Wednesday, November 19, 2014


Just popping in to say that Bombasine is not dead, just sleeping. I know it's been quiet, and it will be quiet for a bit longer...but there are big plans in store :-)

Friday, October 3, 2014

Lessons from Skirtember

Well! Skirtember is over. I'll admit I had it a bit easy, since I work at home and don't always NEED a real outfit (I also cheated a few times, but it is really hard to work up the gumption to get fancied up just to go to the post office... which I did do at least once.)

These were my take-aways:

- If a skirt or dress requires special undergarments, it ain't gonna get worn.
I've got some of those no-show "hipster" undies from H&M that really aren't bad, compared to thongs, but still. The notion of a strapless bra will not even be entertained. This is a really good thing to know about yourself and keep in mind while shopping :-P

- Getting into or out of a tall car in a short skirt is exceedingly difficult.
I've got a lot of sympathy for Britney and Lindsay now. Though, knowing this information, I probably wouldn't go commando.

- You'll get more comments when you don't wear pants
Some of these will be the creepy-leering-dude sort, many will be the ladies-of-all-ages saying your outfit is cute sort. Nobody likes the first kind, and if you're as painfully introverted as I am you may find the second kind a little stressful too, even though they are delivered with the kindest intentions. I find that sunglasses really cut down on how many people talk to me, as does walking around with a gait and expression that says "I'm running late because of someone else's incompetence and they are definitely losing their job and at least one limb when I make it back to the office."

More like "Keep Calm and Don't Fucking Talk To Me"

- Tights need to be like, three inches longer in the leg.
Seriously, I'm not particularly tall and I don't usually have to buy "long" jeans, but tights crotches are almost always way too dang low. Makes you feel like a penguin, but not as cute.

- A skirt-based wardrobe is annoying to launder
All kinds of tights and fabrics that shouldn't go in the dryer... just how many lingerie bags is a gal expected to own, man? I guess you could choose only hardy-fabric items and skip the tights and it wouldn't be so bad, but...meh.

- I love jeans... but skirts are more fun to style.
They're also tougher to style, since you have to actually consider the colors on your bottom half instead of just going "PFfffff jeans go with everything!" I've got my wardrobe whittled down to a fairly limited palette, though, which definitely helps.

- I definitely feel more comfortable in skirts than when I started
...which was the goal (I'm prone to feeling too "dressy" and getting a bit self-conscious... it's also the reason I rarely wear earrings.) I'm also kind of sick of them, but I'm sure that'll fade. There were a few skirts/dresses I didn't get around to wearing, and now I need to take a long hard look at them and figure out if I really like them enough to keep.

All in all, definitely a challenge I'd recommend.... and it's not too late, I just saw the word "Frocktober" somewhere! And then there's always "No-pants November" and "Dresscember"...

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Skirtember's End, Sept 23-30

Shirt: One Step Up
Skirt: Stoosh
Tights: Michael Stars layered over solid black
Shoes: Aldo
Plaid shirt: Forever 21

This is around the point when I started getting sick of Skirtember and pushing it a bit farther. I wanted to make sure to work in some of these slightly trickier skirts (though I'll admit there were a few I didn't get to.)

Hat: This one
Jacket: Vintage Paul Louis  (my mother's! Unfortunately she's shorter than me and was itty bitty, so it's a bit small.) 
Dress: Rewind
Tights: Unknown
Boots: Mossimo
Purse: The Sak

Bats! They are very important. And adorable. 

Hat: Fave
Jacket: Theory
Sweater: Abound (seems to be a Nordstrom/Rack brand?)
Skirt: Windsor
Fringe Slip: Val Mode (vintage)
Tights: UO
Necklace: Unknown

Jacket: Bebe
Flannel: Merona
Tights: these- they're not quite leggings, not quite tights.
Necklace: found on, but I don't think it's this one.

Back view of fun legging things:

Whew! Well! That wraps it. I've got another post in progress where I do a little naval gazing about this whole skirtstravaganza, but in the meantime... time to turn our attentions to the great month of Halloween. Or October. Or whatever you want to call it. 

Friday, September 26, 2014

Fragrance Wars

The other day I realized that I had accidentally purchased disposable razors with scented handles.

Scented. Fucking. Handles.

As a society, we have apparently decided that it's not enough that every product we put on our body has a smell, now the tools we use to do so must smell as well. I am fanatical about avoiding artificial perfumes, but I never even thought to check goddamn RAZOR BLADE HANDLES.

Don't mind me, just heading to the shower.

There are plenty of very good reasons to avoid synthetic fragrances, but let's back up a minute and make the assumption that you, like many people, don't mind and maybe even enjoy perfumed products.

You step into your shower, where you use your Berry-scented shampoo, Lily Essences conditioner, Pink Grapefruit body wash, Mint Julep facial scrub, Cashmere Rain shaving cream (wtf?), and your stupid ass Venus razors with the "tropical scent" handles.


You step out into your bathroom and take a big whiff of your Clean Linen plug-in. You slather some "Pasión de Tango" deodorant, moisturize with your Rose facial oil, and spray a little "Fresh Fragrance" hair product into your hair for some texture. Gotta moisturize those newly-smooth legs, so you grab some Pumpkin Latte and Marshmellow body lotion (it's fall, after all!) Perhaps you're expecting your period, so you make use of a "Clean Fresh Scent" pantyliner, then wash your hands with some Crisp Morning Air handsoap and follow up with Berry Blossom hand lotion. Oh, and let's not forget a puff of Chanel No. 5!

You walk into the other room to get dressed - your laundry detergent claims to smell like a Butterfly Kiss, but you're not sure how that's even possible. Next it's time to slap on some lipstick that smells curiously of Gummy Bears, some Watermelon blush, some Chocolatey-smelling bronzer and Vanilla-scented mineral eyeshadow. When you come out into the living room, looking fab and ready to start your day, you realize that it's smelling a bit musty in there- but hey, it's nothing that a little Midnight Storm Febreeze won't take care of. Just for good measure, you light up a Summer Wish (equally perplexing) candle.

At this point, you smell like a Yankee Candle shop operating upstairs from a funeral home. You are the olfactory equivalent of taking everything in your fridge, putting it in a food processor, and calling it soup. Migraineurs scream and run at the first whiff of you. Airplane seatmates sniffle and dab at watering eyes. Dogs are confused by you.

But honestly? Unless you're actively trying to avoid scented products, this is probably the sort of stuff you'll end up with in your home. Fragrance is ubiquitous- it's in EVERYTHING. It is literally even in products marked "Unscented", I shit you not. (Men, you are not exempt- your soaps, shaving creams, colognes, deodorants, detergents, and god-help-you "body sprays" are just as bad. Though I don't think we've started scenting your goddamn razors yet.)

Of course, you can't smell these smells. Your nose is used to them, so except for that first powerful whiff when you open up the bottle or light up the candle, you don't even notice them. One of the most shocking things I learned when I gave up scented products was just how much EVERYTHING smells- once your olfactory receptors have recovered from their constant fatigue, you'll be amazed what you can smell.

So you don't smell particularly good to yourself, since you don't notice. Other people either also don't notice (being used to synethtic fragrance themselves) or notice and find you, frankly, unbearable (and that's if they're lucky and don't end up with a splitting headache, nausea, or congestion.) And all the while, the dang stuff is fucking with your hormones and slowly giving you cancer (among a jillion other things.)

So why? Why do it? Marketers want you to buy perfumed stuff because our olfactory memories are so intensely strong and linked to emotion- if you associate a particular smell with someone or somewhere you love, you'll want to smell more of it, and you'll pay money for the privilege. (It also nicely covers up the odors of the other nasty chemicals used in a lot of products- which is why "unscented" often...isn't.) Stores will pump scents into the air to affect your buying behavior and mood state - it sounds like some creepy Big Brother shit, but it's true. Restaurants will slap an air freshener into the bathroom outlet to hide the fact that it smells like pee all the time. They don't care if they're pumping you full of neurotoxins, just as long as you keep giving them money. Please, stop encouraging them!

There is a 0% chance that your handsoap smells like this.

Tips for Going Fragrance-Free (or at least Freer)

  • Read the labels. As I mentioned above, "Unscented" is sometimes meaningless, but "Fragrance Free" or "Free and Clear" is usually okay. Still, to be safe, look at the ingredients labels- avoid anything that lists fragrance, perfume, parfum, or fragrance oils. It's important to do this even when shopping at "natural" stores or for "natural" products, as many things claiming "With Lavender Essential Oil!" will also sneak in some artificial fragrances as well. One of the grossest things about fragrance is that companies don't have to tell you what's IN them because it's considered a "trade secret"... it could contain pretty much any kind of nasty poison they want to include. 
  • Don't forget things like dish soap and laundry detergent! Laundry detergent is particularly insidious, and if you start un-fatiguing your sniffer, soon you'll realize just how bad it is- when I buy second hand clothes, I have to wash them repeatedly and let them air out in the basement for months before I can stand to wear them. (New clothes usually need at least a wash or two, but aren't as bad.) Vinegar in the wash water helps, especially if you soak it (baking soda helps too, but may cause it to fade a bit.) 
  • If you want smells, consider natural sources. Essential oils do give some people headaches (or sniffles) but by and large are much safer than synthetics, and more and more products rely on them instead of their chemical alternatives. They're much less "sticky," too- if you wash your hands with soap scented with EO, the scent will fade very soon after, whereas conventional soap smells can stick for HOURS. (Just remember- don't use EOs on your skin at full strength, dilute them with a milder oil! A little goes a long way.) Many beneficial skin oils and butters have lovely scents on their own- my current deodorant is made with cocoa butter and coconut oil, and while it's not very strong, my armpits definitely smell like some sort of delicious confection. Linens can be stored with sachets of dried herbs to help keep them from getting stale in the closet (or you can just wash them again right before you use them, if they've been away for a long time.) 

Hello, I am delicious, and oh so useful.

  • Even if you don't choose to ban fragrances from your life entirely, at least be picky. If you want to smell like your expensive perfume or fancy body lotion, you shouldn't be using 20 other products with different smells at the same time. Soaps, hair products, detergents, shaving creams, etc really do not need to have smells- all they do is cling and compete with whatever smells (deodorant, perfume, lotions) you are actually intending to put on. (And don't even get me started on scented make-up, wtf is THAT about?) Figure out what you actually want to smell like and eliminate the rest so you don't smell like potpourri vomit.

A Disclaimer:
Yes, cutting artificial scents out of your life will probably make you more sensitive to them. Walking past Abercrombie & Fitch will feel like chemical warfare, and if you're a hugger you'll soon learn what detergent all your friends are using. But the trade-off (besides all that "not putting poisons in your body constantly" stuff) is that a healthy, less-fatigued schnozz is much better for smelling good smells- things like actual vanilla, actual pumpkin lattes, actual clean air and autumn leaves. Given how entwined smell is with taste, I wouldn't be surprised if there were benefits there too.

(By the way, those scent names up there? All totally real products. I think Gain detergent wins for originality- Sweet Sizzle, Icy Fresh Fizz, Moonlight Breeze, Dreamy Desire..... and I'm always amused by scents claiming to be "Fresh" or "Clean Air." Oh the irony.)

Gas mask photo by Vivian Aubrey, butchered by me... she would never commit such crimes against Photoshop.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Feelin' Skirty, Sept 10-22

Hat: Fave (handknit)
Shirt: OP (as in Walmart, I think... I got it second hand and it's my favorite ever.)
Skirt: Windsor (old, but they've got a lot of pencil skirts.)
Tights: xhilaration (probably? I don't know, I own a lot of opaque black tights.)
Boots: Minnetonka (these are a few seasons old, but these are similar.)

Hat: Suture (handknit)
Sweater: Mossimo
Dress: Lux
Socks: unknown, but probably from Sock Dreams
Boots: Mossimo

Sweater: Roxy
Socks: b.ella, I think. Believe it or not they are different from the last pair.

Shirt: The tag just has a bunch of spiderwebs on it instead of a name (?!)
Tights: cheap random-ass nylons like the kind you buy in an egg or whatever
Socks: unknown, but probably from Sock Dreams
Boots: Blue Suede Shoes (I find it disturbing how many brands just straight up don't have a website. At least TRY, geez.) 

This was my Halloweenified outfit for Hell's Hearsefest, an event that anyone in the area should absolutely attempt to attend someday.

Clearly, I had estimated the aesthetic of the event accurately.

Hat: Fave (handknit)
Sweater: Old Navy (ancient)
Skirt: MICHAEL Michael Kors
Socks: Urban Outfitters (similar)

I think when this month is over, I'll feel a lot more comfortable wearing skirts (which was the goal) but I'm also going to be really freakin' sick of it. And this is without even going out everyday...and having a few cheat days (because it's really hard to get all gussied up JUST to go to the post office, y'know?)

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Skirtin' along, Skirtember 2-9

When you see how few outfits I have to show for September, you'll really grasp the full extent of how much working at home isolates you, haha. It appears that I left the house 3 times in 8 days (yikes.) In the interest of honesty, I did cheat and run two quick errands in jeans, though. So, 5 times.  (I've been posting these on Instagram as I go, so if you follow me there you've probably seen them. Look for the #skirtember tag.)

Hat: Garage sale find of the year, whoop whoop!
Tank: Thrifted and tagless, whomp whomp.
Shirt: James Perse (TJ Maxx always seems to have these, in various colors, for way less than that.)
Skirt: Vintage, no label
Tights: Urban Outfitters (Don't buy these ones if you're tall- they want to slide down so that the line is on or below your knee.)
Shoes: Ole standby's from Payless

Tank: H&M
Cardi: BDG
Skirt: Gap (thrifted and ancient... Gap is super excited about black denim right now though, FYI)
Tights: xhilaration 
Boots: Soda (I bought these for my halloween costume... scroll down a few posts and I bet you can guess what I'm planning to be, haha. I looked everywhere for a real leather pair but didn't want to spend $100+ on halloween cowboy boots, so, oh well.)

Let me tell you something about pestering your significant other to take pictures of your outfits: Eventually they may start getting bored. As a result this is the best picture I have of this one, haha. But that's an awfully nice ice cream truck, right??

Top: BDG
Skirt: MICHAEL Michael Kors
Tights: Urban Outfitters
Shoes: Aldo (I wish they still sold these- they look like black-on-gray wool chucks and I love them so, so much. I'm going to be devastated when they wear out.)

I'm a little ashamed that I've worn the black skirt twice when I still have plenty that I haven't touched. A lot of them just feel a bit more... formal, I guess? Ah well, I'll have to tough it out. For science.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Remember, Remember, the First of Skirtember....

Somehow, it's already September. This month means a lot less once you're out of school- especially if you're childless- but I'll never shake the urge to buy new notebooks and pencils. It also has the perfect weather for a little experiment I've been cooking up...

I have a pretty healthy collection of skirts, dresses, and tights, but I almost never wear them because tossing on jeans is so damn easy. So I've challenged myself (and you, if you want to play along) to celebrate the holy month of Skirtember.

The rules are simple: No pants outside of the house until October (exceptions can be made for things like manual labor, horseback riding, etc. But otherwise. Skirt 'em up.)

I'll post all my outfits, either here or on Instagram (bombasinedoll, btw) under the #skirtember tag (I thought I was being terribly clever with the play on words, but a quick Google search indicates that I am far from the first to think of it. Ah well.) Since I work at home there won't necessarily be an outfit everyday, but I'll try to drag my sorry ass out of my pjs at least a few times a week ;-)

Today's outfit is nothing to write home about, but it's hot as balls (and twice as muggy) so I wasn't really feeling "layers" or "tights" (I loathe having bare legs, so you KNOW it's gotta be gross out for me to go without.) 

Shirt: Bozzolo
Skirt: MICHAEL Michael Kors
Shoes: Aldo
Sunglasses: Garage sale junk
Necklace: Satomi Studio
Dogs: Out of frame because it's WALKIES TIME, dammit. 

(Speaking of dogs, do other people's leashes manage to get riddled with impossible-to-untie knots? Or are we just really talented?)

If you're feeling a bit skirty as well but need some inspiration, I've been hoarding pantsless Pins hardcore the last few days. Please do join in! 

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Metrotimes Mention

Kids, if you befriend a goth-souled pre-journalist in your adolescence, sometimes later this happens. Thanks Lee!

For context, the "midnight somewhere" was a response to his protest that it was too early to hang out ;-P We all know I'm actually in bed by then.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Dyeing Dark Brown Hair with Henna

I've been using henna to dye my hair for awhile now. I started with the Lush products (detailed here) but ultimately their overpowering perfume smell and relatively fast-fading results were not doing it for me anymore. I'd heard good things about but was a bit overwhelmed (there's a lot of info and a lot of choices, there, haha!) and never got around to ordering. Eventually I came across Henna Color Lab, which has lots of lovely premixed colors and really pretty darn good prices, so I gave 'em a whirl.

I started with the Natural Black a few months ago. This is the color you see in all my recent outfit posts, and in the "before" picture here: dyeing hair with henna, before

(though it is just now starting to fade a little.) It gave me a great, neutral-toned, long-lasting, super-dark-brown...but it wasn't black. And I'm itchin' for black, lately. It's tough to get a good black without using the cancer-loaded stuff, so I haven't done it in years.

For true jet black, I've always heard that doing an application of pure henna first followed by an application of pure indigo (rather than mixing the two) was the way to go. So that's what I decided to do, though as you'll see, it didn't quite work out as planned...

So first, the henna: dyeing hair with henna, during

Left henna for almost two hours and got this: dyeing hair with henna, after
Infinite hair photo! dyeing hair with henna, after

Annnnd I LOVED it. I thought just plain henna would probably turn my hair strange and brassy, but it was just like a lovely red glaze, and surprisingly natural looking (I've never used a commercial dye that actually resulted in natural-looking dark red-brown hair.) So for the moment, the indigo will wait. I still do plan to aim for black for the winter, but for now, I am digging the reddish.

Some notes/tips: 

- buy your own plastic cap and gloves, because the ones that come in the kit aren't very good. The tighter the gloves, the better, because the muck is sticky and will pull loose gloves right off your hands. While you're there, look for ear caps- they're like tiny shower caps for your ears, and they're awesome.
- They say to mix the powder with hot water until you get a "pudding-like" consistency... mine was super lumpy, but it was fine. I mushed it a bunch with my hands just to be sure. Having it be a little on the thick side helps it go on without too much splatter.
- Speaking of splatter... this shit looks like, well, shit. Do not have people over until you've had time to thoroughly clean your bathroom, because it is almost guaranteed that you will have tiny blobs of what appears to be poop stuck to various surfaces. Not a pretty sight. But potentially useful in practical joking?
- People say henna is super messy, but I don't think it's worse than regular hair dye, really... unlike normal hair dye it doesn't stain immediately, so if you wipe it off your skin fast enough it won't leave too much of a mark. (It will, of course, stain your skin... that's henna's primary use, after all. But at least you don't have to panic about what chemical nastiness you're getting on your hands- at worst you'll just be a little colorful.) Rinsing is a bit of an adventure, but unlike the Lush stuff that seems to rinse out in chunks, this stuff dissolves pretty well.
- It smells herby. I find the smell a little obnoxious but not horrifically awful (unlike Lush and chemical dyes.) Once you've got the shower cap on, you barely smell it.
- I have heard that you can amp up the indigo by not wrapping your hair, but that sounds messy. A porous hairnet might be helpful though.
- Protip: Make yourself a super fashionable poncho out of a garbage bag.

Um, so this post is about two months old, but I waited so I could give you an update on how it wore over time. It has definitely faded a bit, but it still has a red tinge when the light hits it. I'll probably try the indigo pretty soon, but I'm torn as to whether to do the henna again first (as you're supposed to, to make it stick and balance out the blue tones) or just give it a whirl and see if it sticks to what's left in my hair. 

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Fantasy Shopping: Free People Dresses

It would appear that someone at Free People got the memo about the whole "goth hippie cowgirl" trend, 'cuz their current collection is pushing all the right buttons. A sampling, while I daydream about a life in which I actually wear dresses more than twice a year...

Elizabeth Maxi Slip / Frontin Slip / Black Magic Mini

(that third one is my favorite. It's like Wednesday Addams westernwear.)


Thursday, July 3, 2014

Fixing Snagged Knitwear

Figured as long as I'm fixing this sweater, I might as well make a tutorial ;-) Snagged knits are a pain in the butt, but fortunately they're pretty easy to fix. I can tell already that this one will be catching on every splinter, loose nail, and dog claw it encounters, but oh well.

Apologies for wandering off camera a bit towards the end- new set-up, still kinda figuring it out!

Monday, June 23, 2014

OOTD: Solstice

(I'm a few days late posting, ah well.)

Pretty much everything in this outfit is cheapy-cheap, old, or both.

Tee & shorts are some generic brand from those chintzy, dirt-cheap, most-likely-made-in-China stores. I don't love buying that kinda junk-food clothing, but I looked EVERYWHERE for a perfect pair of black shorts that actually fit me, and lo and behold, these are the only ones I could find. I also stocked up on basic tees at one of those places years ago, and they're still going strong- holding up a lot better than the ones I bought at UO around the same time, actually.

Boots are second-hand Mossimo

Hat and sunglasses are from garage sales. Good deals both, though the hat needs a little reshaping with the ole steamer. (I took a millinery class years ago, I should get back into that...)

The tights are similar to these, but I've had them for at least ten years now (um, wow) so who knows. (Proof- note the date in the address bar!)

The necklace, which you can see better here, is made of crystals and comes from a seller at the Rust Belt Market called Precious Hardware- unfortunately I can't find a website for her stuff.

Fashion Icon: Marceline the Vampire Queen


I feel like Marceline's style really resonates with me- simple, comfortable, darkish but not exactly goth. Lots of gray and red, and boots. I guess after 1000 years you pretty much get your schtick down pat. And can we take a moment to applaud the creators of Adventure Time for actually having characters wear different clothes sometimes? (Not so much Finn, but hey. At least he's got a nice hat.)

Marceline- Sunhat

The boots are the wrong color, I know, but I couldn't believe I actually found heeled boots with tiny bows!

Marceline- Sweater

Marceline Purple Top



Thursday, June 12, 2014

Inspired by: Dark Crystals

(click through to read about this particular stone, it's kind of interesting.)

I was going to put that last one in as a joke but actually that's a pretty nice poster. 

Peonies and Off-Blacks

I love peonies, they're so darn fluffy. I found this hat at a garage sale for $1 the other day- it is measurably improving the quality of my life (and cutting down on my anxiety about burning the top of my head- I've done it before, and would rather not repeat the experience.)

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

OOTD: April 22nd Shirt: James Perse/ Pentagram Cage Bra: DIY, link provided / Leggings: From GoJane, but weirdly unlabeled/ Shoes: Modesta Shirt: James Perse/ Pentagram Cage Bra: DIY, link provided / Leggings: From GoJane, but weirdly unlabeled/ Shoes: Modesta

Shirt: James Perse
Pentagram Cage Bra: DIY, here
Leggings: From GoJane, but weirdly unlabeled
Shoes: Modesta (similar to these)

Black velvet photographs so strangely- it doesn't seem to reflect any light, so it just turns your legs into black holes, haha. Good to know, I guess, if you ever wanted a really rich (and probably expensive) black background for photography...

These shoes are pretty but they're almost unwearable. They're from Modcloth, but not the ones I linked above- maybe those are better. 


romantica theme by Pink + Lola