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Painted in Love: Interview with White Bear Accessories Creator + Designer Lindsay B.

Dedication, vision, passion, the Beatles, and lots of lace is all it takes to make a life long dream become a reality. I had the chance to interview Lindsay Bleier of White Bear Accessories, a young jewelry designer and entrepreneur whose relentless dream-chasing inspires me to follow my own. 

Lace-jewelry pioneer Lindsay Bleier of White Bear Accessories began her love-affair with the craft at the young age of ten. Her creativity was fostered by her mother, the owner of a clothing and accessories company, who sagely encouraged her and her sister to put their creative energy into art. Lindsay soon found herself surrounded on all sides by her growing treasury of jewelry creations, and friends suggested that she sell her unique pieces online. She founded her e-shop, White Bear Accessories, and with time, her designs evolved and her signature lace jewelry was born.

The idea to combine lace and jewelry came to her naturally. A girly-girl through and through, Lindsay’s admiration for all things sweet, romantic, and vintage guide her design style. She takes cues from her favorite historic costumes, referencing the lace and glamour rocked by English royalty in her hand painted rings, necklaces, bracelets, and hair pins. The young designer can be found in her Miami-based studio, listening to the Beatles, quipped with a paintbrush and paint in every shade set before her. Color is perhaps the most striking aspect of her jewelry line, with eye-catching crimsons, tones of emerald, neons, and ombre in all shades. Since each piece is handmade, Lindsay is able to customize her creations for her clients, a rare find in these days of mass-produced fashion. Lindsay claims that the right necklace is more than just jewelry, it’s a statement. “I want my customers to feel empowered, strong, daring.” With jewelry backed by that kind of passion and love, it’s not so farfetched a hope.

Lindsay’s online shop White Bear Accessories can be seen at Etsy and at Blossom, NY. Visit Lindsay’s page on Facebook.

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Beloved Trend: Flowers in Your Hair

When I was working at a flower shop a few years ago, every now and then a customer would request a crown of flowers to be made. They were always to mark special occasions:  weddings, children’s birthday celebrations, or Spring festivals and holidays. In fact, floral wreaths have been the crowning headwear of many cultures throughout history. The ancient Romans donned crowns made of wildflowers gathered at the sight of military victories, and the Greeks crowned Olympians with rings of herbs such as laurel. In the unsurpassably romantic Victorian era, people used the Language of Flowers to communicate secret messages to others through flowers, and garlands were one way of expressing love, hope, and other things. And who could forget the Mama’s + the Papa’s singing about the gentle people in San Francisco, with flowers in their hair? Here are some modern manifestations of this beloved trend:

via Pretty Penny

via K is for Kani at Etsy

via Pour la Victoire

via Free People

$10 headband via Free People

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Beloved Trend: Zodiac + Sun Signs in Fashion

Finally, the zodiac is going noticed in fashion, makeup, jewelry, and the like. Each time I spy a sun-sign inspired piece, I am reminded of when I was 17 years old, making tee shirts with iron-on zodiac decals that I ordered on e-Bay. In fact, I own a substantial collection of zodiac jewelry, including a gold Gemini bracelet from Free People and a 1970’s wooden block with a pair of “love is…” comic strip twins painted on it. Nowadays, I’ve noticed a rising trend in zodiac paraphernalia. I think there is something very appealing about showing off your sign– it’s a chance to express your individuality and give people a tiny glimpse into what’s underneath the clothing. I love how M.A.C. Cosmetics has used the zodiac as inspiration for 12 color palettes, tailored to each sign, which you can find on this fun Facebook app, and how Free People has tapped into the sun-sign energy to create an interactive e-catalog based on travel and the zodiac. Here are some of my favorite manifestations of this new starry trend. (please follow the links below the images to visit shops.)

“I learned, in short, that love is not a condition of the spirit but a sign of the zodiac.”
— Gabriel Garcí­a Márquez (Memories of My Melancholy Whores)

this post was written while listening to: Jane’s Addiction – Ocean Size/Mountain Song/Up the Beach/Then She Did/Summertime Rolls/I would For You/Slow Divers/Jane Says

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Stellar Herb shop: evermore herbs & co. Historic smithville, nj

The herbal tour continues…I am always on the lookout for great herbal shops & gardens. Finding them is like finding gems. The Evermore Herb Shop is everything I think an herb shop should be: inviting, enchanting, and brimming with beauty and magic. They sell their own essential oils, tea/spice blends, gift baskets, sachets, and healing bundles as well as locally made jams, artisan made decor & trinkets, and brand name herbal beauty products. Evermore is tucked in amongst other specialty shops beside their own sweet herb garden on the Village Green at Historic Smithville. (Located 20 minutes from Atlantic City, NJ,  is a charming little village built around the Smithville Inn, built in 1787. The calendar of events includes a Renaissance Faire, and the Smithville Fife & Drum, coming up July 15th.) Though herb shops like Evermore are rare, like gems, they are always worth seeking out.

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Herbal Recipe: Minted Stone Fruit Compote

20120702-154229.jpgIn a saucepan, combine 2.5 cups of roughly chopped fresh plums (or peaches, nectarines, or a mixture of any), 4-5 sprigs of fresh mint, 2 tablespoons of honey, 1 cinnamon stick, 2 tablespoons of water, and a thick strip of lemon peel.

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Bring to a light boil, then simmer uncovered for 10-15 minutes, until the fruit is softened and the mixture becomes a bright red hue. The mint should be wilted and there should be a strong smell of cinnamon, mint, and honey. 20120702-154243.jpgRemove the cinnamon stick, lemon zest, mint sprigs. Transfer the compote to a pint size jar. Cover and let cool. Enjoy this healthy jam-like compote with yogurt, toast, cheese, or even by itself.

Health Benefits
Both plums and mint are revered digestive tonics, easing constipation and indigestion. The lemon peels, mint, and plums in this recipe also all contain notable levels of vitamin C, which helps build a strong immune system. The high level of antioxidants found in plums land them on the list of super-foods alongside blueberries and green tea. The great thing about this compote is that you can tweak the recipe to suit your taste and health needs. You might replace the cinnamon stick with ginger or star-anise, or switch up the lemon zest for orange or grape fruit. The possibilities are endless and the magic is in your hands.

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