Little things.

Friday, January 31, 2014

enjoy the little things

I walk by a flowering quince shrub on my daily walks to drop off packages. Unfortunately, it's planted right behind a chain link fence, on an alley, behind my apartment's covered parking area, where no one could possibly enjoy it. I took my clippers with me the other day and snipped a few pieces for my apartment. The winter light was so lovely I couldn't resist taking a few photos. The sweet little coral pink blooms have been brightening up my place ever since.

Here's to enjoying the little things! Have a nice weekend!


Book Review: 100 Ways to Happy Chic Your Life by Jonathan Adler

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Review: 100 Ways to Happy Chic Your Life, Adler
I'm a big fan of Jonathan Adler so when I spotted this book last week I knew I had to check it out.

Review: 100 Ways to Happy Chic Your Life, Adler
Oh man, I need a new doorknob.
Showcasing the dream home he built with husband Simon Doonan on Shelter Island, this book shows snapshots of everything from small details to large-scale decorating concepts, all in Adler's distinctive retro-bohemian style. Interior photography shots are broken up with hand sketched lists of great movies, music, and fashionistas. There are also a few DIY projects mixed in. I especially liked this block printed valentine.
Review: 100 Ways to Happy Chic Your Life, Adler
Flipping through the pages I found myself wishing I had a "Pin It" button in real life!  If you're looking to recreate the look for yourself many of the items pictured in the shots are from JA's own collection. There are also practical tips on how to style your bookshelves and how to use unusual items for new applications.
Review: 100 Ways to Happy Chic Your Life, Adler Review: 100 Ways to Happy Chic Your Life, Adler

There's also a great glossary in the back for all of those super-chic new terms you need to add to your vocabulary. I got a kick out of the "ornamental hermit." I remember learning about those in Landscape History class in college. Hmm, I wonder which one of my neighbors can be considered the ornamental hermit of the property...

Review: 100 Ways to Happy Chic Your Life, Adler

Don't take your decorating too seriously! Find 100 Ways to Happy Chic Your Life on Amazon. 


Vitamini is 6!

Monday, January 27, 2014

Vitamini Birthday Sale!
Wow, how time flies! I can't believe that it's been 6 YEARS since I opened up shop on Etsy. Thinking back, though, it feels like so much longer ago. Back then I was in my early 20's and was struggling with transitions. From graduating college to moving to new cities for work. Living on my own and acting like a "grown up" but still having no idea who and what I was supposed to be. I had also been ignoring my creativity for a while (why did I do that?!) and was feeling pretty down about it. It took a chronic illness to make me realize that something was really wrong with how I was living. I put everything on pause: quit my job, gave up my sweet little apartment, and moved back in with my parents to re-group and focus on getting better. I wanted to learn how to screen print for years so I bought a kit on eBay and taught myself. It was January so I started working on some Valentine cards. My mom's friend told me about Etsy, so I figured, "What the hell?" and listed them. I jumped for joy when I got my first sale just 4 days later! If you're considering starting a handmade business of your own, the best advice I can give you is: Just start!

Happy Birthday, Vitamini!

So much has changed since then, but screen printing is still one of my favorite things to do, I still jump a little whenever a new sale comes in, and I still love dreaming up design ideas! Another reason for a happy dance: I just passed the 1K mark for sales in my shop over the weekend. Yahoo!

1,001 Sales!

To celebrate these milestones, I'm having a sale in both of my shops (Vitamini and Vitamodern) through Friday. Use the code Happy6 at checkout to get 15% off your entire purchase! Just in time for your Valentine's Day cards and gifts. I don't have sales very often, so I hope you take advantage! Here's to the next 6 years!


Restocking and a special sale!

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Vitamini Heart Test Print
Happy Saturday, friends! I've been busy restocking the shops. I just printed a new batch of my heart bonnet tote bags in red and (new!) in black on the bigger totes. I haven't gotten them photographed yet, but they're coming soon! Can you believe Valentine's Day is in just a couple weeks? Also, make sure to come back on Monday as I'll be announcing a special sale. :)

The image above is an accidental test print I made the other day. I'm kinda loving the crazy mixed colors. Have a great weekend!


DIY Valentine Planters with a Free Printable!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

DIY Valentine's Day Succulent Planter with Free Printable

Valentine's Day is just a few short weeks away. Skip the drugstore candy aisle and whip up some of these sweet little succulent planters for your favorite people! Don't get me wrong, I love me some Valentine's Day candy, but sometimes the sugar gets to be a little too much. These sweet little planters will last much longer than a bouquet of flowers or a bag of cinnamon hearts and the punny plant stakes will make your friends smile.

Here's what you'll need:

DIY Valentine Succulent Planters with free printable!
  • Mini metal buckets in pink and white. I found mine at Michael's. Similar
  • White fish tank gravel. I still had some leftover from my dish garden
  • Pink spray paint. I used Krylon Fairytale Pink
  • Wood kitchen skewers
  • Assorted cacti and succulents
Not pictured:

Punch a few holes in the bottom of your buckets with a nail and hammer. Well-draining soil is very important to these plants. This will help keep your them happy and healthy! Do you like my tiny hammer? ;)

DIY Valentine Succulent Planters with free printable!

Plant your cacti and succulents in the buckets. I'm going to demonstrate how to re-pot a spiny cactus since those are a little harder to do without harming the plant or yourself. Add a layer of succulent soil to the bottom of your container at about the height of where your rootball will sit.

DIY Valentine Succulent Planters with free printable!

Roll up a few layers of butcher paper or newspaper. Flatten it. Fold it in half to create a loop. Position the cactus inside the loop and hold it tight on the end.

DIY Valentine Succulent Planters with free printable!

Lay the plant on its side and remove the pot. Grabbing the roots with one hand and the paper loop with the other, position the cactus in the pot. Still holding the cactus upright with the paper, fill around the roots with soil. Done! No need to look for the tweezers!

DIY Valentine Succulent Planters with free printable!

Spread out a thin layer of gravel in a cardboard box or on a paper plate and spray paint it. Mix the gravel up between coats to get more coverage. When it's fully dry, layer it over the exposed soil in the buckets. Resist the urge to water! Let them get used to their new digs for a week or two before watering.

DIY Valentine Succulent Planters with free printable!

Low Maintenance Love, You're Succulent, and Don't be Prickly, Valentine. I love me a plant pun and I hope you like these graphics!

Valentine Succulent Planter Printable

Print the download on white cardstock (the thicker, the better) and cut out with scissors or a craft knife. Add a dab of rubber cement to the top of the skewer and attach to the back of the tag. To make it more secure, glue a scrap of paper over the back.

DIY Valentine Succulent Planters with free printable!

Add them to your freshly-potted succulents and give to your valentines (if you can bear to part with them)!

DIY Valentine Succulent Planters DIY Valentine Succulent Planters with free printable! DIY Valentine Succulent Planters with free printable! DIY Valentine Succulent Planters with free printable! DIY Valentine Succulent Planters with free printable!

Project and photography by Casey Starks | Vitamini Handmade
The download is not for commercial use or distribution and is © Vitamini Handmade.


Architecture of The Incredibles.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Image from Babble
Like many others, I'm a big fan of Pixar movies. My all-time favorite is The Incredibles. I love the stylized architecture and the Bond-esque themes. Both harkening back to that era of Americana that I love: the 1950's. I came across this article, Architecture of The Incredibles on The Architizer last week and have had the tab open on my browser ever since. I think that means I should share it!

Image from Mid Century Modernist
Did you get a load of the Parr's house (above)? Can I live there, please? Asymmetrical fireplace, Floor lamp/side table combo, shelf wall divider, fish wall hanging! So good! Edna Mode's mansion on the hill is also fun architecture eye-candy.

Image from Sofia Rodriguez
The evil lair on the cliffs is another one of my favorites. I love the dramatic back-lit arches. I like how the shadows repeat the forms.

Image from Mid Century Modernist
Image from Mid Century Modernist
The code-compliance dweeb in me took one look at that railing and knew it was DEFINITELY not up to code, but oh how its simplistic form plays off the ceiling beams.

Image from Sofia Rodriguez
I've had this book, The Art of The Incredibles, in my Amazon wish list for a while. Some of the negative reviews say the book focuses more on the architecture and less of the character development. That sounds like a positive to me! Click through to the article above to read a real in-depth analysis of the architecture, urban planning, and eras represented in the film.

I don't know about you, but I'm still crossing my fingers for a sequel!


New products!

Friday, January 10, 2014

I'm kicking off the new year with a few new products in the Etsy shops!

Valentine's Day is right around the corner and I made these cute cards for the occasion. "Love in Tow" available in kraft brown and white.

"Love in Tow" Mini Cooper Valentine's Day Card
These Happy Birthday cards are new, too! A MINI pulling a giant cupcake? Sounds like a party to me!
Happy Birthday Mini Cooper Card
Everyone knows Minis are British, but we Americans love them, too! Brand new Stars and Stripes coasters available in white and red.
Stars and Stripes MINI Cooper Coasters
I'm working on boosting up the inventory in my Vitamodern shop, too! First off I have a new fabric print, "Tiki." Remember when I made this card design out of paper shapes? Now it's on fabric! It goes great with my "Retro Vases" fabric print. I think I need to make some potholders out of these two. Two colorways available in the shop.
"Tiki" print by Vitamodern "Tiki" print by Vitamodern
I'm hoping to kick this cold for good this weekend and jump back into my other to-do list items. I also have a fun DIY in the works! Have a nice weekend!


Cool cards from Dani Press.

Monday, January 6, 2014

First post of 2014! Woohoo! I'm very excited for the fresh start the new year brings, but I've got a bad cold that I'm suffering through. I'm going to keep this one short so I can get back to my Dexter episodes and do my best to to kick this thing.

Cards by Dani Press
I was perusing Paper Crave last month and saw the Dani Press feature. I'm pretty good at keeping my impulse buying under wraps but as soon as I saw these cool cards I knew I had to place an order.

Cards by Dani Press
I recently made some big changes in my life and this card and the message really spoke to me. When my package arrived I was pleasantly surprised by the sweet personalized packaging. How cute is that little tag? Check out Dani Press for more cool cards.

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