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Showing posts from January, 2010

Genie Box--the secret word of the day!

There was a time when I tried to settle into Florida life: I looked for things that bespoke a life of travel to exotic places and bizarre climes. This box was one of those kind of things. I love little boxes with cunning little latches--little hiding places for Borrowers and Indians, love tokens, illicit things. This one always gives me the impression of the place where one would consult a genie. I opened it saying "Mekalekkahi-Mekahidy-ho!"

Little Brown Riding Boots

A girl who knows her boots can see the good ones at 20 paces: the architecture of the cut that makes legs look long, lean and strong; the quality of the leather that only gets better with tough wear--more supple, a softer sheen--the kind of leather that says something about where the wearer has been, and of course, where she's going.

These Cole Haan boots were that sort of boot--with the rubber tread that makes sense for winter sidewalks and the zipper that can tuck the jeans in all nice and smooth. The trouble is, they're just the teensiest bit too small for me--and it killed me to stand in them in thin socks. It kills me just a little to part with them. But I'll keep my eyes out for another pair.
You're either an Eileen Fisher wearer or you are not.

Those simple shapes and clean lines bespeak the life of a wife of a minimalist architect or a Swiss art collector at home on Sanibel Island: undyed pageboy haircuts and artsy, German made spectacles; square shoulders and an eclectic music collection that includes Ella Fitzgerald and Lightnin' Hopkins but lots of German opera.

Eileen Fisher was a graphic designer from the good ol' University of Illinois, with good shoulders and a dream--I admire that. It was a good dream of elegant, relaxed drape and excellent fabrics, it just didn't work on me--more of a baroque odalisque than lanky Pablo Giacometti sculpture or a Calder mobile.

Hudson Bay Blanket

I found a scarlet 2 point Hudson Bay blanket at the Goodwill yesterday. One black stripe. New and vibrant. Gorgeously thick, and warm for the bizarrely cold Florida weather. Itchy. Some years ago, I'd found a white 1.5 point imperial tone chief's blanket that was stained and motheaten. I thought I was terribly clever to turn it into couch cushions, but the results were so itchy, I couldn't stand to sit on them.

According to the Hudson Bay Company history, the term is derived from the French term for "empointer," to stitch on cloth, but the "point blanket" was a French, 18th century weaving system that indicated the finished overall size of the felted blanket, not its worth in beaver pelts, which I thought was a bit disappointing. They became something of a "must-have" item among first nation tribes.

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Other History from the HBC website:

Blackfoot Indians…
The minimalist credo: if you don't need it, don't buy it.

I've been getting along very well with what I have for years--a bachelor's degree and a quirky willingness to do just about anything. But what will a Master's Degree in English do for me?

I always imagined I'd convince my husband to move somewhere with a venerable university where I could get my graduate degree in architecture in ivy-smothered brick buildings to the soundtrack of "St. Elmo's Fire." 17 years later, that just hasn't happened.

So, a new M.A. program at a tropical university in English. I am no minimalist.
Thinking of starting an ebay shop from this blog. To have something to do with those too small Cole Haan boots and the Eileen Fisher sweaters that don't quite do it for me.

Funny, though, how an idea will cause you to procrastinate other things because you're stalled in getting started.

Small steps. Small steps.