Parenting an Artist

October 7, 2012 § 3 Comments

While lying in bed between my girls last night I took the opportunity to read three pages of The Style Rookie, a blog created by sixteen year old Tavi Gevinson who has taken the fashion world by storm.

To say that I was blown away by her work is an understatement.

A collection of her thoughts (both typed and beautifully hand written), artistic imagery (collages, others and her own), music (others and her own) and photographs of her sweet bang trimmed self styled in real fashion (as opposed to an overabundance of labels), her voice is crystal clear.

Her current tilt seems to be toward a fifties and sixties aesthetic, but the photos with her friends are timeless. I love the freedom of expression; her cat lined eyes, her mix of print and pattern and form and silhouette and color.

What is there not to love, and with 50,000 hits a day to the blog (an incredible number not attained by people two, three, four times her age), it appears I am not the only one enamoured.

As I scanned the blog I got to wondering.

Clearly Tavi is an old soul; one of those people who functions outside of age. Watching her Ted presentation (below) you can see how bright she is yet the admittance that she still hasn’t, “figured it all out,” combined with her strong yet sensitive presentation, make her real as opposed to super-hero. What a great model for girls everywhere (teenager and not)!

What became more curious to me were my questions about her parents.

Who are the Gevinsons? Who are the people who created and are raising this bright and creative soul?

I was once a teenage girl who took fashion risks and cut baby bangs and wore my hair in Heidi braids crisscrossed over the top of my head, too. But beginning a fashion empire was just a dream for me. Tavi is doing it for real and her parents are allowing her to flourish and bloom.

In her adorable interview with Jimmy Kimmel she skimmed over his questions about her parents by saying something about them being “nice people,” but I discovered later in her posted Vimeo video that her father is an English teacher and her mother is an artist who weaves tapestries. She goes on to mention that her parents encouraged her (and her sister) to be creative and to read.

Sometimes I wonder if I’m doing all I can to raise children who will develop into well-adjusted, secure and strong girls. It’s not easy in this world of Barbie and princesses (whom my girls love) or as Tavi describes, “two-dimensional super-women…with one quality that’s played up a lot.”

I think Tavi’s parents are the example of how to do it right (whether or not a child is meant to be a prodigy). Fostering creativity, encouraging reading and allowing freedom of expression is the key.

Now if only she’d interview them. Or maybe I should try. I bet they are equally as interesting as their delightfully dynamic daughter.

Had you ever heard of Tavi’s blog or her magazine for teenage girls, Rookiemag.com? Are you as interested in learning about her parents as I am? Can you believe she’s been blogging for four years? That’s a lifetime in blogland!

XOM

Advertisements

The Emmys; Boobs and Dresses

September 24, 2012 § 8 Comments

It wasn’t until I met my biological sister that I realized my boobs were a genetic component to the makeup of me. Before then I’d assumed they were a terrible mistake meant to be placed above someone else’s heart.

But within the last year (or so) I’ve come to grips with what God gave me (thanks to my sister and the way she wears hers gorgeously) and I’m starting to kind of like them. I wish they’d stand up without help, but I don’t hate them like I did.

Last night’s Emmys red carpet was a bosom baring display.

One after another busty girls allowed their flesh to peek out from the beneath most dazzling dresses.

I felt a kinship.

Femininity in fashion never looked prettier.

But many on Twitter didn’t feel the same.

A barrage of nasty tweets proclaimed the look tacky and cheap, trying too hard and pathetic. The disdain for what I viewed as fashion risk taking (I do consider it a risk) combined with body acceptance was a disappointment.

So why all the fuss?

There were plenty of legs showing, too. And backs. And shoulders. And low cut dresses on flatter chested girls.

I don’t have an answer on this. I can’t explain why there was so much backlash, though I bet it has something to do with the new female empowerment or some sort of hatred toward women or the whole mother prostitute thingy. I don’t write about that stuff. I don’t think I’m deep enough.

I liked all the boobs.

I liked Heidi showing all that leg, though I wasn’t crazy about the dress.

I liked Ginnifer Goodwin’s choice not to show very much at all in that unbelievable red and nude flowered Monique Lhullier.

I liked that each woman chose the image that she wanted to project for the night.

As for the girls who put their girls on display.

I think you looked lovely (and not in a sexy vroom vroom kind of way).

Just plain lovely.

What did you think about the dresses? Did the boobs bother you? Have a favorite I didn’t mention?

XOM

Kat Dennings. I didn’t even know who this girl was before last night. She has received the most press for the bosom baring. I’m sure it’s because the boobs look so great, but even if the dress covered them,  she’s still stunning!

Zooey Deschanel. Everyone talked about her Reem Acra Princess dress, because she really did look like a princess. The top, if you’ll notice, was just as low cut as Kat’s, but no one spoke about her cleavage.

Christina Hendrikcks in Christian Siriano. This girl is my hero.

Heidi Klum. The legs could not be denied and the sea-foam green is lovely against her skin. Again, the top is very revealing, but the press went wild (in a good way as opposed to the nasty twerps) over the legs.

Ginny Goodwin in Monique Lhullier. I loved loved loved this dress. The pixie hair and the shoes (clear Laboutins’s); epitome of chic. Even though I’ve embraced the boobs, I still love a good high neck. After to Zosia Mamet from Girls, this wins second place for most fashion forward of the night.

Sofia Vergara. Not one of my favorites, still my Emmys post wouldn’t be complete without the addition of Sofia in this Zuhair Murad. When the camera panned down the dress my daughters’ eyes got huge. “Look mom! A real mermaid!” So for that, thank you Sofia!

Hipiti for Fashion

September 13, 2012 § Leave a comment

Paying full price is silly these days, unless of course you are rolling in dollar bills and buying the most high-end fashion straight from the runway (even then, I’m not sure those girls are paying full price).

For the rest of us who only dream of sitting in tents at fashion week, our hearts pine, but our pocketbooks do not. The creation of flash sale websites like Gilt Groupe (my favorite), Haute Look, and Rue La La have up to this point helped make us fashionable, while not breaking the bank.

This morning I received an early invite to a soon to be launched site called Hipiti created by co-founders Rama Katkar and Kristin Flink (friends from Stanford business school whose love for Internet shopping and finding great deals spurred the idea). Their website was built to simplify the shopping experience by collecting information about your favorite retailers and compiling a dashboard of recent sales (Gilt Groupe included) making the need to filter through mass promotional emails a thing of the past.

Even Lululemon is listed as a choice to add to your dashboard! Those of us always following the We Made to Much section recognize how fast LLL’s sales pieces are scooped up lightning fast only to be gone forever.

Even better (according to their Twitter feed), new companies and lines will be added as the demand grows.

Hipiti hop….hip fashion calls!

How about you? Will it be a site that will help you in your busy life?

XOM

Hipiti

Marchesa Spring 2013 RTW photo by Marcus Tondo. Vogue.com Fancy.

Band of Outsiders Spring 2013 RTW photo by Fillipo Fior. Vogue.com LOVE… almost practical… LOVE!

Creatures of the Wind Spring 2013 RTW photo by Monica Feudi. Vogue.com. A wearable collection, but I’m unsure of price point. I imagine that top is more than my monthly fixed expenses, though, since even their collection for J. Crew was pricey.

Marc by Marc Jacobs RTW Spring 2013 photo by Marcus Tondo. Vogue.com. Could be sweet, not so layered.

Rag and Bone Spring 2013 RTW photo by Fillipo Fior. Vogue.com. I love this line!

Tory Burch Spring 2013 RTW photo by Fillipo Fior. Vogue.com Terrific Tory. Her line is always wearable, but I don’t know if I always agree with her price point.

Image

September 7, 2012 § 7 Comments

By the time I turn forty I’ll have my look all figured out.

It’s what happens when a woman turns that age.

All of my mom’s friends had it figured out by forty. Turn forty and you’re a grown up at last with a real grown up look.

These were the thoughts of my twenty something self as I pondered my many incarnations.

The day before seventh grade I walked through school in a Flashdance one shouldered sweat shirt, leopard print zip jeans and flourescent pink jellies, while wearing fish bait earrings (rubbery, not real) dangling near my shoulders. I ran into a teacher who said, “Oh my, Miss Martha! Haven’t you changed this summer!” She was over forty-ish and her look hadn’t changed at all in those short sweet months.

In the tenth grade I went mod accessorizing my Catholic school uniform with illegally pointy toed black flats, black tights, and a black second-hand men’s cardigan. My hair was worn in a tight clean bob, my eye lids liquid painted, carefully winging upward. After school my mod boyfriend would pick me up on the back of his mod scooter and we’d make plans for Fishbone concerts that I would lie to my mother about to be able to go.

Early nineties? The beginning of grunge and I cut my hair Amber Valetta pixie short, just like hers on that one cover of Vogue. I did wear plaid, but styled myself more eclectic/fashion forward; a pea coat embroidered with flowers (early Free People I wish I’d kept), Minnie Mouse minnie skirts, big fat clogs, Big Star jeans and lots of Betsey Johnson.

I always took risks; tattooing my left middle finger because I thought it would be cute (early twenties), pierced my nose so there’d always be a bit of sparkle emanating from my face (mid twenties), and more than once changed my boring blonde locks to shades from platinum white to sleek dark brown (over and over again).

As I drove the kids to school on Tuesday I took a good look in the visor mirror. No makeup, except for the Mac Omega eyebrows that are brushed on daily. No colorful cheeks, no lined eyes, too grown out highlights, no sparkle whatsoever.

I looked down at my outfit; Be Present yoga pants (okay fine, they are the ones with the lotus on the back, but still) and a gray t-shirt. On my feet? Havainas. God forsaken Havainas; not even a decent pair of shoes.

While looking in that mirror I wondered. A pierced nose? Double pierced ears? Maybe committing to liquid liner? Maybe committing to a daily red lip.

I have an appointment to get my hair colored next week and I’m taking a break from boring buttered blonde. The upkeep on red might be too much. Too dark isn’t right for my complexion. Pink? Ombre? The hair world is my oyster.

Mom clothes? They are a job requirement, but I’m done buying yoga pants for a while. Instead, I am going to focus on shoes beginning with the Swedish Hasbeens that appeared on my doorstep just yesterday.

I was wrong in believing that by forty I’d have grown stylishly wise, settling on my appropriate grown up look. Its a new world these 2010’s, so maybe the old rules don’t apply.

Besides, I think it’s true what they say about forty being the new thirty.

If that’s the case, I have almost ten more years of creative expression before I turn fifty, a very grown up age. Let’s hope fifty will not be the new forty or I’ll be one very confused lady.

How about you? Are you happy with your look or do you mix it up? Do you agree that change is good or is consistency a better approach?

Original 1980’s Jellies. I had the pink and the clear.

Modern Mod. Richard Bush for i-d magazine September 2011.

Free People embroidered pea coat. Mine had the embroidery up and down the front along the buttons. Loved it madly.

Betsey Johnson Fillmore Street store was like a home away from home. I loved walking through those doors.

The libra symbol I had tattoed on my left middle finger. Didn’t take long to remove, only a few visits to the zapping machine. Didn’t think it was appropriate when I became a teacher. Too many questions.

Gold Havainas. I was so determined not to buy a pair (or two) this year and instead opted for Tkees and Ipanemas. My resolve failed when the Tkees got killed on the New York streets and I found this pair at Club Monaco on the Upper West side. Boring, right?

Be Present Agility pant with the pink lotus embroidered at center back. I do love these.

Lauren Conrad apparently got tired of her blonde, too.

Butterscotch reddish blonde for Fall. But is it different enough?

Swedish Hasbeens Classic Slip On Super High (Hello Kitty stickers not included). They’re super easy to walk in even my four year old can do it. Do yourself a favor, if you buy a pair online, and buy an entire size up. They rum really small! 

XOM

Maxi-Million

May 17, 2012 § 7 Comments

A few years back I decided I’d try a maxi dress. I found a great one at Forever 21 that cost next to nothing. It was stretchy and comfortable and cool (in both style and temperature), slim to the knee and finished with a two foot gathered hem, which spoke loudly to my inner Mother Earth.

But as happens when I take fashion risks, I got it home, tried it on, and lost my nerve. The rules for an apple-shaped girl with boobs and skinny legs screamed, “NO!”

Fitted is what works. Tent like is tough, so back it went (and fast).

With the resurgence of warm weather the maxi dressed mammas have re-appeared. They are at pre-school and the grocery store, walking down the street and playing in the park. I eye them with a mix of envy for their ability to pull of the fashion risk and hope that I might find one (one day) for my frame that would allow me to play in the game.

There’s a bunch that I like that I’ve seen and so I’ll dip my toe into maxi-million territory by posting some of my favorites.

Who knows, though? With all of the evolving that’s been going on lately, a maxi dress just might act as the finishing piece to not only round out the warm weathered wardrobe, but be the catalyst for a summer of self acceptance (I will like myself in this tent, I will like myself in this tent).

The more I think about it, the better it sounds.

Monochrome Maxi Dress

Monochrome Maxi from Cheap Monday at Asos.

maxi dress

Anthropologie Maxi. This is way chic, but sadly, I don’t do strappy.

Red maxi dress

This I would do. Sleeves, yes. Color, yes. Still a bit sack like, yes. But I like it.

Holy Maxi Dress, Women, Dresses, AllSaints Spitalfields

Holy Maxi Dress AllSaints Spitalfields. I doubt I’d have a place to go where this would be appropriate and I’m note sure that it would work on my shape, but in my dreams I am wearing it with a pair of flat golden sandals and hair that’s been coiffed and set with flowers. I love it that much!

Splendid. Could easily be a part of the mommy clothes board on Pinterest.

Ella Moss. A little ikat, a little space dye, a little tribal. Love it!

Nettie Silk Lace Up dress at Calypso.

The Met Gala 2012

May 8, 2012 § 3 Comments

In the fall of 1994 I was in art school studying fashion. I took classes in draping and pattern making, figure drawing, flats and specs, costume design and history of fashion, just to name a few.

One day I mosied into class where my teacher had set up a television and VCR.

I remember exactly what I was wearing that day, as I do for every important event in my life; a Betsey Johnson flowered jump suit with belled legs, green clogs and a short bolero sweater that wrapped high around my waist. My hair was cut in that pixie way and it was platinum blonde. I once was quite the risk taker.

Galliano, Fall 1994 began to play.

It was the first time that I was spellbound by a show. My physical reaction was a mix of surprise, wonder and heart palpatating excitement. Tears welled up in my eyes, the emotion was pure joy.

Fashion as art; art as fashion.

This morning I logged onto the computer and learned that last night was the Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Gala. I’m so out of the loop, I didn’t even see it coming.

The Met Gala is the fashion equivalent to The Oscars. The risk taking and beauty of the fashion choices leave me with bated breath like Galliano’s hoop skirts did that day in the second floor classroom on New Montgomery, downtown San Francisco.

Unlike the Oscars, the choices are not always safe. Personality is more appreciated as evident in Sarah Jessica Parker’s Valentino choice and Diane Kruger’s Purple Prada, Coco Rochas’ vintage jumpsuit and Alicia Keys’ harem tux.

My smile is wide this morning, my heart has skipped a few beats and the energy from the artistry has left me charged. I love fashion for it’s ability to do this to me.

What is art to you? Who are some of your favorite artists, in fashion or life?

DIANE KRUGER photo | Diane Kruger

Diane Kruger Purple Prada. This girl can wear anything.

LILY COLLINS photo | Lily Collins

Lily Collins in Valentino. She’s young and the dress has a princessy vibe without the big princess skirt. I wonder if people will say it’s too old-looking for her with the sleeves and high neck? For me it’s wonderful!

CLAIRE DANES photo | Claire Danes

Claire Danes in J.Mendel. Doesn’t she look so relaxed and comfortable!

Gwyneth Paltrow in Prada. Love this photo as you can really see the shape of the dress and also the way it moves (like a bell). Good hair choice, too.

Mary-Kate Olsen in custom The Row. It’s severe, but that’s the point.

ALICIA KEYS photo | Alicia Keys

Alicia Keys in a Givenchy Haute Couture by Riccardo Tisci tux. I would have preferred a different shoe, but my affinity for a harem pant makes me forgive her for the choice.

DIANNA AGRON photo | Dianna Agron

Dianna Agron in Carolina Herrera. I’d consider this safe except for the (almost) bustle below the waist, which throws it into mid-nineteenth century territory. If it was more straight it wouldn’t have made my list.

SARAH JESSICA PARKER photo | Sarah Jessica Parker

Sarah Jessica Parker in Valentino. I am sure this will be panned today, but I love it and I’d wear it!

CAREY MULLIGAN photo | Carey Mulligan

Carey Mulligan in Prada.

Beyonce ascending the stairs in Givenchy by Riccardo Tisci.

KIRSTEN DUNST photo | Kirsten Dunst

Kirsten Dunst in Rodarte. Yes this will be panned, the color is harsh, but hooray for her on taking a risk. She always surprises and that’s a good thing!

ELIZABETH BANKS photo | Elizabeth Banks

Elizabeth Banks in Mary Katrantzou. Channeling Effie Trinkett?

FLORENCE WELCH photo | Florence Welch

Florence Welch in Alexander McQueen. Next to Sarah Jessica, this is my favorite!

DAKOTA FANNING photo | Dakota Fanning

Dakota Fanning in Louis Vuitton.

Coco Rochas vintage Givenchy jumpsuit detail. She purchased this piece at auction. It once belonged to Elizabeth Taylor and came with a vintage wine stain.

Shailene Woodley in Christopher Kane.

A still of Galliano Spring Summer 1994. The hoop skirts, inspired by a fictional character Princess Lucretia are exquisite in photos. They come alive, though, in motion!

Re-pinning Pinterest

March 31, 2012 § 6 Comments

Oh, Pinterest!

How I’ve fallen in love with you.

I was hesitant to try you, which is silly, but you reminded me of those old record stores with too much to weed through. I always had I anxiety attacks in those stores. I’d have to wait outside.

I was wrong about you.

Who knew that such inspiration would appear when I gave you a click? Certainly the genius who made you.

Pin, re-pin, like, like, like.

I want to follow people I don’t even know and innocently stalk the ones whose visions increase my heart rate.

I can pin something that I find as I search the grand expanse of the web and never ever lose it again.

If only everyone was pinning, we could all be connected on that cool and clever plane.

Share the love. It’s fun. Really fun!

Where Am I?

You are currently browsing entries tagged with style at Running in Mommyland.

%d bloggers like this: