Dressing Vintage – Choose Your Own Personal Style

From frilly silk blouses to retro 70’s chic, vintage dressing can give you a chance to dress up or down with a style all your own. There is a trick though, to making it look like high fashion and dressing with intent rather than just wearing old clothes that don’t sync with today’s trends. Make sure you know how to combine true vintage, with modern clothing to give yourself a look that is uniquely you!

How Does Costume Differ from Vintage Dressing?

It’s all in how far you go. If you’re going for a 50s look, give your outfit a 50s flair. Don’t do shoes, bag, blouse, skirt AND hair. Choose one or two pieces that hit the chosen decade, and mix them up with something from today. As Glamour recommends, keep the other pieces simple, for example a simple black blouse, and slacks paired with a funky 50s coat and bag give a boost of vintage without looking like you’re playing dress up.

Updating a Vintage Look

From changing buttons, to adding a modern belt or layering, making just a tiny change can take a vintage look from drab to, you guessed it, fab! If you find an amazing dress but the length isn’t right, or it features shoulder pads that make you look like a well-known linebacker, take them to a local tailor for an update. Shorter hems, necklines with a modern edge, or even a shorter sleeve can give new life to a retro look. But it does result in an inexpensive item from the thrift store suddenly costing significantly more, so make sure it’s something you’ll want to wear more than once.

Pretty short set perfect for that vintage look
Comfortable enough for vacation wear

Used Clothing Aren’t the Only Way To “Go Vintage”

Some people have an issue with shopping through second hand clothing stores, or dealing with the mothball smell of clothing from grandmother’s attic. But you can still go vintage with sweet details like embroidery, lace, and quality pure fabrics like cotton and linen. Pair a pretty short sleeved pajama top (like the one featured in this picture from Jacaranda Living) with a mini jeans skirt, or a favorite pair of jeans and a belt and you’ll have a touch of delicate vintage. As Diana Jone of becomegorgeous.com points out, many modern clothes feature lace, ribbons, bows, and ruffles that will give you an air of vintage and add a fun feminine look to your wardrobe.

pretty lace pajama top can double as blouse
Lace-trimmed Summer Comfort

Vintage for Every Day

Some people feel vintage is something you need to save for a special occasion. A wedding, an afternoon tea, or a holiday seems like the perfect opportunity to highlight a special look. But sneaking a bit of vintage into everyday can be a great way to stand out, while also fitting in. Consider a lacy pajama top under a sweater or jacket for the office. Pack a sweet scarf-belted lace trimmed nightgown for summer days. Even this cute lace trimmed short set with a simple necklace and flats are perfect for traveling in warmer climates.

 

Vintage-style lace neckline

Vintage dressing is all about featuring one or two pieces that work with other items in your wardrobe. Whether it’s a one-time thing, or something you build into your own personal style, vintage dressing has a few guidelines:

  • Quality
  • Fit
  • Appropriate to the wearer

Give consideration to the setting, dress code, and your own comfort level. Vintage dressing can be fun while providing you with a unique way to stand out from the crowd.

Sources

http://www.glamour.com/gallery/dos-and-donts-of-wearing-vintage#4

http://www.becomegorgeous.com/fashion-style/new_trends/fashion_tips_how_to_dress_vintage-597.html

http://apairandasparediy.com/2013/05/how-to-wear-vintage/

 

Handmade vs. Custom Made – Gifts for the Holidays to Show You Care

Not everyone is a gifted crafter. Not everyone can bake, or has the time to make embroidered gifts. Sure, we love to receive homemade fudge, or a beautiful knitted sweater or afghan, but these days most people have a tough time finding the time to wrap gifts, let alone make unique items for family and friends.

But if you’re a crafter, and there are definitely a lot of you out there, Jacaranda Living has some great embroidered gift items or blank items to be embroidered that will fit right in with your desire to give something special to those you love. Think it’s too late? Not really.

Embroidered or hand painted items can be beautiful as gifts. Time may be running out to give a completed item by Christmas or Hannukah, but you can order the item and provide your recipient with a picture of the finished product. Then let them know you’ll be working hard during the winter to create their gift.

Embroidered Gifts are Unique and Beautiful

Whether you’re embroidering a cosmetic bag for a friend, or a tissue box for a co-worker, or a pair of slippers for a favorite aunt, Jacaranda Living has a variety of blank pieces ready to embroider that will work perfectly.

large cotton cosmetic bag
large cosmetic bag ready for your embroidery or painting

Not sure where to find the unique patterns that will make your gift the one they treasure? Consider Mary Corbet’s Needle ‘n Thread blog. She’s got great ideas for a variety of designs and even shows you how to use coloring books for inspiration. With so many coloring books out there for adults, you may even be able to ask the person you’re making something for to share their favorite design and you can turn it into an embroidered piece!

Fabric Painting Can Create a Custom Gift to Treasure

If you like painting, why not try fabric painting to create a one-of-a-kind gift for someone special? Look for videos on YouTube that show how to paint flowers, and other designs on bed sheets, scarves, and tablecloths. Jacaranda Living has quality cotton napkins, robes, and pillow cases that would work well for this type of project.

Cotton Dinner Napkins Ready for Embroidery
The Perfect Cotton Dinner Napkin

Just search for “one stroke painting” on YouTube to find a wide variety of projects from easy to complex.

Not All of Us are Artistic – Some Ideas for Embroidered Gifts

Not the type to sit and embroider or paint? Don’t worry, Jacaranda Living can still be your path to giving a unique, embroidered gift to treasure for years to come. From baby gifts to bed linens to ladies’ nightgowns and dresses for the little girls in your life, we’ve got a range of embroidered and monogrammed items made of high quality cotton

a full range of baby items
A beautiful set for baby with sweet embroidered details

and linen, enhanced with lace and fine details that show how much you care.

Consider a pretty set for the littlest member of your family, perhaps booties, a hat, a bib and a onesie all embroidered with little sheep.

 

Maybe a sweet cotton springtime dress for a young lady with a love of elephants.

little girls dress with pink elephants
Pretty white dress embroidered with pink elephants

Who doesn’t love a cool cotton boudoir pillow and you can have it embroidered with a wide selection of designs including this pretty Nantucket basket of flowers.

Embroidered pillows with multiple design options
Pretty Boudoir Pillow with flower-filled Nantucket Basket Embroidery

Or put together a picnic basket of goodies featuring these fun lobster embroidered cocktail napkins that would be a hit with anyone who likes to plan an outing with just a bit more flair than the usual.

embroidered cocktail napkins - lobster design
Lobster embroidered cocktail napkins, the perfect picnic accent

Embroidered linens and handmade gifts show you’ve thought about the person you’re giving to. Whether the gift is something you’ve created, or something you’ve had created just for them. If you’re shopping for gifts and want something personal, consider Jacaranda Living. We’ve got gifts that show people how much you care.

 

 

 

Sources

http://www.jacarandaliving.com/linen-for-monogrammers.html

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8CpX9s-sRSI

http://www.needlenthread.com/

 

Christmas Traditions Begin with Jacaranda Living – Start Yours This Year!

Does your family have Christmas Traditions already in place? For many, the holidays are a time to start new Christmas traditions that will be enjoyed and treasured by your family as it grows! A few of our favorite traditions include:

Reindeer Gifts

If your family attends church on Christmas Eve, the reindeer can stop by the house to leave Christmas pajamas, slippers and robes for the whole family. Include a little note from the reindeer with a few tips

  • get to bed as soon as possible
  • leave Santa some cookies and maybe chocolate milk this year
  • thank them for taking care of their assigned elf (if your family enjoys the christmas traditions of Elf on a Shelf)

While superhero and princess inspired pjs are great for the little ones, consider our comfortable Kelsey Pajamas for the ladies of the household. Finish the outfit with our sweet scuffy slippers embroidered for the season with wreaths, snowflakes, and even a Christmas Tree! We’ve got 10 Holiday designs to give our slippers a true Christmas Eve touch.

Christmas Traditions include the Twelve Days of Christmas
sweet embroidery designs that feature favorite Christmas Carols, another of many Christmas Traditions

Sweet Twelve Days of Christmas embroidery options for slippers!

And don’t forget robes! Light cotton or cozy waffle or willow weave with satin trim. Robes from Jacaranda Living are the perfect Reindeer Gift and will be used all year long.

 EL280 Bath Robe** - Cotton, Long Sleeve

Cookie Traditions – Making Holiday Cookies Can Be an Annual Event!

And speaking of cookies for Santa, why not make Christmas cookies a tradition? Whether yours are a family tradition, like Pizzelle, pfeffernusse, or pepperkakor, making the perfect Christmas cookie takes time and can become a fun competition each year with other family and friends. Who has the best cookie? Sites like allrecipe.com and bettycrocker.com have 100’s of recipes to choose from if your family doesn’t already have a favorite. Ours would be this recipe for Soetkoekies (sweet cookies) from South Africa which can be found on food.com.

South African Traditional Soetkoekies (Sweet Cookies)

  • Yield: 80-90 cookies. The dough should be rolled out really thinly — about 1/6th of an inch — to get a crispy cookie.
  • INGREDIENTS
    • 5 cups cake flour
    • 2 cups brown sugar or 2 cups yellow sugar, if available. (yellow sugar is very light brown sugar)
    • 1 teaspoon baking soda
    • 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
    • 1tsp ground cloves
    • 1TBS ground cinnamon
    • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg (optional)
    • 2 teaspoons salt
    • 1/4 lb butter, soft
    • 1/4 lb rendered pork fat (or Crisco)
    • 1/2 cup sweet sherry or 1/2 cup muscatel or 1/2 cup madeira wine or 1/2 cup port wine, but you may need up to 3/4 cup of the sweet wine
    • 2 large eggs, whisked well

      LL680-CK Ladies Apron - "I love beautiful cupcakes"
      Fun aprons for adults and kids from Jacaranda Living
DIRECTIONS
  1. Preheat oven to 380 F
  2. Grease cookie sheets.
  3. In a large container mix first eight ingredients very well.
  4. Cut in the butter and Crisco/fat with your hands until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.
  5. Whisk the eggs, add just 1/2 cup sweet wine to the eggs, then stir into the dry mixture until well-blended. Add more wine sparingly if too dry. Mix until it forms a fairly stiff dough. The dough should be easy to handle.
  6. Remove dough from bowl, kneading until smooth, then, on a floured surface, roll out to a thin sheet (1/6th of an inch). This will need to be done in batches.
  7. Using your favorite holiday cookie cutters, cut cookies and place carefully on the greased sheets. Bake in batches in the preheated oven.
  8. Use the center rack in the oven, as cookies burn easily on the bottom, especially if you use dark sheets.
  9. Check cookies after 5 minutes being careful not to let them burn. Cooking time can vary depending on oven and size of cookie but is usually about 7 minutes.
  10. Remove with a spatula, and let cool on wire racks. Store in airtight containers.
  11. Can be made and stored weeks in advance.

There are so many recipes for holiday cookies, and so many different ways to make them your own. Make the search for this year’s recipe part of your holiday fun! Have young chefs in the household? Consider Kiddie and Ladies Aprons from Jacaranda as a pre-holiday gift to help everyone get in the mood.

Take Out  as Part of Christmas Traditions – Explore Take Out Options on Christmas Eve

Many households celebrate both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, and it can get pretty hectic preparing two celebrations with food, dishes, planning, and cleaning up! Why not make Christmas Eve the time to get takeout. Whether you go Chinese, Mexican, hearty soups and fresh baked bread, or try something entirely new, researching menus, and deciding what you’ll share this year can become an annual ritual in the weeks leading up to the big day.

Whatever you do for the holidays, make sure to enjoy the time together with family and friends. Life is stressful and at busy times, when to-do lists seem endless, it can be easy to forget the reason for the holiday, and get overwhelmed with making certain everything is perfect. Give yourself a chance to sit, relax, and savor those you love. It’ll give you a chance to breathe, and to create memories that will sweeten over the years.

Get your orders in now for the holidays!

At Jacaranda Living we’d love to help create your Christmas Traditions and make your holidays a time to remember. Get your order in now while there is still plenty of time to embroider and ship your gifts wherever you’ll be celebrating this year!

Sources

http://www.parenting.com/gallery/christmas-eve-traditions

http://www.food.com/recipe/south-african-traditional-soetkoekies-sweet-cookies-187261

http://allrecipes.com/recipes/841/holidays-and-events/christmas/desserts/christmas-cookies/

http://www.theprairiehomestead.com/2013/01/the-mystery-of-the-missing-pig-fat-and-how-to-render-lard.html

Girls Weekend Getaway – Make It Personal

Whether you’re celebrating an empty nest, an autumn wedding, or just extending a homecoming celebration because you want to, girls’ getaway weekends are the perfect way to kick back, relax, and let your inner circle know how much you appreciate them. A special gift to commemorate your weekend getaway; a matching nighshirt or scuffies for poolside, or even a cute cosmetic bag can be a reminder of a fun weekend away, and let your friends know how much they mean to you.

Who Needs a Reason for a Weekend Getaway

There is an endless list of reasons to getaway with your besties:

  • Bachelorette Party
  • Last Child Leaving the Nest
  • Bookclub Retreat
  • Returning to the Working World
  • Milestone Birthday Celebration
  • Old Friends in Town for the Weekend

Abby Draper of The Huffington Post’s Blog reminds us, “every woman needs a good ‘girls weekend’ every so often.” The one thing all the above ideas have in common is a shared history or experience among the guests. If you’re the weekend planner, don’t sweat. It doesn’t need to be a “destination weekend” and can even just be a slumber party in your own neighborhood, as long as everyone is getting away from home, work, and a break from the norm.

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