I know it’s only rock and roll, but I like it!

May 28,2013

On Monday May 20th 2013 my boyfriend, Ron and I went and saw the Rolling Stones at the Staples Center here in Los Angeles. When I heard tickets were going on sale a few weeks back I told Ron we needed to get online that morning and try for the cheap seats. This was a case of the cheap seats being $150! The good seats were $650! Ouch is right. No one ever said the Stones (and especially Mick) are not good businessmen. It’s a lot of dough, but since they said it was their last tour (and at their age, how can I not believe that) we got sucked in. We did end up getting two pairs of the um … Cheap Seats so we were able to ask a couple friends to join us.

Pre-show Prep

The Place was Packed!

The show was amazing! Yes, these guys are old, but man, that Mick Jagger did his famous dancey-prance-dance the entire two hours. He is mesmerizing to watch. The energy and charisma that he exudes is fascinating. Keith is amazing on guitar as usual and yes, he is the most weathered of the bunch, but his singing “Happy” and “Gotta walk before they make me run” were my favorites of the show. Ronnie Wood still seems the youngest and was running all over the stage and Charlie Watts … what can I say … that silver fox, holds the whole sound together! Sure, it was nice Mick Taylor was back and he did an amazing guitar solo, Bill Wyman should have been there and we always need to remember pretty boy Brian Jones, who wrote some of their best music back in the early days.

Jumbo-tron always a help


Ronnie Wood

When I first started listening to rock and roll, the Stones were part of quintessential rights of passage soundtrack for 13 year olds, along with Led Zep, The Who, The Beatles , etc. But funny enough it was The Who and The Stones that were the crossover bands when I later got into punk rock music in the early 80’s. The Who had the energy and the rip-it-to-shreds attitude. The Stones had the bad-boy-raw-dirty-sound on their early recordings but also on my favorite Stones album, Exile on Main Street.

Beatles or Stones? I have been known to ask this question. In fact, on first dates, I would often ask this question (Ron got the answer correct). It was a little bit of a test of personality and a little just for fun, because others were confused by the question. Was there a right answer? Not entirely. It’s kind of like the cats or dogs question …

Yes, I like them both but to me the Stones ARE rock and roll. Even in the 60’s the media asked “Would you let your daughter marry a Rolling Stone?” Many parents said they would let their daughter marry a Beatle. The Stones are the dangerous ones, the bad boys and isn’t that rock n’ roll personified? The Beatles were singing, “I Wanna Hold Your Hand” while the Stones were singing “Let’s spend the Night Together”. The Stones were always masters of marketing and they marketed quite well. They are the last ones standing as far as 60’s rock n’ roll bands, and frankly they did “Rip this Joint” up at the Staples Center Monday night. I got my “Satisfaction”!

Rockin' it


The Tongue Pit all Lit

Lovely Creatures of the Sea

April 22,2013

I recently visited the  The Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach for the first time. Even though I have mixed feelings about zoos and animals living in captivity, I can’t help but be fascinated by the beauty of the ocean and sea life. Seeing the animals playing made me so happy, I felt like a kid again.

The sea otter is so darn cute and amusing I could have watched him all day! The sea otter wears the heaviest fur coat in all of the animal kingdom. This has, sadly, made it an extensively hunted species in the past. The good news is … they have been protected in more recent years and remain on the endangered species list. They use rocks as tools to dislodge their prey and open shells, such a clever little character! They also help protect kelp forests from damage from over population of sea urchins (they eat them for lunch). We just added a new wallet case featuring a little sea otter by artist, Kelly Vivanco. Look at this adorable little guy holding his sea urchin lunch.

I absolutely love the penguins! Always so formal, they make me feel under dressed.

The jellyfish are so gorgeous and graceful and fun to watch (especially with glass between us). Jellyfish have roamed the seas for at least 500 million years (or more) which makes them the oldest multi-organ animal.


The sea lions love to chat!

The seahorse is so prehistoric and mystical looking to me. The male seahorse actually carries the eggs for the female. When he gives birth, his belly swells from contractions and he expels anywhere from 5 to 2,500 tiny seahorses, depending on his size! Geez! Freakishly fascinating creatures! He is then ready to mate again within hours with the next female seahorse that comes along, they are not a monogamous lot!

Speaking os sea life, I love this new painting by Caia Koopman. It depicts the endangered monk seal. Caia’s painting is part of a multi-artist print release done with PangeaSeed, a Japanese/Hawaiian marine life focused environmental organization. The prints are available here.

Cicada Club

March 25,2013

Last night my boyfriend and I celebrated our 3 year anniversary at what we think is the swankiest dance & dinner club in Los Angeles, Maxwell DeMille’s Cicada Club.

When you enter you feel that you are stepping back in time and you are … the Cicada Club was a high-end men’s clothing store/haberdashery back in 1928. It is situated in the famed Art Deco Oviatt building in downtown Los Angeles.

They offer fine dining and talented dance orchestras that bring you back to the the golden days of Hollywood. Last night, one of our favorite bands was playing, Janet Klein and her Parlor Boys. They perform lovely, naughty and obscure music from the 1910’s, 1920’s and 1930’s. They play Old Time Jazz, Blues, Ragtime and Novelty songs. Janet is always adorable and a hit on the ukelele!

The Cicada Club is often featured in movies (“Pretty Woman“, “Mr. and Mrs. Smith“, “J. Edgar” & “The Artist“) and television (“Madmen“) and print (Vogue). It is such a rare gem to have such a gorgeous glamorous place in our fine city. If you are in the LA area you should stop by … but don’t forget to overdress!

The Parlor Boys.

Dining and dancing at the Cicada.

Me & my friend Carolyn enjoying the atmosphere.

Ron, Karyn, Carolyn & Greg – celebrating their nine year wedding anniversary.

Janet Klein with a fan in similar chevron dresses.

The deco glamour begins at the entrance.

The details are amazing.

Look what we found! Rusty Frank, swing teacher and tap dancer, wearing Classic Hardware
at the Cicada Club with the likes of William H Macy and Cicada Club owner, Maxwell DeMille. Photo courtest of photoswithclass.com.

Hootenanny 2012

July 11,2012

Last weekend we had a booth at the Hootenanny in Orange County, as we do every year. Once again it was a great show with tons of bands and loads of people. It was really nice to meet up with our customers and friends. My fave bands of the day were Old Man Markly, The Supersuckers, The Reverend Horton Heat and of course, Rancid.

The following day we went to Crafted at the Port of Los Angeles. Some great crafts and a cool space. Inspiring stuff! Check it out!


Caia Koopman’s New Art Show

June 25,2012

One of my favorite artists, Caia Koopman, recently had an opening in Los Angeles at Thinkspace Gallery. Thinkspace is an innovative gallery that shows the work of up & coming pop surrealists, lowbrow artists and beyond. They were previously located in Silver Lake but have really taken off since their move to gallery row in Culver City a few years ago.

I met Caia several years ago at Thinkspace and began collaborating with her, utilizing her gorgeous works on Classic Hardware jewelry and vanity cases. Caia has grown and really expanded as an artist since we first met. It was really fun to see her, she is super sweet and personable and exudes great enthusiasm about what she does. Her latest series, ‘Between Wind and Water’, is a new edgier direction for her. The work combines the themes of fairy tales and fantasies with elements of street art. In some of the pieces she has reduced her usual vibrant color palette to mysterious blues and haunting blood reds. The images border on creepy yet cool and are thought provoking, as always.

Me and Caia

Juxtapoz Magazine has done and interview with her here and Hi-Fructose did a studio visit recently as well check out the pics here

The other artist in the show, Sarah Joncas, is a Canadian artist, currently based out of Toronto.  Her style is painterly and detailed with themes that are dark and mysterious.

Caia, Me and Sarah

If you are in the LA area try to make it by before June 30th, if you are not, you can view it here. Enjoy the show!