December 10, 2014

A Room in Noyers

If you happen to be in France...

October 29, 2014

Halloween Costumes : 90s edition

Oh the nineties. I remember you fondly. I actually never though it would return in any form. But it's back!! Kind of. Hints of the 90s are making sneaky appearances in the form of mom jeans, overalls and other shapes of denim (bucket hats). There are a lot of things that I pine for nostalgically about the 90s and it seems like Halloween could be the perfect time to really revisit this decade. (Note: I was 3 years old in 1990 so I was a CHILD of the 90s. I sort of missed the whole grunge era.

A Lisa Frank Rainbow Angel Kitten

This costume idea is so good that I might take it for myself. Your base is going to be a white cat. So you can wear white pants/shirt or a white minidress if you feel the need to make the costume "sexy", or maybe some white flannel pajamas for coziness! Then, I guess what I would do is get some white cat ears (FROM A STORE!) and some wings of some sort. You're going to want to turn the wings rainbow colored, if you're going to be historically accurate. I think I would probably make mine out of cardboard and paint them. But I seize crafting opportunities.


Ok so you should know this, but if you don't, Bunnicula is a vampire bunny who sucks the juice out of vegetables!! To be historically accurate, the first book came out in 1979 but as its a part of my 90s consciousness, it is allowed on the list. Your base for this costume would be a rabbit, so all you really need are ears. And vampire teeth. If you naturally have a widow's peak hairline, like I do, then even better.

Peggy & Al Bundy

This is a two person costume.

The older I get, the more I love Peggy. Her outfits were on point, those kitten heeled mules, high waisted spandex, belted sweaters and that huge hair. If you're lucky enough to have naturally red hair then just tease your hair within an inch of it's life and liberally apply hair spray. The clothing shouldn't be too hard to come up with, since the 90s are back and we all seem to own some element of a Peggy Bundy outfit, though perhaps we've never worn all the components at the same time.

Al Bundy - you need a willing Al Bundy. The real Al Bundy would never agree to go to a party with you, let alone in a couples costume, but hopefully your Halloween buddy has slightly more zest for life than their costume inspiration. Al wore a lot of beige, and ties and a pale blue shirt usually. A look of general disdain will go a long way in making this costume feel really authentic.

A few years ago, on Halloween I saw a guy dressed perfectly as Daria. It was amazing and I wish I had taken a photo.

Speaking of Daria, that's another simple costume. Again, attitude is key.

Green Jacket, Mustard yellow shirt, black pleated skirt, combat boots and round thick-rimmed glasses. And apathy.

October 21, 2014

This is fine.

Yesterday was weird.

It really started off like any normal day, I was working in the shop and about to go over to the window where I needed to re-tag some ceramic shells. Outside, the background noise was that of a homeless man, yelling to passersby and shouting expletives. But, this is pretty standard in this neighborhood (which is why I refer to it as background noise). As I was walking over to the window I realized that he was in fact, "enjoying his own company" a little too much for broad daylight, at noon and in public. I saw more than I ever needed to. I would also like to note that during this time, one of the things he said to himself was "Huey Lewis and the News". Make of that what you will.

I was a little uncomfortable, to say the least. Luckily, from my usual spot at the register I couldn't see him, but that also meant that I couldn't keep an eye on him if say he started to wander towards the front door of the store. I started to imagine scenarios in my mind, what would I actually do if he walked into the store? It took me a little longer than it should have to lock the front door. Another person who had seen him called the police I guess.

I should say, that in this city you do see a lot of stuff. And you get desensitized. But this was beyond.

Later on that day, your typical hippy-ish older man, wearing a hat that looked to be made from the same fabric as his large pocket covered jacket sack came into the store alluding to know a "blonde woman" who had worked there some time ago. I said, "which blonde woman?" and he sort of waved his hand in the air in a gesture of "oh you know, who can remember such details". He came over to me and shook my hand, without missing a beat he says,

"You need to increase your aerobic activity, I can read these things, I felt your pulse, I do bodywork."

I said, "Oh, really?"

"Yes, you're so beautiful that you really need to increase your energy levels to be even more beautiful" (eye roll)

Me: "Well, alright.."

Him: "I'm actually having another vision right now, of you carrying my herbal tonics in your store".

Me: "Ha...ha... Oh yeah?"

Him: "Here look at this, this is great"

He presents me with a small bottle of topical analgesic. And before I know it he's placed three drops of this stuff onto my forearm and proceeds to massage it into my skin, like REALLY massage it. At this point, I was slightly amused by the weird bubble this man seemed to inhabit, that he felt like this was OK. But you know, you take these things with a grain of salt. I should say that he was extremely non threatening.. but then...quick as a flash he's putting this stuff on the back of my neck! And massaging it in.

The thoughts which ran through my mind were mostly, "what the fuck?!", and "what is another customer going to think if they walk in right now." and "what the fuck?!"... I shifted away slightly to signal, yes thank you that is fine.

He then asks me if I'm the buyer for the store, I say no and tell him who is, give him the email address and quick as a flash he's out the door. Really he was just a dodgy salesman employing very weird tactics selling glorified Vick's vapo-rub.

After he left, the thing I was most troubled by was my own reaction to the situation. At what point would I have said, HEY MAN GET OUTTA HERE? I like to think that there a point exists where I will not allow myself to be uncomfortable for the sake of not making the OTHER person uncomfortable. But it did signal to me that I need to be ok with being a little bit more UPPITY in such situations should they arise again (hopefully they won't).

Basically, this is me.

October 7, 2014

Pastel Miami

Earlier this month I went on my first trip to Miami. I was most excited for the Art Deco architecture and the pastel palette. As a long time fan of 'The Birdcage', I got a special thrill walking down Ocean Drive and remembering the final amazing and hilarious scene. If you haven't scene the film, go watch it - I won't ruin the finale just in case. But until then, here are some photos of the pastel vibe. 

3 year old style icon

"Before you leave the house, look in the mirror and remove one accessory.” —Coco Chanel

"Fashions fade, style is eternal." —Yves Saint Laurent

May 20, 2014

Moomins and life lessons

I love the Moomins. I think they are so right on with their little messages about life. I don't know about you but I can definitely relate to "I only want to live in peace and plant potatoes and dream!"

February 13, 2014

Leslie's Goals!

Leslie, 24, San Francisco 

I want to watch: More documentaries about the great outdoors/animals

I want to read: Short writings about spirituality

I want to: paint my wood blocks

I need: Patience, painting skills, self motivation

February 6, 2014

Carrie's goals

Carrie, 24, San Francisco

I want to watch:
Batman the Animated Series.

I want to read:
Blueberries for Sal and a letter from Pete.

I want to listen to:
Elvis Presley with Felix and I Want to See Pulaski at Night.

I want to finish:
weaving a bracelet on my bead loom and learn how to weave a Russian Spiral.

I need: 
time and patience.

February 4, 2014

Emily's goals

Emily, 25, San Francisco 

I want to watch:
More Ted talks (like this one: and this one:

I want to read:
Wendell Berry essays
More Infinite Jest

I want to do:
a 5-10d
Start my first sewing project!

Things I need to acquire to do some of those things:
A Wendell Berry book of essays
Mad climbing skills
A pattern, fabric, thread

February 3, 2014

"think about many things, but do one thing." - Dad

Someone once told me (last night), that setting goals for yourself is one of they key elements in the pursuit of happiness. Achieving these goals, whether big or small, will give you a sense of worth. 

My response was "well my problem is I can never finish anything." 
His: "well you have to change that." 
Me: "but why?" (i'm stubborn to a fault) 
He: "Because I want you to finish the painting you started for my birthday!!" (which was 5 months ago)
Me: "grumble, grumble"

I had to ask myself, is this really what I think or is this a defense mechanism? - this is something I wonder often. Perhaps if you're wondering whether it's a defense mechanism, then it most likely is. But really, what behavior isn't some sort of defense mechanism? I guess lately (always) I haven't started things because I have this voice in my head that tells me I never finish anything, so what's the point. Is it the winning or the taking part? Am I just incredibly lazy or am I afraid of failure to the point of inaction? All are questions worth pondering...

Anyway, I decided that I would start to make myself little tiny (achievable) goals. Or at the very least, plant the seeds of goals.. and publish them on a blog so in some way I feel accountable (that is to say, if anyone out there is actually reading this). 

Goals for week 6, 2014

i want to watch
- 'Elaine Stritch - Shoot Me' (she's Jack's mom on 30 Rock)

i want to read
- the lady in gold

i want to do
- weave a tapestry
- publish a blog post twice a week (baby steps)
- submit something to a friend's website
- finish the painting
- pitch a story
- get rid of clothes I no longer wear

things i need to acquire to do some of those things
- a small loom
- motivation

So there you have it...wish me luck! What are your goals for this week? 

here's that painting I was referring to...

October 2, 2012

September in SF

a pigeon having the great morning he deserves


A special moment captured by M at Fashion's Night Out

M's wall at Fashion's Night Out

Watching tiny dots on the horizon surfing

A drawing for someone special

Someone or something's home?


The view out of my window or a horror movie poster?

April 7, 2012

dear internet

you know what I love about the internet? well..I love that there seems to be an endless supply of good stuff. stuff to inspire you, and make you laugh.. or just make you feel connected to other people because maybe you realized that other people are just as weird as you are. 
It's funny, you hear people say things about how we connect less on a more "real" level with other people now, thanks to Facebook and the like... and I would have to agree with that, to an extent - but it's also opened up all these opportunities to connect in some small way with millions of people you'll never know on a personal level.. 
In some strange way it helps make the world seem a little less vast and human kind a little bit more likable...
I'm inspired and comforted in the knowledge that we can all experience a little bit of joy from watching a squishy faced cat eating a watermelon.

so thank you, internet for bringing things like this into my life.

ridiculously great things: 

oddly heartwarming things: 

breeds of chicken I didn't know existed but now love:
(sultan chicken)