Monday, October 26, 2009

Meet my new model

You guys are probably wondering who the stunning redhead is that's been popping up in my shop. I am proud to say that she is my best friend, and her name is Caylin. She just moved from California to New York, and she is my new official hat, purse, and great stuff model. I am not always excited to jump in front of a camera when I am frazzled and tired from shooting all day, so luckily for me she always looks amazing and will be here in NYC permanently! Look how pretty she is!!!!!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Sea Monsters

"O Lord, what a variety of things you have made! In wisdom you have made them all. The earth is full of your creatures. Here is the ocean, vast and wide, teeming with life of every kind, both large and small. See the ships sailing along, and Leviathan, which you made to play in the sea."
Psalms 104:24-26

A few weeks ago, I had a curious dream. I was ambushed by a giant sea monster; he lived among a bunch of withered blackened trees on some strange deserted ocean shore. He ate my friend, then began to chase me up a sandy embankment. I stepped on one of his fiery orange tentacles and screamed, and the dream was over. Apparently I yelled in my sleep! The funny thing is, I have always thought they were pretty fascinating and kind of cute. It amuses me to see them swimming around in the oceans on antique maps, and I was always intrigued by Leviathan, a dreadful sea monster mentioned in the Bible on many occasions.

When I found the vintage ring above, I had to laugh. I had gone into my local jewelry shop to browse for an investment piece; I'm turning 25 soon and feel like it's time to start a grown up jewelry collection. I knew the instant I put it on that it had to go home. I have just never seen anything like it; 18k white and yellow gold, rubies, and diamonds; most likely 40's or 50's according to the jeweler. My favorite part are his sharp little teeth!

Friday, October 23, 2009

The Ramos House Cafe

Sadly, there are not many restaurants in Orange County, California worth bragging about. I guess New York has spoiled me a bit, or a lot... but the Ramos House Cafe is still probably one of my top five favorite places in the world. It's located on the oldest residential street in California, and the building itself is from 1881. John Q, the owner lives next in the little attached house to the side of the restaurant and can always be seen buzzing around the place. Dining takes place under the shady canopy of a huge old tree, with rustic little tables. All the herbs used in the Contemporary American cuisine are grown right in the garden, and ingredients are so fresh and they have a seasonal menu.

Of all the things on the menu though, the twelve dollar Bloody Mary is the most decadent, complete with crab claw and string beans. It is a meal and a masterpiece unto itself. My other favorites are the Mac and Cheese, and the pulled chicken sandwich. If you ever make it down that way, by all means go and eat there!

John Q's House

The restaurant

The best Bloody Mary of all times

Pulled BBQ chicken sandwich

Lox and toast points

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

A Plaid Party

Let's just say this vintage shopping expedition has been quite successful. There is going to be a plaid party in the shop next week to celebrate!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Leaving on a Jet Plane

Image found here

Friends, I will be out in California for the next week on a treasure hunting expedition. I am exploring a giant new warehouse in LA that seems to have a lot of promise, and will be estate saling with my mom, baking with my Nona and shopping with my sister. I'll be back October 21. Stay warm and happy!

Monday, October 12, 2009

The History of Pendleton

I never got to wear much wool in California, but since moving to New York I find myself constantly drawn to the simplicity and quality of vintage Pendleton textiles. I recently came across the most amazing 50's wool pencil skirt of theirs, and became curious about their company origins and did a little research.

The company was founded by Thomas Kay in 1889, and the original name was Thomas Kay Woolen Mills, operating out of Salem, Oregon. Mr. Kay immigrated to the United States from England in 1863 and was trained as a weaver. He involved his daughter, Fanny Kay in the business, who married a retail merchant, Charles Bishop. They passed down their wealth of knowledge to their three sons. In 1809 the whole family moved to Pendleton, Oregon and rebuilt the old wool mill there.

A Sioux Star blanket from the 1920's found on Ebay

The previous Pendleton mill produced woolen trade blankets for local Indian tribes; the Bishop family picked up where the previous mill left off but made changes to designs and expanded business creating blankets for American Indian tribes such as the Navajo, Zuni, and Hopi. These blankets were worn as apparel and also used as means of trade and for ceremonial purposes. In 1912, the company began to produce other products such as woolen apparel. One of the three Bishop sons, Clarence, started a line of colorful men's woolen sportswear shirts in 1924; prior to this time wool shirts were only considered suitable for workwear and came in boring colors. The line took off and by 1929, Pendleton was producing a full line of wool sportswear.

A bag sewn from a Pendleton Blanket, found on timberlineltd on Etsy- I bought it, sorry!

During World War II, Pendleton focused mainly on producing uniforms and blankets for our troops. After the war, there became a greater demand for women's clothing and the company instroduced a wildy successful line of women's clothing. In 1972, they expanded their line to also include non woolen garments. To this day, the company is still privately held by the Bishop family; the great grandsons of Charles Bishop. They operate out of Portland, Oregon and the original Pendleton mill is still in operation.

A 50's pencil skirt up in the shop right now

Pendleton blankets have become a highly collectible item, particularly those made before WWII because during that time they stopped production to support the war. After the war, production of blankets drastically decreased as the company focused on sportswear. Blankets with bright colors are the most collectible. Even though their plaid woolen men's shirts are not that hard to find these days, I still find them completely charming in an all American kind of way. I especially love them on bearded cute men, but they can look great on women too. Topsy Design on Etsy has quite a few of them right now. Here's a good one:

A vintage mens Pendleton shirt found at TopsyDesign

Hope this was fun and a little bit educational! Thanks to Wikipedia for the info.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

A Ladylike Update

These are some wonderfully feminine, ladylike pieces that will make their way into
The Greedy Seagull today.

All Buttoned Up

Megan of 13bees and I went to an estate sale over the weekend that promised lots of vintage clothes, and things turned out to be quite dismal. However, I did score a fabulous box of vintage buttons and I just had to share, they are so darn cute.

Ironically enough, on a previous trip Megan was telling me about a woman at Brimfield that obsessively collects them. She could not understand why she hoarded them, nor could the button lady herself. I know they are a strange thing to fawn over, to obsequiously pore over bins full of them for hours. I think it's just the endless possibilities, and the fact that some of them are like little miniature pieces of art. I think they are a pretty innocuous thing to collect, considering they take up much less room than clothes and shoes!

When I was 15, I had already amassed quite a collection between what my grandma had given me and trips to the flea market. I had them stored in a box with fabric and patterns in the garage, which was my dad's territory. One tragic day, he "accidentally" threw them away. To this day, I mourn those buttons and do not forgive my dad for tossing them (ok mostly I do, but still). Even though I walked away with little else at that sale, I was elated over these glorious buttons; I think they are a good start to a new collection.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Spider Silk

This article blew my mind. Seventy people spent four years harvesting silk threads from over one million Golden Orb spiders to produce the textile below, it is the only one of its kind in the entire world! If it currently on display at the Natural History museum, and I am planning to go take a gander in the next couple weeks. Behold:

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Water by Emily Searle

Let me introduce you to a friend of mine. Emily Searle is not only funny, sweet, and fun to be around, she is an incredible photographer. I somehow cannot seem to get this haunting series out of my mind. They are part Ophelia, part witchcraft, all genius. Enjoy, and please visit Emily's website to see more of her amazing work.