Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Today's Finds

Fauvism Midi Skirt from Anthropologie

I was browsing Anthropologie the other day looking for pretty things I can't afford, as one does, and I came across this skirt with an amazing pattern of painterly strokes and was instantly smitten. Then I saw that it's called the Fauvism Midi if the pattern wasn't enough, they go and name it after an art movement to really reel me in! I started skimming the reviews for sizing info as I always do before placing something in my cart, and that's when I saw the name Yangyang Pan. I was like, "Of course! That's why it's awesome!" The skirts (there's actually two different patterns/colorways) were made as a collaboration between Troubadour and Yangyang Pan. I blogged about Yangyang's work and her shop, Siiso, a little over 4 years ago (longtime readers might remember), and I'm still as bowled over by her colorful paintings today. Her shop is seriously one of my favorites, and it makes me super happy when Etsy artists get more exposure from collabs with large brands.

Greenhouse Necklace from Kate Rowland

Parni Bikini from ApartofmeAPOM

Small Crossbody Bag from Olula

Glass Flower Vase from AvolieGlass

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Plant Babies

Long time, no blog! It has been a busy, busy summer. I've been growing lots of plants and flowers, and I wanted to share just a few of my plant babies with you guys.

My favorites are the ones that look like they could be sea plants or animals...I don't know why...I just love them! I also really love the Donkey Tail plant, and I plan on transferring it to a hanging planter when it gets a little bigger. A couple of the leaves fell off and already started propagating themselves, which is cool, so new ones should continue growing in the same spot.

They've actually all had a major growth spurt since I took these photos about a week ago, and some of them are probably ready to move into bigger containers now.

It's funny, all the years we lived in apartments, I didn't really care about plants that much. They rarely lived very long, for one thing, and they seemed to be more work than they were worth. But now I get so excited at every new leaf and tiny bud that pops up. It has been really rewarding to watch all my plants grow the past couple of years, much more than I would've ever thought. And I totally feel like they make a room happier just by being there. Is that nuts? Am I officially an old lady now? Probably. Just leave me alone with my watering can and my house slippers. :)

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Bits of June

To show you how totally together I am as a person, I had this post titled "Bits of May" for a good long while before I realized that it's actually July, which would make last month June, not May. In fairness to my addled brain, I am including some photos that were taken in May in this bunch because I didn't post them to IG until June. Not that it really matters...summer memories all blend together in a haze anyway, eventually, don't they?

This set and the one below are from a brief stay in Savannah and Tybee Island on our road trip down south in May. I have lots more photos from my "real camera" that I'll share soon. How sweet is that cow's face? She's part of a mural on the wall at Mellow Mushroom. 

Lovely tree-lined squares and streets and The Paris Market, where I wanted to buy everything.

Puffy clouds and boats here in Alexandria; a house undergoing renovation in Old Town (I love to see old houses being renovated here...occasionally, part or all of a wall will be down and you can see inside, just like a dollhouse); pretty windows and balustrade; and a funny building that was, at one point, an old house and was expanded and repurposed into doctors' offices, I think.

We had brunch one day at Fontaine Caffe & Crêperie (really good if you're ever in Old Town and craving crêpes); a pretty blue house with a mansard roof; this former mansion (now split into four condos) has so many porches and balconies...I love, love, love this house. Occasionally one of the condos will come up for rent, and you can sneak a peek inside. Here's an old listing from last year, I think, if you want to see what one of the condos looks like. Gah, it's so pretty. And last, but not least, a super cute little free library in our neighborhood.

Another mansard roof on this lovely yellow building; honeysuckle growing like crazy all along our fence in the backyard; I love the ivy growing on this house on the corner; and irises growing up and along gold-painted finials....basically I guess I like plants growing on buildings and fences. :)

So far, summer has been hot and stormy and very humid. We've had so much rain, Peter joked that we're growing fungi, not plants. And we really are. So many weird types of fungi have popped up in our flower beds. Our yard looks like an alien planet.

I plan on spending most of July in my studio because I have lots of work to do, but I'd love a few nice days to get outside with my camera. It's been a while since I really spent some time in nature, so I'm putting that on my goal list for July too...mosquitoes be damned!

Hope your summer is aces. xo, Mary

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Today's Finds

Garden planner from Terrain

Handmade tool caddy from Strong Wood Studio

Pizza Collection seeds from The Living Seed Company, found at Williams-Sonoma

Spout yellow watering can from CB2

Set of 8 handmade garden markers from Paulova Ceramics

I'm planting some bulbs on the patio later today, and it got me thinking about cute garden things. That planner would make a great housewarming gift for a budding gardener. It comes with seed packets and labels, and makes it easy to keep notes about your garden. (I will forever prefer a notebook/binder to trying to keep notes in my phone/ipad, and I know there are lots of folks out there who agree). And how genius is that pizza seed collection? I can only imagine that making homemade pizza with fresh ingredients from your own garden would be heavenly.

Monday, June 29, 2015

Start the Week as You Mean To Go On

For me, that means making time today to draw, read, exercise, and cook something healthy for dinner. What does it mean for you?

I'm also feeling grateful today for lovely things like flower boxes and a full day with no rain! :)

Friday, June 19, 2015

As I walked out one evening...

Walks on summer nights are my very favorite, and I can't really explain why. I hate heat and humidity. I hate mosquitoes. I hate the severe thunderstorms that seem to be on the forecast nearly every day. And yet, summer nights always have me wanting to get outside and walk and see where my feet take me.

Twilight in summer always feels like the start of something instead of the end to me, like the day can finally get started now that the heat has passed. Maybe that's something left over from growing up in the south...I don't know...but as the summer sun sets, everything starts to come alive.

Happy Friday, guys. Hope your weekend is magical. :)

*Post title from the poem by W. H. Auden.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Today's Finds - Honeysuckle

Honeysuckle is one of my all-time favorite scents; it will literally stop me in my tracks when I pass by it. But those heavenly blooms just don't last long enough in nature, if you ask me, so I'm on the lookout for a year-round replacement. Perhaps because it's a sweet, but not super strong-smelling plant, it's difficult to replicate in scented products. Perfumes and soaps are usually too sickly sweet, too floral, or so light that they don't last very long. I haven't actually found one that made my heart sing yet, but I'm still looking! Here are a few promising candidates:

Wild Honeysuckle handmade vegan soap from Formulary 55

I ordered several olive oil soaps from this shop for my mom years ago when they were still called Sweet Petula, and my mom still talks about them! Sadly, they stopped making olive oil soaps at some point, but I'm sure their shea butter soaps are amazing too. Also, I love their packaging.

Honeysuckle kitchen basics set from Mrs. Meyer's Clean Day

I've tried hand soap from Mrs. Meyer's in other scents and really liked most of them. Somehow I didn't realize they made honeysuckle-scented products. I am definitely trying these soon!

Honeysuckle candle from Votivo

I love the idea of burning a honeysuckle candle on a summer night. This one has really good reviews. Votivo also makes a honeysuckle fragrance mist that looks good.

Honeysuckle perfume oil from Hidden Acres Soap Co.

I've been burned by bad perfumes in the past, haven't we all, but this one promises to be light and "true to wild honeysuckle on the vine," which is exactly what I'm looking for. Also, Hidden Acres Soap Co. has lots of happy customer reviews for all of their products.

All of these goodies are made from natural ingredients, without a lot of added chemicals, which is a bonus!

Do you have any favorite brands/shops for scented home or bath and body products? Please leave a comment if you do!