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

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Entries in Accessories (65)

Wednesday
Aug102011

{Vintage Fur Stole} Product of the Week!

I have a feeling I might get a little back lash for this post/product, but so be it. The item in question is a fur stole.

My 2 cents on fur:

I don’t think animals should be raised purely to slaughter for the sake of fashion. This kind of “manufacturing” simply doesn’t fit into our contemporary society. I wouldn’t want to wear fur in that way and I don’t support it. I do however, believe in recycling, up-cycling, refurbishing and reusing. And I am carnivorous. It is my hope that all parts of the animal end up in good use — including skin and fur. Vintage furs are out there in the world. I can’t help what has already been done. I can’t undo it. I can, however, redo it. 

For the record, the ASPCA does not believe in vintage fur. While I generally stand behind them on many issues, there are others I don’t. Vintage fur is one of them.  I like the idea of using second hand fur. The material lasts for generations if handled well and the use value of fur is really good in northern climates. Fur is WARM!

OK, now that that’s out of the way….on to the Product of the Week!

Vintage Fur Stole

OK, so I found this fur collar at a flea market along with some other collars and cuffs for a steal. The pelt was in relatively good condition: it was pliable, no cracks or tears. There was one little crinkly spot, but I bought it anyway.

I’m not sure what this fur is, and neither did the seller. We think it’s mink. Or rabbit. I don’t think it’s fox, but it could be. I have a vintage fox fur jacket and the furs are nothing alike, but I’m not a furrier. All I know is that it’s definitely animal (it wasn’t lined when I bought it) and it’s definitely pretty!

So I lightly oiled the inner pelt to make it as soft as possible. There are recipes online that include natural oils (olive, flaxseed, etc.) that you mix with a mild acid (like vinegar) to condition leather and skins. I’d never done this before so was super nervous. However, it totally worked! No weird smell afterwards and I got it as soft as possible, methinks. The one little wrinkle can still be felt, but I don’t think it deters from the overall piece.

Now this collar had clearly been ripped off of something else. It still had an odd sort of binding tape sewn to it that I was fearful of removing based on the delicate nature of the piece. I left it there.

I completely re-lined the fur with a super-soft felt batting, just to give it a little more dimension and softness. Then I lined it with a slub weave, satin-back matte gold silk that matches those darker areas of fur. 

The clasp is a vintage rhinestone brooch that I still have to clean before I add it on. You can see the little pin holding it on in the below photo. 

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I’ve got some hang-ups on this piece though. The edges were not trimmed well and I needed to preserve as much of the fur as possible. As a result, some of the outside edges  feel wonky if you run your hand across the underside of the stole. I don’t like how the lining isn’t laying completely flat either, because of those wonky edges. Honestly, there’s nothing I can do about it and it’s not noticeable when the piece is on. However, my highly critical self is wondering if it’s sellable.

To a regular consumer, I bet it’s just fine. Most people think my concerns are too hairsplitting anyway, so I’m trying to keep that in mind. And I can totally see this on a fall or winter bride – someone who has or wants a bit of vintage flair to their wedding ensemble. I like it because it’s not one of the big white puffballs you see everywhere on the interwebs.

I’m considering it for a give-away, but that vintage rhinestone piece is sooooo beautiful (and it wasn't cheap), so maybe not.

And did you notice my lovely model? That’s right, I got a dress form from The Candyman for my birthday! And this is a no shit, kick-ass dress form. I actually DIY’d my own body form out of duct tape (check out this tutorial from Thread Bangers) but it just stood in the corner and stared at me, mocking me in it’s inadequacy. The Candyman really came through with the most awesome and generous birthday gift. Here’s a full length shot:

Ooooh, and from this angle, I just noticed that wonky edge. See it just above her left boob? You can’t see it straight on or looking down on it though. Hm. I’m also noting that my bottom book shelves are actually sagging under the weight of all my books. And yes, those are my cake toppers poking out from one of my pattern drafting folders.

OK, so loving my dress form. I’m kind of loving the fur stole. I need feedback though, people. Should I sell it or consider it for a give-away since its not 100% perfect or what? Or am I over-analyzing, yet again?

Help.

Thursday
Jul212011

{A Styled Shoot} A Fake Oregon Wedding

Styled shoots are eye candy. It’s OK to admit it. Just remember that they aren’t real and that the bride didn’t pay for it. But please do remember that these vendors did put in a lot of effort to promote and display their work. So show them a little link love, will ya?

The main reason I choose this Fake Wedding? Oh, my dears, it is all about those shoes. Enjoy.

Photographer: Diana Sell Photography

Hair Stylist: CinemaStylist

Floral Designer: Fleurie,It's All Arranged

Reception Venue: Bella Via

Dress Designer: Claire La Faye

Cake Designer: Pastry Girl

Makeup Artist: Blush Premier Makeup

Shoes: Figgie Shoes

Jewelry: MiaDonna & Company

Men’s Attire: Este's Men's Clothing

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I was right about the shoes, huh? Smile

Thursday
Jul212011

Trend Alert on Friendship Bracelets–What Are We, 14?

OK, OK – so they say that nothing in fashion is new – everything is repeated. As someone who sat through a semester of the History of Apparel, I can vouch for this validity, save a few styles like wearing cones of scented beeswax on your head (Egyptians. Oh yes they did!) and Chinese foot binding (do you know where men use to put those teeny tiny feet? Oh yes they did!).

We’ve seen Empire waistlines several times: the first to rock out this style were our Greco-Roman sista’s who called it a Peplos or Chiton. If you’re an 18th century novel junkie like I am, you know that’s what all the hip gals wore back then (think: Emma, Pride and Prejudice, Mr. Darcy [*swoon*]). We saw them again with the 1920’s flappers (the true rebels: they whacked off all their hair into bobs, refused to wear corsets and drank gin and danced the night away!) and then again with the hippies in the 1960’s. Now go ahead and Google yourself “empire waist dress” and you won’t find any of the above. What you will find are links to ModCloth, ShopStyle, Zappos. Go figure. What truly goes around, comes around.

So apparently we’re back to friendship bracelets.

These first became popular in the1960’s as part of the whole hippie/free love bullshit. They were originally fashioned after American Indian weaving techniques. Did you know that? In the 1980’s there was a resurgence of friendship bracelets that I believe was due to the first 1960’s revival (trends tend to cycle on a 20-25 year turn). I mean, The Grateful Dead hit Billboard’s Top 40 in 1987 for crissakes (I swear, even now if I hear that song, I want to claw my eyes out)! Honestly, I much preferred the late punk/New Wave scene myself. At any rate, I wore plenty of friendship bracelets. I remember summers at the beach with embroidery floss looped around my big toe, knotting myself into a frenzy of BFF love. I had a purple and lavender colored one I wore around my ankle for years. It was the one friendship bracelet (anklet?) I wore until it fell off. You know that’s the point, right? The friend ties it on and then you never take it off – you let it wear off. Yeah. As a sign of your never-ending friendship. Right. In hindsight, that’s pretty fucking gross. 

I had another one that I wore around my wrist for like, ever. It was WAY special. It was given to me by one Shane Fontayne, the guitarist for Lone Justice, my most favorite 80’s band of all time (love me some cowpunk!). That band got me the worst grounding of my life. Me and a friend showed up WAY early at a club where they were playing in hopes of catching a sound check or something since we too young to get into the club. It worked. Marie McKee showed up, took pity on us (most likely because she was coked up out of her skull) and took us in through the kitchen and we hung out backstage. I’ll spare you all the teenage dream details, but I ended up making out with the guitarist. He had no idea I was 16. What I do know is that I broke curfew big time and spent 30 days chained to my house, with 2 weeks of that with NO CAR. Like, I had to take the goddamn bus to school. *shudder* I got this severe punishment because as I was being lectured to within an inch of my life, I got fed up and said the following: “Well, if I had to do it all over again, I would do it exactly the same way.” Not. Smart. Pops whipped out an “Oh yeah?” and quickly processed me into the worst suck punishment EVER.

And you know what? If I had to do it all over again? Hell to the yeah I’d do it again! That night ranks in with the top 10 best nights EVER! It was worth every minute of grounding. Smile  In fact, in exchange for the friendship bracelet the guitarist gave me, I tied the scarf I was wearing in my hair around his neck. He’s wearing it here on MTV’s 6th Annual Rock and Roll New Year’s Eve Bash. Yeah, I’m that old. And apparently he liked that scarf cuz he’s still wearing it here.

ANYWAY, total digression. Back to friendship bracelets. I recently came across a bunch of crap in my studio – embroidery floss from the 80’s! For reals. Check it:

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And I even found this little nugget of love in that tangled mass:

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Holy shit. First, I should be shot for that disgusting color combo decision, but that, my friends, is the tail end of a friendship bracelet made only God knows when. Nice. I wonder who I gave it to? 

So the bracelets today are much fancier and totally too expensive.

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Ariel Gordon for $108

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$198 via Bottica

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$40 from Max & Chloe

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$30 from Disney Couture Kidada Collection

They are just too fancy. I mean, the point of them is that they are supposed to get grungy and dirty and nasty and wear off. But I guess as with all things that go around and come back around, there’s always a little something different to make it new again.

Me? I’ve been there, done it already. I can’t get on board with it, just like I can’t do leggings again. Or brightly colored Ray-Bans. Or drop-waist dresses or RaRa/Bubble skirts. Nooooooooooo. I cannot. What about you?

 

Wednesday
Jun222011

Killer Beauty

Pistol Packing Lip Smackers? Weapon of Beauty? Pistol Whipped Gloss? New Weapon of Choice for Bond, Jane Bond?  Is it funny? Tasteless? Clearly designed by a man? If anything, it certainly is unique. Check out these new “make-up kits.”

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The black is the Chanel001. The white is the Dior001. These are a part of Dutch artist Ted Noten’s seven-part series 7 Necessities for a Woman (to feel like a woman through the eyes of a man).

The black Chanel001 comes “fully loaded” (not my pun, I swear) with an 18k gold toothpick (what every lady needs), a perfume bottle with an 18k gold mechanism, a USB stick, an antique hairpin, a Viagra pill, and of course, Chanel lip gloss.

The white Dior001 packs Dior lip gloss, a USB stick pre-loaded with “secret information” (wonder what that might be!), a 100-gram sterling silver bar (good in case the economic bottom actually does fall out), a hairpin, and a compartment for stashing your “pharmaceuticals.”

The pistols were just on view at Design Miami/Basel (via Stylesight) and are made from 3-D printed nylon. Noten’s  7 Necessities for a Woman (to feel like a woman through the eyes of a man) also includes sunglasses, a bag, helmet, chastity piece (eh?), bionic arm (now this, I understand) and shawl.

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The Dior001, a compartment for stashing all your crazy-lady meds.

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The Dior001 lip gloss silencer barrel. Nice.

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Dior001 blood red, natch.

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Dior001 USB stick for all the info you'll be lifting from random computers.

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Dior001, the copy calls this a hairpin. It’s actually a hat pin, but what do I know? Maybe I'm splitting hairs? Eh, that was bad....

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Dior001 silver bar. For payment across the border.

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Dior001 a handy mirror to check that you're stylin' during all that espionage. 

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Photo Source

A few thoughts:

1. May not be the best make-up kit to take along on your next flight.

2. Can you image whipping this out at your wedding and then nonchalantly applying your lip gloss?

3. Doesn’t one need a prescription for Viagra, even if it is just one pill?

4. I wonder if Rock-n-Roll Bride would be interested in this accessory? It seems a little, uh….edgy.

Too much? Do tell. 

Monday
Jun202011

Groom Things

The involved groom is not a concept I’m familiar with. I mean, The Candyman definitely took part in the planning process, but for the most part, it was me. There were things he thought were super-important (the ceremony), very important (food) and not important at all (just about everything else). Personally, I wish we’d done something other than the standard tuxedo for him and the rest of the male bridal party. Not that they guys didn’t look great, but The Candyman’s tuxedo didn’t really fit him very well. I didn’t realize this factoid until a few months after we were married and we went suit shopping together. Boy howdy, that man can rock a suit. It made me a little sad that maybe he didn’t get to wear his bestest best like I did.

So here are a few things I’ve recently stumbled upon that I think are super-cool for your groom and perhaps groomsmen. Maybe your dad too!

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Always + Forever Cufflinks via Bella Moda Co., $42. Discount if you buy 4 or more pairs!

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Super cool iPhone/Wallet from Byrd & Belle, $28!

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Belt buckles are a fabulous way for a guy to show his personality without calling it an “accessory.” I adore this Hunter S. Thompson one by bmused belt buckles by Arte, $20.  

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This key chain? It says “I love you” in Morse code. How cool (and private and sneaky) is this! From C. Johannesen Studio, $22.

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For the money clip kinda guy? Check out this Steampunk cool one from Compass Rose Design, $27.50.

I always have a hard time picking out stuff for the men in my life, but hitting up Cargoh.com and Etsy and searching under “guys” will help you find some interesting stuff! Do you have all the groom-goodies selected? What did you get for the Boy’s Team?