Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Spa Day

Want a calming afternoon with friends without paying for a manicure? Here are some easy-to-make recipes for relaxation.

To make your hands/feet soft:
Combine oil and sugar (in increments that make a paste). Rub the mixture over your hands/feet, then rinse off. You're hands will feel like a baby's after you're done, but you might want to use some scented lotion or soap; it smells like the dipping sauce at Italian restaurants.

To open your pores:
Boil some water with mostly squeezed orange slices (you could use the one from the "recipe" below) and cinnamon. Put in a bowl and (excuse the slang expression) stick your face in! Make certain that you don't forget to put a towel over your head so the steam doesn't escape.

To exfoliate:
Take about a tablespoon of real orange juice (squeezed directly from the orange is preferable) an mix it with two tablespoons of baking soda. It should have the consistency of a paste. Rub it onto your face and neck, and leave it in for ten minutes; wash off by wetting your fingers and rubbing in a circular motion.

The Eclectic Authoress Recommends...

34. "You Have Seven Messages", by Stewart Lewis

Monday, July 29, 2013

Heady Stuff

For medical reasons, I will, for the next three weeks, be on an experimental gluten and dairy free diet. If anyone cared to share a recipe of that sort, I would be most obliged to them. Rice milk, anyone? 

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Hungry for More

The popular YA series "The Hunger Games" is back after over a year's lapse with "Catching Fire", and so far, two trailers have been released. The second, in my opinion, which was released only a few days ago, captures more clearly the desperation of the novel. Instead of looking like a franchise, as the first one did, it shows a film that might- if we're lucky- have meaning hidden behind its new, fancy graphics. Watch trailer two here to see if you agree, or want to have it out with me. I might enjoy the debate!
With ever so many opinions,
the eclectic authoress herself

Monday, July 22, 2013

Cats and Cardigans

A few months ago, I posted "A Clothing Piece to Remember", detailing my recent purchase of cat shorts. Well, now I have found a way to style them! They're quite difficult to pair things with, considering the maroon, white, and black color scheme- as well as the basic theme of cats! The pattern craves a solid, but that ends up being much too boring. Now, I have the perfect outfit to fit all your cat-short dilemmas:

The necklace and denim vest are optional, an shouldn't be worn together. It's an either/or situation, and can be used to dress up or dress down the outfit as you please.
I've mentioned the denim jacket before, but here are the rest of the outfit details:
Shirt- Franchesca's
Necklace- Charlotte Russe
Shorts: Forever 21

With ever so much love,
The eclectic authoress herself

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Alas and Alack

Though I have been valiantly searching for the 1950s attire I have mentioned in a previous post, I have come up flat. I've searched four antique shops in the last two weeks, and it's all either too large for me, too expensive, or not in proper quality!
Does anyone know of any Etsy shops where reasonably priced vintage clothing is sold? I believe that will be my next attempt.

The Eclectic Authoress Recommends...

33. The chocolate-chip cookie recipe on the back of Nestle chocolate chips. (Hint: I take out the nuts and add butterscotch chips- one half bag of each chip instead of a full of one.)

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Mason and Co.

There are pencils, pens, and paintbrushes strewn throughout my living space. Clutter is a common problem, and few of us know how to deal with it. Fortunately, I have a handy, vintage way to keep your writing utensils in line. (If only I could do the same for my closet!)
Mason jars can be found at any thrift store or antique shop, and are a perfect solution. Simply shove the clutter into the jars, and wallah! You look artsy, vintage, and inventive.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Ankle Biters

I attended a friend's mostly-outdoor party on Monday, and come back with a DIY to share and mosquito bites aplenty. My ankles and feet are getting torn up from scratching, so I've been inspired to think up a few solutions.
1. Socks. Sure, it's summer, but some Bobby socks with Mary Jane's work with sundresses and shorts as well as winter coats. I use gray socks from Gap and these wonderfully inexpensive, canvas Mary Jane's from Urban Outfitters (pictured).
2. Anti-Itch Lotion. I know it seems obvious, but it's incredible how many people forget about this little wonder. It's  available at drug stores like CVS or Walgreen's.

Now, for the DIY I mentioned!

How to Go Glow-Stick Bowling: Illustrated Version

You'll Need:
1. A few packages of glow sticks; you'll need about fifteen individual ones
2. Ten plastic water bottles, filled with water.

Crack the glow sticks (to make them glow), and put them in the water bottles. Tighten the lids, and line them up in a bowling formation. Use the extra glow sticks to form a lane, and wallah! Now you just have to wait for dark, and bowl! It's very simple, and very fun- especially in large groups of people.

When all is said and done, it looks a bit like this. Enjoy!

Sunday, July 14, 2013

The Eclectic Authoress Recommends: Theme Edition

Today I have gathered my recommendations into one subject: other blogs! Here are some of my favorites; I realize that I have mentioned most of these in previous posts, but I thought they deserved a conglomeration.


Thursday, July 11, 2013

A, B, C... Z!

A trip to the zoo is always a pleasant experience, especially when one sees lions, tigers, and bears, oh my! Other animals, those not in "The Wizard of Oz", are similarly amazing: giraffes, sea lions, cheetahs, penguins, meerkats, red pandas, and many more!
Here, however, is a tip: pack a picnic. Zoo food is highly priced.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Roll Call

I'm afraid to announce that I will be a rather absentee blogger this week. We're having company, and I'm afraid I won't be able to post as regularly as usually.
Until we meet again,
the eclectic authoress

The Eclectic Authoress' Guide to Houseguests

We all have friends that come to stay, and we're all thrilled to have them- until we realise that we must clean and cook and clean again. Here are some tips for making your houseguest's stay as enjoyable as possible- for them and for you!
1. Plan ahead.
Make sure you have the food you need to last the week, unless you want to drag your guest out to the supermarket. And, if your guests have any dietary needs, find out early and plan accordingly.
Plan, too, entertainment; what will you do?
2. Think about breakfast.
It's the most important and most overlooked meal of the day. Get an arrangement of cereals, bread for toast, bagels with various spreads, and eggs. Make it continental style, and have the guests choose what they want to eat.
3. Clean ahead.
This sort of goes with planning, but definitely deserves its own category. Clean bit by bit so you aren't overwhelmed the day before arrival.
4. Activities
Plan things to do that you normally wouldn't. Go to an art museum; have a picnic; visit a zoo.
5. Document
Take pictures throughout their stay and send the best to them- after departure.
6. Film Buff
Have your guests put a hand in the movie night picks. Spread out your choices and have them narrow it down from there; mix in classics like "Big" or "Breakfast at Tiffany's" with newer releases like "The Avengers".
7. Peace and Water
Everyone enjoys a pool, lake, or ocean. Younger visitors can have a swim while other, less interested guests can sunbathe.

I hope my seven step guide is helpful for the next time you entertain!

Monday, July 8, 2013

Fifties' Lips

The easiest part of a 1950s makeup look is the lips- bold, bright, and very, very red. It's hard to find a gloss or stick that holds its color, so what should you use?
Answer: the same thing you use on wood. Stain.
Lip stain stays on even after eating, and gives that great fifties red vibe. I use Elf brand- the two dollar "Crimson Crush". Make sure, though, that you color all of your lips, since it doesn't blend as well as sticks or glosses.

The Eclectic Authoress Recommends...

A beautiful British blog by an absolute maven of fashion, Yours Truly is pleasing aesthetically and with content. The blogger's Topshop, H & M, and vintage clothing pieces weave together perfectly- and she's simply wonderful about finding things on sale!

Sunday, July 7, 2013

DIY Foreshadowing

Today I began a new DIY, and this time, it's something quite a lot bigger than a denim vest! I picked up an old metal cabinet from a vintage marketplace for five dollars- the absolute most I'd pay for it, since it was completely horrendous. Now, with a bit of sanding and a few coats of red and black spray paint, it's almost as good as new! My lovely cabinet is almost ready to share with you; I just need to do a few touch ups.
I'll post full instructions and the final project as soon as possible!

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Happiness is a Vespa

Nothing cheers up a rainy day better than a brightly colored, moped-decorated shirt. Pair it with high waisted shorts and a vest for a laid-back, indie look, or a dress for a more vintage ensemble.
(shirt, shorts: Urban Outfitters; vest: Target, see DIY Denim post; dress: Franchesca's)
So sorry for the awkward rotation on this picture- this blog is rather mobile, written and pictured with the wonderful Blogger app. The app does not, however, allow me to rotate pictures.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Denim DIY

Denim vests are very hip, reasonably vintage looking, and incredibly overpriced. Check out the "Levi's Denim Trucker Vest", $59, or the "BDG Americana Denim Vet", $69. Both are from Urban Outfitters, and are at the low end of denim vest prices. Instead of shelling out sixty or seventy dollars, why not make it a DIY?
I took a light colored jean jacket I got from Target (Converse brand) for twenty-five dollars. I've worn the jacket for years, but the sleeves are getting a bit short. Also, I've been eying denim vests. So what do I do?
Cut the sleeves off.
You can get a jean jacket at thrift stored like Goodwill, or at your local Target or Walmart. They'll all be less then thirty dollars, and you can probably find one for about $15.
Cut with an Exact-o knife (on a cutting board) around the seam of where the sleeve attaches to the shoulder. Clean it up with a pair of sharp scissors, and wallah!
You have a DIY denim vest.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Elegant Pin-Up Hair

Now, I quite realize that I have already shared with you the "Elegant Musings" blog that I so much admire, but I have a new aspect of it that I simply must speak of. Blogger Casey looks like she's stepped out of the 1940s or 50s with her hair, makeup, clothes, and even eyebrows.
In her "Tutorials" section, she shares sewing patterns and how-to videos. Here, I must show you one of my favorites. You can access them through YouTube (she states on her blog that she has her own channel), but I prefer to watch them straight off her blog. Either way, here is a link to a "1940s Pin-Up Hair Tutorial"; let the fun begin!

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Going Indie

Independence Day, better known as the Fourth of July, is quickly approaching. Here are some tips to make your party as patriotic as possible.
1. S'mores.
If you have a fire pit, this is a must. Guests will be entranced, and want "s'more" of your parties.
2. Plates
Buy plastic or paper plates that fit with the theme. This could be flags, eagles, or fireworks.
3. Accessories
Napkins, cups, and table runners: these match beautifully, and don't have to be overstated. A lovely red and blue plaid gives the desired effect. When accessorizing as such, white plates will suffice.
4. Games
Do you have any plans for your party? What will you do between dinner and s'mores? I recommend some sort of card game- KEMPS is a favorite, or blackjack- and make it into a tournament. If your party is too large for that, set up a game of charades or Pictionary.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Ecce! Look Out!

It's the sale time of year, so be on the look out for falling prices. Check off-season items for a discount, and look even off the designated sale rack. I found two pair of tights at Urban Outfitters for two dollars each today, and they were hidden among other ten dollar tights. Best luck shopping!
With ever so much love,
The eclectic authoress herself