Sunday, April 29, 2012

Hair Flower Tutorial!

For the longest time, I have wanted to do a hair flower tutorial. And after much procrastination, here it is!

Here are the supplies you will need:
hair flower
metal (or jeweler's) pliers
glue gun
glue sticks
hair barrette or hair alligator clip
1/4 inch wide grosgrain ribbon
hot pad (pot holder)

To start, select your hair flower(s) from your local craft store. The flowers are usually made of silk, a silk blend, or a poly blend. Moreover, the flower itself is typically on a single or multi-tiered plastic-coated metal stem.  You can find these flowers (or picks) in the flower section.
Before you begin, plug in your glue gun and place it on a hot pad (or pot holder) to protect your work space from the heat. Pre-heat glue gun for at least 10 minutes.

Now, using your pliers, cut off the coated-metal stem(s) at the base of the flower:
Make sure the stem is removed cleanly to ensure a flat surface necessary for gluing on the barrette (or alligator clip).

 Now, cut two equal sections of ribbon slightly shorter than the actual length of clip/barrette.
Using the glue gun, apply a small line of glue to the ribbon and adhere ribbon to underneath of the top part of clip:
Allow glue to cool for 5 minutes.

On the top of the clip, glue on the second strip of ribbon:
 Allow glue to cool for another 5 minutes.

Now, here comes the fun part, ie attaching the flower itself! Add a pea-sized amount of glue to the middle of ribbon and attach flower:
Allow glue to cool/set for at least 10 minutes before handling. Turn off glue gun and let it cool down completely before storing away. When your clip is no longer warm (whatsoever) to the touch), it is ready to wear! Let the compliments roll in!!!

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Frequently Asked Questions

My rockabilly style is quite different from the 'norm' in this modern era and as a result, I often get asked why I dress they way I do, why I have tattoos, why I wear red lipstick everyday, and why I live choose to live a rockabilly lifestyle.

I am sure you gals have been asked why you wear vintage as well! Isn't it interesting how our look gets strangers 'to come out of the wood work (along and friends and family who may question our style)?'

So, without further ado, here are my FAQ!

1. Why do you wear vintage clothes?
I wear vintage because I love the aesthetic of the 40s and 50s. The patterns and fabrics flatter me better than the lines of modern clothing. For example, modern trousers are cut much lower than their vintage counterparts and as a result, the torso and hips on my 5'3 frame look less defined. Moreover, I adore the feminine styling 40s/50s clothes. I feel modern clothing endorses comfort while neglecting style and femininity.

2. Do you wear vintage everyday or just for special occasions?
No, I wear vintage everyday. Without over-sharing,  I wear vintage lingerie, nightwear, and of course, for my day and night wear. The only time I do not wear vintage is when I work out at the gym.

3. Do you wear vintage reproduction clothing?
When I first began to wear vintage, I 'got my feet wet' with vintage reproduction clothing like Stop Staring, Bettie Page Clothing, and Heartbreaker Fashion. To this day, I wear Heartbreaker pencil skirts, Freddies of Pinewood jeans, and Trashy Diva dresses. I prefer vintage, but I like reproduction too.

4. Do you ever wear modern clothes?
Like I stated before, I wear modern gym clothes. I also wear Ann Taylor, Talbots, and J. Crew suiting for work when I have to go on Capitol Hill or meet with government officials/clients. (I am a technical writer for a government contractor).

5. Why do you have tattoos?
Like the clothing on our backs, piercings in our ears, or the makeup on our face, tattoos are just another form of adornment. To me, tattoos are a way to express myself while beautifying myself.

6. Why do you wear red lipstick? It's so bold!
I love red lipstick! In my opinion, it is the ultimate shade of femininity! I fell in love with red lipstick in high school and it has been my 'signature color' ever since. I have tried to wear nudes, pinks, and neutrals but I feel 'out of sorts' when I do. Nothing makes me feel 'like me' like a good shade of bright, classic red!

7. So, you are a 'rockabilly,' you must hate modern music. 
Now, I do love Carl Perkins, Johnny Burnette (before "You're 16"), Santos, Big Sandy and His Fly-Rite Boys, Chuy and the Bobcats, Lil' Luis and Los Wild Teens but I also love the Cure, Sisters of Mercy, VNV Nation, Imperative Reaction, Razed in Black, and Combichrist. I also love Depeche Mode, The Smiths, and Morrissey. VNV Nation is my FAVORITE group. Hands down!! I have seen them four times in concert and each time it just gets better and better! I love rockabilly but I also adore EBM and new wave. (But I hate doo wop!)

8. You are in your late 30s! You have to 'grow up' sometime and dress like a 'normal adult!'
Why is age even relevant? Moreover and more importantly, is there an arbitrary, 'cut-off' age for dressing vintage? In addition, what is deemed 'normal?' I see it this way: life is too short and life is a celebration so I am going to live it my way and how it see fit! I am happy and I feel complete. This is how and who I am.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Viva Las Vegas 15- Photos and Synopsis (Part II)

Here is my Viva 15 synopsis Part II! Today we talk about the Saturday car show, Saturday night, JD McPherson, Sunday, dining at Aureole, Sunday night dancing, and my journey home.

Day 4: Saturday, the 7th: Big Daddy and I wake up and order room service breakfast. I order my usual egg beater omelet and fruit plate but I also "take the plunge" and get a blueberry muffin and croissant. Both pastries were too big to finish but they were good!

It is the day of the car show! The day is sunny and the temperature is in the 70s! After having a quick pizza lunch at Sbarro in the Orleans, Big Daddy and I make our way over to the show at the Orleans Arena. I am wearing my gorgeous 50s cotton sarong dress I bought from DearJohn Vintage on Etsy!
The car show seems more packed this year! The cars are fabulous! I want them all!

I also wear my bakelite bangles!
 Now, to the show!!
While at the show, I bumped into Cassandra, ie the gal who sold me my sarong dress! It was so lovely to meet her! Not only is she super nice, her style is to die for!

Big Daddy and I check out the cars and like I said before, I wanted EVERY car! I love my '05 Volvo but if I could have a real 50s auto, I would be so happy!

After a few hours in the sun, Big Daddy and I decide to go back to the Rio for rest and a shower!

That evening, we have dinner at the Rio. Even though we have a lovely meal, Big Daddy is not feeling well. The dry, desert air combined with the stale, casino cigarette smoke were wreaking havoc on Big Daddy's allergies. So, he stayed in and I grabbed a cab to the Orleans.

Whilst in line for a cab,  I saw a huge line of women waiting. I mean, there were ABSOLUTELY NO MEN. Then, I figured it out, these gals were leaving the casino after seeing "The Chippendales" show! Talk about hilarious!

After a few minute cab ride, I arrive at the Orleans and meet up with Kim and the girls in the main ballroom to see JD McPherson!

You have to check out Kim's fantastic photos from the show on her blog!

Here is me and Jennie Lee!

Jennie Lee and I met for the first time! She was the seller behind the fabulous sequin dress I am wearing! She is so so nice and her look is stunning!

Here is me and Cassandra!
Kim and Jessica were just in front of us at the very edge of the front of the stage! Seeing JD McPherson in person was just wow!

After the show, Cassandra, Jennie, and myself lined up to buy JD's album and he signed them! He had a great energy and he was hella cute! (Sorry, Big Daddy!)

My gold and rhinestone stilettos began to give out on me and I threw in the towel. I also wanted to make sure Big Daddy was okay! When I returned to the Rio around 1:30 am, Big Daddy was fast asleep. I washed my face, changed into my Pjs and went to bed!

Day 5: Sunday, the 8th: Big Daddy and I wake up and I call my parents to wish them Happy Easter and Happy Passover. Even though Passover began on Friday at sundown, I ate leavened foods! I am sorry, I couldn't help it!

For breakfast, Big Daddy and I have mimosas along with our usual fare (pastries too!)

Sunday is the pool party day at Viva. Before heading to the Orleans, Big Daddy and I have a Thai lunch at the Aria. Everything from the Thai iced tea to the drunken noodles was delicious! We finish our lunch and make our way to the Orleans.

When we arrive, the line for the pool party was huuuuuuge!! We realize we would be waiting forever so Big Daddy and I go back to the Rio.  Later on, we change and get ready for our big dinner at Aureole in the Mandalay Bay.

Here is the famous tower of wine that makes Aureole famous. The wine list is so big, it is on an iPad!

Big Daddy and I arrived early for our reservation so we have drink at the bar:
After our drinks, Big Daddy and I are seated and we have a fabulous meal! Then we return to the Rio to change out of our evening attire and into more casual fare. I wear my leopard top paired with my Freddies capris and my black Remix wedges.

Big Daddy and I head over to the Orleans and met Kim for a bit and then he and I do some late night dancing!

I wanted to stay out all night but since we had to go home the next day, we return to the Rio so we can pack and go to bed.

The next day is Monday the 9th. Big Daddy and I finalize our packing and get ready to check out.
I am too lazy to do anything special with my hair so I quickly blow dry my bangs and I put the rest of my damp hair into braids:
 Here is an overall view of my homeward-bound (blurry) outfit. A 50s black and white dress with a black patent, Target girls' belt:
Here is how it should look like:

We do a quick once-over to make sure we leave nothing behind and head to the airport.

After flying all day, we arrive back at Dulles airport at 12:00 am. I am tired and feeling like I am coming down with something! I want to go home even though Viva was over too fast!

So, there you have it! I had such fun and it was so wonderful meeting you all! I cannot wait for VLV 16!

Watching History Over My House!

This is Space Shuttle Discovery on the back of a huge NASA 747 flying directly over my house at 9:46 am. I am on my back deck in my vintage house coat and chiffon nightie yelling like a nut on a roller coaster.

After being retired last year, Discovery was transferred this morning from Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida to the Udvar-Hazy Center at Dulles Airport in Northern Virginia. The Center is a division of the Smithsonian's Air and Space Museum.

As a kid in the 1980s, I used to love watching the Space shuttle launches on TV. I was mesmerized by the idea that something that big could fly into space. There was even a time I wanted to be an astronaut (like most kids I am sure). "Space Camp" was one of favorite movies.

So, here's how the whole scene played out on my back deck:

After waiting a while for Discovery to make its appearance, I start wondering, "Are they sure it's going to fly over?"
All of a sudden, I hear something! Yes, here comes Discovery!
And there it goes:

I am so excited I don't care that I am outside in my house coat!
Nevertheless, after 20 years, the space shuttle program has been retired. I am sad it is over but I am glad I had the honor of witnessing an era come to an end.

Monday, April 16, 2012

VLV 15! Photos and A Day-by-Day Synopsis (Part I)

Last Monday (technically Tuesday), I returned from Viva Las Vegas 15 at midnight. Despite the fact I fell ill with a major cold immediately upon my return, this year's Viva was a blast! Not only did I get my husband (aka Big Daddy) to dance with me, I ate amazing food (ie Il Mulino, China Poblano, and Aureole), I stayed up late, I made some new friends, and finally got to meet some fellow bloggers in person!

This is a detailed post so I will break down events by day.

Without further ado, here we go!

Day 1: Wednesday (April 4th): I wake at 5:30 am to get ready for my 8:18 am non-stop flight to Las Vegas on United Airlines. Having packed the night before, all I had to do was shower and get dressed. I also needed to take out my foam rollers I set the night before. (I covered my hair in a shower cap whilst bathing).

Even though I used Lottabody on my hair, my curls looked like a "chia pet" on crack! I attempt to tame my hair but I end up putting the savage mess in a ponytail. Just before the cab to the airport arrives, I put on a 50s camp shirt, my Freddies capri jeans, Remix wedges, and a red wool Pendleton 49er jacket. I do my makeup later at the airport gate. I need a double espresso!

After a 5 hour flight, Big Daddy and I arrive in Vegas! It is 10:20 am and all I can think about is getting to our hotel (the Rio) and eating some food!

We get a cab to the Rio and check in. We are in the Ipanema Tower, on the 16th floor, and in room 1623. Check out our view: First photo is the right and second is to the left.
Here is our room:
After taking out our things and settling in, we eat an early lunch and then take a nap! Later, we wake and get ready for dinner. We eat at VooDoo Steak, Rio's nightclub and haute cuisine establishment on the 51st floor that overlooks the skyline of Vegas. After an amazing dinner, we retire to our room and go to bed.

Day 2: Thursday, the 5th: Big Daddy and I wake early (because we are on East Coast time) but fall back asleep for a while. We wake again and order in room service breakfast. I get the Egg Beater omelet with tomatoes and mushrooms and a fruit plate and Big Daddy selects the steak and eggs. Everything is delicious!

After breakfast, I iron and steam my clothes:
My shoes:
That big beige 'blob' in the middle of my shoes is one of my shoe bags.

Before lunchtime, I get ready for the day:
The picture looks so grainy! Eugh! I am wearing a 50s cropped black cardigan, black viscose top, black patent belt, a pair of silver Pollys, and a 50s circle skirt I bought on Etsy in 2010:
Here is my hair and makeup:
Here is an upclose view of my eyes:
Big Daddy and I have lunch and then make our way over to the Orleans to check in for Viva Las Vegas and to attend Sweet Pea's "Hooch n' Smooch" in the Bienville Room upstairs. At the event, I first meet Holly from Temperamental Broad blog (I had the honor of meeting her for the first time at last year's Viva),  then I met Kim Bombshell, Jessica, Dollie Deville, E., and Lisa.

At the event, there's music, dancing, and just people hanging out! Everyone looks fab in their vintage couture!

After the "Hooch and Smooch," Big Daddy and I get a drink and then make our way back to the Rio for a quick rest before heading out to dinner.

For our evening, we head to the Caesars Forum Shops to dine at Il Mulino. Before our 8:00 reservation, Big Daddy entertains himself on his Blackberry as I browse the aisles in Sephora. I buy a Nars' lipstick and some hair products from Living Proof.

Our dinner is amazing! The service, the atmosphere, the food, and cocktails are off the charts heavenly! Instead of a cab, we need a wheel barrow back to the Rio! We eat too much but it is so worth it!

Day 3: Friday, the 6th: Continuing to be influenced by East Coast time, Big Daddy and I wake up early again but manage to fall back asleep. We wake around 9:00 am and order a lovely room service breakfast.

For lunch, we head over to the Cosmopolitan hotel and casino to dine at China Poblano, a restaurant that features a fusion of Chinese and Mexican Cuisine.  We order guacamole prepared fresh table-side. Big Daddy orders Chinese fare and I select the Tuna Ceviche and a small taco stuffed with lobster. Everything is too delicious!

Afterwards, we get a cab to Frankie's Tiki Room, which is next to the University Medical Center (near downtown, ie Old Vegas).
Our cab driver has no idea where Frankie's was at all! Thank goodness for the Google search on our Blackberry phones!

Once inside, Big Daddy and I are greeted with dark lighting and small space! I cannot believe how tiny Frankie's is! There are so many Viva people there too! Basically, it's packed!! Tiki drinks and a room full of rockabillies! I am so happy! I order a Mai Tai in a ceramic souvenir mug and I sit with Barbara from Moxie Tonic blog and her friend Gina!
(I have no idea what I am doing here!) It was so amazing to meet Barbara at last!

Me and Big Daddy:
Some folks hanging out:
Jessica B!:
One of the many lights made from real blowfish!:
After hanging out for a couple of hours, Big Daddy and I make our way to the Rio for a nap! Sugary tiki drinks make me sleepy!

Later that evening, we eat dinner at the hotel and I head to the Orleans to browse the vendor rooms. Remix shoes and tons of vintage jewelry catch my eye!

Part II is next! Stay tuned for the auto show, Saturday night glam, JD McPherson, Sunday, and my journey back home to DC!