On the Fringes

“On the fringes.”

A phrase I can honestly use to describe where I feel in my life and career, it can also begin with “My mind is…” This is yet another post hailing the praises of Sophia of Phosphene and her DIY brilliance. Dear Sophia, I love how you can take the simplest DIY ideas and use them to transform blah into minimalist chic.

Please direct your attention to the first DIY project. A huge fan of Target, I’ve always admired some of the styles in the maternity section, but never gave much thought as to how I would fit into one without a pregnant belly to fill out all the extra space. With this simple DIY tutorial on how to transform a black maternity dress from Target into fringe paradise, it’s as though she read my mind.

Who knew that you could take an idea completely daring such as fringe on stockings and make it just unassuming yet interesting enough that you can stow away your leggings for the next couple seasons? Apparently, Phosphene has the fashion foresight to dare and conquer the fear of being “over done.” It inspires me to venture outside the box to take a wild idea and tone it down to something wearable on a daily basis.

For those who want to dare but not dare too much, I think what makes it work is the monotone effect of black-on-black. Your silhouette remains streamlined, but the swish of the fringe as you walk draws just enough attention without going overboard. If you want to go for a more bold statement, check Stylebubble’s black-on-fuschia concoction.

A play on the classic seamed stockings, this is fringe to da max.

If you thought fringed shoulders were meant only for marching band uniforms, think again. Phosphene selflessly shares her instructions on how to sew shoulder pads trimmed with fringe on a plain black dress.

Dude. What a rockstar. She even recommends putting a strip of fringe down the sides of the arm for added volume. From a distance, you can see just enough volume and texture to know that the dress isn’t quite ordinary. The subtlety is what catches my eye; it’s like you know something’s different, but you’re not quite sure what.

So that’s three fringed accounts of creative genius. As I’m still exploring how to harness my own creative forces, I can only credit Phosphene for inspiring the wheels to turn in my brain. But if I needed to break down her, um, formula (for lack of a better word), I’d characterize her DIY style (at least in these projects) as follows:

  1. monochrome
  2. neutral colors
  3. place trimmings in “unusual places” (ie., instead of putting fringe on the hems of dresses, put them on the sides of stockings)
  4. less is more (cliche, but depending on your style, it’s true. I’m betting that most of us don’t have the fashion guts to pull off Stylebubble’s daring outfits, but perhaps the office wouldn’t send you home for sporting any of these fringed projects)
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