Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Slow Moves

So here I am, moving the contents of my other blog to this one, in the hopes that less blogs equals more blogging. It's been a whirlwind month.

Last sunday was the darkest night of the year and celebrating it with our island folks, in an all-night ceremonial event of dancing, huge bonfires, and drums. It was magical, and I shall post more on the topic of Solstice later.

Today though, we're leaving for the more traditional Christmas celebrations in the City with C.s relatives. Off I go to rush around with presents and gathering the last bits and bobs we need!

Here's what I'll probably be wearing again. I'm totally in love with this dress, and purple in general. I've worn it like a week in a row.
The weather got a lot warmer, and so taking outfit photos is less painful now. Though you can't tell that by my grumpy face.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

And Ronja too

and let's not forget Ronja the Robber's Daughter, when speaking of amazing Scandahuvian children's books and movies.

The Snow Queen

Possibly the finest Finnish film ever, in my humble opinion, and certainly the finest film adaptation of this H.C. Andersen story.

I wish I could watch it right now...

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Birth, Love, Death and Muses

Originally there were nine Muses, or sometimes three, though always a three-fold number, or a three-faced element. Much of mythology embraces the three-folded cycles of life. Even Robert Graves' White Goddess is a muse of three aspects: birth, love and death. Or to put it more simply, the three aspects of womanhood; maiden, mother and crone. But I'm getting carried away.

So, originally there were nine muses. There is Calliope, the muse of writing, Euterpe, the muse of music, Clio, the muse of history, who is perhaps the most dangerous, because she's the one who will inspire you to achieve feats of fame that are remembered, and of course there are the six others.

The word muse is generally understood in Western culture to mean "a woman who inspires an artist". At her highest echelon she is the White Goddess, at her lowest a groupie. Almost always though there is the implication that she only invokes the power that is already somehow within the artist; and also that there is something sexual about her power. The artist after all, is a man, the muse a woman. There is a reluctance to acknowledge that the source of creative power could be female, that somehow the world is organized and attuned to the feminine.

So in the vein of my many feminist art rants, I shall stop speaking in abstracts and introduce you, dear reader to some female artist-muses who inspire me constantly.

The Muse of Literature is Tove Jansson, who's work, as small and intricate as it, opens up the universe every time you browse one of her books (and who's also been with me the longest):
(Tove's in the middle surrounded by her lover and partner Tuuti, and her mom Hamm)

The Muse of History is Emily Dickinson, who proved with her life (and death) that history is indeed made in the back kitchen corners of the world sometimes and fame indeed is fickle food upon a shifting plate.

The Muse of Poetry is Mary Oliver, perhaps the finest (and oddly most universally loved) American poet in my mind (along with her male companions Gary Snyder and Walt Whitman, and of course the afore-mentioned Emily Dickinson)

The Muse of Music certainly is a coveted spot with many many suitable candidates, but in my particular case I shall yield the honor to none other than Björk Gudmundursdottir, a musical innovator and free spirit without comparison.

The Muse of Tragedy is Sylvia Plath, who taught herself and us how sometimes great art is created trough great pain, though most pain is in the labor and not the source of it.

The Muse of Children is Astrid Lindgren, who world-wide maybe known for creating Pippi Longstocking, the beautiful anarchist child, but in Scandinavia her fame rests on her other books equally; The Cheerful books about children roaming islands, as well as the haunting tales of afterlife and euthanasia/suicide (yes in a kids book, look up The Brothers Lionheart).

The Muse of Dance and Ritual is Maya Deren, the daredevil filmmaker, anthropologist, priestess and dancer, who's work was so ground-braking and breath-taking that the world then scarcely understood its many meanings.

A muse of a more recent vintage is Tina Fey, a funny lady who scarcely needs introduction as The Muse of Comedy. She may seem a little light in such heavy-hitting company, but frankly female comedy is anything but light work. Women, you see, are apparently not quite as funny as men, and have to work thrice as hard to get screen time.

Finally there is the Muse of Stars, astronomy of art if you will, the fearless Melissa Silverstein has kept an honest log of their movements in her blog, Women&Hollywood, and even if she hadn't been tremendous help to my theses, her sheer insight and efforts are worth commending. In an age where Diablo Cody can win an Oscar and book publishing has become an art so obsolete that it can't keep up with the rapid changes in media, Silverstein's work is invaluable to any film-fan.

Your turn. Muse.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

The Most Neglected

As you probably already know, I'm a little gung-ho about how underrepresented women filmmakers are in their field. This, as anyone who's ever browsed through the "now-playing"-section of their local paper knows, is particularly true when it comes to comedies, and even more so movies about gal-pals, the female equivalent of a buddy comedy.

(Especially if those pals don't just want to shop for extremity-deforming footwear that costs as much as the annual income of a small Guatemalan village. You heard it here first. I hate on that show. Just because women f**k whomever they like and have vague, oddly well-paid jobs does not make it feminist.)

Even when movies in the afore-mentioned categories get made, their distributors often shift them straigth-to-DVD, for the fear of losing money in the theaters, when those goddamn intellectual womens would rather curl up with a good book and a box of chocolates, or whatever the heck they do when we menfolk flock to watch the latest blockbuster. Think I'm exaggerating? Read a couple of books on Hollywood genres and marketing.

I certainly am always delighted when good movies by women, about women are recommended to me, and love to spread my love of awesome chick flicks. That's right. I said chick flicks. I don't mean the formulaic fair of girls feuding over men they'd love to please, while wearing improbable amounts of make-up and designer clothing, and acting out predictable plot-lines. I mean wicked awesome movies by women, for women, about stuff that's funny and touching, and even pertinent to our own lives. Chick flick don't have to be a derogatory term if you own it. Virgin Suicides, for instance, is total chick flick. Piano, chick flick. I could go on.

So if your netflix-que is lacking in lustre this season consider Strike! (alternative titles include; All I wanna Do and my (and the director's favorite) The Hairy Bird). Long before the male- directed, watered down, star-studded (though Kirsten Dunst stars in both) Hollywood version of female camaraderie in the halls of learning, this little movie showed just what the fairer sex is capable of.

As for full-blown female-driven comedy (though directed by a gent) comes this much over-looked mockumentary, penned by Lona Williams to dead-pan-perfection.

Drop Dead Gorgeous has it all: physical fitness numbers, exploding pageant contestants, practising your lip-synching routine, mall-gowns, and most importantly, "F***ing beauty queens blowing chunks everywhere."

Now it's your turn. Recommend.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009


Sesame Street maybe turning 40, but Buffy is timeless...

Sunday, November 1, 2009

And the winner is...

pink!, originally uploaded by allthishappiness.

Are! Psyche! I pulled out three winners instead of one. Congrats to Andrea, Caroline, the otherAndrea!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009


In Finnish the word ihana means wonderful, beautiful, lovely. Which is what this book my friend Sini recently bought is. It doesn't seem to be available in English, but maybe I'll get one for Christmas, since as we all know, Santa lives in Finland.

photos from annujaliinu

Friday, October 16, 2009

That 90s Girl

Most of my regular readers already know all too well about how much I love the 90s. It may be a slightly unnatural love, given that one is never supposed to again appreciate the era one come of age during, but as Angela Chase would say, whatever. As far as I'm concerned, the 90s never really ended. I mean, did floral dresses become uncool, or hats, or combat boots, or Sleater Kinney, or flannel shirts, or reading Bastard Out of Carolina ? I think not.

Since fall is here now I am going to list my favorite 90s trends, because the 90s definitely felt like one long, rainy fall, what with all the layering, and over-size things and the need to wear woolly hats everywhere.

Plaid. Layering flannel shirts, and pretty much everything else in your closet, still works too. Scrunchies not so much, but thanks for playing AA.

Overalls. Enough said, they go with like everything in your closet.
Tie-dye. Thank you for reviving this long lost handicraft, and thus saving my poverty-stricken teenage years, 90s.
Improbable and (at least on me) impractical hairstyles; the short, the fire truck red, and the dreadlocked alike. (What? It's a total fall trend. Hot hair prevents hat hair. Hat hair was a big problem in the 90s.)

Those ubiquitous hats (and flannel. and combat boots. and a nirvana tee). Yeah that's right, Naomi Campbell is wearing a hat. Read nothing into her expression. Unless you take your style-ques from her. In which case: stop reading this.
Floral dresses, preferably in crushed velvet.
Vests. Great for layering, right Brandon?
Combat boots. Floral ones. In my youth any girl worth her (Veruca) salt, knew how many holed
combats she was kicking around in.

There's also small denim jackets, peace signs, parkas, 70s puffy winter coats, A-line button-front miniskirts (that's a mouthful), messenger bags, rucksacks, and anoraks to love, but I only have so much patience and googling is bad for the environment.

What's your favorite 90s trend, or whatever?

(And don't forget the giveaway!)


eagerly finding a nest by amalia chimera.

In honor of the fall and my lovely readers and just because I feel like it, I'm hereby declaring a giveaway for my beloved readers of my both blogs. A package, thrifted by yours truly, can be yours if you give me suggestions, questions, comments, in this post.

You can enter twice by doing the same on my other blog, once I have the time to do a giveaway post there. The winner will be announced on All-Hallows-Eve, and entry closes by midnight the night before (October 30th).

photo by the amazing: amaliachimera

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

...when I first saw you I knew you had a flame in your heart.

I'm starting a petition to get the wonderful Jenny of hellojenuine (and What I Wore Today-fame) to start selling these in poster-size, preferably. Who's with me now?
itunes a-z by hellojenuine.
(Make me a custom Mariee Sioux, Jenny, I'll pay anything. Anything.)

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

I take it back.

Just go see Whip It!

Monday, September 28, 2009

To fall

The big celebration is over, there's a fire in the stove and great books were purchased at the bookshoppe. It's raining so hard the ocean is but a grey mass, all the other islands hidden. Wind is shaking the trees all around the house. Today I wore my lovely, lovely new 70s lumberjack coat from the Dumpsky for the first time. Summer is over. Welcome, you fairest, you severest of seasons all, oh fall.

What a perfect moment to browse some fall favorites:

If you're not into pickling, how about drying apples? It's a easy activity with minimal need for any kind of equipment. You could get a de-hydrator, but why waste electricity when you can take advantage of your warm house?

Five easy steps to dried apple bliss:

1. Get some apples.
2. Dig out the cores.
3. Slice.
4. Hang up trough the core holes.
5. Wait till dry and put in airtight jar.

As an added bonus this activity also fills your house with delicious apple smell.

And what about books, you ask? Is there anything lovelier than sitting by the fire/heater reading a good book? Obviously not.

I just finished and heartily recommend Julie Orringer's book of short stories, How To Breath Underwater.

I was so busy this summer, that reading short stories was often the best solution, as you could finish one and move onto the next without having to wait for days what might happen next.
Another good, though more mixed, collection, was Rebecca Curtis' Twenty Grand: And Other Tales of Love and Money.

Mixed meaning that there were some that I adored and others that were utter rubbish. Sadly that's often the case with short stories.

And what to wear? Why dreamy red velvet, or maybe corduroy, of course.

Holiday Lovely Velvet Dress
Like this pretty from strawberrykoi

A good rucksack, school bag, or anything from forestbound, should hanging on your shoulder(s).

custom orders. by forestbound.

And for those of you still dreaming of spring and summer I recommend one of these amazing headdresses by which.goose.


As for other entertainments, netflix, or better yet support your local videostore, or better yet (if you live near a cinema, unlike me) see them in the theatres, see Jennifer's Body, The Hurt Locker, Bright Star, The Vintner's Luck, or I haven't given you enough variety, ANY OTHER movie by women (produced, written, directed).

Album of the year turned out, after all to be Upper Air by Bowerbirds. Listen to them.

That's fall folks!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

The one that got away...

Have you ever missed a find, procrastinated on an item 'till you lost it, or simply gotten there too late, only in time to see that perfect thing sail away in someone else's arms?

The trouble with vintage shopping is that most things are truly one-of-a-kind, the last survivors of another time, and once they're gone forever more, you can never find them again.

Like this wicked awesome woodland cardi from the amazing Anja.

Amazing Forest Cardigan Sweater with Woodland Creatures and Plants
I fear the memory of it shall haunt me for many falls to come. Have you got a story of sad vintage loss? Share, and for a happy ending story of love and loss and love again, check Bonjour Mon Coeur.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Friday, September 4, 2009

All drawn up

Since my camera is going on an elk hunting trip for a few days, I might just try this wicked awesome group for some outfit publishing. Now to learn to draw...

what i wore today by hellojenuine.

What I Wore 01/09/09 by Lizzy Stewart.

September 1st by katey jean harvey.

Monday, August 31, 2009

American Avatar

Another post on inspirational Woodstock images. Dig it.

Woodstock by you.

Woodstock by you.

Woodstock by you.

Woodstock by you.

What about this awesome clip from the happening itself:

For more inspiration, you might want to check out favorite director Ang Lee's new film Taking Woodstock. While it has barely enough story to keep you enticed for the entire length of two hours (in spite being penned by my favorite Lee collaborator James Scamush), it offers plenty of eye-candy, and a little insight into what it may have been like to have an entire generation "turn on, tune in, and drop out", on a dairy farm in Bethel, New York.

Here's a related entry in my other blog. Peace out, brothers and sisters!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

My Hummingbirds and Meadowlarks

Another week, another summertime activity package. Like you don't have anything better to do, than to hang out by the computer...

First off, I hate to brake it to you, but fall is just around the corner. To ease the pain, I recommend looking for some key pieces for an autumnal wardrobe. Here's some of my current favorites:

Vintage Camel Fur Coat

When I was just a wee lass, my auntie had a camel fur coat, which at the time seemed to me to be height of sophistication.

The Simone Cousteau Dress

Stripe-y dress in the style of Marimekko, is a must.

The Joni Mitchell Vest

As is a velvet-y vest, in true hippie fashion.

But for now there is still summer to enjoy. Speckled sunshine, butterfies flitting, giant squash growing with reckless abandon. That's right. Make some zucchini bread.

3 eggs
1 cup olive or vegetable oil
1 3/4 cups sugar
2 cups grated zucchini
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 cups all-purpose flour
3 teaspoons cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans (optional)
1 cup dried cranberries, raisins or chocolate chips or a combination thereof (optional)

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Grease and flour two 8×4 inch loaf pans, liberally. Alternately, line 24 muffin cups with paper liners.

In a large bowl, beat the eggs with a whisk. Mix in oil and sugar, then zucchini and vanilla.

Combine flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking soda, baking powder and salt, as well as nuts, chocolate chips and/or dried fruit, if using.

Stir this into the egg mixture. Divide the batter into prepared pans.

Bake loaves for 60 minutes, plus or minus ten, or until a tester inserted into the center comes out clean. Muffins will bake far more quickly, approximately 20 to 25 minutes.

Sweet, now that you have that covered why not catch up on some reading (preferably in your hammock). I recommend the Book of the Week:

Clouds to ride, beach treasures to be found, and jungles to be grown in your house, a visit to Moomin Valley is exactly what you need on a hot summer's day.

And take with you your pocket knife for whittling is the craft of the season, pointless and fun, and surprisingly artistic. I give you whittling:

And to neatly cap things off I give you this inspirational whittling outfit.
New little hat :) by thriftcandy.
Brought to you by the most inspirational Brownie of all, Missa. Now get to working on that bird calling whistle!