Monday, December 26, 2011

Shabby Apple Sale and Free Shipping

Top of her Class dress
Just got an email letting me know that Shabby Apple is having a special sale of 20% off anything in their sale section, plus FREE shipping! Free shipping ends at the end of the year.

20% Off the Sale Section at Shabby Apple and Free Shipping with Code 'WINTERSALE'

Monday, December 19, 2011

Butterick Rockabilly Retro Pattern on Sale

Butterick has weekly $2.99 sales on their patterns and this week is a cute retro pattern B5707. This pattern is on sale until 12/25. I love the neck treatment with the bow!

Rockabilly Holiday Music

It's holiday party season! Last year I put together a nice party playlist and I liked it so much I thought I would repost it.

Tart Deco New Years Playlist by Steph on Grooveshark

Monday, December 5, 2011

Shabby Apple skirt giveaway winner

I am always amazed when picks a low number. One time I won a giveaway and I was comment #1, which is like incredibly rare, from what I gather. Anyway, enough of my blabbering...

The winner of my Shabby Apple skirt giveaway is


Ellen has confirmed her win and will be getting the skirt sent to her right from Shabby Apple. Which is good for her since I would most likely keep the skirt for myself if they sent it to me, its so cute. Hey, at least I am honest!

Congrats Ellen :)

Monday, November 28, 2011

25% off Rockabilly and Pin-up at Mode Merr until Nov. 30th

One of my fav clothing stores online is Mode Merr and they are having a cyber-monday 25% off sale until Nov. 30th! Use the code cybermonday for the discount. Here are some of my favs:

Flirt Skirt $84

Peasant Blouse $54

Anchor Skirt $60

Sugar Skull Skirt $78

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Thanksgiving Sale

Hello All! I am having a sale in my Tart Deco etsy shop starting right now until Dec. 5th. Use the coupon code TURKEY20 for 20% off everything in my store (including sale items)! I have lots of cute hair accessories, some for the holidays- plus other vintage goodies like a beautiful mandarin collar house coat.

Here's a sample of what is in my shop right now:

Also, don't forget my Shabby Apple giveaway. It ends Dec. 4th and there are some pretty good odds right now!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Shabby Apple Giveaway! (closed)

I am super excited to have been contacted by Shabby Apple to host a giveaway. Right in time for the holidays too! I'm giving away the adorable Francine skirt from Shabby Apple (, an online boutique of women's dresses and other fabulous items. It is a little hard to see on this picture, but this skirt is made of black twill and has the cutest bow at the waist. I also love the 40's inspired high waist. This skirt is available in sizes up to a 38.5" waist (yeah!).

How to enter. You must do all 3 steps below:
1. You have to like Shabby Apple on their facebook page
2. You have to like Tart Deco on our facebook page 
3. Leave one comment letting me know you did both and what your facebook name is so I can verify. Also, please make sure to leave an email in the comment so I can contact you if you win. No email, no win :) (you can leave the email in a broken form so it can't be trolled by spybots- ex. tartdeco at gmail dot com)

Extra entries (leave one extra comment for each):
1. Follow this blog (or let me know you already follow)
2. Post about this on your blog and put the link to the post in your comment

The giveaway ends on Sunday, December 4th at midnight (central time). I will choose the winner on Dec. 5th. Open to U.S. Residents only. Sorry!

This skirt would be so perfect for New Years, don't you think? Good luck!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Free Vintage Apron Pattern

Bramcost Publications is having a fun 12 days of vintage handmade party where they are posting free patterns from their various vintage books. Todays post is a free vintage apron pattern that is super cute and not very difficult to sew.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Fleur Dress Giveaway (closed)

In the Heyday is giving away a beautiful Fleur dress with daisy trim. Get on over there and enter! Ends Monday, Nov. 7th.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Rockabilly Winter Wear

I am frantically going through my seasonal clothes right now and got hit with that feeling of dread. You know- the "I have nothing to wear this winter" feeling? I am not sure why what I wore last year isn't cutting it for this year, but it inspired me to put together an etsy treasury of cute sweaters and wool skirts.

Tart Deco What to Wear- Rockabilly Winter treasury

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Rockabilly Magazines

Continental Magazine
Hello All! If you are anything like me you like to have a nice big reference collection for inspiration. So, in keeping with my librarian side, I have decided to start a page for Rockabilly Magazines. I have done a few searches and have yet to find a decent listing of them in one place.

I will also need your help to make sure I can make it as comprehensive as possible. When I say comprehensive, I mean magazines that include enough about the various sides of Rockabilly and it's offshoots, like Pin-up, Punkabilly, Tiki, etc. If you see that I am missing something, drop me a line and let me know at tartdeco at gmail dot com.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Feelin' Blue? Get a Sunny Disposish!

Hey everyone! I am SO excited to debut my band Bootless Betties' new music video. It is done in a silent film style and is sure put a smile on your face.

Be sure to like it and share it! The song is off our latest album "Good Time Whoopee" which is available online through reverbnation.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Whole Lotta Shakin'- Rockabilly Documentary Series has a great documentary series online, which is hosted by Rosie Flores. The series is called Whole Lotta Shakin' and features one-hour streaming segments on various subjects in Rockabilly music. I find the topics of this series and how they incorporate the songs into a narrative to be a great way to get to know the evolution of Rockabilly, or to familiarize yourself with the genre if you are new to it.

Here is a break-down of the series' topics:

Good Rockin' Tonight
Elvis, Carl Perkins and the rise of Sun Records

Get Rhythm  
The story of Johnny Cash and The Tennessee Two  

Fujiyama Mamas  
The women of rockabilly stake their claim

Rebels with Guitars  
Borrowing from Brando: the music's most notorious rebels

The Cradle of the Stars
The rise and fall of radio's The Louisiana Hayride

Real Wild Child
Swamps, snakes, Whole Lotta Shakin' and the story of Jerry Lee Lewis

Shake This Shack
Cat Music from the Lone Star State: rockabilly in Texas

Rockin' Bones
Suzy Q and rockabilly's one hit wonders

Rave On
The life and music of Buddy Holly 

Summertime Blues Sunglasses after dark, rockabilly California-style

You can view the song lists for each segment here

(cross-posted to Tart Deco's American Popular Music)

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Glamorous House Cleaning

pic from Miss Retro Modern
I am one of those people that actually like cleaning a bathroom. Maybe its because you can see a difference right away. Other types of housecleaning, not so much. One thing that takes the sting out of chores for me is to make it an event. A while ago I read a great post Secrets to Being Glamorous for Every Occasion – Cleaning on the Super Kawaii Mama blog and I have been meaning to do a post on fabulous items to make your cleaning more of a fun to do than a boo-hoo!

There has been a boom in retro house cleaning items in the last few years making it pretty easy to fab up your daily routine (or if you are like me- weekly routine!). Here are some of my favs:

Cath Kidston- Various cute items from Bathroom to Kitchen
Vermont Country Store- Vintage cleaning products
Boojiboo- Cute Retro Aprons
Carolyn's Kitchen- Retro Aprons and matching gloves

How to tie a headscarf- Vixen Vintage
20 vintage cleaning tips- Tip-nut
DIY ruffled kitchen gloves- Jones Design Co
Vintage Homemaking blog

Cornell University Hearth Project- online texts for home ec and housekeeping books from 1800sand on
        - My fav is The Household Dictionary by Winnifred Fales (1920) Literally a dictionary of what to do when things go wrong in your house, from stains to candle wax accidents

Does anyone else have some glam tips on how to take the sting out housework?

Fabulous Outside Rockabilly Wedding

I found a post on the Green Wedding Shoes blog about this amazingly beautiful outside Rockabilly wedding with a red, white and teal color scheme. I love how one of the women in bridal shower is in a different style of dress (probably the maid of honor) and how everything pulls together so nicely because they stay in the color scheme. Also, you can see that this wedding, all DIY, is all about the details and it really makes the difference. My favorite detail? The black and white checkerboard dance floor (which also matches the gingham details in the groom's shirt and ribbon on the bride's bouquet!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Sale on Sewing Patterns

McCalls, Butterick and Vogue are having a big sewing pattern sale that ends today. Butterick and McCalls patterns are $2.88 and Vogue is $3.88. There are a ton of great retro and historical patterns right now. Here are some of my favorites:


Saturday, October 8, 2011

New Blog Series- Women in Rockabilly

Long time, no post! Sorry for the absence but Grad school and internship are in full swing. It can be hard to set aside time to blog, but I had an idea to try and tie in thesis research by blogging about various women in Rockabilly music, which is my thesis topic. I've touched on a few performers previously (Wanda Jackson, Janis Martin and Lorrie Collins). I am hoping to expand on some of those posts, introduce more singers and talk about some of the social issues they have had to deal with. I also plan to talk about more contemporary singers and who inspired them. Of course, I am going to include sound examples and ways to get your hands on their music.

To start this off, I thought I would include some of my favorite resources about these amazing ladies and Rockabilly music. Most of these sources I have used in my own research. Some are more complete than others, but all have a place in the history of Women in Rockabilly music and I would love to see them circulate more to inspire others to write more about this overlooked topic.

The Women of Rockabilly: Welcome to the Club DVD
Blue Rhythms: Six Lives in Rhythm and Blues
Sexing the Groove: Popular Music and Gender
Girls Rock!: Fifty Years of Women Making Music
Little Miss Dynamite: The Life and Times of Brenda Lee
Memphis Belles - The Women Of Sun Records CD
Rockabilly a Bibliographic Resource Guide
Rockabilly queens: The careers and recordings of Wanda Jackson, Janis Martin, Brenda Lee
She's a Rebel: The History of Women in Rock and Roll
Welcome to the Club-Early Female Rockabilly CD

There are also two theses that are available through interlibrary loan:
Della Rosa, J. L. (2005). Hard rockin' mamas : female rockabilly artists of Rock'n'roll's first generation, 1953-1960.
    This Masters thesis discusses how early female performers in rockabilly music, specifically Janis Martin, Lorrie Collins and Wanda Jackson, were able to defy traditional social roles, yet were not given the ability to stand on equal footing with their male counterparts. The author uses Billboard charts analyses to demonstrate how underrepresented women were in the business at the time and how the media played into social fears of gender roles.

Conor, E. (2006). Women take the stage : Janis Martin, Brenda Lee, and Wanda Jackson.
    This book starts to ask questions of why some female performers could transcend stereotype, yet never achieve the same success their male counterparts did. Includes references in notes for further research beyond the bibliography sources and analyzes lyrics and performances to explore the difference in gender perceptions.

This may be a bit scholarly, however I think it is good to get an overview of some of the more helpful sources out there. If you notice, the list is fairly short. There are more from popular magazines and newspapers, but in general you can see that this topic is sorely lacking in research. Hopefully I can change that!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Retro Butterick 4790 WalkAway Dress Sew-a-Long

I am SO excited! Remember my post a few days ago on the nifty tutorial for the Walk-Away dress on Well she is doing a sew-a-long! Be sure to see her sew-a-long post on it to join in.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Giddyap Bartender!

Unique 1950s Cowboy bar for sale in Utah- only $350. Comes with matching saloon doors!

Saw this post on the bar on and had to repost just in case one of my awesome readers lives close by. The story behind the house this is in is worth a visit to the blog. I just love the detail on the bar top and it looks to be in perfect condition.

If you are interested, you can view the direct  classified ad here.


Ken Burns' Prohibition

I am SO excited about this new documentary by Ken Burns about Prohibition. You know there is going to be some fabulous speakeasy footage (and flappers!). Also excited about the music he will use. Here's a quick blurb on the film from the PBS website:
The story of Prohibition's rise and fall is a compelling saga that goes far beyond the oft-told tales of gangsters, rum runners, flappers, and speakeasies, to reveal a complicated and divided nation in the throes of momentous transformation. PROHIBITION is a three-part, five-and-a-half-hour documentary film series directed by Ken Burns and Lynn Novick that tells the story of the rise, rule, and fall of the Eighteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution and the entire era it encompassed.

Visit the PBS page on the documentary for more info, including customized e-mail postcards you can make and send.

Pre-order the DVD!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Boudoir On a Budget

pic from retrogasm
The idea of a boudoir is fascinating to me. According to the Mirriam-Webster dictionary, the definition of boudoir is "a woman's dressing room, bedroom, or private sitting room" and the term derives from the French word bouder meaning to pout or to sulk. 

Well, if I am going to pout somewhere I want it to be FABULOUS! So I put together an etsy treasury of boudoir items all under $15 called Boudoir On a Budget.

Boudoir On a Budget treasury by Tart Deco

Friday, August 5, 2011

Retro Butterick 4790 WalkAway Dress Tutorial

I haven't had a chance to make this pattern yet, but I had a friend who did and she had to do all kinds of crazy things to it to make it fit right. Well, this post on Edelweiss Patterns blog explains why the pattern is so tricky and gives a tutorial on how to fix that. According to Katrina's post, the pattern companies don't regrade the original vintage patterns, but make "adjustments" for the modern woman (she got this tidbit from a McCall's pattern maker). So the tip is to choose the pattern size by your collarbone measurement and grade the rest of the pattern out.

It may sound a bit funny, but it really works! The blog post explains everything and has pictures (thank goodness!). Be sure to see her second dress attempt for an even cuter version! Also, she is toying with the idea of a sew-along for this pattern, so if you are interested please visit the second version post and leave a message.

Friday, July 29, 2011

1949 Skirt Re-Pattern Giveaway (closed)

Laura on Sew Retro has re-patterned a gorgeous 1949 skirt with bow (above) and is giving away a copy of her pattern. To enter the giveaway visit the Sew Retro blog.

Thursday, July 28, 2011


I just visited the Rockabilly Hall of Fame to see what is going on in Rockabilly music lately and discovered that they sponsor a webpage with tons of rockabilly songs that you can listen to for free. It's called They also have it set up to buy albums online to help support the page. This is a great way to become familiar with the music if you are just getting into the scene, or to explore some older or more obscure tunes.

Here are some suggested tunes to listen to on the page:
Baby, Baby, Baby - Joe Allen & the Alley Cats
Dirty Dishes - Jeani Mack (make sure and see the video too!)
Move it on Over - Rose Maddox
Rock the Joint - Bill Haley & the Saddlemen (obviously they recycle their guitar solos)
Stranded in the Jungle - The Cadets
Twenty Flight Rock - Eddie Cochran

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Coincidence or Karma?

So after posting yesterday's post about losing my Mojo, I just happened to get an article link emailed to me by called Going Through the Emotions. If you don't know about Sparkpeople, it is an online resource to help you get healthy, including a great nutrition tracker. I found it is very similar to weightwatchers online- but free! Anyhoo, the article touches on the very thing I posted on- feeling overwhelmed and undermotivated.

Elvgren "Well Built" taken from
While the article is geared towards health, it stresses being aware of taking control what you can when your life seems out of control. My favorite line in the article is "You can be the hammer, making things happen, or you can be the nail that sits there and gets pummeled over and over." I felt it was a little bit of a sign that it just happened to come my way after I finally posted on my blog after my "hiatus."

Obviously I want to be the hammer! So off I go to workout (TurboJam!) and start putting together my list of construction projects. This might actually be fun ;) Speaking of lists, don't forget about my pin-up To Do lists I posted for Viva. They are free to print out as many times as you'd like so you can get organized in style!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011


Ever get the feeling that you lost your mojo? I am feeling it right now. It's not that I haven't been doing anything, I have been doing plenty. More than plenty: I just finished a huge fundraiser for our local PBS station with my vocal trio Bootless Betties where we did a staged old-time radio show with a friend's theater group Wisconsin Hybrid Theater.

For the show I had to learn how to play accordion, arrange Old Black Magic in a Spike Jones style, do sound for the show and generally keep everything together. We raised over $3,000 and performed in 80 degree weather with no A/C- that is devotion! Bootless Betties also came out with our first CD "Good Time Whoopee" and I started teaching classes for my library internship.

Obviously I have been busy, but I feel oddly empty. It feels like I am creating for everyone but me, even though most of the above stuff was my idea. I'm not sure how that happens, but as a perfectionist I tend to get caught up in details and never give myself a chance to really enjoy what I am doing. I feel burnt out, which is pretty scary considering I have a paper to write in the next 3 weeks and I start my Music History thesis in the fall. I started working out because I thought it would give me energy, but all it does is give me one more thing to try and schedule in (although I will say I enjoy it while it is happening).

So I ask you this (for those of you who have hung in with me during my blogging drought) - what do you do when you need motivation to finish things you have to do, but have no motivation to do them? Do you take an extended break (for me that would mean a semester off, which is unlikely)? Do you dig in and force it? Do you do little things? Do you do an about-face?

On a more pleasant note, J. Peterman is having a magnificent sale and I purchased these 2 dresses to wear on the Rockabilly Vacation my husband and I are taking in a few weeks:

They still have some left up to size 18 (43" bust) for both, so grab 'em up while you can! I hesitated on another dress and it was GONE in a wink. I actually shed tears... but I think I picked pretty good substitutes.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Time Off

So sorry, but it looks like I have been taking some time off of blogging for a while! I was hoping that I could be more consistent during the summer, but I have been totally swamped with gigs and the first CD for my music group Bootless Betties (including a fundraiser for our local PBS station). I am also trying to finish an incomplete paper for a graduate class, as well as get started on my Masters Thesis (comparing and contrasting Rockabilly singers Janis Martin and LaVern Baker), working and trying to stay on top of my Tart Deco etsy store. I am also hoping to take a short vacation before my final semester of Grad school and the thesis madness that I am sure will ensue.

Whew! That's a lot!

I will still try to pop in a blog post when I can. I am sure I will have more to say when I get into writing my thesis because it will be about Rockabilly music and the culture of the 50s. I may even ask for your input on some passages :)

Thanks for reading so far!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Vintage Rockabilly Dresses on Etsy

In an effort to get back into blogging regularly I will be posting some Etsy treasuries I made with a ton of great Rockabilly finds. This first treasury is large-xxl dresses for the curvy rockabilly girls. None of the dresses is over $60 and most are in the $30 range. I couldn't fit all of the dresses on one page for a screen catch, so there are 4 more that aren't pictured here.

Curvy Gal Rockabilly Dress Treasury

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Free Vintage Sewing Pattern

Thanks to the blog A Few Threads Loose, I can repost the link to this beautiful vintage pattern that is available free on the German site Neu4bar. I would suggest this for an intermediate to advanced sewer because some of the writing is in German, but can be figured out if you are familiar with garment construction. I converted the pattern measurements from cm to inches and they are: b-40" w-32"  h-42.5". Don't forget my posts on resizing patterns to grade up or down!

Friday, May 13, 2011

New Vintage Vogue Pattern

Vogue just came out with their new patterns for summer and I am loving Vintage Vogue pattern V8728 from 1946. I have a soft spot for the gathered chest next to a fitted waist look. I could see this dress as a bridesmaids dress at a summer wedding with the right material.
I am not thrilled with the material they used for the live model picture. It is a jersey knit (one of their suggested materials), which is odd to me. It seems like a jersey would be comfortable, but not really enhance the crispness and fullness of the gathers.  I do ADORE the live model's hair though. It's like a double roll, but one of the "rolls" is actually a deep wave and the larger roll looks like it almost be half a pompadour. It looks like a sea sculpture. Love it!

Monday, May 9, 2011

Defining Rockabilly

Back in March I posted about some DIY tutorials on Design Sponge and I got an interesting comment that made think about how to define "Rockabilly." This can be a hard thing to pinpoint because the origin of Rockabilly lies in a mixture of genres (honky tonk, jump blues, etc.) as well as the cultural influence of the late 40s through the early 60s. A lot of Rockabilly music and fashion comes directly from this first wave influence. I have done several posts on music and fashion from this time. You can also use my label 50s Rockabilly to see all of my posts on the topic in general.

There was the second wave of Rockabilly in the 80s, when the influence of punk and harder rock n' roll genres added a gritty overtone to Rockabilly. Psychobilly and similar genres came out of this revival and the music and fashion reflected this as well. I find that a lot of the Rockabillies I know or see at events wear a mixture of the two styles; perhaps a vintage 50s dress with a spiked pomp and stilettos.

For me, Rockabilly is more of an attitude. As I mentioned in my reply to the post comment above, my idea of rockabilly is finding ways to rediscover "vintage" from a certain time period and put it back into our lives. I put vintage in quotes because sometimes the thing we rediscover is not an item, but an idea or cultural element. Some people choose to mash-up more than one culture because they find that it expresses their personality best. I tend to veer towards items that might not necessarily be considered Rockabilly, but makes me feel Rock n' Roll, which is essentially what Rockabilly helped to create. One of my favorite blogs Rock n' Roll Bride pretty much sums up how I feel when she talks about what makes a wedding Rock n' Roll:
 "It’s not about being ‘cool’, being a rebel or even thinking of the most unique idea you can, it’s about planning a wedding that reflects you and your partner and declaring your love in your way...  You don’t have to be ‘out-there’ or ‘offbeat’, you just have to be you."

So on that note, I present to you the website Perpetual Kid. It is so not "Rockabilly" but has a whole lot of nifty stuff that can add up to a whole lot of attitude. My favorites are the Tiki key-caps, the Gunbrella, and the Bonehead folding comb. Thanks to the Chronically Vintage Blog for turning me on to this fun site!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Tart Deco Mother's Day Sale

I have put a few items in my store on sale, including my vintage teacup pincushions and hanky sets. The sale runs until May 7th so get your goodies while they last!

EShakti Review

Last year I started reading about a clothing website called EShakti on some of the fashion blogs I subscribe to. My interest was piqued- an online store that allows you to customize their clothing by changing sleeves, collars, and even measurements? I visited the site and thought they had some cute designs, some even vintage inspired. Unfortunately, because I am a graduate student I don't have the money to order something that isn't a sure shot. Luckily I was able to contact them and in Dec. 2010 they offered to allow me to choose an item to try for this review. Yep, this was a while ago, but I have been putting off writing this review because I don't like to post a lot of negative things on this blog, but I do feel that I need to follow through on my agreement to write a review. Plus, I want to post my experience if anyone else is trying to decide to buy something from the EShakti website.

My initial e-mail conversations with a customer service representative were prompt and pleasant. I was very happy with this because I had read conflicting reviews online. I had a gig coming up for Valentine's Day and was excited to pick something for the show. I started looking in early January because I had read in other blog reviews that because the dresses come from India that they can sometimes take more time than is listed on their website (7-10 business days). Their website is fairly easy to navigate and they have a lot of choices. They also offer various options to customize, depending on the dress. One issue I had was that they don't show examples of the custom options (ie. what their idea of a "wide V neckline" looks like). If someone isn't familiar with clothing terms they are going to have a hard time figuring this out.

I found a vintage inspired black crepe dress and sent my choice and measurements to them through a special link that they sent me on Jan. 16th. On Feb. 3rd, I still hadn't received the dress, nor had I heard from eshakti, so I emailed my rep and asked for an update. I received this reply 4 days later:

"As per the update given to me, our team had emailed requesting you to choose an alternate sample since the one that was made ready for you was rejected at our Quality Check for a fabric defect.   We await your response on an alternate choice.

We apologize for any inconveniences this may cause you.   We have pulled out the style now and await fresh lot of fabric to bring it back online.   Kindly use the same link to submit your new product choice.  Please rest assured that we will process this new sample within 3-4 business days and have it shipped to you"

 I had never gotten any email from them, but I understand that things do happen and since I was essentially getting a dress for free I didn't feel that I should push that point. There was still enough time to get the dress for the show so I quickly reordered the dress to the left. I gave my measurements and had them add flared short sleeves, which is an option they offer.

Feb. 20th and I didn't hear anything about my second choice. Both times I ordered I sent all of my information through the link they provided and to my customer rep to make sure it was received correctly. I also double-checked my email address to make sure I got any email messages from the warehouse. So that day I emailed my rep and on Feb. 21st I received this reply:

"Yes we have received your alternate choice and are processing it.   The sample is nearing completion and will be shipped to you within the next couple of days.You will receive the tracking number information from our Customer Care as soon as it is dispatched."
 At this point my gig came and went (which was great by the way). Now I was just interested to see what was going to happen. Needless to say, I never received an email from Customer Care in "the next couple of days." In fact, I never got an email from Customer Care even when I received the dress in the mail in the middle of March, almost 3 1/2 months after I put in my first order.

Unfortunately, it doesn't end there. The dress came shoved into a small box roughly 12x12" and only 1" high inside a mylar envelope. I honestly had no idea that the package was my dress until I opened it because it didn't seem possible that a package so small could hold my item. Needless to say the dress was insanely wrinkled and I had to steam it multiple times and let it hang for a week to get them out. On a positive note, the dress itself is adorable and looks just like the picture from the website. The workmanship is good and I didn't see any visible flaws.

I would show you a picture of me wearing it, however it doesn't fit. The measurements are all 1/2" too small. You may be tempted to say that maybe I took my measurements wrong or it is a human error and I could take out the seams, but I am a seamstress that knows how to take measurements correctly and I actually entered my measurements an inch larger, just in case. So basically they missed the correct sizing by 1 1/2", which is pretty excessive. It also looks like the hem is a little short (it was supposed to be mid-knee), but I can't know for sure until I am able to wear the dress. Hopefully this will be soon since I have started losing weight.

So there you are. I really, really wanted to have this experience be positive because the concept of EShakti is so great, especially for plus-size gals like me. Other reviews I have read online have been a mixture of positive and negative, so it looks like ordering from the company is inconsistent. If you do decide to order from them, it looks like people who go with the standard sizing fare better than the custom sizing.

Do you have any experience with EShakti? I would love to hear your comments!

Friday, April 15, 2011


I hate that I have been neglecting this blog the last month or so because of Graduate school. Actually, it's more because I started a library internship in January that took 15 more hours a week away from my free time. Obviously this is a really good thing for me career-wise, but it means less time for creative endeavors.

I have found though that doing a small swap every now and then satisfies my creative side and I can do them when I need a mental break from music theory or French for Reading (zut alors!). It feels a little like christmas when I get my package in the mail and open it up. Sometimes I leave the goodies in their boxes so I can re-open them if I am feeling a little down or stressed out. The swaps have also reminded me of the power of actual physical mail in this age of electronic communication.

Right now a have a few of them going on, like the vintage brooch swap, the petite inspiration swap and a pin cushion swap (see sidebar). I also finished a few swaps last month and haven't had time to post pictures, but I will soon.

Do any of you do swaps? If so, what are they and why do you like them? I have been thinking about doing a rockabilly-themed swap once school is done in May- would anyone be up for that?

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Viva Las Vegas Series #16- Music

I am surprised that it took me this long to post about music as it is my main thing, besides being a librarian. There is SO much music at VLV and I managed to track down the websites of a lot of the bands, concentrating mostly on those on the side stages.

Hopefully this will help you to make the difficult decision on who to see when you are there. And if you aren't going, this will help you to familiarize yourself with some of the rockabilly bands that you might not know yet.

Big Sandy- 
Delco nightingale-
Don Juan y los Blancos-
Hillbilly Hellcats- 
Jinx Jones-
Karling Abbeygate-
Los Straitjackets- 
Miguel & the Atomic three- 
Modern Don Juans- 
Morry Sochat & the Special 20s-
Neon Swing X-perience-
Nick Curran & the Lowlifes- 
No Dice-
Psycho Devilles-
Roy Kay Combo- 
Shakedown Combo-
Sin City Surfers-
Slip & the Spinouts-
Still Creek Brothers-
Vicky Tafoya & the Big beat-

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