If you're here for the first time, hi! If you're reading this because you're subscribed to my blog, awesome!

Everyone's allowed some time to regroup and refocus, right? It's been nearly a year since my last post with this project, and I've developed the time to jump back on it. For now, flip through the posts I've saved from the culling to see what FourtyPercent used to be about. More of the same is coming, in different and better ways hopefully, and some new stuff I want to work on and get involved in. I want to up the readership, throw in some collaborations and put my skillzzz to use, because I've got a lot of time on my hands, and too much that shouldn't be wasted.

I gots a new logo. I gots a new year. You gets what I gots.



40% Summer Style Guide

It's been a while since I've taken on the 40% persona. The last rant I went on was about the religious zealots that are taking over Norfolk. What a horrible way to go out! Since then I've been working on other projects, being generally lethargic during the winter months, and lamenting over my lack of big city life. However, it's allowed me some time to refocus my energies and really get to the core of what I want to do with this outlet. (My main goal being to score a gig writing for a magazine or paper one of these days when the economy evens out. Or maybe even make money off a culture blog! We can dream, right?)

If you paid any attention to fashion week(s) this year, you'd have noticed special attention to men's lines. A lot of fashion houses added men's stuff to their production to beef up their sales first of all, but also because the Dapper Dan is making a comeback. I got endless amounts of inspiration from shows like Band of Outsiders, Tim Hamilton, Rag & Bone and Antonio Azzuolo (even if I didn't agree with the use of fur everywhere). I'm in love with all of the classic styles for summer and fall, and it's inspired me to create a series of mini style guides, incorporating a few of the ideas pitched at fashion week, but also putting my own modern twist on a few things.

A few months ago, I decided that chambray was going to be huge throughout summer and fall '09, and I'm happy to see that I've been validated! Chambray is a breathable, denim-like material that was primarily the material of choice for blue-collar work shirts when American men did things like manual labor on a daily basis (a much under-appreciated skill). It's a sturdy fabric, with a comforting rigidness that keeps its shape, no matter what you do to it. So naturally, the brilliantly quirky Koto Chambray Workshirt is number 2 on the style guide.

1. Zuriick Beata Chukka Boot. I actually bought this Zuriick Beata Chukka Boot from Provisions here in Norfolk in a black, with a purple sole. Though I considered buying the grey shown here. The baby blue piping breaks up the gloom a little and adds a modern, whimsical twist to the overall construction - which is exceedingly simple. This is a one-piece shoe molded from the same fabric and shaped for a more fitted look to your foot. They're also mega-comfortable and look great with a skinny jean or even shorts. 2. Koto Chambray Workshirt. Oh, Urban Outfitters, you've always got affordable finds that look so expensive. One of my favorite things about this shirt is the attention to design. Check out how the left breast-pocket is actually turned upside down and in the shape of a jean pocket. The rounded hem, and webbing n the sides (for a bit of stretch when you sit down without giving away too much skin) really add to the style of this easy, comfortable spring/summer day shirt. And it's on sale! 3. Matt & Nat Warhol Grey Weekender. Hello, new gigantic weekender bag I'll use for everyday toting! Matt & Nat are an eco-friendly design company that specializes in women's bags, but has recently branched out into men's accessories and unisex bags. This is one of their new styles, and it's definitely a favorite of mine right now. Grey canvas is broken up by bright blue zippers and vegan purple leather straps to give this throwback to one of the world's greatest art marketers a pop feel, with a fashion forward (and animal-friendly!) twist. Simply, I love this bag. It's a tad pricey ($325), but you're not paying for animals suffering so maybe it's a more satisfying buy. If that's not your thing, and you prefer a more classic bag, the Deerfield Weekender Bag I wrote about a few months ago is available in different colors now, at a more affordable price. 4. Dolce & Gabbana The One. Every now and then I'm pretty into typical big brand things. I love D&G's Light Blue, and was really excited to discover that The One is an even better summer scent. It's a more spicey scent than Light Blue with notes of ginger, cardamom, tobacco (!), and orange blossom, and literally makes you think about a permanent sunset. (The best part of the summer day for me is that hour between sunset and night, when everything is just a little more burnished by the sunlight and the breeze seems at rest.) $70 at Nordstrom, which isn't too bad. 5. Safari Animal Belt. Remember The Darjeeling Unlimited? If you're a Wes Anderson fan you probably noticed the Marc Jacobs-designed luggage featuring safari animals that the brothers carried around India with them. In a brilliant stroke of inspiration, Urban Outfitters is now offering this belt, which bears a striking resemblance to the luggage. At $38, it's definitely not a Marc Jacobs piece, which I'm totally fine with since Marc Jacobs is a bit of a bank breaker. It features a removable roller buckle, so you can replace the buckle with one of your choice. I got this as a gift from the Easter Bunny (via my mom), and can't wait to start rocking it in a whole Hemingway-inspired outfit. (Without the elephant gun, or dead animals of course.)

Summer is all about classic, personalized style. Think literary references like Thoreau, Hemingway and Fitzgerald. The Great Gatsby wasn't great for nothing.


fever ray // if i had a heart.


If I Had A Heart from Fever Ray on Vimeo.

in other news, i'm working on things behind the scenes right now. approaching this blogging thing from a different, more sustainable angle. february will be the month to do this.

how much do you love that video?


where the hell is matt?

most. brilliant. thing. ever.

here's a great article about how the video was faked*. (with photoshop. what else?) the video is almost as good as the original.

*even the fake is fake. this is the single most amazing piece of internet art ever created, fake or not. (and clearly it's real.)

happy new year.

all this happened on the last day of 2008:

túrána hott kurdís by hasta la otra méxico! from Till Credner on Vimeo.

i'm really, really inspired to make 2009 beautiful. (and to go visit sandbridge in the blinding cold to watch the night sky over the water. if you want to make that happen, grab a bottle of wine and let's go soon.)



all of my friends think i'm santa clause, and i'm totally okay with that. anything that brings joy and happiness is a good thing in my book, and martha stewarts i'm pretty sure. (and who doesn't love martha?) well, imagine my glee when i stumbled upon this video while researching topics for my company's blog this morning:

Befriend a Geek from White October on Vimeo.

it seems quite funny, and like a great practical joke for the holidays. but, like most publicity stunts, it's got a great message behind it all: millions of elderly (and homeless, and orphans) will be alone on Christmas Day this year. there are so many charities and organizations you can get involved with to brighten the day of just one other person on what can be one of the loneliest days of the year. visit a nursing home, cook a meal for some orphans, donate to a homeless shelter. do something.

merry christmas!


snowday grab-bag.

if you've noticed the lack of the promised theme lately, so have i. somewhere along the way i lost my vision and have gone askew! (i just wanted to say askew.) however, i'm working on getting it back, with half of today's snowday grab-bag being j's (the letter we left off at)!

yeah, it snowed in virginia today. in november. for folks in northern virginia, this isn't a huge deal. but, we never get snow this early in the southeast portions of the state. i woke up to it, had lunch to it, and there's a looming threat of it later this evening. which is pretty exciting. i'm gearing up for a bit of a holiday-tastic weekend. norfolk has their annual grand illumination parade tomorrow evening. my mom and dad are coming into town for it (they live 40 minutes away in newport news). i'm going to attempt to decorate some this weekend, even though my roommate is completely anti-christmas. i am not. obviously. (which explains the garrish cheating in today's picks.)

1. colored lights. oh yes. when i was younger, i really hated colored lights. i approached christmas at a much more traditional angle, opting for white lights on a green tree with the standard hallmark ornaments. as my own style has grown and solidified over the years, i've gained a deep appreciation for vintage tinsel trees. you know - charlie brown gawked at them in "a charlie brown christmas". they made clunking sounds, and were portrayed as solid metal. awesome. you can't (read: shouldn't) put white lights on a tinsel tree. they beg for the rainbow treatment. so, in the event that i have white tinsel tree like i want this year, i'm throwing colored lights on it. 2. another cheat! i just blogged about this in a separate post, but i thought i'd summarize it here. i'm not a huge fan of the bond movies, but the books are top notch. i will be buying this beautifully designed quantum of solace anthology as soon as i find it at barnes and noble. 3. target ornament sets. if your family is anything like mine, their christmas trees aren't just christmas trees - they're investments that take years and years to perfect. my mom's christmas tree has been in the making since my brother and i were born. her mom's tree has taken even longer, consisting of over 50 years of a mix between vintage and modern ornaments. mine unfortunately tends to change ever year. that's why i love these convenient ornament kits you can buy at target. of course, you need to buy free-standing ornaments and accessories to really get your tree right, but these provide cheap and easy fillers while you perfect your own legacy. 4. and finally, another cheat. janelle monae, my new obsession. while you're out listening to britney's new album that you pirated (read: i pirated and burned you a copy), or kanye's new heartbreak, i'm jamming to a record that was released about 4 months ago. janelle's "metropolis" is a brilliant piece of r&b, pop, hip-hop, future love that stands out from every single one of her peers. where beyonce goes for the over-the-top diva, estelle opts for the reggae roots, and rihanna goes for the edgy teen-pop sensation, janelle goes for the weird. the eccentric. the concept album. (who does that anymore in the main stream?) you can read about it in the gushing post i made last week. i really, really love her, though.

before i stop this joke of a 40% post, check the holiday card i designed for this year. i might actually get them printed for once!

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