Dress to impress!

Quote from my friends’ ‘green’ themed 21st on the weekend.

Me: (arriving at the venue with my green tinsel wig, green tutu, ‘wicked – defying gravity’ t-shirt, green sparkly nails by ProfessioNail, and green eye shadow). ‘I really did go all out didn’t I?’

Darcy: ‘Yeah, but that’s YOU’ (and he scored extra boyfriend points for knowing me too well).

Did someone say ‘costume party?’ BEST DRESSED HERE I COME!! (starts planning 2 months or something ridiculous, in advance). Come on, I’m a thespian, what do you expect?

So I thought it would be a fun little trip down memory lane to gather all my dress up photos (this took longer than it should as my computer files are a cluttered mess) and pick out a few faves to include in this blog. You will learn what my go to stores/places are for finding cute and quirky costume bits and bobs. Hopefully, by the end of reading this, your head will be full of buzzing bees because you will have so many ideas! (not literally, ouch!).

LITTLE ZOMBIE GIRL (and this isn’t the dolls’ only appearance)

There’s one particular nightclub which has some great themed events and this is just one of them! Time to get zombiefied! This costume was so easy to put together. I basically just cut up some old Pyjamas, smeared black eye shadow around my eyes and used fake blood which I bought from ‘Party Plus’. Party Plus honestly has everything you will ever need for designing the perfect costume/party! I buy all my accessories from there, they have wigs, stockings, face paint, party supplies, party hire equipment galore! It even has a delivery and pick-up service! Although I’m all about going in-store. I prefer to try things on to see how they fit, or see products in reality.

I used to be OBSESSED with bratz dolls. I remember in Primary School, my group of friends would meet at Recess (morning tea break) and Lunch and sit there for the entire time, playing with our bratz dolls, as 10 year old girls used to do before they introduced technology and iPads. Unfortunately, I cut all my dolls’ hair because I wanted to be a hairdresser (I didn’t realise at the time that dolls’ hair doesn’t grow back!). But I guess it worked in my favour as my sister coated my dolls in fake blood and used them for a Halloween diorama for school, and now my one lonely bratz doll leftover is being used as a freaky lookalike doll for my halloween costumes.

NAUGHTY NERD/SCHOOL GIRL

I wore this costume for a studio photo shoot. I bought the entire outfit (minus the shoes and stockings) from ‘Hurly Burly’ costume shop. I first discovered ‘Hurly Burly’ when I modelled for my first photo shoot collaboration. The shop has two floors, on the first floor it’s a mass of costumes/accessories and on the second floor, it’s actually a studio. The shoot was a ‘Renaissance theme’ and it was shot in the studio. The photographer hired out some of their costumes and I was also asked to model in some other outfits as there was talk about my photos being on the cover of costume bags. I regrettably inform you that this did not happen. This could’ve been my claim to fame dammit!

So normally, I would rummage through old dance costumes, see what I have lying around at home and just buy some accessories to dress it up with. But if I’m REALLY feeling like spoiling myself, I will buy a whole outfit. I’ve hired a couple of outfits before but once I’ve worn the outfit and made memories in it, I can’t seem to part with it!

I wore two different outfits as you can see in the pictures above. On the left is the costume I bought from ‘Hurly Burly’. I had a choice out of the typical pink and white school girl outfit, or this trendy hot pink, black and purple ensemble. I paired it with some purple suspenders, purple harry potter glasses (as long as it looks the part of a school girl, it doesn’t matter if it’s harry potter, it’s all about improvising to me), and black lacy stockings and black suspenders that I bought from Bras N Things. ‘Hurly Burly’ actually shared one of my images on their Facebook page, so that was pretty exciting!

For my second outfit, I destroyed my plain white collar shirt by gluing pieces of coloured confetti to look like letters and numbers. I bought the bag of confetti from ‘Riot Art & Craft’, which is another one of my go to places for buying craft supplies like fabric glue, paints, all things glitter, etc.

THE VERY HUNGRY CATERPILLAR (I’m hungry all of a sudden!)

I wore this out to my friends’ 21st themed ‘Favourite character or book from your childhood’. I loved reading the children’s book ‘The Very Hungry Caterpillar’ when I was younger. If you haven’t read it, you should be ashamed!! Basically it’s about a very hungry caterpillar (nah duh!) and I’ll leave you with the suspense. READ THE BOOK!

As you can see, I stuck pieces of food on my top. I ordered a large sheet of white fabric off ebay, which had the same sketches of food as in the book. I also wrote ‘The Very Hungry Caterpillar’ in gold glitter. I bought the tutu from Party Plus, I also have the same tutu in black and red (warning, they are see through so please wear stockings or shorts underneath ladies!). And the stockings I believe were also from Party Plus.

As you can see on the photo on the right, I literally WAS one VERY hungry caterpillar.

ABC (Anything But Clothes)

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This theme can really bring out your creative side! ABC can be a tricky one but an intriguing one (also a cheap one)! It’s always exciting to see what people come up with, like my best friend in this photo for instance… who would’ve thought of wrapping yourself up in a glow stick rainbow?

Sometimes my ideas come from an accessory I own and I start thinking about what I could go as based on that accessory. I had two cute little pink cupcake clips so I decided to be a cupcake! And because I couldn’t wear clothes, I simply grabbed a bin bag, cut it, wrapped it and WA LA a dress! I bought the cupcake cut outs from ‘Riot Art & Craft’ and decorated them with glitter and paint. I can’t remember if I glued them or stapled them on, but it can work either way. (This photo was from a while ago, hence the hair colour change!). I do remember people taking them off me (we were at a night club after all). Unfortunately, only two cupcakes survived!

BROKEN DOLL (featuring the same doll, it’s just now a little… broken)

Broken Doll
Broken Doll

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I saved a screenshot of a text conversation I had with my mum about the doll:

Me: ‘I put the cherries on the wrong way so I turned her head around’ (dolls’ dress had little cherries on it).

Mum: ‘That is a very weird message’

And it was weird indeed, walking around the city dressed as a Broken Doll with crazy face paint and an even more crazy outfit. It was for a photo shoot. I used an old dance costume that I wore when I was 12 and played an ‘Orphan’ in a dance number ‘It’s a Hard Knock Life’ from the movie, ‘Annie’. (when I was little, I did ‘Annie’ and ‘Cats’ to death at my dance school). I also cut a little piece out of the costume so I could make a dress for my doll. I paired my outfit with stockings, old pointe shoes and a pair of white socks which had cherries on them.

I spent about an hour in a public bathroom painting my face. I used black eyeliner for the cracks, and white face paint and sponges which the Photographer supplied. I went off some inspo make-up pics I found off Google. It kept me amused seeing the different reactions of people who walked in. Some surprised, some intrigued, some asked me what I was doing, and others didn’t take notice at all.

At one point, I was on pointe ayyy see what I did there! (in non dance speak, I was basically on my tippy toes), and pretending to talk on the phone in a telephone booth. This acquired an audience, and I’m talking legit! People actually stopped to watch as if I were busking/entertaining. It was definitely an interesting experience but loads of fun!

We also stole a trolley from a Woolworths nearby, as you can see!

And there you have it folks! You are now ready to get to work on making that costume bedazzle!

Infinite x’s & o’s

Tania

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Going GLAMping

Grab your toiletries and your hair dryer because we’re going GLAMping!

Recently, I packed a suitcase and went on a cute little getaway with my boyfriend to visit his parents down South in Ravensthorpe. Now if you know me, I am generally not a happy camper, however I have done alright since it was now my second time camping under the stars since Christmas. I’m not going to lie, I’m a bit of a princess when it comes to hygiene, toilet paper and make-up wipes are my best camping companion, apart from my boyfriend of course!

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I call it GLAMping because we did have access to a toilet, and the benefits of Darcy’s parents living in a caravan was we also had access to a shower, kettle, tap, stove, the essentials, etc. I even got to watch TV, some good old ‘Married at First Sight’. We also had a jerry can and liquid soap by our tent so we could brush our teeth and wash our hands. Our sleeping arrangement was pretty cosy, mattress, doona & pillows, a torch  lantern hanging above us, and the added ear pleasure of the sounds of the waves crashing on the sand mixed with the salty, oceanic smells (we had the view of a lovely beach right in front of us, although it was very cold!!).

There is nothing more therapeutic than sitting around a camp fire with a cold, refreshing drink, also lying in a hammock with a dog on your lap keeping you warm. Fact: fire is my worst fear but I don’t mind camp fires. Darcy’s Dad had me face my fear and throw a log into the fire so I’m a pro now!

Darcy’s parents are the camp hosts and all they really have to do is clean the toilets every now and then, which is a drop toilet. I was honestly shitting myself (hold the pun) about the drop toilet, but you get used to it after a while! Just whatever you do, DON’T LOOK DOWN!! There were times, however where I had no other option but to pee in a bush. And I can proudly announce to ya’ll that I PEED IN A BUSH! (I think this blog has more to do with toilets than camping #toiletfear).

Make sure you bring your camera when going camping because I took pictures galore as you can see! Ravensthorpe recently had some major floods causing a fair bit of damage and trapping Darcy’s parents at their camp site so they weren’t able to go to town to obtain fuel and food; luckily they were able to get hold of some supplies to last them until the roads were restored. The following are some photographs of some of the damage.

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I would say that I’m a camper now but I haven’t been REAL camping yet! It was nice though just to get away from the city for a bit and for Darcy to get away from bloody perth drivers DRIVEing him insane (Omg I’m just so PUNny).

Infinite x’s & o’s

Tania

My Quarter Life Celebration!

In this blog, I will be backtracking again like I did with the ‘Workshop with Abby Lee & Cast of Dance Mom’s’ blog and going back one year ago to my 25th birthday party (seeming as my 26th is currently creeping around the corner).

There is a thing called a quarter life crises and it DOES exist! I was about to turn a quarter of a century and I found myself trying to piece my life together, make sense out of it… I couldn’t. I felt as though my life was one big shambled mess, too many dead end career paths, unfinished projects, etc. I change my mind like a chameleon changes colour. So I never stuck to one thing and now I am more confused than ever about what I want to accomplish in life… but you get the drift! Basically I had come to the conclusion that I had reached my prime and I was too ‘old’ to start working towards something new again. I know I’m not actually old but I believe there’s a strong difference between ‘being’ old and ‘feeling’ old. As my mum always says ‘wait until you’re my age’!

So I came up with the idea to celebrate my 25th birthday in ‘kids’’ style, to relive my childhood one last time, but with alcohol instead of juice, obviously! I sourced some ideas like I did with my recent Picnic Party and came across a ‘white T-shirt’ theme where you have your guests rock up wearing plan white T’s and everyone draws on each other. I thought this theme sounded really quirky and fun, my one only thing however was if anyone got a little intoxicated and started drawing on my walls or furniture, but fortunately I have well behaved friends… well somewhat well behaved!

Bonus of the white T-shirt theme was I got to keep the shirt as a souvenir, as well as having a bit of a chuckle the next day whilst looking at what my friends had drawn/written on it. The most common art was penises but that was to be expected!

The essentials!!

I had a bunch of fabric markers as well as glow in the dark ones too. I also used A3 size sheets of paper (you can buy all these goodies from Officeworks). My kitchen table turned into the kids’ table where everyone could draw to their hearts desire using normal texters and pens and pencils and what not. Note: it’s always good to have something at your shindig that will occupy your guests and having a theme also worked as a good ice breaker!

Lolly cups!!

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Because I’m a big sweet tooth and I miss the parties where kids’ received a lolly bag as a ‘thanks for coming’ I decided to have my own version of a lolly bag, a lolly cup! I filled a dozen cups with lollypops, celebration chocolates and candy sherbets. I also included a little ‘candy quote’ in each cup that I found on the internet. If you can’t already tell by reading my party blogs, I always have to add a little something extra and out of the ordinary. I also thought of putting a little prize in one of the cups. I decided the prize would be a $1 coin; I wanted it to be something light-hearted and not too much. Because there were lolly cups left over after handing them out and no one had claimed the prize yet, I spoiled my surprise and told everyone about it, which made everyone started hurriedly looking in the cups and tipping them over to find it. Shout out to my friend, Liam who claimed the prize and was $1 richer, I hope he didn’t spend it all in one place!

Gifts!! (I received some beautiful gifts that I wasn’t expecting and had to share!)

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I actually found these just the other day (one year later) whilst cleaning out my spare room. It was all just sitting there looking lonely and forgotten in the corner, collecting dust. I’m still not sure how one can misplace gifts and forget about them! But ALAS I felt like it was my birthday all over again!

I definitely LOVE themed parties. It’s so fun to dress up and go wild! But from having hosted themed parties in the past, I understand that dressing up is not EVERYONE’S thing and that’s totally ok!

If you have a birthday coming and are planning to have a theme but are stuck for ideas, here are some suggestions!

  1. Have your guests wear something plain coloured (white or black), and then dress yourself from head to toe in colour because YOU’RE the birthday girl and you should stand out!
  2. ‘I shouldn’t be here’. Dress in anything but what you would wear to a party, i.e. swimwear, pyjamas, exercise gear, etc. Or you can think outside the box and come with your face half shaven, face mask or hair messy as if you’re getting ready BEFORE the party ayyy!
  3.  ‘Rock & roll/1950s’ I’ll be having this theme for my 26th birthday coming up, and we’re going ROLLerskating, hold the pun! You can go crazy with clothes/accessories from that era or you can go as a character for example, Sandy or Danny from Grease!
  4. ‘The job I will never have’ For example, I would go as a police woman or a doctor because I don’t have a thick skin and blood/violence gives me a weak stomach.
  5. ‘I can’t believe you wore that to my party’ I was almost going to have this theme for my 21st and then again for my 25th. I still plan on having it one day! Kinda similar to the ‘I shouldn’t be here’ theme. You can have fun with it and go completely outrageous!! you can wear your grandparents clothes, etc. Get creative! There is no right and wrong.

Infinite x’s & o’s

Tania

Workshop with Abby Lee & Cast of Dance Moms!

(Three years ago) I was purchasing some new leotards at my local dance shop and I saw they were holding a competition to win tickets to the Abby Lee & Cast of Dance Moms – Perth Master Class. I was a Dance mom’s virgin at the time and was intrigued so I entered. I was very excited to find out later that I had won! It beat the colouring in competition I won when I was 12. And as Abby Lee Miller says ‘winning is everything’.

When I made a Facebook announcement, a lady actually asked if I would like to give my ticket away to her young daughter who was obsessed with dance moms… um NO!! I expected to be the eldest one there but no one was going to rob me of my free ticket!

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On the day of the event:

When I presented the ticket, I was given a coloured wristband. There was an opportunity after the workshop to get a photo with Abby and the girls and my coloured wristband was to indicate that I would be in the last group to get my photo taken, as I was one of the last ones to arrive.

All I remember is screaming kids, especially when Abby and the girls came out. If there were any gloss bottles around, I can guarantee you they would have smashed. My ears are still ringing three years later!

I remember the struggle that was the warm up. Put a 23 year old next to a 12 year old, do the same stretches and you’re going to feel like you’re at least 100 years old! But alas, I had fun trying!

The Cast of Dance Moms was full of energy. Mackenzie actually injured herself (nothing major) so we had a bit of a time out while she attended to the injury. We were taught a few steps from Maddie’s award winning solo ‘Amazing Grace’, and we performed it a few times as they picked the best dancers out of the group. When the girls were picked, the rest of us spread out to the sides and Abby asked them to form a line.

She treated it like an audition, tapping the ones on the head who she’d cut for reasons such as being too tall or being too short.

They performed acrobatic tricks, showed off their singing skills, etc, while Abby narrowed it down to just a couple of girls. (I think the remaining girls were given the opportunity to attend a meet & greet with Abby and the girls, I’m not too sure).

We were delighted to watch the girls, Nia, Maddie, Kendall and Mackenzie on the dance floor while we all crowded around. Mackenzie was a stand out to me, I was very impressed with her tumbling skills, she was so small and was this little fire cracker and burst of energy. The girls all danced beautifully.

I did wait 2 hours for a photo afterwards but it was worth it. I was kind of jealous though, not having a mummy or a daddy with me to go out and buy me food while waiting in line. The amount of food smells in the room was making my cravings exceedingly high!

Getting my photo taken with Abby Lee & the girls:

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When it came my turn to get a photo, the girls and Abby all looked exhausted, but they were still smiling and acting very professional.

The girls’ photo was separate to a photo with Abby. When I came up to the girls, they all said ‘hello’ and ‘thank you’ in one perfect unison, you could tell they had done it many, many times.

I’m not going to lie, I was a bit nervous to get a photo with Abby but she was very happy, smiley and not as scary as you may think. There were moments during the workshop where she put on her Abby face like you see her on the TV show, but she is definitely a lot nicer off camera.

As I was leaving, I told Abby that she had a lot of fans out there. When I said it, I meant she had a lot of fans worldwide, but she mistook it as me saying there was still a long line of fans left to have a photo and was asking, ‘where are my fans?’ seeming a bit stressed and exhausted. I tried to explain but I was stumbling over my words and I didn’t want to hold up the line. I was kicking myself for that one! I’ve come to the conclusion that I must get over this star struck disease in order for me to act normal in front of a celebrity!

Infinite x’s & o’s

Tania

Picnic Party!

I have been following Zoella (Fashion and Beauty Vlogger, Youtuber and author) for a while now and I was very intrigued watching one of her videos titled ‘The Perfect Picnic Party’. Nothing draws my attention better than food, parties, picnics, and decorations and fun! So I decided to throw one myself, considering Zoella’s helpful tips, but also making it my own.

I planned a few weeks in advance. I recommend planning early as it allowed me more time to come up with ideas and I do tend to change my mind quite often! I used Pinterest as my go to site for looking at simple, easy recipes and DIY decorations. It’s also good to seek out different sources, images and ideas which will allow you to create a vision in your head of what the outcome will look like.

I knew my number one struggle was going to be money because being on a tight budget it was quite tricky but I’ve put together some tips that worked for me to help you stay within your budget and make your picnic planning painless and stress free:

  • Ask your guests to bring a plate of food (This is definitely an easier option, though I wanted to try my hand at making the food)
  • Have a helping hand (My amazing boyfriend, Darcy chipped in and helped me make all the delicious food)
  • Shop at Kmart (I spent about $60 there which may seem pricey to some but it got me all the party necessities, plastic cups, plates, cutlery, drink dispensers, all that jazz!)
  • Pick food which have minimal ingredients and which you could use as leftovers to make other food items (i.e. I bought a whole watermelon to make a watermelon punch. I had plenty of watermelon leftover so I used the leftover watermelon to make fruit kebabs).
  • Plan your shopping list beforehand (I went onto the Coles online shopping website and selected my foot items there, so then I could copy the list from my ‘trolley’ and know how much everything was going to cost before I went in store. I could’ve gone through with my order but I was too fussy with choosing that it got too late and we wanted to get everything the night before so we could start food prepping early the next day).
  • Buy cheap packets of food (I had a look at the specials for both Woolworths and Coles and we went to both and bought food such as a whole cooked chicken, hot food and dips and cheeses).

Decorations/set up

I had a red and green colour scheme so I had red and green decorations, as well as a ‘good vibes’ pillow which I used as a featured pillow to make my picnic… well… have good vibes! I found out closer to the date that my picnic was on St. Patricks Day so the splash of green worked in my favour! I made paper lanterns, they were not only so easy to make but they looked really cute and added to the whole set up. I didn’t bother putting lights in them as I felt I had enough light already (the bonus of having the picnic in my backyard).

I chose to have the picnic in my own backyard because it felt more homey and cosy and I could just turn on the backyard lights when it got dark, not to mention easy access to household facilities. I also bought some goodies from Typo including a Light Box where you could write your own personal quote/greeting, and twinkling watermelon lights, which I think looked so pretty!

I also had an idea that I found on Pinterest, to buy green cutlery and put them into pots so they looked like plants. I had three strawberry plants at the back which I bought for $2.99 each from Bunnings, and I had the cutlery at the front. Although no one ended up using the cutlery, they looked great just for display purposes!

I found some comfy blankets sitting around so I used them for people to sit on, and added a bunch of pillows for a finishing touch.

I forgot to invest in some table cloths so I used bamboo placements instead, which also came in handy for making sushi!!

Speaking of sushi, let’s talk about food!!

I spent about $90 on food and that was more than enough to feed 17 people, if not more. I took inspo from Poppy’s ice lollies and made lime cordial ice lollies with pieces of kiwi fruit. They ended up a bit on the sweet side but I blame Darcy as he made the cordial! I also really wanted to make a watermelon punch bowl. I made one alcohol and one non-alcoholic so the designated drivers could have some of it as well. I also made flavoured water which had cut up lemon and lime, and made ice blocks with the lime cordial that was left over from making the ice lollies.

I included a variety of different foods to suit everyone and their different tastes. I also made some vegan/vegetarian options and instead of making a chicken salad as planned, Darcy put the chicken separate so everyone could have the salad. Good boy!!

Darcy made the sushi which was a massive hit and was devoured pretty quickly. And to me, a party isn’t a party without good old fairy bread and that didn’t last long either!

We had a wide variety and food galore which filled up everyone’s hungry bellies satisfyingly and pretty quickly.

untitled-2149untitled-2162A couple of other essential items for a picnic are:

Music (My friend brought over a portable BlueTooth speaker. I downloaded Spotify on my phone and we listened to the current top hits all night long).

Games ( We played some drinking card games towards the end of the night after downing some vodka shots!).

Mozzie/bug spray (My feet and legs are currently covered in mozzie bites and are itching like mad!)

Seeming as the party started at 5pm, we crashed at about midnight. No all nighters anymore as we’re not getting any younger!!

The weather wasn’t amazing for a picnic, though it was still a fun night and one I will always remember!

Infinite x’s & o’s

Tania

First blog post

Hi ya’ll! I have decided my head is full of chaos and words, words that are eager to be spilled out onto many, many pages so my mind can re cleanse itself from time to time, therefore I have created this blog. I intend to write about life, thoughts, events, anything!! Because it’s my blog and I’ll cry if I want to? Anyway, this is just a little quick intro to my new blog and what it’s all about. Basically, I’m a 25, nearly 26 year old artistically confused female still simply trying to figure out their place in the world.

Infinite x’s & o’s

Tania