Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Fashion Plate: Citrus Garden Top

This week's Fashion Plate is based on ModCloth's Citrus Garden Top.  I selected this item for two reasons:  first, I feature so many dresses and I want to make my Fashion Plates match  fashion realities.  People wear separates.  And second, I want to feature indie patterns where I can.  The pattern I selected for this top is Archer by Grainline Studios.  There are many past sewalongs where you can get help if you have problems with the pattern if you need it.  Pattern support is one of the great things about indie patterns.  The designer is right there for you.  The ModCloth fabric looks like 1/4" gingham to me.  I couldn't find a multi-colored fabric that was right, so I selected this tartan tangerine by Joel Dewberry instead.  It comes in poppy and aquamarine too. 

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Blue Angels Rock 'N Fly March 29, 2014

This was race number 3 for the year.  This race presented a whole new set of challenges for me.  I'm normally an incredibly active person.  I go to kickboxing.  I do Zumba.  I love Pilates.  Push-ups are my friends.  I had 6 weeks between my February & March races and in that time, I only ran 25 miles.  I was TIRED.  I had almost no go juice in me.  My breathing was strained.  My knees hurt early and often.  My ankles felt bad.  I couldn't drink enough water to stay hydrated.  I knew I was going to have issues going into the race and my goal was to simply finish it.  Most races have a 3 hour time limit.  This one was 4.  I can walk a half marathon in 4 hours, so if that's what I needed to do to further my goal, that is what I was going to do.  The course was supposed to be beautiful and I was going to take my camera and take lots of fun photos along the way.  I guess I'll just do a photodump.

I posted this to my facebook the morning of the race.  I don't know why I was so stinking nervous about this one.  We had really bad weather the days before the race and the start time got pushed back an hour.

Most important item on any race:  port-a-potties.  The line was really long.

I'm ready to Rock N Fly!

There were so many people!  The half & 5kers were at the start together.

This guy is a big fan of the Blue Angels.

There was a droid with a GoPro taking photos as the runners took off.

I did not find any photos of myself from the GoPro.

Each water stop was manned by a team and the runners were supposed to vote for their favorite.  I loved this team and most of them ran to their water stop with the rest of the runners.  They were fast!

Thousands of people for the first ever Blue Angels Rock N Fly.

Barrancas National Cemetary

I'm in the middle of the pack.  Thousands ahead of me and thousands behind.

Bye 5Kers.  

Cardboard Sinatra selfie!

Ran past the naval museum.

Lighthouse in the distance

The Blue Angels live in Pensacola

Pensacola has a thing for Pelicans.  They are everywhere.

I saw this picture on Twitter the day after the race.  I had no idea there was a person with a camera there.  I really was this happy while I was running!

Another water stop team.

Eat Moar Chicken

Pelicans chilling on parts of an old dock.

Someone was singing Madonna when I went past!

Retired Blue Angel plane.

There's the end.  Except I'm only at mile 8.  :(

Barefoot running to the extreme.

I'm so groovy, baby.



The end is near!

I always change my clothes immediately after a race.  I can't stand the smell of myself.  Black Lady Skater in the House!

And let me tell you, fun running is the best way to run. This was my favorite race so far.  I had THE BEST TIME (and the worst finish time).

Friday, May 23, 2014

MMM14: Week 4

I wanted an effortless dress for Monday given how sore I was after the mudrun.  This was it:  my red lady skater and reef flip flops.  I'm so glad you can't see the bruises on my legs in this picture.  My hair still had clay and sand in it and I was due for a cut anyway.

I wore my new (unblogged) Chantilly dress.  My camera barely cooperated to take this photo, so hopefully I'll be able to get more photos next week.  Shoes are Nina Brynn in navy.  Also sporting my new hair-did.  It's always so short when I first get it cut!  Now I'm on the hunt for running headbands to keep myself together during my next half marathon.  I need to get better at accessorizing in general.  I'm not big on jewelry.  When I wore jewelry in the past, I'd always wear the same things every day.  I can't even remember the last time I wore earrings now.

That's it for this week!

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Fashion Plate: Streak of Success

ModCloth has several versions of the Streak of Success skirt from what I can tell on the website, each called something different.  This skirt looks like a great wardrobe-builder to me, with or without the ribbon detail.  I chose Simplicity 1369, View D for this look.  It has pockets!  The button detail on the back of the inspiration skirt is a vintage detail not often found on modern patterns.  In order to add that button closure, simply extend the waistband pattern pieces about 1.5".  This will give you enough for a regular seam allowance and a 5/8" button.  I ♥♥ FREAKING LOVE ♥♥ rayon/spandex blends, so I chose this navy rayon/lycra jersey for this look.  You could make the ribbon any color.  I tried to keep to the original and found this 3/8" yellow satin ribbon.  I think this skirt would look absolutely stunning with a red ribbon too.  

This skirt will cost you approximately $21 if you use my fabric and pattern suggestions.  The skirt takes about 2.5 yards of fabric ($12.50), maybe 3 yards of ribbon ($1 because I'm figuring you'll buy a spool at the store), and $8 for the pattern (which you'll probably get for $1 during a JoAnn's pattern sale).  

You can make a whole bunch of these skirts for very little money.  This is why I love sewing.  I can make this same look for 1/3 the price and my skirt will be sewn with more detail and made to last.  Can you tell I just started reading Overdressed:  The Shockingly High Cost of Cheap Fashion?

Saturday, May 17, 2014

MMM14: Week 3

And it continues. . .

I wore my first Colette Parfait on tuesday with a pair of Steven Madden pumps.

 And I wore my red skirt on Wednesday with a black boatneck from Gap and leopard print Adrienne Vittadini shoes.

I'm off to run a badass 10K mudrun in a few minutes!  Wish me luck!

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Orange Beach Sea Turtle Half Marathon February 15,2014

The Sea Turtle half was my February race (obviously).  I think I mentioned before that I am going to run a half marathon every month this year?  So this was #2 for the year.  My time was not that great--I think I ran it in 2:40 or so.  My hip flexor was being weird and I ended up walking most of the last 5 miles.

A little about the race:  The race started and ended at The Hangout in Orange Beach, AL.  This was the first time the event organizer has added a half marathon run to the already very popular annual Sweetheart 5K they have every year.  I paid $35 for this race, which is pretty low in raceland.  I could tell it was the first half by how unorganized the race was.  I guess it's hard to get enough volunteers for such a small race?  The course map only had 3 water stations along the 13.1 mile route.  Even if you aren't a runner, that's NOT ENOUGH water.  I tend to only drink water 3-4 times along the race, but if I'm thirsty, I want to be able to count on water being around.  I bought a running belt with add-on water attachments for when I run at home and I brought that with me for the race.  I'm very glad I did.  It was kind of like a safety net along the course.  I normally drink water after mile 5, 8, 10, and sometimes the last water stop around 11 or 12.  There was water at around 2, 7, 9, and one other mile I don't remember, so not terribly off my normal mileage.  I sucked down my gatorade at mile 5 with my first ever GU (that stuff is weird by the way).  After the race was the best part.  FREE FOOD!  I also got a pretty sweet medal.

Minutes after cross the finish line, probably looking like I just ran a half marathon.
My bib and medal.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

WIP Wednesday: Clouds & Rainbows

It's been a long time since I've done a WIP Wednesday post.

I'm making crazy-fast progress on my rainbow socks.

One of my knitting friends persuaded me to try the fish lips kiss heel pattern  (which I usually call fish lips, fish sticks, or fish kiss because the thing is too many words).  The designer has a special formula for the knitter to follow in order to get the PERFECT fit.  This involves having a partner trace your foot on a piece of cardboard and marking the heel hinge line on the cardboard.

I made my socks toe-up because I thought it would be the easiest way for me to see if my heel fit my foot when I was finished with the heel portion of the formula. The photo here represents the heel hinge line and the point where you are supposed to start your heel is marked with a dpn from end to end.

Here's my sock so far.

After following all the designer's notes and instructions exactly, my heel is too big. 

It's too big by quite a bit.  I've had this problem with heels and ankles on socks I've knit for myself before.  I don't know if I have a more narrow heel or thin ankle or what, but it's quite frustrating to make a sock and have the heel and ankle just bag  up on me.  I thought I might need an hourglass set of increases and decreases while I was knitting the top portion of the heel pattern and I posted some pictures on the designer's forum.  I won't say too much because I'll get really pissed off, but the designer justified every single portion of her sock formula and said that if I had a problem with my heel, it's because I did x, y, z, and alpha things wrong.  It wasn't because the heel was too big for me.

And you know what?  The heel was too big for me.  I frogged back and used a smaller needle size for the heel and that worked famously.  I could still decrease 2-4 stitches on the ankle, but that's less of a big deal.  I'll try that on my next pair of socks.