Thankful For: A long warm fall. It’s strange to have come this far in the season without snow, but I’m enjoying these warmer days.
Reading: I have come across so many good second hand books lately- books have definitely been my spending weakness this year! I foundAbsent in the Spring by Mary Westmacott, which was Agatha Christie’s pen name for her books outside of the murder mystery genre. I liked this one, though the cover description didn’t reflect the story at all! The version I got was published in the 1970’s (the story takes place in the 1930’s) and they made it sound like an adventure and romance. It was not like that at all; it was more of an introspective, psychological story. I like Agatha Christie’s writing, so it was fun to read something different than a murder mystery.
I also found a copy of The Curated Closet by Anuschka Rees! I’ve been wanting to get this book for years and was so happy to find it second hand. (At this shop “Found Goods” in Innisfree, AB– if you are ever in the area, definitely check it out!) This book is the one that jumpstarted my own closet refresh and overhaul over the past several years. If you are struggling with your wardrobe, I recommend this one.
Loving: Baby clothes. I have a nephew now, so I’ve been sewing some things and buying others. It’s nice to have a reason to make baby items. This felted elf bonnet and matching boots are one of the cutest things I’ve ever made.
Crafting: Christmas ornaments! It’s December now, so that means it’s time to decorate. This year I’ve been trying out some folded paper ornaments of different styles. These stars are very easy to make and you can follow the tutorial here. (Ps. Don’t worry- I only craft with books that have been damaged and are no longer readable!) If you’ve been thinking of Christmas crafting, then here are some of the other ornament ideas I came across on Pinterest. (and some other craft ideas in there too!)
The other thing I’ve been making is bookplates. I had a lot of fun designing these with vintage artwork, and have added them to my Poshmark shop.
Well, that’s what I have been busy with lately. I wish you a lovely start to your December!
“After looking into it and taking a self quiz, I discovered that I am either a Soft Summer or a Soft Autumn. I can’t decide which, so I chose to put myself right in between both! …. I think that I fall a bit more towards the Soft Autumn palette, because as I looked back through my favourite outfits on my blog, I realized that some of my colour choices need to be a little bit warmed up.”
Well, we all make mistakes, and that was one of mine! I spent that entire post creating a warm toned personal colour palette for myself, completely missing the fact that I actually lean more cool toned. While I can wear some warmer colours well, my best colours have a cool undertone.
So, how did I figure out that I had this completely backwards? Back in the spring my mom and sister and I spent an afternoon colour draping in order to find which colours are our personal best. In this method, you drape different tones and shades and study in the mirror to see how they effect your complexion etc. We followed this excellent guideline.
The first step is to determine whether you are cool or warm, and immediately after draping the orange and fuchsia fabrics, we could see that all three of us have a cool undertone. You should be able to tell when you drape these two colours. The orange fabric made me look sallow and brought out all of the dark spots in my skin, while the pink, though not a good shade for me, looked much better. It’s hard to see the difference in the photos I took, unfortunately, but you can sort of see that my skin looks brighter in the pink, and a bit more dull in the orange. Some people may have a very dramatic difference, while for others it may be not as clear. Through draping different shades of each colour ranging from dark to light, and muted to clear, we were able to pinpoint which shades worked the best for each of us.
I see colour analysis as a gradient, with your best colours on one side. These colours enhance your beauty and make you look vibrant and alive without any extra work. The colours that are “OK” are in the middle. They don’t make you shine quite as much as your best colours, and you might need to compensate with styling, but they don’t make you look sickly either. And then on the other side are your worst colours which will make you look like you’re ready to roll into a coffin.
And so, this is how I figured out that my best colours, with a few exceptions, are ones that look like they have been desaturated, or smokey, but not earthy. A lot of my best colours align with the Soft Summer colour seasons palette: muted shades that have grey added to them. In comparison, Autumn features warm shades that are muted with the addition of brown. There were some surprising results, and going through the draping process revealed my bias towards colours I like, but that aren’t actually my best colours. Thus, my personal colour palette has changed a bit from my previous post…
In the palette I created back in 2021, I chose these colours:
Tan / Camel
Navy / Blue
I got this wrong! The colours I should have chosen are:
Pearl / Mushroom
Navy / Blue
Some of those original colours still work great, but the warmer shades are better converted to cool ones.
For neutrals, my best choices are pink beige, mushroom or taupe shades, and I should stay away from yellow beiges and tans. Interestingly, I should have been able to figure this out years ago, because my winter coat isn’t a true camel colour, but actually has a pink brown undertone. How did I not see that?
A surprise was that brown is actually not a bad colour for me! (Which is good because I really like brown!) While warm browns aren’t my best choices, they fall into that middle “OK” category.
As for my “white”, I look best in off whites, with a bit of a pink or grey undertone, rather than bright white, cream or ivory which make me look ill.
Navy is a good colour even though it is dark. Blue is, unsurprisingly, one of my best colours.
Dusty rose, mauve, blush and lavender are also good colours for me. I’m excited to add pink to my wardrobe, but don’t really have plans to add lavender, since it doesn’t go with much else and I am not drawn to shades of purple.
And then here is where I chose to “break the rules”.
Black is not a bad colour, although it’s a bit too intense for head to toe, but I can wear it without looking completely washed out. I have lots of pieces that I really like in black (including my glasses!), however, like I spoke of in that original post two years ago, I treat black as an accent colour, not as a neutral. I don’t pair very many other colours with black because the contrast is too great for me.
The black paired with tan is softer than black paired with colour.
Grey is one of the best colours for a cool undertone, and it is a good colour on me… but I don’t like grey! I have had some pieces over the years, but I’ve slowly gotten rid of almost all of the grey pieces I have in my closet. This is an example of using the colour analysis as a jumping off point, but then personalizing it to your own taste. If you don’t like a colour, just because it “looks good on you” doesn’t mean you have to wear it.
As for my beloved mustard yellow and ochre, I’ve decided to steer clear of it for tops and pieces that are near my face. I still love mustard yellow, but I just don’t love it on me, so I’ll keep it for accessories, such as bags or tights.
Regarding those warm browns, cinnamons and beiges…I am not eliminating them from my closet, because I love them too much! However, I have moved many of them to pieces that aren’t close to my face. That is the biggest part of colour analysis: you can wear any colour as a skirt or shoes, but not every colour looks the best as a blouse or scarf.
And, as for my post in 2021 about “warming things up” I do still think this works well for me with accessories, such as my cognac purse and shoes. They keep my cool coloured outfits from becoming too dark and contrasted, like they would if I was to pair them with black accessories. I think what I was unknowingly getting at from that observation, was to create outfits that are more muted, not necessarily warm. One of my favourite colour combinations is blue paired with brown, and when I think about it, that is a more muted and soft colour choice than black and blue is.
Pairing blue with brown vs. pairing it with black. The brown is a softer effect.
So, should you try colour draping yourself? Absolutely yes!
When you know which colours are your personal best, it is so much easier to put together your wardrobe and your outfits. An example my sister gave, in regards to wearing black, is that black washes her out so she always feels that she has to compensate with makeup. How much easier it is to wear a colour that makes you look amazing, even if you don’t wear any makeup or go to great lengths with your accessories!
Finding my best colours has been so helpful for me to realize why I gravitate to wearing certain things in my wardrobe, and why other outfits feel a little “off”. I love warm colours such as mustard, cinnamon, olive and camel, however, when I wore those colours they didn’t look as good as I had hoped they would. I know a couple of ladies who look amazing in mustard yellow, however, when I wear it I look a little peaky and you notice the clothing, but not me. It just never worked as well on me, and didn’t make as much of an impact as it does on those ladies.
Even if you are hesitant to drape your colours like I used to be, because you don’t want to “limit yourself”, knowing which colours are your best is an incredibly helpful tool as you shop and choose outfits. (And, remember, if you know the rules, you can creatively break them!) Finding your colours doesn’t limit you to only a part of the swatch book, but helps guide you to finding pieces that make you look great without even trying. I’ve personally started wearing a lot more blue in the past few months and have been more intentional about shopping for pieces that are good for my colouring while skipping the sections that aren’t. I’ve also changed my sewing plans for certain fabrics, because I realized that I wouldn’t like them as dresses and they would work much better as skirts. Thus, I’ve saved myself a lot of frustration of going to the effort of sewing something new, only to not like how it turned out.
I made both of these fabrics into skirts instead of dresses, once I realized they were too warm toned.
Finding your best colours also doesn’t mean you have to clear everything out and start over. From this point on, as you shop or sew, focus on your new personal colour palette and those older pieces will either slowly wear out or rotate out as you find new pieces. Of course, if you really love a colour and it makes you feel great when you wear it, then wear it with confidence!
But, in conclusion, yes I highly recommend trying out colour draping and creating a personal colour palette for your closet! And if you don’t get it right the first time, don’t worry…in a few years you’ll probably figure it out! Just kidding (I hope)!
Have you ever “gotten your colours done” before, or draped your own? Do you have a personal colour palette for your wardrobe? How do you include colours you love which aren’t your personal best?
We’ve been enjoying a beautiful long fall, with warm temperatures for most of the past month, but in the last few days it’s dropped and that wind is cold in the mornings. I’ve still been wearing my summer wrap skirts and short sleeved tops, albeit with a coat on top, but these last few days have put me in the mood for cozy knits. And what better way to get in the mood for colder weather than some good vintage knitwear! Today I’ve got the 1959 “Easy to Make Fashions for the North, South, East, West” by American Thread Company, Star Book No. 149.
First up this lovely cropped cardigan. I will take one each in black, brown, camel, sage, rose and navy please. Interestingly, this one features a detachable collar, fastened with Velcro, which was still extremely new at this point, having been invented only a few years before in 1954.
On the other end of the spectrum is the long cardigan, which can be made to any length you like. I love this late 50’s look, where the styles held onto some of that 50’s glamour, but had loosened up a bit.
Now for two lovely cardigans…and I have cropped the models faces out of the images because whoever owned this pattern book thought it was a good idea to draw their faces with a blue pen! The cardigan on the left reminds me of Welsh knitwear designs- it’s so intricate!
Now for some his and hers pieces!
I love this yellow one, it’s like an upscale version of a hoodie.
This is my go to winter look- well not with that toque! But I love tucking a pullover sweater into a skirt, especially a cute plaid one like that.
And lastly two beautiful stoles!
Which vintage knitwear pieces are your favourites? Are you looking forward to sweater weather again, or would you prefer that the temperatures stayed warm a while longer?
Happy Saturday everyone! It’s been a while since I posted, except for the duckling photos last week, so here’s some of the things I have been up to this summer…
Years ago I printed a bunch of my flowers and scenery photos, but didn’t really want to have an album full of them. So, I stamped and punched and stitched them, turning them into cards and postcards. It was the perfect way to use them!
I also made yet another pair of baby shoes, for another newborn in our church. Baby shoes are so hard to make because they are so tiny, but so easy to make because they don’t take very long from start to finish!
After about 12 years of using my old water bottle, it was finally time to get a new one. It looked like it had gone through a war, and the paint was flaking off around the top, which didn’t seem particularly healthy, so I got a new one with a stainless steel top edge. It’s also insulated, and has been so nice for keeping my water cool during the hot months! Anyways, I just wanted to share because I thought that my old one was a good example of “Use it up… Wear it out… Make it do… Or do without!” #zerowaste
I’m not sure what variety of apples these are, but we picked quite a few and froze them to use for baking this winter.
My Bible had seen better days, and the cover was falling off, so I decoupaged it with fabric and put in new endpapers. Not professionally done, by any means, but it was fun to do, and now my Bible is hopefully ready for the next 10 years.
I sewed a new little tote bag. It’s just a simple bag without any gussets, and is perfect for rolling up to tuck into my purse for a day out shopping.
I got a new quilt for my bed. I loved the one that I made out of vintage sheets, but because it wasn’t 100% cotton, I found that I often overheated during the night. I was originally looking for a white quilt, but couldn’t find anything in a soft white. When my mom found this green and cream floral one by Laura Ashley, I knew it was the one!
Well, that’s what I’ve been up to the past few months. I didn’t plan to take a break over the summer; it just kind of happened, but I’m planning to blog more this season. I hope you are all doing well, and have a great weekend!
I don’t know why I didn’t post these photos back in June… I didn’t even sort and edit them at the time, but they are too cute to leave languishing in a folder!
My mom got Khaki Campbell ducklings this year, in the hopes she can raise them for eggs. They are almost fully grown now (though still a few more months before they are laying), so it’s fun to look back and see what they looked like a couple of months ago.