If we’ve met, it’s likely you’ve seen me wear this dress. A favorite of mine for obvious reasons (hello rainbow stripes!), it’s extremely easy to wear due to its t-shirt-like top, elastic waist and full skirt. I love the buttons on the shoulder, the puff sleeves, and the fact that it leaves no direction of stripe stone unturned; it’s got vertical, horizontal and diagonal!
rainbow-stripe dress - $20, Jelly Roll at Brooklyn Flea
wooden beads - borrowed from Creighton, Maui Salvation Army
When a Daddy Rainbow loves a Mommy Rainbow very much, their creativity has the special power to form a Double Rainbow! Add just the right amount of time and magic, and that’s how you get a Rainbow Princess. And maybe, just maybe, if all the circumstances are right, you might even wind up with an adorable Pot of Gold on your hands.
How amazing are my friends the Rainbow Family? Thank you, Tina, Gary, Ella and Tilo, for being such a colorful role model for how wonderfully fun a family can be. Thank you, Ella (and Tina) for asking me to help create this Rainbow Princess costume. And thank you, Erin Sparling, for photographing what I think amounts to the coolest family portrait ever.
When I first heard that 4-year-old Ella Joy wanted to be a “Rainbow Princess” for Halloween, my heart skipped a beat. A whole holiday based on candy and costumes is already almost more than I can bear. Adding rainbows to the mix? I actually had a moment where I wondered if there might be too much beauty in the world. (Cue floating plastic bag.) I was so honored that Tina asked me to help bring her daughter’s incredibly insightful concept to life. But I’d never made a costume for anyone other than myself, and I’d never attempted a sewing project without my mom by my side providing step-by-step, dummy-proof instructions that I still sometimes manage to screw up. Would this be a disaster? How could I live with myself if I disappointed such a special little lady!?
Rainbow as seen from my DUMBO Brooklyn studio: 5:22 p.m. EST
Rainbow hunter’s tip: if it’s raining and you’re looking at the sun, turn around because there may be a rainbow sneaking up behind you! When this one landed right on my doorstep today, I started screaming, “Rainbow! Rainbow!” even though my studiomate Jason was on a conference call. After all, rainbows are rare and impressive beasts in New York City. I ran next door to tell everyone, and then the double rainbow appeared! I yelled, “DOUBLE RAINBOW!!” so loud the whole floor could hear. Then Tina and I did the rainbow dance. Good times.
What does it mean? Since I’ve been spending all my non-work time sewing a Rainbow Princess dress as a Halloween costume for Tina’s four-year-old Ella, I thought it must mean the rainbow gods are giving me a thumbs up. Tina and Gary are going to be dressed as a double rainbow, so she took a moment to channel the rainbow and its energy. I’m sure this will make her embodiment more authentic. Look closely at the base of the rainbow, and you can almost see her baby boy Tilo sparkeling as the pot o’ gold!
Halloween is right around the corner, which means Candygrams are BACK! Candygrams are odes to candy by guest authors during the month of October on Jason Santa Maria‘s blog. I loved these posts last year, so I was thrilled when Jason asked me to participate this go ‘round, but I had trouble choosing a single candy to write about because I’m actually excessively fond of ALL candy. (Remember when I couldn’t choose a single color for my Rainbow Birthday so I decided to wear every color? It’s a lot like that.)
When I love something, I really love something. I think that’s called obsession, right? Well in this case, the thing I’m obsessed with actually has the power to make me physically ill. Hence the title of my Candygram: Love Sick. I basically challenged myself to keep a diary about my love of candy for a week and then share the results with the world. Luckily, my friends Courtney Martin and Mandy Brown were kind enough to offer constructive criticism and their crackerjack editing skills.
Tina‘s right. The thought of turning our studio floor into a rainbow has officially blown my mind. Chances my studiomate Josh will go for this? Zero. Although he’d possibly be into a greyscale version.
Read more about the DLA Piper Office by Hofman Dujardin Architects over at Tina’s Rainbow Office post.
What do they do in this office? It had better be something amazingly awesome, or they’re letting this carpet rainbow down.
I’m so thankful for the inspiring setup we’ve got here at work. Sure, the view is phenomenal, but what makes it truly special is the camaraderie shared by all the studiomates. Coming to work is like showing up to hang out with friends, and by friends I mean amazingly talented, creative, motivated people I somehow get to collaborate with. Every day is an adventure in smart people and projects, and somewhere at the center of it all, you’ll usually find this guy. He’s an instigator who pushes everyone to “do something.” He’s got a zero bullshit policy, so you have to be willing to back up anything and everything you say. He’s also a warm, fuzzy heart who calls himself a “sad panda” if he has to miss out on any group fun. You can count on him for either honest perspective or pee-your-pants humor, depending on his mood. Actually, a lot of the time it’s both. Everyone should be so lucky to have Cameron Koczon, lover of pipes, music, scotch, westerns and awesomeness, in their lives. So today on his birthday, this thank you reads…
The numbers five, six, seven and eight, in that order, are very special to me. They evoke the sound of a needle crackling as it drops onto a record, the scent of sweaty lycra in a gym bag, and the sight of my mom front and center in a packed auditorium using her right hand to balance some sort of massive recording device and her left to point towards an exaggerated smile on her face.
Between the ages of 18 months and 18 years, I attended weekly dance classes. According to my rough calculations, that’s more than 1,000 hours of ballet, jazz, and tap, but more to the point, that’s more than FIFTY recital costumes. Sure, the teachers got to choose the costumes for the group numbers, but if you signed up for a solo or duet, which of course my sister and I always did, you got to choose your own attire. Somehow I talked the teachers into letting me borrow the costume catalogs so I could take my time contemplating exactly what concoction of spandex and sequins truly embodied Billy Ocean’s Get Out of My Dreams, Get Into My Car. If I couldn’t find a ready-made match, my mom and I would set to work, and after a few magical evenings in her sewing room, we’d emerge with a perfectly customized costume.
For an Itsy Bitsy Teeny Weeny Yellow Polka Dot Bikini routine, when Wal-Mart failed to yield suitable dotted fabric, my mom and I painted our own dots onto yellow satin. Then there were leotards, ears and tails, all made out of pink faux fur, so my sister and I could realize our vision of the Pink Panther theme song. And in case you’re wondering, for Billy Ocean, I decided on a shiny magenta unitard with royal blue leg warmers, briefs and a headband. There were many, many others, and I remember each and every one. The little voice inside my head is saying, “Wait a minute, this is all making perfect sense!” Maybe I love costumes like Billy loves the lady drivers because more than simple self expression, devising a costume reminds me of a special time in my life when I got to collaborate with my mom.
Not all kids get to go to dance lessons. Not all moms are willing to carpool to them, and pay for them, and sew costumes only to have to sit through four-hour recitals because of them. Mine was. For that and about a million other reasons, I’m thankful. So this note reads…
When I met Creighton, I knew he was special. One of the ways I could tell was by how much his friends care about him. I mean, they seriously go-out-in-the-rain-to-see-you, do-just-about-anything-you-ask-even-help-you-move, can’t-get-enough-of-this-guy care. The reason for this is probably how much he cares back. Maybe it’s a function of being an only child, but he truly treats his friends like family. I’m such a sucker for that.
Case in point is Creighton’s long time friend Scott. Scott is based out of Florida but travels around the globe for his job as a tennis coach. Scott never misses an opportunity to spend time with Creighton, even if it’s just in his mind. When we opened a package the other day to find this bright red 2010 FIFA World Cup hat (that Creighton looks quite fetching in, right?) and a note reading…
If the setting for a Dr. Suess story came to life and mated with a candy store, its offspring would be this town square in Rio. Glorious, right? I’d love to make a point by saying, “what a difference a little color can make,” but this isn’t a little color. It’s gigantic, outlandish, amazing color. For comparison, here’s what the square of Santa Marta looked like before its technicolor transformation…
Bright colors and bold stripes are known to attract attention, and that’s exactly the point. The Dutch art duo Haas & Hahn have been using their work to draw international awareness to some of the most impoverished areas, or favelas, of Brazil since 2005, and this is their latest endeavor. Local townspeople received training on different types of paint and safety measures (think massive amounts of scaffolding) along with much needed paychecks for the month this project lasted. Now, they’re left with a sense of pride and a potential national landmark.
I’ve spent more of my life than I care to quantify attempting to fit in: trying to lower my voice, covering-up my naiveté and hiding my dorky enthusiasm. Nine times out of ten, I failed. Even worse was when I actually managed to blend. An insidious “this isn’t me” feeling inevitably eroded my well being.
Only recently did I decide to let go and give in to my nature. I’ve taken the new approach of exploiting what makes me differnet and celebrating the weird ways I interpret the world around me. (Part of that is this blog, and so I thank you for participating.) As I become less ashamed of my unbridled optimism and my intense bursts of energy, I become more fulfilled. I’m also beginning to sense the potential for greatness, for eventually being able to offer something valuable to the world, even if I don’t know quite what that is yet. Giving in isn’t giving up. In fact, it’s liberating. It’s also hard work, but for the first time, I really believe I’m fighting the good fight. The people in my life, my friends, family and clients, will ultimately get a better version of me.
This shift has taken surrounding myself with people who are on similar journeys and opening myself to inspiration in all forms. One of my greatest sources of inspiration thus far came when I attended TEDActive last February. I met so many people working to live their dreams and watched several Talks that filled me to the brim with hope and ideas. One Talk I keep coming back to is by an incredible woman named Temple Grandin. Temple is a leading thinker on and researcher of the autistic mind, in addition to being autistic herself. She uses her Talk to explain the spectrum of autism and the different types of autistic minds, advocating that we celebrate differences because they’re what actually advance humanity. After all, if everyone saw things the same way, we wouldn’t have scientific or artistic breakthroughs.
Dear Tina, how on earth did I miss your post on this awesome Pantime clock by James Beattie!? I guess it was on your blog way back in 2008 (a truly unenlightened time for me since it was before I knew you or even knew of you). I can’t think of a better combination of rainbow amazingness and design nerdiness.
I’m so glad that I found it perusing the rainbow-laden blog of a reader, Katie. Woah. It blows my mind that I have readers now!
This may be my favorite inanimate object, although I guess it’s sort of animate since the transparent disk on top rotates to produce a full spectrum every 60 seconds. It’s certainly my most frequently worn object. This watch has become an important part of my identity because on days when I accidentally rush out the door in boring jeans and a grey t-shirt, at least I have a rainbow on my wrist. In fact, if I look down and it’s not there, I experience a mildish panicky sensation. Creighton gave this to me on our first anniversary, so I guess he knows me pretty well. My greyscale-loving colleague Josh likes to point out the impracticality of my watch (he doesn’t think I can actually tell time on it) by asking, “Is it rainbow o’clock yet?” I love to respond, “Always.”
Recently, a very sweet client asked where she could find such a watch for herself. I was happy to point her to the Metropolitan Museum Store...
Creighton captured this photo yesterday on Great Jones Street in Manhattan. I have no idea what “home candy” means. However, I do know I love home, candy and rainbows. So, um… mondo amounts of love here. I’m dedicating this love to everyone who checked out my blog today, the day of its official launch. I hope this is the beginning of a beautiful relationship!
There’s a correlation between between luckiness and thankfulness. I’m not certain how to articulate it yet, but I’m working on it. In the meantime, I can say for certain, I owe massive amounts of thanks to massive amounts of wonderful people. I decided to create thank yous by getting cut-and-pastey with the pages of old textbooks I picked up at the Palmer Home Thrift in Starkville, Mississippi (only two dollars per book). I’m committed to getting some of this thankfulness off my chest!
This card is dedicated to the gentleman and poet Mr. Stephen Doyle. Stephen is a design giant, but you’d never hear him even hint at such a thing. He’s a light-hearted, down-to-earth delight of a person. Talent sans ego makes Steven a rare bird. The inside of the card reads…
While I have my friend Laura visiting from Mississippi, and we’re in full on Ladies’ Rock Camp mode, the other two thirds of WORKSHOP, Creighton and Josh, decided to head out on a “mancation.” Sounds like they’re having a great time sailing, swimming and grilling. Creighton snapped and emailed this photo to me from outside Schmidt’s Market in Southampton. Of course he included the caption, “Rainbuoy!”
I seriously love vans (think A-team), and I think you know how I feel about rainbows, so I’m super proud of my borough of Brooklyn and my neighborhood of DUMBO for being worthy of this awesome van’s time. The guy on the back was totally cool with Creighton snapping these iPhone photos. He even invited us to take a pic of the other side, which he touted as his preferred. Maybe it’s the marbled effect he’s keen on?
I couldn’t pass up this rainbow top when I spotted it at my friend Amy’s Brooklyn Flea booth. But I couldn’t find the right bottom to coordinate with it. That is until my mom took a trip up to the attic and came down with my original Girl Scout skirt. I almost passed out when I realized it still fits (thanks in part to the smart elastic panels hidden in the waist). I had a love/hate relationship with this uniform in Junior High and High School. While my inner costume wearer dug putting it on, I dreaded being the nerdy girl who wore it. It’s fun to embrace it now as an adult who’s comfortable with herself, nerdiness and all. And who remembered Bill Blass designed for the Girl Scouts? In his infinite wisdom, he added the functionality of pockets. Sweet!
button-down blouse - $10.00, Jelly Roll at Brooklyn Flea
espadrille sandals - $2.00 (unworn!), Starkville Salvation Army Thrift
fabric belt - hand-me-down from my mom
skirt - from the attic, Bill Blass for Girl Scouts of the U.S.A. (c. 1991)
Know Your Poodle paperback - $1.00, Starkville Salvation Army Thrift
There’s a new market in town… I pass the morning pawing brightly patterned $5 and $10 blouses while Creighton spots and procures this miniature rainbow pin for me. We eat organic veggie omelets, drink mint iced tea, and stroll the sun speckled, not overly crowded booths, which are bordered by tennis courts on one side and a playground on the other. Ah love, thy name is Hester Street Fair, and you’re as lovely as you are tiny. Open Saturdays and Sundays until December. And did I mention the lucky location? Right next to the East Broadway stop of the F, only one subway stop from my DUMBO home. Don’t get jealous Brooklyn Flea, you’ll always be my Baby.
My April 16th birthday doesn’t usually make a big splash because WORKSHOP is always in the throws of planning our annual Kentucky Derby, which is the first Saturday in May. (It takes a bit of work to get ready for 300 hat-wearing, julep-drinking party goers.) But what started as a last minute suggestion for a rainbow themed birthday by the incomparable Jessica Hische turned into one of my favorite days of all time, not to mention the inspiration for this blog and yet another piece of evidence that I’m indeed a lucky so and so.