December 25, 2008

leathergoods: sarah north

Isn't Etsy great? UK leather artist Sarah North hand-makes these luxurious leather bags, sophisticated and fun at the same time. This raspberry Barcelona Bag even comes with a removable inner purse.

I never thought about having a key cover before, but the one below makes me positive that I need one! Check out Sarah's website for more examples of her beautiful work.

December 17, 2008

fresh holiday centerpieces

I created these arrangements a while back for a party at a Mexican restaurant, but I think they could work equally well as holiday centerpieces. I just love fresh fruit mixed with flowers. Components include roses, rhodedendron and calathea foliage, lemons, limes, star fruit, Green Goddess callas, and date palm branches. Crocodile embossed paper was put over the vases after placing the arrangements on the table.

December 15, 2008


I've been feeling a tad sickish lately, so I thought I'd post a beautifully blemished clematis from our yard. Perfection is overrated.

December 10, 2008


My purse is chocka with things I feel compelled to carry around everyday, which probably isn't great for my back. But I couldn't live without one of the contents - light-as-air Envirosax, which fold down super tiny, and pop up into these handy totes at the vege shop, or the butcher, or even the beach. No more plastic bags for me!

"Founded by Belinda and Mark David-Tooze in 2004, Envirosax® originates from Currumbin Valley in South East Queensland, Australia. The Envirosax team uses renewable and recyclable products where possible, and is committed to operating on ecologically sustainable principles.

Situated on 10 acres of pristine Australian rainforest, Belinda, Mark and their three young children live an ecologically sustainable lifestyle with solar hot water and photovoltaic cells for electricity. A sewage system recycles waste water, watering the extensive permaculture gardens and filtered rainwater tanks provide the organic vegetable gardens, fruit trees and the premises with water.

They live totally off the grid and are living the sustainable lifestyle that we hope will spread to more and more homes in the future." - Envirosax website

They've just come out with the Botanica Series, shown here, but they have so many other designs that there's one for every personality. At only $8.50 it's easy to afford several, so you can stuff one in every stocking this season.

December 8, 2008

ceramicist: rose griffin

Now that I'm thinking of leaving New Zealand, I see wonderful pieces everywhere that I would love to take back with me to Texas, like the dark-stained sushi platter imprinted with New Zealand plants, below. All of the dishes created in the Nelson studio of Rose Griffin feel fresh and useable. You can see more of Rose's work on her website, or purchase by going here.

"My workshop and gallery (in a tiny woolshed) share a site with a much-loved native plant nursery, Nikau Gardens and much of my decoration has been inspired by these plants. I love the graphic qualities of expressive drawing and it is these which I bring to my ceramics. All my ceramics are of slab construction and the white slab or pure bisqued dish is very much like a piece of white paper, just waiting for the slash of a pencil mark or smear of inky black stain." -Rose Griffin


I created a little tribute to all the things blooming in our yard right now - a single blossom of each thing in a vase on our kitchen window. Can you believe the list includes: agapanthus, dusty miller, lady's mantle, clematis, lamb's ear and red orchids? I never noticed before how pretty the single blooms on the agapanthus are (thanks mom!).

December 5, 2008

portland floral designer: anna mara

Thanks to {frolic} I found out about Anna Mara, another wonderful floral designer based in Portland. Anna's bouquet (below) is featured on the cover of the Winter 2008/2009 Portland Bride & Groom, and what a fresh collection of flowers it is! Don't miss Chelsea's arrangement as well.

I think the quote on Anna's about page pretty much sums up how I feel about life. Check out her blog for updates on current events. Thanks Anna!

December 4, 2008

textiles: laughing bird & ingrid anderson

I just found out about Laughing Bird, a company started by Freedom Wilson to produce contemporary handprinted Australian textiles. I love that Freedom has turned her charming drawings into homewares using solvent-free inks and natural fabrics. Who wouldn't be chuffed to bits to received one of her aprons or tea towels this holiday? You can purchase here.

All of the Laughing Bird products are screen printed at their Blue Mountains studio, where the calls of the native birds depicted in the illustrations echo in the background. Thanks, Freedom, for sharing your unique work!

On the Kiwi side of the Tasman, Ingrid Anderson is producing a nice range of screenprinted textiles with kiwis, tuis and other native flora and fauna. You can shop for Ingrid Anderson products online here, or at design stores throughout NZ. Images below from their website.

December 3, 2008

leathergoods: nancybird

Based in Melbourne, Nancybird is a small leathergoods company that produces bags, belts and wallets inspired by the Australasian environment and the travels of owner Emily Wright. Emily started Nancybird in 2001 using leather and offcuts of her screenprinted textiles, and now produces a new collection every season. Images below of the current season, from Nancybird website.

December 2, 2008

wallpaper: marthe armitage

While perusing World of Interiors the other day I saw the wonderful wallpapers of Marthe Armitage. Chestnut shown here.

Image from here.