Quick Fix: Milk Castle Night Dress to Skirt Remake

castle night dress to skirt remake

For work I have a pretty basic uniform of t-shirt, cardigan, skirt and leggings/tights. The later item to brave the arctic temperatures that Corporate America apparently needs to preserve its employees at so they don’t spoil. The rest is a combo for comfort to spend the better part of the day staring into a computer screen and constantly calling into meetings. While a lot of pastel spills over from my alternative fashion-side into my office lady-side, surprisingly there is a ton of black. When Milk’s Castle Night (キャッスルナイト) popped up on Closet Child I thought it would make a versatile piece that could be styled for the work day or weekend.

simple instructions to modify the milk dress into a skirt

The Castle Night print is so charming. A collection of ribbons, broaches and vintage perfume bottles in a style that looks like doodles someone might draw in their notebook when bored in class (or meetings.) It is also speckled with small glitter dots here and there. None of the photos do justice to this little detail at all.

Looking forward to wearing this well into winter for a pop of cheery color as the daylight grows shorter. A nice chunky sweater and a little ankle boot should do the trick. And so there you have it. Another simple alteration to give a little extra wiggle room into a one-size-fits-some Japanese brand piece.

P.S. Need to think of something clever to do with the fabric left over from the bodice of the dress. Maybe some hair ribbons and a rosette? Not sure yet…

DIY Upcycle: Men’s Kawaii Shirt

super easy way to take a plain men's shirt and make it kawaii

When I saw big pink gingham in the men’s section of Target I didn’t have to think twice about buying it. Good bones for a DIY project and under $25 to boot. Its a Merona shirt and comes in green too if pink is, well, too feminine. Now that my friend has a good base for his Aristocrat wardrobe its time to help him tackle casual pieces for less formal events. What better motivator than Sebastian Masuda coming to NYC with a Hello Kitty Time Capsule!! Needed a simple project that had punch and could be done in a jiffy.

how to transform plain shirt into kawaii style

Picked up this cute candy print fabric at Walmart in Kona, Hawaii of all places. Several years ago they stocked a pretty healthy section of Japanese fabrics. The print is so colorful and seemed appropriate for seeing Masuda-san. In addition it has a couple sections of pink gingham which provides continuity with the shirt print. All I had to do was remove the original pocket and trim down the sleeves. Then using the new fabric replace the pocket and add cuffs to the now short sleeves. I could have gone fancier on the cuffs and made it overlap and add a button if there had been more time. Oh yeah, and added a wide rickrack across the shoulder for extra pop.

Time After Time Capsule Event

Sebastian asked everyone to bring a happy colorful memorial item

You couldn’t ask for a more perfect spring day. One of those days where you can opt for short sleeves but still be comfortable in pants {or a petticoat and OTKs.} A few of the local girls were there when we arrived. A small but colorful crowd starting to blossom. Sebastian was all smiles. He personally greeted everyone who came and contributed to the time capsule.

shop girl yuka and a film crew at the event

A Japanese film crew was there and Adel got interviewed. Haven’t yet been able to find it online. They were asking questions about the growth of Lolita internationally, what do you like about dressing in kawaii clothing, where do you see the trend going…etc. VictorianMe then proceeded to do a mock interview which basically cut to the chase, “So Adel, how do you feel about wearing pink?”

Tasty Peach Studios

tasty peach studios kawaii crown necklace

Found the perfect necklace this weekend at ConnectiCon to go with my new ModCloth dress.  Tasty Peach Studios had the best booth in the dealers room.  Or should I say the cutest booth.  From kawaii t-shirts, to squishy plushies and adorable acrylic jewelry, it was hard for me to refrain from buying one of everything.  I showed some restraint (or my wallet did) and I opted just for their Angelic Crown necklace.  It is great quality. The only negative comment I have is that the chain is pretty short and I prefer to wear my necklaces a bit longer.  That I can easily fix, so still give Tasty Peach a 5 out of 5 stars.


inuikii plush from tasty peach studios

Look at those faces.  So adorable.  Had to chuckle at the zombie alpaca mash up; the alpacalypse.  The booth was crowded so I didn’t get any good shots of their t-shirts.  But the Om Nom Nom print is still calling to me.  If you like cute accessories it is well worth a stop by their online shop.  The prices are very reasonable and there are many designs to choose from.

alpacalypse zombie alpaca plush toy

the designer behind tasty peach studios

I also recommend you view Ryan’s online portfolio.  She is as cute as her designs.  Chances are if you are a Con goer that you have bumped into her work before.  She is a regular and has designed several convention mascots and program covers.

japanese inspired cute acrylic jewlery

DIY Korilakkuma Sweatshirt

Found this Korilakkuma washcloth thingy when I was in San Francisco ages ago. Japan Town has so many fun little shops.  Loved her because she is adorable, but had no idea what to do with her.  Bought her anyway.  And this weekend was glad I did.  Found a good basic pink sweatshirt on Amazon.com, tossed in some ribbon and lace in my stash, as well as some little charms I found locally, and before I knew it had a DIY project.

diy korilakkuma sweatshirtkorilakkuma replacing the button with a pink ribbonkorilakkuma sweatshirt appliquekorilakkuma teapot and key charms korilakkuma bear ears hoodiekorilakkuma sweatshirt patternsweet korilakkuma pink sweatshirtI also added a couple of bows to adorn the ears on the hood.  It is hard to see from the snaps I took, but in person they add a needed balance and continuity to the ribbon on the applique.  The sweatshirt now matches wonderfully to Baby the Stars Shine Bright’s My Sweet Mate Kumya’s Honey Hunt skirt. Very proud of my little Thanksgiving weekend accomplishment.

P.S. Apparently I forgot to switch the direction of the drop shadow in Photoshop for a couple of the images.  Kinda like the randomness of it ( ̄ー ̄).

Comfy in Coral

kawaii cutsew with lace

I live in t-shirts and go to great lengths to find clothing that is both comfortable and stylish.  That isn’t always easy.  Cotton is king in my world and I out right refuse to buy items full of polyester and synthetics. In fact I will put back a perfectly wonderful item if it has less than 90% cotton content.  This includes socks; although I have caved on my standards for a few Japanese alternative-fashion brands.

Then a couple of years ago I took the plunge and attended sewing classes in Manhattan.  The curriculum including learning how to work with lovely, stretchy knits.  I bought my first serger and can’t imagine how anyone ever sewed without one!

handmade lace t-shirt

Knit + Woven = animated hearts

My latest experiments have been on how best to mix both knits and wovens together.  For this project, 3 fabrics in various shades of coral and peach were pulled from the depths of my stash.  I bought them together at the Discount Fabric Warehouse but was lost on how to successfully combine them.  So a couple weeks ago, while feeling adventuresome, I opted for a ruffle collar t-shirt confection.  The coral fabric is a bit thicker than the soft peach, so that necessitated it being used as the base of the shirt.  The lace was selected for its airiness in order to cut up the heaviness of the densely, ruffled, woven fabric.  Was tempted to embellish the sleeves with a ribbon but showed some restraint.

I really like the result.  And the application of the woven fabric to the neckline was pretty straight forward.  Just needed to be careful that everyone was lying nice and flat when being stitched down.

The biggest learning was to use a ball point / rounded tip needle when working with knits on a regular sewing machine.  For example, when finishing the hem and sleeves.  Thanks to the internet I learned that important lesson – they didn’t tell me in the class I took.  The round needle more easily slips between the fabric threads and is less likely to skip stitches on knits – or worse damage or curl the fabric.

What do you think.  Is it a successful blend of the fabrics?

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