Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Love is...

Love means never having to say I'm sorry.

Love story

Then we wouldn't be saying or doing much. Would we now?

Ljubljana Zoo, May 2011

Here are some of mine:

Love is...
  • Scary and exciting.
  • It's about forgiving (mostly yourself) and letting go (of the fear).
  • It's about laughing and being goofy together.

Ljubljana Zoo, May 2011

Love is a symphony of two notes, yours and mine.

Happy anniversary darling!

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Why I'd make a bad fashion blogger

It's not the lack of clothes. And definitely not the lack of interesting accessories ;-P Whether you call it laziness or pragmatism, I love to create uniform looks for every season. As the seasons change I like to open my closet and pick a few items that will become my favourite. These can be new things or something quite old. As is the case with the black jacket with red lining in the next photo. Blacklisted in May, when I did a major closet de-stash, it came back with a vengeance this autumn after I discovered the lost of weight made it once more a perfect fit.

1. Late September, early October

The weather is still quite warm and it hasn't started raining yet. This is the time when I pack my sandals and bring out some light autumn footwear like ballerinas or these cognac sneakers. I also bring out my autumn/winter bag. Finishing the look off with a random jewellery selection. This year it was the dragonfly brooch I received for my birthday and the necklace from the Bead Soup.

2. Late October, early November

A very old fashion rule states that boots can't be worn before All Saints' day unless it begins snowing before that day. This is probably one of the few rules I stick to relentlessly. Probably because I am irked by the women who break out their new boots around 18th September when it's still 22 degrees Celsius outside.
This is usually the time of year my crazy jacket gets worn all the time. It's cropped and has 3/4 length sleeves making it an utterly amusing piece of clothing. If only for the bewildered looks it evokes.

But if the temperatures reside between 4 and 10 degrees Celsius it's ideal. I love to pair it with long gloves and my Indian girl bag. Also featured a tulip skirt from Sisley.

3. November

Dreary, foggy, depressing. My mood swings are in full swing. I also suffer from lack of interest and/or energy. It's all related to the rapid decline of sunlight. Daylight savings switch to winter time isn't helping either.

My tactic for battling negative thoughts: wear pink, lots and lots of pink! This outfit is extremely infantile: the jacket was made with a girls' fabric and the ankle boots are childrens' too. This is also the only time of the year I love to wear my prescription glasses out in public.

4. December

The most festive month of the year. We go out quite a bit in December. Meeting all the friends before New Year is a tradition. I like to create an outfit that's casual but on the dressier side.
The boots were a recent* acquisition. I bought them last November from a Vegetarian shoe company. These were exactly what my wardrobe was missing, a pair of casual smart boots that can be dressed up or down.

The coat is one I made myself, again. The fabric was quite cheap, because this sort of bright magenta isn't a popular choice for coats in Slovenia.

5. January, February

Aka the frost bite months of the year. This is the time of year when temperatures are well bellow zero. It's also wet and snowing most of the time. As a pedestrian, I hate to get my pants wet and ruined by the salt so I wear skirts at all times. With my trusty heavy duty Doc Marten's boots. These are now believe it or not 6 or 7 years old and will probably last at least another 6 or 7 years.

All hope of wearing a coat in this weather has long been abandoned. Instead, my quite feminine parka with a belt and extra thick lining to keep me warm. Though not obvious from the photo it's actually a wonderful shade of bronze.

And there you have it. From March on, the order of wearing outfits featured above is reversed and come May, I'll probably be wearing the black jacket with red lining.

*recent In my closet time passes at a much slower rate: meaning any item of clothing less than two years old is young and anything bought in the last 12 months is new.

Friday, November 25, 2011


Tomorrow The Virtual Craft Show opens on Lori's blog Pretty Things. Hop over for a chance to win some amazing goodies from other super talented artisans, bead makers, jewellery designers,...

Here's a sneak preview of the piece I'll be giving away:

Update: from the 26th November till 3rd December I'm offering a 10% discount on all items in my Etsy store. Just enter VCS2011 at checkout.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Blogger culture: Exposure and rejection

About three weeks ago I received my first offer to do a sponsored post on my blog. And it quickly became apparent to me this was nothing but an ingeniously crafted scam.
A pretty generic Chinese on-line retailer was offering me the chance to write a post on their wares in exchange for a coupon redeemable at the very store I was supposed to be promoting.
All I had to do was go to their website, fill out a form, do a post and voila! One coupon coming my way. Yay!


The way this looks to me is that they get free exposure and my money, since the $10 coupon they're offering for my writing services can buy me just about one pair of nylons.
Not to mention, how generic the e-mail they sent me was. No salute, no name just hello and a copy pasted message.
What makes it worse is that a week later I received another one of these generic e-mails. This time from a fashion blogger who'd picked the e-mails off some one's comment section and was trying to round us all up and get us to follow her blog.

Again no salute or anything, just come follow my blog, there might be a lip gloss in it for you.
At times like these I am sorely tempted to pack it all up, close down my blog and go do nothing.

What was the most annoying, aggravating or just plain rude experience you've had since you started blogging?

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

The waiting is over?

Are you constantly waiting for something? Waiting for a job promotion? Your next vacation? Waiting to loose weight? Just basically stuck thinking the next thing to come along will finally change everything?
I am that person. Constantly looking ahead. And once I achieve something and tick it off the list I'm like: "OK, that's done! What next?"
This is definitely not the road to happyville.
I waited 10 years for this:

And once I got it I was over the moon for exactly 3 and a half weeks. At that point I became restless again.
Finding a job in these times is no picnic. It can be frustrating, demoralizing and exhausting. It is not productive to add fixation to this pile of messy emotions. And most definitely not productive to give in to negativity.
Which is exactly what I've doing for the past four weeks. And it stops right now.
Have you ever heard of the five stages of grieving? I seem to be stuck in a loop of anger, depression and acceptance. Although I'm not nearly as dramatic as this fella:


Update: the note in the photo is my graduation grade. It's customary at our University for the grade to be noted on the front page of the thesis.

The winner of the earrings giveaway

As promised, today is the day I announce the winner of the giveaway.

I used Random numbers generator service and it picked bead addict! Congrats!

I've been unable to upload the results into this post :-( If anyone has any idea how to import the random numbers generator widget into a blog post, please do tell.

Sunday, November 20, 2011


My home for the past year and a half. Though love at first sight, I am one who slowly settles into new surroundings and I'm very prudent in attaching labels before I'm comfortable.
A collage of photos taken in the last 18 months on our various walks in and near Vrhnika:

the woodland path leading up to the old mill with a stream

Japanese mute ducks

The old mill

Holy Trinity Church

en route to Močilnik

woods around Močilnik

Of course I had to include this photo:

home = heart

feeding ducks and nutrias

view from our balcony: autumn

view from our balcony: winter

view from our balcony: early spring

view from our balcony: summer

Friday, November 18, 2011

Happiness comes in a box: Mini dustpan set

We all know them: the little trinkets that cost next to nothing but they make us incredibly happy. Whether it's because they fulfill a certain purpose in our household or are there simply for their intrinsic beauty.

Another whimsical Koziol household item :-) A teeny tiny dustpan & broom set, with the broom in the shape of a dog. This one was bought for a very specific reason: to clean up after Rufus.

The thing is, sometimes I'm convinced my cat is actually half cat, half pig. He makes a terrible mess every time he eats with food flying all over. He especially likes to put his paw in the dish and flick the kibbles around.

I clean up after him at least three times a day. And it got so annoying taking the broom out each time! Keeping this set handy saves me a lot of time and makes cleaning up a little bit more fun.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

A comprehensive guide on wearing brooches

By now anyone who reads my blog on at least a semi-regular basis knows about my love affair with brooches. People often ask me how I wear them and I've often wrote about it and left comments on other blogs. But as they say a picture is worth a 1000 words.
I waited for a sunny afternoon and assembled some outfits I typically wear with brooches:

1. Coats, jackets, outerwear in general
The sturdy collars and lapels of jackets are ideal for brooches. It's important to find the right balance though. The bigger the lapel, the bigger the brooch. Obviously.

Trench coat

I often ignore this rule. Usually when I want to wear a specific piece for sentimental reasons.

Suit jacket

Like my rooster fibula. I really wanted to wear it for my graduation, though a slightly bigger brooch would work better with this particular jacket.

2. Sweaters
For some reason, I really love to pin my brooches on my turtlenecks.
Bigger brooches are pinned at the base of the collar.

Turtle neck

Smaller ones slightly higher.

Turtle neck

3. Leisure wear:
 Who says home wear has to be dowdy? The road to instant feel happy: embellishing my old ragged (dyed two times already) hoodie with some inexpensive pins.

Leisure wear

Or in the case of this polar fleece, complementing the embroidery.
See, chic on the budget ;-)

Polar fleece

4. Accessories
Accessorizing accessories? Of course! Hats, beanies even textile bags. None are safe from my brooch mania.

Accessorising accessories

5. Tops and shirts
I rarely wear brooches on t-shirts or top. The material simply isn't compact enough. The only partial exception are fine compact knits.

Mrs. Froggy

Shirts on the other hand were made for brooches. Here's one, unironed (sorry about that). But the real shocker: it belongs to Mr. C and I have been known to ahem borrow it on several occasions.

Classic white shirt

Another option is pinning the brooch on the bottom of a sweater just above the patent line. I love this on my knit vests over a classic shirt. With the sleeves cuffed.
On a knitted vest

And finally, for convenience I love to have my brooches permanently pinned to certain garments. Which is great in a pinch. Leaving the house in a hurry, I can rely on wearing at least some jewellery.
But the downside of this pragmatism is that the same pieces get worn over and over or worse.

I end up unwittingly over accessorizing.

Monday, November 14, 2011


Today's post is a follow up on yesterday's bit of wisdom. It was prompted by the lovely Susan Tiner from Style Made by Hand. In her latest post she discussed her sewing misfortunes. Which got me thinking how many times do we really share our failures with people. And I don't just mean on blogs, but everyday life too.
So here is a brief list of some of my recorded sewing failures:

1. The dress that wasn't meant to be
My first attempt at drafting patterns was a huge flop, In April I attempted to turn a pattern for a top into a dress. It was all sorts of wrong. Lessons learned: I need much more than a French curve to make a successful pattern alteration.
Admitting defeat, I cut off the excess fabric and turned it into a completely wearable top.

I talk with my hands ;-)

2. Old world pants
Inspired by so many period films from the 30s (Poirot) I so wanted a pair of flowy, flared pants. I finally came across this one from a German issue of Simplicity patterns.

Simplicity 02/2011

Two metres of fabric and about 4 days of slow paced sewing and I'd be Amelia  Earhart (minus the plane and the leather jacket). Well, that one kind of didn't turn out as planned. At all!

I so totally powdered my nose for this pic!

3. Kaftan dress
From day one this dress was one disaster after another. First, I traced the wrong pattern pieces for the front and back which resulted in a hasty fabric shopping expedition.

After that it seemed like smooth sailing until came the inserting of the placket:
Look closely and you'll see that I've botched it up completely. The placket pieces were supposed to line up with the top one covering the bottom one. I considered re-doing it but sweet Mr. C said he thought this was completely intentional and looked great! I choose to believe him, after all no one's noticed so far and it would take three hours of intense work to correct this mistake.

4. Baking
As far as my (mis)adventures in the kitchen go I'm taking a cue form Angela Liddon, a vegan food blogger who has a regular post series on her kitchen disasters and recipes that flopped. Below is my Red Velvet cake based on this recipe from Pinch My Salt.

It's definitely yummy and moist and in all aspect a wonderful cake. It's just that it does look very shabby and that's why I never serve it to any of our guests.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Bits of wisdom

If you're not prepared to be wrong, you'll never come up with anything original.

Sir Ken Robinson

Lately I've been tremendously inspired by Sir Ken Robinson and some of his ideas and reasoning on changing the current educational system. I'm including a link to the speech he made at the TED conference 2006. If you're interested click here. It's about 20 minutes long but well worth watching.
I think the mere idea of failure scares the life out of most of us. As a society we've become obsessed with success and progress but what we fail to understand is that failure is inevitably just a learning tool. An indispensable instrument of (personal) growth.

Photo courtesy of Mr. C, taken this summer in my mum's garden.

Friday, November 11, 2011

The 1st Annual Virtual Craft Show

So here you have it, a mouthful of a title and you're probably wondering what is this beast. Virtual craft show is an on-line event hosted by the sweet and lovely Lori Anderson from Pretty Things. Among many other things she's also the master mind behind Bead soup blog party.

Quite simply The Virtual Craft Show is like any other craft show only this one takes place in blogosphere, to be precise on Lori's blog for a whole whooping 7 days between November 26th and December 3rd.

I jumped at the chance to participate because where I come from, this tiny quaint country I call home craft shows are rarer to come by than a golden fleece (There was one, but Jason snagged it like 3000 years ago).

There will be lots of artisans showcasing their work and of course there will be giveaways.

my stash
As you all know the holiday season is fast approaching, there is this tension in the air: people in a frenzy to buy gifts, artisans nervous and trying to sell their creations. Budgets are tight, the economy is in the pot. So I'm extending this invitation not to try and get you to buy something. Hop over, take a look, comment, participate in the giveaways.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Today I covet...

Burda Style 12 / 2011

Burda Style had published all the patterns of the December issue on their web site. This dress is quite simply gorgeous and worth the 6 € the magazine costs if nothing else.
I'm wondering, all you seamstresses out there, will you be making this dress?

Don't forget: the earrings I'm giving away are still up for grabs.