Styled Up with Blouses

This week, our featured product is The SteamPunk Dress along with The PuffBall Skirt. As usual, featured products are on sale, but for VIPs only. You can gain access to these offers simply by ordering our newsletter. Every Friday, we send out a newsletter which includes recaps of our blog posts, a bit of news, and a discount code for our featured product.

Today, I wanted to create a few styles with blouses! The SteamPunk Dress especially loves blouses, and I wanted to show you what it looks like with different textures. I ended up using the same blouse on two looks, so let’s see how I did!

See-Through SteamPunk

A while back, I modded a circle skirt I had. It had very clingy light mesh as the lowest layer, which made the skirt very difficult to wear. I cut the mesh off, and made a blouse with it. This is another one of those garments I haven’t gotten around to featuring, and I hope you’ll forgive me for that. I wanted to see what this light blouse would look like with The SteamPunk Dress, so I gave it a go. I wore a spaghetti strap top under the blouse to give it more coverage, and wore the dress as is. And for the first time ever, I wore a brooch the way it’s meant to be worn!

The look is OK, but I’m not nuts about it. The dress has a lot going on, and IMHO looks best with a simple top. This one is a bit busy for this dress, but I do like the way the brooch works together with the SteamPunk-inspired details.

See-Through PuffBall

For the second look, I paired the see-through blouse with my short PuffBall Skirt. I wore a spaghetti strap top under it again, and completed the look with our Reversible Corset. I wore black pearls beneath the collar so that they peek out just a little bit, and totally loved the effect. Though this isn’t a look from that era, pearls always remind me of the inexpensive, abundant jewelry of the 30s. I topped the look up with silver heels. That was a decision I now regret: black heels would have given more room to the less flashy accessories. Despite that, I do like this look. It’s comfortable enough, and the way the elements play together is fun in a dark way. I’d love to wear this out, with different shoes, though. A dinner date might be a good place for this look, don’t you think?

Lacey

The SteamPunk Dress works best with blouses. For the last look, I wanted to try it out with a lace blouse. This one is a flea market find from way back. It’s made with the good quality elastic lace, and features a high collar and ruffle cuffs. I love this blouse, but the sleeves do make it a bit challenging to wear. The blouse is translucent, so I usually wear it a coverage-giving layer beneath it. For this look, I wore it alone under the dress. I accessorized the look with a tie, and nothing else.

I really like the way the feminine lace works with the dress. The ruffles give texture to the top, and compliment the gathered hem. This is comfy, too, thanks to the elasticity of both the blouse and the top.

I hope you’ve enjoyed today’s Everyday With an Edge -post.

Until next time.

Love,

Heather

PuffBall Looks

I’ve always thought of PuffBall Skirts as things you wear to parties. They’re classic, elegant, and often quite unique. Today, I wanted to show you a different angle to puffball skirt looks.

Chic

A long time ago, I had a piece of light taffeta. I wanted to use it for something special, and finally turned it into a long puffball skirt. This style is based on our PuffBall Skirt Pattern. I made the hem longer, and gathered it on the sides. The taffeta is pleated on both hips, and sewn to place. The skirt has a basic waistband, and a zipper in the center back seam, just like in our pattern.

For the first stop of our puffball skirt looks, I wanted to create a classic, party-worthy look. I wore the long skirt with a corset and flashy earrings. Together with a French twist, these elements give the skirt a chic look fit for any party.

Rock

My long PuffBall Skirt may be chic, but it can go the other way, too. With the second look, I wanted to show another side to wearing it.

I’m not the girl who wears band Tees. Actually, I don’t wear T-shirts at all. I do own a band Tee, though. You see, back in my previous life, there was a semi-local rock band everyone loved. I’m not entirely certain what’s going on with them now, but back then Nitroforce9 was The Band. After a particularly eventful gig, I decided to need their T-shirt. It was literally a lifetime ago, but I still have that Tee. As I was contemplating on what to pair my long PuffBall Skirt with, the Tee came to mind. I pulled it on, and it totally works with the skirt!

PuffBall Skirts aren’t just for fancy parties. They can work for rocking out, too!

Silver

The short version of The PuffBall Skirt is most to my liking. It’s easier to wear than the long one, and it draws less attention. Though it isn’t exactly ordinary, it is less of an exclamation point. I love creating looks with this skirt. It goes with almost every top I own! For this look, I wanted to take advantage of the silvery details.

When I first made this skirt, I gathered the hem using silver-toned buttons. For a long time I wondered whether I like them or not. After changing my hair from red to black, I’ve started to thoroughly enjoy little sparks of color in clothing. Silver is one of the easiest colors. I wear silver jewelry, and therefore shades of grey feel natural in clothes as well. For this look, I paired my short PuffBall Skirt with a silver top I got from a flea market. Alone, the top is a bit much, so I toned it down with our Reversible Corset and a shrug I made from a not-so-well-fitting pullover. I completed the look with buckled heels and snowflake earrings.

I love this look, and hope to wear this out soon. Without the shrug, though, it’s getting too warm for layered outfits.

I hope you’ve enjoyed our PuffBall Skirt looks.

Until next time.

Love,

Heather

PuffBall and SteamPunk Hems

On Tuesday, I showed you a crochet shawl I made. The shawl is a very unusual color for me: I made it with white yarn! Despite that, I thoroughly love the shawl, and can’t wait to wear it. Today, I wanted to show you how it looks on me, so I incorporated it into one of today’s outfits. Our featured products for this week and next are The SteamPunk Dress and The PuffBall Skirt, so get ready for gathered hems!

White Shawl

Large shawls (I’m thinking about making this one just a little bit bigger at some point!) can be challenging to wear. Wrapping this one around my neck is out of the question: this thing weighs a lot, and feels constricting worn as a scarf. I like to wear shawls like this instead of coats and cardigans during the summer. They’re easy to take off, and even easier to wrap into.

For this look, I paired my long PuffBall Skirt with my favorite black top. This style is a comfortable enough, but I wouldn’t necessarily go out in this. The skirt with its gathered details is very chic, and requires a top with a bit more drama. The shawl balances it out nicely, but not enough.

I don’t think I’ve shown you this skirt before, actually. I made it a long time ago with light taffeta. It’s fully lined, and has pleats on both sides to give it a dramatic detail and structured shape. This is one of the skirts I don’t really wear a lot: it feels too fancy to wear to a club, and special events don’t come around too often. I’m hoping to find a place to wear it to, though. Next Lumous festival might be the place for it!

Short Sleeves

Our SteamPunk Dress is a pinafore-type dress. It features an open front, gathered hem, and a large collar. This detailed design is best made with elastic twill. I used a pinstripe twill and dark brown buttons for mine.

As this dress comes with an open front, it’s best worn with a top or another dress under it. I like to wear this dress with blouses of all sorts. For this look, I paired The SteamPunk Dress with a short-sleeved blouse I got from H&M.

Though I love this design to bits, I’m contemplating on altering this dress a bit. The long hem is eye-catching with its gathered folds, but it is a bit much sometimes. This dress can be made with a straight hem, too, so I might let the folds down, and shorten the hem to knee-length.

Nearly Casual

This short, black PuffBall Skirt is a mod of our original pattern, and currently the only short PuffBall Skirt I have. This is a pretty one, though, and easy to mix and match. The fabric is a crinkly poly-blend with a bit of shimmer. The silvery buttons give it a touch of color, and serve as a pretty detail as well.

For this look, I chose to wear the skirt with a simple keyhole turtle neck. I used an elastic belt to cover the waist, and wore buckled heels to bring the outfit to a date-worthy level. I love this look, and would gladly wear it out. This style is cute in a classy way, and super-comfy, too!

I hope you’ve enjoyed this Everyday With an Edge -post with gathered hems.

Until next time.

Love,

Heather

White Crochet Shawl

Once upon a time, I knit Converse socks for a friend. I used white wool yarn, and Novita’s pattern. The pattern indicted that I’d need two balls of yarn, when in fact I managed the socks on one. After completing the order, I had a ball of white yarn left. I took a day or two to contemplate, and decided to need a white crochet shawl.Crochet Shawl - Materials

I spend a lot of time on Pinterest, and mainly use it for inspiration. My feed is full of crochet and knit project ideas I rarely make come true. The white yarn, though, was desperate to become something I saw on Pinterest.

Crochet Shawl - Close up

Pinterest is a funny place. You can find pretty much anything there, but digging up info on where the pin is actually from is hard. One image can come from multiple websites, most of which fail to indicate the original source. That’s the case with this crochet shawl. I first stumbled upon a chart, then found an image, and then a Russian site that offers charts and overall instructions for this lovely shawl, and nothing else. I’d really love to know the name of the pattern and the designer so I could give credit to where it’s due!

Crochet Shawl - center motif

This crochet shawl features a large scallop design. It pops up in 3D because one row of it is crocheted behind the previous row instead of on it. I love this effect, and it’s the thing that really makes this design special. The original shawl is made with a fringe, but I decided to skip that. I’m not really a fringe-girl, but prefer crisp edges.

Crochet Shawl - edge without a fringe

I made this shawl with Novita’s 7 Veljestä. It’s a sport weight yarn designed for socks, and due to its high wool content, it’s both pleasantly warm and a nightmare to knit. Before a soak in fabric softener, the yarn is coarse and hard. When knitting it, I always get a deep yarn burn on my index finger. Crocheting with it was a much ices experience. My crochet tension is looser, and that meant I could crochet for hours without my skin chafing off.

Making this shawl took about two weeks. I ran out for more yarn twice, and am actually contemplating getting two more balls and taking it from large to super-sized. I love the shawl as it is, but I might wear it more if it were a bit bigger.

Crochet Shawl - too big to fit in a photo!

I hope you’ve enjoyed reading about my cool, new crochet shawl. On Friday, I’ll incorporate it in an outfit when featured products for this week and next are announced!

Until next time.

Love,

Heather

Garter Petticoat

Creating looks for a petticoat is the most difficult thing I’ve faced. I don’t want to parade around the internet in my under-garments, and doing flat lay -looks isn’t really my thing. I want to show you how clothes look on a real person, not how they look lying on a surface. For today’s post, I tried my best to incorporate our Garter Petticoat in two looks. One of them being more imaginative than the other.

Let’s start with the latter.

Short Dress over Garter Petticoat

The name may be an indication as to how pleased I am with this look. It’s cute and comfy, and I’d totally wear it out, but it is a bit of a no-brainer.

The Garter Petticoat is designed to be worn over tights on cold, cold days. It has built in suspenders, that hold up over-knee socks or leg-warmers. For the first look, I wore The Petticoat under a dress that has a pretty interesting story.

You see, a while back, I made a really nice long T-dress. I wore it one day when we went shopping, stepped on an escalator, and got caught. Charming had to press the emergency button (which was located rather inconveniently, by the way, there’s no way I could have reached it on my own!) and cut me loose. I walked back home with a torn hem, and turned the dress into a short one. The whole story can be read here.

This dress has quickly become one of my favorites. It’s really comfy, and I love the trumpet sleeves. For this look, I wore it with red fishnet socks and my Bloodstain Corselet.

I really do like this look, but I tried a bit harder with the second one.

Tulle

A long time ago, in another life (quite literally, everything was different back then), I made a long skirt with tulle. It’s translucent, and can’t be worn without another skirt under it. I’ve created a look with micro shorts under it in the distant past when I was still red. I kinda liked this look, but it is very colorful for my taste. I might try this with black shorts and the top I wore for the next look.

On photo-day, it occurred to me to try it with our Garter Petticoat.

I wore the skirt-combo with a one sleeved top and my Bloodstain Corselet. I also held on to the fishnets to show how two accessories can work with totally different outfits.

As the skirt has more material on the hem than around the waist, it has a sort of a fade-out effect. The waist is more translucent than the hem, and reveals more clearly what’s worn under the tulle. The Garter Petticoat works surprisingly well with this skirt. It gives full coverage though it is a bit on the short side, while allowing legs to show through the tulle. I also like how the tulle detail on the top matches the skirt!

I hope you’ve enjoyed today’s looks. Don’t forget that The Pretty Basics, including The Garter Petticoat, are on sale for a little while longer!

Until next time.

Love,

Heather

Short Dress Looks

Short dresses can be easier to walk in than long ones, and they do come packed with flirty and fun attitude. Today, I wanted to show you two short dress looks both based on our Pretty Basic patterns. The entire collection is on sale until April 9th, so do take advantage of the offer! Spring is just around the corner, and new dresses are the best way to upgrade your wardrobe.

Wrap Dress

You might recall that I have a difficult relationship with our Sleeveless Wrap Dress. I love the cut on the dress, but I’d like mine to have sleeves. I’ve experimented with it in the past, pairing the dress with all kinds of tops and blouses, and even separate sleeves. I like this dress best worn over a lace blouse, but I wanted to try something more… colorful.

I made two model pieces for The Pretty Basic Jersey Dress. One black and one red. I originally intended to wear the red one only under a crochet dress I made, but it turned out to have a will of its own. The dress refuses to be toned down, and wants to steal the show. This look is a pretty good example of it!

For this look, I wore the red Jersey Dress under The Wrap Dress. I love the way they look together, and I really like it that with another layer under The Wrap Dress, I’m able to tie it looser to create a lower neckline. What I wasn’t that crazy about is the way two layers of cotton like to cling to each other. I am going to continue my experiments with The Wrap Dress, and search my perfect outfit from layered dresses.

Violets in Parties

The Violets on Stripes Pattern was recently launched, and I’ve yet to make a proper outfit post with the cute little cardigan. I wanted to use it for one of these short dress looks, though.

Violets on Stripes is a cropped cardigan. It’s knit with a stripe pattern and embellished with crochet flowers. This might explain the name. The cardigan works best with dresses, and that’s one of the reasons I wanted to postpone featuring it. Coming up with imaginative ways to wear a cropped cardigan is surprisingly difficult! I still wanted to use it for an outfit, and chose to wear it over our Party Dress.

This look is really cute, and goes to show that this little cardigan truly loves dresses. It’s a cute and comfy cover-up that brings a lot of warmth with it. The best part about this cardie is that being very small, it can easily fit in a large purse!

I hope you’ve enjoyed our short dress looks!

Until next time.

Love,

Heather

Maxi Dress Looks

Maxi dress looks are a lot of fun to wear. Long hems may not seem that practical, but they are lovely in a romantic way, and offer a lot of coverage. Accessories offer a great way to express personality even with generic dresses. Recently, I combined our Spaghetti Strap Top and Jersey Skirt into a spaghetti strap dress. I’m quite pleased with my decision: for me, dresses are easier to wear than skirts and tops. This one is casual and comfortable, and I’ve had loads of fun wearing it! Today, I wanted to show you two cute maxi dress looks for it.

Blue Cardie

Dresses that leave the shoulders and arms bare aren’t really suited for winter. Though we’ve officially seen the first day of spring, it’s still bloody cold out there. Cardigans are a must with revealing dresses for at least a few weeks. This spaghetti strap dress goes beautifully with our Crochet Cardigan. For this look, I wore my blue one.

This dress is made by combining a top and a skirt, so it has a seam at the waist. I don’t really like leaving it exposed, so I often wear this dress with various belts. This elastic one has a silver buckle that serves a practical and aesthetic purpose at the same time.

The blue version of our Crochet Cardigan really likes this dress. It’s loose and airy, and still quite warm. I made it using two strands of yarn, one blue and one black. This gives the cardigan a unique coloration. I’d like to use a similar color choice for a knit garment. A dress made with black and purple yarn would be really pretty, don’t you think?

Lace Top

Tops and dresses go well together. Usually it’s more common to wear a top under a dress. Today, I wanted to show you a look with a top worn over a dress. I picked our Lace Top for the purpose.

The Lace Top sports a daring neckline that can be a bit much for many. There are times I would like it a bit more modest, too. With that in mind, I wore The Lace Top over my spaghetti strap dress. The dress offers more coverage, and its neckline peeks out from under the top. The dress also offers more coverage (and warmth) to the back of the top, which is made without a lining.

I didn’t want to leave the top’s hem just hanging out. Instead, I took a long chiffon belt, and tied it twice around my waist. I tucked in the hem of the top, and tied the belt in an ordinary knot. This creates an illusion of wearing a skirt with a chiffon waist, and makes the casual dress party appropriate.

I really like this look. It’s so easy to wear, and looks fabulous. It’s comfortable, too, so there’s a minimum amount of tugging and pulling involved!

I hope you’ve enjoyed our maxi dress looks! Don’t forget that our entire Pretty Basics Collection is on sale, so it’s a good time to stock up on patterns!

Until next time.

Love,

Heather

Lace Dress

A while back, I did an outfit with a lace dress I hadn’t properly introduced. I think it’s time to fix that mistake!

I like casual, comfortable dresses best of all. Elastic materials are my favorites. Though they can be challenging to work with, elasticity makes a dress fit snugly without restricting movement. For this dress, I chose a polyester lycra. I usually go for natural fibres such as cotton and viscose. This fabric had a really smooth finish that appealed to me. I paired it up with left-over elastic lace and skin toned mesh. I used a similar combo in our Lace Top. Lace is a see-through material, and requires another layer beneath it. Layered on skin tones, you can easily hold on the translucent quality while making a garment completely decent.

I didn’t use a pattern for this dress. I actually cut it with just a measuring tape as a guideline. When sewing for myself, I often do this. After years and years of clothing myself, I’m pretty familiar with my measurements. My lace dress has a long, A-lined hem, and a spaghetti strap bodice. Combining our Spaghetti Strap Top and Jersey Skirt will yield a very similar outcome.

I only had a little bit of lace left, so I made the bodice short. The bodice ends an inch or two above my natural waist, so this dress may prove tricky to accessorize with belts. Sashes and waist corsets will probably work, but narrow belts might not look so good with this one.

I attached the straps while binding the bodice. The binding is a bit wider, and as I didn’t want it to roll under the straps, I used buttons to secure the straps. The buttons create a nice, subtle detail.

This lace dress turned out a little bit more elegant than I expected. This isn’t the kind of dress you run errands in, but it’s perfect for evenings out. Sleeveless dresses are a bit cold during the winter, but long-sleeved tops make them a lot more appropriate for the freezing temperatures. Shrugs are also a great way to stay warm.

I hope you’ve enjoyed reading about my Lace Dress! Don’t forget that now’s a good time to grab the patterns that can be used to create a similar dress since all The Basics are on sale!

Until next time.

Love,

Heather

Violets on Stripes

Cropped tops come and go in fashion. In the fall, cropped tops were starting to make a huge comeback, but the trend faded pretty fast. Tiny little tops are still available, and they can look really cute. I think they look best layered, and that’s one of the reasons why I designed our Violets on Stripes Cardigan, a stripy cropped cardigan with flower embellishments.

Violets on Stripes is best made with soft, Aran weight yarn, that’s suitable for size 5mm / US 8 needles. Worked with a larger needle size, this little cardie is a quick project. It’s worked in stockinette with a stripe pattern, which makes it suitable for beginners, too.

Violets on Stripes is designed to be short, but it’s easy to turn it into a full-size cardigan. It’s knit from the hem up, so all you really need to do is to work the hem longer. The pattern comes with instructions on how to do this. You can also knit the cardigan with short sleeves if you prefer a lighter version for the summer.

This cropped cardigan features crochet flower embellishments. I’ve always been a huge fan of mixing knit and crochet, and this is one of the easiest ways to do it. Crochet flowers bring an interesting detail to the cardigan, and give it a fun texture. Feel free to use your imagination when embellishing the cardigan. I sprinkled flowers on one side of my cardigan, and ended up with quite many. A single arrangement on one side of the neckline would look lovely, too, and covering the entire cardigan would no doubt look outrageously cool.

Violets on Stripes features a basic button closure, and twisted rib edging and cuffs. These elements make it seem classic, while the cropped hem gives it a modern look. The tiny little cardigan loves dresses best of all. With shrug-like qualities, it offers warmth to the shoulder and arms, giving room for dresses of all kinds to show off their hems.

I hope you’ll enjoy The Violets on Stripes Cardigan as much as I enjoyed designing it! This little cardigan will be on sale along with The Pretty Basics until April 9th, so don’t forget to take advantage of the offer.

Until next time.

Love,

Heather

Pretty Basics Easter Sale

I just realized that Easter is right around the corner. That means different things for different people. For me, it basically stands for Charming being on holiday for two weeks. I had completely ignored that, and just understood this morning that it would be nice to spend time with him rather than my laptop. For that reason, The Pretty Basics will go on sale for two weeks starting on Friday. I’ll share posts as usual, and newsletters will go out on Fridays, only they’ll be timed until April 9th. I doubt you’ll even notice the difference. I’ll naturally keep up with emails and messages, so don’t hesitate to drop us a note if you have anything on your mind.

Today, I wanted to show you a couple of looks from the not-so-distant past. They all feature The Pretty Basics in one form or another!

Faux Cable Shrug

The Faux Cable Shrug is my favorite knit in our Pretty Basics collection. It’s soft, it’s warm, and it goes with all kinds of dresses. For this look, I paired it up with The Bishop Wrap and our Reversible Waist Corset. I love this style, and wear it regularly. Sometimes with the shrug, sometimes without it. This outfit is casual and comfy, but it works many sorts of outings. I’ve worn it to gigs without the shrug, to lunch with the shrug, and I wouldn’t hesitate to pull it on to a dinner with nicer accessories. The shrug is easy to knit, too: worked with large needles, it’s a quick project for experienced knitters, and a rewarding one for those still learning the craft.

Party Dress

The Party Dress is a cute, fun dress designed to be easy to wear on evenings out. Made with jersey, it’s casual and comfy. I designed this to be the kind of dress you can turn to when you need a comfy, classy outfit. I think I did pretty well, actually. The Party Dress takes accessories really well, and that makes it versatile.

For this look, I did something quite different with it. I wanted it to shed some of its classy elements, so I made it shorter.

Don’t worry, it’s only temporary!

I took an elastic belt, wore it as belts are worn, and pulled the waist of the dress over it. This created a fold that both hid the belt and made the dress look like a skirt and top. I added a tulle petticoat, a statement ring, and silver heels, and felt pretty good about this look. The trick with the belt is a super easy way to transform a dress from longish to short, or from long to shortish.

Wrap Dress

I’ve had a difficult relationship with our Wrap Dress. I love the shape and how comfy it is, but I’m not that crazy about the fact that it has no sleeves. Wearing a top under the dress is always a viable option, but… well, I wish I had fabric left from making it.

For this look, I wore The Wrap Dress with a petrol blue mesh top and separate sleeves. I love the blue top under the dress, and plan to wear this out some day. Pairing the dress with tops is a bit of a challenge for me. Though I like to play around with it for outfit posts, I most often wear it with a lace blouse and black tie. I honestly think I’d get much more wear out of the dress if it did have sleeves, but then again, this has proven one of our most popular patterns! That just goes to show that we all have different tastes, which is one of the things that make us all unique.

Wrap Dress Styles - Blue

Lace Top

This combo is my absolute favorite outfit of all times. I didn’t think about it when I created it, and everything just fell into place. I love the way our Lace Top and Wrap Skirt create an androgynous look while still holding on to that femininity only lace can portray. This look is comfy, too. The top is made with elastic lace, and the wrap skirt is fully lined so that it doesn’t cling to legs.

Though I do love this look to bits, I haven’t worn it out. It’s very different from what I usually wear, and there are elements that feel a bit young for me. I might take a chance some night, but maybe with a different necklace.

I hope you’ve enjoyed today’s Pretty Basics dig-up!

Until next time.

Love,

Heather