Friday, November 27, 2009

Inspire

Some quick inspiration to make you dream and move you swiftly through your day.

Quote from W.B. Yeats taken in Sligo, Ireland at his final resting place.

What inspires you?

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Turkey Day

Happy Thanksgiving United States! I wish I was there to watch the Macy's Parade and chow down on a delicious plethora of food, but I can send my love over the ocean. I will be celebrating Thanksgiving on Saturday and longing for home a lot (I am really going to have to busy myself this holiday season, if I expect to get through it).

In honor of turkeys and all their great feathers, I thought I'd post a festive idea for your hair! Feathers are one of my favorite accessories to use. They are elegant and soft and add a little surprise to your normal look without going overboard.


You can find this headband on sale at Embellished. Enjoy!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Travel Confession #2 and Giveaway Winner

One of my favorite things to do is watch out the window as I am flying. I love soaring over the clouds and feeling free. When I was little I used to want to be like Jasmine and go on a magic carpet ride, I was so disappointed when I learned you couldn't actually hold a cloud. Needless to say, I always have the window seat on flights. And the best feeling of all is seeing my beautiful Charlotte, NC skyline go by me when I fly home. Because no matter how many places I travel nothing will ever feel quite the same as my beautiful Carolina!


And not to keep you waiting any longer lovelies...the winner is of the Mental Embellisher giveaway is...

True Random Number Generator 7ered by RANDOM.ORG

Post #7: Abigail! Congratulations. You can check out Abigail's blog here: Ample Goodies.

There are so many great options, what will you get? Be sure to post your styling of your awesome prize! I can't wait to see it!

An Embellished Christmas

The countdown is officially on for the biggest shopping weekend of the year! Its time to start thinking about your wishlists and gifts for this holiday season. After the rough economic year we have had, everyone has learned how important it is to act locally. Small business owners are what keeps America afloat, plus they provide something unique for you to own. Since Embellished readers come from all corners of the globe, I'm making an international wishlist.

*photos compliments of respective shops*
Las Vegas: Circle Line Studio, wall decal
England: Eclectic Eccentricity, feather bracelet
Canada: Beadsss, Fleur de Lis Necklace
Brooklyn: Pink Baby Mouse, Daschund Pillow
Indiana: My Lavalier, Je t'aime Necklace
South Carolina: A Heron Designs, Shakespeare Ring
New Jersey: Urban Heirlooms, Skeleton Key Clutch
Colorado: Tha Meow Designs, iTouch Case
Israel: Tattoo Socks, Tattoo Stockings

What's on your wishlist?

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Mental Embellisher Giveaway

Through some online shopping I stumbled upon an amazing Etsy shop that I had to share with all of you. Mental Embellisher is a great shop for unique jewelry with a little edge. Metals with a hint of Steampunk, everything you're looking for under the tree this year! I loved learning more about this shop, turns out Mental Embellisher is based out of France, just like me! An original Londoner transplanted for 20 years now. The line really relates to the diverse cultural influence behind the brand. And GREAT NEWS, Mental Embellisher is teaming up with The Embellished Life to offer you an amazing giveaway to get you excited for Christmas. Maybe a great gift for someone...or just a nice addition to your own collection (no judging I'd do the same thing haha)!
*photos compliments of mental embellisher*

Yes they really do say that. How fun to make a statement with your handmade jewelry? I had to put the vampire cuff links in here in honor of Twilight's New Moon United States movie premiere today! And I think the Stud/Bitch pendants would be a great wedding gift for a good friend, you can't top that.

Where do you find your inspiration?
I have been fiddling with jewelry for a few months now and find it is a perfect way for me to be creative without taking up too much space! I also do very large mosaic murals, upholstery, and all other sorts of creative stuff. Putting vintage bits and bobs together with a pinch of humour and preferably an insect or two is what I prefer, and I get enormous pleasure from knowing that people all over the world actually own and enjoy wearing my work...

I have collected vintage typewriters for many years and love to give another life to the really decrepit ones by turning the keys into earrings, cufflinks, necklaces or whatever the client wants. I am the only person on Etsy to customize them in the way I do, it's a painstaking task, but well worth the smile it gives people when they see their guy wearing a pair of cufflinks that say "well hung" or a pendant that says "lush"!

This venetian mask ring was my discovery to this shop, and I fall in love with anyone that shares my obsession with wings and feathers! Bonus: Mental Embellisher loves to do custom orders so if you have a great idea, she will be glad to accommodate your desire!

What is your creative process?
Sitting at my kitchen table I am surrounded by pyramids of stuff to be upcycled, recycled, monocycled, stroked, glued and sewn. I get a thrill just sitting next to it, let alone doing anything with it. Typewriter keys make me weak at the knees, wings make me feel all unnecessary and romantic and the locket fixation stems from some childhood event involving my mother's jewelery box... 'Swapsies' used to take place in the school playground somewhere in the grey 60's, a small group of us seven year-old girls, bare-kneed and huddled around treasures recently and oh-so-secretly prised out of our mothers' jewellery. We had pearls and charms and 'coloured' diamonds which had varying swapsie value, depending on just how much the other girls coveted them. (sorry Mom)!

Some of more lovelies from Mental Embellisher, original earrings and a dangly charm necklace. Such a vintage feel, I love them both.

GREAT NEWS READERS!
Mental Embellisher is giving away to one lucky winner a $15 Gift Certificate!

To enter you have many options to increase your chances!
(and leave a separate comment below for each option you choose)
1. Go to the shop HERE and comment below about your favorite item.
2. Be a follower of The Embellished Life
3.Tweet this post on Twitter
4. Become an Embellished Facebook Fan HERE

The winner will be chosen at random on midnight {NYC time} Sunday, November 22.
Good luck everyone!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

GlobeShopper Spotlight: Mathilde

During my travels, I love discovering new, unique boutiques, and Stockholm was of course no exception. From the country that gave the world Ikea and H&M can you really be surprised that there are so many good shopping opportunities?
Therefore, I introduce to you Mathilde. I feel it has a similar essence to maybe Anthropolgie, and its that same eclectic vintage feel that will make me fall in love with a store over and over again.


The decor among the merchandise in this store allows the consumer to dream, it is a nice place to escape among beautiful things. Did you notice the glass building, housing cute housewares? Love it.

This poster sums up my feeling about life. "The world is like a book. He who stays at home reads only one page." There are so many places to see, people to meet, cultures to experience. We have been giving so many great opportunities for adventure in this world, don't waste them, become consumed by them!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Something for the Mailman

As most of you know, one of my favorite things to do is peruse around Etsy for interesting items. I recently had the pleasure of discovering a wonderful stationary shop on Etsy that got me totally stoked about the upcoming holiday season. Crafterall is a handmade stationary shop with an interesting style that is simplistic and modern and leaves you wanting more! *photos compliments of Crafterall*

I had a wonderful chat with Marnie, the brains and creativity behind the paperworks, and she is so sweet. I always love learning people's passions and process. Enjoy her shop, interview, and maybe an exclusive reader gift below...hmm...what could it be?

1. What initially interested you in making stationary?
One of the things I love about paper is that it is everywhere. It's a very affordable, if not downright free, material. On top of that it's incredibly versatile. I've always had a fondness for paper, for what I can do with it, and for the words that may fall upon it at some point. I've been creating cards since I was in high school, and as familiar territory, it was a natural progression to move it into a business. Because every card and piece of art I make is unique, there's enough variance to keep the actions fresh and not get burned out. And honestly, because I tend to "re-invest" in my work (materials, storage, packaging, marketing, etc.) my business still tends to feel very much like a hobby.

Choosing a name for my shop was like choosing an image for a tattoo -- I wanted it to be meaningful, easily recognizable, and something that represented what I do. Since I have a pull towards all things crafty, I created a name that alludes to multiple media, purpose, and price. In a nutshell, I hope to create items that appeal to a diverse group of people who share one common trait: the appreciation of handmade works. I've started with my most familiar territory: paper. I like to fold it, cut it, and share it. In the near future, I hope to also offer fabric pieces and sketches as well.

2. Your TOPOgraphical style is very unique, how did you arrive at this for your designs?
Trial and error, experimentation, and happy accident all conspired together to allow me to ultimately arrive at the topographical style of my work. I incorrectly assumed that there would be only a little interest in the style, or that people wouldn't think it as interesting as I did. Instead, cartographers, graphic designers, golfers, abstract artists, and lake lovers from all over the world have come of out of the woodwork to check it out, and I could not be happier.


3. Shop Stats: How long have you been running, how long before your shop really took off, etc.
My first twenty listings on Etsy were unlike anything that is currently there. Simple cards made from patterned scrapbook paper with a stamped greeting didn't exactly make the front page. My first sale was two weeks after I opened. From there it was fairly slow until I started listing original papercut art. Once I started listing the first versions of my topo cards, the selling began to pick up and I felt the first inklings of a shop identity. These days, I see more of a direct correlation between listing and sales than anything else. Still, I try to keep the shop fresh with new designs, new experiments, and I'm always open to custom orders.

4. Any interesting tidbits?
I am grateful every single day for the kind of life I live. I'm able to stay at home with my youngest while my older daughter goes to school, and my husband works from home, so we exist together in a pretty idyllic little bubble. Every once in a while I'll get down about something: toddler spilled juice on the carpet, kids argue over a toy, I've got a big order to fill, I need to rush to get to the post office before it closes, etc. And then I snap out of it and realize that I am "living the dream", and that life is way too short to complain. I once heard Steven Page of Barenaked Ladies fame respond to an interview question about the hardships of touring with the band. He said he dislikes it when bands complain or even write ballads about being on tour. Touring is a benefit of being popular and successful, as well as part of the job bands "sign up" for when performing. This struck me as an honest truth that easily transcends the world of rock bands.
Do what you love. Love what you do.

Well said indeed, Marnie always has a passion for helping the planet and therefore sends all Crafterall scraps to another great shop on Etsy where Kendra Zvonik makes products from the remains of Crafterall projects! These projects are fun, useful, and green. Great combination! Be sure to check out Green Post for great present toppers and gifts for Christmas. *photos compliments of Green Post*


And get excited readers because Marnie is offering an exclusive discount
for you! From now until December 15th, Crafterall is offereing all Embellished readers a 25% refund on any purchase! Just be sure to mention "Embellished" in your note to seller.

You can also check out Crafterall's fun blog here, and follow Marnie on Twitter here.
Happy Christmas Card shopping!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Smörgåsbord of Swedish Love

It has certainly been an exciting and fantastic Autumn. Filled with lots of new places, new people, and new food. This year has definitely been shaping up to a more pivotal year than I thought it would be on January 1st, but that is the beauty in life I suppose, its unpredictable. For example I was pleasantly surprised that I loved Sweden as much as I did which is why my Stockholm trip was definitely a two post job! So enjoy part deux (or I suppose "del två" in swedish)!

Stockholm had so many whispful trees full of brilliant fall colors, it really gave me that nice Fall Feeling so I am good to survive the bare Winter. Which also included plenty of yummy to-go latte's, I have really missed those since my move to France.

Stockholm's outdoor museum, Skansen, had many pretty scenes of traditional Swedish living from all areas of the country. This one made me feel like I was back in the Smokey Mountains. I love that.

Skansen also had old trade workers, like blacksmith and glass blowing. I really enjoyed the glass blowing shop! It is a craft I have always wanted to try, how they can make such intricate, delicate things out of melted sand and metal rods is beyond me! What is your hidden desire?
Since I have family in Sweden, I had many Swedish toys I collected from them over the years of my childhood, one of which was a Viking Line piggy bank. It was neat to see it in person!
At the end of the trip I stopped into Stockholm's Absolute Icebar. It was awesome! Everything is made out of ice inside, ice sculpture seats, the actual bar, even your cocktails are served in glasses made out of ice! Definitely the most unique bar I have ever been!
Reindeer are herded in the North of Sweden by a native Swedish tribe. Of course Santa's reindeer were taking a nice tropical (for them) break in the South of Sweden and resting up before their imminent globe trotting in about a month. This is Vixen, he can't wait to see your roof! Oh, and I made sure for him to put a good word in to Santa for all my readers! No coal for anyone this year, unless maybe they are charcoal over the knee boots!

I am so excited that the holidays are here, it is my favorite time. I am a little worried since I will be away from my family for the first time. What is your favorite thing about the holidays? Any fun traditions?

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Stockholm is Beauty

After many years of hoping to go, I finally got the chance in October to visit my family in Stockholm. And what a wonderful trip it was. I got to see everything on my 'Sweden' list and had a blast the entire week. So please, enjoy!

A traditional Swedish home in Skansen, Stockholm's open air museum. Very informative for learning Swedish history.
A viking slab. It is really neat, because you can find these all over the city. Not all are this intricate of course, but it adds such character to the rich landscape.
On the harbor of Stockholm. This I believe was my favorite spot, so beautiful, and in the background the Nordiq Museum, my favorite building in Sweden.
I always love visiting cathedrals during my travels, they are always peaceful and beautiful. This one was no exception.
I love Europe and all their little streets with mopeds, it makes you feel like you are in a black and white film!
The tiniest street in Sweden, and I believe in Europe, if I'm not mistaken.

My whole trip was a whirlwind of adventures, I was constantly amazed at how welcoming and nice the people are. Also, the city is so clean and so beautiful it really makes you want to stay. My family kept telling me I came at the worst time to visit, and if I loved it this much then, I cannot imagine how much I will love it in the Summer?! Its rare that I feel this at home when I travel, maybe one day I could live in Sweden...who knows. Where have you been where you felt you could easily live?

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Every Little Counts

T-shirts are a great American classic that have been styled in countless ways with infinite prints throughout the decades of the 20th and 21st centuries. They are comfortable and quick, but I must admit I normally opt elsewhere in my closet because although I strive for comfort I also want to look put together and feminine. Well I have found a wonderful solution for comfortable elegance in 3 words: Every Little Counts.

Amy Snider and her husband Adam are quite the dynamic duo in creating chic feminine t-shirts that you can style up or down, and I must admit the line will leave you drooling! Originally launched in Los Angeles, they have recently relocated to Brooklyn and I believe they will take Manhattan by storm. "Together we pool our inspirations into an exclusive line of clothing created for a certain kind of girl; complex and independent while also flirtatious and romantic" says Snider. Any of my readers who might be the slightest bit creative know that inspiration can be drawn from absolutely anywhere, Amy says that they draw their inspiration from "daydreams, quite nights outside the city, the soft glow of street lights, and staying up late listening to love songs."

For this season inspiration came from 1950's film such as "Untamed Youth" and "So Young, So Bad" resulting in a blend of edgy romanticism. The soft vintage feel of the shirts allows for easy styling. I can see me wearing one with a bubble skirt, ballet flats, and pearls. But I also see myself rocking it with a studded belt, black cigarette piped jeans, and a fedora. Fun and flirty either way!

In addition to the line being amazing, Amy is as well, and she has given Embellished readers an exclusive discount: From now until November 30th if you buy something from Every Little Counts you will receive a 20% off discount! NOTE: Just remember to type "Embellished" as your promo code. Also follow her on Twitter to keep up with the line!

You can find Every Little Counts by clicking HERE also they have a shop on Etsy HERE and a wonderful blog HERE. Be sure to check them out and take advantage of the savings, it would be a great start to Holiday shopping!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Travel Confession #1

If you have read my blog for any amount of time you know I really am passionate about 3 things: music, fashion, and travel. This year has been an abundance of travel which has been extremely interesting for me as I broaden my horizons with new food, new traditions, and lots of new experiences. Since I have been on the road so much this year, I find myself clinging to anything that feels like home (something I have never done in my life).

From my recent trip to Stockholm I became inspired for a new posting series: Travel Confessions. Every person has something that they love about travel. Something in each place that makes them feel growth, freedom, or maybe just feel like home.

#1 I love that no matter where I go subways smell the same. It makes me feel like I will exit onto 5th Avenue in Manhattan rather than wherever I am at the moment. Its a nice feeling of America that I cling to with each train I take.

What is one of your travel confessions?

Friday, November 6, 2009

My American Market

Thanksgiving is soon approaching, and what am I thankful for? My American Market (.com)!
When you live abroad you strive for any sense of normalcy around the holidays which of course begins with Thanksgiving! So, I have found an amazing website for anyone else living abroad that loves and misses American Food! Cheers to you on Turkey Day, may it be filled with pancakes, cranberry sauce, chocolate cookies, and anything else you have been dying to eat!

Win a 40–euro gift basket of your favorite American treats!

Are you struggling to satisfy your cravings because you are:

- Embarrassed to ask your family and friends for one more favor?

- Fed up with products that melted or broke during the transatlantic trip?

- Worn out from having to rush around Paris, search for parking spaces and drive in traffic?

- Frustrated from having to wait until your next trip or someone’s visit?

- Tired of bringing back heavy suitcases from your trip to the US?


Then, My American Market has been designed for you: it is a hassle-free online store for your American food and beverage staples.


My American Market’s best features:

Selection

One of the largest assortments of American food and treats

in stock and ready to be shipped.

Convenience

Open 24/7, My American Market is there whenever the cravings get you!

Easy to order

My American Market online store is very user-friendly.

Find and order your favorite products in just a few clicks.

Fast Delivery

Your order will be processed within the next business day.

Your shipment will be securely packaged and sent via La Poste Colissimo.

In France, it will be delivered to your door within 2 business days.

Secure

My American Market uses a 128bit SSL encrypted checkout system.

You can choose to process your payment online, on the phone or by check.

Community-oriented

Get connected with Europe's American community and friends.

Great customer service

The American way, period!


It is time you do something about your cravings!

Visit the online "épicerie américaine" today:www.MyAmericanMarket.com

and enter coupon code “BLOG21” to get a 10% discount on your order (shipping costs not included).


To win a gift basket, follow these simple steps:

1. Copy these pink paragraphs (include title)

2. Post them on your personal blog or website.

3. Then, go on the contest homepage HERE

4. Leave a comment and the link to where you blogged about My American Market

5. Uh that’s it!


The winner will be randomly picked as soon as 50 blogs have enrolled and notified through the link they left to their post.

If you have more than one blog, you can post the message several times and enter for more chances to win!

Good luck and happy blogging!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Beer. Chocolate. Waffles. Brussels!

I spent some time in Brussels before heading to their airport for my trip to Sweden. Took some great pictures, had the best Belgium Waffle in my life and a great Belgium Beer (thankfully not together)!




This square is so beautiful. The architecture is unbelievable!

Complete with a spiral staircase, this shop will literally make you feel like a kid in a candy shop!

And of course my door picture. I always take these pictures, I should make a collection and frame them, it would be great decor. The quick trip to Belgium was nice but you will want to stay tuned because Sweden is amazing!

Copyright Rigmarole

Art is a product of original thought, creative compilation, and lots of blood, sweat, and tears...so please, please do not copy the content posted on this blog without permission.

Many photos are the property of Jessica Kelly Photography although not all are ghost marked, please do not use content unless an appropriate hyperlink back is created. And please shoot me an email... I like to spread the content love as a community.

I have tried to credit any outside content pulled as best I can. If you see anything miss credited please feel free to let me know so that I can fix that!
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