Thursday, November 12, 2020

Mid-Week Catch-Up: Coats for Winter; Crafternoon; Brunch Plaid

Hey, my friends! I'm a few days into vacation, which feels weird when you really can't go anywhere. I have been laying low, and puttering around the house, and not really doing anything noteworthy.

But I do like to try to do something every day, though, just so I don't feel like I'm completely wasting my time.

Tuesday: I had the day to myself, so I pulled out my winter coats and put away some of the lighter jackets that are just too cold to wear right now. 
"What's in here I can chew on?"

Vizzini immediately had to investigate, as he's not allowed in the closet. 

I pulled out some of the thin coats, including my thin orange leather one, the leopard one, and a couple others.
"And this bag is for me?"

I already had one small bag of coats I'd removed in September, so I added a full garbage bag of coats to those. Don't worry, the bags are labelled, "NOT FOR DONATION."

And here's all my warm snuggly coats back in the closet, ready to keep me warm all winter. 
Favourites like the Unsafe Polar Bear, the Unsafe Ocelot and the Grape Ape will be appearing soon! I've done the Hanger Trick with my coats to ensure I wear them all (I turn all the hangers backwards, then put them back the "right" way after I've worn a coat). 

Wednesday: Remembrance Day, statutory holiday in Canada. L and I chilled out all day, doing our own things. 
Carolyn had a stack of books and things at Book Club last weekend that she was giving away, including an unopened "Complete Beading Set" by Reader's Digest from the early 2000s. It has two good instruction booklets, and came with enough beads to make three of the projects in the book. 

Of course, I'm an overachiever! I made all three, which took me about three hours to do. 
Remember these necklaces from 2000-2001? This was the thing I was least excited about, so I did it first to get used to using the pliers and working with little bitty beads. I used light green and blue block beads, plus a couple of little silvery beads. I'll probably donate this or give it away - it's not my style. 

The next project was the charm bracelet. 
I'm not really a fan of these, as they are rattle-y/noisy and tend to be heavy, but using beads made it a lot lighter. 

I went through my button and odds & ends tin, and found a bunch of beads that came with sweaters and tops that I no longer had, so I added them to my small collection. 
I worked in shades of red, pink, purple, blue and white. I quite like how it turned out. I may actually wear this. 

And finally, I made the drop earrings. 
Of all the things I made, these are the most likely to actually be worn by me. 
The larger beads are a smoky amber, with iridescent purpley shades, which go well with the other purple beads. 

I kept the plastic bead board, and divided all the sequins and seed-beads into mini-zip bags, and put everything into my sewing bag. 
I don't wear a lot of beaded items, but I did really appreciate the Zen of three hours of crafting and was quite proud of my projects. Thank you, Caro! 

Thursday: I had to go to town to pick up my re-heeled studded boots (purchase from last weekend), so L and I had breakfast at Pluto's before strolling to town. L took the rest of the week off too, so we could hang out together.
Although it was briefly sunny, the temps were around 6-8 degrees (brrr!!), so I dressed warmly. 

  • Sweater - Beechers Brook, vintage 90s, thrifted; first seen here twice in one day in March
  • Skirt - Liz Claiborne, vintage, thrifted; last worn here in February with my other cobalt blue sweater
  • Shoes - Gadea, consignment; last seen here in October with lime green fringed suede
  • Coat (below) - Topshop, consignment; last worn here in March

As we're firmly in Coat Weather, and I knew I'd mostly be wearing my coat in public, I planned my outfit around that. 
A plain cobalt blue 90s mock-neck, paired with my Perfect Plaid Pencil Skirt. 
I've been upgrading on plaid pencil skirts since I was in my 20s, and this is easily the nicest one I've ever owned. 

Pockets! and it's beautifully woven and thick. 
It's fully-lined and is a wool blend. 

I have my fleece-lined tights on for extra leg coverage, and my Star Wars "Imperial"-themed mask (from Lazy Suzan's). 
I only took my coat off when we were eating brunch. 

Outerwear - I remembered two things about this coat. 
One: it's really WARM to wear - all that lovely thick burgundy faux fur lines the entire inside of the jacket, including the sleeves. I did not need much under it to stay toasty. 

Two: anything I wear under it will ride up as I walk. I had to adjust my sweater sleeves once (they were up around my biceps), and fussed a bit with the skirt's hemline on the way home. Not too bad! 
I'm all geared up - this is how most people saw me. It had a couple of admirers.

The stuff: 
I like having a funky pair of navy blue shoes. Metallic? Yes, please! 

Gold bling: 
I can't just go bling-less! It's not me. 

  • Bracelet - thrifted, Sidney
  • Earrings - thrifted
  • Lapis lazuli ring - Wendy Brandes
  • Necklace - Robert Larin, vintage 70s, vintage mall, gift from L

L and I split up to do a bit of shopping. I found this silk scarf for myself at Lazy Suzan's for $18.00.
I love the red and black pattern - this is a big square scarf. 

There's another colour in the plaid too - purple! I suspect this is vintage, due to the hand-rolled edges (most modern scarves have machine-sewn edges). It is not labeled, but it feels like silk. 
It's by Elaine Gold, who I've never heard of, although I found an article (here, link 'cause I love) about the Elaine Gold Launch Pad, a partnership with the CFDA and Accessories Council in the US to help emerging designers. 

Elaine Gold died in 2015 at the age of 89 (text below from that same link):

Visionary fashion and accessories icon Elaine Gold imprinted her industry as a creative entrepreneur, brand innovator, and young talent supporter. As a charter and board member of the Accessories Council, her passionate dedication as a creative visionary possessing deep knowledge within both design and business was honored by the Hall of Fame Award in 2007.

A native New Yorker, Gold’s career launched on Fifth Avenue, at Vera Scarves where she began as an assistant and transformed into a dynamic design professional during her 19 years with the brand. Gold later worked with CFDA president Emeritus Perry Ellis and Robinson & Golluber strengthening her expertise as a brand curator and specialist of scarves, and graphic prints.

Her journey continued at Totes, where she led the XIIX Karats division, collaborating with Kenzo, Ellen Tracy and other contemporary designers. In 1983, she bought XIIX Karats renaming it as Collection XIIX. Her creative entrepreneurship led to Collection XIIX’s success through brand partnerships with Anne Klein and Jones New York, as well as the Elaine Gold collection.

I have definitely seen a billion Vera brand scarves in the thrift stores; how cool that she also worked with Perry Ellis, Kenzo and Ellen Tracy, as well as Anne Klein and Jones New York. I'm happy to add another new designer name to my database (aka my brain). 


And...that's been my week so far! I'm enjoying the quiet pace, and getting in some quality time with my two guys. How's your week been? 


  1. Good morning Sheila, well first off your patience in doing those beading projects is amazing! Yes I remember those necklaces - I had one. I love the skirt my sister once bought me a pair of Liz Claiborne trousers. No wonder you always look put together - look at all those coats lol. You looked great for your breakfast and shopping and I can see you getting a lot of wear from that scarf you scored. Have a nice day Shazxx

    1. Shazz! Hello! I got into a Zen place with the jewelry - it was so fun. I think everyone had one of those necklaces, ha ha!

      I do have a lot of coats! I like my outerwear to go with my regular clothes, so once you go there, you start collecting coats.

      Take care, hon.

  2. Your handmade jewelry is absolutely beautiful! I remember illusion/floating necklaces sooo well! They were incredibly popular when I was in highschool (especially for events like school dances and picture days). I still think they're lovely and wouldn't be the least bit surprised if they make a bigger comeback again in the near future - especially given how in vogue many 90s trends are these days.

    Wishing you a relaxing, wonderful mid-November weekend,
    ♥ Autumn

    1. Thanks, Autumn - it was a fun afternoon. I think those necklaces will make a comeback - they are so of their time! Happy weekend to you!

  3. I like the jewelry items you made. I can see why the charm bracelet isn't your thing, to me they also feel too unpractical for some reason. I like bracelets in general but charm bracelets seem to get into way somehow. The drop earrings you made are beautiful. I hope you'll get plenty of wear out of them. The necklace you made is also very pretty.

    The outfit with the blue turtleneck and the red tartan skirt is fantastic. You look great in this. I love how you wore a matching face mask. The jacket is fabulous as well. It must be odd being on a vacation in this situation, but what we can do?

    1. Thanks, Ivana! Yes, they're jangly, noisy, and often unbalanced and heavy. I get what you mean. I like the earrings and think I might wear them.

      Thank you - I adore plaids. Yeah, I wish we could have gone somewhere, but this was still a good break.

  4. the scarf is looking like silk even in the photo..... and matches your fab outfit!
    gorgeous plaid skirt!
    nothing beats crafting in spending some comforting hours - working with beads, jewels and metal comes for me right after sewing which i love most.
    its cold here too - winter coats are out of storage since 2 weeks now.

    1. Thanks! I always match my mask to my outfit.

      I really enjoyed spending that quiet time creating something. It feels too soon to wear winter coats, but it's so chilly near the water.

  5. I still have some vacation quota to take up this year, but as I'm only working 2 days a week anyway, I can't really see the point, which is why I haven't taken it up yet in the first place. If things were normal - whatever that means - we would now be on a short break just over the border in Holland ... Anyway, I am hearing you on it feeling weird to be on vacation and not being able to go anywhere.
    I too am trying to do something every day, which doesn't always work as planned, I have to admit.
    How lovely to see all your favourite warm coats hanging out together in your closet: can't wait to see Unsafe Polar Bear, Unsafe Ocelot and Grape Ape in action :-)
    I do indeed remember those necklaces, and even had a couple of them back them, which have all been passed on long ago. I can totally see you wearing those earrings!
    I'm loving the plaid skirt and cobalt blue jumper outfit, and that stunning Robert Larin pendant must be one of my favourite pieces of bling of yours. Your newly found silk scarf is gorgeous too. I miss my weekly charity shop trips soooo much! Have a relaxing weekend, Sheila xxx

    1. I know, Ann, I'm going to have to take a ton of time off in December to catch up on it. But yes, I can't see going anywhere this year, maybe not even next year. It's so weird.

      I have been trying to do one thing a day, but some days that's hard.

      I know you love those coats - I thought of you! :)

      We all had those necklaces, and I may try to work in the earrings.

      Thank you - yeah, I love it too. The keyhole shape appeals to me. I am conscious that we might have another shut-down, so I'm trying to get in little shops here and there.

      Thanks, Ann, take care!

  6. I think you did a great job with your bead creations. I still like that type of jewellery a lot. You look great in the blue sweater and plaid skirt. I'm still mad for plaid!

    That coat with the burgandy lining is stupendous! Our weather has now turned more seasonal and I've been pulling out the warm stuff this week myself. Sadly I don't have anything quite as stunning as your coat.

    Very interesting background on your beautiful new scarf.

    Enjoy your vacation days!

    1. Thanks so much, Nana! I never thought that beading would be so fun. I loved that plaid skirt all over again.

      Isn't the fluffy burgundy amazing? It's so thick and warm. I can't believe how quickly the cold weather came.

  7. Hi Sheila, What a nice post - happy you found 3 hours to craft - good for self care! I wanted to mention that I am not getting your emailed posts anymore - last one was November 5th. Enjoy the rest of your vacation weekend!

    1. Thanks for the head's up, Robyn - I've made some changes, although you will have to click through to come read my posts instead of getting the full feed.

  8. Yay for some time off!

    I do love reorganising my wardrobe. I'll have to do a summer swap over soon.

    Look at you doing beaded crafts! Gorgeous! Even though some of the pieces are not your style, the act of crafting or making can be so satisfying. X

    1. Agreed, Jess! A summer swap feels far too distant for me, sadly. :)

      I know, I got my craft on, ha ha! It was very satisfying.

  9. I'm just like you, I like to feel I've achieved something every day.
    The beadwork project looks like fun. The necklace, charm bracelet and earrings are absolutely lovely, I think it would have taken me an entire week just to make a single earring. You are clever!
    I remember that wonderful Topshop jacket, love it with the tartan skirt and that super luxurious scarf. How thoughtful of Vizzini to help with the wardrobe reorganisation, cats are so good like that!
    Hope you feel rested and relaxed and ready for the week ahead. I'm enjoying sitting around in my dressing gown and playing on the internet with no workmen, hammering or vaccuuming! xxxx

    1. You're much more industrious than me, Vix, but I'm doing what I can. Some days it takes a lot more energy than others.

      It was a lot of fun playing with the beads, and I will take a second look at any beaded items I see that are in poor shape to see if I can make them into something new.

      It's a great jacket and I loved wearing it again. Vizzini is always so helpful, ha ha.

      Thank you, my dear friend. It's been a lovely quiet time.

  10. I loveva drop earing. Coats are always a look out for piece when I thrift.

    1. I love dangly earrings but they are trickier with masks. I adore coats and always check those racks in thrifts.

  11. A mini vacation! That's lovely. It's still warm for the time of the year here, and sunny. I'm so glad with that, too be able to sit outside for a while. How is it going with infections where you live?

    1. I wish it had been warmer, Nancy, but we still had a few nice days. We're at around 500 cases a day in my province (which is physically huge), but hardly any on my Island, so still somewhat isolated and safe here.

  12. I don't wear beaded jewellery either, but I can appreciate the appeal of constructing those pieces of jewellery. I have always looked for a nice plaid skirt but the only one I've found I really liked (by a Canadian designer, Debbie Suchat) was too small in the waist and is now in my Etsy shop.

    Glad L was able to take some time off so you could spend some of your vacation time together. I missed my usual week off in October to go to New York, and usually take a couple of days off around my birthday, but as I'm not going anywhere or attending any events, I may not bother.

    1. Yes, it was more fun making the jewelry - I probably will only wear the earrings, but it was time well spent. Very Zen.

      I know Debbie Suchat - I've seen her stuff second-hand. It's hard to find a good plaid!

      Yes, we have reaffirmed that we do indeed like spending lots of time with each other! I'll take some time over Christmas as well.

  13. Vera sounds pretty cool! I love this outfit- I might try and recreate something similar (ish) with some items I have and haven't combined before. You have such lovely items. The coat looks gorgeous!

    1. Happy to be inspiration for dressing, Kezzie! Thank you!

  14. Looking forward to see all these Unsafe coats in action! (mwhaha!)
    And I totally agree that crafting is a really relaxing activity (and so entertaining). Lovely that you made the most of these books and beads.
    Your plaid skirt is a fabulous piece (and Pockets!) and I love your furry jacket, it looks really cozy! (even if riding up tops and skirts are annoying, but I think you'll find some silky-slippery items to work with this coat). Looking fabulous in this!

    1. I'm happy to have them back as the weather starts to get colder. Crafting was so therapeutic!

      It's a great skirt - thank you! I hate when things ride up - so annoying. Thanks, Monica!


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