Friday, October 31

Great Gifts Guest: Denise of

For this special Friday edition of our great gifts series, I'm so excited to share with you Denise of Studio d. Sharp. So glad to have you!

Maybe you recognize d. Sharp's eiffel tower candy containers--widely publicized on the blog scene, I think it can be said that Denise's finely crafted paper pieces are the means to perfect marriage proposal, wedding celebration, Valentine's Day and child's birthday party. A little bit vintage, a little bit Victorian and very much unique, each one of these objets d'art would constitute a gift of love. Plus, Denise has a wonderful line of luxury letterpress wrapping via etsy.

All this and a blog!: Denise also keeps up the warmest, wittiest and aesthetically sharp (no pun!) journal complete with hilarious kid stories (Dispatches from Parenthood--my fave!).

For our series, Denise writes:

The greatest gift I've ever received: One of the most meaningful gifts I have ever received was from my husband on the occasion of my very first mother's day. It is a necklace by Jeanine Payer and I wear it almost daily.

The front has a tiny photograph under glass of a baby with gold leaf wings. The reverse side has a favorite quote from Rumi:

Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing, there is a field. I'll meet you there.

{So special! If you haven't read Rumi's poetry, I highly recommend it. This book is one of my favorites as well.}

Becoming parents alters your relationship with your spouse and that first year is full of changes. This quote was a reminder of how important it is to connect with my husband.

{Such a beautiful reflection and sentiment! A gift like this could just melt your heart, couldn't it?}

Thanks, Denise, for sharing with us! Can't wait to see what you create next!

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Happy Halloooooweeeeeen!

Boo to you, my dears! I hope you're having a delightfully spooky Halloween! I always love the big question: creepy or cute?

I think I would have to be either a r-r-raven or a beeee hive...!
Any fun costume and decorating ideas where you are?

(All images found here.)

UPDATE: Check out these absolutely adorable and ingenius kiddo costumes via Cup of Jo, the ventriloquist's dummy and Max of Where the Wild Things Are--ohhh my, sweet!

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Thursday, October 30

Sweet Find: Pippa Small

Speaking of, have I mentioned I'm completely enamored by Pippa Small's work? The jewels are simply vibrant. Her pieces can be found at Twist.

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A Vision for the Event: Clovers & Cream Ceremony

Oh, does this little wedding idea make me happy! It's elegant but not fussy: a green, green pasture, a comfortable cardigan, a bouquet of fresh herbs, a ceremony out under the sky and a sweet cake reception after. I can really see savoring the moment at an event like this, not to mention the Ireland honeymoon trip....

Image sources: Martha Stewart, canelle et vanille, Brides, Martha Stewart, Elegant Bride via Nibs, Mark Joseph Cakes, Pippa Small from Twist Online, The Lettered Olive.

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Wednesday, October 29

Sweet Find: Initials & Dingbats

Aren't these mugs wonderfully sassy? Pedlars describes them as "letter on one side, illustration on the other." I'm thinking I might need the 'r is for revolver' and the 'b-b-bicycle,' baby...!

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Monday, October 27

Home Is Where the Art Is: Twinrocker Paper

One of my very favorite artisans is Twinrocker Paper, makers of handmade paper and letterpress printmakers (and Martha loves them too!). Learning about book arts in college in California, I dreamt of their watercolor papers for illustration--each piece is simply the best of the best. Little did I know that later on I would live fifteen minutes away from their storefront shop in the tiny town of Brookston, Indiana. An American craft legacy. I mean, traditionally crafted handmade paper--just imagine the wedding invitations! Not to mention, their paper has been used to create some amazing fine art books, including this one by 21st Century Photography with the work of Robert and Shana ParkeHarrison (if you haven't seen their work, it's amazing stuff--imagine the wish you could make with a dandelion puff of that size!). Needless to say, I keep a couple pieces of the beautiful paper around for rainy day inspiration!

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Sweet Find: Jennifer Davis

These days, I'm thinking the work of Jennifer Davis is out of this world. Painted cigar boxes--kids, friends, loved ones, what a brilliant gift one of these would be! Really, I just can't get enough of her Necco-flavored colors. Delicious, delicious.

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Saturday, October 25

Sweet Find: Eden and Eden

Honey, did you stop and get the kitsch? I'm really thinking, snuggling in for the cold weather, that I might have a use for a tea cosy after all. Eden and Eden has really done it right. The whole shop just makes you want to rock their goods. Everything's dream-y.

(Via d*s)

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Friday, October 24

Backyard Field Guide: Fall Planting and Planning

We received such a wonderful wedding present this summer--a gift certificate from White Flower Farms (thank you Kelly & Ben!). I didn't waste any time before browsing around--let me tell you! Believe it or not, the fall is a wonderful time to do some planting in the garden. In the end, we chose a peony (one of the lovely magenta ones with buttery yellow centers) and the sweet autumn clematis, which I'm hoping will grow into a nice cloud of flowers over the laundry line (you can't live in the Midwest and not have one of these!).

All this got me thinking--what a wonderful way to plan ahead for your spring wedding: plant your flowers ahead of time and save, save, save. With good timing and a thoughtful plan for some simple, well-designed bouquets and arrangements, don't you think something like these above could be pulled off with ease?

(Images from here.)

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Designing Wedding Heirlooms: A Feathery Find

I was checking out these new lovelies from JCrew and couldn't help but think they would look soooooo fabulous with a K. Autumn hair flora...! If I were to do it all over again as a winter bride, I think one of these little combos would be a must. (Have you noticed this trend? I'm simply obsessed with wedding accessories--even more than the dresses themselves! Hmmmm! What's the story here?)

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Thursday, October 23

Pretty Primer: It's in the Mail Art

To celebrate our upcoming reunion, my alma mater has invited alums to send submissions to a mail art exhibition with the plan of saving everything as the basis for a new archival collection. Isn't that a brilliant concept? I'm imagining the gallery full of all sorts of creative collage mailed between good college friends--what a way to catch up with one another! In fact, my friend Ben and I are thinking of collaborating--pushing the envelope, if you will--just like old times. The perfect excuse for getting back to playing with my paintbrushes and illustrating.

Do you have any favorite mail art pieces? What materials do you think we could use? Right now, I'm dreaming up schemes with raffle tickets, distorted photocopies, a little gouache, maybe some stitching with colored thread. Of course, the work has to make it through the post. Hmmmm!

(A couple of my favorite pieces from Donald Evans and Litsa Spathi. Evans makes these lovely stamps from imaginary lands. A Fluxus artist, Spathi blends media to create her multilayered collages.)

UPDATE: How fab are these vintage paper packs from Estate Sale? I think I may need to pop one of these in the mail to my penpal....

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