27.08.2015 § Leave a comment
Sister Bay, a village in Wisconsin, only has a population of approximately 800 people. When my family and I decided to stop for lunch in the small, quaint town there seemed to be lots of people. I assumed, because of the small number of residents, that most of the people around were probably tourists. The place we chose to stop at had a grass roof top and was called Al Johnson’s Swedish Restaurant. Outside of the restaurant, crowds of people stood waiting patiently for a table. After approximately 45 minutes, we were finally seated. A polite young gentleman waited on us. After conversing with him, we discovered he was the owner’s grandson and was helping out during his summer vacation home from college. When we were finished and leaving as satisfied, full customers, I decided to compliment the gentleman that was standing near the cash register facing the dining room. He appeared to be the owner, but we were pleasantly surprised to find out that he was our waiter’s father. He was full of delight when I told him how enjoyable our experience was and how impressed we were with the service of his son.
25.08.2015 § Leave a comment
This is a complicated concept. When one says question everything, it does not mean that we should have doubt; doubting our teachers, our tools, or our own endeavors. However, we should not blindly believe everything. Instead we should evaluate with reason and once we find it to be of worth, we engage in the effort wholeheartedly without any doubt.
14.08.2015 § Leave a comment
The spontaneous decision to travel to Door County during summer unfortunately led to all hotels being booked solid. As a result, we ended up staying in Green Bay. When we departed, we traveled north along the Green Bay coastline and stopped anywhere that looked interesting or intrigued our curiosity. One place we visited along the way was a local farmers market, where an alpaca farmer was selling co-op socks. Next to the farmer’s stand, two alpacas stood tall. The alpaca’s hair had recently been sheered, leaving the pair with an endearing hair style, large bold eyes and long black lashes. Their hair looked so satiny and clean, especially the white one. I immediately wished our alpaca mill had a natural color that resembled the white alpaca that stood before me. (By the way, in case you do not know, our alpaca colors are natural, not dyed.) Displayed below are the photos taken of these two alpacas; so uniquely different in color.
04.08.2015 § Leave a comment
28.07.2015 § Leave a comment
Allen came home to visit so we drove to Wisconsin again. Going on a road trip is relaxing because there is no need to plan ahead. We drove to Algoma in search of the light house there. It turned out to be smaller than we had anticipated. Not a light house, but instead a light tower stood still on the shoreline. The color of the tower was beautiful against the blue water, especially the reflection in the waves. The air felt cool in the 90 degree temperature. The beach below was not crowded and the noise was muffled by the vast open water and sand. A very old church stood facing the lake. It reminded me of the old cathedrals I visited in France and Italy. It even smelt the same way.
22.06.2015 § Leave a comment
I like to do “kitchen tests” at Brentano where we try all sorts of different cleaners on our fabrics. One thing I’d never tried was orange peels, but I’d heard about them, and I finally used them at home. I am surprised, they truly clean! They are also fragrant, which is nice.
I always hated to clean the bowl and spoon I use to scoop out wet cat food. The orange peels have come in to my rescue! They really do kill the fishy smell and clean like a magic. (I leave it to you to test them out on our polyurethane. There shouldn’t be any problem.)
- Cook orange peels and water for 20 minutes over medium heat.
- Drain the juice into a jar for cleaning liquid.
That’s it. Cooked orange peels and lemon peels can also be used as scrubbing sponges.
11.06.2015 § Leave a comment
How fun! These fish were swimming all around Sturgeon Bay when I visited over Memorial Day weekend. I had to take pictures.
01.06.2015 § Leave a comment
I’ve lived in the Chicago area for 30 years, but I’d never visited Door County, Wisconsin. It’s just a couple hours away. This past Memorial Day weekend I finally made the trip with the whole family — husband, brothers, sisters, etc.
The little towns were clean and lovely, and the cherry pie was especially memorable! The most special part for me was the lighthouses, and I will go back to seek out more of them. Edward Hopper has long been an inspiration for me and may have helped spark my first interest in lighthouses. « Read the rest of this entry »
03.03.2015 § Leave a comment
The Studio Collection acts as a reminder that there is a host of great art where we can experience the sublime beauties created by many different souls. To go into the deep hearts of those who felt compelled to communicate with their colors, shapes and spaces.
As we age, our perception of visual phenomena changes, actually rather I should say it broadens. When I was young, I could not understand Van Gogh; his swirling texture and thick paints used to scare me. Now he makes many of his contemporaries look pale and unworthy, especially Gauguin.
It’s this broad experience that Brentano’s designers and I used to shape our spring, artist-inspired collection. Some patterns were created for sentimental reasons. Like Moonrise, which I based on a motif created by my best friend in Chicago. She gave up her art career a few years ago to become a Buddhist nun. We can no longer talk intimately because 350 monastic precepts separate her life from mine. To have a reminder of her work in my portfolio comforts me.