tastes great, less filling

Good things about the candles I bought recently: they are pretty, they smell good, they burn for a long time.

Bad thing: I keep mistaking this candle for a glass of beer on my dresser, and as I walk by, I keep reaching over to drink it.

character sketch

In high school, my friend John once said "I think your goal in life, D, is to grow up and be Eurotrash."

He was trying to insult me, but I am still trying to achieve that goal to this day.


closet case

I do not have the greatest track record with closets.

For someone who owns approximately five metric tons of clothing, I keep living in places that are otherwise lovely, but that require me to cram everything into one or two smallish closets. My current apartment, thank god, has a large front closet and a smallish bedroom closet, but:

This is the front closet. It has no doors. My stuff is just spilling over into the hallway, unfettered, and unprotected from the onslaught of cat hair that comes with having a sheddy obese cat.
(Also, I have no linen closet, so this includes towels, laundry supplies, etc., all hanging out with my coats and shirts and pants. Yes, the other closet is devoted entirely to dresses, and no, I will not apologize for that.)

Six yards of mid-weight cotton duck, a borrowed sewing machine, and a trip to Ikea later:

It is absurd how grown-up and accomplished storage boxes make me feel.


queen of denial

Progress, such as it is, on the Theda Bara costume:

- one borrowed sewing machine (thanks, Matty!)
- some gold chiffon, but probably not enough to make anything with
- a folder on my desktop full of Theda-as-Cleopatra images
- two laughably bad sketches

Ahahahahahaha. I have no skill at either drawing or patterning. Also, I am very likely terrible at draping as well, but as I don't even have a dress form to drape on, we won't find out how bad I am at legitimately draping (as opposed to the "let's just swoosh this fabric around my torso and hope" draping I will end up doing).

Not pictured: extreme amounts of stubbornness and inability to admit defeat. Also not pictured: the hot glue gun that will very likely figure into this project quite heavily.



I swear, I did not to to Target today looking for more head-themed decor. But when you're heading down the escalator at Target, holding your curtain rod and laundry detergent, and out of the corner of your eye you see a rack of black glitter skulls...

well, you know I am powerless to resist.
What would I do with a melamine skull diagram plate, you ask? Hush. We do not question the drive to acquire more decorative disembodied heads.



For once in my life, I do not want to go shopping.

I have just been informed that I need to acquire a floor-length formal gown appropriate for a black-tie affair. Oh, and I have to get it within the next two weeks. (It's a work-related boring story, but the takeaway is that I'll be at a black-tie gala with a bunch of federal judges and other assorted Very Very Important People With Corresponding Expectations for Decorum and Formal Dress. Oh, and it's in the South, which adds another layer of formality. Gah.)

Everything I've read indicates that for a black-tie event, women may wear knee-length dresses and be fully appropriate, so that was fully my plan. However, I mentioned this plan to my boss, who looked utterly horrified, and who told me very clearly that if I wore anything other than a floor-length gown, I would be judged very harshly. As a big part of my job is Making Friends, I want to mitigate the things that people are going to dislike me for. Thus: the search for a formal gown.


1) these things are ridiculously expensive.
2) most of them are strapless, which I have a feeling will be judged, in a professional setting, as harshly as if I showed up wearing a minidress.
3) this is clearly the kind of dress you only wear once.

This is, for the record, the first time in my life that I am truly worried about being underdressed for an occasion. Overdressing is what I do. But this web of "must be black-tie formal/ must be Professionally Appropriate/ must involves straps or sleeves/ must be floor-length/ AND OH YEAH I REALLY DON'T HAVE THE RESOURCES TO BUY SOMETHING LIKE THIS*" is freaking me out. Sigh.
*(The dress-rental boutiques, I briefly thought, would be my salvation. Until I saw that there's a waiting list much longer than two weeks for anything in my size.)

Contenders, which we'll pretend do not come with a price tag:

Sigh. On to scour vintage stores this afternoon in the hopes that I'll run across a gorgeous-but-not-too-"interesting" dress that fits like a glove, requires no repair, and will raise no "goodness, that's inappropriate" eyebrows.

I don't wanna go shopping.


red or dead

Things that would make my life complete:

Yeah, these. I'm a EU shoe size 39, for those who may be interested/generous.




A skull cake pan exists. SKULL CAKE PAN.

Hello. Disembodied heads/skulls, cake, needlessly involved theme projects.

(photo via Not Martha)

If you think I am not buying this and not also serving it alongside brain jello, you clearly don't know me at all. (For the record: the best mix of jello flavors for brain jello, strenuously tested by myself and my sophomore-year college roommate, is raspberry jello mixed with vanilla pudding.)



It's no secret the Halloween is the greatest holiday of all time in my brain. Costumes, makeup, booze, candy, and no nagging guilt that you're not spending this holiday with family? Made of win, friends.

I generally start preparing for Halloween in August, finalizing my costume idea and imagining out the details to be worked out over the following two months. This year, I was in a bit of a panic, as it was late August and no brilliant costume idea had yet entered my brain. Then, thank god, a friend began suggesting silent-film stars for consideration.

Now, I normally keep the costume idea quiet until the last minute, so as to make a grander entrance, but I will make an exception this year as I blog the process of going from Idea to Um I Hope This Becomes Reality.
Hint: this year's costume starts with "motherfucking" and ends with "Theda Bara, y'all".

("This, I think, is why I like you so particularly much, D: you have high production values.")

Step one: extensive costume research. It's a pity that the film for Theda's Cleopatra no longer exists, but stills indicate that the movie featured a dress decked out in peacock feathers. Yes. Oh dear lord, yes.

Step two: refrain from cutting my hair until post-Halloween to facilitate a Theda-esque coif.

Step three: buy loads of gold and turquoise chiffon.

Step four: begin stocking up on serpentine jewelry and gold spray-paint.