Saturday, February 27, 2010

My Daughter's Sleep Patterns

Last week my daughter found out she can slip her beloved iPhone under her pillow and record her sleep patterns. She says the results seem valid as the times she was restless are in sync with those on the sleep patterns.

This has little to do with photo styling, I realize, but everything to do with the changing world we live in. As a stylist one has to be aware of the trends of technology, tastes, and fashion. These factors are all part of the images we create and the way people see them.

Friday, February 19, 2010

A Magazine a Year

I wish I had thought of this idea years and years ago. I wish I had kept just one magazine from every year of my life. I started looking at them when my mother would buy a McCall's or Ladies Home Journal. When I was seventeen I bought my own.

I could have started with those sixties Seventeen magazines, that had a certain smell (a good inky smell), were oversized, with articles about letting the boy feel smarter and Breck shampoo ads. Through my young adulthood I could have set aside just one issue a year. They could be Glamour, (the late) Madamoiselle, followed by (the late) House & Garden, Cosmopolitan, Ms., (the late) Apartment Life, even an issue of Playgirl. Later I could add Working Mother, (the late) Working Woman, several years of Vogue, Elle, and Allure.

But I never thought of it. Life was going too fast and I moved too much. It would be a weighty stack of 30 or 40 magazines I’d be lugging around. Still, wouldn’t it be fun to see a 1974 Glamour, a 1982 Vogue, a 1988 Gourmet, a 1996 Metropolitan Home?

So my advice to anyone younger is to start saving. Just one magazine for every year. A trip through style.

Above: 1967 and 1965 Seventeen covers courtesy of Seventeen Magazine. View a slide show of covers from 1944 to present. 1968 Vogue Magazine cover courtesy of Journal of Magazine and New Media Research. 1975 Apartment Life cover courtesy of Ready

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Talk About Prop Styling!

How fun it would be to style the props for this photo shoot! The latest issue of Anthropologie catalog is centered around circus props. Every shot in the catalog is based on this theme, but the cover shot shows it all! Where did the stylist find them? Rented the whole batch from a real circus, I presume. Had to be several prop stylists involved, lots of heavy lifting. All that in addition to the fashion stylists who styled the models. It was shot in the desert, California or some other Western location. Very fun!

The copy is minimal and very small so it doesn't detract from the theme. To subscribe to the catalog go to

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Finale Of Substituting

My third day of subbing for Susan Lazear in the San Diego Mesa College Fashion Department is finished and it was a good day. In Fashion History we talked about the Romans, including those two bad boys, Romulus and Remus. The students did Web research to define the garments on our list.

My Power Point presentations on Crete, the Greeks, and the Romans are now uploaded and ready for student review. Click here and then double-click on the document.

And the fashion photo shoot on campus was really fun! Those students loved it - it was so fun to watch their creativity and fashion sense. They got lots of great shots for the Golden Scissors show. Watch your mailbox or this blog.

One last question, one I'm curious about myself. The Statue of Liberty. Is she dressed in Greek or Roman clothing?? Any answers? Add comments below.

Statue of Liberty image courtesy of

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

More College Substituting

Today it was the Greeks! I didn't study fashion in college (I was in Fine Arts) and I never took fashion history. So this has been a real challenge, and very informative, to substitute in a Fashion History class at San Diego Mesa College this week. I spent most of the day Sunday (until Super Bowl half-time) reviewing my notes on Greek history, culture, and clothing and creating Power Point presentations on all! Wow, what a crash course!

Presenting the material today was exciting but I did have some areas of confusion. What exactly is the difference between a Doric Chiton and an Ionic Chiton? Is it the peplum fold at the top of the wrap? Or is the closures at the shoulders with pins made of bone and known as "fibula"? Is the Chlaina the same as the Diplax, except for the part of the body where it is worn? How did the women keep the precarious Tholia on top of their heads?

I hope Susan Lazear can clarify some of these critical questions for Fashion 120. Meanwhile the Power Point presentations wil be uploaded soon to my educational site.

The Publishing class was easy though! We had fashion photo shoots right on campus to shoot promos for the Golden Scissors Fashion Show. More soon about the shoot...

Friday, February 5, 2010

Fashion History Subbing

Yesterday I had the pleasure of teaching a session of Fashion History at San Diego Mesa College. I am substituting for Susan Lazear who is presenting at a workshop in New Zealand. After an intense learning session of my own we covered the Minoan culture of Crete and will be moving on next week to Greek and Roman fashion history. The fun part is relating these historic influences to contemporary fashions.

I also taught Susan's class in InDesign/Publishing. This is a natural for me - we are doing a fashion photo shoot for the Fashion Department's annual fashion show, the Golden Scissors Awards, coming up in May. It'll be great fun leading these enthusiastic and creative students through a photo shoot. I will write more about it next week.

Meanwhile for the Fashion History class, here is a link to the Power Point presentations on Crete. (Thanks to my friend Annie Amata for the Minoan crash course and learning materials!)

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Winter Weather

This icy season that has most of the U.S. indoors or out shoveling snow reminds of my last winter living in Kent, Ohio. I was snowed in alone for four days – a most interesting experience. That last winter crisis happened at the end of January, 1978.

That winter I remember seeing Walter Cronkite on TV with a map of the United States over his left shoulder that had illustrations of icicles covering it. And President Jimmy Carter was encouraging us all to keep the thermostat at 55 degrees because we were in the middle of an oil crisis. Which I did. I also had to buy heating oil for my house in the country so I was glad to scrimp on heat.

The week in January when it started snowing and snowing and everything stopped, I was at home with a sewing project (a vintage-style handbag) and fortunately, enough food to last until I could get out. There was no question about driving in to Kent to open the plant store. I did have electricity and phone service but couldn’t really see out. The patterns of frost covering the windows were beautiful but impeded my view of the white, suspended world outside. Though many others have spend more time in isolation, spending that much time alone was a great exercise in self-entertainment.