Arts + Crafts, Small Business

Indiepublic *New* Website

August 15, 2007

Sion Lee from the blog Cuteable invited me to join a new social networking site that she developed called Indiepublic. It’s like MySpace for independent artists, designers, bloggers, retailers and shoppers.

Indiepublic *New* Website
They have around 620 members (as of this post), so if you fall into any of the above categories, Sion would love if you’d join too. It’s completely free of charge, so you have nothing to lose. You can watch videos that members contribute (like this gocco demo), contribute photos, post questions (like “how do I get myself out there?”) and lots more. If you’d like to link up with me, here’s my page. Congratulations to the talented Sion!

(screenshot from indiepublic)






Handmade, Rooms

Irana Douer’s Teacups

August 14, 2007

I’m a little teacup, short and…. Irana Douer wrote to me about her hand drawn, painted porcelain teacups and they’re just lovely! The last batch she offered sold out, so if you like them, here’s the link to her web shop for more information.

Irana Douer's TeacupsIrana Douer's Teacups
These are so unique and delicate looking, they are a piece I’d definitely keep for a long, long time. Thank you Irana for the tip!






Rooms

Shabby Chic *New* Collections

August 14, 2007

I was beyond thrilled to learn that Rachel Ashwell, who pioneered the whole casual bohemian look (at least here in the states) 18 years ago under the brand Shabby Chic, just launched a new collection of furniture and bedding collections. I want this entire room shown below, right down to the dreamy patchwork pillows. And have you noticed that patchwork is popping up everywhere? Oh yeah! And we love that…

Shabby Chic *New* Collections
Seems Rachel has been busy traveling the world to gather rugs, accessories and designs for furniture, ranging from classic to casual with a whimsical twist. There’s a little bit of an ethnic vibe going on in this collection, coupled with the California bohemian slash English traditional style she is known for. There are dining tables, coffee tables, dressers, nesting tables, etc. in different painted woods and finishes from washes to primitive stains. In addition, there’s a few new bedding patterns, a leather collection, new pillows, lighting, and vintage Turkish rugs.

Shabby Chic *New* CollectionsShabby Chic *New* Collections

I was beginning to think that Shabby Chic was losing it’s appeal (I was wrong) because I haven’t heard much from her since she launched an affordable version of Shabby Chic under the name Simply Shabby Chic at Target. Rachel isn’t about to let down her fans. Remember when she had her own show, I think it was on the Style network? I taped every episode and watched them with my girlfriends religiously every Thursday night with a bottle of wine. And though some may point to other designers as their inspiration because it sounds cooler, I openly confess that the Shabby Chic queen, Rachel Ashwell, is one of the designers that got me started down the road of mixing vintage with modern many years ago, the whole reason behind my obsession for vintage flea market finds, laid back style, and the goal of someday completing my collection of bone china. My goal is to have no plate nor cup the same. Ah, someday…

Shabby Chic *New* CollectionsShabby Chic *New* Collections
This is a duvet I had for a few years, so it’s not a new pattern by any means, it’s called wildflower (below). I picture it in a guest bedroom since I’m married now and don’t want to overwhelm my husband with girly patterns in the master bedroom. But it’s still a favorite pattern of mine because it’s so feminine and crisp, so I wanted to show it to you. I love the way it looks in this room with the tiny painting displayed over the lovely blue side table. I’d replace the lamp though with a this one from Re:found Objects hanging from the ceiling over the table. You have to mix things up!

Shabby Chic *New* Collections

Another staple in her collection that I’ve loved for ages is the beecroft sofa. I met Rachel in L.A. back in 2005 when I attended a tent sale she was having, she signed my book and had her photo taken with me. I was gushing like a little girl. I can’t wait to see more of her new collection, I hope she turns heads with it and that it brings the line back into the spotlight where it should be, as I’ve certainly missed seeing it in some of my favorite magazines.

Shabby Chic *New* Collections

Go Rachel, Go!

(images from shabby chic)






Inspiration, Small Business, Travel, Trends

Jewett Street – House Swappin’

August 14, 2007

Looking for a more intimate experience when you travel? I discovered Jewett Street in a comment left over at Apartment Therapy yesterday and thought I’d share. The idea of swapping homes isn’t exactly a new one, but it’s definitely more common, even considered trendy, making your stay in a boutique hotel almost pale in comparison. More and more are jumping on house swapping for several reasons, the first being that in most cases, it’s more affordable and comfortable than a hotel. With hotels soaring into the hundreds per night, staying in one is no longer the best way to spend your vacation dollars. Especially when you can stay in a place that looks like this. Charming, don’t you think? It’s a flat available for swapping in Edinburgh, Scotland over at Jewett Street.

Jewett Street - House Swappin'
Next, house swapping is the best way to sink your teeth into your new culture and experience day-to-day life. You really get to take it all in this way (especially helpful if you’re planning to relocate there someday. House swapping gives you a chance to experience living there without the commitment.) Of course, many more benefits exist, but you usually don’t know what they are until you’ve experienced it. And if you cannot house swap, consider looking into rental apartments when you travel. I have connections in my favorite cities so that when I need to travel there, I know who to call for an apartment.

I think that people are much more open to the idea of letting strangers into their home because of the internet. Let’s face it, we share so much of ourselves online, you can google anyone! We have less walls around us, people aren’t as fearful as they once were. Remember back years ago, if a friend told you she was dating a man she’d met online what did you think? Didn’t images of murder and/or abduction play through your head? No one thinks twice about meeting those they’ve met online today, so the same goes for swapping homes. There isn’t as much fear in the idea. Maybe we are more trusting? I don’t know. Of course, there is still a need to exercise caution, but house swapping sounds like a great travel option to me and totally worth looking into. If you want to learn more about how home swapping works, visit the Jewett Street website and register if you’re interested.

Have you swapped homes before? What was your experience? If not, would you consider it? I’d love to know what your thoughts are on this.

(image from jewett street)






Etsy Faves

Blue Bell Bazaar

August 14, 2007

Gosia told me about all the new things in her etsy store today, but this owl had me at hello. What a cutie, and somewhat Adler-esque, don’t you think? I totally picture this in Lena Corwin’s living room… :) This owl is by Royal Dux Bohemia, so you know it’s a nice piece and worth the $78 price tag.

Blue Bell Bazaar
I just purchased these Rosenthal horse plates from her, only $24 for 6! But not for dining, for displaying on the wall. I think they’d look great in my kitchen so why not. Even if they don’t work, I can always use them for entertaining or sell them to a client.
Blue Bell Bazaar
I appreciate that Gosia has an etsy store offering vintage stuff because I’m always on the look out for pieces that are unique but also have a strong sense of history and of course, are well made. I hope more rise up and sell great vintage things on etsy because I really think the site could use more variety in offerings.

Visit Blue Bell Bazaar and mark her as a favorite because she shops flea markets a lot so there’s always a nice find in her store. Thanks Gosia for the tip!

(images from blue bell bazaar)






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