Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

Vintage Glass Ornament fine art photograph by Vintage Chic Images
Bottle Brush Trees fine art photograph by Vintage Chic Images
Vintage Glass Ornaments fine art photograph by Vintage Chic Images
Helping us celebrate the holidays is Sylvia of Vintage Chic Images. Her work is gorgeous, as you can see! You can browse her shop and purchase these beautiful fine art photographs by clicking here.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays Everyone!!!
I am going to take a few days off for the holiday, but will return shortly after the new year. Hope you all have a safe, happy, and healthy holiday!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Thursday Thrill – ❅ A Very Merry Christmas & Happy Holidays To Everyone ❅


vintage creamy snowflake lace dress with satin bow belt

Cottage Christmas

brown white and gold shabby chic holiday wreath for door


1940s or 1950s retro novelty dress with cherry neckline and green cotton
Retro Christmas
red apple, berry, and star christmas wreath with twigs


vintage black velvet dress with lace collar and pockets
Snow Kissed Christmas

frosted pinecone holiday wreath for door


View last week's Thursday Thrill:

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Sunday, December 16, 2012

Tag, You're It! Christmas Edition

My blogger friend Lanaya, from Raising Reagan started this game of tag to learn more about the holiday traditions of her blogging friends.  You are supposed to ask five bloggers five questions about their traditions and then carry on the process. I was recently tagged by Tiffani at Tiffani Goff at Home. She has asked me these five questions:

What is your favorite Christmas tradition? 
I really really love pie. No, I mean really, guys! I don't necessarily like baking them, but I love eating them. My grandma and now my sister bake the most delicious pies at the holidays and I always look forward to that every year. My grandma actually gives me pies for my presents! Like wrapped! Seriously.
Do you have a real or fake Christmas tree?
I'm super lame. I don't even do a tree or really many decorations in general. I usually visit other people for Christmas, so I've become lazy and just enjoy their hard work instead.

Do you do a lot of Christmas baking? 
Nope. Like I said, I'm a lazy, pie eating good for nothin'! I will help out, but I'm not usually the one to do all the baking for the holidays.

Do you put lights on the outside of your house and if so do you do it yourself or hire someone?
Nope, again. Wow, you all are just rolling in the holiday cheer now huh? Sorry. I haven't had Christmas lights since I was a kid. I also haven't ever lived in a house after getting married, so stringing up a whole apartment would get a little tiresome (and dangerous), I think. ;-)

When do you open all your presents and do you let the kids open any before Christmas?
Welp, I don't have any kids, so all the presents are MINE! BWAHAHAHAHAHA! We usually open them at different times but mostly after meals.

Here are the five bloggers that I would love to tag!
Shawn at The Divvy Spot
Kelly at Blart Blog

Here are my questions for you ladies:
1. What is your favorite holiday dish?
2. Do you dress up for the holidays or wear PJ's, etc.?
3. What is your favorite holiday song?
4. What is your favorite holiday movie?
5. If you could travel anywhere, where would you love to spend your holiday?

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Giveaway Winner Announced!

blog header of colorful rainbow of handmade leather journals
Congrats to Kelly!! 
She is the winner of the beautiful handmade journal from The Orange Windmill!!! Yippee!!! Big thanks to Shirley at Trees.Hides. for her generosity in offering up this wonderful journal!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Treasury Tuesday – "Beautiful and Sweet" Gifts

Today's treasury comes from Elisabetta at Betty Home. She has put together a beautiful, delicious, and eco friendly selection of items that would make wonderful gifts. The fact that my vintage button bobby pins get to share the same space as that decadent "Death by Chocolate" gourmet caramel apple is too envy inducing. I am now jealous of the whole state of Washington (where that caramel apple is currently located)!

If you would like to view individual items in this treasury, click here.

earth friendly gift guide for the holidays

View last week's Treasury Tuesday:

Saturday, December 8, 2012

The Orange Windmill Leather Journal Giveaway!

Holiday Greeting banner from The Orange Windmill

Guess what time it is????!!!

Okay, obviously, you saw the title, so you know it is giveaway time, people!! This is the very first time I've held a giveaway and I'm so glad it is for a handmade product from an eco conscious creator. Yesterday, I introduced you all to Shirley from The Orange Windmill. She makes hand-bound and hand-stitched leather products from unused, recycled, and reclaimed materials. If you didn't catch the feature, you can check it out here. Shirley very generously wants to give away one of these beautiful leather journals and I am only to happy to help her!

Win a hand-bound, hand-stitched vintage book cover journal
coptic bound journal or diarycustom stamp on the last page of journaljournal coptic stitched from vintage book coverThe journal that she selected to give away was especially lovely to me because it is made from a vintage book (I kinda have a thang for vintage if you haven't picked that up yet). She has turned a copy of "The Complete Works of William Shakespeare, Volume 2" into a beautiful coptic journal! It is 120 pages of recycled white text paper hand torn to fit and she even includes the original spine to use as the bookmark! Love that!

This giveaway will close one week from today when I will announce the lucky winner! Good luck! Giveaway is only open to residents of the US and Canada.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, December 7, 2012

Sponsor Sugar – The Orange Windmill

photo of handmade journals by the orange windmill
It is time to spread a little sweetness and sprinkle some sugar on one of my lovely sponsors! Shirley, from The Orange Windmill and Trees. Hides., is the author of a pretty wonderful and crafty blog. By the way, isn't she too cute?! Love her little avatar! Someone I would love to have a cup of coffee with and craft together. Sorry, back to the feature...On her blog, Trees. Hides., she features many creative artists, does super cute DIY demos and has one of my favorite weekly link-ups where you can show off your latest craft creation. She also is the owner and creator of her own shop on Etsy called The Orange Windmill

photo of owner and creator of handmade leather journalsYou will quickly be able to see why someone like me would love her creations. She makes beautiful little leather journals just waiting to be filled with magical stories, whimsical thoughts and flowery aspirations! At least, that is what I would fill them with. You could just as easily use them to keep your treasure trove of goofy doodles of the neighborhood grump yelling at kids from his front porch. 

I'm going to let her to tell you a little about herself and how she came up with her shop name and how she creates her little literary treasure chests:

upcycled leather bound diaries and journals
gift wrap option to package holiday gift journals"Hi, I'm Shirley. The Orange Windmill is a place where I sell my hand-bound journals. I love journaling - I've been doing it since I was a young girl. The best part about Christmas for me was the excitement of receiving a new diary - fresh, blank pages ready to be filled with all my secrets!

I make all my journals from scratch. For my leather journals, I find the leather from a tiny local upholstery place, where they have leather remnants of leather in a bin. I take them and give them new life and purpose as a journal!

For my vintage hardcover journals, I use vintage books that are falling apart and breathe new life into them as journals - they are truly one of a kind! I tear each sheet individually to fit the journal cover, and then bind the pages to the cover.

This process is therapeutic and very rewarding for me, being able to create something new and beautiful from unwanted materials. I strive to be conscious about the amount of waste I create in making my journals. I have not thrown out a single piece of leather, as I'm sure I will be able to use it eventually.

I've named myself The Orange Windmill because I'm dutch (the windmill is iconically dutch), and my favourite color is orange. For all you windmill fans out there, sorry, I don't make windmills."

hand bound recycled leather notebook journal
Okay, did you all hear that? She is a local business supporter, handbinds these beauties, gives new life to vintage, AND tries to be eco conscious! I love this chick!

One of her newest ventures that she has recently embarked on is the creation of iPhone covers with the leather that she uses for journal binding. I actually find these quite charming. They have the same antique charm with the cute handmade quirkiness of asymmetry. Hand-stitched leather with adorable floral accents. I think pretty much everything in her little shop would make perfect gifts and stocking stuffers for the holidays. The journals are gender and age neutral so the whole family would love them. The same is true of the iPhone covers, so make sure to give her shop a good look over to see if any items would tic off a space on your gift lists.

To view her blog, Trees. Hides., click here.
To shop her store, The Orange Windmill, click here.

Banner photo from the journal shop
golden leather iPhone case with multi colored leather flowers
detail photo of metal and leather iPhone cover

***********Stay tuned, gorgeous followers!!!***********
Check back tomorrow for your chance to get your hands on a beautiful leather journal of your own for FREE! Shirley has very generously decided to hold a giveaway! YES!!

If you are interested in becoming one of my lovely sponsors, please click here for more details.

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Thursday, December 6, 2012

Thursday Thrill - Early Winter Outing

photo of the woods in late fall in the upper peninsula
Photo by Lina Blair Photography
I don't know about you, but the late fall and early winter days call me outside. The air is crisper, dying, but still wide awake. The sun is in a perpetual glow casting position and all the plants that remain are soaking up what they can of its shortening rays. Blankets of leaves crunch beneath my feet and I feel my own presence in the space with each step I rustle and disturb. It isn't so cold to be uncomfortable and honestly, here in North Carolina, the temperature hovers in the 50's for most of December. That creates the perfect chance to have a leisurely walk and observe the forests and typically green spaces around me. 

1940s crochet knit dress with metallic thread and decorative metal buttons in beigeBecause you don't need to be too bundled up to leave the house in this mild climate, I would slip on a knit that is comfy, cozy, and breathable. This lovely 1940's knit dress in beige would do just the trick. Longer sleeve, warm, but not hot, loose skirt and open neckline so that you don't get too claustrophobic (I always feel like I'm being strangled with closed necklines, especially when I get warm). This vintage knitwear has beautiful little details including pointelle stripes, gold metallic thread woven throughout, and swirly decorative buttons. This little beauty is right here in Raleigh, NC with me too! Super tempting ya'll! I'm actually featuring two local vintage dealers today and the second is coming up shortly. This lovely piece comes from Raleigh Vintage. I've actually met the owners (at a local dance event) and they are lovely people and were so helpful with my innumerable questions. 

cream and gold knit dress vintage with decorative metal buttonsIf we took a hike (however leisurely) we would want a pair of boots that could transition well and still look pretty with a dress. These black and brown vintage Italian leather riding boots (whew! that is a mouthful) are exactly what I would love to have in my own closet for just such an occasion. They are durable, versatile (double color), and quite pretty. I always find it hard to locate boots because they either seem too clunky, too feminine, or too "country". Not that those are bad, but I just prefer a pair that easily goes with my whole wardrobe. These look so soft too! With just the right amount of heel to look casual, chic, and stable (those romantic woodland paths don't walk themselves, people!).
Italian leather riding boots for women in chocolate brown and blackNow let's just say that you aren't quite as fortunate as I and it is a bit nippier in your part of the world at the beginning of December. Well, in that case, you will need a warm coat and hat!  Don't change that dress though. No reason you should overheat by putting on too many layers. Maybe just pull on a pair of lace patterned leggings to keep the pegs warm and let the outwear do its business. 
I came upon the most delightful coat and hat while browsing the vast vintage findings on Etsy. 

1960's Breton style women's hat with brown beaver fur and upturned brimThis hat is a vintage Christian Dior and is currently being sold by my second North Carolina vintage dealer showcased today, Poppycock Vintage. NC for the win! This particular seller deals ONLY in vintage hats, people!! If you were wanting a great little chapeau and didn't know where to go, here is the mother load, my lovelies. You. are. welcome. 
vintage fur hat for women from Christian DiorThe specific hat that I choose to top the beautiful woman of my imagination on today's thrill is a 1960's Breton style creation with an upturned brim and beaver fur in a dark nutmeg brown. The model for this shop has the best job ever! She is perfect for it though with her pretty face shape and rusty curls, so I guess I'll let her keep it. 

Now for the toasty portion of this thrill, let me introduce one of the prettier coats I've seen. This is a Polish made piece from the 1960's or 1970's and is made with genuine shearling sheepskin in a rich chocolate brown. I love neutrals so much because they allow details like the ones on this coat to stand out easily. Embroidered detailing is one of the my loves. I like running my fingertips over the stitches and feeling like I stepped out of a Hansel and Gretel storybook. 

I hope you all enjoyed taking an early winter outing with me!

brown sheepskin genuine shearling coat from 1960s with embroidered flowers

Featured Items:

- Fine Art Photo (top) by 
- Fine Art Photo (bottom) by     ara133photography

genuine sheepskin vintage coat for women brown

grasses in the autumn sunlight fine art photography
Photograph by ara133photography

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Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Wordless Wednesday – Goofy Dancer Trio

vintage restaurant workers for Halloween costume dance competition
Okay, this is a Wordless Wednesday, but I would imagine you would like at least a small explanation here! This is me and two other balboa dancers after we slipped on our halloween costumes for a themed dance. As you can see, we were restaurant workers! Ha! My name for the evening was Doris "We're all out!" O'Connell. And yes, it was hilarious dancing with the guy on the right in his crazy huge belly costume! :-)

For anyone interested, I got my waitress outfit from a lovely vintage store called DirtyBirdiesVintage. Yes! It is an actual 1970's uniform! How cool is that?! I just added the name tag/apron. The shop was crazy nice and even got me my dress in time for the party when I ordered last minute. Check out their wonderful shop here.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Share the Love Blog Hop!

SharetheloveWell hello there my fairly new, newer, and newest friends! I have graciously been invited to Co-Host in my very first Blog Hop, aptly named "Share the Love Blog Hop". And that is what I would like you all to do! This is a great way to discover new blogs, gain new followers, and generally be in awe of some of the wonderful things people are doing in the blogosphere. Help spread a little love around and support the community!

Jane, over at Northern Beauty Blogs is the Host of this lovely little adventure and Laura from Caseta de Paper is my partner Co-Host.

To join the hop, There are a few very simple rules..

1. Please follow The Host - Northern Beauty Blogs Blog & the Co-hosts ChatterBlossom (me) and Caseta de Paper Blogs.

Please leave a comment so that we can find you and follow your blog too!

2. Hop around and be inspired - Please follow at least 3 other bloggers and don't forget to let them know that you found them through our blog hop.

3. Copy & Paste the Blog Hop ( Cupcake ) grab Button & Display it on your Blog in the side bar.

This hop will be open for one week starting on Tuesday, Dec. 4th. 

<a href="http://northernbeautyblogs.blogspot.co.uk " target="_self"><img src="https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-XUOHyCz9DlI/UI7rAlGiMyI/AAAAAAAAAYc/BgCDKVK0GJE/h120/Bloghop.png" alt="Sharethelove" width="125" height="125" /></a>

Sunday, December 2, 2012

My Shop Got a Spotlight! Happy Dancing, Commence!

Blogger Kelly from the blog BlartHello there! I just need to get a little more excitement off my chest. A most lovely blogger named Kelly featured me on her beautiful blog, Blart! Yes, no typo there peeps, it is indeed Blart.  Sounds like one of the many words I would make up, so I knew I would like this chick. Blart is a mashup of blog and art and even her slogan is "the blog about art and other stuff". Makes me smile. 

Anyways, she said gasping from excitement, this lovely feature of my shop is live and I want to share the link with you here as well. Please, oh please, visit her blog. She gives great tutorials about how to do blog improvement and sells blog software on a shop of her own too. 

To visit the feature of my shop, click here.