Tag Archives: accessories
It’s How-To Wednesday!
I am not a neat person. Anyone I’ve ever worked with or lived with can tell you that. Clothing, books, bags — objects in general — tend to strew and scatter. Oh I fix things up nice and tidy every once in a blue moon, but keeping things that way is a constant struggle with myself — one which I eventually lose.
But today I made an accessories holder — a place to hang accessories that hang and dangle. It’s quite uncharacteristic of me to make something that holds and organizes things. It’s definitely the potential for fabulousness that got me on this project. And it’s big — there’s space enough for a lot of earrings and necklaces. It motivated me to gather my earrings from drawers, purses, desk trays around the house. For a while there was a tangled up pile of necklaces and beads and ID tags on my dresser, and my just having made this new and wonderful thing motivated me to start untangling them. There’s still a knotted bundle that remains, mind you, but it’s much (or maybe just a little) smaller now.
I’ve seen a blog article some time ago that gave directions on how to make it, but I can’t seem to find it — just when I decided to make it! I had to figure out most of the process on my own, and I sure made a lot of mistakes as I went along, which I did my darnedest to hide.
So here goes.
- Old (or new) frame. I used a panel from an old closet.
- Aluminum screen, cut to the size of the frame or slightly smaller
- A lightweight but sturdy board to use as the back, cut to the size of the frame or slightly smaller
- Foam sheet, cut to the size of the frame or slightly smaller
- Fabric, cut slightly larger than the board
- Something to embellish the frame, should it be too ugly to use as is — paint, stickers, fabric. I opted for fabric since I thought it would be easier and faster than painting.
- Something that allows you to hang the finished product, although leaning it against a wall is also an option.
- Staple gun
- Hot glue gun
First I had to make the frame presentable, and I did this by covering it with an iridescent fabric I found. A glue gun helped me, but only after burning my fingers and palms many, many times.
Next, I stapled the screen behind the frame.
Then put the foam on the board, then the fabric over it, folding the excess over and securing behind the board with more hot glue. Then I placed this assemblage behind the screen and stapled it to the back of the frame.
Voila! It looks awesome. But the back is awful so I’m not showing it — haha!
I screwed in some hooks and hung the thing. Yay!
All the images in this post by Nathalie Mariano
I’ve a had a number of conversations with people about how less and less people are wearing watches, or at least wearing watches to tell the time. The ubiquity of the cellphone has really put a damper on watches being instruments that measure time. While there are some that wear watches for their original purpose (and because their phone battery dies quickly), many people today wear them more as accessories that express a personal style and aesthetic.
While some might prefer the traditional, classic watches that might become family heirlooms, there are a number of design brands that produce very interesting contemporary designs that have their own unique character. Here are a few timepiece producers that make functional and interesting objects.
Projects watches’ tagline is “architecture you can wear.” Most of the watches in the line were designed by architects and have a clean, modern sensibility, with each piece having a defining characteristic or design element that sets it apart from traditional watches.
Image from Projects Watches
This watch by Italian designer Denis Guidone, for example, has a face where the 12 is slanted slightly so that it is straight up when the wearer tilts their wrist at an angle.
Image from curvebean.com
Originally a kitchen utensil deisgn company, Alessi is a design factory from Italy that produces high quality functional objects. Since the 1980’s, their company has become more focused on creating objects that are considered “high design,” collaborating with periodically famous designers to come up with new product lines.
Their watches can have particularly interesting designs, like their Kaj watch, that has a very slick, futuristic sensibility to it, but also retains its essence as a watch through its analog face.
Nixon is a watch company that caters to more of a younger, independent lifestyle. The california-based company originally produced skate, snow, and surf products and then branched into accessories. Alot of their designs are a neo-retro fusion on contemporary and classic design.
Andy Warhol Collection
Image from thedigitalistas.com
The Andy Warhol Museum has a comprehensive store that brings the art of the great pop artist to the public. The watches do just that – most of them care mini posters and recreations of Warhol’s famous silkscreen paintings within a mod, colorblock design.
Dezeen Watch Store
If one of these watches has caught your eye, and wondering where to shop different designs in one place, then the Dezeen watch store is a good place to start. The design blog has a dedicated store to watches by featured designers.
I’ve always liked the thought of wearing glasses. When I was younger I intentionally broke every rule about caring for my vision. I read in the dark, against the light, and in moving vehicles. I sat too close to the TV, and spent endless hours in front of my computer. But my eyes were tough. My vision stayed sharp and clear.
So I went through a phase wherein I went to untinted glasses anyway, and wore them whenever I felt like it. People would ask me about my spectacles, and find out that there was nothing wrong with my eyes. I would explain that I wore them not because I thought they made me look smart. It was because I just liked the frames. The round ones reminded me of John Lennon. The pointy, slanted ones reminded me of the ones my Mom used to wear when I was little. Eyewear presented a whole lot of stylish opportunities!
Earlier this year I had my eyes checked, and whaddayaknow, my right eye is astigmatic. Now that I’m older (and hopefully wiser) I realize it is not something to celebrate. But nonetheless, I had a great time picking out a frame for my prescription glasses. If I’m to be a four-eyed chick, I might as well have fun.
So I’ve chosen a frame, and ordered the lenses that go in them. I am quite happy with my specs, but the desire to look at more glasses rears up every once in a while. And after looking at a few hundred more frames, I’m beginning to think my choice may have been a tad too safe. I’m presenting here the different eyeglasses, some of which are very adventurous, that I’d consider peering through in the future.
I tend to gravitate toward the huge and the catty. I realize I may not be able to pull off wearing some of these, but it sure would be fun to try.
When I was in grade school, I remember very clearly that in our history classes would always begin by explaining why the Philippines was called the “Pearl of the Orient.” Of course there were several other reasons as to why the country was nicknamed as such, but for many today, one of the attractions comes from the pearls — in a very literal sense.
Today in the Philippines you can buy pearls of all shapes, color, sizes and varieties at local markets. With such a tremendous amount of variety to choose from, one can get easily mesmerized and overwhelmed by the types of pearl available on the market today. I thought I’d share some information on pearls for those who might be interested in these gems of the sea.
Freshwater and Saltwater Pearls
Pearls are naturally occurring gems that are a product of mollusks such as oysters and mussels. Typically, pearls found in the saltwater seas are obtained from pearl oysters, and freshwater pearls from pearl mussels.
The main difference between freshwater and sea pearls are the mollusk they come from, and the habitat where it lives. When an irritant to the oyster or clam enters the shells, it forms layers of nacre, also known as mother-of-pearl to fight the irritation, and thus a pearl is formed.
Cultured and Natural Pearls
Thanks to modern technology, freshwater pearls can be cultivated to form different shapes, sizes, and colors for jewelry. Pearls made using human intervention are known as cultured pearls, in contrast with natural pearls, which are found completely formed inside the mollusk. Another difference between cultured pearls and natural pearls is their mineral composition. While cultured pearls retain their value as precious gems, they contain less of the mother-of-pearl mineral. Natural pearls are usually composed of 100% of the mineral, making them rarer and more expensive.
Some of the most valuable pearls available today are known as South Sea Pearls, which are native to and only found in the seas of southeast Asia and the surrounding areas, including some of the islands of the Philippines. These natural pearls are harvested from wild south sea pearl oysters and are known for their size and lustre.
Pearl jewelry today is becoming more creative thanks to the technology available today. Freshwater pearls can now be cultivated and injected with color to form interesting shapes and sizes. These square pearls were colored and cut with texture to give an interesting an contemporary twist to a simple bracelet design.
For some however the natural beauty of pure, white pearls will always embody the essence of these precious gems. Simple pearl strands such as these will stand the test of time and can become great heirlooms.
Whatever their shape or form, pearls are unique gemstones that showcase the beauty of both nature and human ingenuity. It’ll be interesting and exciting to see what pearl farmers and jewelers come up with in the future!
I love scarves. I’m not the biggest fan of colder weather but if there is something I definitely enjoy during the late fall and winter months, it is probably the fashion and craftiness that comes with them.
A little background on this versatile accessory – it actually has its origins in ancient Rome, and surprisingly enough, was worn during hotter months instead, to wipe of sweat from the neck and face, much like a towel. Around the world scarves have their specific cultural meanings and purposes as well.
Today scarves maintain their popularity with almost everyone, whether for practical or aesthetic purposes. I personally enjoy how a statement scarf can spice up an otherwise plain and simple clothing ensemble. Recently, there has been much more variety in patterns, materials and styles, so scarves don’t simply just go around your neck anymore (although that’s the basic premise.)
How to wear a scarf
A friend of mine pointed me in the direction of this video, which teaches you how to wear a scarf in not one, not four, not ten, but TWENTY-FIVE ways to wear a scarf.
The Square Scarf
This style is probably the most versatile and classic in my opinion. Before finding the two I currently rotate heavily from week to week, I never really thought much of square scarves because they reminded me of bandits in the wild west. Aside from keeping your neck warm and stylish, square scarves can also be used as headwraps, shawls, and can instantly give a plain cotton tote bag some vintage charm.
I love this particular scarf from Madewell – it has all the vintage charm but in a more contemporary design. The color of the vintage maps and the typography are such a lovely combination!
Before I discovered the world of contemporary crafts, I always associated the word “shawl” with an accessory only worn as part of formal wear. Now it’s one of my favorite things to knit crochet–and if you make it in a softer, lighter yarn you can wear it all year round!
This shawl is on my list of things I would like to make (but haven’t yet). It’s got a delicate pattern and lovely rounded edges instead of the usual triangle shape. Perfect for a cover-up in the summer and will give you warmth wrapped around your beck in the winter!
The Infinity Scarf
The infinity scarf, or circle scarf as it is more commonly known, took off in the last couple of years and has made a made many a fashion statement thanks to the numerous celebrities seen sporting it. These long loops come in a variety of sizes and lengths and can be worn either like a collar or almost like a thick, wooly necklace.
I made an infinity scarf for myself last year and it’s by far the warmest thing I own! I also like how the loop instantly deals with the problem of how to keep your scarf ends tidy. I made this one in a superthick yarn to make the project go fast.
There are also a couple of very fun and interesting scarves I found that play with design ideas.
There is nothing that I love more than scarves and pockets on my clothing – and Marc Jacobs delivers both those things in this fun striped scarf.
This critter is a play on the mink scarves of old time glamour, knitted in a lovely chunky yarn. A fine pet for the winter!
Probably my favorite quirky find is the Hatskarfenmitten, which is exactly as it sounds – a hat, scarf, and mittens all made into one ultimate winter accessory. I’m not sure I’d have the guts to wear something like that out in the city, but it sure looks warm and comfy!