Sunday, March 11, 2018

All of Everything, Todd Oldham Fashion

A couple weekends ago my husband, Andrew, and I visited the Wexner Center to see the current exhibit, All of Everything, Todd Oldham Fashion. Though Andrew was a bit reluctant since clothes and fashion aren’t really his thing, he said he found all the background info on each piece to be quite interesting and dare I say, he even liked an outfit or two (like this one below).
I agree with him that the process was just as fascinating, if not more, than the finished product. I too, liked many of the pieces, but would probably not fit in to too many of them (being somewhat height-challenged and not a size 0).
the one on the left is probably the only one I could wear that wouldn't get too many stares

I loved all the colors and creativity that went into creating them and only wish some were available in stores, or that I was talented (or patient) enough with a sewing machine to create my own off-beat wardrobe.

According to the Wexner Center website, “A joyous exhibition....Just about every piece in the show contains a stunning detail, surprise, or secret told....They are as astonishing today as they were on the runway.”—Wall Street Journal on All of Everything

Immerse yourself in the brilliant imagination, irreverent wit, and meticulous craft of an American fashion icon. Featuring more than 70 ensembles, All of Everything explores Todd Oldham’s exuberantly styled, extravagantly embellished fashions from the 1990s. The first major museum retrospective of his work, this exhibition makes its only Midwest stop at the Wex.

In a single decade—from 1989 to 1999—Oldham blazed through the New York fashion world, reshaping the runway landscape with opulent garments inspired by everything from Persian carpets to thrift-store finds. This celebration of using “everything” is central to his aesthetic. Taking an audacious turn away from the minimalist tendencies of 1990s fashion, Oldham delighted in incorporating vibrant shades, dense patterns, and a near-promiscuous range of materials in his garments, giving them a sculptural quality and visual heft. His choice of runway talent was also forward-thinking: Oldham was among the first to work with African American models Tyra Banks and Naomi Campbell as well as rising stars Cindy Crawford, Kate Moss, and Christy Turlington.

Surrounded by installations of his ensembles, displays of custom accessories, and hours of runway footage, you’ll be dazzled by sequins and Swarovski crystals, fine hand embroidery and a dress made of pipe cleaners, and a recent, one-of-a-kind gown made in collaboration with students from the Rhode Island School of Design. Oldham himself designed the exhibition and wrote labels for each ensemble, providing firsthand insight into his creations, which as RISD curator Kate Irvin observes, “resonate with thought, feeling, and a profound commitment to fully exploring potential and possibilities.”

For those living in the area who are interested in taking in the exhibit, you still have a few weeks left as it will be at the Wexner Center until April 15th. If you do go, allow yourself plenty of time to read some of the plaques (like this one:)

as it definitely gives you an appreciation for what you see in front of them.

Here’s a link to my collection of exhibit photos on flickr:

Sunday, March 4, 2018

End of an Era for Acorn Books

On March 10th the doors will close forever in one of central Ohio’s best known used bookstores, though not the biggest, it’s one of the coziest (book lovers are a polite bunch and don’t mind moving out of the way for other bibliophiles).

According to the company website, “It has been a wonderful, wild run through these challenging years, competing first with the big chain bookstores such as Borders and Barnes & Noble, followed closely by the advent of Amazon, and the selling of books online.  We were able to make it for a quarter of a century, and we’re very proud of that.
I only heard the news when Bauman was being interviewed by WCBE (NPR) recently. As I walked into the room my husband blurted out that Acorn Books was closing, so I stayed and listened to the rest of the interview. Hence, my reason for visiting to pay my respects and hopefully pick up some bargains in the meantime.

When I stopped in today (2/23), two weeks prior to the closing, the store was absolutely swarming with customers all wishing Christine and George (see below) well before getting lost among the
stacks searching for one (or an armful in my case) more treasure to add to their personal collection. I heard a customer say that he felt like a ‘book vulture.’ I heard George comment something to the effect that ‘we’re all book vultures; they’re the best kind.’ That certainly made me feel less guilty as I staggered over to the cash register trying to balance my finds.

When George saw that all my books were from the Books About Books section, he told me that was his favorite section. He also asked if I had ever read Biblioholism by Tom Raabe, which is one of the books I had in my stack to purchase. “Hello, I’m George, and I’m a Biblioholic.” I answered back, “Hi, I’m Cindy, and I’m also a Biblioholic.” It was fun listening to him reminisce with his wife Christine when he commented on some of the books while she totaled them up.
He told me he purchased Shakespeare & Company by Sylvia Beach while they were visiting Paris. I mentioned having been there myself briefly many years (13 to be exact) ago, though I’m not sure we actually bought anything, and unlike some, haven’t ever stayed there.

I kind of feel bad that I was only an occasional customer with my last visit over a year ago; prior to that, perhaps less than half a dozen times. This was partly because it’s a little further to get to Grandview, and a lot more convenient to either pop into a branch of Half Price Books or open up my laptop and let my fingers do the walking. As much as I love used bookstores for the atmosphere and being among my ‘tribe’ of bibliophiles, used bookstores are always going to have to struggle to compete with chains like HPB and I guess we all want our cake and to eat it too.

I wish the Baumans a happy retirement from the book business, and know that you and your bookstore will be missed by the Columbus book loving community.

Friday, February 23, 2018

Things I am Looking Forward to in 2018

The return of the sitcom “Roseanne” on March 27th. I was an avid watcher when it was on the air for the first time in the late 80s/early 90s. My sister and I had a similar relationship to that of Darlene and Becky, though I wasn’t as tomboyish and definitely not as athletic as Darlene. I think my sister and I were probably more like Roseanne and Jackie (me being Jackie since I don’t have kids). From what I read Roseanne is back to her old tricks of stirring up controversy where she can leaving no stone unturned. We will learn who she voted for in the last election, why her grandson likes to occasionally wear girls’ clothes and even the opiate epidemic gets a mention. It should be riveting TV.

The return of “Call the Midwife” on March 25th. I have been a fan of this show from Day One and have at least a couple of the books (and used to own the dvds). The writers and producers always seem to keep things fresh by introducing new characters and story lines that echo the times (like the introduction of Thalidomide which ended up causing all sorts of birth defects in babies born in the 1960s). I look forward to more words of wisdom from Sister Monica Joan (the most senior, retired nun who lives at Nonnatus House) who doesn’t always make sense, but loves a nice piece of cake and isn’t above sneaking it when the opportunity presents itself (okay, yes, that’s definitely me!).

The return of Spring and Easter….
Who doesn’t look forward to longer, warmer days? It’s also when my birthday, my nephew’s, my brother’s, and my father-in-law’s birthday all are, not to mention lots of March birthdays in my cousin’s family. In fact, we’re having a sort of combo party next weekend to celebrate at least a couple family birthdays. I will be glad when Easter arrives because things will quiet down again at least in terms of my calendar commitments (March is pretty busy preparing for Easter almost every weekend at church). I can also reinstate eating chocolate candy and watching “Gilmore Girls,” which are the two things I gave up for Lent.

Summer Anniversary Celebrations…
My in-laws celebrate their Golden Anniversary on the 27th of July, and then my husband, Andrew, and I celebrate our 20th a fortnight later on the 15th of August. We’re having an Afternoon Tea (party) for my in-laws at a local hotel where they live. I’m still not sure what we’re doing for our 20th (apparently china and/or platinum are the appropriate gifts) anniversary yet, but tentatively thinking of a jaunt over to the continent (possibly Germany/Switzerland) since that makes the most sense geographically and economically. At the end of the month I plan to attend my 30th class reunion. I’m just hoping for a better turn-out than the 20th reunion.

Have a good weekend everyone!

Sunday, February 18, 2018

“What would your six-year-old self say if he/she could see you today?”

I was recently reading (or rather looking at the pictures since it’s a book of drawings) a book called The Book of Us and came across this interesting question:

“What would your six-year-old self say if he/she could see you today?”

I think if my six-year-old self could see me now the first thing she would probably say would be, “Ewww! You married a boy!” 

Today I would demolish that cake so fast! (what do you mean I have to share it?)
She’d look around and wonder why I have so many stuffed animals for someone without kids.

I would just shrug and answer, “What can I say? I guess I’m just a big kid!” (not that big – you only have another two feet or so of growth to look forward to).

Then I’d pull out some art supplies to distract her and we’d draw or color for awhile until we got the munchies. Later we’d go down to the kitchen and make some brownies. I’d offer her chocolate milk or hot chocolate while I brewed my (chocolate) coffee – something she had to look forward to someday, I’d tell her.

Later after dinner (wine for me, Kool-Aid for her) I’d pull out some of my favorite movies – one of which was made during her lifetime: “Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory,” “The Sound of Music,” and

“The Wizard of Oz.” (I’d have to warn her that after reading Wicked and seeing the play off-Broadway, you’ll never be able to enjoy “Wizard of Oz” quite the same way again.)

Have a great week everyone!