With Paige and Emily in LA for a few days, we’ve been dreaming of the west coast, warm sunshine and all that LA has to offer. We’re ready for summer and can’t stop thinking of floral crowns, tousled hair, sandy beaches, denim cutoffs, friends, flings and road trips. Summer 2013, bring it on!
all images via [pinterest]
Emily and I are headed down to LA for a couple of days, and seeing as how our crazy weather in Toronto has reverted back to the chilly temperatures of early spring, the sun and warmth is going to be a welcome change. Since we’re there for a whole 48 hours (leisurely, I know), and we figured we wouldn’t quite be busy enough as is, we decided to get in touch with a local LA photographer that we’ve been following online for awhile now, Sarah Shreves, and see if she might be interested in collaborating on a shoot. One of the many perks of developing online relationships through social media!
We’ll be letting Sarah take the lead and heading to Venice Beach to shoot tomorrow evening at sunset, and couldn’t be more excited about this new partnership. Sarah’s work has a dreamy, magical quality to it, and her use of colour and light has always felt closely aligned with Bicyclette’s aesthetic. Not to mention the opportunity to shoot on the beach and have a series of quintessential California images – something we’ve wanted to do for awhile now and can finally make happen.
We wanted to share some of Sarah’s work, so below is a series entitled ‘Gluttonous Barbie’ that we instantly fell in love with. We’ve always had a soft spot for a pretty colour palette, polka dots, pink lips and sprinkle donuts.
Nicole Warne from Gary Pepper Vintage is our newest favourite blog crush and style inspiration. Hailing from the beautiful Australia, she is perfect to watch as we enter the warm summer ahead, as she has has an effortlessly beautiful summertime aesthetic. She mixes standout vintage pieces with the rest of her incredible wardrobe making each outfit a bold statement. Her blog, online vintage store and photography is so beautiful to look at with their pops of colours, glimpses into Australian nature, and whimsy dreamworld aesthetic.
It’s was a beautiful week so Paige decided to head to the Jays game on Saturday to
catch some rays and support the boys! #lovethisteam
A new delivery from Free People arrived this week including this gorgeous rose print
dress with a midriff crochet cutout. It had us all dreaming of summer nights .
We had a meeting this week at our local Bellwoods Brewery to discuss our upcoming top
secret project. #90daysbicyclette
We did some spring cleaning and decided to host a big Garage Sale on Thursday, selling
off some of our old goodies at great prices! We enjoyed some lemonade, fun music and
This week Ana talked to July Talk’s Leah Fay about life on the road with boys,
her unapologetic love for sequins, how the band came to be, and more for our
weekly “Girl Crush” feature on the blog.
Watching Leah, of local Toronto band July Talk,on stage is like watching a seasoned pro.
She knows herself, is comfortable with who she is, and that quality is electric on stage.
After being able to chat with her while snapping her photos, I couldn’t help but be drawn
to her energy, she’s the girl every girl wants as their best friend, unique and sweet and
just damn cool. There’s also this elusive quality to her, with the ability to be so relatable
while still maintaing a sense of mystique. We get a peek into her world as she eloquently
responds to our ‘Girl Crush’ questions, and by the end of the interview, I guarantee you will
be crushing on her too.
What would your tour diary reveal about life on the road… with boys?
It’s hard for anyone with an established routine to go from the comforts of home and
regular life to living out of a suitcase in a small moving vehicle with four other people.
Luckily the joy that comes from performing to excited audiences that seem to grow a
little each time you revisit a place outweighs the discomfort of touring. Most of it
anyway. I adjust pretty quickly to being with Josh, Danny, Ian and Peter 24/7. I
adopt the humor within a few hours of driving and my vocabulary becomes coloured
with a wealth of needless curse words which I weed out when I return home. I sleep
with earplugs to combat drunken-man-snoring and carry my own supply of dried sage
and matches for when the “musk” created by 5 traveling bodies and a month’s worth
of their sweaty clothing becomes too much to handle. I’m also very lucky to have
several closer than close best friends (wives) dispersed throughout the country. They
will travel if I’m passing through anywhere remotely close to where they are.
You have your own unique style, and with your perfect mix of vintage you
remind me of a legendary old Hollywood actress straight out of a Hitchcock
film. How would you describe your onstage style, and does it differ from
your everyday life?
For both onstage and day-to-day most of my wardrobe is second-hand and either
inherited or bought at thrift shops. I make my own dresses out of printed cotton bed
sheets and live in them during the summer months. I’m also a sucker for shops like
Sirens and Ciao Bella at St. Clair & Dufferin for their wildly tiny low-cut lycra dresses,
unapologetic use of sequins and metallic leopard print jeggings. I often use the excuse
of the live-shows to justify buying ridiculous pieces and tell myself they’re for performing
in but slowly they infiltrate my day-to-day wardrobe as well.
I’ve spent a lot of my life in dance apparel and feel the need to be able to move, roll
around, dance like a maniac, bike-ride, and climb fences (to pool hop, mostly) at any
given moment. Therefore clothing that requires a precious attitude doesn’t mix well
with me. Similarly it’s not uncommon that during a July Talk show I’ll either be bled
on, sweat on, or covered with water, wine or beer.
The story goes (according to your band’s website), that a half-drunk Peter
was sitting in a basement bar and as an acoustic guitar was being passed
around, it landed in your hands and he found his muse. Can you describe
that night and how your musical journey with him began?
“Half-drunk” is an understatement, but Peter and I never even talked about how we met
until it came up during our very first interview. It was after 2 am on the anniversary of the
blackout and we had both drunkenly chosen the Communist’s Daughter as the last stop
of our respective nights. My friend and I found a guitar next to the jukebox and started
playing songs to no one other than each other. We didn’t notice Pete and his buddy at
first as they crowded our table to listen. They eventually insisted we give them the guitar
so they could play for us. All of the sudden the whole bar was engaged in a drunken
impromptu open mic night. My friend and I managed to sneak away from the charming
duo that night but I ran into Peter at the Dakota a few nights later. He came up to me
and told me he couldn’t get my voice out of his head. There was blatant urgency in his
demeanor so I figured I’d let him call me. Eventually one night, late summer, at 4 am
outside the Lakeview, he dropped a few more details about his idea for the project. We
biked to the Parkdale bachelor apartment he and his best friend were sharing and on
the way he sang this botched, gruff version of the song he’d heard me sing at the Commy.
We sat on a bare mattress (due to lack of other furniture) under fluorescent lighting and
he offered me a multivitamin (probably out of lack of anything else consumable). He
played me an Emmy-Lou Harris & Gram Parsons album and was shocked I’d never heard
it before. We played some more of our songs for each other but at the time I didn’t see how
it could work. I still don’t really understand how it works. I met Pete at a weird time and all
I could make of him was he was as intensely driven and confident as he was completely
lost and unsure and therefore he represented something very unfamiliar to me. I had little
patience for the hot and cold approach he had with me those first few months but I figure
he was just figuring some things out. I think I represented something unfamiliar to him as
well and the project first sprung out of the vast spaces between our differences followed
immediately by the need for a full band to complete the idea.
What is one thing that people don’t know about you?
If my life had taken a few slightly different turns early on, there’s a good chance I’d be
pursuing a career as a professional back-up dancer… or on the Raptor’s Dance Pak.
Paige and I checked out a recent show and you are such a brilliant force on stage,
at one point pouring honey all over Peter. Was there always that comfort and
chemistry between you two, and has performing always come naturally to you?
I’ve loved performing since I was tiny and I feel at ease on stage. Having Peter there instills
a constant level of discomfort and sometimes fear in me. He bites and can be careless with
his limbs and often gets too close to the point where I can’t tell if he’s with or against me. It
seems to work for us so I only tell him to back off if I really need him to. I’m currently
learning about ways to keep the audience with me while maintaining an unspoken
connection with the band. If a song goes poorly for some reason I’m the communicator who
has to deal with it in the moment. Peter can do his regular screaming and slapping himself
in the face thing but I have to be like “HELLO SUDBURY, ARE YOU STILL HERE WITH
ME?!” look them in the eyes and make them believe that I know what I’m doing even when
I don’t. It all seems very unimportant to talk about but when that 45 minutes of the day I
spend on stage is sabotaged somehow, it feels like everything. I forget the five of us get to
go to sleep, wake up have a coffee and do it all again the next night.
What songs would your summer road trip mix include?
Talking Heads – This Must Be The Place
Angel Olsen – The Waiting
Solange – Losing You
The Tragically Hip – Lake Fever
Loretta Lynn feat. Jack White – Portland, Oregon
What’s a quote you live by?
Here’s three, I couldn’t choose:
1. “When in doubt, be brave.”
2. “Push it till it breaks.”
3. “See-thru plus see-thru equals not see-thru.”
What is the best thing about being the only girl in a band?
There’s always a large warm person to sleep on during long van rides and someone
always has french fries. I grew up idolizing my older brother and cherishing the times
I got to hang out with him and his friends. I also spent a good part of my teen years
reenacting “Jack-Ass” style stunts with my best guy friends, endlessly searching for
fireworks on non-holidays and playing in a cover band we try not to speak of anymore.
I’ve always felt most comfortable in scenarios where I’m not treated differently because of
my gender. For the most part I think the guys know they don’t have to act a certain way
around me so we have a lot of fun. We fight and tease each other like siblings but
underneath it all is respect, love and care.
What’s your most memorable music moment?
I asked the Red Rhythm, to play Edith Piaf’s “La Vie En Rose” at my grandmother’s funeral.
It was her favourite song and I’ve always loved hearing their rendition of it at the Commy on
Saturday afternoons. In honour of my pattern-loving grandmother my mom requested
everyone wear polka-dots, animal prints and florals instead of black. The band was waiting
outside and started to play as the coffin was carried out of the church followed by all the
guests. At first, everyone seemed a little stunned to hear such dreamy music at a funeral but
it provided a much needed release and within seconds of listening, people were able to
remember her passion for living. It was an absolutely heartbreaking and joyful experience
and for me it was the only way to honour her properly.
Magic is an important word and concept for us at Bicyclette. What does
magic mean to you?
I think there is magic in the rawness of honest vulnerability. The weightless airy unknown
space between the highest highs and darkest lows. I love those moments where, without
any justifiable reason, you find yourself suddenly elated beyond words or crying
uncontrollably… I hope that made sense. If not, my answer is: “GLITTER!!”
[photo cred: #2, 4, 5, 8]
We experienced a pretty quick transition over the last week, welcoming spring (or is it summer now? Hard to tell…) with open arms after a long, hard winter. Since we’re big fans of lists and goals, however frivolous they may seem, we like to put together a collection of to-dos that challenge us to fully embrace the change in seasons and keep us on our toes.