Tag Archives: watercolor

Wardrobe Essential: the Leather Jacket pt. 2

Here’s the final result of my fashion sketch! It was completed with watercolor and cleaned up in Photoshop.

All Saints Spitalfields Cargo Leather biker jacket watercolor fashion illustration sketch

Today’s Fashion Illustration:
 $$$ Cargo Biker Jacket 
or Free People $$ Vegan Leather Moto

These days, it seems the leather moto is an on-trend must-have. The price tag can average well over $300; so I see it as something of an “investment.” For what you could end up spending, this jacket should last forever.

I’m not sure about tailoring leather, so I wanted something that looked great off the hanger. (A tall order for a short girl.)

My hunt for the perfectly proportioned piece lasted two years. (My friend, also spent a year choosing her leather love.) But, it was well worth it!

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Wardrobe Essential: the Leather Jacket pt. 1

And now, back to some classic Sketchbook Closet fashion illustration. (Don’t worry, Wedding Wednesday will be back soon!)

allsaints leather jacket fashion sketch sketchbook

Today’s Fashion Illustration:
 $$$ Cargo Biker Jacket 
or Free People $$ Vegan Leather Moto

A while ago, my friend recommended posting work in progress. After much deliberation, I’m finally getting around to it. It’s fun for me to see the process of the pieces; I hope you’ll enjoy it too!

allsaints leather jacket fashion sketch sketchbook cargo biker

The subject I really wanted to focus on is my (not so) shiny new leather jacket. It’s a recent purchase and I just can’t wait to get it on my back again. I plan to finish this sketch with watercolor.

The pad I’m using is an Arches hot press watercolor block. I prefer hot press because it has a smooth surface (which is better for scanning.) Watercolor blocks are also easy since they dry flat without ripples or curls.

The leather of this “cargo biker” jacket is really soft and supple. It has a lot of texture, highs and lows, and definition. I tried to express that with shaky line work and a rough pencil quality.


Since this is a black jacket, a lot of the lines will get covered up by the dark paint. But, I’ll be able to pull them out with white ink (or Photoshop.) I really can’t wait to add color and see the finished product.

I hope you like this new part of Sketchbook Closet; thanks for viewing.

Military Parka over Oxblood

watercolor fashion illustration

Today’s Fashion Illustration:
Military Parka $$ Urban Outfitters or $$$ Current/Elliott, white boy button-down $$ Madewell, oxblood sweatshirt $ Topshopskinny black denim $ asos or $$$ JBrand, Clarks Rosepoint Booties $$ Nordstrom

Congratulations to the two winners of the giveaway. They are Claire – and – Victoria (of Oh-So Pretty)!!

Thanks to everyone for participating and offering suggestions for the future of the blog. It seems like most of you just want the hits to keep on coming. I will definitely try to continue to deliver great outfits with a mix of price points. And, I promise to focus on what to wear during these super cold days!

Some of my favorite suggestions were: more gift guides, Instagram videos and tutorials, tech accessory and soft goods round-ups, and collaborations.

I’ve been wanting to do some sort of tutorial for a while, but just haven’t been sure how to spin it. I’ll be sure to add it to the line-up. I really think having some videos on Instagram could be really cool… although I’m not sure how I would videotape and draw at the same time. (I guess VNg would have to help…)

And, I would really love to do some more collaborations. Anyone out there who is interested and has any ideas — shoot me an email – I’d love to hear about it!!

Thanks again…. and thanks for viewing! Happy Humpday!!

What I Wore: My Engagement Party Outfit

Lanvin blanc inspired dress.

Today’s Fashion Illustration:
patent nude sandal
 $ Steve Madden or $$$ Manolo Blahnikpeplum dress $$$ Alice + Olivia or $$ asosgrey cardigan $$$ Net-a-Porter or $$ J.Crewsingle pearl necklace Dogeared, pearl & diamond studs $$$ Bloomgindale’s or $$$$

Lanvin bridal blanc inspired dress for our engagement party.

VNg proposed right before my birthday so we celebrated with most of our friends the night of my party. But, we didn’t get to see our family, so we decided to throw an intimate engagement party. (Other brides out there, did you have an engagement party? We also thought it was a nice way to introduce the families.)

Searching for the place was almost as stressful as finding the real venue (haha, yeah right. More on that next time.) We ate in a new place nearly every night for two weeks trying to find the right spot. (Mad props to VNg as probably one of the most patient and supportive guys ever. He’s been incredible during the planning process–humoring my obsessive perfectionism. Sorry, other dudes whose girlfriends/wives read this blog, but it’s true.)

In the end, we found the cutest spot ever in Union City, NJ. We had a great contact (Christine!) who was very accommodating. The food was good and everyone had a great time!

As you might remember, I LOVE Lanvin’s Blanche collection. So, I knew I wanted to wear something like this stunner. Believe it or not, I don’t have $3-4K to blow on a dress. So, naturally I decided to make one. (Yes, I know just how to create extra tasks when I’m already stretched thin. I can’t be the only one, right?!?!)

The Lanvin is made of scuba material. Mine’s stretch cotton; in retrospect, I wish I’d chosen something with a little spandex and a little more substance. (Throughout the day, it held some pretty severe creases. Womp womp.) But, considering I hadn’t sewn something that complex since college, I think it looked decent.  (The whole thing was lined and the bodice even had boning!)

I like the simplicity of the Lanvin dress, but I added decorative stitching at the side seams to  accentuate the waistline. (If you want to see, check out Instagram.)

Well, there you go. I hope you guys liked the first (of many? should I do more??) “Wedding Wednesday.”

Also, don’t forget to enter the giveaway to win an original piece of artwork (by me) and a cute convertible handbag!


Giveaway: Convertible Clutch & Artwork

My first giveaway; a faux leather convertible clutch from YesWalker.com

Today’s Fashion Illustration: Faux Leather Convertible Shoulder Bag from YesWalker

Hooray, hooray! Today is the official re-launch of Sketchbook Closet.  (You may notice the spiffy new layout. I love the mini previews of my Instagram feed!! What do you think?)

And, to kickoff the “new” site – I’m having my first giveaway!

Two randomly chosen readers will win the above clutch.  Plus, I’ll send a surprise print of my artwork mounted in an 8 x 10″ matte.

To enter:

  • Post a comment below telling me what you hope to see in future posts, or what you already love about the blog.

Get a second entry by additionally Liking me on Facebook. Get another by following  my Instagram.

I’ll post the two winners next week.  Good luck everyone!  I can’t wait to read your comments.

Re-launch: Monday 10/28

working on a re-launch for my fashion illustration blog
Maybe it’s fitting that this month Sketchbook Closet turned one year old.  I’ve been reflecting on why I created it, what I hoped to gain, and whether or not I should continue it. I’m pretty ashamed of my lack of posts.  (I definitely have a deeper appreciation/respect for those bloggers out there who consistently deliver awesome content.)

I wanted this to be a work in progress… a place for me to grow, experiment, and evolve.

Some of you know that I recently started a new full-time job, am in the process of launching an exciting side-project, and VNg and I are planning our wedding.  So, finding the time seems daunting. That said, I hope to post at least twice a week.

I’m looking forward to an exciting new re-launch this coming Monday (including Sketchbook Closet’s first ever giveaway!!!)

I have a lot of fresh ideas and fun outfits to share so, stay tuned. (If you have anything you’d like to see… Let me know! I’d love to hear.)

In the meantime, check out my Instagram where I always post updates and daily photos.

I Love My: Coach Legacy Perforated Penny

I left my apartment no less than five minutes before receiving the first of many compliments on my new Coach Legacy Perforated Penny bag.  So, I just had to turn my new purchase into a pretty handbag illustration.

Handbag illustration of Coach Legacy Perforated Leather Penny bag

Today’s Illustration
perforated leather penny shoulder purse 

Honestly – I never thought much of Coach.  To me, the brand evoked images of over monogrammed jacquards or mean girls in high school.

This was challenged a year ago when my coworker boasted the condition of her five-year-old satchel.  She said “old” Coach bags had heritage, quality, and classic design.  The conversation stayed in the back of my mind…

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OMG, Shoes (Fashion Illustrations)

As you know, I have spring on the brain.  Long story short – I discovered that Amazon has an awesome shoe store (with great search features plus free returns on most items) aaaaand I ordered a bunch of sandals!  Here are my impressions, final verdicts, and fashion illustrations (of course.)

Lauren Ralph Lauren Hazel buckle platform sandal

Hazel platform sandal Lauren Ralph Lauren

I got these in a size 5 – they fit great and I love the snakeskin texture.  But in my opinion the “sandstone” color was too dull and desaturated for spring/summer.  I might get another pair in white and see how those look, but I’m still not sure. Returned.

Schutz, Christie platform sandal

Christa sandal Schutz

The smallest I could get was a 5.5 and the fit made walking around feel awkward.  I loved the chunky wooden platform – and the Jute sole seemed comfortable for hot weather (aka if my feet got sweaty… ew) but I think it might take me a while to get used to the texture.  (Am I crazy? Any “jute sole” fans out there??)  The straps were a really pretty color but, unfortunately these were just too big to keep. Returned.

Lauren Ralph Lauren, leather Hart platform sandal

Hart platform sandal Lauren Ralph Lauren

Amazon only had these in a size 5.5 as well.  As soon as I slipped my feet into these babies I knew they were keepers.  The leather straps were buttery soft.  The heel height is high (which I like) but didn’t feel uncomfortable after wearing around the house for a while.  I also love the “Polo Tan” color – it’s exactly what I was looking for.  And – bonus: V.Ng liked them too!  Verdict: Exchanged (for a size 5 on Zappos.)

Did I make the right decisions or do you disagree? Let me know what you think; I’d love to read your opinions.

Thanks for viewing my fashion illustrations, everybody!


I Love My: Colorblock Ray-Ban’s


Ray-Ban Two Tone Wayfarers

  Today’s Illustration: two-tone wayfarer sunglasses ($$ Ray-Ban) Last year V.Ng and I were preparing for a trip to Cali. (We visit often because my brother and his wife work in the wine industry in Napa.  Score!)  We went to Soho with the explicit goal of buying shades.  It was a disaster; I ended up crying because so many sales people were really mean to me (Pretty Woman style – wth!) After five hours of sunglass shopping, an emotional episode and a raw oyster pit-stop we finally bought some. I got wayfarers and V.Ng bought clubmasters (which looked like they were made for him.) Fate must have been against us because about a month later neither of us had them.

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I Love My: Fun Flats


Fun icons, colors and patterns keep you chic and comfy all day.


Today’s illustration:
Le Bunny Bleu flats (or $$$ Tory Burch), Aldo bow ballet flats, Nine West dot flats  (or $ asos and $$$ DVF), Topshop ballet flats (or $ Banana Republic and $$$ Net-a-Porter)

I am definitely a fan of any shoe that will add height.  But, sometimes I know I’m going to be on my feet all day or other times V.Ng plans a night out that isn’t heel-friendly.  (Um, Dave and Buster’s!!!)

Enter my favorite fun flats.

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