Wednesday, February 29, 2012

In the Red

In the course of prepping my office for a Verizon tech visit, I found my red jeans! I have been trying to find these for a few months, ever since I started seeing lots of red jeans on my fellow bloggers. Of course, mine are "retro"
they are pegged!
made by an OTIS student in the 80s
"ya dig?"

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Austin Advent --Yard Dog

Yard Dog, 1510 S Congress Ave, Austin, TX 78704  512-912-1613
is an art gallery. On their site, they give these categories: contemporary folk art, outsider art, fine art, funky art and pop art from North America.
photo courtesy of Yard Dog
We always visit when we go to Austin.
Great art, wonderful books, and some cool gifty items.
And sometimes there's live music in the back!

My finds:
Roy Orbison shrine in a matchbox
by Suzie Millions (YD no longer represents her)
I bought this cross by Brad & Sundie Ruppert online in 2008!

Monday, February 27, 2012

Neon Nonsense

I have carefully preserved the neon bubble knit tube from the 80s and broke it out today for Visible Monday. It makes my neon scarf look dingy! Note the blue tape heart is still sticking on the sweater. Durable!
I really need to stop squinting at the camera...

Can you see me now?

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Austin Advent -- Tesoros

Tesoros means treasures and that's exactly what you'll find here at 1500 S. Congress Avenue Austin, Texas 78704
I lifted this description from their website:
Tesoros Trading Company is a retailer and wholesale distributor of folk arts and crafts and traditional items from over 20 different countries including Bangladesh, Bolivia, Brazil, Burkina Faso, Chile, China, Colombia, Germany, Guatemala, Haiti, India, Indonesia, Italy, Madagascar, Mexico, Morocco, Nepal, Peru, Portugal, Spain, Turkey, USA and Vietnam.
Amazing, right?
Here are some of my tesoros:
robot wallet that fits IDs easily
There really is something for everyone here.

Where In the World: OTIS

click on images to see bigger 
I have decided that this skirt has too
much of a dirndl silhouette.
I'm going to sew in another panel.
The hem (what hem? It's a raw edge!)
could use shortening too.
The Rat Fink graphic on the tee
amuses me to no end.
Severo picked it up at a NAMM show.
It's for Rat Fink Guitars
By the way, here's the REALLY UGLY print that I'm using in the demo in the Instagram shot at top:
mock printed tie dye
it even comes in colorways!
kind of looks like easter eggs
I snagged it out of the trash pile at the OTIS Fashion campus at the CA Mart. They have awesome trash! I have snagged MANY treasures there!

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Bright and Shiny at Bergamot

It was one beautiful object after another yesterday at the Bergamot Station gallery complex in Santa Monica. Some shows were still being mounted, others are about to close. Here is a round-up of my favorites.

Frank Pictures Gallery - Camomile Hixon (through 3/27)
Test Pattern, 2012
acrylic, glitter, 24x36
Rosamund Felson - Tim Ebner (through 3/10)
Untitled Fish (fabric). 2011-2012
Sewn fabric, leather, fill, steel poles and bases
the fish bodies are sewn from fabrics
Craig Krull - Lita Albuquerque (closes 2/25)
287 Steps Installation, 2012
Wind Painting 01.05.12 3:33:10pm PST, 2012
Pigment on canvas
see more here
Gold Suits no. 1-3, 2011-2012
Gold leaf covered suits, pigment on canvases
the suits and raggedy bits of gold leaf
slowly wafted in the air currents
Latin American Masters - Olga de Amaral (through 4/14)
Resonancia III, 2009
somehow she weaves pigment bits
Olga's work captivated me so much that I bought the catalog. ISBN 9780963939944

Then there's Beatrice Wood at SMMoA. The show has been running for months (last day is today, 2/25) - I had NO IDEA how amazing it is, especially her luster ware. "No photos allowed" so here's an image I pulled from the LA Times blog
Luster Plates and Goblets (3 settings from a set of 10) n.d.
New Mexico Museum of Art
source: LA Times

Friday, February 24, 2012

Tools of My Blogging Trade

It's another Fashion Beauty Friend Friday and this time Katy of Modly Chic asked us to discuss our tech blogging tools. Here is a glimpse of my horribly messy office:
as you can (maybe) see, it is also my "dressing room"
yes, that is a 2nd monitor behind the iMac...
it's been almost a year that it's been sitting there
1. What are the tools you use to blog?
Let's decode the above picture first for HARDWARE:
1) iMac
2) Epson scanner (bought in 98 and the one piece of hardware that I haven't had to replace)
3) Epson WorkForce 30 inkjet printer
4) iPad -- newest piece of gear!

not seen:
iPhone 3G
Panasonic Lumix


I use Blogger. I just couldn't bring myself to figure out WordPress.

iPhone apps:
Pose - using for 365 project and I have issues
on iMac:


dreamweaver, for when the HTML gets tricky 

moleskine sketch books
prismacolor pencils
markers (I like Pantone markers the best, they don’t stink)
deckle edge ruler
glue sticks 

The list goes on and on and you can find it with all the links here

2. What technology item is on your wish-list?
Tech: not a wish, must update to OS7 (Lion). Need iCloud now that I have an iPad
Analog: an excercise ball to sit on and a better working environment!

3. Through the barrage of posts, tweets, pics, poses, messages, etc… how do you avoid becoming a slave to the constant infiltration of information? 
I am very undisciplined when it comes to social media -- I look at my emails, facebook, and twitter first thing in the morning (I've been waking up at 4am!) and sometimes don't surface from it for hours. I also go on them as a "break" when I'm at the money job. Very Bad Behavior. I have tried to not allow myself to go online until I get some art accomplished and have been only moderately successful. Do I need an intervention? Probably... (I also need a visit from the "Hoarders" reality show team! But I know you already thought that when you saw the first photo).

See other responses here. 

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Threads and Surfaces: Heather from The Style Confessions™

click on image to see bigger 
Finally! Another Fashion Icon is done for the Threads and Surfaces sketchbook.

Heather is my fashion blogger muse. I have written about her before. She HAD to be on the next spread of pages and I felt very pressured to do a good sketch. You see, she is a GREAT fashion illustrator, so I needed to do my best.
This pose is derived from this photo on her blog. I love that whole shoot -- it is so moody! Heather's husband Hugo is her photographer and does a fantastic job. Go check it out.

The art exhibition that I'm supposed to be concurrently working on with these same illustrations has now changed themes to my old abstract pattern work. I was stressing out (still nothing is finished and the show hangs in exactly 61 days) and I didn't want to have to rush through the pieces to get them completed in time. I want to have fun with them! So, the Fashion Icon art exhibition will now happen in Spring 2013 at the same time as LA Fashion Week. We'll have a fun private fashionista party at TAG Gallery in Santa Monica! [To get on the list, leave a comment below or subscribe to my newsletter and tick the fashion option].

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

365 project update

link to Pose post
If you're my contact on Facebook (personal, not SpyGirl page), Instagram, Twitter (@annembray) or Pose, you have been getting the daily feed of my 365 project: "365 Days of Jewelry" If not, and you were hoping to see it on Flickr, um, sorry about that -- I'm WAY behind on my Flickr uploading.

I just took a bunch of screenshots from Pose, thinking I'd do a big recap for the however many days [I'm not counting] I've been at it. I changed my mind -- it would make this post gigantic. Here are the most recent five days:
Some thoughts I have about Pose and my process on this project:

The app is still very clunky. HATE that I can't delete misfires (see upper earring shot that I accidentally tagged as a "romper" and then accidentally hit the done button. I ran into a room with no phone coverage - not difficult at my house! - so that it wouldn't upload but it uploaded at work anyway. Grrrrr). Tagging items is difficult with my fat fingers and slow 3G phone service. Wish it was available for iPad. Uploads are not all in chronological order. I will carry on using it, despite all this. Maybe it'll improve during the course of the year...

iPhone photography:
I got a macro lens that I absolutely adore and that's very helpful for capturing tiny items and details on rings. I wish there was a lens for close-but-not-macro (and if you know of one, please share!). A lot of the bracelets and larger pins + earrings are out of focus. On work days, it's still dark in the morning, so the images have suffered from low contrast. Sometimes I process the images in the PS Express app though that sometimes backfires, making things too pixellated.

Aesthetics + process:
My jewelry styling is improving, it's been a good learning process. The best part of this, BY FAR, is going through my piles of jewelry and scarves! I've been cruising down memory lane big time -- I'm on the memory interstate! Most of my backgrounds are scarves, textiles or objects from the shops, locations or era of the jewelry piece. I see a whole bunch of blog posts fomenting. With the ethnic pieces, I've been trying to research their origins. I recently shot a necklace on a mudcloth textile, thinking they were both from Mali and then discovered that the necklace is from a tribe in northern Kenya. Oops! Scrap that one... here's the shot I won't use:

In summery, so far, so good.
I'll update you again in a month or so...

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Austin Advent -- Hey Cupcake!

South Congress has a lot of great shopping. I suggest that you fortify yourself with a cupcake first! Hey Cupcake! is housed in an airstream that is parked at the 1600 block on So Congress. (see their site for other locations).

(my cupcake flipped over on the table and got punk frosting)
It was many cupcakes ago when I last had a Hey Cupcake...
(three years ago, now that I calculate it).
In the deep dark recesses of my memory, my vanilla/vanilla was large, sweet and delicious.

Sweet tip: get on their mailing list and get a free cupcake voucher!

Monday, February 20, 2012

Muted Monday

I'd say this is pretty low-key for me:
 same dress as last week, same tights in different colorway:
not to mention different scarf, outerwear and shoes!
more visible monday here

[a few hours later]
(pantone app screenshot)
I've been sitting with these tights all day and I've come to the conclusion that I can tolerate that mauve color as an accent way down on my legs but I want it nowhere near my face. So, if there's a color that you want to try, without a heavy cash outlay, you might consider trying it out on your legs. A great resource for colored tights is We Love Color -- they stock a rainbow of colors (I haven't worn them yet so can't comment on the quality).

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Austin Advent -- Threadgill's

Hungry yet? In the mood for some Southern comfort food? Go to Threadgill's!
301 West Riverside Dr, Austin, 78704, 512-472-9304

corn muffins
I ate: grilled tilapia, cheesy grits, stewed okra
he ate the beige dinner:
chicken fried steak with gravy, cheesy grits, butter beans
We are especially fond of the cheesy grits, as you can see - we both order it for one of our sides so that we don't have to share.
You CAN cook the grits at home -- I found the recipe in Blue Plate Specials & Blue Ribbon Chefs, by Jane and Michael Stern. There is also an official Threadgill's Cookbook [looks like both are out of print].
Here is a scan of the recipe:
click on images to see bigger
my notes are for a stovetop version 

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Austin Advent -- The Driskill Hotel

Someday, when I'm rich and famous,
I'll stay at the Driskill Hotel,
604 Brazos St.
Austin, Texas 78701
It was built in 1886 as the showplace of cattle baron Jesse Driskill. Check out the lobby, even if you can't check in!
love the carpet!

Friday, February 17, 2012

Austin Advent -- Jon Dee Graham

Finally, some Austin music!

Jon Dee Graham is a "local legend" they say. You can usually find him Sunday nights at the Continental Club. (I hope to see him this March). I don't remember when I first saw him perform... it was during a SXSW when our friend Rafael backed him on drums. From the opening strains of "Way Down In the Hole" he had me hooked.

Most of the videos on YouTube are "rough" fan recordings of gigs (which give you a good idea what his performances are like). Here's a more subdued one with the studio version of "One Moment" accompanied by a slide show:

"Faithless" live at The Continental Club, SXSW 2011:

He has a catalogue of 8 albums and I think they're all great.
Mark Finkelpearl made the documentary "Swept Away" on Jon Dee in 2008.
Here's a taste:

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Where In the World: Work

click on images to see bigger 
cobalt love
want to know details about garments?
ask me in comments!
like my heart "pin"?
I made it out of blue painter tape!!
I HEART blue tape!

What about the blue drips in the Instagram? you ask...
It's a print I'm working on (at work)
that I'll post on my Pattern blog soon (next week hopefully).