¨¨¨°º the adventures of choklit chanteuse º°¨¨¨


Raw Emotion ~ The Imagery of Lilya Corneli

Stache and I have been brewing big plans for an arty photo shoot with some of my gorgeous girlfriends for the adornments, and yesterday we finally made it happen. I'm beyond thrilled with the images he captured, but it will take a bit of time to edit them, so we must all be patient...

For some lovely diversion until the new imagery is unveiled, you must see the work of an incredibly talented photographer who has been inspiring me as of late.

I happened upon Lilya Corneli after going down one of those Internet rabbit-holes - you know the kind, where by following a series of links you somehow end up in a totally different and magical new place. I was completely captivated and found myself wandering Lilya's online galleries for hours.

These breathtaking images are used with Lilya's kind permission.

Her photos are hauntingly beautiful, evocative and sometimes a little disturbing. Everything about them makes me shiver with delight.

And soon, soon... an abundance of beautiful imagery of my own.


Spring Has Sprung!

The vernal equinox was on Thursday, and it felt like everything around me was blossoming and opening up. Admittedly, since this is Northern California, it's been feeling spring-y for a few weeks already. But on Friday morning, the swallows that nest in the eaves of the building I work in had returned, and all the fruit trees were exploding with blossoms.

Celebration was in order. Fortunately, the ever-lovely Brooke had an extravagant Equinox party on Friday night, complete with fire-spinners, live music, and belly-dancers. Stache felt a Spring Pixie outfit was appropriate, and he spent a good part of the early evening gluing leaves to himself to elegant effect:

And I gussied up in a vaguely spring nymph-ish fashion to match him, sporting the Roux cuffs and choker.

We even found a Disgruntled Bunny to round out our merry band.

And proceeded to cause a ruckus at the party, in the usual manner - staying up far too late, having far too much tequila, and enjoying the warm spring evening and splendid company...

Happy Spring!


A Study in Black and White

What is it about black and white that we're drawn to? Is it the starkness, the simplicity? The instant feeling of old-timey-ness that's invoked?

Introducing Cirque. Dripping with elegance and mystery, but with a hint of playfulness. The ethereal trapeze artist, mesmerizing, swinging from her perch high above the crowds, and the silent trickster mime, black beret and painted white cheeks, a blank palette, with just a hint of the sauciness of stripes.

The Cirque choker... coming very soon to Atelier Choklit.

And here's Fudo, proving that men in cuffs are very, very hot.

Devastating. Seen onstage at Baby Seal Club's last gig.


Gigsville... once again.

My band, Baby Seal Club, has been hibernating since shortly after last years' Burning Man. We had a new drummer and needed to incubate and practice before we went out - really, it was for the public good. And last Sunday was finally our first gig back in the saddle. Wheee!

I had almost forgotten the feeling - the butterflies in the stomach... the exhilaration... the way we all have to go out on a limb together... like jumping off a cliff holding hands.

The show went swimmingly. A few loyal friends and fans turned out despite our purposeful lack of promotion, and it's always fun to do a double set with the enchanting Amber Lee, of Amber Lee and the Anomalies. And I don't I always relish the chance to wear bloomers and a corset?

I also took the opportunity to test drive a set of my cuffs and a choker, which you can see below - the design is called Mercurie. Detailed pictures to come.

It being the night before my birthday, we all ended the evening drinking ridiculously tasty old-fashioneds at the bar down the road... instead of the usual egregious maraschinos - they were garnished with real organic bing cherries soaked in Guinness. My new cocktail of choice - bliss!


Things That Please Me: Dandies

Okay, I'll admit it. There's something about a man in a top hat and silk ascot. Something about a man who is a fabulous dancer and a master of witty repartee. Something about that appreciation for all things refined and elegant in life. And especially something about meticulously sculpted moustaches. There's definitely something about a dandy that really makes my heart race.

Which is rather good because my husband, my brother, and most of my dearest male friends are all dandies. I'm the luckiest girl in the world.

I'm fascinated by the resurgence of the dandy as a cultural icon. I suppose this love of dapper men was inevitable given my penchant for neo-victorian and steampunk culture, but I can be entertained for hours watching them debating the relative merits of kid leather vs. cotton gloves on the Dandyism! Tribe, or reading the florid prose of Lord Whimsy, whose website includes downloadable pdfs for tie knots, pocket square folds and moustache care.

Precisely what defines the modern dandy is hard to pin down: a website called Dandyism.net lists qualities of a dandy as, among other things, "a skeptical, world-weary, sophisticated, bored or blasé demeanor," "discriminating taste," and "a self-mocking and ultimately endearing egotism."

According to the ineffable Lord Whimsy, "Dandyism is an elegance of mind that finds its expression in one’s physical presence: clothing, manners, speech, attitude, etc... The dandy of today is as much about his lifestyle as his wardrobe; the dandy is now an artist-philosopher who uses himself as a canvas and stage."

Or, as archetypal dandy Oscar Wilde said, "One should either be a work of Art, or wear a work of Art."

However you care to define it, my heart belongs dandies.


Beauty Trickling Down

Another weekend in the finery sweatshop... I promised myself I'd finish six designs before I open the shop. I'm so close I can taste it, but I'm still missing a few last bits. This process sometimes feels like pouring honey, the beauty trickling down so slowly.

Just to tease you, my dears, here's another sneak preview... Aubergine. Plum-colored silk so rich you can almost taste it, topped with olive velvet and this lovely braid that reminds me of unripe grapevines. Dripping with bronze pearls, purple seeds, sterling, and green garnets.

Aubergine Choker and Drop Earrings

Aubergine Cuff