Sunday, June 10, 2012

What the Art Teacher Wore #20

Strawberry-Fields-Forever-Monday: On this day we returned to Nashville from our Orlando vacation. And you know what returning from vacation means: laundry. Thankfully, that's hubs job. So I took a nap. top: this place in Nashville called UHL or something. URL? I forget, it's on West End if you are local; skirt and belt: thrifted and vintage; flower: H&M; shoes: nada, it's summer
Happy End-of-the-Week to you, friends! I don't know what the weather is like where you are, but in Nashville, Tennessee the weather has been divine. A couple of months ago, when we were supposed to be transitioning from winter to summer, Mother Nature, in all of her in-need-of-some-serious-prozac glory, decided to skip spring and deliver us endless days of hot sticky heat. This week she relaxed a little bit and we had the most beautiful and mild of spring-like days. 

Maybe I was a little delusional because of the lovely weather, but each outfit this week reminded me of a song. So, for your listening pleasure, here you are. I'd love to hear which song strikes a cord with you. Hope Mother Nature is on your side and your day is just lovely!
Love this video of the four running around being their silly awesome selves. See it here.

I-Never-Promised-You-A-Rose-Garden-Tuesday: This day was a fun and full one, meeting up with some art teacher buddies for a birthday celebration. dress: vintage; sandals: old, Target; sunglasses: ebay; flower: made by me

Love this song...but in the short clip, her floor-length minty green striped dress with matching shoes is a sight to behold. Take a look-see.

That's-Amore-Wednesday: This was an errand-running-catching-up-on-a-belt-order kind of day. I felt very much like I should be out on a gondola in that top. top: Forever 21; belt and skirt: vintage, thrifted; sandals: Lucky Brand

Okay, you must stop what you are doing and immediately go check out Dean Martin here. You won't regret it.

Girls-Girls-Girls-Thursday: Our terrific trip to Graceland which you can read more about here. On Quincy: swimsuit: Lena Hoscheck; skirt: Quincy has her own vintage-inspired clothing line and this skirt is from there. You must visit her shop here. On Emma: Emma's make up and hair is always stunning, which you can see on her beautiful blog. dress: Anthropologie. On me: dress: vintage, The Hip Zipper

Nothing says summer like this short clip by our friend at Graceland. Thank you, Elivs, for all of your awesomeness.

Summertime-Friday: On this day a buddy and I scored big at several garage sales. Thankfully this buddy noticed that I'd been walking around with my dress only half-way zipped up (eep!) before I went off to catch up with friend I'd not seen in years. I can't imagine what impression that would have made! dress: You tired of this dress yet? It's my summertime fave. Forever21; sandals: Sseko with straps sewn by me.

I love Sam Cooke and I really love his version of the song Summertime. He actually did another version here ... to be enjoyed with a video of some guy doing crazy stunts down a water slide...whah?

But I have a big soft spot for Janis. I love her...and I love seeing this recording session with her and the Big Brother Holding Company.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Summer Adventure: Graceland

Outside Graceland with some lovely gals: Emma of The Fiercest Lilliputian and Quincy from Q's Daydream.
I have this thing. 

I love to look inside of peoples homes.

As a kid, if my neighbors left their heavy plaid curtains open, I would crane my neck to catch a glimpse of their patriotic-themed wallpaper, the macrame owl with the wooden bead eyes and the green globe light fixture that hung above the dining room table by a chain strung across the ceiling.

Yeah. I know. I sound a little like a crazy person. Neighbors must have thought so too because they had a chat with my mom...and started closing their curtains.
Upon entering Graceland, on your immediate right is the formal living room. Photos of a young Lisa Marie can still be seen on the end table on the right.
But I don't mean any harm. I just love to see how people live. How they decorate. What goes on inside of a home with a macrame owl with wooden bead eyes.

So when the opportunity to see what the inside of The King of Rock 'n' Roll's home looked like, I jumped at the chance. Especially with two of the sweetest vintage-lifestyle bloggers I've come to know.
It's a three hour drive from Nashville to Memphis but with the aid of Starbursts, Starbucks and great conversation, the trip flew by in no time. Quincy, our awesome navigator, leading us straight to Graceland, a place she has visited countless times.

Our adventure began even before setting foot onto The King's property. As we cruised down Elvis Presley Boulevard, we passed by a convertible full of well-tanned -n- topless dudes. They could have easily been mistaken as stunt doubles for the Jersey Shore crew had they not had a British flag flapping from their trunk. We had a couple laughs over their too-tanned-bare-chested silliness and promptly forgot about them.

That is until the unmistakable smell of Abercombie and Finch cologne washed over us as we were standing in line to board the bus to Graceland. Low and behold, our friends were right behind us. Thankfully, they'd found out that Graceland has a strict No Shirt, No Shoes, No Elvis rule and had donned wife-beaters. Which can pretty much pass as church clothes in most Walmarts in the south.

But I'm just being harsh on the guys. They turned out to be a friendly bunch who were excited to be exploring "the states" in their convertible and cologne. And how can you not like that? Especially since they had placed Graceland on their list of Must-Sees.
The television room in the basement of Graceland.
Speaking of Graceland, after we had explored the living, dining room and kitchen, we took the mirrored ceiling stairs down to the television room. We all agreed that the wrap-around blue suede couch was sheer decorating genius.
That's right, I did say "mirrored ceiling". We're having one installed next week.
Across the hall from the t.v. room was the pool room, complete with wall to wall to ceiling drapes. We all placed our bets on the amount of yardage used to complete the room.
Up the stairs from the basement, you enter the famous Jungle Room. My favorite part in this room, aside from the green shag carpeted ceiling not shown, was the fur covered lamp shade on the far left.
Apart of our tour, we were able to see Elvis' vast car, golf cart, and motorcycle collection. My personal fave is this bubblegum pink Caddy. Just need a vintage Airstream Trailer hitched to the back and I'd be in heaven.

After a tour of the mansion, we took in the huge grounds surrounding Graceland. Across the street, a building housed his vast car collection, famous pant suits and his plane The Lisa Marie.
Don't you love Quincy's top? It's actually a swimsuit! And I have a feeling that one day this suit will swim in that pool.
Elvis' famous suits designed by the name that knew how to put a beadazzler to good use, Nudie.
Elvis is buried alongside his mother, father and grandmother right on the property.
With all of this Elvis-excitement, we worked up quite the appetite. We met some lovely friends of Quincy's (also from England, like our Jersey-Shore-wannabe friends) and had the most delightful lunch.

Our day ended with a surprise photo shoot outside of Graceland. We were snapping photos of each other when a journalist began to do the same. And look what appeared in the Memphis paper the following morning! Our happy memories in print.

Eat your heart out, Jersey-Shore Brits. 

Thanks for reading! And if you happen to see some oddly dressed lady sneaking a peak at your dining room furniture on her drive by your house, pop out and say hello!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

In the Art Room: Walk Like an Egyptian

Our amazing second grade singing and dancing to a rewrite of the Bangles hit "Walk Like an Egyptian."
 Well, here it is, folks, the final installment of The Art Show. It seems like a million years ago that I shared  Part 1 and Part 2 of our school wide art show with you. I decided to save my favorite part of the art show for last: the second grade production "Walk Like an Egyptian."

This year, in the art room, our theme was Ancient Egypt. I chose that theme because of an amazing exhibit at The Frist Center for Visual Arts. Not only did my second through fourth grade students visit this exhibit, but the entire school studied Egypt throughout the year. My first graders created Egyptian Landscapes and Nile Crocodile puppets. The third graders created a life-sized sarcophagus. Egyptian god portraits were created by my fourth grade students. And the second grade created Egyptian collar necklaces and gave this magical performance.
 I wrote this short and silly play set up just like the game show "Jeopardy". The program began with the two hosts (shown on the left) kicking off with the song "Walk like an Egyptian" Our fabulous music teacher rewrote the lyrics to The Bangles song (you know, because that little bit about "smoking on a hookah pipe" just might not go over well) and taught the kids the lyrics. One of our incredible second grade teachers taught the kids some sweet dance moves.

After that intro, King Tut (our friend in the middle) comes out as the Alex Trebek of the show. He lobbed questions, as well as some jokes, at the contestants: Cleopatra, a Mummy and Queen Nefertiti. The kids sang a rewrite of Steve Martin's "King Tut" ("he's my favorite honkey" didn't seem like the best thing for the kids to be singing, 'specially since dude was Egyptian). The show ended with the mummy busting free of her bandage strips (er, toilet paper) and stealing the show as well as winning the prize of 100 shabti (shown on the right).
After the production, the kids were all smiles, even the toothless variety.
 The play was a ton of fun and a huge hit, especially with the performers. They lit up the stage with their excitement and enthusiasm. It was such a delight to work with the incredible music, P.E., second grade and many other teachers in the school to make this play possible.
Egyptian collar necklaces are now the latest in second grade fashion.
 My part in preparing the kids for the program was the costuming. I knew I wanted to keep it simple for the parents, so I asked the kids wear over sized t-shirts, shorts and sandals on the day of the performance. During art class, we studied the history of Egyptian jewelry with a focus on Egyptian collar necklaces and scarab beetle jewelry.
Okay, I'm not a macaroni-art kind of teacher but I will admit, this was kind of fun. If you do this, do not use the textured pasta as it cracks when it dries.
 One group of kids was given a wide variety of colorful pasta that they glued onto their gold-painted cardboard collars. We chatted about patterning and design.
 Once the glue dried, we added designs to our necklaces by printing. The kids used cardboard, q-tips and marker caps dipped in gold paint to create their unique designs.
 Knowing that they were going to be wearing their creations in their performance, the kids really worked hard on crafting beautiful necklaces.
The little actor that played King Tut is the son of one sweet mama. She came up with the pipe cleaner idea as a way to hold the necklaces on. She simply hole punched, fed the pipe cleaner through one side and twisted to keep it in place. The other side she left like a hook. This way the kids could take their necklaces on and off on their own.
 Some of my other classes created these scarab beetle necklaces. For these, the kids used cardboard to cut out the shape of wings. These cardboard shapes were then wrapped in tin foil and then colored with sharpie. Can you guess what the beetle's body is...? One of the many uses for bottle caps in the art room!
Two proud Egyptians showing off their necklaces.
I love the anch design, don't you?
 This program was such fun and a great way to kick off the art show. However, having an art show AND a performance on the same day most certainly gave me some new gray hairs. So, while I'd love to work with these amazing kids and teacher on another production again...let's just say I might pick a less insanely busy day. Thanks for dropping by.

Monday, June 4, 2012

DIY: The Empire Strikes Back Dress

"These aren't the droids you're looking for. Move along...move along."
You know those really obnoxious people that go on vacation and then share with you every one of the two million photos they took, complete with the blow-by-blow story behind each? 

Hi. I'm one of those people.

But these aren't just any vacation photos. Especially for those Star Wars fans out there. 

Oh no. These are photos from a long time ago (well, this weekend) in galaxy far far away (er, Orlando)...
Dunno about you, but I am a huge fan of the Max Rebo Twelve (aka The Cantina Band). Looking for one of those tunes you'll never get out of your head? Well, look no further.
For the past couple years, hubs and I have attended Star Wars Weekends at Hollywood Studios in Walt Disney World. It's pretty incredible, even if you aren't a Star Wars fanatic. 

Each day begins with a huge parade of all of the Star Wars characters. This is followed by a series of shows featuring some of the stars. For example, last year the actor behind C-3PO was there to chat about his experience in that little gold suit. This year, the voice behind many of the Clone Wars characters, James Arnold Taylor, was presenting, as well as the Jake Lloyd, the child actor that played young Anakin Skywalker. They were fascinating to hear. 

The day ends with something called the Hyperspace Hoopla aka Dancing with the Star Wars Stars. It's this amazing dance off between the good guys and the bad. Check out this year's dance off here.
The Empire Strikes the form of a 1960's dress.
 As you can imagine, this kind event draws the most die hard of fans. Which usually means geeks in costumes.This year alone, we saw countless Princess Leias (both white robe and metal bikini), double-headed light saber twirling Darth Mauls, a Jabba  the Hut and, of course, Darth Vadar. Did I mention that this is in the summer in Orlando? Wearing those hot and heavy costumes takes some kind of (nerd-tastic) dedication. 
Darth Vadar on my left check and C-3PO on my right.
And, if you know me, than you know I will not be out done. So this year, I decided to craft something of my own.

Recently my mom gave me my Empire Strikes Back sheets that I had when I was a kid. The timing couldn't have been more perfect. I knew I didn't want to dress as a character...but a sort of vintage-girl-who-loves-all-things-Star-Wars-y. 

The above is the result.
My 1960's pattern of choice.
 I decided to go with the above pattern because I've used it before, it's fairly simple and the design is pretty figure-flattering. It does a lovely job of accentuating what I don't have (it's like a force-push to the bosom area) and minimizing what I do. Something all clothes should do, don't you think?
My first dress crafted from this pattern, sewn a couple years back.
Boba Fett was completely taken with my dress...until he noticed Princess Leia and Han Solo on my left hip. I'm attempting to cover it up...meanwhile looking like he just finger-jabbed me.
The Disney actors never break character or talk. So Boba Fett is trying to pantomime that I rest my chin on his hand. I'm a little slow to the dance.
Hubs had to coach me from the sidelines.
Speaking of, Boba Fett did not take too kindly to hubs intruding his space. Especially since hubs seems to be channeling a young Obi Wan look.
So we captured him straight away and shackled him in what looks like a mini-keg. Grr, bounty hunters, unite!
Lemme, tell you, this dress was so much fun to wear. I had several guys tell me that they also had these same bed sheets as a kid. Many ladies stopped me with an "Oh! I love your dress!" and a "Did you make that?!" and a couple "Do you sell those?". Several folks even snapped a picture. And to think anywhere else I'd probably get the freak-show stare.

 Thanks for indulging me and my countless photos, guys. I know there where a lot, but you liked 'em, right?



Where are you all going, I still have 276 more to share!? 
Well, may the force be with you any old way.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

What the Art Teacher Wore #19

Summer Monday, You're as Good as a Friday in My Book: Ahhh, summer. On this Monday, I wrapped up a visit with my mom that involved some serious estate sale shopping and pizza devouring. dress: Issac Mizrahi, thrifted; sunglasses: ebay; belt: Pinkyotto; shoes: sale room at Anthropologie
 Hi friends! I'm currently on vacation in Sunny-One-Minute-Rainy-the-Next Orlando, Florida. I tell ya, this weather is moodier than me comin down from my morning chocolate-and-coffee combo. Hey, Breakfast of Champions, don't knock it.

This week, I chose a mish-mash of images that either reminded me of my ensemble or my redonkulous photos. I do hope you enjoy. Okay, I'm off to sleep...tomorrow we return to Hollywood Studios for one last day at Star Wars Weekends, eep!
Andy Warhol, Flowers 1970
Pajamas-til-noon-Tuesday: And the only reason I got dressed was because I received this gem of a skirt in the mail. I can't tell you how much I love this skirt, it's covered in Parisian landmarks and came from the sweetest etsy seller out of England. top: Anthropologie, gift from a friend; skirt: PossessedN1; shoes: Clarks; giant flower clip: made by me
Don't you love this? Their full skirts and Eiffel Tower background reminded me of my skirt.
Thrifting and Dining Wednesday: I had so much fun scouring the local thrift shops with a buddy who's just bought her first home. We worked up quite the appetite stopping for caffeine, frozen yogurt and lunch along the way. Please don't ask me why I thought doing a hair flip was appropriate. top: Anthropologie, couple years ago; skirt: made by me, tutorial here; sandals: Target, old
Yeah, so, the hair flip. Okay, honestly, I thought I might look a little something like this. But maybe with my mouth less, uh, agape.
...and yet, I'm pretty sure I look closer to this. Minus the biceps and the strong jawline.
Beachy Thursday: This dress proved to be the best for travel. We flew into Orlando that morning and headed straight to Cocoa Beach. dress: Anthropologie, sale last year; sandals: Chacos
Star Wars Friday!: When my mom gave me my old Empire Strikes Back bedsheets, I knew I couldn't part with them. I've had them in my fabric stash for ages. When our trip to Star Wars Weekends rolled around, I just had to use them to create a dress for the occasion. The pattern is vintage 1960's. I'll share all the details (and more photos!) with you in an upcoming DIY.
Oh, yeah, baby. May the force be with you ;)