Saturday, February 26, 2011

This Week's Project

Street style blogs have been done over and over and over and over but for some reason they still hold my fascination. I love The Sartorialist, perhaps the most famous of them all, but I also love the other ones like Stockholm Street Style and The Locals, the re-incarnation of Copenhagen Street Style.

(Okay, I'll admit I am partial to Nordic countries...for some reason I like what the people there are wearing the best.)

I was mulling over the idea of doing a Denver based street style blog, so I googled and came up with two Denver street style bloggers: The Intersection, who has moved to New York City, and Denver Streets who hasn't updated since 2009. As a result, there really wasn't anyone doing anything in Denver.

Early Morning Coffee Run

I'll be the first to admit Denver isn't known for it's fashion-forward looks - the uniform of this city is an R.E.I. fleece and jeans, but after living here for two months I decided that this city was big enough and unique enough that it probably deserved it's own street style blog...so that's what I decided to do this week. So, I'm adding one more blog to the universe of street style blogs, and hoping, at the very least, I'll be able to document what I think is lovely in this city

You can check it out here.



Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Fashion Denver

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Medium sized cities often have interesting creative scenes - they are not too prominent that they rule the city the way art and aesthetics do in places like New York and San Francisco. They are not so tiny that they give one person, maybe two, a way to be a big fish in a small pond and everyone turns out because something is happening.

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I've lived in both sized cities, and now I am in a third and I'm finding that art in medium sized cities hangs in a balance. It needs nurturing and support. It needs places and individuals willing to work against the tide of all business and subtly suburban to make it happen. In Denver where most of the population stares at the mountains instead of the art, it especially needs this coaxing and tending to.

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About a month ago I wandered into Fashion Denver and talked for awhile with the charming, driven, and very creative Brandi who runs this space where local Denver designers can show their creations off. Brandi had years of working on her own handbag designs and decided to create Fashion Denver as a place to share the craft and art of designing as well as advise on the business side of things. This is one of those spaces that helps maintain and grow the designers working in Denver and that makes me excited!

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Fashion Denver hosts classes, shows, and workshops. They also act as a storefront for a rotating host of Denver area designers of all sorts: jewelry, millinery, accessories, and of course clothes.

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(NB: I wasn't paid to say this, like falcon, I just really like the shop!)

Monday, February 21, 2011

...

At night we sit together, him facing away. His eyes are closed but I know he still sees the windows and the busy street. We hear the cars rushing by, and the sirens ringing through the canyon buildings through our cracked window panes. The city sounds help me sleep and I am thankful for the noise of life.

"Tell me yours now," I ask him. "Count them for me."

He starts, and I hear the tired voice say simple sentences. "For the food - grocery shopping."

For this I am thankful too. We eat richly and wonderfully. It is grace.

"For tasty dinner tonight..."

"For a clean bicycle..."

Reyes Point

His voice is growing heavy with sleep. I smile as he finishes.

"For my wife."

We are counting graces.

And to be here with him, who counts me as grace when I could never earn it or be it...well, I count that grace.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Week 7 - 50 Crafts/52 Weeks

Did you notice the skirt I posted yesterday? Here are the details!

Everything that I am making that is modern sewing should be part of the "Morgan Collection" because I have been using up all that fabric she has given me to make modern clothes.

Project ten is this green skirt is made out of upholstery fabric from the 1960's - it has a heavy hand, but a lot of stretch on the bias.

Highland Fling or something..

I decided I wanted to do a scalloped hem - this is my first - and it turned out okay. To make the hem I traced a tupperware lid onto a manila envelope and then used that to trace on the skirt. I lined it in a cotton that I had on hand, and put in an old zipper that was sitting in my trim box. It was a pretty quick sew and one of those things that's easy enough that you don't need a pattern. I love not having to run out and buy things to sew, too!

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***

Fifty first crafts finished a crocheted scarf this week - it's s surprise gift for someone and I'm sure they'll love it because it's so cute!

Okac has been on a baking roll. I'm going to force her to come to my house and make me cream cheese frosting! Also, she made an earring hanger and as a bonus cleaned off her craft table.

Studio Marlowe finished up the knitting portion of her Samantha sweater. I can't wait to see it when it's completely done!

Morgan finished up another hat. She's a knitting machine. Well, not really...she's human...but you know what I mean.

Squishythings has been working on a sketchbook. She's so colorful!




Saturday, February 19, 2011

Schwinnifred and I

I took a little jaunt around Denver today. It's such a happy city!

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I pass these mailboxes on my way home from school every so often and I have to say that they make me smile. People take lots of pictures of them - when I was taking my pictures of them at least two or three people pulled their cars over and grabbed snapshots!

Here is a picture of me and my bike, Schwinnifred, jaunting.

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Schwinnifred is a lovely old cruiser that came from my friend Cale in Milwaukee. When I was in Milwaukee over christmas Cale was selling off some of his cycling stuff for a cross country move. I pleaded with JR to let me buy Schwinnifred, he said yes, and we have been living happily ever after. She's a total upright rider, very heavy, sorta slow, but just lovely and very comfortable. She also gets her own set of "cute bike!" catcalls when I ride her, and she started at least two or three cyclist to cyclist conversations when I was riding her today.

There's nothing not to love about Schwinnifred.

PS: The green skirt I am wearing is object number nine of my 50/52 challenge. I'll be putting up a better set of photos of it on Sunday!



Sunday, February 13, 2011

Week 6 - 50 Crafts/52 Weeks

Wow! What a busy week! Despite a three day weekend (Thank you President Lincoln!) I still am nowhere near done with the grading that I needed to get done!

Well...at least I did get some crafting done in fits throughout the week!

Craft eight was wax paper hearts to hang in my house.

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These were super easy to make and I've done them before. They are one of my favorite valentine crafts because they are cheap, easy, quick and look so lovely hanging in my windows and the archway into our home.

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The final thing I did with them was turn them into gift tags for my kiddos at school. They're each getting a blossom from me since we can't bring in candy.

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For project nine I made a trash bag for my car based on this tutorial.

My car really needed one, so I did that!

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(I am sitting in a perfect moment. It's beautiful outside, there's a breeze coming in through the open window and it's turning to dusk all hazy purple and rose the way only sunsets over the mountains are. Lovely!)

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The other crafters have been busy, too!

Receptionitis has done some knitting for her Ipod Headphones and made an angry bird! It's so cute!

Fifty First Crafts has been working on an amazing paper star and made some paper. Her posts are so thorough that they amaze me! It's incredible!

Okac did something huge: she put new hardware on her mom's kitchen cabinets! Yikes! They look beautiful though, so go check them out.

Studio Marlowe made some beautiful Valentine's Cards!

As always, our non-blogging friends have been working hard too. They've made cards and have been busy knitting!

My list feels a bit thin this week so if I am missing anyone, please let me know!

Friday, February 11, 2011

Closet Clean Out - Part II

I spent most of the day sorting, cleaning, fixing, and organizing.
Ready for some results?

Before:

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After:

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Before:

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After:

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Closet Clean Out - Part I

My bedroom is peaceful, tranquil, huge, and airy.

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I am surrounded by my favorite pieces of furniture in the whole house and heirlooms galore.

Underneath this calm, cool exterior there are some hidden problems:

My jewelry drawer..

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...and my closet.

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Getting dressed has been a real chore lately. I'm struggling to find things, and what used to be one of my favorite things in the morning has turned into a another stressful thing for me.

Why?

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Because I have to dig and dig and dig. If I want shoes I'm sweeping away 1970's floor length evening gowns, turn of the century linen dresses, crawling behind hatboxes. If I want a purse I have to drag a chair into the closet and go to that top shelf. If I am looking for a dress...well...I'm out of luck. Those things are shoved so tightly in there that I'm having to muster all my strength to get one out.

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I have three goals for this closet clean out:

1. Safely store my vintage and antique clothing properly and out of the way: I own a few pieces that are either designer pieces, like an original Dior New Look dress, or straight up antique like an 1850's bodice and some turn of the century dresses that are wearable but should still be stored well when not being used. I don't have enough for a clothing museum but since I sew repro clothing, primary sources and originals are important to me!

2. Get my Etsy stock out of the closet so I don't have to think about it or maneuver around it every morning: I briefly debated just taking it all down to a vintage store and consigning it but I decided that I didn't want to do that because I really enjoy the processes of selling on etsy. I love the photography, the promotion, and the thrill of the hunt so it makes sense for me to store it for another three months and put it up when summer vacation rolls around.

3. Purge clothes (yes, even vintage pieces!) that are past their expiration date. I am starting to horde clothes. Do I really need those worn out boots I wore to Paris in 2007? Probably not. 'Nuff said.

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Saturday, February 05, 2011

Apex...

Saturday is mountain day. That means that it's a day to get out of the city, at least in the morning, and remind myself that I live next to one of the most amazing geographical features in the entire world - The Rocky Mountains.

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This week's hike took me to Apex, a very close trail system that is regularly mountain biked when there is no snow.

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I chose Apex because I have never been there before and it seemed pretty close. It was, and it turned out be a really quick hike. I had covered most of the trails in two hours even.

I'm looking forward to riding it this summer!

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(PS: Can you tell I'm wearing short sleeves here? that's one of the strange things about living here...there can be snow on the ground and you can be too warm for long sleeves when you are walking on the sunny side of the canyon. Move four feet to your left and you'll need a fleece and a jacket!)

Thursday, February 03, 2011

Week 4.5 - 50 Crafts/52 Weeks

Look! Valentines day goodness!

I had a whole two days off in the middle of the week because of the freezing temperatures here in Denver, so I was able to get some sleep, plan some lessons, and sew!

I have had the holiday decoration bug lately and I don't have any Valentines Day things at all, so I decided to make some.

On Tuesday I had my neighbor over and we embroidered little lavender sachets....

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My neighbor had a surplus of lavender (what a great problem to have!) so she graciously let me use some to stuff my sachets with!

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Also, I am still using up that red striped fabric that I have so much of. I have made a mock up with it, a dress out of it, two ironing board covers, stuffed lavender sachets, and now I've done a Valentine's day bunting with it and I still have tons more of it!

Valentine's Day Bunting

These two crafts bring me up to 7/50.


Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Ice Land


It's cold here today. It's not so cold that I can't stand it because I do come from Wisconsin and am used to things like this...

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...but it's cold enough, though, that it's entirely appropriate to stay at home wrapped up in the Icelandic Lopi that my neighbor lent to me.

Ice Day

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