Monday, October 15, 2012

Tiki Time!

Hi again.
It's me.
You know, the girl who started a buddy challenge, then dropped out?
(Don't worry, those of you who make it still get your prizes!!)

I'm working my way to being able to blog again daily. I keep thinking I'm ready, and then let life get in the way. But I really have needed the time to balance things in my life.
One of those things has been taking time off, I think I've talked about that.
Tied into that is spending more time with friends. 

A bi-product of which is spending more DRUNK time with friends. Actually, it's the first time I'd had that much to drink in a LONG time. (Boy, does it show.)
This weekend included a double-header evening that started at 4pm with gratis tiki drinks at Trader Vic's for participating in a promotional photoshoot. We followed it up by watching the local Elvis impersonator at the Pink Feather. Sandwiched in between was food and cocktails at a friend's (AMAZING) home.

I guess we'll count this toward going back to daily blogging. I'm going to give it a shot, at least.
So, I'm back at 180.0 lbs (I think I started at 186)
And yeah, I'm working on it.
But not this past weekend. Because the calories in those tiki drinks completely negates the jogging and healthy eating!

What I'm going to do with all this is not kill myself. If I dress "casual vintage" and just take a snapshot or Instagram, that's what I'll give you. I work a lot, and spend a lot of time here on the computer. I'm going to keep up with business and blogging on a level that allows me to actually come up for air, and enjoy life!

Friday, August 3, 2012

"Quitcher Bitchin"

Well, I will be the very first to admit that my last blog post is possibly the WHINIEST whine that I have ever whined.

And it was public, dear god.

But you know, the mortification of realizing that was good for me. I just decided to stop it. I pincurled my hair the same night. It was such a perfect set, I've kept it through today (but tonight it HAS to be washed.) Today's style was prettier and smoother at 10am than it is at 10:30 at night. But it was never as smooth as a Kristin hairstyle. I don't even try. That way lies madness.

The next day, I went and had my eyebrows threaded. I'd never done it before. But Sarah of Stutterin' Mama swears by it, and her eyebrows are perfect. And now, mine are, too!

The day after that, we took two whole hours to go ride our bikes on the relatively new bike path near our home.

Yesterday, I worked really hard. And then, I stopped working hard at 5:30, and went to have my nails done.

Today, I put it all together. I put on a favorite dress, my bakelite anchor necklace, and those Chelsea Crew shoes from Mod Cloth that I love so much. Jesse and I volunteered for a couple hours visiting with some WWII and Korea vets. (I LOVE WWII vets and their wives. Love and adore them.)

We were dorks and forgot the camera. And now, it is Saturday Friday night and since Jesse is out, I had to take my own pics. So, there you go. Instagram. (Hey! I thought it was Saturday! I just gained a whole day!)

I think maybe I will be able to pick back up on my challenge, I just need some time, confidence, and some babysteps to get there.

After all, it's a lot more fun to take daily photos of yourself when your eyebrows aren't furry and your toes are painted. Although, I haven't taken care of my toes yet. This week. For sure. Because I'm feeling on top of it, now.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Outfit Post and Facing the Music

Well, gals. I have to concede. For now. NOT on losing weight, but on the process of trying to dress up and record an outfit each and every day. I have gained back about half the weight that I lost, because we really aren't eating very well. I haven't been able to find much time to cook.

I have been working for myself nearly my entire adult life - ten whole years now. (Yikes!) I had become *very* accustomed to the freedom of being able to take the time to do my hair and makeup, select an outfit, and to get out of the house each day to do something I want to do - not need to do. Frankly, I've been spoiled.

Here's a thrown-together outfit. The photo was taken outside Goodwill about a week ago - whatever Day 2 would have been. We weren't there to thrift for vintage - we needed more storage bins.

This whole process of acquiring the Puttin' on the Ritz consignment - with the added project of soft-launching the website - has really changed my life and how Jesse and I go about our work, and that's been sort of hard to accept. All I own is vintage, a few reproductions and five sets of workout wear. I don't even have normal "just around the house" clothes. So I've been wearing the same five house dresses on rotation for the better part of a month now. All I wear is turbans - I never find time to do my hair. My life has changed. I need to adjust my patterns. I am still working out how to make that happen.

Right now, I'm clocking about  14 to 15 hours of work a day, every day. (Jesse and I have both worked ourselves sick - we have really brutal summer colds that have lasted the better half of a week or more.) If I am not listing, I'm washing clothes, or measuring, or writing SEO for the website, or sewing on buttons, or patching holes, or responding to email inquiries. Since I have a standing desk, I really only sit down these days if I am in the car for some reason, or if I'm eating lunch. Jesse has a similar laundry list.

I made the mistake of going out to Last Thursday, to be supportive of Jesse, who got up and did his monthly stilting (in a custom made tuxedo) at festival. The cool evening and the crowd of people, plus the late night was the last straw for my health. So much for trying to do something fun! Now that I see the photo, I can see that I already looked sick.

Those pants are the other thing I've been living in - my new One Offs from Jitterbuggin. I love snagging prototypes in my size! Best jeans ever.

Damn. Even my turbans don't look good any more. It isn't that I don't care. I just don't have time to indulge my vanity. 

As defeated as I might sound, I'm really not. I know that this period of intense work is situational, and unavoidable, with building up the website and settling the MASSIVE inventory that we've taken in.  It won't last forever. But I don't forsee a return to the days of total freedom, either. The first step is to move down to clocking ten hour work days.

Then, starting taking one day off a week. To do things that I'm horribly overdue on, like waxing my eyebrows, or having a pedicure, or bicycling with Jesse.

I am going to try to put a couple posts a week, of some kind to stay to connected with you. My challenge still stands for those who started it, you'll certainly deserve the reward at the end! And I will pick up my own personal challenge when I can realistically see a couple hours of free time a day.

Thanks for listening! I know that's one heck of a lot of text for a fashion blog.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Let's Try This Again. Day 1 (Take 2) - OH THOSE SLEEVES!

So, I'm guessing no one needs to hear how busy, tired and overworked we have been. We are still processing the consigned inventory, have soft-launched the website, and Jesse rebuilt the floor of our travel trailer.

Things are still hard, but it is time to get back up on the horse. I'm tired of wearing worn out wrap dresses every day, and having my arms elbow deep in wash water. So I'll dress up at least long enough to post here, and will get back to working on my weight.

Please forgive the creases, we were in the car for some time. This is the second time that I've borrowed this dress from the soon-to-listed inventory. Don't worry, I always dryclean them! c. 1936, this dress is really all about the sleeves. I love them. The matching ties at the collar are the perfect touch. The corde accent - in a very,deep muted green- is an unusual touch, something I haven't seen before.

We actually photographed this dress in our last shoot, but I wanted you to see here on the blog first.

I wore it with the first 1940s turban I every bought. I sold this hat to a collector once, and bought it back a few years later. Whew!

I love everything about the fit of the dress. Of course, it would have worn better over foundation wear, but I can't get to my foundation wear right now - the house is that full! And besides, the photos give me extra motivation to find time for the gym. (Someone can play a laugh track now.)

We went out to breakfast with friends, and I had a lovely - if modern - morning cocktail. It matched the feather in Jesse's 1960s hat.

Dress: Fab Gabs - and it can be yours!
Hat: Gosh, what was the name of that shop? It's been gone for years.
Shoes: Faryl Robin
Bakelite Dress Clips: Goodwill

In closing, I'm starting this new attempt at a full 365 Days from the weight of 179.2. My goal weight is still 135, and I think I can hit that before the year is over! I meant to be much further progressed with it but as we all know, sometimes life gets in the way! Thanks for your patience during our exciting crisis.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

"So, where the hell have you been?" Major updates!

It is 11:45, and I am just now getting to this task that I set up for myself yesterday. I went MIA, and since I know that not all of you are Facebook/Twitter followers, I owe you an explantion!

As you saw in my last? post, Jesse and I spent the 19th and 20th helping clean up the disaster at a vintage shop in Eugene, Oregon. Thursday, we had a break - here's one little peek - more photos to follow at the end of the blog.

And then things got crazy. We went down to do the final clean out on Friday, and the owners of the shop sat us down, and told us that they had decided to consign their inventory to us. My life changed overnight.

Approximately 1/3 of the new inventory. Note the cute mid-50s Kamehameha on the far right.

We have not stopped working since that day. Most days have been 14-19 hours of work, just trying to preserve the items that were wet/damaged, and sort and store the items that were not. We've made a total of something like five round trips totally about an entire 24 hours of driving. We filled a 14ft Uhaul, a 17ft Uhaul, and crammed my little Pontiac vibe to bursting. There's only about one carload left, now.

I did get to wear a nice dress (although I wasn't able to do my hair - turban time!) to meet with ANOTHER wonderful consignor, who is considering letting go of her 30+ year collection of early dresses - 1930s on back. That was last Sunday. It's the last time I looked like a person!

We are not entirely sure how many thousands of garments we are dealing with. There's a vintage clothing triage center set up in the back. Tents, bins to wash needy items in, racks to hang dry things that are damp, wet, or just plaid soaked. We are taking items to the dry cleaner over 100 at a time. Both Jesse and I are wrung out, completely exhausted. I'll be honest with you - I have never worked so hard, in such a concentrated period of time in my life. But it is worth it, because in this collection, there's pieces like this:

c. 1918 Edwardian Wool Walking Suit with Soutache. Currently listed on Etsy

Today, I sat down on the couch (which is crowded with 30s and 40s metallic heels I'm looking for the mates to.) It was the first time in over a week that I sat down for more than a fifteen minute meal break - and I promptly fell asleep. I had a nearly four hour nap. It was much needed, and I would never have let myself take the time if it hadn't just happened, so that was a good thing.

So, yes, I had to fall off the band wagon. My days have been starting at 5 or 6 am, and ending at midnight (or later - it's 12:20 now!) and so getting pretty has had to be my last priority. Also, we've been forgetting to eat, and have most of our meals delivered, or eating pre-made snacks. We've gone out a time or two. I haven't lost ANY weight. But I haven't gained any, and I'm considering that a victory, considering.

I think we have another five to six days of really intense work before things start to even out. Then I'll pick back up with the blog again, and start getting more listings up on Etsy.

I appreciate your patience bearing with me during this incredible, amazing, stressful, trying time. Your support is appreciated!

Here's one more pic from Thursday. I'm afraid all my shots from Sunday show my exhaustion, and they aren't very attractive!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Day 66: Clean Up Crew

I'm going to come back and hit Day 65/Tuesdays post (more pjs!) tomorrow, but yesterday is really what is on my mind, and I want to share it while it is still fresh.

On Monday, a really wonderful vintage shop suffered from a terrible fire. The fire occurred in the apartments above, and for the most part did not come down into the shop itself. But that doesn't mean that they escaped the destruction. Smoke damage, filth from char and wet ceilings, and the sheer volume of water and flame retardant wreaked havoc of the inventory.

We spent Tuesday afternoon, and all of Wednesday helping to clean it up.

I have a LOT of photos of the interior, but it feels so personal, that I don't want to share them all. Just a couple to give you an idea of what it was like. Maybe I should have taken my outfit photos before we left home, while I still looked fresh and was smiling. But this was more real.

A large crew of people helped, and salvaged what could be saved. It was really hard and really sad to be around the things that have no hope, but honestly, there were a lot of good moments, finding things that will be wearable again with just a dryclean, or stored in closed up totes that survived.

I wanted to wear vintage, not just because of this blog, but it seemed to show a support and respect for what this business was.

Sorry for the bummer post. We are still hoping that she doesn't decide to leave the business, and I may organize a vintage clothing drive to help her replace her lost inventory, but right now it is all too fresh for them.

Shirt: Bombshell Vintage
Pants: Bombshellshocked
Keds: Goodwill

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Day 64: Monday's Retro Style

Okay, so wearing an outfit that is all "retro" is pretty uncommon for me. But we mostly stayed at home, and worked in the very muddy garden, so I wanted something washable.

We picked out seeds that we still had time to plant at Home Depot. I hate that place! Talk about a fish out of water.

I love the dress because it is a cotton wrap, 50s style, and super wearable, comfortable and washable. The shoes aren't exactly right for any one era, but they're a great color.

Add Bakelite, my favorite vintage purse, and you've got an outfit.

Repro stuff: Goodwills
Purse: Estate lot
Bakelite: Various

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Day 63: Sunday Color Fun

The sun decided to retire early on Sunday, so I made up for it with a little sunshine of my own. Otherwise known as butterscotch bakelite yellow.

This is my OTHER new skirt from Jitterbuggin. LOVE. Love, love, love.

I was going to use a different bold scarf for the turban, since you've seen this one already, but what the heck. I happen to love it.

The sweater? It's just a little acrylic thing, as-is - but it is RED. It's studded with RHINESTONES. It's Schiaparelli. SCHIAPARELLI. And, a picker at the bins gave it to me because he didn't want to put the work into it. I LOVE IT.

Scarf: Estate Sale
Bakelite Earrings: Gift from Lisa
Sweater: Goodwill Bins
Skirt: Jitterbuggin
Bakelite Bangles: Various, including a gift from Jesse
Shoes: Goodwill

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Day 62: Sunny Saturday

Yesterday was lovely. I was really burnt out from the days of zombie-list product listing, and so Saturday we got out of the house for a variety of obligations, including grocery shopping at the Farmer's Market (much needed, we were down to condiments!), a birthday party, and the World Naked Bike Ride. My "outfit" for the WNBR consisted of a mini bustle skirt and gold paint. I think you'll appreciate this outfit more.

 I love this shot. Go Jesse on the flattering angle.

I own two of these 1930s caps, and sold a third. This one came from a bin of $1 hat, and even though I have the same hat in different colors, I had to keep it. 

 When I bought this 1930s day dress at the March Expo Antique show, it didn't fit, and I was mortified when I tried it on at home. The buttons wouldn't button. It pulled HARD at my gut, my butt and my thighs. I'm still not perfectly smooth at the front (and it was too hot for a girdle) but the dress buttons and wears well enough for me to be comfortable.

Dress: Decades Vintage Co, at the Expo Antique Show
Hat: Thrift Store
Shoes: Remix
Scotty Pin: Thrift Store
Ribbon: Wrapped on a package someone sent me
Cake: Not helping me fit into my pretty dresses, but really delicious.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Days 60 and 61. Work, work, work. What I wear when I don't leave the house

Let's face it. It's hard to put together a finished ensemble when you don't plan to leave the house.

Thursday and Friday I buckled down to list 40 items each day. I did it, too!

Thursday, I picked this cross between a holomuu and muu muu - it's fitted to about the waist, but frees up around the hips. Another one that didn't sell in the shop, and I kept it instead of putting it on sale. It is REALLY comfy.

Friday, I was an utter bum, as far as clothing went. I worked like a maniac for the morning, got dressed in workout gear to take a 32 bike ride, and went right back to being a bum again after my show. At least it is pretty stylish to be a bum around here. This is one of my favorite rayon dressing gowns. Jesse's favorite, too, as the front tends to fall open fairly wide (hence the funny pose.) As you can see, I heat set my hair yesterday while I working.

I love these sleeves!

And the COLORS in this print! And the little bit of shirring.

Thursday's Dress: Vintage Buy the Pound, San Francisco
Friday's Dressing Gown: The Goodwill Bins. (Oh hell yeah! I found three stellar things one day - the palm tree dress, this, and a 30s set I don't fit yet, kept it ALL for me!)

To make up for schlepping around, I really put a little effort into today's outfit/tomorrow's post!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Day 59: Back on Track and Yesterday's Wednesday Weigh In

As I have stated, I have really been struggling with this challenge. For the most part, it isn't the getting dressed up, it is the recording it, and the blogging, and getting to the gym. I tend to fluctuate between being very social and finding lots of reasons to dress up, and being a hermit workaholic. When I'm a workaholic, it's pretty much all I do. I even forget to eat. Which is bad, in the long run, for the waistline.

The days that I don't blog, I probably didn't get any sort of workout in either. Usually.

I'm finally back on track, but loosing focus made my number for my weigh-in a little disappointing for two full weeks. Thankfully, we are eating mostly healthfully, so there is still a loss!

Current Weight: 178.0 lbs
At Last Weigh in: 179.7
Starting Weight: 185 lbs
Weight Loss to Date: 7 lbs

It is amazing the difference that seven pounds can make. I bought two of these Jitterbuggin skirts a few weeks ago, closer to the start of the project, and purposefully bought at size down from what fit at the time. These are solidly a 32" waist with relatively slim hips for the cut. I love it in red! Going to be a favorite for as long as it fits - and then I'll buy the next size down.
Okay.... so this is what happens when you ask a boyfriend to take photo of the chest detail. Of course, I meant on the sweater!! On the plus side, this shows some good vintage bra lift and separation. 

Why keds? We left for bicycling a new little bike path near our house right after this.

Sweater: Thrift store in San Francisco
Shoes: Keds, Goodwill
Necklace: Ray's Ragtime