Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Bee it

Necklace: made by friend T. | Top: J.Crew Factory | Skirt: Old Navy via Dani at DIYFATSHION | Heels: Urban Outfitters | Lips: NARS Lodhi

As promised a while ago, here is a photo of the bee I drew at work. He is not a normal bee, clearly. My boss and I are batting around the idea of having a spelling bee for adults with adult words--a Dirty Bee, if you will--and we wanted to have a mascot. I may have made the bee go a little Jersey Shore, but there's no shame in a visor and a can of PBR. You do you, Dirty Bee. You do you.


Pot of Geraniums, by Henri Matisse
Oil on linen, 1912

When I was a little kid, we had a very small yard. It was probably about 30 feet by 30 feet, if that means any. It was a postage stamp yard, surrounded on all four sides by buildings, and was lined by shallow gardens on three sides. My mom was (is still!) a big geranium fan, and she planted them every spring (they're annuals) in the gardens and in pots lining the steps that led up to the first floor of the house. And every summer, just before they began to bloom, I would pull off the buds and use them as pretend lipstick.

I don't think my mom ever figured out why some of her geraniums only bloomed half as much as the rest.

Submit your outfits inspired by this week's artwork to Jen at Librarian for Life and Style by Monday, July 28th to be included in the upcoming roundup!

Monday, July 14, 2014


Barrette: Target | Shirt: Target | Belt: Target | Skirt: via Dani at DIYFATSHION | Shoes: Payless

Happy Bastille Day, y'all! For more outfits based on today's Style Imitating Art piece, check out Salazar's blog!

Monday, July 7, 2014

What to wear to a Say Anything concert

Say Anything, with The Front Bottoms, The So So Glos & You Blew It!
June 21 @ 8pm
Amos' Southend, Charlotte, NC

I wore:

I've been a less than perfect Say Anything fan lately. Their newest album, Hebrews (recorded entirely without guitars), came out on June 10th, and I ended up buying it on iTunes a week after it came out. It completely passed me by. And even now, I've only listened to half the album. Oops. I'm kind of anxious about listening to the whole thing--it has a solid rating on Metacritic, but the fact of the matter is, I'm always anxious when my favourite artists put out new albums. What if it sucks? And then you have to live with the disappointment that your favourite band threw in the towel.

But anyway. Needless to say, off I went with my boyfriend (you read that right) to Charlotte for my sixth Say Anything concert, which was truly delightful. We got there just in time for the final opening band, which...was generically fine. When Say Anything came out though, my face kind of melted off. I was in a happy place, like the lead singer, Max Bemis, which is a marked improvement from tours of old. Say Anything used to be a very angry band, but the anger has progressed into self-reflection. We were in the balcony, and had a great view of the band without being physically crushed. Although a couple of the songs that were performed were from the new album and thus mostly unrecognizable to me, almost all of the music was gleaned from the band's six previous albums, along with an acoustic version of Got Your Money by ODB. I'm not kidding. That was a moment that I will probably remember forever.

More than anything, I've always wanted to see the people on the stage be happy and healthy. I was pretty torn up when Kesha announced she was entering rehab to deal with an eating disorder; I'm a huge fan, and knowing that when I saw her earlier in the year she wasn't feeling or being well was heartbreaking. Max spent a long time being angry and unhappy and miserable and unhealthy, and even though it led to some great creative output, it came at a heavy cost. He's a great artist, and I have a lot of respect for anyone who can lay bare the minutiae of his life and the shitty things he's done in the past. He has a wife and a baby now, and it's clear that they've had a positive effect on his life. Although the music isn't the same--it's no longer self-loathing punk rock--it's clearly grown and morphed into something beautiful and brilliant, and as a fan, I couldn't ask for more.


Portrait of Elisabeth Lederer, by Egon Schiele
Gouache, watercolour and pencil on paper, 1913

Here's something delightfully simple for this week's Style Imitating Art! Submit your inspiration to Salazar by Monday, July 14th (appropriately also Bastille Day!) to be included. Make sure to click on the painting because there's a lot of great colour in Lederer's hair. Enjoy!

Sunday, July 6, 2014

One day in New York

This is a pretty introspective post.

I had a free day before the Governors Ball Music Festival started. After checking with my friend E., who kindly let me stay at her apartment in Brooklyn while I was in New York, I decided to travel a day early so I could be in New York for a day. Although I grew up in New Jersey, I grew up far enough from New York (state AND city) that I had only been there a few times. I've spent plenty of time in Philadelphia though! (Insert Philly jokes here.) I am a big art fan, and New York is one of the greatest cities on earth for that.

But in addition, I was interested in seeing the 9/11 Memorial Museum. I was a sophomore in high school on 9/11, and it's something that anyone over the age of...13 (holy whoa) has in common. We were all here, we know what happened. This museum has been a long time coming, and I wanted to see long wrought conclusion. It had just opened a couple of weeks before I visited New York, and I felt that if I didn't go then, I probably never would.

No day shall erase you from the memory of time. --Virgil

This is the only photo I took in the museum. I sat in front of it a lot.

I reserved my ticket online, then arrived at the museum a couple minutes after 11am, when I was scheduled to enter. I went through the metal detector and had my bag checked, then descended into the museum proper. I had to check my bookbag (which I later did at the Museum of Modern Art as well), and at first, I was all right. There's a hallway to enter into the museum that projects photographs on columns in the hallway, along with a map of the east coast spread across a wall, which lit up during the narration that played overhead explaining what happened that day. I pushed past the crowd gathered around the map--I saw the photos and I know play by play what happened on September 11th, and I don't need a recap.

The hallway opens into what used to be one of the lower floors of one of the towers. (I can't remember specifics of numbers and which tower was which because at this point things get blurry.) There's actually a balcony that overlooks a large two story room, which includes the uncovered foundation of one of the towers, and that was the point where things began to travel rapidly downhill for me. I started crying, which I didn't expect--I hadn't brought tissues, and I was paranoid about the hundreds of people around me who were snapping photos and reading the map and talking and laughing and whatever the hell else was going on at that moment. The only way to go was down, further into the large room, which led visitors through the construction of the towers. The escalator was aligned with the survivors' staircase, and I was deposited at the bottom next to the mural above, which is compiled of thousands of tiles made to depict the colour of the sky on September 11th. (Blue. Very blue.) Benches lined the wall opposite the mural.

I attempted to push forward through more of the museum, since I had just entered, after all, and maybe it got better! But it didn't. I couldn't stop crying. I got more and more emotional the deeper in I went, which was really not deep at all--I only got as far as that one room, which has smaller areas dedicated to the victims and some of the artifacts saved from the day. I imagine the museum is in roughly chronological order, since it started with the history of the construction, but between that and the Pentagon and the planes themselves and the vast amount of aftermath...I can't imagine how large the museum actually is. Obviously, I didn't make it through the entire building. I had to sit at one of the benches across from the blue sky mural multiple times, and eventually I had the wherewithal to ask a security guard to help me get out of the building. He walked me back to the main doors. I felt like I had been trapped in there for hours, but I only stuck it out for twenty minutes.

My saving grace was that no one stared at me, and no one behaved as though my actions were abnormal. On the way out, the guard handed me a tissue, but other than that, no one acknowledged that I was upset. And I think that was the healthiest thing for me, and the wisest choice for everyone involved. I spent the rest of the day eating French comfort food and absorbing everything at the Museum of Modern Art, which ended up being far more my speed.

I've been to two Holocaust museums, the one in Washington and the one in New York, and for some reason a lot of arguments surrounding 9/11 call upon the Holocaust in comparison. I was not emotionally moved at either Holocaust museum in the way that I was at the 9/11 Museum. I'm usually not really emotionally moved at all--I have a tendency to internalize, which I understand is not healthy, but that's how I react to most things. But for some reason, the 9/11 Museum was different. I wasn't personally invested in 9/11 in any way--no family members died or were even in New York; all of my family lives in south Jersey, and has for a long time. I have no attachment to New York and have actually always kind of hated it (too loud, too dirty, too crowded, etc.), and no friends were affected by the events of September 11th.

There has been a significant amount of discussion about the 9/11 Museum and the thousands of details regarding its existence, from the location of the museum and its very existence to the fact that it has a gift shop. For what little it's worth, I think that overall, the museum (what of it I saw) is well done. It's hard to make a museum about a topic like this, and it's hard to make money to keep it running (the reason for the gift shop, and the reason for charging admission). It's an essential museum for the people who will live in America and in the world in the future, because otherwise, the memory will weaken. It won't disappear, but consider the emotion of someone who lived through Pearl Harbor versus those of us who were born long after that. There's a detachment. And while the detachment will be there in the future, having a visual reminder in concrete will help others understand.

That said: I don't think I'll never set foot in the museum again. The memorial was beautiful and perfect and I wouldn't mind if I ended up back on the property again. And maybe I'll change my mind someday, but as of right now, I can't envision ever going back in. I had a headache the size of Brooklyn after crying so much, and there's so much I never saw. That I'll never see. And I think it's best that way. The museum exists for a purpose, and it's very important for people to go, people who otherwise have no comprehension of what happened that day. But it isn't the museum for me.

At least no one can say I didn't try.

Friday, July 4, 2014

America Eve

Necklace: gift from friend T. | Top: Old Navy via Dani at DIYFATSHION | Belt: Target | Skirt: Target via Dani at DIYFATSHION | Sandals: Ross | Lips: NARS Jungle Red

Happy America Eve, y'all! I spent my day building spreadsheets. BE JEALOUS. I also drew a bumblebee with sunglasses! Suave. It is very late in Cardiganland and I have been cooking/prepping for 4th of July all evening, so I'm going to bed without saying a lot, but Dani gave me this whole outfit and I feel like she deserves a giant glass of American beer for that. Good American beer though, not like...Coors Light. I'm sorry but I can't support that. Happy Independence Day, everyone!