Camp Ginny Branch BesottedNow this is the kind of camp I can totally get behind!  CAMP-Creating Art Meaning Purpose was founded by one uber talented Ginny Branch (my fave) and her uber talented friends (birds of a feather..) I am going to go out on a limb and say this may be the most beautiful camp on earth.  The choice of classes are all sublime, everything from Food Photography + Styling, Upholstery 101, Business Basics 101, to Pick with a pro (I want to join!) and so many more.

The classes are currently held in Georgia which makes me ask why these weren’t in full swing last summer when all I was doing was sweating profusely and swatting away mosquitoes at my Southern country home only dreaming of doing something like this. One day I will take a CAMP workshop or all of them, seriously there’s not one on the list that doesn’t sound completely fascinating and worth the time + investment. If you are on the East coast, Georgia is a short plane or train ride away, I would 100% give you my two thumbs up for you to join in the fun. Being that it’s summer, hotels are probably being given away (it gets hot down there!) but I am sure the brilliant minds behind CAMP have you covered, it looks like there is no detail overlooked on their watch so I bet you will be cool, collected and sipping on something marvelous like fresh squeezed organic lemonade with fresh mint ice cubes and a dash of spritzer for extra refreshment. Think of me while you are learning away and do let me now if you join in the fun, I would love to live vicariously.

photo by ali harper

Author / Miss Tristan B

Miss Tristan B. is the proprietress of Besotted Brand and the writer of this delightful blog. She recently re-located to sunny Seattle with her handsome husband and two pups.



I had been seeing these pipe shelves crop up all over the internet and really wanted to try my hand at making one; I had a couple of obstacles 1) I have a hard time following directions 2) I don’t own any real power tools (a drill + mini sander but those don’t really count now, do they?)  My husband is not handy but he sure is handsome so there’s that.  So here is my “Cliff” notes version of how this came about. Last summer I decided to give it a try.  At Home Depot I eyed the plumbing pipes longingly (as one does) when a salesperson asked if he could help me, I told him that I wanted to make a pipe shelf but they didn’t have pipes in the sizes I needed and I didn’t have tools, (insert crazy look here) I showed him some on-line images, and he said no problem they could cut the pipes to any size I needed for a nominal fee. I went home and started figuring out my exact dimensions needed. This is important since a lot of the DIY instructions on-line are for what worked for that individual, if you are going to make this, make it so it works for you.  I had a very long narrow closet where I wanted this to go, so I knew my boards/shelves needed to have a narrow profile (these were cut for free to size at Home Depot, I think Lowes does free cuts as well). I used the standard 2′ x 4’s. I chose to make my bottom shelf higher so I could fit my filing boxes in neatly, which were tall and narrow. I also added metal casters so I could easily roll the shelf out of the slim closet and could see everything.  It was smooth sailing from there–sanding, stain + polyurethane for the aesthetics, for functionality, I used Gorilla glue and screws to get all the pipe flanges in place and that was it.  It was a weekend project because of the staining and wood glue which needed to dry but it comes together so fast and it did not look like a DIY project, in fact I sold it for a pretty penny when I moved and that was out in the middle of nowhere (the photo above was from my Craigslist listing), just imagine if I lived in the city?!  I am now wanting to make a whole studio space in our tiny city loft and this image has my wheels spinning.

If you need more detailed instructions for this project I have collected some here:

Industrial shelf (they set their shelves on top of the pipes instead of screwing them directly into the shelves like I did).

Here’s the same concept for a coffee table that I think looks equally as good and would probably be the easiest of all the pipe projects.

Be still my beating heart, the already lovely Roost  just got even lovelier (hard to believe but it’s true!) My jaw is still on the floor…

I get a lot of emails each day, but one of my very favorites is the word of the day from Merriam Webster, it not only gives you the word + definition but also the pronunciation and in context examples! It makes me feel like I accomplished at least one great thing each day.

I haven’t been up for doing much lately, but I did download the Graveminder by Melissa Marr (it was on sale!). I am not a big fiction reader but when I do read it I always wonder why I don’t read it more often. I am not that deep into the book, but I’m already impressed with Ms. Marr’s imagination, how did she come up with such things?  From the reviews this isn’t even her most creative book, my curiosity has been peaked.

On a whim the other night my husband and I watched Extreme Couponing, my husband is appalled by the stock piling and I agree there’s not a lot I could/would eat (100 packs of hot dogs anyone?) but gosh darn am I impressed by how much these couponers save.  It has me motivated to look into it a little further, I found this site that gives you a crash course. I would love to have a stock pile of basics like laundry detergent, wouldn’t you?

The Visual Supply Company aka VSCO has just updated their VSCAM app and I love it even more (if that’s possible). I always recommend it as the app to get if you are trying to recreate that film look with your cameraphone.  The app is free and has plenty of filter choices, scroll down here to see some awe inspiring sample images.

Couldn’t get enough of my blogging unsolicited blogging advice? Well here’s some more links to inspire more great content from Alt Summit!

Wishing you all a wonderful weekend!

Author / Miss Tristan B

Miss Tristan B. is the proprietress of Besotted Brand and the writer of this delightful blog. She recently re-located to sunny Seattle with her handsome husband and two pups.


Unearthed Milk Paint BesottedPainting is on my mind. It’s pretty much all I can think about which is a wonder that this post even got written because I was too busy trying to will my ugly (and may I add bumpy-shudder) walls a new bright white without me having to actually break out a roller.  Another thing on my mind, is being green. It could be because Seattle is one of the greenest cities in the nation, losing top slot to our neighbor Portland. It’s the law here to be green, no seriously you need to recycle or go to prison or get publicly flogged or some such. In our (green) building we also compost and recycle heat from the roof, not that we need heat right now as it will be over 70 degrees all week, but I digress.

I have been spending a little too much time researching green/eco paint options, but I have learned that they aren’t all created equal. Even beloved Benjamin Moore’s eco line isn’t as eco as it could be–It’s no milk paint. Milk paint?  Made from milk (but you figured that one out, right?) It’s the only paint I have found that is completely natural, safe, and no VOC’s.  It also seems a lot more complicated than just rolling up to Home Depot and having them shake a couple gallons for you. It comes in a powder form that you mix with water to achieve consistency. In the past I have only seen it used on smaller projects such as furniture but lately several entries into the interior painting category have appeared and I am duly intrigued. It is a pricey paint, but we moved into a green building, in a green city (did I mention that?) and one of the caveats of all this green living is a smaller footprint/blueprint for our new living space. Much smaller. So I think the investment wouldn’t be too bad if I went this route. Have any of you tried this for your walls? Do you have another eco paint that you have tried that you liked? I honestly thought we were pretty eco-friendly before we moved here but it seems we were just silly novices; this city takes it to a whole new level and I am buying what they are selling, I think it’s pretty flippin’ fantastic.


Safepaint by the Old Fashioned Milkpaint Co.

Unearthed Paints

The Real Milk Paint Co.


The Old Fashioned Milk Paint Co.

Miss Mustard Seed Milk paint

P.S. A non-milk paint that is also zero VOC is made by Bioshield.

P.P.S. Any of you ever try renting or buying a sprayer for painting interior walls?  I am thinking with the bumpy walls I may get uneven coverage with a roller and get white walls with horrid “yellow” specs.  Thoughts?

Author / Miss Tristan B

Miss Tristan B. is the proprietress of Besotted Brand and the writer of this delightful blog. She recently re-located to sunny Seattle with her handsome husband and two pup.


ALPHABET STAMP TUTORIAL IHappy Valentine’s Day to you!  I have received a ton of requests on tips on how to best use alphabet stamp sets and I am happy to oblige.  I love alphabet stamps (or ‘alpha’s’ as they are also known).  My biggest tip before I get further into this tutorial is if you start using these sets a lot then you might want to invest in more than one set of the same alphabet, it will make life so much easier.  If I needed a duplicate letter in my word above, say I wanted to spell ‘lovee’ then I would have to print what I have above then go back in with the ‘e’ and there’s a major chance (if you are me) that it will come out all crooked and wonky and ruin what I was working on. Granted, using alphabet stamps does not give you a perfectly straight word, by the nature of the stamping medium you will have very organic/rustic results, but you probably still want some control of the effect, right? Step. 1-I start out by finding the letters I would like to use for my word (like the example above), once I have the word I want I set the stamps as close and straight as possible to make it easier for Step. 2.

ALPHABET STAMP TUTORIAL IIStep 2-I cut a piece of artist/drafting tape long enough to wrap around the entire word.  This is important, if your tape is not long enough the stamps can bow, or become misaligned making this whole process futile. I use artist/drafting tape because it is re-positionable and is easy to remove and does not leave a sticky residue.  You could also try washi tape which also has a low tack adhesive and in a bind you could use masking tape, but it’s a bear to remove from your stamps so I wouldn’t recommend it.

ALPHABET STAMP TUTORIAL 3Step.3-Wrap the tape firmly around the stamps and get to printing!  I tried all sorts of techniques and this is by far the easiest + most convenient way to work with the alphabet sets.  If you have any other questions or requests feel free to email me or leave the request in the comments!

Author / Miss Tristan B

Miss Tristan B. is the proprietress of Besotted Brand and the writer of this delightful blog. She believes hand stamps are akin to owning miniature printing presses.



 As soon as I got back on my feet this weekend I started a cleaning frenzy of epic proportions.  My studio which I usually straighten up before I leave each night was a mess of papers, pens and other ephemera from the night I came down with influenza (yes, I like to call it that, it sounds as scary as it was). I needed to get organized and that I did. As I was cleaning out some boxes I found a stack of antique natural history plates that I have been meaning to scan for you for the longest time.  I didn’t scan them all but a nice amount (I will finish the second half soon, pinky promise), all super hi-res to use in your personal projects. For those wondering what you might do with such things, really the limit is only your imagination but since I love to read I made a set into bookplates for you to print, it’s 8 designs from botanicals to butterflies.  I have also updated all the links on the download page so you shouldn’t have any trouble downloading your heart out.  Have fun!

Author / Miss Tristan B

Miss Tristan B. is the proprietress of Besotted Brand and the writer of this delightful blog. She recently re-located to the country with her handsome husband and two pups.

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