Tonight I listened to a friend wishing for the innocent joy of childhood. That time we all long for when nothing else mattered except the laughter of the present...not worrying about anything more than the joy of moment. Our only responsibility was to have fun. I think we can all relate to this longing...and I think it's possible to tap into that kid-like happiness in a new wonderful way. As we experience these moments of laughter with the people in our adult lives, whether it's working, playing or simply turning out the responsibilities of day-to-day life…stop for a second and get present to the gift that it truly is....laughter. In this millisecond, I believe the joy of life can be found...a smile is greatest gift...and we may take this for granted as children, but it is in adulthood where we can become present to how special and precious it is. And I know that with this clarity comes real freedom.
In the spirit of this, I deviate just slightly with tonight's sketch. I did not do this, but rather my 10-year-old niece did it for me. I'm so proud of it....and looking at this gift makes me smile....and I am present to real joy, happiness and freedom.
The phone rings and someone you know is in trouble...you drop what your doing and run to assist or be by their side. Is this completely altruistic or is there some selfish reasoning underneath? The thought that if "I'm there for them, they will be there for me." Perhaps...but in the end does it matter? As humans, we live life in our heads, wondering and questioning, and most of the time we stumble our way thought it all. However, if when called upon, we can show up...for whatever reason, I don't think it matters. For the reasons are our own...all our loved ones know is that when needed, they can count on us being there.
Remember the swimsuits of the 1950s… The ones you would never think about getting wet. They were just meant to lounge by the pool and look fabulous… Well this is my take on them...done in wool and satin.
Yin and Yang....night and day....happy and sad....good and bad....black and white....can't have any of them without other. In the end isn't just about balance...having a little sugar with your spice to make it oh so nice.
I love living in a part of the world where I can walk down the street in a T-shirt with the warm sun during the day and sip cocktails fireside at a local pub that same evening....in late June! I adore Portland!
Silk knits with suede ankle boots...fireside attire at its best.
This evening I was given the gift of being in a room full of people as they created new possibilities for their lives. It was both magical and inspiring to witness the cliché come to life… Anything is possible.
Gold beaded chiffon paired with maroon satin pleats.
I had a friend over for dinner and a movie...well he watched the movie...I promptly feel asleep. But let me tell you about this meal. We had a Mexican feast. I gotta say, I love cooking, I enjoy it even more when its a collaborative effort. We had such fun, chopping, dicing and zesting...yes, we zested. Let me tell you the salsa we made was a thing of art! So much so it inspired the powder blue cotton flaminco number you see...Muy caliente!!!
This evening I had the privilege to teach some of my friends how to draw. I told them, "you supply the food and I'll supply the lessons". It was the first time I showed you up to someone's home for dinner with an Office Depot bag rather than a bottle of wine. Needless to say we had a blast..I'm very proud of the work they did. It was such a joy watching them create something they didn't know they were capable of doing.
Now seems like a perfect time to thank and acknowledge my uncle. When I was around 11 I started sketching… I thought they were masterpieces… Not so much. My uncle is an architect and while he did not know fashion illustration per say, he did know about line and perspective. I would go visit him and sit on the floor with my sketchbook for hours, cranking out sketch after sketch after sketch. Each one he would critique… We laughed a lot! In the end, it was his generosity, knowledge and time that helped foster my talent to what it became.
I am present the fact that all the teachers in my life need to be acknowledged. Not just the formal educators, of which there were amazing ones (go Sissions!), but the people in my life as well… family and friends who've taught me the life lessons that have made me the person I am today. Thank you.
So now comes my friends favorite part of the blog...clockwise from the top left; A black satin A-line, an simple elegant jersey knit dress, a wool-crepe princess seamed number and last but not least, a nautical inspired boat-neck frock done in viscose-rayon. You guys were awesome!
Lucy and Ethel, Fred and Ginger, Butch and Sundance, Will and Grace… there is something about a good duo. Maybe it's that idea that whatever happens they have got your back. That's a wonderfully warm thought in this occasionally chilly world.
For those comfortably tepid times...silk jersey tops with satin and wool tweed skirts.
Ever say or text something then immediately think "Can I please take that back...immediately!"? We humans are very concerned with looking good at all times. I think this pressure can easily lead to awkward social conversations. With that said I have stumbled over my words more than once...I guess it's natural. We are after all....human. Best advice...remember, learn, and try again. And if you can come away looking as good as this silk polka dot dress, you'll be way ahead of the game.
Hey Precious aka Ramona...I wanted to reach out to you on your special day and thought this might be a new way to do so. Instead of sending you a present, I thought of doing something a little different...I want to thank you for some of the gifts you've given me.
The pride you have filled me with since the first time I held you 11 years ago has grown tenfold. Your strength and courage has been an inspiration. Your laughter has been a healer to my soul....some of the fondest memories of my life have been playing with you and having the room expand with you giggles. Thank you for allowing me to teach what I know about drawing...we have Uncle Roger to thank...remind me to tell you that story. You have a real talent, I know...trust me. Thank you for being the light of my sisters life...your Mom literally means the world to me and you have filled her with immeasurable joy. Thank you for saving Nana for us all. You came to us right after Pawpa died and you gave my Mom a reason to get up in the morning. The relationship you two have is one to treasure and envy and treasure some more. Thank you for being a protector to that perfect little brother of yours. You are an awesome big sister and the love you both share will only grow as time goes on. I look forward to watching you both become amazing friends. Take it from me...the friendship of your sibling is truly a beautiful thing. Thank you for the walks with Uncle David...even tho we aren't together anymore you are a bond we will share for the rest of our lives. I can't tell you the joy I use to feel watching you both walk to the mailbox and back...you brought him such peace and love in a time when he needed it the most...you were his angle.
Most of all Alexis, I want to thank you for you. I have watched you grow from the most adorable baby to the lovely young lady you are now...I am so proud of you and I promise to be here for you when ever you need me.
Love Uncle Jason
Ps. Don't worry...you'll get a "real" preset too. :)
The other night I was asked if I sketch men...here's the answer. This is from a sketch I did for a class in design school. I was forced to take fashion sketching as a requirement....the teacher thought it was ridiculous as I could draw as well as her. I was self taught from childhood and by the time I got to college I was pretty damn good at illustrating the ladies. Soooo, I asked her if she could teach me how to sketch men...and we did. How's that for making lemonade out lemons?!
So I was lucky enough to visit Germany a few years ago. It was such a special trip...not just for the beautiful landscape and warm people (yes...the Germans are warm...swear), but for the nostalgia. No, I had never been before....you see my grandparents were German immigrants. Every Sunday we would spend the day with them...my Grandma would cook and bake....the house always smelled awesome! Grandpa would always talk very loud...his own wonderful dialect of Germglish. They were great afternoons.
What struck me about Germany was how at home I felt...every restaurant and bakery smelled like Oma's kitchen...even the soaps took me directly back to the pleasant floral scents of her little half bath. Then on every corner I would hear my Opa...shouting his point out only to be followed by a warm full laugh. I can't wait to return...it was a magical trip.
I don't know why, but this sketch brought up that memory. I guess I can see some chic Fraulein in this tweed and satin suit...Das ist wunderbar!
Sometimes they roll off our tongue so easily and other times it's as though we are being asked to speak the hardest language known to man. Whether its effortless or a struggle, we should never put off saying this to the people in our lives...For we have no guarantees as to how long we will be blessed with their presence. Our mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, friends, spouses and lovers all deserve to hear that the people in their life matter to them...and I can't think of a better gift give than three little words...I love you.
Have you every seen a child playing alone...completely caught up in their own world? They may sing or dance or receipt the dialogue of their story aloud. They are completely unaware, or better yet, unconcerned about the thoughts and judgments of outside influences. They are only present to their own joy. In that moment they are free...I love that.
Today is my father's birthday. I honestly can't tell you off the top of my head the day that he died… But once a year I celebrate him on this day. He was a kind wonderful man filled with laughter. Dad had the gift of making a "best friend" of every new person he met. I've been lucky enough to have been told that I have a caring heart...I owe so much of this kindness to my father... I learned through example.
I am choosing a sketch for today based on the love his life...my mom. My parents were high school sweethearts and married for over 30 years. I like to think of mom wearing something similar to this for one if their early dates, a silk top and linen shorts, and dad looking at her and smiling, filled with love and pride.
Nature's first green is gold, Her hardest hue to hold. Her early leafs a flower; But only so an hour. Then leaf subsides to leaf. So Eden sank to grief, So dawn goes down to day. Nothing gold can stay.
Yellow-gold satin with black patent leather accents.