Frivolous Universe

The FU Manchu ladies are back after a long winter’s nap! For three months we’ve been pigging on polenta fries and popping tags like Macklemore. But if you think not having a pot to piss in means looking bargain basement, think again.

Check out our YouTube for a peek at coming distractions from FU.


Nothing beats a tea party to cure me of a bad case of March ides. For this shoot I grabbed two bolts of my best Balinese batik and headed out to Eagle, Idaho, to meet Ms. Kelly Lynae on her favorite horse ranch.


And I’ll be damned if that girl doesn’t know her way around a safety pin! Kelly took my vintage batik swathes, procured from a tiny shop in Ubud, Bali, and swaddled the two of us in torqued elegance. I cast my bra aside because it’s April and time to let the minimalist fashion games begin.


This was the moment I decided to hell with scarves. I transformed the natty red scarf I’d been tortoising around all winter into a plunging halter top. Kelly styled me in thrift store belt and then we tried our hand at interpretive dance.


Why? Because we live in Idaho. Because I don’t own a TV or a salad spinner and most everything in the great Gem State, including entertainment, is DIY.


And here are the lessons I took from the long, harsh winter:

1) You will fail along the way to creating something new.


2) What other people think of you is none of your business.


3) Do what you love every day. The secret to any great performance, after all, is muscle memory.


vintage Indonesian batik from Ubud, Bali; cotton scarf-cum-halter: India; 100-year-old Turkmen necklace: Armor Bijoux

Photography by Kelly Lynae

Videography by Ned Evett



My take on the Urban Cowboy Cowgirl. With a hint of neon and a prim and proper neck.


Appearances can be deceiving.  The Urban Cowgirl loves a flash of skin.


These boots were made for Walken walkin’… to acting class, and the laundromat, and gypsy busses to Jersey, and that cafe I like, and the bodega for a club soda because I drank too much last night.


(Boots are good for dancing, too.)


A giant bag is a New York necessity for holding subway reading, and my planner, and monologues, and coffee cards, and a purple pen, and three types of condoms.


A good hair day always means that it will be a good life day.


Just don’t try to cat call at me.  I’ll probably flip you off.



Thrift store fashion print mixing Tibetan breastplate photography Matthew Wade

Kelly: Why do we fight each other? A thought bubble rises from some bottomless pit of soul to explode at the surface with resentment.

Thrift store fashion 70s ship n shore shirt photography Matthew Wade

Bethany: As I get older, I am recognizing the fight is sometimes more within myself than with the other person. My insecurities skew how I interpret or relate to the other person’s actions. If I am worried about being likable or interesting, I am sensitive to when the other person doesn’t ask me questions about my life.

Thrift store fashion print mixing color blocking photography Matthew Wade

K: Nine times out of ten, it’s all me. When some truth becomes newly clear to me, I want to pass it around like a bowl of candy or a tray of Kool-Aid in paper cups. I can have trouble tolerating someone who doesn’t understand my most tender discovery.

B: I wrestle to accept my shortcomings. And I often find a way to resent those very same shortcomings when I see them mirrored in a friend or lover. I feel as though the success or failure of my own personal growth hinges on the self-awareness, or perceived lack thereof, of the people I care about. I’ve been known to drive myself crazy with this line of thinking.

Thrift store fashion vintage Russian Fur Hat photography Matthew Wade

B: When I see someone where I have been before, I feel connected. It tortures me most when I can’t understand where someone is coming from, why they did what they did. Past memories morph. Did we ever like, love, or know each other? The ground dissolves.

Thrift store fashion photography Matthew Wade

K: It is a profound loss. Itching like a lost limb, a phantom consciousness natters on inside my head: What if there were some outside thing? A rock, a shoe, or a shovel? A hammer or a mirror? Could we have found a touchpoint to bring us back to ourselves? 

Thrift store fashion vintage embroidered jacket beret photography Matthew Wade

B: The only thing we control is our own perception.

Thrift store fashion print mixing color blocking vintage embroidered jacket beret photography Matthew Wade

K: We cannot come together without losing something. To get a sacred amulet, you must surrender a sacred amulet.

Thrift store fashion color blocking print mixing vintage embroidered jacket beret photography Matthew Wade

B:  My desire to be close again is frantically noble. I struggle not to compromise to the point that I muffle my self-respect.

Thrift store fashion beret vintage silk embroidered jacket photography Matthew WadeK: My life is in a state of flux. As I rapidly unearth a new self, my relationships struggle to adapt. Newer friends like Bethany are giving me the courage to let others go.

Thrift store fashion 2 photography Matthew WadeB: Over the last year, I lost a best friend of nearly ten years. Very rarely did we ever talk about our hurt feelings. Two of the the last times we did is when I gave up. Her interpretations of my actions were so far off from any motives I would ever have. I didn’t know what to do. I wouldn’t be friends with me if I was who she thought I was. I grew distant. Things festered. My own understanding of her actions were probably wrong too. In the end, it was our insecurities that eroded our relationship.

Thrift store fashion print mixing beret vintage embroidered jacket photography Matthew Wade

K: Who knows why it ends? Who knows what steers our actions? Maybe I too am addicted to Samsara. For better or for worse. Till death do us part.

Idaho thrift store fashion photography Matthew Wade

Peace. Peace. Peace.




Yellow XL nightclub dress; Vintage Tibetan Naga ethnic headhunter necklace from Armor Bijoux;  70s Ship N’ Shore vintage polyester blouse; 70s Ship N’ Shore vintage maxi skirt; Mexican silver and lapis necklace; Chinese Ver Marai Cheongsam lace dress; vintage Russian fur hat; vintage palazzo pants; Bamboo yellow vinyl platforms