one of the awesome things we have at the free people is yoga! if you don’t do yoga…i highly recommend you try. it’s an amazing workout, and you feel incredible afterwards – body and mind. paige chapman, our in house yoga instructor, shared her experiences with me, including an amazing retreat in mozambique, africa. read on to learn more about paige and the style of yoga she teaches. she also teaches at yoga child on 9th & south in philly.
when did you start doing yoga?
“i started doing yoga in college when i was about 19. i was in the dance company at school and thought it would be a good way to compliment my dance training as well as keep me in shape during the summer.”
why did you decide to be a yoga instructor?
“i fell in love with yoga immediately. since i started, it has brought me so much joy, peace, and an overall feeling of well being. after graduating college, i moved to NY where there was a very well respected teacher training that i could do on the weekends while working full time. it took me eight grueling months – eight intensive three day weekends a month with yoga classes and assignments in between. i joke that i never was more stressed out than during my yoga training, but it was by far one of the best decisions that i ever made. i didn’t actually start teaching full time until i moved back to philadelphia about three years ago.” your classes are a blend of hatha and vinyasa…can you explain what that means?
“hatha is probably the most recognized style of yoga in america and is what was typically practiced as yoga started becoming popular here in the 60s. i like to think of it as a very classic form of yoga before we got into all kinds of crazy styles, the use of heat, etc. although still challenging, it’s not overwhelming to beginning students and i like the fact that its slower pace allows for concentrating on form and body alignment – rather than just rushing through the poses which can often lead to injuries. vinyasa is more of a flow style, linking the asanas (poses) together with breath and quicker transitions. It gets the heart rate up and therefore brings more of a workout factor to the mat. i like teaching a combination of both so that you feel like you really got the body moving, but there is still the quality of being mindful about your practice. when all is said and done, yoga was created to ready the mind for meditation. i want my students to feel as rejuvenated, relaxed, and as peaceful as possible when they walk out of class.”
i read that you recently taught a retreat in mozambique, africa…what was that like?
“the retreat in mozambique was absolutely incredible. a friend of mine whom i got certified to teach with in new york, married a south african, and set up a yoga studio in johannesburg (http://www.yogawarrior.co.za/). she invited me to teach the retreat with her at a magnificent eco resort on a completely undeveloped coastline in mozambique (http://www.pontamamoli.com/index.html). you sleep in wooden bungalows with monkeys jumping on your roof, swim with wild dolphins in the ocean, go whale watching, horse back ride, watch elephants in the distant reserve, and eat local organic food. the combination of the natural serenity of that location along with teaching yoga was quite an extraordinary experience.” what is your favorite place you’ve travelled to as a yoga instructor?
“africa was hands down the most fantastic and exotic place that I’ve traveled as a yoga teacher. it’s going to be hard to top, but i’m going to try!” what inspires you on a daily basis?
“that’s such a good question for us all to answer. i would say being in nature (even if you’re in the city – it could be watching the leaves change), kindness from friends and better yet – strangers, and doing what i love to do.” why do you think more people should incorporate yoga into their exercise routine?
“bottom line, it just makes you feel so good! our daily routines can be intensely stressful and sometimes we don’t even know how much tension we walk around with. over time, it takes a toll. whether you’re a beginner student that’s really tight and stiff or an advanced student that can do all kinds of fancy poses, yoga brings the same benefits: it calms the mind, makes us conscious of our breath, eases tension, brings awareness to the way we hold the body when we’re out in the world, and perhaps allows us to become more mindful – opening our hearts to what’s happening in our lives just a little bit more.”
thank you, paige! i don’t know about you all, but i want to go on the africa retreat…it sounds unreal…
in a world where snail mail is used less and less… these handmade cards are lovely!
one of our many artistic employees shared her hobby of making her own cards for loved ones on special occasions. they are drawn and collaged by hand, adding a personal touch that is sure to put a smile on the recipient’s face. i know if i opened up my mailbox and found a card like one of these it would make my day :)
she said she’ll be making her own holiday cards as well, i can’t wait to see those!
it’s thursday…you know what that means…tomorrow is friday!!!
…and, it’s time for another thursday poll :)
last week we asked about party dresses and got a whopping 741 votes! the winner is the on the fringe lace dress with 28%! the moonlight tiers dress was a close second with 23%.
this week…it is cold and rainy in philly so i thought it would be appropriate to ask which sweater you all want to cozy up in…
the cut out cape hoodie:
cold cave – death comes close
listening to this with my roommate, she asked me “is this electro?” and i said, “no, this is new wave” and then next song corrected myself – “well this is kind of electro”. truth is, i was wrong both times. cold cave sways between heady, bleached out melody and something more aggressive – it can’t easily be categorized. whatever bucket you put them in, they’re creating songs that deserve to challenge you. julian casablancas – phrazes for the young
with such a distinctive voice it’s hard to listen to casablancas without making straight up comparisons to the good times that were the strokes albums, but phrazes for the young is a different beast. reviews for this album have been pretty acerbic, but when he’s good he’s very very good; “out of the blue” and “river of brakelights” are both beauties and once you let “glass” warm up you’re going to be happy you gave this the chance to grow on you. bricolage – bricolage
there’s seems to be a pattern in scottish music which has veins part bitter and part raucous. this glaswegian band has created an album of poppy goodness that every once and a while bites back. i’m trying to avoid using sour patch kids as a reference… the big pink – a history of love
with vocals that swoon and swell with shards of guitar and drums, this album is a sonic gem. by far one of my favorites of the year, a history of love lives up to its bravado. patti smith – horses
horses doesn’t prove that smith has an exceptional voice or that she needs to work only with her own material. but it is her real, pure music at its core, and that is rock and roll. perez prado – havana, 3a.m.
better known as the “mambo king”, prado leads his band in the perfect cuban mix of spanish and african rhythms. he finds himself with a better flow on this record than some of his others . the band is so tight, and yet when sections break way into solos they feel like an entirely different entity.
bonus: following the break up of the clash, paul simonon named his (short-lived) new band after this album!!
various artists – 41 original hits from the soundtrack of american graffiti
this is mostly a mix of rock and doo-wop hits from the late ’50s and early ’60s. george lucas and francis ford coppola spent almost all of the money allotted to music in the film on obtaining the rights to these songs. because of that the film doesn’t have a score – think of what that could have meant for some of their other, less known, films… the national – alligator
very understated, yet feels a bit rambling. it is amazingly gloomy and catchy all at once. how can you not love a man with that deep baritone?
(side note from the blogger…this is one of my favorite albums…ever.)
and for your listening pleasure, here is a mixtape featuring songs from the above albums!
good morning everyone…i am so excited to announce about the launch of the book club! we have chosen on the road by jack kerouac as the first book featured in the free people book club! this is one of my favorite books of all time, and I can’t wait to hear what you all have to say about it.
since we’re new at this, we’re just going to learn as we go…if you look to the list of categories on the right you’ll see we’ve created one for the book club. you will still be able to see the posts on the main page, but if you ever want to see only book club posts, click there.
here’s how it’s going to work: on the road is broken into three parts, so we’re going to give you all some time to read the first part and then we’ll start discussing! check back for a post – maybe in the form of a question, a highlight, not quite sure yet – on monday november 23 about part one of the book, and leave any comments you have in the comments section as you normally would. but make sure you don’t spoil the ending for anyone who might not be finished the book yet…
i recently came across the work of rachell sumpter, an artist who lives in tiny island, n. puget sound. some of her work is currently on display at the richard heller gallery in santa monica. what I love about these images is that the subject matter invokes fall, winter and coldness but the colors she uses are so cheerful and warm…perfect on a day like today.
brothers in sport, 2009
molten kin, 2009
other interesting facts about rachell…she is inspired by big, big trees, and living off the grid…she is reading born to kvetch, the orchard keeper, the lone ranger and tonto fistfight in heaven…and she is listening to beach house, bonnie “prince” billy, and bruce.
check out more of her work on her website.
do you love animals? do you love yoga? do you live in philly? then you’ll love this event…
this saturday, practice yoga studio and the monster minders present upward dog: a yoga benefit for paws. the event will take place in the beautiful sanctuary at fleisher art memorial (8th and catherine) at 4pm, with two full hours of yoga led by ellen greenberg, owner of practice yoga studio on fabric row.
this event is free but there is a suggested donation of $25 that will go to the philadelphia animal welfare society to aid in their efforts to save shelter animals.
you can rsvp for the event here.
sounds like a win win situation to me :) is anyone attending any cool yoga events this week/weekend?
what’s not to love about fall leaves? isn’t it sad how quickly the bright oranges, reds and yellows go away? check out this awesome DIY activity from creative kismet to make some pretty autumn leaves! i think they’d be great decorations at home, or even to spruce up your desk at work.
here’s a step by step tutorial on how to make them…
what you’ll need:
A brown paper bag
acrylic craft paints in assorted autumn colors (yellow, orange, green, red, brown, copper, gold)
paint brushes, sponges, old toothbrush
blow dryer (optional)
1. take one brown paper grocery bag, tear it open into one flat piece. tear into 3-4 large pieces and crumple into a ball to give it lots of texture. flatten out.
2. prep paints by diluting with a bit of water
3. slop paint all over paper.
4. allow to dry. use a blow dryer to speed the process (optional).
5. lightly sponge on metallic gold and copper paint
6. spritz some diluted brown paint with a toothbrush to create speckles.
7. admire your pretty paper :)
8. when paper is completely dry, cut into leaf size squares and cut out leaves. if you are lucky to have sizzix machine with leaf shapes, that would be a really easy way to make leaves. If not, try stacking several squares together and cutting multiple leaves at the same time. another way to cut the leaves would be to use leaf shaped cookie cutters!
9. glue stems onto twine and hang your pretty garland on a window or around a door.
grizzly bear, one of my favorite bands right now, just released this awesome video for their song “ready, able” on friday. the video is directed by allison schulnik, a claymation artist that the band likes…if you dig this video, you may also enjoy her short film “hobo clown,” which also features the music of grizzly bear.
i have always loved album covers…i think they’re a very special form of art that tends to get lost in all the online sites that allow you to download music these days. having the actual album means something to me, and to a lot of people who still insist on buying them, and when my dad gives me his old record collection one day (i hope…!), a lot of the albums are going in frames and up on my wall.
so i think it’s really cool that next year, britain’s royal mail will launch a new series of stamps that celebrate ten classic british album covers. for the near-impossible task of selecting which ten to use, they did a series of polls and conferred with music editors, designers and writers. the stamps will have the unique shape seen in the images above, allowing for the vinyl disc poking out of the sleeve.
here’s the full list:
the clash – london calling
rolling stones – let it bleed
led zeppelin IV
david bowie – the rise and fall of ziggy stardust and the spiders from mars
pink floyd – division bell
blur – parklife
primal scream – screamadelica
coldplay – a rush of blood to the head
mike oldfield – tubular bells
new order – power, corruption & lies
don’t be too shocked that no beatles albums made the cut…they have already been on stamps.
do you agree with the british choices? if they did this in the US…what classic album covers would you want to see on stamps?
this would be at the top of my list: