August 19, 2009

Buying Handmade is Cool

Top Three Reasons to Buy Handmade

1. It makes gifts more special.

Handmade gifts are more special because you know they weren't mass produced or bought in a chain store. They support artists and craft makers who take more time, care and skill than with a mass-produced product. Handmade gifts usually have a story to tell and and are often one-of-a-kind.

2. It connects people.

Mass-produced items and chain store products create a more bland culture and strip away the uniqueness of individuals. Buying handmade strengthens the human touch and builds upon the human and local side of products by supporting local artisans.

3. It helps the environment.

Mass production adds to global warming and pollution. Buying handmade can make a difference - even if just a small one - in helping our environment.

Have any more thoughts on the benefits of handmade? Please share.

August 6, 2009

The Fabulous Life of...

I like jewelry with history. My latest obsession is vintage bling: brooches, shoe clips and dress clips. Mostly from the 1930s-50s. Imagine the fabulous lives they've led. And they're about to lead another. These pieces can easily transform any chain or beaded necklace into a statement piece.

I'm drawn to Art Deco, floral and heraldry pieces as you can see from the photos. Watch for how I'll put them to use in future necklaces.

August 1, 2009

Words to live by

I have this crumpled article I tore out of a magazine (and I don't remember which one) posted on my refrigerator. It's a compilation of advice from women around the country about how to deal with bumps in life.
  1. Aim lower. If you're a perfectionist, it can be tough to deal when things don't go your way. If you think about it, is there really such a thing as completely insane happiness? If you aim to simply be content, it can ease the pressure we often put on ourselves.
  2. Pick friends wisely. Spend time with only the people who make you feel good about yourself - who support and inspire you. Why waste time and energy on those who bring you down?
  3. Find the moment. Is it really possible to achieve a sense of balance every day while trying to accomplish everything on your to-do list? Why not focus on moments of peace and harmony instead? Taking the time to "stop and smell the roses" eases the pressure of trying to tackle daily tasks.
  4. Think about something else. If you're feeling down about something, it helps to distract yourself. Think about something happy (a future vacation, a new outfit) or cute (the witty thing your daughter said). Things always seem less dire when you take a mental break.
  5. Look ahead. If something is bothering you, it helps to give it a few months. Things will be different then. How true is that? The very thing that nags at you now likely won't occupy your thoughts down the road.

Got any tips for dealing with bumps in the road? I'd love to hear them.