Monthly Archives

January 2017

Kechmara Designs

I’ve been dying to collaborate with Kechmara Designs, a local Moroccan-made rug shop at 1104 R Street in WAL (Warehouse Artist Lofts). The owner Ali travels to Morocco to hand select the rugs, some of which are decades old! My visit to Kechmara was really fun and informative – you can tell that Ali is very passionate about his business and wants to educate people on these beautiful works of art, so run don’t walk, and check out his beautiful shop.

I chose a beautiful Azilal hybrid rug to match because I loved the vibrant pops of color. Azilal carpets are produced by the Ait Bouzid, Ait Shokmane, Ait Bou Oulli and Ait Bougmez tribes of the Ailal province in the High Atlas Mountains of Morocco. They are single-knot carpets which have a background of white wool against designs executed in undid brown or black wool – some Azilal carpets are highlighted with additional colors. Colorful Azilals are extremely rare and almost extinct, they truly are magnificent pieces of art which really depict the country’s history. I gravitated toward one adorned with symbols of the Berber people in North Africa from the 1960’s and the coloration mimics the confetti-like patterning on a flirty Hemant and Nandita cold shoulder dress that I’ve had my eye on!

 

Hemant and Nandita dresses definitely have a bohemian vibe with their intricate patterns, trademark tassels and feminine silhouettes. I wanted my overall “look” to mimic vibe of Kechmara, the uniqueness of this particular rug, and most of all, I wanted to do something different and have fun with it!

 

The Wild Wavy Hair Routine

I mentioned in my Instastory that I would be sharing my wild wavy hair routine with everyone. There are definitely some key products that I use to achieve this messy and effortless look and they are all within Oribe‘s line.

First, I start with wet hair and and use a dollop of Grandiose Hair Plumping Mousse on the crown of my head. I work the product through at my roots and in general, less is more here. Using the same minimalist principle, I then use their Imperial Blowout Transformative Styling Cream (literally less than a dime-sized amount) on my ends up to about midway up my hair. Again, less is more!

From there I use my prized blowdryer, Babyliss Pro Volare V1, which all of my friends love to borrow because it dries any kind of hair – long, thick, wavy (basically what I have!) – in a fraction of the time that most dryers take! I start by drying the roots with my head upside down and work my way through my mass of hair to get it fully dry. No need for a round brush or anything, just trying to dry the hair and allow the product to do its volumizing!

Once the hair is dry, I section it off into the first bottom third (I just the rest in a topknot). My favorite tool to achieve the messy curl look is  Paul Mitchell Neuro Curl Wand because it heats up incredibly fast, holds heat, and the curls are more wavy and less ringlet like. Then take small sections of hair (I prefer medium sized sections as larger makes for looser wave and smaller makes for tighter curls) and I curl them starting from the front, curling away from my face and alternating between each direction with every section. It is definitely not a precise method and it doesn’t need to be! Once I have the first third completed I use the Superfine Strong Spray to set the curls. I love this hairspray because it allows your hair to be flexible while still holding the curl / wave! Plus, like all of their products, it makes my hair smell so good!

From there I work my way to the top with the other two thirds, finishing each section with the hairspray. Once all of my hair is curled, I like to run my fingers through to separate the sections so they aren’t so uniform. The final touch, and in my option what makes this look “messy” is the the Dry Texturizing Spray, which is essentially the hair gods’ gift to Earth. Similar to to dry shampoo, it boosts volume without making your hair sticky. I apply the product at my roots and sometimes a little here and there in the front to fluff things up!

Tools:

Products:

 

If you want to purchase Oribe’s products locally (Sacramento), you can find their entire line and more at Shapes For Hair at 3001 J Street #100, Sacramento, CA 95816.

Crocker Art Museum: Jennifer Bartlett

I’ve been visiting the Crocker Art Museum since I was a child, and when the museum underwent a major expansion and reopened in 2010, an incredible seascape by Jennifer Bartlett became one of the museum’s most iconic pieces. The painting is the first piece visitors see upon arrival; its sheer size (thirty feet long), luminous palate, soothing subject and intricate brushwork lures viewers for closer inspection. The painting is titled Pacific Ocean and was painted in 1984.

About Jennifer Bartlett:

Born in Long Beach, California, Bartlett studied at Mills College in Oakland and then at the Yale School of Art and Architecture. In the 1980’s, she painted scenes derived from photographs. She considered such paintings twice removed from reality: the first being the act of photography itself; the second, painting from the reproduction.

 

 

It’s easy to see why I’ve wanted to match this painting since the beginning of Dressed To Match, and it’s probably also easy to see why it has taken me so long to find a dress that goes with it! But like they say, patience is a virtue, and I finally stumbled on an amazing collaborative effort by Bay Area designer Erica Tanov and Berkeley artist Tabitha Soren that fit the bill:

 

Here’s a little bit about Tanov’s limited edition apparel collection that features Soren’s “Panic Beach” series:

The rugged, northern California coastline and the power and beauty of its waves, captured by Berkeley artist Tabitha Soren are the subject of a  collection created in Spring 2015, by Berkeley designer Erica Tanov. The photographic series has resulted in a limited-run clothing and home accessories collection this summer, accompanied by a photographic art show of the artist’s work, entitled “Panic Beach.” Starting initially with an image from Soren’s Panic Beach series, Tanov works with the artwork, transferring the photograph by digital screen-printing textiles, which is then subsequently fashioned into silk blouses, dresses, pillows and more. The Anthropologie dress, now currently available, is based on the original from the past season.

“Capturing these pictures was a way for me – and an invitation for the viewer – to dive into the unpredictability and complexity of life. It’s not as if we have much choice about the havoc anyway,” says artist Tabitha Soren. “Working alongside Erica Tanov, it was an exciting challenge to see how my work could be translated into wearable pieces of art and home accessories.”

 

About Erica Tanov:

Born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, Erica Tanov is a designer who seeks beauty in all forms.  Working with the finest opulent fabrics, embracing meticulous construction and subtle detailing, yet always drawn to raw, natural beauty, both Tanov’s clothing and homeware collections exude a relaxed, lived-in grandeur. The collections demonstrate her vision of bringing together understated luxury and glamour with ease and comfort. While most of her apparel collection is made in San Francisco, she also works with traditional artisans around the world to keep their unique techniques and crafts alive. After studying at Parsons School of Design in New York, and subsequently working for designer Rebecca Moses, Erica launched her eponymous clothing label in 1990 then returned to the Bay Area in 1994 to open her first retail store. Today, there are two Erica Tanov retail stores in Berkeley and Larkspur, which carry her clothing as well as her expanding homeware collection. She is also part of a designer collective at 97 Crosby in New York, which showcases pieces from her year-round essentials collection. Her home, stores and design studio have been featured in various books, blogs and magazine, including Elle Decoration UK, Martha Stewart Living, Anthology, 7×7, Remodelista, “Undecorate” (Clarkson/Potter), “Bringing Nature Home” (Rizzoli) and “The New Bohemians” by Justina Blakeney (Abrams).

 

About Tabitha Soren:

Tabitha Soren’s work visualizes psychological states; the internal weather that storms through each of us. Her “Running” series depicted the flight or flight response. “Fantasy Life” is about what it looks like to try to touch greatness. “Surface Tension” foregrounds the anxiety we navigate in the struggle to adapt to technological domination. The large oceanscapes of “Panic Beach” upend the viewer as panic attacks do. Her work is in the collections of the New Orleans Museum of Art, the Ogden Museum of Southern Art and the Oakland Museum of California. She left a career in television in the late 19902 to start another as a photographer. Soren was born in San Antonio, Texas, and now lives in Berkeley, California.

Atou Design

One thing I’ve discovered in the past year is that Instagram knows no bounds and its power to connect people is astonishing! Between my original matches, I like to regram content I find on other people’s pages and it was during this search for something unique, creative, fun, and “matchy” that I came across Atou Design.

 

 

It’s easy to see why I immediately fell in love with Atou’s illustrations. I loved the idea that her work is essentially dressed to match “in reverse” – meaning, she creates the art based on the fashion! Her illustrated girls have spunk, confidence, and style; and in my option, they really steal the show from their model counterparts!

 

 

Atou and I connected a few months ago and we thought it would be fun to create what I think is best described as a double dressed to match! She has such a great eye for composition and I especially appreciate her ability to infuse life and personality into her illustrations. I marvel at the amount of detail she replicates in each piece, down to every color, texture, and pattern.

 

 

Here’s a bit more about Atou:

Atou is a designer and illustrator based in Taipei, Taiwan who has always had a passion for design and painting. During a family trip to Okinawa at the age of four, shepicked out a pink Little Twin Stars sewing machine, which would inspire Atou to teach herself pattern-making and sewing. With time she learned to make dolls and clothing, so it was only natural for her to become a designer!

Atou has her fashion degree from Shih Chien University in Taiwan. After years of work experience, she went to the UK to pursue her Master’s degree in Design Management at Birmingham City University. Atom’s stay in the UK broadened her horizons and taught her to trust her instincts. She has worked in the fashion industry in Taipei, Shanghai, and Billund and her professional career has developed from being a fashion designer, fashion editor, to recently an illustrator.

When Atou started her Instagram page at the ned of 2014, she started by showcasing her daily doodles. She says, “It is amazing how the social network brings people with the same taste together. I have met so many talented people here and have had chances to collaborate with esteemed fashion houses such as Mira Mikati, Celia Kritharioti, etc. I feel most satisfied focusing on my creating process and it would be great to have people love my design and appreciate my work.”

 

My purpose in starting this “passion project” was to express my creativity in a fun and unique way. Over a year later I feel like I am continuing to do this and much, much more. The ability to connect with other creatives to produce visually interesting images is incredibly rewarding. Thank you for the opportunity, Atou!

See more of Atou’s work here:  Instagram   Facebook  Website  Etsy Shop

#museumselifeday

It seems like there is a day dedicated to everything and today I found out that January 18th’s is a day I happen to know a lot about: the museum selfie!

Coincidentally, I had already planned to visit the Crocker Art Museum in Sacramento this morning to do a match, so it seemed pretty fitting that I should take a selfie while I was at it! Typically I’ll have a friend, my co-worker Eric, or my sister, Natalie, take my pictures for the blog so attempting to get the right angle was kind of hilarious. Now I really know what selfie sticks are for! Luckily Eric captured me at the right moment and we basically got two in one – a match and a “selfie” at the same time!

I’ve been a fan of Hemant and Nandita since I first tried on one of their silk dresses at Anthroplogie about two years ago. I’ve done a few matches with their clothing (one from a long time ago and this one paired with Add Fuel’s piece via the  Sacramento Mural Festival) and what I adore about their clothing is how unique each piece is! Oftentimes the dresses come with some sort of embellishment – like tassels, beautiful buttons, embroidery, and other beading, for example – and the fit is great, too. Here are some of my favorite dresses right now:

 

 

This dress is a fun match with Julie Heffernan’s painting, Moving Out, from 2010. The piece is part of the permanent collection of the museum and my first thought when looking at it is of a painting called The Garden Of Earthy Delights by Hieronymus Bosch, a Dutch painter in the 1500’s. Obviously the palette is similar and perhaps there are far less figures in Heffernan’s painting, but the chaotic energy is identifiably similar.

Heffernan’s painting is described by the museum as such:

Heffernan creates visual stories full of twists, turns, and psychological tension. Often there is a keen sense of chaos. In this painting, many things appear off-kilter, especially for the two figures that lumber across a rickety bridge. Behind them trails a massive net in which is gathered the weight of the world – a load of straining, spilling, and toppling out of human control. Heightening the tenor of urgency is the buzzard surveying the scene.”

 

The Manetti Shrem Museum Of Art: Roland Petersen

As a UC Davis Art History alumni, I was very excited when I heard that university would be getting its very own museum, The Manetti Shrem Museum of Art. The museum takes the place of the Nelson Gallery, which opened in 1976 and was named after Richard L. Nelson, the chair of the UC Davis Art Department.

The grand opening exhibition, Out Our Way, celebrates the development of the Art Department through paintings, sculptures, and prints by 12 artists who Nelson hired during his tenure at the university. These include Wayne Thiebaud, Robert Arneson, William T. Wiley, Roy De Forest, Roland Petersen, Manuel Neri, Ralph Johnson, Ruth Horsting, Daniel Shapiro, Tio Giambruni, Jane Garritson and John Baxter.

The museum itself has an architecturally stunning exterior and the exhibition space within is spacious and inviting. The venue is such an incredible asset to the university as it now provides a space to exhibit the immense collection of art owned by the school.

During my first visit, I chose to match a painting by Roland Petersen, whom I have a personal connection with. Several years ago we re-sold an original painting of Roland’s, which eventually led us to representing his work. Through this experience I have learned so much about his style, process, and oeuvre. While most will recognize his iconic picnic scenes featuring abstracted planes of color set in place and time by solitary figures, I chose to match an early, completely abstracted painting called “Cloud Shadows and Fields,” from 1973.