Black Velvet

Alannah Myles - Black Velvet by Alannah Myles - Black Velvet on Grooveshark

I am going to make 2014 my year. Things will happen. I'm much happier sticking with this:  "no negativity". Something simple as a twitter status has inspired me. Thank you, Em!!

This month has flown by for me:
-Taken so many pictures. I'm behind in posting them :(
-Changed my shop name to Minty Fox Designs.
-Continued my 365 project.
-Did some watercolours and sketches in Paint Tool Sai!
-Hit 50+ sales & 100 messages in one day.
-Two photo sessions.
-Sick for a week.
-San Francisco's Academy of Sciences


Lipstick: ELF's Rosy-Go-Round

Dress: Forever21


I have made the choice to only support small businesses for now. I'm really not liking the emails I've been receiving.  It's impersonal.  It's honestly not a good first impression and it's really off-putting.  It only takes three seconds to see my name and a few minutes to read my about me to get a better idea of what I'm like. It's simple. I would rather work with those who actually want to work with me rather than being an email address or "Dainty Fawn". Is that my name? Nope. Also,  how is belitting someone going to make them WANT to advertise your brand for zero compensation?  It doesn't matter how if your numbers are small, don't feel pressure to do work for free. :)

I'm ready to make plans and have more adventures. I really want to take my photography to the next level and do some personal projects. Thinking also a mini trip should happen this year. It feels like it's time!




Brown Fox Amigurumi Pattern


It's finally here! I was going to share this pattern last year but things go extremely busy.  I'm already working on another design. I'll like to do one pattern each month but let's be realistic, that would give me a reason to go out and buy yarn.  Sounds good, right? Not with my never-ending leftover stash. :(  This year I'm going to make an effort to downsize my possessions. I feel like 50% is craft related things and the other is clothes! This baby is up for sale for only $8 shipped, if anyone in the US wants to take it off my hands. :)

Supplies:
❤ worsted yarn in brown and black.
❤ D hook
❤ felt in white and black
❤ optional: yarn needle
❤ Polyfill stuffing
❤ 8mm or 9mm safety eyes

Head: brown yarn
Magic ring.
6 sc into the ring.
Increase around.
*Sc, inc* around.
*Sc 2x, inc* around.
*Sc 3x, inc* around.
5 rounds:  sc around.
*Sc 3x, dec* around.
Sc around.
*Sc, dec* around.
*Sc, dec 2x* around. Decrease in last sts.
*Sc, dec* around. Leave last st unworked

Body: brown yarn
Magic ring.

12 sc into ring.
Inc around.
2 rounds: sc around.
*Sc4x , dec* around.
*Sc 3x, dec* around.
3 rounds: sc around.
*Sc, dec* around.
2 rounds: sc

Ears:black yarn
Magic ring.
4 sc into ring.
Inc around.
Switch to brown yarn:
*Sc, inc* around.
Sc around.
Inc once. Sc across in the rest of the sts.


Arms: brown yarn
Magic ring.

4 sc into ring.
Inc once.  Sc around in the rest.
5 rounds: sc around.


Legs: brown yarn
Magic ring.
6 sc into ring.
Inc once. Sc across in the rest. Sl st together.



Tail: black yarn
Magic ring.
4 sc into ring.
*Inc, sc* around.
2 rounds: sc around.
*Inc, sc* around.
*Inc, sc 2x* around.

Switch to brown yarn:
*Inc, sc 4x* around. Sc in last st.
4 rounds: sc around.





Valentine's Day: Cards!

Have you bought your Valentine's Day cards already? I thought about doing something handmade but decided this year, I wanted something cute and not made by me! haha I know some people are not into this day but I like any excuse to buy something handmade or make a gift for my boyfriend. Definitely doesn't have to be expensive or even cost money since the little things count.

 Here are some of my favorites..

AvoArt Valentine's Day Cards

Avo Art has some cute illustrations of animals! If you want something a little naughty, there is a card for that!! :3 Order now to get 25% off on all items with BEMYVALENTINE25 before it expires January 26th!

Scrawny Girl Valentine's Day Cards

Scrawny Girl has some adorable watercolour cards! You can also order the card and a brooch. That would be a nice gift!! If you order 3 cards, you get one free... scoop it up here!



MyZoetrope I actually ordered a birthday card from here recently! How cute are these?? That octopus!!


I'm considering doing something handmade as an extra. No details because he might read this. It always feels like there's plenty of time to do something then before you know, it's the night before. This way there's no pressure on me and I get something cute for him.

What are you getting for your significant other or friends? :3

spring outfit in winter ootd



The knit top and bag were part of my Princess Bubblegum costume that just didn't happen. Might dress up at a later time :)  I don't know if you could tell by pictures but the bag quality is cheapies. I really like it, kind of reminds me of a toy? haha It fits my tiny sketchbooks and everything random I bring out!

I finally figured out how to color correct my photos to bring out my actual hair colors. The dye I chose is blue based so it looks like most of it is already blended/gone in comparison to the freshly dyed look. Sadness times a million. Does anyone have any recommendations for a good purple?

I am considering a haircut. Baby steps first! I haven't had one in years so my hair is just one length. I can't seem to do a normal side/middle part with my hairline without it becoming all piecey.  Of course, I'll love to have Zooey Decshannel bangs. But you know what? Nope. I'm going to try to get some bangs like Ashley's! The shorter kind. Just to try it out and so I don't have to do trims every few days. It's kinda drastic for me and I'm scared hahaha.

Don't you hate it when something is so cute on somebody else but when it's you, it's just.. no. I think that's going to happen and I already accept it. 


 










knit top- ebay crop top-gojane skirt- bear & twine    shoes- payless  plugs- urbanbodyjewelry

I ordered my first strapless bra. It's a Lilyette bra on Bare Necessities! Apparently it's a minimizer and decreases size by two inches, so I'm in love.  I was going to do a comparison wearing the same outfit but would that be too weird? haha

Enter in the Warm Up The New Year giveaway to win $500 Paypal Cash! :)



On our way to... Healthy!



These were taken back in 2011.

Back then we were actually cooking meals at home and I had much more free time to squeeze in yoga. Within two years of unhealthy choices I have gained up to 30 pounds.  For the past 6 weeks or so I have been doing daily small workouts! I'm really out of shape and tend to get too sore to function so baby steps... 

I bought a bunch of nice jeans a month ago that I felt comfortable in and recently those were on the verge of not buttoning. That was a wake up call for me! I work up to 16 hours a day and made zero room for exercise beyond daily chores.   This isn't the life I want. My hours are decreased and I won't be taking on any custom work just to focus on myself.



I love that I'm not the only one making the choice for a healthier lifestyle! It's much easier to do things with another person. I'm so happy that I won the book  Happy Herbivore Light & Lean!! PERFECT TIMING.

This book has so much helpful information for a noob like me that doesn't know where to start.  I actually brought it with me to the farmer's market because there's a shopping list inside.  Honestly, I'm not all that adventurous with my food and I can eat the same things over.  I'm excited to try new things out especially when a good amount of the recipes have optional hot sauce/salsa. YES PLEASE.



Plus I'm one of those people that says they don't like something when they don't try it. I've never tried GRAPES in a salad before.  Obviously, I have been missing out on that flavor.

We are eating mostly vegan recipes but we aren't going vegan since I'm not sure if he can give up meat fully or if I can give up cheese. I created a board on Pinterest just collecting recipes. It's Day 4 since we've been making meals from the cookbook and I have dropped 4 pounds since New Years.

I'll be tracking my workouts, sharing meals, etc on here! :] PLEASE DO SHARE any simple workouts, meals, tips, etc!!


Photo Series: Editing Process

Ever since I've been using Manual mode, I'm starting to feel extremely confident! Like a pro. I don't know if I could call myself that yet because it feels strange. Then again there's people starting out in photography and calling themselves that already. So I suppose why not??

I'm going to share my editing process from the photos I shared last week. Here's the before and after:



I personally like to retouch things first before changing the overall look of the image.  That way if you don't like the color effect or anything, you can go back to the retouched original and start over. My plan is to remove the people in the back, the girl's head and make this image pop but in a subtle way.

I have a second image with the pathway more exposed. I'll be putting that in this image to make for an easier and quick removal. Other methods like Clone Stamp, Healing Brush or Fill may lose detail.
 
I LOVE layers. I always make a copy of the background layer (in this case it's Layer 2) just in case I need to go back to the original and get detail back.




1. I increased the canvas size and pasted the second image onto this layer. I did a black layer mask and painted with a white soft brush to reveal the pathway. 



2. I pasted the second image again and moved the grass part over it. I used a black layer mask and painted white to reveal the grass.



3. I merge the layer down and made a duplicate layer. I lassoed over the girl's face, did  Edit> Fill and make sure the opacity is at 100%. Usually this works pretty well the first time.


I love using Fill but you have to merge down after you use it.  It usually doesn't work if you do it again.

4. I used the patch tool to move around some pieces of grass.  I'm not really worried whether this looks fake or not for this particular image. I could use content aware fill or patch it so more, even use a soft blur on it!




5. I lassoed around the people, the bird and some of the pond water showing.  I used the same thing: Edit> Fill. 



6. I used my Dawn Action to give these beautiful colors a pop! I put a layer mask on the dawn layer and used a soft black brush to get the original skin color back. 


7. I wanted more of a pop. I used Florabella's  LOVE from Luxe II and lowered the whole action to 47%.



8. I sharpened the image and done!

The rest of the images didn't need retouching and just enhanced the colors :)  It was really beautiful.

Want to see more of Photo Series? Go here!!

If you want me to do a before and after of your image to share on the blog.. then send me a high resolution to  thedaintyfawn [at!]gmail.com. Preferably outdoor ones. I'll choose one or two :)

Sponsor Feature: xo Mia



Hi, I'm Mia! I write about style, cosplay, and living the geek life on my blog, xo Mia. I love exploring how dressing differently can change your attitude, so most of my hobbies are related to dressing up. By day, I am a grad student in digital marketing. In my free time, I cram in as much as possible - video games, comic books, anime, television series... I have a huge range of geeky interests! Come visit my blog to read more about style and cosplay as a form of self-expression and lots of other fun topics!












WEDDING | Eloise & Alex

 The day after Christmas we went to our friend's wedding. It was a small ceremony and I'm excited for when they plan the big one later!  There wasn't an official photographer so everyone snapped quickly away.  We arrived at the park for more pictures about a hour before sunset and lighting was amazing!























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I'll be sharing a before and after tutorial for that last image :)
Happy friday!! Be sure to link up your photography here!