jewelry chooseday

i was actually going to post a "mail art monday" part two (i have tons of fun packages to send out!). but then i was reading a recent post on the anthology and came across these incredible silver pieces by justine brooks in vancouver. i like that she is local to me and i'm head over heels* about these nature based designs.

it's funny because i'm not often stirred by natural forms. i love the earth but its flora and fauna don't generally get me excited. what i like about these however is that it seems clear that the artist has really studied the object. it's like she's (successfully) drawing attention to the small things - the little details in our world. finally, the way they are presented in silver, a material and colour not commonly found in nature, makes them all the more beautiful and fascinating to me.**

*which incidentally is what happens when you hang upside down backwards over a tree branch. i wonder if this is how miss. justine brooks got her inspiration??

**this does not relate to the post above - which means i'm totally disobeying the rules of asterisks. however, i thought you might be interested to know that someone googled "is there a lot of turbulence on a flight to hawaii 2011." for real - and then they ended up at my blog - which i think is hilarious and perfect. that's also totally something i would google!

mail art monday | atc swap

a couple weeks ago i signed up for an artist trading card swap. this involved making a card (or in my head, card like object - i made a bookmark so that it didn't go to watse) and sending it to a fellow blogger, whom in this case i did not know previously. i was lucky enough to have the organizer of the swap, sarah, send me her card. but i had no idea she had such mad drawing skills - look at this envelope she sent! you can learn more about sarah on her blog atlantic atlantis (say that three times fast!) below are pictures of her envelope, letter and card. following that are pictures of the card, letter and envelope i sent to blogger kate from scientific culture.

the front of sarah's envelope

 the back of sarah's envelope

sarah's atc

  the back of my atc, with my letter and envelope

 the front of my atc


book list

so i need your help - because i really don't know how i got myself into this mess. i usually read one book at a time. but somehow i have developed a pile and reading all of them at once is not working. so i'm going to tell you about each book, and why i have to or should or want to read it. and then you tell me which one o finish first. also, a list of what order to read them in would help.
here they are in no particular order (that's your job!):

auschwitz: a doctor's eyewitness account: j wants me to read this because he read it two weeks ago. i do have an interest in the holocaust and am interested in reading this historic account. however, i often read at night, and think it might be too gruesome for me to handle at that hour.

a new kind of monster: a book about a serial killer in ontario that j wants me to read because he just finished it. (no, i have no idea what is up with his reading choices but he's reading so i'm happy). i suspect he is going to just hand me every book he reads. what kind of obligation do i have in this situation?

the opposite of me: my beach book that i started reading in hawaii. it's actually pretty good and i have about two chapters left but it's so fluffy and light, i feel guilty not reading something more pertinent.

the dukan diet: i came across this on lulapalooza's blog - and then i came across it in every bookstore in town. i liked her review and the cover is pretty. i want to read at least a couple chapters before i begin the diet. obviously though you can see my lack of motivation in wanting to read it because it then involves a lack of eating.

water for elephants: a book that i read about six chapters of before getting distracted by hawaii beach reads. i really wanted to finish this so that i could see the movie in theatres. should i give up?

the god of small things: a book i bought and intended to read for a book club i sometimes attend. i have a week, maybe two before the next meeting. should i bother? what about all the others? what about my diet? ack!

oh, and i should mention my mother calls me like every week and recommends new authors and books for me to read...

help me!


what she made | with gentri lee

i want to introduce this post by talking about blogger friends. there have been a couple moments recently when i realized i consider my online friends...as actual friends. the first being, when i mailed out a link to my wedding photos, and i was scrolling through my email contacts looking for friends and family to click. i found myself stopping on all of my online blogging friends. now, i didn't actually send them the link, that may have been odd, but the point is i felt the urge to! secondly, i was considering getting rid of all my clothes, and missed a clothing swap at a friends place. so i thought about just emailing all my friends and letting them know they can stop by and pick through my clothes. when i considered who those friends would be, again i thought "my blogger friends - too bad they can't 'stop by'." anyways, maybe i'm a total dork but i find a real sense of community online.

today at isavirtue we have a guest post by one of my blogger friends - gentri lee. gentri and i bonded over our fear of flying and our love for giveaways. i'm so excited to have her here today. she is going to show you a diy - and it's a skill that is not in my own arsenal so pay attention!

"hello to all of you isavirtue readers! my name is gentri and i am visiting from my blog, gentri lee. i was so excited to win kaitlyn's giveaway which included this guest post. i've never won a giveaway before and was beginning to think it was impossible! (*a note from kaitlyn, gentri doesn't know this but when kaitlyn's husband pulled out the giveaway names he read her name as "gunther!")

today i'm going to show you how to make a rug. what's that? you don't think you can do it? well i have news for you! this is just about the easiest thing i've ever made - and that's coming from someone who stinks when it comes to crafting. oh, and i'm so sorry for the terrible photos. i don't have my computer at the moment and can't use my camera because of it. so you get iphone photos. hooray!

supplies |
heavy fabric - upholstery  fabric or really heavy fabric
rubber backing (you can find this at any fabric store)
e6000 glue
tape measure

first | you'll need to measure the space you want the rug to go. mine was small - just 37x30

second | you'll need to cut your fabric and rubber backing according to the measurements you took. i left an inch extra around the rubber backing - this makes it easier later.

third | lay your fabric upside down and place the rubber backing on top, then simply glue the rubber backing to the fabric. do not lay it with the backing on the bottom or the glue will leak through to your table! i pinned them together on the sides i wasn't gluing at the moment to keep it from slipping out of place.

fourth | let it dry for a good eight hours or more. when it's fully dry, go ahead and trim the edges - and then you're done.

now you've got a great rug made specifically for your space without the giant price tag (note: i used a fur fabric so i don't need to worry about fraying. if you pick a fabric that may fray, there are edging products you can buy).

i made this rug for my mom's surprise birthday craft room makeover. if you want to see the rest of the room and crafts, i'll be posting pictures today on my blog and the reveal pictures tomorrow! just pop on over to my blog (click here) and let me know you're visiting from isavirtue!

thank-you so much kaitlyn for letting me visit!


feature art friday

i almost never post images before i post my words* but these pictures certainly warrant it. i have come across these a couple times now - including on the jealous curator blog and honestly wtf. but i could look at these photographs by italian artist alberto seveso over and over again. it's ink. ink in water! i have to keep telling myself that because in certain areas it looks like anything but. the way it dances amidst the water and begins to combine with it near the top is just exquisite - bravo seveso, bravo!

* is it an ego thing?


dress desires

i am dying over these beautiful new pieces from my favourite online shop - all saints and all saints uk. these dresses are exquisite and in fact i have been drooling over promotional pictures of this first one for months. it's finally online but of course i forgot it would be way above my budget and therefore cause my mind to fight with my heart. and love love love the little dresses but they are so summery...and maybe too much for this girl's chest?

found | running in heels

working on the traveling journal project has allowed me to meet some amazing and enthusiastic people. one of them is nicole, who blogs at "running in heels." while a great deal of her blog thus far takes place in denver, colorado, she is currently living in portland. i'm a little sad that she is no longer in colorado, only because i'm not sure if i'll make it out to christo and jeanne-claude's "over the river" project next year and i kind of wanted to know someone who could describe it in great detail to me. but alas...

i like nicole's blog because it's so clear what she is passionate about. first and foremost, running is a big part of her life. and to that, i bow down to her in a fancy manner because that's something i find incredibly difficult (i think there may be a memory in this blog somewhere about "the time i tried to jog out of doors"). but jokes aside, she writes real posts and doesn't try to pass off pretty pictures as a blog post. i hope you get a chance to head on over there. and watch the traveling journal blog, as she will have the book in the near future!


jewelry chooseday

yesterday was the first day this year that really felt like summer. or maybe it felt that way because people kept saying "it finally feels like summer today." i'm very easily influenced as you can see. but regardless, it's putting me in a summery mood and makes me want to wear pieces like these happy stella & dot creations:


* i have a serious thang for coins in jewelry


victory rolls

i saw that an old friend on facebook had tried these victory rolls with her hair and asked her for tips. i won't lie and tell you it was easy. i spent thirty minutes trying really hard to create the rolls and failed miserably. the next morning i woke up and decided "not to try." of course this method always works. because i wasn't trying and had very low expectations - i totally rocked it. (for the record, it's way harder with long hair).

monday mail art | the traveling journal

i have had so much fun creating my pages for the debut of my project - the traveling journal (click to visit). and i'm not even done yet! i'm not sure whether i am going to decorate the package i put the journal in because i want to use one of those bubble mailers. oh, who am i kidding? i couldn't possible send something out without pimpin' it up a bit! when i think of the next traveling journal participant (carissa in vanderhoof, bc), receiving a boring old white bubble mailer...well the thought just makes me cry. for now, a sneak peek of some of my pages inside the journal!

(for more details about my process/thought process, visit the traveling journal site here)


the 100 follower giveaway winners!

and the winners are...

one | connie from daydream in color

two | genri from gentri lee

three | nicole from running in heels

congratulations ladies! connie, i hope you enjoy the necklace i made (bites nails nervously...). you've all won some of my beautiful stationery, as well as a guest post or feature. i hope to hear from you all soon. if i don't...don't worry i'll contact you!


what i made

sorry, i've been sooo busy working on a large wedding invitation order that i haven't made anything interesting this week. except for these awesome giveaway prizes that is!


feature art friday

did you enter the giveaway yet? click here

when i was in hawaii last week j and i went out to the shops the day before we left. as we were strolling, we came across a place called galerie 103. obviously i loved the name right away (i seriously have a thing for galleries with numbers in the title. if it has number, i'm there! strange i know, but something about it always feels so chic to me). we stepped inside the space and i was so thrilled to see that this was indeed a contemporary art gallery, and not a mish mash of wooden sculptures and beach photographs. it was a pleasure to meet the curator/owner of the gallery, bruna stude. i spoke with her for awhile and it was clear to me we share many of the same ideas about art, presentation and sharing it with the public.

i immediately noticed the artist statement: usually cut from vinyl and adhered to the wall, this statement was written directly on the wall by the artist herself, sally french. i'm tickled by this because it's always something i imagined doing (curating) in an art gallery - writing or painting directly on the walls. and in fact "direct" is the key word here. because the words were written in the artist's own hand, i felt like she was speaking to me directly. her work from "the black spring" is direct as well:

images via galerie 103


the traveling journal

first: did you enter this giveaway??

*UPDATE MAY 20 | GUESS WHAT - THIS PROJECT IS FULL!!! i'm going to have to cap the participants because at this point the project is going to take six months to a year! i'm so excited to do this with all of you and hopefully it won't be the last one!

lula from lulapalooza was so kind to debut this awesome project for me! i'm really excited to do this!


wedding part three | the ceremony


before you read about how exquisitely beautiful my wedding ceremony was (dripping tears and dribbling noses aside), did you enter the isavirtue one hundred follower giveaway? you must do so immediately because the prizes include pink stationery and that only happens once in a blue moon* (unless of course you all love it, in which case i will maybe consider putting it in my etsy store - i'm weak like that).

enter the giveaway here!

*i was going to write "once in a pink moon" but i'm not sure you can just change colloquialisms like that and expect that people will understand what you mean. not that i don't think you guys are super smart.


the 100 follower giveaway / closed

i know it's not much, but i sure am proud of my 100 followers! i'm so excited and to celebrate i've put together a fantastic giveaway for my fantastic readers. there's tons of prizes and tons of ways to enter! (i'm going to stop repeating words now...). for the first time, i'm offering pink stationery instead of black and white - in honour of my pink blog of course!

said amazing prizes are as follows:

my handmade necklace!

first draw prize
one | a very cool necklace made by yours truly
(please note...i'm totally not a professional but i sure am proud of this necklace!)
two | a pink butterfly stationery set that includes five envelopes, five sheets of writing paper,
three miniature envelopes and three miniature cards.
 three | a guest post or feature on isavirtue before the end of may.

second draw prize
one | a pink butterfly stationery set that includes five envelopes, five sheets of writing paper and
five adorable envelope seals.
two | a guest post or feature on isavirtue before the end of may.

third draw prize:
one | a pink butterfly stationery set that includes three miniature envelopes,
three miniature cards and six gift tags.
two | a guest post or feature on isavirtue before the end of may.

how to enter | mandatory
be a follower of isavirtue and tell me your feelings regarding pink.

more ways to enter | just for kicks and squiggles
(leave a comment for each entry please)
add isavirtue on bloglovin (this is on the honour system...)
add an isavirtue item to your favourites and tell me why you love it
blog about this giveaway and leave a link
facebook this giveaway and tag kaitlyn webb patience or Isavirtue

the winners will be chosen next sunday night, may 22|11 at 9:00 pm PST
good luck!!!


mail art monday

before i show you my latest piece of mail art i wanted to share with you a beautiful excerpt from a book i just read. the book is called "the six rules of maybe" by deb caletti. it was my "light" poolside read but ended up being quite good! the narrator is a seventeen year-old who is very observant of other people's lives and feels a need to help them. she lives across from a retired mail carrier who finds great joy in checking the mail, even when it's flyers and bills (i'm like that too in the sense that i'm happy to get anything - i'd rather have bills over nothing if i had to choose!)

when the girl's neighbour starts showing signs of alzheimers, she begins to create a surprise for him - hundreds of origami cranes made from mail-out flyers. she also creates a whole load of mail for him. postcards and letters from "friends" around the world. she sneaks over to his house one night, and fills the mailbox so full she has to start creating piles of mail on the ground. finally, she ties all of the cranes to the tree in his front yard. this is his response:
'the cries came from the front yard. i didn't even have time to open my eyes and look before mom yelled from downstairs. "scarlet? scarlet, come down! what did you do?"
mom pointed to what i already knew was there - the tree, full and bright and glorious in the morning light, shimmery with color and surprise, the mail pile as big as an enormous snowfall - and to what i didn't know was there, clive weaver, bent in half laughing. laughing so, so hard.
i put my hand to my mouth. "surprise, clive weaver!" i shouted. "surprise for you! my heart felt so big and wide.
"it's christmas, scarlet," he said. "it's goddamn christmas!"
and that was the best possible outcome i thought. because if it was christmas when you didn't expect it, it was possible, just maybe possible, that it might be christmas any day at all.'

beautiful huh? okay, i know that was a longer than normal intro to my images - but here is a piece of mail art i made* for my mother that includes a belated mother's day gift/hawaii souvenir.* i won't tell you what the gift is in case she reads this though...

*i'm really into covering my envelopes with packing tape. it allows me to create collages, and also protects it completely from the roughness of the postal service.

*i'm also sending out my hawaiian postcards tomorrow - i know that sounds like cheating but i bought them on the last day and didn't know where to get postage!