Monday, March 30, 2009

Pet Fashion Show!

After the harried-ness that was this weekend, I'm enjoying a nice day off...

The Fashion Show was a lot of hard work but ultimately, super-satisfying. The audience loved it, and I got to see my concept borne into fruition, from the music (Call and Response and Pizzicato Five) to the choreography, to the synchronization of all those dogs, their handlers, the numbers to be held, and our models walking the dogs.

Unfortunately, I don't have any good photos to go with this post because the Expo didn't want me to infringe upon the official Show Photographer's ability to sell photos (and for good reason; any profit goes to the rescue groups). But, I do have a picture of myself, backstage:

Dress: Target. Tights: Target. Shoes: Nine West.

I created a bridal collar for the show, with lots of lace, silk roses and tiny orchids sewn on but I didn't get to take any pictures before it was won in the silent auction! Drat! My item was #19 in the fashion show, as I am attempting to demonstrate here.

And here, we have Gidget, my favorite dog-model in the show. She's a long-haired chihuahua with a permanently sticking-out tongue, and about the sweetest chihuahua I've ever known... although the only other chihuahua I've known was the meanest thing-- it once bit me in the face, and I had to get stitches! Needless to say, Gidget helped turn around my opinion towards chihuahuas.

After this whole pet affair, I find myself a bit dog-hungry... my dad brought over his pug and boston terrier last night to play at our place, and my sweets and I agreed that it's not quite home without a little something furry running around.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Sit! Stay! Now, work!

As the weekend draws near, my trickle of preparation for the Pet Fashion Show has turned into a veritable Niagara. All of the outfits shown on the catwalk --pun?-- will be auctioned off for charity via bids placed in a box. I enlisted my dog model, Puffy, to show off the haute-ness, and spent the afternoon snapping the photos that would be placed in front of each bid-box.

Here, Puffy models a comely denim jacket and bandana-print snood by Canine Closet...

In this photo, he channels his inner Eddie Izzard in a gold leather/cheetah print reversible jacket by Zack and Zoey and courtesey of Dress the Dog...

...And here, Puffy appears in my favorite offering, the pink studded halter by Top Dog, also courtesey of Dress the Dog.

Puffy's the demanding type, always taking breaks in the middle of things. Luckily, he takes these breaks outdoors.

"You're paid by the hour, you know. Five minutes, tops."

"No, go there."

"First one upstairs gets a treat!"

"Ya got me, you beast! Here's your muffin."

Recipe for Puffy's Muffins:

2 cups of all-purpose flour, sifted if possible
1 stick of unsalted butter at room temperature
3/4 cups sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
6 small, ripe bananas
1/3 cup coconut
1 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 1/2 teaspoon Vanilla
1/2 c. chopped pecans, if you desire.

Preheat oven to 350. Cream the butter and sugar until fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.

Combine the flour, baking soda and salt. Add to the creamed mixture, and mix thoroughly.

Mash the bananas with a fork. Add in the coconut, cinnamon, pecans and vanilla. Fold into the batter.

Pour into lined muffin tins (makes about 16). Bake for about 40 minutes, but watch it carefully because I always go by smell and rarely by time when baking. Usually the first instant you can smell a baked item is when its ready, or about 5 minutes later, in my experience. This is a dad-learned trick, though it could just as easily have been Puffy. Oh yeah. Ice it with Whipped Buttercream Icing. Mahhhvelous.

"Animal Planet? Predictable... Good thing you can bake, dog."


That'll be the last nap I get for awhile... til next time...!

Monday, March 23, 2009

I'm Official.

As of yesterday, I'm officially a college graduate -- and the first lady in my family to be one! The night before evolved from a small affair to a larger one...

A few newer friends...

A few older friends...

And one of my two brothers as bartender (the drink of the evening was Three Olives Grape and Ginger Ale). Another of my favorite recipes? 2 parts vodka, 1 part amaretto, 1/2 part triple sec and a splash of ginger. I call it Granny's Drawer Smell.

..And of course, my sweetay. One of my favorite pics from the evening.

The next day, I suffered a bit...

Hmm... yes... catch a falling star... follow my dreams... mmm.... dreams....

But I loved every minute of the day. Listen to the man at the Indian restaurant when he tells you what the day's special is, then order it. We relaxed to a podcast afterward about sleep. At one point in the show, they spoke about how you can practice something all day, but it is when you sleep that your mind works on it the most so that you can return to your pursuit the next day with greater skill than the day before. I felt then, that I am truly free to begin anything.

First on the list? A new book. It's been a long time since I've had time to read a book for pleasure, and I'm beginning with Truman Capote's "In Cold Blood".

What are you reading lately? If you had time (or if you do), what something new have you been wanting to pick up?


Thursday, March 19, 2009

Something for the walls (and beyond).

My new apartment has expansive, white walls-- they beg for something to be put on them; but not any little thing will do. I really dig this, this, and that wallpaper; I'd really like to paint our black-and-white outfitted dining room a tangy, spring green. When my friend, unbeknowing of my mural musings, asked which five pieces of art (price be damned) I'd most like to have in my home, I gladly took the time out to ponder. Timely, indeed, and provocative!

The first would be...

Man Ray's "Glass Tears" (via

I've always wanted to have this one in a powder room or otherwise luxurious bathroom.

Jeff Koons' "Balloon Dog" (via Flickr user Jay)

I just love the ebullient imposingness of this massive piece of serendipity (yes, I said serendipity. Feel free to pelt me with Holly Hobby dolls). I picture Fido here standing guard over my front lawn.

Cai Guo-Qiang's "Infinite River" (via

No more perfect backyard installation exists. I once saw a thing where a guy constructed a roller coaster for his kids in the backyard; and while that probably scores ever-so-slightly higher on intrinsic fun value, you can't float petals and candles in it during an evening soiree, al fresco. Mmm... art with multi-generational appeal...

Cai Guo-Qiang's "Descending Wolves" (via

This image was blasted into existence using fireworks. I just love the idea of "capturing" fireworks. Did you ever try to catch a firework's dying embers as a kid during Fourth of July?-- no matter how close you seem, they always disintegrate into a thousand pieces of ash before you can. I'd love to put a massive, wooden frame on this one and put it in an austere, sophisticated living room.

Joelle Bitton's "Abstract" (via hyptypo blog)

I first saw a similar installation at the Cincinnati Children's Museum. As you move in front of the wall, a slower, plasmatic silhouette of yourself appears on the wall and moves in kind. I'd love to have a formal dining room "wallpapered" with "Abstract" to break up the somberness a great big dark table and chairs, as a conversation piece, and because, dining rooms are where great family and friend get-togethers happen. By participating and watching at once, it would heighten the experience.

And, now, I turn this post into a meme to the following five: Which 5 pieces of art would you most like to own, and where might you put them in your home?

Madame Halo of Wicked Halo
Sunshine of Blog Full of Jelly.
Milla of The Girl Who Married a Bear.
Rebecca of The Clothes Horse.
Haley of Fashion Haley.

And PS! You can now follow me on Twitter, if you so desire.

Cloggin' up my wish lists, yo.

My latest, greatest crave? Clogs.

This slick, cherry pair balances its modern appeal with good old fashioned studs.

Clogs always remind me of Spring. In 5th grade, I had a glorious brown leather, closed-toe version as my "spring pair of shoes". I spent several weeks just smelling the new wood and leather before I would wear them. Their first outing was at a lip-synching contest, where I did interpretive dance movements to Ace of Base's "The Sign".

Dr. Scholl's. Obsessed. I had a white pair in high school that I beaded. Totally rad, and definitely worth a redux.

Not only were the clogs glorious, but they were very apropos-- Swedish band, Swedish shoes? Did no one notice my careful coordination? The answer was "Nej": I was disappointed to see my hands-only dance mocked by the high-schoolers, but I won second prize: $75. There were only 2 contestants in my category, but nevermind: I got a brand new, white-and-pink cassette player at Radio Shack the next day. Heaven!

We Who See.

These might be the grown-up version of those clogs of yore. I envision these with a mid-thigh length trench coat and an abbreviated, floral romper.

Or, on a less fierce occasion, say, delicately fixing a toilet to the strains of my new favorite Swedish singer, I could rock these all day. Perfect color, perfect heel height.... I can almost smell them from here.


Saturday, March 14, 2009

Singin' in the Rain.

So yesterday,
I was enjoying the afternoon after my VERY LAST CLASS EVER, by having a spirited chat with a friend...

Dress: thrifted. Scarf: thrifted. Tights: Target. Shoes: Luichiny.
"I freakin' know, right? Like, who does that?"

When a heard a THUD.

"Like, hold on a hot second, okay? I think there's ghosts or murderers-- or murdering ghosts in my frickin' house!"

But lo, it was merely the thud of a package from Solestruck being deposited at my door!

"Cheez-chrys you guys!"

"What in the who? Who in the what?"

"Aw, frickin awwessommme!" It was a pair of Festival Talls by Hunter Boots (endorsed by the Queen herself. Really!) And just in time for spring. I'll wear these to all the festivals! I'll wear them right now!

Sturdily crafted, cheerily bright with a blue-and-white-striped interior and comfy as all get-out!

"Hooray! They match my umbrella!" Ohh--- clouds--- hurry up and rain!

Thanks a bajillion to Danielle from Solestruck! Check out a couple of my other favorite styles from their site:

Irregular Choice "Olivia".
So cute with a pair of black, zip-up-the-side ankle pants and a Vespa!

Sam Edelman "Fontaine".
Ladylike, in a leg-lengthening hue, but a tad funky as well! Gorgeous!

Hunter Boots "Festival Lace".
I love the straight-forward utility of the olive hue, but they also come in cherry red. Makes sloppy weather sexy with a denim mini and some cozy over-the-knee-socks.


Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Takin' care of business.

I'm in such a weird place right now, but I'm enjoying every minute of it. I'm in my last week of classes --evah-- well, maybe... I've got some MBA imaginings, but that's a long-range plan.

I did some work today on the "secret project" I've alluded to before; I have the esteemed task of directing a fashion show for dogs for a Pet Expo that's coming through town! It's a charity thing; all of the clothing is donated by manufacturers or retailers, paraded down the catwalk on canine models (who will be up for adoption), and then silent-auctioned off, with the proceeds benefiting the 30+ rescue groups in attendance.

Today, I spoke with a woman who is donating boy-and-girl pairings of clothing, to be walked down the runway in tandem. I wore the following:

Swing peacoat: Dollhouse. Dress: Vintage. Tights: Urban Outfitters. Shoes: Nine West.

Shameless plug: If you are a pet clothing retailer, manufacturer or designer, looking to gain exposure to 20,000+ people by having your dog fashions modeled by the adoring public, shoot me an email at for all of the details! This goes for you too, students of fashion and hobbyists!

This week also marks the second week in my new home. No one has lived in the place for five years, so it goes to say that some things like the yard are much neglected (I'm going to, for the very first time, make a concerted effort at gardening). Other things, like this 1950's diner-style table and chairs set that we picked up for near-nothing at a garage sale, just need a little TLC to be good as new.

As you can see, the back pad of the chair still has the original yellow-marbled vinyl-- with some nasty slices through it, scotch-taped together. The chair pad has some hideous 1990's Mod-revival pattern in it. The chrome was cloudy, or downright rusty and pitted.

After an unsuccessful bout with CLR, we picked up some chrome polish from AutoZone and the chairs started to get their gleam back. The fabric was $5/yard at Jo-Ann Fabrics. 3 yards and like, 500 staples later, we got ourselves a sexy little dining table! I'd love to paint the walls spring green now.

Dinette Set: Garage-saled. Vase: thrifted. Salt&Pepper Shakers: Broadway Panhandler.

I'm not going to go all home-improvement tutorial on ya, but if you'd like any advice on how to reupholster similar chairs, I'd be more than happy to oblige!


Saturday, March 7, 2009

She's So Unusual

We're reaching the end of a fashion cycle. Everybody's wearing whatever's cool right now. I find myself starting to wonder if I can be okay with it if I wear another vintage dress or bright color. Neons, no thanks, wayfarers-- bye, high-waisted skirts, still promising, but at present, they're eliciting a bit of ennui from yours truly. What's a moody girl to do?

Below, a few people who are turning my fashion frown upside down.

Do check out her photostream. She is like a technicolor doll, with a healthy dose of true originality and class.

verhext from Wardrobe Remix

Cape? Sweater? Dress? I love people who are daring enough to risk fashion ambiguity. She has taken her vestement and pushed it to the extreme, but at the same time taking dress back to its roots: a covering for the body; for physical protection and in the context of this photo and possibly real life, emotional protection as well.

leila-anne from Wardrobe Remix

My favorite looks take what would typically be a traditional silhouette and inject it with new colors, patterns and textures. I love the marming up of lace tights with the white shoes and hat.

Not a "she" as my post title attests, but I do love to see a sartorially wacky, yet self-possessed teenager (who bears a strong resemblance to a young Willy Wonka). Not one but two blazers, the first of which bears playfully pushed up sleeves, and the second of which belies its somber color with buttons all askance. The floral scarf is a stroke of genius and that hair! Gloriously kinetic.


Thursday, March 5, 2009

I've arrived!

Ah--- my first breath of Internet since we've moved in!

In between moving out of my tiny third-floor studio, while still attending school (wrapping up my final projects before I graduate) and everything else, I'm rather astonished that a pretty hardcore home decor undertaking was completed, in a couple of hours, no less:

Curly lamb coat: vintage, thrifted. Sheath: vintage, thrifted. Polka-dot tights: Target. Scarf: thrifted. Shoes: Miss Sixty. Kitchen dog: thrifted.

Here I am, about to skirt out to a presentation at school today. Behind me is the late 18th century table you may remember from this post. A friend's mentioning that the too-fragile-to-use table looked like a picture frame became a call to duty for my sweetness, and so-- the legs have been removed, and the top, mounted on the wall. I swear this picture does it no justice, because it is absolutely the finest dismantling of an antique I've ever seen!

Future dismantlings are scheduled this weekend, for when I reupholster the chairs of a 1950's chrome dinette set. Pictures to come!