Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Bye 2008

you started out better than you ended, yet all in all there was more good than not. With a so long and a fare the well, another year closes on the timeline of the limited perspective. However it is a great reason to celebrate. The serfs had around 100 holidays but we "lost" ours in the pursuit of that dream thing, that carat in front of the nose, that grand illusion, that ........poof! pop! So make the most of what is left!

Finished fashion collage 3.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

recyCouture dress No. 2

Illustration in marker, fabric, thread and paper of Dress 2 for the Verge chapter of fashionRIP. The illustrations are for the altered book; which is an element of the installation of this first chapter.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Happy Yule

this is a day that reflects the best of our human potential. With peace honored by seeing gently and extending love despite our myriad walls...we will strengthen that which keeps us a species worthy of its abilities. xxooxoxox

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Monday, December 22, 2008


time is the 4th dimension, than spirit is surely the 5th.

Sunday, December 21, 2008



I'll be there. Love the quote -
"So yay, perhaps this was what the universe wants and baby i don't fight or pout I just look for the path i was overlooking and expect brilliance!"
I'll have to use it.
(from Ardis Allyn photography and video)

On Dec 21, 2008 5:01am, DEBORAH BARNES wrote:
> Hey, there are no mistakes....just revisions, the shoot was snowed out!..............
...........................................expect brilliance!

When your own words come back to "haunt you" let it be like this!


"The Intuitive mind is a sacred gift
and the rational mind is a faithful servant.
We have created a society that honors the servant
and has forgotten the gift.
~ Albert Einstein"


"The ladies of New York want to have a new style every year. This year the fashion is relativity." April 1921

The above was taken from the book Einsteins Cosmos by Michio Kaku which i am reading thanks to my son who told me about Kaku's writing on string theories, which delight me and so....

"Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one."

Like the human made construct of rules based on our limited senses and oft mistaken beliefs about the past that are imposed on the "world" and then accepted to be true and therefore become "true" by agreement.... ta-da!

i digress as snow falls again. more Einstein at Ethos

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Goth at FIT

Once again the serendipitous play of the universe beckons for attention.

The gallery at the Fashion Institute of Technology has a show with the title: gothic dark glamour (lower case intentionally theirs!) now until February 21, 2009.
"Walter Benjamin argued that fashion has traditionally turned the living woman into a kind of mannequin, "a gaily-decked out corpse." " quote from the FIT website of the visit in virtual as it is well worth the time! and if going to NYC do it live; i am going to try, hoping February has better travel conditions.

Thank you Linda for once again being the messenger, an intuitive connector and great friend!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008


In Seattle there are hills and people on top of them, so when it snows people on top of those hills either slide down or stay safely on the tops. The shoot was canceled until January which gives us time to play with those extra little details which will make for a better overall production.

Emily, an artist and Verge model showed up on the 14th despite the snow and posed with snow au natural and white in color.

The snaggle in momentum has me discombobulated...oh well, though the reason escapes my human ability it is there somewhere...maybe later i will know it ...curiosity and the path of life...a step on the highwire.

Friday, December 5, 2008


Just finished a backdrop for the shoot and must say i am pleased with the outcome. The trees are from mourning dress and other project remnants; machine sewn onto an old damask tablecloth. They grew from available scraps and hey i am liking it a lot!
Why is the new one always a favorite?

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Grace of the Universe

Last post about SCAN i should have mentioned that they are another great community resource; like the Abbey, The Sanctuary Art Center and the NW Senior Center they reach out to offer services, social networking, shelter, knowledge, space and other means of bridging gaps in this rather silly and dysfunctional culture.
The non profits try to patch the crumbling foundation we were built on and like recyCouture they are great transitional tools. They are the labs where a lot of "new think" can bubble up from.

On the "Verge" front, i am feeling awed by the beauty of people coming forward to be a part of this project. Thank you.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Friday, November 28, 2008

Poppins Grounded

The Verge shoot is on the calendar; December 14th and i am in a pause mode with the RIP until that baby gets wrapped. In the meantime SCAN has reformatted its agenda and i have applied to volunteer there in order to cover classes in Final Cut. I learned the Avid Express software a few years ago but am rusty, so this is a great op and a necessary part of any shoot. The edit shapes the art of the story.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Fremont Abbey Art center

The Fremont Abbey Art Center is helping fashionRIP by letting us shoot the video in their great hall with its old church windows for the unusual price of volunteer hours in a sustainable barter exchange. This is how community action looks and how we can better combine talents and resources at the neighborhood level. i say it is splendid and more people should give it a try. What magic we might achieve as we bridge some of the gaps left from too many middling mens and wimmens and other forms of social divisioning.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

All The London

Fashioning the Future posts are going onto the fashion ethos blog....and then to the Sustainable Style Foundation; that is "where the action is". Oh myo, grade school see there was this show....
The RIP video is in the works but getting all the elements, human and else to gather together at the same time and place is tricky!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Victorian Goth Kabuki recyCouture

Looks like a challenge.....sustainable fashion is the new radical chic. Photos/ Make-up/Styling courtesy of Renee....the best! It must be that big cocky hat that fires up my oversize can-do!
As i've said before, fashion instigated this buy and toss attitude; now fashion is obliged to change it. i have a real sense of what is fair and all isn't; not even in love and war. Stupido cliche!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Stills of the RIP

This is a preview of the photographs that will go to the Posers Flickrr site. The characters and costumes will be in the video shoot. The recyCouture dresses are a stand alone part of the installation ....after all sustainable fashion was the seed that grew the project!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Think Global, Act Local

That is a pull quote from the early days of sustainability. Maybe it's still batting about, in which case I'm giving it a vicey-versey plus.

I was invited to take part in the Fashioning the Future Summit 2008 (10/27 & 28) at the London College of Fashion (GB) to consider the question; can fashion bring about a long term lifecycle change to move us towards a more sustainable economy and better lives? Key industry informers and decision makers are attending and will lead seminar groups. At the end of the day we will meet together and pool outcomes. This is the collective information I am eager to bring back home and share, so we can get out from under this "olde think" pall.

In sharing infomation we expand our capacity to act for the better good, as no one person, group or culture has 360 degree vision. Which is why fashionRIP is becoming a product of its own collaborative process. Explaination later! I have learned to edit my interconnetive rambles.

P.S. The fast fashion ads quoted in the Hall of Shame entry on Fashion Ethos are indicators of the "olde" market we are in.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Blog Lag and Synopsis

I promised a synopsis and its only right to deliver on promises.

Mourning Glories for Species on the Verge of Extinction
This is a story about a funeral. The recyCouture dresses worn in this video are inspired by the Victorian penchant for full scale mourning. There are 7 dresses representing 7 species that are on the brink of extinction or are only "alive" in zoos because their habitats are destroyed.

The fashion runway strut becomes somber as the recyCouture model is handed the portrait of a doomed one which is carried to the coffin. A blurb of that species will go to the screen as in silent films.
This is repeated for all 7. A name and date scroll at the side of the coffin reiterates the poignancy and the rate of current era die offs -as opposed to natural evolution.

A couple models will illustrate how this impacts human life.

The end is a beginning, as the coffin opens and a phoenix arises. The symbol of transformation starts the death scroll rewinding and it becomes apparent that we are still in time to be intelligent designers of our own evolution.

Thursday, October 9, 2008


The original stencil only refashion of the hope Tee was too ...boring. See for yourself -it's a few entries down. I wore it for the shoot because when a photographer is around I try to max the experience. (Thank you Donna Marie for the great photos.)
As in a lot of design the first take isn't the last. Modifiers, edits, changes keep the process fun and at times -frustrating.
This is the latest version and I think it sticks.
Like the storyline of the Verge it has been altered and modified.
Synopsis soon.

Monday, September 22, 2008

RecyCouture 30s mix

Old lace dress from the 30s in a ripping (literal) condition. Took out the slip which became the evolve dress, then cut the top from the bottom. Added a wide stretchy band to the top of the flounced skirt so can just pull it on. Added tulle to the bottom of the top.
Worn with a middy made from the top of a pair of pantyhose, which keeps the skin tones from peeping through in a vulgar manner.

RecyCouture RAG

When wearing a gown that starts with a 1920s era chemise, that runs into a weird stretch remnant then bottoms out with a glitzy flocked floral of the must pull attitude. The flapper rebel in me surfaced.
I used to wear vintage 20s clubbing ln Belltown 's premiere punk rock venue. This worked; as flappers bobbed their hair, raised hemlines, rouged their lips and merrily shocked the old guard.
Defiance for the old order never goes out of style, yet the real changes move so slow, unlike the fashions that personify them.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Stripey Tee and Skirt

The recyCouture Mourning Casual look is from the 2 Tees and a pair of really big pants, The big pants were given to me as I passed out class flyers in Ballard. I thought the Ryther Thrift Shop might post one as an inspiration to shoppers The shop volunteer at the cash register agreed, liked what I was doing and gave me the pants.

It's fun to cut and play with clothes that cost little as you have to come out ahead. (Experience if naught else!)

The big pants were cut apart, pleated to hip width and modified with inserts and reverse applique. The great thing is I didn't have to put a zipper in as I used the pants zipper and fly as is. This leaves time for the fun embellishing part.


The modified witch hat keeps the sun off. We need the vitamin D , but don't need the bad rays-it isn't easy being aware. I read awhile back that 10 minutes of sun should get the D need covered but will check it out and report back later. Like all (?) human derived truths, this one has a lifespan based on current technology.

What to Wear

Have you seen the Bluefly print ads.."closet full of nothing to wear" ? It does a good job of pushing fast fashion along with the little girl that doesn't have to choose, but can buy all the looks she wants from Kmart. How about the tv ad with the back seat, shoe box, pile up that extols the mother/daughter shopping experience? My aren't we pathetic!

I think labels should run below products that point out the persistent organic compounds, the toxic travelers that end up in human tissues (doing what mayhem?) and the natural but not organic fibers grown with pesticides and fertilizers that are running off and killing water life. Why keep pushing madness when we know better now?

Okay, I like a new pair of boots once in awhile. But please, the shoppers rush is short lived and then what?

Get a better creative'll be happier.... I promise.

Monday, September 8, 2008

The San Francisco Garter Snake

This is the reptilian representative of my endangered fauna. Since it is the 7th species and was drawn on the 7th day and 7 is my lucky number, well it amuses me. What with all the mythical lore surrounding snakes, the whole Eve thing, snake in the grass, Cleopatra- the critter has a bad rep. Okay, some of it still seems deserved and I am not going to hike the back trails of Arizona in hopes of meeting rattlers.

When my mother was around 7 years old her father showed her a nest of baby garter snakes. She was unnerved by the wriggling mass but grandpa told her they were good to have around because they kept the bugs out of the garden

These providers of natural services haven't been well acknowledged until recently. The techno/chemical replacements are a bad trade in value and side effects. However, they are good for the bottom lines of some giant corporations as new opportunities arise with new problems.

That is the conundrum of capitalist economics, my dears. The old and big have the economic power to thwart and stall some very good ideas.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

We'll Miss You When You're Gone

..or we can all do something. The problems that may pop up when these critters die off are unknown....that is the problem! We don't know the extent of their food and services webs. (formerly called food chains we now know that linear simplicity is bunk)

Do the research, learn and then incorporate the knowledge. There is a lot of good info out there. Sign up for the A Fresh Squeeze e-letter, visit the Sustainable Style Foundation or the Green for Good websites, or do a search for sustainable living, etc. Real world information has grown by scads since the early days of 2000 and now; well it is almost too much. Then again, since we are a stubborn lot when it comes to making changes...(like the foreign oil crisis of the 70"s got the USA off foreign oil...right?) ......perhaps it's necessary.
So please don't shut off just because it's so noisy with green. However, unplugging all those lcd, nonsense clocked appliances is quite satisfying.
The Monarch Butterfly and the Poison Dart Frog are 2 of the featured endangered. The rest of the pastel illustrations are on the Posers and Pictures site.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Recycouture Mourning Dress 4

This is the latest Mourning Glory for FashionRIP. This recyCouture garment started life as a blouse. The skirt is from the leftovers of the first dress and the panne velvet bottom is from a gifted" to slash" robe. Tell your friends what you do, so when birthdays come around they bring you yard sale and thrift store desirables.
The whole gifting biz is a weird spin on consumerism now isn't it?....resin cat or dust catching thing a ma jig ...not to mention the bag or paper.....all needs a rethink, methinks; and then we can design it! (ps know your copyrights and retain control)

Monday, August 4, 2008

You Can Sew 2

I cannot possibly reFashion enough clothes on my own to make a mark in the industry. Pick up a ripper, a needle and a spool of thread and join the style parade. If you are in Seattle join one of my classes and see how satisfying recyCouture can be... go to fashion ethos for more info. Thanks!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008


Labels are great.. in reDesign.
This Tee uses RAMPAGE, Kashi, Impressions, LUXE, boutique EUROPA and DJB (hand stenciled, the personal element)

Monday, June 2, 2008

Banner Born

To website or not?....that is still the question...Have to do a build for an XHTML class in a little brushing up of the ol' skills set...its all balance baby...mind/body.spirit.
So wish to share cos right now I'm lovin it!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

DIY Re-Fashion

Ready to rip; but a little timid? Try a class in Recycouture or start with learning some basic sewing skills. New classes will be forming in July. Check out the FashionEthos blog Summertime Sewin' for more info.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Mother's Day

In 1872, Julia Ward Howe tried to start a Mother's Day for Peace. A year later (June 2, 1873) women in 18 cities across America participated. The holiday was honored by women in Boston for another decade, but it phased out after Howe stopped funding it.

Anna Reeves Jarvis started Mother's Work Day to raise awareness of bad sanitation in West Virginia. Her daughter Anna Jarvis took on the mission with added agenda in 1912. Her efforts met with "success" when West Virginia adopted an official Mother's Day . Then two years later(1914), Congress passed a Joint Resolution. It was signed by President Wilson which established a national Mother's Day. However it emphasized the role of women in their families - and not, like Julia Ward Howe's campaign, in the public arena. (True Woman ideals)

Never a mother herself, the celebration of Mother's Day was Anna Jarvis’ lifelong mission. As the holiday expanded, Jarvis became dismayed by its commercialization. "I wanted it to be a day of sentiment, not profit," she is quoted as saying.

In remembrance of all great women,

Happy Mother’s Day

for it isn't the birth. its the caring

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Choose to Evolve

I wonder how many creative, intelligent people take some refuge time in the left brain? It seems to be a good way to get the hemispheres communicating - a way to balance.

If that is true then the vice versa would probably be true as well. Whole brain = whole thought = wholistic.

Sustainablility and ecosystems are wholistic expressions that smash into the old Industrial Age concepts. The narrow and singular can't embrace open, complex, wondrously intricate and harmonic ideas of "the next." The planet is one big ecosystem that we are a part of and despite our vanity, we are expendable and given that ...I should think we shall learn to play nice with the whole package as well as with each other. I suspect our true hearts are born into it, we just get sidetracked.

P,S. Don't blame a dinosaur for thinking like a dinosaur; pity the critter but don't let it bully you... It's a mere remnant of dying ideas.

Monday, May 5, 2008

Real Art

I love this piece but don't know who created it. If anyone knows please tell me and I will give them the credit they deserve!

Monday, April 28, 2008

Greenfest Surprise

These Earth Day events are getting crowded, frequent and all over the place. April 13 & 14 was the Seattle Greenfest and it filled the Convention Center that Sunday. I had volunteered for Swap-A-Rama-Rama which is a recycle and sewing gig and then went to explore the business side. It is astounding what a year can do when a good thing is growing; good design, innovation, variety and choices are now the trademarks of sustainable entrepreneurs.

The heart warmiest surprise for me was all the young sewers that participated at the Swap. My first student was around 6 years old and we pulled a princess dress from a cocktail cast off. She was in charge of the foot pedal and did an amazing job. My camera died so I don't have a picture of her delighted swirl at the end but tis in me heart.

The 11-15 year old crowd was amazing. In fact they were the sewing majority and as a promoter of the tactile creative experience...well "the kids are all right."

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

We Need Fashion

We need to know what is in style so we know when we are not.

djb 2008

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Thanks Mr Photoman

Lest it all look so tragic...the outcome is uplifting...Trust me!

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Where have all the..........

....gone? Every day we add more flora and fauna to the list. We seem extremely capable of destroying life and when I ask why, I hear people say that it is in our natures. They point to history for proof and if you buy the past performance argument, you will be disheartened.

Don't buy it!

Never before have we had the technology, the diversity in education, the global connectivity, the capacity to understand and the willingness to change. We have the means for transformation!

We can forgive past ignorance but we cannot tolerate the way of life it generated. We have the heart, the courage and the intellect to create the world we believe possible. Pick your passion and recreate it, re-fashion it, re-purpose it or invent with sustainability in mind. Wow, we may really like ourselves after all!

Mourning garb1 dress started from a thrift store satin 1970s jumpsuit. The leaves are re-puposed from old "silk" flowers. Tulle is new but trims are sewing leftovers.



Mourning garb2, dress from thrift store shirt, recycled trim and taffeta from the local Jo-Ann Fabrics. The rustle of taffeta makes a woman feel elegant even when sinking into rain saturated grass.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Show must Go On

Well, I haven't heard from Bumbershoot so I am guessing this year is out; however new support opportunities for this collaborative installation are peeking over the horizon and I am courting them because this isn't a mere flirtation. nope this is the real thing.

How can a fashion, video, photo, music, painting interconnect /mash up with an activist backbone and a sustainable heart, how can that not be exciting, interesting, fun, informative.....As an installation it will be more than entertainment. it will be a catalyst that grows possibilities; for once a person sees through an idea or theory or they challenge a construct of culture, they change their perceptions of the world and their place in it.

We humans thrive on change and challenge (see Brain Fitness on PBS anyone?) so beyond the eco, enviro, socio and politico issues it's also good for our health.....kind of proves the shake it up instinct!

Sunday, March 23, 2008

art is Everywhere

I came across this work by the most Fabulous Anon near NSCC and went back to snap it yesterday. This morning I realized the synchronistic beauty of it and had to share. With a little Photoshop embellishment's to Spring and new beginnings etc we've all had enough of the sentimental schlock to write our own and yet sometimes trite still works for me!

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Human Agenda

I am not happy with your pretty packages anymore. I want something bigger and the market can't deliver! Instead the promises are hollow, the game was short sighted and now we know it; don't we?

It used to look good because we were taught that it was the best. As long as we played along, it continued and grew and then we too could be rewarded and have more stuff. However all wasn't ever very pretty inside the big package.

So ultimately the Wall of Denial is crumbling despite the seductive propaganda and if we don't change the course, "we will all have to learn the hard way" like my mom used to say and that way always sucked.

The Old Economic Myth
more babies = more consumers
more consumers = market growth
market growth = economic gains
economic gains = we all win
the big winners are few
resources are limited
we are all part of the food/energy chain

species (humans too) will be controlled by outside forces if not from within
we aren't that happy over populating and drowning in stuff anyway!

As in have a right to be figure out why. Look to your own truth and knowing and seek the path that faith in life will show you....have fun!

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Victorian Mourning Works in Progress

Progress can look like chaos. A thrift store evolution starts with an idea that is best left open. Have a plan but don't become so attached to it that you can't see other, perhaps better, possibilities; unless of course you prefer to be limited and narrow.

A good way to start getting past traditional (safe, worn out, limited) ideas and images can start with giving yourself permission to err, explore, challenge, adapt and experiment with a thrift store re-do. It's fun and perhaps closer to nature's intent. Children aren't born with standardized notions!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Sewing Classes Empower

These classes are forming in Seattle but they will probably start popping up all over the place. Please go to the Fashion Ethos site for more information

Monday, March 3, 2008


This picture is a detail of a dress that started as a restyled 70s jumpsuit (adult onesie) made of black satin. The leaves were ripped from silk flower stems. The beads were once new but I have had them so long they count as ....well not new!

Sunday, March 2, 2008

To Render becomes TRend

ren·der verb

3. To give what is due.

4. To give in return or retribution.

8. in Music (or design, decorative arts , mixed media/medium

....................a. To perform an interpretation of (a musical piece, for example).

....................b. To arrange

11. To cause to become; make.

[Middle English rendren, from Old French rendre, to give back,

trend noun

1. The general direction in which something tends to move.

3. Current style; vogue: the latest trend in fashion.

[From Middle English trenden, to revolve, from Old English trendan.]

The sum of the parts is a great argument for nu-style (nu-render) becoming the TRend for the future. I mean if we really want to have one....

Nu-style: when several old pieces of clothing are ripped apart then made into "new" garments; ie for a sentence using the word nu-style see the blog underneath

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Parlor Tricks

Design magic is conjured up behind the counter at the Pretty Parlor. Anna and her mother are the talented duo behind the Pretty Parlor's own label. They start with unlovely or damaged vintage clothing and turn out exclusive one of a kind pieces. This is beyond mere fashion this is nu-STYLE!