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Chau and B.J.'s notes from Space City

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Over the weekend, we went for a short trip to NYC for the store. I need to do a better job at taking photos – after all, this camera is pretty heavy to lug around. We managed to make the most of the little free time we had. Highlights include seeing Jeff, eating brunch at Diner with Fay, Anne, and Jennifer, meeting Megan for the first time, watching The Master, stopping by Beautiful Dreamers and Mociun, catching the ferry from Brooklyn to Manhattan while passengers took turns reading Walk Whitman’s “Crossing the Brooklyn Ferry”, and walking everywhere. On the last day, Beth wasn’t feeling too well so I assisted her while she shot street style photos for Travel and Leisure aka I awkwardly chased down people. We got a couple of nos, but it was a little nice to get out of my comfort zone.

Pictures from our recent trip to NYC. Film to follow.

We tried to cram in as much as we could, but of course, there is still so much to do. Next time. Some highlights: dinner with friends at ABC Kitchen, staying a few days with Beth and celebrating her birthday, the Byzantine and Egyptian section of the Met, Dobbin Mews studio visits, getting roughed up by Snips and lovin’ it, buying goods at the Mociun store, mash potatoes at St. Anselm, Spoonbill and Sugartown, and a ferry ride back to the city before leaving in the wee hours of the morning. Thanks, NYC!

Trinkets from the trip (Beth gave me a photo she took on our wedding day. Excited to see the rest)

Back from a (sadly) short trip to NYC. Although it was only for a weekend, we managed to fit in a lot—even some sleep—and I’m already plotting things to do when we come back. Saturday was mostly devoted to the Capsule Show, the trade show that was the main reason for our trip. It was a visual feast of uniquely beautiful clothes, designs, accessories, and breezy rooftop view of Chelsea! A huge highlight was meeting Jennifer, Anne and Jenny. After seeing their work in person, I’m even more excited for the new Odette collection and, like countless former perfume skeptics, I’m now a full-on MCMC convert. If only it were easier to decide which scent to get …

Since Capsule took most of our time, there was none left for museum visits, window shopping, etc., but that’s okay since good company and food made the work and stress worth it. Coincidentally, during our stay, BJ’s younger brother Jeff was passing through the city during his Seattle-to-Hanover road trip, and we caught him for lunch. On our last night, we joined our friends Beth and David for a late Southern-tinged dinner at Delicatessen of delicious fried chicken and mac n’ cheese. The next morning, we took their recommendations and an enjoyed a Southern-comfort-food breakfast at Red Rooster in Harlem. Not bad for 1.5 days, right?

Leaving NYC was expectedly bittersweet. It has always been a special place for us—our first trip together in college, our honeymoon, introducing my sister Thuy to all our favorite places, reunions with friends, etc. In other words: the trips are always deeply meaningful—not just vacations—despite being so fleeting. Coming and going always feels so sudden, like such an extreme movement between wildly different places (for instance, South Bend, IN to the Lower East Side and back), that it only hits me once I’m home that I was actually there.

 

During our stay in NYC, the first two days were spent buying essentials that we didn’t have time to pack. Honestly, we were happy just to make it to the airport on time. So we ventured down to Rockefeller Center to pick up things like socks, underwear, t-shirts, shoes, etc. We didn’t buy too much after that, but here are some of my favorite things we snagged besides the books BJ got.

Madewell Oxford229.99! oxfords on final sale at Madewell. They kind of slip off my feet when I walk, but I’m determined to fix it!

Nara_Towel2

WarriorsRadness2Yoshitomo Nara towel (already doubling as my movie blanket) & a Warriors of Radness sweater from Opening Ceremony.

1968_Calendar1968 (BJ’s favorite year) calendar towel from 10 ft. Single *

NY_Ties2J.Crew tie & Steven Allen Tie from Bird **

Bird_EarringsMelissa Joy Manning triangular earrings from Bird

* Kudos to Lena C. for the tip
** Spotted George O’Malley + was probably very obviously about it

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Attention, devotees of instant film. We propose that you spend a few minutes poring over Christopher Makos’s SX-70 beauties—or, if you’re in New York, to take in the fifty on display at the Christopher Henry Gallery. Enjoy the brushes with artists, musicians, and disgraced former athletes.

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Makos belonged to the scapegrace entourage that loyally shadowed Andy Warhol. A movement that worshiped the moment. With a mix of love and awe, as the Factory’s house photographer, Makos preserved its history in images. Uniquely suited to this task was his Polaroid SX-70. It was portable and hence pass-around-able. It cherished accidents. And it had mood swings. The camera could toss a wintry silence over any scene, making it pale and bluish and still, yet it could also warm it up, plating yellows in gold or lending flat reds an almost bloody vitality. Hunting for the right adjective for this phenomenon, most settle on dreamy. Dreamy because you know you’re eyeing objects that exist in reality, and yet, whether or not you can put a finger on it, something—the cloudy light? the sanded edges? the deathly skin tones?—seems a touch off. Very faintly, in a word, unreal. Cameras were built to record plain-vanilla reality, but the Polaroid seems magically engineered to flavor, spice, season it. To make the familiar subtly unfamiliar. We couldn’t imagine a better way to remember Warhol and his Factory, and those after-hours adventures in the shabby, sincere, wide-eyed world of 1970′s and 1980′s New York.

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Whew! What a week. My students and I had a huge competition this week, and I was gone all day on Saturday making sure everything went smoothly. One hour into the event, I lost my voice, but I was told that meant I am officially a teacher :). Overall, my students did extremely well, and three pieces advanced to state! I’m super proud. It was kind of odd for me to go to this event because it seemed not so long ago that I was competing. There were over 2500 entries at this regional event, and it was pretty awesome to see so much talent and young people invested in the arts. Makes me feel kinda of hopeful.

BJ and I are counting down the days until we get to go to New York City. I also got my little sister a ticket, and she’s going to try to visit SVA (one of her choices for next year). We’ll be staying for four full days, and I’ve been compiling a list of people, places, and things I want to see. So far, there’s Mike Perry’s show on Saturday night, MoMA, Central Park, and Chelsea galleries. Melissa also suggested Uniqlo, which looks promising. Anyways, I would love to hear any suggestions. Yay! I’m so excited and look forward to a much needed break. Work wise, I’ve been trying out freezer paper stencils and I’ll post those once they are done.  BJ and I have also caught a lot of Big Love episodes on On Demand. Cheers, c