About Me

I’m Louise. Blogger. Wife. Designer of TruLu Couture Veils + Accessories.  If you’d like to know more, check out my bio.

Follow Me!

 

Sponsors

Saturday
Apr052014

Because Weddings. Still.

I don’t stalk the wedding world like I used to. I suppose I should feel some sense of abandonment. Have I let myself down or just run out of material? Or, is this like so many other things I do – try, total emersion, obsession, and then, um….what’s next?

Maybe. 

But something I haven’t stopped doing is working on bridal goodies. It’s slow going at times, because the J.O.B. gets in the way, but I’ve been making room for it lately.

Wanna see?

TheThirtySomethingBrideTruLuCouture1

I’m not even sure what this is going to be, but it’s going to be awesome. I mean, I kind of know what it’s going to be. Think floral crown. Think hand-sewn everything.

TheThirtySomethingBrideTruLuCouture2

Then there’s this. I’ve been sitting on this applique for years. I have a lot of beautiful pieces that take a while to become things. This is one of those pieces – and holy shit it’s going to be amazeballs. Can I still say amazeballs? It’s going to go with this:

TheThirtySomethingBrideTruLuCouture3

It doesn’t look like much, but it’s silk tulle. I got a bunch of it and it’s going to be a holy-gorgeousness-drapey-fabulosity.

I recently finished a few things too:

TruLuCouture5

Vintage lace trim on a dotted Swiss mesh – WHAT? It totally happened.

TruLuCoutureD

Vintage crocheted gloves with hand-crocheted flowers (thanks to T30SB’s crocheting-fool mamma) and vintage pearl beads. They are totally awesome.

I heard on the radio that to be creative, you have to practice. The radio host said that practice doesn’t have to be a big chunk of time. It could be 15 minutes, but it has to be every day. I’m not as obsessed with that rule as I was with Bikram yoga, but I’m working on it.

Saturday
Feb012014

Wedding Day Zits

Selling Shame: 20 Outrageously Offensive Vintage Ads

It’s not often I actually write about wedding shit these days, but I have recently found a product that has made an incredible impact in my life. It could help with the rogue  wedding day blemish, so I thought I’d share.

But before I reveal this little gem of a product, I need to reveal a little something about myself. I’m a picker.

And I’m not talking about antiques found in old barns.

I’m talking about zits. And scabs. And boogies. Even my nails and the dry skin on my feet. If there is something to remove from my body, I’m tearing at it. And yes, I realize it’s disgusting and unhealthy and leaves scars.

I. Just. Can’t. Stop.

SO.  Needless to say, if there’s a blackhead, mini-zit or cyst-like growth on my face, it’s getting attacked. Over and over and over. Just call me Sisyphus. 

The ones that are the bane of my existence are the cyst-style golf balls that you can feel coming for weeks. You know what I’m talking about, right? If I could, I’d take a melon-baller and scoop those things right out of my face.

But I can’t, so I pick.

And then I try to repair the damage I’ve done by using every skin care product I can get my hands on. Some are definitely better than others. I’ve had the most let-me-try-to-kill-the-zit-before-I-rip-my-face-apart-success with Origins Super-Spot Remover and Therapy Systems Topcial Treatment Serum. The Therapy System is expensive, but it’s a big bottle and will literally last you forever. I’ve had my bottle for almost 4 years and it’s only half-empty. I’m sure someone somewhere will tell me that the shelf  life is like six months, but it still works so I don’t care.

I will also mix witch hazel with a dash of hydrogen peroxide, soak a cotton square and lay with down with the cotton on my face. Sometimes I’ll add an ice cube, generally balanced on my forehead, to help reduce swelling.

After the witch hazel soak, I’ll put on the spot cream, dabbing with a Q-tip just so that stuff gets on the zit and not all around it. If I put on too much, it gets really dry and my face starts to peel. Which looks awesome.

After that, I’ll put some Neosporin on and around to keep that dry factor away.

--------

So the above has been my zit-MO for like, ever. Recently I was on a work trip and I had not brought any of my zit tools with me and my face was all like, “I’m going to pretend you’re an adolescent and break the fuck out.” It was so much fun. So I’m digging through my make-up bag and my toiletry bag and trying to find SOMETHING I might have to help.

You know what I found?

Preparation H Cooling Gel.

I shit you not.1

Now, I’ve tried PrepH before. The girls in my sorority would walk around with white dots all over their faces before bedtime. Never worked, not for them and not for me. But when I pulled out this tube (and no, I’m not going to tell you why I even had the stuff in my bag), I figured I had no other choice.

Somehow, the gel is different than the white stuff. It reduced the swelling. It didn’t dry my skin out. It reduced the redness. And it works FAST. Like in an hour I could see a noticeable difference. Overnight? Holy cow. A HUGE difference. And when I can’t feel the pressure under my skin, I pick less. It’s a win-win for T30SB and her adult-acne.

I’m telling you, you should try it. And you should keep some in your wedding day emergency bag (scroll down towards the end of the post for the ultimate list).

Oh, and happy picking.

 

 

1Pun intended.

Sunday
Jan052014

Something of Substance

For once?

Nah. Just a time to check it, me thinks. I haven’t been around for a while, yeah? So like all good bloggers, I’ll give ya a little Year in Review and just go from there, K?

First of all, welcome all you newly engaged brides. You’ll find some really great rants on here and some pretty good information too. Just use the search function and you’re bound to find what you need. From veils, to RSVPs, an open letter to Wedding Guests (in case you need it) and an excellent alternate registry. I still do a bunch of  TruLu Couture wedding pieces, but most are custom. I am working on a pretty lace little capelet, though….

For everyone else, here’s where we’re at:

The year 2013 did not start of so well for T30SB. I got incredibly sick when I was overseas in January and I swear, I wasn’t 100% well until like, March.

On top of it, I was getting to a stress level at my job that was ridiculous. And I mean ridiculous. If I didn’t cry in my cube, it was a good day. I tried to assuage the stress with a January hot yoga class (love me some hot yoga!). In said class, I had an anxiety attack. Nothing like thinking you’re having a heart attack in a 105 degree room, sobbing into your sweat rag, praying everyone in the class will continue to ignore your complete mental melt down (they did).

I think when I was at the office all day on July 4th was when I had had e-fucking-nough and started really looking for a new job. I wouldn’t find it until October! Sheesh! More on that in a sec.

We didn’t do a whole lot this year except try to catch up. At least that’s what is felt like. A lot of that had to do with finances. For instance, we finally met our 81 and 86 year old neighbors when our Red Oak tree dropped a branch on their roof. No damages,  but now we know how much an arborist costs.

I had to get a new bumper and radiator and all sorts of crazy crap done, all because someone caught the edge of their bumper on a bush. In their own yard. I’m not saying it was me. I’m not saying it wasn’t, either.

I think having been unemployed for so long, then buying a fixer-upper house, effing up on our taxes while I was unemployed and then little annoying things like an arborist, all gave me that feeling of needing to catch up.

Once I got my new job (and new paycheck!) I felt like I could breath again. Isn’t that little sad? That money chilled my ass out?

At any rate, I felt less stress about everything and am settling into my new role. If you can believe it, I’m actually doing my product development gig in the world of FABRIC! I know, amazing, right?

The Candyman and I have been married for four years now. I’ve learned marriage is work. The Candyman is much better at finding the solutions than I am. For instance, we started arguing about dinner. Remember, I was Susie-fucking-homemaker before I started working again. I worked late all the time. I still do. I don’t get home until 6:30-7pm every night. The bummer is that The Candyman can’t really cook. He’s pretty good at making one thing at a time, but has a hard time coordinating an entire meal. He’s excellent at grilled cheese sandwiches and popcorn. Anyway, this left all the cooking with me. The daily stress of figuring out what to cook for dinner was just as bad as the damn job. So The Candyman took the lead. He made  lists of dishes, planned out a few weeks of meals and put together a shopping list. Once I saw all he had done, I sat down with him and paid attention. We put the meal list on the frig and when I’m running late, The Candyman acts as my sous chef. He gets all the goodies out and prepped for cooking, so that when I come home all I had to really do is throw everything together.  I clean more afterwards and he helps more before. It seems to be working, though we do have to plan all our meals. This is sometimes painful, but I think we’re saving money by doing it.

Does that sound like common sense to anyone? The above compromise? It seems simple, but sometimes simple is hard to see in a marriage, no?

On the activity scale of 1 to 10, 1 being sofa loaves and 10 being globe trotters, The Candyman and I are ranking at a solid 4. I travel for work, The Candyman never does. The furthest The Candyman travels is the four hours it takes him to drive to the North Carolina coast. My parents are three hours south. We have had little time or extra money to take time for ourselves this past year. The Candyman turns 40 this year, so there needs to be an adventure, just for that, right? I think so too!  I want to go someplace interesting like Mount Rushmore or see the Mayan ruins. I need to get my culture on.

I did work with a couple of brides this year on some customer projects. I even ended up being a bit of a wedding coordinator on my own anniversary. Long story, but here’s an additional tip to any bride who still may be reading at this point: make sure you don’t leave your goddamn wedding license in the goddamn hotel room. It does you NO GOOD there.

So Christmas is done. We took down the tree and decorations today. The time with our families was drama-free! On both sides! Amazing! The Candyman got me the much-coveted Paperwhite.

He also surprised me with a beautiful pair of Tiffany pearl earrings about five days too early. He hid them from me in the suitcase I used to pack for our trip to see family. Oops. It was such a  sweet gift though and I love the ear-bobs, as my grandmother used to call them. 

Oh, and I’m totally growing out my actual hair color and then I think I’m totally going to cut my hair short. I have got some serious gray going on and I just want to see what I look like. If it’s old hag, then I’ll just dye it again, but I want to know: How gray am I really? Stay tuned.

So for the first time in over a year, I feel like I can breath again. I’m sewing for pleasure. I’m building friendships. I might even be starting to exercise again, but let’s just keep that a secret. I can’t be counted on for continuity.

Happy New Year, y’all.

Sunday
Sep082013

DIY–Fancy Frames for Family Photos

So right before I started writing this easy DIY post, I did a little research and realized that perhaps my decision to DIY might have been a mistake?

Maybe not a mistake, but I should have done the research before breaking out the spray cans.

I’ll get to that in a sec.

If you’re a long-time reader and still notice when I post these days, you might remember my DIY Wall Collage post. I’m working on doing another one, but it’s been slow going. We have officially been in this house a year and you would be SHOCKED at how much and how little I have accomplished here. The living room and dining room are still extreme works in progress. Remember the goose-neck couch I was going to recover? It’s still in its horrid maroon fabric, just waiting to be recovered in the dark dove gray fabric I have yet to purchase.

But there is plan.

The plan is to re-create the family collage, but this time I want all the frames to be the same color. I’m working on framing pictures I had printed from The Candyman’s side of the family and re-framing some of my old family portraits. It’s really hard to find oval frames or to have them made at a reasonable price. I have a few of those that are really old. I decided to spray paint them black, to have consistency with all the other frames.

I started by taping them off with that painter’s tape stuff you can get at any home improvement or paint shop and an old paper bag.

And then I waited. And waited. And waited. I waited for a day where it didn’t rain so I could spray paint. Have you read about the weather in The South lately? One of my friends said it has only rained twice, once for 16 days and again for 22 days. So when I finally got a dry, sunny day, here’s what happened.

TheThirtySomethingBride1frames

I laid out the old frames on a trash bag and got my can of black spray paint and an old rag.

Both of the frames are old and cracked and chipped so I used an old rag to get off any dust or dirt or whatever might be clinging to them. One thing I didn’t want to do was get paint on the back of the frames. Why? Because this was on the back.

IMG_5961

George C.J. Bailey Art Shop? What’s that? This is where I should have stopped and gotten on to the interwebs.

The other part that I love about the back of this picture is that it has my grandmother’s handwriting (I’d recognize it anywhere) identifying that the photo is of “mother’s grandfather.” So my grandmother’s mother’s grandfather? So what is that, my great-great-great grandfather?

The othe other part? So it turns out that:

George C. J. Bailey was born 1868 in France of Welsh and Scottish ancestry. He immigrated to the U.S. in 1882. He was an art gallery salesman.

Turns out his daughter was a pulp artist. The Bailey gallery was in Rochester, New York, which is where my grandmother is from. So maybe I shouldn’t have spray painted what I’m certain is the original frame? Not sure, but it’s done so I can’t cry over sprayed paint.

IMG_5967

Start by spraying the sides of the frames so you can pick them up. Otherwise, you’ll be laying on the ground, trying to see if you got all the edges.

IMG_5968

Place it back down on your protected surface and spray the top parts.

IMG_5969

Once I finished, the clouds started rolling in (I couldn’t effing believe it), so I had to bring them in earlier than I wanted to and there might be a thumb print or two on an edge, but I doubt anyone will notice.

IMG_5979

A couple of days later, I pulled off the tape and paper. Unfortunately, I had some bleeding under my Frog tape, but I did not despair. I just took a little turpentine I got at Hobby Lobby and a Q-Tip and took care of it easy-peasy. Not every DIY goes 100% as planned. You gotta give yourself a little leeway.

IMG_5981

IMG_5980

Here’s what they looked like when I was done:

IMG_5982

Isn’t my momma pretty?

IMG_5987

These two will join the the others that have been framed and those waiting to be framed, all hidden under the goose-neck couch that’s waiting to be recovered.

*sigh*

So much to do, so little. time. But the process sure is fun!

Thursday
Aug222013

43 + 19 Days

Jeeeeesus. I can’t even manage a post on my damn birthday. The Candyman gave me kick-ass gifts though. I found this in the kitchen at 6am. He rocks.

 

----------

I have this great post I want to write about my couch. Yes, my 13 year old couch that we gave to the lawn guy who charged me $500 instead of $800 for clearing the fuck out of our yard. Fair trade, I say. The Candyman was sad though. It was an excellently comfortable couch, perfect for afternoon naps. Alas, it had seen better days. I have pictures I took of the couch that I planned to share in my fantasy couch-post, but doing so would require me getting my camera, uploading the pictures and dealing with all that. Way too much effort for me these days. How sad is that?

----------

There is actual wedding stuff going on, believe it or not. A few months back, I worked with a bride on a mantilla style veil and a belt. You can check out the photographer’s post about it here. Here’s a sneak peek:

Images by Brooke Brown Photography

And you know what happened to the gorgeous dress? Red wine spilled on the damn thing. The dress is now hanging in my studio – I’m going to try to fix it, but DAMN. It’s not just a few spots, it’s like a full on glass dumped on it. Ladies, for crissake, watch it with the red wine already! In case you do have a spill, remember this post (it’s super-long, look for the stain fighting tips down at the bottom).

----------

Back to the birthday thing. I’m 43 now. I’ve definitely come to the realization that I’m aging.  The dark circles I’d have under my eyes after a particularly liquid Thurfriday are now an everyday occurrence. There’s like less elasticity in my skin and I’m all “What the hell is this?” And I keep expecting things to go back to the way they were. I think to myself, “My boobs will be perkier tomorrow. They’re just tired today.” But the next day, after a full 8 hours sleep, they still seem a little tuckered out. Poor things.

----------

Last weekend, after the aforementioned couch-lawn-guy finished with our yard, I had pulled some weeds and laid some pine bark mulch around some front yard bushes that I had been DYING to mulch. The front yard looked fabulous. The Candyman got some sweet tea and I got a glass of wine and we sat in our rocking chairs on the front porch and waved to passing neighbors, talking of nothing much. I said to The Candyman, “It doesn’t get much better than this.” And I was right. Smile