Features on Des Moines' Most Valuable - Its People, Art & Actions StreetStyle Snapshots PSYCHIC STYLE for advice on life's biggest questions: Love, Work & What to Wear!?

SELF-EXPRESSION (and/vs?) SELF-PROMOTION. Just the kinda thing that keeps me awake at night! We made a fun music video about it… @ctconquered @ARPATRICKTAPE @jshbckr 

Patrick and I directed and co-wrote the video. Josh Becker was the fabulous video/tech and make-everyone’s-ideas-a-reality, man! I was Chris Ford’s body-double, too!? Hmm… Thank you to everyone involved. The band did a fabulous job acting and just looking awesome.

Also a huge special thank you to Consequence of Sound for the debut - We hope all the COS readers love the video!

-Love Ash

My Husband is a Piece of (ART) Work

We were at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City. I saw this painting across the room and exclaimed, “This one looks JUST LIKE YOU!” to Patrick, but he didn’t agree? So, I asked him to go stand in front of it, turn his head to the side and look up! Then he looked at the photo (through my eyes) and said, “Oh yeah! I see what you mean.”

I think it’s fun to think about the differences in interpretation here:

1) of the work by Patrick

2) of the work by me

3) of Patrick by Patrick

4) of Patrick by me…

And although to me the photo proves an “objective” view of two things being alike,

5) if I did not know Patrick and saw someone else take his photo in front of the painting, it’s totally possible that I may not have seen a resemblance at all?

In case you still don’t see a resemblance, Patrick’s personality informs the majority of what I recognized… And then definitely his laugh, fabulous earlobes, skin tone, and denim shirt!

-Love Ash

*Artist and Artwork: Carroll Dunham, American, b. 1949, b. New Haven, Connecticut Particular Aspects (Two), 2003

How To Wear A Belt (That Is Too Small)

Why would you want to wear a belt that is too small? Because you don’t have anything else that goes with your outfit to pick from of course. So I was frustrated that many of my belts fit my real waist (if I’m lucky) but are not long enough for wearing jeans at the hip, etc… So I wondered, who cares if it closes or not? Most of the time these days we’re not wearing belts to keep our pants from falling down…

It’s just an accessory anyways…

You get the same effect from the side…

What do you guys think?

-Love Ash

I don’t understand what people with tattoos and piercings are trying to tell me?

I was at first going to post quick about "Now that it’s passed, here’s the wackiest outfit I saw during the scorching heat-wave!" But here’s what I actually would like to say…

Recently, I was at a table of business men and women in suits, and the following question was posed: "I just don’t know what someone is trying to say when they stand there with tattoos and piercings and weird outfits. I just don’t know what they’re trying to tell me?"

So, I took this photo and I love it. These people (strangers to me) were having fun in an adult environment and were very kind to me and you can see “human” “wisdom” “life” all in their eyes… zoom in on the eyes you may need less distraction! … I have no idea what “Whatever Waiter” means either by the way, but it doesn’t matter obviously. I think looking into the eyes in this photo could help someone to understand that. Maybe this affirmation on loop would help too, "I’m trying to be myself, to love myself and to live life, just like you!" Ha whatever works! Accept others and life is so much less confusing.

Have a nice day in your short shorts, or suit.

-Love Ash

Sustainable Love Tip

It’s almost comical (but still cute) how similarly dressed this couple is. But, what I found most interesting was how they moved at the same pace (FAST) - and it seemed comfortable to both.

So here’s my Sustainable Love Tip:

It’s not necessary to always cruise at the same miles-per-hour as your partner. But, my Mom always wisely cautioned (I’ll paraphrase and make her sound like a gypsy for fun):

“Beware of a man (or woman) who walks 5 paces in front of you.”   

And I will add “…Unless they’re running to get the door.”

Why? Many reasons. But, simply because they’re not by your side. Literal, but may be your first indication of how long this love will last.

My advice? Take my husband Patrick’s: “If the love glove doesn’t fit, then it’s a love you must acQUIT!”   

-Love Ash

*I took this photo at Starbucks on Fleur Drive, Des Moines, IA (2011)

Behind-the-Scenes, The Poison Control Center’s “Dracula’s Casket”

A shot to show you how difficult the talent can be to work with (joking!)

We hadn’t started filming yet, and Patrick can be a little camera-shy when he’s not performing ;-) Here I think he is saying,

"Geez, hon… Can you not take a photo right now, please?"

Devin Frank (left), Patrick Tape Fleming (right) on set. Special thanks to Lynn and Bill for all their help and support!

The brand new Dracula’s Casket video debuts today on Magnet: http://to.ly/aMe9 

We had a great time making it - Patrick is the wiz editor and Devin built the casket by hand! I personally have one finger that doesn’t bend well from being crushed under the casket… But, it was so worth it! We are all very proud of it, please check it out!

-Love Ash

DIY High-Fashion

@ARPATRICKTAPE @cawdevincaw and I created The Poison Control Center’s @123sayPCC newest video, which is not yet released, but is freakkn awesome)! I assisted with costumes, and the photo above is a behind-the-scenes shot from day 1…

So, check out Devin Frank’s fabulous runway pose above! I did a little research, and apparently one of the most classic runway poses has the left hand on hip and right arm extended down to show the lines of the clothing most exquisitely - good job, Devin!

How did we come up with this incredible outfit and forget to add footwear, you ask? Well, I had just made his robe/mega-tunic deal out of muslin, and hand-stitched a collar onto the neckline with him standing in it. We weren’t quite sure if we’d nailed the costume yet? So, Devin went looking in his closet, and Patrick headed to the store to buy make-up.

Devin came back with the scarf, in which (I found out later), our friend Amanda had recently told him, “You like a model!” So, maybe he had been practicing poses? Anyhow, I looked at the outfit and said, “I know what this needs… My skirt over your shoulders!” (the one I was wearing) He kind of got this look on his face like, “Oh geez, I cannot imagine this is gonna be worth the trouble, I don’t know.”

"Just trust me!" I said, and ran to the bathroom and changed into pants. No big deal, I had brought a whole suitcase full of stuff for them to wear. So, we ended up with a fabulous high-fashion look if you ask me!

And, by then Patrick was back from the store, and asked “What have you guys been doing??” We all laughed, and “Voilà!” took the picture with no shoes.

So, here are two sneak-stills from The Poison Control Center’s Dracula’s Casket video shoot - You are the absolute firsts to see!

-Love Ash

How To Rock 80/35: Q&A With Five Fashionistas

So honored that @hillabean asked me to be one of the Five! Very fun read…

Check it out: http://80-35.com/2011/how-to-rock-8035-qa-with-five-fashionistas

Beatles Tribute Band in Seattle’s Pike Place Market - What Are They Looking At?

These #Bieber Beatles (my name) were pretty darn cute and sounded fab singing chart toppers on a super busy Thursday at the market. When I got home to Des Moines from the trip and looked at my photos, I thought it was interesting how all three of them seem to be aware of something off to their right…

Nobody in the background seems to notice anything to that side? And neither Patrick, nor I recall anything of interest over there?

Maybe it was:

1) Ringo? (just kidding)

2) A rival performance group?

3) The sun could be in their eyes to the left, but that doesn’t seem to be accurate from the photos. It was very overcast anyway?

4) Maybe they are “phoning it in” while playing… Just going through the motions, and there’s not anything very important over there, but more interesting than playing? But still, there was a whole arc of people around them singing along, so it’s not like they were playing For No One (haha, get it)? They seemed into it at the time?

5) Maybe a bobby (Beatle for policeman :-) was coming around to make them move on to the next station? Btw check out this fun Beatle Slang site: http://www.beatlespennylane.com/Beatle_Slang.htm 

Who knows! Any guesses?

I haven’t written in a while and hope you are well out there and have had some sweet summer travels yourself!

Thanks for reading :-D

-Love Ash

How To Be A Merch Guy/Girl

Take a few tips from @sloanmusic on how to perform at the top, even when you’re not in the band. 

It appears that lots of folks are searching for merch guy/girl gigs. Although I’m no expert on how to land one of these jobs, I would like to take a moment (from observing the inspiring SLOAN Crew, and countless uninspiring others) to tell you how to do it well, if you get the opportunity. 

1) Act just as excited to be there as the biggest fans! If you act like you don’t care about anything, well that kind of attitude is yucky and you won’t sell as much. Selling merch is not selling out, and the more a band sells the longer they can keep it up and you can keep your job. (FYI if you’re volunteering, your band probably really needs you to do the best you can. Make it so they can’t go on, or don’t want to go on without you!)  

2) Talk to people. If a business is busy, more people flock in that direction! These guys made conversation with folks, so there always appeared to be action at the table… which drew in more people! People left smiling. Fans weren’t awkwardly sliding away from the table as the merch girl didn’t say thank you and went back to “messing with her phone”, so to speak.    

3) At least smile and look inviting, or wear a hell of an outfit! Everyone was jealous and wanted these guys’ jackets… But, if they had walked around with scowls on their faces, nobody would give a hoot about their jackets - they would have just ignored them or thought about putting a boot mark on their snobby butts!

4) Just because you’re sitting behind a band’s records and t-shirts, doesn’t mean you’re cool. Also, just because you’re sitting behind the merch doesn’t mean you’re not cool. It just is what it is like anything else, so you can only give it meaning by being awesome, confident and helping other people feel good and have a good time.    

*Thanks again to everyone in the SLOAN camp for a fabulous night out. All inspiration for this post came from their Minneapolis show - 400 Bar - May 27, 2011. Here’s our merch purch below!

If you haven’t heard this band before, you may be remiss for missing out on the last 20 years! But, it’s not too late!! http://www.sloanmusic.com/

-Love Ash

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