Sunday, February 27, 2011

G is for generosity

at the shop last tuesday, wearing an outfit i thought i would like more than i did (should have worn some boots instead or something....). thrifted vintage dress, sweater and belt. the most important and pleasing part of the ensemble were the hand tooled leather leaf hair pins made by milla.

just one more little aftershock from last week's extravaganza of sisterhood: gratitude.
because not only did they come all the way to my shop to see me, excuse my awkwardness, and loan my kids gloves so that they could properly conduct snowball warfare, they came with freaking gifts?!

literally a suitcase full of goodness from milla, suitcase included. fodder for many postings to come...

treasures by way of missa. can't wait to wear that patchy dress all. summer.

and there was a little plaid dress from amber, too. i don't know what i did to deserve all this (tangible and not), but i am humbled. thanks again for everything, girls.

at the shop last thursday, has autumn returned? vintage head to toe, about half of which was thrifted. and why are outfit postings suddenly feeling so stupid to me?

Friday, February 25, 2011

the best things cannot be told

for a far more eloquent and better pictorialized account of the weekend, check out heather's beautiful post. then , if you already haven't already, check out the lovingly written first reflections of the weekend by missa and amber...

one day when i was in college i walked into my art class to find that our professor had written this proverb on the board:

the third best things we talk about
the second best we dream about
the best things cannot be told

i may be a word to two off, but that was the gist of it. it seemed pretty powerful to me then, at age 18 years. powerful enough that it has stuck with me through many years and life experiences. i love words and at times find them so profound...and yet there are very significant things that one can experience that absolutely flood the senses and totally defy anything a dictionary or thesaurus might offer.

that's pretty much how i feel about last weekend. i should have known better, because i have already had the pleasure of making a friend through someone i met online blogging and selling vintage. but still, as an introvert having a month from hell, i felt great nervousness about meeting this group of women. and having them to the shop amidst a busy saturday may not have been the best idea, but they didn't mind. and they didn't mind that i was nervous. there was just warmth and joy at the time we were all spending together.

i grabbed my family and joined the ladies (and their families) in nevada city the next day. i have always loved that town, but never as much as i did wandering its streets with this particular group of people.

i didn't even get to spend the entire weekend with them, and i missed them even as we drove away. the comfort of the crowded little cottage, the sound of laughter and the kids jumping on the bed, the taste of adie's homebrewed beer or sadie's local sweet wine, the smiles that felt so familiar.

i may be shy, but i am no fool. i know i won't squander the opportunity to spend time with any of these folks again.

on our way to the main street, by way of an historic graveyard

at the national where we added sadie and her son to the pack. my husband took two photos and i managed to close my eyes for both...but everyone else looks lovely so who cares.


photos, photos, photos of photos being taken

even purtier

back at the cottage

oh sad little snowman, built in the dark by my husband and son. he must have known he was going to miss everyone, too.

Monday, February 21, 2011

birds of a feather

i thrifted this amazing old embroidered peacock robe the other day. the timing was interesting, because i am in the midst of beading peacock feathers onto one of my cardigans at the moment (below, finished the first feather!). i have talked to other thrifters about the way you can seem to manifest objects if you think on them a bit. i suppose that my wires got a little crossed, and that with my mind on plumage, i must have inadvertantly called this beauty my way. but i am not upset about it, not at all.

and speaking of birds being drawn together (or something like that, i need a segue...), i just spent part of my weekend with a beautiful group of bloggers, first at the shop and then up the hill in nevada city. more photos and words to come, but for now, let's just say there was a lot of smiling, generosity, and a boatload of calico and boots.
i hope everyone had a lovely weekend. xo

Monday, February 14, 2011


old vintage sweetness from the elizabeth's estate sale

ah, valentine's day. one of the two annual occasions that, as a mother, i am a total masochistic snob (the other being halloween). handmade, all the way, no matter how busy, sick, or tired i am. in past years we have made valentine bookmarks (hoping that they might be used when kids--gasp!--read and spared from the trash or recycle bin for a bit) or sparkly doily and sequin encrusted hearts, but this year the kids and i went hunting through old dog-eared magazines that weren't in good enough shape to donate for bits to collage. i had just thrifted a stack of postcard-sized paper that had yellowed to a nice color that we used as a base for our little works of art. we had so much fun working on them, and were so pleased with the results that we almost didn't want to give them away. so i scanned a few of our favorites so that we could continue to enjoy them.

a couple we did for my son:

and a couple from my daughter's pile:

i hope everyone enjoys/ed valentine's day in their own special way :)

i haven't felt much like taking photos of outfits lately, but i made a point to on saturday. it was one of those unseasonably sunny february days that give you a bad case of spring fever (and a huge letdown when followed by the weeklong episode of cold and rain we expect this week).
i wore one of my current favorite dresses: a 70s interpretation of 1930s style blue satin ruffle halter maxi dress. it was one of those miraculous thrifting moments when i found it.

i also wore a pair of vintage Sbicca platform boots that i love and don't wear nearly enough, a cute thrifted jingly flower basket necklace, a vintage 1920s lace bolero and a thrifted vintage 50s sweater.

p.s. i didn't make as much progress as i would have liked--valentines!!-- but i did finish the green parts of the peacock feather. i hope to get it filled in and finished in the next couple days, then i will decide how to proceed on the back of the sweater....

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

native funk & flash

a few weeks ago one of our regular customers came in and we ended up talking about how she had just ordered a copy of Native Funk & Flash. just talking about it made me return once again to my favorite bookshelf where i maintain a collection of vintage sewing and crafting books. some of them have practical instructive projects, like The Illustrated Hassle-Free Make Your Own Clothes Book and The Son of Hassle-Free Sewing (which deserve a post of their own at some point), but Native is pure unadulterated inspiration. Inspiration to endeavor into hugely detailed projects, to never ever part with that favorite old pair of jeans, to let your freak flag fly. I could have scanned the whole damned book, but here, above and below, are some goodies...

Native Funk & Flash = good good stuff. Gorgeous photos of artists and their creations, as well as a few stories. Well worth the investment if you are looking for some colorful inspiration.

what i wore last tuesday, the day that i began to get sick and the first day of a sad little series of days that brought even more infirmity and worry. i know that i am not feeling well and/or otherwise distracted with worry when picking out something to wear is of little interest. luckily today i am finally feeling a little more interested in my closet (that kind of thing is important in my line of "work").
(wearing: pants previously blogged about, an old shredded silk slip worn as a tunic, vintage 50s cardigan, lamb collar made from repurposed fur, sanita clogs, fhf tiered leather necklace by me)

yes, inspired by Native Funk & Flash, i started the ambitious project of beading a couple of my plain old vintage cardigans. this one aspires to peacock feathers. i will have to post its progress....

a handful of new flaming hag folkwear necklaces that came to the shop today

saturday at the shop, pretending to feel healthy and energetic

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

prohibition addiction

i have been suffering from a major attack of love for 1920s and 30s clothing lately. startling recent thrift store finds, a whirlwind trip through craigslist-land, and a big old fabulous collection have only added fuel to my fire. the exquisite details on simply cut twenties garments are shiny things that i must add to my nest, thirties bias cut dresses go on like a fluttering second skin that never chastises me for not being curvy enough. add the discovery of king tut's tomb in november 1922, and its residual effects on all things visual for years after, and i am completely drunk with inspiration.



1920s egyptian revival jewelry set offered by vintage sparkles

fairytales do come true: detail of a 1920s embroidered egyptian revival blouse that i THRIFTED last friday?! priced at $3.99 before a 50% discount. it is this sort of discovery that keeps one on the hunt....

what i wore last saturday to the shop: 1930s black satin gown with 1960s black boots. if memory serves, this dress belonged to janine's grandma.

at the shop last tuesday, wearing another of janine's dresses. it is a 1930s bold floral that in the photo i saw of it online at first reminded me an old black label gunne sax dress (but really the inspiration was the other way around...and speaking of gunnes, i am posting more regularly lately on my gunne blog in case you like that kind of thing). also wearing 1960s Sbicca boots, vintage link belt, and vintage glass bead necklace.