Ramona Flowers (Scott Pilgrim vs The World)

So lied about when this post was coming out. I’m very lazy.

I was probably one of the last geeky people to see Scott Pilgrim vs The World. While I’ll keep my tl;dr thoughts about the film to myself (in short: it was okay, I don’t think I was the target audience) I have to say I found Ramona’s character pretty two-dimensional in the film (caveat: I haven’t read the comics yet though I plan to and sources tell me it’s a lot better; woe is me who hasn’t drunk from the fount of Source Material). Interestingly I think a lot of what we’re meant to infer about her character comes from her wardrobe and how she chooses to present herself (her hair, her goggles, her skates). Her wardrobe is super-interesting for a character that, in my opinion, doesn’t do or say very much in the film.

As usual I’ll be writing this post on how to get a general look instead of a specific outfit (or hair colour), but because I think Ramona has a distinct style rather than one outfit I’ll be showing you two different looks to get a general idea of how she dresses (think of it as an apology for not posting recently.)

Preparation

First dig out all your bright blue, purple, indigo, violet, pink(ish purple) etc items of clothing. These combination of colours make an outfit distinctively Romana-esque, especially since she wears a combination of fairly ordinary clothing. If you can find a hoodie and/or a jumper/sweater in either of those colours then you’ve hit jackpot, but if you can’t then that’s okay too.

Here are some items you might want to look for (in any colour):

  • Tops: T-shirt, tank top, hoodie, fuzzy jumper/sweater, striped long-sleeved top, short-sleeved button-up shirt, leather jacket, jacket with a collar and/or lapels, short-sleeved jackets.
  • Bottoms: Stockings or leggings (and/or fishnets), shorts, pleated skirt.
  • Accessories: Fingerless gloves, goggles, boots, (studded) belts, black necklace or some makeshift ribbon, a round messenger bag with a star on it or some other indie-acceptable messenger bag. Rollerblades if you have them?

So even if you own all these items in blue and purple I wouldn’t recommend actually wearing only blue and purple. Choose maybe 2-3 items that are the brightest and boldest in those colours and go black or grey and other muted colours for everything else. However make sure the purple and blue items can be clearly seen in the final ensemble.

The Roxy Scene

I picked this out because it’s possibly the only one where she’s not wearing a hoodie. In the scene with Roxy she’s actually wearing a dress, very similar to the Army Dress from Berserk Clothing. If you have a dress like this – AWESOME! I do not and don’t particularly want to spend $100 on one so we can reconstruct a similar look in two pieces, especially since the dress looks like two pieces anyway.

What you need to find is a shirt with plain short sleeves above your elbow which is actually harder than it sounds because I lot of womens’ shirts aren’t styled that way. You’ll also need a pleated skirt and preferably the skirt and shirt are of similar earthy colours and made out of a heavy matte material. Everyone should own a black belt with a silver buckle, and the striped top or the fingerless gloves should be too difficult to find.

I actually spent ages on this outfit because I was really unsatisfied with my options. The skirt was too long, although in retrospect this was fine because the pleats started much lower (about halfway down the skirt) so it gave the illusion the skirt was shorter than it was.

I wasn’t happy with the shirt either, because of the pattern, the light material and the fact that it’s very very long (and meant to be worn as a dress-thing). It turns out, like I said above, I had no shirts with plain short sleeves that buttoned up to the top, so I dealt with the situation by tucking it in and belting the skirt high. I could do that with this skirt because, like I said, the pleats started further down and the top half of the skirt was very fitted. Also note that the shirt has two breast pockets that give it a more of that military look.

The breakdown:

  • Long brown shirt – free from a friend.
  • Denim pleated skirt – bought by my mum for me ❤
  • Long-sleeved striped top – $6 at random cheap clothing store
  • Belt – from a jacket
  • Fingerless gloves made from socks.
  • Boots – under $10 from a thrift store

The Delivery Girl

It’s annoyingly difficult to find reference pictures of Ramona’s outfits on the internet for some reason. These two were the best ones I could find online (warning: they are big files, but they kind of need to be).

I guess this is more of her “typical” look. Think of layers and textures – note that her top jacket is some sort of heavy matte fabric, the next is the typical hoody which is fleecy on the inside, and the one after that is quite fuzzy. This is also wear her penchant for blues and purples really come into play.

So while I’m pleased with this outfit (more than the other), I do feel it falls down because I don’t own many fuzzy jumpers… if any, and certainly not in blue and/or purple. What I really did was sort of combine this look with the outfit she wears in the scene with her skateboarding ex. When I take off the outer jacket the focus is more on the layers and colours due the the short-sleeved hoodie and low-cut jumper.

I was also quite lucky to own a jacket very much like the one she wears in the film (a sort of military jacket with breast pockets and shoulder pads). A leather jacket would also be appropriate with this outfit, and depending on the weather you might not even need the jacket

The Breakdown:

  • Long-sleeved purple top – $6 from random cheapo shop
  • Blue jumper – under $10 from thrift store
  • Black short-sleeved hoodie – no idea, I’ve had this for years
  • Red jacket – ~$80 from Dangerfield
  • Denim shorts – Cut up from $2 thrift store pants.
  • Purple tights – ~$10 from Target
  • Boots – $100 from Tony Bianco
  • Goggles – $15 from eBay
  • Same fingerless gloves as above

The more I write this blog the more I realise I’m very much missing a leather jacket from my wardrobe.

DIY Unisex Scarf Collar Cravat Bandanna NeckThing

I’m back from my long exam hiatus with an easy but super-effective DIY.

I love things wearing things around my neck. Give me high mandarin collars, lace chokers, scarves, ribbons, I don’t care! They frame your face and give your chin and jawline more definition AND they can keep your neck warm during Winter. What’s not to like?

Recently one of my favourite fashion blogs made a guest post on Etsy featuring their favourite handmade designers. What really caught my eye was this “Asymmetrical Starfish Scarflette Collar“. Kinda pricey but you could wear it a bajillion different ways and it looked freakin’ awesome. It was also very unisex and could look professional or funky depending on how you wore it and what you wore it with.

I thought I could probably figure out how to remake something similar, but little did I know how easy it would be. After one of my exams I spent a total of about 1 hour making this, and the next one will probably take no time at all now that I know what I have to do. (I made this with a sewing machine but it’s very achieveable with handstitching although realise it will take a lot more time.)

Here is the pattern:

I think the picture really speaks for itself but here’s a step-by-step should you need it:

  1. Cut out two rectangles from different but complimentary fabrics.
  2. Sew together inside out, leaving a small hole.
  3. Pull the material right way out.
  4. Using a ribbon make a loop that will fit your two buttons. Make sure the buttons are of similar size.
  5. Insert loop into the small hole and sew shut (invisibly if you can).
  6. Measure material against your neck and sew on two buttons back-to-back in the centre of the width measurement.
  7. Fold and play around with the NeckThing! Figure out different ways to wear it.

I would not recommend everyone using the measurements above since they specifically fit my neck but it’s easy enough to grab a rectangle of material and guesstimate how big it should be.

If I make the NeckThing again (and I will) this is what I’d change:

  • Increase the length a little from 55cm to 65cm.
  • Increase the width a lot from 20cm to 30cm or maybe even 40cm. This is so the NeckThing will have more support to stand and cover more of my lower collar area.
  • Experiment with different positioning of the button hole and buttons. Experiment with more buttons at different places.

Go forth and create! I’d love to see your versions and the different ways you find of wearing this NeckThing, so send ’em in.

Nymphadora Tonks (Harry Potter)

Note from the author: Hey guys, I’ve owed y’all an update for AGES I know, but it’s getting closer to exam season. I actually have several drafts stored up but either A) haven’t worn the outfit yet or B) have no good photos. I am thinking hard about how to write a multi-part steampunk feature but I don’t want to screw it up because it’s a subculture so dear to me heart.

For now updates will be irregular, maybe once in a fortnight, but should this blog should hopefully kick off into once a week territory after June.

And now a proper post:

I’m sure you’ve all come to the conclusion that I’m a massive geek, if the mere existence of the blog didn’t alert you to that fact.

I bought a goddamned time turner. “Awesome” is the correct reaction.

To celebrate I thought I might show you my Nymphadora Tonks outfit. Besides being the character I most identify with in the books, she’s probably got one of the most distinct yet not too wizardy wardrobe in the films. (Also Natalia Tena is just gorgeous and in the midst of writing this post I found that she plays accordian in an awesome band called Molotov Jukebox.)

I will be tackling her earlier casual outfit that she wears to rescue Harry from the Dursley. As much as I love the Deatheater-fighting outfit I think the bustier, striped shirt (drool) and dragonhide jacket are a bit too specific to pull off without major additions to the wardrobe. (Although this outfit is also pretty damn cool and pretty damn doable.)

Unfortunately images on the interwebz are vague about the specifics of what’s under her jacket, but you can kind of get the general idea from this picture (note the enlarged version is huge, but you kind of need it to make out the details):

Here’s the breakdown of what I think she’s wearing:

  • Grey hoodie with red lining
  • Long red and black striped t-shirt
  • Black tight-fitting shorts, below or at the knee
  • Black tights/stockings with some punk rock rips 😉
  • Mid-calf black combat boots
  • Just below the knee black jacket with a giant pocket on the left side. Notice the jacket is a lot bigger at the bottom, so much that the excess material gathers from the waist down. It’s also not a consistent
  • Fingerless leather gloves.
  • Necklace of what looks to be made of large brass bells or studs (?)
  • Possibly a thin studded belt over the t-shirt.

The jacket is also pretty unique and it’s going to be difficult to find something that matches it. From order of preference I would go with length, colour, then style, as usual preferencing the overall silhouette over details.

Because she never really takes the jacket off, the details of what’s going on underneath aren’t so important. The essential item is probably the hoodie which shapes the collar area.

The main impression I get from this outfit is sort of “mainstream punk” if that makes any sense. Stick to bold colours, worn items, matte and simple materials (mostly cotton).

Book Canon

In Order of the Phoenix Tonks is described as wearing a Weird Sisters t-shirt and patched jeans (thanks HP wiki!). I think the punk/outsider style look would be pretty consistent with her character, given her pink hair and metamorphmagi status. A band t-shirt would totally work, as would some ripped jeans, patches, badges, etc. She’s kind of the punk version of perky-goths (perky-punk?), so I think experimenting with a bigger colour palette would look fine as long as it was still rough around the edges and DIY. You could probably also femme up the outfit a bit with a figure-hugging top and skirt and differently-coloured stockings.

The Outfit

When I grow up I want to be an Auror!

The breakdown:

  • Pair of thrifted pants cut into shorts then rolled up – $2
  • Emily the Strange striped t-shirt ~ $20
  • Black opaque tights/stockings ~$10
  • A black sleeveless hoodie – so long ago I can’t remember how much it cost
  • Tripp NYC Elizabeth jacket (with french cuffs and eye and hook closures at the front) – US$75 (it was overpriced and from Hot Topic but I love it anyway)
  • Fingerless knit gloves – $3
  • Leather studded collar from Diva – $5 (God I love their $5 sales – usually I can only find one good thing, but that one thing is pretty good)
  • Combat boots – $100
  • I also stuck a bunch of badges on – one of them says SPEW 🙂
  • And of course my time turner.

You can definitely replace the jacket, as noted above, with a cheaper/different version. I liked this one because it has the silver studs at the front that mimic the omgpunk. I also would’ve preferred to wear my Doc Martens instead for a rougher look but they were being fixed and unavailable. You could also grab a pair of old stockings and rip them but I rather like all the pairs that I currently have.

Images of Tonks gacked off the Natalia Tena fansite.