Posts Tagged ‘culture’

Hey Betty!

I’ve never been one to hide my big, fat girl crush on Chanel. The Mademoiselle has been a subject of countless hours of conversation (to perhaps less interested, long-suffering friends and loved ones) and dog eared tomes of her life and work have a special corner of the bowing shelves of my bookcase. It seems fitting to wax poetic, as I just bought my first bottle of No. 5. Chanel herself picked every aspect of the scent, rejecting many prototypes to pick what is still today’s parfum: a deep, complex aroma, bold as it is timeless.

My Chanel Shrine: all of which were gifts save for the two large bottles of perfume.

Chanel eau, of course, seems like an insane luxury of Parisienne women, with their crisp suits perfectly pressed as they have their Pinot Noir in a classy café. True, it may be unnecessary in the grand scheme of things. But there are few things on earth that can make me feel so special, so beautiful, sensual, and distinctly woman. I got my first bottle as a gift from Jon’s mom; an incredibly beautiful, thoughtful gift from an indescribibly classy woman who knew how much I loved the Chanel story. She braved the ice covered streets of Paris to visit the Chanel flagship shop and brought me back a crystal tube of the lightest pink lipgloss and this little vial of warm, spicy glory.

The scent will always conjure up these memories. Every time I catch a whiff of the amber-colored zest, or see that medicinal, crystal vial, I think of the remarkable longevity of the scent on my clothes, the seat of my car, the couch where I knit, and the gift lovingly brought from the City of Light.

lots of amour,



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dearest mamers,

i know i was wearing this dress in my last post, but it is so damn cute i can barley peel it off my body.  it fits like a dream and has so many happy colors!! i can’t resist it hanging there in my closet, so it hasn’t spent much time in there.  i wasn’t feeling as cocky as the other day when i sported it with my pink turban headscarf and pearls, so this time i kind of toned it down with some grey and navy accessories.

we were at the portland museum of art to see ‘the allure of the automobile’ witch i have plenty of pictures of, but that’s another post.  there were a couple of paintings that really caught my eye, and i thought of sharing them with you first!

i heard a nearby couple giggling as i explained to tom about how this painting reminds me of my coffee from starbucks.  the green logo, the pink lipstick and the yellowish coffee dribble.

i almost expect to see my awkward reflection in the side of this car when i gawk at its photo-realism.

anywho, i hope it’s alright that i didn’t reference any of the artists’ names or the actual names of these paintings, because i didn’t read any of the little placards next to the pieces.



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hey betty!

when i lived in sweden, i asked my friend caroline what she was thinking of wearing in the upcoming winter season: what made your typical swedish girl tick? she kind of laughed, and answered “svart, svart, svart… med svart!” (black, black, black… with black!) she was bang on; all i saw throughout växjö, göteborg, and stockholm was girls and guys head to toe in black, with pops of red and white.

if you check out the spring 2011 pret-a-porter show of swedish fashion house extraordinaire, acne, you’ll see that nothing’s changed at all.

everything about swedish fashion feels streamlined, modern, and just plain cool. if you spend a few hours people watching in stockholm (which i did and could have all day) you’ll see every permutation of the theme, and whimper with the sheer chic of it all. the fashion echoes the architecture and furniture design; look at your local ikea and you can see a chair or table that would look great with some cheap monday slacks and a gina tricot top.

i love the light and dark mix, and the modern flair of swedes. it’s a simple look that can be highly accessorized for evening, or worn plain for day time.

❤ maems.

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part three of my mini-series, the vintage blog: articles from my previous blog since gone.

look books

magazines. my coffee tables are loaded with them, my bookshelf overrunning with them. under the bed, on the desk, in the bathroom (who doesn’t, c’mon). i keep magazines where ever they will fit. vogue, elle, allure, teen vogue, lucky, glamour, seventeen. i should buy stock in anna wintour for goodness sake. these glossies were filled end to end with advertisements of  things i could never hope to afford, even on the glamorous student salary i have now (heh).

so what’s a gal to do? look at these printed arcs of the covenant, cry, get them all tear-soggy, look at them again, feel rage that you cannot afford such gems, plunk them in the recycling in defeat?

why not let them work for you! in addition to being a great way to recycle your mags, you’ll be doing yourself a great service vis-a-vis thrifting, in a simple, fun way.

1. flip once through your ‘zines.  get all the joy out of them that you will, because baby, they’ll be gone soon! make sure you save your favorite articles; cut out the ones that move you, and save them for your look book.

2. bust out some post-its or the like.

3. flip through your magazine again, this time marking anything that catches your eye with a post-it. that great gown from givenchy, the brown brogues by burberry, marvelous man-skirt a la marc jacobs… you get the drift.

4. flip once more through, skipping around and seeing if there was anything to-die-for that you had missed.

5. rip all the pages out that you marked! either rip around the items you marked, or take scissors and carefully cut out items.

6. using either copy paper or card stock, or whatever you have in your recycle bin, tape or glue the items down. slip em in a binder if you feel so inclined.

7. grab a pen, and start writing down what you love about each item. is it the color of the bright orange hat that has you entranced, or is it the fact that it’s a beret? is it the silhouette of the dress or the lace trim? was that whole editorial to die for?  figuring out what draws you to each item will help you in your next step!

8. hike on over, hop on your bike, jump on the train, or start up that car and head to your favorite thrift or vintage shop, your newly complied “look book” in tow. with your nerves of steel, joie de vivre, and complete disregard for what others may think, flip on through that book, right in the store! take a look at the aspects of what you tore out, and start sifting through the racks. does the $3.00 dress match some of the aspects of one or more of your attributes? pull it off, try it on! you’ll find that pieces will be easier find if you have a jumping off point.

if you’re a more ‘virtually’ inclined person, there’s a great website called polyvore that is essentially the same thing! i’m partial to tearing things out of magazines so that my mags get a little more life out of them, i get to keep my favorite articles and clothing in one place, and i get a great rainy day craft project!

❤ mae

image via living green with bean

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hey betty!

lately, i’ve spent hours on my computer, scouring the interweb for anything i can find about the french new wave movement of the late 50s/early 60s. the new wave applied mostly to the shift to realism in films, capturing the beauty in reality with quick jump cuts and close-ups, but it also was reflected in music, art, and fashion.

the idea behind the new wave look was to encapsulate the extraordinary in daily life, or what may be perceived as mundane. sailor shirts, simple palettes of black and white, nude lips and wide eyes paved the way for what most of us embrace as the classic french chic: the eternal cafe dweller, the art house fiend with her jaunty beret and a cigarette clamped between her teeth, the photographer, and so forth. all the things that conjure up images of the french je ne sais quoi seem to have roots in the new wave!

so what are the new wave essentials?

  • a loose fitting navy-inspired long sleeve, that can be worn with pants during the day, or a black a-line skirt for the evening.
  • dark, cat’s eye sunglasses. none of the paris hilton salad-plate-sized shades here! smaller is the key, but with a memorable shape.
  • oversized knitwear that looks like it could have been pulled from your boyfriend’s closet, but with a feminine twist, such as a bright ribbon or a pencil skirt.
  • simple, simple hair. this is perhaps the most crucial of all. who has time to make sure every strand is in place when you lead the exciting life of a french new waver!? go for eyebrow-grazing fringe, straggly long locks, a tight pixie cut, or unkempt curls.

have fun, pop in some classic jean-luc goddard flicks, and vive la french new wave!

❤ mae

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empathy for mae

hey hey hey mae mae!!

so, my situation may not have been nearly as dire as yours, but i’ve also experienced a load of homelessness this summer, but thankfully “summer vacation” is over. tom and i are sufficiently not homeless as per our lease signing at 9:00 this morning, and are effectively starting our Time Machine here, aside for computers, our tv, and compact florescent lighting, we are going completly vintage.  we don’t have much at the moment, as we have only brought to oregon what we could pack in our non-vintage ford taurus.  tom even went on an noneventful attempt at dumpster diving this afternoon looking for a sofa, or perhaps a chair, or anything to furnish our naked, naked apartment. well, they did just open a goodwill in wilsonville, so we will continue to scout for new, old furniture and accessories for our time machine. so, soon, once i have more than a computer, chair and a tv, i’ll post pictures of hopefully well decorated apartment, so you can be totally jealous, and you can post pictures of your BRAND NEW PURCHASED HOME so i can be totally jealous!!

love you gurl!

❤ betty

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hey betty! i’ve been significantly absent lately, but i have a pretty amazing reason: jon and i decided it was time to drive two states away for the weekend, and check out the amazing city of minneapolis!

minneapolis is loaded with midwestern charm, and northern-state hipsters, all surrounded by about a million quaint, locally-owned coffee shops and irish pubs. it’s a totally comfortable city that has a long street of music venues, a lot of which host little intimate shows. most amazingly to me, there’s a few ‘pedal pubs,’ which are basically open-air buses that you pedal while you have a pint, and a sober guy who must love his job drives using your power! and of course, nestled between the two sports stadiums are a bundle of vintage shops full of gorgeous dresses and housewares. there’s completely no shortage of entertainment.

i’ve lived in a few different cities, from chicago, illinois to växjö, sweden, and i must say… i love minneapolis!

❤ mae

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