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In Honor Of Halloween, Some Spooky Skull Shoes & Boots From Martin Margiela (+ 100 more things)

Martin Margiela's leather skull boot and canvas skull sneaker (or trainer) are frightfully scary to some but may be eerily attractive to others. Either way, they're the perfect kicks for All Hallows' Eve.

The hand-painted leather boots (limited edition):

The hand-painted sneaker:

The skull print sneaker or trainer is available for purchase here.
Or here.
Or here.

The hand spray painted limited edition skull leather boots can be found here.

To see over 100 purchasable items I've chosen with skulls or skull-related imagery and design, check out my "Death Becomes You" list here. Or simply use the left and right scroll arrows on the widget below to see them all.

In Memorium: Ethel Sweet (neé Weitz) 1911-2008

I suffered a personal loss today. And the world suffered the loss of one more artist.

My grandmother, Ethel, was an artist.
She wasn't a Georgia O'Keefe or a Grandma Moses. She merely painted for herself, her friends and local art shows her whole life. She garnered several first place and honorable mentions at local shows and growing up, my parents' home was filled with her artwork.

She spent countless hours sitting with me as a child teaching me how to 'draw' and always had fresh pencils, paints and paper ready and waiting upon our visits for me, my sisters and my cousins to play with. I couldn't wait to visit her, spend time with her and draw and paint to my hearts' content.

She never stopped painting until she simply couldn't do it anymore... and that was just a year ago at age 96. Just this year, 2008, her work was included in the Hyatt Classic Residence Artist Series.

She was married to my grandfather, Sol Sweet for over 60 years (he passed away in 1990 at age 85) and she was very close to her two sons, my uncle Bob and my father Larry, as well as her daughters-in-law and her 5 granddaughters and her great grandchildren.

She was Yoda-like in her wisdom. She spoke gently, but deliberately, and never judged people or was even the slightest bit catty. I don't think she ever once uttered anything remotely close to sarcasm. She often referred to her five granddaughters as 'cookie' or 'dolly'.

Always patient and kind, she made killer brownies and potato salad. She was the grandma who snuck me to the mall at age 13 to get my ears pierced, despite my dad's insistence that I not 'put holes in my ears.'

Despite being financially comfortable, she was never showy. She was modest in her dress and jewelry and didn't believe in spending money recklessly. She could have worn designer clothes and drove fancy cars, but she wasn't comfortable with that.

She liked beer, sourdough and candied ginger. She didn't like pictures of herself and bizarrely, never had any photos of herself in her homes.

Of all my family, she was the animal lover, the one who thoughtfully always asked about my dog (being her only granddaughter who didn't have children).

Being an 'artist' for a living made me feel a special kinship with her. But she was the type of woman who made each of her children and grandchildren feel that way. As if they each had a unique personal bond with her.

Her life in pictures:

She had a wonderful marriage to my grandfather Sol, for over 60 years:

Below: with my father, the eldest of her two boys

And in recent years:

above: July 2004

above: last summer, June, 2007

As an artist, she actually began her career doing advertising illustrations for department stores that ran in newspapers, so you could say she was the first 'art director' I ever knew.
She painted with oils and acrylics as well and in her later years became an adept water colorist.

Some of her early work:

Golden Gate Bridge, 1967

Honorable Mention winner, 1967

As she aged, she continued to send me handmade cards for my birthday and the holidays. Even last year, I received a handmade hand painted birthday card:

Incredibly talented until her final days, my gran even taught watercolor at her Senior Living home until her early 90s. And her work, shown below, was used on holiday cards printed by Hyatt Senior Residence at La Jolla.

I will forever have a hole in my heart now.
She will be greatly missed. And the world will be a little less colorful.

Obama Loses By One Vote: Blame Your Friends With This Customizable Video by MoveOn™

Above: It's all my fault.

In an effort to get people out and voting (and in this case, for Obama), this hilarious mock newscast blames the loss on a single non-voter. A customizable non-voter to boot.

All you do is fill in a name and the newscast blames he or she for Obama's loss by one single vote, watch below:

 The mock newscast is laden with hilarious knocks at the intended target complete with accompanying articles.

Now go make one! And don't forget to vote! Special thanks to Andrea Goldman for bringing this brilliant piece of viral propaganda to my attention!

The customizable video was created by Move On. Civic Action is a 501(c)(4) organization which primarily focuses on nonpartisan education and advocacy on important national issues. Political Action is a federal political committee which primarily helps members elect candidates who reflect our values through a variety of activities aimed at influencing the outcome of the next election. Political Action and Civic Action are separate organizations. Learn more about Move here.

Due To High Demand HP Releases Vivienne Tam Edition Early, Reserve Yours Now.

Attention all you Fashionista cum Nerds, due to such a popular response for the new HP-mini Vivienne Tam edition notebook, they've decided to move production up so you can get one in time for the holidays!

Introducing the world’s first digital clutch by award-winning designer Vivienne Tam. Featuring the peony-inspired design in the vivid shades of violet and sophisticated reds found throughout her Spring 2009 collection, this HP Mini coordinates perfectly with stunning Vivienne Tam pieces and adds polish to everyday wear.

Product Specs:
· 10.2" High Definition display
· Under 1-inch thick
· Just over 2 pounds
· Windows® XP Home with SP3
· Intel® Atom™ Processor

* Express ultra sophisticated style with an original Vivienne Tam design
* Stay connected with the world’s first digital clutch
* A perfect accessory at only 2.25 lbs and a mere 1” thin
* Ideal for email, IM and chatting face-to-face with built-in HP Mini Webcam
* Experience the frameless look of the 10.1” diagonal BrightView Infinity LED display
* Greater peace of mind with 1-year HP Accidental Damage Protection
* Get fast, reliable answers to your questions about your new Mini, anytime 24x7 with the 6 month SmartFriend Calling Card

Prices start at $699.99 with protective Vivienne Tam silk sleeve
Reserve a Vivienne Tam Mini by phone at 1-800-230-5752 or online here

Don't Be Frightened: Good Work For Goodwill Of Southern California

Above: wild postings advertising for Goodwill this Halloween season in Los Angeles

If you live in Los Angeles, you may have seen this wonderfully graphic Halloween campaign for Goodwill, created by The Miller Group. For those of you who haven't, I wanted to share it with you because it's an example of a cohesive campaign based on a simple premise that is both hard to ignore and hard not to love.

The campaign consists of nicely designed and illustrated newspaper ads, posters, outdoor, iPhone wallpaper, banner ads and a television spot that all utilize graphic 'spooky' versions Goodwill's iconic lower case 'g' character and logo (shown directly below).

Take a look at some of the charming 'spookified' iterations of the Goodwill character:

The wild postings look great around town:

And the accompanying tv spot is a simple way to bring these characters to life complete with music score by Harry Manfredini known for scoring horror films like Friday the 13th.

Client: Goodwill of Southern California
Spot Title: Halloween
Break Date: October 22, 2008
Agency: The Miller Group, Los Angeles, CA
Executive Creative Director: Renee Miller
Creative Director: Greg Collins
Art Director: Shin Kawase
Copywriter: Greg Collins
Agency Producer: Gary Bettman
Illustrator: Andy Mueller
Animation Company: Mind Over Eye, Santa Monica
Executive Producer: Andy Dellenbach
Animation Director: Mat Fuller
Editor: Dave Wein
Music Composer: Harry Manfredini
Voices: Greg Collins, Heidi Cotton

Smart, simple and memorable.
The only thing they didn't do which I wish they had? Sell these posters with part of the proceeds going to Goodwill! It's such a natural idea, good fit and wouldn't have required and extra designing or production. I know many people who'd buy them, starting with myself.

Let's hope they make it an annual campaign!
I can already see the Christmas one... rudolph, santa, mrs. clause, elves, the grinch....

Nice work Miller Group. Good going Goodwill. And Happy Halloween!

The Miller Group

Goodwill Southern California | 342 San Fernando Road - Los Angeles, CA 90031
Toll Free: (888) 4-GOODWILL or (888) 446-6394 Local: (323) 223-1211

If You've Never Seen The Eyewear of Linda Farrow, You Could Use Some Glasses.

Anyone who's a true fashionista is already familiar with Linda Farrow's collection of luxe, vintage and limited edition designer sunglasses. They appear in the chicest of boutiques and on the runway models of the hippest designer's shows, fashion mags and more. If you've never heard of Linda Farrow or their eyewear, then this will be a treat for you.

First, a little background for those of you who do not know of Linda Farrow eyewear.

First established in 1970, the Linda Farrow brand of luxury eyewear rose quickly to acclaim amongst stylish Londoners and the international jet set. Originally a fashion designer herself, Linda Farrow was one of the first to treat sunglasses as fashion, producing collection after cutting-edge collection, her finger always on the pulse of the times. A tireless experimenter, Farrow pioneered many of the shapes and styles that remain au courant today. Exploring the use of screws on frames, for example, Farrow developed the avant-garde wraparounds that became Yoko Ono’s trademark style in the 70s. Farrow’s relentless pursuit of luxury, innovation and cutting-edge design continue to mark the brand almost forty years on.

Above: Simon Jablon

It was in one of their warehouses in London that the artistic director, Simon Jablon, son of the legendary designer Linda Farrow, rediscovered old models of original sunglasses created in the 70s and 80s by his mother. In April 2003, Linda Farrow Vintage was launched.

They now carry three collections; only a few of which from each line are shown below.

The fine jewellery collection which are glasses whose frames are made with precious metals, diamonds and other gemstones:

A few from The Luxe collection:

And some examples from the Vintage collection:

The Linda Farrow Vintage range consists of 2000 models, which includes styles produced in limited edition of only 500 copies. The glasses are sold in their original packaging, through exclusive and international distribution.

But what I find more interesting than their three lines are the collaborative efforts with other fashion designers and the sunglasses worn by the runway models during fashion shows.

Above: Models sporting Linda Farrow designs at the runway shows

Above: Model wearing the collaborative effort of Linda Farrow and Jeremy Scott

Linda Farrow Vintage has launched several collections in collaboration with brands such as Giles Deacon, House of Holland, Dries Van Noten, Peter Pilotto, Yohji Yamomoto, Ponystep, ACNE, Basso & Brooke, Bernhard Willhelm, Buddhist Punk, Eley Kishimito, Jeremy Scott, Sophia Kokosalaki and Linda Farrow Vintage for Tsuba.

Many of these were designed for select fashion designer's runway shows, below are some of my favorite collaborations with fashion designers:

With Bernard Wilhem:

With Jeremy Scott:

With Luella:

Above: Model wearing the Linda Farrow Luella Cat glasses on the cover of Mario Testino's book

With Rodarte:

With Erickson Beamon:

Learn more and see more at Linda Farrow Vintage

Today, Linda Farrow Vintage and its original concept, Linda Farrow Gallery, are produced exclusively for other designers, and are present in more than 300 outlets. Several styles (not all) can be found only at specific boutiques like Harrods (London) Joyce (Hong Kong), Le Printemps (Paris), Harrods Men's Department (London), L'Eclaireur (Paris), Maria Luisa (Paris), Penelope (Italy), Quartier 206 (Berlin), Jeffrey (New York) and Isetan (Tokyo).

Linda Farrow
51, Calthorpe Street - Unit A
WC1X 0HH London, Great Britain
T : +44 (0)207 713 1105
F : +44 (0)207 713 1106

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