Choice Bit of Calico

From L-R:
1. One perk of the wedding business is getting to take home fancy bouquets after the ceremony!
2. I made special Girl Scout Cookie flavors for the ice cream parlor – Peanut Butter Patty was my favorite. I found a set of Art Deco dessert glasses for $1 each in a local charity shop. Ice cream tastes better from Deco!
3. Devaki Knowles took a polaroid of me from a SXSWi Meetup where we were both showcased.
4. I bought a set of calligraphy pens and inks to practice lettering and drawing. I haven’t had a proper set since I was very young – mostly I’ve been drawing cartoons on ancient sheet music and working on my cursive.
5. I took a trip to a Phonograph museum here in Austin and heard this phonograph lamp play – the sound comes from the horn, which doubles as the base of the lamp.
6. I caught a Grackle in my chicken coop, but all that I kept was this enormous feather.
photo 3I added this cute little girl and her gramophone to my Valentine collection this week. Isn’t she sweet? I love her green striped socks and peter pan collar dress with lacy bloomer peeking out. She looks the way I do when I peer into my phonograph horns.
photo 4With a change from Winter to Texas Spring, my hair has changed as well. It’s now quite long, and black! The right image shows the length with slight curl, and the left is me all done up with a pincurl set. I’ve never had black hair before, and it’s been fun readjusting to a different color scheme.
photo 4I’ll leave you with this priceless gem – 20s sheet music featuring a gentleman rocking out to his flapper femme with what only could be described as “Slayer Face.”

Perfume, a personal history

Each March, SXSW interactive and music festival descends upon Austin with a striking fury, growing larger and larger each year. My neighborhood is no longer safe from the madness, and with my local coffee haunt turned into a Spotify lounge and usual food trailers sold out of tacos by noon, I have been spending my intentions inwards: towards craft projects, catching up on podcasts, and researching a few historical gems.

About once a season, my friend Angeliska describes her new favorite scents she’s been wearing or lusting after.  For any of us lucky to hug Miss Angel in person, we can attest to the romantic waftings of fragrance that hide within her mermaid hair and emanate from her fancy, cluttered purse. The collection of perfume bottles in her powder room is truly a sight to behold. A question about one fragrance leads to one story, one experience after another. They can be photographs, perfume. Little time capsules.

This lead me to my own lackluster journey with perfumes:


Armani “Elle” is my snapshot of 1998. In a sea of CK1 (launched in 1994), I meandered a bit out of the solid lines of High School code when I chose the overly sweet citrusy, sandalwood fragrance of “Elle.” I purchased this fragrance with money from my afterschool job of child minding at the local elementary school. I’m sure it went well with the cheetoe stained thrift store dresses I was rocking back then. writes that the packaging design was based on that of a mobile phone. Ha! A nod to innovation!Amber_Perfume_large

For the last five years, I’ve been dabbing a swatch of essential oils (Nemat brand) behind my ears and knees and calling it a day. These are little $9 vials that I get at my local food co-op, and are good for a finishing touch to an outfit. The scents I wear/rotate religiously are Amber, Rose and Vanilla Musk. For the summer, I’ll wear Jasmine and Lily of the Valley (Kuumba Made brand) which are a bit lighter. I  did buy a vial of Majmua and wore it for a bit last summer, until I overheard a bartender growl after catching the scent, “Who let all these fuckin’ hippies in here?” It has been hidden in my makeup drawer out of embarrassment. I do love the smell, but it’s not “me.”

Funeral Home is a blend of classic white flowers: lilies, carnations, gladiolus, chrysanthemums with stems and leaves, with a hint of mahogany and oriental carpet. I purchased this scent on my first trip to NOLA, in 2003, after a rather macabre walk through a cemetary after bering broken up with via email.

My new interest in perfumes is, in part, in the hopes that they can help me with anxiety. If I am in a triggering situation, say, an overflowing crowded room, I’ll reach into my purse and sneak a smell of Violet or hunt around on my wrist for a trace of Whiskey Tobacco. The smell of violet reminds me of crunching into Flavigny Violette Pastille candies during college, or sipping a bourbon on my front porch. This transport helps to slice down the anxiety until I am able to gulp it back down and regain composure. Hey, we all have our secrets!

In the search for a new perfume for myself, I am compiling a list of scents/flavors that I am attracted to, and have calming qualities for me:

Wood Smoke
Violet (oh, I forgot about CHoward purple violet mints!)
Sandalwood, Oakmoss, Cabreuva, Vetiver (like those in Oshadhi Roots).

12th Night Austin, January 5th, 2013

A very eloquent explanation of the history of 12th Night and how it relates to Austin, by Kate Messer of The Austin Chronicle: 12th Night Rolls Out.

Angeliska explains the origins of 12th Night: 12th Night Parade

Photos by John Leach and photobooth pictures by Devaki Knowles of Fun Loving Photos.

71500_10200458030318212_1976387230_nThe krewe behind 12 Night Austin, Krewe du Bisoux: (clockwise from left) Angeliska Polacheck, Amelia Foxtrot, Shari Gerstenberger, Allyson Garro (and not pictured, Lau Barickman)299519_10200457889554693_925923435_n 398082_316137108485995_470792566_n 16622_316146681818371_559230451_n 207643_10200457888674671_1220767724_n 537964_316137065152666_1239491282_n 303575_10200457892794774_1783053600_n3894_316141135152259_406601732_n 217718_316138115152561_387042772_n 524806_316144628485243_476152577_n 602885_316147168484989_1047101204_n 184444_316139388485767_1247171437_n 427434_316145801818459_1683594081_n 735034_316141945152178_118749708_n 397620_316135815152791_829407600_n
For more photos, visit The Austin Chronicle, the 12th Night FB Page

Dan & Tabitha’s Wedding

Last year, when I launched the kickstarter for Austin Phonograph Company, one of the first couples who backed the project were Dan and Tabitha. They got married last weekend in Austin in a lovely 1920s style ceremony, complete with Paper Moon photo booth, flapper dress, and my pals in The White Ghost Shivers performed after the cake was cut! Here are some of their engagement photos taken at my favorite bar, East Side Show Room. Photos by Julie Cope:

148508_10101063010505517_1777757854_nThe wedding day at Women’s Federation Hall:


Here is what my phonograph set up looked like:

Daily Outfit, January 20th, 2013

  • Sage green knit dress from the 20s(?), gift from my mother
  • Antique peach bed jacket with lace trim and lace heart pocket, Charm School Vintage
  • Belt is actually a headband with antique lace and crystals from Louise Black
  • Peachy lace collar from the 30s was gifted to me by my roommate
  • Pink socks, American Apparel
  • Mary Janes, Payless

Point of fashion: Today I met up with Sophie of The Marvelous Vintage Tea Party at a bridal expo in the Texas Hill Country. Sophie throws fabulous themed tea parties with real fine China, tiny sandwiches, and French Macaroons. I came with my phonograph, and decided to coordinate my outfit with the hand painted flowers on the bell of my phonograph, which run in the families of peach, sage, mint, and pink.
IMG_5821 IMG_5827 IMG_5829
The period between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Eve is the most popular time for couples to get engaged, thus, there are a lot of newly minted financees! This is the most exciting time to catch people because the path to their wedding days are still quite wide. They show off their engagement rings, talk about their party, and dreamily sigh about wedding dress shopping. They aren’t “in the woods” yet, merely surveying the storybook forest.
I made a little collage of the day, featuring a bridal tea party design by The Marvelous Vintage Tea Party:

Choice Bit of Calico

From L-R:
1. The chickens keep eating berries off this bush – do you know what type of plant it is? I need to look it up to make sure it’s okay for them to eat (ETA: Chile Piquin!). I can’t trust them to make their own healthy eating decisions. I caught them eating a discarded fast food chicken carcass that a construction worker had left in the backyard, ICK!
2. Annette HENshaw digs in the fall leaves for worms
3. Austin Phonograph Company went on a field trip to a second grade classroom and played some records. The students danced or clapped along with the music – and there was some waltzing and Gangnam-style riding of the pony.
4. I was SO sick with the flu last week, so I amused myself by watching Georges Melies films,
5. Bela Lugosi films,
6. and some Felix the cat cartoons.
7. Kitty Buick posed for Dr. Sketchy’s and wore an authentic rhinestone dancer’s outfit from the 1920s. (More photos!)
8. I finished a new embroidery for my etsy store.
9. Fun new game: chickens will play “football” with udon noodles, thinking they are worms.

This is the best explanation of why old people like butterscotch and caramel candies!

It’s only been today and yesterday that it has been cold in Texas – and surprisingly, ice cream sales have been soaring! I made this S’mores sundae with toasted marshmallows, graham cracker crumbs, and home-made chocolate sauce in a waffle bowl yesterday.

Later this month, Sweet Ritual has been invited to cater an art opening inspired by “On The Road.”
If you could eat an ice cream that was inspired by Jack Kerouac, what would it taste like?