birthday musings

birthday musings

marilynbirthday

It’s my birthday!

I always feel like birthdays are a bit like a personal New Year’s Eve. I like to take stock of what’s happened in my life during the previous year and what I’d like to accomplish in the year to come. As I creep ever closer to, gulp, 30, every year seems to go by quicker. Where does the time go?

Overall, it was a good year. Good things happened careerwise, and of course I jumped more fully into the pinup lifestyle and started this blog, which has been so lovely! I definitely have more goals I’d like to accomplish before my next birthday, but I feel like I’m starting from a good place.

Cheers to making it through another year and all the new adventures that are yet to come.

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let them eat cake (hearts and found review)

let them eat cake (hearts and found review)

Not gonna lie, I might have teared up a little bit from joy when I put this dress on.

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I’d been nervous in the past about ordering custom dresses; what if I messed up the measurements? What if I didn’t like it after all? Would it be hard???

Luckily, ordering from Hearts and Found allayed all of my fears and then some!

I’m a huge fan of supporting small businesses (especially women-run businesses!), so it was great to see that Hearts and Found works with local tailors and shops at local markets. It’s easy to use “Made in the USA” as shorthand for an ethical purchase, but that definitely isn’t always true, and I’m happy for my shopping habit to support local talent all over the world. Really, the thing that concerned me most about ordering from Vietnam was the shipping time since, in the immortal words of Veruca Salt:

veruca i want it noww

I was really impressed with the communication from Marjorie while ordering from Hearts and Found. I’ve always kind of thought of custom clothing as something very fancy and special, and Marjorie definitely made me feel like I was special! She even immediately checked in after receiving my measurements to double-check they were correct, since they seemed a little off…fear number one taken care of! She was really communicative, and the dresses (yes…dresses) came along much quicker than I expected. For my own personal timeline, I placed my order on July 5, received confirmation that the package had shipped on July 12, and the package was delivered to me on July 20 (and required a signature, so I had to go pick it up at the post office the next day, but that doesn’t count). I don’t know how standard this is for Hearts and Found, but I know I was quoted a longer wait time and was pleasantly surprised by how quickly the garments were created and made it to me.

But enough blah blah. How about that dress?

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As soon as I saw the “Ring a Ring o’ Roses” fabric, I knew I had to have it. I’ve never really been a big fan of pink, but I’ve seriously been vibing on it lately. I’ve been admiring pink things and working pink accessories into my wardrobe, but I still didn’t own any pink clothes. So why not go full in with an ultra femme pink floral dress?

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Hearts and Found allows you to pair any of their fabric choices with any dress pattern; after much deliberation, I selected the Grace dress. I loved the flattering ruched bust and of course the big gathered skirt, and I figured the adjustable straps would be a bit forgiving if I’d messed up my measurements somehow. (Can you tell I was really concerned about the measurements?)

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In person, the dress is absolutely beautiful. It’s fully lined, which is amazing, and the fit is absolutely spot on. The pockets are real deep, and it’s seriously just so well made. I always worry a bit about handmade items looking a little “Holly Hobby” up against the “pro” stuff, but it looks perfectly at home on my rack of store-bought garments.

I was wishing I had some cake-themed jewelry to wear, since I was definitely feeling the Marie Antoinette vibes in this, but then I realized that, as always, Disney knows the way. “Make it pink! Make it blue!”

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The blue and pink bracelet my grandma gave me last time I visited was the perfect pairing! Add in my adorable pink typewriter pin from Ann Shen, a vintage-inspired necklace from a local maker, my trusty pearl earrings, and I was in business!

As for the second dress I bought…well. You’re just going to have to wait until I have the perfect opportunity to wear it! I can tell you that I’m already drooling over the Hearts and Found Etsy shop, trying to figure out what I should order next! I whole-heartedly recommend ordering here, especially if you’re a little nervous about going custom. Marjorie will take good care of you.

keep living that fantasy (overtone review)

keep living that fantasy (overtone review)

I realized the other day that I talked about what my purple hair means to me on the blog, but I never actually talked about the thing that keeps my purple rockin’ day in and day out.

Any gal with fantasy hair knows the struggle of trying to keep your hair bright while still trying to keep it healthy, but despair no more! You can make your colorful hair last longer AND make it look less like straw at the same time!

The answer is Overtone.

Overtone is a color-depositing conditioner that magically adds color back to your hair every time you shower while giving it deep hydration at the same time. How cool is that? You can use it to keep your already-colorful hair fresh and funky, add it to bleac

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hed hair as a dye, or even layer it over your natural color for a fun tint. After I dyed my hair purple for the first time, my color disappeared like a ghost. I started using Vibrant Purple Overtone, and until I got my hair redone a few weeks ago, that was my only dye. It packs a serious punch!

My loyalty is to the Go Deep Weekly Treatment. I had been buying the full “system,” which includes this weekly treatment and a daily conditioner, but honestly, I don’t feel like I got the oomph I was looking for out of the daily treatments. I only wash my hair once a week anyway, so the weekly is just fine for me. I like to wash my hair in cool water, let it dry, and then apply the Go Deep to my dry hair for maximum intensity. I let it sit for half an hour or so while I’m noodling around and watching TV, then I give it a rinse and voila! Color bright and fresh, like it’s just been done! I do also do an additional deep conditioning hair mask about every other time I shower, just to help heal the hair further.

The other day, one of my coworkers asked how I was doing my color. I explained about Overtone and she said, “I could tell…your hair is really bright, but it doesn’t look damaged.” I couldn’t ask for a better testimonial!

Overtone is vegan and smells delicious and minty, instead of like chemicals, which I love. If you’re using one of the vibrant or extreme colors, you definitely do need to wear gloves when you apply! I have learned that lesson more than once. I will say that it is a little pricey, but compared to the cost (both $$ and effort-wise) of constantly redoing your hair, I feel like it works out as a savings. I highly recommend Overtone to anyone with fantasy hair or who would like to add a little fantasy into their life! It’s easy and it works!

(This post is not sponsored in any way, for the record, I just really love the product! But if they wanted to send me a few free tubs, I wouldn’t complain.)

 

of pins & themes

of pins & themes

One of my dearest friends recently said to me, “You know, if you were a kindergarten teacher, you could dress in theme every day.”

“You say that like I don’t already,” I replied.

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Whether subtle or obvious, I’ve always loved to dress to a theme. I’ve often thought it’s not really worth throwing a party if there’s no potential for themed costumes, and I bring that enthusiasm for dress up into my “everyday” clothes as well.

I wanted to write this post to highlight the gorgeous enamel pins I purchased from Ann Shen, and funnily enough, the outfits I paired them with both fell clearly into the realm of themed!

This beautiful typewriter pin was the first one that caught my eye, so of course I had to craft my outfit around the theme of “intrepid girl reporter.” I always love an excuse to include props in my outfit of the day photographs…I feel a lot more comfortable with something to “act” around.

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I purchased the lipstick and powder puff pins at the same time as the typewriter, but didn’t get to wear them until several weeks later because I was patiently awaiting the delivery of this Lindy Bop skirt (it appears to be out of stock now, but you can find other pieces in this print on their site). I saw it not long after I placed the order for the pins, and I knew I had to wear them together.

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The pins are beyond adorable, and very shiny and high quality. They’re larger than a lot of enamel pins I’ve seen, which gets a big thumbs up from me since I prefer to wear mine as brooches. She also has a series of lovely mermaid pins, which of course I have my eye on. You can purchase pins, art prints, cards and more from her shop, all featuring her adorable illustrations.

Do you like to dress on theme?

new accessories storage

new accessories storage

I’m always fascinated to see how people organize things; I went to The Container Store for the first time a few weeks ago and left with the distinct impression that my life has been in shambles up until now without me ever knowing it. So since I just switched things in my accessories/vanity set-up around a bit, I thought I’d share! The lighting in my bedroom is not very good, so sorry about the wonky photos!

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I have my dresser and my garment rack along one wall of my bedroom, and I keep all my accessories over there. You can’t see, but directly to the left of the photo are my mirrored closet doors, so this is definitely the best spot in the apartment for getting ready in the morning! I immediately hung up the hair flower organizer I got in my last Belle’s Beauty Box and started filling it up with hair accessories!

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I’ll zoom you in a little closer. I keep my necklaces, dangley earrings, and some bracelets on a jewelry organizer from World Market mounted on the wall. Of course all of my pretties are flanked with the beautiful Bettie Page and Dita Von Teese prayer candles my bestie got me (aren’t they amazing???), and I have a painting of me (I KNOW) that another lovely friend gave me for my birthday last year up to remind me to always be a bombshell. On the right is a mirrored tray from Target with a jewelry organizer (also from Target) that holds hairbows, stud earrings, and rings. I also have some special jewelry on there (my pearls and some Lord of the Rings jewelry, which really tells you everything you need to know about me.

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And finally, the new star of the show! I saw Tangerine Menagerie post on Instagram about her new brooch organization system, and since she’s obviously as good at organizing brooches as she is at making them, I immediately copied her. These office organizers are from Poppin – they’re great because they all nest together and you can slide them and adjust them pretty much however you want. I got a mint letter tray, the white medium tray, and two small mint trays. The actual organization may adjust as my collection grows and changes; for now, I have enamel pins in one of the small trays, a few special pieces from my grandma in the other, cardigan clips in the white tray, and my other brooches below.

It feels so good to have things neat and tidy! I love being able to see my whole collection at a glance; it makes it so much easier to put together outfits and find the perfect piece.

How do you organize your jewelry?

tiki temptations

tiki temptations

As you can probably guess from my blog and…well, everything about me, I’m pretty much in love with all things tiki. And since it’s been a while since I did a wishlist/round-up post, I thought I’d share a few of the tiki-tastic treats that have been tempting me lately.

audrey hair flower

First up the piece that inspired this round-up: this Audrey 2 hair flower is one of the greatest things I’ve seen in my entire life! It’s got that perfect mix of pretty and creepy that I can never resist.

blue tiki necklace

It was hard to pick which necklace to include from Summer Blue – there are so many gorgeous, colorful options! But I had to go with this one that includes both my  favorite fruit (pineapples!) and a fun twist on tiki style with the brightly colored tiki heads.

dole whip

I know I’m not the only one head over heels for the delicious Disney Dole Whip! I love the pieces that I won from Le Petit Mouse in Miss Lark Bahar’s giveaway, and this precious Dole Whip brooch/pendant might just have to make its way into my life…

smuggler's cove

You gotta know your tiki history! I’ve heard Smuggler’s Cove  is the resource book for tiki enthusiasts, and it’s definitely on my Amazon wishlist!

tiki room ears

Okay, so I’ve been having a serious problem with Mickey ears lately, which is that I want to buy a million of them even though I have absolutely no reason to! I love how creative and unique these Enchanted Tiki Room-inspired ears are; they ALMOST feel like maybe I could get away with wearing outside of a Disney park…maybe??

tiki menu skirt

This list couldn’t be complete without the absolutely adorable tiki drinks skirt from The Oblong Box Shop. I already own a Sneaky Tiki skirt from here, but this print is so cute. I don’t know how any tiki princess could resist for long (I’m sure I won’t be able to…)

And those are my tiki temptations! Probably not good for my wallet or yours, but oh so lovely to admire.

Have you seen any great tiki pieces lately? Let me know! I’m always looking 😉

the middy files: two week report

the middy files: two week report

Everyone wants to post about a shiny new thing, but usually the real truth comes out after you’ve lived with it for a while. So after I got my middy, I decided I’d check back a few times to keep all of you in the loop on my experience. Prepare for a bunch of pictures of my face.

Am I glad I got the middy? Definitely! I will admit that after the first wash when I saw how much length I really had lost, I panicked a little bit. My first set was definitely a bit of an experiment – I used the same rollers & pattern that I’d always used on my longer hair, and struggled to get my shorter hair to wrap properly around the rollers. While the results weren’t bad, it definitely wasn’t quite what I was hoping for.

I was hoping for something a little more “Marilyn,” so I poked around for some inspiration and ended up deciding to try pincurls. They’re a heck of a lot more work, but I have to say that I love the results.

I definitely feel like I’m able to get a lot more body in the places that I want it, and that front swoop? The middy just makes my hair WANT to go that way, which is absolutely fabulous. I’m still struggling a bit to get the back just how I like it (the curls tend to fall out quite quickly), but overall, I love the shape that I get through a somewhat messy Marilyn inspired pincurl set. (I’ve been using this pattern from VaVoom Vintage as a starting point.)

The biggest “struggle” of a middy is that it’s not a wash and wear style, but thanks to the natural wave of my hair, I don’t think it looks too bad unset. It isn’t #hairgoals or anything, but I wouldn’t be embarrassed to go out in public with it either. I’m really pleased that I made the leap, and I can’t wait to keep pushing myself and trying new hair adventures!

Let me know if you have any questions about the middy cut, or if you’d be interested in another check in a little ways down the line!