Saturday, July 30, 2011

Shingai Shoniwa of the Noisettes

Graphic prints, fringe and a mean pompadour
Mobile necklace, luxe textured jacket and fortune cookie fascinator

Often shoeless, always sexy, performer extraordinaire Shingai Shoniwa of the Noisettes is effortlessly one of THE hottest entertainers to surface in the last few years.  She brilliantly blends haute couture, vintage, ethnic and whimsical elements to yield a unique style that matches her amazing voice.  I love the way she plays with color in a restrained manner; her look is always so intentional and glamorous yet youthful and never overdone. 

Make the Noisettes a staple in your auditory diet.  Check out this live performance of Atticus from their sophomore album "Wild Young Hearts".  
You're welcome.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

To Be Young At Heart

Me and Nyela
Runway-side seats at Chanel Spring/Summer 2011 show
How often do you allow your imagination to run wild without limitations or expectations?

Marcia, Aaliyah and Christopher
Wedding with teddy bear groom
When was the last time you REALLY played?

One can learn a lot from kids engaged in unbridled activity.
As adults, we feel compelled to "do" something "productive" throughout our day; stealing moments from ourselves, for ourselves and fighting the guilt that ensues.
This widely accepted cycle can be stifling and limit the opportunities that result from openness, clarity and the sheer joy of being. “Being” itself has been hijacked and transformed into an elitist concept that glorifies “self” rather than sheds ego. This adds to our list of things to “do” and so we continue.

To conclude this entry with a recommendation of any kind would be counter-productive.
*glass raised*
Here's to you and your journey.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Beer and Vintage Clothes

Place du Jeu de Balle Flea Market
Brussels, Belgium

During my recent visit to Brussels I found Shangri-La, in the form of the Place du Jeu de Balle flea market, ensconced in a charming plaza. I arrived at 6:45am jet lagged and exhausted yet within 5 yards (4.57 meters) and with less than 30% of the vendors in place I acquired my first piece; a pair of antique 14k framed eyeglasses in the original case.

"Maison du Lynx; Bruxelles, Belgium"
14kg Antique Eyeglasses

While rummaging through an extensive collection of old buttons, I noticed the first of many clothing vendors setting up her wares in a neighboring plot. I quickly eased my way to her racks and combed through the few carefully selected garments after a warm greeting. As I shopped a 30 something, intelligently clad man appears and strikes a conversation with the merchant in French. He shared that he owns a small clothing shop in Berlin and is in Brussels acquiring new merchandise. As he spoke, like any professional clothing hound would, he watched me gather my finds and began to dig in the wake of my pickings. We exchanged a kind glance acknowledging one another's presence and moved on.

Vintage Ostrich feather Hand Fan with
Mother of Pearl and Brass Hardware

As I meandered through the tables, racks and rugs of world-class, bad-ass bric-a-brac and clothing, I would notice him either paces in front or behind making very few purchases. Upon approaching what would be one of my final stops, I observed him at the table winding down from his search empty handed. He looks at me and states in English “The woman running this booth is across the street at the cafĂ©. If you need anything talk to her” as he points in her direction and walks away. While scanning through his rejects, I unearth a bias cut 1930s sheer silk georgette house gown in pristine condition. I promptly and unashamedly try it on over my outfit examining every fine detail and finalize the sale. Dress in hand and elated, I begin to walk away and hear from across the plaza “I HATE YOU!” The voice led me to the mortified but friendly face of my fellow buyer seated with a small group staring directly at me. I gently smiled and waved walking away half confused yet flattered.

"Wylco Geneve"
1930s House Gown

Friday, July 15, 2011

Shoe Restyled

Restyled Aldo "Craver" espadrille

While numbingly strolling through a Newport News, VA mall (in which I was employed in a past life) days before my departure to Guinea, I found a pair of beige espadrilles I felt were a classic and safe retail purchase. In actuality, the shoe turned out to be too light for my complexion and the rich clay earth of West Africa. After an evening of minimal activity they were ruined.

Rather than throw away a rare retail buy defeated, I painted them, replaced the god-awful ribbon and gave my sandals a new life.

Tools? Acrylic paint and leather cord acquired at a craft store. My palette contained raw sienna, Quaker grey, metallic silver and black which I mixed to create varying shades and colors. I applied three layers of paint to the canvas body at the toe and heel and one to each braid of the wedge which dried quickly and has withstood rainy days.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

New Service: Cataloging

After documenting client purchases and years of tracking store inventory, I've created a service that offers the ultimate in organization to individuals and businesses. Systematize your estate or business with detailed documentation of your possessions. With the cataloging service, your articles will be assigned unique item numbers, descriptions, and any custom identifying features based on your needs. Easily monitor sales, track expenses, update e-commerce sites, prepare for the sale of an estate or turn your crafts and collectibles into cash with an itemized listing of your treasured assets.

Price per project varies