Spider Silk and more!

Every so often, the urge to hit the road and visit New York City just becomes irresistible. Yesterday was one of those days!
I kidnapped my daughter, Kelley, and we drove to the Westport, CT Metro North station and headed into Grand Central Station. The first thing on my list upon arriving (besides visiting the ladies room) is to grab an almond croissant from Balthazar’s bakery on the dining concourse.
The best!

Then stepping out on to 42nd Street, it’s always a joy to spot the unexpected. This time it was lots of men and women wearing their Scottish kilts. My daughter and I always admire a man in a kilt, so this was a great start to our adventure.

Our main goal was to see the American Beauty: Aesthetics and Innovation in Fashion exhibit at FIT. We strolled down to 27th Street and witnessed an incredible show. The garments were largely dresses with a few men’s tailored outfits. They were grouped according to categories such as; embroidery, embellishments, and geometric form. Upstairs there was an interesting exhibit entitled “Night and Day”. This being a history of American women’s day wear vs. night wear. The dress with the 18″ waist still has me shuddering!

I would’ve loved to have taken photos but that was strictly forbidden, so here’s a link that gives an overview:


After that, it was off to see the spider silk shawl at the Natural History Museum. A la Dave Brubeck, we took the “A” train to 81rst Street.

It was hard to believe that I’d never visited this museum as we wound through all the various exhibition halls. If you’ve seen the movie Night At The Museum you’ll know what I mean. This place is a treasure. We saw the world’s largest meteorite, a cross section of a 5000 year sequoia, the bones of Lucy and SO much more. Finally we came to the hand woven golden spider silk shawl. It didn’t disappoint.

Finally, tired and exhausted (in that good way!) we started back to Grand Central. But not before Kelley spied Justin Beiber amongst a throng of excited teenaged girls. Who is Justin Beiber you ask? Good question!

He’s the boy singer de jour, all of 5’4″ and 15 years old. He was very cute and the girls all seemed to be in shock, when not screaming. After we got home to Merrimac, we turned on Saturday Night Live to watch this same Justin Beiber perform. Small world, huh?

If you ever get the urge or opportunity to visit NYC, check out the FIT Museum  as well as the Met’s fashion exhibition lineups. Definitely don’t miss the Museum of Natural History— I was glad to finally go there.

We’re so lucky to live near historically and culturally rich Boston and NYC, aren’t we?

Let’s see now— there’s an exhibit of Curious George illustrations in NYC until the end of summer…

4 Replies to “Spider Silk and more!”

  1. I love the shawl – the texture/motifs are marvelous. It has always been interesting to me to see the same traditional designs used when creating various forms of needlework, baskets, pottery, etc., etc. Thanks for sharing.

  2. What a day you had! Croissants, kilts, the FIT, and …… the SHAWL from the golden orb spiders (all 1 million of them)! I read somewhere, due to the strength of the silk, there was not one broken end during the weaving of this shawl. It must have been a magnificent moment to gaze upon this woven piece. I can’t imagine how intense the coloring was, all natural!

    Thanks for this Kathie!

  3. I’m jealous, Kathie! I’d love to see that shawl. It must be incredible! I’m surprised they let you photograph in there.

    Glad you two had a lovely trip. Thanks for sharing.

  4. Besides the incredible weaving, the color had me awestruck.
    No dyes!

    They definitely wouldn’t allow photography at FIT but Kelley said she saw people taking photos at the history museum, so I went for it.
    Definitely without a flash. Out of respect and I like non flash photos better.

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