Friday, March 30, 2012

a simple little updo for short hair

Ever since I chopped off most of my hair on a whim, I've been having a hard time coming up with fun and easy ways to style it. I've never really liked wearing it down, but I don't really like wearing it in a ponytail either, so having a stockpile of updos is necessary for me. Recently I tried my favorite standby, milkmaid braids, but I could barely get 1" of braid before it was just too short to keep going.

Enter: this pink braid headband I got from ASOS. The color was a little too light and the material too shiny at first so I just used my pink hair dye on it. I painted it on with a paintbrush and then just let it air dry, and now it matches my hair color perfectly! To get this style, I just pinned the braid in place on top of my hair (you want all of your hair under the headband) and then tucked my hair around it. Then I secured everything with bobby pins.

I originally saw the hair-tucked-in-a-headband trick in this video tutorial for curling your hair. (Watch it to see how exactly the tucking part works.. it's so easy but it's hard to describe, and of course I didn't think to take pictures myself until I had already finished.) I think it would look cute with any headband, but I love how it looks with the faux braid! And if you have normal colored hair it's probably easier to pull this off... I think I've seen brown and blonde faux hair headbands at Rite Aid, even!

I ended up letting some of my shorter hairs just do whatever they wanted for a more messy casual look, but I think it would be really easy to make this tight and sleek with hairspray and an army of bobby pins ;)

posh frock friday

dress - modcloth
tights - h&m maybe?
shoes - francesca's
pink braid - asos

The modcloth restock notification alert is dangerous... within seconds of finding out this dress was back in stock I'd already purchased it. Isn't the color something else?! It reminds me a lot of these tights (which also inspired me to pair the dress with purple!)

Also yesterday I discovered that I have a cat who plays fetch! Every time I throw this little pink mouse down the hallway, Hubble runs after it, scoops it up in his mouth and brings it back to me. When I got him a bed with dog bones printed on it I joked that he would be my dog cat, but I never would have guessed he actually WOULD be like a dog! haha!

ps. I have a little hair tutorial post coming up later :)

Thursday, March 29, 2012

lonely tourist charlotte charles

dress - vintage
shoes - modcloth
belt and tights - h&m

Here's a little sneak peek of my new closet! I thought it would be perfect for outfit photos once in a while since there's a big bay window on one wall, but for some reason it came out terribly washed out and grainy. Might just be the time of day or something.. we'll see! The room is almost totally finished, so I'll be taking pictures to post really soon :)

When I saw this dress, I immediately thought of Charlotte Charles from Pushing Daisies! Not only is it shaped like a frock she'd wear, but it has bees printed all over it, and she was a beekeeper!! Perfection! It also reminds me a bit of Miss Frizzle from The Magic School Bus! I loved how all of her dresses matched her lesson plans. If I was a teacher, I'd totally do that.

Speaking of teachers, I stumbled upon a teaching supply shop on amazon yesterday and it's taking all of my willpower not to blow all of my money on chalk holders, two sided pens and testing notebooks. Anyone want to come over and play school with me??

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

wishlist wednesday

1. Enchanted to Meet You dress from Modcloth // $127.99
2. Pleat scallop cropped shirt from Topshop // $56.00
3. Metal half frame cat eye sunglasses from ASOS // $21.49
4. Loveboat shoes with heart detail from ASOS // $35.81
5. Pack of 50 pastel gummy bracelets from ASOS // $10.74
6. Lilac flared dress from Dorothy Perkins // $59.00
7. Ombre print sweater from Dorothy Perkins // $44.00
8. Dip Your Feet flats from Modcloth // $49.99
9. Shining flower ring from Forever 21 // $4.80
10. Lace detachable collar from Romwe // $15.99
11. Seafoam skater dress from Miss Selfridge // $74.00

hot dog!

faux leather skirt - ruche
shirt w/lace collar - c/o modcloth
cardigan & belt - forever 21
shoes - asos

sooo.. I have pink and purple hair! I had enough pink dye leftover to do the bangs and some wisps, then used purple for the rest. I hated it the first night, but it's definitely growing on me. My mom LOVES it (her favorite color is purple) and she said I look like Easter, so that probably made me love it a little more. I absolutely adore Easter colors. I think my heart skips a beat whenever I see all the pastel candy displays in stores this time of year :)

Oh, and I unintentionally dressed like a hot dog! lol! By the way, if anyone is thinking of buying this skirt, I'd definitely recommend sewing or stitch-witching the front shut. The snap buttons are all functional, and they all snapped wide open whenever I moved an inch! I stitch-witched the seam closed for all but the top two buttons (so I could still get it on and off) and that seemed to do the trick but I'm hesitant to wear it out of the house. It's strictly an around-the-house skirt until I can test run it a few times and make sure I won't embarrass myself in public!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Little Adventurer $35 gift card giveaway! [closed]

Alison-Claire from Adventurer Vintage is offering one lucky lady a $35 shopping spree in her etsy shop! She has so many pretty things, but my favorite is definitely this delicate pink nightie from the 1950's! So sweet!!

To enter simply leave a comment with a link to your favorite item from Little Adventurer Vintage, and some way to contact you (email, twitter, blog, whatever floats your boat!) Also, you must be a follower to enter! This is mandatory! (And, please, none of this follow-and-leave as soon as the giveaway is over jazz.. that's super rude!)

For additional entries: (leave a separate comment for each entry)

1. Follow Alison's blog
Tweet this "Just entered to win a $35 giveaway to Little Adventurer Vintage on @kategabrielle's blog!" (Only counts if you use that exact tweet.)

This giveaway ends on April 2nd at 12AM EST. Giveaway has ended.

Winner: Comment #38

Friday, March 23, 2012

slowing down

dress - swap with amber
belt - asos
tights - c/o we love colors
shoes - modcloth

Lately I've been thinking a lot about life pre-social networking. I started blogging in 2009 on my classic film site, Silents and Talkies. At the time I hadn't heard of twitter or tumblr and my little brother was desperate to get on facebook, but I wasn't quite sure what that was. Flash forward three years and I have accounts on basically every site you could possibly have an account on. Twitter, pinterest, instagram, tumblr, facebook, blogger, etsy and flickr, oh my! It's just waaaay too much, right?!

Basically, I wake up, eat breakfast and then spend 90% of my day starting at my screen. A lot of my computer time is work related, so that obviously can't change. But can I filter out some of the sites I don't really enjoy, and simplify a little? You bet your buttons I can!! I am so determined to get off my behind and step away from the computer more this year. I get sucked into websites like tumblr and lose so much precious time that I could be spending with my family or working on art projects that have been collecting dust for months.

It's not just the time-sucking sites like tumblr that I need to filter out, but the constantly-connected sites like twitter. I'm pretty anti-social and private in real life, but somehow in the last three years I've developed "the twitter urge". It's a medical term (or at least it should be) for the need to share information about your life post haste. I've been weaning myself off twitter for the last couple weeks, but prior to that I had the twitter urge bad... really bad. If I'm having a good time on a family day trip, I should be enjoying it... not feeling like I need to write about it on twitter, right? Basically, I realized that anything that I find worthy of sharing online can be saved for this blog. It doesn't have to get immediately broadcast on twitter.

For a lot of people the nonstop connection is fantastic, but it's just not for me. To take it even further, I'm not even that fond of e-mail... I long for the days when it was perfectly reasonable to receive a reply to a message two weeks after you sent it. The frantic pace of instant communication and constant connection wears me out so much! I know I sound like an old lady, but I just want to sit back in my rocking chair and receive all of my messages via carrier pigeon... is that too much to ask?

I know that the world is just going to keep getting more connected and more connected until our dreams at night are being simulcast on youtube and our thoughts are transmitted in real-time 140 character updates on twitter. I can't escape back to a pre-social networking world, as much as I'd like to sometimes. But for a little while at least I can step back and take a breather. So no more twitter or tumblr, no new etsy shops and no new social networking accounts for me.

Does anyone else ever feel way over-connected? Have you ever tried scaling back?

Thursday, March 22, 2012

the sheer truth

dress - urbanog
cardigan - old navy
belt - from another dress
shoes - modcloth
stockings - c/o hanes

A little while ago Hanes contacted me to see if I'd like to participate in a facebook challenge where you take a photo of an outfit without stockings, and another photo of the same outfit with stockings. I thought it sounded like fun, so this is my submission! If you want, you can vote which photo has stockings and which doesn't on their facebook page, here!

I wear tights a lot but I haven't worn stockings too much since I thought they were all like those drugstore ones that make you look like you're either pale as a ghost or have an orangey fake tan on your legs. These really matched my skin tone, though, and I've been wearing them out a lot recently. The weather is in that in-between stage where tights are a little too thick but I'm just not ready for bare legs yet, so these are perfect! And (knock on wood) they haven't snagged yet, which is a miracle. I have wooden kitchen table chairs and a cat that likes to bite at my legs (Hubble) so hosiery that lasts over a week without getting nicked, pulled or ripped is pretty rare lol ;D Also.. not gonna lie, the fact that they make my legs look airbrushed smooth is definitely a bonus.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012


Sunday I finally got to see some dinosaurs!! We spent the day at the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia... they have a butterfly room, lots of creepy taxidermy dioramas and *drum roll please* The Dinosaur Hall! Whee!! I was a little disappointed that the T-Rex was a cast (the original is in NYC, so you can guess which museum I'm visiting next) but it was still awe-inspiring! And of course there is a benefit to seeing the faux bones -- you can stick your head inside a cast.. probably can't do that with the real 65 million year old skeleton lol ;)

Look how huge! His head is as long as my whole body! And I didn't know until Sunday that T-Rex lived in what is now North America! It's tempting to start digging around for fossils in my own backyard (I'm kidding.. sort of...)

I wore my dino necklace from modcloth, of course! If only I had a dinosaur printed dress to wear with it... ps. the Brontosaurus necklace is sold out now but the Triceratops isn't :)

They had a green screen thing where you could see yourself with dinosaurs! I can't believe I'm the only one in my family who wanted to try it (who WOULDN'T want to do this?!) It was so much fun! I was attacked by a T-Rex, I got to pet a Velociraptor and I went nose to nose with a Stegosaurus :)

It was my first time back at the museum since I was a kid, and it's definitely in need of some TLC, but the exhibits are still just as amazing as they were when I was younger! As we were leaving Philadelphia I saw the Franklin Institute is having a huge dinosaur exhibit through mid April so you bet your buttons I'll be heading there soon, too! ;D

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

everything's coming up clover

dress- ruche
cardigan - modcloth
shoes - asos

The post in which I make the transition from cat lady to cah-razy cat lady...

This St. Patrick's Day was the most fun I've had in years! I've been nuts about this holiday since I was a kid-- I used to slip green dye into everything (I mean, everything. My parents weren't fond of the green milk, green rice or green potatoes..) Even though my mom is Irish, we never really celebrated much aside from my food dye craze. But this year she must have been feeling her roots something awful because she went all out! For dinner we had homemade Irish soda bread, colcannon, boxty and burgers (or as my mom insisted we call them, "St. Paddy's day patties" lol)

For dessert we had shamrock shaped cookies -- dyed green of course!! ;D We usually watch The Quiet Man every St. Patrick's Day, not just because it's a household favorite but because John Wayne really reminds my mom of her late Irish father. (He was my grandfather's favorite actor and I swear they looked like twins!) This year, though, I thought I'd introduce my little brother to The Gnome-Mobile, one of my childhood favorites that somehow eluded him growing up. It's not *technically* an Irish movie, but the lead character, DJ Mulrooney, is Irish and the gnomes are mighty similar to Leprechauns! ;D If you haven't seen it yet, I highly recommend giving it a shot! The stars are the kids from Mary Poppins!

All in all I had a fantastic St. Patrick's Day! Did you do anything fun to celebrate? :)

Monday, March 19, 2012

blog anniversary giveaway! [closed]

This week is my 2 year blogaversary!! To celebrate I thought it would be fun to have a special giveaway with some of my most favorite things in the whole wide world! One winner will receive:

+ "Crafting with Cat Hair" book
+ 1 pack of neapolitan astronaut ice cream
+ Sunday in New York DVD (my favorite movie!)
+ a mixtape with 15 of my favorite songs
+ My favorite nail polish (Essie "tart deco")
+ Pink and white hair bows
+ Pink grapefruit tic tacs
+ My favorite black liquid eyeliner
+ 1 Cadbury flake (best chocolate EVER!)
+ three little dinosaur figurines
+ Burt's Bees grapefruit lip balm (not pictured)

To enter: simply leave a comment letting me know that you're entering, and some way to contact you (email, twitter, blog, whatever floats your boat!) You must be a follower to enter (and, please, none of this follow-and-leave as soon as the giveaway is over jazz.. that's super rude!) This giveaway is open to everyone on planet earth.

For additional entries: (
leave a separate comment for each entry)

1. Tweet this "Just entered to win a super fun assortment of goodies from @kategabrielle" (Only counts if you use that exact tweet.)
2. Follow me on facebook
3. Follow me on

Giveaway ends on April 19th at 12:01AM EST. Giveaway ended.
Winner: Comment #403

Friday, March 16, 2012

posh frock friday

dress - c/o modcloth
lace cardigan - h&m
necklace - handmade
shoes - modcloth

I stuck my thumb straight through these stockings when I was taking them off, of course. They were my only back-seamed pair, too! I never seem to get little runs that can be fixed with clear nail polish, they're always gaping holes that expand to the entire length of the stocking within seconds.

Also, I need to touch up my roots badly, but my favorite dye (Special Effects cupcake pink) seems to be sold out *everywhere* online and my local supply store only carries Manic Panic. So... my conundrum is this: should I use Manic Panic pink to get me through until Special Effects is back in stock (hopefully soon) or should I take a gamble on another color?! Maybe light purple? It isn't permanent, so I could always go right back to pink when it's back in stock, right? Hair color decisions shouldn't be this hard when you're dealing with semi-permanent color! lol :)

ps. Have you seen this Diablo Cody interview with Mindy Kaling? Favorite thing ever!!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

matchy matchy

tie - c/o flapper girl
shirt - old navy
belt - from another dress
shoes - modcloth
skirt - c/o francescas

I'm not really hep to the rules of fashion but I'm pretty sure you're not supposed to match all of your accessories nowadays, right? Like shoes/belt/tie/purse all the same color?? Heaven forbid! But I really love matching. I even like matching my outfits to my hair color sometimes. Maybe I've watched a few too many Doris Day movies, but I just really adore it when an outfit looks like everything was made to be worn together.

So when I got this super cute lady tie in the mail, I immediately skimmed my closet looking for a hue match, and found it in this belt and these shoes. There's something so satisfying about seeing a new item that goes perfectly with something you already owned, and then wearing them together all matchy-matchy.

psst! I also like wearing white after Labor Day! shocking!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

The Perfect Apple Pie!

In my family, pi day isn't just a day to celebrate a mathematical constant -- it's a day to celebrate PIE. Specifically, my mom's apple pie. I'm might be biased, but it's just SO good. Like, I'm pretty sure world peace could be achieved if everyone tasted this pie. They'd all be like "OMG this pie is so good! Why were we arguing again? I don't even remember... Goodness, this crust is so light and flaky!"

For the pie crust you'll need:

1-3/4 cup flour
1 tsp. salt
1/2 cup oil
3 tbsp. water

Mix the flour, salt and oil and then add the water and roll out. Sometimes my mom will use a frozen crust like Oronoque Orchards, and that's still fantastic, but this really is the best! Now, for the rest of the pie you'll need:

6-8 tart apples (my mom recommends Empire)
1 cup white sugar
2 tbsp. all purpose flour
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
dash of ground nutmeg
2 tbsp. butter

Pare and core the apples, and then slice them VERY thin. Part of what makes this pie so mouth-wateringly delicious is the finely sliced apples. This way they cook all the way through and pretty much melt in your mouth! Combine the sugar, flour and spices and then mix with the apples. Line a 9" pie plate with one half of the crust, and fill with the apple mixture. Cut the butter into little pieces and sprinkle it on top of the filling. Add the top crust, and then cut slits for steam. I think today it would be fitting to arrange those slits in the shape of the pi symbol, yes? ;)

Sprinkle some sugar on top, and then bake at 400' for 50 minutes. I personally prefer the pie cold, so I put my share in the fridge overnight -- but only because my dad and brother know that I will tear them to shreds if they take so much as one bite. If you like hot pie, or if you can't trust your family members, let it cool for about 30 minutes after it's out of the oven and then dive in!

Pi Day Playlist

I put together a little playlist using the first nine digits of pi! Enjoy!

1. Honey Pie // The Beatles
2. We THREE // Frank Sinatra
3. Number ONE // Goldfrapp
4. FOUR Strong Winds // Marianne Faithfull
5. Just ONE of Those Things // Bryan Ferry
6. FIVE Minutes More // Frank Sinatra
7. Beethoven's NINTH (Ode to Joy) // Jingle Cats
8. Takes TWO to Tango // Annette Funicello
9. SIX to Go // The Pogues
10. FIVE // Joan Jett

You can listen to the playlist on 8tracks, here!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Style Idol - Sharon Tate

// image links back to where I found it

Super exciting collaboration!!

This is a paper doll poster I designed for a Red Velvet package Elsie put together for Sucre! I was SO excited when she asked me to do it, and it's honestly the most fun I've ever had working! Especially when I was doing the dresses, but you probably already guessed that, lol ;D

I am just so honored and thrilled to have been a part of this. The poster is available for pre-order here! And if you haven't yet, you need to hear the song they released from their upcoming album. I'm soo hooked on it, I've been playing it on repeat for a week!

(top image is from A Beautiful Mess)

Monday, March 12, 2012

my five favorite outfits

My two year blog anniversary is coming up next week (I have LOTS of fun stuff planned to celebrate! hooray!!) and I've been spending more time than usual perusing my archives. So I thought it would be fun this week to highlight some of my favorite posts! First up, my top 5 favorite outfits! I left out any from when I used to take my outfit pictures with my webcam since they're so teeny tiny! My oh my, have things changed since then! Now I take the photos with my super fancy... iphone ;)

1. This was from a DIY post on how to do gold-leaf accents on shoes. I love those green tights and that vintage 60's velvet dress is one of my all time favorites! // original post

2. This is just from 2 weeks ago, but I love the colors and I felt so happy wearing it! It's my favorite outfit I've posted since I started fashion blogging almost 2 years ago! // original post

3. Annndd this is from last week lol! But I just loved it so much! Definitely something different from what I'm used to, and so fun! // original post

4. This outfit ended up getting paired with a really emotional personal post, but I still love the pairing of the summer dress & white pussybow blouse. // original post

5. Put simply: my all time favorite dress and my favorite vintage score. I would wear that dress every single day of my life if I could! // original post

Vintage brooch giveaway! [closed]

Beatnik Gal Vintage is offering one lucky winner this super cute pink enamel vintage 60's brooch! I'm sort of obsessed with enamel brooches right now and this is definitely one of the prettier ones I've seen during my constant searches on etsy. It's so fun and vibrant, and perfect for spring!!

To enter simply leave a comment with a link to your favorite item from Beatnik Gal Vintage, and some way to contact you (email, twitter, blog, whatever floats your boat!) Also, you must be a follower to enter! This is mandatory! (And, please, none of this follow-and-leave as soon as the giveaway is over jazz.. that's super rude!)

For additional entries: (leave a separate comment for each entry)

1. Tweet this "Just entered to win a vintage brooch giveaway from on @kategabrielle's blog!" (Only counts if you use that exact tweet.)
2. Follow Beatnik Gal Vintage's tumblr

By the way, if something catches your eye when you're browsing Beatnik Gal Vintage, you can use coupon code BRILLIANTBEATNIK10 to snag 10% off your whole order! :D

This giveaway ends on March 19th at 12AM EST. Giveaway ended.

Winner: Comment #56

Thursday, March 8, 2012

You know how to whistle, don't you?

dress - c/o collectif
netted headband - h&m
shoes - c/o blowfish

This dress is a little different from my normal style, but I thought it would be fun to step outside of my comfort zone a bit! When I first put it on my mom was like "peep-toe shoes! you need peep-toe shoes to go with it! Oh! And back-seam stockings!! And victory rolls!" lol... I think she likes playing paper doll as much as I like playing dress up! ;D

I went my own direction, though, and wore a beehive, my favorite wedges and a silly little red netted headband. I've been going back and forth between feeling like I should be hanging out at a seedy jazz club in the city with Humphrey Bogart or bursting into song with Jane Russell on the streets of Paris. It sort of has both a Lauren Bacall and a Marilyn Monroe -circa Gentlemen Prefer Blondes- vibe, right? Either way I absolutely love it, and I think I might branch out a bit and start trying clothes that aren't always inspired by the 60's!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

me myself and eye

dress - modcloth
cardigan - old navy
shoes - c/o blowfish

I've been having vision problems lately so I have to go to the eye doctor today :( All throughout school, I wanted glasses SO badly I used to fib on the eye exams at the nurse's office. They must have always figured me out, though, because I always got a clean bill of health anyway. Once fake glasses became popular I was finally able to try out the look I'd always wanted while rocking my 20/20, and ever since then I've been kind of proud of my perfect vision. Until now.. I'm like 99.9% positive I'm going to be coming home with a pair of spectacles. I'm sort of excited about being able to pick out frames (maybe pink?!) but considering I have chronic sinus issues, asthma and allergies, it was sort of nice having one health-related thing that made me feel like congratulating my body on a job well done ;p