The self-portrait project has returned! I hope y’all had a lovely Thanksgiving. We had some family come visit and I’ll eventually be sharing photos from our excursion to the St. Louis Arch.
So what else new has been going on during the break from this project? I have discovered the wonderfulness that is the Curly Girl book by Lorraine Massey! One day on Facebook I was saying (complaining) how difficult it is to get my hair to curly nicely by itself. I can get it to behave with a curling iron and last year I had my hair layered so it would somewhat curl when I used a diffuser. But my hair gets fried so quickly and easily by heat and I wanted to find a less damaging way to get it to curl. My hair has a lot of natural wave and curl to it already but it’s always been so poofy and frizzy unless I used heat to tame it. The answer to my problem: one of my friends recommended the Curly Girl book.
A few months ago I got my hair chopped off not just because the ends were so fried and awful but also to make it easier to straighten my hair into behaving. The stylist said the typical things I hear every time I get my hair cut. “Your hair is so thick!” “It must take a lot of effort to get your hair to do what you want.” After reading the Curly Girl book I realized it’s this mindset, the “change my hair” mindset that has been causing all of my problems. I’m trying to get my hair to do what it wasn’t made to do. God made my hair wavy and curly and that’s how it’s going to be.
My hair is still getting used to the new shampoo and conditioner I’m using according to the Curly Girl rules. (I don’t have the money to use DevaCurl products so I’m using something else.) Sometimes my hair is super curly and sometimes it’s just wavy. The weather has a big affect on my hair too. I could probably predict the weather just by the shape of my hair. The pieces around my face usually curl pretty nicely though, which is why that’s the only part of my hair you can see in this self-portrait. Of course my hair would decide to be wavy on the day I designated to take photos. I’ll be sure to get a better, curlier photo to share with y’all so I can give you a better example of how my hair has changed since starting Curly Girl. Like what always happens with things like this, I forgot to take a “before” photo to compare with the upcoming curlier, healthier photo. This self-portrait project contains more than enough evidence though of the torture I’ve put my hair through.
Those curls around my face are completely natural! When I would use a curling iron the curls would turn out flatter and not have as much body to them. Not anymore though! After only a few days of the Curly Girl method I was seeing massive improvements to my hair. Almost two weeks later and the changes continue. I’m still figuring out what cleansing and conditioning schedule is best for my hair, but now I actually look forward to washing my hair instead of dreading it like I have for so long. As I told a curly haired friend of mine when I was recommending the book to her, “This might sound funny, but I’m not exaggerating when I say that this book has changed my life.”
Check it out! I made new business cards!
I got the idea from Pinterest, where all of the best ideas are found. :) It took me a while to track down the original source, but I finally found it at while the sun shines. These instructions create a unique watercolor effect that I really like and it is quite easy to achieve. I tweaked the method just a little bit when I made my own cards. (I did use the same kind of ink though.) (Don’t you just love the classy Rural King ads I put down to protect the table?)
I soaked my cards in water for just 3-4 minutes instead of 15 and they took the ink just fine. After I put the ink on the cards I dabbed some more water on top of it to help it spread out even more. I used paintbrushes instead of eyedroppers and played around with soaking the cards in water before and after I put ink on them. Here’s what the ink looks like after it’s dried and then soaked in water for a minute or two before I put on more ink. This might seem obvious, but the more cards you stack together = less ink running down into the stack (depending on how much ink and water you use). It’s something I learned through trial and error.
The colors can look quite saturated right after you put them on (again, depending on how much ink and water you use) but they become more subdued as they dry and ironing the cards seems to help the colors not be so bright. At first I tried ironing the cards between a single layer of paper towels because I was afraid the ink might come off on the iron. The cards were not getting any flatter or drier though, so I got rid of the paper towels and that worked perfectly. The ink didn’t stick to the iron and the cards became nice and flat. (Don’t use steam when you iron the cards.)
In the past I ordered my business cards from a printing company. They were black and white and had one of my own photos on them. It’s been two years though since I ordered those cards which means the information needed updating and I also wanted to do something besides slapping an image on them. I really like these watercolor cards because they’re creative, colorful, and each one is unique instead of having all of the cards look the same. Another advantage is that I can make however many I want at a time and use whatever colors I choose. :)
I had a great time on my little Wisconsin trip this past weekend. I taught my Grandad how to text a smiley face, experienced what college dorm life is like when I visited my friend Amanda at Concordia University Wisconsin, and took some cute photos with my friend Elisabeth and her husband Nathan. I didn’t take as many photos during the weekend like I thought I would. Actually, the ones below are the only photos I took the entire weekend. We were too busy having fun to really take any others. :)
Nathan and Elisabeth have been married for nearly a year. Elisabeth had asked me if I could photograph their wedding but at the time I wasn’t sure if I would be up to the challenge. We’ve been wanting to do photos together for the longest time and on Sunday afternoon we finally made it happen while we walked all over the college campus.
Nathan and Elisabeth know the campus pretty well because they are both Concordia University Wisconsin alumni but they were interested to see the remodeling changes that have happened since they graduated. I had never been on the campus before so it was all very new to me. Elisabeth told me about the adventures she and Nathan had on campus and Nathan and I perused the library books while Elisabeth chatted with the library director. We took photos down by Lake Michigan (because of where the sun was we couldn’t really get a good shot with the lake in the background) and in one of the courtyards on campus. We all had a great time and I’m looking forward to seeing them again the next time I visit Wisconsin.
Amanda’s Blog: Renewing My Strength: Thoughts on God’s Word in my life.
Elisabeth’s Blog: Wedded Bliss and Cupcakes: Chronicles of a young homemaker.
Concordia University Wisconsin