All of These Things Are Not Like The Others

One of these things is not like the others, one of these things just doesn’t belong.
Can you tell which thing is not like the others, by the time I finish my song?

I didn’t have a specific post planned for today, or if I did, I’ve forgotten what it was. But there I was, doing a quick search for dress clips on Etsy this morning, and it seems a lesson is in order:

Dress clips are not shoe clips are not clip-on earrings. They are not interchangeable. I have personally attempted to use clip-on earrings as shoe clips, and they hurt because they’re too dimensional. I wouldn’t dare use dress clips on my ears, because that’s akin to clipping an iron maiden onto your earlobes. Neither shoe clips nor earrings have the strength required to gather and restrain fabric like dress clips.

Below: some visuals of properly described items currently listed on Etsy, so that you can see what you’re looking for. (Clicking on any photo will take you directly to the matching Etsy listing, if you’d like to see prices and more info.)

Dress Clips
Grandma, what big teeth you have!

1940s Vintage “Cream Corn” Bakelite Carved Dress Clips from ForGrammaAlice

Shoe Clips
See how the clip lies flat and smooth, and isn’t hinged? A hinge would dig right into the top of your foot. All. Day. Long.

Vintage Art Deco Shoe Clips from BakeliteBakery


Clip-On Earrings
Note the tensioned hinge and the somewhat curved (cushioned, as much as metal will) piece that presses against the earlobe. No teeth here!

Vintage Earrings Clip On Teardrop Shaped Bone Colored Filigree from MagpieSue

This is not to say that there are never variations on the hardware for these items, but before you buy (or sell), think about the purpose these items are being advertised for, and whether or not the hardware is up to the task.

DISCLOSURE: As you know if you’re a regular reader, I am a vendor with two vintage-themed shops on Etsy. MagpieSue (earrings) and I are both members of the Vintage Lovers and Vintage Market teams on Etsy; I otherwise have no affiliation with these particular vendors.

Lack of a Cohesive Plot

Forgive me, Readers, it’s been a week-ishy since my last post. The Department of Labor sent the letter with their Official Determination, which makes it Official: My contract work wasn’t as a contractor, but as an employer. Oooooooookay. However, the Determination of Benefits letter was based on very obviously (to me) incorrect earnings for when I was working, so I have to file a correction and blah blah blah.

ANYWAY. I started an on-site contract with a new company this week, and so far, I absolutely love it. It’s immediately apparent that all of the folks in the department really care about each other, and everyone seems to truly enjoy their work. There is no grumbling or rolling eyes, and it feels great to be in such an environment! And, ohmigosh, the paperwork I need for each project is ALL FILLED OUT. Nobody takes a shortcut and assumes that the info isn’t necessary or that someone down the line will pick up the slack. Heavenly and efficient! The breakroom refrigerator is kept stocked with cream/half-and-half/soy creamer for the employees to use! REAL STUFF! Not CoffeeMate crap! Sometimes, it really is the little things that show an employer cares. And did I mention that they’re all nice to the New Girl? There’s talk of bringing me back for a few days in January, when a different person will be out on vacation. I’ll be keeping my fingers crossed for that! Yay!

I had three imperfect transactions on etsy all in the same day, which was odd, but two of them are already cleared up and I know the third will iron out soon. The first was no big deal: A person ordered an item, but the payment didn’t come through. I nudged the buyer to check his account, and yeah, there was a hiccup in the system. All taken care of now. The second was from a new-to-etsy customer who didn’t understand the shipping fees and wanted a refund of the “excess,” but once I explained how the charges are calculated, we came to mutually agreeable terms. The third was a person who was in a rush and very clearly laid out when and how I needed to ship her purchase, without first asking if it was possible to do it that way (it wasn’t). I’ll be checking the tracking number to see if her dress arrives in time, but there’s nothing I can do if it doesn’t. My fingers are crossed for that, too!

The fabric is all cut out for the more complicated part of my primary Halloween costume. There was a bit of a “d’oh!” moment when I cut one piece from the wrong fabric, but it turns out that I need that piece after all, so that’s a happy accident. However, I completely miscalculated yardage for the skirt, and had to buy all new fabric for that. Dang! At least I hadn’t yet cut the original fabric, so I can use that for some future project. Not sure what, exactly, but I’ll think of something. Probably a handbag. Or three. I found a pair of shoes on eBay for a DOLLAR (plus shipping) and I hope they fit and work with the costume. More finger-crossing!

Okay, kids. My coffee is done brewing, so time for me to pack my lunch, swing by Einstein’s for my Free Friday bagel, and hit the office. Enjoy the weekend!

mostly about Halloween

**Twitter** – For those who like to broadcast their lives but can’t be bothered writing a blog or using Facebook.
— @MrDrewseph

Yeah, um, oops. I am told by the author that the above tweet isn’t directed at me, but it sure does fit. And I say this: My life just isn’t iiiiinteresting right now.

Bill Randall, date unknown
Bill Randall, date unknown

I have my annual Halloween Sewing Madness, of course, but my own costume is waiting for a pattern sale to begin. I know, I don’t usually use a pattern at Halloween, but I’m generally Frankensteining an existing piece. This time it’s all from scratch, and the bodice I have in mind involves a technique new to me. It’s best to let the professionals give me some assistance. The costume I’ve been assigned to create for a friend may or may not be secret, but I’m not going to be the one to inadvertently drop spoilers. I can say this much: It’s a knit fabric, and my machine’s built-in overstitch feature is giving me a hell of a time. Adjusting the tension anywhere between 0 and 9 just gives me different levels of Bad. The zig-zag stitch is behaving similarly. Loads of saggy thread piled up on either side of the fabric, and the manual is of no help at all. Grrr.

I can tell you this much about my costume: The party theme this year is The Future (illustrated above by Bill Randall), and my budget is approximately $0, which is a far, far cry from past years. Thus far, I have done rather well constructing the costume (in my head, at least) with scraps left over from an uncompleted handbag project, a remnant purchased for $1.50 from the thrift store, and a yard of upholstery vinyl that I picked up at Big Lots for $5. Also, a few dollars spent on trimmy bits at Dollar Tree. Vintage shoes (mules) were procured, and they might wind up being the most expensive part of the costume… or they may get replaced by shoes that won’t fling off if I wear tights. And am drinking. Two things that I wish to do.

The party is being held on Halloween night, which means that I won’t be home for the evening kiddies. Which, in turn, means that I won’t bother decorating. It’s a Saturday this year, so I imagine the wee ones may start trickling by in the afternoon, and I’ll have candy on hand just in case, but the wee ones are usually put off by my décor anyway, so this will save everyone the stress.

And now, back to packing up items to be shipped off to the Devil Doll concert benefiting Dick Dime. More info can be found at HeartSizedCrush.