Sunday, April 19, 2009

Eye Candy: Hair Clips

I'm sure this is old news to many bloggers, but I recently discovered the posy hair clips and pins sold by Lindsey, the creative owner of the Pleated Poppy shop and blog, and I'm officially hooked. I have yet to make an order, though I do check out her shop almost daily just to gaze longingly at those little fabric flowers. They're sold in groups of three, so I'm sure that if I ever find the perfect combination I'll rush to buy it.

A word to the wise: her products tend to sell really quickly, so if you find a combination that you like, it's best to grab it while you can!

Pretty :)

What you may not have heard of is Hensapir. I found her a few weeks ago as we were exploring Tel Aviv, Israel, and when my friends and I saw her cute and creative hair clips, it was instant love.

Or maybe she just appealed to our sweet tooth. Now, there's just one problem with her website: it's all in Hebrew. So maybe you could see if you can get Google to translate the page for you, or maybe you could shoot her an email... or maybe you could do it yourself. I couldn't tell what it was that she covered the edibles in, but it was some sort of hard, clear lacquer, so maybe some of you craftier types could come up with an idea. Looking at her creations made me realize how limitless the possibilities can be. She didn't restrict herself to just food, either:

So really, anything can be turned into some good eye candy, with the right vision. Mess around, get creative, make it your own--you never know what you might come up with!

Friday, April 17, 2009

A Walk Through the Souk

It occurred to me this morning that today was going to be my last Friday here in Jerusalem, and I hadn't even gone to the souk on a Friday yet! The reason this is even significant is because Friday is the day before the Jewish shabbat, and because shabbat starts at sunset Friday night, everybody's out doing their shopping on Friday, and the vendors sell challah (shabbat bread). So I went with some friends there today, and, as predicted, the place was packed! It was so much fun, though, even though I hardly bought anything because I forgot I hadn't been to the money changer's yet, and I only had 7 shekels in my pocket (less than $2). I just took some pictures, tried to drink it all in, and was reminded once again of why it'll be so hard to leave this place.

Yep. I'm going to miss it.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Sunshine, Daisies, Butter Mellow...

I remember a time long ago when I wasn't that fond of the color yellow. It was all because of yellow Starburst, really. I just never was a fan of that lemony flavor, and my perception of the color was seriously damaged because of it. The only color I hated worse than yellow was orange (because the only Starburst flavor worse than lemon was orange in my opinion), and pink was my all-time favorite color. Now that I'm older, wiser, and don't connect my colors with what goes in my stomach, yellow has redeemed itself in my eyes--in fact, it's my second-favorite color. However, for some reason I'd never even considered using that color for decorating... until a conversation Chris and I had over Kitchenaid mixers.

My favorite color is blue. His favorite color is blue. I thought, "Wouldn't it be cool if we registered for a blue mixer?" So I sent him a picture of the Ice-colored Kitchenaid mixer... and he hated it. I asked him what he did like, and he sent me a picture of the Cornflower-colored mixer. I hated it. Neither of us liked any of the other various shades of blue mixers, either, leaving us at a temporary impasse. Reluctantly, I finally suggested that maybe we didn't have to have a blue mixer, and started searching for other options. This is what I found:

First thought: that's a pretty color yellow. Second thought: wouldn't it be cool to have a mixer like that? Third thought: wouldn't it be cool to decorate the whole kitchen like that? And suddenly, my mind was exploding with images of cheery yellow kitchens, lemon centerpieces, and all sorts of sunshiny, yellowy thoughts (no, those aren't words), and I realized how absolutely awesome a yellow kitchen could be! Chris was good with it, too, because apparently his mom's first kitchen was yellow and he has happy memories about it, so I immediately started looking for inspiration. Here's what I found:

Whoa yellow! Either someone's been messing with this photo (which actually they probably have, come to think about it--even the white looks yellow), or this is a bit too much yellow, even for me. It is a very happy kitchen, though, and I like the warm brown they chose as a second color, and the brick wall behind the stove. It's hard to tell, but it looks like it might be a light green in natural light, which would make it a nice focal point and a good color addition.

I love the butter yellow on these walls! The way it's been balanced with the white and the red makes it not too overwhelming, and the rug adds some nice color to the floor.

The yellow is very light and muted on this one, and the green they chose makes it feel like spring :) My favorite parts of this are the yellow chairs at the table and the continuous line of white tile underneath the cabinets that breaks up the yellow a bit. The curtains are hard to see, but they look pretty, too. Just looking at this kitchen makes me want to go find myself some daffodils...

Sigh, this tiny kitchen reminds me all too much of the kitchen I endured all last semester (and the one I'm going back to), only I had to keep mine white. The yellow does brighten it up, though, and in my mind I'm picturing pretty pastel decorations of the sort that one might find in A Field Journal. In my humble opinion, a little pink and blue could go a long way in "cutening" this little kitchen.

Nope, this is not a yellow kitchen. There's yellow in it, though, and I just love its pure funky awesomeness (does that wall really blend from orange to pink?). And look! A yellow mixer!

This last kitchen was one of my favorites. The walls are white, but the large windows and the bright yellow polka dots on the rug makes it seem colorful anyway. The artwork on the wall and the flowers on the table further tie in the color as a theme, and everything just ties together to make it look fresh and natural.

So after all that, I'm not entirely sure that we're going with the yellow mixer anymore. The reason? This.

And these.

But that's okay, because I'm now picturing a yellow kitchen with turquoise tie-ins. Ha ha, what am I going to do with myself? I can't have turquoise in every room... can I?

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

A Beautiful World

Time, or rather the perception of time, is something I'll never be able to comprehend. One week from tomorrow, I'm taking a plane home and leaving Jerusalem, possibly never to return. How is it that the past three months have crawled by so slowly, yet sped by so fast? I'm looking forward to going home, of course--with family, friends, and a loving fiance waiting anxiously for my return, how could I not be? A whole new life awaits, and I'm eager to see where it takes me. And yet, leaving this place will be bittersweet. I suppose one of the risks of being a traveller is that you leave a piece of your heart wherever you go, and with all of the places I've been the past few months, I feel like parts of me are scattered all across the Middle East. So, in memory of the places that have changed my life and touched my heart, I'm posting these pictures. It's a beautiful world, and I hope to be able to see more of it one day.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Baby Blue and Butterflies

I doubt I can even express how excited I am to become a homemaker (someday soon!), and one of the things I'm most looking forward to is decorating my home. Be it a small apartment (which Chris and I will almost definitely be starting out in) or the house of my own I hope to own someday, there's something about taking any space and beautifying it that appeals to me. This is probably why I've been looking at so many home decorating blogs recently... and have since fallen in love with this little girl's nursery found on Hue:

This may go against the widely accepted gender/color stereotype, but I've always wanted a blue nursery for my little girl someday. Though I might go a little more turquoise than this lady did, and I would probably decorate differently, I love how the artfully painted flowers on the walls work beautifully for a baby girl's room, but are also something that would stay appropriate as she grows older. Did you know Chris and I already have names picked out? Ella Capri for a girl and James Christopher for a boy. I used to absolutely love the name Elizabeth and was set on using it, but Chris has me officially sold on the name Ella, and I actually prefer it now--it makes me think of Ella Enchanted. Capri was my idea--it's a name that's been growing on me ever since listening to the song by Colbie Caillat. A room like this would be perfect for Ella Capri, don't you think?

Oh, and as long as we're on the subject, check out this little girl's
bathroom done by Jennifer from The Magic Brush, Inc.:

This room was featured in the October 2008 issue of the Kansas City Home and Garden magazine. I don't know that I really foresee my little girl having a bathroom of her own like this, but don't you just love the hand-painted cabinets? The metallic swirls and the chandeliers also add a bit of charm to the whole thing.

I came across a changing table that I loved last night, but forgot to save the picture. Sigh... well, just picture a vintage-looking vanity refinished with white, antiqued paint, and made over to be a changing table. It really was quite pretty, and if I ever find a nice, cheap table or vanity on Craigslist or something, I'll have to remember to snag it.

One more thing:

These beauties hail from Lightly, a Melbourne-based company, and were recently featured on Decor8. I can hardly get over how much I love these things, though I can't quite figure out whether it's possible to order online yet or not. Not that I have any use for them yet, but one of these days...

An Artist's Style

May I take a moment to showcase the lovely art of Miss Andrea Cobb?

The colors in this one are fantastic--pink and light aqua has become one of my favorite color combos recently.

A beautifully interesting take on winter. I travelled halfway across the world to escape the snow this year, and now ironically I find myself missing it.

Yay for blue (my favorite color) and for the multicolored wings! And for the swirls everywhere--nothing makes me happy like a bunch of swirly designs.

I've already identified what one of my greatest challenges as an artist will be--learning to let go of reality, and depict things in a more abstract, illustrative manner. My art in the past has looked like this:

and this:

and though there's obviously nothing wrong with going for a more realistic look (though you'll have to excuse their imperfections--I drew them both in high school), I feel like that's all I really know how to do. That's why I'm really looking forward to exploring the more whimsical side of life and art as I move into the illustration program next semester. Hopefully, as I learn and am exposed to more, imagination and reality will mesh, and a unique style of my own will emerge.