“In periods of rapid personal change, we pass through life as though we are spell-cast. We speak in sentences that end before finishing. We sleep heavily because we need to ask so many questions as we dream alone. We bump into others and feel bashful at recognizing souls so similar to ourselves.”
On Friday I met up with Elsa of the blog Styleabaad for coffee. She chose the spot – Last Drop café on 13th and Pine. I live in Old City and rarely come over this way, but I was completely charmed by this coffee shop! I love cafés that feel homey and unique, the kind that makes you want to bring a book and get cozy and stay a while.
I first met Elsa when I posted a photo of her on our blog, not realizing she was currently living right here in philly! It just so happened that same day she was at the Free People home office visiting her friend, our Art Director. Small world, huh? We decided to meet up and talk about blogging, fashion, philly and more.
Elsa is fascinating – she is from Sweden, and has been living in Philly for three years now with her husband. She loves to write and travels often – the last 12 years she has been traveling to India, where she has spent time in an Ashram and also worked various jobs including backup dancer in Bollywood films. In addition to her blog, she is working on a novel about her travels – I for one would love to read it! She also had some really interesting perspectives on fashion in Philly vs. fashion in Sweden, and what it was like to move here as a foreigner. Stay tuned because she agreed to write a guest post about it for our blog :)
I also couldn’t get over how cute she looked with her blue hat, backpack and kate spade bike!
I had to get a closeup of her awesome nail polish too – what a cool idea!
I first became familiar with Christopher’s work through his girlfriend’s blog, and I’m hooked! I love the candidness of his photos and how they serve as a visual diary of his life.
Shoots with:Over the years I have used a few different camera’s. I use a Canon SLR for most of my photographs, however I love shooting in 35mm more recently. I also have some vintage cameras that are over 30 years old. My secret weapon is disposable cameras.
Favorite Subject: My girlfriend. She is also a great photographer, so when we go away or spend the weekend together, we like to take photos. It’s great to be able to look back at experiences you shared together and have some cool snaps.
Inspired by: My father used to be a semi-professional photographer in the 70’s, and he has taught me much of what I know. I would say he has been a big influence. Aside from that, I am easily inspired by the blogs I revisit, as well as my friends and family.
I love to hear the meaning and stories behind the little things people keep at their desks. Everyone’s desk space here is so unique and full of tiny, fascinating details. Here’s a look at the Free People office coordinator’s desk top!
1. The headphones were actually a Christmas present from my father last year. They help when I’m looking for new store music!
2. This little giraffe statue was given to me by our creative director. She’s having a baby (!) and gave away little things after she baby-proofed her home.
3. This is a photo of my friend/coworker. His last day is on Friday (he’s going to grad school) so I snagged it off his desk so I can still see him every day.
4. It’s a pin that says, “Happiness is a warm puppy”. I bought it from a thrift store, it makes me smile :)
5. A photo of my little kitten, Walker <3
6. A piece of my mom’s artwork that she did in college. Unfortunately, artistic ability is not hereditary.
7. A Swedish wooden horse my grandparents brought back from their visit to Sweden.
8. As the office coordinator, people often come to me asking for candles when they have office parties, so I keep them at my desk.
9. I get migraines all the time! My mom sent me this holistic Migraine Tonic recently- hopefully it works! (fingers crossed)
10. Worry doll- I think this came off of a cupcake from an old office party. They remind me of my childhood.
11. Photo of Audrey Hepburn- She’s one of 11 women I have hanging above my desk as my eyebrow inspiration #dontjudgeme
12 . One of our first round discs for a store mix cd
13. This finger puppet needed a home, so I adopted it.
What if there was a magical spider that weaved its webs into intricately beautiful creations resembling lace doilies and delicate crochet… transforming abandoned or un-remarkable places into a beautiful work of art…and instead of being repulsed or scared, people would stop to admire its work…
That magical spider may not exist, but these amazing installations by Poland street artist NeSpoon do… so beautiful.
“The bridge will only take you halfway there, to those mysterious lands you long to see. Through gypsy camps and swirling Arab fair, and moonlit woods where unicorns run free. So come and walk awhile with me and share the twisting trails and wondrous worlds I’ve known. But this bridge will only take you halfway there. The last few steps you have to take alone.”
Sometimes I love going through our Free People stores’ Facebook pages. I like to see what they’re posting about in different parts of the country, and I always find so much inspiration! Here are some of the photos they’ve posted that caught my eye…
Lives in: I was born in Slovakia, but moved to Vancouver, Canada when I was 12. About 3 years ago I moved back to Europe, spending two years living in the countryside of Spain, and I’m currently living in London, UK! I love it here, as there is so much culture, and inspiration everywhere!
Shoots with: For digital I use a Pentax K200D, although I dream and am currently saving for a Canon 5D Mark II! I also sometime shoot film, and for that I use a hand me down Cosina CT7. My good friend also just gave me an old Polaroid, and I’m excited to start exploring with it!
Favorite Subject: I really love shooting women! I love the whole 60s, 70s, sunshine,flowing hair, lens flare, freedom vibe, and I think women just tend to lend themselves to that really well! But really I love shooting youth and people in general, boys as well as girls. (My boyfriend has been very patient modeling for me when I want to try out new techniques and ideas!) Fashion shoots inspire me, because there are so many different directions that you can take with a shoot, sometimes inspired by a single dress or shoe. I find the whole creative concept exciting and beautiful.
Inspired by: I draw inspiration from everywhere, from walking around, to music and books,vintage photos, movies, magazines even dreams. I suppose the concepts of nature and youth, of life and freedom and all that it intertwines, really moves and inspires me. Magazines like Dazed & Confused, Love, AnOther Magazine, Flaunt, Interview and many many others constantly provide bursts of happiness and creation! I also love how the internet has managed to connect us all, and I am a regular reader of many great and inspiring blogs. Some of my favorite photographers are Ryan McGinley, Paolo Roversi, Camilla Akrans, and Guy Aroch, which is why it’s so amazing that he just shot the campaign for Free People!
Random Fact: I’ve worked all sorts of jobs to pay rent and afford travel, including being a snowboard instructor as well as a flight attendant!
Also, I usually shoot during the days, but I love post processing my photos at night; it’s the time that I find most inspiring. I love the quiet, the darkness, a glass of red wine, all making way for concentration and evocative thinking. My parents still tell me to this day (I’m 26) that I need to “turn my schedule around” to prepare me for a “real job”.
See more of Lucy’s amazing work here, and also check out her awesome blog!