H&M x Balmain Launch: What I Experienced

First off: I never intended to pick up the collection’s most coveted items — the beaded blazer and embroidered dress. ¬†While they are both beautiful, I found them more reminiscent of Balmain in 2012 than 2016. ¬†No shade to anyone who picked them up or admired them, but I think H&M and Balmain chose to re-create some pre-existing designs rather than push new ideas, given that people have already been watching celebrities wear nearly identical pieces for years. ¬†Also the target audience of H&M is¬†not as risk-taking as your average runway show attendees, and¬†familiar silhouettes and design concepts are safer.

Doors opened at 8 a.m.  Around 7:30, having just returned from my morning trip to the gym, I headed down to the 86th Street H&M in Manhattan.  The line stretched down the block towards 3rd avenue, but did not reach the next street corner when I arrived at 7:45.  No doubt the people first in line had been there all night.

By 8:30, I had been given a wristband that would allow me to enter at 9:45.  The wristband guaranteed me a spot in line so I did not have to stand around any longer.  I headed up Lexington to Fika Cafe, enjoyed an almond milk latte and a croissant, and casually walked back around 9:30.

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Weather Integrated into Wallpaper: A GeekTool Widget for Mac OS


You will need:

GeekTool is an application available for Mac OS that allows the user to create widgets embedded in their desktop. ¬†These widgets commonly¬†display time, date, to do lists, weather information, and images. ¬†I’ve played with GeekTool on and off over the years — sometimes using it for practical reasons, like an easily visible record of uptime on¬†older machines, and sometimes for frivolous ones, like the GeekTool I’m going to share with you today.

While displaying weather widgets with images is a common GeekTool, I have yet to see one integrated into a desktop image, so I decided to give it a try. ¬†To accomplish this, you’ll needed to use two GeekTools, one image and one shell. ¬†I used two small scripts, one written in bash and the other a line in python, but you could easily write all of this in one script, splitting it up was just faster for me in the moment.

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Raspberry Pi Lighttpd Web Server Tutorial

Setting Up

Acquire a Raspberry Pi, configure your SD card with Raspbian, and connect to the internet via ethernet.  Get yourself a case similar to the one shown or make one from lego or cardboard.

Once you’ve booted your Pi, it’s crucial to¬†change the default password. ¬†If you’re comfortable at the command line, ditch the default user Pi and the desktop interface. ¬†This will help preserve the life of your SD card. ¬†If you think the server will get much traffic, it’s worth taking the time to boot Raspbian from a USB instead of the SD card.

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Maybelline Color Tattoo By Eyestudio 24 Hour Cream Eyeshadow

The Basics

Maybelline Color Tattoos are frequently compared to the infamous Mac Paint Pots. ¬† I don’t own any Paint Pots (yet), but I do have a Color Tattoo¬†Obsession¬†Collection. ¬†So while I can’t comment on the wear of the different products, I can do some fact listing.

The Color Tattoos are $7 for 4g of product, while the Paint Pots are $20 for 5g.  So while the Color Tattoos are $1.75/g, the Paint Pots are $4/g; more than twice as much.

The ingredients in the Color Tattoos and the Paint Pots are fairly similar. ¬†The largest difference I noted is that the Color Tattoos list a cyclopentasiloxane¬†(a silicone emollient)¬†as the first ingredient, and¬†isododecane¬†(a hydrocarbon emollient) as the second. ¬†The Paint Pots list isododecane first and¬†dimethicone (another silicone emollient) second. ¬†The cost of cosmetics grade cyclopentasiloxane and dimethicone seem to fall within similar ranges (cyclopentasiloxane is $3-5/kg, dimethicone is $1-6/kg), so it’s likely Mac’s higher price tag is mostly for brand name reasons.

Someday I’ll be able to pick up some Paint Pots and do a real comparison review. ¬†Until then, let’s focus on the Color Tattoos.

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Sweater Weather

First Accomplishment of 2014

For the past two months, I’ve been knitting my first sweater. ¬†I can’t believe I finished it! ¬†It’s the first thing I’ve knit that’s not a flat rectangle. ¬†Knitting a garment like a sweater is terrifying. ¬†Because you’re creating the fabric as you sew the garment, you don’t actually know that it’s going to fit until the very last moment. ¬†And if it doesn’t, you have to knit any number of pieces all over again. ¬†So I was very nervous to tie off the ends and try it on!

The original pattern came from a Rowan knitting book, the yarn from Valley Yarns.  The sweater was longer and the back was saggy, so I adjusted it to my liking.  I also lengthened the sleeves to match my lanky arms better and, very thankfully, they fit.  Knitting allows me a healthy release for my unhealthy perfectionism, so I think I ended up taking out each piece three times each.

Now that it’s finally done, I’m not sure what I’ll knit next. ¬†It’s between a cat hoodie from scrap yarn, or investing in some nice wool for a deer patterned set of socks, gloves, and a hat (just in time for winter to be over). ¬†For now, enjoy the pictures of my frizzy fishtail braids and the finished sweater.

Full sweater

Shameless selfies.



Left: pattern detail.
Right: neckband, shoulder, hem.