Wednesday, December 30, 2009

My only Sunshine

(image from Etsy listing from nella designs)

I {heart} this poster! The listing, by nelladesigns (on Etsy, of course!), would be a great gift for anyone who lifts your spirits or brings light into your life. A few names are coming to me now...Hmmm. And, who doesn't love this song? "You are my sunshine, my only sunshine..." I love it. I have definitely serenaded my dog with it.

I've linked to Nella's shop above & see the "You Are My Sunshine" specific listing here. And for funsies, see the song lyrics here!

I hope everyone is having a great day & spreading (or receiving!) plenty of sunshine!

** Follow-up note: in the time it took me to write this post, the poster sold out!!! But, good news! The item WILL be relisted, so if you can just hold on a bit, you can buy all the sunshine you want :) ***

Monday, December 28, 2009

The Daily Drop Cap

H oly Typography, Batman!! Via HipHostess, I found this amazing new typography site today called Daily Drop Cap by Jessica Hische. This typographer/illustrator started this blog as an ongoing project. Each day she posts a new hand-crafted decorative initial cap for free use on the net (& I quote) "for the beautification of blog posts everywhere." You just copy & paste the code she provides into the HTML (like I did!) and VIOLA! Her characters are so much fun. Other than the "H" I used today she has many other letters to use in your beautifying:

(Her latest post, an N)

(This dainty Y)

(And this awesome B...can't resist this letter these days. Hee, hee)

Love her use of color. Some letters are bold, some are soft. Plenty of inspiration whether you are a fan of type or not. Check out her other amazing work here. She's got some great fonts on my favorite type site,

Bravo, Jessica! Your work is beautiful. Keep it up!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Etsy Profile - Oh Votre Coeur

Hello everyone! How fun are these Cranes? They are the handy work of my new friend Haley of oh votre coeur. She has a super cute shop on Etsy. Check it out here...but not before you read my little interview with her below.

(this is Haley! Beautiful paper flowers!)

KB: Hi! Introduce yourself:

Hello, my name is Haley Zalesky, and I am a crafter/musician/wife/class clown/office drone/audiophile! I run a shop on Etsy and I love to create. I also love to play my guitar and write songs, and to share beautiful, inspiring things with others. I'm not sure if I have a typical day, really. On days that I work, I try to spend the morning getting things done around the house, checking on my shop, updating my blog, things like that. And housewife things, too - though my husband is a huge support and help and never makes me feel like I have to do everything! I'm very blessed - we're really a good team.

It's coming into Canadian winter now, so there aren't as many sunny days as I'd like, which makes taking pictures for my shop a little difficult at times. The other day my husband and I went outside in -12 C (I think that's about 10 F) with freezing cold wind, just because it was bright enough to take pictures. I only lasted for 3 items and I had to pack it in - I was starting to look more scared and tortured than model-esque.. ha! He's a trooper though for doing things like that! Evenings usually consist of hanging with my husband Seann, more Etsying, or having friends over. We love chilling with good people.

KB: Tell us something NOT in your Etsy profile.

Hmmm. I have a full-length album called "Not the Queen" that I recorded in 2006; it's just me and an acoustic guitar... you can even search it on iTunes. Who knew?

KB: I know how you got started, but tell the readers…please

My first love was music, and I think it always will be, but creating things is so much fun, and I've just become enamored with this amazing community of people on Etsy - it's so inspiring! I never thought I could really create much, but I always wanted to. My husband and I were just married this past July, and we knew we wanted the event to have a very handmade feel, something that represented us well. So I taught myself some things like basic origami, and I learned to make flower bouquets to display. I ordered the bouquets for me and my bridesmaids on Etsy because of time constraints, but I made all the boutonnieres, and my roommate and I (bless her) spent hours and hours in our apartment folding cranes and cranes and more cranes. We had them hanging over the dance floor at the reception and they looked lovely. It was so much work though! Needless to say I went through paper-folding withdrawals afterward. I felt the need to keep my hands busy, so I thought - why not take something I've come to love and share it? I've also cultivated my addiction for finding amazing things in thrift stores, so that was the birth of my Etsy shop. I find it hard not to keep a lot of things though. I try really hard NOT to try things on when I bring them home, but sometimes I can't help it!

KB: Describe your Etsy store:

It's a collection of vintage apparel, jewelry, and accessories; and handmade paper pieces such as bouquets and cupcake toppers.

KB: Your store is a mix of paper objects & things you’ve found…how do you cultivate what goes in your store?

I look for vintage items that are lovely, funky, and that look great combined with modern pieces - items that still have a lot of life left in them and that just catch my eye! The problem with that is it's hard to list some of them - I fall in love with my vintage pieces pretty easily. As for the paper pieces, I like to put things in the shop that are colourful and fresh - things that bring happiness to a room or an occasion.

KB: Tell us about your music!

Hey - how'd you know? Heh. Well, I've written pieces as long as I can remember, really, but I started putting words to music in my early teens. Some of those were pretty rough! I had friends who loved creativity and music, and we all shared our creations with each other. I started playing gigs around my hometown, and once I moved to Toronto I continued. Since I got married life's been really busy, but I still love to write and sing. You can hear a little off my album here.

KB: What do you do when you’re creatively stuck?

I distract myself at first with anything BUT creating... I often will try to go back to what originally inspired me to start creating in the first place. Music is a huge inspiration. Right now I'm in love with artists like Florence and the Machine, Laura Marling, Noah and the Whale, and The Rural Alberta Advantage. There's something about an amazing song or harmony that just knocks me off my feet. Most of all when I feel stuck, I try to remind myself not to force it. It always comes back with a little time.

KB: Who do you heart on Etsy?

It varies! Today I went looking for soap and started hearting a shop that made it in the shape of a hamburger and fries. It was hilarious! I'm a sucker for jewelry, shoes, anything pretty, old, steampunk, victorian, ah - don't get me started, I'll be here for 20 years.

KB: I absolutely know what you mean. How about plans for 2010?

I want to add boutonnieres to the shop, and some more origami pieces. I'm constantly looking to improve my photos, presentation, everything! I hope to get a few more sales off the floor to be able to spruce up my look a little and of course add more things. I've pronounced a self-imposed ban on vintage shopping until everything I have on hand has been listed in my shop. Our apartment's not that big, I'm not sure how much else it can hold!

Mostly I want to inspire and be inspired, and share pretty things with the world! If I can help bring a little sunshine to someone, or find something that makes them feel pretty, I've accomplished the greatest thing.

Thanks for hanging out, Haley!! I can't wait to see what you stock your store with in 2010!

As a special for KBatty readers, Haley has graciously said she'll give 10% off on orders if you enter "kbatty" in message to seller at checkout. Ta-ta for now!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

What a Nice Package!

Man! I wish I had come across this site, Nice Package, especially this video on twistie-tie pompoms, weeks ago when I bought my wrapping supplies for the holidays. They have great video tutorials (found on their blog) & super fun wrapping supplies!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Esty Showcase Showdown

(That's my shop in the circle!)

Happy Monday Morning, y'all!

Today is very exciting as my Etsy shop is signed up for it's first Etsy Showcase, in the Paper Goods section. You can find it through the Showcase box on the Etsy homepage (or I've linked to it in this post). It's a paid promotion, but exciting to see the shop in a more visible location for a bit. I am offering free express shipping on orders placed today & tomorrow. Mostly, I'm hoping to make more connections today & gain more exposure for the shop, although lots of sales would be awesome :)

The first item featured in our Showcase this morning is our Monogrammed Dot cards - Set of 6. There are a few other sets of cards that would all make great gifts & some Christmas cards for anyone still needing those. Items will rotate (slightly...I don't have that much available yet) as the day goes on. So! Check back!

Oh, and PS...if you do check back, don't be surprised if my shop items are not in the same spot on the page each time. As the page loads, they are randomly placed each time.

Have a good one!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Bundle up!

(image from Veer)

Did anyone else get the crazy snow this weekend? Ok...I know the answer to that. All of the upper East Coast is covered in many inches of white. And! If their houses are like ours, that means their coats, scarves, etc are littering the hooks of their front hall. How I would love to hang my coats on this clever vinyl "coat rack" (below) from artwallproject at Etsy.

It comes with hooks, to make it more than just a cool wall decoration, but also a functional coat rack. There are TONS of other cool stickers for your wall. What do you think? Favorites anyone? Check out the full shop offerings here.

P.S. I'm always shocked when someone hasn't heard of this fabulous site. Etsy is a great place to search for all kinds of handmade gifts! Lots of creative ideas & plenty of sellers ready to ship last minute for Christmas. Check it out if you haven't already.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

'Tis the season for candles!

In my neighborhood, everyone is putting up their tree, their holiday decorations & LOTS of candles. They set the mood for so many occasions, but this time of the year, especially, I am in love with candles.

Take this tablescape for instance! It is from Elle UK (via Hip Hostess via iDIY via Happy Mundane...great taste you guys!) & couldn't be easier. I've been collecting wine bottles to use for water at parties, but maybe I'll collect a few extras for this.

And!! It reminded me of the fabulous tablescape my girlfriend from Romey & Zoe Custom Creations did for her holiday dinner party last weekend. The picture hardly does it justice. She has impeccable taste AND is the master of doing things on the cheap. Her website is coming soon...expect to see more of her on my blog when it does. This is her handy work...

Love the candles! It's hard to see from this picture, but the bottoms of them have a subtle coating of glitter. Add that to the glittery garland on the table & the light was bouncing all over the room. Everyone's faces were lit up. Amazing!

Anyone else getting creative with candles this year?

Friday, December 11, 2009

2010 Pantone Color of the Year - Turquoise!!

This year, Pantone has named 15-5510 Turquoise as their color of the year. Doesn't that look amazing? Makes me think of this...

(Photo courtesy of me! Cinque Terra 2007)

Although, I would love to think of ways to use it in a more wintery feel. With temperatures dropping in New York, I have this kind of get-away on the brain, for sure! I love this about Pantone, that they name a color for the year. The whole year! I find it so inspiring! Many times I find they name something I haven't been using much lately, so the suggestion feels fresh.

They may very well be on to something over there at Pantone, as this article, "The Hottest New Paint Colors", came out in the recent issue of House Beautiful magazine. These are their color predictions for 2010 & I see a few similar colors on the list. Also a few grays which is interesting...

What do you think?? How would you use it?

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

My Grand Opening!!

**** Announcing my store *****

It's been a busy month! I am very excited to announce that I've hung my shingle at Etsy & posted some of my holiday cards for sale. So far I'm very excited at the response & expressions of support from my friends & family. Thanks you guys!!

Here are some of the things I have up so far:

"Stars of the Season"

"Merry Christmas Card"

"A Christmas Tree...Tree"

Look for some stationary pieces coming soon! Check out the store here...

And again, thank you to everyone & all your support! xo!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Wants for Sale

On November 23, ADC Young Guns winner Justin Gignac is presenting his work at the Apple Store in Soho. New Yorkers might know his name...he's been packaging up NYC liter & garbage & selling it as art. I'm serious. See...

(image from NYC

He & his wife also have another cool art project going, called Wants for Sale. Each piece of art is something they want, but don't have the money for. So, they painted it on a canvas & are selling that art for the price of the item they want. Simple. Cool.

If it weirds you out to buy someone chicken wings or a night in Vegas, check out their other site, Needs for Sale which operates on the same idea, only for charity. A painting of a door is $150 & donates a front door to a Habitat for Humanity House. And, all $150 goes to the charity.

Both are super cool, I think. Very clever! If anyone wants to hear him talk about his work, the talk is free & doesn't require a reservation. Check out the Art Director's Club website for more events.

Holiday cheer that you wear!

(image from Boden USA)
Love this cardigan from Boden USA! It's so are the decorations behind the model. Super easy party decor! Order up lots of silver, gold & black balloons, arrange around the party space. Viola! It's a party! Which may seem like a no-brainer...hello, party with balloons, nothing new. But, sometimes, I feel, the easiest & most obvious decorations are forgotten or over looked.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Project of the Day

Today (like everyday this week) was website day! Got some work up to show-off my portfolio.

Some of that work was for my own wedding! I absolutely loved working on my invitations. My husband & I couldn't be happier with the way they came out...he wants to frame them! :) Our palette was navy, with shades of lighter blue & a dark smokey purple with a few complimentary shades, which we only used in the flowers & bridesmaid dresses.

The suite! We had 2 monograms. Our first name initials went on everything occurring before the ceremony. Then afterward, we broke out the B! Calligraphy for the addresses was done by Elizabeth Porcher Jones of Charleston. I highly recommend her! She wrote out the RSVP envelope address & we printed it on the envelopes. She also did our escort cards, table numbers & menus.

The Save the Date...where it all started. Actually, I pretty much designed the look all at once. Sometimes I end up doing that when I want to be sure that the look I'm creating will work as well on the other pieces I'm designing.

I fell in love with the design on the back of our wedding invites. Ooohh...and to feel it letterpressed into this heavy paper. Love it!

One of the details, suggested by our printer, was to letterpress our return address in a shade or two lighter than the envelope. It created a nice debossed look. Love it!

Thank you notes! So many thank you's to write after the wedding. It's a good problem to have :) To cut down on costs, I had these digitally printed at ComZone in Manhattan.

We had a BBQ to kick the weekend off. White Rabbit Catering of Pinehurst made the food. Giff, if you're reading...people are still talking about the pig.

A note about your wedding suite...letterpress is beautiful, but expensive. We used it for somethings & then had other pieces flat printed. Like our menus & table numbers. I betcha no one noticed.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Family photos

(image from Martha

Mr. B & I have been looking for a place to hang family photos from both our families in our new lovenest. This arrangement came through on my Martha Stewart Email of the Day & I thought it would work, not just for wedding decor as it's suggested, but also for a nice display in your home. You could choose all kinds of ribbons or frames to create an interesting look!

See the how-to here.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Ivy League, Indeed!!

Soon I'll be posting some of the projects I've been working on recently, none bigger than our wedding. What started out as a bit stressful was made a breeze by the rock star team that helped us pull it off.

One of the rock stars was our fabulous photographer, Shane Snider, of Shane Snider Photography in Raleigh, North Carolina. He recently posted about our wedding. I've posted some pictures below, but see more on his blog, here. And be sure to go to his website, here, to see some of the other fabulous things he has done. You will see the distinctive & energetic style that was the reason we were excited to have him shoot our wedding.

Shane was such a rock star that he helped us find our rock star wedding planner, Ivy Robinson, who you will also see featured in Shane's post. There are not enough words to say what a lifesaver she was & how much fun she made the planning. One of my bridesmaids asked if she descended on a cloud from heaven! Check out her unique ideas & events on her website, Ivy Robinson Weddings & Events.

Two of my bridesmaids sharing a laugh as we were getting ready.

Ready for the big moment! Open the doors!

And now for the big party!

It was a fabulous weekend. Thanks to Shane, Ivy, White Rabbit Catering (best food!!) and our other vendors for making our wedding unique & fun!

Monday, October 26, 2009

Hey You!

Another design blog! What? Why you ask? Close your eyes.

Oh, wait...don't do that. You can't read with your eyes closed.

Think of the color blue. What comes to mind?

Unless you are psychic, I'm sure you didn't come up with what I did (blue birds!)...and I'd go so far to say that if you asked the same question to your mom, your neighbor, your friend at work or your best bff, they would all say something different.

That is the beauty of each of us as individuals. I have a perspective. You have one. We are inspired & moved by different things. Sometimes the same things & sometimes in different ways. I will share mine with you here, talk about the projects I'm working on & hope that you will do the same.

On with the inspiration! Welcome :)
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