Monday, October 31, 2011

hot lava clothing on etsy

Tunic dress with a cute sash
(she's on tiptoe but it looks like high heels!)
Tunic dress
Peasant dress
A-line dress
(nice spirograph-meets-Hawaii print)

Etsy Kids, a new section of everyone's favorite online handmade superstore, features a curated bunch of children's items. That's where I found Hot Lava Clothing, which makes sweet girls' dresses in some really appealing prints. (Note to Hot Lava: I could see that black-and-white one in my size. Just a thought.)

Friday, October 28, 2011

magical beans

For sale on
These are half toy, half art object: organic ovals, eggs, and globes, in Easter-egg colors and glossy grained wood. And though the company that makes them seems to be based on Long Island, the charmingly awkward branding copy seems translated to another language and back to English: "Make your exquisite decoration with these high gloss wooden artwork." "Challenge the ultimate or enjoy your own display." I'd like to challenge the ultimate, please. (Found on minordetails—a great blog about high style for small people.)

All images from beyond123

Thursday, October 27, 2011

rainy fall day

I am really not much of a photographer, but one of the trees in our front yard was worth remembering today. It's not very big, this tree—I think the house's previous owners planted it, to make up for the big old trees they cut down—but it's trying. And the leaves fell perfectly on the just-cut green grass.

rifle paper co.

Floral heart print

I've had my eye on Rifle Paper Co. I think they've recently upped their merchandise; I checked their site recently, and there seem to be more of their (very lovely) prints available. In the sea of kid-friendly alphabet prints, this one definitely stands out, with its delicate salmon-colored background and sweet, shy animals:

Alphabet poster
Animal parade print

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

casa olivi

Dream vacation spot: This rental house in the Marche perfectly blends rustic Italian country style with a sleek modern edge. I'm making a reservation in my mind right now. It's got five bedrooms. Who's in?

All images from Travel Files
(which by the way is extremely lovely and inspiring)

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

baublebar monogram necklace

BaubleBar large monogram pendant

I swear my grandmother had one of these in the 80s. She was really into monograms and initials—she changed her first name as a young adult and was always using pseudonyms for restaurant reservations. Maybe she was reclaiming her identity after the Depression, defining herself as independent while also assimilating? Anyway, the woman liked jewelry, and she liked letters. (My mom, her daughter-in-law, still has a drawerful of those beloved Es.) You can get this one online at BaubleBar, in three sizes (I like the heft and humor of the biggest one) and in silver or gold. (They also have Carrie Bradshaw-esque nameplate pendants, but my jewelry guru, dear friend, and all-around style maven Erin says the monogram is less "played.")

In fact, BaubleBar has a bunch of cute, inexpensive, throw-on jewelry pieces:

Wise Dot bangle
Star Trio bracelet
Gilded quartz drop earrings
If I wore chunky rings, I'd probably like this one

Monday, October 24, 2011

vikachu on etsy

Under-the-sea poster (it's only $12!)

Speaking of cute, extremely detailed, Japanese-y things: Etsy artist Vikki Chu designed this intricate poster of cartoony sea creatures. I know one just-turned-five-year-old who could study this for hours.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

strawberry moshi books

All the Strawberry Moshi books are available at amazon

The Strawberry Moshi books—now a series of three, and I'm guessing more are on their way—are like a crazy-adorable Japanese version of Where's Waldo. You search busy, colorful pages for images of ridiculously cute rabbits (and dogs, and bears, and pandas, and inanimate objects like battery chargers and desserts). Each book has a nominal backstory: Strawberry Moshi is searching for her boyfriend, Super Moshi; Strawberry Princess Moshi is going to a fancy ball; Strawberry Mermaid Moshi is going to a magical under-the-sea wedding. I mean, what other kind of under-the-sea wedding is there? The search-and-find is just difficult enough (both Charlie and Tessa love these books), and a few simple mazes and other matching games are mixed in, too.

Waldo always gave me a headache. But these illustrations are totally appealing and streamlined—much easier on the eyes. Plus the characters include Injury Moshi (wrapped in a bandage), Plaid Moshi (in plaid, duh), and TV Star Moshi (who dresses like a gay cowboy, as all good TV stars do). I can't wait for Strawberry Moshi number four.

Monday, October 17, 2011

joyner avenue clutch

I've been thinking about a simple zippered clutch purse. Last week I found one on etsy. Laura of Joyner Avenue was particularly sweet and considerate, and I love what arrived in the mail this afternoon:

The gray suede is just my color, and the red piping along the zipper totally makes it.

Friday, October 14, 2011

helen rawlinson on etsy

Lollipop screenprint pillow cover

This British textile designer offers cheery, bold home goods like pillows and cloth bags from her Etsy shop.

Lollipop drawstring bag
Moroccan tile pillow
Mini party/favor bag
Shapes and Things small cushion

Her clean lines, cheerful subject matter, and soothing/popping colors (plus her British heritage) made me think of Bold & Noble. That online print shop has recently updated its website; now it's divided by collections and much easier to click through.

Flora is in our basement bathroom
I don't usually like red, but I like Noah's Ark
Trees Around Britain would be great against a pale-blue wall

Thursday, October 13, 2011

house of harlow 1960 necklace

Necklace available on Amazon

I'm still getting used to the idea of Nicole Richie as a paragon of style and glamour. (Nicole Richie?) But I spotted this necklace—from her House of Harlow jewelry line—on a woman in town recently, and I'm kind of into it.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

petit collage happy town menagerie

Petit Collage winter family

Oh Joy featured these—what are they? miniature sculptures? dolls?—a few days ago. Made by this designer, and available here, they're sort of a more girly, earthy (though not more affordable) version of Alexander Girard's gorgeous midcentury dolls.

Geometric couple
Woman with flowers

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Greek Myths by Ann Turnbull and Sarah Young

"Greek Myths" available on amazon

I found this book for Charlie over the summer, but we hadn't really looked at it until the other night—and then we couldn't stop reading. It's a selection of classic stories from mythology (the minotaur, Arachne, King Midas) that's not sugarcoated but perfectly appropriate for a third-grader. Ann Turnbull strikes just the right tone: fantastical, a tiny bit flowery—and then totally down to earth. Sarah Young's beautiful illustrations are perfectly detailed and amusingly gruesome. (We especially liked the bloody bag carrying Medusa's head.) Percy Jackson gave Charlie some familiarity with Greek mythology, and he'd read a bit on his own,* but he was ready for a version with a real viewpoint. It was so nice to relax, regress a bit, and simply enjoy reading to him, not worrying about making him read too.

*If your tastes are a little more old-school, D'Aulaire's Book of Greek Myths is a great introduction to mythology; it's much more comprehensive and totally straightforward in its storytelling.

Monday, October 10, 2011

design project: nautical sitting room

A friend is updating her guest room; she wants a nautical theme—but doesn't want it to look like an overdone beach house. After a quick Etsy browse and a look at a few other online stops, I put together a few pieces she might like. These are definitely nautical: clean, fresh, unfussy.

Ship print
Starfish wreath
This carved swordfish really appeals to me, for some reason
Rope doorstop
A zigzag pillow isn't too obvious
French-inspired seagull

Limpet-shell mirror
Anchor print
West Elm rope lamp
Seagrass rug
Wooden buoys
Sea coral print