Saturday, February 14, 2009

Ready for Spring

It's just turned to February 15th and I enjoyed the sun and clear skies of this year's Valentine's Day. I hope everyone had a lovely Saturday with their sweeties and loved ones.

With most of the snow finally thawing and some days reaching nearly 5o degrees, I'm getting eager for my first New England spring. I'm finding myself drawn to brighter colors and lighter textures in anticipation of warmer weather. On a recent trip to my favorite fabric store, I picked up a gorgeous assortment of peach linen, robin's egg blue twill, shell pink silk, and lime green linen. The soft pastels look wonderful next to brighter accessories like the purple ribbon and orange zipper that I'll use to make a new round of bags and pouches.

I was especially excited about finding the lime green linen because it is one of my favorite colors and textures. I was so in love that I bought the whole bolt! I feel like a 'real' textile artist to have a bolt instead of just a cut piece of fabric. It's uniquely luxurious and gratifying. I am almost finished with a sweet kitchen apron I made with it and I know it will make its way into the linings of my tote bags.

On the knitting front, I'm slaving away at several projects at once, including this green lace scarf that was started months ago. It is slow going on size 3 Addi Turbo lace needles. But the color is that amazing yellow, limey green and htat's what keeps me knitting. The yarn is Malabrigo lace weight one-ply merino wool and it is beautifully soft. I can't wait to finish and wear it for spring!

Stay tuned for lots of new finished products, including my yoga tote which I am so excited about!

Friday, February 6, 2009

New York City

So I had my second Manhattan adventure and it was fantastic and exciting. Due to my awesome job at Rag&Bone, I was able to attend the New York International Gift Fair at the Javitz Convention Center. Our booth was absolutely fabulous and in the prestigious and lovely Studio Section of the show. I wanted to check out the show as part of my "market research" efforts for emmalinedesigns. I was fully expecting to see things that looked like my work, but fortunately, I did not! Of course that just means that people who make handmade, screenprinted bags are probably showing at smaller, crafty type venues since it is very time consuming and therefore hard to offer at wholesale prices and in large quantity.

I got to meet the lovely ladies of Hello, Lucky!, a beautiful line of screenprinted goods based in San Francisco. I was also excited about seeing the full line from the NY firm Hable Construction. I've been eyeing their screenprinted canvas totes since I first saw them at the Persimmon boutique in Hawi, Hawaii. The gift show was as huge as I thought it would be, and after running a short marathon up and down the aisles, I decided to hit the streets and head down to Soho.

I was hoping to make the most of my few hours in the city and my first destination was to Sullivan Street to visit Purl for yarn and Purl Patchwork for fabric. Even though I restrained myself from making any purchases, I loved seeing all the yummy colors of yarn and the fun printed linens from Kokka. My favorite had cars on a purple background - so fun!

I headed East (which I thought was South because I totally don't understand New York yet) I found myself at the New Museum of Modern Art on the Bowery. I got my trusty ASU school ID out for a student discount. I love that card for not having an expiration date! The exhibit was great - modern paintings by Mary Heilmann, but I swear it was the bathroom tile that was worth the price of admission!

I took some other photos of inspiring New York sights, a mural in a school playground that looks like broken glass and a huge cluster of balloons hanging from a tree like gigantic colorful grapes. What a perfect day!

Monday, February 2, 2009


On January 18th my sister and I drove from Providence to Washington DC through a major snow storm to be in our nation's capital for the inauguration of Barack Obama! We have both been on pins and needles throughout the primaries and listened to hours and hours of NPR during the race with McCain. As a student of political science and a budding entrepreneur, I feel personally invested in the fate of our nation and I believe that we finally got this election right and have a great man taking office.

The trip to DC was awesome, cold, and exciting! I met new friends, walked miles and miles around town, visited my cousin Teresa, and joined the millions of people on the National Mall to watch the inauguration on Tuesday morning. Sunday night we arrived in town and after settling into the apartment of our friend from California, our first stop was the Washington Monument. We were there on Monday and Tuesday, too, so it very much felt like the home base for our trip. Then, on Monday, we went out to Takoma Park and had lunch with our second cousin, Teresa Rainey. She has an adorable dog and adorable house and I hadn't seen her in ages so it was great to catch up.

The day before the inauguration we milled around the mall and hit all the major points of interest, quickly. This was our chance to get up close to the capitol building and see all the flags and swags and what not decorating the arches. We didn't really go inside anything - security and lines and crowds were totally prohibitive! Nah, we just burned calories by walking the vast expanses between the gorgeous buildings. Isn't the capitol building so small? And that's me trying to look especially fab on the steps of the Supreme Court. Let's get some really lefty judges in there and make some ch-ch-ch-changes.

On the big day, we got up super early, went to four wrong places before finally figuring out we needed to walk about two miles around the mall to get near the Lincoln Memorial and Washington Monument, which is where we watched a big Obama on giant jumbotrons! And in the evening, exhausted but still excited, we had dinner at the famed Ben's Chili Bowl. Sorry to say the food was not awesome, but it was pretty cool to be there anyway! Note that there is a red, white, and blue Obama ice sculpture behind us - the folks at Bens love Obama. They even added him to the list of people they serve for free (the only other person on that list is Bill Cosby).

The whole trip was a smashing success and I loved every freezing cold minute of it! Now it's time to get down to business and all do our parts to help re-create the US into a nation we can all be proud of. Cheers to us all!