Tuesday, January 31, 2012


Today was a horrendous westcoast winter day.  Cold, windy, and pouring rain: really typical.  Maybe that's why I liked this first picture of long bare legs and short shorts.  It's the sign of a good editorial when I find myself wanting impossible things.  Things I know will not work on me, like these shorts:

Like "a relaxed all-in-one".  I can only imagine what this garments would do to a non-model body.  But I like the jacket and the shoes and heck, I like the way it all looks in this picture and I like imagining the weather on a day when one might be inclined to wear it.

This clutch is awesome.  I'm thinking: can I somehow wrap an old thrift-store clutch with an old thrift-store rug?  Oh, it sounds bad when I put it like that.
all pictures from InStyle UK

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Simple Fashion in Tatler Hong Kong

Karl and I watched Witness today - I can't believe I'd never seen it.  I remember when it came out my parents watching it at a neighbor's house  and I fell asleep on the floor in a sleeping bag right after the scene in the bathroom.  Grown up movies are pretty boring to a five year old, even when there's murder and the Amish.  Good movie now though!

Thursday, January 26, 2012

January in an Infinity Scarf

Nothing too thrilling about this outfit, except this awesome scarf that my sister-in-law gave me for Christmas.  I just wanted to document a day without rain, still light out at 4:45!  Every day now is longer and potentially lighter when we get a break from the heavy cloud cover.  If there's a bright day this weekend I'd love to go for a little hike, well below the snow line!

Monday, January 23, 2012

I spotted a Hawaiian Quilt in The Descendants!

Last night I saw the new movie The Descendants which stars George Clooney as a dad raising two girls as his wife languishes in a coma after a boating accident.  I enjoyed it - it's subtle and sweet, and I like George Clooney when he isn't playing wickedly charming.  One of the best parts of the movie is that it's set in Hawaii and shows the islands from the perspective of the locals as opposed to the tourist postcard version.  

Several scenes take place in his wife's hospital room and I couldn't help noticing the beautiful Hawaiian quilt covering the bed.  It was similar to the examples below, in yellow on a cream background, and it's seen again at the end of the movie in their home.  Hawaiian quilts have this distinctive radial symmetry featuring appliqued botanical motifs and they are usually done in one solid colour on a white background, and have lots of intricate hand sewing.  I absolutely love all of the different flower designs and they remind me of the snowflake cutouts I loved making.  My mom made a quilt a few years ago inspired by traditional Hawaiian quilts and it's so stunning; it's one of my favorite quilts that she has made.  I thought that the movie did a really good job of visually incorporating distinctly Hawaiian elements without having the characters running around in grass skirts and leis.  Come to think of it, looking at the weather forecast, I can't think of a better place to head off to right now!

Friday, January 20, 2012

Mary Ellen Mark: Unattainable beauty ideal

Mary Ellen Mark is a great photographer.  I feel like she's the evolution of Dorothea Lange; the gritty photojournalism of real life through the eyes of an artist.  It's worth googling images of her work,or better yet, tracking down a book of her photographs.  The thing is, I had never seen her until I watched an episode of Work of Art tonight.  Gosh, she's so beautiful, and has amazing style!  I couldn't stop staring at her, which made me realize that I'm way less interested in the beauty of young models than I am in the beauty of older women.  It kind of seems like no big deal to be a gorgeous 19 year old, modelling agencies are overrun with them, but beautiful women in their 60's and 70's are just enthralling and much more likely to cause me to do a double take.  Am I only now realizing that the old cliche of things getting better with age is true?  That's lame of me!  But really, the confidence and personal style and unique looks that time bestows can't be faked until you've earned it.  

Look at her amazing ears.  Those must indicate wisdom or creativity or something, right?  And the thick hair and bold jewellery are so striking.  I guess part of it is wishful thinking on my part.  Just as I was never going to age into Linda Evangelista when I was mesmerised by her at twelve, I'll never age into Mary Ellen Mark.  It must be healthier to appreciate her beauty rather than that of a supermodel in any case.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Louise Pedersen in Elle Denmark

Dreamy.  Romantic.  Retro.  Sophisticated.  Artistic.  Womanly.
All good.

I love these colours, all of them!  And the pants below remind me of my silky printed PJ pants, and I think the belt is a good call; it would help me feel less like I was wearing PJ's.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Outside day

Wow, an outfit post! Sunlight, daylight hours, vitamin D!  It snowed yesterday and today it's sunny and bright, which was the motivation I needed to wear something other than my scruffiest outfits on my day off.  Just running around doing errands, getting ingredients to make pizza tonight, getting cold meds for Karl... basically emerging temporarily from hibernation.

I love the print on this cotton tunic I got at the thrift store.  I'd guess it's from the 60's; the label says that it was designed in Sweden and made in Finland.  It also instructed me to "drop dry" which is kind of in line with my laundering skills.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Dior Couture

Couture still exists; isn't that nice?  I'm so reassured that people still know and practice these techniques, and that there are people who appreciate and will pay for it.  It's not practical and it's not prudent, but gosh, it's art and it's creative and it's beautiful.  I'm inspired.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Meghan Collison by Ben Toms for Vogue Russia

Oh, to have serious eyebrows like that!  Though I know it would be a whole world of maintenance that I could not commit to.  But anyway, I love these photos.  There's something a little twisted about this vision of retro domestic bliss, and I'm know I'm crazy optimistic to be having thoughts of spring, but isn't this what pastel colours do to all of us?  The decor is worth a second look too - is there a home in North America that didn't at one time or another have the side table below?  And how pretty is that leafy wallpaper?  Unfortunately, when I see neat pieces like these in thrift stores, I have to remind myself that they would just make my house look even more like a thrift store!

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Glass Houses

Whenever we spend time at my parents house, I always come away feeling inspired by and somewhat in awe of their energy.  There are constantly multiple projects on the go, the most recent big one being a lovely cabin on their property for guests to stay in.  There are whisperings that the next project might be a new glass greenhouse in the garden, which got me thinking about the design potential for a pretty beautiful addition to the landscape.  Luckily the area isn't prone to severe hailstorms!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Alice Kastrup-Moller by Flippo Del Vita for Creem

These pictures are giving me some inspiration today!  Especially her hair - I want hair like that.  I guess it's not out of the question, but it would take way more effort than I ever devote to my hair.  I suppose if I was getting my hair "done" for a special event I would ask for this, but when does that ever happen?  I also love the nails; that taupe-y beige-pink is so pretty and different.  Right now I'm wearing the perfect robin's egg blue slash jade green that I am really into, but I might keep my eyes open for a nice taupe.  I also love the pintucking on the blouse in the second picture.  I should remember that detail for the future silk blouse sewing spree I'm always planning.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Back to blogging

Ahh, back to the real world of work and alarm clocks and grocery shopping.  We had a wonderful holiday - more than a week off of work, a lovely laid-back Christmas here in Vancouver and a blissfully lazy week at my parents house.  It's really the best part of the year for me.  It's so hard to take time off of work the rest of the year, and for the week between Christmas and New Years we really feel like there is no pressure to do anything we don't want to.  Hibernation mode includes baking and eating treats, napping, reading, walks in the woods, hockey on TV, Scrabble, tea, and lots of time with three of my favorite people in the world: my mom, dad, and husband.  Oh, and their pets.  We got home today to a more-cranky-than-usual cat.

I didn't think of any resolutions this year; sometimes it takes me a few weeks.  This month will certainly be a month of dietary austerity!  My parents are fantastic cooks and I can't turn down anything they make, including seconds, possibly thirds.  Hmm, other than that I'm pretty much perfect.  Just kidding.  I'll keep working on the positive-attitude thing, try to make only smart purchases; maybe I should try to have friends over for dinner more, that would be fun...

Fashion-wise, I'm looking for some sources of springy inspiration.  Part of my island week is the laziest wardrobe possible - sweats, jeans, tees, PJ's, repeat.  So sad the people I love most get the sloppiest me and clients at work get clean hair, make-up, and some attempt at looking cute.  It's just a matter of comfort!  I feel like it might take me a while to get excited about dressing up, but I'll go through the motions until something thrills me.