Spring: Dreams vs. Reality

the artyologist image of dream vs reality spring dressing with trenchcoat, black floral skirt and scarf

April is a saucy flirt, teasing us with sweet sunshine, gentle breezes and the chatter of songbirds. Beckoning us to come outdoors, breathe the fresh clean air, see the spring bulbs poking their brave heads up, reaching for the sky only to tempestuously change her mind in a fit of rain-shower rage and send us back indoors scrambling to keep dry.

And so it was on this day here: waking up and planning what to wear, only to have the weather dash those dreams on the soggy ground. Only this time it was a spring snowstorm, rather than rainstorm. I don’t know why I am surprised: every Spring is the same. There is always more snow, and it usually comes on the first day of Spring itself!
the artyologist image of spring dressing rubber boots and black hotter loafers

So, the dream vs. the reality: I had hoped to wear my black loafers with this outfit, but instead ended up wearing rainboots. I kept dry though, and I suppose there will be days enough for the loafers.

the artyologist: image of spring dream vs reality snow in springtime

So a few words about this outfit. This is the first year that I have owned white tights, and I must say they are great for seasonal dressing, as they are light and bright, and perfect for spring, while still offering much needed warmth on days like this.

the artyologist: image of spring dressing cardigan and floral skirt

You may have noticed that I shortened this skirt. It was a bit too short to be long, and bit too long to be short. If that makes sense. I had hoped for a long, elegant, sweeping floral skirt, but instead ended up with something a bit more frumpy. Not the look I had envisioned. It didn’t hang quite right, so I made the decision to chop it off instead, and it is much improved. It has become so much more wearable. Who would have thought that a few inches could make such a difference!

the artyologist: image of jade polar bear necklace

the artyologist: image of spring dressing with floral skirt, black hotter loafers and white tights

Also, as we were out taking pictures, my sister’s little “pets” came to visit us. They didn’t want to stop and pose for the camera, but I was able to get at least one photo!

the artyologist: image of feeding a chickadee in your hand

Tulip Study

the artyologist- image of tulips

Nothing heralds the arrival of spring as much as tulips do.

My mom received this glorious bouquet of tulips for an Easter gift- and what a wonderful gift it was for all of us! This was one of the most beautiful bouquets I have ever seen.

The thing that I love about tulip bouquets is that they are so wild and untamed. Tulips keep growing even after they are cut, and try as you might to arrange them in some semblance of order, when you come back to look at them later, they will be sprawled in every which way and doing their own thing. Some people put a penny in the water to keep the flowers upright, but I love them like this. It was sad when they were finished blooming, but now we get to wait for the tulips coming up in the ground now, which won’t be far off!

the artyologist- image of tulips

the artyologist- image of tulips

the artyologist- image of tulips

the artyologist- image of tulips

the artyologist- image of tulips

A Multitude of Birds

the artyologist- image of vintage hummingbird dress, butterick 4790Apparently Sunday was bird celebration day, judging by my outfit. This Butterick 4790 dress, which I’ve already worn on the blog, is covered in hummingbirds, and continuing the theme, (because you know you might as well go all in where these things are considered) I topped off the outfit with my owl pendant necklace. Too bad my hat didn’t have feathers on it!

It doesn’t have feathers on it, but this black straw saucer style hat is covered in pearl dotted black veiling (which I tucked up under the brim). I paired the dress with my favourite black mary jane pumps, a faux patent leopard print purse, and light black knitted bolero as it is warm enough to go without a coat.

As for these photos- they were taken in between clouds. 🙂 The sun was so incredibly bright on Sunday, and far be it from me to complain about the sunshine, but it does wreck havoc on photos! We couldn’t find any good spot in the shade to take the pictures, but the sky was dotted with just enough big puffy clouds to cover the sun long enough to take a few photos where I wasn’t squinting in the bright light.

the artyologist- image of vintage hummingbird dress, butterick 4790 and black saucer hat

the artyologist- image of vintage hummingbird dress, butterick 4790 and faux patent leopard clutch

the artyologist- image of vintage hummingbird dress, butterick 4790 and faux patent leopard clutch

the artyologist image of vintage hummingbird dress, butterick 4790 and miz mooz mary jane shoes

the artyologist image of vintage hummingbird dress, butterick 4790 and black saucer hat

the artyologist- image of grass flowers

the artyologist image of vintage hummingbird dress, butterick 4790 and owl pendant necklace

the artyologist image of vintage hummingbird dress, butterick 4790

Before and After: Hat Edition

the artyologist image of vintage hats to fix

Hats are by far the easiest way to introduce a vintage look to an outfit, for as much as people wear dresses these days, hats are few and far between. Millinery is always something I have been interested in, but not very good at as I am attempting to self teach myself the art. There is a lot of information online for sure, but it is always tricky to start something when you have no idea what you are doing- just a vague idea of what you want the finished product to look like!

Here are the three hats I mentioned a while back, that I picked up at an antique mall for a good price. The two black ones are modern, and the feathered hat is a vintage one from the 1960’s. I love the feathered hat just as it is, but the black caps, especially the one with the brooch and netting, are actually rather boring once put on. My thought when I got these, was that I could make them over and embellish them with a bit of vintage flair, without having to make the hat itself from scratch. As Lydia in Pride and Prejudice says, “Look here, I have bought this bonnet. I do not think it is very pretty; but I thought I might as well buy it as not. I shall pull it to pieces as soon as I get home, and see if I can make it up any better.”

So what are my plans for the hats?

the artyologist image of feathered hat before broken feathers

The pheasant hat was easy since I liked it as is, minus the broken feathers. I pulled them out and added a few turquoise feathers, once of which I twisted into a loop, and the tiny spotted feather. Much improved. Although now I still have to wait several months to wear it. At least I have something to look forward to!

the artyologist image of vintage 1960's feathered hat after in front of wallpaper

the artyologist image of vintage 1960's feathered hat detail

As for the other two, about a month ago I came across this beautiful mint coloured felt hat by master milliner Philip Treacy. (Phillip Treacy has made many of the hats we see the Royal’s wearing). I absolutely fell in love with the giant pompom flower, and immediately started wondering how I could make something like this. When I came across the black hat, I had my answer. I haven’t started construction on it yet, but will attempt something of the kind. I also really love the red hat, so if the flower doesn’t work out, I could always make a ginormous bow. If something in life needs embellishing, a bow should do the trick!

philip treacy fw15 collection

(Photos from Philip Treacy)

I am thinking that I will also make a large bow to fit on the other black hat. It needs some oomph too, as the velvet bow is a little understated. There is a hole under the velvet bow, where I think someone ripped some kind of embellishment off, so I need to keep that in mind whatever I decide to do. If all else fails and I can’t figure out how to attach a bow, I could always go with this.

philip-treacy-feathered-hat

(Photo from Philip Treacy)

Just kidding! As crazy as this hat is, it is AMAZING, but I don’t think I would ever be brave enough to wear a hat like this unless I was attending Royal Ascot or something. It’s fun to dream though!