“All these dreams are yours as well and the only distinction between me and you
is that I can articulate them.”

Werner Herzog, director

Daisies-2
Articulating dreams and emotion is the driving task of any artist, (or any creative being) from kids to world leaders to directors of film to interior designers. Can art really save lives? Can one director’s dream save lives? Can design save lives?

Yes. Yes. and Yes.

One spring evening we joined the design-lover hordes at New York City’s beloved Housing Works’ Design on a Dime event. Here designers direct, they create little theatres, mini mis-en-scenes filled with objets d’art, which shoppers go cray-cray snapping up ~ all to raise funds for housing for those affected by HIV/AIDS. At the time I was deeply entrenched in Bernardo Bertolucci‘s 2011 love fest to cinema, The Story of Film: An Odyssey and I could not help seeing the legacy of film in the spaces and people.

Bertolucci’s global survey articulates the vast world of human emotion as seen in the passion of directors, it becomes so clear that Art Invents Style. This style is what connects humanity emotionally and pushes our collective dreams forward.

Come romp with me, see how design directors at Design on a Dime and filmmakers throughout time ~ set styles, create our dreams, and our reality.

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The Location, The Scene: Like a Fellini movie, a parade of human souls daily eagle eye the most famous, most chic thrift shops in Gotham. Housing Works Thrift Shops are a library of colorful lives, clothing, furnishings and mementos; an online auction site; and definitely the beloved secret of many a stylish New Yorker.

The Investors, The Producers: This year these events raised 1.3 million! Shove over Angelina Jolie and Leonardo DiCaprio! We’re getting into Hollywood numbers here, dear design community! Presented by the likes of Elle Decor, National Media Sponsor, Ralph Lauren Paint, HSBC Private Bank, Double Cross Vodka, Viacom, and the New York Design Center.

The Directors: Inspired by this charitable holy grail, over 60 designers signed on to create little worlds. We are talking legendary society designer names, like Charlotte Moss, to donations from major brands like Ralph Lauren and Nickelodeon, to hot young thangs, see a full list here.

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+ The Cast of 1000′s:
A merry band of troubadours here! While incomparable to Vienna’s Life Ball, NY’ers marching through were precious Art Hipsters to Design and Media Brand Veep’s to Telly Celebrity Directors: Andy Cohen, Stephen Fanuka, George Oliphant, Evette Rios, Ryan Serhant, Bevy Smith and Lana Spencer, Nate Berkus, chairs. Design Stars made appearances, like Simon Doonan, Todd Oldham, editors Wendy Goodman of New York magazine’s Design Hunting, to Michael Boodro, editor-in-chief of ELLE DÉCOR, also the media sponsor; and to House Beautiful’s Sophie Donelson. Toss in characters like a Fashion Designer, Chris Benz, an Actress, Lorraine Bracco and yes, even add a Victoria Secret Model, Martha Hunt, and let the band play!

PLUS MANY MORE! SEE THEIR STYLE! LET THE ROMP COMMENCE! ACTION!

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Cookingforothers.com

LE WILD STYLE.
One vignette perfectly summed up the arms-wide-open, bright community philanthropy and cultural bounty vibe of the Housing Works vision. A happy, potluck, circus-fest of cultural kitsch was created by Cooking for Others, a culinary adventure invented by journalist Stephen Henderson, who was inspired by world traditions of cooking for others as a gesture of humanity.
You win My Best Director’s Prize, Mr. Henderson, your vignette was so on Message! Are we surprised the director’s husband is the famed the P.R. James LaForce?

Stephen-Henderson
Here’s James, above, and below, his vignette, presided over by a director we all know, in this instance, Jesus, posturing like the famous character of Monsieur Hulot in Trafic (Traffic) the 1971 Italian-French film directed by Jacques Tati. Furthering the symbolism, Tati used the word spelled trafic for an “exchange of goods,” rather than “traffic” per se…as he was another acute observer of our modern consumerist pumped society using humor and kitsch to enlighten the masses. Parody and Satire, we’ve seen this year how this vital freedom feeds our souls.

Cookingforothers.com
My sense of the absurd, and My Power of Wild Style Award goes to this merry trio we spotted among the throngs of shoppers, below.

B.O.R.N CAST
Meet the 3 of the B.O.R.N.TO STYLE show cast members here, Jonathan Bodrick, Brandon Hood, JJ Langan. Jonathan’s real-life vintage shop in Harlem is the setting for the show, a Mecca calling the un-stylish to get make-overs. Of course, I gave them the option of a pic with or without me, and then because they were all fronting about me in the photo, I had to mess with these rising stars and photobomb them next!

BORN -Jade-Dressler
UN FILM DE NEW WAVE JUMP CUT STYLE STRIPE.

BREATHLESS-stripes
Life as jump cuts is as French as Jean Paul Gaultier Breton stripe T’s everywhere, including in the film he gorgeously styled, The City of Lost Children Stripes were all over the vignettes, perhaps a trend symbolic of our new wave feeling, a moving of boundaries, contrast, rebellion, and dreams.  The energy, textures, and colors of this vignette get My “Almost Almodovar”Award. The teen bedroom was designed by Nickelodeon, inspired by their show ‘Bella and the Bulldogs.’
Zees whole sing, verrry French New Wave meets lost American teenager, verrrry, verrrry À bout de souffle (1959) dir. Jean-Luc Godard.

Nickelodeon bedroom
A FILM OF AN EXISTENTIALIST STRIPE.

Below, designer Miles Redd has his wise way with stripes, angles, geometrics, film lights, and mirrors with a ponderous head plopped in the middle. An esoteric, cinematic take with roots in Metropolis, (1927) dir. Fritz Lang, yes?

Neal-Beckstedt
STRIPED LIKE A BEACH BLANKET BINGO PARTY MOVIE.

Another candy-striper was designer, Scott Sanders’ whose beach vignette drew in design surfers in droves, like a gyrating Annette Funicello. Inside his beach cabana world, you understood his Ralph Lauren background, he began Lauren’s interior design biz. On message, his homage-to-summer vignette was smartly merchandised like a shop. No wonder his clients are art stars and moguls of entertainment. No surprise this beach party mesmerized the frenzied shopper folks, who slowed down, staring at the array of cool, like one stares at the sea for life’s answers.
Here as does Audrey Hepburn in Two for the Road (1967) dir. Stanley Donen.

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Scott Sanders’ Beachy Haven.

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No casting couch, just a peek at whole parade of Stars passing by Scott’s Casting Cabana, here. Of course, the red carpet mantra, “And WHO are YOU wearing tonight?” was incessantly bantered.

Scott-Sanders-Marisa-Marcantonio-Stylebeat
I played paparazzi here with my mobile, snapping Scott with Marisa Marcantonio creator of the Stylebeat blog. As a vast background to her encyclopedic design brain, she smartly opts for the well-tailored, New York uniform of black.
(PS. She also wins My Gina Lollobrigida Look Alike Award.)

Scott-Sanders-Jade-Dressler-Jamie-Drake
Some girl named Jade on the left, Scott in the middle with the super elegant and legendary designer, Jamie Drake. What is Jade Dressler wearing? More on that later, but first: Am I thrilled to be wearing Jamie Drake Hot Pink in my pic with him? Are you kidding me? Beyond thrilled!

Jill-John-and Scott-Sanders
Thank Jill John from Serena & Lily for all those yummy turquoise and cherry tangerine notes of style in the cabana. Who designed that cheery red jacket note of style on Scott? Thom Browne custom tailored, thank you! My Best Man Style Award goes to Scott, make sure you see the footwear below.

Scott-Sanders-Bari-Mattes-
While Bari Mattes, above, posed with her dear friend, Scott, I played stylist and held her exquisite Chanel bag for her. Bari has been a co-director among top-notch directors, like Cory Booker and Tory Burch, so what other designer besides Chanel was she wearing? We honestly don’t know, but we LOVE her sartorial director-genius style, a perfect combo of politically-correct Michelle Obama-esque career wear in a very playful polka dot bikini pattern.

George-Oliphant-Scott-Sanders
George Oliphant, Emmy award winning host of NBC’s George to The Rescue also swung by Scott’s cabana. We love that his bow tie matches his perky, fun personality plus Scott’s Tangy Tangerine color of the night. Plus George’s 1950-ish small check shirt renders all perfect with the dark navy jacket. Who cares WHO he’s wearing? We care more WHO he is!

Housing-Works-crochet-pin
In a similar mood, we spotted this tangy tangerine crochet flower lapel pin on Michael Ventol‘s dark plushy jacket. Michael is a salesman at Housing Works Chelsea, see how smart these people are? I saw and loved a similar tiny paper rose lapel pin on a dapper luxury real estate salesperson later in the week. No designers mentioned for this trend, but perhaps we can credit this au courant, “heart on lapel” style to The Godfather, courtesy of Marlon Brando‘s eerily elegant rose lapel pin whilst petting soft cuddly kitten, below?

Marlon-Brando-red-rose
Speaking of grandparents, my own lapel pin, here below, is courtesy of my grandmother. And I am wearing Jade Dressler. ( Editor’s note: This top was formally known as a pair of Nepalese trousers that I turned upside down, made a hole for my head, impulsed by my own incessant, archaic, Luddite and madcap-director desires to design and make my clothing.)

Sean-Mellyn-Jade-Dressler 2
This machismo chest puff posing above?  Inspired by artist Sean Mellyn‘s beefcake leather, here with me. I shall not insert a pic of James Dean in Rebel Without a Cause, because we all know Sean is a softy heart of the best kind;-) He is in fact, A Director With a Way, with flowers, Monet, and all things design.

Rio-Hamilton
Design-star Rio Hamilton shows us his treasure-find of the night, a sleek black bird. Was there ever a design match? Rio’s ever-sleek self captures the best of the design flock through his work with Assouline and his Mon Oncle blog. (I know! Crazee! I confirmed it…Mon Oncle as in Jacques Tati! Now that’s the kind of Designer-I’m-Wearing/Homage-to-Director we LOVE!)

Raina-Kattleson-Jade-Dressler
Middle, stylist and blogger Raina Kettleson, luscious curls designed by “Universal”, me again;-) and on the left, the fab “What will you bring home?” graphic T’s all the volunteers wore. No, I did not bring Raina home, cute as her curls may be.

Jade-Dressler-Andrew Joseph
This above? Not a 3-headed creature from a Japanese monster movie, just star-PR director, Andrew Joseph and I getting kissy huggy.

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Here is The Karim Abay, publisher with Paper magazine, along with Neal Beckstedt, another talented style director.  Pop culture note: The Karim showed me a picture he took of The Kanye‘s necklace on his mobile, taken up close at during the mag’s “Hubby of Kim” matching April cover shoot. Not really a matching cover, no man-parts on that cover, btw, just a thoughtful, pensive Kanye.

Why is the photo of the Victoria Secret model here? Honestly, I didn’t know where else to plop her. Neal’s way more subtle and gorgeous room follows after.
(and I do love Martha Hunt‘s dress and whole look;-)

Martha-Hunt-model
Voila, Neal’s room…

Neal-Beckstedt-Sarah-Sarna
Like the random picture of the model, Neal’s original and subtle style did not remind me of one specific film. The creamy colors, warm woods, black lacquer, maps and figurative art did hint of a set design for a film in the “Commedia sexy all’italiana,” genre.
More on that to come.

BLACK LIVES MATTER: THE DOCUMENTARY.

African-photo

Black Girl (1966) dir. Ousmane Sembène is often called the first sub-Saharan African film by an African filmmaker to receive international attention. I call it astonishing for its hollow sound and deep emotional orchestration. We noticed quite a number of booths made instantly gorgeous by large photographs of African faces and features (above from Marc Houston‘s room) as well as the ongoing trend of dark, dramatic sultry walls.

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Patrick James Hamiltons room, above, centered by luscious lips.

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And here, Patrick beams on the right, as his room attracts the hordes of typically black-clad New Yorker shoppers. Below, designer Marc Houston‘s room, before the enigmatic, large portrait of the African woman as seen above was placed. Great to see how this rendered the whole room noble.

Marc-Houston
Here below with the designer, myself, and the crowning image. Marc’s subtle set mood-swinged from Dutch 17th century, to an undefinable modernism, to a play of scale and reality that touched on the pure magic of another African film, the visual-stunner, Cannes Jury prize-winning film, Yeelen (1987) dir. Souleymane Cissé.

Yes, I am coyly not including images from these two films. I want you to seek them out, they are a holy grail.

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My favorite piece of art in the show, in Marc Houston’s vignette is in the back there, the shape-shifting collage of two images, and here below. Ya feel me?!

Marc-Houston-painting

DANES BY DESIGN: PERSONA UPA CLOSA.

Igmar-Bergman-Persona

We have a jones for 2Michaels. The sister-twin interior designers bring an in-your face, stark and smart beauty that reminds me of Danish films like Persona (above, 1966) dir. Ingmar Bergman.

THE-JOANS

The-Joans-Desogn-on-a-Dime
The close ups of Joan in The Passion of Joan of Arc (1928) dir. Carl Theodor Dreyer spoke to us of this very Danish simplicity and hip sense of cool (c’mon, peep that fur rug on sisal!!!) All night we’d run into one or the other sister looking for the other.  Granted, not crying, like Joan of Arc did in the movie, but um, LIKE THE MOVIE!

2Michaels
Inspired by this “Danes on Design” simplicity, I am inspired to tell the whole history of film in 3 images! The first below is known as the first film ever,Workers Leaving the Lumière Factory (1895) dir. Louis Lumière. Lumiere of course, means light in French, and how utterly amazing is it that women exiting a dark factory into the bright sun was the first-ever film?

First-film-Lumiere-Brothers
…to the end of this movie, Nostalghia (1983) dir. Andrei Tarkovsky.

Where all the story’s action was centered on a writer, his dog and travels within his country landscape, at the end, the camera pulls back and back and back, to the sounds of Native American chanting, wolf-like dog howling, and emptiness, until you see his whole world framed in a ruined cathedral, sunlight and then, like stars, snow falls softly.

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These astonishing images echo the creative passion to bring light and calculated movement to echo out and expand our vision. Whether in a sketch, an interior or a film. THIS wow’s.

Nostaligia-2

CUT! ALL THIS AWE CAN ONLY BE FOLLOWED BY A SPAGHETTI WESTERN.

Sergio-Leone
The Operatic, The Melodramatic, The Technoscopic Life. The real…slow…time perspectives of dir. Sergio Leone have influenced the likes of Stanley Kubrick, Baz Luhrmann, and me! I was transported into that 70′s real-time laconic and emotionally loaded style, as I became mesmerized by the multi-level terrariums in the vignette designed by Tom Lenz for 513. Anything spaceship-like instantly transports me and I pictured a set from Roger Vadim’s Barbarella, with a mini Jane Fonda inside leaping from frond to frond.

513-terrarium
The only thing that can pull me from Barbarella is a setting for one of my all time favorite film genres, “Commedia sexy all’italiana.”

My Italianate Casa Bella Prize Award goes to Corey Damen Jenkins & Associates‘ malachite walled camera.  One of the most swanky vignettes at the event, it’s an ornate lure for some Sex Comedy, with flashing 70′s wardrobes, hairdos, kinky antics, a hilarious script, and lotsa skin. LOVE.

Corey_Damen_Jenkins&Associates
Comedy. Tragedy. The sheer design intensity and the gorgeous green walls also reminded me of the kind of signature Fassbinder melodramatic room antics seen in The Story of Film:

Fassbinder misery
The set of The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant (1972) (aka Die Bitteren Tränen der Petra von Kant) dir. Rainer Werner Fassbinder, was almost totally restricted to a woman’s bedroom, decorated and dominated by a huge wall reproduction of Midas and Bacchus nude and romping, a brilliant background to the woman’s woes upon her fur rug.  The Standard for The High Art of Angst.

Megan_Winters
And one more stunner in that genre. This tour de force vignette hit all the trends we loved in the show, with the expressionist paintings, striped chairs, and gold footed sheep who like to graze and read design magazines. Brava, Megan Winters Design,you stopped us in our tracks on the strada!

female graffiti art

THE VERTIGO OF LEADING LADIES.

Tamara Stephenson‘s room at first glance was an innocent, sweetly pale pink “pillow” atelier/shop and delivered some dizzying intensity via the above striking Italianate graffiti portrait, above. The combo eerily continued along with muted, mysterious people screened on her new collection of pillows she designed with Susan Young. Suddenly, I was Kim Novak shopping for flowers in Vertigo (1958) dir. Alfred Hitchcock.

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Kim-Novak-Vertigo

Danielle-Colding-Design
Pushing the femme fatale envelope further, the vignette from Danielle Colding Design felt like a surreal homage to the allure and fantasy of women depicted in magazines and movies via the sky blue cloud/petal-like walls and well-scaled curation of images.

And, because the world needs more directors and designers of the female stripe, these quotes from the interview with Jane Campion in Bertolucci‘s film survey:

“The big betrayal of the female is that women want to see themselves through men’s eyes, so they are very interested in what men do. (with film)”

And her quote on cultivating creativity or the muse:

“The subconscious is like a shy pet…if it trusts you, it will come out and play…if you sit for 3 hours and nothing really happens, will you stay for the 4th hour?”

Jane Campion, director

CATCH A FLYING CARPET TO A CINEMA PARADISO.

 thief-of-bagdad

Movies and interiors are at their best when they transport. The Thief of Bagdad (1924) dir. Raoul Walsh flew audiences into the exotic, as did dir. Lotte Reiniger and her precious, animated The Adventures of Prince Achmed (1926.) Reiniger invented her animation 10 years before Disney and surprise! she was clearly a style influence of artist Kara Walker.

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A trip to the Paradise of Marrakesh was imagined by Design on a Dime’s Founding Chair, James Huniford of Huniford Design Studio. All the visual cacophony of a bazaar was the essential alluring message of the event and fit the function. We LOVE.

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Wasn’t there to witness the shopping frenzy descending, although we did catch the first one on line:

Katie
Caught! A winking and laughing Kati Curtis laying claim to a set of blue lacquer Chippendale-style lattice bamboo chairs, very smart!

Segue her stylish snake bag to more exotic people we spotted strolling at the bazaar:

Leslie-Silverman-Victor-John- Villanueva

Cool kids and super fun to boot, Leslie Silverman and Victor John Villanueva, and whoa! Photobombed by another fellow from the B.O.R.N.crew, B.O.R.N. store manager and singer-songwriter, Terry Artis!

Victor John Villanueva-necklace
Victor
makes these necklaces. This one. Don’t get me started on my second favorite movie genre, Japanese monster movies. I decided this necklace is either a pixel Godzilla or that strange ape that always appears in Laurel and Hardy movies.

Laurel and Hardy-ape
Next, and way better dressed, my award for Costume Design on The Coolest Couple of the Evening goes to…

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Arpana Rayamajhi
a jewelry maker from Kathmandu, Nepal, here with multi-disciplinary artist, Bruno Levy. Casting! Call-backs for their laid-back intensity! Wardrobe! Make sure you see her embroidered handbag, mix of leather and shine with folkloric, plus bedhead hair!

Arpana- Rayamajhi-Bruno-Levy
Directors! Take note! Smoldering good looks with the ability to turn the tables at any moment! LOVE!

THE GOLDEN AGE OF CINEMA, CINEMA.

Stalker
The table-turning sequence above, in Stalker (1979) dir. Andrei Tarkovsky has glasses moving as if by a ghost, dandelion seeds floating through, haunting train whistles, dogs barking…a symphony of visual and sound. The light intensity in the gaze of the girl, with her golden head scarf framed by the verticals of the window reminded me of this vignette:

Flair Design on a Dime
The sinuous golden forms against the wispy wallpaper made this vignette by FLAIR, and this elegant cart-like table an excellent, unpretentious spot to display one’s Oscar.

Pottery_Barn

This golden and black tones makes the stark white “casting couch” here beckon and sing like a cloud. LOVE’s here include the double chandelier echoed in the candle cluster, the long pillow bolsters, much more luxe than square, and the two green notes on the back table. A little cascading-like-hair plant and plexi pyramid are as beguiling as two green eyes of a cat. While we love their catalogs, kudos to the designer from Pottery Barn who orchestrated this scenario…A BIG GOLD OSCAR!

In closing, an homage to all the directors that inspired and why this one image we began with, Daisies (1966) dir. Věra Chytilová, sums up all we love about cinema, this event, and the Design on a Dime cause. In the end, as creative kids, its important to share our most precious dreams, creativity and relationships, honoring our dance together and the ultimate responsibility we have as designers to inspire via the rhythm of our times and encourage the eternal flowerings of creativity.

This Saves Lives.

Daisies-2

*********

Credits:

Paparazzi people images from Alvaro Montagna, here below with meself, Jade Dressler, the writer, director and designer of this blog, with Scott Sanders. This image of us is from Rio Hamilton. Additional vignette images from Felix R. Cid, Sarah Sarna and Billy Farrell. Additional people and film imagery thanks to late night Netflix, Google Search and My Mobile balanced with champagne, stilettos, and a director’s lust for the moment.

THANK YOU Everyone! Alvaro-Montagna-Jade-Dressler-Scott-Sanders

 


one wednesday, after all the animals and people creatures trekked through the snow,

snow tracks
they left only their tracks as portals.

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snow melted into the earth, new peep-holes for flowers.

FLOWER-PIMP-Jade-Dressler
In this auspicious week after the latest lunar eclipse, we’ve spotted a trend we call: SIEVE US!  An celestial eclipse is a bit of a sieve, a portal, a winnow, a window. It’s a filtering out of the old and no longer serving aspects of ourselves, saving only the best.

Legends and astrologers say an eclipse eclipses something out, irrevocably, to make way for the new. It punctures and makes a punctuation POINT.

Tracks that Winter wore into our souls are the furrow where seeds push out. Our “Flower Pimp” above, speaks to us in pixel language, a digital, macro-micro cosmic mash-up for us to dissect and hole-punch our former views of life and Self-Identity.  It’s nothing the Pointillists, mosaic artists, or field workers in Bolivia don’t already know. Aligned points on a trail and nature-rythym patterning is just our intrinsic humanity SIEVE’ing us, trusting us and re-forming us.

This molecular osmosis, this is the ‘sexy, new, fun’ trend of SIEVE US! We see it in ourselves in the vast quiet of meditation to the loud demanding world upheavals around us. (And of course, expressing this zietgeist through shopping and DIY-activities is part of the action, more below.)

Make Tracks. Change Plot. Poke Thru.

The wintry tracks of a cat walk, from a bobcat to a house cat, puncture snow and run a straight line, walking in their own steps. When discovered, the mysterious sinuous imprints are deliberate power, instantly transforming the moment, like a runway model on a Rick Owens autumn/winter 2015 catwalk with a strategic peep-hole. When you can shock Paris and the world, as Owens did this season, with one tiny hole in some fabric, what’s gone before is eclipsed.

Rick Owens peep hole
You are such a Filtration Membrain.

Tracks and holes are permuting realities and concepts from star light traveling from millions of years ‘past’ puncturing the night sky, to science decoding heredity, to designs’ laser cutting-everything, and to Earthship homes in Haiti. The fabric of our lives is now rife with our own responsibility to each other to make conscious choices. No one can hide behind rote, impenetrable fortresses of status quo or ego.

Earthship
Just $3500., fully sustainable and built in two weeks for the above beauty. I toured the first-ever Earthships in their Taos, New Mexico birthplace back in the 1990′s and now thrill to see them being built in Haiti. Integrated systems for rainwater, natural drainage which purifies, home as a little bio-system! We are understanding and implementing cost-effective, nature-patterned systems by punching through walls of our industrial culture. From green roof forests in urban centers…

Trees_Carol_Morgan_Eagle-3
…to saving heirloom seeds and preserving the bio-diversity of seed libraries, it’s dawning on us that the planet’s destiny is our destiny and can no longer be so throw-away. Everyone, everywhere can be found hugging trees more than Julia Butterfly ever did. We breathe with our membrane trees, they filter, they winnow, the exchange is a language typing the keyboard controls of our experience. (That line there, is for the breathers, the meditators, especially.)

Skin as Sieve.

I always loved that snakes choose the forked bases of birch trees to slither through and shed their skins. This winter I bought this birch tree photograph, below from artist, Carol Morgan-Eagle. It reminds me of three women on a runway in sheath dresses, powerfully striding forward, like Druidic Women/Trees/Bad-a…es.  Futuristic clothing as I can only imagine and lust for. Sustainably harvested materials for fabrics, a weather-intelligent second sieved-skin, seams and openings to allow movement, a kind of camoflage to silently move through forests and city streets.

Carol Morgan Eagle
Maybe this is a kind of SIEVE US attitude the world needs now, a little Old Egypt temple girl, a little power bondage action, and a little Barbarella huntress, like this nymph below in Lost Art’s reverent weaving and netting.

Lost-Art-Numero-Paris

Dirt Perme-ability.

Even the osmosis and porosity of our skin is having a scientific re-look moment. “The skin microbiome is the wild frontier,” relayed one doctor in a recent New York Times article, My No-soap, No-shampoo, Bacteria-Rich Hygiene Experiments. I’ve always been fascinated by our definitions of “dirt.” Why do animals roll in or children eat “dirt” or the earth? Science now sees this as a roll in nutrients or a bacteria wash!

Happy-cells
Another doc, Dr. Steven Cole, a professor of medicine and psychiatry at the University of California, has spent a decade studying the connection between our emotional and biological selves, seeking what a ‘happy cell looks like.’ “The old thinking was that our bodies were stable biological entities, fundamentally separate from the external world,” he says. “But the new thinking is that there is much more permeability and fluidity.”

Happy Gut, Happy Sieve-yours.

Intuitively we sense and know in our guts what makes us happy. Now a new science, called, mind-body genomics, confirms that our happiness is intrinsically linked with the biology of this rock we cling to. Fascinating that mind-oriented psychologists for years have called this ‘bodymind,’ while those more body/spirit oriented have intoned us to connect our ‘mind/body/spirit.’  Like a crafty, blackhole Buddha belly, what’s being termed ‘our second brain,’ our guts are not only the second seat of our intuition, but also our health. Releasing this year, the HarperCollins book, Happy Gut, from integrative physician, Dr.Pedre, makes the bridge between gut health and brain biology. Aha! We are what we eat.

Perhaps its time to leap and pounce on that “gut-felt idea” like a cat…

aerial-view-city
…activating our shared earth-brain networks…

Las-Vegas-Vincent-Laforet
…to link and form a winnowing, sieving basket called…um, LOVE…

aerial-drone-city
…so we sieve out the old, and are saviors to ourselves. Ah, after all, we are all just points of starlight beaming. wink, wink.

and. then. there. is. shopping.

muscle_man
DIY, Sieved by Shopping.

And, here, because I promised the goods… a dashing circus wrestler painting gets the slash/sieve treatment before a window, making snow stars shine through in a home goods store. (Nifty DIY, too!)

African-basket
Get the look for less and SIEVE others.
One Wednesday, I found a bevy of bright woven sweet-smelling, sweetgrass baskets from Africa, called 92 Villages, benefiting over 10,000 women and their families. And I bought a bunch! So simple, so useful, so hopeful!

SIEVE the planet and yourself. DIY 101.  Seed saving. Yogurt eating for your gut.

Peep SIEVE inspiration: So many videos on Earthships in Haiti, and the aerial cross-hatch, winnowing photo images of Las Vegas.

DIY 102: How can all this poking through and sieving make for crafty DIY’s, something a little more au courant than slashing up some sweatshirts and flash-dancing?

Try some Feng Shui today. Here’s some coaching. If being SIEVE’d vs. STUCK is your desire in an area of your life, and you are tired of the same old, same old, get a little shamanic and have at it. Grab something old, solid, tired and open up, slash up, carve open tiny airholes for some new fresh. Or for some fast Feng Shui, take something woven like a basket and place it in an area of the home. Sprinkle with lots of intent and wishing. If Feng Shui confuses, call me. I know the best Feng Shui person, ME. Call me. I will SIEVE you.

It’s Wednesday. Watch some flowers arise.

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PS. Why Wednesday? Middle of the week, Wednesday relates to the planet Mercury, Hermes, which in turn is communication, exchange, healing. Open up kids, Mercury brings “messages from the Gods.”

 

 


rainbow-room-paul-bartell
NYC, a rainy Tuesday in March, 7pm. Ask anyone what makes a memorable evening in a legendary New York City space, the answer will be the big people, big places, and above all, the little things encapsulating…humanity.  For me, foodie, dancing, or dramatic evenings have nothing on nights when passion turned into action for a place, the arts and the future are celebrated. This turns me on. Music mogul, David Geffen perfectly and simply captured why he supports the arts, with his recent $100 million donation buying naming rights for Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall:

“I’m a kid from Brooklyn,” he said. “I love New York.”

New Years Party in New York
The Scene: Another legendary “kid from NY” is the most iconic, and symbolic Rainbow Room, spinning “Top of the Rock,” aka 30 Rockefeller Center since 1934. This Art Deco skyscraper boasts an “Oh” at top, magnifying and rippling out in 360 degrees, the boldest dreams of its dancers, feasters and revelers. Recently restored and bestowed landmark status, it’s a BIG room.

NY Times Rainbow Room
And what: Another legend roaring awake again these days is the New York School of Interior Design (NYSID), coming around to its Centennial Year in 2016. Voted one of the best in the nation by the industry, the college’s “guiding principle is that the interior environment is a fundamental element of human welfare and the college is committed to actively improving the quality of life for all segments of humanity.”

Choosing The Rainbow Room for this year’s Annual Benefit Dinner was a genius landmark idea. (And PS, the college has a well-celebrated exhibition on now, Rescued, Restored, Reimagined: New York’s Landmark Interiors, until April 24, on Gotham’s greatest landmarked spaces.)

NYSID-New-York-City-Landmarks-01
Now that I’ve given you the big space, here are the big people who filled it: The titans and moguls of the interior design industry are my favorite people, as there’s something about negotiating someone’s dreams while juggling their life, space, taste and budget, hmm…sounds something tantamount to marriage. Takes a socially-adept, psychologically-savvy character with a sense of humanity and humor to choose and master this path.

The ID community in NYC not only works internationally, parties much, vigorously supports philanthropy and honors its own, but clearly, enthusiastically supports its own, as testified by the completely sold-out NYSID Annual Benefit Dinner event, supporting scholarships for the designers of tomorrow. (Those are those green-shoot students hunkered down below in search of knowledge pouring over AutoCAD plans whilst the gala goers smartly spin above.)

30-Rock-architectural-detail
“It’s one of the design community’s most anticipated annual events,” rightly coos Patricia M. Sovern, NYSID board chairman. So I coo’ed and convinced my talented artist and photographer pal, Alvaro Montagna, to join me and the hundreds come to honor Bunny Williams, John Rosselli, Edmund Hollander, and the New York Restoration Project. Headliners were benefit co-chairs, Alexa Hampton and David Scott, interior designers and NYSID trustees; Betsey Ruprecht, antiques dealer and NYSID trustee; and Newell Turner, editorial director of Hearst Design Group.

Ready to dive in with us and discover the Stars, Legends and Evening Bests?

BEST ELEVATOR UP WITH LEGENDS STORY Ellen-Scarborough-Chuck-Scarborough-Debbie-Bancroft
How uncanny to share the elevator up the NBC tower with Ellen Ward Scarborough, antiques dealer, Mrs. to Mr.Chuck Scarborough, the lead anchorman of NBC-TV and Debbie Bancroft! I joined both beauties headed north to the 65th floor. Both in stellar black dresses, dishing about shoes, like any girlfriends, in particular a gift of designer barely-worns from Beth DeWoody. I always heard Beth was super generous in terms of the arts, now you have it, she does shoes, too.

Alvaro was so struck by the women’s golden glow, that he actually tried to elbow Chuck out of this photo, before he realized who the venerable gentle giant and 31-time Emmy award winner was! “Oh, Chuck…sure, um Sir…yes, you get right in there!”

BEST RESCUE-ROMPING ADVENTURE OF THE EVENING Alexa Hampton-Pat-Sovern-Newell-Turner
Life is an Adventure with Alexa! Seen here with Pat Sovern and Newell Turner, Alexa Hampton, in a gorg ombre’d blue gown, was as blue as her dress earlier in the evening. She mistakenly left her speech in her evening purse, in an Uber owned by a “Jose” sixty-five floors down.

Of course, even if I didn’t consider her a friend and an inspiration, I’d still volunteer to retrieve it for her, given she was presenting that night! Picture me in a whirr of running-in-heels, in the rain, on both sides of the building, knocking on car windows of the long line-up of Uber drivers, all looking at me askance, on both sides of the building “Are you Jose?” “Are you Jose?”
Happy ending? Alexa and purse reunited. No ad-libbing necessary. (Although no one quite ad-libs like Alexa, oui?)
THE BEST LIFE, WELL-DESIGNED AND LIVED, HONOREES
Jade-Dressler-John-Rosselli-Bunny-Williams
I seriously doubt there was an actual memo to dress in Art Deco black and silvers to honor the building’s design, probably just a telepathic design vibe among this crowd. Memo or not, honorees and partners, John Rosselli and Bunny Williams win the prize for best dressed and best life. Their curation was introduced to me by my client, designer, Scott Sanders, he of an impeccable eye. I’d seen the magazine spreads of glorious homes and spectacular antiques, it was a thrill to meet them both. (I always want to call her Bunny Wailer, wait, am I the only one?) (Plug: My silk blouse is from Christine Manthey) (and…one of the little things…John Rosselli’s bright red socks with this ensemble, they say a lot)
John-Rosselli-style
BEST MUGGING OF THE EVENING
Deborah-Marton
In the olden days (1970′s) mugging used to be synonymous with NYC. In true Jade and Alvaro style, we caught a new kind of mugging by Deborah Marton and friend, ___________ (so gorgeous, please identify yourself and claim your prize!) Following NYC legend, founder Bette Midler, Deborah, on the right above, is Executive Director of New York Restoration Project (NYRP), the evening’s green honoree. NYRP is dedicated to transforming open space in under-resourced communities to create a greener, more sustainable New York City. Me loves NYRP long-time.

BEST NY CHIC TWIN SANDWICH

Jayne-Michaels-Brian-McCarthy-JOan-Michaels
Also mugging, designers Jayne Michaels, Brad Ford and Joan Michaels brought the dark and delicious intrigue to the mix. Brad in the middle is known for a super sleek, earthy aesthetic as well as his Field and Supply, a modern take on a country craft fair, and designing as 2Michaels, the twins bring a light, savvy eye, and rich history.

If you hadn’t noticed, bringing back the sexy in party pics is what’s next. Beyond stiff portraits, posing and selfies, we vote for old school images, like my favorite below from Miles Ladin. You must admit the bobbed, mugging Michaels above, remind one of Linda Evangelista, below, right?

miles ladin
And see the gorgeous, smoking blond in the leopard spots in the back? At this benefit dinner, that role was clearly played by NYSID trustee, Betsey Ruprecht, below.

BLONDS HAVING THE MOST FUN

Sandra-Nunnerley-Betsey-Ruprecht
Betsey…basically brings the life to the party. The gold-studded antiques dealer and designer has the power and presence to draw smiles. Here she’s corralled designer, Sandra Nunnerley, who wore the chic-est silk quarter sleeve top with sleek, cropped black slacks, very 1950′s updated. See more evidence re: The Betsey, below:

design-NYC-ladies
Way better than an Ellen-like group selfie here, yes, this is the “gathering, get-ready moment” before the “staged” version…and I love it so much more! L to R, Charlotte Barnes, Debbie Nielsen, Pat Sovern, Betsey and that smiling lady in black, Stacey Bewkes of Quintessence.

TIED FOR BEST TAKE AN ELEVATOR WITH A LEGEND STORY

Bill-Ruprecht
Above, one husband of Betsey, Bill Ruprecht, former CEO of Sotheby’s. He’s going up, and if you catch him alone in a burled wood elevator, he’s up for some silliness. Alvaro stepped in to join Bill, announced his photo coverage of the party and added, “You know, a little gig between my Sports Illustrated swimwear shoots.” Bill promptly replied, “Yes, it’s just not the season for it, eh?” Ba-dum-bump.

OTHER TOWERS OF DESIGN POWER

NYSID Annual Dinner
The First Lady in this town and beyond is Margaret Russell, editor in chief of Architectural Digest. Joined by Jesse Carrier, one half of the design team, Carrier and Company. (Just a little in favor of the media, fashion, photography, and film types, with Vogue‘s Anna Wintour, Jane Rosenthal, Town and Country’s Jay Fielden, Jason Wu and Annie Leibovitz as clients.)

Michael-Bruno-Lisa-Kravet-Cary-Kravet-Suzanne-Rheinsteinjpg
Drivers of good taste, all: Michael Bruno of 1stdibs.com, Lisa and Cary Kravet (see below) and interior designer, and now author, Suzanne Rheinstein.

Jade-Dressler-Ellen-Kravet
I was happy to see Ellen Kravet, trustee at NYSID, a true Kravet, a legend in New York for its family-run, to-the-trade fabric and home furnishings business.  How much do I love her Art-Deco get-up? She’s the head woman of her family-owned fabric leader, bring on the patterns! (We wrote about their DVF launch, here.)

Jamie-Drake-Clinton-Smith
Design legend Jamie Drake shares a secret with Clinton Smith about using the inspiration of 30 Rock’s floors in his next project. Mr. Smith reacts.

NYSID Annual Dinner
Martha Stewart is a regular Star at NYSID galas, always escorted by a sharp gent. I’m kind of loving her earthy cape over the wrap dress, with soft gold purse and hair.

NYSID Annual Dinner
Somehow I missed seeing Bari Mattes, most recently, president of the Tory Burch Foundation, alongside such a friendly face in the middle, Archie Gottesman, along with Jill Dienst‘s husband, Dan Dienst, CEO of Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia.

David-Sprouls-Kate-Wood-Jill-Deinst

One of the main reasons NYSID reached top status for its graduate and undergraduate programs is president, David Sprouls, holding the torch for the growth, strength and professionalism of the industry, here with his wife, Kate Wood, president of the preservation group Landmark West and co-curator of NYSID’s landmarks exhibition.  Joining them is Jill Dienst, doyenne of all things Dane and a super fun, energized woman to talk art, design and Feng Shui with.

Julianne-Andersen-Dennis-Miller
The light for all the world will shine on true glamour. Combined with giving, everything about this image makes me smile. Viola, we give you Julianne Andersen and Dennis Miller, NYSID Trustee.

BEST DRESSED SECRETS FROM LADIES WHO KNOW THE DEAL

Jane-Chen-Anne-Korman-Jade-Dressler
Another cheery woman who always brings a smile is Jane Chen, vice president for finance and administration at NYSID, here with fellow trustee, Anne-Korman and et moi, Jade Dressler. Only at a design event would we be having this much fun over each other and sharing Jane’s best-kept sartorial secret, her Hong Kong tailor. With all the personality these ladies have, I still didn’t get the name of the tailor.

Emilia Saint Amand and_Ann Pyne
I mean. Wouldn’t you entrust the world to these gals? Presenting Emilia Saint Amand, (love a woman in a silk dress who looks like she could easily commandeer a sailboat in a hurricane.) And Ann Pyne, president of McMillen, Inc, the oldest and most esteemed interior design firm in New York.

NYSID Annual Dinner
De rigeur for boys, ain’t the Thom Browne cute suit anymore, it’s all about the malas! In my favorite Billy Farrell pic from the event, David Kleinberg, Sam Allen, Christopher Spitzmiller compare malas.

BEST INDUSTRY PILLARS AND POOL BOYS

NYSID Annual Dinner
James Druckman is one always-dapper gentleman. At the helm of the industry as president of the New York Design Center and a trustee of NYSID, he is here with designer Ellie Cullman. Dan Quintero on the right, is the hero of Kips Bay Boys and Girls Club, as executive director. The passion the ID community brings to supporting that charity is remarkable!  We covered Kips Bay this past fall, here.

Tortorella-Pools-Jade-Dressler
So many supporting industry folks in the room, these two pool boys- from the Southhampton-based J. Tortorella company looked like they needed a floater, so we swam over. (I know, so corny, but summer is coming and we all need a laugh, a relief from another snowy, rainy, is-it-Spring-YET-evening?)

CURATORS OF LIVING WELL

Susanna-Salk-Carolyn-Englefield
While we didn’t meet in an elevator this evening, I have to thank both Susanna Salk, elegant design commentator on multiple platforms and Carolyn Englefield, editor at Hearst, for taking me higher. Golden girls of taste.

David Scott-Christina Juarez and Tori Mellott
The one note of green in the room, a nice nod to that aspect of outdoor design and sustainability on trustee and designer, David Scott. Top of the always-elegant list, publicist and home decor platform expert, Cristina Juarez and Traditional Home magazine design editor, Star, Tori Mellott.


Tori’s self admitted “just tossed together” ensemble wins my Best Shoes of the Evening Prize, for her silver Roger Vivier‘s paired with wine-hued stockings. Which by the way is a definite spring trend. I am seeing it once a day on the gamine gams of NYC. I also saw it on a creme colored ronoculous flower edged in wine yesterday in a flower shop…I diverge…but you design folks get it.

GLAMINES OF NEW YORK

Amy-Lau-Sophie-Donelson
It’s so easy to swoon over Amy Lau, a redhead designer with a taste for red or gold dresses + dramatic entrances and spaces, see our coverage on her Ciao, Roma! room at Holiday House, here. Congrats to Sophie Donelson, the new editor in chief at House Beautiful. Between her midnight blue dress, mane of power brown hair, looking for all the world like Jackie O‘s sister…she ruled the room!

MORE RED PASSION IN ACTION

Jade-Dressler-Catarine-Wright
This girl in red. Watch her. She’s like Waldo. When I worked with NYSID, Catarine Wright was everywhere, volunteering, leading, giving events…showing up at events. Now a designer with James Rixner, this girl knows how to celebrate, give her time and basically put her passion into action. This is a huge ingredient for Star Interior Designer Status and Success. It was so good to see her (can you tell there’s mutual love here?)

STARS OF THE BEST NEXT GENERATION

Jade-Dressler-Jourdun-Kristopher
Here just may be Catarine’s successor…world, please meet Jourdun Kristopher. Sartorially-smart, wise for his years, he’s a new student at NYSID, already volunteering with to help with the dinner.

It was fun to chat with him after the party moved inside for the dinner. Our evening’s work a wrap, Alvaro and I asked the bartender for two Manhattans, seemed like a good way to toast a super-fun evening with some of NYC’s top design legends partying for the next wave of design stars…before we headed out into the rain and rainbow neon of midtown NYC.

Alvaro-Montagna-Jade-Dressler
Alvaro Montagna and I wish to thank NYSID, David Sprouls, Ellen Fisher, Samantha Hoover, Elizabeth Kogen, Samantha Fingleton, Michael McGraw, John Mineri and Billy Farrell for their various gifts, such as the invitation, time, support, and for an exquisite evening!

 *********
Written by Jade Dressler, most images by Alvaro Montagna with supporting images from Billy Farrell. Please let us know of any names or titles we goofed on. Thank You!

 



Snow-Princess-Jade-Dressler

As the wintry, snowy mix in #‎NYC‬ this week ebbs…we found our own mix + warmth as usual in fluff from flashy awards + fashion shows, and snarky media to nature and the esoteric.

We’ve spotted 9 trends, c’mon follow our series for instant transformation of the deep chill of 2015,

*from group sleepovers at the home of a dominatrix to astonishing tinder surveys to star-shaped snowflakes to…*

#4   venerating ancestors, grey elders of ‘un certain age,’ now a ‘plus ultra trend’ playing everywhere!

Winter is always about tucking in to the Time-honored, an homage to roots buried deep in the snow. While the Elder Demographic this winter was suddenly chicer than ever… I am dedicating this post to my own living elder ancestor, my mother, now recovering from surgery, and below her stint as Snow Princess in a wintry parade, circa 1950′s.  Here’s hoping this trend towards ELDERS continues, even as the earth warms to Spring.

Snow-Princess-Jade-Dressler

Call it a modern form of Ancestor Worship. We like it.

dogs of bath

Every winter in NYC, we sail through the gates of the majestic Armory to join the parade of princesses and princes of Young Collectors Night at the Winter Antiques Show. It is a cold-snap tradition, an homage to the elders of design.

Inside the vast, stately Park Avenue Armory, this year I was most transfixed by a late 17th/early 18th century pair of carved Bath stone armorial hounds, on duty above, oddly wise and laughing in the naive style. I kept petting the pups’ moss, feeling like it was the oldest, realist energy in the space and touching it might connect me to timeless Celtic Druids or even the elder hotness of Madonna/Annie Lennox at the Grammys, as if these were the energetic guardians of the gates of 2015.

I somehow managed this little elder ecstasy while also strolling the show with our client, designer Scott Sanders and Austin of Fremont Blue Events. Other worship-worthy elder statesmen and women paraded about, those royal guardians of design, emerged from their winter lairs, including curators, Tracy Stern and Renee Vara (seen below with me); publicists Michael McGraw and Stacy McLaughlin; designer, Geoffrey Bradfieldeditors, Newell Turner, Wendy Goodman; and curator, Liz O’BrienLegends, Ivanka Trump, Nate Berkus and Isaac Mizrahi were also strolling through, testifying to this growing passion for antiques, a sort of ELDERS worship.  The lure and intrigue of ancient relics in our lives, re-purposed, taps us into the Timeless. (And can you spot the vintage frocks below?)

Tracy_Stern_Renee_Vara_Jade_Dressler

This season the trends at the show included naive, Early Americana, and I love it for the simple, wise, soothing vibe. To wit, look at this wise ‘ole owl. I love him/her as a reminder of what the grey gardens of Winter and Elders can reveal. You can see it paired in a well-lit modern barn or warehouse adaptive -reuse abode with something cooly modern and fluffy, like a light orange Creamsicle or lavender velvet chaise, yes? Those all-knowing, sneering, put-you-in-your-place-eyes, …hmmm…

Owl_Jeffrey_Tillou

…I think they are something akin to The Elder Prince‘s knowing, creamsicle-covered, wise King-sneer, yes? As truly the most exciting thing at this year’s Grammy Awards, you know it’s because he is the King Elder of music, having taught everyone…everything!

Prince_Grammys_sneer

Pop culture has been rife with Elders Rule evidence lately.  Now we see that Prince rules the music world, as does Tom Jones’ woo-woo-ing again at the Grammys, and of course, Lady Gaga’s teaming with Tony Bennett. In fashion, among many examples, there was the recent hot Father Time guys in Goth gear for Rick Owens’ Fall/Winter 2014 look book, featuring no less than a sprite 93-year old model.

Rick-Owens-older-man

And you saw legendary musician, Joni Mitchell’s appearance on a recent cover of New York mag which followed designers Celine and Saint Laurent crowning as muses, Joan Didion and Joni, respectively, yes? We all know gals like Joan and Joni, elders gifted with piercing eyes, words and hearts.

o-JONI-MITCHELL-570

“Yes, Spring is coming,” said my friend Lucy Raubertas, who is one of THEM, and whose age 59 looks more like yesterday’s 33, on a winter’s evening visit to the Metropolitan Museum of Art...and she should know.  She has created a portal to the immortal lady Clarimonde, based on the 1908 story, a compendium of historical artifacts for modern lives desiring to dip and dive into the past at will. Lucy is a self-proclaimed hedonist, so many wise ELDERS are for good reason, so let drip the icicles, time to get back in the flow.

branches- ice

Like Pandora’s box, ancient people, places and things as libraries, museums, and portals of ancient wisdom are opening via Pinterest to Fountain of Youth-worthy breakthroughs, such as scientists’ recent freezing of light, the fastest traveling ‘thing,’ itself.  Still, the equation remains the same. We are between Earth and Sky. The earth still rolls in the sky, even while we practice ancient arts like yoga and stop our breath and thoughts with meditation. This veneration of elders is more likely a return and remembering the roots of everything. We can go deeper than venerating sporty, older legendary pop stars or cool antiques alone. Let me lead you through a couple of layers plucked from 1000′s of years of ancient trends re-surfacing. Here, just let your inner wise person nod your head and say,”y…e…s…”

The art of the past two-thousand years opens The Plains Indians: Artists of Earth and Sky this Spring at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Below, a man’s shirt, easily imagined on a Brooklyn hipster. YES.

Indian-69-mans-shirt

Seen on runways, kids sporting fringe reaching to the earth like roots, is sure to proliferate as hipsters roam the earth as she thaws. How many of those elder-worshipping beards, trapper caps, vintage furs and seventies fringe will be among us this Spring? More ancient than human ancestors, finding ways to honor the animal brother and sister elders is an Original People concept we have yet to explore. YES.

Snow Queen Italian movie 70s

Our hipster might also be touching further on the elder-kinship wheel of life, drinking the hot, juicy Winter tonic of elderberries found in new kinds of age-defying elixirs, such as Komucha probiotic beer from Beyond Brewing Company. Anthropomorphising of nature’s plant world is a form of ancestor worship we as a culture still have as a vast plains to explore, way beyond Disney characters.  Can any of us identify a medicinal plant as easily as a Mid-Century chair? NO. (I thought not.)

TREND SPOTTING LEAN: We have a ways to go my fellow Earthwalkers. Get to know snowy owls here or bone up on botanicals here. Chat up these elders today!

Hot-Juicy-dancer-Jade-Dressler

BUY IT: If you are more inclined, get a pair of stoned dogs from Barbara Israel Garden Antiques or a 1860′s folk owl oil painting at Jeffrey Tillou AntiquesPrince, I know we all want him, but HIM, honey, money can’t buy, he’s priceless.

*********

  by Jade Dressler, images happily credited.



aimee_song_selfie

Wintry mix in #‎NYC‬ this week…we are finding our own mix + warmth as usual in fluff from flashy awards + fashion shows, and snarky media, to nature and the esoteric.

We’ve spotted 9 trends, c’mon follow our series for instant transformation of the deep chill,

*from group sleepovers at the home of a dominatrix to astonishing tinder surveys to star-shaped snowflakes to…*

#3  self-made everywhere!

Sleep no more! Wait no more!
It’s not everyday you get an evening invite to the home of a A Real Dominatrix to cuddle and watch a classic movie with 20 gal pals. One thing was clear, this “Domme” was a SELF-MADE woman!  Maybe it’s the backlash (no pun intended) from the incessant whippings everywhere (!) of 50 Shades of Grey.  Or maybe it’s the subtle surfing of emotional accomplishment that a woman-dominatrix represents, this appeals, simply and suddenly, that the gift of transformation, play, and magic appear in her midst.

THE OFFERING OF SELF-MADE AT ALTAR

“We all have so many sides of ourselves, so many rich personalities living deep within us that want to play, that never get a chance to have their existence validated.” says The Real Dominatrix. “We end up playing with the same ones over and over again, ad nauseum, and our cultural myth of a single ego/identity does nothing to help. The tyranny of consistency in communication and being will kill us all or bore us to death. It’s responsible for so much of the gray, restless dissatisfaction that is rampant.”

Are you surprised that The Real Dominatrix is also an artist and this photo below is by her?

Kasia Urbaniak
The idea of SELF-MADE today is much more than a person who has created wealth or a persona “without inheritance” or from nothing. There are more of these types than ever before, I see this idea as literally the option for all of us to recognize that to play, to be the changeling, is the whole truth.

Every altar is for sacrifice in the name of LOVE, whether in the name of spirituality, sex play or beyond.  The gold of SELF-MADE is enlightenment itself, the un-bounding of fixed roles. Becoming the altar for someone else in the name of LOVE is the highest play. We explore this making in roles, genders and disguises and venerate those venturing goes beyond the limits of a 50% Mommy, 50% Daddy composition, those leaping into the 100% universal energetic playground!

“I am what I am because of who we all are” is a rallying cry and definition for humanity, and also defines that relationships and the roles we play are integral to individuality.

Now, mind you, I live in NYC, full of the most fascinating, passionate SELF-MADE individuals in the world. However, Houston, we have a problem. Too many of us sophisticates are clueless on who we are and what we want in relationships. For example, take this experiment on Thrillist recently:

A WOMAN ASKED 100 MEN ON A DATE ON TINDER 

Tinder-dating

That’s the boys, girls…worse:

I ASKED ONE HUNDRED NYC WOMEN ON TINDER DATES. HERE’S WHAT I LEARNED.

They joke, they say Paris, they say Chuckie Cheese, and lastly, sadly, the Thrillist Tinder dating experiment here, revealed that a majority of average, submissive woman, when asked where they want to go on a date, have no clue how to tell a man where their desire is.

Women-Tinder-dates

Have these gals not heard of The Law of Attraction? Where are their Spirit Animals???

MISTRESS OF SELF MADE: MADONNA

#AskHerMore is not a hashtag regarding your dominatrix or dullard potential date, it was a campaign on the red carpets at this season’s award shows spearheaded by Reese WitherspoonShonda Rhimes, and Amy Poehler’s Smart Girlsdecrying the typical reporter questions to women emphasizing who dressed/made them vs. more thoughtful questions on their art. While I applaud this focus, basic media training insists one take the ‘bull by the horns’ in one’s response to any reporter question! Stop whining lady stars! A Real Dominatrix would seamlessly and creatively mention one’s outfit, the symbolism, and make a statement about oneself in one breath.

Artist/Changeling/Madonna does this every time. Her toreador outfit choice placed her again as the Top Domme of Play. Even her Rebel Heart lyrics taunted the bulls and nay-sayers of her signature metamorphosis with: “I’ve shed my skin, Letting it go and I’ll start again, start again, Never look back.” 

(and, I say we can really celebrate when men can be as free as the women to play this way on the red carpet!)

Madonna-57th-Annual-GRAMMY-Awards

The Madonna gets points for always being on the make…the SELF-MAKE. Peep her soul bearing comments on ‘regrets’ which are actually way more SELF-revealing and inspiring than her outfits:

“Everyone has regrets. I have regrets for the smaller things, which ultimately are the bigger things in life. For instance, I regret not being more grateful certain times in my life. I regret not being more compassionate. I regret not saying I’m sorry. I don’t have any career regrets. I have human-being regrets.”

Knossos_bull_leaping

BULL-LEAPING. THE HOW-TO DO SELF-MADE BETWEEN TWO

‘Taking the bull between the horns,’ dominating and by turns giving in to another was an ancient ritual sport, today the ritual is played out in bedrooms to balance the beasts of boardrooms, schoolrooms, and everywhere we make our selves.

My favorite new take on meeting oneself in another, leaping in faith with one’s raging bullish desires, is the boy meets girl dance in Eugenio Recuenco‘s video,Toro, playing out underneath a big symbol of a bull. Dancing with aggression and passion tames the beast…something like LOVE.  The setting, the lonely highway, the lonely mountain top, the play back and forth of emotion, posturing the SELF, drawn to, and pilgrimaging towards the MADE.

Take a run with us and the bulls here, a condensed version of the video’s visual treats.

The Bull

He is The Bull, stands his ground on his mountain, albeit, his projected self, propped up.

girl, smoking

She sees him on the mountain, from below, taking her time to ponder moving towards him.

girl smoking

She begins towards him, fluffy, pink.

girl, bathing suit

She bares more, as the pace picks up, a Venus in a Rudi Gernreich-ish bathing suit.

moment of doubt

He then is the Doubter, he demurs, like a child on a swing, hiding, he sacrifices his masculinity. Or does he?

girl,cocoon

She is the Pioneer. She advances, cocooned in black, with one red stripe of passion, a Venus in fur.

girl seeking

She is the seeker, red passion on her foundation, soft pink at her heart.

man combs hair

The male god grooms, he waits in rebel stance, albeit in surrendering white.

man smoking

Back in black, he postures, he watches her.

yellow girl

She re-evaluates. She is the sun, the tart lemon, the winged bird.

Come together

They meet. She is silvery, fluid, a mirror. What happens next? Aha! The Real Dominatrix would never tell the ending! See for YOURSELF the Toro video from Eugenio Recuenco here.

MASTER OF SELF MADE: KANYE

kanye-west-adidas-01

LOVE or HATE on Kanye the Controversial, in a stance most vulnerable, a recent interview by Dirk Standon in Style.com reveals how he took a whipping and kept on ticking.

On Kanye the Versatile as a fashion designer, previously submissive to the fashion press, now getting all SELF-MADE with it:

“I realized that it had all been a scam, that it had all been smoke and mirrors to present this concept that a straight black guy out of Chicago that’s a rapper, that’s married to a reality star, could somehow not design a coat, that can’t design a T-shirt, that can’t have enough of an opinion. You know, it’s like voting. Fashion is merely an opinion.”

Perhaps Kanye intrigues for all his ego, his fumbling, his vulnerability. There is the key. It’s not hidden by drugs, handlers, or a refined, bogus pretension. Nope, he’s all there, raw, un-censored, SELF-MADE, figuring it out, and the hell with what everyone else thinks.

GOT NO INHERITANCE, TRUST FUND, HANDLERS, SUBORDINATES, WHIPPING BOYS, OR GIRLS? FEAR NOT! YOU HAVE IMAGINATION! 

TREND SPOTTING: ”You’re the Director!” challenges goddess-like Vanda to her sub-boy- director in Venus in Furs from Roman Polanski. It’s my favorite line, see here my previous post on the same movie The Real Dominatrix screened the night of our sleepover. (so worth seeing twice!)  Then here’s just one of millions now, a SELF-MADE blogger, Instagram-conquering gal, Aimee Song, constantly looking fabulous and my biggest props, she’s a DIY’er, hand-making her clothes!, here she is in her $ELF-MADE shirt above and below. Did she make this shirt? If you are too busy to care or making your millions, you can get her look for less with a Rick Ross T here. I imagine she made it, while domme-dancing somewhere, rapping with Ross, ”Born to win, Look around, From the projects to the penthouse, Our vision never changed, we SELF-MADE.”

HOW TO’s: If you are still feeling clueless, the name of the Dominitrix is Kasia Urbaniak.  No link, she’s not good at marketing, she says. If you want it, you have to go and get it. Ladies, she’s offering classes, men…you’re on your own. (update…the anti-marketer, The Real Dominatrix has deigned, and gives her digits thusly…kasia@kasiaurbaniak.com)

aimee_song_selfie

(and yep, group sleepovers at the home of a dominatrix was the teaser,
I’ve out with it.
Will you still read the next 6 in the series? Say it. YES, Mistress, I will ;-)




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