Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Food, Fitness, Fashion is moving

Not only is this blog moving, it's changing its name! Please join me at Fitness, Food, and Fashion (http://fitnessfoodandfashion.com), a new site hosted on WordPress.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

How to wear this season's maxi skirts

Long skirts are back again! We haven't seen this trend for summer clothing since the late 60s into the very early 70s. (Remember this?)

This encouraged me to pull out some long skirts that I'd bought for costuming and folk dancing and try to re-imagine them for more casual wear.

Here's what I discovered:
  • Long, loose tops don't work with long skirts. Be careful with any top that is longer that the "high hip." With maxi skirts, proportions are key. If your lower half is completely swathed in skirt, something on top needs to look exposed or the overall effect is "burqa." To work with a maxi, a top has to be short, and should also have one of the following: a low or wide neckline, little or no sleeve, or a fairly tight fit. Fortunately, it only has to be one of those! I've been favoring either the low V-neck or a sleeveless top. You can also tuck in your top (how long has it been since we've tucked in anything?)
  • High heels don't work with maxi skirts for daytime or casual wear. You risk looking like a hooker, or at least like someone who got dressed up for the prom when everyone else was going to a cocktail party. Boots are great with maxi skirts, though they risk pushing them in the direction of a costume. Especially for the summer, go with flats. This is a great time for cleverly detailed or strappy flat sandals or minimalist flats (think cutouts or "toe cleavage").
  • We are not talking mid-calf skirts, by the way. Maxi skirts are down to your ankles (slim ones) and down to the ground (A-line or fuller, tiered skirts).
  • Look to the steampunk fashion trend for ideas on how to wear long skirts for casual wear. Steampunk favors twill, denim, and an "out-of-Africa" look.
  • Play with the idea that you're using the top to turn the ensemble into a dress. This can be done with a necklace or scarf that echoes the fabric of the skirt. Or a top of the exact same color but a very different fabric (plain jersey skirt, elaborately knit silk sweater).
I googled "how to wear a maxi skirt," thinking I'd be able to give you tons of great illustrations, but most of the sites showed idiotic high-fashion getups (a bulky, cropped sweater paired with a see-through chiffon maxi skirt— yeah, right).

I did find a web page with some decent examples, and that's Star Central. You might also check these user-created sets on Polyvore. (What? You don't know about Polyvore? You're in for a treat.):

Desert Nomad
Free People
Senza Titolo

Finally, browse the maxi skirts on sites like Nordstrom and The Sundance Catalog. They're shown as parts of very wearable outfits because they want you to buy them!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Plateaus and landmines

Susan Powter's radio show from Taos is now available on UStream. I love hearing her talk about...fitness, inspiration, movement, healthy eating, sunglasses, earphones, woodworking...

I love her energy. Listening to her makes me want to walk, to garden, to move to Taos!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Cup of Brown Joy

If you like tea or steampunk, you'll like this Prof. Elemental video "Cup of Brown Joy," beautifully presented on Vimeo (below). If not, you'll just be confused.

You can downloaded Prof. Elemental's album "The Indifference Engine" from iTunes. It has a jazzy remix of "Cup of Brown Joy," plus "Fighting Trousers," the soundtrack of a video of the same name that he made as a challenge another "chap hopper," Mr. B. The Gentleman Rhymer.

It's all explained here.

You can purchased the track to the original "Cup of Brown Joy" directly from Prof. Elemental's site. He accepts PayPal, which he acknowledges with this email response:
"Thanks everso for your purchase. I promise that the proceeds will be spent on scones and fine hats."

Elemental - Cup Of Brown Joy from Moog on Vimeo.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Taking a bite out of food fanatics

Tom and I had an wonderful dinner at Mashiko last night. Hajime Sato, the chef/owner, has transitioned the restaurant to completely sustainable fish, and the sushi has not suffered in the least.

I suspect you would not be able to guess the identity of the fish in the photo; it's rarely used in sushi.

I didn't think to snap a picture of the other beautiful dishes Hajime was presenting to us — and was lucky I got the picture of this one before the last bit vanished. So I enjoyed a blog post by Jonathan Bender about Christopher Borrelli's request that foodies stop fetishizing what's on their plates and putting it on their blogs. Like Borrelli, I rather hope I'm not part of the problem.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

San Jose

Spent the weekend in San Jose and was amazed at the difference it makes to be in a 60-degree climate. Lunchtime came and I just sailed out the door of the hotel and went for a three-mile walk. Quite a difference from trying to force myself out the door in the cold, wind, and rain in Seattle.

We had some lovely food on the trip, from breakfast at Il Fornaio (the hotel restaurant) to lunch at Yankee Pier on Santana Row (fresh local oysters, Dungeness crab, and braised chard with shallots). Tonight I re-created the chard at home, and it was fabulous.

And then there was the sushi boat that Seth and Sharon ordered:

Monday, November 15, 2010

Discovering Mis Papelicos

Many thanks to Advanced Style for tipping me to this inspirational and informative style blog: Mis Papelicos.

It's beautifully illustrated, with both historical photos and the author's own snapshots (I particularly like the ones of her boots). And I was charmed to see in the sidebar a link to my favorite tea: Yorkshire Gold.