With Care

Yes, that is a cat ring. And yes, those are awesome sock garters with arrows on them! These and many more neat items are made by Elizabeth, hailing from Providence, Rhode Island. She has a shop called With Care, I love her use of vintage imagery and I am a big supporter of the arrow motif. I asked her a few questions about her inspiration and her favorite old things… enjoy!

The vibe of your jewelry is great, such a good combination of sweet and nostalgic. Do you have a character or imagined person that you have in mind while creating?
Thanks so much! I don’t design with one specific person in mind but, in the beginning, I took to designing jewelry as an excuse to buy myself all these pretty findings and neat things. I like the idea and aesthetic of receiving or finding something that might not be intended as a piece of proper jewelry but taking it and wearing it anyway. Like, “Check me out. I am proud of this.” In that sense, I keep my friends in mind when I am making because they are the kings and queens of ad-hoc embellishment! Since my business has grown and I’ve been taking a little bit more of intentional direction in my designs (relying less on those divine, ‘aha” moments and acting more towards cohesion), I definitely keep little inspirational/aspirational characters in mind: spelling bee champions, prize pumpkin growers, urban dandies, folks with perfect attendance… a lot of ideas having to do with accomplishment and showing it off.

I used to have a small collection of old merit pins, they can be so neat. Do you have a favorite that you’ve sold, or is currently for sale? What is the strangest design you’ve come across?
The “Safety” merit pin is merit pin perfection! So much so that I haven’t been able to bring myself to sell any yet! But I do feature it on the front of my postcard. Of the items for sale, I can’t help but give it up to the “Swine” cuff links. Perfect for your least favorite banker! The “Speaking” merit pin features an old, stand-up microphone, left to its lonesome in the middle of astage. There’s an humorously articulate melancholy to that one. The strangest would probably be some of the food-related badges. There are far more designs for bread baking than you would expect! Probably the strangest of the strange is for “Rice Cooking”. Really? Rice?

Your shop’s aesthetic has a decidedly vintage feel, do you collect any vintage items for yourself? How does vintage play a part in your life?
I’m a history nerd, for sure. Vintage and a general theme of “the past” play a huge part in my life. I even spent the year after getting my under graduate degree getting a certificate in historic preservation from the Rhode Island School of Design. Houses, clothes, furniture, and studies; I kind of live in a time warp. Growing up, I didn’t like the styles and choices of clothes that were available at the mall. Also, I was a weirdly frugal kid… concerned about the value of my precious few dollars. Around the age of 12, my mom took me to the thrift store down the street and it all clicked. By the age of 13, it was brightly colored, polyester everything!!! My taste has gotten better over the years (I think?) but I still wear lots of great, old stuff. Collection-wise, I have to be careful because I can really let my hoarding/researcher side get away from me. A couple years ago I got into collecting mid-century tableware and milk glass ovenware and mugs. I also pick up old, carded sewing notions when I find them. I aspire to collect items from the 1939 World’s Fair, but they can be rather pricey. Someday. When I can have nice things. My boyfriend collects old VHS and audio tapes so our house is pretty swollen with things that are at least as old as us!!!

You can also find With Care on facebook.


February Ad Space

Interested in advertising on this blog? Send me an email and we can talk about it. I’d like to take this lil’ moment to say thanks to everyone for not harshing on me when I decided to start hosting some ads, it was such a relief to not be torn to pieces over the whole thing. I hope that I’m helping to promote some nice folks in a mellow way, and I’ve been happy with passing along those dollars to other bloggers, who in turn host my ads and help me out! There’s always a delicate balance when it comes to self-promotion and promoting others, the most important advice I can give anyone on this topic is to make your own rules and don’t betray your own personal comfort levels. With all that being said, I’ve got another sponsor interview coming right up!

The above image was shot through the window of Sarah Seven‘s gorgeous shop in downtown Portland, back in December.


Winter Stripes

I was (am) having a nice day today. I was up late last night at a funny Ween concert and I was worried that I’d feel like trash this morning (sewing class at 10am!), but I was totally fine! My class was fun, we’re working on knit dresses and I spent most of the class assembling my paper pattern dress for a fitting. It was so gorgeous outside when I got home, and the afternoon was quiet so I listed some stuff in my shop, which I’ll be posting about soon! The light looked nice out there as it was setting, so I figured it was a good time to photograph this outfit, which I’ve been wearing often for the past couple of months. The dress is cashmere, from the Steven Alan fall collection, I bought it on mega sale and it has been a really great dress all winter. It’s warm, it’s soft, it’s comfortable, the colors are great, it matches my tights, which match my shoes… basically I love it. I’m also wearing my treasured thrifted gem necklace and a handmade one by Emily Baker, aka Sword + Fern. She posted some beautiful previews of new work and I’m spying some dusty rose and charcoal combos… aka my favorite colors, if I haven’t made that clear enough these days!

Not much else to report. We’re going to eat crepes and see Marc Maron tonight. Next week dalas and I are going on stage as our comedy duo, verudgo and wife. GET PUMPED.


Sweaters, Ribbons, Sewing, Books…

It has been a while since I’ve done a post like this, I’ve been collecting images and getting lots of things in the mail, working on projects and reading good books. I know I’ve said it already, but I’ve been really busy this month/year so far and I think it’s going to continue being like that. I’m not used to it yet! I definitely prefer a more relaxed pace, but least I’m busy with interesting things. I’m tryin’. Above, you can see a special sweater from Hetterson, which you’ll be seeing more of soon, and a really sweet magazine from Norway.

Sue is my old ribbon dealer. She hooks me up with amazing colors every so often and I use them to wrap up my shop orders! Last time she sent me a whole range of blues.

I have some weird Pyrex science beakers and bird figures sitting in a window downstairs, this is what happens when the light comes in through the window and hits my photo backdrop.

This is downtown in Portland right now, I haven’t actually figured out what it’s part of. There’s a variety of art stuff in that zone, or at least there was a month or so ago when I took this photo.

A collection of shimmery things. A 1930′s dress, 1930′s rhinestone blouse, and a star crown from Giant Dwarf that I picked up in December.

The fabric under the book is silk that I’m using for a Sencha blouse. It’s almost finished, I just have to add snaps to the back. I half regretted using silk for my first at-home-by-myself sewing project, but it doesn’t look bad! I’m obsessed with sewing these days. The book is a recommendation from Liina, it’s a novel that chronicles some friendships taking place in Oregon, switching back and forth from the fur trading era to modern (1980′s, I think?) time. Lots of good Northwest plant descriptions!

So many of these in the park near my house. They always look amazing in photos.

The photobooth in the NE version of Voodoo Donuts. I ate a maple donut that day.

Got a super deal on this Rennes from Julia’s yard sale blog. It’s so soft, and my current favorite color of pink (paired with gray, duh).

Some Pendleton for Opening Ceremony pieces that I tried on at a sample sale, they were seriously discounted, I haven’t seen a lot of sample sales but whew! The dress I really wanted was sold out already, but I did get the matching skirt. Seems like I should be going out to the Pendleton mill end store and making my own stuff for way cheaper!

A small peek at a 1930′s dress that I bought at the antique mall here, it’s from the now-defunct old local department store, Meier and Frank! I had to buy it as a cool historic Portland artifact.

Last but not least, a nice autumn wood pile.


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