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Archive for the ‘Events’ Category

Winners of the California MIWW Left to Right: In the adults category – Jennifer Serr; Juniors – Olivia Frenette; Pre-Teen – Kevin Vlach; Seniors – Rebekah Kasperson.

Make It With Wool is a state and national fashion design and sewing or knitting competition sponsored by The American Sheep Industry. Founded in 1947, the competition website says it seeks to “promote the beauty and versatility of wool fabrics, fibers, and yarns.” MIWW is open to pre-teens through adults and all fabric and yarn used must be at least 60 percent wool. Three judges look for excellence in presentation and appearance, construction, and marketability.

The California Make It With Wool (MIWW) competition and fashion show was held on November 12th in Orinda. The four winners are now eligible for the national MIWW contest to be held in Texas in January, 2023.

I attended the fashion show in Orinda and was pleased to see such talent and interest in sewing and knitting. Many of the young contestants learned to sew in 4H. I noticed a vintage feel to some of the entries. Jennifer Serr, winner in the adult category, used a 1930s suit pattern (see photo above).

Calling all those who sew and/or knit! Why not show off your talent and skills next year? Check out the MIWW website for more information and contacts.

Congratulations to all the winners of the 2022 California Make It With Wool Contest.

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Laila Gohar looking stylish in the kitchen. Photo: Nacho Alegre.

When I work, I like to wear menswear shirts with a long bistro-style apron that ties around my body.

Laila Gohar – Egyptian born chef, artist, and designer.

Ms. Gohar has a masters degree in Media Studies from Parson’s School of Design in New York. While in school she worked at a French bistro where she learned to “curate” events. Now she prepares food for special pop-up events – clients include Tiffany & Co and Comme des Garsons. Her website says that she “uses food as an artistic medium and a tool for communication.” How interesting!

I’m a big fan of aprons. For one thing I like to keep my clothes free of kitchen spits and splatters. But I also like an added touch of style while cooking.

I have a few aprons and each one means something to me. One I’ve had since I was around 12-years-old. It was a gift from my stepmother – a souvenir she picked up in Europe. I kept it but didn’t wear it until recently. Another was a gift from my mother a few years ago. It’s made of fine cotton and she bought it from a local shop that specializes in French imports of linens, dishware, and soap among other goodies. (Sadly that shop recently closed.)

Helping Hands Apron from Gohar World.

How cool that Ms. Gohar has created a unique look for herself that is both stylish and practical. (I notice she’s sporting a brooch on her apron pictured above.) She and her sister, Nadia, also an artist, have applied their whimsy to a line of tableware and linens. One of their apron designs is called Helping Hands Apron and features a pair of lace hands dangling from the tie.

Do you have a cook on your holiday gift list? How about giving them a new apron?

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Thankfulness and appreciation are always in fashion.

This year I am thankful of course for family and friends, good health, and time (the ultimate luxury). I’m thankful for the opportunities that come my way and for the gift of giving to others.

I’m thankful for this photo of the last Thanksgiving my mother and I spent together in 2019. The following years we couldn’t share any holiday meal because of COVID. I am thankful that I had my mother in my life for as long as I did.

I am thankful for my interest in fashion and style. Something I got from my mother, fashion and style are what sustain me, what inspire me, where I go when life gets to be too much. We all need a place like that.

Wishing ODFL readers a happy and peaceful Thanksgiving.

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T-shirt and jeans from the Jane Birkin collection for A.P.C.

It’s a whole art to be invisible. To be noticed for what you actually do or say or write and not for your appearance.

Jean Touitou – Creative director and founder of the French fashion brand, A.P.C.

This season Mr. Touitou has collaborated with actress and fashion icon, Jane Birkin on a new line of fashion unisex basics. Inspired by what has become Ms. Birkin’s daily uniform – jeans, t-shirts, men’s shirts, sweaters, sneakers, and a straw bag (not the Hermes Birkin Bag?). The new line isn’t all that interesting until you get to the details. Such as the t-shirt necklines have a little lower scoop so it drapes just off the shoulder and the sneakers are lined with faux sheepskin. The jeans are 100% Japanese cotton (no spandex!!).

Ms. Birkin herself has said that what she wears is “nice but boring.” I think her style speaks to the Touitou quote above – it’s simple and doesn’t stand out and yet there’s thought behind it. Ms. Birkin is perhaps “invisible,” but she’s still put together and she’s developed her own style. There’s nothing haphazard about her look and in that, I would say, she’s actually quite visible.

I would take these quality basics and accessorize them with a cashmere pullover sweater, a string of pearls, a hat, and a vintage handbag.

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I’ll stop wearing black when they make a darker color.

Wednesday Addams, fictional character from The Addams Family.

Happy Spooks Day!!

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Museum of the African Diaspora (MoAD) in San Francisco is celebrating its 17th anniversary with their latest exhibition, The New Black Vanguard: Photography Between Art and Fashion, on now through March 5, 2023.

Photo: Raquel Adrienne. Courtesy of Aperture.

The New Black Vanguard features 15 Black fashion photographers who create images that step outside traditional fashion expectations and provide a space for the Black aesthetic. MoAD Executive Director Monetta White says: The works in this exhibit signal a dramatic and long overdue transformation taking place in fashion and art today, one driven by the bold vision of a breakout group of Black creatives who are stewarding the representation of the Black figure in the marketplace.

Photo: Daniel Obasi. Courtesy of Aperture.

The fifteen esteemed photographers are: Campbell Addy, Arielle Bobb-Willis, Micaiah Carter, Awol Erizku, Nadine Ijewere, Quil Lemons, Namsa Leuba, Renell Medrano, Tyler Mitchell, Jamal Nxedlana, Daniel Obasi, Ruth Ossai, Adrienne Raquel, Dana Scruggs, and Stephen Tayo. These young artists are from places such as New York, Atlanta, London, and Johannesburg. Their work includes photoshoots for Vogue and Allure magazines as well as ad campaigns for the likes of Dior, Stella McCartney, and Marc Jacobs.

The exhibition of 100 photographs and several publications is arranged in two galleries. In a third gallery visitors can view videos of various ad campaigns created by the artists.

Photo: Jamal Nxedlara. Courtesy of Aperture.

I found the images to be striking for the composition, the styling, and the use of bright colors. They definitely occupy a unique space between art and fashion. I was particularly taken with the photograph above by Jamal Nxedlara, South African image maker and founder of the fashion label Missshape. The more I look at it the more I fall into it. I’m drawn to the color combinations and the sculptured hair echoed in the large earrings. I love details such as the texture in the jacket and the shadow of one earring on the model’s neck. It’s beautiful!

Photo: Ruth Ossai. Courtesy of Aperture.

San Francisco is the only West Coast stop for this traveling exhibit created by New York critic/curator Antwaun Sargent and Aperture magazine. Photographers, photo enthusiasts, and fashion followers will find much to learn and admire at The New Black Vanguard: Photography Between Art and Fashion.

MoAD is located at 685 Mission Street @ 3rd in SF. Hours are Wednesday-Saturday, 11-6, Sunday, 12-5.

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Photo by Campbell Addy, Adut Akech, 2019, from the New Black Vanguard (Aperture, 2019)

Fashion has always been a barometer for measuring privilege, power, class, and freedom. To play with fashion is to play with one’s representation in the world.

Campbell Addy – British fashion photographer.

Mr. Addy is one of fifteen Black fashion photographers featured in The New Black Vanguard: Photography Between Art and Fashion, on now at Museum of the African Diaspora in San Francisco.

A graduate from Central Saint Martins in London, Mr. Addy studied Fashion Communications. Since then he has worked to give a voice and presence to overlooked youth cultures through photography.

Come back tomorrow for more on The New Black Vanguard.

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Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II (1926-2022).

Always elegant in her style. Always gracious in her manner. Always striving to do her best.

The Queen pictured with her favorite creatures – Corgis and horses – at Balmoral Castle in Scotland, 1965. Photo: Godfrey Argent. Such a smart riding jacket.
Pearls, brooches, hats, and a big smile. Queen Elizabeth II. Cover photo for the book Queen of the World, by Robert Hardman. Getty Photos. The Queen was known for her bright colors, which she wore in public so that the people who were in the very very back of the crowd could spot her.

After ten days of official mourning, today is The Queen’s funeral.

Rest in peace.

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Illustration of Coco Chanel by Isabel Pin from I Am Coco: The Life of Coco Chanel (Prestel Publishing).

In order to be irreplaceable, one has to be different.

So true! This reminds me of something a local clothing manufacturer once told me. He said that people don’t want to stand out in their fashion. They want to blend in.

I can understand that. It’s easier to blend in. To not be different. Particularly in our modern world, where life is so hectic. BUT, it’s a lot less fun.

Come back to ODFL tomorrow for my review of I Am Coco: The Life of Coco Chanel by award winning children’s book illustrator, Isabel Pin.

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We Can Do It!

During WWII American women joined the workforce in droves to replace the men who went off to fight. By 1945 one out of every four married women worked outside the home, many of them working in the aviation industry. The original illustration that we know as “Rosie the Riveter” was was drawn by artist J. Howard Miller, who was hired by Westinghouse to create morale-boosting posters for the company’s workers. The poster was only seen by Westinghouse staff and just for a two week period in 1943. When the image was rediscovered in the 1980s it quickly became associated with feminism and mistakenly identified as the Rosie the Riveter illustration created by Norman Rockwell for the cover of The Saturday Evening Post in May 1943.

By the way, I took the image from a badge for the 1993 inauguration of Bill Clinton.

Wishing all workers a happy, safe, and restful Labor Day.

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