Thursday, December 16, 2010
You know how we at the AFC love our vintage. Well, we love it that much more when it's hand-picked by our (multi-talented) girl Rose Broadbent and the Bridge + Bardot crew. Stop by their vintage clothing sale tonight 6:30 - 9:30 at The New Beat studio at 835 Bloor St. W and pick up something steezy (and green!) to dress up in for the holidays. There will be dresses and purses and sparkly things and some non-sparkly things (like flannels) for the boys. And there will be wine! You also know how we love our wine...
Tuesday, October 26, 2010
One member of this crew, our lovely bartender, was kind enough to remind me this morning of a text message I sent in advance of arriving when the results appeared to be pretty well decided: I'll be there in 20. Can you please have a stiff gin martini ready for me? And can you please throw it in my face? A pretty good representation of my sentiments at the time, and of course these were largely echoed by the artists and cyclists and... well, pretty much everyone in the bar last night as we watched the numbers come through.
If you were there, you got your stiff drink, but more importantly, we hope you got a little inspired. The general tone, though admittedly disappointed, was motivated and positive. I heard a lot of "We've got a lot of work to do!" and "Let's keep this momentum up!" And seriously, not referring to the pace of ingesting beer.
There really is a lot to be proud of and excited about; one thing is certainly that voter turnout increased from 39% in last election to 53.2% this year (also that this number includes a first ballot from my little sis, who beat me to the polls), cheers to that! And there really is a lot of work to do, and a lot you can do to help keep Toronto moving in a positive direction. Start by checking out (and supporting) Ranked Ballot Initiative of Toronto (RaBIT) and follow us on Facebook and Twitter for other ways to support things like art funding and bike lanes and food security in this city.
If, like us, you were maybe sipping a martini with a sigh rather than a victory cheers last night, we have a little cheersing up for you here. Our very own magical and incredibly talented Natalie Boustead (you may have read about her before here) tells us why Rob For Won, But It's Okay... in a song. This ought to make you happy.
If you're still sighing (you probably hate unicorns, but) Insomnia's open. And Damara makes a mean dirty with extra olives.
Monday, October 25, 2010
This is it TO. Today is the day. We are about to round up our crew of neighbours and head down to the Cecil St Community Centre to cast our ballots, and we hope that you will do the same - not just vote, but get three, four, or five friends out too. Easy enough for us to say, when we live in the Toronto incarnation of Melrose Place, right? But seriously, just a few quick phone calls from each of us can make a massive impact. We like this quote from Manifesto & Beautiful City's Advisory sent out this morning:
"Please call 5 friends, pass on this message and urge them to vote. Email is good but it's not as effective as phoning your peoples. If we all inspire five friends to call five friends and so on, we can run an Obama-style campaign that will empower Toronto's young people and safeguard the future of this incredible city. Please take ten minutes to make some calls and - your efforts will actually help save this city!"
Tuesday, October 19, 2010
Sunday, September 26, 2010
Tomorrow, OneToronto is holding an Emergency Community Meeting to share their vision for the City, "a city that builds on its successes, cares for its neighbours, and does its part to protect the environment and values community". OneToronto is a coalition of arts, environmental, labour and social justice groups trying to re-frame the current debate around the municipal elections, engage voters and help them realize what's at stake.
Please come out!
Moday, September 27th, 7:30pm
Church of the Holy Trinity -- (located behind the Eaton Centre)
Wednesday, September 22, 2010
In the wake of national funding cuts, good things have happened this year for the arts in Toronto; organizations like Beautifulcity.ca and Manifesto have demonstrated the value of arts and culture to City Council and passed a recommendation to increase arts investment. Heading into this municipal election, knowing that "directed investment in arts and culture dramatically improves economic competitiveness, impacting innovation, creativity and producing a more vibrant city" [beautifulcity.ca] we need to keep this conversation going.
Enter Artsvote Toronto, a network of volunteers who are working to make the arts an important part of the debate around next month's municipal elections. In addition to providing simple info on how to accomplish the daunting task of registering to vote, they have issued a "Councillor Report Card" rating Council candidates on their art-friendliness (high five to Joe Mihevc for earning top in class). So how about the grades of those in the run for the top spot? Come out to hear them duke it out at next week's Artsvote-hosted Mayoral Arts Debate at the AGO and judge for yourself.
And in the meantime, soak in some of the TO culture we're pushing for at any of the numerous Manifesto events happening this week. The fest is on!
Saturday, September 18, 2010
The smiling lady is Rachel Beauparlant and I’m still pretty convinced she didn’t mind my lingering - what a gem. Rachel is one of the team of three that runs HAUS. They’ve been stationed quite perfectly in the quirky little neighbourhood of Bloordale since March, though Rachel says people constantly ask them why they’re not on Queen West. They had the opportunity to move into the QWW/ Parkdale hood, but she, William and Maurizio (the other two owners) felt their hearts were in Bloordale.
If you work up an appetite shopping, I HIGHLY recommend heading toward the Junction and treating yourself to brunch or dinner (now serving!) just West on Bloor at Zocalo. The adorable little café –clad with reclaimed furniture and hand-picked flowers– is tended to by its equally adorable owners Paul Hardy and Heather Braaten. The dishes on the menu are every bit as creative as the clothing down the street and they’ve also chosen to source from our local offerings. Local and organic ingredients go into their daily vegan (but still so creamy) soups, served with corn bread (made with organic whole wheat and fresh corn) and current preserve. YUM. And the egg mash, (oh, the egg mash) which I “sampled” (slash, licked off the plate) from my fellow diner, complimented with fennel, mustard seeds, Quebec Brie and homemade tomato relish… I’ll just say that the content of the last set of brackets was not exclusively for effect.
Now the fresh breaths, Zocalo and HAUS are set to be mainstays as this strip of Bloor inevitably flourishes. For the moment, HAUS is happy to hang between the thrift shops -I should also take a second to shout out Bloordale pioneers Freedom Clothing and the 69 Vintage Collective- offering a selected option for the vintage hunter alongside local labels like Jool by Julie Phelps, our friends the Muttonhead Collective and affordable staples like Cheap Monday. And they just seem quite excited to finally have a space to do with whatever they like; art shows, photo shoots, parties. Rachel, for one, is just thrilled to finally be allowed to write on the walls.
Friday, September 3, 2010
Tuesday, April 27, 2010
For bragging purposes and the good of the world:
We at About Face are proud to count among our leading ladies, one very (multi) talented wonder by the name of Natalie. Aside from being a totally captivating writer, passionate environmental and social activist, events (and everything) coordinator and skillful feathery head-decorator and friendship-bracelet-maker (correct me if I'm wrong about the last one, Nat, but I feel this is ought to be accurate), she has also succeeded at weaving dreams in the form of light... I mean sparkles... I mean... songs (you may actually be convinced that all of these suggestions are true upon first listen). I don't think it's going too far to say that these songs may help to save the world in just as great a capacity as her other efforts. Actually, as an artist, I'll go ahead and confirm that it's probably a scientific fact.
Because people seem to like comparisons: think about what would happen if Regina Spektor, Feist, Kimya Dawson and Joni Mitchell rode their bikes out to the beach and left only a poem and a trail of cupcakes for someone to find them with. Well, I'd put all my bets on Nat. And I'd go double-or-nothing that she'd find a unicorn to ride out on. Or that she is actually just made of cupcakes. None of this makes sense? Perfect. It doesn't matter. Just listen. Then go kiss someone. Or at least smile at a few.
And if you're wondering if "Cool Girl" is about me, well, it is. Okaaaaay, it isn't. But please don't tell, I plan on making this my claim to fame when everyone falls in love with Natalie's music. It's only a matter of time.
Thursday, March 25, 2010
So, it's been a long time coming, but I've finally found the time to write about my experience in San Francisco this past January. Although I could talk about the million reasons why I love this gloriously colourful city, specific to this blog would obviously be my visit to the Brain Wash Cafe, a thriving laundromat/cafe/indie music venue space located in the historic Mission District of San Fran.
I was at the (sadly, non-solar-powered) laundromat last night when Barack Obama's Facebook post popped up in my news feed (Yeah, we're friends. No big deal.). When I realized that this meant the US health care bill had officially been passed, well... tears. Sniffling, choking and at least three actual tears.
Here's the scene: exhausted, confused, over-worked, me standing knee-deep in a pile of every one of my launder-able possessions. (Might I mention that at this point, I have been standing in a similar position for over half an hour, just bending and twisting to move my clothes and other sewings from one side of the pile to another in an effort to mathematically compile colour-appropriate loads? I feel this somehow justifies my ridiculous emotional explosion. I'm not sure how to justify the forty-five minute sorting spree.) I decide to take a well-deserved break and scan through the latest FB updates on the internet. On my PHONE. (Technology! I know you more advanced humans have enjoyed this for some time, but am new to the world of phones that think they're computers.)
Anyhow, as previously stated, tears ensue. The poor, lovely, sane woman patiently awaiting her drying in the corner is obviously praying that I were not standing between her and the door, her only escape route...
This is what I read:
To the untold millions who knocked on doors and made phone calls, who organized and mobilized out of a firm conviction that change in this country comes not from the top down, but from the bottom up: this moment is possible because of you.
So yes, my reaction may have been slightly dramatic and I may be posting this three days late, but this really is a monumental event and incredible progress for the land of the free. And I think I may speak for a lot of us when I say that it’s amazing to see some real change happening under the man we fell in love with in hopes of just that. The above image is a piece by our friend Justin Broadbent from the recent Creative Type II show at 52 McCaul (post coming soon). On why he chose “Barack Obama” as the text for his piece: “He was the nicest person I could think of.”
Indeed. I'm sure there are a few Americans who would agree.
Monday, March 15, 2010
Monday, March 8, 2010
Some of our very talented friends including the adorable Eunice Luk and charming and quirky Ted Gudlat (Ted, get a website!) are showing some of their very amazing work at Hot Shot Gallery starting today! I'm sure you're already convinced to by the enchantingly named White Cloud, Buttermilk Sky, but if some beverages and a gathering will further entice; view the wonders with wine in hand at the reception this Thursday, March 11th from 6pm til midnight or (and again) during business hours until March 21. Facebook event here. See you there!
Tuesday, February 9, 2010
Read the article here.
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
It’s true. We’ve fallen. It all started years ago in a magical living room far, far on the other side of Bathurst… okay we’re not really sure, but there was wine involved. Anyhow, there were definitely sparks from the moment we met each of the Muttonhead Collective members. Like, major girl crush sparks. And although we could easily sit around with this crew all day, every day and braid each other’s hair and have pillow fights, we’re happy we have developed one of those healthy relationships where we actually let each other run around and do our own thing, since Muttonhead’s thing happens to be our new favoritest Canadian apparel line.
Not only is their collection of unisex outerwear and innerwear the bees knees, it’s made using natural, sustainable, locally-sourced and recycled fabrics and produced right here in our own snowy backyard (that’s metaphor talk for Canada), swoon!
AND it won’t cost you an arm and a leg. Take, for instance, their pleated pullover, made with hand-dyed hemp cotton, a simple piece with the magic in the details; inset pockets, pleats from the yoke up, contrast buttons, rounded seam edge and a great fit. Price? A hundred bucks! Ladies and mans, put down those two disposable, child-labour-wielding hoodies that you’ll throw the same dollars at and watch disintegrate next week (but never biodegrade), exit h&m and come a runnin! Except, don’t come quite yet; Muttonhead’s premiere line hits stores for Fall/ Winter 2010/11. Get excited! We can’t wait to get our hemp cardigans, recycled Mexican blanket sweaters, leggings with recycled leather patches…
For now you can view the collection online and watch the space for their upcoming Readymades collection. Here you’ll be able to pick up one-of-a-kind Muttonhead pieces; tweaked vintage finds and recycled fabric garments. Heart!
Oh, and their Goretex outdoor jackets and suspender pants with recycled features are totally slope-worthy. So you can guess where we’ll be taking the Muttonheads on our next date, organic Canadian whisky and hot-cocoa equipped.
**Bonus: One lucky winner will score a Muttonhead collective sweater by counting the number of body-part references in this post.
***Editor’s note: Sorry, but Lauren already stole your prize. xo