17 December, 2009


It's snowing!

Proper snow. Snow flying horizontally in the wind. It's a pain the ass if you have somewhere to be, but first snow always makes me feel like a little kid. If I had wellies and a pompom hat I would put them on and waddle around the park.

09 December, 2009

Another Piece of My Puzzle

When I was a little kid I loved to draw people. I designed clothes often enough, but as I discovered the last time I went through my mother's attic and found my old sketchbooks, it seems my favourite thing to draw was women in kinky lingerie.

I suspect this trend began because I used to steal my mother's Victoria's Secret and Fredericks of Hollywood catalogs to use as pose reference. At first I had no idea what lingerie was for- to my naive eyes it was just another sort of dress up costume. But judging from later sketchbooks, I figured out its purpose pretty quickly. Soon my women were brandishing whips and wearing corsets. I don't think I understood exactly what I was drawing, but on some level I figured out that this stuff was supposed to be sexy.

Flash forward sixteen years and I have begun to develop a sudden obsession with high-end lingerie and innovative, strappy contraptions that serve no purpose other than looking fucking sexy.

So a new dimension to my design future has begun developing in the back of my head. I think it's time to start up my youthful habit of drawing half naked women again. Only this time I want to add it to my developing design line. I was to design and produce shoes, latex clothing, and innovative/naughty lingerie. I know there are companies that dabble in similar spheres, but I have a rather unique design aesthetic and I think I could put together the most amazing boutique full of fabulous-ness!

This plan of mine has been growing and developing in the last few days. It makes me so happy to consider making this plan a reality. I really want to make this happen....

03 December, 2009

Gary Numan, Eigenharps, Boyfriend and Bad Weather

The Boy was here for ten days- ten very full days.

We saw Gary Numan in Manchester, wandered around Liverpool, played Eigenharps in Birmingham, had dinner with my new friends, met up with old friends from San Francisco, drank absinthe, mulled wine, mulled cider, ate too much food, spent too much money, and generally had a good time for ten days.

A few impressions and highlights:

*Gary Numan put on an EPIC show
*Drag Queens in Manchester aren't very friendly
*Girls in Manchester have fantastic shoes, but cannot walk in them. I should offer lessons.
*Afflecks in Manchester makes me feel old
*Liverpool has the coolest cathedral ever. And the creepiest graveyard. And my friends and I are all horror movie stereotypes- "hey everyone's gone, let's go back into the graveyard!" "what could possibly go wrong?" "Um, I'll stay here while you go." "Why isn't my camera working?" *while not looking at the monster coming at her...
*The unbelievable amount of hilarious FAIL during our trip. Bars, restaurants, tours, events.
*Liverpool had the shittiest weather ever. No wonder so much music comes out of there. "If we get famous, we can buy tickets out of here!"
*Coco de Mer is the best lingerie store ever
*I have lived here long enough to actually have a "favourite bar" and know which places have the spiciest indian food
*being one of the first couple people in the world to play an Eigenharp. I haven't been so inspired by an instrument in a very very very long time.
*being offered a fantastic situation where I might be able to learn more about shoes, teach, and gain access to the facilities needed to prototype some of my shoe designs!

These ten days have made me want to travel more while I am still here in Europe. I am inspired to start making music again. I can't wait to start working on making more shoes. I'm ready to start exercising and getting my health back. And these ten days have also made me incredibly thankful for all my friends in London.

It was a very full ten days. And now I need to relax and catch up on sleep. So I'm just going to hug this heater and settle in with Slaughterhouse 5 in my local cafe.

30 November, 2009

Big Girls Don't Cry

I have so much to write that it will have to wait until tomorrow. But for now, let me just make a note about one thing that matters to no one but myself. The Boy flew home to San Francisco this morning, and to my surprise I found that having built up some semblance of a life in London made his departure much easier to handle than his previous visits.

The last time he visited, I was angry at him for most of the week he was here (for no good reason) and spent the last three nights crying on his shoulder, worrying about how he was leaving and I would have to go back to my dorm room and my empty depressing life without him.

This time everything was different. And it was so much better.

And now, I'm going to attempt to make my bed seem less empty and go to sleep. More info on my last two weeks will be forthcoming.

09 November, 2009

Living It Up

Until two weeks ago I was one of those lame 20somethings that wasn't living up their youth. I almost always stayed in and opted out of social events or parties, making up excuses and finding reasons I couldn't go.

All of a sudden my biological social clock switched on and I've had to buy a little calendar just to keep track of all the events I've agreed to attend with new friends. I've sort of fallen into two different groups of lovely people that are into art, style, nerd stuff, and latex clothing.

London doesn't feel like such a lonely place anymore.

06 November, 2009

Where Things Stand

I have been remiss in my blogging duties. I know that a couple people back home read this in order to keep up with me, so this post is mostly for those who want an overall update.

I visited Goldsmiths some weeks ago, and was shown around the design department. I drooled over the BA Design program's facilities and the concept behind the program itself. On top of that, I really liked the idea of attending a college that wasn't just an art school. The diversity of thinking and temperament would be a nice change from all of the art-specific schools I have been to. In short, I would love to attend.

Of course the reality of life is that I can no longer afford to continue my studies, and a BA is no longer something I can aim to get. I've wasted a lot of time and money on three different schools and that decision has come back to bite me in the ass.

However, I looked over things and realized that I might be able to fund one final year of study, and suddenly the 1 year Masters at Polimoda began to look pretty good. But I find myself waffling. Maybe it's weakness, but I am hesitant to live in a country where I don't speak the language. I feel quite lonely here in England a lot of the time, so can you imagine not being able to speak comfortably with most of the population? Of course I would learn Italian, but I am very conscious of language and how it can be used. Starting over with a new language in a new country would make me feel very isolated again. I don't know if I want to do that.

In other news I have accidentally gotten myself a weekend job. I was asked to work by the head of the shoe design school. See, she runs two footwear boutiques and now I work at one of them as a salesperson. So that's kind of nice. It's also an in. It means she no longer sees me as just a student who pays to learn from her staff.

And speaking of shoes, I have been making a point of working on new design every day. I grab my bag, run down to the coffee shop and camp out with a sketchpad and a book of tracing paper. The coffee shop window sills are littered with Taschen design history books, so I often grab one at random, flip through to random pages and pick a lamp or a chair from which I sketch a page of shoes.

This new habit began when I was bitching and complaining about how I don't have access to the materials I need to continue making shoes. My flat mate got really angry and kicked me around a bit, telling me to get off my ass and stop whining. She then bought me a drink and discussed how she could help me proceed with creating a design portfolio. I worked out what I needed to do, and she offered to help me with the branding and design of the portfolio. She is also going to help me get a copy of Rhino so I can begin rendering my more radical heel/platform designs more precisely.

In other news, I have broken a long standing habit of being a hermit and begun socializing. Making new friends is really scary for me, but I really need to stop being a lonely, cranky bastard holed up on my couch and cursing the world at large.... at 24. So I've started making plans with people. Old friends, new potential friends. Every time I go to meet someone I get the overwhelming urge to cancel on them last minute. I want to wrap myself in a blanket and hide instead. But so far I've only canceled once, and that was with a legitimate reason. So, go me.

The Boy is coming to visit in less than two weeks. And as per usual I'm scrambling to make my apartment look nicer, and magically lose a few pounds. I get nervous every time he comes to visit, and dread the couple of days leading up to his departure. And since I won't be coming home for Christmas this year, I'm particularly dreading these next couple of months in solitude after he leaves.

And now I've run out of things to say, and I have to go run errands before I meet up with a cute girl for drinks tonight and pack for a party I am going to after I go to work tomorrow (whew!). So, in leiu of a witty summary for this rambling post, I leave you with a picture I took in Florence, that made me giggle:

26 October, 2009

Another +1 Networking Point

Sometimes all it takes is the right question posed to the right person at the right moment for doors to fling open for you.

As I was leaving my local cafe today I ran into the owner in the midst of a conversation with two other arty looking men. I happen to know that the owner has a background in furniture design and woodworking. Since I've been reading up on materials I might use to make heels for my prototype shoes I asked him if he had a moment for me to pick his brain about using wood for heels. He said he'd not only love to talk to me, but then introduced me to the man standing next to him. Turns out I interrupted a chat between woodworking designers. They were kind enough to give me an overview of what sorts of wood I could use, and the sorts of tools I would need. Then, this designer I just met offered to help me knock together some prototype heels if I brought him sketches and specs.

Just like that!

Looks like I'm growing a group of designers and teachers and mentors to help me as I start off on this shoe design thing. And it seems to be going pretty well.

24 October, 2009

Making Shoes

I just completed the last week of my shoe design course. During these final five days we were going to attempt the realization of a shoe design we'd worked on before leaving for Italy. For beginners like myself, five days to see a design all the way through from sketch to actual shoe is a pretty bold undertaking- especially considering the sort of designs a couple of us had in mind. I had three designs sketched out, and they were all very science fiction-y, but I settled on the one that was most complex in terms of pattern drafting. My teacher encouraged me to challenge myself.

Since I plan on actually making the other designs at a later date, I will only share those with you later. For now, here is the design I started with when I began to make the shoes:

Several changes would be made due to practicality and time, but the essence of the sketch stayed the same throughout the process of making. And now I'd like to take you through a very quick run through of my last five days, from that sketch to the actual (nearly) finished shoes.

So first we had to make a pattern. Using a last (the wood or plastic foot form), we began by taping them up and drawing on the form. We then carefully cut the patterns off and flattened them before tracing them off, adding and refining and finally creating something that would fit the foot perfectly. (I left a large block of fabric where the heel would be because at the time we weren't sure the shape of the heel I would be using.)

After much crankiness and confusion over my colors and materials I settled on a deep navy patent leather and found a beautiful warm mustard vegetable tanned leather for details. The project began as a (warning: pretentiousness ahead) "meditation on duality", so the mix of shiny and craftsmen-style leather suited my concept perfectly.

So now it was time to start making the shoes. First up, the veg tan leather toe caps. Veg tan leather is very stiff and difficult to work with. The trick to making the toe caps was to soak the leather in luke warm water and shape the toes around the lasts to let them dry.

While they were drying I began sewing all my pieces together. Adding stiffeners, shaping tape, and all the bits and bobs required to make the shoe upper and lining. I chose the bright blue suede lining because I thought it would brighten the shoe and make it look luscious and luminescent. Once the little toe caps were dried (aren't they cute?) I saw the colors and the pieces beginning to take shape and only had to put the whole thing together.

First I lasted the blue suede lining, as you can see below. Then I did a similar lasting technique to the upper (the outside layer), before gluing it all together. Next I had to shave all the edges of leather down to create a flat surface to walk on. As you can see I then filled in the bottom with a cork/acetone mixture that helps to even out the bottom surface of the shoe.

After everything was sewn up, nailed down, glued together, and attached, I began to worry because I hadn't found a heel. My original design called for a wedge, so I began to carve one out of very dense cork. In the end I realized what I really wanted was a heel and later scrapped the cork, but not before I'd put a fair amount of blood and sweat into hand shaving layers of this very very hard cork.

So the shoes were nearly finished, short of finding or carving a new heel for them. Because of the lack of heel, the big block of leather was still hanging off the back of the shoe when I presented my design to the panel of teachers on the last day. They didn't seem to mind. All in all, I have to say I'm pretty damn pleased with myself. This is only the second pair of shoes I've ever made, and I didn't even get to design the first pair.

Unlike fashion, I found to my surprise that I actually enjoyed the process of making the shoes. I loved the craft and the detail and working with the variety of materials. I loved working with tools and making a mess. Shoes are amazing. I want to do more. And more. And more and more.

I learned so much about shoes during this project. I've come to see that although I can use some of the skills I picked up in my fashion training, shoes are a different monster. For example, when pattern cutting and planning clothing, you can anticipate and use gravity to your advantage. But in footwear, you don't have points of the body to hang fabric off of, such as shoulders or hips. You have to work against gravity because the bulk of the shoe is at the bottom. So a shoe designer/pattern cutter has to think upwards instead of downwards.

I also began to appreciate how difficult it is to line things up perfectly. I realize there is a margin for error in shoes- I mean, when's the last time you stared at the stitching on your mass-produced shoes to see if it was perfectly aligned- but I have noticed that my toe caps are about 2mm different and it annoys me! On top of all of that, I have a new appreciation for working with difficult things like patent leather. That wasn't an easy choice for a beginner.

I have been getting a fantastic response about these shoes ever since I began showing them around. Even my teachers complimented my design, and I have the utmost respect for my teachers and their work. That was high praise.

My plan is to focus on making the rest of the mini-collection I designed during this class with the help of my FABULOUS teachers and mentors, and we'll see where things go from there...

What do you know- I have finally found something I love doing.

20 October, 2009

Back From Italy!

This has been the most incredible couple of weeks for me. Italy was a fantastic series of adventures which I will detail in another blog entry when I have more time. But let me just say a quick word about Italy. Although I only saw two cities, my impression can be summed up in one of the photos I took wandering Florence:

Warm light, vespas, beautiful, but a little grim around the edges, and gated. That is the Italy I saw.

10 October, 2009

Marcello, Come Here!

Monday morning, at the ungodly hour of 5am I will be setting off for a week of design work, studying, drinking, dancing, a party or two, visiting Polimoda, and then more design work in the sunny country of Italy.

It will of course be exactly like a Fellini film, kitten, fur wrap, disillusionment and all:

06 October, 2009


In the last two days a lot of things have turned around.

I began a three week footwear design and production course today and I'm already working on a collection. Tomorrow we're seeing the shoe museum and visiting a couple factories, and then next Monday we fly to Italy where we will attend Linnea Pelle and visit Polimoda.

Strange timing makes this upcoming visit to Polimoda very important to me because I was just invited to apply for my MA in shoe design there. One of my shoe design teachers also teaches at Polimoda and spoke with them on my behalf, and encouraged me to apply despite not having finishing my BA. So, next week I'll not only be in Italy for the first time, but I'll also be viewing a university I hope to attend in 2011.

A number of other interesting opportunities have also popped up out of the blue as well. Things are finally looking up.

I am back in the game people. No more moping around the house and watching bad movies. I'm back in the library and doing research. I am traveling, teaching, and generally wearing myself out.

I forgot how much I hate/love dragging myself out of bed early in the morning to carry paper-heavy bags on the overheated underground, sweating like mad after bundling up against the sudden downpour, and craving coffee like a madwoman.

This is good. This is all good.

30 September, 2009


Fashion disgusts me right now.

The whole CSM sketchbook process was so unnatural to me that I no longer care to even attempt it. But it seems the habit has set in and I've forgotten how to be inspired without first worrying about the sketchbook.

This was upsetting because I find myself intensely inspired by things these days, and unable to respond in a way other than fashion. And fashion, as I delicately mentioned above, disgusts me. But recently I've begun looking at small fashion designers and staring at their clothing, trying to work backwards to what their initial concept might have been. It began to bother me that I couldn't imagine how I'd defend those designs to my past tutors. Then one day I stopped and said, "what the hell am I doing that for?" And that's when I realized I don't need a damn sketchbook full of research to explain my ideas to anyone anymore. Don't get me wrong, research is important but in fashion no one cares HOW you got there as long as the place you arrived is good.

Forget all my sketchbooks and research and all the time I wasted trying to explain what was perfectly clear to me to tutors that didn't understand the basics of social etiquette much less style and fashion. Forget all this "challenging myself to start from difficult and complex subjects". I should stop making it so hard on myself and just start sketching.

I want to design what I want to design. It's as simple as that.

27 September, 2009

+1 Networking Point

Woke up feeling like I'd been hit by a truck. Dragged myself to the coffee shop down the road hoping that a caffeine injection would enliven the brain a bit. It didn't.

But some good came of my miniscule effort to drag myself outside. Our local coffee shop is under a building full of artist studios and as a result the cafe owners are lovely arty people who know all the goings on above them.

As a regular who knows the entire staff by name, I found myself in a discussion about art and what I want to do with my life after I asked the owner if I could borrow this design magazine laying around the cafe with an article on rapid prototyping technology. He liked that I want to try my hand at a bit of everything right now, and said he might be able to help. Turns out a shoe designer just moved into the building above the cafe, and the cafe owners also know a fashion designer, a furniture designer, and all sorts of artists up there. He said he would love to connect me with those artists and set up a meeting so I could mingle and find myself some new internships.

I suggested they use their cafe as a meeting point for artists and designers in the area and they suddenly lit up saying, "we were JUST discussing doing that not ten minutes ago!" I offered to help organize that event, which they aim to make happen early November.

So I still feel icky and tired, but now there's a little light of hope that maybe I found a way to study under some designers, craftsmen, and artists so that I actually try my hand at all those things I dreamed about learning this year.

25 September, 2009

No Importance

An announcement of no importance:

My flatmate N and I took part in a guided bike ride into the center of the city today. We woke at 6am, rode our bikes to the meeting point at 7am and have been out riding around ever since. Six hours later, we were both surprised to find that we were TIRED.

I rode my bike for SIX HOURS!

Go me!

23 September, 2009

Oblique Strategy for the Day

"Don't be afraid of things because they're easy to do."

That's advice I really should take.

21 September, 2009

The Spaces In Between

Let me tell you a story, dear readers. A story of one of the only projects I really enjoyed doing at Central Saint Martins. Well, "enjoyed" might be too strong of a word.

This project had a prompt as lackluster as porridge: "what is your journey?" I was feeling particularly lonely that term and so I planned to do the project on physical journeys, historic journeys, epic stories and poems, migration, the hero cycle, and my own journey from San Francisco to London. After I had amassed a pile of research several hundred images thick I approached my Evil Tutor with my idea, only to have him cut me off with a disappointed sigh and the question, "why don't you do it on fashion or something more interesting?"

At that point I realized he wasn't going to like anything I produced, so I whittled the grand concept down to something so basic even a luddite like Evil Tutor could grasp it. But I had to keep in mind the fact that this was Saint Martins, and they don't like anything too direct or obvious. So, first I narrowed the concept to something physical: two iconic bridges. One from the city I came from, and one from the city I came to. And then to make it more Saint Martins-y I decided to focus not on the bridges, so much as the way they cut up space... the negative space around the bridges. (This is when my fascination with negative space began.)

The project was called "The Spaces In Between", and now I'm going to share it with you.

I began with my two iconic bridges, and followed it up with a few pages of sketches of the negative space created by the bridges (which didn't turn out in photos, and weren't all that interesting anyhow)

From these sketches of negative space I began to wonder what defined space as negative. If you are looking at the space around an object at the same time as you are looking at the object itself, you are seeing the same thing two different ways at the same time. So my next step was to find a way to visually explain the idea of "looking at the same thing from two angles at once" visually to my Tutor.

I found a photographer whose name escapes me now, who photographed the same arch from two perspectives and placed them one right next to another. How would that translate to fashion? I imagined a woman wearing a dress with a naked body printed on it that was facing a direction other than the one the wearer was actually facing.

But Saint Martins likes to see that you always refer back to your original concept by the time you design rough sketches. So after some playing with 3d application of this concept on top of this my naked torso ideas (again, which didn't photograph well), I designed a number of very strange garments.

Now, before you think, "holy shit, those are some crap drawings and hideous designs," let me explain that I went a bit crazy with this project because my tutor told me two conflicting things at once shortly before I began this project. First he told me that I didn't experiment with shape or concept enough, and then he told me not two minutes later that my designs were too outlandish and not at all wearable. So I tried to both experiment with shape, but not go as overboard as I previously had.

Moving on....

That same photographer also played with space by taking photos of an archway, cutting it in half and thereby redefining the space it occupied. It was a natural progression from my last idea, so I started cutting up the body and redefining the space it would take up. I then took something very basic- the jeans and t shirt- and cut those iconic shapes up, changing the space and shape they used.

I liked the idea of playing with familiar shapes on the body, so I asked one of my flatmates to let me tie her up. Using string I created some interesting shapes on her body, around her body, and then translated these shapes into negative and positive space, before changing the negative into positive again etc etc. I ended up using some of the shapes created by the string and raising them by quilting a fabric sample...

I also looked at artists who responded to the shape of the body in unusual ways, and found that I was drawn to things that protruded from the body in unusual ways, so I did a few fabric samples to create little nubbins that would protrude from seams...

But I worried I had strayed too far from my original starting point and Evil Tutor hated my train of thought, so I explored the use of space again by literally taking the images I began with and cutting them up, sewing the paper back together, etc in order to create new shapes out of them.

Which I then combined with the idea of quilting shapes (thereby turning a flat space into a 3d space) and designed a few more roughs:

So now I had a lot of ideas, but I had more to do. Being a fashion and print student, I also had to design and produce a print for my fabric.

I once again went back to my original bridges and my idea of negative space and began looking for art and photography that served to illustrate my ideas. In the end I ended up tracing out the negative space around the bridge in the black and white photo on the top page. I then repeated that pattern, cut out out and made a ghetto screen which I used to print, foil, flock, and dye fabric with. (The print looked like what you see on that sheet of tracing paper stuck in the book.)

I then proceeded to combine all these concepts together to create a booklet of about 15 fabric samples using my new print, some of my original concepts, and all the various artists I ended up looking at. Here are a few poorly photographed samples:

Nubbins, a clear foil print, and industrial looking seams/bolts. Very bridge like and also very in line with what I wanted to do. Pardon the brown fuzz on the fabric sample. heh.

The ass print from the original "looking at the same thing from two angles" idea, combined with the bolts, and the print, done in foil.

Just the print, quilted in select places. Um, I did this one very quickly so please excuse the mess. It was just a quick sample, remember.

Taking the concept of the bridge print and making it less literal.

A painting using the artist I found late in the project that I felt showed the softer side of the steel structures.

Now, using these and my other ten samples, I did a few more sketches recycling my favorite styles from the previous sketches and applying my new prints onto them:

And finally, I attempted to change the very fashiony way I illustrate (being trained for 3 years in fashion illustration will do that) to reflect the playful nature of the designs I settled on. These were a lot of fun to do:

I think my favorite is the ass dress, which I aim to produce at some point...

So that's a rough idea of how a project went for me. I got a lot of good response from my classmates on this one. And although it was a very new way of working, and I had to disregard all the research I did in the beginning, I felt like I arrived at something that I could see being worn.

I also realized that the project could have been much more Me. It would have been more interesting, more in-depth, just "more" if I hadn't had to waste time visually explaining my ideas to the tutor, instead of just working the ideas through to their logical and creative end. I was too tutor-aware my boyfriend said, and he's right. This project would have been much more interesting if Evil Tutor didn't need each step explained out to him. He could never follow my thought processes and so I went to a great deal of trouble trying to visually explain them to him which in the end distracted me and stunted my design process.

Of course I failed this project. Evil Tutor never told me why, and frankly I didn't care. Shortly after this project I realized I didn't want to be at Saint Martins anymore.

Funny how a project about journeys would end up pointing me in a new direction.

17 September, 2009

Oblique Strategy for the Day

"Make a blank valuable by putting it in an exquisite frame."

16 September, 2009

Oblique Strategy for the Day

"Listen to the quiet voice"

13 September, 2009

Mum in Town

My mother is in town this week.

I love my mom, but a week is a long time to spend with her nonstop.

Details to follow soon.

05 September, 2009

Boring Domestic Life

I am sitting in the lounge. Warm light, cool breeze, quiet music playing.

My flatmate is curled up in the other arm chair reading cheesy crime fiction while I surf the internet for electric pianos and latex catsuits. We're sipping tea, and eating toast made from the fresh bread we bought at the market today.

After a bike ride along the canal we spent the afternoon at Broadway Market sitting on the curb listening to a soulful guitarist, and buying fresh fruit, veg, and chicken to roast tonight.

Boring domestic life can be nice.

(Oblique Strategy for the Day: Disciplined self-indulgence.)

03 September, 2009

Oblique Strategy for the Day.

My Oblique Strategy for the day:

"Faced with a choice, do both"

01 September, 2009


It's a little after midnight and being that it is now September 2nd, I am officially a year older.

I think I'm finally an adult because for the first time in my life I have no plans, no party, no nothing. My big birthday plans include picking up a used bike, and cleaning my kitchen. I will be eagerly ripping open a box that has been sitting on my desk though. The boy sent me something and I am dying to see what it is.

I guess I'm a little melancholy tonight. I've never spent a birthday alone before. So when I saw this photo The Boy took of me at our friend's place in SF this past spring, I saw it as a moment of indecision and aprehension captured on film. It seemed to fit my mood just now.

Happy Birthday, Me.

29 August, 2009

Design Ideas

Here is a shitty photo of a quick design rough I did in the second of my shoe design courses today.

I'm kind of in love with the design, to be honest. I want to produce this one. The body of the shoe will be thick, ruched black leather while the heel/back/collar and toe are in taupe leather.

It was compared to Rick Owens' work by my teacher, and I am VERY flattered.

(MY design, please do not steal. If you do I will send my ninjas after you. Shiny ninjas. Shiny ninjas of pain.)

28 August, 2009

The Beginning of a Little Artistic Venture

My flat mate and I have been discussing a number of projects we want to do together. They range from ridiculous business ventures (a butcher shop called "Please to Meat!") to the basic art student shit. You can probably guess which we feel is more realistic for us to pursue at this time...

She got a fantastic digital SLR camera for her birthday and we've been DYING to mess around with it. So today, we found time to choose an outfit and shoot in the park just as the sun was setting. But of course the light disappeared quickly and took the warmth of the day with it. Not ten minutes into our shoot the temperature dropped and the rain began. We got only three photos, which I will now post here to mark the beginning of an artistic collaboration between two idiot girls with a camera and some pretty dresses.

All photos are by the very talented Nivina Hameed.
(ps- not all the photos will be of me, we're just starting this way because we have to work with what we have.)

27 August, 2009

Replacement Bikes

Today we went back to Bike Works, my favorite bike shop, in hopes of picking up two bikes that had been fixed up for us. The new-to-us used bike buying was half successful today- My flatmate came home with a nice bike, but the one I went back for needed some more work done to it. They offered me another one but it wasn't quite the right size. I was a little let down.

The shop is couple of miles away from our flat, and I didn't want my friend to have to walk her new bike back simply because I hadn't found one, so I offered to walk back alone so that she could ride back. The guys at the bike shop overheard and in a moment of pity over our stolen bikes, offered to loan me the bike I had tried out today!

So we rode away with two bikes, only one of which we paid for, with plans to go back on Wednesday (my birthday) to go try out the bigger bike. :)

We rode home along the canal and through Victoria Park and it felt so good to be riding again. In the week I had my bike I had become rather addicted.

I can't wait to go back on my birthday and try out another bike!

Oblique Strategy for the Day.

"Make a sudden, destructive unpredictable action; incorporate"

24 August, 2009

99p of Oxfam Greatness

How could I leave the store without it?

23 August, 2009

Bikes Be Gone

Today my flatmate and I both had our bikes stolen while we were having a drink in the pub a few streets away.

We came outside excited by our day and our new found comfort riding in real traffic, only to find that the rack where we had chained our bikes was empty. I felt numb, and then sick, and now I'm just sad and pissed off.

We are going to do everything we can to try and find our bikes. We will go to all the 2nd hand bike shops to ask if bikes matching our descriptions were sold to them yesterday. We also filed a police report, even though we know they won't do anything about it (despite the CCTV cameras pointed directly at the place where we locked our bikes up).

It feels like someone took away the symbol of my new freedom to go where I want to go. It really shook me up for a few hours. Somehow it will all work out, I am sure of it. But right now it just feels shitty.


goodbye little bikes.

S&M Brunch


Sausages and Mash.

22 August, 2009

Well Hung

I finally took a moment to hang the chalkboard we bought for the kitchen.

This Is My Life

There is nothing like biking to your neighborhood produce shop in the sun to come home and prepare a dinner of Dhal, Curried chicken and potatoes, Bhindi Bhaji, and bay leaf soaked rice. We cooked curry in a wok while listening to MC Hammer in a flat in England.

We also discovered magnetic poetry stuck to the side of our refrigerator and have since begun tormenting one another with it.

Our first poem sprung forth from the eating of tarts and discussing being an interracial household.

"You are whit(e)y. I, pariah. Tantamount torment! We know ennui. Usurp my Treacle."

And today we picked up the Russian print from 1927 and hung it in our otherwsie empty living room!

This is my life.