October 31, 2010
October 30, 2010
Saturday night was Kenya’s birthday. Saturday morning I taught my Beginning Sewing class at PCC. We so often mistake our teachers for being “adults” or equally one-dimensional. We never picture our teachers to be partying in a yurt 70 minutes from the city on a farm in the middle of nowhere, drunk, stoned, and dressed as a chinchilla.
October 25, 2010
One of the ways I cope with being self-employed and working at home is to take a true weekend. I don’t do Filly on Saturday or Sunday. Today I worked in the garden decapitating disintegrating zinnia stocks. I am saving seeds of particularly beautiful varieties for when I become a zinnia farmer. The dehydrator is perfect for drying out the rain-soaked blossoms.
October 25, 2010
When I was in the Bay Area I took the Spring 2011 collection to my manufacturer. They will make official samples to photograph for the catalog and to send to trade shows and press outlets. My job is done, at least for now. When I got back to Portland I cleaned my studio and emptied the room of everything related to the Spring 2011 collection. I threw out unsuccessful patterns and half made garments, swept and organized and breathed a sigh of relief. While bagging up the paper I found various notes I wrote to myself over the past month. Notes that helped me along, kept me organized, and reassured me that I love what I do.
I began writing notes to myself the first time I returned to Santa Cruz after moving to Portland. I was really nervous about the trip and fearful that I would be overwhelmed with sadness again. So before leaving I cleaned the Airstream, laid out a new beeswax candle and wrote a few words to my future self. You did well. I’m proud of you. Welcome home. You like it here.
I use this technique whenever I need to ease myself into tasks I naturally resist. Or to communicate what I know but might forget that I know in the future. I am my own mentor and friend in this life. Literally.
October 20, 2010
Our last day in the little house. Tomorrow we leave for Portland.
It was fun here. I liked living with Luke. I liked having him in my space, playing the banjo in the bedroom while I made tea. I liked joining Dad and Bonnie in the evenings and seeing Jeff when he came by to work on the yard. I liked having my Mom over for soup. I liked borrowing the little white truck and bouncing my way across town to the dog beach. I liked pedaling down the hill on Dad’s old Peugeot to a yoga class with Kelly. I liked picking persimmons from Josh’s tree. I liked watching and then feeling the fog roll in and chill my body. I Iiked (and hated) the curling effect the salty air had on my hair. I liked sitting in the bright morning sun and feeling so different.
But I am ready to like all the wonderful things about Portland.
Home, you are everywhere.
October 19, 2010
My family lives in Santa Cruz. My Dad and Bonnie, my Mom and Rupert, all three Cousins and their children, my Uncle, my Aunts, and both Grammas. It seems that no matter how much time I am here there is never enough time to see everyone. I am now dating someone who also has family in Santa Cruz so add to that list another Mom and a Brother. I have been like a political operative in an election season- constantly on the phone, scheduling meetings back to back, combining where I can, distracted by incoming texts, planning, planning, planning.
And of course, this does not include all of my friends, whom I long for and want to feel a part of even though I don’t officially live here right now. On Monday night I invited my peers to a potluck dinner at Kelly’s. And I have to say it was not that different from the family dinners I have been a part of all week. The meal was balanced and healthy and we spoke of politics, community drama and food. We drank fine wine. We did the dishes. And we retired to our respective homes by midnight. I was both inspired and challenged by various aspects of the night and like any good family, I know that despite differences (or maybe because of), I will know and love these folks all my life. Until next time…
October 19, 2010
October 15, 2010
October 14, 2010
I arrived in Santa Cruz on Monday night. My Dad was waiting in the driveway. Home.
I was directed toward the little house behind his. My own little cabin nestled in the redwood trees along a steep cliff overlooking a creek and the town lights. To be here is emotional. The sun and the brightness of the light combined with the loving bosom of my family create a very safe feeling. I am taken care of here. I regress a bit and become happily dependent and a bit spoiled. Even Bello feels the weight of the world lifted from his shoulders.
October 11, 2010
Remember that post about St. Helens? That was the last time I felt “off duty”. Shortly after that trip I began preparations for the FOF tour followed by preparations for the PFW show followed by the completion of the Spring 2011 line. Today I leave for Santa Cruz and everything on that list is finally done. Luke will be here in fifteen minutes and I will load everything into his van for the twelve-hour drive. South. Where I will find more sleep and more sun.
A couple of nights ago I somehow found time to can pickles, potatoes, beans, radishes, carrots, and peppers. I really love the look of food in a jar.
October 8, 2010
“Though I don’t like to start conflict, Filly may have been the crowd favorite. Designer Emily Christenson was off to a good start with a crowd of lovely girls with sleek hair and neutral make up, dressed in simple chic beige dresses. But then to top it off she had the worlds’ sweetest dog lie in the center of the display and not a single person could resist the level of cuteness happening there.”
Portland Monthly Magazine
October 7, 2010
The night was an impressive presentation of all that I love and value. The ladies looked amazing! The overwhelming power of their combined beauty stopped people in their tracks.
Of course Bello was there, front and center, surrounded by white dresses and beautiful legs. He received more oohs and aahs than the ladies and certainly more than the designs. Portland Mayor Sam Adams greeted him like an old friend and kindly knelt down to Bello’s height for a buddy photo.
Our friends came to wish us well. They were the most stylish attendees- Luke was photographed for a fashion blog!
The girls were nourished throughout the night with backrubs, pear slices, chocolate and whiskey.
After the crowds had thinned and the last of the press had snapped their photos, we returned to our real selves-hungry and slouchy. No longer concerned with presentation or the opinions of others, we simply relaxed on our little stage and enjoyed eachother’s company until the music faded and our night came to a hazy and satisfied end.
Thank you to the models: Sarah, Julia, Raven, Elizabeth, Renee, Gina, and Skye, and the crew: Hendo, Natalie, and Luke for creating the perfect night.
October 6, 2010
October 5, 2010
Okay, stay calm. The other day I was photographed by Urban Weeds for their street style blog. And I haven’t mentioned it until now because I felt really unattractive that day and didn’t give myself enough time to get ready. But now the photo is featured on New York Magazine’s Fashion Blog! So cool! Thank you Lisa at UW!
Filly in New York Magazine (I am wearing the Country Suit from Fall 2010 set to hit stores mid October.)
October 5, 2010
The homestretch. Tomorrow is Opening Night. I like that title. Opening Night! This is a show! This is a one-night mini play. And that’s why I feel so buzzy and nervous.
There is the set. There are the costumes. There’s the hair and make-up. And there are the characters. Finding eight women that compliment each other and compliment the clothes has been so challenging! But I think I have my line-up all settled. The set is being constructed by friends Sarah Hendrickson and Natalie Jenkins. And the costumes are almost finished. Just one more all-nighter and I think this puppy’s in the bag.
October 4, 2010
Sometimes you don’t have to look far for inspiration. You might not even need to leave the house. Just the other day Sarah staged and styled a photo shoot in the nook at the top of the stairs. My beautiful housemate Maggie was her model and photographer Jason Levins was there to catch the magic on film. The idea, the back story, the character development … a sexy babe reading. Yeah, works for me.
October 3, 2010
This past month my social life has consisted of eating lunch with Sarah and spending the night at Luke’s. And only rarely. I am very busy. But every once in a while a breath of fresh air can clear the mind and re-energize the creative spirit. And so with this in mind I linked arms with Natalie, a fellow artist and all-around rad woman. We headed out to pick pears and walk in the woods. I took home 30 pounds of pears and I plan on drying every last one of them. She took home a modest 25 pounds and talked of pear butter. At the end of our sojourn my mind was actually emptied of clothing details and filled with life’s questions and a couple of answers. Thank you Natalie.