Saturday, July 30, 2011

Precious things/8 Tattoo

Today, nine years ago, I had my first (and only) tattoo done.

It was to celebrate my upcoming 21st birthday. Nine years later, I can definitely say, I don't regret it at all. This tattoo is of very personal as well as symbolic nature. It represents a marker in the passage of time, the coming of age and a life altering realization I had made at around that time regarding my struggle with my depression.

I felt uncomfortable sharing photos of the actual tattoo, instead I'm posting the photo of a T-shirt to which I transferred the copy of the tattoo. I went to great length to position the image as accurately as possible onto the T-shirt. And the actual tattoo is black.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Friday night film selection: Off the map

Rarely has a film eluded concise definition like Off the Map does. I could give a detailed account of the plot, but that really doesn't describe the film at all. Most critics call this film a slow paced one. I disagree. The structure of this film is entirely different from what we are used to in a basic narrative: the beginning, middle and end.
This story has no beginning, it opens in media res and it has no plot, that is resolved through the course of the story. So why watch it then? I can only think of one good reason. To experience it. To experience the quirky characters and the indescribably beautiful scenery of New Mexico and to feel the magic of the story.

Off the Map - Used Girl Scout
Get More: Off the Map - Used Girl Scout

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Early graduation present

 It was only a few days ago Mr. C and I were discussing my graduation gift. I didn't care for anything lavish or expensive, All I really wanted was a small keepsake, something to mark the occasion. I guess Mercury wouldn't hear of it.
As we drove to the store yesterday, I noticed a crack in the frame of my sunglasses. What followed was a blur of emotions. I know that a broken pair of glasses doesn't qualify as some horrific tragedy. Well it does in my book.
It's horrible to conceive, but I felt so naked without them. Due to my severe myopia, my eyes have become super sensitive to sunlight, making it impossible for me to drive safely without sunglasses.
There was nothing else to do, but get a new pair that very moment. And so we did.

I'm sure people get all sort of things for graduation. Well I got something that made me immensely happy. What more could I ask for?

Edit note: As I reread this post, I noticed how horribly it was written. I was trying to make a point of how the intention of buying a small present to mark my coming graduation turned into a rather expensive venture. While I am delighted to have the new glasses, I am also very frustrated to have the original glasses break in the first place, thus making something that should have been a joyous occasion of receiving a gift turn into a frenzy and necessity of purchasing a replacement.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Bits of wisdom

Peggy Olsen from Mad Men:

I don't think anyone want's to be one of a hundred colours in a box.
When asked why she didn't participate in the lipstick sampling, Peggy unwittingly produces a slogan for the lipstick company. The striking realization being that the need to please (by conforming to the established norms)  is sometimes superseded by our innermost desire to be unique.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Summer sales

The summer sales are in full swing here in Slovenia. While I confess that I've taken a day to peruse my favourite boutiques and the Internet, nothing really tempted me enough to justify pulling out my credit card.
I think sales in general are a carefully manipulated illusion that makes the customer believe they're getting off with an unbelievable bargain. When it's far more likely that the items on sale are pieces from previous collections that the merchant wasn't able to sell whereas the "good stuff" has been removed from the shelves or wasn't marked down.
So there we are, lost in a sea of maybes: the clothes that almost fit, are almost the right colour, the sleeves just a bit too short or too long... trying desperately to find a hidden gem. While I don't discard the possibility of finding genuine treasures, I find it incredibly improbable. It almost always ends up the frustrated customer giving up hope and in a desperate attempt to not leave empty handed grabs the first maybe of the shelf and heads to the cash register.
So here is a list of some of the maybes that have tempted me to no avail:

Sonia Rykiel's oversized top currently priced at €52,80:

While I love the stripes and the print, I know full well oversized T-shirts never look good on me.

Vanessa Bruno's
silk blazer:

At €121,80 this blazer is a bargain, but it's so specific, I haven't got the first idea what to pair it with.

A sarong style skirt from Anthropologie at €59,95:

This one is a cutie, but the colour is all wrong for me. As well as the fact that a skirt designed for casual wear made of frail silk chiffon is a recipe for disaster.

Regina Schrecker's sandals from Yoox reduced to €35:

These tempted me the most, because the style and the colour were exactly what I've been looking for. They're also leather free, a condition that is not negotiable for me. However, I was never comfortable with the heavy diamante embellishments as well as the fact that the upper layer of the straps is made of satin.

And finally rubber ballet flats from Raton currently on sale for €24:

I've been meaning to buy a pair of rubber flats to wear in the summer months on rainy days. It breaks my heart when I wear my canvas loafers or leather sandals in the rain. The problem with these shoes is the fact that they are peep toes. I've never been comfortable with peep toes in general.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Friday night film selection: Swimming pool

In a nutshell: Swimming pool is a film about an English detective story writer who goes to France in search of inspiration for her new book. As she becomes somewhat comfortable in her new environment, her routine is completely uprooted with the arrival of a mysterious, brazen and sexually assertive young woman.
This intricate film is like an abstract painting with the plot so tentatively outlined it leaves the viewer to fill in the blanks. Swimming pool isn't really about solving a mystery, the director was careful enough to leave many little clues that don't really add up logically. So instead, I believe he was trying to encourage the viewers to focus on the relationship between two women and the evolution of the otherwise emotionally restrained Sarah (the writer) as she observes the young French woman with a mix of envy and contempt.
Definitely not for everyone.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Wonderful Tuesday

Tuesdays are my favourites.

It's another quirk of mine, but I associate days with colours and Tuesday is mix of turquoise and cerulean.
I've been getting nothing but wonderful news these past few days and I'm feeling very happy.
So here's a picture of my mum's rose, that smells so divine and for your listening pleasure Maxine Sullivan with the ever so wonderful Blue Skies:

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Happiness comes in a box: Ceramic jars

We all know them: the little trinkets that cost next to nothing but they make us incredibly happy. Whether it's because they fulfill a certain purpose in our household or are there simply for their intrinsic beauty.

This set of hand painted ceramic jars is a work of Slovene artisan Mateja Horvat. I'm not usually a fan of ceramics but there is something so adorable and fresh about her designs.

The jars are meant for storing coffee, sugar and cookies.

The knobs are my favourite part of the jars.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Friday night film selection: Blow dry

A delightful little film that doesn't pretend to be more than it is. The plot is pretty simple and no surprises there really, but the execution is brilliant. Leave it to the Brits to turn an ordinary romantic comedy into something more than an hour and a half of one cheesy cliche after another.
Everything from quirky personalities to down right odd black English humour (an absolute staple and should be deemed a top national feature along with tweed and the five o'clock tea) is refreshing.
Alan Rickman and Bill Nighy. Together in the same film. It's worth watching just for the sake of that alone.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Blogger culture: Dealing with negative comments

Though I am definitely a newbie to blogging, I am by no means unaware of the fact that blogosphere comes with its own set of rules. The one I find most conflicting is the almost complete absence of dissenting opinions. While the words stunning, awesome and cool are a daily feature in the comments section, I rarely see anyone openly oppossing.

Močilnik, source of river Ljubljanica

It's absolutely impossible that this apparent unity of opinion is real. The practice of voting by walking has reached alarming proportions. It would appear no one is willing to rock the boat.

And all is fine and fair in blog land.

In all my time blogging I haven't yet received a negative comment but I am "guilty" of writing dissenting opinions myself. Every time I've written a particularly strong dissenting opinion a flurry of violent and demeaning words ensued with the purpose of ostracizing me. I was shocked and hurt each time.

I grew up in a culture that emphasized the right of opinion and rules of engagement were: you are free to attack the ideas, opinions not the person voicing them. I ventured into blogosphere hoping to connect to different people, discussing our thoughts and ideas openly without fear of verbal conflicts and attacks. Am I being naive?

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Slow days

And I'm back.

Mr. C returns to work tomorrow after a fortnight of staycation. And with all the work surrounding my thesis, I decided to take a break from blogging in order to spend more time with Mr. C.
I'm slowly settling back into my old routine. My thesis is written and I'm meeting with my mentor at the end of next week for what will hopefully be the last of the corrections. After that, all I can do is wait for oral presentation, which to my grave disappointment will probably be somewhere around September.

The fact that I won't be able to graduate sooner than I've hoped had crushed me completely. I've been feeling really terrible these past few days and I've also injured my leg, so I won't be able to go running for a week.
I didn't even do much sewing, just keeping my head down, waiting for the storm to pass. I did manage to sew Ferdi a new cover, something I've had on my to do list for at least 10 months. The fabric was bought at Ikea last week. And the print was just adorable. I had enough remnants to make a small purse I'll be using to store my most basic sewing tools.

I thought I'll show you an easy, foolproof way of attaching bias binding. In my experience the classic method of folding binding in half, basting it on the fabric edge and hope to one deity or another that the thread catches both the top and the bottom layer never works.
Instead, I open the fold of the binding and line it up with the edge of fabric. I pin it and baste it and the sew the stitches right in the groove of the fold.

With the binding firmly secured in one place, I then remove the basting and flip over the binding.

I pin and baste it on the other side and stitch it in place.
This method does take a bit more time, but it's well worth the effort, because the binding is firmly sewed in place and no more gaping where the stitching didn't catch both layers.