December 14, 2014 Comments Off
It is the life of the crystal, the architect of the flake, the fire of the frost, the soul of the sunbeam. ~John Burroughs, “Winter Sunshine”
December 10, 2014 Comments Off
Woodland Perfume, This homemade blend truly smells like you just walked into the Forest. Uplifting, grounding, meditative, and comforting. Woodland Perfume is for you if you love the fresh Forest aroma and the great outdoors. Perfume you make yourself is free from synthetic chemicals and is fully customized to your personal taste. The possibilities and combinations are endless. Creating your own essential oils signature seasonal scent is a powerful way to express your individuality. Beautiful & Beneficial.
4 drops wildharvasted Spruce essential oil
2 drops organic Fir Needle essential oil
2 drops organic Cedarwood essential oil
1 drop organic Vetiver essential oil
1 drop organic Bergamot essential oil
1 tsp (100 drops) organic Jojoba Oil
- Drip all essential oils into a glass bottle of your choice & snap on the roller -I prefer a clear roller ball bottle for practical & aesthetic purposes.
- Roll between palms to evenly mix the oils. Add Jojoba oil, and roll again.
- Create an artful label to further personalize the perfume for yourself and or for seasonal gifting. Share it! Enjoy!
Use essential oils that are 100% pure aromatic distillates, certified organic, sourced from reputable distillers.
As with all essential oils, never use them undiluted. If you have sensitive skin or any serious medical condition, do not use essential oils unless advised by a physician or medical professional that it is safe.
December 6, 2014 Comments Off
“Hidden in the glorious wildness like unmined gold.”
~ John Muir
Brad Kunkle Solo Exhibition “The Belonging” 11 December – 31 December, 2014 at Arcadia Contemporary New York.
Born in rural Pennsylvania, New York-based artist Brad Kunkle spent his younger years exploring and romanticizing the beauty of the sparse countryside and the deep forests around him. From an early age he was drawn to the worlds of Maxfield Parrish and the Pre-Raphaelites, worlds, he says, “where a subtle, supernatural beauty seems to be hiding under the breath of women, worlds where something beyond our natural perception is waiting to be found.”
Brad Kunkle, Seer, 17 x 18 in, Oil and Gold Leaf Paint on Linen, 2012, In Private Collection, Courtesy and © Brad Kunkle.
Known for his gorgeous brushwork that is at once dream-like and photorealistic, and his truly romantic, luminous landscapes brought to life with a wonderful use of gold leaf paint. An evocative and organic painterly style which draws the viewer in, creating narrative by the way the leaf absorbs and reflects the light. In discussing some of the ideological challenges of working with gold “That’s the beauty and tragedy of this element,” he says. “It’s the most controversial element in the history of mankind. It also implies love and spirituality. The spiritual implication comes from its use in organized religion. But if we look at gold outside this context, we can see why it has been used to inspire our spiritual senses, which for me is the way it reflects light.”
Brad Kunkle, Sixth Sleep, 47 x 31 in, Oil and Gold & Silver Leaf on Linen, 2011, In Private Collection, Courtesy and © Brad Kunkle.
His minimal palette is inspired by the grisailles of early European masters and the haunting quality of antique photographs and daguerreotypes. “Grisaille has a mysterious quality to it, and that mysterious quality is also at times carried into the way I will treat an object or a dress. Sometimes I like to give just enough information for the viewer to finish the details of what they are seeing.”
December 4, 2014 Comments Off
Marsala Pantone Color of the Year 2015
The earthy red kissed wine hue will replace Radiant Orchid as fashion and design’s “it” color in the new year and is expected to “make for an elegant, grounded statement color when used on its own or as a strong accent to many other colors,” color experts at Pantone say. The shade is complex but grounding -a brown-red with blue undertones for a dark blush effect. “It’s a color that you can mix with what you already own,” You can add just a touch of it. That’s the intent and purpose. It is not the color that swallows the world.” A universally confident and calm color.
Bobbi Brown Iconic Lipsticks from the cult-following classic ‘Marsala’ color palette.
Pantone’s yearly picks can herald a marked presence of a color in fashion, beauty, housewares, home design and consumer packaging, though some years the influence is stronger than others. For example, as they did with Radiant Orchid last year, and Emerald the year before, the cosmetics giant Sephora plans a limited-edition collection of beauty products based on Pantone and its latest pick. ‘Marsala’ has been widely used in lipstick -think Bobbi Brown, and hair color for years. Emanating natural, sophisticated earthiness and appeal.
December 1, 2014 § 1 Comment
Marc Riboud, China, Palace during Winter, 1957, Silver Gelatin Print, Courtesy Rubin Museum of Art, © Marc Ribound.
On view now through 23 March, 2015, at the Rubin Museum of Art is the exhibition “Witness at a Crossroads” which chronicles French photographer Marc Riboud’s journeys across Asia during the mid-1950’s and 1960’s, a period of great cultural and political transition in the region. More than one hundred remarkable photographs offer glimpses into everyday life in Turkey, Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, Nepal, China, and Japan, illuminating tensions between tradition and post-war modernity.
Marc Riboud, Washington, DC, March for Peace in Vietnam, 1967. An American girl, Jan Rose Kasmir, confronts the American National Guard outside the Pentagon during the 1967 anti-Vietnam march, Silver Gelatin print, Courtesy Rubin Museum of Art, © Marc Ribound.
From a camel market in Rajasthan to music hall dancers in Tokyo to an extraordinary meeting between the Dalai Lama, Zhou Enlai, Indira Gandhi, and Jawaharlal Nehru, Riboud’s photographs capture moments of humanity, humor, and intimacy. Also on display is correspondence between Riboud and his mentor Henri Cartier-Bresson, press cards, contact sheets, maps, and personal items such as the photographer’s passport and camera.
Photographer Marc Riboud has been witness to the atrocities of war -photographing from both the Vietnam and the American sides of the Vietnam War, and the apparent degradation of a culture repressed from within -China during the years of Chairman Mao’s Cultural Revolution. Best known for his extensive reports on the East: The Three Banners of China, Face of North Vietnam, Visions of China, and In China. In contrast, he has captured the graces of daily life, set in sun-drenched facets of the globe -Fès, Angkor, Acapulco, Niger, Bénarès, Shaanxi, and the lyricism of child’s play in everyday Paris. A man of the world with the eye of a poet, Riboud’s photographs are a vignette of the lives of many, brushing against the souls of culture.
Riboud’s photographs have appeared in numerous magazines, including Life, Géo, National Geographic, Paris Match, and Stern, and major retrospective exhibitions at the Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris and the International Center of Photography in New York.
November 23, 2014 Comments Off
Don’t let the ‘vegan’ part of this recipe scare you. This is Goldilocks cornbread. It’s a little sweet, but not too sweet; a little salty, but not overly so. Using fine cornmeal or corn flour in the recipe, creates a texture that isn’t too rich or dense, and not quite cakey either. Everything about this cornbread is a delightful compromise. Its just right!
Vegan Cornbread, The perfect balance of savory & sweet, rich & light. A batch of cornbread is great to keep around this time of year, especially as an accompaniment for a seasonal soup or served warm for an afternoon snack. Quick & comforting. This pairs beautifully with homemade Pumpkin Butter for a special occasion or holiday treat!
- 2 tsp apple cider vinegar (or fresh squeezed lemon juice)
- 2 cups organic soy or almond milk (room temperature)
- 1 1/2 cups organic (non-GMO) finely ground white or yellow cornmeal
- 1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
- 2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp Himalayan pink or sea salt
- 2 Tbsp organic maple syrup
- 1/3 cup organic coconut oil (melted/liquid)
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Whisk the apple cider vinegar and milk together vigorously and set it aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the cornmeal, flour, baking soda, salt, and maple syrup.
- Add the oil to the milk mixture and then add the wet ingredients to the dry ones, mixing until they are totally incorporated.
- Use a spoon or spatula to transfer the mixture into an 8 x 8-inch square baking dish and bake for 35 minutes, or until the top of the cornbread is firm and the edges are turning golden. Allow the bread to cool before serving.
Connecticut Farm Pumpkins, Did you know that pumpkin is actually a berry? And there are more than 800 different kinds of pumpkins! Pumpkins belong to the oldest cultivated plants on earth. Both the seeds and the flesh contain compounds that are incredibly healthy and good for you. Dark-orange colored Winter pumpkins are loaded with carotenoids, especially beta-carotene. Beta-carotene is a potent antioxidant that prevents free radicals from causing havoc in the body!
Pumpkin Butter’s festive taste and intoxicating aroma make it a Fall classic. The name is a little deceiving because there’s actually no butter in the recipe, but you use it like a spread or jam. It tastes like delicious pumpkin pie -sweet, rich, and full of flavor. The taste of Fall! It’s also vegan and gluten-free. Plus, it’s fun and easy to prepare!
- 1 cup of organic pumpkin puree
- 1/4 cup organic almond milk
- 1/2 cup raw honey
- 2 Tbsp organic maple syrup
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp ground ginger
- 1 tsp nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp all spice
- 1/4 tsp coriander
- pinch of sea salt
- Put all the ingredients into a saucepan and mix thoroughly.
- Simmer the mixture on a low heat until it thickens ensuring to stir it constantly to prevent it from sticking to the bottom of the pan. It should take approx 20-30 minutes to thicken.
- Meanwhile, sterilize a canning jar by washing it in very hot soapy water, rinse thoroughly and dry in a low oven for about 15 minutes. In the last 5 minutes put the lid in the oven.
- When the butter has sufficiently thickened transfer to the jar and screw the lid on immediately.
- Decorate with burlap twine and or label & tag for gifting.
November 19, 2014 Comments Off
Chakras ~Human Energy Centers
The beautiful Chakra Collection jewelry by Caspita, created by Arlène Bonnant -a Switzerland based designer and contemporary art expert, takes shape around the seven main chakras. Stemming from Indian spirituality and designating seven centres of energy in the shape of symbolic lotus flowers, visualized through their own unique colour. Representing a world in itself, a sensibility, an emotion, and a deity. All of the Capista artisan jewels are crafted in the finest Gold, Enamel, Diamonds & precious stones.
Caspita Anahata Micro Chakra Ring from the Chakra Collection in 18K Yellow Gold with 0.2 carat Tsavorite -a young and rare type of Grossular Green Garnet gemstone with a very long geological history. One of seven designs, this delicate ring represents Anahata, meaning ‘whole’ in Sanskrit. This chakra, the heart chakra, lies at the centre of the chakras, the life force, hence forming the centre of one’s humanity and empathy for others.
‘Caspita’ the name chosen by Bonnant to launch her line of fine jewelry, expresses admiration, joy, surprise -literally “my goodness” in Italian. This spirited word came to the designer while reminiscing about her grandfather, who often used this expression of surprise in her presence. The word created a bond between them, in much the same way as a jewel can unite two people. For Bonnant, her creations are designed to develop a certain spiritual balance -a harmony and beauty nourishing every level of being, from its inner strength to its exterior radiance.
Caspita Swadhistana Silhoutte Necklace from the Chakra Collection in 18K Yellow Gold studded with Diamonds (1 carat) on one side, and orange enamel on the other, represents Swadhistana, meaning “one’s own abode” in Sanskrit. Swadhisthana is the chakra of creativity, pure attention and pure knowledge. It is the second chakra which connects us to the inner source of inspiration, and enables us to experience the beauty around us. The necklaces in the collection includes Sahasrara, Swadhistana, Muladhara, Manipura, Anahata, Vishuddha, and Ajna chakra designs, ranging from the simple to the ornate.
Chakras are centres of energy and awareness in the human body. The word ‘chakra’ comes from Sanskrit, the sacred language of Ancient India, and literally means ‘wheel’ or ‘disk’. As they revolve continuously, chakras absorb energies from without and assimilate them, hence promoting harmony between one’s inner and outer worlds.
Caspita Secrète Chakra Swadhistana Ring from the Chakra Collection in 18K Yellow Gold set with 57 Orange Sapphires (5.5 carat), 80 Blue Sapphires (0.2 carat), and 73 Diamonds (0.3 carat). Cleverly designed to conceal a secret compartment that contains the bijas of the 6 lotus petals, engraved in Sanskrit. One of twelve artfully embellished rings in the collection, each radiates extraordinary.
Caspita Secrète Chakra Swadhistana Ring from the Chakra Collection in 18K Yellow Gold with an Aventurine symbolising the cosmos set at the back of the ring. Blue Aventurine is a variety of Quartz characterized by bright inclusions of Mica and Dumortierite that give a shimmering or glistening effect to the stone. Its name is derived from the Italian a ventura or all’avventura, meaning “by chance.” A stunning inclusion, making this a stellar piece!
There are seven principal chakras or energy centres situated along the spinal cord, each linked to a specific gland and associated with a particular shape, colour, sound, deity and meaning. Each Chakra has a very precise physical and emotional function. Chakras are traditionally represented in the shape of a lotus flower, each with a specific number of petals. The lotus flower is a powerful emblem in India -the plant springs in darkness at the bottom of lakes and grows towards the surface in order to flower in brightness into the purest flower.
November 9, 2014 Comments Off
Scent is enchanting in all of its many guises. There’s something about the way scents evoke emotions, feelings, memories. One of my favorite times of year in terms of scent, is Fall + Winter. Whether it’s a forest scented candle, fragrant pinecones in a dish or Eucalyptus & Sage branches hanging from above, the holidays are a time of evocative aromas. Bringing the outdoors inside is a powerful way to connect to your sense of smell, and to make a space inside four walls feel cozy, inviting, special. And scent is an ingenious way to cultivate that ambience. In celebration of everything seasonal, I’ve put together a few of my favorite indulgences for making your home fragrant and festive. Ideal for gifting. These products are all naturally scentsational, seasonably appropriate, and will add a level of warmth and groundedness to the rapidly approaching holiday season. Enjoy!
Truly Aesthetic Assorted Bath Affirmations, Let a fantastic brew from the holistic eco-luxe bath and body care concept Truly Aesthetic pamper the body and awaken the senses. Bath Affirmations are crafted with mineral rich Dead Sea Salt, aromatic Flowers, soothing Herbs, skin nourishing fruit and pure therapeutic grade essential oils. Each bath salt test tube is accompanied by a hand selected positive affirmation scroll which will set the mood for your bath as well as prepare your mind for a divine holistic spa experience -before stepping in, take a deep breath, clear your mind and read one of the enclosed affirmations to evoke the mind, body and spirit connection. Also included are reusable unbleached muslin tea bags which can serve as an option to enclose the contents and create your own bath tea. Available in Enliven, Fortify, Harmonize, Repose, Thrive, Cherish & Bestow. Made in the USA.
Farmhouse Pottery Vermont Fir Wood Candle, Hand poured & made from American farmed soy wax, essential oils & reclaimed vintage glass. Everything about this candle, from the recycled letter pressed package to the robust Pine scent, echoes the rural beauty of Vermont. The Vermont Wood collection is inspired by Vermont’s rural landscape, preserved natural beauty and seasonal change -a fragrance that evokes that warm Winter feeling that we want to fill our house through the season. New England native and Farmhouse Pottery founder Zoe Zilian has a mission rooted in a modern farm aesthetic that represents farm-to-table values infused in traditionally crafted designs. She’s determined to sustain the next generation of local makers and farmers by bringing authentic gifts with a deeper meaning and useful purpose to market. Each piece in the 100 % New England made pottery studio is designed to be functional, artful, and covetable!
Creekside Farms Cedar & Eucalyptus Holiday Wreath, Cedar, mixed Eucalyptus, Tallow Berries, and a burlap ribbon, Let your decor pull double duty this Fall & Winter with the beauty of dried Cedar & Eucalyptus, and bring a bit of scentful aesthetic magic to your door or wall. Hand-crafted on Creekside’s California farm, this artisanal Cedar and Eucalyptus Wreath is a natural alternative to classic holiday wreaths- makes a perfect gift or way to welcome the season. A fragrance that makes you feel as though you’ve stepped into a snow-covered wonderland. Ideal to hang inside over a fireplace or somewhere else where one could see, smell, and appreciate it daily. Simply lovely! Drawing inspiration from surrounding flora, Creekside Farms handcrafts seasonal wreaths using a unique blend of fresh and dried materials, for many exclusive companies worldwide.
Juniper Ridge Trail & Crew Soaps, Campfire Incense & Cabin Sprays, Great scents to experience the pure, untouched beauty of the West coast’s backcountry from the comfort of your own home. The company’s incenses, soaps and room fresheners -all of which are made using sustainable ingredients from in and around the Pacific Northwest, capture the essences of those areas with such accuracy, that they’re basically the next best thing to being there. Featuring small-batch essential oils extracted using pre-industrial perfume techniques including juice presses, old whiskey stills, and copper pipes, every scent is sustainably wildcrafted by wild fragrance experts and avid hikers who are obsessed with natural aromatics. Juniper Ridge -the world’s only Wilderness Fragrance Distillery, extracts scents from real plants, bark, moss, mushrooms, and tree trimmings found hiking the backcountry -products are named for the spot where ingredients were gathered in the mountains and deserts of the West. A hundred years ago, all perfumes were made this way. Today they’re the only ones who handle every step of the process themselves, from beginning to end!
Dr.Hauschka Spruce Warming Bath Essence, Hauschka’s Limited Edition Essence featuring Norway Spruce essential oil is an invaluable Fall + Winter aid. The resinous Norway Spruce fragrance has a grounding, calming effect and lets you breathe freely while Jojoba Oil gently moisturises your skin. A blissful bathing product for cooler months and in times of stress or exhaustion, offering intensive, long-lasting warmth for your body -both inside and out. Perennial favorite! Tip: Add a few drops to a small bowl of water to bring a fresh, deep Forest scent to any room. Dr.Hauschka is a premium certified organic German skin care line formulated using a holistic approach that keeps the big picture in mind, creating products designed to be used as part of a healthy lifestyle to reconnect us with our natural, seasonal rhythms.
FIG + YARROW Juniper + Sage Atmosphere Mist, A healthy home fragrance for Fall into Winter packed full of organic goodness, Bring on the good vibes and cleanse your space with handcrafted room spray, bursting with natural essential oils. Infused with notes of Juniper berries and Sage, a staple in every holiday kitchen. The savvy artisan behind the cult Colorado brand FIG+YARROW has crafted a delightfully fresh, Woodsy Atmosphere Mist out of these two Fall scents. Keep a bottle in the living room, kitchen, bedroom -the scent is both soothing and uplifting and helps purify the air. Fig + Yarrow is a nature-honouring line of organic artisan apothecary products born of a love affair with botanicals and earth elements. All products are crafted in small batches, mindfully formulated for efficacy and pleasure, artfully synthesising traditional wisdom and contemporary science. Marrying wildcrafted and organically grown herbs and botanical essences to create a healthfully indulgent experience!
DRAM Apothecary Pine Syrup, A deliciously unusual, bottled taste of the Rocky Mountains. DRAM’s Pine Syrup has been so popular in their tasting room that they are now selling it! Imagine the wonderful aroma of a Christmas tree, with notes of Woody spice and warming fresh Pine flavor, its go-to Fall + Winter magic! To add a bit of the wild Forest to your seasonal culinary ritual. With a collegiate background in Food Science, Ecological Agriculture and Botany, Herbal Alchemist and founder Shae Whitney forages Colorado’s White River National Forest for Wild Sage, Rose Hips, Pine Needles & Juniper Berries, and takes them back to her small town shop to transform them into the DRAM Apothecary line of bitters, teas, and herbal syrups in flavors like Pine. All of DRAM’s products are designed to offer the healing benefits of various plants while still tasting wonderful enough for use in the kitchen. A specialty hand-crafted line of goods made from organic and wild harvested herbs -thus free of synthetic dyes, flavorings, preservatives or flavor oils.
L’Artisan La Boule d’Ambre, These beautiful Terracotta spheres radiate deep Amber scentfulness throughout the home and simply look gorgeous. They are, to me, the ultimate artisanal design object meets ambient perfume for the home. Intricately carved and handmade by a mother-and-daughter team in the Picardie region of France and filled with a solid version of the warm, golden Amber fragrance -carried by currents of air and magnified by heat in the room, elegantly packaged for artful aromatic gift-giving. Amber is an emblematic fragrance of L’Artisan Parfumeur -one of the most unique fragrance houses in the world. Founded in Paris in 1976, by perfumer-chemist Jean Laporte, it was one of the first in a movement toward exclusive niche fragrance houses inspired by nature and a desire to do things a little differently.
If you’re more of a do-it-yourselfer, here are some excellent ideas for how to create your own home fragrance. An always simple and natural alternative is to do what your grandmother did: simmer a pot of spices on the stove! Adding everyday ingredients like cinnamon sticks, apple peels, vanilla, nutmeg and more will have the home smelling festive in no time! Instructions: Fill a small saucepan with water and bring to a boil. Add the ingredients from your favorite recipe, continue to boil for a few minutes, then turn the heat down to simmer. Add water as needed, usually every 30 minutes or so. Recipe #1: Cinnamon Sticks, Apple Peels, Orange Rinds, Whole Cloves, Anise Stars, Recipe #2: Peel from 1 Lemon, Peel from 1 Orange, 2 Bay Leaves, 3 Cinnamon Sticks, 2 Tbsp Whole Cloves, Recipe #3: 5 Bay Leaves, 1 Tbsp Whole Cloves, 2 Cinnamon Sticks, Cranberries.