Tag Archives: Seattle

Whidbey Island Getaway

We’re lucky in Seattle. It is a city surrounded by natural beauty. Mountains, lakes, forests, the Puget Sound, and islands.

I recently took a much-needed break and escaped the city with some friends. We took a ferry to Whidbey Island, just a few miles away.


We stayed in a rented cottage on Cultus Bay. So idyllic! We saw amazing birds and had deer grazing outside our window.


The town of Langley has a educational whale museum and cute shops and pubs. Definitely worth a stop.

A fun and unexpected highlight of the trip was visiting the recycling depot. Yes, that’s right. It was a stop on our way home, and we had to drop off our recycling anyway. The depot was also a wonderful, artsy, collection of junk. It would look horrible in my yard but was so interesting at the recycling depot.








We had lunch at a state park before taking the ferry home. A tired bee crash-landed on our picnic table so we revitalized him with some maple syrup. It worked!


If you’re ever in the area, be sure (no pun intended) to visit Whidbey Island!

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Filed under Art, Travel

The True Cost Film Screening

Being a fashion blogger has opened my eyes to a lot about the fashion industry—not all of it good. You may have noticed that I love to attend clothing exchanges and I love supporting local designers and small businesses. I also don’t wear animals. People, animals, and the earth are important but they are often exploited in the name of business.

true costLast year I watched The True Cost, and I learned a lot about the human and environmental impacts of the fashion industry. The film sheds light on the wasteful nature of fast fashion and the horrible working conditions in the factories where cheap clothing is made.

This groundbreaking documentary asks the simple question: “Who made my clothes?” It features activists and green fashion companies too (it’s not all grim). And it drives home the obvious fact that no one should die making the styles we love to wear.

Click here to see the trailer.

Edit: I showed this film in Seattle last week and people were really moved by it. If you’d like to see it, it’s available on Netflix, iTunes, and Amazon. Please have a look and let me know what you think of it.

 

 

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Filed under Ethical, Fashion, Film

Anniversary Date

It’s hard to believe that December 24th marked my 8th wedding anniversary to hubby.

the happy couple

It’s a busy week, with Christmas and New Year in the mix, but we made time to get downtown to ride the Seattle Great Wheel, a 175-foot-tall waterfront Ferris wheel.

hubby

me

The views it offers are spectacular.

After riding the wheel, we wandered around downtown, peeking in storefronts and watching last-minute shoppers trying to complete their lists.

It’s hard to find places to eat dinner on our anniversary, because a lot of restaurants close early on Christmas Eve. Luckily, hotels are often the exception. We ate in the Boka Restaurant in the Hotel 1000. They had a great chickpea burger, which surprisingly went well with champagne!

drinksAfter dinner, we crossed the street to another hotel, the Alexis, and had a celebratory drink in their bar, called, oddly enough, The Bookstore.

I wouldn’t be a very responsible fashion blogger if I didn’t at least mention my outfit. Under my cozy pink scarf and warm, wool-free coat (by Vaute Couture), I had on this outfit.

anniversary outfit

Blazer: Bebe via Goodwill
Top: Swapped
Leggings: Fred Meyer’s
Pleather boots: Diba
Vegan purse: Stella McCartney
Necklace: Swapped

black and gray

satin blazer

all black outfit

I hope you had a great Christmas. Happy New Year!

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Filed under Ethical, Events, Fashion

Ten Years of Roller Derby

This year is the 10th anniversary of the Rat City Rollergirls, Seattle’s roller derby team. I can’t believe it’s been a decade. I was a founding member and it seems like yesterday.

It all started in 2004, when my friend Lilly asked a group of her friends (myself included) if we wanted to start a roller derby league with her. She’d fallen in love with the sport after watching the Texas Rollergirls play in Austin.

Meeting One was between Hurricane Lilly and two of her friends, Rae’s Hell and Dixie Dragstrip. Meeting Two expanded to seven. I remember meeting in a living room and planning what would become part of the fabric of Seattle–although we had no idea at the time.

founding members

We researched locations, looked into things like insurance and marketing, and planned fundraisers, media strategies and recruiting events. The league needed uniforms, coaches, managers, players–everything! It was almost a full-time job, and we all had jobs!

We were engineers, writers, developers, baristas, managers, you name it. We combined our skills and passion and built up the league from humble beginnings in a rink in White Center to Key Arena! I never played at the Key though. I played at the hangars at Magnusson in front of 1500 screaming fans, but after season one, I retired.

I’m Jean of all Trades, and I didn’t have the commitment to devote to one thing. I was busy with motorcycles, art, animal rights, and I had a boyfriend and friends to fit into the mix (not to mention a new job).

skates and helmet

But I’ll always remember the year and a half that I was Lady Die #83. I met powerful women, made great friends, and reached a level of athleticism I didn’t know I had.

Lady Die 83

I’d highly recommend catching a bout and celebrating season ten. Roller derby has exploded onto the scene in the last decade and there are other leagues in Washington State, the country, and all over the world. There’s probably one near you. If you go to a Rat City bout, you’ve got to cheer for Grave Danger, my former team.

grave danger season one

(starting back row, left to right) Edie Brickwall, Daisy Mayhem, PamOpticon, Lil’ Hateful, Sake Bomb, Bruise Lee, Lisa Lawless, Rettig to Rumble, Lady Die, Darcy Rant, Tashya Round, Ann Munition, Jinx (Photo by Lilly Warner)

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Filed under Events, General

Visiting Chihuly Garden and Glass

I recently visited Chihuly Garden and Glass, an exhibition, garden and theater showcasing the life’s work of Dale Chihuly.

chihuly glass and space needle

The exhibit is new to the Seattle Center. It’s a permanent collection housed in a new building under the Space Needle–and it’s worth a visit. I was impressed with the size of the collection and with the variety of styles.

When I see a chandelier like these (Beneroya Hall has a couple, and there’s one in the foyer of Lincoln Center in Bellevue), I recognize it immediately as a Chihuly. I was lucky to see many of these pieces at the exhibit, and I got to see a film about how they’re made.

The neutral vessels in one room were delicate and subdued compared to what I imagine a Chihuly to be. They fit in perfectly with woven baskets.

The glass garden was a sight to behold. Chihuly’s work is organic and imperfect. These pictures can’t show the scale. The glass balls were about three feet high!

This breath-taking display was also larger than life. In the film about Chihuly, I saw him and his staff throwing similar floats into the water. Amazing! Floats were originally made to keep fishing nets afloat, so I know they must be durable. Still, it seemed so reckless. Great fun though. The beautiful floats in the film were sent downstream for an art installation on a small island and under a bridge.

boat and floats

Chihuly’s work fits into the natural environment and that’s probably why the glass garden was so mesmerizing. It was hard to separate the artificial from the living. In summer, this garden will be stunning!

I got to walk around Chihuly’s work, and even under it. The glasswork in the ceiling cast colorful shadows. I saw a similar installation in Tacoma, where a glass bridge welcomes visitors to the Museum of Glass.

Similar vessels were on display in a room where I got up close and could appreciate the variations in the glass colors and patterns.

I’ve taken a couple of glass-blowing classes and I have a true appreciation for the art and craft of glass art. It’s an amazing combination of creativity, physical labor and chemistry.

Jean at the museum

Have you been to a glass museum? I highly recommend Chihuly Garden and Glass if you’re ever in Seattle.

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Filed under Art, Events

Celebrating Thanksgiving at Plum Bistro

I blogged about my Thanksgiving feast on my vegan blog yesterday and I thought enjoying delicious food is something everyone loves, so I’m reposting my experience here.

For Thanksgiving this year, hubby treated me to a four-course meal at Plum Bistro, a vegan restaurant in Seattle. Most restaurants were closed today, but Plum had a special prix fixe menu. Hubby thought it would be nice to eat without cooking or cleaning up. He was right!

We started our meal with roasted heirloom carrots and Brussels sprouts with a maple and thyme glaze. I could have gone home happy at this point, but there was more.

starter

Our appetizer was Plum’s famous smoky mac and yease. It was creamy and delicious–vegan comfort food at its finest.

mac and yease

For the main course, we dined on smoked seitan roast with gravy and cornbread stuffing. The stuffing, with cranberry reduction on the side was so satisfying I didn’t need dessert.

main course

But when dessert came–a bourbon chocolate pecan pie–I didn’t hesitate to devour it. It was drizzled with caramel, covered with a dollop of smooth, dairy-free whipped cream, and garnished with pomegranate seeds and a pecan.

pecan pie

I have a lot to be thankful for, and this meal was no exception! I enjoyed a cruelty-free meal and I loved seeing everyone in the packed restaurant enjoying healthy, vegan food too.

I hope you had a great Thanksgiving. If you’re in Seattle, you’ve got to visit Plum!

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Filed under Ethical, Events, General, Healthy Living

The Lure of Horror Film

October is a spooky month–perfect for a visit to the scary exhibit at Seattle’s EMP museum: The Lure of Horror Film.

Can't look away

Truth be told, I’d rather laugh than be scared, but I was intrigued by the exhibit. And despite not being a die-hard horror fan, I’d seen a lot of the movies featured in the exhibit, which made it extra fun to see the props used in the film.

spooky selfie

The exhibit was curated by three horror film directors: Roger Corman, John Landis, and Eli Roth. They’ve put together a terrific collection, including a scream booth, movie artifacts, a shadow monster installation and horror soundscapes. Examples like:

The axe from The Shining:

shining axe

A stick man from The Blair Witch Project:

Blair Witch man

The alien creature suit from Alien:

Alien suit

Props from The Fly:

The Fly

Jason’s hockey mask and machete from Friday the 13th:

Mask from Friday the 13th

And a zombie suit from Michael Jackson’s Thriller:

zombie suit from Thriller

One of the scarier things I found in the museum was not intentional. I took a few pictures in the reflective ceiling in the EMPs expansive atrium. The combination of curved metal and screws turned us into monsters of sorts.

Are you going to see the show? What do you have to be scared of?

scream gallery

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Filed under Architecture, Events, Film

Casual Denim Dress

Hubby and I went out for brunch at the Blue Star Café in Wallingford. I love their hearty meals, and especially that they can veganize any of them. I had a tofu scramble with non-dairy “cheese” and toast and home fries. Delicious! And of course a mimosa is a brunch must-have.

tofu scramble

I wore a denim dress that I picked up recently. It’s a simple shirtdress style that I can cinch with a belt. Today I chose a skinny white one but it would be fun with a wide belt or sash too. I’ll try this in the cooler weather with tights.

denim dress

Dress: Old Navy
Pleather belt: Steve Madden
Faux suede boots: Novacas
Bag: Flea market in Harlem
Cuff: B.O.R.N Fashion
Sunglasses: Target

I love going sockless in the warm weather–sandals are a favorite–but I find boots take a summer dress into fall even before the weather is cool. It’s still relatively nice out but sandals are starting to seem less appropriate. Swapping in a bootie grounds the outfit and is a nice fall transition.

dress and booties

These booties proved to be invaluable on this occasion. After brunch, I got an invitation to meet up with friends. So hubby took my car and ran errands and I walked to the University District. I have to say, these boots are made for walking!

outfit details

I’m also incorporating some of recent finds from my New York trip. The bag, from a flea market, is made of upcycled upholstery fabric. My cuff is from a great store on 125th called B.O.R.N (borrowed, old, refurbished, new). I’ll write about all the wonderful things I found at that store real soon!

I’ve joined Monday Bloom and Style Elixir for linkups – have a look at what everyone else is wearing!

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Filed under Ethical, Fashion, Thrifty

Polka Dots for a Picnic

When the weather’s nice, people in Seattle take advantage of it–you never know how long the sun will stay out. On a recent sunny day, hubby and I packed a picnic basket full of goodies and headed over to Gasworks Park.

picnic and polka dots

T-shirt: Tahari via consignment
Dress (worn as skirt): Swapped
Shoes: Payless
Sunglasses: Old Navy
Purse: Crystalyn Kae
Basket: Santa Fe Farmers Market

Gasworks is a great location. From there you can see South Lake Union and the Seattle skyline. The Space Needle is visible behind me on the right. Everywhere we looked, people were kayaking, playing Frisbee, flying kites–it was really fun to watch the world go by.

Gasworks

We set up our picnic on a hill near a guy with an easel. He was painting landscape of the Seattle skyline. From this spot, we could take in the scenery (natural and otherwise–I like the urban feel of the gasworks. If you don’t, a simple turn to the left or right will have you looking at water, trees and hills).

picnic goodies

I cheated a bit because I went to Whole Foods and bought prepackaged goodies instead of making everything myself. We even sneaked a bottle of wine with us. We’re adults! Besides, it was a rosé and looked like juice.

I bought vegan potato salad (made with egg-free nayonaise), a quinoa salad, avocado rolls, diced fresh fruit, and the best wrap ever! It was made with faux chicken strips by a company called Beyond Meat. Delicious, healthy, and good for the chickens!

picnic spread

We actually ate too much. So we loafed around for a bit (I had on sunscreen–don’t worry) before wandering back to our car. On the way, I found a neat mosaic. Each of the metal designs was fabricated from kids’ drawings. How cool would it have been to see your childhood drawings permanently installed in a floor mosaic?

mosaic

I’ve joined Not Dead Yet for Visible Monday and Color Blind for Thrifters Anonymous. Check out what all the others are wearing today!

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Filed under Ethical, Fashion, Healthy Living, Thrifty

Rainy Days and Sundays

I went to the Seattle Center with my hubby recently. It was pouring all day and we almost didn’t leave the house. But if you live in Seattle and don’t go out in the rain, you might wait 6 months to get out! So we went for it.

EMP and Space Needle

Here’s an example of how faux leather boots are a better choice than the real deal. These leather-look boots are practically rain gear. They look cute and they’re totally waterproof.

rainy day wear

Umbrella: Hubby’s
Cape: Target
Brooch: eBay
Jeans: Goodwill
Boots: MIA via Amazon
Purse: Crystalyn Kae

I wore a cape, not a raincoat so I had to use an umbrella. Most people in Seattle skip umbrellas. We’re usually well equipped with our jackets and hats and we just don’t bother. Plus, the rain is often barely more than a mist. And while it goes on and on, it’s not heavy enough to warrant an umbrella.

EMP by Frank Gehry

I like the buildings in the area. Between painted murals and post-modern architecture, you almost won’t mind the rain.

EMP

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