Halfy Birthday!

Our little pumpkin is 6 months today! Half of me can't believe it's been 6 months, and the other half of me feels like she was born 12 years ago (those first few weeks are . . . special). She is, literally, the best days of my life. 


kate spade featuring my friend Char

One of my very best friends is a jewelry designer at kate spade (pretty much every kate spade jewelry piece you see in a mag - yup, she created it). The daughter of renowned artist and author David Macaulay and a historian/teacher/expert seamstress mother (whose beautiful photo you can see in the top right corner, along with a good 'ol Wolski's bumper sticker!), it's no surprise Charlotte Macaulay is both creative and extremely skilled. Clothes, bags? Yep, she does those, too. In fact, Charlotte designed and made my wedding dress. Introducing Charlotte Macaulay, via kate spade's "behind the curtain" blog!

Photo via kate spade

it’s often said that we’re a brand known for our baubles. we sat down with the girl behind the sparkle—charlotte, our jewelry designer—to talk about shopping, our holiday collection and the gem she uncovered in the vending machine.
q: how did you get into jewelry design?
a: it wasn’t really planned. at parsons i studied apparel design, but i’ve always had an interest in accessories. after an internship at kate spade new york, the jewelry assistant designer spot opened and i thought, hey! this could be great. i was right.
q: what keeps you busy during the day?
a: day to day i do everything from sketching and brainstorming new concepts to vintage shopping (7), searching for inspiration, bead shopping, making jewelry, reviewing samples, correcting samples and going on multiple, multiple starbucks runs.
q: who inspires you?
a: my dad, david (6), who taught me from a young age the importance of doing something you love as a job.
q: what’s your jewelry design claim to fame?
a: one of the first styles i worked on was the all wrapped up bow ring (4) with the grosgrain texture. we still use it in the jewelry line and it’s also expanded to belts and a few home products.
q: tell us a little-known fact about our holiday collection.
a: i sent two pieces of actual popcorn from our fourth floor vending machine to the factory to get the most realistic shape possible for the popcorn garland necklace (2).
q: which have been your favorite pieces?
a: i love the date night ring. i had a lot of fun with this one—in true ksny fashion, it offers a quirky pop of color to any look.
the pearl street statement necklace—this piece was a work in progress to say the least. i combined necklace samples from several different collections and added other elements i found locally. it really came to life at my desk.
i can’t wait for the double exposure collection (graphic day pieces in great colors!) to arrive in december.
q: pick three things at your desk and tell us about them.
a: my pliers (5) are essential. whether it’s creating a new piece or fixing a sample, i could not do my job without these.
this millimeter gauge (1) is always nearby because i am constantly measuring.
my bulletin board (3) is where i stick anything and everything—from inspirational images and photos to random odds and ends that strike me.

Love it! Also, the popcorn necklace is genius.


Missoni for Target

Get your countdown on! Starting September 13, Missoni for Target hits stores and online with over 400 items in women's, men's, and children's clothing, home and more. I know people have ripped the previewed clothes, but I have to be honest - these look amazingly like their couture counterparts. The question will be: what are the fabrics like? If they're a cotton blend, fantastic. Rayon-polyester? Eh, it's going to look real cheap. 

Based on the ads, here are some items look adorable, wearable in everyday life, and affordable to moi:

Adult twin set

Kids hoodie (I may just buy this for Arden years down the road because it's so fun and youthful)

Long cardigan (worn with jeans, yes!) and patterned tights

Long cardigan (again, for jeans)

Not entirely sure what this item is, but I'm intrigued . . . kimono-style dress? Sweater cape?

A true Missoni piece

(boy is the styling awful here; hello Italian Amish)


Patterned tights

Scarves (I would frame and place in a hallway or make a pillow of - perhaps a different scarf for each side?)
 Baby onesie and blanket! Man, I hope these are cotton! My Calypso for Target bloomer onesies are among my favorite pieces in Arden's closet. (And yes, I purchased them all before she arrived and when we thought we were having a boy. They were too cute to pass up.)


Incredibly chic outdoor furniture

 Coverlet - great for a guest bedroom with fun colors and a reversible pattern

Towels and shower curtain - which - depending on its fabric - I am fully considering using as drapes. Love the modern stripes and reversible option. This curtain is my number 1 covet right now.

Fab, fab, fab bike

Personally, I'm pretty impressed with the photos. Guess we'll have to wait and see what the items are like in person. One of the upsides of living in Wisconsin is European fashion (okay, fashion in general) doesn't have much of a following. Meaning, I have my pick of the litter. Woo hoo!

Do you like?


As Seen on

Copy Cat Chic today - just purchased two of these zig zag rugs in grey:

The reviews were great, though there were complaints that the black ink rubbed off. Since I went with a light gray stripe, I'm not too worried about it. And for this price, I am totally willing to order (it's online only) and see if it works. My plan is to lay them side by side in the living room.

Check it out here. If you're interested in buying too, I hunted down a coupon code for Urban on Google and got 10% off. There's also a free shipping sale today, though you can only choose one of the discounts. Happy shopping!

O'verlays by Danika & Cheryle

Spied this puppy on "Me, You and a Weiner Dog" blog: O'verlays (yep, name is awful). 

"Olivia," painted gold and attached to an Ikea RAST dresser

"Gigi," as a divider/partial screen

They currently have 6 available patterns, including fretwork and Greek key designs.  Clever solution to upgrading an Ikea or thrift store find. Shop here



Pure Style: Sofas

I check in with this blog from time to time - and Wednesday (August 10th, if you need to search for the post) Lauren had a great item about inexpensive but nice-looking upholstered sofas. Thought I would throw it your way . . . 

Image via Pottery Barn

Full post here!


Etsy: Kari Herer

Just discovered the Etsy shop of Kari Herer, a photographer from Portland, Maine. Love the stills of flowers, and those with a mix of botanicals and illustrations (silverware and antlers are also common subjects). Her work's been seen in Martha Stewart Weddings, Lonny magazine, Daily Candy and more. Beautiful. 

Prices starting at $25 for an 8 x 10 photo.

Images by Kari Herer found here


Belated Wishes

To my parents for yesterday, their 36th wedding anniversary. They are an inspiration to Una and to me - just like my grandparents, who were married 68 years.

Happy anniversary!

Keep on truckin'!

Clos-ette Chic

Melanie Fascitelli, founder of Clos-ette in New York (a high-end closet design and organization firm), interviewed my friend, interior designer Sara Gilbane. Needless to say, Sara has been a fabulous dresser for as long as I can remember and now that we have grown up, her closet has, too. (Apparently I'm still a thirteen year old, per the Forever 21 and H&M that craps up my closet.)

Here's an excerpt from the interview - get the whole piece here

What would you dream closet look like?
I have pulled so many images for my dream closet or dream closets for clients that it is tough to choose.  However,  if I had to choose, I would go with a wall-to-wall carpet (in a fun graphic print or animal print), I would upholster the walls in some sort of fabulous fabric (a pattern or a faux shagreen would be outstanding) and would have high-gloss cabinetry with plenty of shelves for my shoes and bags. I would also have a jewelry case of some kind made so I could see all my jewelry while getting dressed. The lighting in closets is also key, and nothing beats a custom or vintage light fixture. Slightly antiqued mirror inset in a panel as a full length mirror would finish it off. I also love having a free standing piece (an ottoman or beautiful chair) in the room where you can sit with a glass of wine or have a friend sit. Getting dressed should be a fun and relaxing process. For my husband’s closet, I would upholster the walls in a grey pinstripe and do high-gloss cabinetry in a deep blue or red. 

I'll take any of those shoes, thank you. Custom closet with fabric wallpaper, chandelier and lucite handles - another item to add to the future house. You know, the one I get to live in when pigs fly. Sigh.


Door County Souvenir

Well, I don't think I'm allowed (given its unwarranted ticket price of $1100), but nonetheless this puppy was awesome in person. A standout piece - an antique carved English chest. Perfect for our master bedroom in our future house.


Babytator had her first swim this weekend in Door County (the Midwest's version of Cape Cod; literally - that's the slogan). 

First, Mom had to get me dressed in my flashy suit and covered in sun block.

 We shall start with the left foot, pinky toe.

 I will allow the heel . . .

 Now right foot, pink--

Una: Oh, for cryin' out loud, we'll be here 'til she's forty. Hand her over.

 And, swim lesson over.

Mom: It's so hard being right all of the time. 


Dear Dyson

Thank you.

Vacuum running with nowhere to go (nah, I'm not going to actually use it) = a sleeping baby. Hallelujah.


That Postcard You're Always Meaning to Send

So yep, I've fallen off the face. This is what happens with a young babe like Miss Arden, who I have lovingly named Babytator (as in the wee version of a dictator, not the tot-style of potatoes). Babytator likes to live on the edge, which means I wake every day wondering what time - or if - I will get out of the house. If Babytator has her two or so naps in the morning, afternoon is open! Watch out world! (Seriously, some of these diapers require a toxic cleanup akin to the B&P disaster.) If not . . . Una arrives home to a flying baby headed straight for his arms as I sprint out the door for a stress-relieving run.* 

Anywho, was flipping through the latest issue of Better Homes & Gardens (in place of the many, many shelter magazines that have closed, this one has youthened up a ton and is fully worth the subscription) and discovered this app. 

For Android and iPhones - the Postagram application ( takes a photo from your phone and for a fee of 99 cents, turns it into a postcard with your message and mails it anywhere in the world. How cool is that?

Course I don't have an Android or iPhone. Family! Friends! Send me, Una and the Babytator a postagram! Preferably of the outdoors, which I don't see much of these days. 

*Sadly, these runs are few and far between thanks to the ridiculous heat wave we've been having. Oh yeah, and the crap food I eat. Meals are defined by: me not making it, and what arrives the fastest. 


Bravo Summer Camp

I just love this commercial and all its variations on Bravo.

I mean, seriously. This is exactly the adult version of camp I would sign up for. 
Oh yeah, and Curtis is cute, man.


The Stanley Kiss

I thought Canadians were mild-mannered? Seems Vancouver got a little crazy after it lost the hockey finals to the Boston Bruins (burn - go Boston!). 

In the midst of a full-fledged street riot, a young couple was photographed having a sweet moment . .  

Okay, turns out the circumstances weren't that sweet. The police started beating everyone  in the vicinity with their shields (seen carried in the foreground) and the boy's girlfriend was knocked to the ground in the process. Trying to calm her, he leaned down and quickly kissed her. This little second was not only captured on film but in video, where you can see the whole thing go down. Go ahead and add this photo to the list of famous kisses - 



Urban Outfitters Fleur Embroidered Pouf for $69.00

So cute for a little girl's room.

Buy it here.


Newborn Necessities

Wow, life with a newborn. Let's call it . . . spontaneous. My day revolves around the little one and whatever version of a schedule she prefers. Here are the items that are worth their weight in gold for a new mom who most days can't remember if she's brushed her teeth:

Summer Infant BestView Digital Video Monitor
It's probably added hours to my precious sleep (allowing me to determine if Arden's really up and moving, or just making her standard pterodactyl noises as she dreams). Zooms, scans and has great sound. 

Miracle Swaddle Blanket
Recommended to us by numerous people and after testing out no less than 5 different swaddles (Wombie, standard folding blankets, MySwaddle, and more), this is the only one that keeps her arms in check. Girlfriend is squirmy! (Warning: it is a bit like a straight jacket . . . in a good way.) Also allows you to use on taller child, as you have the option not to enclose her legs.

The right size for a little newborn's mouth. Given to us at the hospital.

Petit Bateau Newborn Kimono-Style Onesies
The side-snap is the best - no over the head action. Also adorable. Wish I had bought more!

Pampers Swaddlers for Newborns
When you're on your 20th diaper change and it's 4 AM and you're supposed to keep track of all of your baby's wet ones, the urine stripe (turns blue if they went) is priceless. Trust me. Plus, the elastic legs on Pampers are stronger than Huggies. Also priceless. Really trust me.



Great Dress

Emma Watson in Marchesa at the 2011 MTV Movie Awards. Awesome. 

(And no, I didn't watch. I was asleep between feedings. Arden was furious she missed, but I told her she's got years of Justin Bieber ahead of her.)


Why Yes, Thank You

I'll take this, courtesy of Copy Cat Chic . . . 

Teva Living Trestle Table on sale for $995


Schooled by a 24 Year Old

Check out this recent college grad's rental apartment in Boston, filled with her DIY projects and flea market and Craigslist finds. Looks magazine-worthy and expensive (campaign-style cabinets or nightstands have been on my want list forever!). Wow, wow, wow.

Photo by Luisa Design

See the apartment photos on Copy Cat Chic today. I'm off to search Craigslist between feedings, cuddles and naps. 


Wolf Pack: Official

Una has been saying for weeks that little Bloom was the official start of our wolf pack and here she is:

Arden Crowley Bloom

Photos by Emmie Cerow

Posting likely to stop for some time for baby bonding. And sleep. 


Special Delivery

May 21, 2011 at 9:33 AM
6 Pounds, 2 Ounces

Baby Girl Bloom 
Healthy Appetite, Advanced Sleeper, Una's Beautiful Curls - My Kind of Girl
(name to be determined)

Girlfriend has a full head of hair!
And yes, epidural occurred. Holy sweet hell, natural birth went out the door when I went from 0 - 8 centimeters in two hours flat. That drug is a gift from heaven above.
(I was worried she might be groggy after birth from it, but she was peering at everything for 2 hours! Not a single effect!) Exhausted and thrilled.

Happy birthday!


Bon Jovi & Baby

Guess where we're going on Saturday night?

Baby's first hairspray. I mean, concert.