Wednesday, December 29, 2010

A New Year's Eve Post

Pretty cool huh?

Head on over to Etsy to check out the post yourself. You know it made my day.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Gettin' into the Swing of Things...

For those of you who may have missed my twitter and facebook ramblings it's been a bit chaotic on my side of the world lately. My father underwent surgery right before Thanksgiving and is still recovering from the physical tolls of it. I had a blast participating in the LabRats' trunk show in Etsy's virtual labs, but I spent a lot of time editing pics and getting my shop ready for it. I've been sending out paper goodies in the post left and right and running myself haggard shopping for excellent presents.

And now, with December 25th right around the corner I must admit to finding myself blindly running through the motions of Christmas rather than truly getting in to the spirit of things. That is, until this past weekend when I decorated the tree, strung up my favorite white lights, watched 3 silly holiday movies via the Hallmark channel and Lifetime, and baked sugar cookies from scratch with my mom, sister, and niece - and of course, ate said cookies
It seems that a lot of sparkle and a little sugar was just what was needed to make a cold season feel all warm and cozy again.

{top photo: little treasure via ChelseaVictoria}

Monday, November 22, 2010

How To: Hidden Staple Matchbook Notepad

With the holidays fast approaching if you're anything like me you're always on the look out for inexpensive and easy to make stocking stuffer ideas. Well here is a great little D.I.Y. that takes next to no time to whip up, is super easy to personalize (say with an initial stamp), and costs literally pennies per item to make. Ready for it? That's right - matchbook notepads, but this version is large enough to actually be useful and jot down lists and ideas in. Plus, it's complete with hidden staples which makes it both kid friendly and purse friendly - no pesky exposed staples snagging on fingers or fabric.

All right, let's get down to it. Here's what you'll need:
1. a strip of card stock which will serve as the notepad's cover measuring 2 3/4" x 11"
2. two sheets of basic copy paper for the inserts
3. a paper cutter for cutting your paper and to serve as your ruler
4. a heavy duty craft glue {Crafter's Pick works great and can be found at your local Michael's craft store.}
5. a stapler with at least 2 staples
6. two paperclips (optional)
7. a small perforated rotary cutter {You can also pick up a small handheld one at your local Michael's for $1.99 or just use your sewing machine minus the thread}
8. a bone folder to help make neat folds and crease lines (optional)

How To:
1. Cut your copy paper into strips measuring 2 1/5" wide by 11" long. You will get 3 strips per sheet.
2. Now take those strips and cut them down to 2 1/5" x 3 1/2" pieces. You will get 3 per strip. Count out 12 sheets of paper to go inside your notepad and put the rest aside for any other notepads you may want to make later.
3. Use your perforated rotary blade or an unthreaded sewing machine and perforate the copy paper 1/2" from the bottom and set aside.
4. Grab your strip of card stock and lay it face up. Fold inward a 1" flap at one end.
5. Flip your card stock over, face down, and fold a 1" flap after the first fold.
6. Keeping your card stock face down make a third 1" fold after the first two.
7. Keep all the folds sandwiched down together and measure 4" from the top of the folds towards the center of your card stock. Make a crease to be folded down as the cover later.
8. Now that your card stock is all folded take your sheets of copy paper and insert the perforated ends into the pocket created by first fold. Center the paper from the sides of the card stock getting ready to staple at each end. You can use your paperclips to help keep the sheets of paper together and to keep them in the right spot...
9. ...because you will need to turn your card stock over to staple it. Make sure you place those staples below the perforated lines. This way the paper can be easily ton out of the notepad.
10. Get out your craft glue and add some paste between the second and third folds and smoosh the two together.
11. With those pieces glued together now apply some glue to the other side, being mindful not to get any on the copy paper, and fold inward making a sandwich.
12. Now fold the 4" crease down over the copy paper making a cover. Trim any excess card stock off so that the cover will tuck comfortably into the bottom lip like a standard matchbook.
Now that your notepad is complete grab those stamps, linocuts, paper punches and have fun decorating! Don't be afraid to put some personality into those stocking stuffers.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

This Is A Necklace.

Yes. Yes, it is and a pretty cool one at that.

{Word Charm Necklace via Tickette}

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

The Many Faces of Eve

It's getting to be that time. That time of year when you curl up on the sofa, pull out your paper and pen, and start jotting down your holiday gift ideas. I love this time of year because shopping for other people is one of my favorite things to do. I'm so hesitate to spend money on myself that it's such an indulgent thing for me to buy something 100% guilt free. Plus, I can honestly say that I'm an excellent gift giver. I have a knack for reading people - well except where guys are concerned. Just ask my dad or my brother-in-law. For three years running now they each tend to get the same thing: "something" and socks for my dad and "something" and a Tim Horton's gift certificate for my brother-in-law. Yippee. But, in my defense it's not entirely my fault. Women are just easier to shop for. We like pretty things. Be it clothes, jewelry, a bauble - if it suits us, rarely will we ever say "ehhh, I don't need it."

Still, there are some women that can be tricky to shop for. So in my down time I did some virtual shopping and put together a gift guide for that clever, quirky, hipster, laid back, sophisticated, slightly over-the-top friend. Because, we all have someone who defies description.

{For links to any of the items shown above just click the picture. It will take you to my treasury on Etsy. Happy shopping!}

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

You Say Goodbye, I Say Hello

I've been putting off a "I'm home" post for 4 days now because it'll mean that...well, I'm home and vacation is over. But, since I've already been back to Birdcage Cards's business, house cleaning, dog walking, and babysitting I think its proof positive that it's life as normal once again - though not that that's a bad thing. After taking 2 days to travel home and getting locked out of the Newark airport I'm quite glad to be in the comfort of home.I brought home a slew of magical memories, a few of which are among the most meaningful of my life, tons of fun travel pics, and a heavy handful of super cool souvenirs and trinkets.

By far my favorite souvenir was, you guessed it, a bag. However, in my defense, this isn't just any bag. It's a super special, handmade in Guatemala, leather and Mayan brocade weekender by John Heaton. The quality is superb and yay for me the price tag was not nearly as steep as the one listed on the shop's website! Props to my dad for raising me in a flea market where everything is negotiable.

Unfortunately, I was in a bit of a frenzy before I found said weekender. You see, low maintenance me was convinced that I could pack for two weeks (including two formal gowns) in a simple carry-on suitcase. Well, once there I realized that not only had I under-packed, but I packed the wrong things. So, needless to say purchases had to be made and before I knew it my (or should I say my sister's) little red carry-on could fit no more. The day before I left I added shopping for luggage to my to-do list and while I ended up missing out on seeing one particular convent I did come home with this lovely lady... ...nice right?! And don't worry I haven't forgotten to share some of my gorgeous pictures of the rehearsal dinner, wedding, and city of Antigua. It's just that I took so many I hardly know where to begin! I guess I'll have a lot of sorting through to do tonight.

Until next time. Lots of love,

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Adventures in Antigua

I'm writing this post from a very swanky suite in a very cool city and I have to say that I have officially been bitten by the travel bug. The city of Antigua, Guatemala is quite literally amazing and it would be impossible not to fall head over heels in love with it. The sheer volume of historic sights is overwhelming. I mean I spent hours exploring the ruins of just one cathedral the other day. At that rate, I'm hopeful that I'll get all my handwritten asteriks on my little map checked off before its time to return home!

But, until I do you can bet that I'll be taking nothing for granted and creating some life-lasting memories.

All my love,

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Taking In The Details

Leave it to me to have the first picture I take in Antigua be of cobwebs. But honestly it just sums up the city so well; its worn in, it has a history, and its beautiful even close-up.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Gone Fishing

Hello lovelies! I'm thrilled to write this quick post this morning because it finally means that today is the day. I'm off to Guatemala to participate in my dear friend's wedding. I'll be enjoying the beautiful city of Antigua and refreshing my college Spanish - yikes!

I promise to take a ton of pretty pictures and share them when I return. I'll even try to get in a post or two while I'm away. Otherwise, I'll see ya'll at the end of the month. I'll be back just in time to catch my niece and nephew in their Halloween costumes - ahhhhh, how I LOVE Halloween.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Monday Morning Movie: Blue Valentine

I'm a big fan of both Michelle Williams and Ryan Gosling. So, the pairing of the two in Blue Valentine holds great appeal to me. I've been hearing such good things about this movie, but am wondering when the heck is it gonna come out?! And now with an NC-17 rating it seems it may be tricky finding a theatre to show it. Unlike many of my dear friends I am not a relationship optimist. Like one of my favorite books titles I sort of feel that all things fall apart - at least they do eventually. Still, I'm a firm believer in humanity's beautiful capacity to re-build.

It'll be interesting to see how the story develops as it tracks a young married couple's relationship from the beginning to its demise. I'm already wondering if the couple will work to re-build what they started with or go their separate ways. Either way, it looks to be a good flick.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Time to Gush

It's cold and rainy here in Buffalo today - shocker I know - but the smile on my face is plastered on so wide that I'm feeling all sunny and warm. I'm super excited to share my news. Some of you who get Etsy's emails may already know what I'm going to say, but for the rest of you - I'm just dying to gush! My Autumn Harvest Confetti was featured in Etsy's Fall Entertaining Guide yesterday. I'm feeling a bit stunned to be included and am pleasantly swamped with orders - woo hooo!

I'm getting a ton of traffic to my shop and a bunch of new hearts (hearts are Etsy's way to bookmark a favorite shop or item). For a handmade artist literally every bit of word of mouth is a treasured thing, but to reach an audience this wide at the recommendation of one of Etsy's shopping guides is huge and I'm truly grateful.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

What Time Is It Mr. Fox?

Fall is for foxes! So let's pay a little homage to our furry forest friend Mr. Fox today with some foxy Etsy finds. Clockwise from top left: absolutely gorgeous desperately calling out my name Rose print, delicate fox necklace in 14k gold; perfect for that quirky subtle statement piece, to be the coolest trick-or-treater in town slap on this hand carved leather red fox mask, a bit of fun on your hand to make you smile, while typing perhaps, white fox fixed finger ring, is it possible to not be obsessed with this illustration - my cup of tea print, love the idea of dressing up your entryway with this groovy fox on a bike door mat, I'm sure many of us are familiar with the adorable plushes from Sleepy King, but I can't help raving about them some more. This sleepy forest fox is my favorite handmade plush in town, A fox in a tie with a pipe blowing geometric triangle shapes in assorted colors? Come on what's not to like about The Duke of NY print?

A few more noteworthy finds:
- Chunky Red Fox Cowl
- letterpressed Foxy Fiddler Pickin Critter Calendar
- solo fox button
- The Hopeless Romantics print

p.s.- I've got a little foxy screenprint of my own workin' its way to the shop. Here's a little sneak peek:

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Studio Snapshot

It's been a crazy week for me. Filled with a plethora of family and friend outings and get-togethers. So it felt great to spend the day today locked up in my sunporch workshop diving in to some Fall projects. Today I handcut over 1000 of these cute Autumn Harvest Confetti pieces. I even got to play with table settings for some fun product pictures. And while I'm especially loving this Autumn Harvest Confetti for Fall weddings, I gotta say these are definitely going on my Thanksgiving tabletop this year!

Tomorrow morning I'll be adding these to my shop with all the other new items that have been trickling in, but for now its off to bed. I'm aching for some sweet dreams.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Methods of Printmaking

Lately I've been asked just what does "hand printed" mean? So I thought I'd take a second today and try to share a basic understanding of a few popular types of printmaking. There are 4 types of printing, stencil, relief, intaglio, and planographic. Each of these categories has a plethora of different techniques, a few of which I'll delve into below.

1.Screen Printing: From the Stencil category of printmaking. Also know as silk-screening this type of printing is praised for its relative ease of production with very high quality results. The basic process involves stretching mesh across a rectangular frame and using a light sensitive photo emulsion to create a “stencil”. The ink is then pushed through the unblocked areas of mesh to create an image.

2.Block Printing: This form of relief printing dates back to 5th century China in the form of hand carved wooden blocks which were used to print text and images on to paper and fabric. Today many block prints are the result of hand carved linoleum commonly referred to an linocuts. The image is transferred on to paper by rolling an inked brayer over the raised areas of the carving and then applying some pressure and elbow grease through the use of a press, a baren, or a spoon.

3.Engraving: From the intaglio family of printmaking. Metal plates are carved using a steel burin. Ink is then applied to the entire metal plate only to be wiped off, leaving only the grooves or carved areas full of ink. Once put in a press the paper picks up the ink from the carved lines making a print. The earliest engravings date back the the 15th century and, today, our paper money is printed from metal engraving plates.

4.Lithography:From the planographic family. An image is drawn on to stone (typically limestone) with a greasy crayon. Acid is used to burn the image into the surface. Ink is then applied to the whole surface, but sticks only to the greasy marks of the drawing. A sheet of paper is placed on top of the stone and the image is transferred on to the paper through the use of a printing press. This is truly an exceptional method of printmaking that, though rarely used today, was extremely popular during the late 1800's until the 1920's. All those bright and colorful circus posters, WWI propaganda posters, and product advertisements were lithographs.
5.Digital Printing: Images are printed using a digital printer rather than a traditional press or by hand. It has a near immediate turn-around as the creation of printing plates is not needed. The tricky thing about digital printing is getting an accurate color reproduction. The difference between high quality prints and low quality prints is in the type of ink used. Today's Giclée prints are basically fine art prints produced on an ink-jet printer.

These techniques represent just a fraction of the many different types of printmaking. While the chemicals and inks available to print makers today vary greatly from centuries, and even decades, ago you will often find that the basic methods of printing remain carefully preserved by today's printers. After all, printmaking is an important part of our cultural history. I hoped you've enjoyed learning a little bit more and if an interest has been sparked please nurture it and head over to your local library or community workshop to learn more!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

I Want Wednesday: Danish Treats

While perusing through my October issue of House Beautiful my eyes stumbled upon this delicious Hans Wegner swivel chair and I had to make my new found obsession known. I love the mix of leather, wood, and chrome. There is so much going on with this chair, but it comes off so simplistic and chic. And while yes, I am in the market for a new desk chair, sadly this $10,000+ is a tad out of reach. But hey, what's a girl without a dream?

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

It's the Little Things...

When your afternoon snack suddenly takes the shape of a heart you know things are lookin' up. Here's wishing you all a love-ly day!

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Studio Snapshot

Hi all! Things have been busy busy for me lately: burning new screens, carving new linocuts, cutting new tags, printing new seals. No time for end-of-summer slacking. I've got a lot of new items to be added to the shop for the up-coming season, including a line of hand-cut and printed packaging materials. In the next few days I'll be finishing up a basket that I'm donating to a lovely fundraiser (more on that later) and then it's all product photos. Finger's crossed that this wave of bright sunshine lasts through the week!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Go Poketo!

If you've been hiding under a rock like me you may have missed August 10th's release of Target's collaboration with design studio Poketo. Target has been luring big name designers as well as quirky lesser known artists into producing budget friendly wares for quite some time now and, I gotta say, few have had me as excited as their most recent hook-up with Poketo.

L.A. based Poketo was founded in 2003 with the goal to produce art for the everyday. Working together with a slew of ever-charging artists Poketo takes otherwise expensive gallery art and showcases it on wallets, tote bags, key chains, plates and more. Their back-to-school Fall line for Target does not disappoint; full of 52 quirky print accessories ranging from wallets (that helped make Poketo famous) to water bottles.
I urge you to head on over to your local Target today and snag a few pieces of your own before they're gone. I was in there yesterday and when I saw that Poketo sign I made a b-line through the accessories department and immediately started filling up my basket. I came home with some super fun 3-in-1 pouches and a new camera bag. It hurt me not to buy it all. Sadly, I had to walk away from this wallet and luggage tag. But, not to worry, I'm sure they will find a nice home soon.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Time for Transitions

It's cool and rainy here this morning. So much so that I actually dressed in jeans! So sad, but one positive thing about summer coming to an end is that a new Fall line is soon to be released by, one of my favorite designers, Built by Wendy. And even better than that is the fact that their last collection is now on sale through August 28th.

It's a great time to shop for those pieces that, with the addition of some thick tights, a textured cardi, and some leather booties, will transition smoothly into Fall and Winter. Here's a few of my favorite multi-seasonal pieces...

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Spot On

Ever feel like life might be a bit easier if there was a giant flashing arrow pointing you in the right direction? Of course. I'm sure we've all been there; wishing for a way to take the pressure off. Remembering how stress-free life was when we were six years old and our parents did all the heavy lifting for us. But the truth is, that that giant flashing arrow would take all the guess work out of life and constantly keep us on the straight and narrow. And we all know its off the beaten path that we tend to find ourselves because a good life, a full life, calls for a lot of misdirection. So, here's to getting lost...

{ Clockwise from top left: A is for Arrow, B is for Bomb tee-shirt, hand stud boyfriend cardigan, love spinner necklace, This is the spot giclee print, Struck poster, organic cotton apron in a fun red arrow print, arrow stud earrings by Jennifer Meyer, vintage Harlequin arrow pin}

Monday, August 16, 2010

A Sun-Charged Day

It has been such a great day today! I've been working on some lovely 5"x7" Swallowtail Invites in my bright and sunny workshop. My space has just been flooded with light all day, but there's not even a trace of that yucky humidity that's been hanging 'round Buffalo all weekend. So now I'm taking an early dinner/late lunch break from a productive day in my workshop and I thought it'd be the perfect time to share a tiny taste of a few projects I've recently worked on.
The only problem is I keep forgetting to photograph my local orders. I worked on a handful of them in the past few months, but because each was hand delivered it never occurred to me to take some product shots like I do for my online orders. And its driving me nuts since they were all lovely custom invitation orders and I could have used some shots for my portfolio! Ugghhh, I guess I'll have to chalk it up to part of the learning process and know that next time it will be on my mind. Well, at least I hope it will, eek!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Virtual Vaca

Ohhh, my sweet little blog. I remember you when. When, you were well tended and cared for not recklessly abandoned for months at a time. I'm so very sorry for my absence all. It's not that I lost the blog love. It's just that I had an entire virtual overload. From blogging to tweeting and facebook, as well as all sorts of other online networking I just sort-of had a digital meltdown and needed a break. The weather got warmer and I needed to create some free time to breathe; to photosynthesis and re-charge.

But I've been missing my outlet and my online friends so ya'll can consider me back! I'll return to posting my fun finds and themed tributes several times a week and hope to "see" all my online friends again real soon. So, I wish you a very happy weekend and I'll see you Monday!

shown above: love letter necklace from SimonDesigns

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

So Long Blues...

Well I don't know when it happened, but it did. April is nearly over and we're one month closer to the summer - woo hoo!!! And while I know that rainy days are sure to be scattered through our summer months I like to think that the gloom and doom of concentrated rainfall is over for us...well until the Fall that is.

Anyhow, here's a little tribute to cozy rainy days; may they be few and far in between from now on.

{clockwise from far left: We all know you can't get a rainbow without some rain. Which is why I thought this picture of a rainbow on a post-it note was so cute. Love this swirly cloud print from MichelleDigital on Etsy. Don't ask me why these gorgeous lace collar necklaces remind me of upside down clouds. They just do. How could anyone not fall in love with this fun Tempest in a Teacup print; I can picture it hanging in my home already. An innate fan of quirky jewelry its no surprise this whimsical pair of cloud and raindrop earrings caught my eye - fun fun! Silk screened cloud tights. Come on, what's not to love?! I've had a crush on the fun prints from PataPri for a while now and this rain hand towel was too cute not to include in this little ode to rain. And lastly, an adorable cloud mobile from leptitpapillon.}

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Secret Garden

With a new season in full swing is it any wondering that I'm feeling all these fresh bloom inspired creations?! Feminine details in soft dreamy colors makes each find above quite sigh worthy. They have even got me thinking about a little sewing project to breathe some life into a simple cardigan and classic tee. Don't worry, I'll be sure to share all the fun details once I get the project underway and that won't be until I wrap up my newest invitation order for a baby shower. See - spring really does bring in new life all around us.

{clockwise from top left: I love bringing a bit of creativity to an outfit in an effortless and casual way and this secret garden tee is the perfect way to do so. Lovely and Elegant, this quintessential soft and dreamy print is done just right. Love this white cascading flower wall art; I think its perfect for a nursery or bedroom. These mini rosette bobby pins are a great way to bring a touch of softness around your face. Adore - adore - this soft ivory flower pin. Use it as a hairpin one day and a brooch the next and, come on, who doesn't love a double duty accessory?! Surprise, surprise another ruffle that I feel in love with, Five Ruffles Pillow Cover. Yet another flower brooch variation from the lovely shop French Toast Friday. Not only are these earrings great, but so is their name: Flowering Sugar Drops. To fun! And smack dab in the middle is a gorgeous drawing, Flowery, that I have literally fallen in love with.}

Well, that's all for today kiddies. Until next time!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Buttercups and Books

Today, I feel sleepy. You know those days, like you're sleepwalking through life and everything seems soft and dreamy? Yeah, well, today is just like that for me. I'm tired and I feel like a plant who just needs some supercharged photosynthesis pronto. So, I'm filling my afternoon with daydreams of longer days, warmer winds, and the sounds of a happy neighborhood.

image via pinkparis 1233

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Just a Spoon Full of Sugar...

I'm not much of a cook. I've got a handful of recipes down that I know by heart and a bunch more that, it's safe to say, I could improvise decently if I had to. But, let's be honest, I avoid cooking (and I do not consider eggs, omelets, grilled cheese, or heating up canned soups on the stove cooking) like the black plague. It's such a chore to me. I'd rather wash the woodwork in my entire house with a toothbrush before I'd take on the task of cleaning a chicken.

Now, baking on the other hand - well let's just say if it involves chocolate chips I'm all for it. But it still doesn't mean that I'd jump at the chance to whip up a batch of cookies either. No, I am not my mother's daughter. I am not a cook, a baker...or a candlestick maker (sorry couldn't help it). I do not seek out happiness from whipping up ingredients in a large bowl mostly because I cannot live in that moment. When I cook I am all too aware of the amount of cleaning that is to come soon after. And where's the fun in that?

Still, there is something beautiful and awe-inspiring about crafting an apple pie, crust and all, from scratch. My grandmother is quite skilled in the pie making department and for years I've been meaning to sit in on one of her crust making afternoons. Learning the recipe by watching her busy hands rather than it reading some old dusty cook book. Besides, part of the charm of cooking or baking is in carrying out the tradition; doing something the way your elders did before you. Isn't it? So, for today, for this Wednesday, I want to learn that tradition and carry it on...with an industrial strength dishwasher at an arm's length that is.

shown above: Matryoshka Russian Nesting Doll Measuring Cups from Neatorama

Friday, March 5, 2010

Little Critters...

I've been spotting a lot of little critters lately - on my front stoop, in my niece's drawings, in the silly costumes for the facebook games I play, and now on Etsy in the form of these oh so fabulous and clever handbags and wallets from the Tsuru Bride. Every now and then you stumble across that rare find on Etsy that reminds you of the cool indie flick you just saw or that strange lanky grungy boy that you secretly crush on for God knows why. There are just some things that you find and their very coolness shows just how un-cool you are without them. And, well, these clutches are the bees' effing knees.

Hmmm, now which one will make me the coolest?

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

How To: Hanging Terrarium

It's here. I can see it beneath the melting snow; taste it in the air. Spring. The time for green things to sprout, for life to spark awake is nearly upon us and today I'm desperate for some outdoor love. So, I've got a little spring fever project to share - something to bring some new life and fresh air into your home or work space and I promise this is one easy D.I.Y., but if your green thumb is a bit black I've got a gorgeous hanging terrarium from Monkeys Always Look Twice built and ready to go for you. Oh, and did I mention it's crazy cheap?

Monday, February 8, 2010

D.I.Y. Decor

Talk about the ultimate do-it-yourself in home decor. Jonathan Adler has come up with another great idea - modular dresser drawers that you can arrange into your ideal dresser. Now, aesthetically its not exactly to my likely though its decidedly mid-century modern flair, I have a feeling, will suit many of you. And I know he's not the first to come up with the idea, but come on whether its to your taste or not you have to admit his execution is beautiful. And actually, the more I look at that stunning white modular seat with the red cushion the more I think I have to have it!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010


Here it is the first week of February; the start of the "love" month, but honestly this winter weather is giving me no love. Its so bloody cold here in Buffalo! I can't stomach it anymore. So much so that my poor dog has been deprived of his daily walks for the past 3 days! Okay, 4 days. I know I know its neglectful, but again its just so darn cold you could really rationalize that I'm actually doing him a favor; protecting him from the viciousness that is winter. See, the thing with winter is is that its really one of the most dangerous predators in nature. It lures you in with its beauty and alluring stillness while prolonged exposure to its elements can and will kill you.

I know it sounds dramatic, but A.) its true and B.) I've got pent up fever. I could use a little drama! What?! Okay, okay I'll go put on 25 layers and walk the dog, but I won't be happy about it...

(icicles image found here)

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

bump bump, bump bump

So, while working on writing some new listings, today's post, playing a computer game, cleaning the house, and checking my email I discovered this gorgeous and quirky Heart Beat Brooch that makes my own heart go pitter patter. I'm on a bit of a shopping moratorium as I'm saving for a very special event in Guatemala (psst, love you Vicky!). So, even though I do want this bad boy I will restrain myself from snagging it, but for those of you who aren't saving for a holiday hurry up and buy this piece. I have a feeling that it will sell fast. It's definitely wearable art. Plus, it reminds me of my new motto - to live life with more love; to greedily soak it all up and give it out freely.

Oh, and if you do buy this lovely piece please don't forget to let me know. That way I can live vicariously through you!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Under Pressure

I tend to keep this blog all happy and light; fun girly stuff. So, you'll have to excuse my return to real life for a moment with today's post, but I'm finding that my stress level about the state of our planet has been growing exponentially lately. Environmentally our planet is stressed. Species become extinct, fresh drinkable water gets depleted, polluted, green space is running out. Our society is breaking down all around us. Our country's infrastructure is falling apart and for a developed nation we have one of the highest rates of child poverty in the world. And, I'm kind of feeling very heavy with the world's problems this morning and just as I was about to shake that yucky feeling and distract myself with something light and girly it dawned on me that I'm nearing 30. I'm an adult now and the time for distractions is just not an option anymore.

I am not one for New Year's resolutions, but I am one for making committed changes. So, from this day on I will be taking my mother's advice (shhhh, don't tell her!) and I will become a proactive citizen of my country, my planet, and my species. Every day I start will start with this one thing in mind...

What will you do today? Small changes around your own house? Volunteer work in your community? Let each day be new, be fresh. Surprise yourself and love more - you, your planet, and your fellow mankind. I know I will and just that thought...makes me feel a whole lot lighter already.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Love, Love, Love...

This is what my desk looks like right about now. Every year I make handcrafted valentines to send out to my loved ones and this year - well this year I have an Etsy shop. So, I've been making twice as many. I've always felt that the best valentines I've ever gotten were the ones made by little fingers with crayon smudgings and dried glue everywhere. Now mine may not be so messy, but they are made with just as much heart because, I think, nothing says I love you better than a homemade valentine. Well, that's my two cents anyway.

Okay, gotta get back to work. I've got a ton of pictures to edit so that I can list these new cards in my shop this weekend. Wishing you all lots of love. Smooch!

Monday, January 11, 2010

That's Probably Not Amore...

I'm getting some cards ready for Valentine's and I'm in the mood for a little amore. And when I think of love, naturally, I think of Pepe Le Pew. Now, I'm not sure what that says about me that my thoughts of love are associated with being stalked by a deranged skunk, but I do know that I love a good cartoon. Hope you do too :)

Friday, January 8, 2010

Snow White

I'm surrounded by freshly fallen white fluffy snow and mid-way into winter, you know what? I still love it! So, today in honor of my lovely and cold (brrr!) world outside I thought I'd pay a little homage to white - Etsy style. Enjoy...

While I openly admit to being more than a little obsessed with each item I've picked for this collage, it is this knit hat that really makes my heart go pitter patter. I mean did you see that crocheted flower?! Calling all secret admirers - pssst, I love it! Okay, next up what girl doesn't love a little hair adornment? And this sparrow bobby pin is just the thing for bangs too stubborn to grow out. Attention, attention: please excuse the minor bird theme. It was not intended...scouts honor! I mean, hey, we can't help what we're drawn to and really can you blame me for being drawn to this gorgeous ceramic owl cup and fun necklace made of white lace and old copper chains?! I didn't think so.

So, I think we'd all agree that there is just something sexy about chillin' in your man's button down and this sheer boyfriend button up will leave you happy and your man clothed. Oh, wait would that make you unhappy? hehe! And I had to share this oh so enticing handmade soap - ahhh, the fresh scent of baby powder. Plus, isn't that such a lovely product photo?! I mean, really, I wanna buy it. Now, you can't have a snow theme without a little snowflake inspiration and these winter doily earrings do just the trick. And last but not least, I was so happy to stumble upon these lovely life mantra lavender sachets. What a great idea to have a little inspiration jump out at you as you riffle through your sweater drawer.

Okay kiddies, if that wasn't enough winter white inspiration please check out this super neat video courtesy of NPR and Science Friday.

See? Wasn't that a fun little picture show? And now you can't say I never taught you anything...or at least connected you with someone who taught you something :)

Anyhow, until next time enjoy your weekend and share all your love.

{top image: white swan plush by La Pomme}

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Color Me _________

I should probably start the year off right. Get organized, get in shape, be a better human being, yadda yadda. But all I can think about when I look at these oh so colorful moleskine notebooks is the amount of waste involved. And then I'm surprised to find myself thinking "yeah, but aren't they pretty" and "maybe it would be helpful to have a separate notebook for each month". Come on Kate! How does getting organized involve keeping track of 12 different notebooks?!

Ahhh, but my love of paper products is winning out and I think I could probably rationalize a use for them. How 'bout you?

Friday, January 1, 2010

Memo to Me...

At this point you may be expecting some words of wisdom for the new year or perhaps you thought I might take a look back at the final year of a decade and the start of my little stationery company, but no. I am being in the moment. And in this moment my head is telling me that I drank too much wine last night and I better crawl - slowly- back into bed before it implodes. So, there it is - me being in the moment and snuggling back into bed...with my bathrobe still on.

Happy New Year! (ugh, probably shouldn't have shouted that last bit)