Sunday, May 31, 2009

Site to follow: Zara Illustrates

I recently joined yay!everyday, and visit the site a few times a day to see what new posts will get my mind turning. About a week ago I found an image that instantly made me smile, and begged me to find out more about its creator. After a quick hunt I discovered the culprit to be Zara Picken, a London-based illustrator whose simple designs are fresh, youthful, colorful, and my very favorite--whimsical.

Each of her works feels like a 50s-era poster, when all the elements of a print piece were layed out with grids, pencils, tracing paper, and an industrious pair of hands. She weathers each piece, transforming something flat into something with texture and character. It doesn't hurt that there's a strong undercurrent of cheer and optimism in virtually every piece, translated through pallette and subject matter.

After you check out these next few images, do yourself a favor and check out her website, quickly followed by her blog, where she's got a larger inventory of all the work she has done. Her body of work is just so damn wonderful, you must check it out. (And if I haven't sold you yet, reread that last line in a pretentious English accent. It works every time.)

(Click on this link for the larger image, for who couldn't love a pug drinking tea?)

Monday, May 25, 2009

Latest cowl-making venture

A few months ago I journeyed with Adette to Purl Soho in search of some quality yarn, hoping to challenge myself by sticking to Pantone forecasted colors for spring. The trip was quite a success, as I picked up some luscious "Road to China" yarn in "Grey Pearl" and "Citrine," both of which are a baby alpaca/cashmere/camel/silk mix. The colors look fantastic together, and I felt validated in my decision after discovering Monique Lhuillier's gorgeous S/S09 collection (though my picks ended up being a loose translation of the forecast).
I knew this yarn was destined for a cowl, and its sport weight (which I don't usually use) seemed great for springtime, as it has a delightful drape. So began attempt #1: a tube with one row of contrasting purls in a sea of knits. Fail. Attempt #2: an all-knit tube with a grey acrylic, to give it body. Fail. Attempt #3: pictured above, with a 5x4 rib at the base that turns into a regular tube. Win. I'm super stoked about it, and can't wait to finish. HOWEVER, I seem to have misplaced a small sampling of the yarn in both colors, and I'll have to find them to make this cowl the perfect length...I hope they turn up soon...

In conclusion, Pantone has not led me astray, Peru deserves props for some of the softest yarn I've ever held, and I need to keep better track of my yarn stash.

1. Two beautiful ensembles, Monique Lhuillier S/S09
2. Final cowl in process
3. "Citrine" and "Grey Pearl," Road to China

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Bust Spring Fling Craftacular

One of the amazing perks of living in the NYC is having so much crafty, quirky and whimsical stuff available almost anywhere you turn. And today, my friends, was an event that brought it all together in its full indie glory: Bust's Spring Fling Craftacular.

This year, the Craftacular was "Garden Party" themed with demos on vegan cooking, clothing and accessories made from all-natural and organic resources, and tons of kitschy floral decorations. A select number of vendors, the creme of the crop, I'd say, from showings like the Renegade Craft Fair, were tightly packed into The Warsaw in Brooklyn, a space vaguely reminiscent of a dimly lit school gym during a science fair. Elaine (my partner in crime for the day) and I trolled the aisles and found fantastic jewelry from Erica Weiner and Ach Ach Liebling, fanciful perspex necklaces from Brookadelphia, a crap-ton of screenprinted anything-you-can-think-of, showgirl-style headbands, and the cutest freaking cupcakes from ninecakes (chocolate and rosewater?! Wha?!).

My favorite purchase was from Digby & Iona, an emerald cut beauty in sterling silver and gunmetal (check out the sexy pic from their site on the left). I've been stalking them since I saw their stuff at the New Designer's Market in SoHo, and was determined to make one of their rings mine. Is it wrong that I didn't actually know how much I paid for it until I got the credit card receipt via email after I got home? WHATEVER, I had my eyes on the prize.

And I got a free tote. I win!

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

It's like the gods are smiling down on us

I have inappropriate love for Anna Sui: I kept the merch bag from that ONE time I bought something at her boutique, use any variety of her products on mood boards I assemble (almost regardless of what that product is), and obsessively check her website in the hopes that her web developer will have gotten a clue.* I also don't hide the fact that if she and Betsey Johnson had a lovechild, that person would be my soulmate.

So imagine my unbridled joy when I read an article on High Snobette declaring that Ms. Sui would be collaborating with Target on a collection for Go International launching in September. 'OISC'C PASOD;LUKJA'S VL!!! Quoting Sugar Rock Catwalk's article, "Sui used materials such as metallic jacquards, herringbone, silk and chiffon and detailing with tulle, lace and sequins." All my favorites!

Someone out there really is looking out for me.

*After reading the article I quickly rushed to Ms. Sui's site again in the hopes that it will have been updated, only to discover that it has been completely redesigned! Double bonus!
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