Friday, April 23, 2010

Spring Celebrations You Can Wear - A Rare Post by Leal

My birthday is coming up. It's right around the corner actually, on the 1st of May. And although in my family, birthdays aren't special days or particularly celebrated, my twin sister and I were fortunate enough to be born on a major holiday, which meant that whether my parents wanted to celebrate our birthdays or not, there was always a celebration regardless.

May 1st is May Day, which is also known as Beltane. In many religions including our family's, this is a religious holiday. What that meant for us is that our parents always had the day off of work and my sister and I always got the day off school.

Not only that, but there was usually a party of some kind to go to involving moon cakes, cookies, dancing and a lot of fun activities for kids and adults. This made our birthday special, even if that wasn't the point of the actual celebration.

Beltane celebrates the fertility of spring and the greening of the earth and is the last of the three spring festivals, which heralds in the arrival of summer. It's filled with celebrations of fertility including maypole dancing, which is one of the more popular and well known ways off celebrating this special holiday.

I've chosen the pictures in today's post from a shop on Etsy that is filled with a wide variety of beautiful jewelry that, to me, celebrates this season to perfection.

I especially like the floral pendant necklaces in this shop, which I think are remarkable and perfect for the season.

These necklace are made by Magdalene Jewels in collaboration with Zuda Gay, who created the pendant itself.

In fact, the artist at Magdalene Jewels will gladly custom design any piece from Zuda's shop, according to the colors of the Flowers you choose and your personal specifications.

TO VISIT MAGDALENE JEWELS' SHOP ON ETSY, YOU CAN CLICK THE PICTURES ABOVE OR, IF YOU'D RATHER, CLICK RIGHT HERE!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Refresh with a Bit of Natural Luxurious Fun

It drives me nuts when the weather changes. It's like my body decides that while the weather's changing, it's time to be rebellious. All winter long, my skin will be nice and smooth (if a little dry), my hair settles into a comfortable flippy curl style, my little toes look cute and I keep the toenails painted for an extra bit of a festive touch.

Then spring arrives. And with it... comes acne (something I never ever had as a teenager, I now get every spring as an adult), my fingernails turn brittle, my toenails turn soft and my usually very cute feet? They become dry and callous-y and just over-all yechy!

This is how I discovered today's shop. I was searching for a way to pamper my feet and turn them around back to their usual cute bits.

Today's shop is Artesia Products on Etsy, and in this shop I discovered a very neat product that's a foot scrub shaped like a bath bar. I love the idea and I can't wait to buy some for myself to try out. Not only is this innovative idea just what I was looking for, but it's made with peppermint oil which doesn't just smell refreshing but also has antibacterial and anti-fungal properties, so it's perfect for pampering the feet!

Artesia Products also carries a variety of other bath and body products from lip balms to bubble baths and much more! And, 10% of all their profits is donated to a charity called water 1st, which grants funds to communities to establish sustainable safe water systems.

I love this shop and I'm sure you will too, so be sure to stop by and take a look around at Artesia Product's fun, luxurious and all natural bath and body products.

YOU CAN CLICK ON THE PICTURES ABOVE TO VISIT ARTESIAPRODUCTS' SHOP ON ETSY AND TAKE A LOOK AROUND OR, IF YOU PREFER, CLICK RIGHT HERE.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Luxury from France - Gorgeous Handwoven Textiles

I've always had a special fascination for artists that work with textiles and just recently I had the unique experience of watching someone work at a loom.

After having this experience, I've come to the conclusion that the artists who do this type of work are visionaries.

In my opinion, they're not just artisans but rate up there with oil painters who make unique, breathtaking landscapes.


The amount of vision required to create these beautiful pieces of art that are produced from a loom is extraordinary and I came across a shop on Etsy the other day that offers a variety of just this sort of wearable art.

Gill Back's shop "Tisserande" on Etsy is filled with a beautiful variety of scarves and shawls that are all handwoven on a floor loom using all natural fibers. The artist
especially enjoys working with silk, but also uses cashmere, alpaca, linen and cotton. There's even an offer for requesting custom ordering if you see a design you like but would prefer it in different colors than those offered.

Each piece is beautifully made
and photographed for a pleasure to browse through.

After starting out when given an old 1930's loom, Gill Back now has a studio in France and an absolutely beautiful shop on Etsy to browse through so be sure to stop by and check it out. A small selection of the wool used to make these beautiful creations is even produced from a small flock of the artist's own sheep!

I'm personally drawn to the silk and cashmere pieces, because I love the way fabrics made with those textiles lay and move but I can't think of a single thing in Gill Back's shop that I wouldn't love to own and wear.

TO VISIT THE GILL BACK'S TISSERANDE SHOP ON ETSY, YOU CAN CLICK THE PICTURE ABOVE OR, IF YOU'D RATHER, CLICK RIGHT HERE!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Leaving an Audience Breathless - Abstract, Contemporary Artwork

I love art but I'm really, really picky when it comes to abstract art. It's not that I don't like the style, it's more like I think that some people can get a little carried away with the concept.

That said? I found an abstract artist the other day that I just have to share with you because the moment I stepped into their shop, I had my breath literally stolen away with the beauty within.

The artist is Frances Seward.

She is an emerging artist from the U.K. and currently living in New Mexico that specializes in abstract, contemporary landscape photography paintings that are truly remarkable.

As with most art, it's nearly always far more impressive in person than in print an I just can't imagine how entrancing and hypnotizing Seward's work must be in person because the pieces in her shop really catch the eye even over the computer screen.

There are copious amounts of information on Frances Seward and her artwork both in her shop profile as well as on her personal website, and I'm not going to reprint any of it here.

Instead, I'm going to encourage each and every reader to go and visit her gallery on Etsy and see these beautiful, breathtaking works for yourselves. They are truly inspiring, absolutely emotive and, in my opinion, they are the true definition of what abstract art should aspire to be.

So stop by, take a look around and be sure to click on her Profile so you can find out a bit more about not just the beautiful pieces Frances Seward has to offer, but about the artist herself as well.

YOU CAN CLICK ON THE PICTURES ABOVE TO VISIT FRANCES SEWARD'S SHOP ON ETSY AND TAKE A LOOK AROUND OR, IF YOU PREFER, CLICK RIGHT HERE.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Giggles and Grins - Cute, pretty and perfect tile pendants

When you take a browse around the handmade community out there, you'll find that that there are a lot (and I mean a LOT) of craft and artisan designers out there making and selling tile necklaces.

They use everything from
coins to scrabble tiles, glass tiles, dominoes and many more options for the backs of these cute and inventive pieces and there's a wonderful, almost endless variety of opportunities for creativity.

That said, there's always a few in a crowd that stand out and above all the rest.

Dawn and Ronda
Wilcox are one of those few. Their shop "Giggles and Grins" on Etsy is filled with some of the best scrabble and glass tile pendants I've ever seen and they are all portrayed with clarity and precision that makes them nearly irresistible once you get your first peek.

Dawn and Ronda started out on Etsy in 2008 while Dawn was looking for a way to help fund her children's gymnastic dreams, and she's done unbelievably well! Or, well it's not unbelievable at all, really. Their pieces are gorgeous so it's very believable indeed.

Even if the tile-pendant style isn't your usual choice, you won't want to miss this wonderful shop. There truly is something for everyone. In fact, I have an eye on one of her pieces myself that I want to hang from the rear view mirror in my car!

YOU CAN CLICK ON THE PICTURE ABOVE TO VISIT DAWN AND RONDA WILCOX'S GIGGLES AND GRINS SHOP ON ETSY AND TAKE A LOOK AROUND OR, IF YOU PREFER, CLICK RIGHT HERE.
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