Christmas Greetings

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Dear friends and family,

I hope that this letter reaches you in time for the big day! It has been such a busy season that this is the first time I have gotten a chance to sit and write you all. Despite my normal bah humbug attitude I actually DECORATED for christmas. I put up the tree and decorated the mantle with care in hopes that my new roommates would be there. They aren’t and won’t until new years but I did send them a little video that DOCUMENTED this festive and rare show of Christmas Spirit.

I am writing you this from the comfort of bed, in fuzzy matching pajamas, watching Ernest Saves Christmas because I AM A GROWNUP.

This year (and last year while we are pointing fingers) has been complete and utter BULLSHIT. Hardest two years on record for me and most people I know and love. There were absolute highlights (so many weddings and babies and puppies and kittens) but the lows make it hard to trudge through and be merry. I am absolutely ready to pack it in and just hibernate until 2016 – BAH HUMBUG with my fellow grinches!

Processed with VSCOcam with a4 presetOne of my dearest friends, Ashley, plays this little game with me. She is the sunshine to my negative nancy tendencies and the polar opposites of our outlook helps me get through. Every time I say something I hate she makes me say something I love. It is a good reminder to see that I am indeed blessed and am going to make it through (see even this is hard for me to write without snark and with a straight face) and this list is dedicated to Ashley – because she fucking RULES.

Processed with VSCOcam with c3 presetThings I love:

• My friends – I have had a LONG year of sifting through friends that don’t really have my best interest in mind, BUT have really built friendships with people that I admire, respect, and adore. I am surrounded by the most talented and truly caring people and I am grateful every day for all of them!

• My parents – they rule. They have always ruled and I really won the parent jackpot with them.

• My new living situation – I have the best roommates and live in this magic castle on the hill. This house has INSTANTLY made me feel like I am home.

• My job and coworkers – these lovely people are also in my FRIENDS category but I feel they need a double shout out. I am lucky enough to get to do photography as a JOB and also work with the strongest, hard working, creative, hilarious, and kind group of bad ass babes I have ever encountered in my LIFE. The whole PUG team (production – to corporate – to the boutique – to customer service) is full of hard working rad chicks.

• This space – this blog and my instagram have really kept me on task to keep up with being creative. Thank you so much for the friendships I have built through here and for looking at all!

I know a lot of people out there have had a rough year too, and as hippie hippie as it sounds it really helps to write down the things you DO have. I am also really grateful for cheese. That shit is magical and delicious!

And as my gift to you I have this years Bittersweet Susie’s 2015 Christmas Playlist. Get in that holiday spirit while you wrap that last minute gift and cut yourself peeling the potatoes. Break out the booze early BEFORE the in-laws get there! It’s Christmas Damnit, we are going to have a dance party or bust.

I heart your guts – Susie

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Here are the playlists of Christmas’s Past:




• Write down three things that you love and are thankful for! Feel free to share them here!

Viva! I Hardly Knew Ya! VLV18

Bittersweet Susie | Viva Las Vegas 18 - 2015

Howdy! Another Viva is done! Another notch in our belts, another pile of dry cleaning and suitcases I bet have yet to be unpacked. The prep work (especially for the vintage wearing friends) is SO MUCH! All the outfits and shoes and it seems to be over in a flash. I brought more clothes than I could possibly need only to hardly touch most of the outfits and CURSE the one perfect dress I left at home.

This year was a success. I danced and laughed with friends, made new friends, saw some amazing music (THE SONICS!!!!!) and snapped some photos. It was great but it also felt different from the few I had attended.

It felt like I kept MISSING people I wanted to see, some friends I only ran into once! I didn’t take NEARLY as many photos as last year either. The plus side is that it actually felt like a real vacation and the most relaxing weekend in Vegas that I have ever had. And I am OLD so that is a lot of weekends to compare to.

Things I did manage to do at Viva:

  • Bowl – I brought my own ball because I am hardcore like that. This was a welcome break because we bowled after everyone else left.
  • Lay by the pool – made possible because I was staying at a hotel DOWN the block. It was a sand bottom pool and it ruled.
  • Instafriends – met people from Instagram that I have followed (stalked) for a while. Missed some of my favorites but I will hunt them down, I mean meet them next time.
  • Barfed – from food poisoning and dehydration. Kids, don’t eat at the Orleans and CHUG that water. Learn from my mistakes.
  • Danced – until I could barely stand!

Bittersweet Susie | Viva Las Vegas 18 - 2015

Enough with the talking, you only came for the photos. Jerks. If you see your friends below send them over here to me! I promise to be REAL NICE.

If your photo is below – you can totally post it on your Instagram as long as you credit and tag me. If you crop out my watermark I will be forced to punch you RIGHT IN THE NOSE. So don’t!

Bittersweet Susie | Viva Las Vegas 18 - 2015

Thanks Russ for the photo!

Thanks for stopping by! Please follow me by adding me to your blog reader or signing up over here to the right! I would hate to miss each other AGAIN.

No homework – I still have some unpacking to do!

The Most Wonderful Time of the YEAR – VIVA

Holy crap friends!  Viva is here! And it really snuck up on me. I was on the fence about going but decided why the fuck not.


Bittersweet Susie | VLV17

I know for a lot of people getting all your special vintage outfits ready is a HUGE part of this event. Last year I was super lucky and my friends let me borrow some gems from their wardrobe! It was fun to play dress up but let’s be real – I am not that put together. My huge game plan is to wear whatever vintage that isn’t completely falling apart. I have been doing a big PURGE with my clothing so I actually can see the floor in my bedroom (almost) and the options have been narrowed down. My dream for next year is to only wear items I have made myself. I will be lucky if I complete one thing by then but here at Bittersweet Susie we like to DREAM BIG.

 Bittersweet Susie | VLV17

Today I am doing a little greatest hits/ montage of some other posts I have done for Viva – starting with one of my favorite posts! Sonia at Yay for Firsts has some GREAT tips for surviving Viva. They all still hold water with me. I think I would add this piece of advice when stressing about the perfect outfit or needing to see EVERY band, or getting into the pool side to watch the swimsuit competition…..


Say it loud and proud friends, remember not to get stressed over silly things.

You are pretty and I love you.

Go on, read the tips, and comment below with a few of your own!

5 Quick Tips to an Extremely Enjoyable Viva Las Vegas 2014

What I am looking forward to is taking portraits of old friends and new ones. Last year I got to photograph some of my FAVORITE people on the planet! I hope to repeat that this year!  Are you going? Can I photograph you? Awe thanks pal! You are the coolest!

Have a look at my shots from last year!

photo 3-1

Viva17 – I LIVED

VLV17 – Photos Round 2

And finally – let’s be real here – THE DRIVE SUPER SUCKS. My butt hates me by the end of that trek. WORST. Per usual, I have something for you!

A road trip playlist to help with the drive – I feel your pain and I am here for you.

Summer 2014 Playlist – ROADTRIP

I will be thinking of all of you friends as I head out to Vegas. I missed your faces and can’t wait to see you!


• If you see me say Hi!

• Can I take your picture!?!

• What’s your favorite/least favorite part of Viva

• Give me your pro tips!

• Favorite road trip songs – lay them on me!


Holiday Craft Bonanza – PART 2

Hey there. Hi there. Ho there.

We are just SO DARN CLOSE now, aren’t we? I still have so many crafts to share with you. I was so so busy about a month ago and then – out of nowhere – my computer died. It was like losing my best friend. I was so worried about the thing and not really having a place to post and well, it was just the worst. So sorry I am late but you may be one of the lucky ones on vacation this week and can just hanker down and craft with your bad self.

I have SEVERAL projects for you today. THAT’S RIGHT! This is a fucking party and you are TOTALLY invited. But don’t bring THAT BITCH I don’t care for. You know the one.

I was going to tease them out up until the BIG DAY but we ain’t got time for that!

OK I will SHUT IT and get on with it.

First up:

Fusible Bead Gift Topper

Bittersweet Susie | Holiday Crafts

You remember these, right? Perler Beads? Hamma Beads? Apparently also RAVER BEADS?!?!? Who knew? Probably you – if you were a raver.

We this little project is a complete throwback to the camp craft time days of my youth. I think I got a bee in my bonnet that I was going to make a bunch of coasters and start myself a nifty little business. That works WAY better if you are little and cute OR maybe if you are a delusional Etsy seller.

Dyed Bottle Brush Trees

Bittersweet Susie | Holiday Crafts

Everyone is making these. Fall into line and make them too!

Felt Christmas Pin

Bittersweet Susie | Holiday Crafts

Got another last-minute party to go to? Only have that ONE red shirt that you have already worn out THREE TIMES? Have no fear – the Felt Christmas Pin Tutorial IS HERE! This is such a fast and easy project you can make this before you head to that family party you have dreaded all year. At least your outfit will be festive even if your face is looking shabby.

Photo Decal Plate

Bittersweet Susie | Holiday Crafts

Are you like me and just gave everyone fat I mean TREATS for Christmas? Deliver that diabetes on a custom plate. You can even put grandmas face on the plate. HO HO HO.

This is a LOT of craft goodness. Pace yourself. Bookmark it for later. Share with your mom.

The 2014 Holiday Playlist is coming. You should subscribe so you don’t miss it, because that would be lame.


• Did you DIY this Holiday season? What did you make?

• What are your favorite treats to pass out this time of year?

• If you make anything you see here TAG me in the post or #bittersweetsusie because you love me and I love you right back. 

Holiday Craft Bonanza! – Retro Felt Christmas Tree Skirt Tutorial

Ok how it is only a week before Christmas?  WEEK. I had great plans for making lovely crafted gifts for every person I have ever met. Instead I am going to re-watch Twin Peaks for the millionth time and skip the holiday altogether.

A month or so back I was full stop into the Christmas Spirit. I did manage to crank out some crafts for EHOW and now I can share them with you.

All of them are simple and easily customizable. You still have time to do any of these guys before the holiday knocks on our door. Most you can do while watching your favorite holiday film (or two!) and will give you the satisfaction of being one crafty and creative bad ass mother fucker.

So get on with it!

First up – The Retro Felt Christmas Tree Skirt

Bittersweet Susie | Retro Felt Tree Skirt Tutorial

This project can be easily changed to match your decor. I have GRAND PLANS to make some different versions.

Maybe a Halloween Tree one year???

Tune in every day leading up to Christmas for more tutorials and the long awaited Holiday Playlist (to tide you over click on link to last years!


• Did you have any grand plans you never completed?

• What is your go to Holiday movie?

Retro Felt Circle Skirt Tutorial

Retro Felt Circle Skirt Tutorial  – say that three times fast! I have such a way with words.

Bittersweet Susie | Retro Felt Circle Skirt Tutorial

Look at this cat skirt I made – LOOK at it! You want one? Of COURSE you do!

Lucky for you I am your bestest pal and have this instructions already done for you.  This is a simple tutorial for beginners (because that’s what I consider myself with the sewing of the clothes). Mine has cats because I am a baking, knitting, old lady glasses wearing, all the cats having grandma but YOU can put whatever you want on there.

This is just in time to make a skirt for every family holiday occasion. Giant turkey circle skirt! Big fat santa eating all the damn cookies circle skirt! Make one slightly offensive and impress those conservative relatives you only see once a year!

The possibilities are ENDLESS.

Click HERE to see how it’s done on good ol EHOW.

HOMEWORK – comment below

• Make your own circle skirt MASTERPIECE – you better show me what you have made OR ELSE OR ELSE

• What are your best ideas for the MOTHER of all felt circle skirts?

I went to PROM

Hi Friends!

Pin Up Prom 2-14

Earlier this summer I got to go to Prom again! No, not with an unsuspecting underage kid, cause that would be GROSS.

I got to go to the 2014 Pinup Girl Clothing Prom.

Please check them out if you are not familiar.  They are an amazing company that promotes positive body image and their clothes are made in the US! What’s not to like?

Pin Up Prom 2-14

Pin Up Prom 2-14 Pin Up Prom 2-14
Pin Up Prom 2-14

There were never a more well dressed bunch! My own prom (in 199….. WHATEVER did NOT look like this)

I did wear vintage to my own prom but my fabulousness was drowned out by the sweet sweet sounds of  “No Diggity”

ALSO – our illegal after prom was held at this shady hotel in Hollywood – the same one Brenden Fraser stayed in Blast From The Past! (everyone in LA is famous – even crappy hotels)

But the BEST part is around 1 am when we all finally got there, tired and our hair a mess from our sweet dance moves, the elevator doors open and you know who was standing there?


Little mother fucking Richard was in the elevator. I froze. The kids I was with had NO IDEA who he was and piled in. That was the highlight of my elevator experience EXCEPT for the one time I high fived Justin Timberlake in one. Remind me to tell you that story later.


There were treats, there was glitter, there was BOOZE!

Pin Up Prom 2-14

There was also burlesque performed by Masuimi Max!

Pin Up Prom 2-14

And Ivy Levan performed – have you seen her? She is a complete BADASS!

Pin Up Prom 2-14

As usual, I am just going to DUMP some of my favorite snaps from that night right HERE. Have a look!

If I took your photo feel free to show your cousin Barbara –

or make it your profile photo – just credit me!

* If you are interested in purchasing a print – you can at this link! *

The whole gallery will be up (not just this selection)


PLEASE say hi to me on instagram @susieq

Subscribe to my blog on the right so you NEVER MISS A POST!

• tell me about YOUR prom? What did you wear?