Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Day 30 & visit from Viceregal Consort of Canada, HIs Excellency Jean-Daniel Lafond

A visit from the Viceregal Consort of Canada, Jean-Daniel Lafond, at Makeshift Space yesterday. He was taking a tour of some galleries and artspaces in Vancouver that use unconventional funding models. Since my space is being provided by Parking Spot , which is donated by Patron of the Arts, Scott Hawthorn, for one year at a time, he wanted to come and take a look. And, he seemed to like the project! He did not comment on my t-shirt underwear displayed on the wall behind us.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Day 29

When I first designed this top I made it in white only and called it "the uniform" since it was somewhere between a chef's jacket and a lab coat with hints of hospital, military and factory worker (see Day 9). At the time I didn't know that it would actually become my uniform! You've seen me in it a few times now (black and white) and I imagine I will be wearing it a lot more since it's cozy, comfy and versatile.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Days 26, 27, 28

Just came back from a quick island adventure where this time, my shoes stood up to the test of travel. Although I didn't do any scrambling over rocks this time and it wasn't raining.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Day 25

Today I will be at the Makeshift Project space in Gastown from 12pm to 6pm. Please feel free to stop by if you're in the neighbourhood.

Thought you might like to see the bag that I've been using, also known as The World's Biggest Bag (see below). Astonishingly, it isn't nearly big enough to carry everything that I cart around everyday. I'm working on this. It's a problem. It stems from having three different spaces - home, studio and project showroom. There's always at least one thing that isn't with me when I need it.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Day 24

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Day 23

According to many reputable news sources and weather forecasts, today will be the last hot day in Vancouver for a while. A long, long while. But if there's one thing that I've learned since I started this project, it's that weather forecasts are a hoax. That's why I will be bringing an extra set of clothes with me today including a pair of long socks, a cardigan and a jacket. Maybe also a scarf and a pair of pants (now named My Only Pair of Pants). I consider it to be almost like a survival kit. This 'kit' continues to grow, however, and soon I will have to start toting a wagon. I'm working on a partial solution to this and hopefully you will see it in tomorrow's post.

Today I am also wearing some "jewelry" (a first) inspired by the dance costumes that I've been working on for Kim Cooper's October/November tour of wowandflutter.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Day 22

Today I'm dressing up a somewhat boring outfit with my King-Lear-Hits-Rock-Bottom t-shirt, which is basically a giant square t-shirt with a lot of big holes cut out of it and roll-hemmed. It amazes even myself that I'm not too embarrassed to wear it. It thus follows that it is truly bananas that it happens to be my favourite t-shirt.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Day 21

One of the most frequent comments that I get about the project is its likeness to the "100 Mile Diet". At first I didn't really understand the comparison since, as you probably know, the 100 mile diet is about eating only foods that have been grown or produced locally (within a 100 mile radius). Besides the one year time frame that they both share, I think the desire to compare the two concepts is based on both projects' attempt to take responsibility for one of the three basic human needs - food, clothing and shelter.

Once this connection has been made, the next question I'm often asked is where I'm getting my materials and if they're locally sourced. The answer is no, they are generally not locally sourced though i would love it if they could be. Sadly, we are not big producers of textiles in the Lower Mainland, and I don't want to limit myself to wool and bark. Alright, that may be an exaggeration - there are definitely artist here producing beautiful handmade textiles. But I think that locally sourcing my materials would be a further tangent from my goal. The project is partly about the exploration of materials so right now I don't want to limit myself even further than I already have. If I am successful this year, maybe it's something to consider for the brilliant future.

Having said that, I am trying to use materials that I already have (I have a lot) as well as re-purposed materials, found materials and materials that people have given to me (my favourite). I am conscientious about my materials and am considering where they come from as part of my larger agenda of critically questioning the roles of clothing and being clothed. I hope you will also view this as valid approach to materials.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Day 20

Chamois jacket!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Day 19

Friday, September 18, 2009

Day 18

I finally made some pants. Okay, they might be 'lounge' pants at best, and made from cotton jogging fleece, but I've been experiencing an overwhelming need to be comfortable. Once I have achieved my ultimate goal of comfort, i will move on to more fashionable endeavours. It's the survival instinct kicking in, I swear. Since I've got the shoes sorted, for example, I've already started planning some less practical (yet highly functional) footwear in my mind.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Day 17

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Day 16

This scarf isn't actually a scarf yet (just an unfinished piece of silk fabric) but I'm hoping it will turn into one by the end of the day. It was just such a good colour that I couldn't wait. I thought it kind of worked with the aesthetic of my 'scraps' sweater and my tangle of thread 'brooch' (which is only secured using static electricity).

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Day 15

Leggings seem to be a pretty good alternative to pants right now (since I still don't have any pants). I made these a couple of years ago and haven't even worn them once. Many more things will get pulled out of the woodwork, I'm sure. I already really miss jeans but alas, I can't honestly anticipate making any in the very near future

Monday, September 14, 2009

Day 13 and 14

I sure hope you like these coveralls because I have a feeling I'm going to be getting a lot of use out of them. The truth is I only have one pair of pants so far, and they're too small. So on slightly colder days like today I don't have a lot of options. Pants are really high up on my list of 'things to do' but until I get to them, you may be seeing me in my uniform pretty regularly.
I did make a new bra over the weekend though! It is a big improvement over the last two but still is not exactly right. This one is made from silk and mesh and elastic and even has underwires!

At this point I still find myself favouring function over fashion. I just want to be comfortable and be able to do the daily things in my life that I need to do. I also find that I have been making things to look 'normal' so that I can walk down the street relatively unnoticed, without people staring at my shoes, for example, and wondering what is up with them. I'm hoping this will change eventually but probably not until i have all the comforts I need taken care of first.

I'm really hoping this wasn't the last hot day of the year.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Day 12 and Last Night's Opening

This is kind of a strange combination - a silk apron-style top layered over a stiff cotton black dress. Oh well, I'm working with what I have and right now most of my clothes are on display at my new Makeshift space in Gastown. Thank you to everyone who made it to the opening last night - it was nice to see such a show of support from all of you!

I had a couple of complete outfits on display so that people could examine them closely and be confident that I have indeed been making everything. Generally everyone was the most interested in the bra and the shoes. Socks and the felt apron were next in line, followed by underwear made from t-shirts. (Since I can't wear them as t-shirts anymore, I might as well turn them into underwear...)

This fella REALLY wanted this leather bag ('The World's Biggest Bag'). I'll admit, he can pull it off. Sadly, It's one of my only two bags right now so he'll have to wait until I make more for my clothing line (Hunt & Gather).

Friday, September 11, 2009

Day 11

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Day 10

Ok, it might be time for me to make some different coloured socks... The shoes are holding up pretty well. I was wearing them out in the rain yesterday and they didn't leak or anything!

If you're in the neighbourhood tomorrow evening (Friday the 11th), stop by for the opening of my space between 7pm and 11pm. It's at 8 E. Cordova St. Vancouver, BC. There will be a lot of art openings happening in Gastown for SWARM so the Makeshift space could be one of your many stops.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Day 9

I have finally finished my new shoes! I've learned a lot already and these ones feel a lot sturdier. This time I lined the leather with canvas, added a 'shank' for support (a thin strip of aluminum that I cut from an old eavestrough), added an extra layer of rubber sole and sealed it all in with a thin strip of leather all around the edge
(a 'rand', I'm told). So far this has all been gleened from books, the internet, trial and error, word of mouth and common sense. I think my next step will be to get some expert advice.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Day 7 & 8

Back from my first Makeshift trip out of the city, I now immediately have to go to my studio to finish my other pair of shoes. As you can see, rain, walking on a rocky beach and general island wear and tear has taken its toll on my only pair of shoes.

I think I can make it there in my (now) slippers as long as the sun keeps shining.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Day 6

The uniform saves me again, today with a wool t-shirt underneath for extra warmth for my boat trip. I've just finished water-proof spraying my leather (only) pair of shoes also in preparation for my over night trip to Gambier Island. I'll be off the grid so see you in a couple of days.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Day 5

The look that I am apparently achieving today is cavewoman meets housewife, or 'cavewife', as it were. The apron is made from wool felted onto cotton gauze with copper denim straps and snap closures at the back. Combined with a very simple and comfortable black cotton dress, it makes the perfect outfit for doing domestic chores on a chilly day.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Day 4

This crazy Vancouver weather is really throwing me off - hot then cold then hot then cold. As always in this fair city, layering is key.

Based on some recent conversations and ponderings I would like to add a few more rules.

First of all, I would like to clarify that I don't feel the need to make 'tools' or things that I carry around such as my ipod, phone, swiss army knife etc. Though conceivably some might consider these things to be 'worn' because they are in my purse, I think of them more as being 'brought along' for the ride called My Life.

Having said that, though, I will only wear purses that I have made myself. This was determined through a discussion the other night when luggage came up. I was questioning whether or not I needed to make my own suitcase to go to Toronto at the end of the month. We concluded that a suitcase is not worn but a purse is. OK. I may end up trying to craft something though, just for fun. I'll see how it goes.

Also, with regards to make-up, hair products etc. I have decided that I don't have to make things that are applied to my skin or hair. Back at the round table, the jury was in favour of actually trying to make the stuff! As much as I think this is a great idea, I don't think I'm ready for that yet. Sorry!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Day 3

I made this jumpsuit in anticipation of the project. The idea of having a couple of 'uniforms' around relieved some of my anxiety about having to come up with something new to wear everyday.

I have always been interested in how uniforms have the ability to affect the psyche. Just by putting this jumpsuit on, for instance, I am suddenly ready to get to work in my studio. I also feel a (possibly false) sense of protection - from the elements, from dirt and grime, even from social conventions to a certain degree, almost like the uniform itself is my excuse for the very fact that I'm wearing it. It's like a disguise but it's actually the opposite.

*Special Note*

I have to apologize for my blogging ineptness. I'm learning this as I go so please bear with me as I fumble through the blog fog! I've been getting a lot of comments and am only just getting to some of them now. Sorry!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Day 2

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Day 1

Ok, here I go.

(so you can have confidence in my intentions)