Now that Thanksgiving has come and gone, I feel it's appropriate to liberally incorporate anything that's red and sparkly into my daily wardrobe. Whether you want to create a fashion accessory for your own collection or give a handmade gift, these tutorials can help inspire you to pull out your needle and thread, plug in your glue gun and make something festive.
Sunday, December 14, 2014
Projects like this prove you don't have to go all ruffles and stuff to get your glam on and you can get a clutch like this in two easy steps. And I love a small clutch for holiday events, church programs and parties...big enough to carry what you need without the hassle of hauling a giant bag over the shoulder of your pretty dress.
When it comes to finding the right kind of jewels, I've found bracelets with large pieces attached by elastic are the easiest and most convenient (no assembly required). They're easy to disassemble and using larger, stand-alone pieces that are ready to glue to your bag will save you the time of gluing several tiny pieces together.
--several bracelets or flat-back jewels (I bought mine from Charming Charlie)
--hot glue gun
1. Cut the elastic band from the jewels, if you're using strung jewelry.
2. Hot glue jewels to clutch in desired pattern. I went with an up and down pattern and only covered the top flap.
Wednesday, December 10, 2014
I love how winter holidays give such licence for over-the-top styles like this red satin circle skirt. In a skirt like this a girl can be all like Yup, it's only Thursday and I'm all gussied up...so what?
I thought I might do this skirt in a taffeta, but changed to brushed satin at the last minute because I wasn't wanting it to totally stand at attention like a traditional ball skirt. That's another design for another day, hmm?
Kristina J. Winter Festival skirt | J.Crew baseball sweater | Nine West pumps
Sunday, December 7, 2014
Kristina J. dress | J.Crew blouse | Marc Fisher booties | Anthro belt
HUE tights | Beanie cap made for me by my sister-in-law (she's awesome!)
I was so super excited to find this geometric sweater fabric this season because I've been wanting to build a semi-flare, sleeveless sweater dress that could be dressed down with flats and a bulky cardigan or dressed up. I was originally going to go with a gray shade, but solid colors in winter get lost in the haze and the graphic black and white pattern of this textile was the perfect alternative. This design has three small pleats at the waistline to give it the smallest amount of fullness ('cuz we all know those body-conscious sweater dresses are deformed by a weird bulge after you stretch their shape out by sitting in them). Not what I was going for here. HA.
Wednesday, December 3, 2014
Everyone knows someone who just can't leave things alone...those people who are always taking things apart, giving clothes a nip/tuck or saying, "I can make that myself."
As one of those people, I love to receive hands-on gifts. These are my top picks for the crafty people in my life this holiday season (I might even slip one or two into my personal wishlist).
2. Lindsay Letter Treat Stamp "A little treat from me to you" stamp for the person always baking cookies and bread for the neighbors.
3. Harper Street Custom Foil Hashtag Print Get one of these with their product brand name or etsy store printed. I'm currently loving the idea of one of these prints that says #hello or maybe #kristinaj for the studio.
4. Craftstore giftcards Sort of a given (but for the crafter, never ever under-appreciated)
5. Darby Smart Wood Burning Kit Burn your initials into anything wooden
6. Ashley Brooke Designs Brilliant Ideas Foil Notepad An adorable way for the craft blogger to keep track of all the ideas running through their heads
7. Brit + Co Beeswax Mason Jar Candle Kit Make the most yummy smelling candles yourself!
8. DIY Style Project Tutorial Book Shameless plug, I know. But any refashionista LOVES to be inspired by new ideas. The Chic Girl's Guide is also available as a Kindle book for only $6.99! There are so many other great choices on Amazon as well.
9. Lindsay Letters Almond Milk Is the New Black Mug To hold the yummy hot chocolate (made with almond milk, of course) while they work on their DIY projects
Monday, December 1, 2014
Wrap yourself in glimmer. A grosgrain belt with rhinestone detailing is a brilliant way to add wow factor to a waistline (beats adding inches any day!). No mater how you style it, a rhinestone belt is sure to make you feel like you're already on holiday. If you don't want to construct the belt, you can use any premade fabric belt. Skip to the embellishment part of the instructions to create the same look.
--spool of 1 inch grosgrain ribbon
--spool of 2 inch sheer ribbon
--about 50 iron on rhinestones
--18-20 large teardrop sew on rhinestones
--18-20 medium oblong sew on rhinestones
(a couple rhinestone options depending on the color you prefer; these clear rhinestones from Joann Fabrics or these resin rhinestones from eJoyce)
--Anorak snaps and snap kit from Joann Fabrics
--1 inch wide elastic
1. Layer the grosgrain ribbon over sheer ribbon.
2. Fold ribbons into 1 inch box pleats to cover the front width of your waist from one side to the other.
3. Stitch pleats down both sides of ribbon, leaving 1/2 unstitched at the ends. Fold these ends to inside and press.
4. Formula to figure how long the elastic sections at back of belt need to be:
total waist length - front waist measurement + 2 inches = elastic length
After you cut the elastic, divide and cut in half to have a section for each end of the belt.
5. Cover each piece of elastic with layered ribbons by sewing evenly spaced vertical lines through both layer, leaving a small amount of give in between stitch lines to allow for stretch.
(You can replace this step by using cream decorative elastic that doesn't need to be covered)
6. Insert ends of elastic portions into the open ends of front folded section with exposed elastic facing toward the inside. Machine stitch through all layers to secure.
7. Mark placement for snaps and then fold extra ribbon to back of belt and top-stitch in place to finish.
8. Fit belt around waist. Following instructions on the package of Snap Kit Tools, apply snaps to ends of belt.
9. Cut the bound edges of sheer ribbon away from belt and roll raw edge with fingers to create a frayed look. You can remove some of the lengthwise fibers with a straight pin to thin out the ribbon if you prefer a super unfinished look like I have here.
10. Starting from center of belt, attach rhinestones onto every other raised box pleat with needle and thread in any design you chose.
11. Place four small iron-on rhinestones between each larger group and press with steam.
images courtesy of my book The Chic Girl's Guide to a One-of-a-Kind Wardrobe