Monday, May 14, 2012

Gem: truly outrageous

New album from Beach House = yes!!

Before it's too late, I wanted to tell ya that you can listen to it for free on NPR First Listen, even though it doesn't come out until May 15th.  First Listen is an ephemeral thing, so check it here out before they remove it.

In case you miss it, check out this little song- my favorite on this new album by far - Lazuli.  It's delightfully layered and is as beautiful as it's eponymous gem.

and speaking of  Jems....


(sorry! I couldn't resist)

Tuesday, February 21, 2012


So excited to see these guys tonight! (Though they now go by Bleeding Rainbow)  My dear old friend will be touring with them, drum-drum-drummin'.  Can't wait!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Happy Valentine's Day!

Ahoy à vous!  It has been far too long since I have posted anything, and despite an insanely busy grad school schedule, my aim is to try my best to change that.

Appropriately in character, I think a fashionably(?) late DIY Valentines tutorial would be a good way to break the virtual silence.  I made these yesterday for all of my studio mates- they were so quick and easy to do!
So maybe you were too busy to show your pals the love they deserve? Here's a quick little DIY using stuff you probably have around your house.  These lil' love tokens are crazy cheap to make and are sure and are a sweet treat to give to your friends!

-wax paper
-white paper  (I used freezer paper, which is shiny/waxed on one side and is a great thing to have around for crafting, but printer paper would be fine)
-Red Mesh from clementine packaging- see here
a sewing machine
-Red thread
-Candy! I used red hots and gummy hearts

Cut Heart shapes out of both wax paper and white paper, you will need equal amounts of each.

Cut red mesh into strips, as pictured

Sandwich red mesh strip in between 1 wax heart and 1 white heart.
Sew around perimeter, leaving an opening where you can put the candy into.

**Note: if you want to write a message on the back, now is a good time.  Once you get the candy inside, writing on the back will be tough.

Fill with candy (don't fill it too much, or else it will be difficult to sew closed).
Sew the gap though which you put the candy, and voilà! You've got yourself some Valentines!
I like to leave long dangly strings hanging, but can trim 'em right off, if you please.

I hope your Valentine's Day was a happy one! 

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Savage Beauty

This week, after coming down from the mountains, I was lucky to see the incredible Alexander McQueen exhibit, Savage Beauty, at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.  It was certainly worthy of all the buzz it's been getting, so if you are able, there are 3 days left until it closes so waste no more time! (but prepare yourself to battle the masses)

When I arrived with my mother, we parked in the Met's parking lot and as soon as we got into the museum, we realized we didn't lock the car.  When I ran back out to do it, I happened to smile and say hello to a man passing by.  He asked me if I had enjoyed the show and I explained that we hadn't even bought our tickets yet, but that I was very excited to see it.  He happened to be the Museum's Senior Procurement Agent and  told me to just come with him and he'd take my mom and I in so that we could bypass the three hour line to get into the show!  It was unbelievable- we just waltzed right to the front of the epic line (which, according to him, went outside the museum and down three blocks!) and were let in just like we had VIP passes.  It's incredible what can happen when you greet the world with a smile!

(this room was so insanely crowded when I was here; sardine-packed so full you could barely move!)

My mom, a voracious museum-goer, has been taking me with her on museum trips including many to the Met since I was a kid.  Of all the many temporary exhibits I've seen there, I was especially impressed by Savage Beauty.  Not only is the work of Alexander McQueen incredible, but the way the exhibit was designed was perfect.  Each room was more like a movie set on which the elaborate dresses should be worn than the standard white-walled gallery museum.  Not a detail was overlooked, it was simply amazing.

It often seems to me that the high fashion world exists in its own little vacuum that only sometimes trickles down into trends for the masses.  The wild ensembles and beautiful gowns that are always a treat to look at but are far from the reality of most women.  Although it's fun to fantasize wearing these incredible haute couture creations, McQueen's designs look just as unattainable as any of the rest. But what I find most exciting about his work is the way that his designs are fashionable reactions to our contemporary culture.  Throughout the exhibit, there where quotes from McQueen citing his wide spectrum of  his influences on various pieces, from TimBurton to Sam Taylor Wood to Harry Potter, to name just a few.  In the video above for his S/S 2005 collection, his inspiration to make the runway show a human chess game came directly from the first Harry Potter movie.  I love, too, how the video below from a 1999 runway show is like a human spin art... hot couture à la summer camp!

here are a few more favorites...

first 4 images from google search, all other images from Met's website

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Platte Clove

I am super excited to be spending the next week of my life here in the a cabin...with no running water (except for the nearby waterfalls!)... by myself (except for a few short-term visitors)! I can't believe it. I feel like I won the lottery or a free vacation!

So now it's time to buckle down and do lots of work.  See you in a week!!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

a fond farewell

Pardon my absence!  I have been busybusybusy moving from Pennsylvania to Rhode Island.  I have moved so many times since I graduated from college that I feel like I should be a professional by now, but as time goes by I accumulate more and more junk.  Even after a major purge, I still have way too much! Ah well- it's a work in progress, I suppose.

Here are our lazy felines lounging around our old abode.  We'll all miss it, but it will be good to have a fresh start!

I will be a little bit sad to leave my ginormous Lancaster apartment, but I am really excited to begin my Providence adventure!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

here & there & everywhere

... well, not exactly everywhere, but I am excited to be featured other places on the web today!

First, check out the awesome blog of The Dandy Lion- a lovely store in New Albany, IN just outside of Louisville, KY.  I'm excited and honored to announce that they recently began carrying some of my jewelry.  I so wish it were closer so I could check it out-  it looks like incredibly cute store!  Perhaps a road trip is in order...  If you are in the Louisville area, you should stop by and visit them!

Also, the blog of  'Team Upcyclers' Love 2 Upcycle, has linked my Flower Crown Tutorial as part of the "How Tue-sday" feature!

Shop Update: Stripes, stripes, stripes!

I just added a bunch of new vintage items to my etsy shop.  While I was taking pictures of them, it occurred to me that half of them were blue with white stripes, in some capacity!  I guess my taste is more particular than I thought :)

click each image for listing

...but I think other colors are great too, I swear!

Monday, June 27, 2011

DIY Flower Crown

Raise your hand if you have an old Hawaiian Lei kicking around that you're saving for the next time somebody happens to invite you to a luau!  Or maybe for the next time you go on a tropical vay-cay? Perhaps you are better at not being a pack-rat than I, but a few of these faux-bits of the tropics have hula-ed their way into my pile of not-very-useful things.
 As I'm cleaning out my house and getting ready to move, I came up with this lil DIY to share with you.

...and you know I love a good Flower Crown!

Take your lei and give it a snip so you can un-thread the flowers

Each flower 'bead' consists of two sets of petals.  Remove the little green plastic things so you can easily separate them.  They should just pull right apart with a good tug.  (If they are stubborn, use your scissors or a pair of pliers)

Pick out about 20 to 30 flowers- for narrower flower section choose closer to 20 and vice-versa
(counting precision is not necessary....)

Make your elastic headband by sewing the ends of your 18" strip together.  I find it to be very helpful to put a piece of paper underneath the elastic if using a sewing machine.  Elastic can be tricky to sew on but this makes it a piece of cake.

If you have a store-bought headband, that should work too, but try to avoid the round kind unless you plan on hand-sewing.

As you add each petal, you should fold it in half at the center of the flower.  This is what will give the petals a tightly bunched look.

Using a zig-zag stitch to keep the elastic stretchy, sew over folded-in-half petals one at a time until you have used them all up.  Don't worry about folding them in half in advance (they won't really stay)- just fold them right before you are about to put it down and sew over it.

PS- notice how there's a little arrow pointing to the seam in the first pic of this step?  By positioning the seam of your headband underneath where your flowers are to be, you will not only strengthen that joint, but you'll hide the seam too :)

So now you've got yourself a flower crown. Pretty easy, right? And it takes up only a snip of your time!

double dipper

By some strange alignment of the stars, my dear friend Katie and I were both dip dyeing on the very same day, unbeknownst to each other! Stranger still that we were both using blue dye only...  (Check out Katie's awesome dip-dye action here)

For my dip dyeing, I used indigo dye and pieces of vintage lace. Having indigo around makes me want to find every white or light colored fabric scrap in creation and dye them all!  It's not exactly a mysterious process, but there sure is something kinda magical about it.

Once dry, I made some funky earrings out of the lace pieces, and stiffened them lightly so that they could hold their pretty shapes:

earrings now available in my etsy shop :)