I randomly came across this Human Heart illustration while doing an image search online and it is perfectly fitting for Valentine’s Day. I’m not sure who the original artist is, but I think most people could relate to the humor and honesty portrayed here. Most people could also relate to the highs and lows of love, particularly around Valentine’s Day, and this artist nailed it in one simple illustration.
I put together a series of Valentine’s Day inspired images from my photo library. It is peppered with a few images of great gift ideas.
Before you begin, here is a classic Mirah song to listen to while you browse the Valentine’s Day inspired images below.
Alter Eco Dark Blackout Organic Chocolate. Fairly traded, organically grown, and 85% cocoa! Simple and pure delight. Have a piece first thing in the morning on Valentine’s Day.
In Fiore based in San Francisco “is total floral seduction for your skin and for your soul” (as their website states). They use certified organic or wild-crafted essential oils, herbal infusions, and floral waters to create balms, oils and more for your skin. A friend of mine worked at In Fiore and she got me hooked on the Vetiver balm. It smells divine.
I saw this bedroom (above left) in an article in Dwell Magazine years ago and the image stuck with me. I love the lavender ceiling (they claimed that it’s ), the upside-down lingerie artwork and the simplicity of this room. I painted the ceiling of my bedroom lavender in my last apartment and I can vouch for its calming effect. Also, having lavender on the ceiling creates a unique lighting effect during the day- a subtle, rose-colored-ombre hugs the walls which makes the perfect nap environment. Read the full Dwell article here about this West Village home
I have always been impressed with Urban Outfitters’ lingerie designs. They have a tendency to create soft silhouettes in contrast to the puffy, padded, underwire-laden designs that flood the market. The labels Silence + Noise, Kimchi Blue and Out From Under have designs this season that are lovely, comfy and vintage-inspired. I suggest getting the Silence + Noise Alexis Strappy Soft Bras in every color (above). Or as seen below, treat your lady friend to the Silence + Noise Front O-Ring Strappy Bralette, the Out From Under Sheer Lace-Back Bralette, or the Kimchi Blue Allover Scalloped Lace Bralette (more colors available on the UO website).
Create a sprinkle topper for your smoothie that tastes just like Red Hots candy by mixing the following spices in equal parts: turmeric, cayenne, cinnamon. Then dust the mixture through a small heart stencil on top of the smoothie. The spicy-icy combination is mood altering.
I recently found an original sketch for some t-shirts that I designed for a few friends that said “COOL BOOBS” in bubble letters. The design was hand screen-printed on tight, white cotton tees so that the letters would stretch across their chest and be barely legible. One friend mentioned that she still has the t-shirt which is now almost 10 years old and threadbare. It’s probably in peak condition at this point. Make a tight t-shirt for your sweetie!
Above is a pencil drawing that my mom did in February 1997. She was forced to do this by my high school art teacher at a parent-teacher meeting. I saved it because it is beautiful. If you don’t normally draw or make art, but you decide to make some art for someone special you might melt their heart.
My vegan-gluten free chocolate chip cookie recipe can be found here. They’re protein-packed so your health nut friends will like them, too. Make + share these and you will win hearts — forever.
You can’t go wrong with gifting a pair of American Apparel Stripe Thigh-High Socks. Think about it, you could buy someone a long, fuzzy robe, or you could buy them these thigh-high tube socks. Both will keep them warm around the house, but one will keep them warmer. Find more great options from American Apparel in their Hosiery & Socks section.
This video is about the narrow hallway in the house that I grew up in. It’s where I learned to crawl and walk. This hallway has always been the best playground in Chicago. Much to my mother’s dismay- my brothers, sister and I used to climb around in this area of the house all the time. This is also where the rotary phone was hooked up so we had many conversations while sitting in the middle of the hallway, directly in the path of those who needed to pass through. Mom will be moving soon, so this video is dedicated to my brothers and sister so that they will remember this hallway. I hope they attempt a few more climbs to the ceiling before she moves.
My goal was to stay inverted on my hands for almost four minutes, but I started to fatigue right after the 2 minute mark. After that point everything became really sloppy and I start laughing at myself because I know that I’m stuck.
When I showed this video to my mom she laughed really hard and then asked, “Don’t you have anything better to do?”
She’s the best.
Song in the background is “Try Me” by DeJ Loaf.
This video is dedicated to my friend Erika. She likes the core workouts that I come up with and she gets a kick out of the outfits that I put together.
In this video I work on an exercise that is really difficult for me- push ups. I do some of my favorite burpees for the first minute and then try to keep the high intensity workout going for the entire duration of one song. It’s incredibly tiring but I had the pleasure of my mom’s company for this session and her humor kept me laughing throughout.
Mom asks me at one point in the video, “Is that fun?”
The answer is YES!
Song in the background is “Satisfaction” by The Rolling Stones.
I was listening to WGCI today while driving around in Chicago and heard DeJ Loaf’s “Try Me” song for the very first time. When I came home I looked her up online because I was curious about her style. It was an instant crush. DeJ Loaf is this week’s #wcw because of her amazing feminine-tomboy style. She’s redefining femininity and is completely one of a kind. Comfy is sexy after all. She’s beautiful.
Here are some of my favorite photos from DeJ Loaf’s instagram feed:
This is a tribute to my dear friend Lara. We’ve lived in two different cities together and recently she helped me move halfway across the country to yet another home away from home. I am thankful to have such a sweet, creative, intelligent friend who provides so much joy + inspiration in my life.
We didn’t have much time for road trip photos, but we managed to snap a few of the in between moments. Here Lara is making me laugh as we use the remaining produce in the refrigerator to make what turned out to be a very “Earthy” juice for the road trip.
Lara helped unpack, too! She’s a real trooper. And the best part is that she let me dress her up and style her for some photos with all the random stuff we unpacked. Ain’t she something else!?
Lara recently challenged me to do the #stopdropandyoga challenge. In response I created these two yoga videos below for her this week. They include two songs that we listened to on repeat while on our road trip. They’re very meditative and somewhat sleepy songs, so I’m not sure how we stayed awake with this soundtrack while traveling through the dark, lonely roads of eastern Utah, but somehow we managed.
Song – “Asleep” by The Smiths
Song- “Magpie to the Morning (Bonus Track)” by Neko Case
If you like yoga and are in the San Diego area please take my friend Lara’s Ashtanga class at Namaste Pacific Yoga and Wellness Center in Hillcrest. Her class is challenging, restorative, and you’ll be just as mesmerized as I am by her Southern charm.
I’m deeply saddened by the departure of a co-worker friend. Today was the first day that I did not have her by my side at work. I miss her support, her laughter and her impeccable eye for detail. I saw that her name tag was still up, her cube empty, and I felt hollow inside. I was tempted to take her name tag but the facilities personnel would probably discover me clinging to it desperately. Her departure leaves an empty space and I honestly felt like crying today at work. At least she is moving on to an exciting opportunity and I’m very proud of her! It’s amazing how having someone that you click with can make the toughest work load seem light. Not too long ago we took a moment to escape from a hectic-microsoft-excel-overdosed-day and enjoyed the view of a double rainbow outside our office.
On another day she left a banana sitting out on her desk and I drew a sweet little face on it to greet her when she arrived. She snapped this photo below.
And she also helped rekindle a favorite hobby of mine- making burlesque-esque costumes! She asked for some assistance with a Halloween costume that she knew she wanted to wear again, but it needed a few more finishing touches. Here are some shots of her Katy Perry-esque bra (I sewed and glued on the furry “icing” with some remnant fabric). We could not stop giggling when we saw this costume come to life. I want to make more of these and I’m thankful that she rekindled my passion for this craft. Thank you AEL!
Recently I also came across some photos that another friend posted on a social network site of some burlesque bras that I made for her a few years back. I was so pleased to see that not only are they still being used for burlesque performances, but also that they’ve held up to the wear and tear over the years (they’re 3 – 5 years old)!
Making more burlesque costumes will definitely keep my spirits up!
We had an automobile painting project to do this past weekend and I grabbed a few rags to have handy for any unwanted spills. As it turns out this t-shirt has history and I wasn’t quite ready to let it go yet. This t-shirt used to belong to my friend Brandon. We worked at a vintage furniture store together for a few years and he wore this super-soft brown t-shirt often. When I think of him, he is wearing this t-shirt. A few years back we went to a clothing swap at his house and my husband scooped up Brandon’s faded tee. Donald wore it to shreds as he does with all of his favorite clothing items.
Since we’ve developed the habit of getting rid of something anytime we buy or take in something new, the brown t-shirt eventually made it to the cleaning rag pile not too long ago. It sponged up a splatter here or there and at some point one sleeve was cut off for a separate cleaning project. When I pulled out Brandon’s t-shirt this time around it demanded to be tried on. It felt so comfortable, soft and perfectly worn. I wore it for two days while working on the auto painting project. We took a few photos to commemorate the last days of this t-shirt’s life. All of our giggling about the t-shirt this weekend reminds me of a favorite series of photographs by Hana Pesut.
Hana photographs couples twice- once in their own outfits and again wearing each others outfits against the same background. The results are humorous and endearing. I will post some of my favorites from her series below. If you’d like to see more please visit Hana Pesut’s blog, her website, or perhaps make a donation to her switcheroo book project (link here and video posted below). You can donate $5 and receive a hug from Hana herself!
P.S. Dear Hana, I donated today! I love your work- it makes me so happy.
This year one of the funniest Christmas cards we received was from my Aunt Margaret. The front of the card was peppered with die-cut snowflakes and it read, “Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let is Snow.” Inside she wrote, “Kathleen & Donald, It does snow.”
It was a simple reminder for those of us nestled along the southern Pacific Coast that December can be a very dark and ferociously cold month.
Although, I have to admit that I was freezing when we took these photos below for our card this year. I can hear my family and friends scoffing about this statement from 2,000 miles away. My inner Chicagoan is taunting me as well. This is exactly what I love and miss about my Midwestern crew- their humor, wit, pragmatism, honesty and authenticity.