Tuesday, May 31, 2011


I've been thinking about portraits lately, for a few different reasons. At Christmas, I had my portrait done by the artist my mom works for, and it was a really cool experience. Then we started watching The Borgias on HBO, and in a couple of scenes it is mentioned that having one's portrait painted was in vogue, and we see the Pope's mistress sitting for a portrait, holding a lamb which will be transformed into a unicorn. I've also seen a couple of episodes of a Canadian show that airs on Bravo called Star Portraits, in which three portrait artists depict a celebrity, who then decides which piece is his or her favorite. It's a really interesting show, because you get to watch the artist work, and they talk about their process etc. And most recently, I read this article, which is about a controversial art authenticator who claims to have developed a new technique for detecting forgeries. He's asked to authenticate a portrait that is possibly by Da Vinci, and ultimately decides that it is, which makes the drawing worth millions of dollars.

All of this led me to look at lots of portraits online. These were just a few of my favorites:

Sunday, May 29, 2011

sweet sunday

What a good day. Sunshine on my day off, gardening, a nice long walk, gym, grocery shopping - pretty productive, and I think I've earned a bowl of ice cream after dinner! I had to make the denim shorts of my dreams from a pair of thrifted high-waisted jeans. Karl laughed at me, but that's only fair, seeing as I laugh at him sometimes!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

The View

I saw this photo on a (mostly) fashion blog based somewhere in the States, and something about it seemed kind of familiar. Those trees, that shoreline; sure enough, it's Quadra's neighbor island, Cortes. And a beautiful house that has been built there, right on the water, with fantastic views through walls of windows. It's really worth checking out the rest of the pictures here.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

natural fibers

These are the pants that I was hoping to wear on a perfect spring day, but I settled for today. I've never worn linen pants before, but I know the wrinkles come with the territory. The cheerful colour (just a little brighter than in these pictures) more than made up for the wrinkles. They're kind of a funny cut - ankle length, boot cut - but I like the way they look with heels.

I haven't gone real shopping (as opposed to thrifting) in ages, but it was nice enough after work to go for a stroll downtown, so I moseyed around Zara, and while there was lots of tempting stuff, it all kind of looks like I could find it at Value Village. All those bright solids and boxy silhouettes. I felt like I fit right in wearing what I was, but I think the combined prices of the two pieces might have been six dollars.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

on the street

Ladies in pretty colours. I was hoping that the sun would shine today, because I have a new pair of pants to wear that are crying out for sun and sandals, but alas, rain called for something a little more basic and I didn't bother taking a picture. Oh yeah, it's a long weekend, so I shouldn't have expected sun, though secretly I'm keeping my fingers crossed for a nice enough day to do some gardening tomorrow, or even a walk with my girlfriends after the hockey game.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

first blush

The sun came out! My legs came out! I had a lovely walk home from the grocery store today, taking in the sun, getting a dose of vitamin D. I didn't wear these shoes though.

This blouse drives me crazy. I can kind of scan a rack at Value Village for anything silk, and this caught my eye of course. The colours are so beautiful and the print is lovely. The only sad thing is that there are two little burn marks on the front; one under this brooch, one at the hem. Luckily there were covered shoulder pads that were unnecessary, so I saved the fabric from them and I'll make a couple of bows to cover the marks.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

High Colour

The sun is finally shining and I am so excited to wear some springy clothes this week. I actually bared my calves today, but I was walking to the gym behind a gorgeous Amazon in short shorts and towering platforms, and she had the longest golden legs I've ever seen in reality. Men and women alike were turning to stare! Oh well, I try not to compare myself to unattainable ideals, but I can tell you, I might never cover my legs if I had pegs like those.

Monday, May 16, 2011

green and white

By mid-May I should have posted way more flower and garden pictures, but it's been a slow Spring. The lilacs are finally out though, and I picked a couple of bouquets because I can't get enough of that wonderful fragrance. The white lilacs aren't as smelly as the purple ones, so I'm going to get Karl to borrow some from down the alley on his way out to work tonight.

Work is getting really busy, as it always does this time of year. Somehow, even after ten years, it's still hard for me to keep in mind that I'll manage and get through it all. My mantra walking to the bus-stop is "let's just give this a try". I did decide that it would be helpful if I could sneak in a secret extra day, maybe in between Thursday and Friday for example. I could get work done, but no one would be able to take advantage of my day. For some reason that sounds good to me, but things have to be really dire before I come in on my days off. I love my weekends!

Friday, May 13, 2011

Flower Girls

When do we get to wear wreaths of flowers in our hair?

Tuesday, May 10, 2011


You might think that there is something distorted about the colours in these pictures, making me look more pale and washed out than I really am, but no, I am this pale. I go back and forth about whether I embrace the whiteness, or if this will be the year I self-tan the crap out of my skin in the hopes of adding a little colour. You know what though? It always boils down to simple laziness, and I do nothing about it and pretend that I think it looks great that you can see my blue veins through my transparent skin!

Monday, May 9, 2011

Garden of Inspiration

I think this must be the latest I've ever waited into Spring to start planting my vegetable garden. The last couple of weeks have left me feeling a little bit antsy, but it's been so cold and so wet - we've barely had a week without frost! I wouldn't want to be a seed in there until there was some hope of sunshine. I feel the hope now.
Yesterday we tilled and raked, today I planted spinach, peas and lettuce. Next weekend I'll put in the next round, and hopefully it won't be too long before we see those little seedlings poking up. I love a good day in the dirt!
Unfortunately, there's nothing much to show yet, but I was toodling around the web for some inspiration, and wow, some people have amazing gardens. Personally, I think my parents spread could put most of them to shame! It's huge and healthy and bountiful. At this time of year I'm always of two minds about the size of my garden. I want more space, more varieties, more dirt! But we have a small lot, and I like having a small area of grass. And more garden means more weeding, and really, we can't eat all the veggies we grow as it is now. I'm starting to learn to can some of it, and I send every visitor home with all they'll accept, and it's a horrible feeling to let anything go to waste. I guess I'll just look at pictures of giant gardens and spend a few summer days watching my parents toil in theirs!

Saturday, May 7, 2011

True Colour

Fuchsia lip again, now with current favorite fuchsia silk blouse. If this keeps up I'm going to learn how to spell fuchsia whether I want to or not! I'm getting pretty good at wearing lipstick more often; at least a couple of days a week. Now I've been seeing some cool beauty editorials with really bold, bright colours on the eyes. It's one or the other of course, but I might try being a little more bold with some green eyeliner, or layering on the lavender eyeshadow.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

1930's Part Two

If I did travel back in time to live in the thirties, I think my skills would be transferable. In fact, I'm sure there was much more demand for dressmakers then than there is now. I'd happily take in mending and make kids clothes out of flour sacks and quilts out of kids clothes. Or for the fancy ladies, make dresses like the ones in the patterns below. How amazing are those details? Enchanting designs for the dainty needlewoman, indeed!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011


We've been watching the HBO miniseries Mildred Pierce, starring Kate Winslet and it so good, and I'm going crazy for all the 1930's fashion and home decor. It's so beautiful; all the collar and shoulder details, the drapey silks and wide pants. I'm jealous. Admittedly, there may have been some challenges to living at that time, but I feel like I'd give it a try. I might be better suited to that era - I'm thrifty, I don't mind the telephone and the radio being the extent of technology, I'd be happy baking cakes and hanging out the wash.