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Lady Violette

The Romantic Lifestyle

Posts Tagged ‘Jewelry’

Be Your Own International Scarf Stylist with Two Pretty Side Tied Shawl Styles From France and Italy ~ Gorgeous International Shawl and Scarf Tying Techniques That Are Easy to Do By Yourself to Wear and Add to Your Spring Wardrobe Right Now! Perfect for Fashionable and Lightweight Traveling!

Monday, April 4th, 2011

As a professional ballet dancer living in New York, San Francisco, and Washington DC; and traveling extensively, I picked up many ways to wear scarves and shawls along the way that I would like to share. I also collected quite a few scarves and shawls because they were nice momentos of the places I’ve been and easy pieces to pack and use to transform the looks of the two dresses I traveled with. I love to travel light and I call them transformers! Two dresses and and a mixed selection of five scarves and shawls can create many different looks. I haven’t counted them and I know I haven’t discovered them all! It seems there is always a new way to wear a scarf just around the corner or in the next country you visit! Scarves are an international staple of style. They are worn by women everywhere and how they are wrapped, tied, and worn is a wonderfully interesting feminine art that is practiced all over the world.

I have already shown you Style #1) the Sash, Style #2) the Dorothy Lamour Sarong and Style #3) the Cowgirl Bandana with this square blue shawl in the previous blog. Here are two more wonderful ways I like to wear a large 43″ square silk shawl with 6 ” hand tied fringe. I am using the same blue shawl to demonstrate and will number the styles accordingly. I ended with Style# 3) The Cowgirl, and continue here with Style #4) The French Bateaux and Style #5) the Italian Side Tied Sling.

Begin with Style #3) The Cowgirl Bandana Tied at the Back of Your Neck

Style #4) The French Bateaux: Begin by folding the shawl in half in a triangle and hold it up like a bib in front of you, just as you do to create the Cowgirl Bandana. Tie the ends of the shawl around the back of your neck.

Then rotate the shawl so that the knot is nestled on your Left shoulder and the long pointed centers of the triangle are hanging down your Right side. Arrange the drape of the silky shawl so that it appeals to you and make sure the fringes hang down neatly. I like to arrange a Bateau ~ a more or less square shaped neckline ~ for this style.



Style #4) The French Bateaux

This is an easy to execute way of tying a shawl and makes an elegant look for both day and evening. It creates warmth around the shoulders on slightly chilly occasions. You can both decorate it by pinning a brooch at the shoulder.

Style #5) The Italian Side Tied Sling





Style #5) The Gorgeous Italian Side Tied Sling: Simply begin with the shawl folded in half in a triangle. Place it, centered, on your right shoulder, with half the shawl coming across the front of your body and the other half going around and across your back. Gather the ends together on your Left side near the waist and tie in one overhand knot! Arrange the shawl to your liking and make sure the fringe is hanging nicely.

I often saw shawls worn like this when I was in Italy. It is lovely, graceful and very sexy!

Vintage Eisenberg Ice Brooch on the Hip






This is also incredibly easy to execute! I have added a vintage blue Eisenberg Ice and sterling silver brooch at the side on the hip to create a bit of jazzy evening dazzle!

Eisenberg Ice is Very Nice!











A jewel at the hip is gorgeous bit of glitzy vintage Hollywood Glamour inspired sparkle so rarely seen these days and so lovely to emulate. You can see many examples and get many ideas of how to wear it in old films.

Enjoy trying, tying and wearing these large fringed square shawl styles and I promise there will be more to coming soon!

These large square shawl styles I have demonstrated are truly international with origins and inspirations coming from The South Seas, Hollywood, The Cowgirl from the SouthWestern United States, France and Italy so far!

I think we could cover the world with ways of wearing shawls there are so many! The more I discover, the more I want to know! They are such an easy way to add elegance, grace, and a touch of the feminine arts to any outfit. There is no reason, with access to the internet, that you cannot be your very own international scarf stylist! Isn’t it wonderful?

The WOW! Performance Dress for the Princess of WOW! ~ Finally Fini!

Sunday, March 20th, 2011

Grecian Style Dress for the Princess!

I am extremely happy today because I have finally finished one of the two dresses I am making for Princess WOW!  to wear in her upcoming performances. So here it is!

The bodice is made of paisley printed vintage 1960’s silk and crosses over in the front. It is embroidered with hand applied sequins and seed beads and embellished with tiny hand sewn violets and roses. These are made out of satin ribbons and tiny pearls. The bodice is faced with the same bright silky pink fabric used for the top layer of the two layer skirt.

Ribbon Violets & Roses Decorate the Neckline

The double layer skirt is made up of a bottom layer of silky mauve fabric which is sewn closed all the way to the hemline at the sides. This is topped by the second layer which is bright pink and is slit all the way up both sides to the empire waistband. The  split allows the second skirt to gracefully sweep and billow open at the sides as the wearer moves.

Divided Overskirt & Green Side Ribbons

The empire waist band is constructed with a casing which encloses a soft 1/2 inch wide elastic inside a beautiful lavender French printed vintage satin ribbon and is adjustable for both fit and comfort of the wearer from the inside. This pretty ribbon casing is only visible to the wearer on the inside of the dress. I often do something special and pleasurable inside a dress that only the owner/wearer will know about! A very narrow drawstring ribbon in bright light green double faced satin with picot edging is run through the waistline casing on its top side and emerges as a colorful surprise at outside openings on both of the waistline side seams. These green side seam ribbons can be used to adjust the skirt for both style and comfort then tied off in soft floppy bows with long elegantly floating streamers running all the way to the hemline.

The double layer skirt is hemmed at two different lengths – the light mauve under skirt is two inches longer than the side split bright pink over skirt so that the light colored skirt peeks out below. I was inspired by Isadora Duncan’s Grecian dance dresses which always had side split skirts and moved beautifully. Drifting skirts in filmy fabrics always seem incredibly springlike and romantic to me!

The dress is designed to be worn on stage for performances by singer and songwriter Princess WOW! during her upcoming spring and summer concerts. It is meant to evoke the feeling of the bohemian dresses worn by the flower children in the late 1960’s, particularly Penelope Tree in her 1967 ~ 1968 heyday.

The necklace shown with the dress is also designed by me, Lady Violette, and is made of hand made lamp wound pink mille fiore glass beads and 24 K gold and antique rose colored Swarovsky chrystal. It is a one of a kind art piece.

Red satin court shoes and shiny bright pink tights will complete this flower inspired ensemble! All the colors, textures and shapes are inspired by flowers. I am eternally grateful to roses and violets for the ways they inspired me.

The Rose Red Satin Shoes to go with the Princess Dresses

Custom Designed "Pink Flowers Necklace" by Lady Violette

Lining and Casing Inside of the Dress Inspired by Looking Inside a Blooming Rose!


3/4 Turned Front View

Fully Slit Top Layer Skirt Lifted to Fully Reveal Underskirt

A Noro Greens Kureyon Hand Knitted Sweater I Have Just Finished Making!

Friday, March 18th, 2011

Noro Cropped Flowers Inspired Sweater

I have finally finished knitting and finishing this lovely Noro Kureyon Sweater. The color way is appropriately called The Greens. I executed the entire thing in moss stitch, except for the ribbing which is done in a knit 2 x purl 2 rib.

I ended up having to create the pattern myself which has often been the case for me when working with Noro yarns. I wanted a little 1950’s style bolero jacket that would fit snugly under the bust and stay put due to the ribbing. I had to add the wide ribbed button and buttonhole placket down the front and the ribbed collar to make the ribbing under the bust look balanced.

I struggled and ultimately succeeded to make the stripes on both sides of the sweater match up perfectly This took two more balls of yarn, than I would have needed, yardage wise, to complete the sweater. Noro is self striping hand dyed yarn and does not come out in a predictable manner. Every time I have used it I have needed a lot of extra yard in order to match the stripes on both sides.

I love Noro’s yarns and have made a number of garments out of them but without fail I have needed a lot more yarn than sizing recommendations or patterns called for. I highly recommend buying at least two more balls than you estimate you will need to be sure you can complete a garment. It is also made in limited color runs and dye lots so it is often impossible to get more if you find yourself running short.

If you end up with extra you can always use it up in a small project. It felts beautifully creating unusual effects! I do have some left over from this sweater and I plan to make one of the Lady Violette Clutch Purses out of it. It will come out in the same colors as the sweater but felted so the fabric will look totally different! They should be adorable together! In fact, I want to start on that tonight!

One-Row Buttonhole

I recommend using the One-Row Buttonhole method as the buttonholes described in average knitting patterns usually just create a hole which can stretch out easily. Just google Knitting One-Row Buttonholes to find several  instruction methods on how to make them.

If you want to make a similar collar there are patterns in Noro Flowers Book 4  by Jenny Watson with ribbed collars – not exactly like this and shown in different Noro yarns. In fact it would probably be much easier just to follow one of those and use the yarn they recommend.

I really wanted to make my bolero out of Kureyon The Greens yarn and already had the yarn. It is much heavier than any sweaters they show in The Flowers book. I did keep notes but I do not plan on writing out this pattern for others to use at this time. I am on to other knitting projects myself! This one took a very long time to complete and I am eager to plunge into something else now.

Here is the back view of the sweater. I really like the placing of the stripes on this one solid piece of knitting. It is always easier to work on a large pattern piece with self striping yarn than a series of small ones that need to be sewn together. Notice how the stripes are both horizontally longer and narrower in width on the larger back piece than on the two smaller front pieces. I think this shows the yarn off to greatest advantage. To end up with equally narrow stripes on the fronts you would have to break the yarn and attach new pieces constantly which isn’t good to do. I ended up deciding to compensate for the wide stripes in the front by the positioning of the yarn and the stripes in the front ribbing and on the collar. I am satisfied with the way it ultimately turned out but I want to try to work with Noro in larger more continuous pieces of knitting to best utilize the way the stripes naturally form in the yarn if I can.

I plan to wear this bolero with bright kelly green tights, the dress shown in the photo and, for additional warmth, with a dark green hand loomed Irish tweed hooded cape. The green alligator shoes I showed a couple of days ago will complete my look. Yet another good one for Saint Patrick’s day isn’t it?

The necklace in the photographs is vintage Givenchy.

Back View of Noro The Greens Kureyon Yarn Bolero Sweater

Green Vintage Jewels & Creative Ways to Wear Them for Saint Patrick’s Day

Thursday, March 17th, 2011

Green Vintage Costume jewelry

Interesting ways to combine and wear vintage costume jewelry. On the right side mannequin ~ 4 long strands of green glass beads from the flapper era, art deco crane pendant as pin on right shoulder strap, along with crystal brooch, square art deco crane pendant on decorative chain of short necklace. All from the 1920’s.

Middle mini mannequin ~ tear drop shaped Czech glass “jade” pendant suspended from  4 chains.

On table ~ Large celluloid flamenco hair comb set with emerald green glass rhinestones, from the 1840’s. Two 1920’s thin celluloid bracelets ~ one set with green glass rhinestones, the other with blue ones. Large clip earrings from the 1940s ~ made of mottled green glass cabochons, glass pearls and glass “amethysts,” in base metal settings.

The 1940’s bracelet that matches those large green glass cabochon clip earrings is fastened around the shoulder of the velvet sleeveless blouse on the left side mannequin. I have found this to be a glamorous and unique way that I can wear bracelets that I like but that are too big for my small wrists! I also sometimes use large clip earrings such as the cabochons shown as dress clips.

I often like unusual and dramatic pieces of vintage jewelry but they are too big for my small wrists or my tiny earlobes so I find another place to wear it. This dilemma has resulted in my developing some original personal looks that are mine alone which is always a good thing!

I recommend trying jewelry out in all kinds of ways because you never know what new way you might discover to wear it! The large fringed scarf/shawl draped over the shoulder is also jeweled and embroidered with metallic gold thread and pearls. It makes a lovely evening shoulder wrap and is so large it can also be wrapped and tied as a long sarong skirt or a short sarong dress!

How you present yourself and wear your clothes and accessories is a performance art. How you put yourself together is a feminine art!

Men can practice this for themselves too as a masculine art. There are as many fabulous opportunities for styling men’s clothes out there as there are for women. I hope to eventually be able to blog about those as well! Because a lot of men need help. The first thing they need to do is care about how they look and what they wear. Today they should wear a little something green! For Saint Patrick and for the plant!

Everybody, you are supposed to wear a little something green today so you don’t get pinched!

The White Shawl Again – This Time Antiqued with a Vintage Gold Brooch by Sara Coventry

Wednesday, February 23rd, 2011

White Shawl - Antiqued with Vintage Gold Brooch

Here is the white shawl yet again! Tied in the same basic way and accented with a lovely vintage 1950’s gold double pin brooch with a chain and dangles designed by Sara Coventry. This would be beautiful paired with a simple gold bangle bracelet , gold rings and gold earrings. I like all the looks we have tried so far, but I think this one is particularly  glamorous. It demonstrates my belief that vintage glamor is timeless.

The creamy natural white silk shawl is a perfect foil for gold jewelry which in turn is very flattering to every skin tone. The reason gold jewelry is popular is that it actually does softly flatter women and, if carefully chosen, can be worn with just about anything.

The gold is lovely here paired with the white shawl and would be equally so with a perfect white blouse. I have put it over a basic dark velvet sheath dress. A dark sheath dress, or a dark skirt or pants always work as base pieces under scarves and shawls.

The same white raw silk shawl, again, is tied by International Scarf Stylist Tricia James of

Soon, Tricia will give us instructions with pictures to follow on how to do these shawl and scarf ties and variations  ourselves. then we will have to practice! I for one am determined to master this!

I should point out that i antiqued the photo one step as I could not resist doing so to enhance the antique feeling just a touch. It just made the photo a tad warmer.

You Can Sash Your Waist With a Scarf! or Do It Doll Size! There are Endless Possibilities with Scarves and Imagination!

Monday, February 21st, 2011

A Dramatic Scarf Sashed at the Waist by Tricia James

Isn’t this a darling way to use a scarf!  Tricia James has taken a small pocket sized square, folded it and wrapped the waist of my little 16″ tall mannequin as if she is wearing a giant sash! She has put one of the scarf clips in her collection at the waist as if it is a pretty buckle. This is one of her own designs and is gold plated over sterling silver and set with small pearls, the epitome of classic elegance.

Of course you can use a larger scarf and make a waist sash to fit yourself. Either a square or rectangular scarf will work. Wouldn’t it be pretty to wear a vibrant silk scarf this way over a simple black dress and accent the whole with vintage or modern costume jewelry you just happen to have? I have used my string of vintage red glass beads doubled to fit the little dress form. I am able to be wear it myself as a long single strand necklace. Any brooch or scarf clip could be used as a clip at the waist. Even a hair clip will work!

I have lots of scarves languishing in my dresser drawers and I am anxious to get them out and try them in all these new ways! I can see that the strategic use of  scarves can transform and massively extend my wardrobe. I am wondering, for example, how many different looking outfits I could create with two  basic dresses and five different scarves… And what a great solution this would be while traveling  – allowing me to travel light and still have enough different looks along to be super stylish and surprising at all times! It is exciting to consider this. Also, it requires no shopping (or spending of money) so it is a very economical solution to updating one’s wardrobe for the spring season. I liken this to going shopping in my own house which is always a good thing. Everyone probably has a lot of untapped potential in their closets and drawers that they don’t realize is there or know how to use. Specifically, a lot of scarves and shawls that could come out and get used imaginatively…They are kind of wasted sitting in dark drawers aren’t they?

This small dress form pictured is the same size as a Madame Alexader Cissy doll at 16″ tall. Madame Alexander also makes the My Favorite Friend doll who is 18″ tall and is designed to be a play doll. I have discovered that you can make great outfits to dress dolls out of scarves. This is a fun way to play with dolls with little girls while teaching them ways to tie and wear scarves themselves when they grow up.

Scarf tying is a fascinating subject! Definitely an art form and definitely one of the Feminine Arts! Lovely!

I am thinking, this small one on this tiny mannequin looks like a beautiful red silk skirt worn over a straight black sheath dress. Why couldn’t I find or make a gigantic scarf into a “skirt”  like this and wear it over a straight black jersey dress, thus creating an elegant high drama look? It is all about changing the proportions. A large silk scarf made into a wide sash at the waist, human sized, is one lovely idea. And a much bigger scarf made into sash so large it becomes a dramatic overskirt is another! I am inspired and I must try it! So I will, soon…and I will post a picture of the results!

Visit International Scarf Stylist Tricia James at where she shows many of the things she is creating and producing…

The JOY perfume bottles are from Lady Violette’s personal collection of classic vintage perfume bottles.