28 February, 2010


My new fitness plan: put myself in situations that test my ability to cope with stress. Fail at coping, stress out until I have to exercise to regain sanity and prevent the accidental murder of an innocent in the heat of the moment. Work out for two hours because I can't stop. Then put on a Vince Noir tundra suit and play on the wii fit. On webcam. For pay. 

It's a flawless plan, I know. You don't need to tell me, I already know.

27 February, 2010


The best way to spend a Saturday afternoon, in my humble opinion, is in an underground venue with tea and cake, a hot redhead by your side, and sexy, talented people stripping for your viewing pleasure. I also advise that you then hang out with the sexy talented people for the remainder of the evening and wander around in the rain giggling and talking about sparkles. I would recommend that you fill all of your days with hilariously clever people, feathers, sequins, balloon popping, boobs, butts, stockings, nipple tassels, sailors, boy-lesque, and sugar.

Yes, I can safely say that in my experience, this is a good way to spend a Saturday.

At the Moment

My life looks something like this at the moment:

Two internships, one starting on Friday, one in a couple weeks I hope. One job I don't honestly have the time for, but need the money. Helping to organize an event (though I've been useless the past few days), and pulling together three complicated costumes for three different events. Meeting with my boss in a week and a half so we can figure out if I'm going to be starting a shoe design school in San Francisco and teaching there.

Ok, um I have got to fit the gym in here somehow. It's time to stop feeling so awful.

26 February, 2010


For reasons I don't care to go into, today was a horrible day. There were moments when I thought I might explode. I gave myself my second stress-caused migraine-ish thing, and felt my head was going to pop.

But tomorrow will be better. I will make it be better.

Good night.

25 February, 2010

24 February, 2010

What I Wore

What I wore today was surprisingly normal for me. I never wear skirts like this, but now I really like the length. It will be good for spring....

Curiouser and Curiouser

I just got back from my first visit to the British Library, where I attended Curiouser and Curiouser, a talk on Alice in Wonderland and Lewis Carroll. Christopher Lee and Michael Sheen did fantastic readings from the text, and the writer Will Self blew my mind with his gigantic unpretentious vocabulary and thoughts on Wonderland.  (I have an intellectual crush on Will Self now- I want to rape his brain. If anyone knows him, please let him know.) And now I am obsessed with an idea he brought up during his talk, and want to use it for my next collection: interior exteriors. Sky underground. Etc

The BFI is now in possession of the only remaining copy of the 1900something film of Alice in Wonderland. At twelve minutes, it was deemed too long to watch as a whole film back then. You see this was only a few years after the invention of film and most movies were one or two minutes long, so cinema owners used to only buy one scene to show of this epic extravaganza. Because of this, most people never saw the film in its entirety. At the time, the cast of 100+ and the wild special effects were outrageous and fantastic- the world had never seen anything like it! The film will soon be available to view in the BFI archives, but we were the first people to see the film in full in over 100 years! I highly recommend that you take a few minutes out of your day and watch it (I've posted it below for your viewing pleasure)

My brain is going wild!

23 February, 2010

One Tiny Step for Me, Hopefully Leading Toward a Giant Leap for... uh, Me

Whilst sitting on my ass at my job, having finished all my tasks, cleaned the store, restocked all the shoes, and listening to classic Bowie, I found myself thinking about how much I despise retail. Even on the best of days, I think, "I have got to make something of myself so I never have to work retail or food service ever again."

Spurred by the fear of amounting to nothing, I decided to pursue my boss (aka the head of the shoe design school) about an idea we once discussed over coffee. See, this mini school of shoe design also occasionally holds classes over in San Francisco, and my boss and I once discussed me helping her set up a more permanent school over there (think Stitch Lounge, but for shoes). She also asked me once if I wanted to be a teacher (this was after only making one pair of shoes, mind you).

So, I emailed my boss today to say that if she still wanted to pursue that idea we should sit down and have a discussion about how best to use the last year I am here. Should I start attending classes and being a teacher's assistant so that I can learn how to run a class on my own?

A few minutes before I sent the email, I got a serendipitous text message from the shoe designer I will be interning with, asking if I wanted to start playing with ideas and design next week!

All signs point towards better things to come!

I feel good. I really want to make use of my remaining time in London. Although I'd like to do everything (go to all the shows, travel all over Europe, live in every part of the city, see every thing, hear every band), the truth of my life is that I need to focus and really use this time to help me get a head start in a field I just jumped into rather suddenly. This is the sort of knowledge I will only get here and now- all that other stuff can come later. I'd rather be busy learning and interning, stressed with all the work I have to do, than have all this free time, a part time retail job, and depression creeping in at the edges while I sit on my fattening ass wasting the time I have left in the UK.

21 February, 2010

Body of Modeling Work (some nudity)

In response to my previous post about the design work I do, I've decided to post a bit about the other work I do, which is in front of a camera. I feel I've had much better luck in this department. I love being part of the creation of interesting images, and since I haven't been able to do much in my own design work, I can take a little comfort in having made lots of ridiculously over-lit, carefully posed, and photoshopped facebook photos....er I mean, um, tasteful art.

A smattering:

Body of Work

An artist I've recently become acquainted with has asked to see my work. I get this question a lot when I say that I am a designer, but it's a question I dread answering. I don't think that any of my design reflects my artistic sensibilities yet. In my meager body of work there are many failed experiments in "pushing myself" and "trying new things", but surprisingly little work that actually shows the sort of thing I really want to do.

I have posted a number of entries about various design projects I've done, and I don't think the collection of work, much less any single project reflects my aesthetics all that well. However, maybe you all see something I don't... So here I am going to collect my "Body of Work" via all the blog entries that contain photos of what I have spent the last few years doing:

I Need an Internship with a Shoe Designer
Ignore the text, and take a look at the photos at the bottom.

Visual Overview
Some repeat from the entry above, but some other photos as well

Making Shoes
Making some shoes!

The Spaces In Between
A photo heavy journal entry about a project I did at Saint Martins.

Thinking In Fabric
I did a lot of draping to get ideas for projects

 Some Old Work
A collection of crap I did in art school and fashion school before CSM

A Little Artistic Venture
A few photos my flatmate and I took when we both had time and wanted to start up a photography blog. Yes, I mostly just modeled, but I had a lot of input and put a lot of work into the final product as well.

Last Two Weeks
Again, the text is useless, but I loved this retro-future I created in my sketchbook. This page on propaganda and conservative politics felt so cinematic to me....

Hair Fabric
The text is useless, but I loved making this plastic hair creepy fabric, even though we ended up not being able to use it.

That's all for now, folks.

Who Needs Fashion Week....

... When you have inspiration like this??

20 February, 2010

FormS to Remember

Formspring is a useless website. It's a vanity-stroking popularity contest where everyone gets to indulge in their favourite activity- talking about themselves.

So of course I am on it.

I have been asked one or two questions that brought about some honest thinking, though. And every now and then questions have led me to say some things I'd like to remember in those times when I feel like I have failed at life....

Pretend until it's real."
- 19/2/2010

Remind me of this approach to life because in my better moments, I totally believe it. 

19 February, 2010

Fashion Week Friday

I am home from the fashion show, and I have kicked off my incredibly high heels. A cuppa tea, some food to balance out all the wine I had.....It was a good night.

The catwalk shows were held in a subterranean bar that used to be a bath house. The walls had skeletal wallpaper, the corners were draped in red velvet, and the place was lit by candles in golden candelabras. FAB. U. LOUS!

The clothes were by designer James Hock, and some of the key pieces were really fun. (Sadly, I didn't get great photos)

The catwalk was preceded by a showing of the short shoe-film I helped make, and it was the first time I saw it put together. It was beautiful. I was proud to be involved. I met some cool people, made a new contact or two, and began discussing the next collection with the designer. Turns out he wants to start working on his next collection in a week or two and wants me involved from the very beginning!!! This means I'm going to learn some 3d work in Rhino, some mould-making techniques, some design, and then probably how to deal with getting prototypes made. This is EPIC! I can't wait!

What I wore to fashion week: Fluevog boots, Betsey Johnson dress, vintage fur jacket, and a fur hat given to me the day before by my favourite redhead. I went for that 6'5" Russian spy girl look...

Oh! I also realize I have never mentioned who it is I'm working with. His name is Eelko Moorer and the girl who made the stop-motion film of Eelko's work is Catherine Anyango who unfortunately doesn't seem to have a proper site up yet. Her work is incredible, and when I can get a copy of the film, I will post it here for all to see. For the record, they are both incredibly cool people and great to work with. I can't wait to start a new project!

Let There Be Lights!

Look what just arrived!  It's thicker than I thought it would be. YEAY!

16 February, 2010

Mini-Internship, Semi-Go!

I know I know!

So it turns out that despite planning to scrap the film idea, they found a way to salvage the project and it looks like it's a go! So I was in the studio helping with some last minute things for a couple hours today.

Looks like I'll be at Fashion Week on Friday, after all.

Oh god. What am I going to wear?!

15 February, 2010

Good Night

Good night!

This has been a public service announcement from Dr Seuss Wine Glasses and IKEA lighting.

Shoe Box Shelving

I bought a desk when I moved into this flat, but it hasn't gone to much use. I spent most of the summer being too mopey to do art. But I'm back in the game and it is now time to start making it into a useful space where I can focus on my work.

There is very little storage in this room and so I struggle with cleaning up clutter. But I came up with a rather appropriate solution to my problem- shoebox shelving! I grabbed some boxes from work that were going to be thrown out and clipped them together to make some mini shelves for random stuff, and books, etc. Elegant? No. Useful and funny for the time being? Yes.

(Also note the roses that appeared at my job on Sunday.... *kisses to boyfriend)

Mini-Internship, No-Go. Real Internship, GO!

It is disappointing, but due to some problems with the footage, it looks like the film we were working on isn't going to be complete in time for London Fashion Week. The designer called me today and I could hear how depressed he was, even though he was trying to be positive about it- "I'd rather release my line later and be proud of the product than release something shitty and start off on the wrong foot," he said. I agree with him, but I'm very sorry he won't be putting his work out there this season.

But it looks like my eagerness to work with him has paid off in the long run. After he explained the film situation, he followed up by asking if I would come back to work with him on making and designing actual shoes in a few weeks! Looks like we'll be working on mould-making for unique heel shapes, production techniques, actual making/sewing/etc, pattern cutting.....  His work is amazing, so I know I will learn a lot!

It seems that I have gone from a mini-internship to a proper internship in a matter of days. I'm thrilled!

14 February, 2010

My First Girly Brogues

I brought these beauties home with me from work today. They are H by Hudson -which isn't the most well-made brand in the world, but I do think they are designing with me in mind almost all the time.

Not only do I LOVE them, but I don't have anything like these in my closet. I'm trying to expand my style into the tights-with-old-man-tweed-shoes look, even though I think my leg shape might be a bit too thick for it.... (photos to come, and I want honest opinions!)

I was just so thrilled at how comfy they were. Also, I LOVE herringbone tweeds. And yellow leather. So, what's not to love?

13 February, 2010

Fancy Meeting Those Here...

I am laying in bed sifting through design books on amazon.co.uk and drooling unintentionally. I'm supposed to be sleeping. Suddenly I come across this book cover and think to myself, "those look familiar!" These stilt shoes (seen on the catwalk a few years back) were designed and made by the footwear designer I'm currently interning with:

Small world.


Inspiration is a funny thing. Of all the things that could possibly inspire me to design, it seems my fail safe starting point is.... table lamps. No, I'm completely serious- vintage table lamps, and the evolution of their design.

My next fail safe? Chairs. I love chairs.

(And if nothing else pops into my head I look at branches, skeletal shapes, voluptuous curves, and sometimes vintage pulp illustration.)

For this reason, these two Taschen books are at the top of my wishlist:

I hope these find their way onto my slowly evolving design-desk-setup-area-thing very soon.

12 February, 2010

Mini-Internship, day 3

Today I was loaned out to the girl who is shooting the film we're working on for London Fashion Week (to promote the designer's new shoe line- which is AMAZING). For the most part I cut paper and props for the miniature set. Very. Exciting. Work. Yes. Also, my hand is killing me and I never want to see scissors again.

However it was a great day. The film girl is lovely and I'd really like to work with her again. She's an incredible artist, but very modest and sane. She works in this old warehouse with great light, where digital artists rent out a desk space and all share the building. It's ideal! I only wish my art of choice wasn't so noisy and messy. I would love to rent a space there- the atmosphere of arty people working together is enough structure to keep me in line, but without the stress of school and evil tutors.

There was a sweet dog roaming around the studio, lots of tea, yummy food, hilarious people. Watched two graphic designers play Quake against each other for 15 minutes to blow off steam. Talked shit about CSM (YEAY!) and generally had a decent day.

Ow, my hands hurt.

Tomorrow I have to work at the shoe store. I wish I didn't have to because I could be of use on the project. But I couldn't get out of work- in fact I even have to work Sunday too (which I hate doing). But after work on Sunday I'm going over to the set and helping out all evening.

I am going to be exhausted. I already am. Which reminds me. I better go to sleep.



Well, maybe. I'm not entirely sure when or how it happened. But it seems that a few days ago my debit and credit cards were removed from my wallet while I was at the cinema with some friends. I realized my debit card was gone a few hours later and rushed back, but no one had seen it. It took me a few days to notice the credit card was missing- in fact I use it so rarely I only noticed when they called to ask about suspicious activity. Seems the card was used at that very cinema a few hours after I had left.

When we were there buying tickets, perhaps I turned away for a moment with my wallet open or something...? There was almost no one in the lobby, or in the theatre.... so I have no idea how anyone could have taken the cards....

Anyhow, it's all been sorted out now. Just wanted to share the excitement of being stolen from!

11 February, 2010

Mini-Internship, day 2

Ran errands all morning, worked until 10pm. Had some wine, had some food, met the designer's girlfriend, hummed along to the Yeah Yeah Yeahs while I worked. Weighed in on a few design decisions (fun!). Learned a bit about mould making. Then I fucked up a little.... but he didn't blame me, and with the help of his brilliant girlfriend we figured out a solution.

Tomorrow I go help one of the other people working on his project, and then back to his studio to work some more.

Then I work my retail job all weekend (oh god!) And then I think I'm back on my mini-internship Monday.

I am absolutely knackered. G'nite. 

McQueen is Dead. Long Live McQueen.

I'm not one to mope about the death of famous people I didn't know, but today is a sad day for all designers: Alexander McQueen killed himself this morning.

His work has been an inspiration to me for years. His fabulous creations will be very missed by this Redhead. Rest in peace, Lee Alexander McQueen.

10 February, 2010

Mini-Internship, day 1

Today was a big day for me because I began working on a short-term project with a shoe designer. I haven't mentioned it on here yet because I wasn't sure if it was going to happen. I met him through my little independent shoe school and really admired his work, so I bugged him and hassled him and charmed him and smiled very nicely until he found a use for me.

One day into it and I'm already learning things about making shoes, even though this project has nothing to do with making shoes. I've gotten to look through his technical specs, we talked about casting strangely shaped heels (yeay!), and I even found myself able to critique the quality of craftsmanship on the sample shoes his factory sent him -sure, I couldn't do any better, but I was pleased that I have a good eye for quality even if I can't achieve it yet.

And most importantly, he left me to my own devices at several times during the day. Which to me means that he trusted me to not fuck things up, and be resourceful enough to sort things out. That speaks volumes.

I had a good day.

This Used to Be Me... (and between you and me, sometimes still is)

"There's a club if you'd like to go. You could meet somebody who really loves you. So you go and you stand on your own. And you leave on your own. And you go home, and you cry and you want to die."

Etc etc and so forth and so on.

36 Pairs, and They Each Have a Story

You know what this picture says to me? This says I need to buy more colourful shoes. It also says I have an addiction to boots and heels. It also says I need to find a way to organize them so they don't keep ending up in a pile in my closet.

With three pair at the cobbler, one on loan to my flatmate, and about ten more fetish heels back at home in SF, I have 36 pairs of boots or shoes here in the UK. And I think when I have some free time I might share with you my favourite and most interesting ones....

For now though, here are a pair I bought in San Francisco when I was there last month. Vintage white leather victorian superhero boots. I tried to wear them out the other day, but it started to snow. Due to this weather mishap these little darlings don't have a story yet, but I'm sure they will eventually...


08 February, 2010



 A small feat you accomplish today could evolve into a much bigger achievement down the road. You may have  felt recently that you can't tackle the big stuff because the little stuff keeps getting in the way, but actually you are covering a lot of ground just doing what you're doing now. You sometimes tend to feel as though you have to make big, sweeping changes in order to show progress. But progress is any forward movement. If you stop focusing on how many inches forward you moved, you will soon look back and realize just how far you've come.

That is more than a little important for me to remember these days. I am having lots of really panicky moments, feeling I am making no progress with my life/design and wasting what time I have left in London. I have to remind myself that things are moving along, just in tiny baby steps.

07 February, 2010

Some Old Work

I was digging through some folders on my computer this evening and came across some old art and fashion work. I thought I might share...

I'm not saying this is the cream of the crop you understand, but I thought it was interesting looking back at some  pre-Saint Martins, pre-shoemaking stuff. A lot of these were very assignment-specific, and I remember hating how restricted I felt in my design. What I'm trying to say is that my aesthetics, if even present, are hidden rather deeply in some of these. There are a mix of sketches, gesture drawings, illustrator things, and some cheesy photo shop manipulations we had to learn to do. Blah blah blah, enough disclaimers!

Anyhow please feel free to comment!