Friday File

It’s been awhile since my last Friday File, and there have been a few big changes in my life. First, we are moving at the end of next month. I’m pretty excited about our new apartment, even if moving is a pain. And second, my husband and I adopted a beagle! Her name is Dakota, and I promise a post about her soon.

At work I’m doing inventory of all the hanging garments in the collection with the help of my student intern. It’s very enlightening to go piece by piece examining the contents of the collection. We’ve finished the European designer section and are almost through the American designers. Need to pick up the pace a little though to get through everything by the end of the summer.

Hope you have a happy weekend!

The Cooper-Hewitt Design Library has digitized a couple of Victorian hair jewelry how-to books. So tempted to hire someone to make something for me from the books. Is that weird?

Somewhat sad, but also very interesting, Olivia Laing takes a look at female literary alcoholics.

Vanessa Friedman feels like she’s experiencing deja vu regarding the lack of change to fast fashion manufacturing conditions. Like her, I don’t understand why the industry is still figuring out how to address human rights violations in garment factories.

An artist is filling Chicago potholes with custom mosaics.

Beauty DIY vs. Pro

Yesterday I was reading this post by Garance Dore, when her post script got me thinking. She mentions that most French women color their own hair, but most women in the United States pay professionals to do it, along with manicures, waxing, etc. I’m wondering if that’s true and what beauty regimes you outsource.

Personally, I’m willing to spend a bit more on my hair. I think a really good hair cut is worth something. (Although I admit to touching up the cowlick that forms at the nape of my neck with embroidery scissors between cuts.) When it comes to hair color, I’ll only let a professional do it. I have a horrendous DIY dye-job story from college. And after a recent bad dye job from my regular stylist, I might only let a “colorist” do it from now on.

I’ve only ever had two professional manicures, but last summer I indulged semi-regularly in professional pedicures. I loved the way my toes looked all cleaned up with cute polish. But that ish is expensive, and I should save my money this summer. I’ve never had a facial, but I’d like to some day.

So what beauty and skin care things do you pay a professional to do? Are there one or two things you’ll pay a little more for on a regular basis and do the rest yourself? Only pay for beauty treatments on special occasions? Or do you outsource it all?

Friday File

I am wiped out. A combo of allergies, writing deadlines, a symposium I am co-chairing next weekend, and attempting to start exercising again is running me ragged. So expect a little lighter posting until the end of the month.

I hope you are all hanging in there and getting enough sleep. If I can’t, I hope someone is.

Now, a quick roundup of the best I saw online this week (even though my time was much more limited than normal):

Delpozo spring 2014 and Young Girl in a Rose Garden by Auguste Toulmouche mashup, created by Miss Moss

Love the comparisons Miss Moss made between Delpozo’s spring 2014 collection and historical works of art.

Flavorwire has an excellent list of fashion documentaries. I’ve seen most of these, and if you only see one of them, watch Notebook on Cities and Clothes.

The title of this post on Collectors Weekly says it all: “Untangling the Tale of the Seven Sutherland Sisters and Their 37 Feet of Hair.” Tell me you aren’t intrigued!

Russell Brand is not for everyone, but sometimes I love his brash honesty. Case in point, calling out Hugo Boss for dressing the Nazis at an event sponsored by Hugo Boss.

More hair — historical hairstyles brought to contemporary life. My favorites have to be the 1830s coifs sported in images 2, 5, and 6.

Friday File – Busy Week

This was a long and busy week for me. In the fashion study collection I manage, I had eight tours, class visitors, and requests to use garments in classes this week. I slightly underestimated how much that is, and I learned that maybe that is a tad too much to book in one week even if I love doing it. Transitioning between appointments isn’t the easiest thing to do and only goes smoothly if I have a student worker to help.

And now for my favorite things around the web this week:

When I grow up, I want to be Judith Clark. Lady is a fashion exhibition genius. That is all.

I’m pretty happy that the Smithsonian’s fashion blog, Threaded, is continuing its series on the flapper. This time, learn about the bob.

I’ve always been a bit skeptical of Fashion’s Night Out. According to Business of Fashion, the night was more of a money-sucking circus than an economy-boosting shopping event, and it is going on “hiatus” in the United States.

When I saw that Paola Antonelli of MoMA was on Stephen Colbert on Wednesday, I knew I had to watch. Paola is MoMA’s Architecture and Design senior curator. I quoted her in my masters thesis a number of times for her take on how to exhibit design in a museum. Watch and develop your own girl crush on her.

Style File – Hair Chop

My hair has been getting long, or at least long for me. It’s very fine, which causes it to tangle throughout the day and look a bit ragged. Not exactly a professional look. When you work in higher ed and already look younger than your age, having messy hair only encourages getting mistaken for an undergrad.

I scheduled my chop for this past Friday. I missed having short hair and was in the mood to do something completely different.

'To Bob or Not to Bob,' Life magazine cover, 1921

Also, I’ve been reading a lot about the 1920s (more on that tomorrow). The more I read about chic, American women living in Paris with their short hair, the shorter I wanted to go. Bobbing of hair in the 1920s is probably over romanticized today, but, oh well, I’m totally caught up in allure of the liberated, glamorous hairstyle.

'The Revenge of Samson,' La Vie Parisienne magazine cover, May 1924

Above is my before shot taken just minutes before I left for the salon. It makes me cringe just remembering how bad it had gotten.

And below is my after shot. Short and chic. I love it! The people who worked in the salon kept asking me, wasn’t your hair long when you came in? Yes, yes it was. I love the drama of a long to short chop.

And the 1920s is influencing more than just my hair right now. Friday after the cut, I wore a sweater and dress combination by Elsa Esturgie, a French designer, and my beat-up Nine West black flats. The silhouette reminisces of the dropped waist, boxy cut from the 1920s.

It’s such a relief to loose all that hair and have a completely new style. This isn’t the shortest haircut I’ve ever had, but it’s probably the second shortest. I keep catching glimpses of myself in the mirror and doing double takes.

photos by Travis Haughton – Wasabi Photography

Long Hair Lovelies

I can’t believe I’ve gone almost a year since my last haircut! (My last one was in mid August.)

But still, my hair hasn’t quite grown long enough that I can do much more than leave it down or put it in a ponytail with lots of whispies that don’t quite reach. I’m thwarted by those short layers.

These two lovelies by Hair Design Access by Sylvain are on my long hair wish list.

Hair Pin – Silver | from Creatures of Comfort $72
Semi-Circle Barrette – Silver | from Creatures of Comfort $68

Style File – Bike Week Helmet Hunt

On the last day of Bike Week, I want to talk about my helmet. Oh man, did it take me a long time to find one I like.

There aren’t a lot of neutral options out there for women. It seems like most helmets on the market have a cutesy or sporty design, which I am not interested in. Why it is so hard to find a neutral yet fashionable helmet? Bikes are becoming fashionable items themselves, coveted by lifestyle bloggers and photographed by the Sartorialist.

But still there’s a dearth of headwear that doesn’t clash with a fashionable outfit. And no, do not expect me to match my outfit to my helmet. Helmets are commuter items that should go with what I already own, not the other way around. (I believe there is a niche market out there for the entrepreneur who wants to tackle this.)

But I finally found my lovely Bell Faction helmet after hours of online searching. I worried for a little bit whether I would seem like a “poser” wearing a skate-style helmet instead of a cycling one, but once I got it and tried it on I didn’t feel that way. Also, the Bell Faction is certified for bicycle use for those concerned about safety.

I purchased my Bell Faction helmet in matte khaki. That color is not currently sold through Bell’s website, so I tracked down a new one on eBay. Thankfully it fit when it arrived. In fact, I think it actually is kind of cute on me!

Another thing fashionable female bikers worry about is helmet hair. Refinery29 posted a Helmet Hair, Begone! tutorial on 5 bike-friendly hairdos last week.

I was inspired and decided to try out a version of what I saw there. I created a twist on the side of my head, starting in the front wrapping two sections of hair around each other. I added more hair to each section as I worked my way down and then pinned the hair in place before gathering the rest into a low ponytail. My hairdo might not have been quite as elaborate as Refinery29’s suggestions, but I thought it looked cute and it held up after more than an hour of riding. (See pictures above as evidence).

all photos by Travis Haughton – Wasabi Photography