SNOWY OWL GICLEE

Are you feeling just as frantic as I am?  I am seriously in a tizzy.  My in-laws are coming to town for the holiday which will be our first time hosting Thanksgiving. My husband is the most amazing cook so I am just on cleaning + decorating duty. The problem is I am certifiably insane when it comes to cleaning. Yesterday I was cleaning and my husband asked what I was doing and I told him I was ‘pre-cleaning’, he just nodded his head and left me to my insanity.  I will probably stop working a couple hours early to re-clean everything I cleaned yesterday. I know it doesn’t make sense, it’s just how I am. In the midst of my hyper-obsessiveness I did receive a very happy email; Erica sent me a snap of my snowy owl giclee ‘in situ’ (that’s editorial speak for in the wild/room/what not). I LOVE seeing the owl in it’s new home, so pretty against all the white and organic elements. Maybe it’s because I am just nosy, naturally curious, but I love getting a peek into other people’s homes, don’t you?  I am going to pop back in later today because I have to show-off the world’s cutest stamp set, it wasn’t my idea, it was my smart + pretty friend T. (not me), she’s obviously a genius.  It’s such a thoughtful sweet concept, that yes, I wished I came up with but lucky for us we can copy her.  See you back here soon!

BESOTTED BRAND FAVOURITES PARCEL::PRE-ORDER

Our new wood boxes for this parcel of pretties are on route to the studio as I type this!  I am so excited to offer this for holiday, it is all the best sellers of this past year!  It is also all my very favourites (the Queen’s English of course).  The small parcel tags in the cutest oval kraft hat box, it’s not just a pretty item it’s so functional to be able to have this sitting on my work station when I am wrapping up parcels; before the tags would be strewn across the table and would get bent or have ink all over them and now they are housed in a perfectly delightful vessel. The tiny twine which I can’t get enough of, I wrap all my smaller items in it, it’s so delicate but still rustic.  The Archive labels are a perennial favourite, they are just classic with their pitch black border, slightly off white color and wine label worthy paper stock, sigh.  I have been in love with this imported deckled-edge paper since I was first introduced to it, rumor has it that the company created stationery for Napoleon and Josephine, it has a very royal lineage. It’s just very luxurious and what I use when I am sending something extra special. The monogram handled stamps are by and large your favorites so I put one in this set, but running a close second in favorites are the antler and now the striped bow (my new love) and if requested the monogram can be substituted for either one.  The best part is I made the box to fit perfectly into a Priority mailer, which means that you or your recipient can get it in no time, it will ship immediately if you don’t get a custom monogram! Great for all the last minute shopper, but you aren’t a last minute shopper are you?  No, of course not!  This is a pre-order item and will be in December 5th, if you order now until 12.15.12 you can get it for $25 off the listed price, only you, because I love you of course.  It will ship free in the U.S. (so sorry my overseas friends!), just use the code BESTOW at check -out, you can order it here.

THE SILVER HORSE

I love this photograph, it’s not technically a great photograph, but it’s what the photograph means to me that makes it so special. I think it’s important for any photography enthusiast to embrace their photographs that may not be ‘perfect’, it’s your free trip down memory lane, in the imperfection you may have captured more than a photograph, perhaps a feeling.  We have lived in the country now for nearly six months, it has had it’s ups & downs, but the ‘up’ for me is being so close to a horse stable.  I am so fascinated by these beautiful, gentle creatures. I hadn’t had much experience with horses prior and I admit that I was really intimidated the first few times I went to visit them. I think they sensed my trepidation and stayed far away from the weird individual with the big black thing growing from her face. I decided to try another approach and wouldn’t bring my camera, slowly making my way to the fence and just watching them from afar.  My husband a.k.a. Dr. Dolittle, could of course go up to the fence and the horses would trot over and want him to hand feed them.  All animals love him, I am both envious and jealous. I decided to just copy him and try to feed them clover which is their favorite (btw, six months ago I wouldn’t be able to tell you what clover looked liked if you paid me to guess). I eventually was able to draw the affection of the ‘silver horse’. That’s what my husband dubbed the stallion even though I am pretty sure it’s white, but I will allow creative license, after all who am I to judge? I named my girl dog George.  Once I knew that the silver horse would come to me when I was at the fence I started to bring my camera again, but not take photos, just have it on me. The other day around dusk, I had some time alone with ‘Silver’ and he came right up to me. I fed him some tasty wild grasses that were growing high outside of his corral and although he would eat continuously I stopped and brushed my hand along his beautiful, cashmere soft muzzle. He stood still and allowed the attention and then I slowly brought my camera to my eye. I was able to shoot some up close shots that I had been envisioning for as long as I have ‘known’ Silver.  This was my favorite shot. I love how soulful that look is, this is the closest I could get with the lens I had (the 50mm). We are planning to get some photos printed for the house and I am most definitely adding this to the wall. I know it will always remind me of this time in my life and our grand adventure.

STRIPED BOW RUBBERSTAMP + GIVEAWAY!

Cute right? So cute! I love stripes, I love bows, I love tiny!  Together you have the new striped motif stamp!  Too many exclamation points? Okay, I will try to dial it down this Monday morn, but I am excited.  I have to admit this holiday creep that happened the day after Halloween has thrown me a bit. Why did I not notice that people are getting ready for holiday so soon?  I am usually either hyper aware or totally oblivious, it’s how I live my life, the holiday creep must of been one of my oblivious moments, but back to the stamp…I think it will be something that will be useful way past Christmas/Chanukah/Kwanza, etc. It’s just a good little stamp to have. It’s especially cute printed in red, very festive!  Of course, I shall be giving one away because Mondays are always better when  a prize is involved, right?  Just re-pin this here, or Tweet it, or leave me a delightful comment, I am open to however you would like to enter to win.  I will announce the winner next Monday. If you can’t wait, you can always pick one up here.
How is your shopping coming along? Are you like everyone else and have started your shopping in July for holiday?  Or are you waiting until after Thanksgiving and will succumb to the holiday heat?  I’m not a last minute shopper, I actually think about gifts all year round (if you haven’t gathered yet, I am a bit obsessive, so no surprise that I have been thinking about something for 12 months straight).  This will be the first year though that I prepared so thoroughly personally. I was assuming professionally I wouldn’t have to bring out the goods until the day after Thanksgiving, but I have quickly learned otherwise–noted.
And I must announce the winner of last weeks giveaway the Stag silhouette  + tiny snowflake, I couldn’t choose just one so I chose–Paulina Bäfverfeldt and Georgina Gill (because flattery gets you everywhere with me). I do hope it makes the winners less anxious to know they can make holiday goods (cards, tags, ornaments, etc.) on the fly!  Good luck to everyone on today’s giveaway and thank you all as always for playing, it delights me to no end to be able to see what you will create with the prizes.  Oh, yes, and of course this giveaway is open world wide!

NEUTROGENA RAPID WRINKLE REPAIR MOISTURIZER REVIEW

I am a skeptic when it comes to drug store face products, I don’t hold any notion that a lotion bought at Target would do anything but perhaps moisturize.  I am also pragmatic and when I needed a face cream because I didn’t want to waste my fave splurge, I bought the Neutrogena Rapid Wrinkle repair for night. My thinking was that if I used the drugstore brand at night then I could use my splurge during the day thus the splurge would last longer.  I am very picky about face creams, I have super dry skin and for some reason manufacturer’s are under the very wrong belief that people with dry skin want a heavy, waxy cream on their visage which is not true; I want something that feels light, like a drink of water for my face and that I feel makes my skin soft without it feeling waxy or greasy, my splurge does just that.  I bought the Neutrogena because it felt nice and light, it does come with a warning that it is strong and may make your skin start to feel irritated and flake. I of course ignored the warning and my skin did get very red and irritated, because I was using way too much (think slather instead of dot). I took it down to every two nights instead of every night and then when my skin calmed down, I went back to every night. I have had hyper-pigmentation on my cheeks for ages (it’s horrible like a cluster of fat freckles, without the charm of freckles). After two weeks I noticed a big difference in my skin, it was less ‘splotchy’ and definitely more even. I have had wrinkles around my eyes since I was 10, I laugh at almost anything (it makes me a great companion), so I wasn’t expecting anything to go away there and it didn’t, but my skin in general looks more fresh and ‘even’ and for me that’s worth more than a wrinkle repair. Let me forewarn you again, this is a very strong product, if you have sensitive skin take it slowly, use sparingly–you have been warned! I was reading reviews this evening and people are crazy for this product and it even won a ‘best of award’ with Allure.  It is more expensive than a traditional skincare product at the drugstore ($20), but still a total steal compared to a specialty beauty store product. I found a nice article from Vogue on retinoids that might be of some interest to you. If you have been curious in this type of product I can completely recommend this to you without hesitation. Another warning would be to not use this under your eyes, it’s way too strong and you will be sorry that you didn’t listen to me. They do have a product specifically for under the eye, which I will most likely try since I am pretty happy with the results I have had so far. Let me know your thoughts or if you have another recommendation, I am always open to hearing about new products!