Hair: top bun created with the help of my Odango Cushion

Earrings: tiny rhinestones, various (from Japan); chunky gold, maygloba

Beaded Cropped Tee: handmade by me

Watch: Citizen Eco-Drive

Rings: twig ring, mocha; star ring, unsure (from Japan)

Striped Jersey maxidress: Forever 21

Convertible Schoolboy Satchel: Ober Tashe (similar product from their line here)

Chain-Embellished Sandals: Wet Seal

Well, it took me about a month, but I finally finished that beaded DIY I was working on!!

All in all, the shirt probably only took about 7 hours to make, but I stretched it out over the time I was in Japan.  I made the body of the shirt from scratch (tracing another cropped top I have for the shape), and added some sleeves that I cut off another mesh shirt I found at Goodwill.  Then I added two types of beaded trim around the edges of two double-layered squares of mesh chiffon, and then covered each square with a scatter of silver seed beads, gold and silver bugle beads, and some sequins.  I also added a line of gold beads around the neckline, and stitched each square onto the front of the top.

This is my version of an Aula Aila top I saw last summer in Vivi magazine, and have been dying to get ever since.  I figured I could easily make it, especially since it’s no longer available for purchase.  You may have seen Rumi from FashionToast wearing the Aula Aila top a couple months ago in a photo on her blog.

Anyway, it’s a really unique piece to wear over a maxidress, or paired over a simple white tank and cutoffs, or khaki cropped pants.  And because of all the beading work, it looks really expensive too! (I think) – a huge bonus that goes along with making things oneself.  (I may rethink the shape of the sleeves – I’m not sure if it would look better with more fitted, rolled t-shirt-like sleeves like the original, or if I should leave it with the fluttery ones.)

I’m currently so obsessed with tiny, delicate jewelry.  Chunky jewelry and thick rings don’t seem to make much sense in the summer!  In Japan delicate, barely-there pieces are quite popular, so even cheap costume jewelry is offered in tiny, baby-like sizes.  My current faves: a thin pinky brushed rose gold star ring with the rhinestones set in the sides of the star (!); a pewter twig ring from mocha boutique; 1 millimeter-wide rhinestone earrings (with nylon posts!) that are so itty-bitty they practically sink right into the holes in my ears; and large Czech crystals set in rough-hewn bezels by maygloba.  Maygloba is my new favorite affordable jewelry brand – along with Kaza; I love the organic chic quality to all their pieces!  (And the prices range from around $16 – $42 for their jewelry.)

My ever-present satchel; Ober Tashe did a great job with this incredibly cheap item (around $38!); the quality is very good and the straps are convertible from cross-body to backpack.  It had me at “versatile.”

Finally a shot of my hair using the Odango Cushion!  Of course there’s a piece sticking out – and of course Hub wouldn’t inform me of this before he took the photo. *> _ <*

I grabbed the sunhat my mother-in-law lent me for this photo.  I loved how the print looked with the stripes.  It kind of looks like a clutch, no?

When you guys are wearing slim-fitting jersey maxidresses, do you find your stride is hampered by their cut?  It was driving me crazy as I was walking around that day, so I ended up folding up the hem of the dress, by placing the hem at my waist and pulling the outer layer of the dress to my knees.  It’s a great way to add versatility to the basic maxi!  (It stayed as-is pretty well throughout the afternoon, too.)

Hope everyone’s having a great weekend!

xoxox

Carly

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