This weekend I am headed to Durban with P to be the official photographer for an article he is writing. Woootl! We go away for the quick weekend a lot and so I’ve become pretty efficient at throwing together a bag. One thing that I can say about myself is that while I generally love the excess, I’m good at keeping my luggage to a minimum (I have gone on three week trips with only a rollie carry on).

My strategy, whether I’m going away for 2 days or 2 weeks, is to write up a list on my iPhone in the Notes app. I’m a pretty last minute person but if I have a big trip coming up then I can add things to my packing list as I think of them in the days leading up to it. This way, when I’m inevitably throwing things into a bag hours before my flight I don’t miss anything important.

Weekend Away Checklist:

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diy: baby slippers (people be reproducing)

babyslippies-6472For reasons unknown to me, our friends have begun reproducing. This is a scary fact that must be dealt with with a clear head and iron stomach. I am nearing the age of reproduction (WITH A GOOD DOSE OF DENIAL -and also not for about 3-4 years) and when that happens I will forgo wine and sushi and rare steak and unpasteurized cheese for close to a year in the service of a bunch of cells that will literally suck nutrients out of my body and then become an ungrateful child that will suck money out of my bank account for extravagant things like ‘food’ and ‘college’ and ‘winter coats.’

Until I must face my own child-filled reality I can enjoy other people’s babies from the safe distance of NOT MY WOMB and send them cute clothes and stuffed animals and felt baby slippers that I have been diligently manufacturing. Because obviously.


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DIY: folding chair makeover


I always need extra seating for dinner parties or braais. Folding chairs are ugly. I don’t like ugly things taking up space in my home. Here’s a solution!

I used some cheeky Shwe Shwe fabric with Madiba’s face since we live in South Africa for one and some old scrap I had laying around for the other.

Things you’ll need:
folding chair
drop cloth
spray paint
staple gun

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DIY Navajo inspired shoe laces

shoelacesWinter is coming (I know we’re in denial but fall is officially March 21st!) and when I was in the States for Christmas I bought some Minnetonka Moccasins to keep my feet warm. The brown suede laces were sort of blah, so I bought some red ones which were cute enough and then saw these. Snappy! And thought I could make a pair. You’ll need: shoelaces-3shoelaces-2

Use the masking tape to tape up the laces at a regular interval. I used 1.5 inches. Paint using fabric paint in your preferred color/pattern. Let dry overnight. Take off the masking tape et voila:shoelaces-6380

And that didn’t cost 30usd plus shipping. And Minnetonka Moccs are comfortable as clouds on your feet. You’re welcome.

ombre effects via pugly pixel

diy: industrial concrete notepad

In Berlin my bank (Deutsche Bank) had a branch called “Bank der Zukunft” which means Bank of the Future. I loved it there as much as one can love going to the bank (which is a lot). There was everything from a champagne bar and coffe bar, to a rotating display of goods by different German designers which you could peruse and buy. That is where I got introduced to Betonware and purchased this skinny concrete note pad. Everybody who sees it thinks it’s so clever and more importantly I love staring at it on my desk. And I love concrete. One day when we return to the United States to Settle Down and Buy Something Permanent I hope it’s an industrial loft made of concrete. Until then I created my own version of the concrete notepad and you can too. I got the idea to spray paint the sides of the paper from this pin.

I love it so much I kind of want to start selling them!

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diy: chevron tray

To corral all of the COFFEE RELATED CRAP in the kitchen I made a gold chevron tray. I wanted something simple so made oversized zig-zags. The other reason I want something pretty for the coffee stuff is that thanks to my friend Anna I bought an electric milk froth-er. I’m going to make thousands of espresso drinks on our trip to St. Lucia (the milk froth-er is coming with us).  Pre-safari latte is where it’s at.

1 white tray
gold spray paint
over sized masking tape

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diy: alexander mcqueen-inspired flats

     I was admiring these McQ by Alexander McQueen studded pointy toed flats. Even though McQ is his ‘cheap’ label, they’re $375 usd. Why thank you McQueen, for making design accessible to the people. And yet, I couldn’t get them out of my mind- some damned flats with pointy studs on them would be the perfect addition to my winter wardrobe (it’s winter here, COMPLAINCOMPLAIN). 
     So obvi, I got over myself and made a pair of my own. It’s not a bag after all, it’s a pair of shoes that I’m going to wear into the ground in one season. 
1 pair of black pointy {faux} suede flats
34-50 pointy studs (depending on how many you want)
gold spray paint (if your studs aren’t the right color)
glue gun
I had to spray paint my pointy studs because they were not gold, and I couldn’t find any gold ones. Then I simply glued them on to the back of my shoes in a similar pattern as the McQ shoes. I meant to do 25 on each but I think my studs were too big. 
Going to wear these all around town, smugly.