Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Spring Thoughts

Spring has sprung here at the Hatfeathers studios...more like sprung a leak! This has been one of the wettest springs in recent memory, but, in between sprinkles there has been some planting going on. Being a Midwesterner, we have to choose wisely when planting. Our garden friends have to be tough enough for 100+ degree heat and dips down to below zero, rain in buckets and months without. We manage, though, and if you can, so should you.

In a recent newsletter from the National Gardening Association, I read this interesting tidbit:

"Researchers at the University of Virginia found that air pollution from power plants and automobiles is destroying flower fragrance and making it harder for bees to find flowers when foraging. The result is that bees visit fewer flowers and gather less nectar. Researchers found that scent molecules could travel up to 1200 meters in the 1800s. However, with pollution, today’s scent molecules travel only 200 meters. When the scent molecules bind with common pollutants, such as ozone, hydroxyl, and nitrate radicals, the flower’s aroma gets destroyed. The bees can’t find the flowers so they go hungry and the flowers don’t get pollinated. "

So what's a vintie gal to do? Why, plant some flowers! Easy grow "old school" flowers like daisies, coneflowers, bees balm (monarda), any type of mint, coreopsis and black eyed susan will give the bees and butterflies something to enjoy. You'll love it, too! The rewards of gardening are many; there is the physical aspect of getting out and moving, plus the beauty of the flowers in your yard. Also, a good sized flower bed cuts down on mowing time, reducing the polutants and cutting down on gas use!

Don't have a yard? How about looking for a local garden club that does public garden projects? Perhaps your local retirement or nursing home could use a hand brightening their landscaping. Does your apartment building allow window boxes, or is there a small green space that needs some work? Even a small herb garden can be grown in an old bucket. There's just no reason not to have plants around.

Hooray for flowers!

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Item of the Week

Vintage 60's "Big E" Levis Jeans

OK, they aren't the fanciest named-label dress, nor are they really that much different than the Levis jeans we could go to the mall and buy today, but I still love to find a pair of Big E jeans.
The Levis company has been around since the 1800s, originally just to produce sturdy jeans for minors to wear that wouldn't wear out fast. Little did Jacob Davis and Levi Strauss know, but people would be wearing jeans as their main clothing item-from fashionable dress to work attire- well over 150 years later.

One time, while considering the jeans industry in church (appologies to God for my wandering brain) I decided to count how many people were in jeans as compared to anything else, as they walked by at communion. I lost count, and it's not a big church.

So, this item of the week is featured not only as just a neat thing to find, but as a salute to the jean itself. Wardrobe staple and a favorite clothing item for anyone from New York fashionistas to midwestern moms to hard working blue collar folk.

See them this week only at auction on ebay: http://cgi.ebay.com/Vintage-60-s-Big-E-Levis-Denim-Jeans-501-Redline-42W_W0QQitemZ360050659896QQihZ023QQcategoryZ52401QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem