Lately I've been obsessed with decaying plants. Sounds a little gross (and weird) I know. But I got a big bouquet of Fall blooms about a month ago and I've been having trouble letting them go. They were beautiful and became even more charming as they aged. Someone commented on one of my Instagram posts featuring them saying that flowers seem to become more sculptural with age. Maybe that's why they become so enchanting. Full of personality, mystery and whimsy.Read More
I've been in business for almost six years now. The first summer that I ever experimented with selling at markets was the summer of 2010 when I was trying to make a little bit of extra burrito money and dip my toes into what I've found to be a quickly addicting small creative business / market world.
My birthday is this week, and this birthday marks the first birthday that I feel the teeniest bit "old" so I'm doing some reflecting. I think I've finally hit the point where I'm no longer looking forward to being "grown" - I am grown now, and from here on out, the benchmarks are a little intimidating, as opposed to being pure bad girl fun. I'll be one of those real adults now that has no idea exactly how old they are, because it's no longer how you define your independence in life. *Sigh, I'm kind of missing those innocent days of trying my hardest to find a fake id that looked enough like me.
At the farmer's market this weekend, I spotted this apricot blueberry pastry THING, for lack of a better term, and had to have it. At the first ever little flea markets that I set up at, I would buy myself a big ass peach cobbler from the Amish folk there and eat the whole thing for breakfast. My then-boyfriend/ now-husband was always like "This is an amazing life philosophy, Amina, but you know that's a dessert, right?" I did not know. IRRELEVANT - all fruit is breakfast food to me. So when I saw that big ass pastry that is half-eaten in the photo, I had to have it. It made me feel a kind of nostalgic bliss to eat it for breakfast this morning. It made me remember how scared, happy and hopeful I was at those first few markets that I ever did. I was so terrified about being judged and whether people would like my work or not; I was so elated that someone loved one of the bags that I used to make enough to take it home with them; and I yearned that this was the start of some kind of weird, crazy life for myself.
Six months ago I made the enormous goal of finding a studio space by the end of 2016. This month, I signed a real lease. It feels so official, so intimidating and I'm just so nervous / happy / excited to see where this new apricot blueberry pastry thing journey is going to go. It's like I'm back in 2010 dreaming of being a grown up with a business all over again. <3
A few weeks ago, I hosted my first workshop of the year! My pal Stephanie of Cocktails and Craft and I teamed up for a perfect welcoming Spring workshop where we made grapefruit negronis (a perfect Spring cocktail) and paper flower crowns (a perfect spring accessory).
The afternoon was such a blast and a perfect way to spend a gray and lazy Sunday. The crowns all turned out so colorfully and unique!
TFW you spend two long weeks opening a pop-up shop and getting ready for a big craft show and it all feels so good in the end now that there are officially two days off in a row. Feeling so grateful for all the love and support of the wonderful creative people who have stopped by the shop & the show over the last few weeks. It's been said before, but it always bears repeating - no one ever does anything alone. I would be nothing without the support, advice and the often heavy lifting (literally, ask my hubs) of others.
Brad & I spent a nice quiet Valentine's Day together yesterday eating tons of Mexican food, drowning in margaritas, napping the afternoon away and petting our pup. It was the perfect day to spend together after the chaos of the last few weeks with him right by my side all the way - building Ikea furniture before the pop-up opening, breaking down the chaos of a big craft show and always, always making us coffee in the morning. I'm a lucky gal.
I've been working on some changes to my product line and studio lately. I'm all about simplicity + breadth. How do you accomplish that? That is the key.
In Decor: Displaying the giant paper flowers from my wedding all over the place. Like on top of this curtain rod.
In Product: Taking apart old scarves from a past incarnation of
and transforming them into painted eye pillows. Coming soon to the shop. ;)
I'm super excited to announce our new
that will feature seasonal, limited edition
products and the work of other awesome DC area artists + makers. First up on consignment is the work of
- ceramics you'll find in all of the little corners of my apartment and now with me at shows + in my Etsy shop.
For spring, we have mugs, spoon rests (or ring dishes depending on how you use them) and tins of jasmine green tea in the collection. More to come soon. Stay tuned!
Some of my favorite shots from a recent re-shoot of my large candle tins. It came about in conversation recently that I do collect vintage copies of my favorite books [not for slicing up]. I recently got a good copy of
[not pictured above] and I have multiple copies of both
Pride and Prejudice
that I cannot and will not ever part with. These books are the joys of my life. I also collect different editions of Harry Potter but if I ever cut one of those up my sister might actually excommunicate me from my family. So instead they sit on their own special shelf along with my Lego Knight Bus.
March is a big birthday month in my family. My sister's is the 1st and my mom's is the 20th. Then my maternal grandmother's would fall on the ides of March and my paternal grandmother's is the 25th.
In our family, the beginning of March always the signifies the start of spring, regardless of the temperature. My sister has historically embraced a brand new spring outfit every year on her birthday - rain or shine; snow or daisies. I've seen her leave for the school bus wearing flip flops on her birthday, even when there was still remnants of snow on the ground. By the way, snow was a novelty where we grew up. It did not happen and stick very often during the season. We were too close to the Chesapeake Bay to ever get out of school for a good amount of time.
So in the spirit of spring, birthdays and maybe even some
sprouting out of the ground, our March candle subscription package includes a
and a pair of
. Lift your spirits through these last few cold days and embrace them a little too. Every day is joyous with the right state of mind.
My workbench is a constant mess. Specks of ink, paint, stamp pads, washi tape everywhere. Sorry it doesn't make for very pretty photos, but this is where I find myself spending most of my days - in my studio room, splayed out on the tiny little couch in here, watching movies that I've seen a million times. Real hibernation.
In my and Mr Handsome Habitat's quest to become simple and free of things, we got rid of duplicating ways to produce the same item. No. 01 on the list was to get rid of the coffee maker and stick to just the little french press and pour-over device that slide right into our limited kitchen cabinets. Such a small thing to do but it made such big impact on our counter space and livelihoods.
Recently my brother came over for brunch with his own coffee. (He's 18 and cool like that.) I told him that we do have coffee here, you know - to which he promptly replied, yea but you probably have some weird hand pumped coffee or something. (Yea, that's all we have) - so if it's not your thing, BYOC to my apartment.
In other news, I'm taking full advantage of leftover 2014 stock and burning it all. I don't enjoy my candles as much or as often as I should, so I'm taking the opportunity to truly enjoy my product and my work. Since the New Year I've been burning my way through an
, which is a book that is also on my reading list. This is a scent that I've been debating getting rid of, because making all natural citrus fragrances work in candles is a little peculiar. It requires a little tinkering to get it just right. I'm really not willing to go the non-natural route for what I make in my line though. I'm all for sustainability, of course - but even more in favor of health.
I'm really enjoying this little pup these days though, and citrus is supposed to stimulate your brain. Grapefruits were a favorite of my very creative late grandmother who passed when I was really young, so this is one of the few ways I feel that I can stay connected to her spirit - through the things she enjoyed and liked. Grapefruit is one of them, giant paper flowers are another. I'm on a mission of self-discovery.