Thursday, December 24, 2009

Some Christmas Bling

... if, like me, you can't get up the Christmas spirit on your own this year, these designer Christmas trees just might do the trick. This Hermes one is my favorite. Probably because it looks less like a tree and more like a dream fort, the perfect hideaway, the perfect Narnia-style portal. Especially with that ethereal (read: slightly frightening) glow emitting from within!

Soon this 9-hour Christmas Eve shift will be over and I can escape to my own little family bubble, where we will smoosh onto the couch and read the hilariously 80s edition of The Night Before Christmas, and stare at the colored lights until they blur and it's bedtime. And then in the morning there will be Vivaldi and coffee cake and stockings to exclaim over. It is gift enough* to have this one last childhood Christmas with my family, though none of us are children anymore.

What traditions do you look forward to most?

Generic seasonal tidings,


*just kidding, Santa

Tuesday, December 22, 2009


Just an old photo and someone else's words, today; not because I am sapped of creativity, but because it's not time yet (and I'm frightened) to see what would come forth.

To Papoo.



Photo taken at the cliffs of Kilkee, Ireland, in May 2006.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Dear Santa

If I were cleverer, I would have revived this blog weeks ago, just to make known my dream wishlist. But, I'm not, so here we are, only five days left and no chance of it being at all useful for anyone. Oh well, a girl can dream, right?

Moleskine 12-month planner,
to help me track my progress through the coming year.
And look at those colors!

Anthropologie bottle opener
to help me feel like a classy lady,
despite my love of beer

Modcloth headphones,
because my years-old iPod earbuds
just aren't cutting it, anymore

a Free People cardigan,
because a girl can never have enough cardigans

a book of stitches, because embroidery is
really hard when you have no idea what you're doing

the perfect Frye boots,
because, well, they're perfect.

In fact, let's just go ahead and add 'procurement of the Melissa Riding Tall Frye boots' to my 2010 resolutions. It will be done.

Glad tidings,


Friday, December 18, 2009


Well, hello again. It's been awhile, to say the least. For months now I've been meaning to post again, maybe next time I've got wireless, but maybe after I grab some coffee, or when I find a killer photo to use as a metaphor... and then, just a minute ago, I read this astonishingly inspirational post by the lovely lady behind the blog Little Red Fox. Now, this blog is just incredible. For the most part I really only read fashion blogs, but one lucky day last spring I came across this one and I fell for it, like that. She's creative, enthusiastic, a great writer, and she sometimes shares stories about her experience working with David Hyde Pierce. How could I not love her?

Anyway, she revealed in this post that all of the beautiful things she creates and sells in her Etsy shop, all of the photos she takes, all of the posts she writes, et cetera, were all made possible by skills she has acquired in the past two years. Here I was, assuming she was this superhero, the next Martha, while slumped at my desk yearning for such natural prowess, when all along she was JUST LIKE ME a couple years ago.
Except for one (yes, just ONE) thing: she had the motivation and belief that she was capable of learning and doing and fucking up and then doing again and eventually getting exactly the results she had hoped for.

SO. This year has been a rather strange one. I graduated from college with a highly predictable B.A. in English -- I was always a bookworm, and writing was my only creative outlet -- but with no inspiration or energy for writing (even in my journal!), or interest in reading (I couldn't even finish my first attempt at Virginia Woolf!), or ambition in any career path. Then, I took a class in jewelry making and metal work and suddenly I was filled with inspiration and ambition and drive and... what have I done with it? Not much, at all.

Alright, you guessed it. This is a New Years' Resolution post. A little early, yes, but so very earnest. There will always be reasons not to do, not to try, not to fuck up and grow up. I will always have too little time, because life is short, but sweet for certain.* And it will be made all the sweeter if I finally grow the proverbial pair and just work hard. I don't know yet who I want to be or what I want to do or where I want to go, but I sure as hell won't find out without research, and work, and introspection, and the occasional failure.

In 2010, I will
- learn to sew (like, at all. Even just replacing a button would be a struggle for me, now.)
- continue to redefine my ideas about diaries, through my recently acquired and deeply beloved veryfirstever Moleskine sketchbook
- be a better pen pal
- begin dancing again
- actively research the artists and designs and methods and fields that interest me
- make a lovely home
- keep up with this blog; not for you, the anonymous, judgmental entity of my bad mood daydreams, but for myself, and the unknown others who may like me, and the things I like, and maybe this blog, too.


*Yes, I did just quote Dave Matthews Band, shutup.

Thursday, August 13, 2009


At long last, I have photographs of the pieces of jewelry I made earlier this summer. Without further ado:

You can't tell from this photo, but the stone is
a deep green, with little orange-red flecks. Clearly, this one is Pond.

The concept behind this one was Fiddlehead, but I didn't really get the shape I liked, in the end.
Still, I'm proud of that tiny bezel, and the way the bracelet loops perfectly around my wrist.
Again, the stone is green, but you can't really tell.

This one you've seen before. This was my final piece, another pendant.

I still haven't found a chain for either of my pendants, but I'm optimistic. I've contemplated stringing the latter on to a piece of black velvet ribbon entwined with a gold filler chain, but I think I'll keep searching for the perfect chain before I give in to that easy fix.

For now I'm without a space to continue working, but I've taken to carrying a sketch book with me to work, and keeping it on my nightstand, so I'll become a little more accustomed to drawing out my ideas. Haven't seen much improvement yet, but hopefully I'll be able to express myself a little better as time passes.

And that's all for today. Off for a week-long jaunt to the Garden State, then back to reality -- just in time for my mom and sister to go back to school and leave me all by my lonesome.

It's going to be a long, lonely descent into the endless Vermont winter; any distractions welcome. More boldly put, have I got any readers yet??

love to the anonymous (imaginary) masses,


baby steps

One of my coping mechanisms, when looking to the future and reminding myself that I will indeed be living with my parents for the next several months, is by renewing my promise to experiment in the kitchen and become a decent cook. I hope to be proficient and a little adventurous, even, by the time I'm ready to get my own pad.

The other day I started off slow, with this delicious 'Sunny Sunflower Spread' so generously shared by Little Red Fox. This woman is a domestic goddess, a real icon in my fantasies of becoming an accomplished homemaker (in my spare time, of course, when I'm not busy celebrating my wild success as a jeweler). Anyway, the spread is fantastic, especially as a condiment for sandwiches. I decided to indulge the strange form of narcissism that prompts girls like me to photograph every step of the food-prep process, so please, sit back and enjoy as I demonstrate how to make a simple sandwich:

Klinger's sourdough bread + sunflower spread

+ slices of orange bell pepper

+ thinly sliced cucumber

+ shredded crisp romaine

+ thinly sliced Hunter's Sharp Cabot cheddar
(made here in Vermont and
always in our fridge)

+ voilĂ !

Well, it's not much, but it's a start! And man, was it good.

Go eat something delicious, I know you want to. I think I'm having corn on the cob tonight, my first this summer. :)


Thursday, July 23, 2009

booties & beaches

It's been a month since I last posted, so there are a few items of interest today. For my own peace of mind I'm going to dedicate a post to each train of thought. So, here's the first:

This post (at Charade) on individuality and self-expression through fashion is now the most long-winded mantra I've ever had.

Though the soggy state of Vermont has robbed me of a proper summer, I have to say, there are now fleeting moments when I become so excited about the prospect of autumn. I haven't been home for a good leaf-peeping season in four years, I can't wait. And of course I can't wait to don again my fall wardrobe staples, old and new. I got some great grey boots at H&M the other weekend that I can't wait to debut. Though last winter seemed to last forever, already this Glamourai post seems exciting and inspiring, again. (Also, part of the appeal of the aforementioned H&M booties was their vague resemblance to her favored footwear, the Patricia Field for Payless booties.)

But, enough of that! Because, at last, I'm going to the beach!! Tomorrow morning I hop a train to visit the boyfriend in sunny New Jersey for a week. And on our lovely To Do list, underlined, italicized, and dreamily doodled upon is 'go to the Jersey shore'. I can't really put into words just how strongly I long for the seashore. Expect pictures.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

New addition to my all-important staff shelf

The other night, finally, after over a year of forgetful anticipation, I pressed 'play' and sat back to enjoy The Fall. For those of you that have yet to see this film, do. It is visually breathtaking, and toys with your emotions in all the right ways. A peek at the delights available to you at your local video rental store:


Friday, June 26, 2009

givin' up on vegetarianism

In the interest of continuing to provide my faithful readers with aesthetic delights, photographs of stunning objects that engage that part of you that is daily suppressed, but still knows how to fantasize, how to dream... I present you with this mesmerizing series of photos posted by Jak & Jil Blog.

Translation: Enjoy the beefcake, ladies!



Thursday, June 25, 2009

lasers, bowlers, hostels, oh my!

For awhile now I've been promising a post featuring photos of my jewelry pieces. Today was the day I would finally deliver... until I discovered that my camera not only had very low battery, but is also suddenly incapable of focusing on small objects. Cross your fingers that this was a momentary glitch, please. In the meantime I'll have to satisfy us all with this single photo, taken by my teacher, Laurie Peters. It's a bit washed-out, but it gets the message across. It's my third and final piece, a pendant.

The book cover is made of copper, the keyhole is cast silver, the bookmark is silver as well, and the pages (not featured here) are nugold. Hopefully I'll be able to get up some more pictures, both of this piece and the others, soon.
On a related note, I welded with a laser today! It was very, very cool. I have an acquaintance who is a local jeweler, and he was kind enough to show me around the studio, answer a few questions, and showed me how to use a laserwelder. It was a moment of intense heat, and then it was done, the two rings were fused together. I can't wait to tell my geek scientist boyfriend.

you may have the get-up, but I've got lasers

Hmm, I probably should've checked with him before I uploaded that gem... ah well. Haha!

Lastly, I'm wishing I had expendable income, because this piece by Danny Robert (the guy who does those great bloglovin' illustrations) has got me drooling:

Now that it's quite clear I'll be living with the folks for a good chunk of time, I'm wishing I had made more of an effort the past four years to make my room my own. The walls are bare (though a lovely rusty/eggplant shade, much nicer than it sounds), except for a nice photo I tore from a Nylon magazine yesterday and taped to the wall. Sigh, it's a start.

Back to -- I'm trying to work out an affordable
NYC weekend in late July for two MJSA shows and a brief reunion with Apron Boy (above). It'll coincide nicely with the Red Sox tickets my dad scored for the following Monday on the Budweiser Pavilion at Fenway. Amtrak and I have become best friends these past few years....

Until next time,


Friday, May 22, 2009

it's my half birthday, today

So, it's been awhile. I'm back living at my parents', post-B.A, or rather, B.A.-impending. I was 3 credit hours short as of Commencement, so while I got to wear the cap and gown and pretend I was now a graduate, President Cornwell actually handed me a be-ribboned blank piece of paper. Sigh. It's not all bad, though; every Monday, Wednesday and Friday through mid-June I join my mom on her daily commute and take a Jewelry making course at UVM. It's just been a week and I can't believe how much I've learned and created. It's unbelievable, the class is from 9am to 1pm, and it doesn't even occur to me to look at the clock until about 11 -- there's just so much to do! Everyone keeps saying it's like summer camp; I never went, so I can't know for sure, but it is pretty damn fun. Once I've got my pendant finished I'll take a few photos of it and share my work.

That's pretty much it, for now. We still use dial-up at home, so I haven't really been able to follow all the fashion blogs (I've got a backlog of 359 posts on bloglovin'), and all my time is currently devoted to class/work/eating/sleeping, so there isn't much creative thought going on. However, I did renew my library membership, so hopefully soon I'll be crossing a few off my Books to Read After College list. First up: To t
he Lighthouse, Virginia Woolf. Somehow I've never read any Woolf, I can't wait.

Lastly, I did manage to get a job. I'm replacing a friend of mine at the indie/offbeat video rental in town, and while I'm just happy to have a steady income, I also get free rentals of anything non-new release. Yes! This is fantastic. I love films, but have never been able to watch very many. Living on a mountain in the middle of nowhere with parents who didn't allow me a driver's license until I was 19 kind of limited my options. Anyway, it's been great so far, I've now crossed Blue Velvet and Paris je t'aime off my list. Blue Velvet was... interesting. I feel like there's something I'm not getting. And I felt totally manipulated and violated by Lynch at some points, but I guess that's his M.O.

And then there's Paris je t'aime. A collection of short films by many different directors, all placed in Paris; I had seen a few of them before, when I took Francophone Film last spring, and have been meaning to check out the whole thing since then. There were a couple that I didn't like as much, but overall, they were beautiful vignettes that got my wanderlust at a dangerously high level and my emotions spiking in every direction. I highly recommend it.

Well, to quote our favorite Bunny, That's all, folks.


Friday, May 8, 2009

a moment of whimsy

This, a link to which can be found over at The Enthusiast:

La Joie de Vivre

reminds me of this:

Paul Gauguin's Fatata Te Miti

Thanks Julia for sharing that gorgeous, strange little video!


Wednesday, May 6, 2009

I never knew Frye loved me back

On this slow rainy day I don't think there's anything better than lying in bed, finding a new online tv obsession (check out Chuck for a thoroughly entertaining action show -- it's hilarious, the guy playing Chuck, Zachary Levi, has an adorable John Krasinski-esque smile), and browsing various shoe sites for the perfect high-heeled sandal. And what do you know, at both Piperlime and Urban, my favorites literally had my name on them. I'm a Frye girl (on an Old Navy budget), and I have fallen in love with these two lovelies:

the Frye Emily Slingback at Urban

the Frye Emily Ankle at Piperlime

It wasn't until relatively recently (the past two years or so) that I finally tapped into my womanly right: a deep love of shoes. And almost immediately following that magical, bittersweet day, was the
day when I discovered the irresistability of a shapely platform. A month ago or so I fell for a Madden Girl gladiator platform on the DSW site, and then... it was gone. Just like that.

I hope some day I'll find her again. (Because she was a hell of a lot cheaper than these Frye beauties.)


Saturday, May 2, 2009


I cannot believe it is May already. Not only that, but there are only nine days between this lovely Saturday and that long awaited Monday: the day when I will graduate from college.

In the interim, I must write one last paper and take two last exams... and then, I'm done. Done? Done.

To quote OMC, how bizarre.

Are you, too, looking for distractions from the bittersweet beauty of this young green spring?

Head on over to Feed Your Soul: the Free Art Project, and download yourself some beautiful, unique, quirky pieces to decorate your dorm room or otherwise. Predictably, perhaps, the Tricia McHellar piece is my favorite, with the Elsita Mora and the Michele Maule as close runners-up.

If you're feeling the spring cleaning impulse, head on over to Charade (you can always find a link to this great blog under Emily's Favorites in the right sidebar) for another invaluable installation of The Dream Style Series, entitled Getting Organized. Lord knows I should (get organized, that is) -- but hey, I'll be packing up to go soon enough. Ugh, need more distractions, and fast....

Nope, can't do anything but succumb to this irritating wave of nostalgia. Well, I'll leave you with a shot of the brilliant fireworks witnessed a couple weekends ago in Louisville:

A lovely weekend to all,


Thursday, April 16, 2009

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

antique delight

Earlier today, when searching for trinkets, I stumbled across wildplum's page, which has several perfect antique-y items. Check it out if you like what you see here. I'm too poor right now to afford even these reasonably-priced treasures, so please, give them a nice home.

But! I am not as financially desperate as it may have seemed above. In fact, I am saving my $$ for the weekend, when I will finally be seeing Louisville, Kentucky with my girl friends. Thunder Over Louisville, they call it: the largest fireworks display in the country, a.k.a. the largest assemblage of rednecks in the country. I cannot wait. Hopefully I'll have some photos capturing the adventure for the next post.

Until then,


Saturday, April 11, 2009

small joys

Earlier this week I stumbled across and a new obsession was born. It took me awhile to assemble something I could be proud of, but here's my first dabbling in the creation of inspiration boards, let me know what you think!

There are a few other ideas I've been knocking around this week, but I have yet to realize them fully, so until then, I will remain mysterious.


Sunday, April 5, 2009


clck hr, plz

I've added the bloglovin' feature, just in case anyone stumbles across this small thing and finds it entertaining... I hope some day to have readers. Yes, that would be nice. Until then,


Friday, April 3, 2009

What I'm excited about right now

This month Charade, a blog that intends to help women like myself enjoy a "fabulous lifestyle on a student budget" (amen to that), will be posting a series of articles with advice on how to achieve your dream style. Yesterday the first of the series, entitled Dream Style Series: Why Bother?, was posted -- and it's brilliant. My favorite passage:

let’s look at it logically: what other elements of your life do you leave merely to chance, or ‘make up as you go along’? Your education? Hell no. Your career? Uh-uh. Your relationships? They take work. Well, isn’t your appearance, in many ways, central to all of these? Doesn’t your style deserve a bit of special attention all of its own, especially if you want it to work in your favour? Don’t simply shrug it off as vanity as, although it can lean that way, I’m not advocating excess, I just think your personality deserves a little artistic representation.

Yes, exactly. I go to a liberal arts college in Ohio, and most of my classmates tend toward sweatpants or jeans, the depressingly prolific and predictable Uggs and flip-flops, and there are Northfaces and pearls, and quilted Vera Wang, or more recently those (absurdly popular and shockingly bland) Longchamp bags, as far as the eye can see. When I walk into a classroom looking like this,

vest, Urban Outfitters; blouse, vintage; ribbon, presents; earrings, don't remember

or like this (though maybe not in that position, exactly... excuse my limited technologies, please),

gold bamboo hoops, goldmine vintage in boulder, CO; plaid blouse, Urban Outfitters; enormous teardrop pearl necklace, Second Time Around in burlington, VT; skinny jeans, Express; beloved cowboy boots, Oak Tree Farms, via teh internets

I tend to get some strange looks. For years this has inhibited my personal style, as conservative as it may be to some. But in the past year or so I have trained myself to either ignore these glances or consider them complimentary, and stride with confidence past their uncomprehending scorn. I see no reason why I should be made to feel a fool for putting effort into the way I look. There are scores of Facebook groups bashing people for 'dressing up' to go to lecture, as if it's rude or extravagant, but I wish these sartorially-impaired people would see the flip-side of this issue: imagine you are a professor, a highly intellectual professional with the life goal of imparting your knowledge on the younger generations and helping in the formation of creative, critical, productive minds, and your pupils show up to class in enormous sweatpants and Crocs and their hair all over the place with one of those elastic headbands.... How could you not feel that you had been disrespected? Especially in a small setting like ours: a total student body of under 2,000, the usual class size being well under 30 people. And how can these people carry themselves this way on a daily basis? How can you maintain a feeling of confidence and maturity when day-to-day they are essentially wearing pajamas and presenting to the world the sloppiest, most irreverent side of themselves? And how on earth will they transition into the 'real' world, the professional world, where the way you present yourself is imperative?

Well, there's my (admittedly elitist) rant for the day. Anyway, today is a lovely, sunny, Saturday (after a rainy, frenzied, Friday), hooray!


[edit] p.s. Also very excited to read my first ever issue of paper (the March issue) right... now.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

A fresh new start

Today, the first of my blogging career, is a typical spring day in Ohio. I hear it was beautiful and sunny at about 9am, but when I had finally gotten myself out of bed and presentable enough to walk to the dining hall (shamefully, but typically, for a Sunday, it was now 1pm), the skies were a heavy gray, and with a mighty gust they opened and released an angry, soaking deluge. 15 minutes later the rain had let up and, with the exception of another shower about an hour ago, it's been a lovely, sunny, breezy, afternoon.

The grass is greener with every rain, and there are young shoots and red tree buds and some brave little flowers dotting our manicured grassy areas. Spring!

But. I have this problem every year, this sudden puritanical (which is definitely not a word I would normally use to describe myself) reaction to warm weather. Thrilled as I am to be releasing my warm-weather wardrobe from the dark depths of my closet, I find myself slightly horrified at the idea of showing so much bare leg. No tights? No leggings? No denim to shield me (not from the elements, but from the realization that I must take up the razor again)?
In a month, of course, I will be traipsing bare-legged about campus, not a care in the world, but right now the idea of showing so much skin is rather shocking. In the hopes of banishing these inhibitions, I went to the Anthropologie site to look at their inspirational dresses, as breezy as this lovely blue day.

The New Math Dress from Anthropologie has me fawning and frankly amazed to discover that dreams do come true

Mind you, as a poor college student with hardly enough $$ to excuse a trip to Goodwill or Friendtique (a charming thrift shop run by little old ladies, proceeds go to hospice), I couldn't even dream of shopping Anthropologie's sale rack, but a little virtual window shopping is something I indulge in frequently. I think of it not so much as an exercise in futility, but as an exercise in honing my personal style -- comparing and contrasting garments with my own ideas about what would suit my current wardrobe, physical dimensions, and sartorial whims....

Speaking of whims, yesterday I had a very impulsive moment of whimsy. After 21 years of shuddering at the thought of letting anyone but a professional stylist come near my hair with scissors, including (and especially) myself, I decided to cut myself some bangs. Mind you, I hadn't worn the style since I was a toddler, having told myself during the past few years (when quite literally surrounded by girls with bangs) that I 'couldn't pull off' the look. For some reason I believed yesterday that with a few snips I could transform my look and achieve that fringe-y, hair in the eyes, su
ltry look I so admire. Obviously, this would be impossible because not only do I have very coarse, ornery and whimsical hair to match my demeanor, I also apparently have a cowlick. How exactly does a person get to this point in their life without knowing that they have a cowlick right above their hairline? I don't know, it is a mystery that will never be solved. A few minor panic attacks later and with the amused but reassuring assistance of my girl Andrea, I am, I believe, quite bangin'. (I'm sorry, but it is for the best that you become accustomed immediately to my tendency to pun as often and as painfully as possible.)

not just bangin' but sleep-deprived, too

With this new hairstyle I am forced to take my wardrobe in a slightly new direction, but, happily enough, a direction I was already heading in anyway. I have been told by my boyfriend that I now have far more potential for cuteness now that I have such a 'sweet' hair cut. While I have learned that my personal style/what suits me best are femininely-detailed garments, such as my favorite lacy buttoned off-white Urban blouse, I think that I will have to learn to incorporate my more edgy pieces into my outfits to offset this new look. At 5'3" I'm rather sensitive about the word 'cute', and I hope that items like my oft-neglected, zipper-laden, black, cropped faux-leather jacket I got on sale at Urban a few years back will help me avoid the word as much as possible.

And so, I embark on a new virtual window shopping expedition. Edginess and color are my goals, in the hopes of expanding my beige/camel/gray/blue closet and bringing it into a new age of Emily. I hope yo
u'll excuse my corniness, and come with me on this journey to redefine what it means to be this woman, in this small world I have created for myself.

With that, I'll leave you with this absolutely perfect photo taken by an absolutely lovely girl I wish I had gotten to know better before she left the country to go take this photo:

this photo has been a constant source of inspiration since I first laid eyes on it...
and rather reminiscent of another great dress over at Anthropologie, actually

and with that,