Ways to Duct Tape Dress

When G. Weilacher said this, I am sure he never dreamed that in some time, the commonplace duct tape, used to seal anything and everything, would become a revolution in the world of fashion. Today, where crazy ideas rule the roost, dresses made of duct tape are the perfect solution to give you an edge, and make sure that you are the cynosure of all eyes. Strong enough to pull out a car from a ditch, and still easily enough ripped by hand, duct tape is a tape for all seasons with a strength, that is a result of its triple layer structure of plastic, cloth mesh, and adhesive.

These tapes first came into use during the Second World War, when they were used by the Allied Forces to seal different boxes, full of warfare, to protect them against water and other natural forces. Soon, their usage spread to factories and households, where they were employed for a host of activities, from patching things to sealing boxes for courier services and fixing leaky faucets (a lazy solution).

It was in 1995, when the world discovered that, the mundane everyday duct tape was the greatest invention since the wheel, when Tim Nyberg and Jim Berg, wrote The Duct Tape Book, which educated us about the brilliant, crazy, and unconventional uses of this tape. And since then, there has been no looking back. Everyone was hooked to this tape, including the world of clothes. The fashion crazy needed an idea, and there it was, sitting on their kitchen shelves, staring back at them.
Apparels and accessories made from duct tape have now become the new buzz word. It is durable and cheap. You can patch it up, and you won’t be hauled up by fashionistas. It takes little space while traveling, it is waterproof, and you can make your own dress out of it. No designer needed. So, how many dresses do you own that can boast of such unique characteristics?

A ‘Sticky’ Dress

The duct tape dress, while an adventurous choice to make, also tests your patience. Want to know how to make this dress? The one you are dreaming about. Well, here is how to make one.

  • If you are wary of creating and designing your own silhouette (like me), you could use a previously owned dress of yours, as the base. Create a design for this base, and then start sticking. Literally! Just get a sewing form or a friend to model your dress for you, and start wrapping the duct tape in the pattern that you envisaged. Wrap it horizontally, and pay attention to the details. Make sure that your dress has well aligned seams (or stick ’em paths). To wear the dress, just cut it up at the back, till the waist, and then cover up the slit with more tape when you wear it. Remember to press the tape evenly and firmly.
  • Alternately, you could use duct tape fabric. The sticky sides of two pieces of the tape are taken and joined at the center. Then two more pieces are used to cover the exposed part of the previous two pieces. This process is continued till one has the required length and breadth of fabric. It is then washed with water and lather, and dried. Use this fabric on an outline of your design made of real cloth, and go crazy with the pattern.

While at one time, the limited colors that the tape was available in, were enough to put you off the fashion, today there is a plethora of colors to choose from. For the safe dressers, there is the white or the brown, but then, if you are a safe dresser, this pattern would not be your cup of tea. So, for the adventurous, there are neons, electric shades, and day-glo to choose from.

A Dressy Affair

If you thought that people are giving this trend a miss on their special days, think again. Prom, the dream night of many high school students, has been taken over by this unique dressing style. And surprisingly, there have even been reports of people wearing wedding dresses made of this stylish fabric. Prom dresses made from duct tape are in vogue. In fact, there are nationwide competitions held by manufacturers of these tapes for the best prom dresses. Students all over the country vie for the scholarships that these competitions hand out as prizes. And for the socially conscious, as DeNeen L. Brown of The Washington Post put it, “Making a prom dress or a tuxedo out of duct tape is, like, so anti-corporate, anti-world hype, anti-commercialism.”

Duct tape dresses are glossy, and can be accesorized ingeniously with purses, shoes, belts, all made of…well, duct tape. However, these dresses, should also come with a statutory warning. They should be ideally worn with a layer of cotton. The tape does not allow your skin to breathe, as it is not absorbent. Hence, it is advisable to apply baby powder before wearing a duck tape dress. And also, check for any allergic reaction.

So go ahead, tape up and be that guaranteed winner of a dress. You never know when the shutterbugs may go clicking.

Tips on What Not to Wear

Not everyone is born with an excellent sense of fashion, or with the knowledge of what to wear and what not to wear on different occasions. Nonetheless, many have mastered the art of wearing exactly what brings out the best in them. They’ve learned, after innumerable embarrassing outfits and awkward situations, that the secret to looking good does not lie in knowing what to wear; it’s more about knowing what not to wear.

Tips for Women

Ah, women! Always worried about what looks good and what doesn’t; always competing with Ms. ‘Oh-So-Pretty’ to look better at every social gathering, to look the best. If you know what not to wear, you’ll automatically know what to wear. Here’s some advice for women of different shapes and sizes on not only what they shouldn’t be wearing, but also a little on what they should be wearing.

  • The Apple-Shaped Figure: For those of you who have a large bust compared to your hips, firstly, avoid over-sized clothes to make your hips look as large as your bust. Also, avoid wearing plunging necklines and wide lapels or ruffles around the neck, as these attract attention directly to the bust. Even outfits with shoulder pads are a big no-no! Empire cuts are not for the large busted, so even though they’re the latest in style, maintain your own by avoiding them. Avoid extremely tight or tapering pants. Instead, highlight details below the waist by wearing dark colors above. Moreover, pleats and cargo pants will enhance the right curves.
  • The Pear-Shaped Figure: Those with a narrow bust and large hips should avoid tops that end right at the hips. Short skirts are a big disaster for a small bust, as they completely divert attention to the hips. Wear dark colors on the lower body with lighter ones above to accentuate the bust. Also, wide necks, scarves and neckline embroideries should do the trick for those with a narrow bust.
  • The Wide Frame: If your entire body is wide, with few curves, you have a large frame. In such a case, avoid wearing large prints, bold, contrasting colors, and pants with large pockets. Horizontal lines are a definite error in judgment for large frames. Wear long skirts, shirts with sleeves tapering at the wrists, and long jackets. Monochromatic colors are good for those with a large frame.
  • The Narrow Frame: This is just a narrower version of those with a large frame. Avoid anything that highlights the waist, including large belts, collection of colors at the waist, and straight jackets. Vertical stripes should also be avoided. Instead, wear anything that will accentuate the upper and lower areas of your body, such as empire cuts, straight fit low-waist jeans, horizontal stripes, and contrasting colors at the top and the bottom.

Tips for Men

Today’s metro-sexual man knows exactly what he wants to look like, and wants to project the right image. Even so, there are many men who mistake the clothes they wear as trendy. Here’s some advice for men on what they shouldn’t and should wear.

  • The Skinny Man: For those of you who are too thin and always feel like nothing looks right, this is probably why: you’re wearing very loose clothes to add some bulk to the small frame, or you think your slim figure is sexy and you wear all your clothes to highlight it, and end up looking like a stick figure. Skinny jeans are for women, and lets keep it that way. To look great, wear bulky fabrics like corduroy, and shirts that are slightly larger than your narrow frame. Wear jackets that end right at your buttocks; and finally wear straight legged pants to look great.
  • The Plump Man: You’re the man who likes his weight, so you even wear clothes that highlight this fact. However, not everyone is comfortable with this knowledge about you; so avoid clothes that have large and bold prints on them. Men don’t have the privilege of carrying bags for their stuff, but an equal distribution of things you have to carry in your pockets will avoid making you look bulky in the lower region. Bulky fabrics and sweaters aren’t very flattering for your frame, so steer clear of them. Do not wear tight belts, as your belly will just flop out and look larger than ever. Instead, wear easily flowing fabrics such as cashmere. V-neck t-shirts and sweaters take away the attention from the double chin and highlight the chest instead. Long pants are the way to go to get the look of a naturally elongated body.
  • The Bulky Man: You’re not fat, but well-built; therefore, bulky. Avoid horizontal stripes, as they make you appear larger. Do not wear tight fitting clothes, especially skinny jeans, as they will enhance your large shoulders. Neither will baggy clothes help. In contrast, vertical stripes will narrow your frame considerably, without disturbing your natural look. Also, small prints and monochromatic colors will flatter your frame.

Whether you’re a man or a woman, thin or fat, narrow or wide, finding clothes that fit you well are of prime importance. Also, do not keep trying many clothes; it is best to go with what you are confident will suit you. It makes more sense to buy good looking clothes rather than giving preference to brands and price tags. Sometimes, the most expensive suit will not do the trick, which a suit purchased at a sale at half the price can do. Identify your body type and wear the clothes you’re most comfortable in. Confidence contributes most to that classy look you want to portray.

How to Chossing Workout Clothes for Men

Regular exercise is the best way to maintain physical fitness and overall well-being. Whether it’s running, jumping, weightlifting, stretching, etc., all these exercises help to lose those extra pounds and shape the body. Besides these physical aspects, exercise also helps to strengthen muscles, the cardiovascular system, and boost our immune system that helps fight different health ailments like obesity, heart diseases, diabetes, etc. Hence, considering all these benefits of exercise, it is vital for all of us to follow a regular exercise regime in order to stay fit. The clothes we wear during the workout are an important element that make a huge difference.

Most of us are unaware of the fact that well chosen clothes can help us to exercise better and for longer duration of time. Imagine yourself exercising wearing an old jeans and a flannel shirt, after a few minutes of exercising you will see yourself drenched in sweat with no energy to exercise further. Hence, it is very important that before you start any exercise program, you should have appropriate attire which will help you exercise properly.

Ideal Fabric

When we go shopping for some good gym attire, a lot of the times these clothes turn out to be very expensive, especially the designer ones or those with special designs and fabrics. Moreover, most of us don’t know what to look for while shopping. First, check whether it is made of a good fabric or not. Good fabric will let your body breathe and fit well.

The two most commonly used fabrics for exercising attire are cotton or synthetic materials like polyester. Though cotton is excellent, especially in the summer for daily activities as well as for workouts, the disadvantages are that it collects moisture and doesn’t allow the skin to breathe as effectively as synthetic materials. This means that you will be soaked during the entire workout when you wear cotton. Also, since cotton shrinks, these clothes are not very useful for long, regular, and strenuous workouts.

A better option is polyester which is light in weight and breathable. It is soft, quick-drying, and resists shrinking and stretching. Likewise, even nylon and spandex are good. They are light-weight, strong, quick-drying, and affordable. Used alone or when blended together, all these fabrics can serve as good materials that are breathable, stretchable, and won’t shrink even after repeated use.

Clothing for Men

Shorts: Tight compression shorts like lace-up flex shorts made of spandex can be worn as a base layer under exercise clothes. They benefit by providing overall support and by keeping the muscles warm to avoid cramps and strains.

Pants: Cotton jogging pants can be a good option for walking or just lounging around the house. However, when it comes to proper exercise in the gym or otherwise, pants like big performance pants, karate, or flextech pants made of a polyester blend which provide a little stretch and full range of movement can be a good option to consider. You can even go for zip-up or snap ankle pants in case you feel like taking your pants off in the middle of the workout session without much hassle.

Shirts: Go for something which is made of polyester or another synthetic fiber blend. This is because T-shirts made of such fabric help to regulate your body temperature by absorbing the sweat and letting your body breathe while exercising. Good options are tank tops, sleeveless muscle tees, victory T-shirts, etc.

Sweatshirts: Sweatshirts or hokies are great to stay warm before and after the workout. These sweatshirts are very appropriate especially in the winter when you are jogging outside.

Along with these exercise attire, it is equally important to wear proper shoes to enjoy the maximum benefits. The best shoes are the ones that provide proper cushioning as well as stability to your feet.

Ideas to Identify Quality Clothing

unduhan-12Shopping for clothes (especially if its cheap) will never fail to attract women (and men alike). With hundreds of shopping malls around housing thousands of brands, it becomes difficult to resist the temptation of buying. And in this adrenaline rush, you forget to check if that piece of clothing will stand the abuse of washing and the daily wear and tear.

Discounts-induced-shopping-syndrome is the word that I struck upon to describe those who resort to impulsive buying as soon as they spot a $10 dress or a $15 jacket, no matter how crammed their wardrobe might be with clothes.

I would say that instead of taking pride in the quantity of outfits, invest in some quality clothing. Don’t just enter an outlet because there’s a ‘Sale’; ask for recommendations from your friends, check the ratings of a particular outlet online, check the store website (if they have got one), and inquire around to check if the store is trustworthy. After you enter, quickly scan the store visually, check if the store is properly maintained, the staff is properly dressed and well-behaved, and whether they have a proper exchange policy in place. While selecting a garment, check the instructions for cloth care, see where it is made, inquire about the durability, and then decide if you should invest in it.

Before going into the nitty-gritty, here’s a fundamental fact. There is no foolproof method of checking the sturdiness of a cloth; it is only after several rounds of trial and error that you will be able to judge the quality and finalize the outlet that caters to your taste.

While the good news is that if you become a little aware and train yourself into rejecting shoddy material, you’ll end up investing in clothes that are really worth the buck!

Tips to Help You Identify Quality Clothing

For the Fabric

Check the Material

The first thing you do after you look at garment (and you kinda like it!) is to touch it. But what do you look for by touching it? Is it just the softness of material, or do you check for any other parameter? I don’t say that ‘fabric-must-feel-good’ notion is wrong but purchasing it just on the “feel factor” is not recommended.

Usually, what needs to be checked is whether the material is ‘100% natural’ like cotton, silk, and wool, or is it ‘mixed’ or ‘synthetic’, like nylon, or polyester.
Aspects to Keep in Mind
► Ability to resist wrinkles

► Water-absorption capacity

► Ability to regulate temperature

► Dust resistance

► Ability to resist shrinkage

► Antimicrobial ability

► Breathability

It is seen that natural fibers are easy to launder. They are highly breathable and have a higher capacity to regulate body temperature. They do not emit static electricity and are a great option for people with skin allergies, rashes, or chemical sensitivity. It is true that natural fibers wear a little faster over time as compared to the synthetic counterparts. However, you can opt for synthetics, as there’s no way I can say that synthetics are not good; even they can become a ‘good buy’ when purchased thoughtfully.

For the Garment

Check the Seams

The first thing that you should do while checking for quality of a garment is to turn the garment inside out and check the seams carefully. Seams are those lines of stitches that run down along the sides and join two pieces of cloth.
As a beginner, start looking out for loose threads and broken stitches. You can also hold the cloth from both sides of the seam and pull the stitches (a little!) to see if they are loose. Double seams are usually stronger than single seams. The density of seams also matter — usually 8-12 stitches per inch should be the ideal density. Checking these little points can guarantee you a sturdy piece of clothing.

Check the Hems

Hems are edges or the ends of a piece of cloth which are folded inside and sewn in order to prevent the fabric from unwinding. It is seen that nowadays to manufacture and complete the garments faster, the hems are sewn by advanced computerized sewing machines. But quality hems are the ones that are stitched by hand.
The only garment that can be an exception for a visible hem is a pair of jeans. Other than jeans, no other garment should have a top-stitched hem. Ideally, the hem should be stitched in such a way that it should not have any puckering or crookedness and should blend magically with the fabric.

Check for Lining

Lining is the extra piece of clothing that is stitched to the inner side of a garment. It is observed that lined garments are more durable than unlined ones. Contrary to the belief, a lining should never be tight. Speaking from a practical point of view, it should actually be a little loose so that it allows ease of movement without tearing or ripping apart. Also lined clothes usually are easier to glide on and provide a better fit.

Check the Buttons and Zippers

The first thing to observe about buttons are if they are complete, broken buttons are an indicator of poor quality. The harder and shinier buttons are usually considered superior. You should also check if they are sewn tightly and also if they fit into their respective buttonholes or not. The buttonholes should also be checked for poor stitching. Quality buttonholes are the ones that are stitched by hand and have a slight irregularity in the stitches. Coming to zippers, I would recommend metal zippers from my personal experience. They zip and unzip better and usually do not run out of track. Do not go for plastic zippers unless absolutely necessary.

Check for Design Matching

Design or pattern matching is nothing but a parameter to judge quality craftsmanship. If the designs blend with each other at the seams in such a way that the complete garment seems to be made of a single piece of cloth, then it is an indicator of superior quality. If the designs and patterns don’t align, it shows that the garment was made hurriedly by the manufacturer to produce quantity rather than quality.

Check for Discolorations, Blots, or Any Other Damage

It is also during its stay in the department store that the garment can undergo damage. Check thoroughly for any rips, stains, discolorations, or any other visible or the not-so-visible damages before taking the garment home.

Check the Instruction Tag

Here’s a tip for post-purchase care of your prized possession. Check the ‘instructions for care’ tag. If a garment is tagged ‘dry clean only’, it is impractical that you will visit the dry cleaner every time you feel the need to wash a garment. However, you can at least do it for the first time. Diligently following the instructions, like ‘dry in shade’, ‘do not wring’ or ‘do not iron’ will save the garment from getting ruined permanently.

To sum up, I would say that you should try to purchase clothing as if you are buying an asset. Instead of stuffing your wardrobe with cheap and deceptive clothes, search for quality by browsing through the various brands properly. Don’t condemn brands for being costly; they have earned that reputation over time and through customer satisfaction. Checking the garments before purchasing for all the above-given points will ensure that you bag only some sturdy and stylish long-lasting clothes.