DIY Projects

Winter to Spring Closet Transition and Capsule Closet Curation with Goodwill

Its that time of year again when the weather is warming up and all of my cute& chunky winter pieces begin to make their way into retirement once again. My pale skin and off the shoulder blouses welcome the warmth of the sun!

When this season comes around, I often feel a sense to want to purge my existing warm weather clothing and buy new items to stuff into my closet but, typically doing so without just cause. Aside from the new and emerging trends on the market, I remember that I already have the perfect place to shop from, and it begins within my own storage closet! There is something that sends off positive feel good emotions when the concept of shopping is mentioned. Which, can be true for a lot of people. Even if I shop second hand and from thrift stores, simply consuming just to consume is still wasteful. Just like anything else, things are best approached with care and responsibility.

In order to resist the urge to splurge and when fall turns into spring, I do a huge swap in my wardrobe by setting aside one day during the weekend to rotate pieces within my wardrobe that are more weather appropriate for the season. Just as I’m welcoming fall’s arrival last year, I gathered my summer and spring items and placed my out of season items into one of my large suitcases (to use as storage) while simultaneously taking items out of the same suitcase that are from the last season. As I begin sorting, I am conscious when analyzing what to keep and what to donate. As I get older, I find that my style and tastes remain the same year to year, but, sometimes I always have a few pieces that I am ready to part with after it has served its season in my life.

During fall & winter 2018, I successfully created a capsule wardrobe that included items that I was absolutely in love with and enjoyed wearing and re-wearing multiple ways. You can read more about that post here

Now that spring has sprung, I am ready to look through all my items and separating what should stay and what should go. This season, I am anticipating wearing more classic feminine cuts, colors and silhouettes. I am also hoping to shape my closet with pieces that will work well in transitioning from business casual into after work social blogging events.

WHAT I REMOVED

Winter had some bitter unforgiving cold days. My many thick knit fisherman’s sweaters were perfect in protecting me as much as possible but, are now way too warm to even think about. Other items that are going into retirement, include my Michael Kors silver down jacket, my various solid mock neck tops (although some of them that are 3/4 sleeve make for great pieces to layer with a faux leather jacket during the cold spring mornings. Oh- and my many, many pairs of suede black booties. Honestly, I might keep my olive Sam Edelman chain wrapped booties and my chunky heeled booties for late nights out. They look great paired with skater and slip dresses. A couple dark wash trousers will remain in rotation for work as well.

WHAT I SWAPPED

I was surprised by how many colorful items I already have in my warm weather collection and felt a sense of pride for accomplishing this last year. As someone who loves her neutrals, I must say, I did an amazing job and adding pops of color, especially different hues of yellow, and pink/ purple pastels. Various cuts of dresses were also to be found as I continued to sort. An assortment of bomber jackets, windbreakers, denim and basketball shorts, embroidered floral tops and bottoms and silk & linen blouses.

WHAT I ADDED FROM SHOPPING SECONDHAND

As I mentioned earlier, I wanted create a capsule wardrobe with my spring and summer wardrobe and lucky for me, that means that I will get to add a few pieces to my current mix. Since I have done an great job incorporating color, I am going to focus on collecting similar colors (I’m thinking yellows, greens, and mauve’s since they look great with my warm weather tan) while also channeling both comfortable yet vibrant chic vibe. I also want to include more edgy footwear. Usually I’m a booties girl and love when fall comes around for that reason. When it warms up, I usually play it safe (and sometimes boring) with sneakers, flats and slip on shoes, and I want to change that. I am thinking more natural heel sandals and straw detail wedges.

I love this time of year when seasons are transitioning. It gives everyone such a great opportunity to fall in love with their wardrobe and evaluate what items you currently have before running out and purchasing new pieces blindly.

What are you doing to transition your wardrobe this winter to spring season?

 

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DIY Projects

DIY Home Makeover: How to Build a Gallery Wall!

*Collaborative post

With spring in the air, many people tend to equate the changing of seasons with the physical act of replacing their winter wardrobes with their spring. However, there are so many other ways you can channel that energy! I thought I should take a moment to  reevaluate my living spaces and see what improvements could use a bit of a pick-me-up. After looking around on Pintrest and Instagram, I decided upon the idea to create a gallery wall. The concept is very easy to create, budget friendly, and if you rent an apartment space like me, you know that leading with creativity might not always fit the rules you landlord has set in place. Thankfully, this DIY is guaranteed to meet your expectations and won’t damage your walls too much in the process!

You don’t need to watch too many episodes of Property Brothers or Queer Eye to understand that speaking from a design perspective, creating a gallery wall has the ability to instantly elevate any space with personalized style. Using your favorite prints and art pieces of various sizes, shapes, and colors gives you the opportunity to create a gorgeous gallery that gives your guests a chance to get to know who you are, through photos.

So let’s get started!

Processed with VSCO with a5 preset

Pick Your Frames

While this project is fairly simple, there still needs to be thought put into the assembly of it. As I got started, I thought about what color scheme I wanted to work with, which wall I wanted to use, and what theme my prints would represent. If you’re indecisive like me, take down your thoughts on pen & paper to sort out the many ideas you have floating in your head.

Next, search for your desired frames. This is one of the more important steps in the process because your frames will set the tone of your gallery. Do you want thick frames, thin? Are they square, rounded, oblong? Also think about what colors they will be. Since  this is a spring transition, think about what colors inspire you for the season. In addition, think about the space you are working with. What color are your walls and the surrounding areas (carpet, furniture). If you are working with a classic white background, than almost any color will compliment it. However, if you have painted walls like me, think about which shades of frames will compliment them and make it really stand out within your space!

It’s Hammer Time- What You’ll Need

As far as tools go, here’s what you’ll need to create the gallery wall of your dreams…

  1. Picture Frames
  2. Hammer or Scotch Hanging Strips
  3. Nails
  4. Leveler (if you don’t have one, you can download on right to your phone!)
  5. Pencil & Paper
  6. Small Notebook
  7. Extra nails and screws
  8. And a good playlist going to keep the inspiration flowing

 

Pick Your Prints

Ok- now THIS is the fun part! As I mentioned above, if you want to add some cohesiveness to your gallery, make sure you are combining similar frame shapes and complimentary colors. This includes what images you choose for your prints! For example, your gallery could consist primary of people, animals, places you’ve visited, or inspirational quotes; but don’t feel like you should limit yourself. The most important thing is for your wall to represent you- your tastes, history, and what you  love the most. I sourced by prints via Etsy, but there are thousands of prints you can print for free and affordably from Google, Canva and Unsplash by simply searching images according to the theme you want to achieve.

Lay It Out

From a designers perspective, it comes recommended that you first measure the amount of wall space you want to fill and then tape off that section on a clean floor. This process allows you to space everything out the way you want in advance allowing you to save time and (let’s face it) disappointment of securing it on the wall and not exactly enjoying your results. And not to mention, avoiding unnecessary damages to your wall. Once you lock down your favorite arrangement, take a few photos on your phone and compare layouts. Use your photos as reference when you’re hanging as a guide to go back to as you begin hanging.

Hang In There

Now it’s time to get that art onto the wall! Starting small in this case is not recommended. As a matter of fact, starting with the largest frame will help you visualize how to place the others around it. Placing your larger piece a bit of centered won’t allow it to steal the show, but rather, will allow you to build the smaller pieces around it. Hanging is more of a building framework that yields positive results from the top down. Remember to refer to the photos of the layout options you took on your phone and feel free to move some pieces around as you begin to hang them; remember you are not committed to one idea, this is YOUR wall.

I hope these tips helped you become inspired to create your own gallery wall & revamp up your space!

Good Luck,

Danielle

 

 

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DIY Projects, Fashion, Lifestyle

DIY Tutorial: Personalized Embroidered Sun Hat

If you thought summer was coming to an end, you might be lacking some essential Vitamin D, ’cause there is so much summer to enjoy and sun to be (safely) exposed to. OK, sure- there may be Halloween decor starting to pop up in stores (I love Halloween BTW) but that doesn’t mean you still shouldn’t plan your next beach destination!

One of my favorite summer trends for 2018 has been the embroidered straw sun hats that have cute sayings like ” Out of Office” or “Gone to the Beach”.

This DIY was inspired by my thrift buddy, Chanel Little of @mytullekit to create our own custom embroidery sun hats!  Like the sun hats stores with cute sayings along the brim, our ideas were similar, but we planned to use positive black culture colloquialisms like “Black Girl Magic”, Cute Blerd (black nerd), or “Melanin Popin” for our hats. HOW STINKING CUTE IS THIS?!

Chanel always comes up with gorgeously creative DIY projects and I highly encourage you to check out her other creations on her IG: @mytullekit for more inspo!

First task, find appropriate the sun hat. I found mine in store, but here are other similar options from Amazon.

Next, write down your ideas! What do you want your hat to say? Keep your phrase to about 2-3 words so that you have enough space to embroider on the hat and so others can read it!

 

Shots from behind the scenes of our photo shoot Chanel and I had this weekend with our hats!+6

Summer Photoshoot at The Wharf DC - August, 5 2018 - Thread Lift x My Tulle Kit - Photos by Chris Bulbulia - Models Danielle Dukes and Chanel Little

Summer Photoshoot at The Wharf DC – August, 5 2018 – Thread Lift x My Tulle Kit – Photos by Chris Bulbulia – Models Danielle Dukes and Chanel Little

Summer Photoshoot at The Wharf DC - August, 5 2018 - Thread Lift x My Tulle Kit - Photos by Chris Bulbulia - Models Danielle Dukes and Chanel Little

Summer Photoshoot at The Wharf DC – August, 5 2018 – Thread Lift x My Tulle Kit – Photos by Chris Bulbulia – Models Danielle Dukes and Chanel Little

Summer Photoshoot at The Wharf DC - August, 5 2018 - Thread Lift x My Tulle Kit - Photos by Chris Bulbulia - Models Danielle Dukes and Chanel Little

Summer Photoshoot at The Wharf DC – August, 5 2018 – Thread Lift x My Tulle Kit – Photos by Chris Bulbulia – Models Danielle Dukes and Chanel Little

 

Get to it!

  • Purchase sun hat of choice
  • Sequin Trim. Ours came from Micheal’s
  • E600 Glue. Ours came from Michael’s
  • Other accessories to decor as desired (flowers, beading)
  • Pintrest for inspiration

Instructions:

  1. Eyeball or lightly trace what you want your hat to say. Use fabric chalk or sketch with a pencil your phrase.
  2. Most wording is done in cursive so take your time when deciding what you want to say. Have a friend review your penmanship to make sure it is legible.
  3. After you have carefully placed your sequin trim and have your spell out, begin using the super glue to place your words in place. [Tip] It might be easier to use sewing needles to hold down the trim while gluing so everything stays in place. E6000 is extremely durable and dries relatively quick, so be carefully, a little goes a long way.
  4. Let your hats dry for at least 30 minutes to ensure it is complete.
  5. Enjoy

That’s it! I would say this project took all of 1 hour from start to finish!

 

Comment below what your personal embroidered sun hat would say?

Good Luck,

xo,

Danielle

 

 

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DIY Projects, Lifestyle

D.C.’s First Vlogger? My Take on Becoming a Youtube Creative

WE DID IT!

Our first vlog has been posted and is now live on our YouTube channel!

This has been something on my mind for a while and I have finally gained enough courage to do this. For the last two years, I have slowly stopped watching network television and have gravitated more towards online streaming and YouTube for my media entertainment. There are a couple of channels I have been watching religiously everyday for over a year, and I am consistently fascinated by their courage to share their lives online with strangers while making it look effortless. And I figured, if they can do it, why can’t I?

Then I remembered that the idea of starting my channel alone gave me serious anxiety and was causing me to never start it. It was actually my boyfriend who encouraged the process by suggesting that he be apart of it! And with that we decided to create CD’s Lives (See these Lives)! Yep, we have decided to vlog our adventures each week and share them with you all! While putting yourself out there to the world is nerve racking (internet trolls), it is nice to have home videos to look back on in the future- that will be my (our) silver lining.

From the bit of researching I was able to do online, I did not find many vloggers within the DC area or any for that matter. While there are plenty bloggers I found few that have tapped in the the video entertainment industry (YouTube)- so this could be a chance to start a new wave of creatives in the District.

I want to make a personal note to say that creating this channel isn’t for fame, for the money, but rather another outlet for expression that we both will create together. We both hold corporate jobs that are honestly not our passions, but with consistency and determination, I have no doubt we can make something out of this to free ourselves spiritually and if its right, financially!

Our first video IS PUBLIC and I encourage each of you to subscribe to our channel, CD’s Lives by clicking here. Don’t forget to hit the bell after subscribing to be notified when new videos are posted and be sure to like and comment!

xo,

Danielle

 

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