The Perks of Being a Wallflower - My Story

Saturday, December 29, 2012 3 comments
Some moments enter our lives and change us forever. For many, it's a movie, a person, a book, an adventure, or a song that has defined us. But sometimes, the things that change us the most are the result of the mistakes & the mishaps. Life is 10% what happens to you, and 90% how you react to it.

When I was 9 years old, I found Stephen Chbosky's novel 'The Perks of Being a Wallflower' on my sister's bookcase. I had a natural curiosity for literature as a kid, largely due to my parent's strict nature and refusal to pay for cable TV. Any kid in the 90's without TV can tell you about making your own fun. For me, fun was flipping through book series' such as 'The Box Car Children', 'Sweet Valley', 'The Bailey School Kids', and 'Nancy Drew'. This particular day, I spotted a new neon green paperback in my sisters bookcase. I snuck it off its shelf and into its new home in my bunk bed, where I wedged it between the mattress and the wood frame for safety. 

I remember reading it and feeling indifferent. It was whatever. I put it back on the bookshelf and moved back to 'The Babysitters Club'. I didn't get it. I wasn't ready to understand it yet.  

Four years later, I was navigating my way through world war 3, more commonly known as middle school. The dreadful years that we are forced to define ourselves. Unlucky for me, I was a fucking nerd. I had just gotten braces (in addition to my glasses), never watched tv or played a single video game, was in every honors class and even the Knowledgemaster Club - it's like chess club but worse. I even gave up my lunch period so that I could be in both the Orchestra and Band. Arts were extra curricular. 

I came home one day after getting my braces tightened, feeling like the ugliest gremlin of an angsty human wreck.  So I shut my self in my room and cried. No one was ever going to like me. I was never going to have friends. I didn't belong anywhere. My alligator tears were symbolic of the beginning of the teenage angst years. You know, when you cry about nothing and everything at the same time? Through my tears a bright green book on my sisters bookshelf caught my eye. I remembered reading it a few years ago, but I didn't remember what it was about. "Maybe it was time to revisit," I thought.

I pulled the book out from its neighbors and took it to my bunk bed, where I read and I cried until it was over. I knew then that I was a wallflower, and I knew that I was going to be ok.

It's interesting how our teenage selves often know more about us than we know about ourselves now. When I was 14,15,16,17, I knew exactly who I was going to be, what I wanted to do and how I was going to do it. I had a reason to wake up every morning. When we get older, we start to compare ourselves to the expectations we had as teenagers of our adult lives. Am I married yet? Do I have a dog? Am I an astronaut? No. No. No. It's hard not to be critical of what we've become. Every year I grow older, it feels like one more year of failure. When I was 17, I thought that I'd be married at 23 and have a dog and a beachside apartment. The real 23 year old me doesn't have a real job, or a dog, is in debt from student loans, and the last thing on my mind is having a boyfriend. I can't even take care of myself, how am I supposed to look after someone else? Who am I? What am I supposed to be doing with my life? How did I get here? Charlie knew.

“So, I guess we are who we are for alot of reasons. And maybe we'll never know most of them. But even if we don't have the power to choose where we come from, we can still choose where we go from there. We can still do things. And we can try to feel okay about them.”  

Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it. It's not the our decisions in life that define us - it's what we take away from them. How we pick ourselves up from failure, how we rebuild our lives after things have fallen apart, how we deal with pain and suffering and sorrow and loss. What we find and learn about ourselves from love and lust and laugher and friendship. The particles of our being. These reactions, effects, affects define us. The billions of decisions we make each day compose us. And every once in awhile, you'll catch a glimpse of yourself in a sure moment - a moment of confidence and clarity - an ultimate understanding of who you are and what you've become. "And in that moment, I swear we were infinite."

Drea Sobieski, New York, NY, 2008, Silver Gelatin Prints 1-8

Sun-Drunk-Love - Tusk Collective


Introducing "Every Morning Comes the Sun" from Tusk Collective.  The lovely ladies of Tusk Collective share their creativity and passion for design by creating pieces that breathe fresh, tropical and erotic air. Don't even get me started on my obsession with the Madame Fate cape (below). Without further adieu, tap into your inner wanderlust and explore Tusk Collective.

Where did you meet?
We met drifting around our lazy coastal town, and got to know each other on escapades to the tropics.

How did you get into designing?
We're both inherently creative and our backgrounds in fashion & graphics were a catalyst to begin our own design ventures; It was just perfect timing with island life and the mix of our visions & inspirations that Tusk came about.

What are your favorite materials to work with?
Metals & leather; creating natural, handmade products that are designed to age with you, and one day tell their own story. 

What inspires you daily?
Sunshine & caffeine. Marrying a rockstar in Mexico ala Patti Hansen. Flowers in every room.

How would you describe the 'Tusk Collective' wearer?
Sun-drunk & wandering

What are some of your favorite places in New Zealand?
Opoutere's forest & ocean. The top of our local mountain. Undiscovered waterfalls. Fruit icecreams on a roadtrip. Birding on Great Barrier Island. Fields with live music. Home.

"Delivering thoughtfully curated collections to adorn both the body and abode. A collaboration between friends - we cultivate our design inspirations from our most loved destinations, creating relationships with loving craftsmen and together refining limited edition capsule collections."

Shop Tusk Collective online here. Follow them on Facebook here.

Metal Swoon

Friday, December 28, 2012 1 comments
When you meet me, you'll likely discover during our first handshake that my fingers are heavily adorned with metal jewelry. I confess: I'm a ring junkie. I don't know why or how it started, but I love having all of my fingers decorated with handcrafted, unique metal pieces. Some of them tell a story, and some are just a testament to designers that I believe in. The next piece to enter my collection will likely be one from Vanessa Mooney's beautiful line of boho, rock-and-roll and raw jewelry. Every piece is homemade in her downtown LA studio. Some of my favvies are below:

More here

Cara Delevingne X Hugh Lippe for The Journal #32

Wednesday, December 26, 2012 2 comments
Ok, I KNOW Cara Delevingne is making waves all across the internet right now, but I am no exception to her booming fan club. Her goofy personality, eccentric look and faboosh eyebrows have me captivated. Recently she graced the pages of The Journal #32, photographed by Hugh Lippe and styled by Joanne Blades. I have such Cara-fever, I seriously can't get enough.

Well Hung Heart

Kind of obsessed with the new single 'Devil' by CA-based band 'Well Hung Heart'. Their grunge rock sound is like the rockaholic lovechild of Rage Against the Machine and The Kills. Check out Greta Valenti, Robin Davey & Phil Wilson's firey new video below:

Throttled II

Tuesday, December 11, 2012 1 comments
Portland-based photographer Ray Gordon is kind of like the accidental badass that we all aspire to be. His photography is sexy. 

Last Saturday I went to the R&R Gallery for Throttled II, an exhibition of Ray Gordon's photography presented by LA Canvas & Comune. In addition to the 40 new works on display, there were also a handful of custom bikes around. I wish I had brought my camera, but here's a handful of his work from Throttled II, and some photos from the event, courtesy of The Self Centered Man.

View more of Ray's work here.