Lei Ann...Off Duty

acupuncturist kung fu sifu speed typist hawaiian-born bostonian zombie hunter...so what's a girl supposed to wear on her day off? leiannoffduty@gmail.com ~ FB: Lei Ann Off Duty

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*faux fox fur wrap*

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i’ve been doing so much new knitting & crocheting for others lately, it reminded me of some oldies but goodies i kept for myself…like this chunky yarn fox scarf/wrap that was one of my very first knitting projects years ago.  i still love wearing him with his cartoony, yet playfully morbid look.  yes, i did say him.  i guess i have a weird habit of thinking my accessories are male, hahaha!

wearing: thrifted microsuede dress || DIY knit fox scarf || target tights || equestrian style boots c/o marshalls #fabfound gift card

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*DIY spiked barrette*

DIY, spikes, barrette, spike hair, hair accessory, spiked clip

i’ve been pretty obsessed with kelly osbourne since like for-rev-ver.  i think she’s adorable & now with the lavender hair & elevated personal style, i adore her even more.  she’s been sporting these AWESOME spiked hair accessories lately & i decided to DIY a smaller version of my own!

DIY, spikes, barrette, spike hair, hair accessory, spiked clip

i’ve had spikes lying around from previous DIYs, so all i had to do was buy barrettes.  these have a thin enough gap to slide the screws of the spikes up into them & then just tighten the spikes on top of the metal.  easiest DIY ever!  as soon as i can locate the rest of my bag of spikes (i.e. have no idea where they are), i want to make bigger & longer clips, just like the ones kelly have.  until then, these mini ones will do ^_^ 

DIY, spikes, barrette, spike hair, hair accessory, spiked clip

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*the easiest DIY ever - the floral hat*

i was perusing online for a hat to buy for this kentucky derby party MDH & i had to go to, but really wasn’t wanting to spend mucho $$$ for something ridiculous that i’ll only wear once.  DIY skills to the rescue!  so easy.  took a wide-brimmed hat i already had…found a ribbon that was already conveniently connected & fit around the crown of the hat…found all these black & white hair doodads in my drawer….then got to either safety pinning or clipping to the hat or ribbon in a pretty arrangement.  the centerpieces were just a regular black silk hair bow & a grey mink flower brooch, then arranged the flower clips around.  easy, peasy & ready for the derby! no hot gluing, no permanent fixation.  i can easily disassemble the flower clips for hair use once more :)  or…i can keep the hat the way it is & hope another garden wedding or some other suitable occasion pops up to wear again ^_^

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*crocheted baby bunny hat & diaper cover - a different kinda DIY*

i love to knit & crochet.  usually, it’s stuff for me, but now that i have a 1-month-old niece, all my attention has gone towards making the most nauseatingly cutesy baby stuff i can find.  not a mommy blogger, but i’m becoming an AUNTIE BLOGGER!  hahaha!  i’m not innovative enough with my knitting to have created this cute bunny suit, but used repeat crafter me’s handy pattern (sans happy face). i used uncurled paper clips in the bunny ears (ends up to prevent poking baby’s soft head) so they don’t flop over.  the pom doesn’t look that big, but i’ve already seen pictures of her in the suit & it is as big as her head.  sooooo cute!  it’s really appropriate only for photographs & not everyday wear as the yarn is pretty stiff to hold its structure.  i’m already on to the next project that will be a softer, poufier suit that she could wear more on a daily basis.  my poor niece!  hope she doesn’t hate me when she’s older…hahaha!

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*DIY trio zip clutch*

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i’m a big fan of luxirare & coveted her iphone 5 cases for a long time.  i never pressed ‘purchase’ however due to me being an android girl & worried my phone would never fit the case.  still, i was in love with the triple compartment design.

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then, i saw a pair & a spare’s easy DIY of the similar (and bigger) celine trio bag & immediately wanted to try it (plus how adorable is little miss pair & a spare)!  i’m one of those rare species of girl that doesn’t carry a lot of stuff in my every day bag…my wallet, my phone, my camera & keys are pretty much it, but i do love how highly organized i can keep things now.

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i found these cheapie clutches in the clearance aisle at target & decided to give this DIY a whirl.  if/when i find proper leather or suede clutches (finding 3 identical is pretty tough), then i’ll make more.  at least this colorblocked cobalt blue/black one is still pretty on trend with a strap i added from another handbag to make it a shoulder bag.  i couldn’t resist also the whimsical animal cameos of these clutches below (also on clearance at target) & this will be my smaller party-time triple clutch.  check out a pair & a spare’s post for the tutorial.  if you can sew a button snap, this really is the easiest & chicest DIY ever!

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*DIY leather paper bag clutch*

as i partake of my huge thanksgiving meal this day like millions of you, i leave you with this DIY project that i had wanted to do for a long time :)  i’ve been obsessed lately with leather bags…but more in regular every day functional shapes, like the ubiquitous bodega bag or the trader joe’s/whole foods paper grocery bag.  something quirky for every day use :)

i had wanted to buy one in the shape of the good ol’ paper lunch bag that we all grew up with & use it like a clutch…similar to the jil sander men’s one, but even if it weren’t sold out, NOT for $630!  plus, this design just begs for a DIY in its simplicity, right?  first step was the hardest part…finding leather.  instead of scouring ebay & paying a premium, i just made a stop at my local goodwill & found the motherload of leather…a men’s 2X size leather jacket in that purrrrrrfect color of paper bag brown :)  all for a measly $8.

next, i found the size paper bag around the house that i found suited my needs.  i carefully tore the seams so i could get the approximate size.  then, i had a perfect rectangle that i handsewn the ends together to make the “tube” part of the paper bag.  now here came the tricky part.  with the smooshy leather, it was tough to “fold” the bag into the shape that i wanted.  so, i ended up folding the bottom part of the bag like i would when i’m gift wrapping a box.  i was satisfied that it achieved the same look that i wanted, so i went with it :)  i glued the seams & left under heavy books just to make it easier & wouldn’t come apart when i finally sewed the flaps to reinforce the bottom.  i put a cut piece of cardboard inside the shape of the bottom to give the bag structure when i finally use it & TADA…my version of the leather paper lunch bag :)  maybe i’ll use it to take home some thanksgiving leftovers…hahaha!  have a great holiday weekend, everyone ^_^

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*wedding in new hampshire ~ rodarte inspired*

another one of my kung fu brothers got married this weekend, but luckily we didn’t have too far to go this time…new hampshire vs. california.  it was a beautiful ceremony & reception set in a castle venue & of course you can’t have a castle or a kung fu wedding & NOT have a dragon show up!  hahaha! 

even though this dress is years old at this point, i still really love it.  i adore the lace overlay & the flounce of the full skirt, yet the black bow tie detail makes it really appropriate for formal occasions.  since the bride had requested that fascinators be worn, i decided to go a step further with the whole rodarte theme & wore my DIY stars headpiece.  it was a wonderfully warm, but not humid, summer night with plenty of food & wine, lotsa dancing, a photo booth & my favorite, a bananas foster station!!!  congrats again to rich & deb…much love & happiness to you both :)  

wearing: rodarte x target lace dress || DIY rodarte stars hair clip || thrifted black snake cuff || the glamourai double knuckle ring || lulu townsend flower ring clutch (via DSW) || xoxo beaded bracelet (bacalaren district, manila) || dolce & gabbana archless black satin platforms

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*DIY spiked DSLR camera strap*

happy june, first of the month *AND* friday!  trying to get this quick post out before i have to see my last client of the week, teach my class, pack up & then get the heck out of dodge for the weekend :)  when i saw this camera strap DIY on chictopia, i was thoroughly obsessed (you know me & spikes…& the look of a strong shoulder…hahaha!) & spent a nonstop 2 hours trying to craft my own version of it.  since it was kind of a spontaneous thing, i didn’t stop & photograph every step of the way, but you get the gist from the chictopia tutorial.  the only thing i did different was not cut the nylon ends off of the entire strap.  i just sewed my fabric (a pretty chinese blossom brocade still in neutral black) around the strap…easier & that way i wouldn’t compromise the safety of my camera with my *ahem* so-so sewing skills.  then, i threw a tassel on as a little decoration…why not?  now, i’m raring to go for the weekend! can’t wait to strut my new strap around, take lots of pictures & scare off the fanboys with my spikes :)  comic con here i come!

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*DIY sneak preview ~ seeing stars*

yup…you got it. it’s *that* DIY ^_^  wait for it…WAIT FOR IT…

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*mint green spike the punch DIY…kinda, sorta*

can’t even count this as a DIY…if you call just painting some rhinestones a DIY…hahaha!  sorry the photographs aren’t the greatest to truly showcase the colors.  i got this spike the punch necklace a while ago in neon green & hot pink.  i love the design, but i find i never wear this shade of bright green very often.  sooooo…i decided to paint over with mint green nail polish.  kind of rude to change colors on such a coveted item…but mint *is* the hot color for spring.  me likey much better ^_^

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