Monday, March 25, 2013

Emergency help for the manatee

Brian J. Skerry photo

If you know me at all, you know I love manatees and try to raise some money for the protection of these endangered animals at least once a year.

The West Indian (Florida) Manatee was once plentiful around the coast of Florida, but now its survival as a species is in jeopardy. Humans are the gentle herbivores’ only enemy, with our fishing lines ensnaring them, our pollution poisoning them, our boats striking them and our living space encroaching upon theirs. Heather Sellick of the US Scuba Center wrote “the manatee is one of the most magnificent marine is also the one that tugs at our heart strings and reminds us of the great damage humans have inflicted on the creatures with whom we share this planet.”

Right now, a persistant red tide is wreaking havoc on Florida manatees. Although some red tides are entirely natural, others appear to be a result of increased nutrient loading from human activities. Red tide acts as a neurotoxin which can kill manatees without human intervention.

With manatees dying from red tide at a rate of as many as 10 per day, along with the usual threats of motor boats, fishing lines and cold stress, there is a lot of rescuing and attempted rescuing going on. Fortunately, some manatees are being found in time and transported by trained biologists to critical care centers where they can receive medical treatment until they are well enough to be released into the wild. While the red tide persists, the rescued animals can not go back to the wild where they may be sickened again. Right now, according to the Save the Manatee Club, emergency funds are urgently needed for the care and feeding of the rescued manatees. A 1,000-pound manatee needs to eat 100-150 pounds of food each day.

This is where you come in: Starting today, 30% of your purchase price on any items you select from my Etsy shop or my web store will go to the emergency rescue fund of the Save the Manatee Club. This will continue through April 15. If you don’t see any vintage finery to suit you during these three weeks, I encourage you to donate directly to the Save the Manatee Club here. My goal is to raise $500...enough for a decent amount of greens for the rescued manatees!

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has. —Margaret Mead

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Denisebrain gets some #vintagelove

My Etsy shop has recently been featured in 100 Best Vintage Shops Online, a new e-Book by Sammy Davis Vintage, who uses #vintagelove to share the news of her book.

#vintagelove is more than just a hashtag to Sammy, she really lives and breathes her love of vintage and—most impressively—her open-mindedness about vintage. Her 100 Best Vintage Shops Online does not have 100 shops much like mine. Instead it’s a real range from the least expensive and up-and-coming to the sites that sell museum-worthy clothing and accessories, antique to relatively modern vintage.

Here is what she latched onto about my Etsy shop (click to enlarge):

It isn’t always easy to put your own business in words, and I think Sammy did a fine job of stating the Essential Denisebrain. I look forward to reading all of the book and finding some online shops I may not know yet. 

Thanks for the #vintagelove Sammy! 

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Spring has arrived at the Vintage Fashion Guild!

I am a member of the Vintage Fashion Guild, and one of the co-chairs of the VFG’s site committee. This committee puts together a fall and spring tribute to the vintage influences on modern fashion, a feature we call Vintage Inspiration.

Well, spring is here, and so is Spring 2013 Vintage Inspiration!

This is my layout and writing I'm—well, yes—proud to say, but the visuals would not be possible without the fabulous items of VFG members. This time there is everything from an antique Battenberg bridal veil to mod 60s stripes.

As of the date of publication, all the vintage items shown are for sale—Think of this as a pop-up boutique from the members of the VFG!

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Current obsession: Referee/jailbird stripes

So many diverse designers showed black and white stripes for spring 2013, it’s as if they all got the memo.

Particularly fetching for me—
Stripes looking fresh on an evening gown at Oscar de la Renta
With an 80s-90s vibe at Michael Kors
Dolce & Gabbana, invoking the 1950s
A 60s mod look at Moschino

Black and white stripes have regularly made the fashion rounds—
Silk evening shoes 1860-70, British, Met Museum

1920s bathing beauty

Bernard Newman gown worn by a fashion model in the film Roberta (1935)
Gene Tierney in Laura (1944)

Judy Garland, 1945

Harper’s Bazaar, May 1957
Qui ĂȘtes-vous, Polly Maggoo? (1966)
Anjelica Huston, Vogue, 1970s
Rifat Ozbek stripes and Graham Smith straw hat, 1980s

A few vintage items currently available:
Original 1940s dress...also made to order from Vintage Costumes

80s party dress from NESTdesignstudio
Georgio Armani sweater from The Brass Razoo
1950s circle skirt from Zwzzy

90s Christian Dior suit from  pinehaven2
1960s velvet evening coat with striped lining from Villa Villa Vintage
This outfit is in my Etsy shop