31 July 2010

Extra Special: Grace Coddington

In my insular (and delusional) world there are many idols.  Josephine Baker, Daphne from Scoopy Doo and Edward Gorey are three names that come to (my rattled) mind...another is the visionary Grace Coddington.  Anyone who has viewed the documentary The September Issue knows why.  If you haven't seen the film, watch it and all will make sense.  Now, I know I pushed the limit with my Brimfield wander but I just want to add one last Brim related post...my big jackpot score of the show:  A first edition copy of Grace Coddington's tome which is currently out of print and fetching 3-4 digits used or new.  Yes, the slip cover here is a bit farm-field-worn but that didn't stop my sun burnt hand from grabbing it off a pile of odds and ends.  The Brimfield price? $20.  It was the quickest transaction of the day.  The seller thought the book was too heavy to lug back home....I was more than happy to bear the weight.

30 July 2010

Distraction: Newcastle

Sometimes it really helps to have low expectations.  Yes, that is a loaded statement but I'm referring specifically to a film that has me dreaming of Australian beaches, surfers and the pangs of a first crush.  First let me set the scene: late night, glass of wine, summer breeze blowing, dog napping, television remote pointed, channels flipping and a deluge of woeful programming.  Then I chanced upon the opening of a film...a montage of quiet scenes from a place I didn't recognize.  Fast forward a bit and I was engrossed....big rays of sun, the ocean both beautiful and frightening, that Aussie-where-are-the-subtitles-accent, surfers in all their freckled glory,  and a gay subplot presented quite tenderly...blame it on the late hour or the wine but, by the closing credits, I was trying to decide if it was too late to move to Australia, bleach my hair and take up surfing.  The film is Newcastle.  Give it a viewing and, oy, don't judge me Mate!

29 July 2010

My Future Home: Mix & Match

My future home will be much like my present abode: a collage of high and low, an assemblage of tasteful and trashy, an all-you-can-eat buffet of styles & periods that somehow work together...like a Garanimals version of decor...just much much bigger...turned up way more than a hair.  Mammoth chandelier next to freshly washed delicates in a room with perfectly peeling surfaces?  Why not?  Have a seat and stay awhile...I've a pitcher of sangria calling your name.
Photo by Michael Eastman.

28 July 2010

Rhyme nor Reason: Tank you.

Sometimes it's hard to say why something (or someone for that matter) strikes ones fancy....perhaps if this were a different day with a different mood I would have walked right by this pair of tall red tanks reclining in the dark basement corridor of a massive building complex ....discarded relics of another time, another structure now long forgotten...still there was something about that red...audaciously bright in the shadows and those oversized wheels waiting patiently to roll away.

27 July 2010

Distraction: Hardware Store

Blame it on my butch-side but I can spend hours in a good hardware store.  By good I don't mean those airplane-hanger sized retailers with aisles as wide as a freeway.  I prefer smaller, mom and pop establishments....old school hardware stores....the kinda place with dark walls heavy with wooden drawers, rotating bins of nails, shelves upon shelves of boxes, cans, bottles and tall check-out counters with tops covered by a collage of pencil marks, nicks and scratches.  I can lose a good chunk of time wandering each aisle, examining tools, admiring packaging.  If the hardware store happens to be in a foreign country than I'm in even more trouble because I have no self control.  I'll buy random hooks, knobs, odd shaped shovels, balls of colorful twine, light fixtures, brushes, hammers, metric tape measures, decorative upholstery tacks...all the things you want to have bulging in your luggage as you wheel it through customs.

26 July 2010

Rhyme nor Reason: Style

I love a man with his own sense of style...someone not afraid to roll the fashion dice and risk a loss or big win.  Take this gent here: gold jacket with billowy sleeves, checkered pants, blue booties and a basket of arrows at the ready.  Be still my heart.  And don't even get me started on that up-do or the matching beard, moustache and eyebrow in sophisticated grey.  I am a tad concerned about the sallow complexion though....perhaps my new fashion plate and I need to spend some time poolside or by the shore?

25 July 2010

Distraction: Comment (allez vous)? Part Deux.

To follow-up on my distracting whine regarding lost comments a few days ago I am pleased to report that all comments are back and in their proper place.  I don't know the who, what, why or how and I'm not asking.  I'm just amazed that all is right in the wee world of my blog....which brings to mind a song by one of my all time 80's favorites: Culture Club.  A cheery ditty about miracles.  The video, in my opinion, is one of Culture Club's best...incredible styling....tongue-firmly-placed-in-cheek visual metaphor of a people-sized board game...I love the Japanese woman in full geisha regalia and electric guitar...and, of course, there is Boy painted like a peacock, hair flowing and flashing that impish grin that lets you know he's in on the joke. Get your miracle dose right here.

24 July 2010

Rhyme nor Reason: Filled to the Brim

My inner ear is hearing a collective shout of "enough already!" so I will end my lengthy wander through Brimfield with this last image from the field.

23 July 2010

Rhyme nor Reason: Brimming Over 7

Fragile sequined bits with strands of delicate glass beads attached...mementoes of circus costumes, a life lived high on a wire or flying through the air under a giant striped tent filled with the smell of popcorn and anticipation....the cheers of children and adults alike rising into the night and far below hundreds of faces looking skyward.  All this found in the shade of a massive tree, nestled in a small wooden case with tiny metal handle like a suitcase for the smallest hand to hold.

22 July 2010

Rhyme nor Reason: Brimming Over 6

Maybe it's the list of places never been....destinations that hold the promise of yet-to-be-discovered wonders or, perhaps, simply a row of strip malls, a gas station, some tumble weeds and a Dairy Queen by the only street light in town.  Still my wandering self would gladly visit all if only for a quick visit and an ice cream cone....save for Hospital....I'll take a rain check on that destination.  Thanks anyway.  

21 July 2010

Rhyme nor Reason: Brimming Over 5

Almost enough to make me forget all about antiques, don some overalls instead and get to clearing a plot of land out back for a new crop of edibles.  Almost.

20 July 2010

Rhyme nor Reason: Brimming Over 4

A weighty coat of chain mail lined in a wonderful shade of faded indigo...the fabric beautifully scarred by  hand-stitched repairs...small pinches of gathered cloth and squares of patches bordered by evenly spaced stitches.  The only closure this one tie....a knotted bit of coral holding tight for centuries.

19 July 2010

Distraction: Comment (allez vous)?

And now, a brief interruption: I'm the first to admit that computer techie mumbo jumbo is not my forte.  Still, I thought I was doing a good thing when I switched this blog to its own domain....simply www.diaryofawanderingeye.com instead of www.diaryofawanderingeye.blogspot.com....I thought it looked nicer...sounded better.  So, I clicked on some Yes boxes, clicked on some Agree boxes and...voila!  Transformation complete.  Unfortunately, I didn't realize that all my reader comments would be wiped out in the process...I'm pretty sure they forgot to include that warning in the switcheroo (my technical term).  So, I've fired off some emails to the powers that be asking if a technical wizard can wave a magic mouse and restore my reader comments but, sadly, I imagine my emails and comments floating about weightless in a vast virtual universe never to be seen again.  If you are one of the kind readers who took the time to comment I apologize and ask that you comment again as many times as you like...I promise I won't be fiddling with any more domain sh-tuff ever again.  And what does all this have to do with this image?  Absolutely nothing...I just like this photo of some vintage trim sparkling in the bedroom.  Now, back to our previously scheduled posting...

Rhyme nor Reason: Brimming Over 3

Sometimes all it takes is big ol' flat palmed slap of color right across the face to wake me up and get me moving....works in a farm field or on a Monday morn.

18 July 2010

Rhyme nor Reason: Brimming Over 2

A collage of striped buoys spilling across an expanse of green field...perfectly faded colors fading even more in the bright sun....the vision making me feeling quite buoyant in spite of the heavy heat.

17 July 2010

Rhyme nor Reason: Brimming Over 1

Pardon my single-mindedness but I can't stop sharing more images from Brimfield....please humor me and my wandering eyes but they saw so much there worth sharing here.  In fact for the next week I'll be sifting through my photos, gathering up a random sampling of favorites for (hopefully) your viewing pleasure.  No objections please!

16 July 2010

Rhyme nor Reason: Strappy

Perhaps it was the heat.  Or the fact that my heavy head just wanted to rest awhile in a patch of shady grass.  Or maybe my eyes were tired of table upon table and booth after booth of assorted stuff.  Whatever the reason, I was taken with this tangle of straps...forgotten in a square of green at Brimfield....sturdy strong ties for tents looking like delicate gift wrap ribbon discarded once the present is torn open.

15 July 2010

Favorites: Brimfield Antique Show

Even though it was hotter than Hades I still found myself standing in the middle of a farm field 70 miles west of Boston surrounded by truck loads of legitimate antiques, vintage treasures and a generous sprinkling of, well, Early-American junk (both covetable and non).  Only an antique show as sprawling as Brimfield will get me up at an unnatural hour, rubbing my eyes as I try to focus on the incredible array of merchandise on display.  Of course, just as intriguing as some of the antiques were the participants at Brimfield, sellers and buyers alike....I overheard a plenitude of stimulating conversations but my favorite of the day was a lengthy discourse on the merits of shooting at paint cans in the woods...apparently, when hit low enough, the paint can erupts in quite an impressive explosion of color....which made me picture a paint splattered circle of trees...a multi colored environmental homage to Jackson Pollock somewhere deep, deep, deep in the woods...the excess pigment dripping down, splashing on rocks, twigs, dirt or a passing squirrel whose friends will point and giggle at his spotted coat.

14 July 2010

If I Were A Girl: Hair Color

If I were a girl, I'm pretty sure I would have a lovely shade of hair color....a given right?  I imagine something unexpected...reddish....auburn.....my flowing locks a swirl of autumn colors like a maple leaf in October.  Think less Little Orphan Annie and more Rita Hayworth circa Gilda.  My girlish self would be the envy of many a mousy brown headed lass and to think such an unusual shade of hair color would be 100% natural...of course!  So obviously, if I were a girl, I wouldn't need to color my hair although my inner girl was definitely tempted when I spied this sign with technicolor wheel spinning seductively.

13 July 2010

Covet: Jackpot

Another image of bounty from the vintage jackpot I mentioned last week....cha ching!

12 July 2010

My Future Home: Shhhh

I'm not a big fan of the 'shabby chic' look.  In fact, I usually change that second word with a well-placed S and T.  Something about all that white washed wood and draped furniture makes me think of powdery sweet room sprays and chubby armed cherubs.  Shudder.  Still, bias aside, I can't deny the charm of this rather shabby cottage nestled in the Catskills.  Although with surroundings as lovely as these, I wouldn't mind if my future home were a mere shack be it shabby or shitty.

11 July 2010

Rhyme nor Reason: Sports Fan

Even though I'm not much of a sports fan I do appreciate an athlete in a well-fitting uniform...I've had to sit through many a sports game surrounded by peanut shells in beer soaked stadiums or raucous fans in beer soaked bars and since I'm not one to feign interest convincingly I've gained an appreciation of the sports uniform...specifically how said uniform fits the male form.  Most recently, I've endured copious amounts of World Cup action and, I admit, I have been seduced by the multi-culti competition not to mention ample toned leg in short short visuals.  Still, this here is the type of soccer match I would gladly buy a ticket for....front row center please!  Pass the warm, watery beer and that jumbo bag of peanuts in the shell!  Oh....wait...I believe these are rugby players....oops.  Oh well, close enough.

10 July 2010

Covet: Skateboards

These are sculptural pieces by the artist/sculptor George Peterson.  They are made from actual discarded skateboards that Mr. Peterson has painted and carved and grouped.  I would love to see a large expanse of wall filled with rows upon rows of these pieces.  Check out more skateboards here

09 July 2010

Favorites: Christian Lacroix

My enjoyment of the couture season is now somewhat dampened by the absence of Christian Lacroix.  His couture collection was always a highlight...the theatrical romance of it all...the incredible details and the striking color combinations...it was easy to fall under the spell of a visionary like M. Lacroix.  
Fashion Monsters 2007 by Christian Lacroix

08 July 2010

My Future Home: Hand(les)

Once again one of my favorite blogs steers me toward trouble....an auction for incredible vintage home decor like these circa 60's German door handles...I'd love to install these on a set of double doors in my future home.

07 July 2010

Favorites: Bowl

Anyone who has read a post or two on this blog is aware of the fact that I am prone to more than a few materialistic obsessions (insert guilty face and shoulder shrug here) so it should be no surprise that I have a thing for...bowls.  I can't help myself.  I love their generous receptive nature, the incredible range of silhouettes and shapes, their ability to safely cradle a diverse assortment of things...edible or non....solid or liquid.  This is the latest addition to my collection...hand-painted, ceramic, Japanese... purchased at a shop in Osaka where I gently but assertively wrestled it from another shopper's hand...we reached for it at the same time and I should have been gracious and released my grip but that's the thing about an obsession, it takes hold and it doesn't let go.

06 July 2010

If I Were a Girl: Rolling Along

If I were a girl I would learn to just go with things....roll with the fashion punches...let 'em be and make 'em work.  Hair not so cooperative this morning?  Try a new larger look.  Fringe a bit on the long side?  Let it hang and drag.  Shoes a tad higher than normal?  Take smaller steps, walk more slowly and be sure to enjoy the view from higher heights.
Photo by Mario Testino from French Vogue

05 July 2010

Covet: Vintage Fabric

Nothing makes my vintage-loving heart beat faster than discovering a flea market jackpot....those rare occurrences when I chance upon a veritable mother lode of dusty, aged goodies...the slot machine in my mind becomes a symphony of sounds like a roar of stadium cheers, lights flashing and the shiniest of red cherries lined up neatly three in a row.  This jackpot hit in the most unlikeliest of places: a busy intersection in Tokyo...there in the shadow of glittery billboards and stylish shops I spied rolling racks of vintage kimonos and cardboard boxes filled with neatly tied bundles of vintage obis.  I thought the oppressive humidity was playing a trick on my over-heated mind...in fact, in my rush to get past all the shoppers congregated on the corner, I passed right by this jackpot of textile wonders but something about the tarnished glimmer of a golden thread, there in the far corner of my eye, made me stop in my tracks (much to the dismay of the shoppers marching behind me).  Further proof that one should always keep both eyes open lest a jackpot be missed right under(tired)foot.

04 July 2010

If I Were A Girl: Fireworks

If I were a girl I would know all about making an explosive entrance when the time was right...Happy Fourth of July!
Via the NYPL.

03 July 2010

Rhyme nor Reason: Thing

There are times when it is best not to ask...simply nod your head and offer a smile and back away slowly...

01 July 2010

Rhyme nor Reason: Cherries

A big bowl of cherries just seemed appropriate for the first day of July...don't ask me how, don't ask me why.