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Monday, November 21, 2011

InStyle Recreation and DIY Necklace!

This month in InStyle magazine (I subscribe, can't help it) there was an outfit layout that I thought was so cute. Actually, they are always at least a few outfit mockups that I love in each issue--usually almost all of them! The only problem is that one of their outfits usually totals up to somewhere around $1,000. Um, that's a used car. No thank you.

SO. I recreate these outfits using all second-hand, thrift, upcycled and pre-owned items from my own closet! If you love fashion and you haven't tried this, you should. It's so much fun and it gives you new perspective on things you might already have!

Here was the original outfit I loved. Super cute, classic, romantic, vintage-y. I knew I could recreate it at home but problem numero uno was this lovely Swarovski crystal necklace on black ribbon. Nope, don't have one of those lying around. Neither did I have black ribbon. But what I DID have was a bit of scrap black satin in my sewing room and this fantastic vintage starfish brooch that had broken last year and was hiding in my jewelry box. Time to repurpose!

Here's what I did:

-Cut a thin strip of satin long about 1.5 inches wide and long enough to go around my neck and attach to the starfish.

-Glued the underside with Elmer's--a light coat. Spread it evenly and waited until it was tacky. (You could do this with a paintbrush). Anyone who has sewn with satin knows what a pain it is to work with--especally thin spots. Uck. I opted for the quick easy way. And if the necklace doesn't last forever, I'm not going to have a tantrum.

-Rolled the satin into a thin strip and flattened it. Now I had a nice, thick ribbon effect. Once it had dried for the most part, I bound each end with string so it wouldn't come apart. I then made it attachable/detachable from the starfish pin by permanently hot glueing one end and sewing a hook on the other side, which attaches to what was left of my pin brooch. You could get creative with this part, and you could even glue the ends and do loose ends to tie, though the satin does become stiff after being glued. You would want to attach some pieces at the end for tying. I didn't want that with my necklace because I wanted something collar-style. It turned out just lovely. It keeps a nice shape and is stiff, but it looks soft and shiny still. It will look so nice with a black shift/cocktail dress, too!

So, the rest of the outfit I had under control! In another post, I have already talked about my favorite little polka dot t-shirt. I subbed that for the black and white heart shirt pictured in the original! Red cardigan was subbed for the jacket. Simple black polyester skirt for the ribbed one shown here. I did a black shoulder bag instead of a clutch, and added red shoes instead of black heels. And of course, I subbed my DIY necklace for the crystals!

So, only two items shown here were things I actually bought new, and that was the shoulder bag ($6 on clearance at Family Dollar) and the black skirt (also purchased at Family Dollar so long ago that I can't remember how much it is literally seven or so years old, haha!) All other items were cheapo thrift things.

Here's my version of the outfit, with the original one more time for comparison:

ORIGINAL: Over $1,000 MY VERSION: Free, but if you take into consideration the collective amount paid, about $20.

AFTERTHOUGHTS: I do love this outfit but two things happened when I actually WORE it --things always look better on paper, don't they?

1) Retrospectively, black heels work better. There is so much going on with this outfit that the red shoes put things over the top.

2) I felt the same about the necklace WITH the outfit. I am glad I made it...and it looks great laid out, but when you put everything together, I felt like it was too much.

So, to sum things up, I love this outfit but in wearing it out, I would do a black flat, most likely, and skip the necklace. The red, black and white is strong enough on it's own! Put a red lip with it and it's all the flare you need, in my opinion!

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