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Monday, May 31, 2010

M is for...

M is for...
Hasta luego!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

And the winner is...

The Petit Rococo Necklace giveaway ended 5/24 @ midnight CST. We had 25 entries for the free bowtie necklace and the winner, chosen by random.org is....

#4 "Red"! Congrats, Red! You chose the clear necklace, so if you are out there leave a comment with your email address or a way to get in touch with you and Petit Rococo will get you your winnings :-)


And for the rest of you, if you are totally bummed just remember the Petit Rococo bowtie necklace is still for sale online in any color for only $18 right here.

This was fun! I hope to feature more giveaways in the future, so stay tuned.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Mood Board Monday - Midnight & Violet

It's Mood Board Monday!

For my second edition, I'm featuring a mood board I created withthe color combo midnight blue and violet.

Kitschicagoan Midnight & Violet Mood Board

Below are the sources of my inspiration...

Top (from left to right):
1. Baby Leg Warmers Gray with Blue and Purple Argyle, by BarefootClips, etsy seller
2. Kimchi Blue Printed Empire Halter Tank in Purple, Urban Outfitters
3. Liberty of London Blue, Purple & Red Toddler Swimsuit, Target
4. Tissue Pom Kit shown in Boysenberry, Navy & Grey, by prosttothehost, etsy seller
5. Lucienne Bracelet - Navy blue silk rose with frosted purple beads, by EternalEden, etsy seller
6. Print Color Options Blue Jay & Eggplant (my fave is 'Keep Calm and Blog On'), by KeepCalmShop, etsy seller
7. Fountain in Midnight Wallpaper by Amy Butler (my inspiration for this whole board!), for Graham & Brown

While this color combo could be viewed as dark or become overwhelming, I love the way it's used above and actually find the berry tones to be romantic yet cheerful. Although unintentional at first, I also really like the accent color of grey that appears in many of these images.


Hope you feel inspired to consider this combo in your own little crevice of the creative world.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Fossil Felicity: Like Orla, but Less!

I recently came across the Fossil Felicity handbag collection and it reminds me very much of Orla Kiely's collection, but for a whole lot less dough.

Both handbag collections are made of printed, laminated canvas and both feature bold, mod floral patterns. So without further ado, here they are for your viewing pleasure and critical comparison:


I actually prefer this original Orla Kiely "stems" pattern, but it's hard to find for sale now:


So what do you think? No, the Fossil bag doesn't have the broad recognition that Orla Kiely's "stems" pattern has and the bag's shape & structure may lack a bit of the same sophistication, but for 1/3 of the price I think it's a steal. In fact, I just ordered the Fossil Felicity Shopper in Yellow online.

If you are set on ordering a Fossil bag now too, there is good news! Right now at Macy's you can get FREE shipping with an eligible $50 juniors purchase (Fossil counts!) using promo code: HOTFREE (expires: June 6, 2010). And if you still like the Orla Kiely better, and have the extra cash, the deal on Piperlime isn't bad either.

Happy online shopping :-)

Friday, May 21, 2010

Exploring Chicago Photography Course

I bit the bullet today, spent my $200 and signed up for another course at Lill Street Art Center!


Remember back in January, when I pondered which course I should take? Well, I'm glad that I waited to decide, because they are offering a great new course this summer called Exploring Chicago -- a 7-week digital photography course offered as part of their new Digital Arts and Photography Department.

Here's the description. I'm getting giddy just reading it again...

What's a better way to spend your summer than getting outdoors to new places and learning to make better photographs? This class will meet on location in different Chicago neighborhoods. We'll learn about the history of each place, the major features, and then explore each with our cameras. Each class will culminate with lunch at a great neighborhood restaurant. This is a terrific way to hone your travel photography skills while getting to know Chicago better, and eating some good food!

This class combines three of my favorite things: photography, food and exploring local neighborhoods. So how could I pass it up? I will miss the first class due to an out-of-town wedding, but I hope to make the most out of the other six weeks and walk away with a great visual narrative of our city. Maybe I'll even make my own custom Chicago coffee table book with the images using blurb.

I have two long months to wait for the class to begin, but I'll be sure to make a weekly post about each neighborhood once I do. And if I've inspired any other Chicago-area shutterbugs to join in the fun, let me know. I'd love to meet you :-)

Monday, May 17, 2010

Friendly Giveaway Reminder - One Week Left!

Just a friendly necklace giveaway reminder!

Only one week left to "friend" our featured jewelry designer Petit Rococo on Facebook and leave a comment on my other post here for a chance to win this Bowtie necklace.


Reminder: The giveaway will close ONE WEEK from today on Monday 5/24 at midnight CST. On Tuesday 5/25, I'll randomly select a winner to receive one Petit Rococo Bowtie necklace in the color of their choice.

Mood Board Monday - Aqua & Orange

Today I'm going to try out an idea for a new weekly post, Mood Board Monday.

It really will just be me, putting together a montage of things that inspire me or that I'm digging at the time. For this first edition, I'm featuring a mood board of the color combo aqua and orange. I'm loving it these days for anything from stationary to fashion to home decor.

Kitschicagoan Aqua & Orange Mood Board

Here are the sources of my inspiration...

Top (from left to right):
1. Blue Colander, Martha Stewart Collection for Macy's
2. Chicago Ork Poster, Orange & Blue
3. Old Aqua Wheelbarrow by deardaisycottage, on flickr
4. Vintage Enamel Blue and Orange Daisy Brooch, by bunnygoods, etsy seller
5. Orange by D Sharon Pruitt, on flickr
6. Orange and Aqua by wiccked, on flickr
7. Oranges in Turquoise Bowl by hedgiecc, on flickr
8. i love illinois, by qadesign, etsy seller
9. Real Simple Logo
10. Be Yourself. Flower Hair Pins, by jennifermagnesi, etsy seller

So there you have it. Aqua & Orange...not just for the Miami Dolphins anymore.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Early Risers, Bring May Flowers

Today I got up at the crack of dawn to head to my first ever garage sale excursion. A neighborhood here in Chicago was having a big sale that has been hyped up a bit so I thought it might be a nice time to scope out a bunch of sales all at once, but...it was a bust. Maybe I wasn't in the mood or maybe it's just seeing the junk in other people's garages that makes me realize I really don't need anymore junk of my own. Don't get me wrong, I won't give up on garage sales altogether but today I was particularly unimpressed so I might stick to vintage sales and thrift stores, etc. for the time being.


The good news is that being up so early on a gorgeous Sunday morning did inspire me to do something about our drab balcony. It has been neglected since the winter (and the winter before) and the rusty floor will likely not to be repainted & repaired until our Condo Association gets more funds. So I thought I needed to take matters into my own hands.

I went to Home Depot and bought some commercial grade, environmentally-friendly indoor/outdoor mats to cover the unsightly balcony floor.

Let's consider this a partial "before" pic. See 3 out of 5 mats down here, and notice the rust where we do not have a mat down yet...yes that should be black to match the railings!

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Then I got an assortment of flowers, and a new plant stand with a huge terra cotta pot to sit on it. I filled each of my four green plastic planters with 2 white geraniums and 6 red salvia.

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Then I put a stonecrop 'Sedum Autumn Joy' in a cute yellow planter on the bistro table.

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I also filled the huge terra cotta pot with yellow, orange and red gerbera daisies.

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And here's the end result...

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I even had helpers, well more like onlookers, but I was glad to have them there for moral support :-)

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Job well done, Lou-dog! (And yes, we like to taunt the Cubs fans here with our grill cover.)

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Saturday, May 15, 2010

Revolution Brewing Co.

Yet another review of another great Chicago food and drink experience... I'm realizing we must really like beer. And eating :-)

We went to Revolution Brewing Co. in Logan Square last night and had a terrific experience, even with an hour + wait.

They were really thinking when they built the waiting/cocktail area. It sure beats getting bumped into for an hour while crowding around a bar and interrupting those eating there to get the bartenders attention.

On the contrary, we had an excellent cocktail waitress, who kept our beer glasses full and made the wait enjoyable. It also didn't hurt that the weather was finally nice, so they had the wall of windows open to the sidewalk which made it bright and breezy. I also loved the lighting fixtures and ceiling:

Revolution has a nice selection of their own brews, but I stuck to the Bottom Up Wit which I thoroughly enjoyed. Dave had the Cross of Gold & the Logan Pride and both were quite nice.


Now on to the food. As an appetizer we had the sweet potato cakes, which are served with a red pepper & curry yogurt. These were quite good. Very sweet, could have used a touch of salt, but very good none-the-less.

My favorite of the night though was the pizza special, a Spring Pea & Bacon Pizza served with a pea puree as the sauce, fontina cheese, halved grape tomatoes and an organic fried egg on top. TO. DIE. FOR.


If you like more meat on your pie though, try the Smoke House Pizza with pulled pork, bacon, and smoked tomato sauce.

This was our first visit, but it will not be our last. It's so nice to have a walkable option like this in the hood. I am also excited that they are now offering free brewery tours every Saturday at noon. Tours last about 45 minutes and include a free sample.

Check it out this summer :-)

Flirty Cupcakes on Wheels

Friday was such a nice day here in Chicago, which perfectly aligned with a rare day that I was able to leave the office for lunch. To make my day that much brighter I came across the most glorious sight on my walk, a cupcake truck!

Why didn't I think of this?

Good thing the people of Flirty Cupcakes *on wheels* did. As fate would have it, the day I got away from my desk was the day they parked their van just a few blocks from my building. It was so cute that it lured me right in and I just had to get a taste.

Sure, there are other bakeries scattered around town where you can go for a cupcake craving, but this is different...like the difference between seeing an ice cream truck and seeking out an ice cream parlor. Both are good, but there is just something so spontaneously special about encountering your treat on the street and getting it handed to you through a window.

Here is the Flirty Cupcake mobile:


Their flavors include:

Devil in Disguise
(Red Velvet Cupcake with Cream Cheese Frosting)

No Plain Jane
(Vanilla Cupcake with Italian Vanilla Buttercream Frosting)

PB&C
(Chocolate Cupcake with Peanut Butter Ganache)

The Curious George
(Banana Chocolate Cupcake with Salted Caramel Italian Buttercream Frosting)

The McDreamy
(Chocolate Cupcake with a Cream Cheese & Chocolate Filling)

CBFF
(Chocolate Cupcake with a Nutella Ganache)

Coconut...Nuts!
(Vanilla Coconut Cupcake with Toasted Coconut Frosting)

Each cupcake is $3.25 or they have the option of purchasing 4 "mini's" for $5.25 (only available in 4 flavors though). I ordered the "Coconut...Nuts!" and it was to die for. Moist and sweet, but not too sweet.

If you live in Chicago, be sure to check out Flirty Cupcakes on Facebook or Twitter to see if they are on their way to an intersection near you.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Nashville Relief Effort Posters

Having two sets of good friends that live in Nashville and being a sucker for great prints, this Nashville Relief Effort Poster post at Apartment Therapy really spoke to me.

Check out some of the affordable posters that their local artists have created with the proceeds all being donated to the flood relief efforts. Many of them are available for purchase, here at Liftupnashville.com.

This one is probably my favorite, and would look good in any home -- even one with no true Nashville ties.


A simple sentiment, "Love Your Neighbor". And for just $10.

Monday, May 10, 2010

A Lovely Giveaway: Petit Rococo Jewelry

Tonight, I'm posting my first giveaway! I am excited to feature some amazing, handmade pieces from Petit Rococo Jewelry.


A Chicagoland native, designer Madeleine "Maddie" Maciag is inspired by her time spent traveling abroad specifically to Vienna & Paris. Thus, she decided to put together a jewelry line that captures her style and love of historical architecture & romantic clothing, and I for one am a BIG FAN!

Here are some of my favorites...
I think this next one would be great to wear to a summer wedding as a guest, bridesmaid or even the bride!
And last but not least, THE GIVEAWAY :-)

Petit Rococo is offering up a beautiful Bowtie Necklace to one of my lucky readers this week, which can be ordered in the winner's choice of Sapphire, Emerald, Ruby, Clear, Purple and Peridot. Here it is in a variety of colors...

I personally received my own Clear Bowtie necklace as a Christmas gift this year from my sister and I get compliments whenever I wear it :-)


Isn't it lovely? So, here's how to win:
  • Become a Facebook Fan of Petit Rococo here or join the e-mail list to receive updates here (or both!). Then, leave a comment letting me know which color Bowtie necklace is your favorite and which way you chose to keep in touch with Petit Rococo (email or facebook).
  • For a 2nd bonus entry, Blog or tweet about this giveaway and leave another comment letting me know you've done so.
The giveaway will close on Monday 5/24 at midnight CST and a winner will be randomly chosen on Tuesday 5/25. At that time, I'll randomly select one winner to receive one Petit Rococo Bowtie necklace in the color of their choice.

This contest is open to all readers, Good luck!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Meet My New Niece, Monster!

My canine niece that is. My sister celebrated Mother's Day as the new mom to a terrific, scruffalicious pup.

Her name is Monster and she is part French Bulldog, part Brussels Griffon Terrier and all love.

Behold this beautiful bearded lady!

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Tuesday, May 4, 2010

$200

Late April was my four year anniversary at work and I have been given a nice gift card in appreciation. The kind you can spend anywhere on anything...yay! I know it's not the kind of money that's life-changing, but it sure is more fun to spend gifted cash. So if you were given $200, what would you spend it on?

My ideas:

Summery clothes for our upcoming Mexico trip?



A down payment on a motorscooter I've been coveting for years?

Any other fun ideas? I need some inspiration. What would you do?

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Two Brothers Brewing Co. - Ebel's Weiss Beer

I love trying local brews and I think I found a new favorite.

Two Brothers Brewing Co. Ebel's Weiss Beer


I guess I totally have a thing for Hefeweizen's considering the only other beer I have reviewed here is one with very similar characteristics as well.

According to the website, Ebel's Weiss beer is a very traditional German Hefeweizen that is naturally unfiltered. It has wonderful malt sweetness and a soft aroma of clove, vanilla, and banana. This deep golden colored weiss will make you think you are in Bavaria.

Two Brothers Brewing Co. is located 30 miles straight west of Chicago in Warrenville, IL and I was happy to discover that they have brewery tours EVERY Saturday at 1:00 & 2:30 and now Sundays at 1:00, too.

Now I know how we'll be spending a Saturday afternoon in the near future!

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About Me

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I'm a St. Louis native, but I have been living in Chicago since 2005 and am loving every windy minute of it. I enjoy cooking (more-so eating), home decorating and really anything creative. I'm a supporter of DIY & handmade goods, a fledgling foodie and a connoisseur of kitsch. I spend my days filling online shopping carts, emptying them and repeating the process all over again. Most of all I love spending time with my husband, Dave, our first child, Claire and my dog, Louie.

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