SIA Inspiration: Paul Klee 2.0

Welcome to another week of Style Imitating Art! It’s my turn to host, and here’s my pick of the inspiration:

This is “Castle and Sun” by German Expressionist Paul Klee. As you can see from the post title, we’ve featured Klee on SIA before, but this one couldn’t be more different – the other painting is all muted, while this one is an explosion of colors. I know we just had another colorful piece with Shelbee’s challenge, but I like this one for its geometric shapes and graphic quality (while Shelbee’s pick is much more soft and fluid), so I’m interested to see what you guys come up with. Deadline is next Tuesday, August 9th, as usual. Have fun!

Ice Cream

It wasn’t my inspiration when I put this outfit together – I just wanted something light and simple, because it’s been too hot – but when I looked at these photos again, they just shouted “ice cream” to me. I mean, it’s not crazy, right? The skirt looks like a waffle cone, the shirt is the ice cream (vanilla), and the shoes and belt are like the chocolate sauce/sprinkles on top. What flavor would that be? Chocolate chip, cookie dough, Moose Tracks? Maybe I just really wanted some ice cream while I was writing this post.

Book Reviews: July 2022

It’s an average month of reading – 4 books, which is my usual number, and an even mix of fiction and non-fiction – but I quite enjoy all of them, so maybe it’s not so average after all. Here goes:

Howards End by E.M. Forster:

Even though I’ve watched all the Merchant Ivory adaptations of E.M. Forster’s works, somehow it didn’t occur to me to read his books until now. I mean, me, an Anglophile who loves Edwardian fashion, and never read Forster? It’s a bit embarrassing, really. But I recently watched the mini-series adaptation of this, so here I am, rectifying that oversight. The book is more philosophical than I expected – there are a lot of discussions of the characters’ inner lives and thoughts. They are thought-provoking; however, if I didn’t know the plot already, they would bore me. Call me shallow, but I’d prefer more descriptions of the characters’ outer lives – what they eat, what they wear, that sort of thing – and see their inner lives reflected through that. More realism, less modernism, I suppose. Also, for all the insights into their thoughts, I don’t really connect with any of the characters, except for poor Leonard Bast (it helps that he’s played in the mini-series by the lovely Joseph Quinn, aka Eddie from “Stranger Things”). Still, there’s no denying that it’s beautifully written, and those philosophical discussions do touch me, in a way. 4/5

A Room with a View by E.M. Forster:

“Howards End” left me so depressed, so this is a bit of a palate cleanser – yes, it’s the same philosophical discussions of inner lives and thoughts, but on a smaller scope, more relatable, more lighthearted, and has a happy ending. It may not be as profound as “Howards End”, and the conflict is all internal, but I appreciate how subtly yet deeply the book portrays the characters’ inner turmoil. Also, all the part about being a traveler vs. a tourist is still relevant today, 100 years later. Plus I absolutely love the 1985 film (my favorite Merchant Ivory production, in fact, and one of the reasons behind my obsession with broderie anglaise.) 4.5/5

The Princes in the Tower by Alison Weir:

I bought this a couple of years ago and somehow it got lost amongst my TBR stack, so I didn’t discover it until I reorganize my bookcase recently. I’m not particularly interested in the mystery of Edward V and Richard of York, but I picked this up mostly because I enjoyed Alison Weir’s “The Six Wives of Henry VIII”. The book points the finger at Richard III as the mastermind behind the murder pretty unequivocally though, so if you’re familiar with the mystery already and want different theories/perspectives, this won’t be it. It’s well researched and the writing is accessible, but I was hoping for something more impartial. 3/5

Killers of the Flower Moon by David Grann:

From one non-fiction historical murder mystery to another – and another one I’m not familiar with, but I’m reading mostly because I enjoyed the author’s previous book (“The Lost City of Z”). Also, it’s being made into a movie by Martin Scorsese and I wanted to read the book before the movie comes out. It is, at a glance, about a string of murders of wealthy Osage people in the US in the 1920s for their oil rights and the subsequent investigation of the newly formed FBI, but it’s much more than that. It’s about the history of the Osage Nation, the racism and systematic corruption that allowed a few greedy men to literally get away with murder, and the development of modern criminology as well. It can get a bit rambling at times, but just as with “The Lost City of Z”, it’s well written and engrossing. 4.5/5

Feeding In The Light

Here’s my outfit for this week’s SIA, inspired by “Feeding in the Light” by Jerry Garcia of Grateful Dead. When I saw this painting, I immediately knew I’d wear my yellow skirt. It’s the brightest item in my closet, and yellow is a major part of the painting. For the rest of it, I struggled a bit, but then I remembered my colorful plaid dress – the colors are a bit darker than those in the painting, but they’re pretty close – so I decided to wear it as a top. I then paired them with my green vintage shoes, because the tassels look a bit like the green creature in the painting (an octopus), and added my crab brooches to go with the marine theme. The result is definitely not something I’d wear normally, but that’s the fun of SIA, and I’m happy with it.

Don’t forget to drop by Shelbee’s blog on Wednesday to see what everybody wears!

Casual Vintage Summer

I bought these pants solely because of the buttons on the front – they remind me of those 1930s/1940s trousers with the bib at the front, like this pair. And, keeping with that inspiration, I paired them with this short-sleeve blouse and a headscarf (which is not just for show, by the way, a handkerchief is a good thing to have in our insanely muggy summer) for a casual vintage summer look. It’s a bit Land Girls, which is exactly my sweet style spot. I love vintage outfits, but they’re not always the most comfortable to wear, especially with dresses that require all sorts of foundation garments and accessories to look right, so these casual looks are a great way for me to fulfill that vintage aesthetic while remaining comfy.