Sunday, April 20

If Spring, Then Emphella Shell

Who among you remembers the Emphella Shell? *raises hand tentatively*

I love mine so much. I wear it a lot. I have a cropped cardigan that sometimes goes over it, and leggings and a skirt for underneath. It's easy, just a bit dramatic, super comfortable. And a lot of people who bought them came back for more. The problem is, I hate making them. DON'T TELL ANYONE. 

But a few people wandered into the studio last week and inquired about their return, then someone online did as well, and honestly *I* wouldn't mind one in another color, so okay, I'm making some more. I'm picking colors now.

I'm thinking of FUCHSIA PINK! That's right, fuchsia, the word the internet insists can be spelled fuschia. Plus I'll make some more in olive green ...

and of course, black.

None more black. I'm still browsing through fabric, so I may surprise you with another color too. And I'll try not to complain while I'm sewing them.

Friday, April 18

what I'm staring at: Takashi Endo teapot


I let out a small but audible gasp when I saw this teapot online this morning. Such economy and grace and balance — simplicity that's easy to take in but complex to achieve. It changed my breathing, immediately.

"Making the simple complicated is commonplace; making the complicated simple, awesomely simple, that's creativity." — Charles Mingus

It's a teapot by Takashi Endo. It's on Analogue Life.

Thursday, April 17

just made: Raggedy Annxiety

Just made, just listed: Raggedy Annxiety. --->for sale here

Raggedy Annxiety is a deconstructed pullover dress that balances sweetness with a darker, jittery edge. If I had to guess I would say this could have only been made at the same time I was finishing my tax forms — in this case there is indeed no such thing as a coincidence. Improvisationally hand made by me in my studio. One of a kind.

It's built from an array of red and white checked cotton. It has a few different collars (see the back) and a lot of button holes that go nowhere and some big X's that may or may not mean something. There's also a collar on the side. And on the other side, just for a touch of practicality, there sits a pocket. It's sewn with a mix of exposed and traditional stitching.

Tuesday, April 15

today in the studio: checky reds, deconstructed

I've got red thread in the serger and a heap of truly ugly red and white checked shirts before me, waiting to be chopped up.

In my head they will end up something like these Comme des Garcons pieces.

Of course they won't end up anything like them, but these are a nice jumping-off point for my brain. Someone else already gave me permission for seersucker to get weird — if I needed that, there it is.

Then when I'm done these are waiting for me — variations on a theme, this time in black.

That's what I'm doing for the next few days. -helen

Friday, April 11

that's meta

I awoke with good intentions this morning. Mr. Lentil and I had coffee then walked around our city park assessing Winter damage — we need the Civilian Conservation Corps to reunite and fix the stone wall around the pond — and watching Spring try to make a comeback.  A few weeks ago someone posted a photo on our neighborhood's facebook page — wait, I have to stop right there. It's hard to toss out a phrase like "our neighborhood's facebook page" and pretend to do it without acknowledging the wave of modern self-consciousness I feel right now. Yes my neighborhood has a facebook page. But it gets better. In the photo, the entire landscape was newly snowless but still damp, brown and dead. And there on the arc of a barren hill was a turkey vulture eating the carcass of a frozen turkey. As my friend Allison said: that's meta.

The good intentions involved the tax preparation that waited patiently back in my office. I imported some files, shuffled a few papers around furtively, then felt an urge to collapse on the couch where apparently I have been for half the day. Oh silly brain.  I'm awake now. Coffee is on. There's no stopping me, probably. Plus I have cookies.

It's still exciting to get real mail.

I sent my postcards out into the world and look what I got back! Multimedia artist Jen Worden sent me this. She made it. I wish you could touch it in real life, it's collaged and shiny and sealed and solid and lovely. Here's a Pinterest board of her work

And yes Jen, we still read blogs. I do, anyway, and I don't think I'm alone.

Tuesday, April 8

INTP leaves the house, lives to talk about it

I, goofball

I spoke in public today — that's twice this year and I haven't died or even vomited! And yes, when no one was looking I posed by the sign with my name on it and took my own picture. Don't tell anyone.

It was at the WISE Symposium — Women Igniting the Spirit of Entrepreneurship. We had a great panel. Our topic was finding a balance between passionate work and paying the bills, something I could talk about for way too long if anyone let me. The whole event was fairly awesome. My favorite detail was having our lunches served in Chinese food takeout boxes. What can I say? I'm easily entertained. Tomorrow I return to the studio, energized and refreshed. Yay.

Saturday, April 5

freshly made: oceanic party dress

It felt good to mix green and bright blues and turquoise. I should have procured a picture of the linen that makes up the middle panels, it's a nice mottled blend of all three, but it's already in a box on its way to Florida. Yay!