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The Rise of The Sparkly Stoner

Posted by admin on Dec 5, 2015 in geekery, style

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Bongs, babes and blunts are part of cannabis’ heritage, but with weed gaining in popularity with young millennials, what’s the sparkle-loving stoner to do? It’s easy to find pipes decorated with skulls, but what about girlie greenies?

The lack of appropriately pretty cannabis accessories was the inspiration for 26-year-old Madison Alvarez’s creation of Miss Mary Jane Co., a store that caters to the “blunt bae.” We’re talking pipes adorned with lipstick kisses, Hello Kitty rigs (for doing weed dabs) complete with glass red bows, martini-glass-shaped rigs garnished with glowing green olives, and a bright yellow Smokemon spoon with the tagline “Gotta smoke ’em all!” (That’s a Pokemon reference, if you weren’t clear.)

“Hello Kitty has been a part of my life since I was a little girl,” Alvarez says. “How can someone not smile when they see [this]?” The pop culture influences are everywhere, from the pastel colors to the rig designed to look like Adventure Time’s Finn. Plus, an adorable necklace dabber that resembles a pink Sharpie. Read more…

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Hijab Couture goes haute

Posted by admin on Jun 5, 2015 in style

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At first glance, the pastel colors, monochrome prints and street-style photographs might make you think you’re reading Vogue. This online shop is flirty, friendly and doesn’t take itself too seriously — its Living Doll collection shows a Bambi-eyed model wearing clownish shoes and eyeing cupcakes. The overall aesthetic is clean and modern, with boring solids like black at a minimum. But this isn’t Madewell or Anthropologie. It’s HijUp, and the wearables on offer here are hijabs.

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We know the hijab as a religious or cultural clothing choice, but it’s also a serious fashion statement. And it’s increasingly big business: The 2014–15 State of the Global Islamic Economy report by research firm DinarStandard found that Muslims spent $266 billion in 2013 on fashion, compared with $242 billion in 2012, and projects global spending of $484 billion by 2019.

Numerous startups, keen to cash in on the demand, are now catering to the craving for stylish headwear. Like Indonesian startup HijUp. Its marketing manager, Nenden Alifa, tells OZY that the company launched its e-commerce site in 2011 to “bring a positive image for Muslim women.” She’s emphatic that wearing a hijab doesn’t leave you “trapped” — it’s a choice — and she wants their fashion to reflect that. Read more…

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Equine artists turn horses into works of art

Posted by admin on Dec 15, 2014 in Animal Oddities, Design and Home, geekery, news, style

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When most people see Jillian Scott’s horses they do a double-take. Is that really a zebra in North Lanarkshire, Scotland? Nope, it’s part of Scott’s art — but the canvas she uses isn’t paper or linen; it’s the bodies of horses. From shaving giraffes to dragons to Batman, this is the realm of creative clipping.

And some of the designs are crazy. For customers Scott has shaved everything from a skeleton to the Minion from Despicable Me on a horse’s rear — a type of clip called a “bum patch” that’s increasingly popular wIth people who don’t want to commit to a full-creative groom — to a One Direction logo onto a pony. But her favorite designs is her leopard print.

Halloween Horse Jillian Scott

A horse groomer for ten years, Scott, 27, started experimenting last year: she took out her clippers and carved a zebra pattern into her horse, a job that took around three hours, with breaks to consult images on her phone to make sure she had the pattern right. The same clip now takes her 45 minutes. Her work started getting her local attention — some positive, some not so friendly. “Some people don’t like new things,” she shrugged. She charges $63 for a “regular” clip and $78 for a creative clip.

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Scott isn’t the only groomer using horse hair as artistic medium. Melody Hames, 28, a graphic design student at the University of Salford, Manchester who works at JMC Equestrian, wanted to combine clipping with her art.

After sketching her designs on paper she clips freehand — with no stencils. Her most impressive creation: a detailed castle etched into the side of a Freddy, her 4-year-old horse. It took nine hours. Read more…

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A Look At Creative Cat Grooming a.k.a Feline Fantasy at Intergroom

Posted by admin on Apr 12, 2014 in Animal Oddities, opinion, Strange events, style

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I knew that when I moved to America I would be privy to all sorts of things that had previously existed in fiction . I’d heard of creative grooming for dogs, but creative cat styling, a.k.a feline fantasy competitions were a whole new arena.

It’s not easy turning a cat into a flowerbed. Or a devil. Or the pink panther. But for extreme cat groomers — a growing community of pet stylists who compete on a national circuit — the transformation of felines with clippers and dye is worth the long hours of painstaking effort.

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In the past twenty years, extreme pet styling has gained some acceptance in the dog grooming world, encompassing seven large scale competitions in the U.S. The cat world however, is new to this phenomenon and stylists are struggling for acceptance. Two organisations- the National Association of Professional Creative Groomers and the National Cat Groomers Institute of America- offer education and training in how to apply creative color. They try and counter PETA’s claims of cruelty with information, but can this battle be won?

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These images were taken at Intergroom 2013, an annual animal grooming exhibition in Meadowlands, New Jersey. The cat groomers follow strict rules to make sure that the cats are safe. These include using, “Non-toxic, cat safe color and glues,” and making sure the cats are already groomed before the show. This means that the cats come fully designed, and only touch ups are allowed, potentially so the cats don’t get uncomfotable by all the noise – and all the dogs around.

Christine de Felippo, producer of Intergroom said that these “feline fantasy” competitions have been happening since 2003. “It was our pleasure to introduce the very first Cat Grooming Competition at INTERGROOM 2003.  It was met with great interest, several brave groomers, an enthusiastic Sponsor in Kim Laube, and a perfect Judge in Shirlee Kalstone,” she wrote on Intergroom’s website. The competition went on gold for a few years but then started up again, and 2014 saw more entries than the year before.

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The designs were very striking and I was amazed by the creative vision of the artists.  This is definitely still a small field, a sub-subculture of a subculture, and though it is animal friendly inasmuch as the dyes are safe and the cats are cared for, it’s still hard to know whether the cats enjoy it.

SIDE NOTE: I’m starting to think I should have a ‘animal’ section of this website, as in the past few months it seems that a lot of these types of stories are coming up. What do you think?

All images: Copyright Zara Stone

 
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Seven delicious looking DSLR bags that don’t scream “Rob Me”

Posted by admin on Oct 10, 2013 in lists, style, technology


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I’ve been brushing up on my DSLR skills lately, and have been taking some really cool shots of NYC and Miami events. Case in point; Coney Island Mermaid Parade. The issue I’ve been having – and yes this is totally a girl thing- is that I really dislike the ‘standard’ one size fits all DSLR carry-case that came with my Canon T4i. Sure, it’s protective and useful and has roomy pockets, but it screams, “Hey, something in here is really expensive, come take me,” as well as generally looking boxy and bulky. It’s not love.

I’m on a quest to find a stylish supportive DSLR bag that can comfortably fit my camera, the charger,  plus a small microphone and potentially even an extra lens. My search has revealed a large dearth in this marketplace, a wide range of unflattering styles that I wouldn’t be seen dead in. There’s also a weird array of bags with the pinkification problem (I want a nice bag for a girl, not bag for a vomiting Barbie) and some that are so MASSIVE I’d need to wear heels to be seen when carrying them.

I’ve now narrowed down my DSLR bag choice to a shortlist of sweet styles, and I’m going to share them with you. Mostly because I’ve done so much research It shouldn’t go to waste, and also because I’m totally open to suggestions and inout from people who have used these/ and/or know of other ones.

Here are the seven loveliest looking DSLR bags I have found on my hunt for a pretty bag. Read more…

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Real Life Barbie DreamHouse Experience with RFID wristbands

Posted by admin on May 21, 2013 in Design and Home, random, Strange events, style

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Say what you will about Barbie, but that girl knows how to market herself. Sure, I could bash the notion of a pink themed house filled with physically disproportionate plastic dolls wearing skimpy size -Zero clothing, but you guys are smart, and I’ll leave you to draw your own conclusions. Instead, I’m looking at the giant pink behemoth that is the Dream House (a European version in Berlin and another one in Florida) and getting a big case of pink-eye. Modelled on Barbie’s Malibu Dream House (would have been interested to see the architects blueprints) the Berlin DreamHouse opened May 16th, 2013 and features 2,500 metres squared of pink frothy stuff you can touch, taste and obviously. buy. Well, Mattel isn’t a charity right? The Florida DreamHouse (opened May 8th, 2013) is pretty similar to its European cousin. Both offer ‘life size’ rooms (well, it’s a house) decorated with  everything a Toys-R-Us child is familiar with, on an adult scale.

What I think is pretty cool about this is the RFID pink wristband all visitors receive on check in. The DreamHouse offers interactive experiences at the ‘Dream Stations’, allowing a semi-custom adventure. By this I mean that you input details such as name, gender  and language and then the bracelet will interact with you AND the LED touch screens around the house.

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Kerrie Luft 3D Printed shoes: High Tech style

Posted by admin on Mar 14, 2013 in style, technology

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3D Printing is this years buzzword; a brand new way of thinking about how mainstream products are created and manufactured. It was  even referenced by President Obama in his Feb 2013 State of the Union address. He said, “3D printing that has the potential to revolutionize the way we make almost everything”.

True, 3D printing is pretty unique in that it truly allows the creative process to actuaize itself  going from concept to product with a push of a button (and some technical stuff).  British shoe designer Kerrie Luft is using this technology to blend style with 3D printing.

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3D printing might be really hot right now, but it’s not that new to Kerrie Luft. She first came to public attention in 2011 when her line of shoes won the British Fashion Fringe award; all featuring heels that were 3D printed. Luft is now looking at launching her own line of shoes- and with support from mentors such as Lulu Guinness and Patrick Cox (who she interned with) it looks like she’s on to a winner. Read more…

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