Sunday, June 21, 2009

More photos from the mess on my desktop (all have been pulled from sites like the Sartorialist, Facehunter, etc).
These are dedicated to the beauty and intrigue of genuinely personal style.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

What gets us through the day

I recently recovered my Ipod after having lost it for several months. (This sort of thing is fairly common. Yesterday I lost a pattern piece under another pattern piece that I had already taped to a marker.) Having it at work again is such a relief, since the white noise of the air conditioner and sewing machines, and even the quieter music in the studio makes me sleepy. Yesterday I had it on shuffle, and a Kanye West song came up and I thought of you, Carly. (Am I outing you right now?) Carly and I were recently talking about the music that will get us through the stretches when we just want curl up and go to sleep. Quality is less important than poppy energy and good hooks. Carly's recent pre-fashion show marathon was apparently powered by Kanye's 808's and Heartbreaks, and Missy Elliot. Here's my favorite picture of Kanye:

In the past my favorites have included Billy Idol, Tom Jones and Prince. Lately I've elevated my tastes just a tad to Hercules and Love Affair.
Britney's Blackout got many of us at Nicolas' studio through the 4pm stretch, to the point that Nicolas regretted ever buying the album. I loved it when high fashion folks came by for a fitting while she was on. And for a long time I listened to podcasts of NPR programs like This American Life or Radiolab while doing the boring bits like putting on seam allowance and cutting out patterns. I had to give that up though, when I realized how often I discovered and fixed mistakes if I instead paid attention.
At the moment I've been listening to a short playlist of the Valentine Brother's "Money's Too Tight to Mention" and the Bee Gee's "Nights on Broadway". Two songs get old really quick. Maybe that's why my productivity's been down?

Sometimes I forget what a little slashing and spreading can do.

Monday, June 15, 2009

From the Desktop Pile

It's nearly midnight, and I can't sleep because I spent the day guzzling coffee at work in order to deal with my sleepless red-eye flight back from Alaska. The fact that it's currently only 7:30 pm Alaska time doesn't help either.
So a blog post it is! Not a particularly wordy one though, as I'm not feeling articulate, or even all human.
I promised Carly that I'd post some of the inspirational pictures I've been collecting on my desktop, so here goes:
It may seem odd that as patternmaker I'm a sucker for instant gratification, but I am. Carly can spend 3 weeks (but usually she'll be done in a quarter of that time) on a gorgeous gown, but I want to be done and wearing my project by noon. Which means I rarely finish, but I digress. I've been collecting photos of details, little things that I love that can be made without a whole lot of planning, but still to dramatic effect. This scarf is one of my favorites.

And the collar on this coat is one of the those simple details that changes everything.

And, because I was just home visiting, and thinking a lot about what makes a house a home, here are some of my favorite inspirational photos ever. I wish I remembered where I'd found them...

You can tell there's a million treasures in that house, just waiting to be taken out and examined. And there's a block and tackle in the bedroom?

New York City!

As our heading suggests this blog was started because Hannah moved to New York and we couldn't bear the idea that we would no longer be hanging out together, messing around with projects, talking shop, basking on the river, eating pastries, or otherwise enjoying each others company. My recent trip to NY was a wonderful teaser of Hannah's company that makes it all the more difficult to bear.

We had a wonderful time. We went to a tugboat grave yard on Staton Island with two awesome guys, both named Collin. Collin Kennedy took some wonderful pictures which you can see here.

We took a harrowing taxi ride after a late night dance party. Matt of Wilding fame, Hannah, and myself caught a cab driven by a older east Indian man wearing an American flag turban who insisted on walking us through some sort of made up Hindi wedding ceremony. It involved having Matt put bangles on our hands and me put a scarf on Matt and then he sang us made up Hindi wedding songs in a strange, rasping, tuneless, old man voice. I'm not sure Hindi customs allow polyamorous wedding ceremonies but maybe everybody's more open minded in NY.

I went to the New York Public Library and read turn of the century pattern drafting books on microfilm. It amazes me the amount of information that exists in New York, for less effort than going to the supermarket you can read books that have been out of print for decades.

We got a back stage tour of the model making studio of the Natural History museum. Which has made me want to lean as much as I can about model making. I have trouble thinking of anything I really need to make models of but I also can't thing of anything I don't want to make models of. Perhaps I will wind up with plaster replicas of my daily life.
Here's Hannah and I attempting to eat a cookie afterward.

I also got to check out Top Shop which is about what you would expect. I'm not a fan of H and M mostly because everything I've ever gotten there fits horribly. I think that they must cut costs in their patterning but I'm not sure how they do it. Top Shop has a similar feel. If you are into H and M you will probably like Top Shop. There were a couple cute things but the only thing that really caught my eye was these shoes by Office. I would have bought them on the spot but the sides are too high and chafed my ankle bone something fierce.

Here is Hannah and Matt, we were enjoying the beach the day I left. Leaving was not easy.

And last but not least... I took a picture of a picture in a book because I thought it was great inspiration on how to wear scarves.

Summer adventures

I have recently gotten back from some pretty amazing summer adventures. I had the good fortune of being invited on a rafting trip through the wild and scenic portion of the Rogue River in South Western Oregon. The Rogue River runs from Crater Lake to Gold Beach and the Wild and Scenic area starts just west of Grant's Pass and ends about ten miles from the coast. The "Wild and Scenic" designation protects the area from development, and in this case motorized boats of any kind. After going on this trip I can see why it was selected for protection. It is quite stunning and a perfect combo of rapids. Most are II and III class rapids meaning scary enough to be fun but if you get thrown from the boat its unlikely you'll get hurt. (Not the official definition obviously.) Although there were some IVs and one V, which was pretty scary. There are also a limited number of rafting permits given out each year for the wild and scenic area so I was doubly lucky to be able to go. There was twenty five of us on ten boats. There were some Cata-rafts, a paddle boat, and some kayaks.