Since my last post I’ve been across the ocean and back twice, covered about ten zillion more fashion weeks, summer festivals and expanded my line of accessories tenfold. Gonna try to start trying to catch up!
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Oh me, oh my! Well, I’ve just arrived back in the US from an interesting time in Paris covering Paris Fashion Week for literally the most outlets I ever have before. It was hard! But now that the links are up, I can look back on it as being both hard and rewarding…
This fashion week marked my return to Gawker. I shot an extensive gallery for them as well as did a mini-write-up:
Over 100K views!! That’s my biggest yet for a Gawker gallery. Super psyched!
This fashion week also marked my first time shooting Paris Fashion Week proper (though I’ve covered Men’s Fashion Week and Haute Couture in Paris before). It also marked the beginning of my contributing to Societe Perrier, my favorite sparkling water brand’s website dedicated to nightlife, arts, culture and music. If you know me in real life, you know I am OBSESSED with perrier and even wanted to have a stage-name that incorporated the brand name when I was 15 year’s old (DJ Raymond Perrier, for the record), so this was rad. Here’s a run down of what I covered for them:
Fashion Week party review: This is New York
Words can’t express how much fun this party was! I only wish I would’ve had my friends with me so we could dance together. However, I played it like Robyn and was “Dancing on My Own” in the middle of the dance-floor for much of the time. I then totally emailed Alley telling her how much I wish she’d been there. It was DREAM playlist full of Top 40 and throw-back hip-hop hit (think Missy and Nelly) and dream crowd of young pretties not afraid to sing-a-long to every lyric of every song. it made me realize how desperate I am to do Paris with friends.
I collaborated on a street-style gallery. I wrote the text and contributed photos 1,2 and 3.
Lastly I also did a show-review and full gallery of the Paul & Joe show, my first attempt at something of this kind.
I have no idea if I’ll do another fashion week. Men’s Fashion Week is coming up again at the end of June and Lina and Bryan have tossed around the possibility. I’d love to do New York fashion week again for the experience of it all as it’s so down to earth, accepting and inspiring.
A few weeks ago I sat down to make some Portland themed magnets. First I brainstormed a list of Portland’s most well known traits such as frequent rain, its terrain such as trees and mountains and its nicknames such as “Bridgetown” and “Stumptown.” Then I broke out some paints and got creating…
I meant to do this forever ago! I love that we’re already so far into 2012, but 2011 was a wild and crazy year and deserves a re-cap. This won’t be as in depth as I had originally planned, but oh wells…
First off – let’s talk about my top albums. Ned Lannamann, the newly anointed music editor of the Portland Mercury reached out to me for my top albums. It was a hard pick. I had to ask Arya if there was anything outside of Top 40 that I like anymore. He didn’t know. Here is what I scrapped together:
This is the 3rd year in a row I have been asked by the Mercury to contribute my top albums and second that I have included Kanye West in my top five.
Moving on… So I said 2011 was a crazy year. It was. I went everywhere (not really, but almost) and experienced a lot. I finished writing my first novel (50,000 words!), DJed like cray cray, started doing graffiti and paste-ups (finally), got cast in and filmed a VW commercial, directed a music video, shot publicity shots for Milagres/Kill Rock Stars, fully launched and supported myself via my own accessories company, got some great press from the Oregonian, had Portlandia reach out to me, etc… My geographical timeline breaks down to 5 months spent in Berlin, 5 months spent in Portland, 1 month spent in Paris and 1 month spent on the lamb (San Francisco, Austin and Jamaica). I started out the beginning of the year with a week in Portland, then a week in Jamaica, then two weeks in Paris with Lina covering men’s fashion week and Haute Couture then it was off to Berlin to reestablish myself in a foreign locale. I had last visited the city during a crazy weekend in 2005. Why? Well, I had contributed a photo of Test Icicles to German Vice. When I asked for them to send me a couple copies the editor suggested that I just come by the office and pick them up. Being that I lived in Glasgow at the time and Ryanair had cheap fares, I did just that and fell in love with the magic of the city and vowed to move there at some point in the future. 2011 was the time. Within two days of arriving I found myself in an amazing sublet with the most amazing roommates I could have ever imagined I’d find (Olga of Sweden with her fancy party dresses and love of video games and Katie of Oklahoma with her vintage glasses and continually changing hair color and styles). Ever. Seriously. And then of course there was the spiritual guidance of Elizabeth who I finally got to meet IRL after being friends on Flickr for years. Spiritual guidance doesn’t begin to define the wonderfulness of Elizabeth or her generosity, but for the matter of this summary, we’ll leave it there. Anyway – met amazing people, experienced magic, came back to the USA for SXSW, made my way to PDX and kept extending my stay when I realized how much I was loving the time I was spending there.
By July it was time to cross the Atlantic again and I spent summer and fall primarily in Berlin with many amazing visitors (Jayme, Sallie, Jude) and became a visitor myself as I bounced back and forth to Paris again. Then in mid-November it was Portland and fox scarf making time. So much crazy! Like I just remember finding myself walking down the cobblestone streets in Neukolln one day and being so struck with “how is this my life?” Berlin changed me. Made me more aware of me. I’m not sure how necessary it is for me to live there, but I really came into myself through the time I spent there. For real. I experienced some low lows (I’m not typically a depressed person, but I got depressed) and some high highs. I swear – it’s like there is a veil or a bubble that encompasses the entire earth and magic is just hovering on the outside, waiting for a seam to tear so it can come in and do its business. And I feel likes that bubble’s layer is thinest over Berlin so magic is able to dip in and just mess with stuff way more easily and often in Berlin than anywhere else. That city is so crazy magic. I want to go back and make a music video in spring and a full-length film sometime after that. Who knows… Berlin magic, can you hear me??? Can you make this happen?
I still reflect on my time there. When I made the decision to leave and move away from Portland again, I originally thought I’d land in New York, but as I saved, I realized Berlin was my ultimate destination and when would I next have these funds available to me? I was ready for a challenge and ready to grow. I accomplished both in Berlin. And in Portland, it feels as though there is a ceiling. You can experience growth, success, etc., but there is a ceiling. In Berlin, there is no ceiling. The world is your stage. But it can be much harder to energize those opportunities in the first place, so it’s a real give and take.
Anyway, yes. I will post some recaps of 2011 adventures soon. It was amazing. I’m glad the year was/is a part of my life. I got a lot out of my system, saw some truths (that I fucking love Portland and if I can make the choice to live somewhere – which I can – then Portland is my choice) and so much more…
As for 2012, if I had written this at the beginning of the year as I intended, I would have listed my goal/desire as being to fall in love (as though that can be a goal – ha). I have always felt I’d need to move to New York for that to happen and kind of still do, however I don’t think a move to New York is gonna be part of my year this year so who knows. Maybe it’ll happen next year in Marfa, TX. Ha.
As for realistic, more normal to this blog goals, I would like to write/complete another novel. And maybe finish another draft of last year’s Phenomena, Nebraska. Now that Darren is reading it and giving his feedback, I think that’s totally possible. I would like to work on a Portland on My Sleeve guide book if there is any left over time on the writing front. I would like to do an online TV show. Would really like to do that! And it’s already in the works! I’d like to develop a portfolio of music videos so I can pitch myself as a director. I would like to take more photos and have a budget to shoot more film. I would like to both explore the US more, while at the same time spend more time in one place (Portland – hint, hint, hint). I’d like to write a script and shoot it too if possible (French countryside dreaming). Maybe two scripts? Ha! But for reals… That’s how I do and I have two ideas both wanting to get out of my head and committed to page. I’ve been working on a country EP. That is getting finished! And I am lucky enough to have the people who are most important to me helping to contribute. I’ve been asking my friends and I think the end result is going to be magic. It’ll make a great gift to then give back to those dear friends and maybe be the catalyst to explore those other states. Who knows! What else? Ooooh – I’d love to do a trade show and I’m aiming to do POOL in Las Vegas. Gonna cost a shit-ton, but could really take my brand to another level. If all goes to plan, I’ll be driving a U-haul filled with cardboard display props and all my jazz there in August. Lastly, I would love a house. Just need to sell a novel – ha! But I would just like to feel as though I’m working towards that goal this year. Maybe by just even establishing an untouchable account that is gonna buy me the security I need to keep creating.
Oh, and if this is the year I meet and/or marry Drake, I’d be cool with that too…
I’m super happy to say that one of my newest stockists is the Space by Jillian Rabe. It’s run by her and her sister and located at:
1030 NW 12th Avenue in Portland, OR.
What can you find there made by moi? Beaded bobby pins, scrabble tile necklaces, Portland on My Sleeve canvas totes and fox scarves.
I dropped off my stuff just as their First Thursday event was beginning to rumble on the 2nd of December. They were hosting an open mic, but not a run-of-the-mill open mic. No, not at all. The people who came to fill the space were varied and of multiple art forms. It was inspiring just to be in the presence of. I snapped photos of the scene and my items as things were beginning to bubble underway:
Check out their fabulous post on their own blog about the Open Mic after we left. They’re gonna have another and I wanna go – this time for the whole thing. And who do I spy opening the door? Me! Ha.
And by season, I mean week. I did three in early December. The proof is what follows.
The first was at the MESD, my former stomping ground that employed me as a Program Leader at Sandy River Outdoor School in 2009 and 2010.
Here’s a view of my booth (with me at it):
I split the table with Lena Coleman who works as an Operation Specialist for Outdoor School. What was on her side of the table? Awesome rugs made by her husband. Not your run of the mill rugs either. They have a sail boat, so he uses old rope from the boat and ties it in nifty knots to create rugs.
The second show on the docket was at da Vinci Arts middle school (my alma matter) for their annual art fair. I feel that my booth looked the most pro it ever has this year:
The third and final bazaar of the season/week was an art fair at Holocene during their weekly Friday happy hour on December 9th as organized by Gina Altamura. And no, it was not your average art fair, but one in which you could buy and sell, but where you were also encouraged to swap with the artists around you. All the while. you can drink rad drink specials (one was titled Purple & Green as an ode to the band – blackberry+tequila+ a lime on the side and the other was title Hotlanta and an alcoholic slushie) and eat their insanely amazing free appetizers. Emphasis on insanely amazing. We gorged ourselves on what tastes like otherworldly delights – such as Mexican wedding cookies with cinnamon ice cream, black beans and green rice, tortilla chip and avocado salsa and other tasty jazz. And who is “we” might you ask? I was one lucky girl! I didn’t brave it alone, nope. Darren and I shared a table while Francesca kept us company. Later Arya and Yousef showed up too.
Here’s the listing that went out to Holocene calendar subscribers:
Here’s some pics:
(Aside from the candlelit table, please note the sign.)
In the end Darren was the only one that adhered to the swapping intention. He swapped with three different tables and procured a set of cards, a painting of a cat losing its innocence and a painted wooden bunny that would have set him back only $7 had he shelled out cold, hard cash.
Oh! And the lovely Curtis came by our table. Turned out his birthday was just around the corner so we banished him from the table to write in one of Darren’s cards and add a fox scarf (given Fox is his son’s name) as an impromptu, but very sincere birthday gift.
Another great season had by all!
Portland on My Sleeve bags are proving to be persistent invaders into different store’s window displays. The funny thing is I’ve rarely been in town over the past year to catch these amazing moments in person. Luckily, my lovely friends have been at the ready with their cameras in hand!
The tote bags’ first appearance in a shop window came care of Twill on SE Division. I was tipped off in advance that something like this might be in the works by Meg Aul who played a role in the bags getting into the store in the first place. Her and Michael snapped this photo and sent it to me at the beginning of this year while I was in Berlin:
Being a part of a store’s window display is a crowning achievement, plus you get the added exposure!
Over the summer and heading into fall, I heard from Evan that Tender Loving Empire had include a bag and fox scarf in their autumnal window display. I asked Bryan to head over, which he did. The fox scarves in the store and in the window had already been sold, but he was able to capture the bag sitting beside some Typhoon vinyl:
Over the weekend, Olivia snapped a pic of my bag in the window of Memento on Hawthorne as part of their Christmas display:
I’m super happy! Super happy! This time last year, aside from getting ready to move to Berlin, I was hosting a chorus line of friends at my NE apartment. We’d cut fabric, iron and sew in my living room while listening to Kanye’s My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy and the Wild Ones EP. Maybe I’ll do a photo recollection of that… Anyway, I would come home from working and just sew, sew, sew. This year they got into stores and it’s been beautiful to see them blossom into an Oregonian feature and several window displays!
Oh girl, I be so busy since I’ve been back in Portland! Doing things. Of course. Like sewing, sewing and more sewing! Store drops off, approaching new retailers and so much more! I’m gonna try to catch up on back posts which includes, but is not limited to: holiday bazaars, an appearance in the Willamette Week Gift Guide, a Thank You letter from Portlandia, new Portland stockists, a photo in the Mercury, new products, maybe a DJ mix or two, LocalCut posts, plus the Jared Mees music video I was in that was shot back in spring and oh yeah… there’s a rumbling of a Deelay Ceelay CD booklet thank you to me that came out while I was in Berlin. I’ve yet to see it in person, but am looking forward to it. And a year-end list. Can’t forget the year end list.
And there’s a lot of upcoming stuff in the pipeline too. Lots. Consider this your warning. Shit’s about to get cray. If only there was enough time in the day/left in my USA stay…