Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Sorry

Here is another recent love.  I've fallen hard for Karine Polwart's tune 'Sorry' and it's been on repeat a great deal over here.  I think the instrumentation on this is just fantastic... spare and true.  I want to find myself a cymbal playing accordionist!

(The tune kicks in at 0:49.)

 
xoxox,
 
K

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Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Prophetik - A Little Love Letter

Fashion is one of those things that draws me in and yet makes me feel at odds at the same time.   I know what I like and I know what suits me. I know the details that call to me...  pin tucks, a long row of buttons, embroidery, a deep ruffle.  I am a romantic.  If an item quotes a day gone by, it's very much assured to catch my eye.  I'm clear on what I like, but I'm not totally certain fashion deserves the weight its given.  Oh, I could debate with myself forever on this topic...  personal expression vs. the greater environmental good.

Often I go the vintage route to express the style I love and this has lots going for it... lovelier and long lasting materials, very good workmanship and a lighter ecological footprint.  I do buy new things too but I'm very much in buy-to-last mode.  Even so, investment pieces do not always make me feel entirely justified in buying new things...  there's just so much resource mismanagement, pollution and unfair working conditions associated with the garment industry...  all this for something pretty to wear?  It seems more than a little wasteful.  (Sorry to get heavy, lovely readers. Bear with me... this post will get better!)

I also try to buy clothes made from environmentally friendly fibres.  I'm wearing my favourite hemp knee socks as I type this!  But I'm even at odds with this.  I feel a bit horrible that I'm not a person who could be completely happy in most eco-friendly designs.  It's such a struggle...  I know there's a better way, I want to do the right thing, but I also want to express my inner life externally and most sustainable fashions are either a little more earth-motherly than I want to wear, or resolutely modern-looking, nary a scrap of lace in sight.

But there is a man who calls to my whole heart with the outer and inner beauty of his designs.  His name is Jeff Garner and he's the talent and vision behind the line Prophetik. It strikes me that there is something so beautiful and true about these designs... care and attention being given not only to the end creation but a deep respect for the process and materials as well.  I love to see old souls carving their place in this world and I sense he's doing it a stitch at a time. 

Please enjoy this little glimpse into his world.



 
xoxox,
 
K


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Monday, April 1, 2013

Putting Things to Rights

An interesting thing about darkness is how completely it disappears when some light is shed upon it.  This is what has happened to my sadness.  It seems all it took was to share my angsty frustration with the anonymous world for it to run in the other direction.

Other things have helped...  Spring is here and is pretending to be summer.  I took a nap face down in the lawn today!  I wrestled some weeds out of the ground too...  it wasn't all laziness.  And I've taken on the large and satisfying project of putting things to rights in my world.  This is a hard thing to explain... bear with me.

It started with my grandmother's silverware; a set I inherited and always loved but there were missing pieces and so it rarely got used.  I finally clued in that eBay might be a good place for sourcing the missing bits and now something that felt regretfully under cared for is finally being used and appreciated.  My grandmother would be pleased.

I also had a lovely old necklace that was my great grandmother's repaired.  While at the jewellers I lamented that I only had one matching earring as the other had been lost long before I arrived in this world.  They helpfully set up an appointment for me to meet someone who could do custom work and my little earring is now having a new partner created.  My great-grandmother would be pleased.

These little resolutions have been easy enough, but there's a gap in my life that has been not easy to fill. There is nothing I can buy to solve this one, well... other than studio time.  For a long time I've thought my second album was going to be my last one.  This idea caused my Dad a great deal of sadness.  I struggled with so much self doubt after the last release and just wanted to hide behind a 'normal' life but his belief in me never wavered. 

Finally the writer's block has lifted...  there are new songs.  I've booked a Juno award winning producer.  It may take me a while to get album number three together, but it is in the works.  I heard myself played on the radio today...

My Dad would be pleased.

 

xoxox,

K

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Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Wonderful Weirdness...

 
 
xoxox,
 
K

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Thursday, March 7, 2013

But it Really Gets Bad... 'Round Midnight

If I were slightly more self-destructive I would have had Courvoisier for breakfast this morning.  I have real worries that I muddle through and most mornings are manageable, but last night I threw some public humiliation onto the worry-pile and now I'm feeling less than functional.  I haven't much distance yet...  I so hope it will be funny in time.

It had been a few months since I'd sung publicly.  The sadness I claimed made me silent?  Even more so in music.  A friend invited me to a vocal jazz jam last night and on a whim I thought it time to come out of hiding.

I'm sure we've all seen painful performances and felt both empathy for the struggling performer and annoyance on behalf of our own assaulted ears.  It was that.  Some novices are blissfully unaware of the mixed emotions they cause, but I am no novice.  It's been a long time since an audience felt so badly for me no one would make eye contact.

K by Julie Desroches


I left the stage and went out onto the street.

It was a drizzly night and I left both my coat and my handbag behind in the club and I just walked and walked the fairly quiet streets of my city.  I don't often do this...  my sense of personal (womanly) safety prevents it, but this was fight or flight and I was fleeing.

I walked until the fresh air calmed my flushed face, finally being able to stop staring down at my own two boots and look up and around and see the people I passed.  I was approached by folks on the street living a far more hand to mouth existence than me.  When I have money I tend to give it but I had nothing with me to donate.  Often I'm so busy rummaging for change and a solution to my guilt I, like my audience, neglect to make eye contact and have a human exchange... but last night, with nothing in my hands, I could finally meet everyone's eyes.

It strikes me that we all have failures and embarrassments.  We all have dropped the ball at some point in our lives and lost the game.  People out there facing the elements might very well be there, in part, because it was better than facing some horribly humbling event.  We are not very far removed from each other. 

Even the people who seem to handle uncertainties with grace want to have a tipple instead of toast in the morning sometimes.

xoxox,

K

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Tuesday, March 5, 2013

When I'm 84

I saw Quartet recently.  It's a film set in a residence for retired musicians somewhere in the achingly gorgeous English countryside.  This place does not resemble the 'homes' I've seen.  I'd move in right this minute for the fantastic wallpaper alone not to mention the inspiring music that seemed to be pouring out of every room.



I think I may have been the youngest person in the theatre, but considering the pain that two hours of sitting in a cinema seat causes right now, I feel I earned my place!



I wish we could find a fitting and comfortable place for my father-in-law as we are struggling at the moment over what to do about the changes in his health.  Small strokes are silencing his accordion.  He just does not have the arm strength to hold his instrument anymore.

We've just about talked him into leaving the mainland and coming to live on the island so we can be closer, but it's such a big change at 84.  I fear that change is coming for him whether it's chosen or not.  To be at this point with him so soon after losing my Dad...  well, my heart is not ready for change either.

We've spent the past week looking at apartments and residences and trying to learn what his tastes and preferences are in a place to live.  It's quite clear that this man would not be happy in a remote and stately country pile!  He likes new.  A young man in war-ravaged Italy, the old and the handsomely crumbling holds no romance for him.  Me?  I quite liked the look of this place...



 
 
 
xoxox,
 
K

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Monday, March 4, 2013

Cover Your Self! (Help)

Ah, sadness.  It can dry up one's creativity and leave you instead with a stack of books by the bedside with embarrasing titles.  I haven't been particularly crafty, but I thought I'd show you one of my better ideas of late.

 
Are you like me and feel slightly sheepish about the self-help titles in your book collection?  I find them a tad too revealing when company is over... plus?  Ugly.  Why so much yellow and red on stark white backgrounds?  This does not help my self!
 
If the looks of your books are not helping your self, do find the prettiest handmade paper you can get your hands on and simply make book covers.  Stash your reads amongst your vintage book collection and no one will be the wiser.
 
xoxox,
 
K

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