Sunday, August 22, 2010

a love letter for you

after the muddled feelings of my last post, i thought i would very decidedly change the tone with images of these incredible & inspiring murals by artist steve powers that happen to be right here in philly.

though i may not feel any more clarity than i did last week in terms of my life's work, i am lucky to have the most amazing partner in my husband, who is with me every step of the way, through the good and the bad. these murals are another reminder to me that i already have what i value most... him. where we live, where we work -- it's all secondary & it will fall into place, though maybe not exactly at the instant that i want it to. wherever we are, we'll be together. and that's enough.

i also want to thank you all for your encouraging comments on my last post... it means so much & has helped me along my way this past week, tremendously so. i promise not to abandon my etsy shops... i've just got to find the right balance in my life & i'm examining it all from every angle to find that balance. i'm planning on a lot more outdoor adventures, time with friends, & exploring new opportunities to help shed a little light on what i'm meant to do. and i suppose, even if i don't find it, i'll have fun in the process!

i hope you all have a great week ahead of you. and thanks, as always, for reading


Sunday, August 15, 2010

the absentee

i'd like to think that i am a focused, dauntless, & resilient person. that i'm capable of anything that i put my mind to.

i'd like to think that my work & personal life are in harmony.

i'd like to think that my current career path is well-suited for me. that it makes sense. that it helps me achieve this harmonious balance in life.

but what i've realized is this: sometimes, even the most fervent beliefs aren't enough. i can't will something to be true that simply isn't. and though certainly i can continue to work towards a goal that has proven elusive... maybe what i want isn't what i thought i wanted. maybe i don't know what i want.

and that's okay.

(i'm still working on accepting that last bit of wisdom as my personal mantra, but goodness knows: accept it is exactly what i must do.)

a bit about how i arrived at this crossroads:

i always knew what i wanted to do. so i did it. i went to college. i studied fashion. i became a designer at a company that i wanted to design for. i worked there for four years. i slowly became someone that i didn't recognize. i caught the ubiquitous disease-of-more. i had an abundance but felt that it wasn't enough. i left this company. i decided to strike it out on my own. make etsy a living. i set a weekly goal for myself that i considered to be modest. i never stopped working. or worrying. or anxiously awaiting my next sale. some weeks i exceeded my self-prescribed modest goal, but clearly, these were not the weeks that inspired the creeping self-doubt. they were the weeks that i came up short. proper coping mechanisms were not in place. self-loathing ensued. anxiety levels sky-rocketed. (perhaps the past tense is not the most accurate one to be used here, but i'm working on that.)

again, i find that i don't quite recognize myself... and this time for different reasons, but really, the end result is the same: now what? what on earth am i meant to do?

and this is exactly why i have been so very absent here. in a world that hosts every imaginable variety of social marketing & self-promotion (some that i haven't even attempted to understand... chictopia? weardrobe? oh dear), i am overwhelmed. and confused. and not without lingering self-doubt.

now, *ahem* i don't fool myself into thinking that this is something that has been weighing on your minds, however, i do believe that honesty is the best policy. you all have been kind enough to stop by my little blog & i appreciate that far more than you probably could ever know, so i thought it only fair to share a bit of the seedy underbelly of my mind.

so, as i re-evaluate, i seem to have made some small revelations:

what i definitely know: that i will continue both of my etsy shops (capacity undetermined). that i need to get out of the house more. and converse with real-live people. and that i need to do this on a regular basis.

what i think i know: that the above means that i need to get a job outside of the house.

what i don't know: how exactly this job will manifest. will i work part time at a boutique? maybe look into fashion freelance? possibly get another full time design job & make etsy a hobby again?

it's hazy. i suppose i'm still a work in progress... but then, aren't we all?

i'll leave you with a video that i found via deargolden & lolavintage that has helped me through some bleak moments recently:

i hope it inspires you as much as it did me.

and thank you for reading.


Tuesday, August 3, 2010

in my dreams: sister visit

i've made some plans to go to nyc for some sister-time next weekend & i couldn't be more excited. my excitement is due to several factors:

1. my sister is my best friend. i love her at least one million tons.
2. we will undoubtedly eat lots of delicious food.
3. i get to meet my cousin & his wife's brand-new baby boy. i suppose the baby is technically considered my second cousin, but that just sounds crazy to me... after all, he is not even a month old & i have 28 years under my belt. i think that a new term is in order.
4. we will perhaps... go shopping. (my sister & i, not the baby & i. c'mon guys, try to keep up.)

the prospect of these activities got me thinking: if i'm going to be traipsing around all day in steamy manhattan & brooklyn, i want some serious comfort. but i would also, ideally, look really great while enjoying said comfort. hence: my outfit wish-list.

although i cannot read a word of this swedish website, i will surmise from the looks of this lovely dress that it is silk. and that is precisely what i want to be wearing in 100 degree heat.

this delightful bag from hickoree's hard goods would come in handy for toting around some serious H2O reserves.

and finally, what has been the object of my affection for some time: these beautiful & wacky oxfords from osborn shoes.

now, as i mentioned, i recently indulged in a few wonderful things irl, so all three of the above beauties will have to remain right where they are: in my dreams. but two of my indulgences arrived in the mail today, so i will instead excitedly wear them. hooray!

which items are you itching to get your sticky little hands on right now?

Monday, August 2, 2010


ever since leaving anthro & striking it out on my own, i have become exceedingly pennywise. no more are the days of $300 skirts from cute little boutiques. nor are these the days of chie mihara anymore (though perhaps someday...). instead, these are the days of incessant thrifting, which, i must admit, have done my closet much more good than the spendy boutique visits. but, as it happens, i am not entirely reformed... there have been a few indiscretions this week (though all vintage & all from beloved etsy).

photo evidence below:

perfect, oh-so-perfect, dress that i scooped up from dear golden vintage this afternoon. i will be wearing this little piece of heaven to a wedding up in the adirondacks later this month. obviously, i will now be excitedly counting down the days to this event.

prim & adorable little blouse that i simply could not resist from vint condition. what pushed me over the edge is the fact that it was made in bucks county, just outside of philly. shop local, right? ha!

and then there are the perfect neutral everyday sandals (for which i've been in the market for some time now) from vim vigor vintage.

now that i have indulged & showered myself with (mostly undeserved) presents, i will now reel it in & go back to spending money almost exclusively on food, alcohol, & lace. it's a good thing i like those three things so much.

Monday, July 26, 2010

shop update: sun-scorched

with a sun-scorched color palette of terracotta, bleached sand, warm putty, & washed olive, this week's shop update will be all about drape & texture.

35+ items of transitional neutrals to cool your palate while in the midst of this summer's unrelenting heat wave.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

very much in love: amanda blake

very much in love... with the work of amanda blake.

her rich, layered oil paintings of seemingly very stolid characters are replete with moody color palettes & captivating narrative titles. each painting's quietly heady feeling leaves me wanting to cover a room's walls with her work & hole up with a good book.

you can find her beautiful work here.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

pre-fall collection: adrift, part I

silken tassels of dusty quartz & midnight blue, fringes of burnished brass chain, untamed tangles of copper links, buoyant ball lockets, lacy fish inamorata, delicate scalloped ivory rope, and weathered pearl orbs... a romantic maritime transition to fall hit the shop yesterday.

i hope you like the new direction the shop is taking. a lovely weekend to you all!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

sneak peek: boi bumba shop update

lots of bright, bold colors & patterns for one last shot of high-summer, wear-now summery goodness in the next shop update. all these items & more coming later this week...

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

trifecta: tiny toadstool

ahem. well. it seems that i fell off of the blog bandwagon for a good long while there, but i'm back. and with good reason. (oh, and i pinky swear that i won't let weeks pass without showing this blog some love again. really.)

i was browsing my tree & kimball google analytics (incidentally, best invention/ most fascinating tool ever) a week or two ago, when i stumbled upon... world's cutest girl. it's fair to say that i squealed with delight when i saw that she was wearing one of my necklaces. because, you guys, wait until you see her...

i know. i know. like i said: world's cutest girl.

yes, those are wings. you saw it right.

(all photos via shan shan's blog, tiny toadstool)

not only does have killer shoes & an awe-inspiring sense of style, but it turns out that she also makes this:

and this:

and THESE:

yep, that's right. she makes wildly playful & meticulously hand-embroidered berets & mittens that make my heart melt. i have obviously now begun saving my pennies so that i may someday own one of these little beauties.

in the wise words of one niecy nash (sorry, can't help it, i love her)... can you stand to see more? because that's not all -- she also has a vintage shop filled with beautifully-photographed and adorably-styled (duh) clothing.

so, in short, what i'm saying is this: go on & show this perfect trifecta of a girl some love & visit her here, here, & here. because she really is the coolest.