Monday, May 31, 2010

Couture, Cupcakes, & Colorado

Just returned from a vacation to Colorado. So needed! I feel replenished and sunburnt. So happy to carry back with me fond memories and pictures of some cute finds in the Centennial State. Boulder is definitely a cool college town with a city vibe. The pictures here are a few of my favorite shops that I saw while walking down Pearl Street. I had to enjoy the offerings of Tee & Cakes, a cute/artsy cupcake/sweet/coffee shop in Boulder. The remaining shots (the one that reads 16th Street Mall and upward) are from Denver. I love the hearts of big cities with buildings, metropolitan restaurants, and a skyline. Came across this beautiful old bookstore called Tattered Cover (recommended by Lindsay Mason) and saw a familar face/cover. The brick building in the top picture is in a location called Writer's Square. Had to stand there for a minute and take the noise and movement of Denver in. Im definitely a City Girl. More from the trip in coming posts. Happy window shopping!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Fun With Lisa Loria

Lisa Loria ( dropped by today. She gave me one of the most inspiring and beautiful pieces of artwork I've ever received. Check it out. It's a bust with the Union Jack painted on (in aqua and pink instead of red and blue - making me love it more). Of course a vintage crown bling adorns the center and there's this amazing quote from Coco herself on the bottom. I dont think anything drives me more than the words of women who were trailblazers and were not afraid of being different.
Lisa also dropped off some exquisite goodies for Jewelry Affaire and Somerset Studio. And to make the trip perfect, she even picked up this tote from our Shoppe by Papaya! ( This tote is so Lisa. I love how Lisa is not afraid to be who she is both in her art and in person. Her jewelry has so much color and personality, it's so happy and fresh whil winking at the past - it reflects her so well and the fact that she is a painter and a true artist. Another happy Stampingtong customer ... and editor!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Unpackaging Passion

I feel like it's Christmas around here, with all the jewelry and bags coming in!

Jewelry Affaire is unique in that unlike the other publications I oversee, there is a lot of unpackaging that comes with each item. Sure, clothes are wrapped up, and bags are in parcels, but jewery is ever so-delicately boxed with care, love, and attention to detail. You can tell how much an artist loves their items by how they ever so gingerly wrap their beloved pieces, bundling them up to keep them warm and preserve their shine, preparing to send them off to an often cold world.
When I unpackage jewelry submissions I handle each piece with care, mindful that it's someone's passion I am unpacking. It is their labor of love. I carefully untie knots in chain, flip pendants right side up, and always put back these pieces in their padding once I've beheld the splendor of someone's intense work.
Can you believe these jewelry boxes? Talk about art of presentation! You'll see what was inside of them in the next Jewelry Affaire.
And then there's this beautiful gray ring with rhinestones from Nerissa ( I couldnt have wished for a more perfect ring. I've worn it the last 2 days. Gray goes with everything! The other cocktail rings are party favors from last year's birthday. I just like to be surrounded by bling.
And how could I forget about Haute Handbags? I am loving the unexpected bags that are coming in. There's still time to send something off. We have extended our deadline to 5/28/10! This business card from Sacha Allen ( is currently sitting on my computer because it embraces my favorite things: color, handmade, and London. You will get to see Sacha's handiwork in the upcoming Haute.
Get to packing!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Speaking of Jewelry

Today was a good day for jewelry. As the Jewelry Affaire deadline looms nearer and nearer more artists are coming by to grace me and my office with their latest designs. It's such a happy time when this deadline nears. I love seeing things in person that I have for a long time admired from afar.
I had been waiting for Tracy's ( pieces anxiously. When they finally arrived they were everything I envisioned and more. I cant wait to wear her stuff out and introduce her to the world in the next Jewelry Affaire.
A definite treat was meeting Denise Yezbak Moore ( who brought with her oodles and oodles of jewelry. I love sorting through jewelry. When I get my hands on a piece, I start to really "see it." i love the smoothness, the touch, seeing how a piece lays down. it's all so much fun, and yet it is also part of the process. As I told Denise, it's not until every piece is laid out that I know what look Im really trying to achieve.
Denise is incredible. Her tastes and mine are so similar. She favors pearls, bling and color. She can make anything. I have a feeling Im going to become a collector of her things. I urge you to collect too (
It's always a good week when Deb Hodge comes to visit ( Im so glad Deb has forayed into jewelry. Check out her cuffs. Delicious and soft.
My thanks to the jewelry community, as it is unlike any other. These women are so passionate about their affairs with jewelry, bling, and the people who inspire them. Keep creating and Iwill keep sharing.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Renting & Rocking

Rent the Runway ( is hailed as the Netflix for clothes. I think it's genius. You can rent a dress for an occasion and simply return it. Easy peasy mac and cheesy. But now they are offering to rent jewelry too. I think this is fabulous! Whether you dream of jewelry in spring/summer colors or in classic black and white, they have lots of options.
I bring you this glitterfest to remind you that the Jewelry Affaire deadline is rapidly approaching. We originally said 5/15/10 but we are slightly extending to 5/28/10. For more information, visit and click on Submission Guidelines. Shoot me an e-mail ( if you have other questions.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

What I Bought Today: A Safe Purchase

When things aren't going well we all have our therapy rituals to heal and restore. I do enjoy retail therapy, running, and red wine, but one of the most soothing practices I have is reading poetry. It's a little known fact, but sometimes it's words from long ago from no one I know, that give my soul the most nourishment. Break ups, bad work days, rejection letters, arguments, etc. all have been made better by turning to poetry.
One of my favorite poets is ee cummings. I love Modern Literature and I think Cubism is comforting in that while it seemingly does not make sense, the words still convey a meaning through the feeling behind them, as opposed to syntax. Cummings describes things in a way no one else would, and yet, I know what he means when he says it; I know the feelings he is talking about.
My dad gave me an gift card and I used it to purchase this used edition of cummings complete works. I got it through friends of a library in Kansas so that funds go to helping the library improve and grow. I love the smell of the old shelves, the sticker on the sleeve with typewriter print and call numbers, and this cute library book mark they left inside for me. In this age of Kindles and books on tape there is so much more that I love and appreciate about an actual book and the library itself. I feel like I can actually breathe the poetry in when it comes from dog-eared pages. I dont think technology can ever offer that, nor make us feel close to those writers we run to for solace. But a book offers that love; poetry offers that warmth, that knowing.
J.D. Salinger once said "There's no safety in poetry." I agree with him so often, but I love this quote because I whole-heartedly disagree. There is no safety in writing poetry because it exposes so much; but in reading it there is immeasurable safety, comfort, and strength.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Happy Apron Day

Some may not know that there is actually a National Apron Day. Traditionally preserved as the Monday after Mother's Day, this is a special holiday that honors the many layers and meanings to this symbol that is as warm as the women who wear them.
It's no coincidence that my grandma came across this apron while thrifting, and gifted it to me today of all days. It's red gingham, a perfect match to the blue gingham one with red stitching that my grandma had given me months ago. This apron is so me, complete with cherries on the pockets and colorful trim. I love it. The fact that my grandma gave it to me today, on Mother's Day, says everything. It was a literal passing of a torch; passing down tradition to the next generation. Grandma in all her wisdom even left the original prcie tag on. She liked the look of the vintage tag and knew I would like it too, a reminder of simpler times. It cost $2.25 many years ago, and today means everything to me. How wonderful it is to take part in this heritage, this history, to share this appreciation with my grandmother. We need to make every day worth jotting down in a history book.
Thanks to my grandma who helped me realize the value of telling and preserving stories; writing down things as they come in my mind, so that every day can live and breathe just as we do. Because that's what mothering is after all, the giving of life, the giving of hope, the continuation of a story.

Friday, May 7, 2010


If you are familiar with Suzanne MacCrone ( then you can instantly spot her style: white, clean, understated, elegant. I am currently in the process of working with Suzanne on Somerset HOME. Let me tell you, this woman is a genius. I can't wait to show off her charming pieces that are so functional and fresh you'll want to buy them right up from her Etsy shop. Needless to say, I love Suzanne's style when it comes to making things for around the house. I was completely honored and grateful to have received this gift from her. Beautiful clothespins with her signature flower, in the prettiest little box. I'm picturing these clothespins on some aprons ...

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Small Victories

Some days are met with hope, others with hesitation. Many people wake up and read the paper. Many people wake up and cook breakfast for their families, brew the coffee etc. For many women the dawn of a new day brings with it the donning of an apron. This idea is not old-fashioned. Quite the contrary. It's contemporary.
This is why I work hard. This is where it all pays off. Make sure and buy the L.A. Times today to read about the apron, and of course, apronology. I'm so proud to be mentioned in Rene Lynch's article alongside so many of the women I admire like Amy Karol( and EllynAnne Geisel ( The perfect way to start the day.
(The link to the online version of the article is posted below)

Aprons: Go ahead and tie one on -

Aprons: Go ahead and tie one on -

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