I decided to move on from my previous job in order to give me some *REAL* time to focus on getting something going that I’ve wanted to for a while, but never could gather the energy and time together to make it happen while working. I’m very proud of what’s come of it, and really it didn’t take as long as I thought, although I have more I want to do to get my stuff out there, but for now, it exists on Etsy. Check out my store!
I named my line Ria. At first I just liked how it sounded, and wanted something short, easy to remember, feminine and powerful sounding. It turns out though that a ria is an inlet of water that forms between a big body of water and a river. So, I felt that was extra fitting for me:) Ria is a way for the world to connect to me.
I’m very excited about fabric jewelry, because not only is it just as beauteous as beads and jewels and chains and all that hard stuff, it’s super lightweight, flexible, and my pieces are all from recycled materials. The black felt that I am using is actually from my grandparents, specifically my grandpa used it as a backing to frame rocks he found during his walks in nature.
The metallic and “jewel” fabrics come from SCRAP, an awesome supply warehouse for artists to get completely random stuff for very cheap. Much of the stuff there is priced, but a lot of it is on the honor system too, meaning you pay what you think it’s worth. The buttons are from my ridiculously awesome button collection, I rarely ever bought buttons from an actual store, it’s usually been from thrifty/second hand type places, or I just accumulate them from the ground or old garments.
Looking for a job is tough on my sensitive soul, but I’m hanging in there. In the meantime, I’m thankful for time to be arting.
It’s been a little over a month since the move, and I’d say the castle in a box has gone through a detox. We are completely moved in, and so I wanted to share some pics to all those who’ve asked (and who’ve not asked but are curious) to see the new place.
View from our living room, facing west.
A tree blocks about half the window, but we get a good amount of light. We live in the Western Addition, and are in somewhat of a valley I’m finding, thus you can see the houses go up in the distance. The sky is amazing, it changes pretty rapidly. It goes from blue sky and sunny to cloudy/foggy, to hazy and rainy, back to sunny.
View upon entering.
This has been our general set up since we’ve been married. It’s called using what we have. I have peacock feathers in vases from our wedding. We are a TV-less, but internet dependent family. I’ve gotten rid of all my CDs, and the only books I have left are the handful sitting on the desk in the back. The wandering jew vine that borders the top is from our wedding, what we used to decorate the center arch. I like how I feel when I’m among plants, and I love the look of the wandering jew vine. I was inspired when I saw the inside of my friend’s apartment, where his parents had used real ivy to grow all around the top of the apartment, it was really remarkable. I’d love to one day use real plants, but considering my growing record for container planting, it hasn’t been great. I hear that succulents do well here, so maybe I’ll give that a try, they seem more hearty anyway, and I love the peaceful look they give off. We were in a basement in our last place, so maybe this setup on the 5th floor and more mildweather will be more encouraging.
I am happy with the empty space, this is where I like to do exercises in the morning, or play our beautiful handmade djembe drums in the evening. I can bring my easel out with the natural window light and paint, or cut fabric, etc. It’s also a big enough space for Drew to practice his martial arts, and for us to do our daily massages at the end of the day:) And it’s big enough for our air mattress for whomever wants to crash here ::hint hint::.
My decorating style is basically to use beautiful fabrics to drape surfaces. I LOVE to use fabric!!
View of the entrance and kitchen.
Kitchen and laundry cove.
That big white block of an eye sore is our breadmaker. I make bread every week, it’s cheaper and fresher, and I can control what goes in. If I was really hard core, I’d make bread from scratch, but that takes all day, and I don’t know that many people have all day anymore. I still like to make sourdough from scratch when I make time.
I am really happy with our setup. I always felt like I could have studied interior design and been very good at it, but I also know that I have a very different aesthetic from what a lot of the design “rulebooks” say. I think I’m more conceptual and less consumerist focused than what interior decorators are “supposed” to be. For example, I don’t like furniture. I mean I very much appreciate the art of furniture, finding the balances between art and functionality through design. But for my home, at least the communal areas, I would more prefer empty space.
“We shape clay into a pot, but it is the emptiness inside that holds whatever we want.” – Lao Tzu
You know, for me this really applies to interior spaces too! I love the potential of an empty space. I’d rather have the space be filled with family and their activities and energies, rather than furniture/stuff. Our little dining table is perfect, it’s just the way I want it, intimate, simple, and soothing. We have received a lot of criticism and confusion about sitting on the floor. I welcome the inquiry! In many areas of the world, sitting on the floor is a normal part of culture. In Japan, and parts of China, India, and Africa, they sit on the floor to eat, work, or even in school to learn.
I like sitting on the floor because it feels more natural and healthy to me. When my chiropractor learned that I sit on the floor, he said it’s actually quite healthy for the spine to sit on the floor. It encourages the body to stay in motion more than sitting in a stagnant chair would. It activates the hip muscles more often, and increases flexibility when your legs are stretching different ways to sit. If you think about it, getting in and out of a chair does not require as much flexibility as getting up and down from the floor. This is why many elderly have trouble getting up from the floor, amongst other reasons with age. But if you look at the elderly in the parts of the world I mentioned above, they are fine with it, generally, because their body has adapted. Sitting in a chair allows some muscles to not be used at all, where others become fatigued because they are constantly being used with no chance rest (lower back pain). I also feel that when I sit on the floor with others, it facilitates relationship more than if everyone was in their own chair. There is something about sharing the same floor space that is unifying. Sometimes I feel that clutter divides people. Especially for me, as an artist, I am very distracted by things, because I love things. But I love people more. I definitely have my organized clutter, as you’ll see in my studio:
My art nest.
Close up of the sewing table.
Yep, weird, I know. I used the old curtains we had at our old place (the white fabric was the huppah at our wedding) to make a little partition to divide the studio from the bedroom space. It’s kinda ghetto, but I’m happy with it, I’m still getting used to the space since I rearranged about 90% of EVERYTHING.
So maybe from the picture, the curtains appear to be hovering magically in the air. You could believe that and I’d be fine with it. Or I could say that I used fishing line. Either way, it was a fun process. Did I say that I LOVE FABRIC?!
The love nest.
It’s significantly more dim in here because of the tree. But I actually like it, gives more privacy and with our bed placed next to the window, we still can have our faces bathed in sunlight in the morning, and depending on the mood of the moon, we can see it as we go to sleep:) How romantic! I’ve always wanted to have more flexibility with the bedroom than I have in past apartments. It’s like, we are fine with a tiny space, but I would love to have more space to create a real atmosphere, lusty, sensual, healing, and therapeutic. One day, one day.
Entrance to the bathroom.
I made the curtain! I’ve had the sunflower curtain (which I also made) for years and decided to put it to good use by extending it’s life, literally, with some cream linen fabric I had laying around. Gives a little more privacy than just an empty entrance.
It’s kinda different than what I’m used to, we have a nice luxurious counter space, and a separate space for the shower and toilet. Hard to photograph, but I like it! Yes, that is a ladybug rug
There you have it, our castle in a box. I’ve been spending more time at home than I have in a while, and it’s been wonderfully refreshing. I think that I’m not alone if I said that many educated women feel a stigma upon “staying at home” because it implies inactivity, failure, lack of ambition, skill, worth, and other ridiculous beliefs. I say DOWN with that crap. Those beliefs existed in the 70′s-80′s in order to free women from the expectation of existing only in the home and not in society. I’m not saying those times are completely over, many are still feeling strapped and discriminated against. But when we start acting out a new way, we are more likely to speed up the pace in progress. I’m driven to showing the happy medium for work-at-home (not stay-at-home) women (and men). Working-at-home is actually what a lot of women and men desire, and it’s more possible now than ever with technology. I love cooking my own meals and I love the freedom in my schedule. As much as I’d like some work outside the home, I am very happy working-at-home. With my computer, my art nest, my kitchen, and my empty space, I can do what I want to do in River world.