July 31, 2008
Twice a week I work the Springhill Farm stand at the Portland Farmer’s Market. I earn enough to almost pay for my berry expenditures. We are a vegetable stand and I get to take home MOUNDS of potatoes, tomatoes, greens, and garlic, basil and parsley for homemade pesto. The other day I made a cilantro “pesto”- just cilantro, parsley, garlic, olive oil and pumpkin seeds. Super good and light.
July 29, 2008
Leila Elliott. We grew up two blocks from each other and now live ten blocks from each other. She is odd in the good way. Recent convert to an all-Filly wardrobe. Naturally bleached-blond. Potentially a bad-ass bike-riding companion. Peace-core volunteer. Spanish major. Single. But not for long.
She joined me for my evening routine of watching beautiful African men play soccer at Irving Park. I sit on the hill with my seam-ripper and clothes from the collection and admire the players while Bello chews on sticks. I like to wear a dress and tan sandals and imagine I am someone with an accent. Bare shoulders, bare legs and white clothing on my lap as the light fades cause me to fall in love with myself.
July 27, 2008
(picking ripe blueberries outside the trailer)
And so now I have free time, and it is kinda overwhelming. I’m trying to remember what I do with myself when I am not working. It is also a strangely sad time for me as well. My life still feels different and foreign in this new city and without long-time friends at my side-and when I am not working, I am more aware of this state of starting over. Sometimes I am frustrated at being such an emotionally slow mover.
July 25, 2008
I finished Spring 09! It is out of my hands and in a precious box heading to the East Bay for “official sample manufacture”. I hope it looks good. This was the largest collection I have made- 21 pieces. And this is for spring only, there will be another separate collection for summer. I am in talks with Tracey my rep and a Portland-based belt maker about collaborating on a Filly belt to go along with the dresses. Should be cool. And the colors are nice- yes, I did use sea foam blue but it is closer to a cucumber. Mostly it just feels amazing to be done.
July 17, 2008
I wish I had her hair. Oh, and her coat. And shoes. And probably her dress if I could see it.
July 9, 2008
All of Santa Cruz smells like the sea. Even miles from the shore the ocean asserts itself- salty and bigger than you.
I didn’t know this when I lived there but I realize it now.
July 4, 2008
July 4th. I don’t care for this holiday. Fireworks are terrible and they scare animals… so… anyway. It is a little blustry outside, grey and cool.This is my one day off between farmer’s markets (my side job) and I know I need to work but I don’t feel like it. I would rather go home and read my book. A little later I am invited to a BBQ at Leila’s house (my childhood friend who now lives here, yes!) so there is that to look forward to. I don’t want to feel melancholy but I do.
July 4, 2008
Those that know me also know there are so many things I could say about Josh… so I will limit this post to a description of his well-honed skills as a frame builder. He started a little frame company called Frances Cycles (named after his mom) which he operates out of his backyard workshop. He makes these amazing bicycles that are really very artistic with curved seat stays and personal details such as custom head badges and seat cluster cut-outs. And he does all of this without big machinery- hand-built wooden jigs for bending tubes, an architect’s drawing table for mapping it all out, files. He truly loves bicycles and this appreciation comes out in the painstaking way he assembles each one. His bicycles are individuals. But don’t get the impression that these are shiny, prissy, look-like-they-live in a gallery bicycles-these are hardy rides, tested off road in the wilds of North Coast Santa Cruz. He is currently offering fixed gears, city bikes, road bikes, cross bikes, touring bikes, and cargo bikes for carrying your dog around town. I have a gorgeous little yellow city bike that is so precious to me I actually keep it inside my airstream trailer.
When my sister first met Josh it was during a Bike-To-Work bicycle art show in which a number of his prints were featured. She was looking at a red and yellow print with the words: “BICYCLE therein lies salvation” along the bottom and she turned to me with a concerned expression and said “He really likes bikes.” http://www.francescycles.com.
July 1, 2008
gosh, this is how designers earn their keep- designing a collection is an all-consuming process. It is soul searching and soul crushing. Do I have any new ideas, any talent at all? Do I have the down-right stamina to complete a 20 piece collection within the next two weeks? Can I handle another day hunched over my work table going through the same steps over and over: wrangling with my old Morse sewing machine, ripping out faulty seams, feeding elastic into prepared channels, ironing, ironing, more ironing. Ira Glass of This American Life my constant companion.
And outside the summer unfolds.