Friday, September 23, 2011

Ingenuing above the Cuyahoga

Ingenuity: the power of creative imagination.

Woah. That's quite a definition, thanks to my Dictionary app. In my honest opinion, this very power is one of the most powerful powers one can possess. And it perfectly describes what I witnessed on the lower, old streetcar deck of the Detroit-Superior Bridge last Saturday night. It's Cleveland's coolest kids' favorite weekend of the year, the Ingenuity Fest! Where else can you soak up art, music, drama, science and technology all in one place? Actually, if you look hard enough you could find quite a few of those things in several places around town. BUT when else can you do it UNDER A BRIDGE?!? I simply adore the Ingenuity Fest and wish my life was a little more like it every day. I would totally become a troll (not the interwebs kind, the real kind) if it meant I could live under that bridge. And, of course, if it was constantly filled with such ingenious awesomeness.

When I was telling people that I was going to or had gone to the Ingenuity Fest the question that usually follows is "Oh yeah. What is that again?" To which I am dumbfounded. I probably should be able to describe my favorite Cleveland festival a little better than by saying, "Um there's like art and stuff and it's like, ingenious?" But it really is something you can't understand unless you've experienced it.

The best way to do it however, is through photos, which is what I plan on doing in this here blog post with the goal of luring you to the festival next year.

I know what you're thinking. What does this have to do with fashion? Well, people were selling fashionable things there (very fashionable things in fact) and it's art and fashion is the most commonly experienced form of art and stop yelling at me! Oh you weren't? My bad. Anyways YES there seemed to be more selling of fun and funky artifacts this year than I remember from last year. The first stand I came about was a new Cleveland Tshirt company I have not had the pleasure of coming across yet, I Love CLE. I loved their Ohio shaped Cleveland design, which really sets them apart from other C-town shirt sellers.

You may recall my gold triangle ring I bought from Salty Not Sweet this past spring. We were browsing a jewelry table and saw that very ring! Bestie and I felt really super cool when we asked, "Do you sell your stuff at Salty?" Even though we already knew the answer. Otherwise there was a serious case of gold triangle ring copycatting going on. But yes was the answer and I am so glad they were selling their goods! My favorite items had to be a pair of gold zig zag earrings and a pair that were zebra striped. As I love my animal prints I picked them up to discover they were actually cut up credit cards. Upon further observation though I realized they were H&M gift cards! SUCH a great idea! I've always had really chicly designed gift cards which are always sad to part with. I could keep them, but then again what would I do with an empty gift card, no matter how cute it is? Um, duh make earrings out of them, hello! The power of creative imagination at its best, people. They also had some unique long necklaces  adorned with gold feathers and tiny bird cages. Sadly, when we made the rounds and headed back to where the tables were set up the happy jewelry people had fled. I'll definitely have to hit up Salty again to get more of their info!

Recently I have noticed an increase in Cleveland art and prints. One vendor had some great photos of our fair city for fairly reasonable prices. I have seen so many great artists and photographers with Cleveland-inspired art I can't decide on one to actually add to my collection! I think when the day comes that I have my own place I'll finally make my decision. I loved the street name prints I saw at Made in the 216 event at the Dredgers Union in July, but some of these were fantastic as well.

This particular signage isn't even art, it's an actual street sign harking back to the day when this lower deck of the bridge was used for streetcars. I absolutely loved it and my little iPhone took a pretty legit photo, thanks to Ingenuity Fest lighting. I might have to take this and turn it into art myself. Somehow…

Perhaps the most literal cross between art and fashion was the table of tiny hats. And no, Amy Poehler and Kristen Wiig were not selling them. Bestie and I could not get enough of these funky tiny hat and hair clips in just about any and every shape and size you could imagine, and even some you couldn't. For example, Bestie could not pass up the head topper with her boyfriend, Optimus Prime on it. I mean come on, how awesome is that?!? She wore it the rest of the night and received several compliments.

The rest of my photos aren't fashion per say, but could definitely serve as some kind of artistic inspiration. And what did we say about art and fashion? FASHION = ART. Boom. So I thought I'd add a gallery of the rest of my photos which include glamour shots of the bridge and a few of my favorite artists' installations at the Fest.

I had an amazing time at this year's Ingenuity Fest. Like I said before, I really wish the bridge were that awesome all the time. I wonder who I can talk to about making it a permanent market, kind of like the open air markets in Charleston, SC and other cities. Because come on, how GREAT would that be? So here's to the power of creative imagination, and hoping we get a little bit of that action every single day.

Friday, September 9, 2011

"Cock your hat, angles are attitudes."

As I tweeted last week, I got to go shopping the past two weekends! A rarity these days, on account of my shallow bank... account. But I had some spare change and thought I'd have a little me time at Great Northern Mall and Crocker Park. I even got into a kind of "what the hell, I'll buy it!" kind of mood. Don't worry I didn't go too crazy, just crazy enough. And by crazy enough I mean crazy enough to buy THIS hat!

Ohhh yeah. Here's the story... Remember when I went to LA last month? My friend and I did a little shopping in Old Town Pasadena and took a pit stop at H&M. There was this GREAT maroon fedora kind of hat with a black band and feathers on the side. It looked fun so I put it on and kept it on for the remainder of our browsing. When it was time to leave, bestie said to me, "aren't you getting that?" I told her I didn't think so, it was $17 and I didn't really need it. Turns out it didn't matter that I didn't need it because I totally bought it when I saw it here back home. I wore it the rest of the day at the mall and I felt so baller. It fits so nicely and honestly feels down right lovely on my head! I have thusly dubbed it my new fall hat and will be really mad at myself if I do not wear this thing OUT. I hope to be known as the maroon hat girl all around Northeast Ohio.

Speaking of hats, I also bought a new straw hat at Kohl's. It's replacing one I got there a few years ago that was actually from Guinness and had a fun shamrocky patterned band around it. But due to excessive wear and tear, my good ol' chapeau has just about run its course and it was time for a new one. This one is a bit more structured and has a very nautical red and navy band. I've already worn it on a few bad hair days this week!

Back at H&M, I also bought a great new bag. Remember my white lace bag I bought on eBay? Don't get me wrong, I love that purse but it's a bit small and honestly a little too springy/summery, so when I saw this Givenchy look-a-like in a nice rose tan I had to snag it. 

The other thing I fawned over at the Pasadena H&M was this feather-patterned scarf. The past two autumns I've bought a new scarf there and I absolutely love them. I usually get a really fun and colorful one, big and comfy that I can throw on with any outfit between now and March! Keeping with this tradition when I saw the feather scarf I did not buy in Pasadena I, you guessed it, bought it here. Can't wait when it gets really fall-y and I can wear it with my trench coat and drink pumpkin spice lattes. And wear my maroon hat, of course.

Skip a week to a quick outing at Crocker Park. I hadn't been in the new Anthropologie yet, which is probably a good thing because that place is down right dangerous. I want EVERYTHING but can afford NOTHING, with one wonderful exception - SALE ITEMS! This blue striped dolman sleeved top was marked down twice - from $78 (ridiculous) to $39 (obnoxious) to $19.99 (fairly reasonable). And now it's mine!  It's kinda funky but also kinda awesome and I can't wait to wear it.

I hope I didn't bore you with my shopping sagas. I just really haven't really been for a while. And honestly, even if I hadn't bought anything it would have been fun. Just being around fashion when I haven't for so long was plenty to tide me over! So here's to retail therapy, or, giving that whole "I'll go window shopping without my wallet" thing a go :)

*Title quote by Frank Sinatra