Schlagwort-Archiv: Texas

Interview with Cobra Rock Boot Company

10.02.2014 um 14.01 – Maria Kai

In my #1 · Dear Santa… wish-list post (1/12-13), I wrote about The Cobra Rock Boot Company and how I coveted their stunning ‚South Highand Boots‘. By way of my own stubornness, I can now declare that I am the proud and happy owner of a pair! So beware out there, as soon as the sun comes out more permanently, so the rain and snow wont hurt my babies, I will be strutting around like a dapper rooster on any and every sidewalk, showing them off.
On our roadtrip to Marfa we had the opportunity to visit the shop and take a look at where the hard work happens. Unfortunately Cole and Logan (the amazing owners), where out on travels, instead their sweet friend Ariele took excellent care of us. It was very surreal to suddenly stand in the room surrounded by the shoes and tools that I had stared and stared at on my google image research. And seeing the bag with my name on, pulling out the boots smelling of the thick, fat leather and then turning them over to see the mahogany dark, glossy polished leather soles, soft like two pieces of amber – I kid you not, I nearly shed a tear. No such emotion can a pair of factory, mass produced boots from China ever evoke.

Here is a little post-visit email interview I did with Logan and Colt about working with your hands every day and how that effects their life.  

– Living in small town Marfa in Texas, making boots on old machines in a traditional and hard-on-the-hands kind of way – do you ever feel time travelling, when visiting fx LA or NYC?
 
A little bit! Life is definitely slower here. Marfa is a wonderful place since it’s geographically isolated, but culturally rich with artists, musicians and writers either living here or traveling through. We love that we’re able to watch a sunset over the West Texas plains where antelope are grazing and then go to an art opening when the stars come out. 
 
– Has this way of living changed your views on life?
 
We feel very fortunate that we are able to make a living doing what we love, especially in a small town. We are both from rural communities and thought we would need to move to a larger town or city to be able to do the work we want to do.
 
– What is the most challenging part of your lifestyle/work?
 
Some of the boot-making steps are physically demanding, but honestly just keeping up with our orders is the most challenging part. We know that is a good problem! We spend the majority of our time making the boots people have ordered, so we are slower on making new designs than we would like. Balancing production and new creation is our current challenge. 
 
– How long does it take to make one pair of shoes?
 
We can make more than one pair at a time, but the whole process takes about two weeks to make a pair.
 
– There is a 6-8 months waiting list for a pair of South Highland boots selling at 500$, and they are increasingly sought after. Do you have any thoughts on how come your boots has gained such success?
 
We wanted to make a boot for women that was good looking but as tough as a work boot, using the same techniques that handmade cowboy boot makers have used for a century. Colt apprenticed with a cowboy boot maker near his home town in the Panhandle of Texas and made custom cowboy boots for several years before starting Cobra Rock. Marfa draws people who are interested in art, architecture, fashion and design, so we are lucky to have customers who appreciate our handmade process. We have tried to make a modern boot that pays tribute to the place and history around us.
 
– Do you have plans for expanding your production to include other leather goods? (fx bags, other styles of boots etc)
 
Yes! Last year we were able to enlist the help of a few West Texan bootmakers to help us work on certain steps, and that has enabled us to have more time to design. We have a lot of plans for 2014! Expect more styles, colors and leather products coming from us later this year.
 

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IMG_3920 a video snippet of the shop.

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All photos by me

Roadtrippin‘

04.02.2014 um 12.47 – Maria Kai

And then it went. That month of heavenly pleasures and endless fun and I am already sitting like a stuffed animal, tucked away in woolly jumpers, holding hot coffee mugs, with a slight frown on my face at the weather outside. Uff… only late in life I realized how little I care for snow and ice, although in vast landscapes its grandeur holds such stunning beauty. But here the ice is snot-yellow and I am constantly about to fall on my ass from the icy roads and people look grumpy, and so do I. Admitted I have been terrible at updating my little blog-space in here, but it is the same thing that happens every time. I am so excited about everything and think that I will be writing and posting about it all the time. But then life happens and I get completely consumed by it and forget about the lap top – except instagram, cause it is so easy and I snap photos of all the marvelous things I see.

My friend Jordan and I embarked on a roadtrip to Marfa. We stayed at the El Cosmico greatly designed by Liz Lambert, it’s a bit pricey, but you can stay in anything from Safari tents to re-decorated Airstream trailers, fully equipped with kitchens and outdoor hot tubs. On a star-strewn night, with a bottle of wine and good company, you are garanteed an unforgettable time.  

Well finally it here it is, 2nd Texas travel photo-essay. And while looking, listen to this, the Allah-Las

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This is ab old post office still in function! No one ever see anyone there, just hear their voices.
Reminded me of the police station in Twin Peaks.

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In Texas people still dream of cowboys and Indians.

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And people are old school and still hold hands..

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There are forever many churches in Texas,,,

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Jordan trying to woo the cat pack

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in love with cats forever

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First night in a Safari tent with heated madrasses – it gets cold at night in the desert.

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Ever wanna play a game of pool, call me.

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El Cosmico – I can strongly recommend staying there, although a bit pricy.

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‚The Pinky‘ our trailer

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The biggest dog I ever saw, possibly the size of a pony.

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Outdoors shower, freezing but fun.

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All photos by me – some of them up on my instagram: _JohnnyBob

Alice in Wonderland

14.01.2014 um 1.49 – Maria Kai

Reaching destinations is not always as easy as it often looks. Every time I have embarked on a journey to America, it sure has felt ‚destined‘, but it has taken a lot of legwork too – was never just handed over. People often wonder how I get to spend several months away on tourist visas with no income. I see how that may be puzzling, as I am no rich kid.

There is no secret to it – only priorities. Unlike 94% of my friends: 
· I do not care for a career – thus no steady income, only freelance writing/pr/assisting jobs.
· I do not have an apartment – all of my treasures are now on third year kept in a storage facility. 
· I do not have a boyfriend/husband
· I do not have children/pets
· I do not have a car/nice bike
· I do not have any insurance

At my age that might sound sad to some, but everything comes at a price and what I do have is:
strong health, a good imagination, invaluable friends, wanderlust, and a hell of a lot of  f r e e d o m
and boy do I know how to make the most of that!

The only way I can afford extended stays in the States is by endlessly grateful, move in with my wonderful friends, and in return offer to cook, clean and declutter their homes (or whatever they may need a helping hand with). It has become a lifestyle that I am increasingly addicted to. Probably because it is the most difficult, as I am only allowed to stay 3 months on a tourist visa, not allowed to earn any money, do not drive, have to live on other peoples terms and never know where to stay once I return to Cph. In between, Berlin acts as second home, but since I have never managed to overcome the simple task of learning German, I always end up leaving Berlin too. In other words a lot of moving around and not a lot of predictability. 

Sometimes I wonder if there are a few or many like me out there, that do not feel destined to follow only one path in search of a prestiges position? Being well educated it makes me feel guilty not to contribute more and also unambitous – the latter at least in the eyes of other people. But in fact I know what I want and I go straight for it. I want to be in America, because I find that it is one of the few places where fiction dissolves reality and vice versa. And to me there is nothing more interesting than that fine line. Things here are all too real, but more often just surreal. I feel like Alice every time I enter this vast Wonderland. I am so fortunate to find extraordinary people, living unordinary lives and get to observe them first hand. Being the late bloomer I am, some day I’ll write y’all a big book about it! 

Here is part 1 of my Texas travel photo-essay.

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High above the Canadian winter wilderness

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Chicago from above

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We couldn’t get landing permission because of the snow blizzard

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Chicago is home to The Chicago Blackhawks professional ice hockey team.

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Layover and delayed.

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My dear friend Jordan and her entangled kitties Lenny and Nico

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Still cannot believe that I get to stay here. Glorious!

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Room with a view like no other. Feel blessed every morning I wake up and look out.

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If ever in Austin, visit this rad shop: Uncommon Objects. Your wallet is bound to hurt.

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Treasure hunting (thrift shopping) in Savers or Goodwill is one of my top 5 favourite things to do

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Have a great sympathy for cacti and succulents..

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– and low lit bars…

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This beauty my friend Jordan rescued from certain death New Years eve. Now I bob arond with her.

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Lenny snoozing in my armpit

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Where did the river go..? #globalwarming

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Really into psychedelic rock – always have been.

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Meeting the warm hearted locals at Lone Star Bar

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One of the great things about local bars around the US is their no-bullshit Jukeboxes.
More soon to come on our roadtrip to Marfa!

Navajo jewelry. Welcome to Texas.

09.01.2014 um 7.41 – Maria Kai

It has been such a trippy travel getting from rainy grey Copenhagen to Austin (or more precisely Jonestown) Texas, that is has taken me a while to collect my thoughts. I have though been very diligent on Instagram for those who cares about that, have a look at: _Johnnybob.
There is so much to show and tell, that I have decided to boil things down a bit. Remember the beautiful Cobra Rock Boots I posted about earlier? Well tomorrow morning my friend Jordan and I will go on a small roadtrip 8 hours from where we live to Marfa and visit the shop + interview the people behind these very fine boots. And next week  I will have my Tarot cards read by the epic lady and longtime blogger Angeliska – but more about that soon.

First I will share an old obsession – Navajo or Native American jewelry. The great thing about being in The States is (amongst other), that you can buy stuff on ebay only sold in the US, or with almost no shipping cost. Taking great advantage of that these days! Here are some of my crushes that hopefully will not end up costing me too much. So stunning!

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The New Year. The New West.

30.12.2013 um 23.31 – Maria Kai

While emptying my room and packing the bags, my mind circles of all the adventures that lies ahead – feeling more than ever ready to greet a new year! I found this article from Interview Magazine, called The New West photographed by Craig Mcdean and styled by Karl Templer, thinking it captures the warm and lazy, leather, sun and rust mood I am imagining to find in Texas. 

http://www.interviewmagazine.com/fashion/new-west#slideshow_60074.7

 

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#1 · Dear Santa…

03.12.2013 um 14.22 – Maria Kai

– all I want for Christmas is a pair of ‚South Highland Boots‘ from Cobra Rock Boot Company! For the next couple of weeks I will compile a little wish-list from near and far. At the top are these magnificently well-crafted boots, that are made from thick cognac colored leather and can be worn throughout a lifetime. Looking at my own miserable, worn out desert shoes, it’s time for a replacement and I can think of nothing better than a pair of these handmade beauties.

Since no one knows where Santa lives, it might as well be Marfa, Texas – my plan is to a visit Cobra Rock Boot Company once I get over there. Checkt out this little video about them:

– and their webpage: www.cobrarock.com

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Boots These old fellas has walked me many places, and can nearly tell stories about it themselves… arrow+arrow

 

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 (Photos courtesy of Cobra Rock Boot Company)

Hold on TEXAS, momma is coming over!

03.12.2013 um 0.55 – Maria Kai

A bit improvised, I have chosen to resolve a two-part problem in one big Kirkegaard’esque leap. Copenhagen is, unfortunately even for a native with an extensive network, a very difficult city to find an affordable place to live. And with an academic background in the arts, and the recent years recession, related jobs are not exactly hanging on the trees. The standard of living is high, but so are the prices on everything – not a lot of shabby places for you to fix up DIY style – it’s all been done for you, but at a considerable cost. So trying to settle back into the cadence of Copenhagen, after spending most of the past two years in America and Berlin, where everybody hustles, but the cities are bigger – it is not panning out as easy as I had hoped. Fact is, I have to move out of my current apartment January 2nd. Having not found a new place and with scarce funds – what is a girl to do? Trying to untie that Gordian knot has caused a bit of a headache – hence the recent silence here on the sub-blog.

It is the month of Christmas and therefore wishes, but wishful thinking I have been doing a lot of, and enough of lately. So I have granted myself my biggest wish up front – and that is to leave Copenhagen and all worries behind and go visit my beautiful friend in TEXAS! Yes, on the 2nd of January I will see my dear friend Jordan again. She lives in a house 30 km northwest of Austin and I can’t wait to hang out with her all of January. There is talk of line-dancing, horseback riding, road trips, long hikes and if I get the chance to go to church AND try to shoot a gun, my contradictory nature will undoubtedly relish. The excitement and relief is enormous, although aware that it is not the most responsible way of handling things. No less looking forward to take any reader I might have, with me around the dusty corners of Texas. Any tips and recommendations are greatly appreciated!


– learn how to dance at home!

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Cowboy Rounding Up Wild Horses

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