WINTER INSPIRATION

winter-skiing-holiday inspiration

From parades on skis, egg hunts in the snow, crazy ski outfits and sunrise church services at the top of the mountain, for me, Easter and skiing have always gone mitten in hand.  I’ve rarely missed being at my local ski area with friends and family on Easter and this year will be no different.

Bored with the pastel hues of Easter decorations I decided I’d bring out this colorfully saturated 1930’s St. Anton poster depicting Hannes Schneider, the legendary ski instructor who made the “Arlberg” ski technique famous, surrounded by a class of playful snow bunnies.

From: The Art of Skiing by Jenny de Gex

Could it be pure coincidence that bunnies, spotted in a shop window in Salzburg last month by AlpineStyle56, bear a close resemblance in color and silhouette to Schneider’s unruly pupils?

photo: ©AlpineStyle56

Happy Easter everyone!

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I’m digging the unlikely and brilliant cross pollination of themes in the print on this Fall 2013 Quicksilver jacket with a vintage feel seen at the SIA show last month. Gondolas, pheasant and elk – who woulda thunk?

Click to see  Vintage Camper Fabric

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I’ve been distracted by the bountiful snow I’ve been chasing from east to west and back again over the past few weeks, hence my laxness in blogging.  I promise to share some of my (in)sights from that adventure soon.

Today, my valentine (who shares my passion for winter and skiing) and I will be going on a ski tour, over the meadows and through the woods style, chocolates tucked into our pockets.

This sweet print found here. More of my valentines here.

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Winter Road Trip

With the Outdoor Retailer trade show successfully behind me it’s time to hit the open road for a bit of big mountain skiing.

As much as I’d love to be touring in a ’54 beetle with the top down I’ll be relying on an all wheel drive vehicle with studded Hakkspellitas. I’ll be sniffing for powder in the Wasatch, Tetons and Rockies before I head back to my beloved Green Mountains and get on with designing Fall/Winter 2014/15 product. It never hurts to do a little skiing to get the creative juices flowing!

Cover of the ADAC January 1954 (Issue 1, Volume 7) as a teaser for an article “Winterland Allgaeu, between road and slopes”

Via: Huimat

For more vintage VW inspiration click here.

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A friend with a shared passion for skiing recently discovered a January 1948 Ski issue of Town & Country magazine in perfect condition in her grandmother’s attic. This delicious edition shares many of the same attributes of today’s magazine, large format pages, beautiful fashion photography, advertisements for luxury fashion, jewelry and destinations, and articles focused on the rich and famous.

The issue is rich with articles about skiing. A many-paged article by Elizabeth Woolsey, a former national ski champion, is devoted to the U.S. Women’s Ski Team  a.k.a. “The Belles of St. Moritz” and their chances for winning Olympic fame in St. Moritz later that winter.

The most exclusive North American ski areas are listed with information about vertical drop, number of trails and lifts, ticket prices etc.

An article devoted on how to get in shape for skiing suggests classes at the New School of Exercise in New York City. Tips on how to avoid injury, which salons offer the best beneficial massages, and how to prevent chapping ones hands and face.

The issue is packed with advertising – including apparel and hard goods brands and ski lodges and even a two-page spread of a painting depicting skiers arcing through untracked snow promoting Chrysler motors. The ads allow us a peak at how glamorous and exciting the sport was sixty odd years ago.

A fashion and gear guide highlights the newest innovations and there is a lovely spread of illustrated après ski styles. I will be sharing this nostalgic skiing gold mine in the weeks to come. Below is a little taste of what’s to follow. I thought it particularly appropriate timing to post these as the the skiwear and ski equipment brands will all be unveiling the latest and greatest for next winter at the  Outdoor Retailer, the SnowSports Industries America and ISPO trade shows within the next couple of weeks. Maybe I’ll see you there!

An ad for Marjorie Benedikter’s ski fashions in the January 1948 issue of Town & Country

“Designed for action, the well-tailored three-piece suit on the left is of water-repellent Forstman wool gabardine in gray, by Irving of Montreal. An added accessory is a smart belt and belt-bag made of pony. Bally Boots. At Saks Fifth Avenue Ski Shop. Marjorie Benedikter, an accomplished skier herself, designs with an eye for the practical. Right: her becoming parka of white Byrd cloth may be worn in or out, and has a convenient drawstring around the face. Navy wool gabardine pants are essentially functional with front fullness achieved by trouser pleats. Dayton Co., Minneapolis; Frederick & Nelson, Seattle”

Saks Fifth Avenue had it’s own ski shop in 1948.

For more vintage ski inspiration click here.

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Today is a powder day. My world is cloaked and muffled in swirling snow.  Sekka Kamisaka’s woodcut, Momoyogusa (Flowers of a Hundred Generations), captures the mood and hues surrounding me, and is perfectly complimented by haiku by Joso.

Image via NYPL Digital Gallery

 

Snow whispering down all day long,

earth has vanished

leaving only sky

(Joso)

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I spent a lovely and long day yesterday – 8:00 am ‘til 5:30 pm – tramping around the acres and acres of antiques, junque, architiques and vintage stuff at the Brimfield Antique Show. Billed as “the largest outdoor antique show in the world” it has 6,000 vendors and a festive flea market vibe. It is virtually impossible to see the entire thing in one day.

This was my first Brimfield experience so I hooked up with a fellow designer friend who knows the ropes. The show is divided into multiple sections, each having their own flavor and days of operation. We chose to go mid-week, even though all the shows weren’t yet open thinking it would be less crowded. Being a week day we called it “inspiration work”.

It was fascinating to see what people were selling (piles of rusty old faucet handles, vintage vending machines, plastic toys from the ‘70’s, old industrial lighting) and to see what people were happily toting away (taxidermy creatures, fixtures from old factories, wooden packing crates, chairs without seats). Regardless of how lowly, all this stuff had value to the buyers and the sellers. We never made it to the area selling Chippendale furniture and Chinese export porcelain, if there even was one.

There was so much stuff to look at we decided early on to focus our attention on textiles, paper, and ski related objects allowing ourselves the occasional sidetrack to check out free standing signage letters from old gas stations and super market signage. Here’s a sampling of the fruits our treasure hunting.

If you want to see it all for yourself, the show is open through Sunday.

Ribbon with skiers

Vintage silk scarf

3/4″ sterling snowflake skier pin

Lampshade made from vintage barkcloth from Lake’s Lampshades. My favorite find!

Detail from embroidered hankie

Silk scarf from the 70′s

Sweet Tyrolean themed ribbon

Vintage postcards from Snoqualmie Pass, Magic Mountain and Aspen

And here are some things that we passed on…

Vintage skis

In hindsight I should have bought this exquisite wooden flask covered in animal fur and decorated with tooled and braided leather and embroidery. The dealer had no idea of its origin or intended use. Do you? I’d love to know.

And am I crazy to have passed on an original of Lou Hechenberger’s New Hampshire ski poster for $1,200? Unfortunately the crispness of the design and clarity of color is lost in this image. It was a beauty.

An assortment of wooden skis and ski boots – various eras

Plastique. Antique?

More skis

This guy bought his Tyrolean hat for a steal minutes before we met him – darn! It was covered with beautiful souvenir pins from all over the the alps and is in mint condition.

Enjoy your weekend! (And Thank you A.N. for sharing your pix.)

 

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After enduring a less than stellar ski season in Vermont’s Green Mountains I’m off for a ski adventure in the Italian Alps. I’m looking forward to being unplugged, climbing and skiing all day long and sleeping in mountain huts. I’ll get back to my blogging toward the end of April!

Ciao!

For more vintage ski art, fashion, ephemera click here.

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I’ve wanted to write about my all time favorite dinner plates for a while. They are souvenir plates from the ‘40’s with ski scenes in the middle. Each one highlights a different Canadian ski destination stretching from Quebec City’s Hotel Frontenac through the Laurentian Mountains and west to the highest peaks around Banff. To me, part of their charm is the old-timey lack of ski lifts; all skiers are “earning their turns”. It’s complete supposition on my part that the plates were in some way connected to the railroads that shuttled skiers east and west. I haven’t been able to find anything out their origins. I’d welcome any insight.

Last Easter as I was taking the dishes down from the top shelf in my pantry I watched in horror as the entire stack of ten slipped from my grasp and smashed on the floor! I felt physically ill as I picked up the shards.

Within minutes I called a friend who shares a passion for collecting the same plates (in both blue and red) and told her my tale of woe. She gamely agreed to sell me a few of her extras, which raised my spirits considerably. I then went about re-building my collection.

In less than a year I piece-mealed together an entire new set, plus one. I acquired a few from my friend, and a couple on ebay. The best score of all however was an almost complete set I found in an antique shop in Maine while I was travelling by motorcycle. (I had to have them shipped home.) Because of this experience I’ve realized that hunting for the dishes was just as much fun as it is to actually own and use them. I loved the challenge of the hunt and the thrill of discovery. So really there’s no reason for me to cry over broken dishes ever again!

 

For more vintage skiing on my blog click here. Or on Pinterest click here.

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Finally (!) winter has come to northern Vermont and snow has been on my mind ever since last weekend’s big powdery dump. It’s hard to concentrate on my work when there’s so much fluff to play in. Needless to say, the “Studio Closed – Gone Skiing” sign was hung on my door for most of last week.

Michelle Aldredge, the creator of art blog Gwarlingo also had snow on her mind last week when she posted an article and photos about Simon Beck’s snow art. I’d never heard of Beck, who lives in Les Arcs, France and was immediately smitten with his work.

According to Gwarlingo, Beck is an Oxford educated, self-employed mapmaker. His gigantic snow drawings, which he stomps out with snowshoes, are the size of three soccer fields and take about two days to complete.

The biggest challenge for Beck (besides getting overly tired) is finding a way to reduce the visibility of his own tracks when he begins and finishes a piece. Sometimes, he might work all day only to have his design covered by fresh snow overnight. At other times, he finishes a design right at sunset and doesn’t have enough light remaining to photograph his work properly.

Beck’s geometric snow designs have a textile quality to them and remind me quilts, snowflakes, solar discs, crop circles and ancient symbols.  How DOES he make such perfectly aligned designs on such a large scale? A mapmaker’s sense of place and desire for accuracy must come into play.  I wonder if he finds tromping back and forth, and around and around, filling in his patterns meditative? I think I would!

Visit the Gwarlingo site to see more about Beck and images of his work. There are more photos on Simon Beck ‘s facebook page where these pictures came from. Be prepared to lose yourself, as I did,  for a bit if you venture there!

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The ephemeral quality of Beck’s work is shown here, a short time before it completely dissolved into the lake.

To see more ephemeral snow art on my blog click here

To “Like” Poppy Gall Design Studio on facebook click here. To follow my inspiration board on Pinterest click here.

 

 

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One thing always leads to another when I’m searching for something on the internet. I get side-tracked and discover things I didn’t even know I wanted to know about! Yesterday I found this amazing ski-themed blouse circa 1957-1960 on the Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising’s blog. It’s just too great not to share. Here’s a bit of ski fashion history cribbed right from their blog.

“Until the 1950s, ski wear consisted of baggy woolen pants and knitted sweaters, topped with a bulky wool overcoat. Though warm and functional, these clothes did nothing to flatter the figure. This changed in 1952 with the introduction of Bogner ski pants. Created by Maria Bogner, member of a German skiwear producing family, “Bogners” were a form-fitting ski pant made of wool and a newly developed nylon fiber called Helanca. By 1955, Bogners were available in a variety of bright colors. Because they displayed the muscular curves of both male and female skiers, Bogners were credited with introducing sex appeal to skiing. According to Ski magazine, “Marilyn Monroe, Ingrid Bergman and the Shah of Iran wore them. Henry Ford ordered 15 pairs. Overnight, skiing had been transformed into a sexy and very visible sport.”

 

“Bogners appeared at the perfect moment, just as North Americans were experiencing unprecedented economic prosperity in the wake of World War II. Many individuals with surplus income turned their attention to the serious pursuit of sporting and leisure activities, such as skiing. Widespread interest in skiing was encouraged by simplifications in ski boots, skis and ski lifts, making it easier for a novice to get both up and down the mountain. At the end of the day, skiers could relax at comfortable resort lodgings, which often included spacious rooms for dining and dancing, along with heated outdoor pools. Skiing was now a fashionable activity, no longer limited to those rugged enough to withstand a cold slog through the snow.”

While the Bogner family might have stolen the limelight, there is historical evidence that in Megeve, a collaboration between skiier Emile Allais and the AAllard family brought about the first ski stretch pants. Armand AAllard was a skilled tailor in Megeve and made custom clothing for both on and off the slopes.  Unlike “Bogner” his was a custom not production affair which is why he likely has taken a backseat to the internationaly known ski brand.

The FIDM Museum ski-themed blouse seen here details the daily activity of a stretch pant clad skier on vacation. As you can see from the silk-screened images, actual skiing occupies only a portion of her day. Her brightly colored ski wear is typical of the late 1950s, when retailers offered ski wear in a variety of fashionable colors and patterns. Many urban department stores featured ski boutiques, and in 1959, at least one fashion writer suggested that ski wear would soon be seen both off and on the slopes. Not surprisingly, the slim silhouette of late 1950s ski wear echoed (or vice-versa) the slim pants then seen in casual sportswear.

For more vintage ski fashion click here or follow my “Vintage Winter” boards on Pinterest.

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Directed by artist Sonja Hinrichsen, 10 snowshoers deliberately and methodically stomped giant circles and spirals into fresh powder in a wide-open meadow atop Rabbit Ears Pass near Steamboat Springs, Colorado, a couple of weeks ago.

Hinrichsen has been doing similar projects on her own across the country from New York to Aspen, but in Steamboat, she thought the outdoor- and snow-oriented community would be a perfect fit for a collaborative project.

“I always loved those big snow surfaces,” Hinrichsen said about why she began making snow art three years ago. “I thought, ‘I have to do something with this.’ It came out of play, really.”

Hinrichsen said it’s the impermanent nature of the project that intrigues her. She also works in video and performance art, works that interact with the environment around her and leave no lasting impact.

“I’m not so into making art that lasts,” she said. “The world is saturated with manmade projects. I don’t think I need to add more things to the planet.”

To see more ephemeral snow and ice art click here.

Via: Explore Steamboat.com & Steamboat Aerials 

 

 

 

 

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Besides thinking it’s a little scary looking, and that it might be hard to breathe while wearing it, I’m at a loss for words regarding the aesthetic of this 1962 ski mask by Emellio Pucci. What do you think about it?

Enjoy your weekend!

For More vintage ski inspiration click here.

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I take the jumps,

And do them right,

But my heart jumps

only

when you are in sight!

 

Happy Valentine’s Day everyone!

For more Vintage Skiing Inspiration on my blog click here, and on Pinterest.

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I’m lucky. It’s 15 minutes from my front door to the bottom of the ski lift. I prefer to ski during the week because I can fit a lot of runs in within a short window of time, and still put in a productive workday.

Skiing on weekends can’t be about making lots of runs because of lift lines. But longer lines are great for socializing and checking out what people are wearing and the gear they’re using; real time trend spotting at it’s best, and great inspiration for my work.

Over the weekend I spotted a couple wearing some fabulous mittens a bit behind me in line. I waited for them at the top of the mountain so I could take a closer look.

Their handcrafted leather mittens are made in the U.S. and are beautifully embellished with intricate beadwork, fringe and fur based on Cree Indian designs. The company name, derived from the Cree word for mittens, is Astis. The mitts are truly works of art.

It turns out that the couple I was chatting with are friends with the owner of Astis and filled me in on their story. I mentioned that I was a designer, and as an aside had designed the Isis jacket the woman was wearing. She told me how much she loves her jacket and that the photographer who took the photos on the hangtag was a friend of theirs. There are far less than seven degrees of separation in the ski world.

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