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OOTD: Navy Floral Dress for Cool Spring + DIY Paper Bracelet Page to Bead Examples

Although the weather is warming up (this weekend, it seemed that snow was melting before my eyes), it's still tights and boots season in Minnesota. But when I wore this navy floral dress last week, I only had to pop a knit blazer over it rather than a pullover sweater, so I'll take that as a win.

Plus size outfit idea for women over 40
OOTD 3/21/23

I also wore my scarf in a loose necklace-like tie (Method 5: Loop to the front with ends brought through...from this post) rather than snugly around the neck for warmth.

Plus size outfit idea for women over 40

An advantage of this tie (when the ends are brought through multiple times) is that the visual impact of the distinctive print of the scarf is somewhat diminished...you mostly see the colors of the scarf rather than the print. This worked well for me because I had chosen a scarf with similar navy, blue, pink, and peach tones to the dress but with a floral print that clashed a bit. (This is an advantage of the braided method as well.) It's still a print mix, but it's a more subtle one than if I had worn the scarf with its print easy to see.

Plus size outfit idea for women over 40

I wore my go-to oatmeal DIY 5-braid headband made from an old t-shirt and simple silver earrings.

Plus size outfit idea for women over 40

I enjoyed the opportunity to wear this dress with my tall cognac boots one more time this season. The cognac looks great with navy and picks up the orange-y color from the print.

Plus size outfit idea for women over 40

My daily bracelet stack is based on a recent DIY paper bead bracelet set that I made specifically to coordinate with this dress. For this set, I wanted to emphasize the navy, blue, and pink/peach colors of the dress's print and left out the yellow and orange tones. I added a DIY blue lapis lazuli bead bracelet, a DIY soft blue glass disk bead + silver spacer bracelet, and a purchased navy/silver bracelet to complete my stack.

DIY Paper Bracelet Set

The top bracelet started life as a photograph from Audubon magazine of a large flock of waterfowl lifting off a lake against a rising sun. I loved the shades of blue and pink/peach in this photo, and I thought the small images of the silhouetted birds would show up nicely on paper beads...not necessarily recognizable as birds, but adding an interesting speckled quality to the beads. I cut 7 1" triangular strips and rolled them up into bicone beads. These turned out great with no doctoring of the paper strips before rolling!

DIY paper bead page to bead example

Coincidentally, the lowest bracelet also was made from bird magazine paper, this time from Birdwatching...a navy page with blue and white text...and a yellow bird that didn't fit my color scheme. I cut my strips from the left (oriented here, top) edge of the paper without the yellow bird, once again 7 1" strips for bicones. I colored over the white text with a light blue permanent marker to match the large blue lettering. None of the letters on the paper is visible in the rolled beads! Instead the beads have lines and streaks from the blue text against the navy background. And yes, I did keep the leftover paper with the yellow bird for later use.

DIY paper bead page to bead example
DIY paper bead page to bead example

Other posts in this series:






These cognac boots always remind me of a favorite rabbit fur coloration: the castor of the rex and mini rex breeds. Castor (which comes from the Latin for beaver) refers to the rich orangey-brown color that has a dark/light speckled quality (called the agouti pattern, which is the pattern wild rabbits have), as shown on this rex rabbit. This coloration together with the unparalleled softness of the rex's velvety fur makes for a gorgeous combination!

Castor Rex rabbit
Castor Rex rabbit

One thing that struck me about this rex rabbit is how much the head and ears reminded me of a hare. In my office, I have a print of this famous painting by Albrecht Dürer from 1502 that is called "Young Hare" in English but is "Field Hare" (Feldhase) in the original German. I was impressed to learn that the hare is drawn with such accurate detail that it can be identified as an adult hare rather than a young one. Do you also see that the hare and the rex rabbit have some similarities in the head and ear shape?

Castor Rex rabbit
Field Hare vs. Rex Rabbit

I was curious how a Google image search would identify this rex rabbit so I loaded up this image and here are the results. The first result, rex rabbit, is correct...and the second result is hares. So Google agrees that there is some similarity there.

Google reverse image search results

When I looked into the origins of the rex rabbit, all became clear. The first rex rabbits were developed from cross-bred Belgian hares! But wait...Belgian hares aren't actually hares...they are European rabbits that were bred to resemble hares. The hispid hare and the red rock hares are also actually rabbits. And the jackrabbit? It's not a rabbit; it's a hare. And the Easter Bunny, who will be visiting children all across the land very soon? He's a hare! The Osterhase ("Easter hare") was introduced to the US in the 1700s by German immigrants.


So what's the deal with rabbit versus hare? Is there even a difference? Sure, rabbits and hares are technically distinct. But in the US, people tend to not generally distinguish between rabbits and hares in normal contexts, calling both "rabbits." (Interestingly, in Germany, people tend to call both "hares" instead.) If you want to get scientific, you could call both rabbits and hares "leporids" (Latin for "those that resemble a hare"), which is the taxonomic family that contains both. They are also (along with their cousins the pikas) both "lagomorphs" (Greek for "hare" + "form") at the taxonomic order level.


Or you could just go with "bunny." This is definitely the word I use the most day to day.


A castor rex rabbit by any name would look as wonderful as an oversized accessory to my tall cognac boots + navy floral dress outfit!

Plus size outfit idea for women over 40

Do you like the dress + blazer outfit formula? Do you ever choose how to wear your scarf based on the print and how it works with your outfit? Are you a cognac leather aficionado? Do you have a preference among rabbit, hare, and bunny as the term for these adorable long-eared mammals?


Blogs I link up with are listed here.


10 comments

10 Comments


carolbenton
Apr 10, 2023

I love how the colors in your paper beads complement the floral dress so perfectly. I'm sure you're glad to be wearing a blazer instead of multiple layers of warm clothing. Nice outfit for early spring! Thank you for sharing this post in the Talent-Sharing Tuesdays Link-Up 59.

Carol

www.scribblingboomer.com

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sallyinstpaul
sallyinstpaul
Apr 11, 2023
Replying to

Thanks, Carol - early spring vs late spring definitely is very different around here!

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Di Cook
Di Cook
Mar 30, 2023

Love this outfit, Sally! It is a perfect segue into spring, especially if your mind is there, but the weather has not quite followed. I have never been to Minnesota, but your blog is giving me a good picture of what it is like, climate wise. Brrr! I like your cleaver scarf tie. I wear scarves frequently, so I will have to experiment with this one. I hear the term bunny-rabbit a lot. Especially with activities involving children around the Easter holiday. Enjoy your week, and thanks for sharing this informative post!

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sallyinstpaul
sallyinstpaul
Mar 30, 2023
Replying to

Ah, yes, bunny rabbit is also a common phrase - I didn't think of that one! Yes, Minnesota is definitely a cold place, but we make up for it with some hot days in the summer ;) This is a scarf tie I haven't seen a lot but has its uses. Thanks, Di!

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bijoubeadboutique
bijoubeadboutique
Mar 30, 2023

Beautiful outfit, Sally! I love the subtle print mixing. And the bracelet stack is lovely. And the Rex does look like a hare. Beautiful bunny.

Michelle

https://funkyfashionstyle.com

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sallyinstpaul
sallyinstpaul
Mar 30, 2023
Replying to

Rex and mini rex rabbits are so gorgeous, even by bunny standards. Thanks for the feedback on the print mixing! It's fun to try something a bit different.

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mlrbanks57
Mar 30, 2023

OK, I admit it. I had no idea a rabbit was different from a hare! I think I'll just go with bunny, too! I really like the dress with the scarf with the blazer. And, I am definitely in the cognac boot camp! They're so classic and add such a punch of oomph to an outfit!


https://marshainthemiddle.com/

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sallyinstpaul
sallyinstpaul
Mar 30, 2023
Replying to

Marsha, glad to find you in the cognac boot camp with me! (I would fail at military boot camp, but cognac boot camp is more my speed.) "Bunny" will always serve us well. Thanks!

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jodie filogomo
jodie filogomo
Mar 29, 2023

I go with bunny? Lol!!

Did you see all the cute bunny items in my updated post I shared on Tuesday? I was totally thinking of you!

And this print mixing is fabulous! Subtle but very effective!!

Xoxo

Jodie

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sallyinstpaul
sallyinstpaul
Mar 30, 2023
Replying to

YES to bunny! And YES to your adorable bunny finds - I have to pull myself back because I want ALL the bunnies, haha! Thanks, Jodie!

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