See you there!!! xoxo, pmb
Friday, March 27, 2009
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
Laurie Halse Anderson is one of my literary heros once again. Thank you, Laurie Halse Anderson, for giving us Lia.
And what do most of us hopeless thespians end up doing to make a living starting off, even with a college degree? You guessed it. But when Katy nearly spilled an expensive bottle of champagne on Robert Deniro while waitressing one evening, she knew it wasn’t the job for her. There had to be a better way. Turned out there was.
Katharine Sise and/or her jewelry have appeared on “Good Morning America,” The Oxygen Network”, “The View”, “Live With Regis and Kelly”, “Good Day New York” and one of my personal favorites… “Gossip Girl”. We are so honored and delighted to have her here with us in “The Love Spot” today.
Read on for a Q&A with Katharine Sise. You’ll learn more about why we have so much love for her and her jewelry and also discover some exciting news about what’s coming up in her life...
PMB: I have no doubt that that day is to come. Mrs. Obama came to my mind as well. She is certainly someone that I’d love to see rocking your jewelry. Give us a day in the life of a fabulous jewelry designer. Take us through your creative process...
Tuesday, March 17, 2009
Check out this Joel Fendelman produced reel "Beauty is Pixel Deep" to learn exactly what someone like Melissa, a "digital retoucher" does. She tells us very matter-of-factly, which I love, sans moral objectives. Still, I thought this offered a very unique and realistic perspective of the images we see.
It is very interesting stuff...
I go under. I don't blog for awhile. You email me. I tell you I will blog again soon.
And finally, eventually, don't I always? ;)
In addition to working on various upcoming projects, I've been featured on a couple of blogs since the last time we spoke. Please check out my interviews by clicking on these links...
The Brown Bookshelf
More updates soon!
xoxo and lovvvveeee!!!!
Saturday, December 6, 2008
Recently, the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) and Vogue announced the recipients of their fifth annual awards from the CFDA/VOGUE Fashion Fund. Congratulations are in order for the winner—Alexander Wang— and also for the runners up Lisa Mayock, Sophie Buhai, and Albertus Q. Swanepoel.
The CFDA/VOGUE Fashion Fund (CVFF) was established in 2003 to help emerging talent find continued success in the business of fashion. The winner and runners-up are given the opportunity to meet regularly with a team of business mentors and also receive $200,000 ( the runners-up each get $50,000).
In the CFDA’s official press release, VOGUE Editor in Chief Anna Wintour was quoted as saying, "In only the fifth year of the Fashion Fund competition, we know that to win a first or runner-up prize is to receive a very substantial professional boost. The proof lies in the remarkable success of the Fund's previous winners." It was Anna Wintour who also gave the foreword to Vera Wang’s gorgeous pictorial Vera Wang On Weddings (Collins Living), in which Swanepoel crafted all of the hats.
Albertus Q. Swanepoel (elegantly pronounced Swan+pool) is a milliner, the only hat-maker ever to be nominated for this most prestigious award, and is primed to evolve from crafter of hats to celebrated fashion icon, not unlike CoCo Chanel—whose first American job was also as a milliner.
Recently, Albertus welcomed me into his studio for an interview. Here is an excerpt of some of some of our most memorable discussion:
pmb: In the ongoing discussion—fashion as art—do you consider yourself an artist? Do you consider fashion art?
AQS: I don’t consider fashion art in the traditional sense of the word, no. If anything, fashion is sartorial art—art related to clothing. It’s more of a craft for me. A dress is not going to be in fashion 20 years from now whereas art is timeless. We won’t look at a hat five years from now and still be inspired by it, as we would a Picasso. What we do in fashion is influential, but it’s not art. People are not going to take a Picasso and repaint it. We are constantly re-creating fashion.
After discussing his work, much of it adorned with South African motifs and flowers, including this design below that Jennifer Anistan wore on an episode of 30 Rock...
I said to Albertus, “Yet so much of your work appears so innovative, so artistic…”
AQS: Well, that may be because I love the idea of taking something incredibly expensive and putting it with something that is not; like a hat I crafted with a pom-pom made of a plastic garbage bag. I just think it’s such a whimsical idea. I just personally love to use something when it’s not so fancy and expensive looking; and for something to look almost damaged in a way.
pmb: A lot of women that I know, including myself, love to wear hats, however I realize that there are equal, if not more women who simply won’t. Many women think they just don’t look good in hats...
AQS: There is a weird misconception, so many women who think that hats don’t fit them, that they don’t have a hat face or that it will mess up their hair. The trick with hats is to make them a matter of contrast. Hats should contrast with your outfit yet compliment it. The same with your face. If you have an upturned nose, for example, try a downward brim. Round face? Try a square hat. I feel anybody in the world can get the right hat to wear. I don’t buy the excuses.
pmb: What about women and/or the fashion enthused who think hats are not in style?
AQS: Hats get a bad rap. It’s the first thing that is picked on with celebrities. It’s just not that highly regarded anymore. That’s why I personally try to make hats that are very wearable. A hat should be put on and become very personal. Hats are for people who love and appreciate the craft of fashion. There are always more hats in European shows than
A milliner known to take a traditionally male fedora and feminize it, Albertus adds this advice for the hat reluctant:
AQS: Just have one fantastic hat at least. Try an old vintage fedora with a fairly modern outfit or try a winter fedora in the summer.
On his nod from the CFDA, Albertus, ever assuming, simply says, “It’s just truly… really amazing.”
The same could be said for Albertus Swanepoel and his incredible talent.
In the tradition of “The It’s All Love” blog, re-born now as “The Love Spot”, I asked Albertus our magic question…
pmb: What is love?
AQS: Love is a very powerful, intense feeling closest to one's heart: strong yet very fragile.
Having said that, I asked him who or what does he love?
He says his BF, Eddie Marquez, his cat, “Cuculoo Pooker” and opera music, which—much to the chagrin of his assistant—he plays 90% of the time in the studio.
AQS: My parents took me to the opera when I was a kid. It’s the ultimate art form. When all of those aspects come together—the stage, the costumes, the singing, the orchestra—it’s such an extraordinary experience. It’s an amazing art. And now there are more and more really young singers. It’s not so much just the fat lady singing anymore.
Albertus Swanepoel also digs 80s disco and Frank Sinastra and he loves books, evidence abounds on all the shelves in his studio. He also collects magazines from the 1950s.
And so, here’s why The Love Spot loves Albertus:
Albertus Q. Swanpoel, milliner extraordinaire is an unassuming man, not at all pretentious despite his success; yet he is quietly self-assured. He’s got an unusual name and, well we love unique names, no? :) In a world, a city in particular, where people are coming and going and on to the next thing to do, Albertus is present in the moment. He takes time to ponder before he answers. He listens when you speak to him. And his eyes are sincere. His is a handshake firm and confident yet warm and so genuine. To know Albertus is to adore him and to know his work is to respect it… and to want to wear a hat, right? Here’s hoping.
xoxo and love!
P.S. The CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund event was made possible In partrnership with the GAP, and underwritten by American Express, Appleman Foundation, Barneys New York, Coach, Evgeny Lebedev, Hudson Bay Trading Company, Juicy Couture, Kellwood Company, Liz Claiborne Inc., L’Oréal Paris, Nordstrom, Theory, and VOGUE
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Red: Teenage Girls in America Write on What Fires Up Their Lives Today (Plume ISBN 978-0-452-28983-3) is a wonderful collection of essays edited by the enormously talented Amy Goldwasser--as in Elle, Seventeen, The New Yorker, Vogue, Runner's World, The New York Times, New York... etc. (Okay, I also think she is exceptionally jazzy for having also hailed from the Midwest, smile, but I digress...)
After recently meeting Amy, I read, in one weekend, my autographed copy of RED, now out in paperback. In regard to how the eclectic list of teen essayists was compiled, Amy says in her introduction, "It was really important to me that Red not be based on the stories of a privileged few in large cities on the coast. This book is a true representation of girls across the country, writing across the spectrum of geographic, socioeconomic, political, racial, and religious upbringings."
DON'T. YOU. JUST. LOVE. THAT?!?!? I sure do.
Teen Vogue calls Red, "A must-have." And I agree.
I attended a panel discussion this evening with Amy as moderator. Three of the essayists were present--Kelly Otterness, Olive Panter, Zoe Mendelson and Maya-Catherine Popa--and I thought it remarkable that, while on one hand I wanted to encourage them and applaud these young talented women, clearly they don't need such validation. These women know who they are. Hopefully, after reading this book you will, too! Out now in paperback, I highly recommend it for gift-giving... (Sorry, the season is approaching and why not start making suggestions now? smile...)
I love Red and particularly admire Amy's colorblind inclusiveness of its authors. I hope she's igniting not a trend but a new truth in literature.
I'm a bit inspired tonight. (Those closest to me would say... Philana when are you NOT inpired? LOL) But seriously, our country is evolving into an America where so many previously unheard voices are carving out ways to co-exist and tonight I'm particularly thankful for that.
I don't think it necessary, in our progress, to eradicate any voices in order for others to be heard, yet balance in literature is in desperate need. Entertainment is a force of influence on young girls and it is warming to have some of the void of diversity filled via this book. There is so much room for everyone at the table. And it is okay to have a selection of books from which to choose, no?
Red is a new classic, a quiet storm collection of voices--not shouting--but just speaking... and being heard. You've gotta dig that.
Dr. Maya Angelou put it best last week, when she simply concluded, "I'm an American, baby!" Thank God for a country where everyone has a right--and is getting more opportunities--to be heard. Amy Goldwasser has made a way for 58 teenaged girls to do just that.
Get this book! Read it. And, as always.... love!
THURS, DEC 11, 6:30p
The Lower East Side Tenement Museum
108 Orchard Street (two doors south of Delancey)
TUES, DEC 16, 7:00p
143 Seventh Avenue (in Park Slope, between Carroll and Garfield Sts.)