You might recall a while back when I posted the video for Oscar Wilde by Company of Thieves. We got such a fabulous response from you all! We were psyched that you guys are into Company of Thieves too – so when we were able to catch the lovely lead singer Genevieve Schatz for a quick chat before their appearance in Indianapolis, we went nuts!
Meredith (who works for FP) and Genevieve talked about the band’s new album, Ordinary Riches, fashion, traveling, and peanut butter! And, as if that weren’t enough, we are pumped to announce that the band are going to do an intimate acoustic set in our We The Free store in Brooklyn this very Saturday at 5pm! Don’t miss it!
Until then, check out the interview below!
So how is the tour going?
Actually we just got home from a west coast run. We are about to leave in a few days for about a month and a half (tour) so I hope it’s going to be fabulous!
Did you have a very steady tour schedule so far this year?
Definitely. We left at the end of January and went out for about two and a half months with Thriving Ivory, came back for about a week. Then we went to the west coast to have our own run of headlining shows and it was just amazing to be out there. I’d never been out to Seattle or Portland or San Diego and places like that. It’s been a really wild ride. I’ve gotten to the point that I’m more comfortable on the road than I am when I come home!
Better with dirty laundry than clean clothes?!
Yeah! You become part of the earth! It’s a totally different rhythm that you sink into.
I love the webcasts you did on Youtube from the road! They’re so cute and they made me feel like one of your friends, watching you bopping around while you traveled.
Haha! That’s awesome! That’s the whole point! We want to always include our fans, our friends in what we’re doing. We just always want to share it.
Were you happy to share when your van got broken into at SXSW (a music festival)?
Well, it’s cool to show all sides of the game because a lot of people are under the impression that, you know, it’s always a very glamorous lifestyle. You have your ups and downs just like anything.
Your latest album, Ordinary Riches, is clearly very influenced by Oscar Wilde. Are you often influenced by other arts than music when you write songs?
I always have been. It’s something that isn’t really sought out for me, I kind of always end up in the middle of… I don’t know! A lot of things open my eyes constantly. I’ve always been very aware and conscious of what’s going on around me. It’s always been hard for me to keep it out, I always let me fill me up! And so the whole album is really based on personal experiences and also sometimes being in the center of a lot of commotion just by the nature of living in a major city and being in a lot of crowded areas and coming into contact with other people and relating to them and things like that. It’s kind of an album about a coming of age.
Have you been writing on the road?
Absolutely! Every day!
Are you getting a different tone with being out of the city and in these new places?
Yes yes! I would say… How do I explain it… It’s much darker but much more focused.
The thing I find interesting about this album is the lyrics are fairly dark and introspective but the melodies, though not necessarily “pop”, are definitely accessible and often upbeat. I found it weird to find myself happily bopping along to a song and then realize what I’m singing along to.
I think that’s something that I’ve come to really embrace is the fact that, for me, I feel like the painful things in life and the joyful things in life have a lot of similarities and the physical effects of feeling overjoyed or feeling deeply deeply hurt are very similar to me – just the weight of the world. That’s kind of what our songs, even our new ones, have that tone where there’s a contrast going on with a shared vein.

So what is the dynamic between you and your bandmates on the road?
As far as the three of us go, I feel like Marc (Walloch, guitarist) is the guy who is the problem solver and will just bulldoze through anything and be a soldier. Mike (Ortiz, drummer) is the guy that makes sure everyone keeps calm. He seems impervious to disasters. It’s really funny – he has this energy level that’s super calm of just “It’s all ok. We’re going to get through this.” And I’m the person who… well everyone jokes that they see the little girl in me all the time. It’s because I’m definitely the explorer. I’ll be like, “Let’s go on this adventure! What’s this?! Let’s do this thing!” They’ll turn around and I’ll be climbing a tree or something, shouting “Come here! You guys have to see this!”
What is some of the stuff you’ve discovered while you’ve been traveling that’s been exciting for you?
Honestly, one of the coolest things was a town in Tennessee called Tallulah. We just wrote a song about it. It was a town that has been almost completely abandoned and every single building, the school house, the post office, the homes and store fronts, were completely left. There were a only a few human beings in the whole town. You know, at first I was really scared and I couldn’t believe that this happens. But when I realized that this is what happens when people leave, nature just comes in, I had this glee. When I looked closer there were vines coming up from the earth and wrapping around buildings and taking them back in. It was almost like nature trying to say that nature prevails and things change. I found that comforting.
I’m really excited that you guys are going to be able to do an in-store set for us. But you also recently did a set for another “store” of sorts- Etsy.
Yes! Oh my gosh!
How did that come about?
Well, a few months ago I was talking to the band saying that I feel that we’re at a time in this industry where independent arts really does have a huge window of opportunity and there’s a lot of presence. I’m really into supporting other independent artists so I was like, why don’t I incorporate pieces in my wardrobe that are very personal to people that they’ve spent a lot of time and put a lot of heart into? That’s what I do with my life so I should have a full circle representation of that. I started getting into Etsy because there’s a local artist in Chicago that I buy a lot from, dresses that no one in the world has but me and it feels so cool to wear them on stage! So basically we contacted Etsy about it and talked about different things we liked and performed for the creative people on Etsy. It was so cool to be able to do that!
Yeah, Etsy really is a great platform for a marketplace. It’s amazing how quickly it’s taken off and all the talent on there.
Definitely, and also a lot of unexpected surprises. I found this person who makes these wooden peg figures of casts from Wes Anderson films. It’s so hilarious! It’s like a child’s toy but who would ever have thought that someone would think to spend their time doing that, and it’s great that they do and it makes them happy.
Are you a fan of fashion? Do you look out for trend or do you have your own vibe?
I definitely have my own style but I’m a huge fan of fashion! It’s obviously a representation of the greater picture of the world that at least can be broken down into personal perspective and I’ve always loved that. I really believe in expressing yourself through fashion. I do believe it’s an art.
And your song was on Gossip Girl
That was crazy! I didn’t get to see the excerpt because I don’t really watch television but I heard about it the day it was happening and I was kind of blown away! To start off I didn’t know how I felt about it to be honest but it was a very cool opportunity for us to get exposure.
I always think it must be quite surreal the first time you hear yourself on the radio or on TV.
I still haven’t heard us on the radio! I hope that if it ever happens it will be like the That Thing You Do moment when we’re all screaming and running from different parts of the city and meeting up just as the song ends.
Now I have all my stupid questions…
Crunchy or smooth peanut butter?

Wait what? Oh, crunchy.
Innie or outie?
Hmmmmm… innie?
Pink or black?
Black.
Spots or stripes?
Stripes definitely.
Ocean or country?
Oooooh ocean.
Winter or summer?
Summer!
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Wow! What an awesome interview! Thank you Genevieve! And thank you Meredith for your interviewer skills! I couldn’t have even imagined a better interview than that!
Check out more from Company of Thieves on their Myspace – and don’t miss their in-store appearance, this coming Saturday afternoon at 5pm at We The Free in Brooklyn!

Karen -Jun 04, 2009, 3:00PM
What a great interview! CoT are an incredibly talented group of people! They are unbelievably sweet and also amazing performers. We are lucky to be able to listen to their beautiful musical creations. I can't wait for new material either!
Nathan -Jun 04, 2009, 3:20AM
Great interview! CoT is amazing and after hearing Tallulah I can't wait for new material!

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Many of us who work at URBN Inc. have little brothers or sisters through the local Big Brothers Big Sisters organization. They have a wonderful program where they even bus the children to our office from their school, twice a month to eat lunch with us! After lunch, Bigs and Littles just hang out together and do their own thing, or they can do whatever the fun scheduled activity is for that day.
At the end of last week, our Littles came, and the activity was so fun! It was a newspaper fashion show! Bigs and Littles made outfits out of newspaper and then walked the runway! There are so many adorable and funny pictures from it, I couldn’t resist sharing them with you! I’m sure you’ll get a kick out of them too!

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Such a blast!

niccole -Jun 02, 2009, 11:37PM
Those children are adorable! Looks like so much!
Chloe -Jun 02, 2009, 5:04PM
what great community involvement, you guys are great! thanks for letting us know.

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dream in paper

This video from Petra Storrs is really fantastic! It’s a little bit Alice in Wonderland, and much paper-craft! Check it out for yourself and see!

FaireyGothmother -Jun 17, 2009, 9:03PM
Did she do the music as well? I love it!! Is it available for download??
emma k-s -Jun 01, 2009, 7:42PM
i feel like i've seen this here before... was it posted a while ago? I love it!!

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maps are beautiful

Black*Eiffel spotted these sweet old cartography maps, so carefully made by Harold Fisk in 1944! They portray the alluvial valley of the lower Mississippi River, and the ribbons of color are the banks of the river at various times in history. Very interesting, and very very pretty. See the whole set at Radical Cartography!

new boys

The latest issue of Dazed has a cool piece on some of the newest models who walked the London catwalks this year. The pictures remind me of the work by Daniel Newman that I posted here a while back.

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Check out Dazed or Men’s Rag for more!

Kevin -Jun 01, 2009, 12:21PM
Love 'em!

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dance piano

This video is really fun! I’ve seen these giant pianos for dancing before, but I’ve sure never seen anyone playing it with such skill! These folks do a little routine and play Bach’s Toccata and Fugue in D minor on it! Sweet!

Fiona -Jun 01, 2009, 5:32AM
Warm nostalgic flashback to watching Big when I was ten...
Amy -May 30, 2009, 3:31PM
SUPER COOL

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Meet our friend Brittaney! (And her fiancé Adam!)

Brittaney resides in Bellingham, Washington, and is one of the star item reviewers on our website! She reviews using the nickname mushroommoon, and is a total Free People girl, who loves to create and be outside!
She writes: I appreciate dark, earthy, grungy clothing with a fine feminine touch.
To our delight, Brittaney agreed to do a mini-interview with us and tell us a little more about herself! Read on…
So, what do you do for a living?
I am currently attending Western Washington University for a Bachelors of Fine Arts in Studio Art.
What do you like to do for fun?
When I’m not doing homework, I paint, cycle with my fiance Adam, roll around on the bed with our corgi Morton, obsessively read Marx, and garden. :)

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What music do you enjoy?
My favorite bands are Joy Division, New Order, Talking Heads, Neil Young, Can, and Nick Drake!
Who is your style star?
David Byrne and Siouxsie Sioux!
What inspires you?
Working on a project in studio with filthy hands and filthy clothes…
Describe your style in 3 words.
grunge, flowers, earthy
Name 3 wardrobe essentials for summer!
Flip Flops, flowers in my hair, and mismatched, bright accessories!
Some final thoughts to share?
I only shop at the local Food Co-op. I buy organic, grow my own food, and I never eat factory farmed meat. Environmentalism is very important to me.
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Yay! Thank you for sharing all this with us Brittaney! It’s been a pleasure!
If you would like to see all of Brittaney’s (a.k.a. mushroommoon’s) FP clothing reviews, click here! She has some helpful feedback!
Thanks again Brittaney!
xo

Marita -Jun 23, 2009, 10:25PM
you grow your own food and wear D&G. my hero.
mushroommoon -Jun 01, 2009, 5:52PM
I love you guys!

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underwater

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These images by Alinka Echeverría are just amazing! They are from a series of photos and video that she has done called Lightness of Being, which features, as you can see, stunning shots of synchronized swimmers underwater. I really love that the waterline is at the bottom of the picture – it gives a whole different perspective than one usually sees in underwater photos. Awesome! If you have a moment you should totally go to her site and watch the video – it is like the pictures, only even better – just incredible!
Via You Might Like This.

MArianne Clancy -May 30, 2009, 9:52AM
I love this posting of the synch swimmers and reading on and on fell in love with the diversity of your posts and the cleverness of those who work at FP. My daughter who is 17 just bought a little bikini from you guys and after not giving up after it was too small, like the three bears story it came yesterday and fits "just right" so she is happy to both wear the clothing and now I will send her this link. She is a great etsy artist and I am including her url if you like. She designed the cover of the lit mag for her high school, see it on her store"the brain"! I am going to check back often for your posts as they are so cool, love the horses and cookies and wel.. my daughter loves your clothing and so do I. We moved to Sedona from APtos CA where the aptos shoe co first introduced your line to Rita, now she is a life long fan and always checks the site to see what is new. here is her unusual art store Animalgam http://www.etsy.com/shop.php?user_id=5503205

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These two pictures are some candids taken at a shoot we did for next week’s freepeople.com homepage. In the second picture they were trying to avoid getting her tights in the shot so she just pulled them below her knees. Looks more like she couldn’t wait for the bathroom!
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And this is some fun our graphic designer Lizzie made a while back and we just held onto becuase it is amazing!

Don’t miss this year’s Art Star Craft Bazaar if you are in Philly this weekend! It starts at 11am and runs until 6pm, tomorrow and Sunday at Penn’s Landing Great Plaza. Their site has directions if you need them!
There will be a ton of stuff to see and do (and eat) at the bazaar, which boasts over 100 artists this year! Of course there will also be plenty of live music – check out the schedule below!
Saturday Music Line-up
11am: Pairdown
12pm: The Josh Olmstead Band
1pm: The Documents
2pm: Gildon Works
3pm: Padre Pio
4pm: Toy Soldiers
5pm: Folklore
Sunday Music Line-up:
12pm: Perkasie
1pm: Photon Band
2pm: Like A Fox
3pm: North Lawrence Midnight Singers
4pm: The Mural & The Mint
5pm: Oh!Pears
Be sure to stop by if you need something awesome to do!
Art Star Craft Bazaar

janet hill

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Canadian artist Janet Hill remarks in her Etsy store description, “As a result of living in a cold climate for six months of the year, I’ve developed a strong interest in the beauty of interiors.” I can tell, and I love it! Her paintings are so glamorous and soft! Be sure to check out her blog if you enjoy the paintings above, as she has lots and lots of her work posted there!
Via Penguin & Fish!

One of our designers brought the picture below to my attention – it’s so fun to see people out and about wearing FP! It came from a Perez Hilton post about Kate’s new brunette hairdo – but check out her shirt! It’s our Printed Dreamweaver Tank in Purple Sun!

Ryanne, who designed the tank, was really psyched! And what’s extra cute is that she happens to be wearing that very tank, in that color, today! So random!
Here she is being happy and cute below!

Jenni -Jun 02, 2009, 1:07PM
i love love love this shirt!!
K @ Blog Goggles -Jun 01, 2009, 8:46AM
That's so awesome! Congrats :)

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