Getting real in Mallorca

 

It’s been a few months now, and I’m settling in nicely. I’ve found an apartment in a fun part of town, the Brooklyn of Palma, Santa Catalina. As I discover the old towns nestled all over the island, the indie shops and makers, the endless coves, and I meet the Mallorcans and expats that populate this gorgeous island, the layers of culture and possibility are coming ever more to life, as am I !

The layer I am most delighted by is the authentic one – the one in which cafecitos and tostadas are had in locals’ bars and cafes, where the quick Catalan chatter is about everyday life and the ages are super varied. These are tucked around the corner from the trendy new yummy cafes, of which there are many, that could be in any capital city. There are a few spots dotting the city where the local drunks hang around – these provide a special level of entertainment – loud male camaraderie and somehow friendly arguments about love and politics unfold among wobbling characters of every ilk.

Favorite days are spent cruising the old town for the oldest (and best) forns or bakeries, meeting the knife sharpener in his little shop, the cane chair fixers, the old school fabric shop with it’s remaining rolls from the 70’s. I’m drawn like a firefly to local materials, makers, sense of humor, and history. It’s about traditional cuisine, local agriculture, and permaculture, too. I’ve been promised a freshly baked coca, the fine yet rustic local vegetable tart, made by aunt Margarita in Bunyola. Apparently hers is the best on the island. Of course it’s like chicken soup, everyone thinks their mom’s is the best – but I suspect Margarita’s really is.

A place where this love of authentic culture gels in the most sophisticated way is in the legendary finca’s, especially the ones which are renovated honoring their original structure, preserving their heritage design and function languages. I’ve seen extraordinary fire places taking up a whole stone nook, floor to ceiling. Seating arrangements can involve multiple benches and shelves, both carved from and built into a wall, then appointed with very inviting natural materials like linen, jute, and palm. A comfort balance is achieved with carefully updated plumbing and electric, and clean and modern fixtures where needed. This is the apex of rustic luxury, the ultimate for me. The pool is small and made of stone. Everything is both fabulous and sustainable. Oh, the views. The Sierra Tramuntana, World Heritage site,  is the backdrop. Rolling hills with ancient olive trees nestle all around. The deep blue sapphire sea sparkles below. I’m referring to one particular finca as I wax on at the moment.. are you curious about this spot I’m talking about?

So dear readers, my new chapter is happening, and my career is developing towards a new role I’m trying to name –  “authentic culture consultant” or “conscious design curator!”  My friend and colleague Jason Siegel giggled when he heard it, saying it sounded like ” shaman bottle service,” a fluffy moniker he imagined might be useful for folks offering evening hospitality in today’s Tulum!

Authenticity. Natural Materials. Sustainable Consumerism. Global Local Culture. Slow Design. Independent Businesses. Entrepreneurial Empowerment.

What I find myself focused on these days is slow culture and design in all their facets. I know this stuff, I’m naturally and powerfully drawn to it, been learning about it steadily all my life. In the last decade of my career the interest has grown more formal and intentional, studying sustainability, working closely with artisans and natural materials. I’m invited inside the ateliers, the fincas, the studios, the kitchens, the shops – all over the world and now in Mallorca – to meet the makers and people who are in this choir with me. An expert, consultant, advisor, mentor.. what will this new role gel as? How do you define the work you do when your experience wheelhouse gets fuller and your intentions for how to be of service to people and business evolves… ?

More soon!

X Nicole


A Very Good Day 1



Here I am !

In Mallorca, settling in..

My mid February arrival was full of Mediterranean promise, sunshine and palms – a light jacket was enough to walk the ancient streets looking for a new home.  I criss crossed the old town 1000 times, making new friends and contacts along the way, introducing myself to yoga studios, shop keepers, restaurant owners and teams, estate agents, people at cafe’s..

And so it began – one person led to anther and now I have a place, a few colleagues and business projects cooking, and a sense of a new home forming. In fact, some of this lucky chain of events started in a salty blue wave back in autumn when I came to the island to scope it out the first time. A simple moment of joy frolicking in the sea led to an acquaintance who is now my guardian angel on the island – Catin Muntaner is a curious, beautiful soul who has brought me to the bucolic village of Bunyola today to meet her family. And although the weather has turned and the greyest March in memory is underway, the Med still delivers  – the air plants and peonies are gifts from their generous hands and gardens :))))

The sense of discovery, growing community, and little spurts of joy are carrying me – they motivate me to push through the doubts, the “how does this place work,” and “am I going to find my way” questions. A big move creates a particular sort of vulnerability  – a hybrid state of openness and anxiousness. The war raging in Ukraine is adding a level of uncertainty and fear as well, costs rising sharply and unexpectedly, the specter of nuclear danger showing itself. I feel exposed as a single human making my way in the world. And yet I wake up daily truly touched by the agents of welcome and little bits of kismet popping up as I go.

Work is good news, coming to life in a web of excellent directions, all the things I’ve prepared for are happening. I’m very excited to co-produce an event with Open Studio here in Santa Catalina, an amazing textile atelier headed up by a talented and like-minded colleague, Tatiana, who is totally my cup of tea. On May 14 we’ll host ReNew – a day of clothing and home textile swapping, redesigning, refurbishing – with natural dyes, mending, tailoring, and embroidery – a coming together to give new life to existing pieces while connecting and learning from each other. I’ll also lead a workshop for female entrepreneurs on May 11 centered around business and project identity with a bright young woman called Marina hosting, founder of the lovely bookshop La Salina. We’ll get into exercises to clarify message, mission, content, platforms, etc., and step into business networking in the process. This will be a true pleasure as it marks the end of my Playing Big Facilitators Training with Tara Mohr, and my half way mark to coaching certification.

And this … in early summer I’ll be moving into a historic building across the street from the outrageously beautiful Palma Cathedral, creating a conscious salon of sorts – hosting indie designer trunk shows and textile talks, healing music and wellness events, humanistic art and more. This is so super exciting – very special colleagues like Love Binetti and The Plant Lore are in the works from the US and further afield as well as talented local creatives and makers. Thinking of calling it, The Current Mallorca, any thoughts? Drop me a line by clicking here ! 

Last but not least, the Nomadic Web Shop is featuring a very pretty collection of Algerian Berber Rugs. Check back here in the coming weeks for a look at the history and artisans of this slice of desert magic.

Oh, did I mention the Mallorcan and Spanish tiles? Obsessed.


Suukuu | New in Nomadic Web Shop

 

!! SUUKUU  !!

In the Spring of 2021 I found myself seeking some relief from a compounded series of personal challenges – emotional and physical. Anyone else? Specifically, menopausal symptoms prompted me into action to try out Sea of Serenity Adrenal Support. I am glad to report, after a month of regular use, that I feel – better. I sense a slight uplift in mood and a bit of edginess removed. The flower essences that I taste and smell when I’m drinking the water I’ve put the tincture in signal the arrival of well being, something like the effect of deeply aromatic chamomile tea.  Overall, the roller coaster of energy, mood, and body comfort swings are also softer, and I feel more steady in the face of all the change that’s happening.

I definitely recommend giving it a try.

The Lake of Dreams Sleep and Rest Aid tincture is next for me.

If you try them, drop me a line.

Thanks to Erika and Adam at Suukuu for their kind help with learning about the products.

I really appreciate your lovely work in this field.

It’a a pleasure to carry these tinctures in the Nomadic Web Shop.

Hope they work for you, too!

 

!! More !!

Super-pro food and cannabis blogger and friend, Marcia Gagliardi, turned me on to Suukuu. I had reached out for guidance knowing she had done a very deep dive into research on all things cannabis and cbd for her excellent blog and service, My Milligram.

 West Michigan Herbalist and student of Anthroposophy, Erika Hanson, started Suukuu in 2018, having been deeply connected to and involved with plants and plant medicine for over 30 years. With an extensive background in health and healing, she understands plants and their physical and spiritual properties, and works directly with local farms to stay connected with those aspects during the production process.

Suu Kuu makes high vibrational formulas to maximize vitality, featuring freshly dried and extracted, organic tonic and adaptogenic herbs. Focusing on high bio-availability, the tinctures are made with a locally distilled grain spirit as a means of making the CBD more absorbable. Suukuu strives to make comprehensive and synergistic blends that are effective in finding metabolic homeostasis and balance in the body.

 

And now for a word from the FDA:

The Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act requires this notice.

Not for use in pregnancy except under the supervision of a qualified healthcare practitioner. Not for use in persons with hypertension, liver disorders, edema, severe kidney insufficiency, low blood potassium, or heart disease.

The statements made regarding these products have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The efficacy of these products has not been confirmed by FDA-approved research. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. All information presented here is not meant as a substitute for or alternative to information from health care practitioners. Please consult your healthcare professional about potential interactions or other possible complications before using any product.

 

 

 


the good stuff | live nomadic shopping sessions


! Save the Date !

 Live Nomadic Shopping Sessions

Round 1

MAY 22, Saturday   |     In Person In NYC 

12 PM  @  HEARTWORK    29 W 30th St.  #301

 

    MAY 23, Sunday   |   on Zoom  – Worldwide 

9 AM  CA    12 PM  NYC       5 PM  UK      6 PM  EU

 

Smart, contemporary, easy-to-wear clothing+accessories.

Elegant + rustic, textile-based goods for your home.

 Beautiful, natural, handwoven fabrics.

All with a modern edge.

 

 

 

 

 

 


LIVE Nomadic Shopping Sessions…

I’M BACK !

!  LIVE NOMADIC SHOPPING  ! 

It’s simple. I’m still doing what I’ve always done.

Sourcing the most contemporary accessories, clothing, and home goods in the fine artisan sector, along with the smartest pieces from my favorite sustainable brands and producers.

I’ll present them to you LIVE.

Online with Zoom.

+

In Person in NYC.

!  You’re invited  !

The debut live shopping round will be this May.

You’ll be able to see how things fit, to understand how they feel and how to wear them, and to hear their story directly from me.

Order unique items I’ve travelled the world to find with the finest artisan groups and producers holding down the ever important heritage handmade sector. Receive exclusive online codes to use with favorite sustainable brands, taking advantage of my yearsss of styling expertise and enjoying the perk of a little discount.

Expect to meet your needs for venturing out to dinner, making it to a few outdoor parties, taking a vacation at last, and as always, hanging in beauty at home.

The aim is to breathe life into online shopping, to give dimension and movement to the pieces that so often look just flat on the screen.

It will be my pleasure to style you, to guide you to the smartest, freshest new pieces to add to your repertoire, and to help you cut through all the noise about sustainability.

 


Where I go from here …

I thank my lucky stars, in a period of such intense global struggle, to be able to allow myself a return to my roots, a real Mediterranean retreat. Dual citizenship helps, as do dearest friends, and an indelible nomadic spirit. I navigate every day among umbrella pines and giant cacti, ultra salty seas, boisterous characters, ludicrously large hunks of feta, and real mozzarella, as big as a baby’s head. From an idyllic, big bday autumn in Paxos, Greece to Italy, Napoli, a sometime beloved home – I’ve harvested olives, discussed heated politics of the moment, and walked more rocky cliffs than even tiny local lizards manage to.

Clearing in Paxos.

Napoli. My mamma was born here, my big sister… my grandparents greeted us for decades in their home perched above one of the most majestic gulfs in the world. Although I can’t hug anyone, and masked smiles happen only through sparkling eyes, I say thank you life – thanks for delivering me safely to this place.

From my window. Il Vesuvio, powerful creator of land and life, occasional destroyer.

2021 is here. I’m evaluating. Where to live? How best to evolve my career? How to spend the next half of my life? Art, fashion, the electronic dance world, the fastest, coolest cities in the world – these were the motivators in the first half. Ever lucky stars! Parties, festivals, productions, fashion shoots and shows, trips to work at the source of heritage cloths and artisan traditions – all had a major thread in common – a love for passionate self expression, the stories of people told in celebration and style. And even as things have gotten tough – illness, work challenges, most profound loss and massive changes – I still aim to live celebrating and working out the story, if only in fragments, in redux for now, between one lockdown and another.

I am certainly cultivating a deeper relationship with “what I do,” working on a new project, bringing together long time dreams of making the world a better place with best use of my skills as a communicator and entrepreneur.

I’ll be sharing more over next months about The Artivist Nest (!!) an arts activism non profit for social good of which I am a co-founder. Please click through below to read about our evolving mission and developing concepts for yearly retreats, the first of which is happening in June 2022, corona virus be damned! Teen refugee community building and integration is our first endeavor to spread some good luck. Other themes involve accessible sound therapy, the securing and elevation of women’s place in the world, a simple strategy for a big personal reduction in carbon emission, and so much more….. Here’s to brighter times ahead!

http://theartivistnest.org

 


Healing Art of the Abiquiu High Desert

Suzie Fowler-Tutt is an inspiration.

Here’s to creating and consuming with real purpose and effect.

Her artist statement:

Suzie-Fowler-Tutt is a mixed media folk artist and painter who spends her free time exploring the vast wilderness around her home in Abiquiu, New Mexico USA collecting interesting rocks, sticks, bones and feathers to use in her work as well as infusing pigments with local earth to enhance the power of her representational art.

Suzie immersed herself in the art world once again after a 20-year military career as a Naval Intelligence Chief. Difficulty transitioning to civilian life and suffering from PTSD led to a variety of unhealthy coping measures. Upon hitting rock bottom she sought care and began healing through artistic expression.

Suffering and pain are universal. How one copes with it determines the ability to function in society. Whether expressing a message of hope with her ‘Pathfinder’ series, facing pain in the ‘Lost Souls’ works, or healing by creating ceremonial ‘Prayer Sticks’ and ‘Smudge Wands’, Suzie has found peace in the remote high desert at Studio Rama Seca.


Experience is a superpower!

I’ve been observing something wonderful over last few weeks.. my brain has been offering solutions to things even while I’m doing something else, not actively considering them.
All the years of finding answers to myriad large and small questions seem to have formed automatic pathways to solutions – and these pop up spontaneously, in their own time. It’s like you ask yourself a question, put a goal in the calendar, or set to preparing something you need to do – and your mind offers solutions, better ways, without having to actually ponder and search and analyze. You just know at some point, it simply comes.
It’s like a superpower you earn with years of practice. A bit of ease, some flow with challenges and process.

 


A Solopreneur’s Mission Statement

MISSION

Independent entrepreneurs and small businesses contribute to a healthier collective future, helping to curb mass production and consumption by placing more focus on authenticity and mindful process. 

I believe people who are allowed, encouraged and trained to do their own thing create a more contented world – and self-realized, fulfilled humans are a powerful thing. 

I recently had an aha moment around my own personal mission.
Having often longed for mentorship as an independent entrepreneur, I’m inspired to offer the very same support I have always desired myself.
To that end, I’ve created a consulting and mentoring practice consisting of a series of practical workshops. They’re written from the point of view of my own active experience, and certainly founded in the spirit of self-starting. 

ABOUT THE WORKSHOPS

One-on-one and group workshops function as a sort of “business therapy.”  The very practical curriculums are designed for creative entrepreneurs at different stages of their endeavors: for those who are exploring what to do, those who are starting up, those who are digging in, and those who are ramping up. Custom consulting packages are also available for entrepreneurs seeking help with particular issues or structured support from a fellow founder.

The take aways are answers – a clearer business concept and identity, documents and tools to manage smooth operations, strategies to address challenges arising in your mission, an action plan for your business, pertinent resources and referrals, and a supportive, sounding-board relationship to return to.

 

 


Cactus – the man, not the plant


In May of 2012, I landed in Bogota to snoop around their textile scene. I had just made my first trip to Peru to visit their premier trade show in Lima, Peru Moda and Home, and to explore the country a bit. While planning this maiden voyage to South America I thought, might try to make a more thorough expedition.. I contacted a few friends to see if anyone knew anyone, and the gods of hospitality extended their hand to me once again. A friend of the family in Bogota invited me to stay, so I booked an extra leg to my trip, and off I went. Lucky.

In Bogota I was advised to take taxi’s carefully, not to be out in the evening on my own, not to have that much cash on me, etc. I was super intrigued by the museums and gardens and parks, but not very confident about exploring freely. That approach wasn’t going to work all the time. At one point, the generosity and care taken by my host produced an invitation to lunch at the home of a distinguished professor and textile expert, Ricardo Carrizosa. For this trip I had to take a few buses and a publico, or van, to get to a mall where we had our rendezvous, that was absolutely nowhere on the outskirts of town. Then we drove into the hills to his beautiful home and art studio to have a charming lunch among his flowers and a brilliant chat surrounded by his cache of folkloric wonders and books. I was schooled in Colombian artesanias – in addition to hearing all about Ricardo’s travels and intrigues!
IMG_2771IMG_2780IMG_2791IMG_2798IMG_2803I admired the mantas antiguas Ricardo had thrown on the sofas – these handwoven beauties were from Peru and I had just picked up a few of the same myself while in the Sacred Valley. Ricardo had found a veritable treasure trove of these heirlooms in Puno, in a little shop on a street just off the main Plaza, with mantas stacked to the ceiling! That sounded like Valhalla to me having just been introduced to these collectibles and already obsessed. He insisted that I get myself there at some point. Never having been to Puno, I wasn’t quite sure I would ever locate it. But there was another clue.. The man to see at the shop was an avid collector of Peruvian handwork of all kinds, maybe a bit of a hoarder even as I was to learn. He went by the name of Cactus, quite a flamboyant character in the town and well loved by all. Ricardo was confident that I would find him if I ever made the trip. I thought, hmmm, sounds farfetched, but…..

 

This is me, a year later in Puno, looking for Cactus, with a nasty bout of altitude sickness that kept me awake for nights.. I’m smiling, but it’s only because I have chewed up coca leaves stuck to my temples. I was instructed by the giggling ladies in the market place to do so because they could tell I had a migraine that was out of control painful. It didn’t work, but it was a fun distraction.

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Saheli Women

I was recently invited to work with a promising NGO based in Jodhpur, India – Saheli Women.  Since their director, Madhu, and I met in the fall,  I’ve been tinkering with product concepts to produce with these ladies. Mirror and embroidery work are their strengths and I am very drawn to both. Why not create an eye pillow or eye mask with embroidered silk? I’m obsessed with the patterns in tile work, at once so fine and imperfect, and have many photos saved from travels around the world. These are a starting point for a simplified embroidery motif.  And as far as mirror work goes, wall hangings are dancing in my head ! More soon……IMG_1352IMG_1351

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In their own words:

Saheli Women is a nonprofit clothing manufacturer and ethical fashion social enterprise in rural Rajasthan, India. Located in the village of Bhikamkor, Saheli Women employs 20 rural women, providing them with fair wages, health insurance coverage and a safe work environment free from gender, religious and caste discrimination.

Saheli is a subsidiary of IPHD, Institute For Philanthropy and Humanitarian Development (IPHD), a women’s empowerment and rural community development nonprofit based in Jodhpur, India. It manages the Saheli Women production facility for clothing, accessories and homeware out of its community center in Bhikamkor. Additionally, IPHD sponsors the educations of all daughters of Saheli Women members, runs the only female health clinic in the village and delivers workshops on a range of topics including human rights, feminism, menstrual hygiene and health and financial literacy.

 


Mongolian style Booties

I swooned when I saw them the first time ..

All hand made, with loads of inspiration and in the spirit of high craftsmanship. The man who is working with me in NY on development of new designs, sampling, small batch production, etc., made them back in Georgia – ex-Soviet Union – before coming over with his family a few years ago. He studied fashion illustration at art school, and picked up all sorts of other skills as well. I’m talking with him about how to reproduce them! Black ones with grey copper details. Ivory ones with jute and copper and olive, close to the originals. I’m thinking to look for a sole that can stand up to the city. They will be precious, with 40 hours of work at least to each pair. Taking orders !! Write to us at order@nicoleg12.sg-host.com with interest if you are swooning, too…..MongolianBooties Lasha


Metallic Kimonos for Every Evening & Every Party

Nomadic Thread Society is proud to present a series of textiles of our own design. We’ve recently become obsessed with mixing natural with metal fibers. The result is this intriguing, diaphanous weave.
The Metallic Kimono emerges as the perfect “it” piece. It’s one size, multi-seasonal, and weighs nothing. Tuck it away in your handbag before work, and slip it on before an evening out. This signature piece works with infinite outfits ushering you easily from day to night.

 

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India !

There is so much to say, and yet I am fairly speechless.
A wonder for the spirit and senses, yet utterly confounding..
No use trying to figure it out.
India is a land of infinite beauty and complexity. I shall always return.
I have a deep and lasting gratitude for the tremendous hospitality extended to me by colleagues and friends throughout my trips, and beyond. I felt I was held by their generosity as if in the palm of their hands. Never have I meant NAMASTE more than here.

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Whimsical Woolen Color Strip

We were given this sample strip of colors by some lovely Peruvian weavers on a past trip… Still conjuring handwoven and embroidered pillow shams to cozify spaces in need…

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Looking forward to India

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Jacquard is our newest fascination. Our Spring ’15 collection will feature this eloquent hand craft. India is a great master of this delicate, intricate skill. We are experimenting at the moment with original jacquard designs, derived from our favorite ancient tiles… photographs of which have been collected over a lifetime. While we are in India, we will be working with artists to see if these new motifs can be achieved with jacquard.


Vapor Inspiration

Visual inspiration strikes in the form of subtle vapors- colorful, ethereal, moody, expressive.
We’re a bit obsessed and wanted to share. The artist is Filippo Minelli. Looked into his work, Silence/Shapes, and found that these colored vapors derive from his observation of smoke bombs at protests. Interesting how a smoke bomb can be used to scatter and scare and yet these artful interpretations inspire serenity. Matters of perspective and context, make us think…

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Shooting in Wonderous Andalucia

Truly a land of gypsies and nomads, at once lost in time and full of history…

Welcome to Andalucia, where the Sierra Nevada rises from the vastness and the locals keep things real.
Farms and mountains dominate, along with great Moorish forts and tiny remote villages. There is a powerful charm found in ancient olive groves, where trees are thousands of years old.

Nomadic was invited to shoot our Spring 2015 collection on a dear friend’s land. Said friend was also our talented photographer. The model was a neighbor, beautiful young Davina. Everyone participated, from Ramon, the gardener, who erected our tipi, to Sofia, Davina’s mother, who lovingly prepared our meals.

As always, an authentic, homegrown effort with loads of vision and love.

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photo 2.JPGTry this! Ummm, no nevermind..

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flowersandlightMagic morning light on the land

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