{etsy love: red}

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Red Roan natural lotion from Hous of Gloi

3 jars of Western Cowboy soy blend candles from True Texas Scents

Ika Bags  from Paris brings you this nautical tote

Such a lovely ring from Psychotic Reaction

Earrings from Beppies

Red Velvet BabyCakes from Addy B's Cakes
$20 (2 doz.)

Cupcake stand from Vessels and Wares

Red wine antioxidant tea from Sage and Mage

Red molded sugar crowns for your tea by Le Chic Bakery Boutique

Cherry Berry lip balm from Bungalow Bath & Body

{june giveaway #4}

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Hello friends! We have one more giveaway this month for you....to conclude a month of fabulous giveaways. This one actually goes into July--enter by 9pm Friday, July 2nd. Winner will be announced Saturday.

This giveaway is actually for my male readers or for that special guy in your life. 

The prize package consists of 3 men's products from Menscience and Emmett Cooper Haircare:

Styling Paste from Emmett Cooper Haircare (used by Josh Duhamel, Peyton Manning and the men from Dancing With the Stars)

$22 value (full size, 2.5oz)

Menscience Microfine Face Scrub 
(sampler pack)

Menscience Anti-Aging Formula with Peptides-GABA-Retinol
(sampler pack)

How to Enter

*Enter a comment on this post.


*Become a C & G Facebook Fan. Do this by using the "Like" button on the page.


*Become a follower of this blog.

*Open to adults over 18 years of age. Immediate family members or paid advertisers of C & G are not eligible for prizes.

Winner will be drawn July 2 at 9pm.

{bixbe finds}

I recently told you about Bixbe. This new project from the CEO of 1000 Markets is a fantabulous tool for sellers across the board--from handmade to vintage to clutter clearing individuals. If you're into social media--and who isn't these days?--Bixbe is a new resource quickly gaining popularity.

Here are some Chic & Green favorite Bixbe items:

Hand spun Merino wool & silk yarn from Obelisk Fiber Arts
$50 (for over 400 yards!)

A beautiful sterling and gemstone pendant from Alaiyna B. Designs

Sampler Village Sampler Box featuring several Etsians

I think this is simply brilliant. It's a collection of coloring pages for adults from Cynthia Emerlye

Stunning earrings from Mannybeads

Jeweltones scarf...so fresh! 

Garden Pond from Jewel Fire Designs

This is *gorgeous*! A Polaroid painting by Jeane Vogel

Necklace by Loubird Handmade

{on a burt's bees kick}

Monday, June 28, 2010

I have been on a major Burt's Bees kick these days. I used to use the Burt's Bees skin care way back when I was pregnant with Nick. That's 7 years ago now. I liked, but didn't love the facial products. Burt's Bees has come a long way since then. I hadn't tried their facial products again until a few months back.

If you're a regular reader, you'll know that I am really loving the Burt's Bees Radiance Facial Cleanser. It is ultra gentle, but it also works to exfoliate the skin with a multi-fruit acid complex. It contains the same blend of fruit and sugar enzymes (sold through suppliers as "Multifruit") that I used to use in my Fruit Enzyme Facial Cream that I made. It also has royal jelly, which I love in skin care.

I have had a pretty set routine these months--the Radiance Cleanser, Thayer's Alcohol Free Rose Petal Witch Hazel Toner, Avon Ultimate Age Repair Cream SPF 25, Derma E Tropical Solutions Anti-Aging Night Cream, Avon Clinical Eye Lift, and an antioxidant serum from Juice Beauty.

A few weeks back, I started to change up parts of that regimen. First of all, my night cream started making my skin break out after I had gotten about 1/2 way through the jar. I also liked the Juice Beauty serum, but it really is overpriced (in my opinion). I also really like the Avon Clinical Eye Lift's new version, but I guess I am always on the quest for something that could be better.

I now, for the time being at least, have found some really great replacements. I have been using these for about a month with great results! I find that my skin does change seasonally, so I may need a bit more moisture as we get to fall and winter.

I have been using 2 more products from Burt's Bees that I simply adore. They are from their pomegranate-based Naturally Ageless line and they work well and are ultra gentle. I also will preface this by saying I have been getting mine on eBay. They are new and boxed from sellers with great feedback, but they are 50-60% less in cost than you'll pay on the Burt's Bees site. Just do a search and you'll find some good deals. If you're hesitant to try, Target often has good deals on Burt's Bees.
The first one I will recommend is the Line Smoothing Eye Cream. It retails for $25. I got mine on eBay for just under $10. If you are at all sensitive to scents, this one you may want to bypass. It has a very subtle floral aroma. I wish Burt's would eliminate any type of unnecessary fragrance, but I am thankful that this recipe doesn't bother me at all.

This is a light, semi-cooling eye cream. I can feel it soothe the undereye area. It absorbs right in without leaving a greasy residue, yet it really moisturizes. It contains natural ingredients such as horse chestnut, sunflower oil, olive oil, magnolia bark, pomegranate, evening primrose oil, and more. I really like this one, especially at night.

The next product I adore even more. It is the Intensive Repairing Serum. It also retails for $25. I paid $11 on eBay for this one. It is all-natural and just makes my skin feel like silk. You'll find rosehip seed and jojoba as the first two ingredients, followed by so many other wonderful nutrients for the skin. There is antioxidant green tea, calendula, wheat germ oil, and an ingredient I love for skin care--Bulgarian rose oil. This is just lovely.

You only need one small drop and it just feels so wonderful. I apply this as my night time treatment product. In the winter, I most likely will need a cream over it. Right now, though, this is perfect on its own. After cleansing and toning, I apply this at night all over and then use the eye cream as well.

Compared to the Juice Beauty serum, I actually prefer the texture of this one once more. I also like how my skin feels when I wake up in the morning.

I am a big proponent of natural facial care products and am so happy that Burt's Bees has been meeting most of my skin's needs. I still prefer the Thayer's Rose Petal Toner and I like the peptides and SPF I am getting from the paraben-free Avon day cream. Otherwise, Burt's Bees is my one stop skin care line these days.

Speaking of Burt's Bees, the winner of the body wash from Friday's giveaway is Renee B. and she was notified via my Facebook Fans page. Congrats!

{burt's bees giveaway ends tonight}

Friday, June 25, 2010

June's third giveaway is going on now through tonight! One lucky winner will be sent a 4 ounce Burt's Bees All-in-One Body Wash. This "Outdoor" wash is naturally scented with peppermint, spearmint, rosemary, and lime essential oils and can be used from head to toe. It earns a five star rating by customers on the Burt's Bees website!
Contest ends Friday, June 25th at 9pm EDT.

How to Enter

*Enter a comment on this post.


*Become a C & G Facebook Fan. Do this by using the "Like" button on the page.


*Become a follower of this blog.

*Open to adults over 18 years of age. Immediate family members or paid advertisers of C & G are not eligible for prizes.

Winner will be drawn June 25 at 9pm.

Congrats to Geo G., winner of the NVEY ECO eyeshadow!

{foot finds}

It's 1:10 am. This blogger drank way too much coffee this evening. It is only day 2 of summer vacation and I am already tired. The boys have an endless supply of energy that I just cannot compete with...and the fact that they were bugging each other all day long today. After waking up at 6am with the chirping birds, I found myself extra sleepy this evening. I should've headed to bed when the kiddos did, but I wanted to stay up and have some time with my hubby. I made coffee and had too much. Hubby has been snoring since 11:20 and I am now wide awake! 

I thought I would share a shopping bargain with you. I love sandals. I typically find fun ones on the clearance at TJ Maxx and Target, but I have been looking for others. I found 2 great pairs of summer footwear on eBay the other day, both new in the box. One is actually a pair of flip flops--Havaianas. If you know about these, you know that they are super comfortable, practically indestructible, and last forever. The same cannot be said for a typical pair of flip flops. I posted a picture of a pair I happened to like the other day and ended up finding them on eBay for a few dollars less.

While I was browsing, I also found a pair of leather I.N.C. thong style sandals for the tiny price of $4.99. I'm really eager for them to arrive. Hopefully Mr. Fed Ex will drop them off tomorrow afternoon this afternoon.

DIY Thursday: Brown Sugar Scrub

Thursday, June 24, 2010

I received an email from a C & G reader, Emily, the other day. Here is what it said:

"I once tried a body scrub with brown sugar from Fresh. It was soooo nice, but a real luxury. I would like to make my own and I really enjoy your DIY posts. I do not live near a store with natural oils and I cannot order $50 worth of supplies on-line. Can you give readers a recipe for a body scrub made from items commonly found at the supermarket?"

Sure thing! This super simple recipe is for Emily and anyone else out there who would like a very affordably priced, effective product.

Everyone needs some exfoliation. Even in the summer time when we're generally not as dry, a good scrub can make your arms and legs smooth and radiant. It also provides the perfect canvas for applying tinted bronzers and self tanners.

The cult favorite body scrub mentioned by Emily is a $65 product from Fresh called Brown Sugar Body Polish. Is it worth $65 for 14 ounces? No way, Jose. It is a nice, albeit very overpriced product.

Today, we're going to make a similar body scrub using items you can find at the grocery store. After I post that recipe, I will post a "fancier" recipe using many of the same ingredients found in the Fresh product. The second recipe will be much, much closer in terms of oils used and scent. Please keep in mind, though, that the first sugar scrub recipe will be just as effective!

Now, I will use oils found right at any grocery store. You may not live by a huge Wegmans or a Whole Foods. Maybe you're in a tiny town with a small grocery store. Surely, there will be canola and olive oils, though!

Easy Peasy Sugar Scrub:

3/4 cup Turbinado Sugar (Sugar in the Raw)
1/4 cup Light Brown Sugar
1/4 cup canola oil
1/4 cup olive oil

The proportion you want--no matter how much you're making--is 2 parts sugar to 1 part oil. This is what I personally feel is ideal. You can always alter it if you like it firmer or softer.

You only need those ingredients! I also suggest adding in a squirt of honey. If you have buckwheat honey, even better! It contains an abundance of antioxidant protection. Do you have vitamin E capsules? Squeeze in a bit of vitamin E from your vitamin.

Gently combine in a mixing bowl and you're ready to scrub!

Now we'll make the "fancy" version to make it much closer to the Fresh....

Ingredients in Fresh: Sucrose, Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil, Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Kernel Oil, Simmondsia Chinenesis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Oenothera Biennis (Evening Primrose) Oil, Passiflora Incarnata Seed Oil, Panax Ginseng Root Extract, Tocopherol, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Citrus Grandis (Grapefruit) Peel Oil, Citrus Medica Limonum (Lemon) Peel Oil, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Oil, Citrus Aurantium Bergamia (Bergamot) Fruit Oil, Citrus Medica Vulgaris Peel Oil, Litsea Cubeba Fruit Oil, Cymbopogon Schoenanthus Oil, Limonene, Citral, Linalool, Citronellol, Geraniol

Make your own version--first of all, we'll skip the questionable ingredients. They serve no purpose and are irritating. This one can be mixed up so many different ways. I make this often, because I already happen to have most of the oils on hand.

The sugars can be purchased at the grocery store. The oils can be found at Mountain Rose Herbs, Wholesale Supplies Plus, or many natural foods stores. I recommend Mountain Rose Herbs for the essential oils, too.

*Turbinado Sugar-I like Sugar in the Raw brand
*Brown Sugar -I just use the Wegmans Light Brown Sugar
*Sweet Almond Oil
*Jojoba Oil
*Apricot Kernel Oil
*Evening Primrose Oil
*Vitamin E Oil
*Sunflower Oil
*Grapefuit Essential Oil
*Lemon Essential Oil
*Sweet Orange Essential Oil
*Bergamot Essential Oil

Again, I will give you proportions because you may want to make several jars to share with friends or a tiny batch for just one application.

Use 2 parts sugar to 1 part oil. Here is an example--Since this recipe contains many oils, I would combine the different oils into a 1/2 cup measuring cup. There is no right or wrong way. Just make sure you only use a small amount of vitamin E oil. It is quite thick and you only need a tiny bit. Use 3/4 cup turbinado sugar and 1/4 cup brown sugar. Add in about 10 drops of each essential oil. Combine these in a mixing bowl and stir gently with a spatula. Store in an airtight container. When you make this, you'll notice it smells SO MUCH like the Fresh scrub....and it's not $65!


Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Happy Birthday, Benjamin Lou.

Ben at age 1

My baby boy is now FIVE. He was born at 3:26am on Thursday, June 23. I honestly have no idea where time goes, because my sweet little monkey is still a baby to me. He starts kindergarten in September and I am having a very hard time dealing with that!

I know that Ben is still the Ben he was when he was 4 yesterday. It sounds very silly, but to me saying he is FIVE seems so much harder than FOUR. Four is closer to three, to being a toddler, to being a baby.

New Pieces; New Site!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

I haven't shared any new creations lately and thought I would on this ultra muggy and early evening while dinner is finishing in the oven. First of all, I have been working on something new--the official Loubird Handmade website. It is coming along slowly but surely. It features my new business logo, which was made by a talented Etsian. Her shop is called Faith Above.

I have been selling happily over at what I believe is the best online marketplace for handmade artisans--1000 Markets. The CEO of 1000 Markets, Matt Trifiro, recently launched the beta version of a new project called Bixbe.

Bixbe is something I was a bit apprehensive to try. Quite frankly, I made a promise to my family that my business would never take over my life the way my skin care line eventually did. My jewelry business is truly part-time. It's on my own terms. Most of all, it is fun.

Skeptical me decided to try this new tool out. It is not an online marketplace where you would set up a shop a la Etsy, 1000 Markets, or Artfire. It basically is limitless for sellers. You can sell an old DVD or book you no longer want. You can sell your artisan wares. You can list a special, password-protected custom listing for a favorite customer. Buyers with wholesale accounts can buy their shop inventory from their favorite sellers with ease. What buyers seem to like the most, though, is how fast and easy shopping is!

Bixbe is really a tool to use with existing shops, Twitter, or Facebook. As someone with Facebook fan pages and a Twitter account with well over 1000 followers, Bixbe was made for me. I can, in less than one minute, list an item and have it posted to Twitter and Facebook. I can embed a sleek and modern widget on a blog. One way I've found success using this new tool is with my new website. You can browse my boutique and click to buy with Paypal so quickly. You don't have to come up with a user name or register--it really is so simple for shoppers who want a hassle free transaction.

Another super convenient tool is a simple "For Sale" tab on my Facebook fans page. People visiting the page can shop right from Facebook. Since Facebook now has more visitors than Google, this is a smart option for all business owners who realize how important social media is to e-commerce. In fact, it most likely is the future of e-commerce.

So what new things have I been making these days? Check them out:

Just got this one done...will be listed soon!

{99 cent nail note}

It is Nick's last day of school today and I'll busy doing some errands with Benjamin this morning after our morning date. Speaking of Ben, he will turn FIVE tomorrow! How is that possible? Even more impossible in my mind is the fact that Nick will be a second grader in the fall!

I just had to stop in a give a quick rave for a new nail color I bought over the weekend. It is another green shade...more of a shimmery teal, actually. In the bright sun, it almost has a silver meets forest tint to it. It changes and I like it! Best of all, this nail polish is free of phthalates, toleune, and formaldehyde. Did I mention it was less than a buck?

The formula is Wet N Wild Wild Shine. The shade is Caribbean Frost. I just put it on my toes Sunday. No chipping yet, but my toe nail color doesn't chip as easily as my finger nails.

Just thought I'd share!


Monday, June 21, 2010

Fabulous bag from Austin's Jenny N Design

A truly glam little apron from Pretty Little Pearl

I love this set--it is made of black and white beads and features napkins rings, placemats, and coasters.

Zebra in green--pillows by Designs By Me Fun
$29 ea

Earrings from T Marie's on 1000 Markets

LOVE this clock! It's from Mad Tea Party Furniture, also on 1000 Markets

I really want this chair. My hubby says it is "tacky". He just doesn't understand...

Hmmm. I wonder if he would like this seat with zebra? It's bamboo, too.

I think I may just order these Havaianas from Zappos. They last FOREVER!

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