Mrs. T is a Tree

Back in February, my school had spirit week. And one of our days was Tacky Holiday Day. Best part- teachers got to dress up too!

Most people dressed up as Christmas, or had something tacky.

I decided to be Arbor Day.

Why yes, I am festooned in ivy, thank you.

A duchess I am not

One of the perks of working in a bridal shop is trying on bridal gowns when work is slow. It’s really fun. I’ve tried on some really…um…interesting gowns.

The best one? The knockoff Kate Middleton dress. It’s beautiful, right? Classy and glamorous and elegant and simple in its royal glory? So of course anyone who puts it on will gain those same powers, right?

Let’s see…

LOL NO.

I look more like Lindsay Lohan in Mean Girls when she goes to the Halloween party.

Related: it does not look very pretty bustled. A friend tried it on and I pinned it and…well. It’s not good. Not good at all. It looks like someone poured meringue down their back.

I just read your post on dresses and I have to agree, you look amazingin them. I used to feel uncomfortable in them because I dislike mypasty legs, but this year, I’ve really begun to warm up to them andhave been searching for some cute things to get me through the springand summer. Any advice on where to find cute, affordable dresses? (AndI’m exactly an inch shorter than you, but my license says 4 footeleven, so that it shall be!)

WELCOME TO THE DRESS SIDE!! IT’S FUN HERE!!

I get my dresses all over the place. Forever 21 is hit or miss for me- I am rather large of boob, and a lot of their wovens don’t fit me right. Charlotte Russe used to be a go-to place, but lately they have all clubwear and…um, I’m not so much a club lady. Old Navy is good sometimes, mostly for basic knit maxi dresses.

Honestly, my favorite place to get dresses is Modcloth.com. They have a lot of dresses in the $40-$50 range, which isn’t too bad for a decent dress, and while they sometimes aren’t as perfect as they are online (the perils of ordering without seeing), you can at least read reviews beforehand, and they have a great return policy. I have about ten of their dresses and I adore them!

I also sew a lot of my own clothes, which comes in handy. I sew them from scratch, and I can take a dress that’s too big or too long and take it in to the proper size.

This has been a post about dresses for short people.

Hiccup Haddock Horrendous IV

My kitten is the cutest kitten.

I’ve never had a pet. Except for the ant farm I accidentally slaughtered when I was in kindergarten, but that’s another story. P and I talked a while about getting a pet, but we didn’t really have any plans.

And then a coworker of mine needed to give a kitten a home, and we volunteered.

Okay, well…let’s rewind a little bit. I work at a bridal shop, right? Well, one of the girls in the tux department got two baby kittens for her son for Easter. Within a few weeks, she realized that two kittens were a huge pain and she didn’t want them. Oh, and her son was five months old. So she brought the kittens in a box to work, dumped them in the break room, and said “whoever wants them can have them.” Nice, hm?

Well, the calico girl kitten got adopted by another tux girl, but the little black boy kitten- Fitzgerald- went home with one of the bridal consultants. Then she realized that her puppy didn’t exactly get along with Fitzgerald (who by now had been renamed Oscar)- she had to leave the kitten locked in the bathroom all day to keep the puppy away from him. So she asked me if P and I wanted to take the kitten.

Did we ever!

She brought the fuzzy little darling over and we’ve both been in love with him ever since. P picked the name- we named him Hiccup after the hero of How To Train Your Dragon, which is ironic because he looks and acts more like Toothless. He’s a little over a year old now, and he’s our sweet darling baby bugaboo.

Except when he pees on everything I love. But that’s another story.

But here, have another picture of our baby cuddling in his blankie when he was only about seven weeks old.

dfadfksdjf that dress is adorable! you’re adorable! I know you’veprobably answered this a hundred times but how tall are you? I’m 5’0”and it’s so hard to make dresses look good but you really pull thatoff :)

ADLSKFJKLD LET ME CUDDLE YOU.

I am precisely 4’ 11 3/4” tall, but I usually say 5’ just for simplicity’s sake.

And I LOVE dresses. I don’t know what it is, but with my height and my body type I just feel more comfortable in a dress. Add a pair of leggings and some boots or ballet flats, and that’s basically my sartorial life. In 2010, I only wore pants twice. I wear them more often now because they’re often more practical at work, but when I’m the American J.K. Rowling I’m going to have a wardrobe full of Modcloth and Anthropologie and Betsey Johnson dresses and then WEAR THE SHIT OUT OF THEM.

Ode to a Breakfast Sandwich

I’ve never been much of a breakfast person, but oh, I could eat this for breakfast every morning. I like to serve it with a glass of milk and a sliced tomato. Mm. So good.

Crap. Now I’m hungry.

-Butter a griddle and a round metal…thing. Like a metal biscuit cutter, or the ring from a jam jar. Crack an egg into the metal ring and cook over medium heat. Cover if you can.

-Prepare your bread. Biscuits, bagels, English muffins, or slices of bread are always good options, but I’ve even used Eggo waffles.

-Put sliced ham (or chicken or turkey or what have you) on one side and a slice of cheese on the other. I love muenster, but you can do whatever you want.

-When the egg is cooked to your liking, pry it carefully out of the metal ring and drop it lightly onto your sandwich. If it goes flying and you say some bad things, don’t worry, I shan’t judge, I’ve done it too.

-Assemble your sandwich, stuff it in your face, and smile.

The Ellie Frederickson Dress

Last June, an old high school friend got married, and I needed a pretty dress to wear. And since I had done the alterations on her wedding gown, I figured I needed to show up in something I’d made! (Do you understand that logic? Yeah, me neither.)

 

 

I had Vogue 2960 in my stash, so after a quick trip to JoAnn’s I had a few yards of a white vintagey print cotton and a super awesome zipper- I knew I didn’t want to do the full button closure front. These boobs aren’t made for buttons. But I picked up some buttons anyway, so I could sew them on as decoration.

 

 

The dress went together super easily, even though I decided against facings. I hate facings. Especially facings with interfacings. Come on, if you’re going to go through the effort of sewing a facing, you might as well go all out and make it a full lining. And since the fabric was a white print and not that thick, and I didn’t want to bother with a cami, I sewed a full lining in white muslin.

 

 

Instead of the open button front and the seamless back, I cut the front on the fold, cut the back into separate pieces, and just slapped a zipper on that bad boy. Since it’s an exposed zip, I literally just stuck it on. It actually worked! And looked cute! So I was excited.

 

 

I also eliminated the waist belt. In vintage clothing or some formal occasion gowns, you can find belts inside the dress- sometimes a twill tape, sometimes an elastic band. You fasten the belt around your waist, then zip up. The belt functions to keep the dress situated firmly at your waist and to support the weight of the fabric, since vintage dresses were chock full of gathers and pleats and the modern wedding dress is often made of ridiculously heavy satin and boning and lining and interfacing and…whew, getting tired just thinking about it. It’s a great way to hold your dress up and more special gowns should have them, but since I was making a lightweight sundress, I skipped it.

 

 

Well, anyways, the dress went together without a hitch…until the morning of the wedding, when my machine decided to bird’s nest everywhere. Luckily, it was only the hem, so I threw up my hands, shouted “THIS WILL HAVE TO DO,” did the best I could, and put it on.

 

 

That’s when I realized the lining was rolling around everywhere, so I took a few small tacks and that fixed it.

 

 

I felt glorious in my dress. It fit beautifully, it sashayed around my hips like a vintage print cloud, and I had made it myself.

 

 

 

Then I realized the shoulders were too big. As in…they stuck up about two inches above my shoulders on their own kind of big.

 

 

If I stood up straight and didn’t move my torso, I was okay. The second I slouched or moved…bam.

 

 

So I got home, took off the dress, and said “Dress, I will come back to you later.”

 

 

Well, fast forward to February.

 

 

I work at a local Christian school, and for Spirit Week, everyone is encouraged to dress up. Everywhere! And heaven forbid I turn down an opportunity to dress up!

 

 

One of the days was character day, and after much deliberation (seriously, this was my very own Sophie’s Choice going on in here) I decided to be Ellie Frederickson from Up. So I pulled out my pretty Vogue 2960, altered the sleeves, fixed the hem, and there we go. To complete the Ellie look, I added a red cardigan (it’s February, man, it was cold!), the grape soda badge (borrowed from my mother), and red patent leather T-strap heels.

 

 

And also a petticoat. Because everything’s better with a petticoat.

 

 

(This was at the end of the day, so please forgive my disheveled appearance and teacher keys. This was post tutoring, seventh grade study hall, pep rally, and a dozen hyper first graders.)

 

 

And here’s a better look at the dress all on its lonesome!

 

 

(Oh, and I never did put buttons on it. Oops.)

 

 

Date Made: June 2011

 

 

Pattern: Vogue 2960

 

 

Fabric: white cotton print from JoAnn’s, white muslin from stash

 

 

 

Time: About three hours

 

 

Soundtrack: Mostly the Across the Universe soundtrack.

 

 

 

Things I Loved:

 

-The adorable fabric print. I’ve been tempted to make other things with this print…but how many vintage drape-print clothing items do I need?

 

-The simplicity. Most vintage-reprint patterns scare me a little, but this went together easily.

 

-I CAN WEAR IT WITH A PETTICOAT. POINTS FOR THAT.

 

 

Things I Changed:

 

-No inner belt

 

-No button front

 

-An exposed metal zipper on the back

 

-A full bodice lining instead of facings

 

 

Next Time:

 

-Stick with the bodice lining!

 

-I might give the button front a try.