Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Blog Survey

Although I almost never leak details or talk about possible projects with folks outside the Urban Prairie camp, I've come to really value you who visit this blog on a regular basis. So, I'm throwing this survey out to you all. Anyone who knows me well is aware of my fondness, or some would say borderline obsession, with BBQ. I have eaten at almost every BBQ joint, stand & shack in the South. I feel I KNOW good BBQ. Here's the project:

The URBAN PRAIRIE BBQ STAND. This would be a one off joint, no chains. It would be "Chris Brown" and Urban Prairie style down to the last detail - and believe me, there would be details.

The building would be a vintage barn feel with a modern twist. There would be long primative farm tables with white lace and vintage chandeliers hanging above every one. Huge bundles of fresh white roses and wild flowers throughout.

The wait staff: Females-Prairie Dresses by Kara Larson, biker & cowboy boots, cowboy hats and vintage aprons. Males-Jeans, t-Shirts, boots, cowboy hat or caps. The guys order pad would fit in back pocket, attached with chain. All would be tattooed, of course!

Music played throughout on vintage drive-in speakers would consist of Johnny Cash, Neil Young, Hank Williams, John Mellencamp, Bob Dylan, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Willie Nelson, etc. LIVE music on Friday and Saturday nights.

And lets not foget the BBQ. Pork meat ONLY. Sauce by Rufus Teague, sweet honey. Texas sweet tea served in white ironstone pitchers with fresh mint.

So, would you eat at a place like this?

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

I've Been Bootlegged


I am alway so honored when someone writes and lets me know when they are inspired by my work and the things I do. A very sweet, young lady named Michelle Kristal, a interior design student, has emailed me several times over the past year. She sent a email about two weeks ago letting me know about her new blog, Chris Brown: BOOTLEGGED. I am so blessed and honored to know I have inspired Michelle and that she enjoyed my Urban Prairie lifestyle enough to have BOOTLEGGED me. I hope to contribute to her blog as often as possible. Visit the blog, have fun and get BOOTLEGGED.

Photo: D'Ette Cole

A Note From Amy Butler

Hey Chris!

This is so cool! By the way YOU are too cool. Your site is gorgeous, over the top luscious. Your graphics and imagery are so beautiful. I'm guessing you do all of the photography as well. Nicely done Mr. Brown. Dave and I are big fans and we love sending folks your way. Thanks for sharing my book!

All Best,

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Head of the Class

Chris is not the only one obsessed with vintage doll heads. They seem to be coming all the rage. In the latest issue of Country Living magazine, Theresa Smith of Glendale, KY uses several to add a touch of humor to her ironstone collection (see photo above). Chris has been collecting, designing and adding vintage, cracked and faded doll heads to his own displays for over three years. A book on his collection and his use of them, titled "Crack Heads" will be available at the end of June at

Photo: Keith Scott Morton

Sunday, May 20, 2007


D'Ette Cole of Etta Industry was asked to shoot promotional photos of Chris for upcoming projects last March. D'Ette and Chris spent a day in Warrenton, Texas walking the fields of the Round Top/Warrenton Antique Show and shot over a hundred photos throughout. Stroll on over to D'Ette's Fig. 5 Flickr series at There D'ette has posted five unseen/unpublished photos of Chris from the shoot.

Photos by D'Ette Cole

Thursday, May 17, 2007

A House Full of Talk

For tips and advice for the new store owners or store owner-wanna-be's, visit Elizabeth Maxson's SHOP TALK at Click on "View my complete profile" - that will lead you to the link ELIZABETH HOUSE SHOP TALK SERIES. "It is my hope that by my sharing what I learned over these past years will be of some assistance to your ventures into the retail world." says Elizabeth.

Check her out. She's a modern, quirky, stylish friend with much to offer.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Great "Urban Prairie" Style

AVAILABLE FALL .07 (Stewart, Tabori and Chang)

Attention, design and style mavens! There’s a lot more to America than just the east and west coasts. Today, innovative American design—in clothing, home decor, even gardening—is emerging from the Midwest. So lay your bicoastal biases aside, and let Amy Butler show you what’s happening in the heartland.

Helping her fans jumpstart their own creative spark is Butler’s fashion credo, and her approach has won her a huge following. Her “Mid Mod” philosophy—neither homespun nor haute couture—is as up to the minute as it is firmly rooted in Midwest tradition. Emphasizing simplicity and integrity of craft, Butler is passionate about recycling materials, reinventing vintage looks, and taking joy in the homemade. Her approach—drawing its inspiration from the natural world and the lives of real people—is organic in every sense of the word.

Amy Butler’s Midwest Modern brings the many aspects of its author’s vision into focus, from re-imagining the home as a retreat for relaxation and dreaming, to picturing the body as a canvas for creating one’s personal style, to looking to nature as a “sketchbook” for design ideas. Vibrantly illustrated, the book underscores design’s practical side, with information on budgeting money and time, a shopping resources list, and “how-to” projects in every chapter.

Visit Amy at - Tell her Chris said hello!

Monday, May 14, 2007

Playing now on my ipod

The most vital acoustic music being made today acknowledges its predecessors and lives in the here and now. For four years now, The Duhks, the band of five skilled, high-energy, tattooed twenty-somethings from Winnipeg, Manitoba, has been riveting audiences and winning staunch fans across North America and around the world with just that kind of music.
Since the release of their self-titled, Bela Fleck-produced album in 2005, and the consequent re-release of their Canadian debut, Your Daughters and Your Sons, as well as this year’s Sugar Hill release Migrations, the band has won admirers as diverse as David Crosby, Dolly Parton, and Doc Watson. This is not surprising, given their Duhks-alone blend of soul, gospel, North American folk, Brazilian samba, old time country string band, zydeco, and Irish dance music, and the attack they bring to these interwoven acoustic styles—which might as well be called sheer rock and roll. Their unique sound has also earned them a Grammy Award nomination in the Best Country Vocal Performance by a Group or Duo category, one Juno Award, two additional Juno nominations, two Folk Alliance awards, and an Americana Music Association nomination for Best Emerging Artists.

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Skin Deep

Each week I get at least 15 to 20 inquires about my tattoos. Questions ranging from, “How many tattoos do you have” to “Who does your tattoos” and “Please take us on a tour of your tats”. I’ve loved tattoos since I was very young. I studied my dad’s ink for hours. He has three. I have far surpassed him. I don’t know wether it’s the art and design, the colors or just the idea of having something under your skin that will be with you forever that draws me to them. To me tattoos are very personal. Each one means something. Although I may not reveal the meaning behind them all, I will take you on a “tour” of what I have presently. I have only worked with three tattoo artist. I have designed all my tattoos, although I have given each artist free rein to put a bit of their own style into each. 90% of my ink has been done by Nick from EPIC TATTOO in Fort Worth, Texas.

Right Upper Arm: Both my daughters names surrounding a red rose and green leaves.
Left Lower Inside Arm: Black and gray gothic cross surrounded by red roses and green leaves and scrolling vines.
Left Upper Arm: A red sacred heart crowned with thorns and fire. My mothers name Grace with tribal scroll work in black. Magenta flowers with green leaves and blue japanese waves that surround my whole arm.
Left Upper Shoulder: A orange/yellow/red koi fish mixed with blue japanese waves.
Left Upper Shoulder Blade: A red/orange rose with scrolling vines/thorns.

All of the art on my Left Upper Arm/Shoulder/Blade is surrounded with a backdrop of gray swirling japanese style clouds.

Photo by D'Ette Cole

Sunday, May 6, 2007

A Note from Chris

The May 4th opening of the online Urban Prairie SHOP seems to of been premature on my part. I wanted to get some of my cool collections online as soon as possible. But my people, (yes, can you believe it, I now have people) strongly suggested that I premiere the online SHOP section of the Urban Prairie site with the release of my book "Crack Heads" at the end of June. It will all be one big promotion now. I promise it will all be worth it for the serious collectors. And maybe the newcomers will find something cool too.

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

A True Fan (6)

From KansasRose's Favorite Five:
Chris Brown of

Now ladies...I am a happily married woman but this Texas dude is HOT....not only that but he is hot in the design biz. Chris is the founder of the cool site urban and has his first book coming out in June called "Crack Heads". This blue jeaned/tatooed guy is a devoted husband and father and takes old junk, vintage finds, antiques and puts a twist to it that is REAL and beautiful and edgy and just plain cool. Chris is ONE to watch! Plus...he is a genuinely nice person and not on some kind of ego trip like so many designers/lifestyle/book writers are...what you see is what ya get. Real, honest Texas prairie hipness.

1. Rubber boots and vintage prairie dresses on my wife.
2. Cracked doll heads.
3. Organic foods.
4. Vintage paint-by-number portraits of Jesus.
5. Tattoos.