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Onyx Coats!

June 29th, 2010 § 2

I’m now on the road to focusing on jackets until Burning Man. Everyone wants one for Burning Man because as I jokingly call it a Couture Snuggy, it is extremely warm, comfortable, soft and as you can see, pretty fashionable.  I do have to admit that I notice all the heads turning as I walk by and they’re all looking at that back white ruffles which are surprising because of the contrast to the deep black and simply the sheer unexpectedness.  I have two custom orders already and I’m really excited!  I’ve never done custom orders before so depending on how these two go, I might make them all custom or decide to make them as I do my other clothing (each as a piece of art that comes to me organically).

This is the first one I made for myself.  As always, there’s more to come…

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Premiere Opening Of Onyx’s Closet

June 29th, 2010 § 5

This weekend was my first official experience vending


(Photo from DJ Dragonfly who was rockin it all weekend!)

and I couldn’t think of a better place to have that experience than at such a heartfelt, family oriented and personally meaningful festival such as Movement Play.  I’ve found lately through so many experiences that the more you put out to the world, the more you will receive, and my heart is overflowing with the praise and support I received this weekend.

It’s funny how the whole circle (of life) comes around.  Last year at Movement Play was the birth of my relationship with dance as self-love.  Up until the Saturday night one year ago at MP when Beats Antique played and Zoe Jakes danced, I had “danced” before, kind of wiggled in one place is a better description actually, but something happened that night. While being surrounded by warm and accepting people moving in all sorts of ways, some to the music others not, simply doing whatever their body said it wanted to do at that moment with no judgement, I let go of all of the control and self judgement. I let go of my fear of being “seen”.

For too much of my life I have hid, afraid to share who I am. That night I let it all go. That night my life changed. That night I Danced!  Since then I have been going to Ecstatic Dance and opening myself up little by little through dance which bled into the rest of my life until almost one year later a new person stood looking back at me in the mirror, and her name was Onyx. Lauren lived in reclusive fear, Onyx doesn’t apologize for who she is, she is dark, sensual, calm, open and shares herself with the world that gives her so much back.

Thank you Jenna Luna, Jenny Severo Susan Lee, Christabel ZamorMelissa (Candy) Wren, and Rosie and Ken Masters for supporting me in my dreams.

Onyx’s First Photo Shoot…

June 23rd, 2010 § 6

I had an amazing late night photo shoot at Movement Play’s warehouse on Treasure Island yesterday with my ever so amazingly talented photographer/husband Rich : )

I haven’t gone through them all and post-proccessed, but i just couldn’t wait to post at least one picture…

Makeup inspirations

June 17th, 2010 § 2

While perusing the blogs I follow regularly this morning I found the work of Rankin (photographer) through twistedlamb.  I’m not sure who the make up artists are but props to them!

Check out the rest of his photography at rankin.co.uk.com

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My First Review

June 16th, 2010 § 0

I have my first review, how exciting!!

Thanks Laura for coming to visit my ‘closet’ at LIB and for such a wonderful and surprising gift : )

* Impressive fashion:  Onyx

This woman came out of my same B. Arch program,  and I am so glad to see another person using their Architectural vocabulary in other arts.  Very subtle punches in the color, body-flattering cuts, a harmonious collage of textures in a kind of “deconstructed” Victorian Gothic vintage.  For the price of other manufactured pieces I’ve seen sold around, you could get a tremendous upgrade from this one-of-a-kind clothing designer.  It reminds of “Coco Before Channel,” whose fashions revolutionized femininity by working with a different body type and paring down the forms to a contemporary aesthetic. -Laura Novowelsg

visit her entire post on LIB here: OkapiCrux

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Feather Pieces Coming to Movement Play and Etsy Soon

June 14th, 2010 § 1

So I’ve finally got some shots of the feather pieces I’ve been working on lately!  They all have clips on the back and are meant to be worn any way you want. I love to wear them on belts, skirts, or pants… on the hip, lower back, the back of the neck, or on a necklace…


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All of these pieces will be available at Movement Play.


Buy your ticket to this amazing three day micorfestival HERE

If you haven’t heard about it, you can watch a short clip HERE

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Personal Style: Use The Tips, Ignore the Rules.

June 13th, 2010 § 0

I’m often asked where my own personal style came from.

It’s probably because my schooling/training is in design rather than fashion, but I don’t believe my “personal style” to be that I wear a lot of black, wear black eyeliner or make most of my clothes. I actually look at personal style from it’s structure first. The most basic structure you have to work with is your body (it’s like the building’s site).  The first thing I usually tell people when they want my help on personal style is not what they were expecting. I tell them to ask themselves “what body type do I have” and then secondly “what do I want my body to look like”.

There are many beauty tips out there on how to accentuate certain features (I’ll talk more about some of these in my next blog).  That doesn’t mean though that you should follow these as RULES of beauty.  It’s important to remember that what they are telling you is correct, if you want to look “standard” or fit a predetermined definition of feminine or masculine.  I personally though, don’t EVER want to be standard.  So if you want to look thinner, taller or more hour glass shaped then use the tips but don’t believe that you HAVE TO follow the tips they give for your specific body type.  Fashion is about looking like everyone else, personal style is about your uniqueness. Use the tips, ignore the rules.

Some ways that I use the tips and ignore the rules

- I have a really long face and every “beauty expert” says that women with long faces should add bangs and keep the volume on top down in order to make their face seem shorter.  So, because I don’t want to look ’standard’, I did the oposite.  I love my mohawk.  I love that it makes my face even longer and that gives me a unique look (personal style) that is not very common. (see image above)

- I also usually just accept that nature just made me thin and no matter what I do to try to change it that’s just who I am, for right now at least (though that doesn’t mean I give up trying to achieve the most healthy body weight I can).  I’ve chosen, for the most part, that I don’t want to try to over emphasis curves like the rules say I am supposed to for my body type and instead often play with androgyny or being long and flowy (which is still feminine but not the epitome of it, which is curvy).

(Shane of The ‘L’ Word is super androgynously HOT)

- Being 5′-8″, I’m on the tall side and being thin makes me look even longer, but lately I’ve been wearing this one black skirt (on top of all my flowy pants as well) that extends my torso (kind of in the flapper style).  Fashion consultants would definitely warn against this, the rule for long torso’s is to wear high waisted belts, but in the world of personal style I choose that I like playing with the flapper style and have fun doing it.

(Flapper cuts)

This doesn’t mean that you have to break all the rules. That’s not what I’m saying, just use them (by following or not following them) to help you achieve your own personal style.

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Kucoon

June 11th, 2010 § 0

you rock my world!

The first time I saw this designer’s work (Designer in Chief, Andrea Spratt) atHarmony Festival a year ago I’ve wanted one of everything they sell.  To me it’s pure comfortable luxury and absolutely fits the description they give in their biography as “elegant, yet whimsical”.  With soft, comfortable, flowing fabrics, a focus on cut, options of layering and a sophisticated color pallet, their pure concept of style breaths through every piece they make.

Visit their store here: http://store.kucoondesigns.com

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Not only are they one of my favorite companies but they were also a huge inspiration to me as the Artistic Director of the Hoop Technique DVD

One of the first things I knew when Rich and I sat down to conceptualize the hooping DVD we wanted to make and he asked if I would be the artistic director of it (see my profile here) I knew exactly what kind of style I saw him (and later Spiral) in.  One of the first thing I gave them were these images as the inspiration for their wardrobes (the first three of which were Kucoon’s designs)…

Coincidently, Spiral knew the designer, Andrea, who invited them down to the Kucoon warehouse in LA where she helped them find some amazing clothing for the DVD.  Spiral wore Kucoon pants in all instructional parts of the DVD and they both wore their black and silver striped pants their performance shoot.  I can’t wait for the release of the DVD!!

Visit Hoop Technique here: http://hooptechnique.com/blog/

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Black

June 9th, 2010 § 0

…is not just a color

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and White

June 9th, 2010 § 0

…is not always white

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Onyx’s (Secret) Closet at LIB

June 9th, 2010 § 0

One of my goals, along with this blog, creating an Etsy store, throwing trunk parties etc is to set up a booth (which I call my ‘closet’) at festivals to bring my creations to our community and to hopefully find them new homes with people who love them as much as I do. Seeing as how I only started production a month and a half before Lightning in a Bottle (a music/art festival in southern California) I decided to only do a test run of sorts there.  My very supportive husband and I (in one week) collected mostly re-used (as all my creations) a pop-up tent, fitting forms, a rug, curtains, lamps, tables etc to set up an amazing place to display my work.  I set it up at our camping area and invited my friends to come and visit.

As expected, this was a great experience in showing my work and definitely helped me clarify my intentions on how I want to share it.  I had originally thought of, rather than just selling my pieces, to set up a system where one could come and borrow pieces for a day or night and if you wanted, you could even bring your make-up and get ready there too, wonderful inspirational women all inspiring each other and bonding before the big night of dancing and play…  I was so happy to be able to loan out my pieces and see them worn on such beautiful women at LIB, but the details of making this system work seems to be a larger task than I think I’m ready for right now.  I’m still open to the idea, but maybe it would work best down the line when I have a larger selection.  I love that all of my clothes are about 80 recycled materials (about 50% of that being vintage) and that they already, by completion, have a story behind them; and I love even more the idea that they are worn in and characterized pieces, not something you buy brand new off a rack, that each time a new women wears them its story continues and brings new inspiration to the next woman who wears it.  Plus, aren’t the most beautiful clothes the ones that have made it through 5 Burning Man’s!!  I still have intentions towards this, but until I get it worked out more, if you have a big event you’d like to borrow a piece for get a hold of me and lets play!

Personal Style

June 8th, 2010 § 1

If you’re looking for inspiration into your own personal style, one thing that has really helped me is that each year (usually after Burning Man which is not only my internal ‘New Year’ but also the place where I get the most inspiration each year) I create a folder on my computer called “Inspiration” or “Style” in which, if I ever see an image of something that I like, that I feel is expressive of the way I feel, that exemplifies the direction I want to go with my personal style, that I think would look good on my body type, or for some reason just speaks to me, I’ll just throw it in my folder.  My best method of finding these images is to find other peoples blogs that I share similar taste with or that I just find inspirational.  I’ve bookmarked 4 or 5 of my favorite fashion blogs and every few days (or couple of weeks if you prefer) I’ll read (or just quickly look at) their newest posts.

Then, anytime I’m going shopping or about to sit down to make something, I’ll just open my folder, select all the images and open them in my Preview application. Then I just scroll down the images quickly not thinking too much about them. Your brain will do that on it’s own and hence you won’t end up necessarily copying what you see but allow your brain to translate what it sees and interpret them into new things. I believe this is part of the reason why they made us memorize thousands of slides in Architectural History class. Being exposed to many different languages (of design) will help your brain create it’s own (don’t reinvent the wheel, use it in new ways).

The blogs I follow regularly are:

http://hautemacabre.com

http://www.twistedlamb.com

http://siouxzenkang.wordpress.com

http://teacupsandcouture.wordpress.com

http://froufroufashionista.blogspot.com

And here are some of the images from my “Inspiration” folder…


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Inspired

June 8th, 2010 § 4

I never thought that I would have a blog. 

I’ve always been a person of few words, bringing all of the long hours I spend in human observation and inner contemplation (that I almost never share) to the world solely through the spaces that I design as an architectural designer.  I know there are many architecture blogs, but to me, architecture is not something you can write about, nor show in a picture; its something you experience, its the way a space makes you feel and how it effects your actions, quietly influencing your life through your routines, your human comfort, your perception of self, your rituals, your feeling of safety, your bodies mobility… when it comes down to it though, what are the clothes you wear but the first layer of human architecture?  Unlike architecture today (versus tribal times) most western humans no longer have the ability to take control of their built environment because the basic framework of design is just not a shared cultural knowledge anymore. Architecture is mass produced for the lowest cost (in so many ways) and pumped out as a universal solution to everyone needing structure. Unfortunately our clothing has followed the same trends away from personalization and towards mass production and distribution.

Unlike architecture though, most of us have the basic knowledge of how clothing effects us through our routines, human comfort, perception of self, rituals, feeling of safety, bodily mobility etc leaving personal style as an easy(er) first step in taking control of the built environment we live in, hence, no longer accepting the universal solutions of design our society is trying to feed us.  And so, if I want to always wear layers of loose cotton blends that could easily be worn to bed then rolled out of (wrinkle free) in the morning (to get a bowl of ice cream which I then go back to bed and eat) and spend my day working and sitting on the floor, rolling over to my low couch to cuddle with my love until I leave the house when I’ll throw on a long cotton blend coat because it fits my frame well… then so be it.  I love my life, I love my clothes, I love myself enough to just be me.

As in architecture, I don’t believe one can fully express their ideas of personal style and the experience of clothing solely through a blog but since people have been asking me for years about my personal style, how I make my clothes and will I make them something, I’ve finally decided to take the step and share myself and my experience with anyone who wants to go on this new adventure with me.  This blog is my way of sharing my new adventure of designing clothing not only for myself but for all of the beautiful and inspirational women in my life and in our community.  You are the new abundant inspiration in my life and these are the creations you bring out of me.

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