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Minty Fresh Breath of Spring

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I’m kind of tired with the way the weather has been acting. It’s like Mother Nature is pmsing and throwing a weird temper tantrum. One day its warm and sunny, then next its storming upon us like we should have built an ark.

Sims has taken over my life. Along with Supernatural. I’m only on the 3rd episode of the series, but I’m hooked. I’ve been alternating between the two and have successfully escaped the stress of holding two job positions at one time. Sometimes, the best way to let go is to lose yourself in someone else’s life. In this case, it’s the adorable character I made in Sims whose life ambition is to be an evil genius and the crazy adventures of Sam and Dean. Ahh the nerd life. So many escapes from reality you provide me through these busy times.

 

This Outfit:
Jacket – sashimi (thrifted)
Dress – One Clothing
Tights – Xhilaration (exact)
Shoes – Seychelles (exact)
Purse – Coach (last season)
Sunglasses – Target (exact)

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Lovely Shades of Purple and Red

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Its getting to the point where if I don’t purge my closet of all the clothes I don’t wear anymore, I’m not going to be able to find anything I do wear. I feel like cleaning out your closet is one of those things you know you need to do, you have the desire to do it, you even have the time to do it, but something else always seems more enticing. For me, it’s making sure the 1 bedroom/1 bath loft my Sim character has is nicely designed before she starts her journey down the path to becoming an evil overlord and start creating her minions family. I just bought the World Adventures and Generations expansions and have been obsessing over it. It’s a nice break from Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition and Star Wars: The Old Republic.

For those of you who don’t follow my Twitter (@thejoeyroberts), I recently left my position as graphic designer for the company I work for and am now taking on a new role in the company. I’m super stoked about the transition because it’s going to mean putting my tech and training skills to good use and helping out with a major software change that will be implemented company wide. It’s a little crazy right now because I’m still finishing up projects from my old position while also trying to start this new position, but who wants things to be easier right?

Me. I would like that. Oh well. I tried.

Additionally, I’m still trying to power through getting the inventory and product pages of October Rose done. I’m hoping to get the first round of products up this weekend so I can still make it for my April 1 reopening, but we’ll see. In the meantime, I sort and sort and sleep.

 

This Outfit:
Top – Collection Costa Blanca (thrifted)
Pants – Mossimo Supply Co. (thrifted)
Shoes – Seychelles (exact)
Purse – Poppy Coach (old)
Sunglasses – Target (similar)
Scarf – Unknown (gift)

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Happy Hangover Day!

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Hey guys, remember that time it was St. Patrick’s Day and I forgot to hit publish on my post and then EVERYTHING I wrote became instantly irrelevant and had to start from scratch?! Yeah. Me, too. *facepalm*

I hope you are all recovering well today from drinking last night. If you’re like me and you’re lame and didn’t drink because you didn’t want to feel like ass the next day at work, I hope you didn’t laugh too hard at your peers. Although I might not always participate in the drinking aspect of the Irish holiday, I always wear green. I made the mistake of not wearing green once in grade school and was so traumatized from the experience that I never forgot to wear green again. Which, let me tell you, was quite difficult going to a junior high school that had uniforms that didn’t include green. But I made it happen! And you better believe that I will pinch you if you are in my presence and not wearing green. Unless I’m severely outnumbered by people not wearing green, in which case I will be lazy and not pinch anyone but feel slightly smug for remembering. I love holidays. Probably too much.

 

This Outfit:
Jacket – Target (thrifted)
Top – Forever 21 (old)
Pants – Forever 21 (old)
Shoes – ModCloth (similar)
Sunglasses – Target (similar)
Purse – Coach (old)

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Splashes of Grey and Blue

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This weather has been all over the place. Central Valley weather can get pretty skitzo, but this is just ridiculous. One weekend we’re getting beautiful sunny weather, the next its nothing but crazy winds and downpours. I’ve gotten to the point where I’ve stopped trying to dress for the weather because by lunch it’s different than when I woke up, and different again by the time I get off work. *shrugs* Now, I just go with it. This skirt’s been pretty good to me this past year. I stay cool in the summer time, and relatively warm in the late winter without the need of tights or knee-high socks. I scored this baby during my thrift store shopping trip with Kristen last February at this adorable boutique, French Cuff Consignment, in Sacramento. The colors are great because I can pair the skirt with so many different items in my closet, and pattern gives every look an interesting visual. It also kind of reminds me of the sky over head right now; random tiny rays of sunlight on occasion through the thick clouds. Been plugging away pretty hard at revamping October Rose Boutique. There’s a lot of things I haven’t been able to accomplish since the launch, more than I had originally thought. A little nervous about being able to meet my April 1st reopening, but I’ve got a great support group backing me up in the fight. Hopefully, I’ll have a more exciting update soon!

Also, dat necklace, guys. Robots. Win.

 

This Outfit:
Sweater – SONOMA life + style for Kohl’s (old)
Skirt – Vivienne Tam (thrifted)
Shoes – xhilaration for Target (exact)
Necklace – Evangeline’s (old)

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In Remembrance of Roses

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Last Friday marked my Grandma’s one year death anniversary. If you were wondering why the past week has been quiet, that’s why. We had a small gathering of friends at my parents’ house that night. It was pretty nice seeing the house full of that many people all coming to remember the wonderful life she lived. I did pretty well until a close friend of the family asked me to show him and his wife photos we had of her. Afterward, I grabbed a piece of AMAZING apple pie and sob into it in her old room. As weird as this may sound, it felt pretty good. When it was time to calm down so I could go back out and interact with the remaining guests, I made a quick phone call and was good to go. It’s nice having people in your life that can make you smile in the worst of moods.

Since her passing, I’ve noticed an increase of rose paraphanilia popping up in my closet and home. I buy bouquets that have at least one rose, and the other day I bought this pair of skinny pants from Ross. And this goes beyond the fact that I have an online secondhand shop called October Rose Boutique (named after her birth month and favorite flower; reopening on April 1st). I’m not really one for roses, personally, unless they’re the kind that grow in bush form and not the kind people buy during Valentine’s Day. The thing I love most about this pair of pants is that the design looks almost cross stitch when you look closely at it. They’re also ridiculously comfortable, which rocks.

 

This Outfit:
Jacket – Katherine Barclay (old)
Shirt – Forever 21 (thrifted)
Vest – Rampage (thrifted)
Pants – Shinestar (Ross)
Shoes – Blowfish (gift from Kristen)
Sunglasses – Target (similar)

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Craft Time: Cross Stitch Logo

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I finally finished my first cross stitch project about a week ago! I’m so happy with how well it turned out. I think the only thing I would change is having an extra shade difference between the two purples. It’s a little hard to see the shading, even in person. I used a 14 Aida white canvas, a 3″ hoop, embroidery needle, and DMC 211, 208, 3873 and 310. It’s been years since I last attempted a needlepoint project and was very nervous going in. I knew the basics of how to do cross stitch, but had no idea what type of needle and canvas would be best to use. Thankfully, there’s a ton of resources on Pinterest that I was able to click through an get a better understanding of how to go. I know once I’m super comfortable with doing cross stitch, I’ll have a solid understanding for the best needles and canvas sizes to use. For now, though, I’m having fun with it.

I didn’t really create a pattern to work from with this piece. Luckily, I made my logo by the pixel and the number of squares was still fresh in my mind. From there, I lightly marked the basic outline with a pencil and did the black (DMC 310) first knowing I’d need my perimeters set up before getting too deep in. Next, I did the light purple (DMC 211) highlights because I wanted to get the easiest steps out of the way. I would say doing the medium purple (DMC 208) and the dark purple (DMC 3873) was the hardest, primarily because the shades were too close in color and I was working in pretty poor lighting.

At one point, the thread in the back became a jumbled mess that took me nearly an hour to untangle. If you’re working with a particularly long strand of color, be mindful of what’s happening in the back because you might end up getting tangled and losing half your length. I originally wanted to have the full URL at the bottom. I realize now I could have achieved this if I had done a simple straight stitch instead of the cross stitch, but didn’t want to risk it not coming out legible. Instead, I went with just the letters PNG. To get the curves on the letters I did a half cross stitch.

Overall, this project took me about a week to complete, but I was only working on it for maybe 5-20 minutes at a time. If I was able to give this my full attention and complete in one sitting, I would say this would probably have only taken me an hour or so. The total cost for this project was about $15-20, and that was for the hoop, canvas, embroidery floss spools, embroidery scissors and pack of embroidery needles with a case. The thread I already owned for a different failed project (friendship bracelets). I still have a TON of canvas and spools left, so really this project probably only cost about $4. I got this particular set of supplies at my local Hobby Lobby and saved with a 40% off one item coupon from their app.

I’ve already started on my next project which is Bulbasaur from Pokemon. He’s so tiny on the medium sized-hoop I bought, so I’m thinking about having his evolutions layered behind him and stitching “I choose you” at the bottom. it’s for a set of Pokemon ones that I’m doing based off the initial Pokemon I’ve chosen for each of the version I’ve played. Bulbasaur just happens to be my favorite of all the Pokemon, despite having never really chosen him as a starter. He’s just so cute and cuddly looking!

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Geek Chic: Who’s ready to science?!

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So, I attempted to put together an outfit that was inspired by Winnie the Pooh. After everything was thrown together I quickly realized I resembled more of your classic stereotyped nerd from an MTV original series. My brain then went immediately to Bill Nye and the natural order of things told me to slap on my 8-bit bow pin that I made a couple of months ago. That guy has some pretty shnazzy bow ties, am I right? I’m actually please with how this brightly colored outfit came together.

Did you know that an asteroid passed by Earth on Monday night? One large enough to kill a large number of people? I was so stoked to catch the live feed of it on slooh.com all day. After taking my video game back, all I could think about was making a quick dinner and playing some more Pokemon White that I had completely forgotten about it and didn’t jump in until 56 minutes in. Still, seeing science history happen and on the one-year anniversary of the asteroid hitting Siberia last year was pretty thrilling! I can’t wait to catch the total lunar eclipse happening in less than 55 days!

 

This Outfit:
Jacket – Zara (thrifted)
Sweater – Splendid (thrifted)
Shirt – Liz & Co. (thrifted)
Skirt – Old Navy (old)
Belt – Unknown
Tights – Target (similar)
Shoes – Brash for Payless (old)
Pin – handmade

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Geek Chic: Nightwing

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As you can tell, I love these boots. There are days when I’m concerned that I live in them. Then I remember how awesome and super comfortable they are and stop caring that I wear them almost 3 days out of my work week. How can you not love a great pair of ankle boots?! Same with this jacket. I’d been needing a shorter black trench coat and this has been my staple jacket since I bought it two months ago during a shopping trip in San Francisco. This purse is also another one of my favorites. Story: I really wanted a satchel bag, but waited too long and couldn’t find any, anywhere. A day after I had given up and started looking for the next trend of bags that I was late to jump on board, this thrifted Anne Klein one on sale and the one I’ve been rocking from Target on clearance appeared to me in the same shopping week. Loving both for different reasons, I took them both home. I’m so glad I did that too, because there are some outfits that one works with the other doesn’t. This Nightwing inspired character outfit is a great example of that. I pulled my character inspired outfit direction from this pin by the lovely, gogirlwonder, and put my own little spin on it.

Nightwing is the adopted superhero alter ego of the original Robin, Dick Grayson, in the Batman series. Dick Grayson was always my favorite of the Robins, but I guess I’m just a sucker for the originals. His parallel background to Bruce Wayne and his many ups and downs throughout the series has always fascinated me. While I’ve never really been a fan of comics books, I’ve watched the hell out of the 90s cartoon series growing up. Finding out later on that little Dick Grayson grows up to be the sexy badass Nightwing made me fist pump in excitement. The thing that I love the most about the Batman characters is that no one is really born with powers, they all are just crazy people with really amazing skills and access to a lot of money. Way better than Superman’s story, but that’s just my opinion. You can read more about Nightwing here on the DC wiki page.

 

This Outfit:
Jacket - Ambiance
Blazer – Target (similar)
Tank – Target (exact)
Pants – Forever 21 (similar)
Boots – Target (similar)
Purse – Anne Klein (thrifted)
Glasses – The Icings (old, non-prescription)

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Monday Mash-up… err Tuesday.

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Sunday afternoon, I made a visit to my local Game Stop to pick up a couple of games for my Nintendo DS Lite. You have no idea how stoked I was to find Animal Crossing: Wild World and Pokemon White! I swooped those in a hot second and celebrated my victory with a Baskin Robbins Chocolate Chip ice cream cone. I should have known my luck would run out quickly as the ice cream started to fight back (I’m sorta lactose intolerant, so I get that that was my bad) and found out later that night that the Animal Crossing cartridge was defective. I was pretty depressed after all that. Sure, I still had Pokemon to play with, but I wanted to play Animal Crossing. If you’ve never played that game before, GO PLAY IT RIGHT NOW. SRSLY. RIGHT NOW. You can thank me later. Unfortunately, they didn’t have a replacement cartridge at the location I went to and not wanting to run all over town I grabbed Super Mario Brothers 64 for the DS. I’m hoping I’ll have time to play it tonight while I work on my craft projects a bit.

Press Start: I have to say that getting into Pokemon White has made up for the headaches of my video gaming issues. I’m on Route 2 and hoping to score a Purrloin and a Audino soon. Some people may consider it “cheating”, but I’m so grateful for walkthrough guides when it comes to the Pokemon games. The game is so expansive and there’s so many hidden things that it’s nice having a roadmap to ensure you don’t miss anything. And yes, I’m that crazy of a player. I’m like that with all my games. Take Animal Crossing for example; I will shake every damn tree in sight at least 2-3 times just to make sure that I’ve gotten every fruit, stone and mystery gift there could possibly be. *crazy eyes*

Nailed It: Guess who got a new paint color like three weeks ago and forgot about it?! This girl. I absolutely love the tones of this polish! I managed to swoop this baby from Sally’s Beauty Supply during a trip a few weeks ago with my friend, Sheena, and I’m so glad I splurged. I needed a palette cleanser after the glitter polish disaster from last week. ORLY’s Ingenue has a bit of gold, pink and bronze, and layers up perfectly. One coat gives you a soft, delicate, pale pink and gold shimmer to your nails. Two coats (like I have on) really packs on the gold glitter and the pink darkens a bit to look almost mauve. I haven’t tested out what three coats of the polish will look like, but my prediction is turning the pink into more of a burgundy and really bringing out the bronze tones from the polish. I’m most excited to rock this polish with one coat later on because I have eyeshadow from MAC, called Expensive Pink, that is pink and gold hues, and would match this perfectly. I might even have an outfit to boot…

Craft Time: Right now, I’m jumping back and forth between this Super Mario Brothers scenery paper craft and a Bulbasaur cross stitch. I couldn’t find my normal straight scissors for a while and did most of the straight edge work with an Exact-O knife. I wish I had gotten a photo of the bricks so you could see just how insane I am for attempting this with an Exact-O. The wavy lines at the bottom were no easy feat either, but luckily I had special scissors for it. I can’t wait to get this bad boy frames and posted on the blog. I’m going to wait to bombard you with my Pokemon cross stitches until I’m done with the little set I’m making of the ones I’ve started the games out with. Don’t expect to see any evolved ones anytime soon.

Bumpin’: Gracie Potter and the Nocturnals is owning my soul right now. I’ve been playing “All Over You”, “The Divide” and “Roulette” from their The Lion The Beast The Beat album. I’ve also been listening to Grace Potter’s “Something That I Want” from Disney’s Tangled soundtrack. Their beat has been thumping on the inner walls of my brain and my foot won’t stop tapping along with it. And really, who can’t relate to “All Over You”? With lines like, “You’re so cruel when you smile, You keep me waiting all the while, If only you stopped leading me on, Then you’d see that it’s been raining all along,” it’s hard not to think back to a time when you were in that position. Unless you haven’t, then you have absolutely no idea what I’m talking about and should go back to listening and enjoying the song. *hums the lyrics*

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