Monday, August 16, 2010

Bicycles and Butterflies

I'm all for living green.  I try to conserve gas and water, reuse containers, and avoid styrofoam whenever possible.  I even got some of those little grocery bags for shopping, and one day, by gum, I'm going to remember to take them with me.  Green is a lifestyle change, and one that I'm trying to adopt, albeit slowly and clumsily.  Some people, however, have taken to it like ducks to water, and can make anything eco-friendly, it seems.  I'm in awe of these people.

Photo by Ecouterre
For example:  a fashion designer and a landscape architect (two great tastes that go great together?) were asked to create an eco-friendly cross-over work of art for the Amsterdam Center for Architecture.  What they came up with was a "living" dress created from wool and bicycle innertubes (read:  not a Summer dress).  The innertubes create a smocked effect which is, in actuality, a series of vases that can be filled with whatever type flower or plant you desire.  Change the flowers, and you change the entire look of the gown.  This is obviously not something the average fashionista is going to hang in her closet, but as a work of art, it's an astonishingly beautiful reminder that anything can be reused.  These bicycle innertubes could have gone into a landfill, but instead are helping to sustain life and bring beauty into the world.  Really makes you think.

Photo by Ecouterre
This next dress, were it not in the Science Museum in London, could make a coccoon in my closet any old day.  At first glance, this sweet little cobalt blue day dress looks like any ordinary dress...except, it's not cobalt blue.  It's not any shade of blue.  In fact, it's not any shade of anything.  This dress is completely colorless, and the fact that it looks blue is merely a trick of the light.  The fabric used to make the dress is called Morphotex, and was created to mimic the microscopic structure of the Morpho butterfly's wing.  Sixty different polyester and nylon fibers in alternating layers produce the color through light reflection.  It's nanotechnology at it's prettiest.

Now, in case you're new to Adorable Napalm, I'm in the middle of a self-inflicted mission to get through my ridiculous stash of samples.  Everyday, I try something new and review it here.  It's generally a one-shot trial, so all opinions are based on first reactions.  Today, I reached into the magic bag o' samples and pulled out Michael Kors Very Hollywood Eau de Parfum

It's what I would call understated elegance.  The fragrance is mostly floral with just a hint of citrus.  It's light, not too sweet, not too flowery, and not too "little old lady".  Best of all, it hasn't given me a headache.  I'm not rushing out to buy a bottle, but it's going on my short list for future reference.  $45 for 1oz. at  There's also a rollerball option available for $18.

Now, I'm going to preach for a second.  This morning, when I grabbed the Michael Kors out of the bag, I noticed that I have a sample of Chanel.  My first thought was, "Oh!  I'll have to save that for a special occasion!"  Then, I thought about how I'd spent my morning cleaning out cabinets, getting ready to move into a new apartment, and how I'd thrown away a garbage bag full of expensive, beautiful products that I'd put up for special occasions.  They'd been "too pretty to use", and ended up turning rancid and going to waste.  Then, I thought about the fancy hand cream that I gave my grandmother for Mother's Day last year, and how it was still sitting on her dresser, unopened, when I went to pick up an outfit for her funeral a few months later.  It had been "too pretty to use".

Life is a special occasion.  Every day that we wake up and breathe in and out should be celebrated.  Break out the bath salts and aromatherapy candles you got for Christmas, or the way-too-expensive body lotion you got for your birthday.  Wear those awesome heels you bought on sale, even though you couldn't think of a reason to wear them (they'll probably look hot with jeans, right?).  Whatever it is you're hanging onto, enjoy it!  It's only going to go to waste if you don't, and what good does that do?  If you use it, the worst that will happen is that you'll use it up.  Big deal.  It's only a thing, and can always be replaced--maybe with something even better.  All I know is that tomorrow, I'm celebrating Tuesday, and maybe with Chanel.



  1. I try to conserve gas and water, reuse containers, and avoid Styrofoam whenever possible.


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