Follow Your Nose, Navigating Maker Faire

What drew me into the Maker Faire might surprise some: I was asked to volunteer to help guests sort out their recycling. While not the most glamorous job, I was posted next to the main stage and really got into character, the smell of ketchup giving me flashbacks from when I worked as a cashier at McDonald’s. 

For the most part, guests were cooperative in supporting the fair’s effort to be as close to zero waste as possible. 

Day two I returned on a mission to find useful technology to expand my design range. Entering the pavilion in The New York Hall of Science, I detected a faint odor of cool ranch Doritos. Proud to have made the onerous journey two days in a row, I walked straight into the caf n paid $2 in all quarters for my own bag of the trendy snack, then sat down at what I thought must be the cool table. Having downloaded the Maker Faire App the day before, I checked which exhibitors I had favorited and scrolled through them with powdery snack fingers. 

Circling around a dazzling array of educational kids exhibitors, I could smell almond soap and hand sanitizer. I spoke to some of the best available facilitators of techy type design labs, one at which I enthused a bit much, and recoiled at my Dorito breath. 

Next I decided to check out the Bust Craftacular exhibitors, in the muddy shanty town close to the exit of the fair. Donning my headphones, I blasted The Cold Cold Hearts but nothing could block out the savory fragrance of ramen noodles. There were some very alluring organic beauty and skin care ranges, and talented jewelry hobbyists, but as far as people advancing the craft of clothing design, it was sadly lacking. Perhaps Bust could do better in presenting professional talent in a more respectable light. I was very depressed looking at this and spoke to no one as my kitten heels sank into the soft earth. 

Seeking adventure, changing my soundtrack to electronic music, I picked up my chin and traversed across towards the 3-D printing village. En route, I was handed a pair of safety goggles courtesy of Google. There was a long line for Google and Intel-related activities with a faint odor of cherry kool-aid mysteriously emanating from an unknown source. 

Turning the volume up to drown out hecklers who presumably got tired of working their booths, I located the 3-D printer folks and gathered Intel on who can create a printer collaboratively, based on your needs, and for the best rate. Dizzy with all the information, I nearly wandered into the drone-building and flying zone. Terrified, because even among geeks, I am that person who will be struck in the eye with a flying object, so naturally I fled. 

Touching my toe to a discarded pipe cleaner was also a thing that happened. Then I checked out the Barnes & Noble pop-up shop which was swamped with shopper frenzy (take note Bust.) it was beautifully merchandised and well-staffed with both professional sales staff as well as security.

Tired, sore, and slightly humbled by everything I saw; however, somewhat triumphant as well, I gratefully accepted my complimentary copies of Bust on the way out, excited to read them when I get home. The smell of ink and a petroleum/nylon backpack that says microchip dangling off my arm. Am I ready to drink the kool-aid? Possibly. 

Eco-fashion tips, the personal fables, Uncategorized

Monte Carlo Fashion Week Highlights


Chanel aka Epcot Center with barricades and a dry fountain.


Intimate cocktail reception on the terrace above the Cafe de Paris, overlooking the Casino.


Phone frenzy as the Princess of Monaco arrives to view the shows.


The Chambre Monégasque de la Mode awarded Stella Jean for her engagement and contribution in the creation of an ethical and sustainable fashion brand. When accepting her award, Jean said, “We can make beautiful things, but we also have the chance to do so much more.”



View from all the way up! in Beausoleil.




the personal fables, Uncategorized

The Dance of Female Assertiveness


When I was a child, I remember being told that a lady should be “Seen, and not heard.” So, my beauty pageant success soared as I waved perched from convertibles in all the local villages’ parades. I refused to sing along in my beginner ballet classes and when they prodded me, I silently mouthed the words.

Now that I’m an adult, I noticed situations sometimes turn out better for me when I am seen but speak less. I know I’m smart enough so that’s not the problem, so what is? Even males have criticized my behavior in situations where they would have felt comfortable being more brazen, but the truth is that I know better how it would pan out for me if I skip the formalities.

Fascinating behavioral studies covered by Danya Evans quoted Melissa J. Williams in this week’s New York Magazine help us see where the wage gap continues and why asking for a raise often doesn’t work out for women.

“When people see a woman asking for something, they may interpret her act of dominance as inappropriate, as out of bounds for women. Yet when people see a woman stand tall and speak loudly, they tend not to consciously label such behaviors as dominance — so they may not trigger outmoded reactions about how women ‘ought’ to behave.” link to the full article here. 

Below, Hillary celebrates her democratic nomination with a grand gesture. So what can we do to create equality? We need to take a look at the phrase, “asking for it.”


Uncategorized, visual art

Manus, Machina, Matrimonium

In the statement issued by Conde Nast, the Metropolitan Museum Costume Institute Manus x Machina “exhibition showcases the traditionally opposing roles of hand and machine in the creation of haute couture and avant-garde ready-to-wear and explores the unification of the two through the evolution of technology.” When entering within the cathedral setting, and considering the heavy-handed selection of couture wedding gowns in this exhibition, you almost feel as if there is a rushed marriage occurring between Apple and Conde Nast.


Exhibition entryway, House of Chanel (French, founded 1913) Karl Lagerfeld (French, born Hamburg, 1938) Wedding Ensemble Autumn/winter 2014-15, haute couture Courtesy of CHANEL Patrimoine Collection. 

The stunner, pictured above, when observed in profile: an extra-long train balances the proportions of what can only be described as Rotund silhouette.  Hushed whispers at the first viewing of this exhibition were wondering, was the bride expecting?

What I have to wonder is, how is there an entire wing of the museum dedicated to fashion and its history, yet in the United States we still cannot acknowledge that the works of these designers should be protected as their own highly valuable intellectual property?

Cultural Anthropologist Sondra Rapoport’s response to viewing the exhibition was that it “brought to light the complete circle that is the relationship between fashion and history. Long has fashion been an essential piece of the power of imagery. Use of color, quality of materials, level of detail has long been an indicator of power and prestige.”


Mary McFadden (American, born 1938) Dresses 1908-1987 “Marii” machine-pleated, hand-stitched with hand-embroidered panels of polychrome sequins.

Rapoport says of the above pictured Mary McFadden dresses, “I was particularly interested to see fashion embracing both the past and the future. I saw dresses designed to resemble 12th century court wear.  Created using modern materials and methods, but keeping the traditional styling and therefore its connection to its history and its former significance.”


House of CHANEL (French, founded 1913) Karl Lagerfeld (French, born Hamburg, 1938) Wedding Ensemble. Autumn/winter 2005-6, haute couture Courtesy of CHANEL Patrimonies Collection.

Powerful as the the clothing exhibited may be, who has the ultimate upper hand in the overarching relationship? Why does a would-be blushing bride have tears in her eyes? Apple’s sponsorship statement says “Ultimately, it is the amount of care invested in the craftsmanship, whether machine-made or hand-made, that transforms ordinary materials into something extraordinary.”  That sounds nice; however, I would like to add that if technology continues to overpower creatives by disseminating the designers’ work without any legal recourse, together we are witnessing in real life, how, what could have been a lasting marriage ends tragically.

Eco-fashion tips, Uncategorized

Celebrating Earth Day Every Day

If You Care:

We can celebrate Earth Day every day by improving our dressing habits with consideration for the impact our actions have on the environment.

Care for your clothing responsibly. If your clothes have minor holes at the seam or hem, a tailor can easily repair them so you can continue to wear.

  • Hand Wash: Lingerie, nylon hosiery, slips.
  • Machine Wash: Towels, linens, socks & pajamas.
  • Organic Dry Clean: Coats, blouses, dresses, suits, outer wear.

With the best care, you will see that cost per wear go down significantly.


Overabundance, what to do? 

Hand-me-down: when you are finished with a piece of clothing, pass it on to someone you know will wear it.

Road Trip: Gather wearable used clothing and take it personally to impoverished areas, especially those which are affected by harsh weather conditions. Be responsible!

Sunday Clothes: What do you do with the holey tee shirts? Use them to clean the floor or dust windowsills. Old tee shirts can be used to pack fragile objects for shipping or storage.

What you really need: 

Avoid future offenders: When shopping, check the content: Steer clear of microfiber, nylon, plastic, rayon, pleather, plush and synthetic fur.  NEVER shop at H & M, even when they pose as sustainable, because they are mis-allocating their colossal budgets to PR instead of being responsible.

Seek out natural fibers: opt for GOT Certified Organic Cotton, 100% silk, linen or clothing made from deadstock materials. If you can splurge, treat yourself to a piece of high fashion or something made from the raw materials.

Personalize: get clothing locally made just for you. Monograms or customized clothing is available in-store at I Love You Bedford.


Get the best quality clothing possible and find styles you’ll want to wear numerous times. Just think about how you felt after the last time you ate fast food: Gross, am I right? Once you realize how good it feels to wear better clothing, you won’t even want to go back to wearing garbage.



Image credits: Photos by Jammi York, model: Ilona MAJOR Model NY, Hair & Makeup: Rachel Lopez (c) 2016 Alisha Trimble

Eco-fashion tips, Uncategorized

The Sustainability Scale

What makes sustainable fashion so difficult? This year, the garment industry went from top three to the Number Two source of pollution worldwide. Clearly we haven’t made any progress in the last year.  How come?

The reason is because the market isn’t supporting absolute sustainability. We know that in the current climate it cannot be profitable to go from one extreme to another with a quick solution. Green fashion is a work in progress, and while 100% sustainability is an excellent goal to work towards, let’s break it down into smaller choices we can each make in the progress toward sustainability.

Natural Fibers

Natural fibers are overall more sustainable options. The best ones are:

  • Cotton
  • Silk
  • Linen
  • Hemp
  • Wool

One thing to remember when selecting clothing made from natural fibers is that they are often created in a manner of “cut and sew” using woven fabrics.  Woven fabrics are lacking the versatility of a stretch fabric, making it more of a labor-intensive process to create a properly fitted garment. This is why clothing made from woven fabrics will cost more and take longer to produce.

The benefit to working with woven fabrics is that you can accomplish sophistication in silhouette. The result can look polished, professional, even formal.  The benefit to wearing well-made clothing is you look better. Whether you work in sales or in an office, or are a weekend socialite, a well-dressed professional will be more respected and overall more successful.

Bigger Strides toward Sustainable Options

Organic fabrics:

The popularity of organic cotton has fluctuated, mainly due to the observation that cotton (like most any fabric) is still treated with chemicals in the milling process. There are some who feel it is not worth using because it isn’t 100% sustainable; however, it is my opinion that small steps toward sustainability are always worth taking. The water used to grow the cotton will not be polluted and the people who pick the cotton and work with it in mills will be free of the health risk.  Look for GOT certification when selecting organic fabrics, such as the dress pictured below, available in store at I Love You Bedford.


Raw Materials:

Silk, wool, mohair and other materials are workable in raw form.  We understand the concept of whole foods, how it is better to buy a whole potato than a bag of chips. Just like with food, the closer you can get to designers working with the raw materials, the bigger the impact it will have on sustainability. For example the wool vests available for purchase on my website were made by hand using the raw materials. An added benefit to purchasing clothing made this way is it is very difficult to copy, ensuring your investment is a valuable original.


A Sliding Scale

It’s dangerous to look for absolutes when working towards sustainability.  Eco-friendly products have come a long way in other industries: for example look at our current easy access to recycled toilet paper, and our ability to recycle plastic and glass bottles with utmost convenience. We can reduce the harm caused by one of the top culprits currently destroying the earth, not by thinking in absolutes, but by taking small steps. Look for clothing made with 100% natural fibers, pay a better price for them, and don’t give up on organics.  If we were to create a Sustainability scale from 1-10, I would place 100% natural clothing at 5, organic cotton clothing at 6, and handmade clothing from deadstock and/or raw materials as a perfect 10.