To me, it is as energizing and relaxing to build a website as it is to draw in a sketchbook. I like to do different things at different times. Drawing, reading, designing, cooking, and gardening, are all ways to express myself and are all facets of who I am. This blog is a current interest of mine. Hopefully you'll glean something new or interesting from it TO SPARK YOUR CREATIVITY.
(Above) This sketch is one of the dozens in my sketchbook. To keep drawing everyday, sometimes I play around with the mental gymnastics of organizing my wardrobe into a 'capsule' of mix and match outfits. I try to pick a color scheme and see what options I can make in different seasons. It keeps my mind churning and my hand drawing. It is relaxing to me. It also takes me back to my childhood and coloring books and crayons. It is kind of like playing with paper dolls. Being a visual learner, these drawings are just my way of 'thinking' on paper.
Why care about fashion? How we present ourselves is just another facet of who we are and what we do. It is what makes us unique. I know it is odd to be interested in 'fashion' when there are worldwide survival issues that need our attention and there are people who are homeless, hungry, and fighting for everyday essentials. I see the way of Mother Teresa, and her simply lifestyle, and by contrast, an interest in fashion may seem frivolous and materialistic.
But, what interests me about fashion is putting ourselves together in a way that adds intention and beauty in a civilized society. It's playing with color and pattern as in art, but wearing it. At a time when people are using fewer manners in public and language has deteriorated on television and in social situations, presenting ourselves thoughtfully, adds a touch of civility and structure to our lives. I remember my Grandmother Dorothy (see photo below), who dressed presentable EVERY single day. She would don her garters, girdle, slip, dress, earrings and necklace or brooch - like armor - ready for her everyday acts of kindness. If she was doing physical housework, she'd add her apron. It wasn't until she was in her late 70's and early 80's and when was unsteady on her feet that she took to wearing a blouse and 'slacks'. She always presented her self properly and respectfully and that is how she was perceived.
It may seem at odds that I am on a quest to reducing excess and yet I am interested in what to wear and what to buy. I don't think the two ideas are incongruent. I think we can use our interests in style to make better, strategic choices about what we have in our lives. I intend to use this site as a outlet and a forum for us to speak the same language and share ideas.
I hope we can discuss ways to polish our ourselves and our environments a bit in the process. As an artist, I love to notice the little things in life, and the beauty and function and I want to add more of that in my life without adding excess. I want to reduce my belongs in a functional way that allows me to live with less and make it work. That works for the wardrobe.
I really respect the work of Jennifer L. Scott. I stumbled upon her book Lessons from Madame Chic: 20 Stylish Secrets I Learned While Living in Paris because I have to admit I am turning into a bit of a Francophile and I mistakenly thought her book was going to be a how-to-guide for French fashion but it was so much more. It really spoke to my heart and subtly shifted my attitudes on lifestyle and purpose. If anything, she eloquently verbalized what I was feeling inside, and demonstrated that others are living in a way that addresses life with simplicity yet still paying attention to detail. She describes the Parisian way of putting intention and a finishing touch in all areas of life. One of the chapters in her book is about 'Looking Presentable Always' which could be applied to the home or person.
Here is a quote from Jennifer which I like.
"Looking presentable always. A concept that may seem obvious to many people, but is something I think we as a society desperately need to discuss. Looking presentable on a daily basis may initially seem like a shallow and superficial concept, but really it is about so much more than appearances. It's about respect. It's about tradition. It's about honoring formalities that seem to be going by the wayside."
So, thank you Jennifer! You and Madame Chic inspire me to use creativity and intention not only in the wardrobe but in all areas of life. Thanks for changing the way I think about clothing choices and family rituals. Thanks for inspiring me to draw what is on my mind whether it be landscapes or closets.
So why would an artist be interested in fashion? I think that Art can be about whatever inspires you.
What inspires you? What do you do to be creative? New recipes? Gardening? Scrapbooking?