Monday, 26 August 2013

Jewelry without jewelry

For nearly all my adult life wearing jewelry has been pretty much out of the question. Teaching dance, and teaching at the gym means wearing jewelry could be a serious health risk (think of dangly earrings getting wrapped up in somebody else's long hair and what that would do to your ears...), so I've never really got into jewelry in the first place. I do have my wedding and engagement rings, but they are very simple and won't do any damage (I hope) to anyone. And they never come off, so they're more a part of me than a separate thing meant for making someone pretty.

Being a part of Project 333 means jewelry counts, and I reasoned I'd rather be warm and without dangly things than to freeze with a necklace on. So I've left jewelry out of the 33, and have decided (for now) that I'm not wearing any, aside from the two mentioned before (which don't count, for they never come off).

Over the summer I longed for something new to learn, that I could learn from home, and I found a YouTube channel, that teaches basic nail art designs for beginners. I've always wanted to be good at doing nails, and I never previously have learned, having thought it's only for the professionals to know how to do it, and that I wouldn't learn because I'm not that kind of a girl and I'm not even interested in the whole make-up thing. But I figured, having had a look at a couple of tutorials with NO need for extra materials, that I might just give it a go, to try to learn the basic skills for doing nail art, because they look SO cool, they look easy enough to accomplish, it would be something new and you never do know unless you try. Besides, doing one's nails would be like jewelry on one's hands, without them counting towards your 33 items :)

Here's my first tutorial's worth:

The tutorial itself can be found here:

And there's plenty more where that came from - she's doing one tutorial per month of the beginners' designs, and number 6 has just come out. This one above is the first of the six. I've also had a go of the third tutorial, but I think I'll re-do them later when the time comes, and just work on these one tutorial at the time.

I've decided to not go over the top with the polishes either. I only have a couple of colours (as one can tell) and that's good enough for me. I thought having 8 bottles would be somehow ideal - it would be scarce enough to not be overflowing and it would mean I'd have to think carefully which colours are the best for me, but it would be enough to do any of the beginner's tutorials for at least another year. There needs to be a top coat (which, if possible, could double as a base coat), a clear glittery polish (like the blue-and-silver I still have some left of which you can see on the bottom and middle pictures), then I'd like to have a coloured polish with glitter bits in it to do very simple nails without much thinking, and that would leave space for 5 different colour polishes.

So there, that's a beginning. Maybe I'll get better, hopefully so. And I hope doing "the other hand" will get easier in time. At least I've already learned a ton of new things, from different designs to different techniques to different materials used. And it's amazing what you can do with a ball point pen and a watercolour brush - things everyone has at home already.

I think I'm falling for nail art - it's a small enough canvas to let one's imagination run wild :)


Friday, 23 August 2013

21 of 33

I promised to show pictures of the items I have found so far for the Autumn Season of Project333. I have a total of 21 pieces of clothing and accessories, so there's a bit missing, but it's slowly coming together.

The first two pairs of leggings. I don't like trousers, and I love wearing skirts. But skirts and tunics in the autumn require something warm underneath. These will do. It was pretty hard to find leggings from flea markets. I suppose people buy them and completely wear them out, so there are none left for the thrift aisles.

Third pair of leggings (these are 3/4 length) and a denim skirt. I never wear jeans, but for the past 12 years there's always been a denim skirt in the closet :) This one is SO short I'm not sure how I'll cope, but I promised to challenge myself and not take the easy way out, so we'll see how this will go. 

The two last skirts. I like my skirts flat around the hips and flary towards the bottom. And I LOVE skirts. For nearly all my life I've lived in a world where ballet tights and tracky bottoms were the way to go and skirts have just been too inconvenient for wearing. But now that I only need gym stuff twice a week, I love to wear skirts and be a bit more girly.

One strappy top and one tank are always in order. Besides, the tank was the first item I found, and I loved the pattern.

Teeshirts turned out to be grey. And the one on the right was so funny I had to choose it over a bucketful of other teeshirts in market. Turquoise pointe shoes?! How fitting for a dance wear shop owner :)

The tunic on the left was so pretty it had to be chosen. Brown has traditionally my basic colour, so it was an easy choice. And the turquoise details fitted well with the whole teal-navy-turquoise thing that seems to be happening. And when it comes to the checkered thing on the right, I had to grow into it. I never thought it would fit me or suit me, but now that I've tried it on plenty of times before the season's start, I've grown to like it. And there's another one along the same lines coming.

Half sleeve tops are a must at work. The one on the left was pretty and just my kind of a colour, but the grey and sparkly thing was a trial. The cut is nice and it fits well, the sleeves are just the right length, but the sparklies? I'm not quite sure I'm all up for them. But we'll see.

Long sleeves. There's something about that top on the right. The navy is so beautiful (coming from a girl who has never liked anything dark blue). It's like a night sky. Long sleeves will most probably be worn underneath a cardigan at work, or with rolled sleeves on their own, if need be. I'm not really into long sleeves at all, but I do need some, for it get's cold in the late autumn.

Cardigans. Lovely cardigans. I've for a long time wanted to have a go with the boxy thing on the right, but I haven't wanted to pay a full amount for one only to find out it looks silly on me. I could also have knitted one, but there's an even bigger problem with it if it is not suited after all that hard work. But finding one in my size from the thrift store (it cost about 1,50€) was just the solution. And the cardi on the left is self-explanatory. It's my style, it's my colour, its something I would buy and buy again. It was a easy choice.

Last of the long sleeves (the other new checkered thing I'm trying on) with a dream scarf. Such pretty colours :)

And so far the last of the items. A mid-size bag. This fits in it just about everything one can need on an ordinary day when not working at the gym or at the shop. And the text just makes it funny. Angst?!

So there's still a good few missing articles to be found, but I'm happily beginning my project this time around with these, and trying to find the missing pieces as quickly as I can. And I'm replacing the missing items with items from home that should *not* be a part of this season at all, but they're just there until I can find a flea market replacement item for them.

And now it's time for a film. The little one is ill and we need to take things quite slowly today.


Thursday, 22 August 2013

Day one, Season Three

This morning dawned cloudy and a bit rainy. A great morning to begin the Autumn Season in the wardrobe project, Project 333. What better than to wrap oneself in a warm cardigan and woolly socks.

This is my third season of the project, and I'm trying out something I've never tried before. I'm in it for a Thrift Season, which means pretty much all of the chosen 33 items will be from second hand shops, flea markets and charity shops. I haven't found everything yet, I'm still looking for more wintery gear for the latter part of the season (mittens and such like), and I'm missing a work bag (which would accommodate my computer and gym stuff as well as other day-to-day-things needed), and my shoes are MY shoes (for I haven't found fitting pairs from the thrift shops around). But as there are gaps in my needs-list, there are gaps in my 33 as well. I'm beginning the season (as it's still warm) with about 25 items and will add up to 33 once I find suitable gear from the local flea markets.

Today the delve into the closet was quite exciting. ALL new clothing for me. Well, all-never-before-worn-by-me-except-when-trying-on -clothing from flea markets for me. And I chose a skirt and a top and a cardigan with some tights and woolly socks (it looked rather autumny outside) and a scarf to go along for the ride.

What a joy. It was easy to choose what to wear. The clothes are in good condition (I only chose items that looked reasonably worn), they fit me, and they have no stories to tell (yet). I looked at myself from the full length mirror at the gym this morning and thought "I'd never quess I'm only wearing thrift store finds".

I noticed I've never worn navy blue before and now I have a good few items in that shade. It looks like it fits nicely to the darker evenings and starry skies. It also goes well with grey, which I have quite a lot of now as a base colour. And there's the turquoise-teal-type broken lushness of colour that's there as an accent.

I'm well looking forward to this season and what it's about to teach me. I'm already loving the no-strings-attached anonymity these thrift store clothes have. They all have stories, they all have belonged to somebody else in their previous homes, but there are no emotional attachments, and they are not sentimentally laden and bound to be worn by quilt. They are simply clothes, and I'm quite happy about that.


Tuesday, 20 August 2013

Autumn Season gone wild

The eve of my Autumn Capsule will soon be here. I've been a part of the Project 333 for two seasons now, and in 9 days time it'll be time to make a swap for the Autumn Wardrobe.

I've gone through my out-of-season box and found all my lovely autumny clothes just waiting to be worn. In fact, for the first time, it was a little difficult to choose the 33 that will make it to the final wardrobe, for I've got SUCH lovely stuff just waiting to be worn and I love them all. A dream wardrobe.

Which led me thinking...
Pretty much all of my clothing is very sentimental. It's either a birthday present, a gift from a friend, a memory of a good time or a souvenir from some place. It all reminds me of so much, it's no longer clothing at all. It's a bunch of memories, and it's very, very hard to let go of it, even if it's falling apart or fluffy or completely and utterly worn. Which it pretty much all is too.

I've been reading some other P333 people's stories of their wardrobes, and it's led me thinking about my relationship with my clothes. There are people who are very stylish and who are always ready to tweak the garments they have just to make their selection that bit more perfect and likeable, there are people who are very conscious of their own set of colours, there are a few shopaholics with jam packed wardrobes, and what they all seem to have in common, is that their relationship with clothes is their relationship with CLOTHES. Not sentimental memories, but garments. And I'm finding that a little hard to understand, and also a little intriguing.

So I played around with the thought of having a wardrobe, where I'd have NO previous relationship with the clothes in it. How it would give a refreshing viewpoint, how I could learn a lot from it, and how it might teach me to look at clothes as just what they are. I'm by no means rich, and I can't possibly have a brand new set of clothes to play around with - so no wardrobe makeover for me. Unless - unless it were all from the cheapest possible anonymous places on earth - thrift stores and charity shops, in which case I just might be able to pull it off.

I slept a good few nights letting the thought seep in, and the more I thought about it, the more it seemed like the perfect idea. To choose one season of P333 clothes and accessories, all 33 of them if at all possible, from thrift stores and charity shops. That would mean a LOT of things.

1. It would mean all garments I would have in the capsule would be brand new to me, with no sentimental strings attached to them.

2. It would mean I could try out pieces I have never tried on before because I don't shop around and spend my days trying on clothes.

3. It would mean I could try to incorporate some new ideas and colours into my wardrobe without making a big fuss about it beforehand and without it costing me a fortune.

4. It would mean I could try to build a wardrobe from scratch - which I've never, ever done before. How would the capsule be different in terms of things fitting me properly, in terms of mixing and matching different outfits from it?

5. It would mean I could do research on HOW MUCH a capsule might be worth in pure cash. Could I do it with minimum budget? And is it at all possible to find everything one needs in charity shops?

I first thought I was going to go through this Autumn season with the lovely autumn stuff I have stuck at the not-in-season-box, and to take my time finding stuff from the flea markets of the area to do the special season in winter, but then happened to have about an hour time at the local Ekocenter - a thrift shop where all of the clothing costs the same, 5€/kilogram. On my first visit a few days back I already found a cardigan and a tank top which were beautiful and they cost 2,75€ (about three dollars) together, and there seemed to be plenty more where they came from. Since that day I've visited the same place again once, and today another flea market, and all in all I seem to have already gathered exactly a third of all things needed. And I still have 9 days before swap of seasons.

I'll be putting all my previously owned stuff that's still worth saving to the not-in-season-box and have a look at it again when it's time for the winter season.

For now, I've been following the home made rules when finding flea market finds:

1. I'll stick to my tried and true way of deciding how many items of each kind to choose for my 33 to be. For example - two teeshirts is just good. There will be only one completely long sleeved top for I prefer 3/4-sleeves to long ones, and I NEED cardigans, for it's cold where I work. Three bags is in order - one small purse, one bigger purse/bag and one work bag.

2. I shall NOT even try on any top that's all black, and refuse to buy one even if it screams my name, for my face and black are not a very good combination.

3. I'll try to find clothes that are nicely my own style and that I feel comfortable in, but I'll try not to choose garments I have a ton of already. I'll try to choose something a wee bit out of the box, something I still like, but that I've not had before.

4. I'll try to find garments that are in good condition and of quality materials, which fit me well.

So these are what I've found so far:

These nine are two skirts, two teeshirts, one cardigan, a pair of leggings, a long sleeved top, a tunic and a bag. All in all these nine cost 17€.

The tank top and the carrot cardigan - my first founds. These cost a total of 2,75€.
So there. I'll need to fill in the blanks and I have 9 days time to do it. And I'm contemplating on shoes - of whether to just have my own pairs because finding proper shoes from the flea market is quite a challenge. But I'm getting there - and I'll keep y'all posted.


(This post is transferred from my other blog - Anjusha-äireen taikateekannu, to be the beginnings of this new blog)