favorite find: week of 2/16

usabox11It was Valentine’s Day last Friday, and we are certainly not the romantic types.  If there was a type we had to assign ourselves to, I’d say J.R. and I are more the sarcastic type.  I reserve most of my fawning-over for kittens, little babies with curly hair and messy mouths and (last, but not least) things I find in my favorite color combinations.

Red, white and blue are one of these – patriotism aside (so many flags to adore in these colors!) I just really, really love the way they work together.  So short of painting our living room like Ol’ Glory it’s nice to know that I can just throw in some accent pieces like this amazing, 1950s-era roller skate box that I found at the Pride’s Corner flea market!  It’s listed in our Etsy shop, so you can experience the thrill of the find, too!

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shake shake shake

anthropomorphic oranges, what else?

anthropomorphic oranges, what else?

New energy in the shop!  We rifled through the collection to find some bright sunshine for these dull, gray days.  Found a theme just waiting in the stacks of items waiting (patiently, ahem) of salt + pepper shakers, and we’ve listed three in the Little Eye Etsy shop!  Click on the images to take yourself whizzing across the internet to the listings.

love bugs by Ruth van Tellingen Bendel

love bugs by Ruth van Tellingen Bendel

It’s hard to pick a favorite, but I think these little love bugs are mine.  They were designed by Ruth van Tellingen Bendel in the 1950s for the Regal China Company out of Illinois.  Ruth cut her teeth as a children’s book writer, but her visual language translated very nicely to seasoning delivery vessels.  Aww, here’s their cute little behinds:

lovebugs03.2You can see the little holes in their head for salt and pepper to come out of!

picnic in style

picnic in style

These are also from the 1950s, hand painted strawberry blossom shakers, oversized, excellent for a retro picnic or camping excursion.  The paint is in awesome condition, but there is just a little wear on the very tops of the plastic lids, presumably because this is the only part you should wash (or wash insides of globes very careful not to get the outside wet).

Just a little snippet!  We spent some more time in the studio snapping pictures of goodies that will be in the shop soon.

Re-entry 2011, welcome back to Vacationland.

Well, we got back last night fresh from balmy Vermont nights (seriously, 40 degrees in December?!  Global warming is real, people!) with only three extra boxes in tow.  Which is really impressive considering I went to Vermont with ONE box full of presents so we should have returned with less.  But not me, no, not possible.

Let me explain!  The three boxes are full of genealogical manna, unleavened bread of a photophile’s wet dream from the sky.  Or from Grammie’s crawlspace.  FAMILY PHOTOGRAPHS.

And we’re not talking “Trip to Asia 1998” or “The Hotchkisses Visit Disneyland 1989” (which we didn’t, p.s.) but rather a veritable treasure trove of honest-to-god silver-on-paper prints from the 1920s and 30s, a small selection from the 40s, and a resurgence in the 50s + 60s when my father and his four sisters were children.

So while I spend the next however-long-it-takes of my life addressing these wonderful items (Grammie wants them back in April when she visits) I’ll be featuring particularly fantastic ones on my blog for your viewing pleasure.

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Naturally, I am participating in the American tradition of declaring resolutions and then quickly forgetting them and doing exactly the opposite.  In no particular order:

GETRIDOFJUNK,i.e. things that are really junk, not the super-cool version of junk that must be saved, photographed and put on a special shelf in the kitchen.  GETITTOGETHER,i.e. why is the notion of putting clothes in the hamper or cleaning up cat fur tumbleweeds completely lost on me?  I suspect getting rid of junk will make getting it together a lot easier.  PHOTOGRAPHIES!  Do more.  do more art.  Start drawing, too, because it’s really fun and usually way more interesting that a photograph (oh my God it hurts to say that, but is usually true, if it’s a good drawing).  COOKNEWTHINGS!, why oh why are we stuck in a delicious brown rice and quinoa rut?  And everything we eat has sweet potato in it.  Please note:  brown rice, quinoa and sweet potato will still be regularly featured but it’s time to learn some new tricks.  SHAREMORE.  Give people gifts that they don’t expect, send photographs I think people might like to them without being asked (i.e. family pictures).  Just more surprises and nice things, in general.

Lastly, I’ve been suffering from a gradually expanding waistline.  I say suffering because today at work I had to unbutton the top button of my jeans…and this particular pair happens to have a hole (small, but a hole nonetheless) in the crotch.  Seriously, Audrey, get it together (#2).  And I’m pretty sure the hole was caused by a stress fracture in the pants’ integrity due to the girth of my thighs, vying for second place in the ‘parts of my body I am pretty sure were smaller last August’ competition.  As a consolation, I’ve found Allie Munier’s Being Bess Marvin. blog and find comfort in some familiar impulses/emotions/reactions to cheez-related foods.

I’m confused, though – I eat well (not like, ‘a lot’ well, but ‘healthy’ well), exercise regularly, dance even more frequently and have a pretty physical job.  So why does it feel like I’m packing bean bags in my pant-line?  I don’t know, but what I do know is I love bubble dresses and baby dolls, stretch pants and leggings here I come.

Art stuff on its way as soon as I can organize vacation pics and start talking to some other artists for future features!