Lemon Ice from Funky Frum
The colour of this skirt from Funky Frum is a very soft, enticing shade of yellow. It makes me think of meringue pie, or lemon sherbet, or an old Buick (hey...it's me here, you know). As a blonde, it's not advisable for me to wear yellow by my face, lest I appear to be dying of some tropical disease. But that hasn't stopped me from wearing this cheeriest of colours, and why should it? This skirt, at $39, is a great wardrobe-builder that gives you a tremendous splash of colour.

Made of cotton-poly-Lycra, this skirt's waistband is flatteringly thick and actually has tummy control incorporated into it. If nothing else, it will make it uncomfortable to eat more than one ought, right? The skirt is an attractive and modest length, and definitely looks like it will have that feminine swish-and-swirl about it.

Also available in black and heather grey, the versatile, wear-anywhere-and-everywhere skirt comes in a broad size range as well, from zero to twelve. 


Country Comfort
Well, this is a borderline Fun Friday goodie, but it's so cute and so charming...Besides, who can't use a little fun on Monday, of all days? This top from AC Clothing and Bags is handmade with a fitted knit waist in a cool, smile-inducing blue while the bodice is made from a 1940s farmhouse & floral print. To give the tee just a little more personality, artist Amy has added a "peekaboo" lace insert. The sleeves are slightly puffed princess sleeves, and it all adds up to a feminine, pretty, and fun little topper for work or class or bumming around town. Just $28! Size small (bust 34-35).

Looking through Amy's shop, I'm really pleased and excited to see a lot of chic, modest clothing that has great personality and whimsy to it. Better yet, everything is very reasonably priced, especially for such well-constructed handmade pieces! In addition to darling tops like this, you'll also find skirts, dresses, handbags, clutches, and more. I'm probably going to end up favouriting half her shop. She uses a lot of vintage fabric and scrappage, too, and I know that's important to many of you. 

What a delightful store Cali-based Amy has, and I'm sure you will agree. She's a very talented young lady and is probably the one who always looks cool and sophisticated in a very unique way, leaving everyone wondering how she does it so very well, don't you think?

Have a great night!


Fun Friday: Rickrack earrings? You're on!

While I'm sure there are many crafters who aren't particularly enamoured of rickrack, I'd say they are rather few and far between. How can anyone resist the retro look, that happy little wave? Not only is it lovable on clothing, rickrack isn't out of place on handbags, aprons, curtains, sheets, pillows, Christmas decorations...you name it. 

And now...behold! Rickrack on earrings.

From the Minneapolis studio of Lousche, these cuties have a fabulous retro vibe, and not just due to the rickrack; the fabric is a repro from the 30s. The overall effect is sweet, but very summery and cheery too. They even come in their own gift box, and at just $3.50 for the pair, you simply can't go wrong. 

Artist Kayla has oodles of cute, fun, vintage-y button earrings (with and without rickrack). Freak out your coworkers and family with eyeball earrings, earrings featuring grumpy (but still cute) sheep,  or just terrific prints. She's also offering these really unique butterfly bobby pins; the butterflies have transparent wings, having been made from shrinky-dink plastic. These would be great for a little girl or anyone with a great sense of fun. You can find dangly earrings, artwork, rings, and other goodies too. 

Have a wonderful weekend! We're planning to hit the berry farm tomorrow for some goodies, and are hoping it doesn't rain 'till we're through. I hope you all have fun things going on as well!

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Bracelets, bracelets all the time!

I love bracelets. There's something about them that makes every woman look instantly more elegant, more ladylike, more sophisticated. They make the wrist and the curves of the arm look so pretty. Over the years, with all of the time I've spent in vintage shops and glancing over sales racks, to say nothing of the wonderfully generous gifts others have given to or even made for me, I'll admit to having amassed a pretty nice little collection of bracelets. Nothing designer, nothing fancy, but I enjoy them all. In fact, when we go on vacations or trips, my favourite memento (other than the photos, of course!) is usually a bracelet or ring that makes me think of the place (heaven help us when we finally do the Route 66 trip...).

So you can imagine that a shop like Linda's is destined to keep me quite interested for some time. You'll find earrings, necklaces, and even watches and anklets there, but it appears that she, too, has succumbed to the lure of the bracelet. She's crafted tons — okay, well, many, many pounds — of them, all very lovely and pretty, with styles ranging from funky to sweet to gamine to beautiful, and all at remarkably fair prices. You pick the best part; I'm mystified.

 She also makes some really inspired bead choices, so all of her work is quite interesting and unique, like this peridot and amethyst bracelet. For one thing, peridot is one of my sister's favourite stones, but the shape of those deliciously-coloured green beads is definitely eye-catching and whimsical, particularly when paired with the amethyst  rondelles (which have always made me think of flying saucers, but I am a little strange). And the clasp demonstrates a terrific attention to detail, too; it looks like a fantasy butterfly, or perhaps a cluster of berries. Just $14!

Or what about this bracelet, featuring a summery blend of amber, turquoise, and brown wood-like beads? The colours are gorgeous and cheery, and this bracelet is just $15.

Honestly, these are just two of the many delightful treats to be found at Bracelets by Linda. She'll also do custom orders for you if you like, and is more than happy to work with you on a specific design you may have in mind; she'll also resize bracelets to your needs. If you're having or participating in a wedding anytime soon, I think giving Linda a ring is definitely worth your time; she can probably create coordinating pieces that aren't all exactly alike so they'll match bridesmaids' or mothers' personalities (there I go again...just a thought).

Definitely check out Linda's shop...you're sure to find something to love. 

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With the hot weather, sometimes it's nice to see jewelry and other goodies that reflect the light, or allow it to pass through them. As pretty as most of the things on Etsy are, when it's this hot they often just seem...heavy. Maybe it's the humidity here, I'm not sure, but it's almost as if even our eyes need a relief; maybe that's why just the sight of an icy glass of lemonade or a lake with a gentle breeze skipping across its surface allow us to exhale and relax for a moment.

Regardless, I think that's why I'm so attracted to this necklace and earrings set from Tulip36. Everything featured on the set is transparent, lending a light-as-air feeling to a very pretty set without denying us any colour. All of the beads are quartz (the cherry quartz beads remind me of small, salmon-reddish tomatillos), so the light will reflect and bounce off this quite prettily — and, dare I say, offer a luminous frame for your face. Very pretty, and thanks to the crystal beads, you'll be able to match this with many things in your wardrobe. $40.

I also like this vividly golden-yellow ribbons necklace with a lovely beaded pendant and these subtly elegant flower agate earrings. There are plenty of lovely things in Tulip36's shop, though, and you're sure to enjoy your perusal thereof.

No, I've not been ODing on Jane Austen books this summer...

Have a great night. ;)


Beauties from New Hope Beads
Sorry this is a bit late tonight, but after a day of running we had a little local neighborhood thing to attend, and have just returned home! We live in such a very nice part of the country; everyone is so friendly and kind. After the main part of the event, we spent the rest of our evening chatting with a lawyer couple, a doctor, and a father-and-son construction team, as well as the very nice owner of a wine shop. 

I have to say that Pittsburgh, where we lived for a year and a half after our marriage, is full of very shy, very cautious people, so it's a relief to be back in a place where people are more easygoing and openly friendly! I miss that about my hometown in the Detroit area, so it was hard to tear myself away...but since we were among the very last group of people to leave the event, I should have the tank filled for a while.

(In all honesty, our neighborhood is so "Leave it to Beaver" one expects to see a young Cleaver tearing down the street at any moment, and our neighbors are all marvellous, but after a year and half of a town peopled with socially reticent, uncertain, and careful types, it's a blessing to be where we are now, and I seem to be making up for that lost time.)

Now on to the cute...please forgive me if I seem tired!

Whether you want something as simple as silver filigree dangling earrings or things a little more artistic, New Hope Beads' shop is a fine place to stop. Among my favourite pieces is this Desert Moon bracelet (above), with its complimentary, soothing colours so nicely set off by the Israeli sterling silver beads. The coloured pieces are made of African Turquoise Jasper, Swarovski crystals, and Nambian Amazonite. The blue and chocolate are so very lovely together, and certain to be very pretty with your summer (and fall, and winter, and perhaps even spring) items. You know I love seeing colours paired with chocolate, particularly soft blues, greens, and pinks, so it was hard to pass this up; besides, the chocolate really grounds the airier blues and silvers here. $53, one-of-a-kind, and is customizable to your size if necessary.

I also feel it is important to point out to you this mother of pearl necklace. I have a similar piece, though mine features an undoubtedly dyed piece of shell; it's a precociously bright and undeniably cheerful lime green. Regardless, I wear it very frequently because of its simplicity in shape and design, and this necklace from New Hope Beads is quite similar; therefore, it is a good buy as a wardrobe builder.  

Being  mother of pearl, it brings a lightness to whatever you are wearing without being frivolous or funky. Indeed, as a piece made of natural material, it 'grounds' what you are wearing at the same time it brings a sense of freedom and lightheartedness (think "beach", though it doesn't scream it). Since this is in its original, God-given colour and strung on black satin with sterling accents, this is an especially good piece of jewelry, wearable with nearly everything and admissible everywhere.  Just $22, a great price for something you will wear — trust me — a whole lot.

These pretties and many, many more (including an almost irresistible coral-turquoise piece) from artist Connie at New Hope Beads. Part (or all, I'm not quite sure) of the proceeds from your purchase go to God's Pantry, an organization that helps feed the hungry.


Be a sweet pea

Isn't this dress from Shabby Apple lovely? Appropriately named "Sweet Pea", it's bedecked with flowers in delightfully cool colours and is perfect for church, weddings, or parties this time of year. It definitely has a very nice vintage vibe to it as well, and that's something I never have a problem with. Available in sizes from extra-small to large, all Shabby Apple purchases come with free shipping both ways in case you don't get the correct size.

Normally $86, it's now on sale for $64.50. Snap one up, this is a keeper!


Fun Friday: Non-offensive animal print
Yes, I know....an animal print that doesn't make your eyes bleed or remind you of leopard-print stretch pants from the 80s (or was it the 90s?). It's on this Ch-Ch-Cheetah handbag from The Sea Within. Bright splashes of colour create the jungle for black-and-white cheetahs on this marvellously colourful $39 bag. It's lined with a yummy, cheery red and has a magnetic snap.

Keep in mind that when you order from The Sea Within, your bag is often made then and no sooner.

The Sea Within offers many bags with cute prints for your day-to-day enjoyment. There's so much whimsy in this shop I'm not sure how you can browse it without cracking a smile.

Have a great weekend! 

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Well, there was no way I could not feature this startlingly coloured necklace and pendant. And this is a good startling: the vibrant purple, green, and turquoise are so cheerful, so bold...it just makes me smile.

The blossom is handmade of polymer clay. I'm not too familiar with this medium, to tell the truth, but oftentimes...well, one gets tired of the whole millefiori look, which is possibly a horrid thing to say, except...it's true, and I always wondered why we didn't see more things done with the clay. Here we have it!

Seed beads and two candy jade beads finish off the necklace. Handmade by Tia of Jazzi Jewels, the necklace is $46.

There's a lot in the shop, like this irresistible Lemon Drops necklace, and for something more subtle in tone but still fabulous when it comes to style, there's the caramel-y Gobstoppers bracelet, with big carnelian beads and tiny turquoise rounds. Yum!

Tia's  shop is brand new to Etsy, but she has so many cool things, such a variety of work, I'm sure she'll find many fans without much trouble.


Big sale alert!
Shade Clothing, who I just featured last week, is having a big summer clearance with prices up to 50% off! Tops, skirts, slips, swimwear, little girls' clothing, and even the two dresses I pointed out last week are being cleaned out to prepare for new styles, so make sure you check out the sale.


Orange Dream

Well, I wasn't here Friday, but I also dropped out (temporarily!) last night; we had some landscaping that needed to be worked on, and by the time we got back in it was late and hot and...Well. *sigh*  Sorry...

To make up for it, though, check out this confection of a dress. A vintage Henry Rosenfeld, were this not orange, you wouldn't be seeing it here because I'd be bidding on it! The stripe, the pleating, the collar, the colours...Oh, it's lovely and darling and sweet, perfect for just about anything you endeavour to do or take part in this summer. 

It's a soft fabric, but also sheer, so you'll need a nice slip or even petticoat underneath. The bodice is perfectly pleated while the rest of the dress just...flows.  (There are pleats at the waist to give the skirt more poofy wonderfulness.)  

This beauty is unbelievable...Three mother-of-pearl buttons march up the front of the bodice, adding a little sparkle, which of course can be added to with pearls of your own.  Obviously, the cut and print (as it were) are very flattering, too.

The voile scarf you see as a belt is included with the dress; it could be used as a scarf or, if you have a belt for this one, you could always make the scarf into a headband or other accessory (or put it on your dog, I don't care). This is probably a small or medium, with measurements of 38-30-full.  Bidding ends July 14, and begins at just $19.50. Really, there's not a thing wrong with this lovely dress...other than blondes just don't look good in orange. ;)

Good luck!

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More from Shade

For some reason it's been a while since I last visited Shade, but you can imagine the warm fuzzy feelings when I discovered the two new dresses in their line. They're drapey, flowy, feminine, and attractive without being revealing. The colours are great, too. Both are just $32.50 and available in medium and large only at this point, though additional sizes may come back into stock as the season progresses.

In addition to their website, Shade is now also available at retail stores, including selected Macy's shops. Look here to see if Shade clothing is available at a brick-and-mortar near you!

Friday being Independence Day, I will not be posting. Depending on how I can juggle the ol' schedule, maybe I'll put up a post tomorrow evening instead. Regardless, have a wonderful Independence Day!