Happy first day of the “Summer of 2023”.
I have a different type of post for you today that I have been wanting to share with you. It is not about home decorating.
I bet you don’t know something about me. Although, if you are a long-time reader you may know. When I first started blogging, my first post was about women’s fashion, not home decor.
At the time I started my blog back in 2009, I was a new empty-nester and had time on my hands. I began dabbling in illustrating the objects around my house and also flat lay outfit ideas. My career background was as a visual merchandiser for department stores.
One of my weekly tasks was to change the mannequins in the store with the new arrival of clothes. I could dress and accessorize them in my own style. I enjoyed it and missed being able to do it when I became a stay at home mom. Back around 2005, I began drawing my outfit ideas on paper.
I had many. Some I framed, others stayed in notebooks. Over time I found I wanted a place to share my colorful illustrations and other creative ideas so I started the blog.
One of the creative ideas I shared early on was how to hang plates on a wall with paper clips. It went as they say … viral! I was shocked by the response and found that what people and new readers got excited about was budget ideas for around the house. So I posted more of this type of post and my blog took off, leaving my initial idea for the blog to be forgotten.
Fast forward to today. Now that it is summer (today marks the official first day of summer) and I have finished the cable railing project on the front porch, I want to take a break on the “DIY home improvement front” over the summer.
Not to worry though, I am actively working on 3 smaller decor projects and will post them as I get them completed, but no big projects that require trips to Home Depot and Lowes or that require power tools over the summer. :-)
I want to enjoy drawing again as I find the process very relaxing. I don’t strive to be a fine artist, but like to draw realistic objects using colorful markers. I was inspired to do this many years ago when I was a pre-teen and loved the colorful illustrations of the Hallmark artist, Betsey Clark back in the early 1970’s.
As I got older I studied every page of Susan Branch’s books where she illustrated and penned the written sections about cooking and life on Martha’s Vineyard. The fashion stylist, Kim Johnson Gross was also a huge inspiration to me.
Over time I found what I liked to draw the most was women’s fashion. I did a series of fashion illustrations that I made into greeting cards way before blogging was a thing. For each card, I was inspired to draw an outfit worn in movies starring Doris Day and Audrey Hepburn, as well as my vintage Barbie doll dresses from the 1960’s.
The black dress above with the palette sequin trim is what Audrey Hepburn’s character, Regina Lambert wore in the Palais–Royal scene near the end of the movie Charade with Cary Grant.
The yellow dress with the pearl top, Doris Day’s character, Carole Tempelton wore in the movie, Lover Come Back in the scene where Rock Hudson’s character, Jerry Webster comes to her apartment for dinner, but with another agenda on his mind.
The red boucle suit in the Ladies Who Lunch illustration was from a Barbie outfit. The belted leopard coat was another Barbie outfit that one of my friend’s had for their Barbie.
Same with this Prom Night dress. The pink day dress in Just Browsing is one that Jackie Kennedy wore on a trip to India when she was the first lady.
The green gown with sparkly top and mink stole was another Jackie Kennedy outfit. The brown and white polka dot dress For Strolling the Promenade was inspired by a dress that Julia Robert’s character, Vivian Ward wore in the polo watching seen in the movie Pretty Woman.
I created these images for print, not for a computer’s resolution, but would like to try to make free printables of them for anyone who would like them.
When I first started drawing these illustrations, fashion flat lays done with a phone app were not invented yet. Now it is a thing and so easy to do with images taken from retailer’s sites.
Last week I got an email from Walmart asking me if I would like to do a post sharing fashion or beauty finds with my readers. At first I thought, no, but then I realized why not. I love fashion and want to be myself on my blog so I took them up on the challenge and searched Walmart.com to come up with a few fun outfits that I would wear this summer.
When I was in high school and college, tennis was my life. Friends always ask me if I play Pickleball now. I don’t because of my hip, but I sure think the outfits you can wear to play are pretty cute, especially flirty tennis skorts.
I love tennis and golf skorts that flair out like the one I am wearing in the photo above (hard to tell though in the photo) or that have a flouncy ruffle along the bottom. I think they look so much nicer than a pair of shorts.
Do you love your clothes, finding deals and items that you love so much, you buy more than one in case one gets stained or damaged? That is the way I feel about tennis skorts. I have quite a few.
What item of clothing do you love and reach for in your closet without thinking or a need to look in a mirror to make sure it looks OK?
I hope you enjoyed this post and seeing a different side of me that you may not have known about. XO.
Here’s to a Stylish Summer!