Stamp It Out

I'm a fan of stamps. 

Christmas 2010's highlight? The library date stamp—it was number one on my list and Santa came through. Quirky, I know, but there is something about sending a letter with the date imprinted on it that I just love. We used stamps for our wedding as well, adding fast and easy charm to place cards, gift tags, signs... And now, thanks to custom stamps, the possibilities are endless.

I calligraphed, digitized and ordered a few—a 'to:' to add a fast hit of calligraphy to gift tags and envelopes, the F&W logo for obvious reasons, and a 'yo!', well, just because. I'm currently working on a coordinating monogram and return address order that I think is going to be just lovely.

stamped...signed, sealed, delivered.


Cheer up

Here, have an antioxidant...


Status Update

Some say it's a right of passage, that things didn't really happen until they're made official on Facebook. You're not really in a relationship until your status says so (my years of marriage were only recently legitimized on the site). Your birthday only really happens if Facebook sends a notification to all your friends. So here goes nothing, Flourish & Whim is making this official...Facebook official.

So, now for a request that pre-Facebook would wreak of desperation (even post social media it sounds a bit forlorn)...will you be my friend?

Like F&W here!


Let's Toast

5x7 flat invitations // engagement photo by Sarah Shreves // F&W calligraphy and design

Beautiful couple, stunning photo...

loved working with Mel on her engagement party invitations and am smitten with the final product. The calligraphed banner coupled sweetly with the natural beauty of Mel & Austin and their woodsy surroundings. I love the radiant glow and intimate moment photographer Sarah Shreves captured along with the touches of hand drawn whimsy.

Cheers to Mel & Austin, Happy Engagement!


Home Office No More

Lauren McIntosh's letterpressed alphabet and Tall Cow screen prints hang above my desk.

I have rejoined the "going to the office" ranks...and it feels good. I've begun working out of a studio in the Mission—it's a 3 floor warehouse space filled with artists, creativity and some lingering turpentine fumes

While my neighborhood is blanketed in a miles deep marine layer—aka sad, cold, gray fog to end all fogs—the Mission has sunshine, warm temps and blue skies. In addition to the amicable weather, I'm around the corner from Heath Ceramics' new outpost, steps away from a great cafe with bluegrass night on Thursdays, blocks from the best super burritos in the city and nearby friends for lunch time meet ups, snack breaks and strolls. The days of home office isolation are over!

My studio no longer doubles (triples) as our living room and "guest bedroom". No more putting everything away at the end of each day. No more stifling clutter. I sit below a wall of windows and have what feels like miles of desk space. It's a dream. Inks, pens and drawing paper, sketchbooks, watercolors and brushes, laptop, plants and art books all have a home and there's still (still!) space to work. There's room to breathe...and create.

Looking forward to what's going to come from studio #319.


Hostess Gift 2.0

I've already shared my hostess gift revelation for dinner parties—breakfast bread is the new bottle of red—but what to bring for a whole weekend at a friend's gorgeous getaway? 

Stripey candles!

Candles aren't something you're apt to splurge on, but when they're striped? And over a foot tall? To say nothing of the endless color combinations (fern-peacock, sage-linen, wasabi-mint...) We have a set on our kitchen table and they're pure awesome, you can't help but smile at their cheery disposition. Grinning at inanimate objects? I blame the stripes.

All that to say, the stripe, smile, and splurge factors spell perfect hostess gift in my book.

Ribboned, wrapped and monogrammed, we're ready for a weekend in the mountains. To Tahoe!

For Emma

Cue up Bon Iver's For Emma for sweet baby Emma Rose, born July 25th.

Knit up, pom-pommed and packaged, this tiny hat is en route to Chicago. Word has it that she was born with a head of dark hair, so come winter in the Windy City this ought to keep her head warm and little locks in place.

Welcome to the world, Emma. 


Dinner Party

This dinner party with our newly engaged friends called for a little fancy, so we prettied up our normally verrrry casual Friday Pizza Night tradition with place cards, menus, fizzy cocktails, the works. It was great fun to prepare and even more so to eat, enjoy and toast to our friends and their happily ever after.

The Salted Caramel Bundt recipe came from Chronicle Books' Cake Simple—a whole book of bundts! (This classic scene from My Big Fat Greek Wedding, anyone?)

Heath Ceramics is an eternal favorite for everything simple and beautiful—their commitment to the craft, impeccable use of color, and timeless forms have made them a favorite around the Bay Area and beyond. Heath recently opened an incredible new store in San Francisco's Mission District, so I was more than happy for this excuse to peruse the space and pick up a little gift. 


Farm Fresh

After our friends generously shared their CSA farm box bounty with us, we were flush with carrots. I loved how charming and homely the organic CSA carrot was juxtaposed to our long, lean and mean Safeway select. 


Three Cheers!

No need for elaborate centerpieces or decorations when the drinks pack this much darling. As party goers mingled with their bottle in hand, these stripey straws and cheery exclamations brightened up more than just the bar. 

I'll drink to that!


Happy Birthday from one Julie to another; silver ink on scarlet A2 envelope // F&W style: julie


White gouache on eggplant A2 envelope // F&W style: samantha


Color Ways

Color combinations and inspirations are everywhere—nature, fashion, food, interior design... To contain them for quick reference, I keep a color section in my sketchbook of magazine tears, fabric swatches, and written descriptions for when no picture exists. One note reads like a recipe: celadon & cool mint + royal blue splash + equal parts golden yellow, sand, cream.

I love color.

When faced with a blank tote and a rainbow of ink possibilities, I get excited and simultaneously overwhelmed by the potential. So much potential. This mag tear helped reign in my imagination and inspired my printing. 

And I think it's safe to say that gold adds a touch of fabulous to everything. Look at that sparkle!


Boxed Up

You know summer has truly arrived when the berries make their ripe debut at the local farmer's market. I buy them up and quickly tote them home to bake into some sweet, summery confection. 

All labeled and boxed up for delivery, these berry cakes tasted as sweet as they looked. 


Cookie Bar

A true cookie bar—the host divulged that these blondies were made with Bourbon! (The Drunk Blondies recipe came from Back in the Day Bakery's great new cookbook, perfect for when life calls for an extra stick of butter.)


Produce Signage


Black ink on mint 5 3/4 square envenlope // F&W style: olson


Brown Bag It

Goody bags with flair.


Oh Baby!

After receiving a baby hat order, my mind was a flutter with visions of colorful yarn and pom poms...lots of pom poms. As I continued reading the request, the plot thickened—the hats would be gifted at a gender reveal party so they had to be gender neutral. Nooo! And not just neutral, but ready to quickly assume a girlish sweetness or boyish charm at the drop of a hat (ha, pun.)

I refused to accept pastel yellow as a solution. Or any pastels for that matter. Why can't babies have a little fun? So after gazing at Imagiknit's wall of yarn and (over) analyzing options, I landed on this creamy neutral with fun, poppy stripes that could swing either way...the red reads sweetly coral when I pictured it on a girl and fire engine when imagined on a boy. And it's no secret that I love mustard yellow, it's a neutral that would look darling with a bright fuscia onsie or handsome with navy blue.

Wrapped in gold, adorned with more pom poms, these precious little numbers were packaged up, sent cross country and ready to learn their destiny.

*UPDATE it's a girl! Break out the bold florals and hot pinks!


Black ink on lime A4 envelope // F&W style: abotts