Project Minima:

Monday, December 31, 2012

This Is It For Now

Getting ready to join Patti's gathering with the Visibles at Not Dead Yet Style for the end of  2012...hmmm, what to wear...? 

how about the skirt I just finished, the top I refashioned & the gifted vest?

find out after the break!

Monday, December 24, 2012

Cheers to One and All!

It's a Monday and I can't help but I just finished a new top...and
My new Christmas eve day outfit.  yeah.

I made this long, straight skirt earlier in the week and had material leftover.  It's the last of the great corduroy fabric I scored recently.  So I made up a tunic top from what was left along with some scraps from the skirt with big pockets and the top with changed necklineWell, when I tried them both on together, it  looked kinda kimono-esque, don't you think?  The top also looked cute as a mini, if I dared, or as a tunic over other stuff.  It has pockets too, see em?

More pics after the break...

Monday, December 17, 2012

The Artist Not Wearing Banksy or Hirst

I've been toiling away in my studio for the past week or so on a little something something.  Ready?  Oh, but first, let me show you the latest Style Imitating Art inspiration...

Roller Rat by Banksy

Everyone's probably familiar with England's (in)famous street artist, Banksy.  But perhaps you were like me and unaware of this particular piece which has a hilarious back story.  Given a museum show in Bristol, Banksy had several rooms of his work, plus he put things amongst the museum's regular collection.

Lo and behold, the art world's darling, Damien Hirst, had one of his ridiculously expensive spot paintings housed there.  And that is what it looks like now after Banksy painted over it adding his trademark rat.  hee hee hee.

Okay, now you're ready to see what I've done after the break!

Monday, December 10, 2012

My Cords

Have been sewing with corduroy lately.  Love the stuff.  But haven't caught up with showing myself wearing them all.  Toward that end...

here's my new skirt with big pockets!

I also have on the new corduroy top I recently made.  See more views after the break...

Friday, December 7, 2012

Something's Happening Here and I Don't Know What It is

I've found myself being mesmerized by some images, ideas, blogs lately and I want to share a bit of it with you.  Many of these 'enlightenments' have come to me in circuitous routes, but many have happened through art for housewives, which is a marvelous resource and I urge you to check it out on a regular basis.

feminist top from art for housewives

For instance just click here on Sri Threads and feast your eyes.  I practically tear up it's so breathtakingly, humanly, amazing.  ahhh.

Sakabukuro from Sri Threads

And then reading from Grace and Mending about her discipline of procuring found cloth to create profound pieces.  I can go on and on, but let me just show pictures.
from Grace and Mending

I have a slew of images to share just after the break...

Monday, December 3, 2012

The Art of Disguise

Style Imitating Art is due tonight for Tuesday's showing here.  Meanwhile, why not show myself off with the Visible gang at Patti's Not Dead Yet Style, says I?  Come on over and see what we're all up to.  While I'm at it, I'm going to slip into the crowd at Monday Mingle too.  The more the merrier. So, let's get this week rolling! 

Here's the inspirational artwork:
Tree of Life stained glass by Henri Matisse

See how I styled with it after the break...

Sunday, December 2, 2012

State of the Project Minima: Y2-2nd Qtr.

This Fall quarter production totals 30 pieces refashioned and/or made-from scratch:  12 items of clothing, 8 pairs of shoes and 10 accessories, primarily jewelry.  The items are shown on the Clothes for Fall page, under year 2012.

painting by Sharon Yamamoto

Seems I've doubled my output from the Summer quarter (14 pieces) which was the start of my second year of Project Minima.  But there were extraneous circumstances that summer to consider.  See that report for details.

Noted trends from Project Minima Fall quarter:
  • rehabbing, painting of shoes
  • putting together bits and bobs for jewelry
  • mending knit gloves
  • buying some things:
           - new fabric (although it was drastically on sale @ $1.99/yard)
           - new patterns (they were drastically on sale online @ .99 to 3.99 ea.)
           - new color tights (also drastically on sale under $4 ea with free shipping)
           - second-hand shoes/boots:  e-bay golden boots, e-bay red & orange 
              cowboy boot shoes, thrift store pink snakeskin ankle boots
  • new concepts absorbed about design and construction for refashioning clothes

Read my thoughts about that after the break...

Friday, November 30, 2012

I've Been (Couture) Altered

It's the end of November, the end of my Fall season at Project Minima, and I've just finished refashioning a top this evening.  It was another Asianesque, made-from-scratch, blouse.  I spent some serious time on redesigning it to fit.

artwork by Moki Mioke

Seems to me I've had some major breakthroughs in my approach.  I credit it to reading Altered Couture (thanks Jean!) cover-to-cover, several times and to studying designer patterns a lot.  It's really opened my mind to alternative ways of thinking about how I want to construct clothes. 

I also finished sewing this great skirt from a Vogue pattern designed by the same person who did those pants I recently made, Marcy Tilton.  I just love it, it so architectural.  I'll have to get a pic of me wearing them, well both things, soon.  Meanwhile I do have pics on the Clothes for Fall page, if you'd like to check them out.  ahh, I'm tired...

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Repeat! Repeat!

Seeing as I'm a bit late for the party at Not Dead Yet Style, I'm reaching back into the vault today.  Here I am wearing my hand-me-down flannel shirt...transformed into plaid pants!  Yes you heard right and here's the pic to prove it, y'all.



I'm wearing a refashioned poet's top, the remade flannel shirt pants, and old platform shoe boots.  (Click on bold type to get to that item's origins.)  I was trying to finish my next corduroy project, but it's not going to be wearable in time, so hey, flannel's the next best thing.  Back to sewing.

Oh, I'm linking up with Patti's Not Dead Yet Style, of course.  And also the Monday Mingle.  Late.  Then there's Lakota's Ta-dah Tuesday.  And now Ethical Fashion Bloggers November's DIY challenge.

This just in:  I'm linking up to Spy Girl's 52 Pick-me-up: Honey!  Check it out.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Stop Shopping, Start Sewing

Remember Take Back the Night?  I say, let's take back our right not to shop, consume, over-indulge, etc.  Sounds good the day after Thanksgiving, or on the so-called Black Friday, or the __# of shopping days before Christmas, doesn't it?  Yeah.  Let's mark Today as Buy Nothing Day (Acquire Few Needs.)  How about the idea of wanting what you already have for a start?  Or being who you are so you can do what you want in order to have what you need.  Something like that, rather than the other way around.

painting by Ray Caesar

Anyways, not that I'm a saint about it all, but let's get it under some control already.  How much does a person really need/want/have to have?  Of any thing?  Breathe. 

Okay, here's what I made today and the week before (after the break)...

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Let Me Brooch the Subject

Oh good, I've just heard the news: Une Femme wants to see our jewels!!!  Well, brooches really.  And I simply must obey, as I've been displaying mine forevah.

 painting by Pat Otto, Jewel, 1984
I have a pix of them on my Clothes for Fall page, but for your convenience, I'll place it right here...(after the break)

Monday, November 19, 2012

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Hanging Out with Frida - Again

Ethical Fashion Bloggers issued a challenge to Frida yourself, so I'm re-posting something I put together for Style Imitating Art way back when.  (cheater, cheater!)  Interesting how things you like all overlap, isn't it?

Self-Portrait ala Frida Kahlo by pao
Self Portrait by Frida Kahlo

more after the break... 

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Quietly and Spot On

Let me tell you a little story about how the universe works.

~ artwork by Marieloes Reek ~
The other day I'm in my studio, and my true love comes in with a bag of stuff, dumps it out on the floor, and lo and behold... There are my red Doc Martin's along with some colorful socks and athletic shoes that I had donated to the Salvation Army over 10 years ago.  Apparently the bag ended up in the basement instead.  (what was I thinking?)

Monday, November 12, 2012

It's Monday!

And you know what that's showtime at Patti's Not Dead Yet Style for all the Visibles!  Join us and start your week off right!
Here's looking at you, kid!

Check out the details after the break...

Monday, November 5, 2012

Young Girl and Her Mother?

Style Imitating Art is here again!  And this is one I couldn't get into, I mean literally.  There just wasn't any room for me in the painting.  So rather than force the issue, I stepped aside, and I do mean literally.  Here's the inspiration:

painting by Tamara de Lempicka

You can see how I interpreted the "Young Girl in Green" after the break...

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Animals and Angels

~ artwork by Emile Morel ~

...were just pouring out of me in the jewelery-making scene.  But that's it for awhile.  I've cleared off the table in my studio and am ready for a sewing bout again.  Meanwhile all the jewels-to-be are now organized to the max which delights me to no end.

Without further ado, here's my latest playthings (after the break)...

Monday, October 29, 2012

The Mystery of THE Golden Boots

~ painting by Mike Worrall ~

Coming up, what I wore to school on Saturday with THE boots.  Everything goes with 'em.  The silly excuse the e-bayer gave for selling them was she hadn't a clue of what to wear with golden boots - puleeze.  Well actually, thank goodness, because they're on MY feet now.  Yeah baby!   I'm rocking 'em with my lagenlooking.  Check it out after the break...

Friday, October 26, 2012

Some Bugs and Barbie

Alrighty then, we have a combo for you today.  Yesiree, step right up and see three of the most unusual  pieces...

artwork by Maurizio Anzeri

....yes, of Maurizio's embroidered photos, but also dah, dah, dah, dahhhh,...

(more after the break!)

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Ain't It A Darning Shame

And now ladies and gentlemen, for your viewing's elbow length, ivory knitted and pearl decorated gloves!  That's what I'm highlighting today for the Ethical Fashion Bloggers October DIY knit challenge.  No, they weren't handmade by me, but I did clean, darn, and mend them so I can make this fashion statement:
Yes, yes, I've just highlighted the gloves.  
and here's a close-up
AI-yi-yi, my inexperienced darning job

Otherwise I am wearing an old pillowcase turned into a top with a lace and trim collar and mom's old kitchen curtains turned into pantaloons all made by me.  The boots, however, were recently bought, used, as confessed here (click on the bold items to see more about them.)

Check out what other Ethical Fashion Bloggers have brought to the October DIY Knit challenge after Tuesday.  And I'm joining others at the Pleated Poppy.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Some Volcano Action

Woohoo, it's Style Imitates Art Time!  And here's the inspiration:
 South Wind Clear Sky by Katsushika Hokusai

And my interpretation:
Me and Volcano on Fairly Nice Day

I just love these things! To get a better idea of what I'm actually wearing and where it came from see the pic after the break.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

I've Been Pinned!

Yeah, I'm referring to it as Pin-arrested, actually.   I just noticed a sudden influx of visits from that site and wondered...WTF, you know?  So traveling back in time and space, what did I behold?  A selection of photos of my very self from my very own Project Minima posted on someone's Pinterest Board...about Lagenlooks!  (Apparently I am a prime example of that style of dress.  Who knew?!)  And I have been re-Pin-arrested by other entities too.
kinetic sculpture by Claire Oswalt

Back to lagenlooks.  A few moments before this arresting discovery, I had just read a post by Meagan Mae on the very same subject of Lagenlook.  (What are the odds?!)  The style seems to be about a loose, long, layering look.  Yes, I guess I do do that, don't I?  hmmm.  So I've been labelled too!

Anyway, I have never gotten into Pinterruptus.  I've always thought it a big waste

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

From the Treasure Trove

I've been assembly bits and bobs together to make some jewelry lately.
painting by George Gower

Oh, and I received a Sunshine Award from the loverly Vivienne of Thrifted Shift: 
Thank you.  While I will always appreciate a bit of sunshine sent my way, I really do loath all the Q&A that tag along with those I shall make up my own rules and repeal that aspect.

I'm going to award some sunshine pick-me-ups to a couple of bloggers who could use it right now.  Vix of Vintage Vixen who has a bit of pnemonia and Lakota of Faith, Hope and Charity Shopping who is nursing a cold.  Enjoy your Sunshine Award and do with it what you will!

Now back to my treasure trove...after the break

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Meet Up with Frau Fiber

Made possible by an art exhibition entitled Opening the Black Box: The Charge is Torture.   A call was put out by Frau Fiber (the founder of the original Sewing Rebellion) for local stitchers to join the Chicago Chapter of the Sewing Rebellion in a stitch-in at the Sullivan Galleries.   The task was an interactive one: to work on a prison bed-size quilt within the exhibition space, as a way to commemorate the cases of torture by the Chicago police.

As the host of the monthly gathering of the Sewing Rebellion in Chicago, it was my great pleasure to finally meet Frau Fiber (now living in L.A.) in person for the first time.  
Frau and I happy to see each other at the gallery!

See pic of the opening and quilt after the break...

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Tulle Time & OMG I Bought Something

Well I don't have any, tulle that is, nor do I have a tutu, ballerina outfit, can-can slip or the like.  The closest thing I can come up with is all these pantaloons I've been making with organza and lace.  Does that count?

Here's to all my sistah bloggers who have transcended time and space in tutus on stairs with tea!  If you don't know what the #@% I'm talking about, Miss Simmonds deliciously spells it out with pictures and links in her post, I am doll parts.

Please remember, I'm doing the best that I can with what I've got...drumroll...

Yeah, I know.  What a let down compared to all the other groovy ladies.  But let me tell you, try putting on multiple layers of pantaloons sometime, yeah.

Maybe if you let me say a bit about the pieces I can get extra credit for effort.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

An Art Attack

You're not going to believe what's up for today's Style Inspires Art:

~ Watson and the Shark by John Singleton Copley ~

Yep.  See how I worked this one after the break...

Thursday, October 4, 2012

A Bit of This and That what I've been doing lately.  Finishing things up really.
~ artwork by Pamela Murphy ~

Two more pairs of shoes.  Some altering and mending.  A clutch bag,  kimono top, found shirt in a give-away box, a couple of tunics, my lady boots.  I think that's it.  All completed in the last few days.  So do click on the Fall Clothes page, under "A Bit of This and That" for quite an eye-full.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Monochromatic Wine...?

Yes, I guess that's what you'd call it.  What I wore to class today:  a variety of wines in my wardrobe choices of home-made concoctions.  See for yourself.

All made-from-scratch &/or refashioned by moi!
Except for the jewelry - the necklace of red glass beads was store bought a hundred years ago and the bracelet I found in a give-away box.  The kimono-type satin and suede jacket was made-from-scratch pre-Project Minima.  So were the dress and pants, but they were later re-styled.  (Click on the bold words to see what happened and how).  And more painted shoes!
a look down at some newly painted shoes
These used to be beat-up black suede oxfords and I painted them with my finger massage method in Cadmium Red Deep with some Magenta for the strap.  I coated them with clear gloss acrylic medium at the end.

I'll be joining others at Patti's Not Dead Yet Style and Monday Mingle.  
Come on Over!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Stepping Out

...of my True Love's painting in all florals.

and everything's made or refashioned by moi!
Okay, from the top:  made-from-scratch reversible vest and skirt, rehabbed transparent dress and shoes. Just click on bold items to get to post about them and see details.

I know it's a bit much, but I wanted to wear my newly painted oxfords and dressed myself from the feet up - one thing led to another - and voila.  I had to go to class.  Worse things could have happened...

Come see me and others at the Pleated Poppy.
And I'm participating in Ethical Fashion Bloggers Outfit Challenge - Brights.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Prehistoric Me

A fabulous inspiration was chosen for Style Imitates Art this time:
~ a painting from Lascaux cave in France  ~
While I'm at it, I want to encourage everyone to see Werner Herzog's documentary on the most recent cave discovered in France housing the oldest cave drawings known (30,000 years old), called Cave of Forgotten Dreams.   (The Lascaux cave paintings are dated at a mere 17,300 years old.)  The film itself is incredible, not to mention its subject.  You can get it on netflix.  Miraculous.  Let me know what you think.

Okay, see what I did with this after the break... 

Friday, September 21, 2012


Style Agent 909 suggested we all link up and do an on-line swap this Saturday, September 22.  So here I am with what I have to offer:

 Black suede heels, says size 8, feels like size 7
These shoes are in excellent condition inside and out, top and bottom.  They're too small for me now and too high.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Kimono with Loafers (and Sox)!

Yeahhhh...I'm too crazy cool for school.  I'm too nerdy quirk for work.  I'm too overblown for home.  But I'm outta sight for here, right!

made-from-scratch kimono top & skirt, upcyled loafers & old sox 

I know, too much of a build up, right?  But wait til you see the shoes after the break...

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Shoe Be Do Be Do...

what were the chances...I'd be re-do-ing shoes...before the night was through?...ah, yes.  I have had a serious case of shoe lust lately.

shoes designed and created by Lloraine Neithardt

So to keep myself in line, I've dived into the depths of my closet to reclaim some lost soles.  Surely no one needs sooo many pairs of black and/or brown shoes!  Where are all the beautiful colors I crave?!

Just check out these gems after the break, my dears...

Sunday, September 9, 2012

The Madame and I

...are posing for Style Imitates ArtHere is David's (pronounced Dah-veed's) painting of her looking right out at us.  Now check out what's happening with me after the jump!
Madame Charles Louise Trudaine by Jacques Louis David

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Back to School Day

What I wore my first day back to college where I teach painting & drawing.
I dressed feet first today.  Why?  Well, just take a look at those awesome shoes I'm wearing.  I upcycled them yesterday.

I have been so craving new shoes lately.  Really massively lusting after them.  So...I went through the back of my closet and found a bunch

Monday, September 3, 2012

Wearing It Out...

or In, as the case may be.  I'm speaking of the previously noted Downhome Funky Dress.  See?!
Shot live in the bed-sitting room, looking out into the museum/archives
I'm sporting that dress and that necklace along with an old stretch lace store-bought top and old cowboy boot clogs.  Click on the bold words to check out what the items look like up close and personal!

And without further ado, I'm linking up with Patti and all the Visibles at Not Dead Yet Style,  the Pleated Poppy,  Recycled Fashion Finds and Refashion Co-op.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

My Downhome Funky Dress

Yep. That's what I have to call it, the poor old homely thing.  This is one of those pieces I kept working on and saying it was a flop, stopping, and then giving it another go, ad nauseum.  Well, the other day I went at it and didn't stop until I declared it was finished and boy was it funky.
artwork by Elisabeth Lecourt

So funky in fact, that I decided it needed a downhome funky homemade necklace to go with it.  And so there's that too.  I made it out of a bunch 'o junk that I painted with nail polish to boot!

The dress started out as a plain store-bought linen shift with short sleeves.   I added some length by taking the hem down and sewing crocheted lace to the bottom.  I ended up removing the sleeves after trying a bunch of different stuff to keep them.  And I added some floral print linen from my fabric stash as side inserts so it would fit me.  Check out the Clothes for Fall if you want to see it.

Friday, August 31, 2012

State of Project Minima: Summer of Year 2

Starting from scratch with Year 2, I've completed a total of 14 refashions during this first quarter of summer.    
~ painting by Marieloes Reek ~
~I notice a new trend with my posts where I'm including more of my everyday life, thoughts and opinions.  Like in the posts: Memory Lane, DIY Shelving, I Don't Donate/Thrift, Graceland Sketch Club, and giving out my art website.

~I bought something, the first thing in 1 year & 3 months:  a pair of shoes!  Sandals to be exact, on sale at Marshall's - for my 60th b'day.

~Then I got pneumonia.

~I've often been a nervous wreck about health insurance and work.  The Reader has been decimated and sold to The Sun Times and my true

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Linens and Things

Dug into my retired bedding for this one. 
~ painting by Antonio Macedo ~
The pillow cases had beautiful lace trim about 4 inches wide.  Made from 100% cotton, they had been laundered many, many times and were so soft.  

Referring to my Japanese Stylish Dress Book, I chose pattern X to create a topI must say, even though it's

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

T-Shirt Tunic Mod

I've been working on a bunch of losing propositions lately.  ah well.  This is one I can lounge around in anyway.

Here we are...
It's a modification from a tunic top I saw on Refashion Co-op by Love Flow Creations.  When I tried it out in the original format it was gigantic on me (and I'm not a little person by any means).  So I reconfigured a smaller version out of old t-shirts I didn't much care for - just to see what would happen.  I basically used half the amount of t-shirts as recommended and my tunic was still quite huge.  Maybe if I used really small ones, it would work out better.  We'll see, another time.

You'll be able to see it's kind of kimono-esque in shape, if you check out the Clothes for Summer page.  It's actually made from 2 shirts: 1 faded navy and 1 deep purple.  The short sleeves I removed have been turned into patch pockets.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Three's a Charm

It's that time of the month again Ladies...and luckily for us it happens twice a month:  Style Imitates Art!  So without further ado, may I present to you, today's work of inspiration:

Two Girls in Bed by Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec

To see what I did (heh, heh, heh) stay tuned after the jump...