this week’s pick from our stylists is the eternal sunshine shirt! our assistant stylist says “transitioning into fall i love the idea of wearing woven button downs as layering pieces. it’s great for adding pattern and texture to your outfit.”
as mentioned the other day, i had the chance this weekend to sit down with singer/songwriter diane birch and ask her some questions. she’s incredibly sweet and down to earth – and she’s got great style too!
i read that you weren’t allowed to listen to pop music growing up, how has that influenced you as an artist?
it’s really influenced me, because during my formative years what i was exposed to was classical, opera, church hymns, just really kind of old school music. i’ve gotten into many different phases of music, like i was listening to a lot of goth bands at one point, but i’ve still extracted that formative listening experience with my music and it’s definitely been a huge influence because for a long time i had to suppress all that stuff.
are there any specific musicians who have had a huge influence on you?
i’ve always greatly admired people like john lennon, elton john, nina simone, brian wilson, michael jackson, people who had the ability to be really individual and push boundaries and yet reach a massive audience and touch every person in some way.
if you could get on stage and jam with any musician who would you pick?
do they have to be alive? i guess i would probably say michael jackson or stevie wonder – i actually just did a show with stevie wonder in the south of france and he was incredible. it would be fun to get up on stage and jam out with him.
so you have a day off – what do you do?
day off, what is that? i’ve been on the road for about three months straight so i haven’t really had a day off in a while…i guess the first thing i would do is laundry. the second thing is to try to organize the piles of clothes – i actually have a day off tomorrow so i’m going to sort the piles of clothes in my room.
other than that i’d probably just hang out with friends. i love to go shopping – vintage shopping, going to flea markets, antique shops. i love going to museums, checking out bands. i live in brooklyn so there’s always something to do, it’s really fun, especially in summertime – i’m in williamsburg right by the waterfront so there are always fun things going on.
how would you describe your personal style?
it’s kindof a mix of a lot of things – classic, gypsy, masculine, feminine, a little rock and roll. my style icons are people like coco chanel, patti smith, jane birkin, annie hall, stevie nicks – i’m in a kind of stevie nicks obsession right now. there’s definitely a 70s, hippie, gypsy kindof feel to things, i love mixing old and new. and a lot of black.
what do you like to wear on stage? do you go for comfort or style?
i like to try to go for both. i used to always dress up when i would be on stage, like i would wear a skirt or heels… but i like to feel a bit more masculine now when i’m on stage so i like to wear flats or boots, but i do like to dress up a little – it’s hard for me to wear jeans and a t-shirt. and i always have to have some jewelry.
at free people we’re all animal lovers – do you have a pet?
no i don’t but i would love a pet – i’m obsessed with dogs! but when you’re always on the road it’s hard and also living in new york i feel like i want to have a yard for it. i personally love pugs – i’m one of those annoying people that when i see them i have to stop and pet them.
where do you draw inspiration for your music?
i definitely draw from personal experience. this first album was really inspired by my life, my childhood, it was kind of an album about the past. about my relationships and my whole range of human emotion whether its triumph or joy, loneliness, depression. it was really kind of derived from this transition between my childhood and adulthood in a way…so that’s sort of where i drew my inspiration from on this album. now that i’ve got that out of the way i can focus on my present inspiration and things that i’m doing and feeling currently as opposed to having it be so much in the past… but yeah it is quite personal.
so what do you have coming up in the near future?
i’m almost done touring now, and i’m going to asia in ten days. then when i come back i’m pretty much done for a while and i’m just going to focus entirely on the second album because i’m dying to get it done. i’ve been working on this first album for such a long time that i’m just really ready to move on to something else now.
what’s the biggest challenge you’ve faced being a musician?
the most challenging thing is just sticking with it when you have so many people that are kinda like “yeah, that’s cool but i don’t know…” people who just aren’t really understanding it, they don’t really get it, and you have to constantly work through that. even though you have people that are putting you down or closing doors you have to keep believing, believing, believing. that was always a challenge for me, to stay focused and positive when there are so many opportunities to just say “you know what, i give up.” that’s the most challenging thing, just staying with it. you have to learn patience and you have to keep believing. i’ve always had people, fortunately, that believe in me and are really supportive.
what does free mean to you?
free means choice. being able to choose what you want to do…being able to dictate your life.
check out her myspace page and listen to her music, it’s really lovely.
she’s a wanderer of the land. her connection to the earth beneath her feet is strong- she feels the presence of those who walked here before her. this comes across in her style through her worn, ripped denim, heavy brown vintage leather and hair tangled up in braids. turquoise, rust and natural colors that come from the earth accent her jewelry and accessories. the open landscape of the southwest calls to her with its wild horses, dust storms and fields of cacti that burst with beautiful flowers. she hears music in the wind.
this is the lovely georgia of the blog dora’s fur – doesn’t she look adorable? our creative design assistant snapped this photo of her yesterday. apparently the shorts used to be a skirt that she altered herself! they are super cute and i love the knotted shirt look- so effortless and cool for summer.
“these pants are so versatile – you can dress them up or down. wear them with a graphic tee and a scarf for a cute casual look, or dress them up with the black seamless tupelo honey top, the fritz bows & arrows clog (our other pick for this week) and a dressy bag. it’s great to see cargo pants in a skinnier fit so they can be sexy! plus military is still going to be a huge trend this fall.”
“these clogs are SO comfortable! they look amazing with the sock trend that’s going on right now – they look really cute with over the knee or slouchy socks. wear them now with cutoff shorts and a tank, and carry them into the fall with tights and a bodycon dress!”
our concept intern, anastasiya, put together this post on a trend she loves right now – and i love it too :)
I have always had a special spot for grunge, but lately that tenderness has grown into a full-fledged love for the style that was popularized in the nineties before staging its comeback in the twenty-first century. The utility and the comfort that accompanies the look is an instant winner, but the most fun aspect of grunge for me is the way that it makes me feel. I love that I can pull on a confused blend of loose thermal, torn jeans, floor-length skirt, give or take flannel, and go bare-faced out into the world and feel totally at ease. All insecurities dissolve, receding further into some forgotten trapdoor in the back of my mind each time that my hands re-inhabit the warm asylum of my too-long sleeves. In grunge there is no pretension—nothing to prove. It feels right.
Free People’s incorporation of grunge is divine. I love the idea of injecting pretty, feminine lace into a look that is messy, low maintenance, and somewhat boyish by nature. It feels very fresh.
our july catalog and its stunning location have really got me longing for a rugged hiking and camping vacation. all I want to do is take off on a weekend with nothing but a rucksack on my back and explore the great outdoors. i am a summer person but i am already dreaming about fall because i think that would be the perfect time of year to do this… hearing the crunch of the leaves beneath my feet, brisk morning air that still warms up to the sun, moonlit dips in a lake and drying off by a fire with a big cozy blanket wrapped around me…
i would really love to hike the appalachian trail –maybe not the entire length (from maine to georgia or vice versa) but at least part of it. i had the opportunity to do this once in high school and i always kindof regretted not taking it.
we love these amber and macramé bracelets because not only are they beautiful but they have an amazing story behind them.
the bracelets are hand made by women in ecuador to raise money for the eden’s rose foundation. this foundation is working to build job skills and sustainability in the impoverished outpost communities of tosagua, ecuador, and proceeds from the sale of these bracelets go directly towards building a basic needs center in tosagua to help young children in need.
the region of tosagua, ecuador is affected by heavy flooding.
each bracelet varies slightly in the color of the string, and they all feature columbian pre-andean amber. this is a rare and lovely amber that comes in a few different shades. some specimens include the fossil remains of the wood the amber was once attached to, and others have bugs and other creatures from the time period. most of this amber is from before the aquitanian age of the miocene period and some predates the formation of the andes!
by purchasing one of these beauties you are not only getting an extremely unique and special item but you are helping a very worthy cause – what could be better than that?
good morning! today i have a special treat for you – a guest post by the lovely and talented artist/designer kris chau! she has a really cool blog with illustrator hawk krall called “drawing for food” on which they review restaurants, food, and lots of hot dogs! and of course art makes its way in there too :) please enjoy this guest post from kris chau in which she interviews fellow artist rob sato!
Artist Series: Mr. Rob Sato
Rob Sato does not stop drawing. It actually gives me a huge complex about drawing. Why aren’t I drawing all the time too that I too need a special compartmentalized side satchel to hold my travel watercolor palette and brushes and various pens????? Then I look at his art and feel somewhat worthless and hide to eat my feelings. So with that introduction here is the amazing art of Rob Sato, eater, cook, drawer, and friend to Drawing For Food.
left: SweetBonesDeck–painting of Sweet Bones on skateboard
right: Satobites-imaginary food from my sketchbook
SweetBones–sketches for broken arm drumstick ice cream cone
DrawingForFood: What is your favorite dish your mom makes?
RobSato: Rum Cake.
DFF: What do you snack on for art deadlines?
RS: It used to be whiskey. When my body couldn’t take it anymore, I had to switch to almonds, bananas and water.
DFF: Do you make better art hungry or full? Why?
RS: Reasonably well fed is what works. Being too full makes me nod off over my work. A few times I’ve come-to with my face planted in a painting, drool pooling, and an unintended paint stroke streaking across the surface. I also fall into time warps after I eat where I suddenly become aware that I’ve been lying on the couch for hours reading or watching movies. On the other hand, being hungry causes panic, pacing, frantic snacking on weird food and long stares into the fridge. This can then lead to being overly full on snacks instead of simply preparing a decent meal. Every so often hunger mixed with creative blockage will drive me to the following menu, consumed in a near-zombie state wandering back and forth between the kitchen and the studio– It usually starts with a handful of nuts, then maybe a strip of beef jerky, soon a hand plunged into a box to eat cereal dry, more nuts, a bit of chocolate, an apple, a bag of baby carrots, cheese melted on toast, bites of cold gray dinner leftovers directly from the tupperware, a spoonful of peanut butter, a fried egg with more toast, more chocolate, just biting cheese directly off the block, a longing look at any alcohol in the house then maybe a beer, all the bananas, the remainder of the package of beef jerky, a few spoonfuls of ice cream, a cup of coffee in an attempt to shake it all off and calm the frenzy. Then a dreary, stupefied drawing session or an unintended, unsatisfying, guilt-ridden nap.
DFF: Wheres your favorite place to eat?
RS: With Ako, on our porch.
****DFF: coincidently this is one of Kris Chau’s favorite places to eat too…
DFF: If you could cut up and eat any artist in history to absorb their strengths and talents who would it be?
RS: This was a tough question. After much thought, the final and obvious choice is Leonardo Da Vinci. Absorbing him would deliver a massive load of skills and knowledge which I could mix with my own visual taste and pursuits. He does seem like he would taste pretty awful though. I’m not exactly sure why, but I’m imagining a combination of dust, dry burnt bread and bad, foul smelling cheese. The first artist that comes to mind who seems like they might actually have tasted good is Picasso. He reminds me of a cartoon drawing of a glistening ham. I’ve just disturbed myself.
Ako with our dinner from the other night: Sea Bass with miso marinade, Tamago (japanese omelet) brown rice, avocados and pickled ginger.
DiscountBurgers–stickers I found that look like burgers
Ako with Thai Iced Coffee
And here is a recipe from Mr. Sato!
Chicken and Fruit Curry
2-4 tablespoons oil (canola, vegetable, peanut, or butter all work–amount varies depending on how greasy you want this)
2 medium onions, chopped
3 apples chopped into chunks (fuji or gala tend to be the least mealy, but all seem to work OK)
1 banana chopped into chunks (you can also use papaya or mango, or go with just apples but I prefer the banana)
1 cup tomato, diced
1 to 1 1/2 lbs chicken meat, cubed (about 2 breasts, or 4 cutlets, or 3 -4 thighs)
2-3 tablespoons of curry powder
1/2 cup yogurt (optional)
hot pepper (optional)
soy sauce to taste, at least a tablespoon
handful of chopped cilantro
2 tablespoons chopped mint leaves
1. Heat up the oil over medium heat in a large saucepan or skillet that you are able to cover
2. add the onions, stir occasionally, cook until they become soft, 5-10 minutes
3. lightly salt the onions and then add the curry powder, stirring into the onions until they are fully coated with the powder,
4. add the chicken, the fruit, tomatoes and hot pepper (if desired)and mix them into the onions
5. pour the 1/2 cup of yogurt over the mixture (if desired)
6. cover the pan and cook covered for 8-10 minutes
7. check to see if the apples have softened, if not, it will need a little longer to cook
8. once the apples are soft, uncover and raise the heat to medium-high. cook until the mixture thickens slightly, another minute or two.
9. add the soy sauce and continue cooking for one minute
10. taste, adjust soy sauce if necessary
11. Serve over white rice, season with a spoonful of fresh yogurt, the cilantro, and mint
We’re intrigued by fashion everyday – it stimulates, inspires, and influences everything we do. We’re always looking for the freshest trends and the newest movements in street style and boho fashion, and we constantly fuel our ideas with the best from fashion culture.