16th December 2013
I have to admit that at the beginning of December something clicked and since then I’ve been unashamedly donning as much sparkle as possible. This magpie style penchant for all the pretty pretties seems to be an inclination that strikes like clockwork, as soon as the holiday period comes around. If you can’t cover yourself in glue and roll in glitter before you go out at this time of year, when can you? Recently Swarovski and I got together to work on a holiday accessory using their new Swarovski Elements beads, and it was the perfect timing – their new beads are about as sparkly as one can get without being dangerous, and so I set about creating something to wear on Christmas Day. The result was this necklace, shiny and bright in more ways than one, and just as perfect for wearing with a simple sweater as with a top-to-toe sequin dress.
- a few assorted Swarovski Elements beads
- thick black rope
- think gold and black rope
- gold and black paillettes
- a needle and thread
- two end caps the size of the black rope
- a lobster clasp and some jump rings
- super glue
1. Start by preparing the base rope by adding the end caps. To do this, put a dollop of glue into the bottom of the caps.
2. Press onto the rope and leave to dry overnight.
3. Cut a small section of gold rope and then start to sew your black paillettes on.
4. Sew them across the front of the rope.
5. Add a few gold paillettes to create a statement section.
6. Add the beads into the centre of the gold paillettes.
7. Secure the gold rope to the black base rope by wrapping the ends with thread and tying in a knot.
8. Then stitch the two ropes together at along the back.
9th December 2013
As many of you probably know by now, nothing satisfies me more than reworking old, boring pieces from my local secondhand shop into shiny and bright wardrobe essentials that I can not only wear down the street for a coffee, but actually throw on for my christmas party. I saw this white dress in a thrift store and bought it because I supposed that deep down it had some potential, if not only as a blank wall for me to go all Banksy on. Once home, I put it on and asked my boyfriend what he thought I should do with it and he said (with zero pause and much vehemence) ‘burn it!’. As you can imagine, his response was pretty much a red-rag-to-a-bull style challenge for me to see if I could make it into something not bound for a Joan of Arc inspired farewell. With a quick hem chop, a few nips and tucks and the addition of some golden paillette sequins, I think it worked out ok! Read on to see just how I did it.
- A dress or top with a simple round neckline
- 100 or so gold paillettes
- A needle and thread
1. The first thing I did to make the dress more party worthy was to cut a few inches off the bottom of it because it was an odd middi length.
2. I used my sewing machine to finish the hem.
3. And then ironed it nice and flat. I also took it in a bit at the back by tightening the little belt tie that went around the back, and folded the sleeves under once and ironed them down. These small changes made the world of difference to the shape and overall look.
4. Then I grabbed a handful of paillettes… So shiny! (eyes light up).
5. I then took some time out on the couch to then handsew the paillettes onto the dress. This might sound super tedious and some of you may want to opt for glue instead, but honestly it didn’t take much longer than an hour (in fact, one episode of homeland – the sewing gave me a great excuse to avert my eyes during the suspenseful bits!), and they have so much more movement and flow when they are sewn on.
6. I left a small gap along the edge so they didn’t scratch my skin.
7. I sewed them all the way around to the shoulder seams, and then repeated with layers underneath.
8. Knot each sequin at the back as I have done here by threading the needle through a loop made by a stitch . This will ensure that if one comes off, they don’t all come off.
9. In the end I did around 4 layers. I mainly tried to make sure the gaps between the sequins were filled and didn’t bother making it too tidy, straight or regimented.
Et voila! I have to say the this is exactly what I needed to satisfy my holiday-party-dress cravings! Can’t wait to wear it this week (can kinda see myself spilling red wine on it already…).
For more Before & After posts head here.
Outfit photos by Luke Casey
28th October 2013
If you’d said to me ‘sequin cushion’ a while ago it wouldn’t have been my jam. But interestingly, I have to admit that recently I’ve come around to the idea of a bit of sparkle in the lounge room, but only in a ‘one in a VERY neutral room’ kind of situation so it’s not too in your face. As usual, when it comes to sequins, for me it’s all about the colour and the matte – when in doubt I go for the non shiny ones or sequins in a larger size. I think it would be quite easy to stitch some matte sequins (like these) over the top of a simple Ikea cushion – and bing bang bong you’re done!