Monday, April 30, 2012

Listening to: The Head and the Heart

"Down In The Valley" ranks high on my list of best road trip songs. Not only is it about traveling, but the rhythm builds and barrels on like an anthem for a lonely wanderer.

AND....did you notice TURNER HALL BALLROOM in the music video?? There are some clips from set up, soundcheck, and bits from their show this past spring. Don't you just love the burnt out wooden beauty of Turner Hall - it's a great music venue so I'm not surprised this band filmed there. I'm a big fan.

I even had my wedding at Turner Hall.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

take shelter!

mango stripe umbrella, $69. coral/tan umbrella, $35. red umbrella, $45 bubble umbrella, $20. kiwi dot umbrella, $24. red flower umbrella, $40. black stripe umbrella, $40.

The forecast here has been nothing but rain, rain, and rain. Usually, I'd complain, but a) my new sod is really loving it and b) shopping for a new umbrella can be so much fun! Who knew there were so many different colors and patterns out there. I'm especially fond of the the Marimekko patterns. And just Marimekko in general. But really, any bright, fun umbrella would do the job of both keeping you dry and giving a little boost to the rainy day blues. So take shelter, Milwaukee, the sun doesn't look like it's going to shine any time soon.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

MKE locals: Marie of Rose and Anchor

Today we're talking with Milwaukee local and artist, Marie from Rose and Anchor as part of our MKE locals series. Marie makes beautiful vintage inspired brass jewelry she sells at small boutiques across the midwest (including Sparrow Collective in Bay View) as well as on Etsy. For the month of April, she's offering a 20% discount (use discount code APRIL20) for her Etsy shoppers.

Where do you find inspiration in Milwaukee?
I think one of the biggest inspirations for me has always been Lake Michigan. In the early days, it was the subject of photos I sold, and in the present it's more about everything that comes to mind in the nautical and historical sense of it all, if that makes sense. Too elaborate a little bit - I started out in the fall of 2009 while I was pregnant with my son, as a photography shop - I was known as Blue Balloon back then. I was stocked full of dreamy photos and stationery of Lake Michigan and landscapes, then I began dabbling in photo jewelry, which eventually evolved into what it is today. We live a few blocks away in Bay View, so the lake sometimes feels like a second home - we visit some point of it's shores nearly every day. I really began feeling a disconnect between the name Blue Balloon and the pieces in my shop over the past year and a half. It began bothering me enough that I finally took the big step and began rebranding as Rose & Anchor a few months ago. It's a name I'm really happy with, and was inspired in part by that beautiful body of water to our east. All that remains of the earlier days as Blue Balloon are a few photo lockets featuring Lake Michigan - they will remain in the shop always for sentimental reasons, and because of their popularity. In a way, they are like my shop's anchor. Which didn't really occur to me until writing it down just now...

How would you describe your style?
I think nostalgic, rustic, and feminine are the big ones that come immediately for me. I use a lot of old stock, or vintage findings whenever I can. Also a lot of earthy stones that I like to mix with brass. If something is made of newish materials, I try and still give it that old feel. I've also heard modern, earthy, minimal, simple, and romantic from other. I'd agree I'm a mix of all of the above.

What are you currently digging?
Recently I've been really enjoying everything my Vancouver pal and jewelry designer, Sarah, has been creating for her shop, Camp + Quarry. Also, fellow Milwaukeean, Little Ocean - I am in love with everything she makes, but especially her baby and kiddo designs. Other favorites lately include the handmade wooden sunglasses from Tumbleweeds, beautiful crocheted doily blankets from Goodknits, and Bookhou - I've got one of her waxed canvas bags, but she keeps putting out new designs and I've been admiring them all from afar. I could probably go on forever on this, because there is so much to love in the creative and handmade world, so I'll leave it at that for now. Thanks so much for including me in your series!

all photos courtesy of Rose and Anchor

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Let there be sight.....

It was about time I got new glasses. My old ones were from High School circa my Lisa Loeb stage and I was wearing my contacts dry. But where was I going to find stylish glasses to accommodate my whopping -8.25 prescription? I need a walking stick just to find my bed at night. So I checked out some of the online retailers like bonlook, lookmatic, and Warby Parker. After an at home trial run, I picked the Fitz style from Warby Parker. And my eyes are now experiencing a welcome break from studying, blogging, and researching. Although I still need a little help finding my bed sometimes; I can see the pile of laundry on the floor now.

Friday, April 20, 2012

It's Friday!

Although it might rain all day (my new backyard sod is so excited), I'm still so thankful it's spring. My spring fever kicks in right on cue. I've been looking at this yellow rose photo above for the past few days and think it's flat out beautiful. The color and composition is just lovely -- but what roses aren't lovely? However yellow rose are, in fact, my favorite (HEADS UP, HUSBAND).

Thursday, April 19, 2012

For the Win! Milwaukee's Best Fashion Blog

A big thanks to those readers, friends and family who voted for Cream City and Sugar in the Shepherd Express' Best of the Web Awards. I took home the gold for Best Fashion Blog, and the runner-up spots for Best Personal Blog and Best Neighborhood Blog. In addition to the sweet charging station I won at last night's awards party, I got to hang out with some cool people, eat some mini Sobelman's burgers and Milwaukee Cupcake Co. cupcakes. Pretty sweet, indeed, if you ask me. For the big night, I searched high and low for a good outfit to wear to the dang thing. And on my last stop, after hitting up imaginable store in Milwaukee, I found the perfect thing; RED JEANS. I was about to give up but decided to check out Boutique Vieux et Nouveau (BVEN) on Brady Street and am so glad I did. If you go, Heidi, the owner is great at helping you find exactly what you need.

My final look was an Old Navy chambray top, red Goodtime Premium jeans, Banana republic bangle bracelet, Kate Spade earrings, Kate Spade pocketbook and nude high heel sandals from Target. For this low-key event, I gave myself a pat on the back for dressing nice, but not over the top.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Good thing I had my coffee today

I brewed up a pot of Valentine Coffee this morning to charge me up for a marathon of errands that included clothes shopping, hair-doing, event-going, and dinner-eating. I picked up a pound of the Papau New Guinea blend while at Groppi's last week; because a) they're a small, local coffee roaster and I love me some local. and b) I liked the packaging; I'm a patsy for anything pretty. And the verdict is: nice! I love Alterra, but secretly water it down because of my caffeine sensitivity. My mind wants dark, strong, bold coffee but my body says too much. I get the crazy shakes after two cups. Alternatively, the Papau blend is milder, but still full-bodied. So no shakes here.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Gingham-ed Out!

1., 2., 3., 4., 5., 6.

I always thought there was a small window of opportunity to wear gingham: Picnics, 4th of July, and Mary Ann from Gilligan's Island look-a-like-contests. But through the ubiquitous gingham button-up, it has earned its place in the warm weather wardrobe. Check out J.Crew or Old Navy for some classic ginghams and up above for the more non-traditional ways to wear these fun checks!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Hi Mom.

I got my Milwaukee Magazine in the mail this week and was surprised to mom! She was interviewed for the "Fostering Flea: What's Old is New Again at Area Markets" by Maureen Post. She runs the Elkhorn Flea Market in Elkhorn, WI and talked about the shift in buyers and collecting. The issue should be out on newsstands this week.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Happy Monday

It just occurred to me that most grocery stores outside of Milwaukee don't have a "sausage section" - a whole section of the meat department in the summer that is just bratwurst/kielbasa/weiners/sausages. You're missing out, America.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Milwaukee Faves: WiSKULLSin shirts

In preparation for Brewers Opening Day, I took a trip to the WiSKULLSin store on the corner of North Ave. and Oakland Ave. From the street, it's a little hard to find, but just walk to the west side door and you'll see the entrance. Inside, they have a good supply of mens (sizes S-2X) and womens shirts (sizes S-XL). Their iconic skull in the shape of Wisconsin graces many of the designs. So if you ever need to sport some hadrcore Wisconsin pride, this is the place. I picked up an updated version of the Lady Hank. This is white in unisex sizes and fits way better. American Apparel fabrics notorioulsly shrink so keep that in mind when ordering.

Visit their online store: here

Visit their real-life store: 1726 E. North Avenue, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Visit their facebook page: here

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Outstanding in the Field

There is an uh-mazing culinary event coming to Wisconsin in a few months. It's Outstanding in the Field, a farm-to-table "restaurant without walls" that tours the world and will be making two stops in Wisconsin this summer. Outstanding in the Field pairs up with local farmers to host a locally sourced, gourmet dinner on their property prepared by renowned local chefs. The first one is August 11th at the Sassy Cow Creamery in Columbus, Wisconsin. The next is at a family farm in Elkhorn, Wisconsin, a 45 minute drive from Milwaukee (and my hometown!) on August 12th and 13th. Chefs from Chicago's Longman & Eagle, Milwaukee's Hinterland Gastropub, Madison's L'Etoile and Graze will each host a dinner. The tickets have some sticker shock at $200, but if you're a local, sustainable, organic foodie this is a bucket list type of thing. Go for it!

Check out the U.S. tour schedule and buy tickets here.

images via communaltable, Ohhappyday, and Outstanding in the Field

Monday, April 2, 2012

I want to go to there: a perfect backyard patio

We are in the midst of some major construction at our house. A patio, sidewalk, sod, and landscaping are all being put into our tiny Bay View backyard. If you live in the city, you know that our yards are tiny but we practically live out there in the summer. An entire overhaul was just necessary. So, our yard will have a raised dining area on the right, an inset living area in the middle, and a step up to the sidewalk in back to accommodate the slope in our yard. Can you picture it? I'll post finished pictures in a few weeks. In the meantime, here are some inspiring backyard patio pictures to peruse.

Source: via Sara on Pinterest


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