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!