Blogging about a variety of things I enjoy. Also peddling my wares at Thicket and Thistle on Etsy.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

on the beach

Growing up, my family spent a lot of time at the Jersey shore.  My grandparents had a beautiful old house a block away from the beach and we'd spend a good portion of every summer there.  Not being a huge beach lover, for better (minimal UV exposure) or worse (being at the beach...but not actually going to the beach), it was always a welcome excursion to go shopping with my mom and sister.  Sur la Plage was the "fancy" boutique where I still distinctly remember buying a Three Dots shirt at around age 14. 

We no longer spend every summer in New Jersey but we did make the trip this past Memorial Day and, of course, I had to visit Sur la Plage.  The store is still there, going strong, and decidedly fancier, what with its collection of Kate Spade, Shoshanna, and other lines of that caliber. It also has a large selection of bathing suits, Roxy clothes for teens, and delish-smelling candles.  On this trip, my sister spotted this insanely beautiful Alice + Olivia embroidered sweater:

I love the colors (which don't look great on my skin but I still daydream about them) and intricate but not heavy embroidered florals.  I also love that it's short-sleeve, which lends it a slightly casual air.

Then I spied nearly an entire clothes rack devoted to Amanda Uprichard.  A much simpler look compared to the Alice + Olivia sweater, this silk shirt is still stunning with its pure hot pink color and scalloped rear hem. 

Very different styles but each so beautiful and luxurious in its own right.  Sur la Plage never fails to disappoint (especially when my sister-in-law secretly bought me the flamingo-print Kate Spade makeup bag I'd audibly pined after...).

Friday, June 19, 2015

notecards for a steal

I've never been a big Marshalls or T.J.Maxx person, unlike some of my friends, who are champs at burrowing in the racks and emerging with great finds.  Recently, though, I found myself in Marshalls looking for paper cocktail napkins (which are extremely elusive when you need them but don't live near a party store); they had several decent packs of napkins but what really caught my eye, naturally, was the small but pretty respectable selection of notecards.  I found cards by Meri Meri, a couple of letterpress ones, and some unfamiliar lines that are surprising cute for $1.99-2.49.  Below are several of the cards from my haul of about a dozen.  I haven't been able to determine their turnover yet in terms of styles offered but I assume it's like anything at Marshalls -- keep checking back and you might get lucky.  With a lot of family members and friends having birthdays and weddings this time of year, it's worth it to stock up.

Friday, June 12, 2015

national donut day, belated

On this, the one-week anniversary of National Donut Day, let's marvel at these beautiful little apple cider donuts.  They come from Mac's Donuts, which lures customers to it's funny-looking truck at the Court House farmers market with its truly intoxicating aroma.  While this legitimate national holiday was unbeknownst to me at the time, I happened to have a regular glazed Dunkin' Donuts donut that day, these petite Mac's Donuts donuts on Saturday morning, plump and decorative District Doughnut donuts (introduced to me by a friend and located in DC's Barracks Row neighborhood) Saturday afternoon, and big, doughy Sugar Shack donuts Saturday evening.  It sounds absurdly gluttonous when enumerated like that, despite being completely unplanned.  I just happened to have a number of events that day that entailed eating donuts, which is totally normal, with or without National Donut Day.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

word art

I have a healthy collection of craft odds and ends on hand at all times -- beads in onesies and twosies, loads of random envelopes in never the right size, spools of wire that always come loose, a bag of feathers....Occasionally I rummage through my Ikea boxes and try to make something out of the madness.  These little word art cards are made using leftover Paper Source flat cards in a pale, pale pink with silver foil cardboard letters from the dollar section at Target.  The letters came in precise alphabetical sets so coming up with words was a bit of a challenge. 

I figured MRS will be good for bridal showers, LOVE for any occasion, and FIG is just one of those weird words that I think would be amazing as a name.  For a human being.  Not kidding.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

vintage stamps

I planned my wedding in precisely three months, so, while I spent hours and hours gathering inspiration from magazines and the Internet, there were certain things I now feel I sort of missed, whether because I had to go the easiest, fastest route or was completely unaware of at the time.  One example of the latter is a pretty small detail but I so wish that I thought of putting vintage stamps on our invitations. 

[Image via Pearls on a String]
Our paper products were one of my favorite aspects of the wedding (we got them at The Dandelion Patch) but our envelopes were pretty blah with a lone, measly stamp with the mildly cheesy USPS "wedding invitation and white rose" motif (no offense!) and my hand-scrawled cursive.  Now, photos of perfectly calligraphed, color-coordinated stamped wedding invitations are practically ubiquitous in photos of stylish weddings.  Over the past couple of years, we've received some beautiful invitations to weddings of family and friends and I've marveled over the pretty color combinations and themes of their postage assortments.

[Whooping Cranes, Scott #1098.  Image via US Mint Sheets]
[Cape Hatteras Lighthouse, Scott #1448-1451.  Image via US Mint Sheets]
[Cassatt Art, Scott #1322.  Image via US Mint Sheets]
This article on Oh So Beautiful Paper lays it all out in terms of how to find interesting older postage, to include Etsy, eBay, and dealers.  Now I have a running tab of Scott numbers (how stamps are technically categorized).  While I'm no longer planning a wedding, there are so many out there that would make receiving a bridal/baby shower invitation, thank you note, or holiday card a little more charming. 

[American Ballet, Scott #3237.  Image via US Mint Sheets]
Perusing old stamps makes you realize that the USPS has covered rather, let's call it varied topics over the decades.  There's "Homemakers" (Scott #1253), "International Telecommunications Union" (Scott #1274), "Parent Teacher Association" (Scott #1463), "Rural Electrification" (Scott #2144), and more.  The USPS is nothing if not thorough, apparently.

[Love, Scott #2440.  Image via US Mint Sheets]
While many stamps are priced over face value, as is to be expected, they seem perfectly worth it to me for the utterly precious snail mail they make for nearly any occasion (like sending your loved one a card just to remind them of the historical presence of Martin Luther (Scott #2065)).