Ahh! I have so many half-written posts, and no time to refine them into something worthy of my readership! Things have busied up here for the time being, I might not be able to post until next week.

It’s so hard to see the blog get neglected when I’m having these terrific, exciting, scary ideas that I want to share. I’ll try to take notes. Please, don’t give up on me, I will be back soon…

hanging out with teenagers

I just had the nicest discussion with Isabel from Hipster Musings: a Bitch Fashion Blog and some of her friends. On her terrific blog she seems like this bitchy, insouciant punk girl who could kick my ass and in person she seems so delicate, I swear even I might have a fighting chance in a smackdown. A loving smackdown. I love meeting fashion bloggers in person. They’re always exactly as cool as their blog and there’s always some sort of unexpected surprise.

bus reading

Taking it’s place amongst my favourite posts of all time, without a doubt, verbal croquis’ how I got started post is the medicine I need right now.

It’s been two months since I graduated from university. It’s been two months of hope and confusion and dread, super highs and mega lows. It’s been two months of fitful semi-employment. It’s been two months of beginner’s mistakes, and rushed-feeling epiphanies.

Guess what? This is no secret! Looking for a job is hard. Trying to find where you belong is hard. I haven’t got it all figured out, that’s for sure…

My family insisted I go back to the bush with them this weekend. It’s always good perspective to go back. I don’t do it enough. I was willingly stuffed into a little canoe with my whole family and a picnic to travel to an island where there is not a single connection back to the rest of the world. It does my blackened, caffeinated, big-city heart good.

Highlights include much sighting of wildlife – two deer, a blue heron, a loon, and a squirrel that jumped at me from a garbage can, and a bunny that we saved from my family’s killer cat. All in one weekend. That’s not including all the dead animals we saw too, including a tragic nest of baby turtles that some coons feasted on. Life is cheap for baby turtles.

Of course the local free weekly newspaper is always a hoot. Particularly I like the opinion pages, where the evils of female adornment share equal time with shopping cart disputes.

Mom’s cooking is amazing as always – the fresh rhubarb custard pie was superb. Fresh lettuce picked a few minutes ago makes city salad taste like cardboard.

The town I used to go to school in has, in the course of the four years since I moved away, almost totally changed. Big box stores are moving in. It is turning from a one traffic light town to a three-traffic light town. It will never be like it was.

On the bus back from the boonies, I read a couple new books.

The Machine That Changed The World, discovered via the Fashion Incubator, is the product of a study that examined different methods of manufacturing in the auto industry. Not a book I might have found on my own. Yet I find it fascinating. I did not fully understand the difference between craft, mass, and lean manufacturing before.

Confessions of a Window Dresser by Simon Doonan is not much as far as writing goes – a quick, aimless read – but it’s an amusing view into the life behind the windows. I’m inspired by his willingness to throw it all together, the haphazard way he wandered through life, and of course his tongue in cheek, perverse window dressing style.

Oh well, tomorrow’s another day! I’m going to do another little journalistic foray into a new subject, I’ve got to do some work, and after that I’m also going to have coffee with another Canadian fashion blogger.



This is my boyfriend Ray. This is our four year anniversary today! So I thought it was time I introduced him.

Ray: I am not very fashionable, but I appreciate people who are.

Danielle: Everyone’s probably really curious about you. Why don’t you describe what you do, what you’re into?

Ray: I do special effects for the film industry. Physical, in-camera effects in particular. I like robots, machining and industrial music. Danielle’s blog rocks. I don’t read it, though.


I picked up my degree this morning, and had a nice surprise – I was one of the few to graduate with honours. I never would have guessed – I did well, but I never really paid attention to my grades.

I also stopped by the library for a little reading – on Kathleen‘s suggestion I am beginning Paco Underhill’s Why We Buy… it looks pretty darn fascinating.

Via the English Cut, another great little bespoke tailoring blog – Martin Stall. Check out his shears, they’re incredible – custom made by a blacksmith! Aren’t tailors just adorable? I love how they seem to be embracing the blogging phenomenon more readily than fashion designers. Kind of interesting how new media gives an old niche a new life.

Speaking of new media, fashion design is adapting in some surprising ways – check out this video. I must admit I’m staying well away from Second Life because I know what’s good for me. I’m not a big fan of video games but this one is obviously digital crack – a world where you can design and wear whatever you like, plus you can fly? Don’t tempt me this way, internet.

I got an invite to participate in Toronto Alternative Fashion Week. I’m thinking of putting forward a proposal, time allowing, to present an installation that explores the idea of apparel manufacturing, kind of contrasting the rest of the material which is usually “art” or student projects. The FAT seems like a great vehicle for hype but it lacks a commercial purpose, which interests me especially as I am focusing on the marketing efforts concerning manufacturers these days which have the opposite problem, as commercial enterprises with an utter lack of hype. Plus, I could cover the event from the perspective of a participating designer. Hm… interesting subject or waste of time? What do you think?

Plus some new blogs to look at…

Everything you didn’t need to know about fashion straight from the mouth of a working stylist.

The Sewing Divas, discovered thanks to their recently hosting the Carnivale, are another great read, with lots of practical sewing tips, too.

New Yorkette is a happy discovery via Kathleen again. She’s a fit model and New Yorker cartoonist, and she writes an excellent blog about her life in the city.

the good life

I have a dream.

All I want is the good life.

See, I already have it pretty good. I have the good boyfriend, the good studio, the good family. The last piece of the puzzle is the good job.

I don’t care about prestigious job titles, big fancy companies, or even what category of sewn products I work in. I don’t want to move away to London or New York and work for some famous designer for nothing, and have to give up my beautiful studio to live in a matchbox.

I don’t care about having the “cool” job. Being a designer is not my top priority at this point.

I just want a steady job at an established sewn products company, a boss I respect, a clean working environment, and a short commute. I want to gain a practical understanding of how the apparel industry does business. I want a steady paycheck for a few years so I can pay off my student loans. I want to be treated well.

Is this really so unusual? When I express these things I get the gamut of reactions from disbelief to disappointment that I will be wasting my potential. I don’t get why my dream seems so hard to understand.

carnivale – ritual cloth


This is my piece of ritual cloth. I know I’m a little late for the Carnivale, but the the Sewing Divas gave us such a great subject.

It’s the first quilt my Mom ever made, for me, her first child. It has all sorts of scraps in it from friends, from my Nana’s stash, and I had it on my bed for basically my whole life, and brought it with me here. I still use it sometimes. It’s worn out from use and I have to patch it every now and then. My mom’s made a lot of quilts since then. One year she set up the quilting frame in my bedroom and I slept on a bed under the quilt for a summer. It’s such a simple little piece but it’s obviously a part of me and not at all disposable, even if it disintegrates into bare seams I’ll take it with me wherever I go.

The afghan on the couch is another piece of history. It was made by my great grandmother, who was a prolific maker of afghans – everyone in my family has at least one in their homes. It’s so amazing how our mothers just want to keep their families warm, and make these warm blankets for their offspring.