Button Sunday

Last month at Murder By The Book, Johnnie and Matt slyly sneaked a shopping bag to me before the Foolish Hearts/Best Gay Romance 2014 book signing. Apparently they did a bit of shopping when they were last in New York City, including a trip to Mood, everybody’s favorite designer fabric store.

While there, they purchased fabric for me that we all know we’ll see sometime in the future adorning any number of Mattel Muses.

But that’s not all. They also gave me a Fashion Mix & Match Barbie!

As it happens, they’d taken her shopping with them to Mood, where they were helped by Noel, so that’s the name they gave her. (I hope Mood’s Noel is spelled that way, because I already have a Noelle who wouldn’t appreciate having her name given to someone else.)

Thank you SO SO MUCH, Matt and Johnnie. I’m sure Noel had a great time in NYC with you two. Now she’s settling into the work room here–in good company.

Notice her shopping bag, which is a gift Mark G. Harris sent me long ago. Tim Gunn, you may remember, is courtesy of Marika.

I know the best and most generous people. =)

The Sartorial Archie


At the last Rescued Pets Movement transport, I met Archie. Archie is a chihuahua, about three months old.

What sets Archie apart? He’s a fashion hound! As you can imagine, this put Archie squarely in my camera sights. His foster mom, Kathy, told me that Archie loves to be dressed. The outfit he’s pictured in is his favorite. Kathy suspects that Archie is well on his way to becoming one of those sartorialists who wants to pick out his own outfit every day.


Archie defies the foolish notion that pink is for girls.


Archie knows that looking one’s best means considering everything. For example, when choosing to bundle up for warmth, match your blankets to emphasize the highlights in your hair.


Archie believes that when being photographed, a natural background and some Burberry plaid are nice touches.

You know what else Archie thinks? That when you need a foster family, you can’t go wrong with someone who has, through the years, fostered 156 other dogs, and still understands that you’re a unique little fellow who deserves to have your tastes indulged.

I think Archie’s right. Thank you, Kathy, and your family, for opening your home and hearts to Archie. I know the family who adopts him will give him as much love and care as you have. He’ll help them figure out he needs a little fashion in his life, too.

Runway Monday All Stars: Are U.N. or Are You Out?

On the season finale of Lifetime’s Project Runway All Stars, the last three designers were taken to the United Nations headquarters, where they met with delegates from their countries of origin. These countries were to inspire their final collections. In addition, they were asked to add a seventh look that would incorporate a scarf from a wall of scarves representing countries from around the world.

I didn’t get to go to the U.N. or meet a delegate from my country of origin. Does Alabama count? Actually, I decided to take my pick from my English, Scottish, and Irish heritage. I checked out some current Irish fashion designers. When I learned that their runways were filled this year with bold fabrics, including florals paired with clashing prints, animal inspired prints, lace, and the color pink, I knew I’d found my people.

Here’s how that turned out for Catrine DeMew.

And for Venus McFlytrap.

And for Howleen Wolf.

And for GiGi Grant.

And for Catty Noir.

And for Draculaura, whose look incorporates the scarf.

And for Rochelle Goyle.

Thanks for sticking with me throughout this season. The Monsters say goodbye until next time!

From Mattel: shoes and purses, Howleen’s beanie, Venus’s stockings, Rochelle’s socks, and Draculaura’s tights. Scarf used for Draculaura’s tank top from a Harumika kit. Catrine DeMew’s and Rochelle Goyle’s belts by Becks. Venus McFlytrap doll gift of Lynne. Catty Noir doll gift of Marika.

Previous looks from this season:

Week 9: Fashion Cents
Week 8: #Nina’s Trending
Week 7: As Sewn On TV
Week 6: Marge Madness
Week 5: Kiss Kiss Bang Bang
Week 4: Get Back to Class!
Week 3: There Are No Bad Cocktails, Just Bad Designers
Week 2: Bitten by the Fashion Bug
Week 1: You Got Punked

Runway Monday All Stars: Fashion Cents

On the most recent episode of Lifetime’s Project Runway All Stars, the last four designers were asked to create a look for Michelle Smith’s New York-based fashion label Milly. The looks were to use Michelle’s custom fabrics and retail for $400.

I’m sure it’s no surprise that no one sent me any Milly fabrics to create my look. However, there’s a fabric I’ve had my eye on for a while, a playful print in keeping with some of the brightly colored dresses I’ve seen in other Milly collections. I chose Skelita Calaveras to walk the runway in my look; if anyone can understand the pressure for a model to stay thin, it’s Skelita. I’ll let the design speak for itself.

Hope you’ve enjoyed the look. Skelita is going to eat a sandwich. See the rest of you next time on the runway!

Shoes and bracelet by Mattel.

Previous looks from this season:

Week 8: #Nina’s Trending
Week 7: As Sewn On TV
Week 6: Marge Madness
Week 5: Kiss Kiss Bang Bang
Week 4: Get Back to Class!
Week 3: There Are No Bad Cocktails, Just Bad Designers
Week 2: Bitten by the Fashion Bug
Week 1: You Got Punked

Runway Monday All Stars: Another Off Week

There wasn’t an episode of Project Runway All Stars this past week due to the Christmas holiday, so I have no designs to share. However, there are some new Monsters in the house who you may see in future challenges.

First up, Catty Noir, daughter of a werecat, who’s just given up her successful life as a rock star to be a “regular ghoul” at Monster High.

Meanwhile, in Monster High’s Home Ick class, Abbey Bominable is cooking up a recipe for disaster with her new partner Heath Burns. Though I have other versions of Abbey, this is my first Heath doll! It’s always difficult for me to find the boy monsters.

Thanks, Marika, for these Christmas delights! I can’t wait to see where they’ll show up next.

Runway Monday All Stars: #Nina’s Trending

On the most recent episode of Lifetime’s Project Runway All Stars, the remaining contestants were asked to create looks for popular style vloggers that incorporated Pantone’s 2014 Color of the Year: Radiant Orchid. In addition, their designs needed to include an element that the designers believed would be a fashion trend in 2014.

One thing I don’t need hanging around my workroom in the week before Christmas is a vlogger. Fortunately, I have an inspiring model in Twyla, because if anyone understands the importance of purple, she does. As for my fashion trend, I know that 2014 is the year of prints, and I say it’s the year of geometric prints. (Apparently, the designers at Alexander McQueen agree with me. Score!)

My look begins with a floor-length coat made of a fabric that not only illustrates my design trend but uses Radiant Orchid as one of the colors.

Beneath the coat, I went full-on Radiant Orchid with a shimmering mermaid gown.

Twyla shows off Mattel’s vibrant heels.

Twyla is ready to begin her purple reign! Hope you’ve enjoyed the look. See you next time on the runway!

Previous looks from this season:

Week 7: As Sewn On TV
Week 6: Marge Madness
Week 5: Kiss Kiss Bang Bang
Week 4: Get Back to Class!
Week 3: There Are No Bad Cocktails, Just Bad Designers
Week 2: Bitten by the Fashion Bug
Week 1: You Got Punked

Runway Monday All Stars: As Sewn on TV

On the most recent episode of Lifetime’s Project Runway All Stars, the remaining designers were flown by helicopter to QVC’s headquarters in Pennsylvania, where they were challenged to design a red carpet gown. The winning design would be worn at an Oscar gala in Los Angeles, and the model should be able to comfortably stand, sit, and move in the dress.

Once I decided to design in a lemony yellow color palette, I chose Robecca Steam as my model. A copper simulacrum made of spare parts by her mad scientist father, Robecca has already proved she can look fantastic no matter what. I thought she deserved something soft and flowy to counteract the gears, bolts, and rivets she’s made of.

I began with a yellow silk bodice and a sash of cocoa ribbon that ties into a bow at the back:

Then I added the delicate skirt of chiffon print.

Robecca would look fantastic on any red carpet, and the gown is completely comfortable for standing, sitting, and walking.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this week’s design. See you next time on the runway!

Thanks to Lindsey and Rhonda for the ribbon.

Previous looks from this season:

Week 6: Marge Madness
Week 5: Kiss Kiss Bang Bang
Week 4: Get Back to Class!
Week 3: There Are No Bad Cocktails, Just Bad Designers
Week 2: Bitten by the Fashion Bug
Week 1: You Got Punked

Runway Monday All Stars: Marge Madness

On the most recent episode of Lifetime’s Project Runway All Stars, the designers had a very special client: Marge Simpson! The matriarch of The Simpsons wanted a dress that would be appropriate for a romantic dinner date with Homer at a nice restaurant. Her only request: no green! She also said Homer would like her look to be easy to remove in case he wanted to snuggle at home after dinner.

Say what she will about wearing the same green dress every day, Marge has obviously chosen a silhouette that works for her. I wanted her to feel comfortable and also beautiful, so I stuck with the silhouette but thought it was time to give her a little black dress of her own–with one small addition.

Ghoulia Yelps was the natural choice of model–she and Marge share a hair color, after all. Here she walks the runway in my Marge look.


The dress is sparkle glittered black velvet. The fabulous shoes are from Mattel.

The red button on the capelet is a nod to Marge’s usual necklace of red beads. The capelet is easily removed so Marge can show off her lovely shoulders at dinner.

A little dramatic, a little sweet–just like Marge.

Hope you’ve enjoyed the look–see you next time on the runway.

Oh, one other thing. The PR All Stars had their looks drawn for animation, and I thought mine deserved the same. However, as anyone who works with characters knows, they often say or do the unexpected.

Previous looks from this season:

Week 5: Kiss Kiss Bang Bang
Week 4: Get Back to Class!
Week 3: There Are No Bad Cocktails, Just Bad Designers
Week 2: Bitten by the Fashion Bug
Week 1: You Got Punked

Runway Monday All Stars: Missing in Action

There was no episode of Lifetime’s “Project Runway All Stars” this past Thursday because of the Thanksgiving holiday in the States. However, if you feel like looking back, I have compiled the videos that I make after every season. Less than fifteen minutes for the both of them, and there’s music. Music’s always good while you’re looking at fashion.

From Spring 2013:

Runway Monday Spring 2013 from Becky Cochrane on Vimeo.

From Fall 2013:

Runway Monday Fall 2013 from Becky Cochrane on Vimeo.

You can always see any of my uploaded videos by clicking that Vimeo link on the sidebar on the right. Thanks!