Tag Archives: audrey hotchkiss

I Love Ferdinand

9 May

Last week, I was flipping through the Portland Phoenix as I waited for my delicious sandwich at Punky’s, and I noticed something weird. Ferdinand, one of my favorite local stores, was listed as “Best Last-Minute Costume Shop” in the Portland Best Readers Poll. As someone who buys a good portion of her everyday clothes there, I was kinda offended. The blurb, while no doubt written by someone who loves Ferdinand, does the store a disservice by treating it like a joke.

Ferdinand, which is owned by my friend Diane and staffed by her and Maddie (of Gertrude Knickerbocker, Find, and Moody Lords fame), does have plenty of vintage sweaters, dresses, slips, and shirts, but I’d hardly classify it as a clothing store, let alone a costume shop. It also has the “quirky* brooches” mentioned in the article, but I wear my hamburger pin almost every day, and nobody asks me if I’m wearing a costume.

Ferdinand is the first place I go when I’m looking for a birthday present, because there’s something for everyone there: handmade, stylish jewelry (almost all under fifteen dollars), letterpressed stationery (much of which is made by Diane right in the store), adorable, durable catnip mice by Doonyaya, art prints and posters, cute boots and shoes, four dollar silk scarves, eyeglass cases, journals, stuffed animals, screen-printed tshirts and onesies, sunglasses, mugs, and even hula hoops! The eclectic selection is constantly changing, and features many talented local artists, not to mention the mind-boggling amount of stuff that Diane makes herself.

Most of the clothing I’ve gotten at Ferdinand has gone into heavy rotation, including tshirts, altered vintage skirts, and underpants that feel like they’re custom-made for my butt. I also bought a gorgeous, floor-length vintage halter dress that I wore to Jay and Althea’s wedding reception. It’s fully-lined, fits me perfectly, and has a matching wrap jacket. I paid around fifteen bucks for it.

photo by Audrey Hotchkiss, who can be hired to take photos that make you look this good

I don’t disagree with the “last-minute” part of the Phoenix article: if you need earrings to match your outfit, Ferdinand has them, and they’re five dollars. If you need a card for any occasion, Ferdinand has one (or five). If you get cold, Ferdinand has sweaters in every color.

Diane and I have talked before about how awesome it would be if every day was Halloween, if people could just stop caring what others thought of them and wore whatever they want. But to say that she “cares far more about fun than fashion,” implies that fashion and fun are mutually exclusive, and I don’t buy that. Plus, while Ferdinand may be a store with a sense of humor, that doesn’t mean that Diane isn’t serious about what she’s doing. She works hard to keep her store, and by extension Portland, awesome and unique.


And she looks great doing it.

*As a person frequently referred to as “quirky,” I am so sick of this word. I feel like it’s become a euphemism, and I wish people weren’t scared to say what they really mean. Seriously, stop calling me “quirky.” I know you meant to say “weird” or possibly “borderline autistic.” I know I’m weird. Weird isn’t a pejorative.

adventures with Audrey

29 Oct

Audrey wrote another hilarious post about our continuing photography misadventures. You should totally read it.

Fortunately, despite all the photoshoot craziness, I have managed to update my Etsy store, so you should totally look at that, too.

Now with more goofy pictures of me!


27 Aug

Tomorrow, I’ll be  selling all kinds of awesome stuff with the amazing Audrey Hotchkiss! If you live around here, you should totally come visit our booth and buy tons of jewelry, clothing, and photography.

I’ve been pretty busy getting ready for this, plus I wrote a review of a Lifetime movie for my friend Rusty’s blog (watching trash TV is essential to my jewelry-making process). Next week, I should have a post about the gorgeous (and possibly HAUNTED) dresses Greg and Sam pulled out of their attic for me!

When I Go Shopping: Audrey’s Spring Predictions

11 Apr

My lovely friend, the multitalented Audrey Hotchkiss, has shared her style predictions for spring so that you may obey her unquestioningly when you go shopping. It started in Google chat:


I think when I go shopping, I need a lot of nice, shiny shirts.


is the name of the game this spring

you can quote me on that

Here are some more tips:
  • Tunic-length lightweight sweaters and little capri-lengths leggings
  • Dresses with pockets: they are functional AND flirty and a great way to get a promotion when you’re bending over to pick up a piece of paper in front of your boss.
  • Scandinavian knits are the coolest thing since we remembered that there were a bunch of people living up there. Thank you, Sigur Ros’ last album for that tidbit.
  • As far as footwear goes: ladies – you are in luck, puddle jumpers for EVERYONE and LL Bean has this new cool thing that goes inside them to keep your feet from smelling like dead peoples’ toenails.
  • garter stitch is hot, purl is not
  • Ladies of Portland, ME will not be caught dead making a “bad decision” at a house party in any underwear other than the ones Diane from Ferdinand makes with her own blood, sweat and tears.
She also has ideas for accessories:
You will be seeing a lot of rocks from Maine beaches, probably bottle caps too. I am my own billboard. As for scarves – I think the chic ‘I accept everyone, especially the cultures my government is oppressing’ middle-eastern scarf is OUT. Sure, it looks awesome and I didn’t get to join that fad, but I’ve had enough. The new cool scarf is…well, it looks like this:

this is the cool scarf now

I panicked. I just googled ‘gorgeous scarf’ and that’s what I got, but I’m comfortable with it.

I think I might try to do more of these predictions if any of my other friends are interested. It’ll be fun! As Audrey said, “I like saying what’s cool and what isn’t. It makes me feel powerful.”

Kate the millionaire and Audrey the Riveter on Halloween