Monday, May 31, 2010

Comeback Kids

Happy Memorial Day all! I hope you had a blessed day with those you love remembering the great sacrifice of all who have laid down their lives for our country, those who currently serve, & all their families. I just wanted to squeeze in one last fashion post for May before the craziness of June sets in…& the Romance & Purity celebration, & Grace’s (“Grace’s Garden Walk”) Nancy Drew reading event, & so many other exciting summery things! Please check back tomorrow for the kickoff of Bess’ Bag’s first ever, all month-long celebration: Romance & Purity month! And don’t worry more fashion posts are still to come, too!
Love you all!

-Comeback Kids-

Cartoons on Saturday, lemonade stands, imaginary friends, Barbies, tree houses, & meals that came with toys…ah, the good old days of childhood. Most likely during those days you wore a romper or a pair of overalls (or both=) at least once. Well, my friend, they’re back!

It was indeed a surprise to many to see the overalls & rompers (jumpsuits/playsuits – they have many aliases=) out on major spring runways such as Ralph Lauren (pictured here), & a myriad of other top designers this season. So, go don some nostalgic childhood garb…I think I hear a teeter-totter calling somewhere…


Ralph Lauren - Spring 2010

photo source:

...My Way

What I've Donned:

Capri Overalls - No Boundaries - thrift store (They still had the original tags on 'em!)
Gray Peasant Top - (Relativity) - thrift store
Vintage-Looking Lace Trim Blouse (worn underneath gray top) - Quizz - thrift store
Cat Pin & Bracelets - ? - yard sale
Slight Gladiator Sandal - Montego Bay Club - Payless

TIP: If you have a buttoned top that is styled without any buttons higher up, & leaves your chest too exposed, try pinning the shirt together in place of buttons with a vintage pin.

FYI: It's hard to find a modest & affordable romper!

-Some Polyvore Fun-

Overall CharmFashion Trends & Styles - Polyvore

A Jolly Good Romp: By DayFashion Trends & Styles - Polyvore

A Jolly Good Romp: By NightFashion Trends & Styles - Polyvore

Sunday, May 30, 2010

A Special Invitation For All You Girls

June is just around the corner sneakily teasing us from the wings, waiting for the curtain call. It certainly feels “June” hot. Did you know that June is the most popular month for weddings? If you’re like me you did. I wouldn’t say I’m obsessed with tulle, masterpiece cakes, bouquets, & all that, but I do like to think about it at times. Yes, I have a couple of bridal magazines I’ve been known to skim through on a whim (left over from my sister’s wedding), & I’ve mulled over the idea of going to J.C. Penney’s to try on a white formal gown & snapping a photo of this prime Kodak moment, but I’ve never actually done it (lost the nerve, I guess=). As the years move on I feel I’m thinking bridal-ly more & more…afterall, friends & past classmates are tying the knot right & left (or so it seems). It’s hard to not wonder, “When’s my turn, Lord? Is there truly someone out there for me? Is it worth the wait?” You know, I can’t truthfully answer the first 2 questions…because I simply don’t know, but I do know that God fully knows the desires of my heart & has given me these dreams for a purpose. Psalm 37:4 says, “Delight yourself in the LORD & He will give you the desires of your heart.” The last question I can honestly answer. Yes, it’s worth the wait. So, without further ado…

As May winds down (along with Jane’s “Picture Book Month”), & the season of brides & grooms comes upon us, I thought I’d leave you with a story of purity written for children & read by the author herself. Sometimes little girls & big girls need to hear the same thing.

If you plan to be a part of this celebration please consider taking one of these buttons for your sidebar with a link back to Bess' Bag. Not sure how to do this, read below for instructions. Thanks! Can't wait for June, girls!

Button Instructions:

Right click on the button you want & click "save picture as." Save pic to your computer. Upload to your sidebar by clicking "add a gadget" then "picture." Browse your computer pics until you find the button & then upload. You should see a "link" space above where you can copy & paste my web address. Click "save" & you're done! NOTE: The images should shrink down to fit in your sidebar. If they don't make sure you've clicked the box "shrink to fit" below the link option & image.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

The Hats of Summer

The hot sun is shining! Get your hat on!

Hats of SummerFashion Trends & Styles - Polyvore

I have to say I don't often don a hat. But, this summer I'm going to change that! (Did that just rhyme?) Cast your gaze to the lovely collection of hats created by milliner extraordinaire Eugenia Kim (Bess' Handy Dictionary Definition - Milliner: a hat maker (I wish words like "milliner" were still commonplace=)). And all these hats can be found at Target! No more excuses, I'm getting a summer hat!

-Polyvore Hats-

Fedoras: $16.99 each - Engineer Cap: $14.99

Sun Hat: $14.99 - Straw Cloche: $16.99

More Eugenia Kim for Target:

$14.99 each (above & below)


$16.99 each (above & below)

Confession: I actually went to my Target & tried on all these hats (& more=), & left - not with what I had intended (a Eugenia Kim creation) - but a Mossimo fedora style hat. It was a couple dollars cheaper! =)

Don't forget sun screen! Being tan is not worth getting sun damage & a greater risk for skin cancer! Lip balm that's got SPF protection is great, too!


P.S.: I'm now on Polyvore! Yes, I custom made the Polyvore at the top of this post (I'm still learning & trying to figure it all out). Now that I've joined you'll see lots more Polyvores on my fashion posts, cause now I can create whatever look I'm going for. Cheers for that! =)

"Soak Up The Son" image: Natasha Hale (

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Tuesday Tutorial: Poppies For Remembering

It was the birth of a poem that led to the poppy flower becoming a symbol for Memorial Day & all those soldiers lost for freedom's bright cause.

John McCrae's words led a woman named Moina Michael to respond with a bit of verse herself:

We cherish too, the Poppy red

That grows on fields where valor led,

It seems to signal to the skies

That blood of heroes never dies.

Ms. Michael also started the practice of wearing a poppy for remembrance on Memorial Day. Today's tutorial takes a cue from her patriotic spirit.

Poppy Pins for Remembering

What You Need:
-red felt
-green felt
-yellow ribbon
-green or yellow center bead
-black seed beads
-red thread
-yellow thread
-sewing needle
-pin back (found at craft stores in jewelry section)
-hot glue gun (optional)

What To Do:

Cut 2 ovals out of the red felt (make one slightly smaller than the other). Mine were about 5 in. across & 4 in. wide (bigger one); 4 1/2 in. across & 3 1/2 in. wide (smaller one). Cut around the edge in a sort of wavy, free form way to make it look like a flower (see picture). Cut a skinny rectangle about 5 in. long out of the green felt for the stem.

Taking your needle & red thread sew on your center bead & smaller seed beads. While you are doing this you can also sew on your green stem.

Make a little yellow remembrance ribbon & sew it to the stem with the yellow thread.

Sew &/or hot glue your pin back to the backside of your poppy.

Wear on Memorial Day to remember all the fallen soldiers past & present.
Sorry this is a blurry pic! =(

Happy Memorial Day
Remember to pray for our country, military, & their families.

Love in Christ to all my Sisters,

Monday, May 24, 2010

Army Orders

My Way---


Oscar de la Renta - Fall 2010
photo source:

What I donned:
Military-Style Shirt Dress - Faded Glory - Walmart (I've had this for a few years now.)
Black Leggings - Walmart
Colorful Flats - Vintage - Yard Sale
Faux Fur Hat - Yard Sale (I like to think of this as my "Russian Hat." No, I wouldn't really wear the hat with the dress, I just did it because of the Oscar de la Renta inspiration.=)

This early budding springtime trend is likely to march into fall, as you can see from the above autumn runway shot.

-My Military Picks-

"Route 66" Military Star Cap - - $6.99

Cargo Capris - - $12

Patriotic Tee - - $5
Perfect for this Memorial Day weekend, Flag Day (June 14th), & the 4th of July!

-Some Military Polyvore Fun-


I'm not so sure about that holey shirt. You'd have to wear something under it, of course. Not sure if it's me, but if you like it you could easily take a pair of scissors to a thrifted tee to recreate the look. Not so sure about those open-toe boots either...=)

Inspired by Marc JacobsFashion Trends & Styles - Polyvore

Inspired by Marc Jacobs by Jilbi

"I'm In The Lord's Army"
by Hal Wright

I may never march in the infantry
Ride in the cavalry
Shoot the artillery
I may never fly o'er the enemy
But I'm in the Lord's army!
Yes sir!

I'm in the Lord's army!
Yes sir!
I'm in the Lord's army!
Yes sir!

Homemaker in Training & Faithful Commenters

Moe of "Helping at Home" presented me with this lovely award. Thanks, Moe! You can tell just from her blog title that she's a true blue homemaker in the making! =) My great sis in Christ, Grace of "Grace's Garden Walk," also presented me with this one! Thanks, Grace! I love all my sisters in Christ!

Here are the rules:

•Award at least 4 other bloggers.
•Name someone you really admire as a homemaker.
•Post a Scripture verse that inspires you in daily living (please not Proverbs 31 - be creative).

My sweet mother is a wonderful homemaker. She was able to stay home with me until I entered kindergarten, & then she began to work again as a professor while I went to school. Through that time she worked diligently with home, family, church, & her school career. She is wonderful & amazing!

"Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer." -Romans 12:12

Verse 13 reminds me of homemaking, too: "Share with God's people who are in need. Practice hospitality."

I award:
Shaynie of "The Book Blog"

Shannon of "Below the Plateau"
Lady Florimel of "Rose of Venice"
Samarah of "Samarah's Sayings"

& any homemakers in training that are reading this & haven't received the award yet... Yes, you! =) Bess thinks you're great!

Grace of "Grace's Garden Walk" also presented me with the "Faithful Commenter Award." Thanks, Grace! I love exchanging little notes with a dear blogging friend! You're an encouragement to me, little sis! =)

I would like to thank all of you that comment here! If you're one of my faithful commenters this award is yours! Congrats!

Friday, May 21, 2010

"DVD Read & Share Bible: Life & Miracles" Review

Here's my 1st "Book Sneeze" review! =)
The time in between Bethlehem and Calvary is portrayed for little eyes and hearts in the “DVD Read and Share Bible: Life and Miracles” (“The Jesus Series”). When presented with the opportunity to receive a free complimentary copy of the DVD from Tommy Nelson, I jumped at the chance, as I work with children on a regular basis. Based on the Read and Share Bible by Gwen Ellis / illustrated by Steve Smallman, the DVD brings to life the ministry of Jesus for little ones. I found the colorful and somewhat simple animations sweet and charming – perfect for the intended audience. From Jesus choosing his disciples, healing the sick, feeding the 5,000, walking on water, to the Last Supper I found the DVD to be a great concrete resource to bring abstract and often hard to grasp concepts to life for preschoolers on through elementary students. The DVD is 30 minutes with an additional 30 minutes of bonus features which include an interview with the writer/director and trailers for other Tommy Nelson titles. The DVD can also be put in a computer to access printables, such as coloring pages. This DVD would be a valuable resource for Sunday School and Children’s Ministry, as well as home enrichment and enjoyment!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Tuesday Tutorial: Gone Fishin’

Have you ever seen those “Gone Fishing” signs…in real life? It seems they’re most often found in cartoons, movies, or at a country store as a decoration. In Mark 1:17 God calls us to a fishing life, but not like you may think. We aren’t called to catch those slippery, smelly, scaly fellows...we’re called to fish for folks! “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “& I will make you fishers of men.” If we follow Jesus & our His, we are called to fish for souls: casting out a line of forgiveness, love, & hope to a lost & dying world. Our lives should be one big fishing trip, where we’re always on the lookout for those who don’t know Christ. We should reel them in with His love & kindness. Now this trip & whatever we catch isn’t for our own gain & praise. You know those old photos where a man in a bucket hat is proudly holding up a fish twice his size? That’s not what this is all about. We are leading people to Christ because our Father has called us to such work, & we ourselves have been “caught” & know the peace, love, forgiveness, hope, & purpose we now have. It’s easy to forget we’re on this “fishing” trip – we need reminders like those old aforementioned signs. Our “Gone Fishing” sign should be forever up, but as they are hard to come by outside of animated features, flicks, & Cracker Barrels we’ll have to make a substitute to remind us of what we’re called to…

Now, I have never actually fished for fish, but happen to know cork is a fishing supply of long ago, which is still used today by many. So, taking a needle threaded with thin ribbon, & a thimble, peirce through the cork until it is threaded onto the ribbon. Add different ribbons, threads, &/or fabric scraps by tying/ knotting them onto your ribbon. Add beads & shells for extra decoration. If you happen to have a good smooth shell, you can write “Mark 1:17” on it for an extra reminder. Hang your fisher of men reminder on your door handle, bed post, car mirror, etc. Don’t forget, you are called to fish! ><>

Monday, May 17, 2010

Sunshine Sisters + Blue-ness!

The literary all-star, Shaynie, who is just plain bookish to the core (which I love & admire=), presented me with the Sunshine Award. Thanks so much, Shaynie!

I pass this on to these blogging rays of sunshine:

Grace - "Grace's Garden Walk"

Jenna - "Where the Heart Remains"

Moe - "Helping at Home"

Amber - "Taking Life One Step at a Time"


The sweet Samarah over at "Samarah's Sayings" presented me with this "Blue Award." Thanks, know I just love that name! =) I love your profile picture of the moment, too! When I 1st saw it I did a double take! Go to her blog & check it out! =)

Rules: For the award, answer the 10 questions your tagger has made up, make up 10 of your own, and award 6 other bloggers!

Samarah asked…
1. Favorite board game?
The Uncle Wiggily Board Game (It's based on this old kids series of the same name that my dad always read us.)
2. Favorite Female singer? Can I tell you 3? Francesca Battistelli, Ginny Owens, JJ Heller, Britt Nicole (oh goodness, that’s 4=)
3. Have you ever wanted to have a twin? Hmmm… I don’t know - maybe sometime. I think the twin-thing is cool, but I think I like being solitary.
4. Do you have anything really exciting planned for this summer? I’m thinking about taking a trip to England to see the Cotswolds, London, & more – but I don’t have any firm plans, so who knows what’s in store? God. Yep. I can’t wait to see…
5. How long have you been blogging? blogging since Feb. 15, 2010 (the day after Valentine’s Day=)
6. What do you want to do " when you grow up"? live God’s adventures & purpose He has for me
7. What is your favorite subject in school? art or literature
8.Would you say that you are the kind of person that likes to stick to the rules and stay safe or the kind of person who likes to stray away from the rules and have adventures ;)? I’m not a rule (as in law) breaker, but I do love adventures…if you mean breaking “rules” like people’s conceived notions kinda thing, then yes.
9. Favorite dessert? ice cream (I scream for it=)
10. Favorite month of the year? November

I ask…
1. Have you ever swam in the sea?
2. What’s your fav book of the Bible?
3. Do you have a favorite baby name for a boy &/or girl? Tell us!
4. Where’s your favorite place? Can be specific or general…
5. When & why did you become a Christian?
6. Name a fav movie.
7. What’s something in your closet/wardrobe you love?
8. Tell us something interesting, wacky, or unusual about yourself.
9. Which is your fav: Psalms or Proverbs?
10. Have you ever dreamed of being a princess?

I award...

Grace - "Grace's Garden Walk"

Moe - "Helping at Home"

Celine - "Iradessa"

Josie - "Hillbilly Chronicles"

Allison Elizabeth - "Girl of the Prairie"

Josie - "The Many Adventures of a Country Girl"

If any of you above are too busy, etc. to accept this award at the moment I totally understand, so don't sweat it! =)



Sunday, May 16, 2010

The Would-Be Entomologist

Bess’ Handy Dictionary Definition
entomologist: a person who studies insects (insects are the ones with 6 legs=)

Those creepy-crawly, six-legged critters God made… They invade during the spring, it seems.
Even fashion isn’t safe!

a Chanel butterfly brooch

Gone Buggy

What I've donned:
white tee - Xhilaration - Target (kids' dept.)
pink/black dress - Jean Paul Gaultier for Target - Target
bug keychain (put on a chain) - gift
black leggings - Walmart
black flats - Crocs - eBay

I L-O-V-E the inspiring fashion collaborations at places like Target. It's likely my only chance to get my hands on some famous designers' creations. I had had my eye on this Jean Paul Gaultier dress for some time. I got it just the other day on clearance for about $10! It was originally $40! Notice the bees & other bugs that splatter the frock.

Madame Butterfly

What I've donned:
thermal tee - The Limited - thrift store
butterfly necklace - ?
leaf print skirt - Calvin Klein - T.J. Maxx
brown leggings - Walmart
colorful flats - vintage - yard sale

-My Entomology Inspired Picks-

Butterfly Statement Necklace - Rue21 - $8.99

Butterfly Tunic Tank - Rue21 - $16.99
This would be cute if paired with a white or colored tee. I heart modesty! =)
Insect Earrings - - $29.99 (pretty pricey, but I wanted to show 'em cause they're not the typical butterfly or ladybug feminine motif)

2 Weird Facts About Bess:
-I don't have pierced ears, so the little gold fellas above wouldn't be an option. I don't have any real desire to get my ears pierced either. It's funny, in most ways I'm pretty girly. I guess I just like the natural ear look. =)

-For my middle school's student career fair I chose to be an entomologist! I had little business cards with butterflies on 'em & I wore a white lab coat! My dad loved studying insects, so I did too, cause I wanted to be just like him - still do!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Kerchoo! Gesundheit!

I have just stumbled upon a fantastically wonderful [free] resource...& I simply must share! It's called "Book Sneeze," & no, it's not a club where members carry hankies in their back pockets or whisper "bless you" for their secret password. It's something marvelous! Bloggers can sign up for the program, request a book, receive the book via the mail, read the book, & then write up a 200 word (or more) book review on their blog. Did I mention it's all free & that it's Christian books we're talking about here? I'm so excited! I just signed up for the program yesterday & I already received my confirmation e-mail & requested my first book (which this time around just happens to be a children's DVD that a little 1 year old boy whom I love will hopefully love). So, when I receive the DVD, I'll watch it, review it here on Bess' Bag, & then keep it or do whatever I want with it, & then I can request another book! They had 8 titles available the last time I checked, but they add new titles often. Oh, isn't this just sublime? I've never loved a sneeze more! =)

Let me know if you join!

My Bookish Crafty Pics

As promised, I present my bookish crafty creations...

For the 1st corner bookmark I created I had to stop & start the video quite a bit, but after that it started to get easier... I enjoyed making 'em so much, I created 4! I used scrapbooking paper, rhinestones, paper flowers, charms, & even a safety pin! These are so fun to make!

Here they are in action! Look closely at the orange & purple flower 1 - yep, if you're a super-cool guitar playing gal (not me - I'm just super-cool on my own =) & happened to have a guitar pick nearby) you can store a pick in your bookmark!

Here's my instant book! It really takes about an instant (or minute=) to create! I used heavy embossed scrapbooking paper. I do recommend using scissors to cut your book if your paper is very heavy, embossed, etc.

I created a beaded ribbon bookmark & then taped it to the inside (the inside folds where you make the cut). Simple simple!

I cut out some inspirational quotes & scriptures from a set I had + added some accent with glitter pens.

Using tulle & vellum, I created a lift-up flap for the "hiding place" scripture.

Here's what's under it!

These were such fun! I'll definitely make these again! Love 'em! Have you made any yet?