Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Color to the Cold

So recently, I have been watching a lot of the 90's show "Northern Exposure," which I got off of Netflix. I use to watch this show a lot when I was little with my mom and still love it. It is set in Cicely, (sounds like Sicily), a small city in Alaska. For me, this series epitomizes what America is. I love how all the characters feel authentic, making you as a veiwer feel as if you know them and may even live in Cicely yourself. I especially love the argumentative yet flirty relationship between fish-out of water doctor from NYC Dr. Joel Fleischman and independent feminist local bush pilot, Maggie O'Connell.

I am half way thru season 2 now on my netflix dvds, always sympathizing with Ed and gushing over Chris (played by John Corbett), and I started to notice all the different colors in the landscapes of Alaska and the functional yet fashionable wardrobe of this small town. Originally airing in the 90's, it definitely inspires some of the fall/winter fashion trends of this season. I especially enjoyed a lot of the bright color trends of the early 90's mixed with the need for function in a cold, rural landscape. I pulled a few photos, which remind me of Northern Exposure and the Alaskan culture / way of life---bringing color to the cold...

These looks are from the Marc by Marc Jacobs Fall 09 Collection on style.com.
I love the bright tartan prints layered with the washed and indigo blues. The jackets have a fitted menswear look, reminding me of Maggie in a way. How can the heavy fur boots not scream Alaska!

The moss color "lift off" jacket from Daughters of the Liberation (left), cotton checkered tunic (center), beaded wooded clasp belt (right) can all be found at Anthropologie.
I would love this look layered with some black leggings, long grey wooly knee-high socks, and heavy black army boots. The pattern of the belt clashing with the checker print of the dress adds just a little bit of whimsy and fun.

These last looks are from Gina Michele on Etsy! The first two looks have the color pops of the early 90's. I loved the criss-cross pattern on the oversized sweater (left). It looks warm and happy. The rainbow wrap sweater cinched at the waist is my ode to Shelly on Northern Exposure, who is a young spunky waitress who always serves advice with a side of fries and a beer. Last, I love the navajo pattern on the handbag (right), I might just have to get this myself!

After reviewing these photos, can you tell I have a thing for red:) This makes me want to sew the buttons back on my vintage red and black buffalo plaid hunting jacket so I can wear it out:)

I hope you enjoy!


Friday, January 22, 2010

What I'm Reading...

So before Christmas, I borrowed this really, really big biography from my friend Kelsi on Edna St. Vincent Millay called
Savage Beauty by Nancy Milford. I would have to say I normally stick to fiction in the semi funny realm with a little bit of romantic suspense, girl getting guy, rediscovering what her real purpose is in the world---examples: Emily Giffin's Something Borrowed, Something Blue, Love the One Your With, or Cecil Ahern's P.S. I Love You which was made into a movie with Gerard Butler.....can you say YUMMY! Anyway, my sister Leah always says they are not REAL BOOKS. Well if a biography isn't a real book, I don't know what is...

Edna St. Vincent Millay was a poet/playwright in the 1920's who embraced the bohemian lifestyle, with many love affairs, breaking with conventions of the time. I am not that far into the book, but I am already addicted. I wish I could read quicker. I have made it to Vincent at the age of 20 when she wrote her poem "Renascence." I love the first and last verses...

First Verses:

LL I could see from where I stood
Was three long mountains and a wood;
I turned and looked the other way,
And saw three islands in a bay.
So with my eyes I traced the line 5
Of the horizon, thin and fine,
Straight around till I was come
Back to where I’d started from;
And all I saw from where I stood
Was three long mountains and a wood. 10
Over these things I could not see:
These were the things that bounded me;
And I could touch them with my hand,
Almost, I thought, from where I stand.

Last Verses:
The world stands out on either side
No wider than the heart is wide;
Above the world is stretched the sky,— 205
No higher than the soul is high.
The heart can push the sea and land
Farther away on either hand;
The soul can split the sky in two,
And let the face of God shine through. 210
But East and West will pinch the heart
That can not keep them pushed apart;
And he whose soul is flat—the sky
Will cave in on him by and by.

I pulled these verses from Millay's poem from

For me, I don't know if I fully understand what she is saying, but... I get an overwhelming, lost feeling.....but this feeling is a good kind of scary. Like when you get lost on a road trip, but find new and exciting things and then realize being lost is kind of fun. I guess the main point for me is to always expect the unexpected but to always know that the sky is only as high as you make it....and maybe you can go higher than the sky.....

I know it sounds corny, but after a rough week, it kind of helped me.

Anyway enough blabbering. Check out a few of Millay's poems or if you are looking for something new to read, take a look at her biography.

Have an awesome weekend!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

A New Year.....A New ME????

Ok so it is mid- January now and I have finally tried to start on some of my New Year resolutions. It took a while to get up the motivation:) Hell it took over a week just to unpack my giant suitcase after getting back from Christmas in London and New Years in good ol' Wisconsin. Here it goes anyway...

Resolution #1
Eat Better---I have been cooking more---made scallops for the first time ever on Tuesday. Who knew they only take 10 Mins. I used Barefoot Contessa's recipe for Scallops Provencal. They were delicious even after I substituted margarine for butter. Which is better for you anyway anymore?? I can't remember now... Is margarine better than butter or not?...oh well.

Resolution #2
Work Out More--- This goes with Resolution #1. My sister recommended Jillian Micheals: 30 Day Shred. Well, the DVD was still in the Barnes and Noble Bag and in plastic wrap up until this Monday collecting dust. I bought the DVD mid-December in anticipation of my holiday eating habits. I am still on Level 1 for the 4th day but going strong:)

Resolution #3
Be a Little Less of a Mess---well being a mess could mean a lot of things. Pick up the apartment more, do the dishes, vacuum, maybe spend a little more time on my appearance, hair, make-up etc ummmm haven't quite gotten anywhere with this.

Resolution #4
Take Time to be a Little More Creative--- I need to explore the hobbies I love more often, like sewing, photography, graphic design/illustration etc. The whole point of me starting this blog was to have some type of outlet for all my "creativity". Well, that hasn't exactly made me say, "Let's not watch the Grey's Anatomy / Private Practice Crossover Event tonight and instead write some poetry!"

So to help with the 4th and last resolution, my first creative project of 2010 is to make a crazy vest to wear this spring... I have a general idea in mind, but I won't give away the whole design just yet.

This past fall the military trend was big, big, big and I think it will definitely carry over into spring, plus I am obsessed with pin stripes. Here are a few jackets/vests I love! And just if you didn't catch on...my vest design may be slightly military inspired with STRIPES:)

This asymmetric cowl neck leather jacket I saw when I was in London at AllSaints by the Spitalfields Market. The leather is mushy and the brass closures up the front make this basic a definite statement piece. If it were only a little less expensive and in my budget. Oh well....

I didn't get to see this in person, only online. But I love the white and taupe stripes, large studs and frayed/distressed edges on this wool blazer at Free People. Looks so comfy!

Here are some stripes again on this Bolero Jacket at Top Shop. It has a clean-cut, uniform feel, with a zipper pocket detail! I would totally rock this with some hi-waisted pleated pants or leggings.

The last photos are Madison Marcus, which I pulled from Shop Bop. These are a little less military and a little more rock and roll. But I had to include them. The faded canvas vest with studs is a perfect transition to spring. The grey silk blazer with the dropped neckline is a great new yet "vintage" take on a blazer. Love the added attention to the welt pocket detail.... and it is GREY! I wear grey all the time:)

So anyway, I hope these few fashion finds will inspire you as much as they did me. I will keep you posted on my military vest creation. By the time I am done, I may have a whole uniform for combat this Spring and ready to tackle my #3 resolution!

Best of luck on your resolutions too,