A pretty song and video from South African singer/songwriter Lira.
I enjoy bright, colorful, and patterned pieces for my wardrobe, but every now and then I can appreciate nicely tailored designs in simple subdued colors. Like these looks from Carven's fall 2012 collection. You can never go wrong with classic and chic.
Lately I've been feeling like I need to get my hands inked up and dirty — I've been wanting to make things. So I've been inspired by those who do, especially bright and colorful things. Like these textiles from Harvest Textiles.
I've been eyeing this cute little polka dot blazer from Madewell and these fab tweed pants from J.Crew (did you know I love tweed?). These textures together would be so fun and perfect for a fun weekend flow, a busy day at work, or an evening of dinner with friends (or boo).
Here's what I think would be perfect with the jacket and pants.
I am a tough critic when it comes to films. There are very few films that take my breath away, so when I say I love something I really LOVE it. It's been over a month since I've seen Beasts of the Southern Wild, and the film is still rocking my core. It left me with a lot of questions and theories, some of which I would love to discuss with the director one day — this alone means the film touched me.
How is it possible that a film can touch on so many issues (social dynamics, environmental challenges, the Apocalypse, love and relationships) in a way that is not confusing or silly? This film was able to do just that.
The trailer alone captured me. I was completely drawn in by the little character, Hushpuppy, played by Quvenzhané Wallis who was about 5 years old at the time the movie was filmed. I LOVE her. I am convinced she has the physical and emotional essence of my daughter to be (should I have a daughter one day). She is what tugged at my heart to see this film. Maybe it was because I hadn't seen a film featuring a little brown girl since Crooklyn or because her charisma shined through in the short few minutes of the trailer. Either way I just knew I had to learn more.
Despite everything the film covers, I was most connected to the relationships between Hushpuppy and her father, and her absent mother. So much so it left me crying throughout the film.
Hushpuppy is this little girl full of strength, curiosity, self-awareness, and promise. Her eyes are full of life, rich with experience, yet still have so much more to see. She's loved by her father in the best way he knew how to love and nurture a little girl. Through tough love and discipline he shows Hushpuppy how to survive, because in their world, in their circumstances, survival is the best gift of love you could give (or receive).
Which brings me to why I loved this movie and why it touched me so.
Towards the end of the film Hushpuppy says she could remember on two fingers how many times she had been lifted (**tears**). She's then shown being held at birth by her father, and in present-day by her mother. That scene made me think about so many children who have never been held affectionately, or lifted in their self-esteem. Without getting too deep, it also made me think about all the little Hushpuppies everywhere who are taught to be tough, taught to yell and scowl to get attention and to be heard; otherwise they'll be overlooked or forgotten.
It's an image I see all too often. Both negative and positive. If I had time or had to write a thesis paper about it I would compare Hushpuppy to Troy's character in Spike Lee's Crooklyn — different time, different space, but the same thread of survival, strength, and responsibility at an early age holds true. (Yet the lens in which the characters are portrayed are significantly different, but that's a whole other post, or a graduate thesis paper.)
I don't know if the director, Benh Zeitlin, was intentionally trying to speak to this concept but Beasts of the Southern Wild poetically articulated some of the challenges that a lot of Hushpuppies have had to endure emotionally. Hushpuppy is fictional but her experiences, strengths, and vulnerabilities are very real.
I applaud this beautiful film and hope you will check it out. If you have seen it already please tell me what you think. Did it speak to you in a special way? Did you hate it? I loved the film, but I am internally conflicted with the fact that I would love to see more films with little brown girls shown in a different way. Did Hushpuppy's appearance bother you in any way? Please share your thoughts.
1. Seagrass Tote - perfect for storing magazines or handbags (it comes in a lovely red color-way as well).
2. Scandinavian Tree Oven Mitt - keeping you hands safe and cute while you cook.
3. Lemon Scented J.R. Watkins Hand Soap - loving this natural earth-friendly hand soap. The nicely designed vintage label makes it nice enough to display as is in your bathroom.
4. Patch Pouf Ottoman - made of old saris and gently used textiles (I so want this!!).
5. Sara Lee Parker Textiles - this collection of printed fabric works well for projects like putting together your own lavender sachets or tea towels.
6. Clementine Zest Hand Lotion - this is perfect to keep in the kitchen.
7. The Harvest Printed Cotton Dhurrie - I absolutely love this little rug. Works perfectly in a guest bath.
8. Succulent Garden - you can create your own garden using little succulents purchased at your local garden store or you can purchase one already made like above. I think these little plants add character and whimsy to any window sill or cozy corner.
I've lived in Kansas City, New York City, the City of Brotherly love and just over the weekend I made the move to Charm City, better known as Baltimore. Growing up in Maryland I never imagined I would be living in Baltimore, but I'm truly excited to explore and see what's happening here. It was a necessary move to get me closer to where I teach, so now I can avoid the time consuming and exhausting commute (an hour each way, without traffic).
I thought I would be able to get settled in and start up my regular weekly posts on Monday but decided to focus on getting unpacked and squared away, which is why this is the first post this week.
It'll take some time to really get settled, but I've already been paging through my Domino Magazines for ideas, going to home stores like West Elm to look at wonderful textiles (pillow cases, rugs, and bedding), and picking up succulents for a terrarium (a project I'm really excited about). I plan to share my little finds and projects along the way.
Moves are exciting, stressful, time consuming, and overwhelming. I'm trying to prioritize and focus (focusing is something I've been having a hard time doing lately). One room at a time has always been my move strategy, but it's challenging when you need another room before you finish the one you are working on.
But it's coming along. I'm really looking forward to decorating and putting up my artwork. I'm also anxious to get my bookshelves together. I love books, and hate that they're sitting in boxes.
What about you? Did you just make a move? (August is a busy moving month, five of my friends have also been busy with moving). What's your strategy for unpacking? Do you throw out a lot of stuff so you can start new? Or wait to see what you need? Do you get movers? Or enlist family and friends? Do share.
images: Domino Magazines (my own); Bathroom rug from West Elm; quilt from West Elm; sheets from Target; succulents from Ikea and a garden store.
All I can say is I love No Doubt and I love this new single "Settle Down" off their new album Push & Shove (title reminiscent of the pop grundge era, maybe?). Hearing from them again takes me back to my high school days when my homegirls and I jammed to "Don't Speak." This new single definitely captures the energy that No Doubt once mesmerized me with back then, but doesn't feel repetitive or stale like we're stuck in the 90's.
And the video is fun to watch, like video-watching used to be back in the day — oh no am I now speaking like a grown adult with the "back in my day" talk?
Take a listen and let me know what you think. (I love how the music plays out at the end.)
This week I had the pleasure of attending the Onyx Feather garden party. It was a great evening with friends, lovely refreshments, beautiful jewelry on display, and catching up with Sola (the creative mind behind Onyx Feather, pictured below) before she heads west to expand the brand.
And meet April, one of Fly's summer interns (pictured above). It was great to hang out with her since we usually communicate virtually.
(Learn more about Onyx Feather and Sola in a previous post here.)