Wednesday, June 30, 2010

No Words Necessary


Cart-Worthy + Heart-Worthy: Anchors Aweigh!

Summer always makes me wish I knew how to sail. Especially living so close to the beach, I feel like I'm missing out on my given right to enjoy the spray of the sea on my face and the salty air tangling my hair... Maybe I don't want to go sailing; maybe I want to show you my collection of anchor-related items instead. Maybe...

One Ticket To Rio De Janeiro, Please.

{i've got the travel bug again... 
apparently this is in brazil.
wanna go?}

Tuesday, June 29, 2010


{I don't even watch LOST, but I found myself giggling at my desk after reading this post over at little brown pen.}

Tutorial: Monogrammed Burlap Napkin Ring

How sweet and rustic is this burlap napkin ring by maya*made? You could even skip the napkin ring part and make a ring, hair clip, gift topper or headband out of the burlap flower!

Monday, June 28, 2010

Shabby Apple Groupon? Yes, Please!

shabby apple dress champs elysees
{my fave - the champs elysees}

Like Shabby Apple? Who doesn't? They offer vintage-inspired dresses for any and every body type. Shabby Apple is constantly being written about on blogs, fashion websites, and in magazines, and now you can get in on the action!

Groupon (a fabulous deal-a-day site for Los Angeles based companies) has posted a deal for a $100 gift certificate to Shabby Apple for $40! That's right, a gift certificate for more than double the value. This deal is only redeemable online, so it doesn't matter if you live near L.A. or not. This is a limited time deal and only available for a couple more hours, check it out now!

5 Etsy Features You Should Be Using!

Are you familiar with this page? Read on to find out why you should be!

etsy buy page

1. Shop Local - I like Shop Local for two reasons. One: everyone hates shipping fees and hopefully, by purchasing locally, you can cut down or eliminate those shipping fees entirely. Two: this is great promotion and networking for your own shop. The more local artisans you know of, the wider your circle when it comes to sharing craft fair booths, sharing advertising space or just sharing a cup of coffee. How many times have you wished your blog friends lived nearby so you could hang out? Well, this is a way to actually do that with your etsy friends!

2. Treasury East - Treasuries are such fun! If you're creating one, you get to pile through your favorites (or maybe find some new ones) and curate your very own collection of etsy beauties. If you're in one, you are a part of a wonderful tool for marketing your shop to etsy users who may otherwise never stumble into your category. For example, I can tell you that I never click on the soap link on the front page; I'm never in the market for soap. However, I have made numerous soap purchases because the items were listed in treasuries I found interesting and the photography caught my eye.

3. Pounce - Pounce has 2 sections: Undiscovered and Just Sold. Undiscovered displays shops that have newly listed items that have never made a sale. It's a great feeling to be someone's first sale and if you like being "ahead of the curve", it's an optimal place to start shopping. Just Sold is a section that displays still available items from shops that just made a sale. If you're interested in seeing what items are selling or finding out what others are buying, Just Sold is the place for you.

Are you familiar with this page? Here's what you should be getting out of it!

4. Promotions Forum - The Promotions Forum is the first place I go on Etsy. I advertise my giveaways, new listings, and blog posts there. The threads are so variant - sales, threadkillers, giveaways, gifts with purchase - it is a great place to promote (duh!) anything you like. If you want to add blogs to your reader, readers to your blog, enter giveaways or find people to enter your giveaway, it's the perfect spot. The best thing (for me) is that most of the threads are "post and run" - it's not necessary to stick around and follow-up on your post. The majority of the Etsy seller blogs I read have been found in the Promotions Forum.

5. Five Minute Featured Seller Chat Room - This chat room is almost always available and usually has a title like "5 Min FS." I stumbled upon Etsy chat almost a year after joining the site and I realized that I'd been missing out on a lot of fun. The chat rooms are a fabulous place to get to know your fellow etsy sellers, who are also your prospective buyers!

In this particular chat room, one person is chosen as the Featured Seller. They then have 5 minutes to promote their shop. Everyone else in the room promotes them as well, talking about what they like and posting their favorite items in the picture sidebar. The Featured Seller may advertise promotions during this time or offer gifts with purchase. At the end of the 5 minute period, the Featured Seller checks their orders and confirms how many sales were made in those 5 minutes. The first person who purchased from them (no matter the amount) is the next Featured Seller and the cycle starts all over again. If there are no sales, the 2nd purchaser from a previous round is chosen and if that doesn't work, the FS chooses randomly from the sellers in the room.

I've met a lot of fun people in this chat room and try to stop in once every few weeks to participate. It's a great way to make 10 sales in 5 minutes and at the same time, I found 15 new shops that I liked.

Whether you're a seller or a buyer, knowing the features available to you can maximize your experience on Etsy!

Sunday, June 27, 2010

We Have A Winner!

I'm so sorry, my fabulous friends! I am a day late in announcing the winner of the India Blue Jewels Giveaway! I got back from Las Vegas yesterday and was too exhausted to do anything productive!

So, with no further ado, here is the winner!

#12, Ana!

I will be emailing you right away to get your information, Ana! Thank you to everyone else who entered and be sure to try again next time! Also, a huge thank you goes out to India Blue Jewels!

Friday, June 25, 2010

Breakfast At The Wynn Buffet

{the atrium at the buffet}

{mint chocolate mousse}

{they had candied apples!!!}

{the architectural detailing is amazing}


Thursday, June 24, 2010

Breakfast At The Terrace Pointe Cafe

{larissa and i at breakfast this morning}

Hello From Sunny Las Vegas, Nevada!

My mom, sister and I are on a girls' trip to Vegas this week - 4 nights, 5 days of the two people who drive me the craziest, but who I also have the most fun with. I'll be posting some pics over the coming days.

{larissa and i on the way to dinner}

Today on the agenda, we have the gym, spa treatments, and lounging by the pool. Sounds fabulous, right?

Wednesday, June 23, 2010


You guys. YOU GUYS. I am in love with these shoes. 
a. They're flats.
b. They have dainty ankle straps.
a + b + c = = Me in love.

Unfortunately, Topshop, purveyor of fabulous and affordable goodies, is SOLD OUT. If any of you see these, tell me! :)

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Tutorial: Fabric Wall Art

Need some inexpensive wall art? Have some awesome vintage fabric? Find out how to make super cute (and super easy) fabric wall decorations over at Designs By Vanessa.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Run For The Trees

On Sunday, I ran the Run For The Trees 5K in Playa Del Rey, CA. It was jointly sponsored by Fiji Water and Myspace and benefited The Amazon Foundation. Also, by ran, I mean walked and jogged and occasionally sprinted. 

I did finish a full 11 minutes faster than the I did a month ago at the Revlon Run/Walk. Which is definitely worth a !!! However, it was still waaaay slower than it should be. Therefore, my new goal is to run a 5K. Right now, I'm not going to focus on a time goal, because my main goal is to RUN A 5K.

Sooo... I shall start training. And I'll keep you apprised along the way. :)

{my fellow runners; Lindsay, Sarah, Mike and Erica}

Happy First Day of Summer!


Summer begins today! At least, here in the Northern Hemisphere.

I know that I want this summer to count. I want it to be filled to the brim with fun, friends, laughter and love.

I want to go on trips and cheer on my friends as they play tennis, soccer, hockey and cycle. I want to eat lemon-blueberry sorbet everyday. I want to wake up to the sun streaming in and warming Oliver's fur. I want to come home when it's light and take a walk by the beach.

I've already started changing my life and 2010 is basically the beginning of the new Kate. Summer will only continue this trend.

This will be an amazing summer.

What are your summer plans?

Saturday, June 19, 2010

5 Ways To Use Burlap In A Wedding

1. As economical and earthy table linens.


2. Put coffee beans or flower bulbs in burlap bags, tie with string, and voila! For the foodies, chocolate or taffy would also work.

{via and via}

3. Small burlap pouches filled with cedar chips and hand-burned with guests' names make great place cards.


4. As part of your decor.


5. Incoporate burlap into your paper goods, like invitations, programs and menus.


Friday, June 18, 2010

Raspberry Sorbet, Anyone?

{I'm not exactly sure what that is supposed to be, but it's almost lunchtime, so I'm going with raspberry sorbet. Silly Brits and their crazy hats.}

Thursday, June 17, 2010


these cabled gloves from That Yarn Store.

Focus On... India Blue Jewels And A Giveaway!

{{giveaway closed}}

This necklace is what first caught my eye on etsy. I couldn't decide what it looked like: rocks in a river, vertebrae on a back, buds along a vine. It could be whatever you see in it, I suppose. India Blue, the shop behind this piece is backed by Heather, a San Francisco-based artist who uses precious materials to create a sense of serenity and confidence. Or at least, that's what I see in her shop. What do you see?

Read on for an interview with Heather and her generous offerings of a discount code (!) and a giveaway (!!).

Tell me some basic info about yourself.
I’m a farm-raised girl from Michigan, and have lived in the San Francisco area for the past 10 years since graduating college. In 2005 I married my sweetie who keeps me laughing and is my biggest supporter. We’re proud parents to a Whippet mix named Cheeto. When I’m not making jewelry or busy with other craft projects I love being outside (especially camping) and "off the grid" as much as possible. Having always aspired to be completely self-sufficient, my handicrafts naturally play into that aspiration.

What kind of mediums do you use and why?
For the past several years my obsession has been beads, gemstones and precious metals… basically anything I can string together and use to adorn myself. My favorite materials are those with interesting, detailed textures, especially crystal-dusted druzy gemstones and hammered texture metals.

What made you decide to sell on etsy?
My stockpile of gems and jewelry was amassing far more quickly than I was able to gift them to my friends and family. If I was to continue my pocket-emptying patronage of the dangerously addictive gem shows, I had to figure out a way to start selling my creations. A day job and busy weekends precluded craft fairs, so I looked online. Etsy offered the best design aesthetic of any of the sites available at the time, and was a perfect way to start out at my own pace, without a huge upfront investment.

 Where do you get your inspiration?
I’d love to say the shape of a cloud, or the fur on a baby’s ear or some other highly creative and esoteric source. But, alas, I must be honest and say my inspiration comes from the materials themselves. While I definitely try to infuse nature themes into my designs, I see the most life in a gemstone’s sparkle or a charm’s texture. I try not to force a design, but combine the beautiful materials in such a way that they speak for themselves.
What is your favorite music to craft by?
My go-to Pandora station while crafting is Lily Allen – light-hearted, happy-making “chick” music.

When it's cold outside... I light a fire, grab a blanket and snuggle up to my sweetie.

When I'm hungry... I feel proud that I haven't snacked between meals and have actually made it to "hungry"! Then, I eat.

When I need a boost... I head outside. Fresh air beats Diet Coke any day.

I wish I was/were... taller. I hate hemming pants.

If I could give one gift to anyone I know, it would be... an around-the-world travel experience to my mom. She's done so much to enable me to succeed and see the world, I'd love to return the favor (with me at her side, of course!)

If I could have coffee with anyone, it would be... Ryan Reynolds. Presuming, of course, it was at a shirtless-male coffee house. Gotta be honest.

If you were an animal, what would you be? A horse... graceful, running free.

What's your favorite piece of your own? I'm loving my gold collections now. It's been years and years since I’ve worn gold jewelry, but as I've diversified my shop I'm remembering how beautiful it looks against the skin.

What are your favorite blogs/websites right now? I used to be a massive celeb-gossip geek, reading all the snarky blogs. Now my favorites are less-celeb (but even more snarky) sites like Don't Even Reply. My idea of perfect, ridiculous, milk-spitting humor. I also love Jimmy R. to give me a roundup of all the hot news and other funny tidbits across the web on any given day.


Heather has generously offered a 15% discount if you mention you read this interview!

One of you lucky readers will win a $30 gift certificate to India Blue!!

- To be eligible for entry, you must be a follower of my blog through google friend connect or through your preferred RSS reader. -
- Make sure you leave me a way to contact you if you win. -
- Please leave separate comments for each entry. -

First entry (mandatory):
Head over to India Blue and tell me your favorite item!

 Extra entries (optional):
- Become a Facebook fan of India Blue.
- Sign up for the Kate and Oli mailing list.
- Add my button to your blog (in sidebar).
- Become a Facebook fan of Kate and Oli.
- Blog about this giveaway and leave me the link.

Fine print: Giveaway begins when it is posted and ends at 11:59pm pacific standard time June 25, 2010. A winner will be selected by a random number generator on June 26, 2010 and will be emailed promptly. India Blue will ship anywhere in the world!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Mr. Mailbox: Status - Overwhelmed

Mr. Mailbox is often privy to envelopes, packages and catalogs of all colors and sizes. But sometimes, Mr. Mailbox gets overwhelmed by the incredible amount of mail it's expected to hold. And hold. And hold.

Yes, I may have forgotten to get the mail for a few days. Which means that all of this was shoved into my teeny tiny mailbox (he's only about 3 inches tall).

One of the fabulous items in this pile was the official invitation to Saba and Hammad's wedding. You may recall I wrote about their nikkah here. Saba ordered these invitations from India and they are printed on silk. S I L K!

I also received some fabulous items I won in giveaways! This super awesome CD holder is from the super talented Moonika of kuutydruk (the giveaway was hosted by Paper In Style).

This little cutie hails from Fuzzy Muffins, purveyor of cuteness and plushie love. Fuzzy Muffins has a sweet blog here and the giveaway was hosted by the wonderful Adore By Nat! Isn't he cute? He now lives on my bed, but he still needs a name. Any ideas? I like Roger. Or maybe Liam.

Mr. Mailbox, I promise to empty you more often.
Then again, I've said the same thing to The Litter Box so often, he doesn't believe me anymore.

Kate and Oli Giveaway On Vegan Craftastic

The lovely Kala from Vegan Craftastic contacted me a few weeks ago about doing an interview and giveaway. I graciously accepted and now the fruits of our labor are ready for viewing! Check out the giveaway and interview here and be sure to check out her shop full of goodies like this knitting work in progress bag.

The Sharp Knife Of A Short Life

{i heard this song on the radio last week and have been listening to it ever since. it's so, so pretty.}

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Introducing Thrown Chain

My fabulous friend Sarah (owner of adorable mews, Spot and Snap) has started a blog about the other great love of her life (besides kittens), cycling! Sarah is a cyclist. Actually, Sarah is a Cyclist - with a capital "C". She has completed two century rides. For those of you who don't spend lots of time around a hard-core bicycler, that means ONE HUNDRED MILES. She's done that TWICE. So, basically, she's superhuman.

And now she has her very own home on the interwebs to talk all about cycling. Cycling gear, cycling food, cycling events. And even if you're not a hardcore cyclist, even if you have a *gasp* beach cruiser, her writing is so funny and fresh that you'll enjoy her blog. Check it out here and make sure you read the interview with yours truly about my first spin class experience.

Cheap Cheap!

{misspelled on purpose!}

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