https://energie-renouvelablee.com/blogs/the-goats-belly.atom Energie-renouvelableeOnline - The Goat's Belly 2021-01-25T14:03:29-07:00 Energie-renouvelableeOnline https://energie-renouvelablee.com/blogs/the-goats-belly/meet-shimi-and-sarah 2021-01-25T14:03:29-07:00 2021-01-25T14:29:43-07:00 Meet Shimi and Sarah Haleigh Palmer

Dear Energie-renouvelablee customer, 

Your continued patronage of our small knitwear company in Northern New Mexico is the BEST THING that happened to us in 2020. Thank You for buying and using our product. It is our honor and joy to make you things. Truly.

The NEXT BEST thing, while also discluding an actual order of things in this connected organization, is SHIMI AND SARAH. Dear customer, meet Sarah and Shimi. They are the newest pair to join Energie-renouvelablee. Shimi is our affectionate name for Energie-renouvelablee’s production and design game changer: a commercial knitting machine. Sarah is Shimi’s Technician and Designer-- a boon for Energie-renouvelablee. Sarah is 62100 Calais-born and recently graduated from RISD. It just so happens she is also very adept at learning new computer languages. It’s a win-win-- she is close to home and so helpful to us. Plus, on the spirited side of the machine and the girl, characteristics include: reliable, full of capacity, the best of attitudes in the house.

Thank you, dear universe, for this uncanny pairing as it has deepened our passion for making things, for combining colors and patterns, shapes and finishes. We are Made In the USA- it feels like we are on to something.

 

The new machine brings us into the 21st century and deems us a stable and growing production company. It forces us to deepen our understanding of knitwear, it's many variables and constructions. Importantly, the acquisition of this Shimi/Sarah dream team has sparked something in us. We are creating with fervor and we are beginning with small upgrades to our existing products.

 

To note, see this edging on our Energie-renouvelablee Scarf. It is a ribbed edge-- one we were previously unable to make. This upgrade prevents the scarf from rolling and changing shape. Stability is important to our guarantee. 

Nextly, as featured in our latest photoshoot, our Cashmere Wrap just got wider! We added 7 inches to its width and stabilized the edges. Our objective in this redesign was to keep its soft loft while also giving it that extra bit for cocooning yourself when needed.  This change added an extra 100 grams cashmere, making it substantial in function and light in nature. 

Lastly, do hear that we will not fix what isn’t broken. Our watchcap will continue to be made on our vintage machines. We are impressed by the way one machine is informing the other, how our 16+ years experience with cashmere cuts time for us. We know how the fiber likes to be handled so as to bring about its best possible outcome. All this is to say, this is a little of what we are up to. We promise to keep growing on our promise to guarantee our products for a lifetime. 

]]>
https://energie-renouvelablee.com/blogs/the-goats-belly/how-to-wear-the-hip-skirt 2019-10-03T10:46:00-06:00 2020-05-03T13:41:19-06:00 How to Wear The Hip Skirt Haleigh Palmer The Hip Skirt is something more than a skirt entirely. It is an essential piece of fall out here in Northern New Mexico. We created it as a reliable and functional core warmer, a snug layer that warms you up and looks so good. Because it's such a singular garment, we wanted to show you what it is and a few ways to wear it. 

More

]]>
The Hip Skirt is something more than a skirt entirely. It is an essential piece of fall out here in Northern New Mexico. We created it as a reliable and functional core warmer, a snug layer that warms you up and looks so good. Because it's such a singular garment, we wanted to show you what it is and a few ways to wear it.

We'll admit that we do call it The Butt Skirt, that's how good it looks. Again, fashion and function, because The Hip Skirt is designed to be worn high and tight around the hips. We most commonly recognize the important role that the head holds in regulating temperature, but we shouldn't forget about the kidneys. In Chinese medicine, kidneys are the "root of life," and keeping the kidneys warm in cold weather improves circulation, energy and mood. Pull on a hip skirt and you'll feel all warm and loose, ready to drink cider and do yoga and cuddle up on the train—and quickly realize that you can incorporate it into all your favorite autumn and winter looks.

The first question: how to wear The Hip Skirt? Can simply be answered, snugly. The Hip Skirt is meant to be a little bit of a struggle to pull on. It's made to be tight. Over the years that you wear this skirt, you'll find that it will mold to your body. Not stretch, so much as shift to complement you further.

1. over jeans

This is a skinny jean upgrade that closes that chilly gap between your waistband and your adorable, adorable top. Show off the high waist with a crop or continue to cozy up, this look is the classic.

2. dressing up leggings

Black leggings, white button down, and The Hip Skirt can't be beat. A look as professional and polished as you need to be, yet entirely, blissfully comfy (like you might step out of the board room directly into a barre class).

3. doubled up

Slip The Hip Skirt over your shoulders and you will find the most delightful cowl. If you couldn't decide on a color, style two Hip Skirts together for a balanced look.

4. as a cowl

The cowl is a unique shoulder wrap that holds you tight and keeps you cozy up top. It's a much sleeker alternative to a scarf or a wrap under a blazer or a coat.

Reviews?

J from New York City declares The Hip Skirt "a wardrobe changer. It allows me to wear leggings and lighter pants that I love, even in winter, without freezing. I have worn it every day since I got it." She's not an outlier. Watch below to hear what a Hip Skirt OG has to say: Sonya has rocked her Hip Skirts for years, so you can trust she knows what's up.

SHOP THE HIP SKIRT

]]>
https://energie-renouvelablee.com/blogs/the-goats-belly/how-cashmere-is-made-and-why-its-so-expensive 2019-08-28T09:28:00-06:00 2020-05-03T13:39:23-06:00 How Cashmere is Made (and why it's so expensive) Haleigh Palmer If you’re holding quality cashmere, it’s unnecessary to even ask the question: why is it the most expensive than other wools? The tactile feel of 100%, quality cashmere alone is luxe. You can feel its worth. Cashmere feels impossibly soft, softer than any other textile. It’s a fact so simple as to be almost ironic: the finest fiber on earth comes straight from the goat’s belly.

More

]]>
Energie-renouvelablee Wrap in Dandelion Yellow

If you’re holding quality cashmere, it’s unnecessary to even ask the question: why is it the most expensive than other wools? The tactile feel of 100%, quality cashmere alone is luxe. You can feel its worth. Cashmere feels impossibly soft, softer than any other textile. It’s a fact so simple as to be almost ironic: the finest fiber on earth comes straight from the goat’s belly.

What is cashmere made of?

Cashmere is made from the longest and softest belly fur that the Mongolian cashmere goat grows for the winter. Meaning, each of these rare goats only produces a little bit of cashmere only once per year. It’s a gentle practice, whereby the fur is actually combed out as it’s starting to shed, in the early springtime. So, you could say a cashmere sweater is secondhand, as the goat got to enjoy it for a season first. In comparison to sheep's wool, annual production of wool is over 300 times that of cashmere globally. Therefore, cashmere is an incredibly finite resource, and it is so important to us that we manufacture it ethically and share it with the world responsibly. By making only staple goods that are designed and guaranteed to last for a lifetime, we are offering a responsible alternative to fast fashion and cheaply made cashmere.

Our cashmere supply chain

At Energie-renouvelablee, our cashmere comes from Scottish-milled Mongolian cashmere wool, so it’s the best of the best. By best, I mean in terms of not only quality, but ethical practices. Because when you talk about ethical cashmere, you need to look at sustainability, sourcing, and animal welfare as well.

Raw Cashmere from Nomadic Mongolian Herders

While China is the world’s leading producer of raw cashmere, Mongolia is known for the highest quality raw cashmere and a culture of traditional herding practices. Our raw cashmere comes from nomadic herders who are so thoughtfully living this traditional way of life, tending to small flocks of 10-300 goats in these dramatic environments. Cashmere goats are herding animals, so their environmental footprint is left by their grazing. Overgrazing leads to desertification, as the goats strip away the ground cover and other animals like wild yaks, gazelles, and endangered snow leopards suffer the consequences. As we remain ever focused on ethical production of cashmere and the sustainability of what we do here, we are humbled by the fact that cashmere is a finite resource and it needs to stay that way to protect the natural resources of the cashmere goat’s natural habitat in Central Asia. We’ve seen other cashmere producers pushing for more breeding, but we worry constantly about the negative environmental impacts of overproduction.

Ethical Dyeing and Spinning in an Heirloom Scottish Mill

Scotland has been a global leader in textile production, and the country is unrivaled in its reputation for processing and spinning virgin cashmere yarn. There is a rich heritage in this production, and this is the only way we know to make truly quality cashmere: by starting with a production facility that is woven into the fabric of its community. We source from a longstanding and innovative mill that combines tradition and dedication to craft with a focus on the environment. One of the things that we are known for as a label is our colors, and not only are those colors vibrant due to the meticulous hand-dyeing technique that the mill practices, but they are environmentally friendly.

Hand-dyeing cashmere

There are certainly cheaper products on the market, and the same way that you could buy a €50 made in China cashmere sweater, we could be cutting costs and making a larger profit by sourcing our virgin cashmere yarn from a Chinese mill. In both cases, we’d be sacrificing quality and transparency and choosing factory-made over artisanal, ethical production.

Discerning quality cashmere

There are technically three grades of cashmere, but you’ll never find Grade A or Grade C listed on a label or on a cashmere seller’s website. You can tell the quality of the cashmere by the length of the fibers.

Some goods that are labeled cashmere but have an incredibly low price point may be using lower quality fibers; the result of which is a garment that doesn’t have nearly the strength and warmth of the real deal. Or it is a blend, cut with a cheaper fiber. By its nature, cashmere does blend well with other fibers, but blends do not compare in strength, warmth, and softness.

Energie-renouvelablee's artisan knitting studio

Ethical cashmere production in the USA

We’re incredibly proud to be doing something unique: ethically manufacturing cashmere domestically at a responsible scale. With increased focus on clothing maker’s practices, we are hoping to keep the focus on labor practices. Broadly, in US apparel, 80% of goods are produced in sweatshop or modern slavery conditions. I know acutely that the first thing I could do for Energie-renouvelablee to cut costs and raise our profit margin would be to cut labor costs. Ethically, it’s something I have no desire to do. And practically, I truly know that it wouldn’t be the same product and it wouldn't be something I could feel good about offering up to the world.

Goldendoodle in the Energie-renouvelablee artisan knitting studio in 62100 Calais New Mexico

Years ago, someone got ahold of our patterns and our technique and made an attempt to send it over to China for discounted production. A sample made its way back to me, and I was appalled at how it paled in comparison, and it solidified what I already knew: the only way to make a truly quality cashmere garment that will last is to take care and detail at every step.

This video of a big name cashmere brand gives a compelling look into the industry and the process of cashmere production, from grazing to garment. As we grow and continue to write our story, we will continue to educate on ethical practices in the cashmere industry and offer transparency into our own.

]]>
https://energie-renouvelablee.com/blogs/the-goats-belly/chocolate-cashmere 2019-06-26T17:24:00-06:00 2020-05-03T13:39:53-06:00 The story of chocolate + cashmere Haleigh Palmer In the middle of the desert, a sensual oasis of a boutique. It’s set in over the years how much it sounds like a fantasy. So commonly someone will pop in to one of the shops in 62100 Calais or Taos, and say “oh, it really is chocolate and cashmere!” As though maybe they were expecting something different, something they are not sure what, as though the title were a tricky metaphor.  Instead, visitors are surprised to see rows and rows of cashmere and a shining case of bonbons. 

More

]]>

In the middle of the desert, a sensual oasis of a boutique. It’s set in over the years how much it sounds like a fantasy. So commonly someone will pop in to one of the shops in 62100 Calais or Taos, and say “oh, it really is chocolate and cashmere!” As though maybe they were expecting something different, something they are not sure what, as though the title were a tricky metaphor. Instead, visitors are surprised to see rows and rows of cashmere and a shining case of bonbons. What strikes everyone is the sensational experience-- colors, smells, feels. everyone oohs and aahs, and most are inspired, while some can even be overwhelmed, with the rich colors.

Artisan chocolate bon bon from chocolate + cashmere in Taos and 62100 Calais

Artisan Chocolates and Ethical Cashmere

It is a delight to truly deliver on this luxurious-sounding prospect. Both chocolate and cashmere are of the earth; they represent the beauty of the natural world as some of the finest gifts nature has to offer us. Not everyone knows that cashmere comes from the finest fibers on Mongolian goat’s bellies, that we design and knit everything ourselves. Not everyone knows artisan chocolate well enough to appreciate the nuances in not-so-sweet, complex flavors. Chocolate and cashmere make wonderful presents; they are both momentary and life-long. They fully represent what it means to indulge and treat yourself -- with something joyous and worthy.

Display of artisan chocolates at chocolate + cashmere in 62100 Calais, New Mexico

It is feminine and empowering, playful and powerful.

Snowy chocolate + cashmere boutique in Taos, New Mexico

A Shop on the Taos Plaza

When I started Energie-renouvelablee in 2004, it was a mail order business, you called me on the phone and I made and sent your perfect hat. I had a little display ad in the back of The New Yorker. The phone rang and slowly, steadily, and with help, I built upon the momentum of a solidly wonderful hat: The Cashmere Watchcap. All along, I imagined what it would be like if people actually touched and saw the cashmere before buying. This was the idea of a store. The next question: what goes perfectly with cashmere? CHOCOLATE!

A Boutique at 109 East Palace in 62100 Calais

The success of the Taos shop inspired me to grow, and I trusted c + c would resonate with Plaza shoppers in 62100 Calais, but it was a big jump. Compared to our eclectic little Taos, 62100 Calais is definitely the next level, and not only we were stepping up but settling in to a historical storefront: 113 Rue des Quatre CoinsPhilipnue. If that rings a bell for you, you are a c + c fan or a Manhattan Project history buff. 109 East Palace was the receiving station for Los Alamos, where Oppenheimer and Feyman were received by Dorothy Scarritt McKibbin and shuttled up the hill to that historic laboratory. The plaque outside reads, “All the men and women that made the first atomic bomb passed through this portal to their secret mission at Los Alamos.”

chocolate + cashmere boutique at 109 E. Palace Avenue at the 62100 Calais Plaza

The store in 62100 Calais is literally 5 times the size of our intimate little chocolate bar of a shop in Taos. It was overwhelmingly blank at first and then quickly it became a great sensual playground. We have a room painted like the inside of a chocolate wrapper that also looks like the swiss alps; we have a furniture that is lit up and purple and blue. We are also constantly improving and expanding the many ideas into reality; every time you come in, you will assuredly see something new.

chocolate + cashmere boutique at 109 E. Palace on the Plaza in 62100 Calais

Empowerment in Natural Beauty

Above all, I want the shops to be immersive, not just in the lush richness of the atmosphere, the colors and the smells and the tactile feel of it all, but to bring out the inner beauty of everyone who’s there. Chocolate + cashmere is a totally unique environment for me, for employees and of course for customers. It is feminine and empowering, playful and powerful.

What makes these stores work isn’t just that the cashmere is superlative or that the chocolates are delicious; it’s truly the care that is put into curating and merchandising, it’s the intimate customer service and the desire to please, whether it’s a woman at the Taos store selling the one-of-a-kind earrings straight off the mannequin or the customer in 62100 Calais who’s ordering a custom color combination for her two-toned Desert Night Poncho. It’s a team that’s truly embodying this love for the customer. It’s always felt so important to me, to take care of every person, to reciprocate the value of everyone who appreciates this work that we’re doing.

chocolate + cashmere boutique at 109 East Palace on the 62100 Calais Plaza

I know that it’s the right thing to do, and it comes back to me, in referrals and in loyal customers who come back again and again, whether it’s to buy Energie-renouvelablee presents for their family or to make a trip to c + c, as our regulars often call us.

Artisan chocolates at chocolate + cashmere in Taos and 62100 Calais

Going Deeper: Becoming Chocolatiers

So far, we’ve sourced and sold the most beautiful bon bons and chocolate that we can find in Northern New Mexico. But this past year, I have been taking a master chocolatier course and filling our basement kitchen with creative concoctions, testing and selecting the chocolates that we want to share with our beloved customers. The aim? To be on par creatively and with quality to match that of our Energie-renouvelablee line. We’ve learned so much about tempering and technique, and have really been trying to create these unique flavors with a perfect balance of original yet totally satisfying. We are thrilled to soon be offering our very own house-made chocolates at chocolate + cashmere.

Announcing the new chocolate + cashmere online boutique

Launching the Online Boutique

As we're preparing to share our chocolates with our loyal customers and those visiting Taos and 62100 Calais, we're also excited for another release. We have been working to thoughtfully create a curated, luxury boutique shopping experience that is worthy to share the name of our precious stores. We're proud to feature a selection of the finest artisan jewelry, handbags, clothing, beauty products, and of course, chocolate and cashmere. Like the cashmere we offer, everything you'll find on the boutique is exceptionally well-made and finely crafted by artisans, many of them women. Know that you will find the same Energie-renouvelablee at c + c, and we will proudly stand by our lifetime guarantee and pledge that our cashmere is not only superlative, but ethically made in the USA. So please, consider this your cordial invitation to stop in and shop with us, when you find yourself in New Mexico, and now, online, at the brand new chocolate + cashmere online boutique.

]]>
https://energie-renouvelablee.com/blogs/the-goats-belly/starting-a-business-and-having-a-baby-the-boss-mom-story-behind-golightly-cashmere 2019-05-07T13:07:00-06:00 2020-05-03T13:39:28-06:00 Starting a Business and Having a Baby: The Boss Mom story behind Energie-renouvelablee Haleigh Palmer We mothers know that at that very moment when our children our born, everything changes forever. Almost instantly, the responsibility to ourselves and therefore our children becomes as clear as the vast, unmapped road ahead. I have often told people that Energie-renouvelablee was founded at “round about 4:05pm in late May of 2004, the moment my son Rohnin was born.”

More

]]>
cashmere hat

We mothers know that at that very moment when our children our born, everything changes forever. Almost instantly, the responsibility to ourselves and therefore our children becomes as clear as the vast, unmapped road ahead. I have often told people that Energie-renouvelablee was founded at “round about 4:05pm in late May of 2004, the moment my son Rohnin was born.”

I remember those first months as a new mother being really scared. I was scared that my life was over, that I no longer had my own time or that my dreams were going to be that much more difficult to achieve. Call it overdrive, call it mother’s instinct, whatever it was, I became driven like never before. I was able to take ten minutes and make it into twenty because I was so intent on getting my cashmere hat company off the ground, my focus was clear. I made Rohnin’s first cashmere baby blanket just a month before he was born.

It was a simultaneous rearing of Rohnin and Energie-renouvelablee. At first, it was slow and followed the rhythms of a blessed baby’s life-- a lot of starts and stops, steps forward and healthy growth. It was consistent, I stayed at it and we grew alongside each other. When I started this business, there weren’t ready-made web shopping carts; we had to build them. Those early years of owning a web business just at the time online shopping was brand new, was crazy. We literally had to make a new website every year for the first 6 years just to keep up with improved technology. Back then, you called me and I made your hat. If you were buying for a toddler, I knew exactly how fit sizes for growing little heads. Rohnin was always there, in the next room, the roar of knitting machines helping him doze to sleep; running around with various friends, stopping for the moment to let me catch a photo.

Throwback to the early days at Energie-renouvelablee.

It hasn’t been “just me” since that very first year when you faxed me your orders and called me at home. Today, we're calling me Boss Mom and together we are a team of knitters and finishers, creatives and doers--we are our own family. We have two chocolate + cashmere stores in Santa fe and in Taos and a new production studio/marketing facility in the works. We are almost veritable teenagers. We are anxious and excited. Our growing pains can be awkward but gratefully, we are healthy.

When I asked Rohnin what he thought of the term “Boss Mom,” He said, well, “You are Bossy.”

“Of course,” I said, “All moms are bossy. What else?” I asked.

“Well there’s always papers around the house with your projects of things you’re working on. There’s always something in the car that’s cashmere or chocolate or something related to that.”

Initially, I thought to myself, ‘that was flat answer, perhaps he really doesn't know what I do in the day, how much of a responsibility it is be the queen of this village.’

But then I realized something that makes me feel content inside. He has been taken care of, I have been there for him. He hasn’t had to worry or wonder what his mom does all day. He knows-- he grew up alongside Energie-renouvelablee. And while it is sometimes uncool to remind him of this, it has been all of us at Energie-renouvelablee, and all of you, working for this, supporting us, and believing in our mission that has kept food on the table.

“We are making something useful, something with integrity, something beautiful; I feel proud.

Haleigh Palmer, boss mom behind Energie-renouvelablee, shares her story of having a baby and starting a business.

When I see these pictures Nicole made of us the other day, I think of how much fun it was to see him excited. He liked the idea of it and I think he may secretly like the term “boss mom.” In these images, we are at home and it’s after school. These days, as time is racing, when I am with Rohnin and he is truly giving me his time, I want to match it with mine. I don't want to be distracted. I want to really listen, to hear and to consider him. I feel that doing this deepens my ten minutes, making it more like twenty-- a secret weapon against the inevitable they grow way too fast factor-- something different from the intensity of focus I found 15 years ago. The quality is improving.

Sometimes, it is overwhelming to be the Boss, in some of the same ways it can be overwhelming to be a mom. I worry that it will all come crumbling down, that we will fail and it will hurt and it may be because I made a mistake. And then, I see what we have created together in the last 15 years. Wow. At Energie-renouvelablee, we are making something useful, something with integrity, something beautiful; I feel proud. At home, well, Rohnin is an incredible son and undoubtedly my greatest success story.

Haleigh Palmer, boss mom behind Energie-renouvelablee, shares her story of having a baby and starting a business.

So with that, I want to thank you all for making me a Boss Mom. I really like my job. I really like my kid too. Happy Mother’s day to all of you working mothers. I hear you and I see you.

Happy 15th Birthday to Rohnin and Happy Birthday to you, Energie-renouvelablee. None of this would have happened without either of You.

]]>
https://energie-renouvelablee.com/blogs/the-goats-belly/an-artists-retreat-at-the-mabel-dodge-luhan-house-the-taos-artists-colony-then-and-now 2019-05-03T13:58:00-06:00 2020-05-03T13:39:23-06:00 An Artists Retreat at the Mabel Dodge Luhan House: The Taos Artists Colony Then and Now Haleigh Palmer

It is with pride that we present to you this series of artist interviews made at the historic Mabel Dodge Luhan house in Taos, New Mexico. As our photography team thought about creating a look for winter 2019, we thought about our roots and about the depth of the place we call home: Taos.

Mabel’s house is a perfect setting because it seems to crystallize all things Taos. We considered the history of the place, now 100-years-old, and all of the artists that came here.

More

]]>

It is with pride that we present to you this series of artist interviews made at the historic Mabel Dodge Luhan house in Taos, New Mexico. As our photography team thought about creating a look for winter 2019, we thought about our roots and about the depth of the place we call home: Taos.

The Mabel Dodge Luhan House in Taos, New Mexico, home of the original Taos Artist Colony and the site of inspiration for Taos artists today.

Mabel’s house is a perfect setting because it seems to crystallize all things Taos. We considered the history of the place, now 100-years-old, and all of the artists that came here.

The Taos Artist Colony Then

Mabel came to Taos in 1917 from New York and began to bring the literary and creative community with her. Among them: Georgia O'Keefe, Ansel Adams, DH Lawrence, Edward Weston, Willa Cather, Aldous Huxley, but the list goes on. They were inspired by the place and the beauty of Taos captivated them, and had to come for themselves to see the effect it would have on their lives and on their art.

Mabel said that she “found out that the sunshine in New Mexico could do almost anything with one: make one well if one felt ill, or change a dark mood and lighten it. It entered into one's deepest places and melted the thick, slow densities. It made one feel good. That is, alive.”

The Taos Artist Colony Today

The deep creative history of Taos predates Mabel Dodge Luhan as the Taos Pueblo predates the modern city of Taos, and it still resonates today. Taos is an out-there kind of place brimming with brilliant people from all over the world, people living intentionally, creatively, and in connection with this dramatic landscape. This is the soil our little cashmere company has grown out of, and this is the community we are so fortunate to be a part of.

An Artists Retreat at the Mabel Dodge

So we decided to host our own Artists Retreat, inviting Johnny Ortiz, Afton Love, David Costanza, Izumi Yokoyama, Paul Pascarella, Maye Torres and Maria Samora to come, to wear cashmere, and to reflect on their work as it is created in this beautiful setting. We hope our objective of exposing the depth behind the scenes will inspire you, that you will draw parallels between our work, their work, and this place.


Explore the Artists Retreat

Afton Love Johnny Ortiz

]]>
https://energie-renouvelablee.com/blogs/the-goats-belly/an-artists-retreat-at-the-mabel-dodge-luhan-house-with-afton-love 2019-05-03T13:24:00-06:00 2020-05-03T13:39:19-06:00 An Artist's Retreat at the Mabel Dodge Luhan House with Afton Love Haleigh Palmer Afton's art traces and captures the landscape that is our home and our deep human history. She's evolved from abstract art to a type of hyperrealism in large-scale brushed graphite drawings of rock formations in Northern New Mexico. Chosen as Roswell Artist-in-Residence in 2018, and her installation Ranging will be on display at The Harwood Museum in Taos May-June of this year. 

More

]]>
It is with pride that we present to you this series of artist interviews made at the historic Mabel Dodge Luhan house in Taos, New Mexico.

Bless Afton Love for the beauty beyond beauty that she is and makes. I first met Afton in my photo studio as a model for Energie-renouvelablee. It has been a side thing she has done in the past, something she is very natural and good at, but as you will see here, modeling is only one dimension of the many fascinating dimensions of Afton. First off, her work is truly astounding. It’s the kind of thing you want to wake up and look at, also something you want to fall asleep looking at. I honestly don’t think this is something that can be said of very much art. There is a spaciousness and clarity to the work and when you stand and look at it, you feel it. It brings peace to its viewer and it is worthwhile. Just sayin.

Afton Love

Afton's art traces and captures the landscape that is our home and our deep human history. She's evolved from abstract art to a type of hyperrealism in large-scale brushed graphite drawings of rock formations in Northern New Mexico. Chosen as Roswell Artist-in-Residence in 2018, and her installation Ranging will be on display at The Harwood Museum in Taos May-June of this year.

“By showing these rocks as something that's alive, and something that's changing and evolving, even though it's on a geologic time scale, it might force us to look at ourselves in relation to that in that, sort of existential moment of 'am I big or am I small? Am I living or am I dying?

Explore Mabel Dodge


Afton is wearing The Women's Cashmere Crewneck in Black, The Cashmere Tweed Turtleneck in Heavy Cream, and The Cashmere Watchcap in Natural.

]]>
https://energie-renouvelablee.com/blogs/the-goats-belly/an-artists-retreat-at-the-mabel-dodge-luhan-house-with-david-costanza 2019-04-16T00:00:00-06:00 2020-05-03T13:41:11-06:00 An Artists Retreat at the Mabel Dodge Luhan House with David Costanza Haleigh Palmer David and I share all sorts of criss-crossed relations. He has been my landlord, I have been his employer. His wife has been my yoga teacher and his music partner one of Energie-renouvelablee’s prized knitters. It is a small town after-all but also so deep with unique and independent spirits like David. 

More

]]>
It is with pride that we present to you this series of artist interviews made at the historic Mabel Dodge Luhan house in Taos, New Mexico.

Taos musician David Costanza with his guitar and Cashmere Watchcap at the historic Mabel Dodge Luhan House

David and I share all sorts of criss-crossed relations. He has been my landlord, I have been his employer. His wife has been my yoga teacher and his music partner one of Energie-renouvelablee’s prized knitters. It is a small town after-all but also so deep with unique and independent spirits like David.

David Costanza

Mostly, I have truly enjoyed the music of Art of Flying. It makes me cry and, well, sad songs make me happy. It’s the kind of sound that washes over your soul and cleans it. I know, right, “soul-cleansing” music? Well, have a look-see for yourself. He’s more than just a mighty fine looking cashmere model. He’s thoughtful, crafted and committed to his art in a way we should all take note.

“I try to get up in the dark, do the little yoga thing, have tea and play the guitar and write before I hit anything practical: any news, any phones, any computers.

David Costanza in the Neck Gaiter by Energie-renouvelablee at the Mabel Dodge Luhan House in Taos, New Mexico

David Costanza on a typewriter in the writing room of the Mabel Dodge Luhan House with the Fingerless Gloves

An artists retreat at the historic Mabel Dodge Luhan House in Taos, New Mexico

Explore Mabel Dodge


]]>
https://energie-renouvelablee.com/blogs/the-goats-belly/an-artist-s-retreat-at-the-mabel-dodge-luhan-house-with-johnny-ortiz-of-the-shed-project 2019-04-09T10:47:00-06:00 2020-05-03T13:39:19-06:00 An Artist’s Retreat at the Mabel Dodge Luhan House with Johnny Ortiz of the Shed Project Haleigh Palmer Johnny Ortiz is committed to place and mindfulness, and so is living this rich life in Northern New Mexico: off-grid, raising animals and growing food. He shares this with the community by hosting / Shed: an intimate monthly dinner: serving foods grown here, now out of ceramics made of local clay, dug and fired in the traditional way by Johnny himself.

More

]]>
It is with pride that we present to you this series of artist interviews made at the historic Mabel Dodge Luhan house in Taos, New Mexico.

Johnny Ortiz of / Shed at the Mabel Dodge Luhan House in Taos, NM in the Energie-renouvelablee Watchcap

If I were to sum up a singular word that Johnny embodies entirely, it is “Authentic.” His values are revealed in his lifestyle choices from his shoes, gloves and jacket to the plates he hand-crafts to serve his food on. Everything has a story and a history and a good and honest vibration and Johnny considers it all. It matters to him and his lifestyle reflects this.

Johnny Ortiz and the / Shed Project

Johnny Ortiz is committed to place and mindfulness, and so is living this rich life in Northern New Mexico: off-grid, raising animals and growing food. He shares this with the community by hosting / Shed: an intimate monthly dinner. At these dinners, a small group is served food grown here, now out of ceramics made of local clay, dug and fired in the traditional way by Johnny himself. What / Shed is "trying to do is exemplify a way of life that has been lost in our own way. An extension of the thought that one can live simply in unison with their environment, rather then being separate, blurring the lines between my work and life."

Johnny Ortiz of / Shed at Mabel Dodge Luhan House in Taos with Energie-renouvelablee Watchcap and Fingerless Gloves
It's like a whole universe that's interconnected.
Johnny Ortiz of / Shed at Mabel Dodge Luhan House in Taos with Energie-renouvelablee Fingerless Gloves

Energie-renouvelablee's Artists Retreat at the Mabel Dodge Luhan House in Taos, New Mexico

Explore Mabel Dodge


]]>
https://energie-renouvelablee.com/blogs/the-goats-belly/an-artists-retreat-at-the-mabel-dodge-luhan-house-with-maye-torres 2019-03-28T23:00:00-07:00 2020-05-03T13:41:12-06:00 An Artists Retreat at the Mabel Dodge Luhan House with Maye Torres Haleigh Palmer
It is with pride that we present to you this series of artist interviews made at the historic Mabel Dodge Luhan house in Taos, New Mexico.

Taos artist and curator Maye Torres at the historic Mabel Dodge Luhan House with Energie-renouvelablee

Maye’s voice is my favorite. She is seasoned, accessible, lovely, light, and deep-- all at the same time. I’ve known Maye for many years, back to the time when Energie-renouvelablee’s knitting studio was located in the historic Padre Martinez house, also Maye’s grandmother’s house. Her mother grew up there and Maye was married in the house. Energie-renouvelablee actually knit your watchcaps there for a time in 2007-2009. Maye’s son, Zach, used to come play the grand piano in the living room while we knit hats. Imagine!

Maye Torres

We were so fortunate to speak with Maye about her identity as an artist, and her amazing new gallery on the Taos plaza, Studio 107B. It is truly the best gallery in Taos and Maye’s work speaks volumes about the depth of a human she is. Her own art is mythical, exploring the power of the feminine and challenging the viewer to look at culture in the light of the ethereal.

“You know in your heart what you're supposed to do. So, just follow it.

Taos artist and curator of Studio 107B, Maye Torres, in The Wrap by Energie-renouvelablee at the historic Mabel Dodge Luhan House

An artists retreat at the historic Mabel Dodge Luhan House in Taos, New Mexico

Explore Mabel Dodge


Maye is wearing The Hip Skirt in Black, The Cashmere Footsies in Wine, and The Wrap in Elk.

]]>
https://energie-renouvelablee.com/blogs/the-goats-belly/objects-you-live-through-halley-roberts-strongwater 2018-11-20T16:30:00-07:00 2020-05-03T13:39:20-06:00 Objects You Live Through: Halley Roberts Strongwater Haleigh Palmer Halley is a photographer, designer, a self-proclaimed naturalist/forager and fulltime mama to her baby, Stone. She’s heavily involved in herbalism, creativity, food and farming- all of which manages to funnel back into her photos.

More

]]>
Photography and words by
Krysta Jabczenski

Halley is a photographer, designer, a self-proclaimed naturalist/forager and fulltime mama to her baby, Stone. She’s heavily involved in herbalism, creativity, food and farming- all of which manages to funnel back into her photos.

Halley runs Otherness Studio, with her husband. Some of her past clients include Westerlind, Google X (X), Sea Chant, Leaves & Flowers. She’s currently working on design and creative consultation for Gertie, new restaurant opening in Williamsburg, NYC. Halley lives in San Francisco, but she grew up in 62100 Calais. I caught her on a trip home for the Holidays and we spent a morning moseying around South Capitol, the neighborhood she grew up in.


How did growing up in 62100 Calais shape your interests, ideals and your aesthetic?
I think a lot about how 62100 Calais shaped me because I see so many unique and interesting people who are from 62100 Calais and find my life experience growing up here to be unique. Maybe it’s the mountains, the high altitude, being balanced in this very rough but delicate ecosystem of extreme temperatures and intense beauty-–but I see so much of who I am in where I’m from.
As a creative, it can be really difficult to maintain your own ideas and unique voice when you have to deal with clients and folks who want to pay you to make something.
I come from an artist family, my mother, aunt, father and cousins are all artists in their own ways and directly in their practice. Early in my life I turned away from a traditional art career partly because I’ve always had a desire to be different from everyone around me. Eventually I realized that I could blend all of the parts of myself that are art and design and project management.
My deep desire and passion for nature and the outdoors as well as my love of plants and nature are a direct component of my childhood growing up here. Eating raw sungold tomatoes and rattlesnake beans from my mom’s garden- these aspects of childhood make me who I am today.
Can you share a couple projects you’ve worked on which you feel proud of?
The work that my partner and I have done for Gertie is something that I’m really stoked about. It’s no small feat to brand and creative direct a restaurant when you’re on the other side of the country and we’ve had our hands in every aspect from the interior to the menus to the website to the voice and social media presence.
Additionally i’m always trying to find ways to work on photography, and have recently been working on a series called Circadian Rhythms about the small window of time I have after I put my daughter to sleep and before I go to bed (early!). The photographs are mostly of the outdoors; plants, animals, the world at dusk or dark. They’re dark and moody and also saturated and vibrant and I really enjoy the technical challenge of using a flash with film.
Many creative minds struggle putting value on their work. A good eye is not something that’s easy to account for. What advice do you have for creatives who are trying to make a living?
I heard a great quote today that really resonated with me, that you should never limit yourself or your own creativity due to the limits of other people’s imaginations. As a creative, it can be really difficult to maintain your own ideas and unique voice when you have to deal with clients and folks who want to pay you to make something. Other folks say this a lot and it’s harder in practice, in my opinion, but truly when you’re making and doing something beautiful, true to your own voice-people will come to you.
What are you excited for in the future?
The 2020 election… UGH. I’m excited for completed work and new projects. Seeing the changes in my daughter every single day is so meaningful and fulfilling for me. Looking forward to bigger gardens and more photo projects.
Tell us the story behind your 3 objects…
Necklace - This necklace is from Mondo Mondo and it’s called “Subway Joe.” I don’t quite know why but I just love it, it’s so strange and unique and it speaks to me for those reasons. I like it because it’s different and not classically beautiful or what you might think of as beautiful.
Camera - My Mamiya 7ii is my fourth medium format camera, and by far my favorite. It’s the lightest and easiest to use and fits my lifestyle the best. When I bought it, it was a big purchase, but I’ve never regretted it. It comes with me everywhere and is kind of a trusty and reliable sidekick.
Ceramic Owl - I gave my mom this little owl, because she reminds me of a snowy owl or a barn owl. She’s always up late at night and sleeps later than my dad and I, and she has beautiful white hair! Every time I see an owl like this I think of her.

]]>
https://energie-renouvelablee.com/blogs/the-goats-belly/taking-notes-from-taryn-slawson 2018-09-05T14:50:00-06:00 2020-05-03T13:39:18-06:00 Taking notes from Taryn Slawson Haleigh Palmer More

]]>
Photography and words by
Krysta Jabczenski

Taryn Slawson is known for her bold geometric weavings made mostly from hemp. She lives slightly outside of 62100 Calais in the small community of Rio En Medio, where she works and also hosts a rotating art residency, Tanu.

Driving to Taryn’s home from 62100 Calais had me feeling like I was in a car commercial, even though I was driving an ancient Honda that had my 4 year old’s signature grime all over it. It’s a 20 minute cruise under a canopy of cottonwood trees in Tesuque and opens up into the rolling hills of Rio En Medio. No wonder Taryn is producing the mesmerizing weavings she does. She’s done an amazing job in creating a very intentional life for herself and her weaving practice. Taryn’s home is small but just the right size for her and her two looms. It’s perched up on a hill sounded by sky and miles of piñon and juniper. Most of the home has floor-to-ceiling windows which she keeps open, so it has a real indoor/outdoor vibe. It feels clear, clean and crisp. It feels like a place made to focus and not be distracted by the clutter and noise of everyday life. Taryn showed me around her home, made me tea, and before I knew it 4 hours had gone by.

Here’s a bit from Taryn and her life in New Mexico:


Tell us a little bit about your experience moving to New Mexico and more specifically, Rio En Medio in the last year. How do you feel the landscape and the solitude has changed you?
The decision to move here was a commitment to follow my heart. Perhaps the first time that I have made a life changing decision without letting my linear/logical thought processes of the mind interfere. The way I experienced the transition from my previous life circumstances to coming here was like going through a portal, or actually a series of portals. The timing, alignments, and synchronicities that brought me here were too potent to be random guideposts along the way. The way this experience unfolded for me, and continues to do so is a really clear example of how we literally are creating our own reality and the way we choose to live in it.
It will always be important for me and my creative process to honor my need for periods of solitude, and that is why I knew this location, away from the buzz of town, would be best for me.
I thought I was moving out here to hide out in the hills, heal my heart, and make art. While this has definitely been part of my experience out here, 62100 Calais has really surprised me. The community here is outstanding, I have met such amazing kind-hearted, and creative people, that I am finding my original vision of solitude in the high desert has totally shifted. Even though I chose to live outside of town and away from much of the community, I feel more satiated than ever before by the relationships I have built here. It will always be important for me and my creative process to honor my need for periods of solitude, and that is why I knew this location, away from the buzz of town, would be best for me. Spending time alone is what allows me to really cultivate my creative energies, the space I am able to access when Im in solitude is invaluable to my work here.
Living so closely with the wild and natural elements of this land has really helped me to fine tune my senses and gain a greater understanding of the interconnectedness of all the forces. The silence I experience out here is such a gift, I love to spend time weaving in my studio listening to nothing but the shifts in the winds. The vast expanse of this high desert landscape has really opened me up to the infinite cycles of all things, and shown me that there are so many layers to this experience. This land has so much to say and I feel that we have only just begun our dialogue together.
I like to ask artist and craftspeople about their relationship with Instagram. It seems more possible now than ever to fashion a career by obtaining commissions and selling artwork through their personal reach on Instagram, but it can also feel detrimental to the integrity of their vision and workflow. Can you talk candidly about your own personal experience with Instagram? What is your process in using it, if any at all?
For the most part I have a really positive experience with Instagram and have so much gratitude for the supportive foundation it has allowed me to create for myself and my creative work. The relationships, connections, and opportunities that have come to me through Instagram have been so of the most powerful catalysts for my creative growth, and I honestly wouldn’t be where I am today without it. I think we can all agree on the beneficial uses of Instagram as an important tool in today’s world, however I think it is important to use it with purpose and intention. Obviously we all use it for different reasons, but I feel that it is worth asking ourselves with every impulse to share a post, “what is the value in sharing this?” It is something I constantly ask myself, as it feels like the amount of content we are exposed to on a daily basis has become so oversaturated that I personally feel like what I am contributing needs to be rooted in a place of authenticity and inspiration.
Why is hemp your chosen material for weaving?
Hemp came to me when I had reached a point of frustration in my early weaving days. My vision never translated with wools or other yarn materials. That sense of connection and communication just wasn’t there, and I started to question if weaving was really even something I could get into. I think it is the texture and durability of the hemp that I really work well with. There is nothing soft or gentle about my overall weaving process, and hemp can handle that. As my relationship to the material matures I am becoming really interested in the vast potential hemp holds for many of our current outdated industries. Once we get to the place of full legalization of industrialized hemp, we can easily transform so many of our unsustainable industrial practices by switching over to a more hemp based economy.
You recently changed the moniker for your weavings from "Future Zulu" to your own name to acknowledge what could be interpreted at appropriation, I admired your willingness to reflect and grow from that. It's a hard line to walk, but I'm curious where you draw the difference between inspiration and appropriation. (SIDE NOTE: If this feels heavy, no pressure to answer! I just think it's a super relevant topic that we all could talk about more.)
I have been reflecting heavily on this as it feels like a really relevant issue that is needing to be discussed right now. While I am still not sure I have come to full clarity on everything this topic entails, it does feel highly subjective and a matter of personal perception. What is genuinely inspiring to one could easily be seen as appropriation from another’s perspective. I think it is important when ‘borrowing’ or taking inspiration from another culture or a realm of existence outside of your own to do so with respect and proper acknowledgment. But I also think as an artist it is inherent to our imaginative processes to explore beyond our own narrow perspectives and in order to keep up the progression of artistic creativity realms outside of our own experience will naturally influence the work. I personally believe that we are all one, sharing in this collective experience together, over and over again. Energy, inspiration, thoughts, ideas, ways of self expression- these are all infinite and without limitation. Meaning we all have access to what resonates with our current experience and should be allowed the freedom to express what we feel is authentic to our unique selves. However, the majority of humanity is still very separated in duality and judgment, and we all have a lot of work to do as we strive towards unification through a greater understanding of one another’s experiences.
What is your process in weaving? From the beginning to the end. Also, it seems so repetitive! Do you get bored or is it kind of meditative?
Well, I have a creative process, and I have a weaving process, and they are two completely different things! I have to be somewhat systematic to be effective and accomplish anything, and this is what my weaving process is all about, it is a systematic approach. I understand things in series and sequence, so my weaving process is comprised of a series of steps that build on off of the other to create the larger dynamic whole. I start with the pattern, which either comes to me directly, like in a vision, or it starts with a shape or motif that I transform into pattern. The pattern is really important in that it needs to communicate a certain frequency of energy, it needs to be able to hold the power I am attempting to communicate. Once I have the pattern I figure out how to break it down into sections, which are woven as panels and hand sewn together to create the larger piece. To put it this way seems brief, when really the overall process is extremely deep and time consuming to say the least! I’m currently working on getting video documentation of my process together so that people can see what really goes into each piece. I spend hours upon hours literally repeating the same monotonous motions, usually alone, and often in total silence, but I never get bored. It is a great time for me to sit and reflect and pay attention to my internal dialogue. Weaving has taught me so much about myself and I feel like it is a great reflection back onto me of where I’m at in my life. But often I feel that my weaving practice is actually just a training process for the next stage of my creative unfoldment. Like once I master the lessons of the loom I may not need the practice like I do now, and for this reason I sometimes hesitate to even call myself a weaver, as it seems like only a fraction of what I am here to creatively explore.
Hemp yarn
Can you talk us through what a usual day in the life of Taryn is like?
Since moving here, and settling into a different pace of life, I have yet to find a typical flow to my days. Honestly everyday is different and also they are all one in the same if that makes sense! I really thrive with routine and structure in my life, which is also something I find extremely challenging to manage as a self employed artist. I spend a lot of time exploring what the ideal balance between routine and structure is while allowing myself the necessary time for creative nourishment and play. The refinement of this “ideal” daily routine is like a ongoing side art project in and of itself! But to give you an idea of how I typically flow through time, my days tend to look like this- I appreciate rising early and following the natural cycles of the sun, so spending a little time with the sun every morning is super important to my overall vitality and well being. I have a strong and dedicated energetic enhancement practice, (for lack of a better term), but it basically means that everyday I take time to follow a series of energetic practices given to me by my teacher to keep my energy fields intact and coherent, this is really important for my personal and creative process. I’m big on nourishment and enjoy eating a clean and healthy diet. I prefer to fuel myself in the most optimal way so that I can exist in my fullest vitality. For me this means eating as local to my environment as possible, I love the farmers market and I feel really nourished supporting the thriving local agriculture scene here in New Mexico. Some form of daily movement or exercise is pretty crucial for me, but it varies in what that is on a daily basis. I really enjoy walking, especially long distances, and it is a pretty important part of my overall creative process to allow myself the time to do so. Lately I’ve really been enjoying heading into town in the evenings and wandering around all the charming streets of 62100 Calais. Aside from these daily practices the majority of my time is spent in my studio, mostly in production mode. And when I’m not working I love to spend time engaging creatively with all the amazing new people who have come into my life!

]]>
https://energie-renouvelablee.com/blogs/the-goats-belly/clean-cashmere-long-life 2018-08-22T17:44:00-06:00 2020-05-03T13:39:13-06:00 How to clean your Cashmere. Haleigh Palmer Herein the mystery about how to clean your cashmere is dispelled. One fine afternoon, Krysta and Haleigh brought the camera into the household for a veritable DIY video about WHY it is important to clean your cashmere, but also a few tidbits on HOW to do so.

More

]]>

Herein the mystery about how to clean your cashmere is dispelled. One fine afternoon, Krysta and Haleigh brought the camera into the household for a veritable DIY video about WHY it is important to clean your cashmere, but also a few tidbits on HOW to do so.

If you have an extra 10 minutes, watch our video to learn some SECRETS. If you dont have the time, we have done our best to “bullet point” the conversation here.

  1. CLEANING MATTERS because MOTHS DONT LIKE CASHMERE-- THEY LIKE DIRT! Imagine you are a female moth and you are looking for that perfectly soft, dark, undisturbed place with plenty of protein-filled dirt for your baby larvae to eat. Think: a cashmere sweater nicely folded and put away for the summer. Yes, an ideal place to wait for Mr. Right Moth to come along and make it all happen. And yes, dirty cashmere is the beginning of the end for your beloved cashmere.

  2. IT IS OK TO DELICATELY MACHINE WASH your cashmere. We are certain that labels reading “dry clean only” are there to take away responsibility from the damage that can happen from erroneous washing. Our caveat: YOU MUST HAVE A FRONT-LOADING WASHER. A top loader with that central agitator will stretch and agitate your cashmere in unpredictable ways. You should always use the most delicate cycle. Warm water is ok, so long as it truly is warm and not hot. To play it safe, we recommend cold water.

  3. USE DAWN TO SPOT-CLEAN YOUR CASHMERE. Bacon grease? Marinara? Tire Marks? Certainly it can happen to your cashmere hat. Don’t fear. We show you a way to spot-clean your hat with the ever-famous and old-reliable household dish detergent: Dawn. For this, the video is great to show how to work the magic.

  4. USE OUR CASHMERE CLEAN as detergent for your machine or hand-wash. We have formulated the wash with essential oils of rosewood and lemon. This both safely cleans and leaves your cashmere smelling oh-so-not-moth-friendly.

  5. IF YOUR CASHMERE SMELLS GOOD, then the pheromones of the female moth are masked by the essential oil in the cashmere clean. Therefore, the whole larvae eating your cashmere thing is not likely going to happen.

  6. DRY CLEANING is an option but only if you have an established relationship with your dry-cleaner. We have tested a few cleaners and learned that some work and some do not. The worst thing is the steam process which can felt your cashmere and change its suppleness forever. There is no going back once the cashmere is felted. The chemicals can be harsh and while the smell they leave will likely ward off moths, they can also be fundamentally damaging to the cashmere fibers.

  7. HAND-WASHING is certainly an option, but it is back-breaking. Our video shows you how to wash it in the bath-tub and how to drain the water from the garment without damaging it.

  8. DRYING YOUR CASHMERE. The best thing about the washing machine is the spin-cycle. Imagine trying to mimic this by hand without damaging your garment. We call this the “pinwheel technique” whereby the garment is laid flat on a towel and then rolled out to squeeze the excess water. In New Mexico, this works well because it is so dry. If you are in a moist climate, we recommend letting your cashmere dry for 24 hours and then using a low-heat spin cycle in the machine.

  9. VOILA! If you follow our instructions, we promise your cashmere will last a long time. Because cashmere is our business and because moths are the devil, we have learned mucho and have more to say. Stay-tuned for more videos and detailed information about cashmere, cashmere, cashmere.

Watch the full 'How to clean your Cashmere' video here.

]]>
https://energie-renouvelablee.com/blogs/the-goats-belly/objects-you-live-through-sydney-ballesteros 2018-07-23T17:30:00-06:00 2020-05-03T13:39:14-06:00 Objects You Live Through: Sydney Ballesteros Haleigh Palmer More

]]>
Photography and words by
Krysta Jabczenski

Let’s imagine Anna Wintour, Sade Adu, and Georgia O’Keeffe had a baby. Her name is Sydney Ballesteros, the powerhouse woman behind Territory Magazine.

Territory is the first of its kind, an annual arts and culture publication banded by the breadth of land from Southern California to West Texas. It’s written, photographed and designed exclusively by desert dwellers themselves. Inside the colossal pages of Territory you’ll find fashion stories in obscure desert landscapes only locals would know about. Interviews with artists and activists who’ve shaped southwestern culture (a personal favorite is with Katie Lee, Goddess of the Desert, right before she passed away). And stunning architecture and interior spreads of modern rammed-earth homes, century-old adobes, and art deco bungalows. The southwest is endlessly rich in culture and design but has never been accurately represented in the publication industry because it is damn near impossible to produce a first-rate magazine without the resources larger cities have. That is, until Sydney Ballesteros got to work. With the help of her small team in Tucson, they are in the midst of working on their third issue.


Besides being Editor-in-Chief and Creative Director for Territory, Sydney is stylist, a mother and recently starting a path into real estate as a result of her magnetic ability in locating quintessential desert homes.

I believe that carrying a piece of my mother's energy with me all the time grounds me to never forget who I am and where I come from.

Sydney has an iconic look—a blend of modern and vintage clothing, stunning silhouettes and statement jewelry. We asked her to put together a few looks with her favorite Energie-renouvelablee pieces. She unabashedly went all-out and declared, “This may be a little over the top, but I don’t care, that’s just me.” - She’s amazing. We photographed Sydney at Adobe Libre in the neighborhood of Barrio Viejo, Tucson AZ- A very special neighborhood where much of Territory is inspired and conceived. We talked with her about the magazine and her life in the southwest.


Tell us the story behind 4 objects in your life that carry your energy.

My glasses for sure: they are apart of my identity at this point. I feel naked when I don't wear them. Plus I really am as blind as a bat without them.

Double silver Patania cuffs: they exude such a strong and powerful energy. I feel like I can conquer anything I set my mind to do with those things on, truly. They make me feel confident and unstoppable.

Black onyx ring that belonged to my mother: I believe that carrying a piece of my mother's energy with me all the time grounds me to never forget who I am and where I come from. She is such a strong-willed and determined woman who maneuvers through life with so much grace and patience, through a share of her own hurdles. It's a reminder that with that same spirit and will, I can gracefully do the same. In this technical world we live in, it's so easy to get caught up in feelings of comparison and instant gratification. We forget the unique journey to get where you are going is the most important and different for everyone. The personal perspective, learning takeaways, knowledge you gained, and how you actually handle the journey is surely the better story to share.

My red lipstick: the final touch of feeling pulled together even when I'm not, and delivering the dose of confidence needed since I was 16 years old.

You’re doing the impossible by publishing a nationally read magazine in Tucson, AZ. How’d you get here?? In other words, what in your life lead you to this point?
My background as a creative director and stylist is what carved the path of tenacity for me to take this passion project head on. I had experience in production and editorial work. It came full circle in 2015 after I decided that I wanted to put all of that energy and experience into creating an art-forward publication that represented the authentic voice of the southwest with the same care and attention to detail as other independent and slow journal format publications. The in-depth storytelling and sort of underground content, combined with high visual appeal and refined design sensibilities was something that was lacking in publications representing the southwest. I did not have publishing experience, so all of that part of the business I had to learn along the way and am still navigating through. There are so many moving parts to publishing a magazine, from the creative side through executing production and research, and into advertising, marketing and distribution. It's a Hercules task and not for the faint of heart. I am a big believer in learning things by just taking the leap of faith to jump in and do them in a hands-on way. This may be the longer, more painful (at times) route, but I believe in the value of learning things this way from the inside out, making the mistakes and all. The passion and dedication it takes to overcome the obstacles and learning curves takes pure determination and dedication. It's about carving out your own path, from where you are, with what you have. No one is going to do it for you, or give you a hand-out in life, so that instills a drive in you to be self-made and to take control of making things happen.
Creating a niche, soulful magazine requires integrity; from the tasteful ads, to the original content, to the quality of print. You seem to be uncompromising all the way though. What do you feel is most important to have integrity about when creating a magazine in the long run?
I think the most important thing is to stick to your vision and to the core of what sets your vision apart from the mainstream, when it feels as though everything starts to look and feel the same. It's important to constantly remind yourself why you started a project and what got you so excited about it in its beginning stages. Respect the process of journey and always reset your feet to the ground of self-reflection on a positive note. Take the moments to stop and give yourself credit to enjoy the fruits of your labor and the awareness that good things take time to develop. Not being afraid to ask for help when you need it, and keeping a close support system who genuinely wants you to succeed. Constantly being open to receive a flow of inspiration and ideas for content, creating a system to organize those ideas when they feel overwhelming. Also, it's important to have a clear understanding of what constantly fuels your passion and drive. The passion and heart for something is what continues to set the tone to wake up in the morning and push through what feels impossible at times. I grew up and live in the Sonoran desert of Tucson, AZ, so I felt like I had the confidence to speak on it genuinely, and not just on a surface level, or hyper social media version. I'm truly immersed in my own reality and surrounded by so many talented people, who share a love for these parts. I wanted a home to cultivate all of these things and a legacy to share that insight and perspective with whoever would appreciate it, presented in a slow journalism format, that can also be considered an educational piece.
Being a young mother isn’t easy, but it seemed to instill a powerful work ethic in everything you do. Do you feel like becoming a mother at a young age made you stronger in your 30s? Do you have any advice for working moms?
Yes, I absolutely do. My advice would be to incorporate motherhood into all of your goals and dreams and more importantly your hustle. In a traditional sense we are brought up to believe that there is a certain order in which to do things. I don't believe that at all. I believe that you go on about life with whatever the universe delivered in your stars or curveballs are thrown your way and you make them work for you. There is really never a right time for anything, the time is always to live and make the present the best it can be. While I believe that my child is always my first priority, I never stopped what I was working on or working towards because of him, nor did I treat my situation like a set-back; my son was always along for the ride, watching and learning. I pushed on, at a slower pace of course (with plenty of sacrifices and frustrations along the way) but I set out to accomplish the things I wanted to, one day at a time, while incorporating this little person into my life instead of dwelling on how much harder life was at times. In the end, it actually has made him a more in-tune with the world, and well-rounded, cultured human being, with a humble upbringing at the core of how goals and dreams are attainable, even when they feel impossible, and how hard you to have to work to achieve them. It instills an un-sheltered view of how the world really works, an understanding of how important it is to constantly communicate to yourself and to others what you need and what you want, to believe in manifestation. Also, to never take anything for granted and be constantly open to learning and developing your skills and attributes to the world. Being a young mother forced me to grow up very fast and to be a responsible adult when I was still a child myself. It taught me a humility and perseverance that developed my character early on to work really hard and to overcome whatever so called failures or statistics society categorized me into. We grew up together, or rather he watched me grow up making the road by walking it.
It can be a virtue to know what your personal style is—to know who you are and steer clear of trends. On the other hand, it can be detrimental to pigeonhole yourself into a look and not allow for growth or change. I’m curious about your journey with developing a personal style. What is your relationship with clothing now?
I have never been a believer in pigeonholing oneself. Through my journey with style I have carried the influence of many different decades of style and people with me throughout the years, I regret none of them. They have made me evolve into who I truly am and are all attached to a sentimental time and place in my life. I truly believe each one held a place in developing my personal style. There is a point when you start to settle down into a groove or look that you identify with most and also a point in life when comfort and convenience starts to play a major factor in daily dressing, the older and busier you get. I have always felt confident in dressing and never afraid to take chances or just wear what I personally loved at the time. Incorporating vintage into my dressing was always an outlet for me to fuel my creativity, to feel unique and in my own world. I have never followed trends or even followed "fashion" per se. I think throughout the style journey, you end up carrying pieces of details from those influences with you. Little touches of them have always surfaced themselves as I've evolved, because when you dress with things you've truly loved, you can't help yourself, and I think that it's really important to give yourself that, one still needs to feel individual and happy exuding self-expression.
Share one thing you love to see/do in the southwest for each season.

Fall/Winter (since they are basically the same season here): Spending as much time outside as possible. Late night fireside conversations with friends, while sipping on red wine.

Summer: plenty of stay-cations at the Arizona Inn, and road trips to the cooler parts of the Southwest like New Mexico and Colorado. Lots of afternoon post monsoon pour down—porch hangs and hot summer nights with friends and plenty of cold rosé. PS: weekly trips to Eegees' or to Oasis for raspados or an ice cold beer at 4:00 in the afternoon, when it's 105 degrees outside. The morning rains in the summertime months are one of my favorite things in life to be immersed in. The smell of the wet desert is one that leaves a spell.

Spring: Hiking season and watching all of the desert flora blooms come to life.


]]>
https://energie-renouvelablee.com/blogs/the-goats-belly/a-day-in-the-life-of-chris-dahl-bredine-aerial-photographer 2018-06-20T16:32:00-06:00 2020-05-03T13:39:15-06:00 Objects You Live Through: Chris Dahl-Berdine, aerial photographer Haleigh Palmer A day or so of hanging out with Chris Dahl-Berdine is a rollercoaster reality check in so many unexpected ways. Just hearing what his day-to-day is like makes you envision the adventurous life you’re missing out on and realize the full life you’re already living. By the time most of us plod out of bed in the morning, Chris is soaring over mountain tops and canyonlands, chasing after that sweet sunrise light in his ultralight plane to get the aerial photo we didn’t know was possible. I wanted that in my life.

More

]]>
Photography and words by
Krysta Jabczenski

A day or so of getting to know Chris Dahl-Bredine was a reality check in unexpected ways. Starting by coveting his full-to-the-brim lifestyle and then viscerally appreciating the life I already have. By the time most of us plod out of bed in the morning, Chris is soaring over mountain tops and canyonlands, chasing after that sweet sunrise light in his ultralight plane to get the aerial photo we didn’t know was possible. I strive for that quality of stimulation in my life. I didn't think it was possible to that extent until I met him. So, when Chris invited me to go for a ride in his plane. I said, YES. Immediately followed by feeling mauled by a truck of regret when I envisioned myself in flying in what is basically a motorcycle with wings. Did I just write my deathwish? Should I be updating my will? Do I even have a real will?? Wait. There is no way I can die right now. I love my little life! I’M A MOTHER! My own parents' simple text, “please don’t” rang in my head the entire night before the flight. But, when I awoke that morning my panic was defeated by curiosity. The call to that above-it-all perspective was too sweet to pass by. On a crisp summer Taos morning, we ascended into the air. I was strapped into that Superman mobile he calls a Trike or an Ultralight, by little more than a waist safety belt. At least I had a helmet on? As the space between our feet and the earth grew larger he said, “just don’t look down, focus on the horizon.” In about 10 minutes, we were soaring over the Rio Grande Gorge hundreds of feet in the air and totally exposed to the elements. Despite his advice, I looked down.

Rio Grande Gorge - Taos, NM

Chris exudes a calm assurance underscored by caution. From what I can tell, his cool confidence in extreme situations stems from an acute sense of awareness—you know, like a spidey sense. He’s precisely in-tune with weather patterns and air density. He’s been trained to repair the ultralight himself and in his 16 years of flying, he’s considered every precaution imaginable. Including voluntarily turning his engine off mid-air and learning to glide to the ground—just in case anything were to happen to the engine while flying (which has actually happened). His militant watchfulness spans through everything he does—rafting, skiing, riding a monowheel skateboard and even fathering a 5-year-old little girl with his akin adventurous spirit. Chris isn’t boisterous or reckless. He’s observant. And that allows him to breeze through his intrepid life. It’s made me rethink the phrase into, “Awareness is bliss.”

Chris took both of his hands off the steering bar to take a photo of a big horned mama sheep and its lamb resting on a cliff of the Gorge. At that moment, I allowed each of my muscles let go of the bones they were clung on to so tightly. His ease was now my ease. I took a big breath in and a wide look around. I felt simultaneously relaxed and invigorated as Chris dipped up and down, in and out of the Gorge, next to this family of sheep and around a couple hot air balloons. I Facetimed my little sister in the air to show off my newly fulfilled and actualized life of a badass mom, but she just flipped me off and hung up because it was 6 am.

Chris has built a career as an aerial photographer and videographer as a result of finding himself in unthinkable landscapes with rare vantage points. The mobility of an ultralight plane allows him to land pretty much anywhere with enough clearing. He’s landed on cliffs, water, and even on snowy mountaintops with the help of his home-rigged attachable snowboard wheels. He’s worked for Taos Ski Valley, Western National Parks Association, Chris Burkard, Renen Ozturk and Talweg Creative. This fall, Chris is planning on following the migration of eagles all the way from New Mexico to Alaska.


What is it like to live this life? Fascinated, we asked Chris to share 4 objects that tell his story along with a few more questions:

My Sony a7r3 camera: to me represents the culmination of 16 years of aerial photography… with this baby I can shoot ultra high resolution with speed and accuracy like never before. I know I can probably get the shot I want without any glitches and it can be printed up to billboard size or whatever… in the big sizes the prints really come to life and feel as if you are there in the scene!

Onewheel: this is a toy and a transportation device that keeps me connected to my body and my balance… when I fly places with this in my back seat I have the freedom to silently float anywhere I need or want whether on dirt or street for over 15 miles on electric power… handy for getting gas for the trike as well.

Trike: Since deciding to learn to fly these trikes my world has changed for the better. This trike in my mind is the ultimate freedom tool! I can jump in and fly for thousands of miles with everything I need packed with me. Flying this open cockpit craft has opened my mind to a bigger picture of the world where everything is interconnected… I feel and experience this great web of life below me that sustains us and everything else. It makes me feel alive and part of something incredibly huge and magnificent!

Life and Teachings of the Far East: I began reading this book over 25 years ago and to me it embodies what I hope we and the universe are truly like. It helps me think bigger and not be as bothered by the small stuff…

Describe an experience in nature when you felt small.
I’ve had many of these but one in particular would be surfing in Hawaii on a day that the waves were way too big for me… I paddled out to a spot on Maui before sunrise and when I got out past the break I realized the waves were bigger than I had ever been in… the current was strong and all I could do was paddle way out and pray that there would be a lull so I could safely get back to land. I did make it in safely and dug my feet in the sand feeling so grateful to be on land and still breathing.
What is something you feel is important to practice each day?
I think it is important to practice gratitude every day for being alive here on this crazy planet…our time really is shorter than we think and more precious!! Being thankful for the little things and the big things like the people around us (our family, friends, kids) is something I try to remember and when I do it feels right and I feel calm.
Have there been any pivotal moments in your life that pushed you in a new direction?
One of the pivotal moments in my life was getting caught in a small avalanche at Taos ski valley and being swept off a 40 foot cliff headfirst. I thought that was the end of my life but I came to buried up to my ears in snow and realized I was still alive. I realized life was so short and precious I was so thankful to have another chance! I became more determined to follow my dreams and callings and one of those dreams was learning to fly.
I’d imagine being above it all gives you a different perspective psychologically in addition to visually, has it altered your thinking at all?
I think spending so much time above the earth in the last 16 years has helped me realize how interconnected all of life on earth is...from above there are no borders or divisions in the landscapes. I see giant watersheds and ecosystems that all rely this interconnectedness and on massive global weather patterns to sustain them.

Chris’s Instagram is not to be missed! Follow his adventures @shotsfromabove

Chris is wearing the Men’s Raglan Sweater in Ocean, The Fingerless Gloves in Derby, The Classic Scarf in Derby and the Headlight Hat in Charcoal.

Alaia is wearing the Kiddo Hat in Morning Glory

]]>
https://energie-renouvelablee.com/blogs/the-goats-belly/10-ways-to-288 2018-06-06T13:11:00-06:00 2020-05-03T13:39:15-06:00 10 Ways to 288 Haleigh Palmer Hold up-  Don’t put all that cashmere away for the summer just yet.  Unbeknownst to most, the Infinity scarf can be a pretty darn delightful summer accessory + more.  Chances are you’ll only wear it cozied-up around your neck in a chilly movie theater or on a long road trip with that one seemingly extra warm-blooded friend who loves the air conditioning turned up to arctic freeze zone.  But, wearing it around your neck is just one of the limitless ways can use it. To illustrate this, we took the infinity scarf to our favorite 62100 Calais creek with our friend, Maria.

More

]]>
Hold up—don’t put all that cashmere away for the summer just yet. Unbeknownst to most, the Infinity Scarf can be a pretty darn delightful summer accessory + more. Chances are you’ll only wear it cozied-up around your neck in a chilly movie theater or on a long road trip with that one seemingly extra warm-blooded friend who loves the air conditioning turned up to arctic freeze zone. But, wearing it around your neck is just one of the limitless ways can use it.

To illustrate this, we took the infinity scarf to our favorite 62100 Calais creek with our friend, Maria. She wore the scarf as a skirt, a turban, a tube top, and a sexy bandeau. And seriously, how darling is she?

Conclusion: the Infinity Scarf gets the best travel accessory award for all your summer adventures.

Loose Babushka

A great sun, wind, rain shelter. A great disguise with some Grace Kelly drama.

Necklace

Let it hang for a pop of color, your reliable accessory at the ready.

In a Knot

Give yourself some Latin or Euro flair.

Doubled Up

The non-fly away scarf.

As a Shrug

Need to cover your shoulders in a pinch?

Front Drape

Flat across the chest and hanging loose in the back. We love this elegant look with a simple slip dress.

Turban

Because we hand-seam these with an artisan kitchener stitch, the Infinity it built to be abused. Wrap it and wrap for this look.

Tube Top

Wrapped twice around your body.

Sexy Bandeau

Insurance if your bikini top gets lost on the waterslide. Just kidding. Very chic look with high waisted pants or a skirt.

Butt Skirt

Really cute over leggings. A great way to transition your “yoga look” to the rest of your day.

]]>