One of my favorite things about NYU is that they usually release as separates and the lovely camisole and lace skirt released at faMESHed are true to form. I love separates because it’s fun to mix and match. The pieces come with multiple colors selected by HUD.
In Halldor Laxness’ extraordinary book Independent People, there are well over 150 references to coffee, most of them reverent. That is as it should be. Laxness was Icelandic and they are among the world’s greatest coffee consumers–along with all the other Scandinavians.
Although Swedish-American, I am closer to real Swedes in my coffee consumption. When I was a kid, I put coffee in my milk, sometimes now I will put milk in my coffee when I get a latte, but usually drink it black. There is no perfume in the world quite so warm and evocative as the smell of coffee.
So I was thrilled by the coffee shops at The Arcade. I took some pictures outside the other day, but today I am shooting inside where I combined elements from the RH Designs Coffee House and the PLAAKA Coffee Factory. The building is from PLAAKA’s coffee factory. I just fell in love with the look of the crumbling old factory being repurposed to serve coffee. The broken down wall and patio appeals to my love of things old and worn.
Thalia Heckroth™ has made minimalism and simplicity her design signature. But just as Doris Janzen Longacre was correct when talking about simple living not being simple, minimalist design is just as deceptively complex. Embellishment is easy, structure is hard. Look at the structure on this gorgeously simple dress. Look at the bodice and the way the sleeves are inset. This is a deceptive form of simplicity that is the hallmark of good design. I decided to go for pink, out of the many color choices this dress comes in. I was tired. Pink wakes me up.
I am loving the outfit released by Zaara for Collabor88 this month. The February C88 showcased folk designs and how appropriate that Zaara release something representative of her country’s traditional, and still current, fashions.
Our imagination is the only true freedom we have. Before you decide that is depressing and melodramatic, consider this. What really impinges on our freedom more than anything? Is it the government or is it the mores and expectations of friends, family, and community? What stops us from pursuing our dreams, the police or our fears? There are many things that hold us back, health, financial limitations, even time, but for those of us who live in a relatively free society, we are the ones who limit our freedom.
As a white woman in the United States, I am relatively free of governmental repression. Of course, there are many cultural limits on women’s freedom and if some get their way, there will be governmental restrictions as well. But given the continuum of freedom in the world, I am comfortably situated on the relatively free section.
I have been arrested a few times for my political activities and always released with an apology. For people who are not white, police encounters are more dangerous. In fact, over-policing and police impunity are repressive, a form of unofficially sanctioned terrorism to set the limits on the movements and aspirations of people of color. Nonetheless compared to many places in the world, we continue to enjoy a relatively high degree of political freedom–for the moment. That may change, as some states are trying to criminalize protest and political activity.
The idea that our imagination is our only true freedom makes me think of Mahatma Gandhi who said, “You can chain me, you can torture me, you can even destroy this body, but you will never imprison my mind.” This is real freedom. That is why we are the ones who keep us unfree and we are the only ones who can liberate us.
Epictetus said we had the freedom of choice whether we stand at the podium or in a prison. I think of Epictetus when I think about Donald Trump. He may be the “leader of the free world” but he is one of the least free beings I can think of. He is a prisoner of his desperate need for approval and praise. He is a prisoner of rage, it clouds his judgment and incapacitates his reason. He will never be content, not to mention happy, because he is a prisoner of fear. No matter how many podia he speaks from, he will never be free.
Real freedom is in peace of mind, in being able to make your choices without fear or anger. Real freedom is when your mind is free of emotional traps, societal limitations and cultural prisons. So, yes, our imagination is the only true freedom we have…if we dare to grasp it.
The theme for Collabor88 this month is StoryTime and the creations showcased are a rich display of folkloric traditions and influences. There is a lot of embroidery, a lot of beautiful colors and rich traditional fabrics. Sissy Pessoa ran with the idea into a more modern direction with this gown and capelet. It has all the traditional flower forms, but the dress itself is quite modern and made even more so in the sheer version.
Our web site was down. Somehow there was a virus in the database. Is that not the strangest thing? I don’t know if that would affect readers or not, but thankfully it’s been fixed.
I shot these pictures last week. I was still shocked by the Orwellian phrase “alternate facts” that in a healthy society would completely discredit the people who promote them. But, since people no longer distinguish between fact and opinion, alternate facts seem to be growing. Aldous Huxley, though, had the right idea. “Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored.”