DIY Clutch in Denim

bag7

I only have one handbag. Shocking, I know. I adore my big Coach tote with gold flowers, but seriously, what fashion blogger only has one bag?

A few weeks ago, I posted a super easy tutorial for fabric flowers and loved how they turned out. Since then, I have been thinking of a project to do with them. A few days ago it hit me; I only have one bag, why not make a new one myself?

 I adore the denim on denim trend (see below). So with that as my inspiration, I came up with the idea for this denim clutch.



These only take a few hours to make, so you can easily whip up a few different styles/colors to match your outfits.

DIY Clutch

Gather These:

  • Denim Fabric (1 yard will be enough to make several bags)
  • Thread (preferably the same color as the denim)
  • Needle and Pins
  • Zipper (Mine was 7")
  • Flowers (or whatever else you want to adorn your clutch with)

And Let's Get Started…

diy clutch

Measure and cut your fabric. The length should be twice as long as you want your clutch to be and the same width as your zipper. In the above example, I cut mine 24" long (for a 12" clutch) and 7" wide.

bag2aPin your zipper to the top, right side of your fabric.

bag3Using a simple back stitch, sew along the top side of the zipper track. Tie off.

With the same stitch, sew the other side of the zipper onto the other side of the fabric. Tie off.

Now you should have the basic clutch shape. *Hint: If you're feeling a little lost, check out this video.

bag4On both the front and back of the clutch, stitch along the top of the fabric right next to the zipper. This will help the denim to lay flat.

Turn the bag inside out, and stitch together the sides and around the edges of the zipper. Now your clutch is complete and ready for enhancement.

bag5Now for my favorite part – decorating! Add some fun fabric flowers (tutorial here) or other embellishment to jazz up your new bag.

And your done. In under two hours and less than $10, you have a cute new bag (or makeup case, pencil case, etc.). I love this fun craft, and I hope you do too. If you make one of these bags, I would love to see what you end up with. Show me on Facebook!

Montagne Jeunesse Renew You Sleep Spa Face Mask

 

spa face mask

Have you ever thought about all the time you spend on your beauty routine? Between skincare, hair, makeup, and nails, being a women can get exhausting.

Because we all have better things to do, it is important to find simple ways to streamline our beauty routines.

Save Time With An Overnight Spa Face Mask

Personally, when it comes to daily beautification, one of my favorite time saving tips is an overnight face mask. After all, you're going to be sleeping anyway, why not get in a little face treatment too.

Since having well hydrated skin equals fewer breakouts, less fine lines and dullness, a moisturizing face mask like the Papaya and Pineapple Montagne Jeunesse Renew You Sleep Spa Mask is a fabulous option. The mask is made from 100% natural bamboo and contains papaya and pineapple to eliminate dry, dead skin while delivering the moisture your face craves.

To Use:

Once a week…

  1. Cuddle up in your favorite blanket.
  2. Apply the mask and relax for 10 minutes.
  3. Take off the mask and massage the excess cream into your skin.
  4. Go to sleep.

When you wake up, your skin will be soft and hydrated. It doesn't get any easier, and this time saving treatment helps nourish, cleanse and remove impurities to keep skin healthy.

Read More…

Skip the Sun, Go with Norvell Spray Tan

I remember spending days in my childhood backyard with one goal in mind – getting the darkest tan possible. Hour after sweltering hour, I would lay out on our giant trampoline, occasionally flipping back and forth to get evenly bronzed.  Fortunately, we no longer have to bake ourselves (and risk premature aging and/or cancer) to get a beautiful summer glow. Spray tanning has come a long way, far from the terrible smell and orange streaks, and can give a gorgeous tan, sans sun.

Norvell Spray Tan

Finding a brand that gives a natural color is key when it comes to spray tanning. Last week, I tested the Norvell spray tan and was truly impressed. I went to a church picnic the day after applying, and received several comments on my lovely color.

norvell spray tan

 

No matter which brand of sunless tanner you choose, following a few simples rules will insure you get the best tan possible.

Rules for the Perfect Spray Tan

The Prep

  • Shave your legs the day before you plan on applying.
  • The day of application, use a body scrub to exfoliate skin. This step is critical. If you don't exfoliate, you will end up with a blotchy tan.

Tip: Look for a scrub that does not contain any oils.

  •  Use a product like Norvell's XLATAN to hydrate skin for even color absorption and to balance pH levels. It also boosts amino acids to help maximize your tanning results. Spray all over your body and face.

The Application

  • Starting with your legs, hold can 10-12 inches from your body and use a steady sweeping motion (If you've ever used spray paint, it's the same idea). With the 360 Eco Mist, you will actually see an instant bronze which is immensely helpful in achieving even color. This bronze will slowly develop into the final tan over the next 24 hours.  

Tip: Wait at least 8 hours before exposing skin to water.

Protect and Prolong

  • Protect your tan in the shower by using a sulfate-free body wash. Norvell's PH Balancing Shower Cleanser moisturizes skin without striping your tan.
  • Use Norvell's Prolong to gradual build and maintain your color. This was my favorite product from the Norvell line. I tend to prefer gradual self tanners, and this formula is very moisurizing and gives beautiful results.

Tip: Blend thoroughly when applying, and use sparingly around knuckles, knees, ankles and elbows.

 

Have you ever given yourself a spray tan at home? What did you like or dislike about your results? I would LOVE to hear from you!

 

Tips for the Thrify Fashionista Featuring Diamond Nexus

I received earrings to facilitate this article.

 When on a tight budget, learning to do with less is common advice. But after years of living with limited income, thanks to a husband in grad school and a new baby, I have learned that spending smarter is often a better alternative.

To the detriment of my wallet, I love fashion and shopping in general. With a little forethought, however, my favorite hobby doesn't have to ruin me financially. There are lots of ways to save when it comes to your closet. Coupons and thrifting are always popular choices, but one of my best little nuggets of advice is something most don't consider. If you seek out high quality pieces that are both versatile and classic, you will fill your wardrobe with long lasting looks that aren't at the mercy of the trends.

Wardrobe Staples

So let's talk about some of these must have pieces. A simple white t (absolute must!), a neutral colored pencil skirt and jeans that fit perfectly are all items that will get a lot of mileage. When it comes to accessories, however, nothing is more versatile then a pair of classic diamond studs. They literally go with everything! Of course, getting back to my original point, a pair of diamond studs are not exactly budget approved. So we have to find a way to shop smarter.

diamond nexus review

diamond nexus review

diamond nexus studsI am a bit of a jewelry fanatic, so finding a cheaper option has been on my to-do list for some time. I came across Diamond Nexus several years ago when I was looking into a diamond alternative for my engagement ring, but I hadn't seen their stones in person until last week. I have to say ladies, if I didn't know the truth, these would have fooled me. The Diamond Nexus stone is the most realistic man-made simulant I have seen. I've been wearing these Round Cut Basket Studs (.93 carats each), for a few days now. I am LOVING them; the cut and sparkle are fabulous. And instead of paying thousands for these little beauties, they are on sale for $149 right now!

When you have a limited budget (or you just like to save money), you don't have to do without the things you love. Getting creative with how and where you shop can make a big difference. And when it comes to diamond jewelry, Diamond Nexus is an excellent alternative.

Diamond Nexus Giveaway

So now that I've convinced you that a classic pair of diamond earrings is a wardrobe must, would you like to win your own pair of Diamond Nexus studs to flash around? I bet you do! One lucky reader will score the same earrings I received (you will love them, I promise). Just fill out the form below and you will be entered to win!

 

Incredibly Easy Fabric Flowers

I have always felt like a craft impostor. Craft stores fill me with giddy excitement, and the beautiful papers, beads, and ribbons thrill me to no end. Unfortunately, I am no good at it. More often then not, complicated projects end in a frustrated mess.

I do love the process of creating, so I carry on. And sometimes, that persistence pays off. This past week, I made a little denim clutch (tutorial coming soon). It turned out surprisingly well, but needed a little something extra to really make it pop. So, I did some experimenting and came up with these lovely little fabric flowers. They are incredibly simple to make and great for countless projects.

Easy Fabric Flowers Tutorial

fabric flowers

Things to Gather:

  • Fabric
  • Needle and Thread – thread that matches the color of your fabric is ideal.
  • Pins

 

Step 1

ribbonstep1Cut your fabric into strips. The size of strips depends on how big you would like your flowers. I wanted a few different sizes, so I used 22" long pieces with widths varying from 1.5" to 3".

 

Step 2

ribbonstep2Fold fabric strip in half and pin to hold. Using a simple in and out motion, stitch along the bottom of the folded over strip.

 

Step 3

easy fabric flowersAfter stitching along the bottom of the entire length, pull the thread until fabric gathers (as shown above).

 

Step 4

ribbonstep4

Arrange the gathered fabric into the shape you want and stitch to hold. Finally, tie off your thread.

 

And that's it! Pretty easy, right? I love making these little beauties; they work up so quickly and add a fun pop of color and whimsy to your project. They would be a perfect beginning craft for a child just entering the sewing world as well.

 

If you do this project, I would LOVE to see what you come up with! Show me on Facebook.