Nov 26, 2013

bound by button holes

Oh November, how did you come so fast? Wasn't it just last week that it was the beginning of October? Time is flying. always I guess. Things have been really good lately. This fall has been really lovely and very dry. Only 3 days of light rain this whole season. I really hope that winter proves to be a cold one, we need the rain! Especially being off the grid, I have to think about things like our well.

October has been a very different month then in past years. But I've been adjusting to the changes.
With some extra free time, I decided to make a little road trip up to Ashland to visit my sweet friend Brittany. She's been living there for a while now and it was so good to catch up with her. We went on an awesome hike, checked out the little shops of Ashland, did a soak and sauna, ate really yummy food, drank coffee, talked for hours and went out for cocktails and to the local farmers market. Pretty much the perfect mini vacation ever. Definitely going back for another visit soon.
When I returned from my trip, I packed up a few things and then headed into the woods with my friend Aly to post celebrate our birthdays. It was a good time out in the wilderness. We only camped for 1 night but it felt like a week had gone by out there. The place we hiked is called Ace of Bean. Such a sweet spot. And I just love the name, makes me think there's a jolly green giant somewhere amongst the forest. On our way back we saw an old abandoned cabin that we decided to check out. Kinda creepy and kinda cool. Glad I got a mini hike in this fall, especially cuz the summer annual hike with the lady crew didn't manage to happen this year. Crossing my fingers it lines up for us all to go next year.

October was also about going to a show in the city. Hardly ever get to do that and it's always a treat when Gus and I can both get away together. This show was extra special due to the nature of how I acquired the tickets. There was a contest being offered on facebook, so I entered and WON!! We got to see Alice Russell in SF at Yoshi's and that show was fantastic! I got to meet her after the show and she signed a cd for me. She is such a sweetheart. Here's a link to my new favorite song off her new album. Our seats were fantastic! When she played this song everyone got up and started dancing around! It was so awesome. Been following her for like 8 years. She's from the UK and I was thrilled to win those tickets! : ) A for sure highlight of this fall season.

After taking a 3 month break from school, I'm back and right now I'm taking a tailoring class. It's been really good to get back into the swing of things, needle, thread and all! Learning so much about the inner workings of a jacket. Now I get why hand tailored suits can be $5,000! Surely my jacket will be worth that to me after all the hours I will have invested when it's all over.

I chose to use a beautiful shade of purple wool and a mango orange as a contrasting fabric for my jacket. This week I am cutting out the silk lining and have been working on making bound button holes and welt pockets with a flap. I love my school so much and really want to devote more of my blog posts to the fashion and sewing world my heart is so fond of.

Gus and I got crafty together this halloween. He decided to be a snail and I wanted to be a zebra.  I really wanted to start putting my skills to the test from school and made my costume using my own drafted pattern. I scored some very old early 1900's victorian lace with beads and an amazing opera silk cape from a rad antique shop out in Sebastopol that I used in my costume. Gus was the cutest little snail I have ever seen. He made the frame of his shell out of chicken wire and used paper mache for the outside. I helped with the paint and glitter and it all came together so great! The kids really loved his costume and they kept asking him if he had candy in his shell. One little kid even said "Come on man, stop holding out!" Kids say the funniest things sometimes.

Speaking of kids! I've been lucky to get to spend a few weeks hanging out with a friend of mine who came for a visit from Nova Scotia. He brought his little girl Mare that I got to meet and she is seriously the smartest little girl ever! She's not even 2 yet, already knows shapes, colors, animals, even a butterfly and a moth. Can say rectangle and I love you! I found her a little bear costume for Halloween and so she was Mare bear! So cute. She melted my heart and it was hard to say goodbye when she had to leave. Looking forward to seeing her again soon.

Gus and I have also been working on getting our house more in order these days and helping Gus look for building supplies on craigslist. This fall we scored a really awesome old 1950's double apron sink that I've been hunting for all summer. The guy we bought it from lives in Berkeley and is remodeling an old 1920's victorian. We ended up scoring some old cabinets with glass doors too. We also found a cute little apartment size Wedgewood stove for the summer months. We use a wood cookstove for the winter but it's hard to want to use it in the summer when it's like 100 degrees outside, so the little stove will be perfect! The best score so far definitely has to be the butcher block. We went to an old bowling alley from 1958 that is being torn down and bought part of a bowling lane to use as our butcher block. It's a 3inch thick piece of maple that is almost 8 feet long. We're gonna resand it and make a cool island out of it. So fun to recycle things from the past. Our kitchen is definitely gonna be a little funky with some flare for sure! Now we're on a mission to find a really cool spiral staircase for the loft. Thank god for Craigslist!

Things are just moving along. We hope to get our kitchen dialed in soon. I was really hoping to have thanskgiving dinner here but gonna have to wait till next year for that.

Haven't been doing much thrifting these days either, seems like any time I go, I never seem to find much. I really enjoy using etsy to find all my treasures and antique shops. Sometimes they have the best deals!

Speaking of etsy, boy do I need to take some time to work on that project. I have bins and bins of amazing vintage clothing from the shop that I have been wanting to put online for so long. Maybe this winter that will be my goal. I was hoping to do some traveling to Europe this winter but looks like I'll more than likely be staying around these parts, which will give me some time to work on getting an online shop going. I sure miss my storefront. It was hard to let it go but I do enjoy the free time it has given me.

Oh and a movie recommendation! I found the cutest little series called The House of Elliott...
It's based in the 1920's and it's about 2 sisters that try their hand at opening a fashion house in Europe. It such a sweet show that was filmed in the 1990's and I'm on disc 4. If you love fashion and old time periods, I highly recommend it.

Well I better get back to sewing and homework. Lots to do on this beautiful Tuesday.
sneak peak into construction of my wool jacket

Gus the snail

Classy Zebra
Sweet Mare! Love this cutie pie
1920's cabinet score!

Alice Russell Concert at Yoshi's in SF

hiking boots

coffee shop in Ashland
Ashland Farmers Market

cocktail made by Brittany

Edward Scissor Hands creation : )

the road to Ashland- Shasta in the background

Nov 13, 2013

a new beginning.

I started this post back in September and then never posted it.  Now it's already November and I have so many new things to share. So gonna play catch up a bit.
Flash back to September....

Wow so many changes taking place these days. My world has been rocked and rocked hard! It's funny how things can change in just a blink of an eye. One day you are a shop owner of a cute vintage/sewing boutique and then next minute you find yourself sleeping in till noon and then  drinking  your day away with cups of four barrel coffee in your sunny lit room, wishing you could go back to the way things were before everything happened. And then coming to terms with the fact that everything is in its divine order. That magic "A" word. Acceptance. So powerful and so true. And yet you have to go thru all the motions to get to that magic word though. You have to really feel into it like its really apart of you. Not just a concept in your mind.

  I went from being the happiest girl alive, getting clearer with my creative visions. Seeing an astrologist who helped me to see in my chart that it was time to start shedding layers that didn't serve me anymore. Taking the ultimate leap of faith to embark on getting really serious with my fashion design desires and schooling by letting go of the shop that had brought me such joy and connectedness and a sense of belonging to my quaint little town. And then deciding it was time after 2 years to start a new project and shut that door so a new one could open. And then having the door slammed on your face was certainly not what this girl was expecting. But so it goes, we learn from the hardest things in life sometimes, and for sure this will be one of them.

But I wont stand for this unexpected turn to break me down or suck the creative life out of this girl. I can't let that happen. I let my mind drift into isolation this past week. Spending my birthday alone. Trying to find some calm after the storm. Going to the place of sadness, feeling alone, and bummed that things had to be so difficult. I thought I could sit in my pajamas forever and feel numb to my life. Forget about my dreams and wither away into dust. But that was just the lower part of me. My soul wouldn't let that be. And so I realized after a pretty hard week that wearing the depressed hat just doesn't work for me. Cuz the truth is, I'm too tough for that. I'm too much light to stay in darkness for very long. But I'm glad I went there. And realized it's not for me. This girl has too many plans. Too many desires to let this misfortune take me down.

Although I need to stay private about my misfortune, I know one day I'll be able to speak of my experience a little more publicly. Maybe when laws have changed. And then  I can talk about how I was part of a bigger movement out there. Fighting for a right we should all have. And then maybe I will be looked at as more of a hero then the bad guy. Maybe one day. Just maybe.

But for now, I have to take this experience and really LEARN from it. And then grow. Grow like the morning glory vines that seem to stretch out so far. I'm eager now. Eager to change and be different. To step out onto new turf, a little more wise, and certainly more empowered.

I'm looking to change the scenery a bit. A few things are on hold right now and rather than be resentful about it, I'm choosing to look at the brighter side of it all. This is EXACTLY what I need. It's kinda rare in life when everything gets put on pause, so you can really just take a break from life, the responsibilities and your duties and just well, Relax! Not something I'm very used to doing being the busy bee that I usually am. Which is why this has been so difficult for me. But I want to treat it like a gift from the universe. A time that I really want to cherish. Because these moments are rare indeed.  What perfect timing too. Summer is winding down and fall is right at my doorstep.

From a great song by an amazing singer Ayla Nereo

"I feel the winds of the west out breath
Letting go of my leaves
all I do not need
Into the darkness
of the fall sunset
I release
getting ready
for the silence...."

I pulled this tarot card, how fitting at the time