Thursday, August 26, 2010

Time-Traveling Thursday :: Hair Fail

I was thirteen and curly. On my head was hair that most people told me I was “blessed” to have.

Sure, curly hair can be beautiful, but it’s a helluva lot easier to curl straight hair than straighten curly hair.

My 13-year-old attempts to straighten my hair worked, but it was still frizzy. I needed a solution. I had no money. And my mother wasn’t gonna pony-up cash for expensive creams or treatments.

“I’m crafty and creative,” I told myself. “I can find a solution,” I told myself.
And one day, I figured it out... or so I thought.

Now, before I tell you how I solved my problem, let me tell you that I honestly don’t remember why “this” seemed like the right thing to do. I can’t tell you how this item came to mind. But once I set my hopes on something, I’m just gonna do it. And really, at the time, it made sense.

My solution was plain ol’ vegetable oil.

Yep. Like the kind my mother cooked with. Yep. That’s the stuff.

I put the oil in a spray bottle and I sprayed my hair lightly. This made it glossy, but it was still very frizzy.

What the hell... let’s add more.

So I sprayed more on and at this point, I’m realizing that I may need to rub the oil in to get the desired effect. So I’m rubbing and it’s looking glossy & smooth.

So I’m spraying more, more to get deep into the hair, and I’m rubbing & smoothing my tresses down.

Now, my thirteen-year-old mind, is thinking that my plan has worked. And I’m sure a diabolical laugh came out.

“Let’s throw caution to the wind,” I say to myself. So I sprayed and rubbed like my life depended on it. I put enough vegetable oil in my hair to make sopapillas.

Oh! And I remember the joy I felt. It was so smooth and glossy. It only had a slight curl to it and it was so, so sleek.

I wore my hair this way for a day or two. I remember my blue bed sheets looked kinda funny (can someone say “grease spot?”), but I never gave it another thought.

Around day four came the most cringe-worthy moment.

I wanted to test my new hair. It was still looking sleek and I only had to add a little bit of oil here and there to smooth it back down. It still had quite a bit of wave to it and I became curious about how beautiful it might be if I straightened it; so I plugged in my curling iron...

You know, looking back now, I’m surprised I didn’t cook my hair right off my “blessed” head. And if I smelled a little funny before straightening my hair, you can bet your sweet cheeks that I smelled like fried chicken after straightening my hair.

And maybe I am selling my thirteen-year-old self a little short in the crafty department; because even though I put cooking oil in my hair and slid the slick strands between a hot curling iron, I did achieve the look I wanted. I succeeded.

I loved my new hair. Simple as that.

The vegetable oil phase only lasted a week, at the most. My mother may have noticed, but she never said a thing. It was summertime, so I didn’t go to school this way, but I’m sure I visited with a close friend or two. No one ever mentioned my new style.

The allure wore off. It was stinky and hard to care for and eventually, I noticed that it was too smooth and slick. And maybe, just maybe, I looked in the mirror and realized that I looked ridiculous (although I doubt I caught on that easily).

I returned the unused oil to the kitchen and washed my sheets. My room reeked of warm, homemade tortilla chips for a week but it was the last time I went to extremes for my hair.

I didn’t process that time in my life until I was in my 20’s... and when I thought of that incident, I laughed my butt off.

Thirteen was a hard age. And even to this day, it isn’t easy seeing commercials, TV shows, movies and glossy magazine pages with (mainly) smooth-haired women.

People still think I’m “blessed” with great hair. And, yeah, sometimes I like my hair.

Mainly, I live with it. It is what it is and what it is is curly.

And not that “curly” you see in magazines... that is wavy hair that had been curled with an iron.

You can’t trick me, Cosmopolitan. I know curly and I know slick when I see it.

Current picture of me... and my curly hair.

Friday, August 20, 2010

"Fan of" Sublime Stitching

Dream Garden by Jenny Hart

m. ranae designs is a big 'ol fan of Sublime Stitching!

Sublime Stitching is the dream of Jenny Hart, stitcher-extraordinaire! In 2001, Jenny launched Sublime Stitching out of her own personal need for better embroidery instructions and her "stitch or die" attitude.
She, alone, brought back the resurgence of embroidery in teens & 20-somethings. Her easy instructions & hip patterns have launched the craft of embroidery into new heights (and new age groups).

I found Sublime Stitching in the back of an old issue of Bust Magazine (my favorite magazine... feel free to buy me a subscription). After that I was logged into Jenny's site reading & practicing her how-to's. I also tried to get a stitching group together here in Asheville, but the response was minimal and we didn't get past one meeting. But I've been stitching ever since.

Recently, I submitted a project of mine for Sublime Stitching's Combo Contest, where we were asked to combine at least three of Jenny's patterns into one project.

Here is my submission:

So if you're looking for a new craft to try, try Sublime Stitching on for size. Through her website you can purchase kits to get you started. She also has a few crafty books that have been published and you can find those at any book store... just ask for books by Jenny Hart or Sublime Stitching. And check out the website & blog for more info & how-to's.


Monday, August 16, 2010

Mediocre Mondays :: Green Ribbon

So silky & pretty. Used for a custom makeup bag order.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

It's Time

I’ve been tossing around ideas for a while now on how to improve my blog. I know, at the very least, that I need to blog more.

So I’ve been keeping a notebook of blog ideas and as of Monday (tomorrow) I am starting a new format.

The new format is:
Mediocre Mondays - You know how Mondays just kinda stink because the weekend is over and you’ve got 5 days of work ahead. No one wants to put effort in on a Monday. So for Monday’s blog post it will just be a photo. Easy, simple & takes the least amount of work.
Tips & Tricks Tuesdays - These posts will feature ideas, short-cuts and tutorials. This is the day to watch for if you’re curious how something is done.
What’s Up Wednesdays - Wednesday will be the day we review what is happening in my little room. You can see what projects are in the works and what is ahead for the week.
Time Traveling Thursdays - This will be a fun day, trust me. I’ve been crafty as far back as I remember. Thursday will be the day we look back at my previous craftiness (Barbie clothes, anyone?).
“Fan of” Fridays - This will be the day I shine a spotlight on other crafters/cool stuff/news/blogs/etc.

I won’t post five times a week, quite yet, but the goal is at least 2-3 times a week. For sure, you will see the first post tomorrow.

Thanks for reading so far... I hope the journey gets better from here.