Monthly Archives: December 2008

Some Friends Are Poets

We’re having a POETRY READING! Come on over to the shop this Monday the 29th for some oh so lovely post-holiday-poetry from Lily Brown & Joshua Marie Wilkinson. The duo’s passin through town for a conference, and we at G&G are thrilled to hear their work with a little post read wine and hang. We’ll get going around 7pm at 18th and Treat Street of course!

One of my favorites from Lily:

Smaller Gulls Before

I want the tree a mile up to shakeMade by Sarajo Friden
its blond leaves to the pavement.

From my spot I think it odd that birds
don’t shit on us more often.
We’re right here ruining the sand.

I too further the obesity of gulls.
For years I’ve let them steal
my sandwiches and sealing wax.

That with which we stamp our selves
we stamp with our selves.
Sink of emblem in hot wax.
Lies that swap stories with heart.

Lily Brown is the author of two chapbooks, The Renaissance Sheet, published by Octopus Books in 2007, and Old with You, forthcoming from Kitchen Press very soon.  Her poems have appeared in Fence, Pleiades, Tarpaulin Sky, Handsome, and Coconut, among other journals.  She lives in Chicago.
Joshua Marie Wilkinson is the author of four books, most recently The Book of Whispering in the Projection Booth due out from Tupelo Press very soon. With Solan Jensen, he is the co-director of a tour film about the band Califone, also due out next year.  Born and raised in Seattle, he now lives in Chicago.

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Merry Merry!

Merry Happy Hurray! Lots of holiday love and sandy candy canes to all.

img_2425Nile and Uncle Bill making all the little ones’ wishes come true on Hanalei Bay.

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Aloha Arlo!

Baby Arlo is here! Baby Arlo is here!

Aunties have received word from Uncle Sam that Arlo has arrived, 8 lbs. 10 oz., healthy, happy, BORN AT HOME, and a boy once and for all! We send our great big congratulations, love, and promises of ever more nursery mural painting to Bronwen & Mickey and to your whole gorgeous family. LOVE!

Bron +LisaBron and Lisa just a day or two before Arlo decided to join us on the outside.

img_2367Arlo’s mama, daddy, aunt, and cousin beckoning him to come play with them.


Auntie hard at work, making sure the seaweed glows in the dark and the grass grows in compulsive little hills in time for Arlo’s arrival.

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Holiday Hours

Merry Merry all!

Try as we might to figure out an elegant solution to keep the shop open during the busiest shopping season of the year, all of us lady shopkeepers decided to dig out and spend time with our families instead. Which means, the shop will be closed from here on out to the new year. We do apologize if that means you were unable to grab that final pair of Slip ‘N Slips in time for stocking stuffing, but you see, such is often the pitfall of having super rad families.

That said, if you walk by and find the shop open, you’ll likely catch a rare sighting of the occasional lady shopkeeper Ms. Sarina Eastman taking some down time from her valiant battles with the inanimate, though very fierce, plastic dinosaur that lives on top of my closet, armed only with a rainbow throwing hippie crystal, to camp out at the shop with her puffy paints and take your money in exchange for goods. That will be a very good day.



img_2395Hooray Sarina!

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Faun Frolic Proposal

This amazing Kate Bush dance video looks like it was made in my backyard—the trees, the fog, the field, yes please. The dress looks like a costume my rogue auntie Barbara convinced my cousins and me to wear for a modernist interpretation of a faun frolic that she staged on my grandmother’s porch c.1991. And now I’m putting the invitation out there for any and all (starting with you, Wendo) to build on the inspiration laid down here, come to my backyard on the pronto, and manifest the second coming of Barb’s faun frolic c.2008.

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Shake It, Rule It

Last night I semi-slept through my first full on Bay Area lightening storm. What a thrill! I can’t recall ever having them when I lived in San Francisco. I’m counting it as an added advantage of moving  a bit north of the city and outside the protection of the Bay. However, the storm brought with it a smattering of hail and some serious bone chill. Lisa and I are working huddled by the fire through the day and still we are having to take intense boogie breaks to get the blood flowing. Per the recommendation of the ever-rad Sarina Eastman, we shake it to this:

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Kneass Boat Works

Ruth drifter

You see here Ruth Kneass hard at work on the beach and then her phenomenal results—necklaces made of washed up treasures, a bit of leather, a bit of enamel, some cast driftwood here and there, and a whole lot of love. Each one of a kind piece begins with a natural form and, dare I say, improves it. They feel very right. The cast silver ones lie weighty on your necklace-place, the long driftwood ones make for excellent worry stones.cast_trio_lgwrap_around_moons_lg1

And all this reminds me of one of my all time favorite poems, Sappho’s fragment 145, which has been translated variously by Mary Barnard and Anne Carson:

if you are squeamish don’t prod the

beach rubble


do not move stones

I’ve been hearing those lines over and over these past couple days as I comb the beach myself. The only trouble is, I’ve only got eyes for Ruth’s shapes. So it’s, “Oooo, look at this little shard, this little thorn. Maybe. I. Could. Paint a little moon. And. Then….” Ah, but she’s done it so well already. It is a great pleasure to offer them to you at the shop.


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Happy Thursday!


Looking forward to seeing everybody tonight!

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Shiny Things Holiday Party!

We here at Gravel & Gold do love shiny things.


This Thursday, December 11th, join us in banishing the dark early evening gloom with a little headstrong will to dress in shiny things, gather with friends, and make major merry down at the shop. We’ll provide the rarefied holiday beverages and, of course, spare shiny things for those in need of more shiny.

It’s been so long since we’ve had a party! It will be a huge gift to see you all again.

Love Love,

Nile, Lisa & Cass

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Intuitive Adult Witch Networking Workshops!


The wait is over. Honey Spell Master Dori Midnight has locked down some dates for her adult Witch School! Yessssssssssss!!! I’ll let her tell you all about it. Be sure to sign up before class fills up!dori-smile

After many years of teaching Witch School for kids, I am answering the pleas for Witch School for adults (and their inner children) beginning in January. I am starting out with a series of 3 classes, which will explore basic and beautiful elements of creating your own practice of whatever you want to call it: witchcraft, folk magic, earth based spirituality, woo woo deep play enchantment or mystical craft night for unicorns and those who love them. We will work with the elements, the ancestors, the spirits, the wheel of the year, a little plant medicine, and make things with sticks and fabric and sequins. All levels of experience and curiosity are welcome.

Witch School
A series of 3 Saturday evenings: January 17th, February 21st, March 14th
4:30pm- 7:30pm (get your witch on before you go out)
$100- $200 sliding scale for entire series (paying each month is fine) OR $50/class
work/trade available
Deposit due January 1st:

I am also doing an Intuitive Arts: Psychic Friends Network class this month, which is a excellent way to listen to your gut. I am of the belief that we all have the capacity to know and see more than meets the eye, and this workshop will help you get to know your own intuition. We will be doing exercises and learning practices to strengthen your relationship to your own way of knowing things- which you have always had. All levels of experience welcome!

Intuitive Arts: Psychic Friends Network
Friday, December 12th (full moon!)
$25-$60 sliding scale (work/trade options are full)

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Papa Was a Rollin’ Stone

Well do we know that awesome very often begats awesome, as can clearly be seen in these terrific old LIFE magazine shots of rock stars at home with their mamas and papas. Of course, the questions begs: Which is the radder of the two generations? Looking at these, I’m really not sure who I’d rather have over to play—Elton John or his mum Shelia showing a little coordinated snake skin leg.

Elton JohnElton + Fred + Shelia

Frank ZappaFrank + Francis + Rosemarie

David CrosbyDavid + Floyd

Eric ClaptonEric + his grandma Rose

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Ian Is 2 Months Old

lisa-and-ian-3Auntie Lisa and the big healthy little one, duly impressed with Auntie’s powa necklace.

ian-and-coReally, really hot times in my bedroom, just camping out with my friends and Lisa’s rainbow baby blanket.

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Vintage Thea Porter Market Under Threat


A warning to you, eBay seller kerrytaylorauctions of Pall Mall, London UK:

Look at it this way, you can either come down on your starting bids for these bodacious vintage Thea Porter kaftans (and certainly those inflated estimates―in GBP, no less, as though by halving the figure before my currency conversion aversion eyes, I might frantically begin to justify actually bidding on one or two or all) or else you ought to consider the potential for collapse in the bodacious vintage Thea Porter kaftan market on which your livelihood depends in light of the fact that if I cannot begin to justify paying such exorbitant prices for the pleasure of owning such perfect garments, then I just might have to begin designing and producing my own bodacious kaftans of such exquisite awesomeness that even the originals from the master’s own hands shall be eclipsed, causing every right-is-right mama (and the occasional rad lad) to redirect all their kaftan acquisition needs to my tiny shop, Gravel & Gold, and nobody will want these silly overpriced party muu-muus of Thea’s anyhow and then I’ll be scooping them up by the armload in the town free box because everyone’s dumped them, and even though I’ll be resting sweetly after nights of  tossing and turning, wondering who will own the yellow one if not me, who will own the plaid one if not me, even then―I’ll still be humming to myself, “All I want for Christmas, is you….” because there’s no denying who is who in the game of guru and disciple.





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