window for this top-priority.  
Now I will confess that after the paint splatter coat, which was super fun with it's no-fuss organic shapes, doing these redundant vertical and horizontal lines and shapes was a little dry. There might have been some grown-up grape flavored drinking to help pass the time. Which got me very close to making the back of the coat look like a Pollock. 
Yes, Peg. Apparently so. 
But it's done now. And like all pain-in-the-arse crafts, I often forget the unpleasantries when I'm left with something I'm proud of.
Here's something I found interesting along the needle-felting way: I've never really had the hots for Mondrian or these paintings of his. But since working on this coat, I love those works of art! I don't know if it's the primary color palette or the vintage/Mod look to the work but I'm totes a convert. The back of the coat is my fave. 
Because I've shared so many needle felting DIY projects with y'all, I didn't think you'd wanna see one million how-to step photos. So I took exactly ONE. Sorry, y'all! If you follow this link, you'll find oodles of details along with how-to videos.  I've created many thingies via needle felting that, if I wasn't so stinkin' lazy, I'd create a link-able list for y'all. However, if you google my name and needle felting and hit image search, you'll see it all a whole lot faster. 
Oh, did I mention that this glamous 1980's coat came with white buttons and shoulder pads? I swapped out the buttons for red vintage ones from my stash. The shoulder pads stayed because they make me feel like this...
BAM. Shoulders of a quarterback, y'all. Deal with it. 
When I put on my finished coat and showed it to el hubbo, I got the usual response...

And there you have it! A Mad-Mod-Mondrian coat that gets a big ole thumbs up. I can't wait to wear it 'round the Windy City doin' my best Pegg-the-Boss impersonation. Hope to see y'all there! Now, lemme get back to better-habit-forming (bwhahaha, ahem). 

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Wednesday, February 10, 2016

DIY: A Paint-Splattery Needle-Felted Winter Coat!

Let's get deep for a second shall we (I'm of kiddie-pool depth, it truly will only take a sec). Can we talk about what rattles around in your head, what keeps you up at night, what has you biting your nails, twisting your hairs and wringing your hands? For me, it's pretty much a slew of first world probs that can best be summed up in a series of memes: 
First bite is always a lava-hot fiery inferno whilst the middle is freaking Antarctica. WE CAN PUT A MAN ON THE MOON BUT WE CAN'T FIGURE OUT THE SCIENCE OF A HOT POCKET?!
Been known to use the following milk substitutes: ice cream, yogurt, apple sauce (not recommended) and water. Desperate times, y'all. Don't nobody wanna see their Fruity Peebles go to waste!
Or a dress because, let's be real, I ain't got no pants!
Honestly, what had me up in a panic the other night was realizing that this year's NAEA (that'd be a big fat art teacherin' convention for those of y'all outta the loop) in Chicago was more than likely gonna be a cold one. Chi-town? In March? I know I'll be wrapped in a coat 99% of the time which is when I realized, OMG, MY COAT MUST BE CUTE! Because, priorities. 
So a week ago, I popped by the thrift store and picked up a couple of wintery coats that I thought would be fun to artsi-fy. This here little black belted number and a white one (which, if you follow me here, you already know the plan for that coat!). Dontcha know I was all kinds of thrilled to receive the gift of a snow day yesterday so I could work on this bad boy! 
It was a super easy make and went together surprisingly quickly! 
Even if it looks like I got into a paint ball fight and my bum was the target. 

 Now y'all know that I have a lurve for needle felting. In fact, my last two DIY's have been needle felted (I always over do it in the winter, it's such a cozy craft). Folks always ask how to needle felt, if it's hard to do. Y'all. I'm not gonna lie...this is the EASIEST craft you'll ever do! For starters, you'll need a needle felting tool and a bristle brush cushion. I recommend the above by Clover which can be found cheapest on Amazon. While you are there filling up your cart, be sure to pick up a pack of wool roving too. A variety pack of colors is the best place to start. Unlike wet felting, needle felting does not require a bunch of roving. These packs are sold by the ounce so don't be surprised when it comes in the mail and is no bigger than a ping pong ball. 

A coupla of years ago, I made some demo videos. I def need to update but in the meantime, here you go...

Keep in mind, you can needle felting on pretty much anything. ANY.THING. I once thought you could only needle felt on wool but that isn't true. I know my coat isn't wool and it worked just fine. I've needle felted on jersey, wool, knit, cotton, you get the idea. Fabrics like denim and twill would probably bust some needles.

I love that little tool because I can control the design. However, they do make a tool which holds many needles that would be grand for doing big paint blobs!
Now, I must confess, one reason this coat came together so quickly is because the hubs bought me a needle felting MACHINE. So for the paint blobs, I just lightly tacked them down with my tool as you see above. 
And then ran it under my machine! The machine was also picked up from Amazon. It's made by Simplicity and called 12 Needle Deluxe Felting Machine tho I don't know what's deluxe about it. It's the simplest machine I've ever used. You simply put your fabric underneath and hit the petal to commence needle stabbing. There are no feed dogs so you do have to maneuver the fabric yourself. I just take it nice and easy so as to not bust any needles.
And, viola! From there, I clean it up a bit, add more roving to the translucent areas and refine edges with my little tool. 
 And that was pretty much how I spent the majority of my snow day. Stabbing and watching Mad Men because, you know. Don Draper and vintage clothing. I could handle that scandal all day long. 
Meanwhile, in CatTown...
 Now just in case you wanna see what a Tennessee Snow Day looks like, I thought I'd bring you outside. A good couple of inches is all it takes. Growing up in Illinois and Indiana, we very rarely missed a day for snow. I mean, we'd have it up to our eyeballs, slipping and sliding off roads, pulling each other outta ditches and strapping chains to our tires before they'd even think about it. So this kind of snow day I can handle!
 And I'm super excited to wear this in Chicago, back in my old stomping grounds-ish (I grew up in Joliet so not too far!). If you happen to be signed up in my hands-on class at NAEA, hurray! This is what we'll be up to! It is sold sorry, friends. If you see me at NAEA and wanna talk needle felting shop, just holla at yer girl!
Until then, stay warm, dry and happy, y'all. And for heavens sake, PUT YOUR PANTS BACK ON BEFORE THE PIZZA IS DELIVERED!
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