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I thought about titling this post “ME ME ME ME ME ME (and a little more ME),” because let’s face it—this is a whole bunch of ME. I don’t post a lot of photos of myself on the blog, I guess because it just always feels awkward. I hate having my picture taken by other people, and I don’t like taking a photo of myself unless the camera/phone is visible in the picture as well. Having the camera visible makes the resulting photo less about documenting the subject and more of a marker of that specific moment—which is the act of taking the photo.

Am I over-thinking it? Maybe, but all of that over-thinking made me realize something: I am my own design project. Here are some Instagram snaps from over the past few weeks.

So yeah. I mean…I pretty much look like my house. I don’t really draw any distinction between designing myself and designing anything else. I have a set of limitations that I need to work with, and a knowledge of how to use certain tools and materials in order to achieve the results I want. I never think about what would be perceived as “sexy” or whatever, that’s just not something I’m concerned with. I do like to look attractive, of course, but for me physical attractiveness (in anyone) is determined not by a specific set of features, but by a series of proportions, contrasts, textures and colors—exactly the same things that make a room or a book cover or a garden appealing to me.

OH, AND: Here’s me matching my dorm room 18 years ago.

I’m curious: How about you? Do you “match” your home? If you’re an artist or designer, do you feel like there’s a correlation between your professional work and, say, your hair?

Is it just me, or it next to impossible to snap back into work mode this year? Maybe it’s because I took two weeks in a row off in December, but I just don’t feel like I’m fully present and engaged in what I need to be doing every day. I think the weather might be partly to blame—it’s been unseasonably mild in lower New York this year, and I constantly feel like it’s either late fall or early spring. I’m just sort of floating from one day to the next.

I did just have a really great weekend, though. Jen from Honey Kennedy came to stay at my house in Newburgh for three whole days, and we had a wonderful time. Jen is terribly sweet and funny and really, really nice to be around (just ask Fritz and Bruno, who fell deeply and madly in love with her), and I’m happy to have finally met her in person.

Aside from holding the very first semester of Anna’s School for Unicorns (a.k.a Photoshop classes), I also made us some very very thick and rich and spicy and almost too delicious hot cocoa using Vosges Aztec Elixer. And tofu scramble. And burnt kale chips. And reheated pizza. I’m pretty sure it was like going away to a fancy resort for Jen! (Or, um, not…)

I got my hair cut again, too. More of the same! I’ve been back to Mariko at Dlala Salon four times now since I got the best haircut ever 8 months ago, and that has to be a record for me in terms of frequency. Can I add that NOT ONCE have I taken a pair of manicure scissors to my bangs in a fit of midnight desperation since I started seeing Mariko? Her cuts look so good growing out that I don’t have to.

It’s pretty neat having LONG hair, too! I haven’t had this much hair since I was a freshman in high school, which was…um…23 years ago. I’m going to just let it keep growing. Now that I know about layers and deep parts and stuff, it’s nice to have waves and partial buzz cuts and long bangs.

On a side note, I just want to put this reminder out there: Much like paint is just paint, HAIR IS JUST HAIR. The great thing about it is that even if you do something stupid and it looks terrible, you can always just cut your hair short and eventually it’ll grow out. As a side bonus, you get to have a million different hairdos as it gets longer. If you want a fun haircut, get a fun haircut. It’s just hair.

Fritz turned four years old a few days ago. I can’t believe he’s four already! It seems like it was just yesterday that were were bringing home this insanely adorable, sleepy lump of fur. He was so cute! (And then he ate our sofa.) Fritzy is so good now. Yes, he has his moments when he does an ultra-annoying Chewbacca/seagull vocal impersonation for seemingly no reason at all and for lengths of time that are highly unnecessary, but he’s a total snuggle bug and just an all-around great dog. He’s also really warm and he likes to sleep under the covers at night, so our heating bill is less with him around. And he’s still really cute.

Oh, clothes! I found that nice triangle-print shirt at Target! The proportions really aren’t as weird as the photo on their website makes it look. It’s quite flattering, actually. And Martha has a the same one of course.

Yeah, that’s a new black + white iPhone case. I ordered one from Society6 because I’ve been thinking about selling some stuff through them and I wanted to know what the quality is like, and I’ll be honest…as cute as the illustration (by Dawn Gardner, whose work I love) on my new case is, the quality is really, really sub-par. I’ve had a capsule case from Uncommon since I got my phone in May (that’s the multicolored one in the top photo, designed by Marco Cibola), and I love it. The plastic is smooth, strong and durable; the edges are smooth and comfortable to hold; and the design is actually embedded in case. The case from Society6 is unbelievably flimsy, and you can literally scratch the printed image off with your fingernail. I fully expect it to look terrible in a couple of months. Both cases were about $40, and while that’s pretty steep for something so small and made out of plastic, it’s definitely way too much for the ones from Society6. Bummer! It’s definitely cute, though, so I’ll keep using it until it breaks.

UPDATE: Society6 contacted me after reading this post, and they have very kindly offered to send me a replacement case as they believe I may have been sent a defect. Fingers crossed that the new one is better. I’ll update this post when I receive it!

UPDATE 2: I received the replacement and it’s exactly the same. The quality is too poor for me to recommend it, sadly. It should also be noted that Society6 has a no-return policy except in the case of defects, so if you’re disappointed by a product upon arrival, you’re out of luck.

UPDATE 3: I purchased a new case from Society6 in July 2013 for my iPhone 5, and it’s MUCH better quality. You can read my updated review here.

(Like I said, RAMBLY.)

My old stylist moved to the other side of the world, so today I got a haircut from Lisa at Fringe on Broome Street for the first time. The salon is super cute, the staff is very sweet, and Lisa did a great job. I’ll be going back to her again for sure.

I’m also modeling my new sunglasses from Anne et Valentin (this is the “Hello” style). I’m really bad about wearing sunglasses even though I know I’m supposed to, but since these are so crazy cool and fancy (check out the detail on the frames—love those ridges), I’m hoping I’ll be more inclined to put them on.

Fringe is conveniently located next door to Babycakes, an all-vegan bakery. Right now there are vegan carrot cake and red velvet cupcakes chilling in my refrigerator, waiting for it to be dessert-time…

Post-haircut, I headed over to Teany, (formerly) Moby’s vegetarian cafe and tea house. Teany had a fire last year and were closed for a long, long time afterward, and this was my first visit post-renovation. It’s not quite as cute is it used to be (I guess because there are a lot of new materials in there and it’s not as charmingly ramshackle as it once was), but the food is still REALLY, REALLY GOOD. Between 2002 and 2006, I ate so many of their vegan “turkey” club sandwiches that it’s kind of absurd. I actually don’t think I’ve ever ordered anything else (though I’ve eaten plenty of nibbles off of other people’s plates!), and today was no different.

A couple of months ago, a D16 reader asked if I was in the Teany book. I’d never seen it before, so I actually had NO idea that I am indeed in there! I saw a copy on a shelf at Teany today, so I took a picture of the page with my photo so you can see how goofy I look when someone else takes my picture. I guess I was having a bad bangs day, too!! I vaguely remember a Teany employee taking my picture years ago and asking me to fill out a little survey, but I never questioned what it was for. Hah!

On my way out, I stopped to take a photo of the floor in Teany’s bathroom. Look familiar??!! So funny.