Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Hopping on Board the Instagram Train

For anyone who isn't quite sure what this is, it's an apple-made app for your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch. It allows you to take photos, which are always in square format, edit them with some filter options, and post them on a page you develop. Best part? It's free. It also includes a touch of social networking - similar to tumblr, you can follow other photographers, and they can follow you. You can also tag your photos with the typical hashtags (#winter, #cute, etc) so people can come across you work in searches.

As far as I can see, this little program is fantastic for many, but a touchy subject for others. Real photographers get a bit pissy over it because there are tons of teenagers with iPhones who claim they are great photographers because they use Instagram. Of course, by no means is this little thing a substitute for a nice DSLR or film camera.

However, I think it's a step up for phone cameras. Frankly, my phone takes pretty shitty photos. When I was gifted the iPod touch for Christmas, my natural inclination was to turn this music device into yet another camera. What can I say, I am me. After downloading all my music, I got this free app, and went crazy. I've enjoyed taking holiday photos, and family photos, and this device will quickly replace my phone for taking quick shots in public. Since I don't always carry my big DLSR with me, this gives me the opportunity to take shots when I'm out with friends. Instagram also makes life easy when emailing pictures to myself or friends, so I can have them on my computer.

As far as I can see it, it's a win win. Just don't use it to inflate your ego!

If anyone else out there has one, you can find me under Carolyn M, or my screen name MizRolyns. Lots of my photos were recently tagged under "Winter" and "LakePlacid," so there's always that too. Cheers!

(PS - I promise to be better about this blog. I've been neglecting it, and haven't shown any of my work. More entries to come!)

Monday, December 26, 2011

LookBook in a Nutshell

It's ok, I can make fun of it. I'm on it.

Monday, December 19, 2011

The DIY Short

Lately the whole DIY studded and dyed shorts have been really in, although I've noticed that most pairs cost anywhere from sixty to ninety dollars. Since this is rather outrageous, I thought I'd give my own pair a try.

First, I went about cutting some old skinnies into shorts, since I never seemed to wear them anyways. The best part about the pants however, was the zipper detail at the bottom. I decided to save those for ideas later. When I'd cut them up, I borrowed a friend's switchblade and began to distress them - though I proved not to be very good at this. What was supposed to be exposed white threads (which would color when dyed) just turned into frayed holes. Thankfully, they still look ok.

I then took them into the art studio at my school, where I sewed on the zippers to the sides of the shorts, and cut out the fabric between them. This makes them a bit scandalous when wearing... but I need to figure out a lace short or something I can wear underneath. After this, I dunked them in a yellowy dye, which was a mixture of a golden color and an ochre yellow. Expecting them to be a bit more brown, I was a little surprised when they came out more green than ochre, but I didn't bleach them at all, and the light blue on the jeans must have turned the yellow a bit green.

After letting them dry and putting them through the wash one more time, I bought some studs on Etsy, and studded them up, like everyone else. Good news is, I think they're pretty cool!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011


So many people in my country want to or already look like this. Given this image is an exaggeration for most, for some... clearly it's not, and that's scary. The media represents people that look like this every day on TV and in magazines. There's every kind of way to get a fake tan, or put implants in various places in your body to make them "look better."

And yet, there are those of us who think the kissy-face fake girls are delusional. Why are those who have sleeves or look like the girl on the right trashy or scary to many? Why is having a fake tan, poorly done highlights/bleach jobs, and potentially plastic surgery better than having tattoos and interestingly dyed hair?

Why does the majority of my country aspire to be fake in every way?

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Stuff - My New Boutique

Hello all!

I have begun a little boutique where I am selling my wares - including everything from clothing to jewelry, and accessories to custom orders.

Here is the link, and I plan on having many more things up soon, more jewelry, shoes, blouses, skirts, outerwear, belts, bags, and bandannas. Keep your eye out!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

A Return to Monochrome

Recently, I was invited to a new website based out of Germany called ARTFlakes. Still in Beta, you can only join by invitation, but I was lucky enough to score one. After uploading your pictures, your art is available to the web for customers to buy high end prints, cards, and posters. For every sale, they are made and shipped by a a third party, without my involvement (thank god). I earn a royalty for every sale, a percentage I decide (though the higher you go, the higher your part is priced).

I am slowly building a collection to display. I get the impression this crowd is more for decoration arts, and keeping this in mind, am uploading things for a more domestic audience than necessarily an artsy one. Though we're all artists on the site, I am catering a different set of images than those I would put on places like Deviantart.

I have been primarily focusing on black and white works thus far. Though I will be uploading some of my favorite color images later, for now, these seem to add a classy edge to my gallery. I have been pulling images from Lake Placid, Carmel, Big Sur, Hobe Sound, and all over. It's very fun, and I hope to start making some sales soon. By all means, if you need an artistic gift, or some black wall space that needs to be filled - that's what I'm here for! This is my shop :)

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

DIY - Studs and Fringe

Recently I've been trying to build up my collection of modified clothing for the up coming critique in November for my textiles class. My ideas have changed so many times since I finished my tapestry shoes, but I have enjoyed making these next two pieces.

After a sad night out and the death of an old friend (my poor studded belt), I pried apart the studs and applied them to some old leggings that needed some new loving. I definitely will wear them now, they've improved by far! Since the studs had prongs, and were hallow and light, they were easy to insert and space on the leggings, which had a handy side panel (if you're looking to do this, get some easy studs and try Nike leggings, the side panel helps hold them in place).

I was also pleased to find some bright fringe at Walmart the other day, and added it to the bottom of this shirt. After a failed attempt to dye an old crop top, I went to H&M to find this one, and I knew just where it'd be since I have the same shirt from weeks earlier, un-altered. But, I bought another one to mod up.

I shot them together for convenience - which I would never wear out. Remember, leggings are not pants! But I still love this shot. So take a look at my recent projects!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Risingstate and Red Boots

Today I received a curious email from a clothing website I'd never heard of, prefaced by interest in my blog. I occasionally get these emails from various other blogs, clothing places, etc. but don't always have the time to check them out. However when I did this time, I was actually pretty rewarded.

Risingstate is a wholesale website for women's clothing in China. Their prices had me grabbed in a second. Being me, I went straight for the shoes. Even though I purchased a pair of shoes online today already (hey, it's been a tough few weeks), I definitely want to get my hands on these red boots sometime soon:
I know the fringe thing is a love-hate trend to many, and I've generally avoided it because sometimes wearing fringed things gets annoying, but these boots were too hard to pass up (and there will always be a soft spot in my heart for suede).

Sunday, October 9, 2011

DIY - Tapestry Boots

When I saw these Jeffery Campbell tapestry heels (both these and many other similar fabric-covered boots) - I knew I had something to do with my old fabric.

After working two years as an intern and assistant to an interior designer and decorator, I have amassed piles of old discontinued fabrics. When I started this year in my independent study class, I had a few scattered ideas of what clothing I was going to modify and decorate, but little did I know I was about to start off with shoes instead!

My pair of black faux-suede booties are a loved pair of shoes - I have worn them many a time. However, parts of the suede has worn off and they were starting to look a little sad. Knowing I could easily buy a replacement pair, I decided to recover them in some heavy duty tapestry fabric of my own - I don't need designer shoes if I can make them first!

Best part is, they count for a grade. I love turning hobbies into school work, it's how things come out best. The tapestry fabric is both beautiful and should wear well. Originally, I started out with a chevron design with a covered toe, but after pinning and cutting the fabric for the first shoe, I neglected to cut the pieces in the opposite orientation for the opposite shoe. Lamenting one of my favorite samples gone useless, I moved onto a red paisley fabric, which is both soft and heavy duty.

Using my old pieces as guides and cutting them correctly this time, I have embarked on a spectacular shoe journey. I have been working piece by piece, starting with the inner back section, which was the smallest. After cutting the pieces, I made sure they fit correctly before buying fabric glue and using that to put the fabric on. After letting the piece dry for several hours, I hand sew the places I can to reinforce it (basically anywhere not near the sole, where it is too hard for the needle to go through). So far, they look like this, and all I have left to do are the outsides:

I hope to finish them either tonight or tomorrow morning, and I can't wait to wear them!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Business with Friends

You might see this as a bit of self promotion, but I see this as a bit of fun.

My friend and housemate Sam and I are beginning a small site for each other, where we offer Skidmore College our artistic services. While I am primarily offering photographic things such as product shoots or portraits (and randomly some tattoo design in there), she offers things in the area of graphic design, such as posters, layout services, and logo creation.

After coming together last year to make our friend a calender for her birthday full of fun photos, we decided working on projects like this were quite fun. Just recently we've finished the bulk of the site, and hope to get our work out there for the rest of the year. After all, pre-snow weather shoots are the best kind, I hope someone takes me up on it!

I know you guys aren't fellow Skidmore Students, but here is where I've been putting up my favorite shots from strict interiors to flowing landscapes. Check it out!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Back in Time, Indeed

Finally someone that agrees with me - blog writer Enem Uko from LookVille featured me not too long ago with many of my vintage and vintage-inspired looks. I pride myself daily on dressing well, and some of my greatest finds are thrifty pieces like my fifties bathing suit - turned romper, or my necklace made from old jacket lapels. I've got nothing against modern clothes, but sometimes all of the charm and quality are to be had in the older pieces.

So for some of my looks, new and old, check it out! Thanks, Enem!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Ladies of LookBook - Put a Real Shirt On!

One of the most recent trends I have seen has grown from the occasional thing to a regular daily sight, and an unfortunate one at that. People seem to have this attraction for wearing sheer - incredibly sheer - blouses with simply bras underneath. The sheer blouse worn right is a classy and sexily delicate thing, but when worn wrong, it can be an ugly whorish marker. I'm not going to name names, mostly because that would be kind of rude and I don't remember them anyways, but I'm going to post a few pictures. I am apologizing in advance for your eyes.

My advice is simply this - figure out how to wear it with a tank, a nicer bandeau, or just... something. Some of these girls have great outfits, minus how they are wearing their shirts. They could be doing a lot more for their bodies than just looking trashy. I wanted to find more examples of people with white shirts and black bras, but sadly couldn't now that I was looking for it - those are pretty terrible. But instead, here are a few people who are doing more wrong than not just wearing a shirt. In fact, I think I might add they're missing pants, too.

And worst of all, this one's not even wearing a bra, a real shirt, or pants. When people post these upon LookBook for all the world to see, I pray to the god I don't believe in that they didn't go out of the house like this.

Well, that is all for now.... keep the good fashion up, and don't dress like this for the sake of other's poor eyes!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Tattoo Stories

The "small" font seems to have gotten smaller (and no, I'm not old, on ly 21), so I think I'll go back to the "normal" size, or whatever.

At any rate, I'd like to thank Funmilayo for featuring me and the story of my first tattoo :) It was really fun to talk about it again!

Wednesday, August 31, 2011


After hours of cleaning my room and library yesterday, it seemed to be lending gifts to me like it was Christmas. I found things I had been missing for a long time, including this laptop case. It was probably meant for my old high school laptop, but fits my current laptop like a glove. I decided to elaborate on it for kicks - if I am going to use it, boring and white seemed unacceptable. Sharpie worked like a charm, and I'm very happy with how this turned out.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Before Irene

I took my last vacation not too long ago at Cape Hatteras, down in Hatteras Village, an island off North Carolina. Unfortunately the area got hit pretty hard today, and the island is once again split, but I hope there won't be too much damage in the end.

My boyfriend's grandparents have a vacation house down there with a gorgeous view of the water. Joining him and his friends, we headed down from Baltimore on Friday last week. Surrounded by houses on stilts and sandy beaches, it is a very relaxing place to be. Here is a panorama I stitched together from the view from the deck:

Sunset every night also was gorgeous, and here is another (the colors here look TERRIBLE, goddamn you Blogger):

At 1AM on Wednesday night, we departed, getting around traffic of the next morning's 8AM mandatory evacuation. Driving long hours into the dawn, we were all sad to see our vacation short.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Sorry for the Neglecting of this....

Of course I waste post 100 on something trivial. Only I would do this.

Anyways, entries soon about what I've been up to, I've been so busy I haven't done anything here! I feel bad nothing's been up here for a month, not even pictures of my new shoes! When work is over today or tomorrow, I would like to write posts on the photography I've been doing, both for my jobs and for pleasure.

See you all soon!

Monday, July 11, 2011

When Things Grow on You

Jeffery Campbell Lita's. You probably hate them or you don't. When I first saw them, I was not a fan. But since those months ago, Lookbook's Lita-wearers have shown up almost daily when I choose to browse. Every time I scroll down the list of photos, there's bound to be a few of them.

After I decided I liked them enough to buy a basic black leather pair, I set out on eBay, only to wait too long. The cheapest auction was gone within a week. The others seemed expensive - and I turned to a site I don't like very much, Nasty Gal. I've never been a fan of their clothes really, but this place was for once, cheaper than eBay. I had also been debating Lita's American Flag shoes, but decided I couldn't wear those with much, the same going for the pink sparkley ones I had been eyeing.

After surfing google too, even other sites didn't have them the price I had found before on eBay (around $150). Thankfully, for only about $12 more, I bought this lovely pair on Nasty Gal (that comes with free shipping!). Can't wait to get them next week. I gave in.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Some Things I Want

Please join me on These are a Few of my Favorite Things for some crazy posts. I'll be featuring things I want - from outrageous shoes to fascinating headware, stellar interior decor, and unique jewelry. You neer know! I will be posting regularly.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Seeing Things Come to Fruition

This summer, I was lucky enough to be re-hired by my boss from last summer, a very efficient interior designer. Nearly a one woman business with only recently acquired full time help, I come in a few days a week to make sure fabrics are current, help her find things, and occasionally, go on site to some exciting jobs. I like having a hand in the creative processes and not just being on the phone - so when I got a chance to see the finished version of a job I helped with last year, I was very happy.

Most jobs we have are local. That being said, my aunt was one of them, and her family was just finishing up a house nearby. After they built a pool house, I had my hand in picking out fabrics for most of the furniture inside of it. Today, while over there, I had a peek at the finished product. Considering last time I saw it, the pool was a hole in the ground and the house was an empty wooden shell, this was beautiful!

Here are some crappily taken quick details to share - but to note, I spent hours searching for those rope and fringe trims, getting price quotes and availability, faxing orders for fabrics, and finding as many greens to match those fern pieces as possible. But now it looks great - so well worth it!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Abandoned Mines of Palmer Hill

When it rains in the Adirondacks, we often find ourselves hard pressed for activities. As an outdoor place, I often spend my rainy days inside, drawing or surfing the internet. After days of doing this, I was happy to get a text from my friend and professor Kyle, who wanted to go scouting for shooting locations. When he offered waterfalls and caves, I couldn't decline.

We spent the afternoon exploring, starting out over a river near the gorge just outside Lake Placid. Though you have to pay to get into that part of the park, this stop is free! Parking just after a bridge, we headed down a muddy trail alongside the river. We saw painters all around, and people swimming nearby, and it seemed like a great spot to come hang out. Like many other stops in my mind, I bookmarked it as a place to bring people in the future.

Driving on, we passed through a few small towns before locating a residential road on the GPS, and taking it up to a four-way fork, where several trails led off from the dead end. Parking the car, we picked the one that seemed right, and headed in. We were presented with what seemed like a secluded area highschoolers favored for parties - a fire tower with cell tower equipment, and a few electrical sheds. Passing on, we continued down a trail we thought to be the right way, only to find it was an area carved out down the hill for power lines. We were sure we were wrong. Getting back in the car to find another trail in in search of the caves, little did we know we'd stopped but five feet from the entrance to the large mine.

Treading into the woods, we came across a small cave, and some beautiful light hitting the water. Just before getting some good shots however, the light died on us. Hoping it would come around, we slapped mosquitoes in wait for a few more rays. When they didn't come, we almost decided to give up. But we knew that small cave couldn't be it. There were supposedly hundreds of feet of connected mines, and the big cave had to be somewhere.

Heading north along a wooded trail, we finally found what appeared to be a main entrance, covered in piles of rocks. It was astounding to think anyone made a living hiking up into the woods and diving down into these dark holes. But we continued on, finding a string of deep cuts into the earth, projecting a series of dark abyss'. None of them seemed friendly enough to enter, and we were worried dark holes might be all we'd find - until we spotted a familiar area. Not too far above us was the cell tower we'd witnessed not too long ago, and we thought we'd been wrong! All along we'd been two feet from it. We must be close. Up ahead, we were glad to see some promising sights, where large holes opened into the earth, letting down light into a much more open section.

Descending a rocky, muddy trail, we emerged from the stones into a refreshingly chilly cave bathed with light. Two large openings in the rock above let in mist that sunk in the humid air, and it felt almost like natural air conditioning amongst the cool rocks. The ground was littered with grasses and pools of water, and with bags, cans, and the occasional article of clothing. We'd come to realize it was also a local hangout spot, probably for teenagers looking for a place to drink. Remnants of fires and burnt wood sat damp in a rocky outcrop, and graffiti lined the dark walls along the inside - I questioned who would ever want to wander into a cave potentially drunk during a dark Adirondack night. But despite the mess, it didn't take away from the area's beauty at all.
Loosing track of time, we took photographed and explored every rocky crevice and grassy hill inside. It felt nice and cool, both relaxing and mysterious, and certainly breathtaking with it's awe-inspiring and wondrous atmosphere. I regretted leaving my wide-angle lens back in the car, though I know where the cave is now, and will certainly return.

We were hesitant to leave. After goodbyes, we hiked out and back up towards the cell tower and down the road, favoring the roundabout route for it's clearness, instead of taking the buggy almost-bushwhack wooded trail back to the car. Ending our expedition with the area's best local ice cream, we sat on the parking lot benches watcing the clouds over the mountains, in hopes the rain would lighten up for future summer days.