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A Sustainable Life. Make Magick.


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R.I.P. Sharon Jones

So heartbreaking. I was so fortunate to see Sharon Jones and the dap Kings open for Prince. And now come 2016 they are both gone. She was an anomoly. A middle aged Black woman who began her career late and and came out strong. She was and is a goddess! May her music inspire and her spirit live on. Thank you and rest in power Sharon.

BROTHA WOLF

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From The Root:

Legendary singer Sharon Jones passed away Friday at the age of 60 after battling pancreatic cancer. Jones, who was part of Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings, was born in North August, South Carolina in 1956, and raised in Brooklyn, NY.

“We are deeply saddened to announce that Sharon Jones has passed away after a heroic battle against pancreatic cancer,” the singer’s rep wrote in a statement. “She was surrounded by her loved ones, including the Dap-Kings.”

Jones was first diagnosed with cancer in 2012, but went into remission, and it returned in 2015.

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Work Capsule Wardrobe: Shop Your Closet Pt. 1

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I was feeling very unsatisfied with my sense of having decent ‘work clothes’, as I continue looking for a great job. I have been slowly updating items in my closet. I decided to have a movie montage moment and try on some neglected items and finally assess what I have in my closet. It’s going on two years since I’ve done that! Remember ReFashion 2015? Well, it turns out I have quite a bit! I’m not much of a traditionalist, love pattern on pattern but I do like to be appropriate to the job and don’t mind a professional dress code. And I think what I have pulled together from my dear little closet can serve me very well!

In the last week, I have refashioned a thrifted dress, made a classic black pencil skirt from two older makes that didn’t quite work out and made a tunic sweater from some sheer knit chevron fabric salvaged at my favorite, Michael Levine Loft. Most importantly I found a few older items that haven’t been seeing the light of day that are perfect for a work wardrobe.

Four out of five of my tops were me made,  or made by me, for comfort, fit and my style. The exception was the Alfani black cold shoulder button down shirt that is one of two new store bought clothing items I have bought in 2016.  AND I LOVE IT! It is a staple and I got if for something like $20.00 on clearance at Macy’s.

My rare purchase preceeded my knowledge of the #GrabYourWallet boycott. In case you didn’t know there is a boycott of Trump products and his corporate funders and supporters in opposition to the racist, transphobic, homophobic, xenophobic and islamophobic rhetoric that Trump uses and promoted throughout his election campaign. Macy’s announced that they would continue to not carry Trump merchandise or his subsidiaries again after the election. For me that made my rare purchase doubly satisfying and a WIN/WIN! However I have learned they are still carrying Ivanka Trump merchandise. So no more Macy’s for me given the opportunity.

Five tops, five cardigans or light jackets, five bottoms, three dresses and three pairs of shoes make for a lot of options, and I was pretty impressed with the endless combinations available to me once I actually tried some options on. Here are about 20 outfits below.

Ofcourse, I’m still going through my closet so I can’t say it ends here. But it’s a good reminder that I have more than what I need. Plus, I am already working on complementary makes and alterations. For instance, my tunic sweater is fairly sheer so I am making a slip with a ruffled bottom to wear underneath it so that I can wear it as a cozy little dress. And I can think of a pair of ankle boots and heeled sandal that could also be office appropriate to add to this capsule collection. But then again, this is part 1 and there is more to come! See you then!❤

If you like and want to support the blog consider donating at PayPal.me Be well!

xoxo,

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Work Capsule Wardrobe: Retro Shift Dress

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So I looked through my closet for suitable “professional” day job wear while I search for the perfect day gig and wasn’t impressed. My last refashion, the black shirt dress was the first piece in and beginnings of a work capsule wardrobe in the making. For this dress, I had already made the bodice and the skirt of this dress over the summer with the intention of using them for mix and match separates. I didn’t really like the fit of the two together and decided to make a dress, which kind of makes this a refashion!  Once I had the shift together I had some adjusting to do since the tank started out pretty billowy.

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Then I looked through my drawer of sewing patterns and hallelujah found this sleeve pattern. Which made me ecstatic! A little early 70s vibe was what this simple shift needed for me to make it feel more special and give it some School Marm Boho styling appropriate for work. YAS! This look also fulfills a goal of making a print/color blocking piece as noted in my 2016 Make and Refashion Planner, that I made at the beginning of the year. Sweeeeeeeeeeeet!

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retroshift-5 I am not mad at the results! I made the sleeveless sweater coat above with leather cap sleeves a few years ago now! All of the fabrics here were bought in the last few years from my favorite spot, the Loft, at Michael Levine fabrics in Downtown Los Angeles. The loft is the outlet that sells remnants and bolts and pieces that are out of season before they are discarded which can mean shipped abroad or put in a landfill somewhere. I still love wearing this sweater coat with all sorts of outfits from a t-shirt and joggers to interview wear and will definitely be using it in my work capsule wardrobe. In this case, I am loving how the additional print and cap sleeves show off of the bell sleeves of the dress. You know I love some print on print action!
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Basic Black#ThriftyThursday

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So it’s been ages since I did a Thrifty Thursday but was inspired upon seeing Confession of a Fashiontista ‘s Sheri’s latest blog post. She runs  Refashion Nation and organizes weekly themes to inspire folx to show off their thrifted and refashioned treasures! I actually found my treasure yesterday! These men’s Brogues fit perfectly are nicely broken in and have many more years in them. I am psyched to have found a new comfy and stylish pair of Black shoes suitable for both work and play.

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The other gem of this post is my second refashioned shirt dress. The first is a denim number you can find here! I live in that dress have nearly worn it out already. This time around I finally used an old bedsheet in a refashion. It was gifted to me in a huge bag of fabric I inherited. I used it to create a skirt to add to a button up shirt that I wasn’t wearing. I love my boxy new shirt dress which is as Basic as it gets! And I definitely need to grow the basics in my closet. Below is a couple of visual maps on how I did the refashion. It is fairly self-explanatory.

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And there you have it. A basic number that I can wear to work, or out for the weekend with my docs or peep toes or sandals… this is L.A.! I’m not mad at this little black day dress which will be hard at work for me for a long time to come.

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If you like and want to support the blog consider donating at PayPal.me Be well!

xoxo,

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The Magick Season

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It has been a really busy couple of weeks. I made a decision that seemed to open a gateway of opportunities and have been busting a*$ ever since! This weekend I was working a vintage show doing a fair amount of physical labor for two days then was up until 2 am collaging all of these images to share what has kept me away. It is my prime working season. My favorite time of year when folx order costume pieces from me at SweetLeigh and I am my most playful when it comes to making! See Autumn Moodboard for current inspirations!

First up is SweetLeigh. The Miss Argentina Cape has continued to be a strong seller this Halloween so I have added a Black version for Bats, and demons and vampires alike, to my Etsy. I have capes to make! Folx also love the Bat ears and the Eartha Kitty set! I’m a little sad because I used the last of my fabulous leopard velour up for my final Eartha Kitty set. But I hope to generate as much excitement with a pink velour version for a “pink panther set” which I’m also working on. And lastly, time to start fleshing out my own Halloween costume!

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Do you know Steven Universe!? A cartoon show for kids that should be mandatory viewing for all humans everywhere…. If you haven’t heard, it stars the Crystal Gems, an amazing renegade group of nonbinary Crystals who are trying to save the people of earth from their homeworld leaders. They do this with the help of the half-human/half-Gem child of their compatriot Rose Quartz, Steven Universe! Garnet, Amethyst, and Pearl learn as much from young Steven as they teach and the show is a bastion of queer bi-sexual, lesbian and nonbinary representation, centered around the basics of love and respect for ourselves and others. It is all the things that we should have been taught in school.

Every episode is a life lesson or reminder that we  are enough as we are whoever you are and how you present to the world. Although Garnet is my favorite Crystal Gem, I am pondering what my own gem might look like! Pyrite! Let’s see what I come up with! I will keep you posted.

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My other costume idea is one that I’ve been wanting to do for a while now. I originally thought that a unicorn would be amazing in an 18th century outfit, and then I played with the idea of zombie Marie Antoinette when that was going around. But now I am thinking of another twist on the look, featuring the Hedgehog style wig of the day… mmmmmmmmm hoping I can make this happen!

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I have been working on Refashions! I have a shirt dress that I did rather quickly that will most likely be posted before this one, but had to share something I have essentially been working on since Summer! I love this denim Jacket refashion, if you follow me on Instagram you have been seeing bits and pieces of the process for ahile now. It has lost it’s collar, cuffs, at one point half of its sleeves and then all of the sleeves. But the moment I tapped into my love of magickal symbolism I realized I was on to something special that would definitely inspire me to get back into this jacket. This is a labor of love and magick this applique embroidery spellcasting of mine….

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And finally, there has been an equinox, and a new moon to celebrate. You can catch glimpses of my rituals and tarot check-ins on my Instagram. The lovely Meg of Miller’s Cabinets and Curiousities sent me this article about Lilith and the Black Moon that ended September. A wonderful read that you should definitely check out! In the center of my little collage of magickal moments is an image I regrammed from Black Witch Coven that makes me happy in many ways.  The full moon is coming up on the 16th loves, enjoy. Be true and aim high!

If you like and want to support the blog consider donating at PayPal.me Be well!

xoxo

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Moodboard: Autumn Vibes 2016

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Fall is my jam. It is the time of year that I miss the east coast’s turning leaves, waning temperatures, light-weight coats and sweater weather, wearing tights while gusts of wind lift my skirts! Sigh…. Being a west coaster my Autumn vibes still employ cozy sweaters for the dropping temps, if mainly at night, my favorite muted colors and most definitely layering it up. It also marks a return to getting my high femme on. A little bit of high drama in my styling choices as the layers pile on.

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Autumn also begins “holiday” season. There are my favorites Halloween (Samhain) and Day of the Dead, an evolution of the Catholic All Soul’s Day, which is celebrated throughout a number of both Spanish and non-Spanish speaking colonized countries. Many a New Year is celebrated included Hibri, the Islamic New Year which begins in mid-November. The Wiccan celebration Mabon and the Autumn Equinox occurs, celebrating the harvest time and gratitude. Many Yoruban orishas have feast days throughout Autumn including one of my favorite Yoruban Goddesses Oya. It is also Feast of Eleggua, an Initiation Day into the Yoruba Faith (Nigerian religion).

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There is lots of magic in the season which is probably why I have such an affinity for it.  Autumn is the season where nature fades and starts to die off leading into Winter. For me, the dying off is a shedding of skin and relinquishing of that which doesn’t serve. It is the beginning of making way for all that’s new.  I am inspired and energized by the Fall in spite of any challenges or hardships. For me,  it is organically a very freeing season.

The full moon has passed and the Autumn Equinox is here and there will be celebrations. Enjoy them. Right now its dusk giving way to night and the trees are rustling and I peep a deep blue and tawny sky out of my window and the breeze greets me and I am truly content. The smallest moments are filled with gratitude, the falling leaves, my tea and tarot, a favorite autumn meal, the shedding of skin. Enjoy the magick of Autumn, before you know it, it will be gone.

If you like and want to support the blog consider tipping me at PayPal.me Be well.

xoxo

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ReFashion 2016: Resort Style, Body Acceptance & Fatkini Fall!

fatkini-refashion2016It’s been AGES since I did a ReFashion post! I have done a lot of hemming, mending and alterations that I just couldn’t manage to post yet, but hope to get around to it. Why a fatkini for fall you may ask? The practical reason, I have access to the apt building swimming pool without tons of children screaming and splashing (who are now in school!), so I tend to swim more at the end of summer. Also living in sunny Southern California is year round incentive!

The other reason is that in all of the collections fashion designers put out annually, my favorite is usually resort wear. Resort collections generally consist of great separates that can be worn year round in warm or cold weather and yep includes killer swimwear. I feel the need to be prepared, for when someone wants to take me away for a fabulous tropical holiday! (((Manifesting)))
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I made this skirted swimsuit bottom last year and didn’t manage to get a DIY up for it. So when I finally decided to turn this built-in bra from an old ill-fitting camisole into the base of a swim top to match, I was excited to complete the look! This top was one of those projects that I kept putting off since I hadn’t made a bra, or bathing suit bra top before.

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The project turned out to be easier than I thought and one of my favorite DIY’s EVER! It’s not perfectly sewn, but it was very well thought out. I experimented with straps successfully and have a nice heavy-duty elastic lining the top and bottom of my side straps. All of my materials were gifted, salvaged and refashioned, including an old bra closure for the top closure.

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I’m fatter than last year and feeling it. As I decide how to best practice more consistent care for myself I realized I was starting to fall into old habits of shaming myself and my body, particularly my belly, which has also grown. So making a new suit top that doesn’t completely cover that belly was a true act of love, resilience, and acceptance. I really love the suit so much and feel quite adorable in it. And let me tell you, feeling attractive doesn’t hurt when it comes to body image which you probably know already. But it’s always good to be reminded.

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I often reflect on how I’m coping with the world and how where I am at, largely depends on my ability to stay the course when it comes to taking care of myself. If I am not taking care of myself then I find myself reacting, to the people and world around me. When I am in my moon cycling (Happy Full Moon by the way), when I am honoring creating sacred space for myself, it turns out that I am far more resilient than I often remember. Making and creating is as empowering as meditating and spell crafting for me and is very much a part of my holding sacred space. So look forward to more ReFashions loves! Autumn is so my time of year to #MakeMagick! Ciao bellos!

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If you like and want to support the blog consider tipping me at PayPal.me Be well.

xoxo

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