Judge a book by looking at its cover….

fall9
The Fall Nine
The Memory Police – Yoko Ogawa | Three Women – Lisa Taddeo | Those Who Knew – Idra Novey | Fleishman Is In Trouble – Taffy Brodesser-Akner | On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous – Ocean Vuong | Delayed Rays of A Star – Amanda Lee Koe | Bunny – Mona Awad | Opioid, Indiana – Brian Allen Carr | The Seven or Eight Deaths of Stella Fortuna – Juliet Grames


In honor of Banned Books Week 2019 (September 22-28) I’m ordering my next batch of 9 reads which have been on my 2 B or NOT 2 B Reads list for some time.   I’ve really been wanting to read ‘Three Women’ and ‘Fleishman Is In Trouble’ so maybe I’ll chose one of those to begin.  And while none of these books has been placed on a banned list YET, give it time – one or two have the potential to end up on someone’s ‘do not read’  list before long.

I find it amazing that someone could be threatened by an idea in a book, since reading is knowledge and it’s the lack of knowledge which is truly dangerous, but what do I know.  My philosophy is pretty simple – read and let read. If the book offends close the cover and move on but don’t  prevent me from reading the story if I choose to do so.  I’ve written about banned books before (here) and encourage everyone to send the proverbial bird to the book censors among us by reading a few ‘banned’ books because you – still  – can.

*Can’t Judge a Book By the Cover – Bo Diddley

A dedicated follower of fashion…

Long time no post. I fell victim to the ‘dog days of summer’ in its truest sense and haven’t felt inspired to create much of anything, let alone share on social media.  Mostly, I’ve buried myself in work, family, reading (6000+ minutes read for pleasure between May 15 and August 21st), TV (the 3rdseason of Glow, the newest The Great British Baking Show, The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance, and The Righteous Gemstones to name a few) and movies old and new.

I’ve seen Once Upon A Time in Hollywood twice and stumbled upon CBGB shortly after. One has made $124 million and the other $40,000 but regardless of gross both are love stories well worth your viewing time.  Once Upon a Time romanticizes moviemaking’s past while addressing the constant need to evolve and remain relevant while remaining true to one’s own moral code, set against an alternative, fairy tale, mid 60’s LA backdrop.

hippie
California Dreamin’
Zara high leg leather heeled boots | Molly chunky medium hoop earrings | Floryday floral round neckline maxi a-line dress | Tallulah small hexagon sunglasses | J. Crew white denim jacket | Miss Dior perfume | Farm embroidered denim shorts | Chantelle soft stretch bodysuit

Fast forward a decade later to The Bowery and Hilly Crystal.  Hilly was the grandfather of the punk rock music scene who created what is undisputedly one of the greatest music clubs of all times, CBGB’s. The personification of punk, Crystal tried his hand at being a musician, bandleader, booking agent and club owner, only to fail at them all. Even his original idea for “CBGB and OMFUG” failed.  The abbreviation represented  the kinds of music he intended to feature (CountryBlueGrassBlues and Other Music For Uplifting Gormandizers) but he couldn’t get any of those acts to play the club so he took a chance on an obscure a punk band (Television) and the rest is history.

punk
New York State of Mind
Between the Lines turtleneck sweater | Kilian Vodka on the rocks perfume | Jenny Bird Sloane bracelet | Bec & Bridge pink party mini dress | Blondie punky pink muscle tee | Anthropolgie essential houndstooth bootcut trousers | Venus faux fur jacket | Jessica Simpson Pixelle 2 bootie | Rave Krisp-E’s Crossbody bag

Watching both of these music-themed stories got me to thinking about a paper I wrote in college on whether music influenced fashion, for which I earned an A+.  How could music and fashion not influence each other – even decades later as evidenced by the looks I’ve pulled together to relive my inner hippepunk!

How about you? What musical genre influenced your style? Do you still incorporate elements of that style in your wardrobe today? Drop me a line…I’d love to know.

*Dedicated Follower of Fashion – The Kinks

7-23-19 Ephemera (The Cooks and Crooks Edition)

bread
Farmer’s Market Breads

I haven’t assembled an ephemera post for quite some time, mainly because I am at turns feeling uninspired by, overwhelmed with, and/or suspicious of the internet. There are only so many ‘best of’, ‘you need’, and ‘cute [insert here] animals/kids/ kindness’ articles a person can take (or believe). That said, I still get lost down the rabbit-hold of the web with one click leading to another, and realized I am just a little bit consumed by anything having to do with cooks and crooks. In no particular order, here are a few of the articles I’ve enjoyed…

If you are surfing the web because it’s too hot to do anything else here’s hoping you find a good rabbit hole (or three) to fritter away the day with.  Stay cool…

If a 6 turned out to be 9…

For the second year in a row I am taking part in our library’s Summer Reading Program (see last year’s progress here), which runs from May 6th thru August 21st. Last year I was a Rock Star and this year I’m a Rocketeer!  To date, participants have clocked 11,314,826 minutes of reading and counting. I am proud to say I’ve contributed 4460 minutes of that total (or .0004% for you matheteers) and am thinking I can log another 2,500 – minutes not books – before the program ends… Continue reading “If a 6 turned out to be 9…”

I’ve seen all of this world…

Dolly[of]wood

Last week my husband and I put the dog in the kennel and headed east for a quick 3-day get-a-way to Gatlinburg, TN.  I’ve never spent much time in the area, except to drive through Knoxville on my way to somewhere else.  I always laughed at the signs for Pigeon Forge but after watching an episode of ‘Family Guy’ where Peter takes the family to Dollywood we decided if it was good enough for the Griffin’s it was good enough for us…

Continue reading “I’ve seen all of this world…”

I’m gonna buy a paper doll…

Kate & Meghan Paper Dolls by Eileen Rudisill Miller

Do little girls still play with paper dolls? I had quite the collection when I was young and spent countless hours playing with and organizing my collection. I can still remember waiting for the McCall’s magazine to arrive each month because there was always a seasonally appropriate Betsy McCall waiting to be introduced to my other dolls. I would draw my own designs for my dolls, which certainly helped lead me down the path toward becoming a fashion designer. All this to day when I was presented with an opportunity to review ‘Kate & Meghan Paper Dolls’ by Eileen Rudisell Miller I jumped!

Originally trained as a fashion illustrator, Ms. Rudisill is a talented illustrator and painter who is internationally known for her paper doll work.  Over the last 10 years she has produced over 40 coloring books and paper dolls for Dover Publications and Paper Studio Press, as well as over 50 self-published Paper Doll sets.

As its title implies, ‘Kate & Meghan Paper Dolls’ features a collection of memorable outfits worn in 2018 by the most famous royal sisters-in-law of all – Kate, Duchess of Cambridge and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex

Kate’s wardrobe features easily recognizable 2018 outfits from big moments like the Trooping of the Color Parade, Prince Charles 70th Birthday Family Photo, and Meghan and Harry’s 2018 wedding. Meghan’s clothing selection features many of the looks she wore during the 16-day tour she and Harry took to Australia, Fiji, Tonga, and New Zealand, when she was pregnant with her first child but not showing much.

I believe any fan of the monarchy, Kate, Meghan, or paper dolls would appreciate this book. It is well-drawn and informative book, as Ms. Miller provides designer and historical information for each outfit. It would make an excellent addition to any serious paper doll enthusiast’s collection or serve as a great tool to introduce a little girl to the joys of paper dolls.

Checking out ‘Kate & Meghan’ led me down the rabbit-hole of the web to see what else I could find. A Google search of ‘paper dolls’ led to 17,400,000 results, including the Original Paper Doll Artists Guild, The 2019 National Paper Doll Convention in Kansas City (with the theme being ‘Mystery, Murder, and Mayhem’) and popular paper doll blog PaperDollywood and Paper Doll School.

Spending time exploring these sites has a) made me want to try my hand at designing my own series of paper dolls, and b) instilled the desire to introduce the younger generation to the hobby. How about you? Did you ever play with paper dolls when you were young? What doll was your favorite? better yet, do you collect paper dolls now? Did you even know paper dolls were still a thing? Drop me a line…Id love to know.

*Paper Doll – Frank Sinatra

You got a new horizon, it’s ephemeral style…

Summer officially begins on Friday, which means it’s travel time for me! I’ve got three weekend trips planned and I hope to get away with bringing nothing more than an overnight bag for each. Mix-and-match outfits, some lip gloss, and a good book are about all I need – besides a loved one or two – to enjoy my time away…

Gatlingburg

Bling Jewelry 2CT Solitaire CZ StudsJust Class Patterned Shark Bite DressCircus by Sam Edelman Carolina Sling-Back SandalsLifestyle Attitude Tie Front TopTime and Tru Ocean Stripe SwimsuitLevi’s Classic ShortTommy Hilfiger Beauty PerfumeClinique Two Ton Tomato Chubby Lip Color BalmComfort by Brinley Co. Espardrille WedgeBowlaway: A Novel by Elizabeth McCrackenKendall & Kylie Red Patent Tote

First up is a weekend trip to Gatlinburg, where the plan is to tour the Old Forge Distillery and The Salt-and-Pepper Shaker Museum, walk across the new pedestrian suspension bridge (if I can a suspend – ha ha – my fear of heights) and soak up some rays by the pool…

Denver

Falari Pashima WrapSA106 Tortoise Butterfly SunglassesLove Sadie Hawaiian Print Ruffled  RomperPalm Beach Jewelry Concave Cigar Band Gold RingFleishman Is in Trouble by  Taffy Brodesser-Akner | Bling Jewelry Tortoise Shell HoopsElizabeth Arden Sunflowers Body MistTime and Tru Deep V SwimsuitUnique Bargains Stacked Heel Tassel Ankle Strap SandalsLove Sadie Halter Shift SundressC. Wonder Michaela Suede EspadrillesEliza May Rose White Stripe Ultimate ToteRevlon Ultra HD Embrace Matte Lipgloss

My second adventure is taking me to Denver to spend time with two of my favorite peeps, where we’ll tune in and turn on at the Dead & Co show, followed by a day enjoying Mother Nature at Garden of the Gods. Since my flight doesn’t leave til late Monday night I am going to play solo tourist and check out some art and some books at the Denver Art Museum and the Tattered Cover Bookstore

Charleston

Gottex Sinatra Bathing SuitBrinley Co. Bow-Accent Slip On FlatGorjana Power Gemstone Turquoise Charm Gold RingSofia Vergara Faux Wrap Front MaxiTextile Lacey Flutter SkirtFate Rainbow Knit SweaterLux Turquoise & Coral Inlay Medallion Drop EarringsEliza May Rose Toile Basket Tote| L’Oreal Infallible 320 Red Fatale Lip GlossThree Women by Lisa TaddeoAnne Cole Crochet All Day Swim Cover Up

Finally, at some point before Labor Day I’m going to make it to Charleston for a long weekend. I’d like to spend the time exploring the architecture and cemeteries through walking tours, drop in at SCAD, get some tan time in at Folly Beach, and visit the basket ladies at Charleston City Market

How about you? Any travel plans for the summer? Do you like to visit new places when you go on holiday or do you stick with the tried-and-true spots that make you feel nostalgically happy? Drop me a line…..I’d love to know.

*Feel Good Inc – The Gorillaz

Just a girl in a t-shirt…

So many t-shirts so little time

Row 1: HS Favorite | Hometown Sports | Vinyl
Row 2: The Pointing Finger | Elvis | Hula Pinball (Similar here)
Row 3: Tourist Destination 1 | Tourist Destination 2 | Favorite Author/Book
Row 4: Favorite Band/Album | Hometown Sports | Tourist Destination 3

Ever since the 2019 Camp Met Ball I’ve been thinking a LOT about t-shirts. And while a t-shirt can certainly be camp (with a few appearing on the red carpet the night of the Gala) it can also be much much more. The right T can silently communicate your life philosophy, favorite sports team, travels, tribe or musical preferences. T’s are like the workhorses of the clothing world: no other type of clothing serves as many diverse purposes for its wearer. It’s really a rather remarkable when you think about it. Did you know:

  • International t-shirt day is June 21st
  • The word “T-shirt” was first used in 1920 by author F. Scott Fitzgerald in his novel, This Side of Paradise. 
  • The first promo t-shirt was produced for The Wizard of Oz in 1939 (sadly no image exists fo this art)
  • The first t-shirt to bear a slogan was the “Dew-It with Dewey” shirt made for Thomas E. Dewey’s 1944 presidential campaign.
  • Tropix Togs was the first company to decorate T-shirts with pop culture icons and slogans in the early 1950s.
  • In the late 60s tie-dye t’s became popular, largely due to Rit Dye ad mogul Don Price. Rit gave away hundreds of dyed shirts at Woodstock, starting a counterculture trend still in style today.
  • Coca Cola was the first brand to promote itself using t-Shirts
  • Over 2 billion t-shirts are sold worldwide every year.
  • 60% of American have more than 10 t-shirts, which is enough to circle the earth 34 times.
  • At least once per week, 89% of Americans put on a t-shirt.
  • The Salvation Army receives several million t-shirt donations every year and auctions them off by the pound, exporting them to third-world countries.
  • T-shirt recycling keeps 5 billion ton of textile waste out of landfills annually

I am, unfortunately, part of the 40% of Americans who owns less than 10 t-shirts. I plan on rectifying that situation over the summer by adding a few choice designs purchased during my upcoming summer travels. How about you? Do you wear t-shirts? Do you own more or less than 10 t-shirts? Are you a plain t or design t advocate? What’s the best t you ever owned? Drop me a line…I’d love to know.

*Girl in A T-shirt – ZZ Top

Camptown ladies…

Barbie Pin | Olympia Le-Tan Caviar Bag | My Own Guitar Pic Dress | Max Star High Heeled Sneaker | My Own ‘Luck Be A Lady’ Vest | Katy Perry Present Slide | TU Sequined Bomber Jacket | Andy Warhol Brillo Camp Shirt | Chinese Takeout Evening Bag | Two Ladies Bodysuit | Katy Perry Hamburger Shoe

Today is Camp Day (aka: the 2019 Met Gala, which kicks off the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s newest costume exhibition “Camp: Notes on Fashion”) .  I equate the Gala to the Super Bowl of Fashion, bringing together a who’s who of artists, models, designers, and style arbiters to see who walks away with the ‘Best Dressed’ prize. This year’s exhibition (which opens On May 9th) was inspired by the 1964 Susan Sontag: Notes on ‘Camp essay which notes that “Camp…has the proper mixture of the exaggerated, the fantastic, the passionate, and the naïve.”

As a designer I have always had a camp mentality, creating one-of-a-kind garments that are tongue-in-cheek, irrelevant, and sly.  This sensibility is on display in two of my designs pictured above: the ‘Pic Dress’, made from beads and thousands of unique guitar pics (worn to a Grammys ceremony and which made music when I walked) and the ‘Luck Be a Lady’ denim vest, incorporating rhinestones, embroidery, and vintage naked lady playing cards (worn for a night in Vegas and which truly was a good luck charm).

You may be thinking camp fashion isn’t for you, but trust me when I tell you anyone can incorporate a little bit of camp into their daily look: shoes, jewelry, bags, t-shirts and coats are all easy ways to add a little fantastic into your everyday.

As for the ladies who walk the carpet in a few hours, you better believe a bit of attitude is going to go a long way toward pulling off whatever ‘camp’ they choose to wear, which is why I am already predicting who might end up in the Top 10 looks of the night.  I have high expectations for Lady Gaga and Katy Perry, two women who seem born to ‘camp’, along with Rhianna and Zendaya, both of whom kill any carpet they grace. Throw in Sarah Jessica Parker (representing the old guard) and Lupita Nyong’o (representing the new), actresses who seem to make statements with whatever they wear. I wouldn’t count Madonna out, or Kim K either – both either miss or hit spectacularly with no in-between. Since camp is all about irony, humor, parody, theatricality, and exaggeration I’d say any other ladies I’ve listed could easily end up with ‘Best Of…” tomorrow morning.

*Camp Town Races – Johnny Cash

Walks beside me…modern love

It isn’t often I read a work of fiction and want to learn more about some of the characters but that is exactly what happened after I finished reading ‘The Museum of Modern Love’ (aka: MoML) by Australian author Heather Rose.  Ms. Rose’s story uses performance artist Marina Abramovic’s 2010 MoMA retrospective “The Artist is Present” as the background against which her characters experience fear, sadness, doubt, loneliness, wonder, happiness, creativity, and love… Continue reading “Walks beside me…modern love”