Things I ♥ THURSDAY

March 4, 2010

A 1.00000 different stories & other photographic stories by Chrissie White.

These truly unique magical things to have by Jesophi. Everything is handmade using new & vintage materials – jewelry of the sweetest kind.

The Don’t Sweat Shop guys & their initiative to raise awareness about social, environmental and ethical issues of everyday consumerism.

Nothing beat’s Bob Dylan’s The Times They Are A Changing.

Crafty corner: Online seamstressing & DIY sewing lessons a la Burda Style.

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the WRITING life

January 20, 2010

“Why are we reading, if not in hope of BEAUTY laid bare, life heightened and its deepest mystery probed? Can the WRITER isolate and vivify all in EXPERIENCE that deeply engages our intellects and our HEARTs? Can the writer renew our HOPE for literary forms? Why are we reading if not in hope that the writer will magnify and dramatize our DAYS, will illuminate and inspire us with WISDOM,COURAGE, and the possibility of MEANINGfulness, and will press upon our minds the deepest MYSTERIES, so we may feel again their majesty and power? What do we ever know that is higher than that POWER which, from time to time, seizes our LIVES, and reveals us startlingly to ourselves as creatures set down here bewildered? We still and always want waking.” (Annie DiLLard, The Writing LIFE)

Things I ♥ THURSDAY

January 13, 2010

Eliot‘s stream of photos.

Thank god for KATIE MUTH & her PRINT collection. Whatever card you need, you’ll sure find it here, ranging from park animal cards to love cards that say lovely things like ‘I’m wearing your favourite panties.’

Meet Mimi, Molly, Daisy & Ginger, also knows as the SWEETIE PETITES DOLLS KITS. You can meet them amongst other unique one-off and limited edition art, hand crafted cards and Chalkboard Eggs by the very talented Miss Lisa Tilse.

A Lullaby like YOU BELONG TO ME by Carla Bruni.

Let me introduce you to the family: Ginny & Francis McMullen are one mother-daughter combo that works very well together & creates a whole lot of SWONDERFUL things.

The GREATEST

December 29, 2009

“Melt me down
into big black ARMOUR
Leave no trace
Of grace
Just in your honour
Lower me down
To culprit south” (Cat PoWer)

Ben is one of these people that enters your life and won’t walk away without leaving a trace. He’s covered in tattoos and he swears a lot. Ben also carries some scares in his face that tell tales about his troubled past. But despite his odd and ‘outrageous’ appearance, Ben’s just about one of the most forgiving people I know and living proof of the saying that family ties matter after all. A little while ago I passed all these picture perfect scenes that advertise the ‘season of love’ and somehow, over all these glowing Christmas lights and chanting carols in the background, I couldn’t help but think of Ben and his story which goes like this:

Like the Bra Boys, Underbelly, or the slew of Kings Cross’ underground culture whose stories are so horrific, their integrity demands scrutiny, Ben’s story comes with a similar strife. For most parts, Ben’s life sounds as though being slammed headfirst into an A-class drama series with cast and storyline being much stranger than on-screen fiction. At only 19, Ben had added juvenile runaway, jailbird and junkie to his resume. With that, Ben’s memoir offers more than the life of an average 80 year old citizen, revealing pieces about Ben senior on a decade-long high, and a fanatically religious mother, copying lines from the holy book over and over again, alongside other chapters of living life on the street, surviving gang bashings and juvenile detention centres. Today, Ben still shows off the scares and scripts of his former life on his bare skin.

For most of his life, Ben’s folks have been everything but that picture perfect of a family. Born and ‘raised’ somewhere on the outskirts of Newcastle, NSW Ben grew up with a father who has been all else than a great father-figure, struggling with drug and alcohol addiction on most days. On the contrary, his strict and devoted catholic mother has been the living equal to Carrie White’s ma, repeating threats of damnation. Brougth to life out of Stephen King’s notorious novel, she was unable to cope with the secular daily grind in a small country town and a husband on a long-term high [or better low], subsequently turning to biblical cult to handle the harshness of reality.

So just imagine growing up in between two extremes and you might get an essence of what Ben must have gone through. Since the day the door slammed shut, Ben hasn’t been back, living it up on the streets, first in Newcastle’s suburbia and then in Sydney, somehow managing to keep up the biblical mantra “good prevails over evil,” even though he has been caught up in some criminal deeds. However, living life on the edge and bouncing from one extreme to the other comes with its costs. Throughout his teen years, illicit substances made an appearance, but now Ben is “clean, once and for all,” not including that occasional joint after a hard day’s night.

Apart from all the drama and disaster within Ben’s first quarter of a century, one thing in particular stuck with me: Despite his troubled relationship with both his parents, Ben holds on tight to the saying that ‘blood remains thicker than water.’ I still remember his voice sounding rough and his eyes facing the ground, telling me that he made peace with his past. Even though his family affair hasn’t been a picture perfect one, Ben earns a batch that says ‘Master of Forgiveness’ as he considers himself as ‘quite conservative’ with solid family values. Hence, for the family’s sake, and to maintain at least a sense of a family tie, annual family gatherings are “a must,” even if just within the festive season.

Another thing I admire dearly about Ben is that being happy remains his default setting. Although Ben’s past reveals not much to smile about, Ben’s an expert in finding humour in the humiliation, revealing a smile that stretches to darker territory anyone would assume on first glance. But this was then, some time ago, and the Ben that’s here is a different one now. As for the future, Ben is quite optimistic that he smoked his last cigarette a while ago. The last time I saw him around, he was well and living life on the outside of underbelly, assuring me that he left his troubled past behind, his trademark smile fading to an earnestness I haven’t seen before.

All in all the big lesson I learnt from Ben is that no matter what kind of drama, disaster and destruction our childhood collection reveals, what matters most in live is forgiving flaws and finally finding that family and friends matter most in life. Even though we can’t dish up stories like Ben’s stranger than fiction tale, everyone can pull out some family stories that are hilarious, sometimes even malicious and borderline outrageous and maybe a little controversial as well but for most of it they turn out compelling and heart melting in the end – if we let them be what they are: tales of love & hurt, scars and hugs, all stapled together by a huge portion of forgiveness that depicts family ties. Merry xmas!

ME & MYself

December 20, 2009

‘Although there was a time in my life, where I was keen in wearing other people’s dresses and slipping into someone ELSE’s shoes, I reached a point where being ME & MYself became of utmost importance and the pursue of all these things that life had forced me to postpone for the one or the other reason became of HIGH priority…’

THINGS I ♥ Thursday

December 9, 2009

The Home Project & other photo stories by Miss Eleanor Hardwick.

ON THE PHONE TO PARIS only produces PRETTY petite things for bold & beautiful people such as the vintage inspired GATSBY CLUTCH. Get it NOW or NEVER!

Mot de jour like Enragement Ring = A very beautiful & expensive piece of jewellery bestowed by a man upon a woman in the hope that she will agree not to be mad anymore.

All & everything at Georgie Love leaves the store with the certificate ‘g(e)orgeous’ – bags, bangles & brooches. Oh I ♥ them all!!!

Watching Across The Universe by Fiona Apple. Finally a Beatles cover version that is much much better than the original. Jai guru deva om!

Awesome, awesome awesome!!!! Before the fanny packs and Andrea Bocelli concerts, your parents were once free-wheeling, fashion-forward dare devils. Admit it – Your Parents Were Awesome – at least before your time!

This is a treasure trove for paper fashionistas & stationary junkies: Pulp Creative Paper=Paper Print Paradise.

Things I ♥ THURSDAY

December 2, 2009

Photos with a twist & names like Latar Hundar maste ocksa komma ut by Eric Johansson.

Two words: MELISSA SHOES!!! I absolutely adore all kinds of SHOES but these LOVELY little things come with a bonus: All MELISSA products are created from mono-materials that can be easily disassembled & recycled. HOORAY – maximum design & zero waste – CLAP CLAP.

MOT du jour: intexticated = Bumping into things, behaving rudely and driving badly while under the influence of TXT messaging.

This lovely idea by Craig Giffen & his friends: The HUMAN CALENDAR will help you to get organised in 2010, showing a bunch of 517 pixel pics for the coming 365 days.

If you ever need a partner in CRAFT, check out CUT+PASTE. All you ever wanted to keep, know and more is here: Paper GOODS, books & ZINES, accessories, bags & wallets and all sorts of PRETTY craft supplies.

Sweet, SAD songs like Jewel’s VIOLET EYES, written for her best friend Jacque who died a couple of years ago from cancer.

A label with a ♥ like Purocorazon. Peruvian Carolina Restrepo designs bags that say ‘CARE FOR ME, LOVE ME, SHOW ME, I AM YOUR HEART.’ The result is pretty awesome: A colourful MISH/MASH of tradition and popular art.

WORDwise

November 29, 2009

 “You don’t write because you WANT to say something, you write because you HAVE something to say.” (F Scott Fitzgerald)