Look at that face and those little fingers. What could be cuter than Ms. Hepburn and a monkey? Not much, except maybe a baby rhino. I am really happy it’s Monday, I have a ton of work to do but so ready for the week. Sunday was dedicated to more apothecary experiments, working with soap and testing stabilization of fragrances. Patience is not my strong suit, so the waiting for curing, stabilization, etc. nearly kills me. I am trying to figure out what scents to launch first, which is like asking me to choose my favorite puppy, I am having a hard time with that decision. I am doing something very complex that has to feel very simple, I am trying to re-create the scent of nature identical fragrances, but it really is a Herculean task. There aren’t essential oils for a lot of florals, like gardenia, you can’t get an essential oil from an actual gardenia so if you are buying a fragrance that reads it is gardenia essential oil it’s a lie. What you can do though is try to combine essential oils to re-create that scent. It’s extraordinarily difficult.  I like to think that my tuberose is spot on, cue the angels singing but I realize now that most people won’t want to smell exactly like a tuberose, it is a little heady. The tuberose would probably be best suited for a room fragrance so that leaves me going back to the drawing board. What other one’s do I think I have perfected (in my not so humble opinion)? Well, my cucumber smells just like a fresh, watery cucumber when the oil is in the bottle, on the skin not so much, in soap, uhm not so much. I have some candles with the cucumber curing and I am hoping that it doesn’t change, but one never knows. My California clementine blossom, hello, I could smell this all day. Flowers from most citrus tree’s have an almost jasmine and gardenia combined note, they don’t really smell citrusy I really love this one.  I only have a couple people that emailed me about being testers, so if you are interested send me an email.  I am going to start sending out samples to my testers soon!


 I created a whole series of these round images inspired by the 1890 Kodak No. 02 camera. When one developed their film it would come back as a round image on a square card. I love that it has an air of adventure to it, almost like you were looking through a telescope or a porthole. This was from one of my adventures this summer, miles above the Pacific ocean, somewhere between California and New York City. I have been playing with the idea of printing on a very slight white background so it feels even more authentic. It was shot with a vintage Canon manual film camera and yes I am as surprised as you that it actually came out.


True kraft envelopes are coming!  They should be here by Monday, so exciting! I searched long and hard for REAL kraft envelopes with pointed flaps, which seemingly didn’t exist so I had them made. I since have seen them on the open market (I can’t attest to the quality) but trust me they were nowhere to be found when I went about this treasure hunt. I could have just bought existing ones, there are some pretty kraft type envelopes out there and I did find some kraft envelopes with straight flaps, but I had my heart set on pointed flaps.  Don’t ask me why, I have no idea why I wanted them so badly.  I could have easily settled and got the kraft look-a-likes or gone and bought the straight flaps, but easy and I don’t go together, difficult and out of control and I do. That’s the way of my world.  They arrive soon and will be in the shop just as fast, they are a really nice color kraft-not too yellow, gray or red.  They are darker than my boxes, but just a tinge and they are much thicker than what I found in the straight flapped variety. To me they are a very true kraft and for that I am happy (I hope you will be too).


I am doing the Friday happy dance, you can’t see me but trust me it is as ridiculous as it sounds. I really shouldn’t be this happy as I have locked myself out of my car and since my ‘smart’ key for the car is really dumb I have to go get it re-programmed for a king’s ransom, which includes towing my car to the dealership 20 miles from home. Fun!  I realized that I hadn’t shown any of the pics from all of my recent NYC trips.  I had bits and pieces from my iphone on my Twitter feed and I did upload the above images to my sorely neglected Flickr account, but I don’t think I posted any here.  These are from the Natural History Museum (one of my favorite places on earth), but I like to think they look more like I was on safari with Nick Brandt. I have to say for all the riches that city has, their NHM needs a little love.  This lioness had some serious cosmetic damage and is lucky I am a Photoshop Jedi so I could make her look pretty again. I will try to add some more images from the trips, which looking at what I shot is quite a trip in and of itself.  I had a lot of ‘what the h-e-double hockey sticks was I thinking?!’ moments when I was editing.  I am sure I had some sort of rhyme to my reason but I can’t figure out what that may be just yet. I wish you adieu for the weekend, I hope you have a beautiful one!
 ::photo’s by::tristan b.::


I added some more stamps to the shoppe yesterday. I think I photographed and edited for about 21hours straight (I did stop for lunch, thank goodness). Speaking of straight I realized that my ability to align items when I style is way off. The majority of those hours was spent trying to make things look less lopsided. I wanted to give up about a thousand times but I know myself too well if I did then I would just get distracted by something shiny. I am happy to add new items even when I get overwhelmed by how many I still have to upload, it’s exciting for me to see which designs people are gravitating towards. There isn’t a clear favorite that I can see yet, I know in my last shop it was my manatee card which yes, is coming back, most of the Bella Bella Co. cards will be added to Besotted Brand but as a set. Shipping one off cards was not the thrill I thought it would when I first started but I know I will be over the moon to offer the sets and those sweet manatee’s will be able to go to good manatee loving homes (but of course).

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