Monday, March 29, 2010
on sunday, march 14th, simon invited myself, georgina, cristobal and karina to his uncle's sugar shack in bellechasse, québec. i was so excited, since it had been years since i'd been to one and my first time going to one in québec. so i grabbed my pentax and we ran to catch the ferry to lévis. after a short drive and a little stroll through the woods, we arrived to the lovely cabin and were greeted by simon's aunt and uncle. they were very enthused to have guests, especially mexican guests who had never seen so much snow aside from never having been to a sugar shack.
here are some of my favourite photos:
you can see more film photos on my flickr. here are a few digital ones that give you a better idea of my outfit since i suppose that's what we do here on fashion blogs:
happy monday! now back to job applications.
photo by anja, cross-stitching by amelia (who both have awesome blogs you should read)
march has been a whirlwind and i've been trying to think up ways to update this blog on a more regular basis without getting caught up in not having the time to edit my 3,000 word essays every time i try to write about something. so here is a new little feature that i'll try to do from time to time, sort of like feministing's weekly feminist reader where i suggest some links and you can comment with your own favourite things you've read as of late. i'll start with some quotes that have really caught my attention lately.
The theme of rescue through benevolence underpins power relations and gives expression to those relations in a way that "makes sense." Thus difference, which is threatening, can similarly be recuperated through its conversion into exotica, or its neutralization through containment. In speaking of the exotic, it is apparent that imperial literature was replete with representations constructing women from the East and other parts of the wolrd as exotic Others who need to be unveiled so that their hidden natures could be consumed by the colonizers.
Sympathy or even empathy that is not coupled with power-sharing is meaningless. Any story that purports to show solidarity or uplift marginalised groups, but is not willing to let us tell our own stories in our own way, is not a friend.- Stories that Ally versus Stories that Appropriate by Thea Lim, via Racialicious
- Anonymous, via Genderfork
I am a woman, and present myself as such. This does not mean I am anybody else’s expectation of what a woman is, but my own. I’m always reinventing the meaning of womanhood by just being myself, and knowing that whatever the result of being myself is, it is being a woman. I think that goes for everybody and any gender identity they may have.
There is no automatic or axiomatic relationship between a particular sexual act and the identity of the person performing it.- Anonymous, via fuckyeahfemmes
...When we appeal to some notion of an unmodified or undecorated body, we participate in the adoption of a false neutrality. We pretend, in those moments, that there is a natural body or fashion, a way of dressing or wearing yourself that is not a product of culture. Norms always masquerade as non-choices, and when we suggest that for example, resisting sexism means everyone should look androgynous, or resisting racism means no one should modify the texture of their hair, we foreclose people’s abilities to expose the workings of fucked up systems on their bodies as they see fit.- Dress to Kill, Fight to Win by Dean Spade (you really need to read the whole thing)
and last but not least, a little less about fashion and more about decor (which has been on my mind a lot these days), a quote from the Globe and Mail: Russell Smith's A lament for the bookshelf:
Bric-a-brac is generally unfashionable now. Designers see apartments full of amusing memorabilia – the matchboxes from Berlin, the Soweto tin car, all the stuff that children love – as dust-gathering and space-consuming. We no longer respect the Cabinet of Wonders as a guiding principle of decoration. So we lose forever the pleasure known to humanity for 500 years of taking a stroll up and down the aisles of someone else’s brain by perusing their bookshelves. Gone will be the guilty joy of spending a rainy afternoon at a cottage with the remnants of someone else’s childhood: their Nancy Drews, their 1970s National Geographics. Without bookshelves, you will never know the warning signs contained in the e-reader of your handsome date – you will not know for months that he is reading The Secret and Feng Shui for Dummies, even if you stay over. You will never be able to ask, as casually as you can, “Did you like this?” as you pull down, as if fascinated, Patrick Swayze’s autobiography.
to end off, a lot of people ask me how i find all of these awesome things on the internet, and wonder if i spend every waking minute of the day online simply googling "awesome things." sadly, it is not that simple and i really don't spend that much time in front of my computer. thanks to people i know both in real life and online, we share our favourite things with each other via emails, our livejournals, our tumblrs and our blogs. (unimportant sidenote: i know lots of people would argue that lj, tumblr and blogs are all "blogs" but i always feel the need to differentiate) and since most of these quotes came to my attention via some of these wonderful people i will give you some links so you can cut out the middle (wo)man! i'm posting their tumblrs because those are their most public places and where they most often share awesome quotes like the aforementioned ones.
Monday, March 22, 2010
found: march 2010
how much: 3$
why it's awesome:
i promised myself years ago i would stop thrifting things for other people; i would only purchase things that i could fit into and that i would wear. i wouldn't simply take anything that i thought was beautiful or interesting or cool home with me just to have it, or to give to a friend, or to maybe one day sell. this, of course, has failed miserably, namely since i started my etsy store in november 2008 and when i stumble upon things like... this dress.
this dress. this dress is made for a child, but it is by and large one of the world's most wonderful dresses i have ever found. i'm sure you're looking at said dress, thinking, "why, yes, julia that is a cute dress, but one of the world's most wonderful dresses? that's quite a statement to make about a simple little 1970s children's garment."
sure, there's no fancy embroidery, or embellishment, or designer tags. it, by all accounts, looks like any old dress a young girl in the 1970s would scamper around the yard in, spill ice cream on, get dirty in. but let us look a little bit closer.
upon inspecting the perfectly sweet peter pan collar, the awesomeness of this garment should become apparent. no? need more convincing? look closer still...
look at the print of the sleeves! there are little children holding placards; they are all protesting for women's liberation, a permissive society and worker's rights! how amazing is that! i can't stop using exclamation marks!
and to top it off, they are the most stylish adorable freckled little protestors you've ever seen.
this one, who holds the sign saying "up with permissive society," reminds me of a turn of the century suffragette. think of the mother in mary poppins.
and there you have it. one of the world's most wonderful dresses i have ever seen.
check out my flickr for a few more photos and for higher resolution versions.
Thursday, March 18, 2010
for the past few months (oh who am i kidding, years) i've been trying to flesh out my ideas about self-portraits. why i take them, why they are interesting, why i find them so thought-provoking. but since every time i sit down to write about them, i end up writing a novel, i decided to simply share some self-portraits with you guys while i work out some actually writing. i realized i still had yet to share my favourite self-portraits i took while i was in mexico back in december. it's about time i shared them with you.
(view this one larger, it's much better that way)
this one, i love because it's all about the mistakes; i had no idea there would be the shadows of the clothesline and powerlines cast on me. i didn't know i would hear a noise crashing in the kitchen that distracted me so that i wasn't looking (posing) at the camera. my favourite self-portraits are always the mistakes, the surprises.
Monday, March 1, 2010
a friend of mine shared this with me and i am simply blown away. it is incredibly beautiful and i thought my readers might enjoy it as well.
aside from the staggering beauty of this short film, i'm very intrigued by the marriage of mediums going on here. think about it: a filmmaker makes a short film to promote a book, and uses a song as the soundtrack. if it works well, you want to know more about all three at the end of the three minutes and thirteen seconds.
after watching this (three times now) i want to read the book, listen to the album, and see what other work the filmmaker has done. i wouldn't be surprised to see more people doing these sorts of things, a very creative promoting machine.
Mel: The models that we will be having in the show will be bodies that are not normally represented in mainstream fashion, as well as those that are. For this reason, we will be having drag, trans, disability, burlesque, kink, BDSM, as well as mainstream models. We are aiming to be fluid in our representations to allow people to question the normative nature of models in mainstream fashion and what this dominant discourse does to our gender roles, socialization practices, body image etc.
Garçonnière: What kind of set up will you guys have, and how did you decide on it? (traditional runway, standing models, chessboard or holograms a la McQueen).
G: What kind of music are you using in your show?
Alyssa: We're trying to combine feminist awareness but at the same time reach out to mainstream minds. So we've got high energy, loud, vibrant music, but at the same time, the lyrical content and message is feminist -friendly. The playlist works to be inclusive - we've got all types of genres and artists, from Nine Inch Nails to Rihanna to Le Tigre and different cultural music as well.
G: What do you want people to take away after having seen your fashion show?
Mel: Our main goal in the Feminist Fashion Show is try and get people to re-think their normative conceptions of mainstream fashion and the media. We want people to question what they think about fashion, push their boundaries about sexual expression, gender roles, queer beings, feminism and the fashion show style. We hope by doing this we will provide visibility of the feminist and queer community while educating about expressions outside the boundaries of heteronormativity.
G: What other sorts of events is WSUSC organizing?
Mel: In November of last year the WSUSC organized a symposium entitled "The F Word." The aim of this was to try and address why feminism has become a taboo within our generation and why many do not want to take up the label. The panelists that the event feminist theoretical lens to give the audience and diverse perspective on the different approaches and thought within feminist (i.e. fat feminism, feminism and the church etc). This is our last event of this year, but be prepared to see MANY more exciting and boundary pushing events starting in September of 2010.
G: Do you find being students inspires the kinds of events you organize? Or do you find that it shows you that there is a need for events like the feminist fashion show?
Mel: There are many political bodies and student run organizations within York University that allows for many forms of expression. However, what we noticed over the past couple of years is that there has not really been any radical grassroot feminist activism on the campus. Because of this, we decided to run the Women's Studies Undergraduate Student Club (WSUSC) to allow for this voice and to support and recognize the work that feminists do on campus. It has been through the lack of feminist and queer activism that inspired us as third wave, radical feminist's to create this event. It is through events like the fashion show that allows for "mainstream" students to question their dominant ideological lens. If we were to continue to just hold private events we would only be preaching to the converted. Visibility and voices are major keys to change the lens of North American thought.
Where can people find out more about your event (i.e online resources, in person, etc)
And last but not least, since you're being interviewed by a fashion blog, what are your favourite blogs or readings about feminist fashion?