In the spacious but homey split-level basement of Cody’s Books, I always find myself drawn to the tables displaying the Cavallini & Co. stationery products. I can’t seem to keep my eyes off the passel of varicolored notebooks, notecards, carte postale (postcards), flashcards and magnets and accessories, among other products.
Many of the designs embody a neo-Victorian aesthetic, reminiscent of decoupage and Beatrix Potter books, whereas the frames have a distinctly Italianate flavor. Whole maps feature prominently in Cavallini’s collection of gift wrap, making the paper itself a gift. (With Cavallini map gift wrap, I don’t use tape and I advise the recipient to open the package carefully without tearing the paper.) The file folders are works of art, almost too beautiful to kept in a drawer.
Posted March 9, 2006 by Mariva in arts, books, decor, gifts, home
The Solutions catalog offers all sorts of, well, solutions — or, as the company puts it, “products that make life easier.” Lest you think that Solutions products are akin to Kenji Kawakami’s 101, 99 More and The Big Bento Box of Unuseless Japanese Inventions: The Art of Chindogu, check out this sampling of potentially useful items:
If you need help with home improvement or getting organized, Solutions also provides a handy list of free clever tips.
« Hide it
Posted February 22, 2006 by Mariva in decor, entertaining, gadgets, gifts, home, innovations, kitchen, resources, travel
Half the fun of a gift is the packaging — and all the better if the wrapping paper is unique. If you’re lucky enough to have this unique designer paper, would you use it to wrap a gift — or would you frame and display the paper itself?
Posted February 21, 2006 by Mariva in arts, decor, gifts, home
Whoo-hoo! Macy’s is having a big fat Presidents’ Day Sale on apparel, jewelry and shoes for him, her and kids — but today is the last day. Also, this is the last week of the annual Home Sale on bed & bath, dining, housewares, luggage and rugs.
Posted February 20, 2006 by Mariva in bath & spa, decor, entertaining, fashion, home, jewelry, kitchen
Ever feel nostalgic for products or supplies that you remember from childhood, but haven’t been able to find in years? Your search may be over. The Vermont Country Store offers a wide variety of products that your parents or grandparents used — all brand-new and recently manufactured. How is this possible? The proprietors get permission to re-create vintage products as close to the originals as possible — including design and packaging — and bring them to market for another generation of consumers. If you’re not in the neighborhood of one of the stores in Weston or Rockingham, Vermont, you can order vintage games, classic New England apparel (warning: not for the fashion-conscious), long-lost fragrances and even food and beverages online. If you can’t find what you want, let them know, and they’ll consider re-creating it for you.
Posted February 15, 2006 by Mariva in bath & spa, business, decor, edibles, fun, games, gifts, home, innovations, kitchen, resources
Tarzjay is having a big furniture sale this week. Get cute stuff for your home without spending a fortune.
Posted February 7, 2006 by Mariva in decor, home
I can’t imagine a sweeter Valentine’s Day gift than a personalized teddy bear — especially one from the Vermont Teddy Bear Company (sister company to the PajamaGram Company), which makes high-quality, hand-crafted, fully jointed huggable friends that are guaranteed to last a lifetime.* As the company name indicates, each teddy bear is made in America, specifically in the Green Mountain State of Vermont.
To make your gift even more special — now that the original "-gram" communications service has ended — consider sending a Bear-Gram, which includes a bear of your choice, delicious gourmet chocolate and a personal message printed on a colorful gift card — all encased in a fun gift box, complete with an "air hole" so that your bear can get fresh air on his or her journey. You can choose from over one hundred Valentine’s Day Bears, including the "Heart Throb" bear pictured here.
*How does the lifetime guarantee work? Simple: if your bear is ever "injured," you can admit him or her to the Bear Hospital, no proof of bear health insurance required! (A full-coverage, lifetime health plan is included with each purchase of a Vermont Teddy Bear.) And how might a bear get injured? See for yourself with the “When Bad Things Happen to Good Bears” video footage of bear bloopers.
« Hide it
Posted February 1, 2006 by Mariva in decor, edibles, fun, gifts, holidays, home
This patchwork wooden frame looks like the hand-built exterior of a tropical beach cabin. This might be because, according to the product description, the frame is handmade in Thailand, using recycled wood from old boats, houses, schools and buildings.
In the print catalog, the colors look even richer. That’s an actual turquoise you’re looking at. Keep in mind, though, that because each frame is one of a kind, designs and colors vary slightly from frame to frame. Fits 4" x 6" photos.
Posted January 12, 2006 by Mariva in arts, decor, gifts, home
Does scented paper exist? I’ve been intrigued by the concept since seeing Legally Blonde, in which Reese Witherspoon’s character Elle Woods submitted her resume on paper that was not only pink, but scented as well, to give it that "extra something." After conducting my own exhaustive research, however, I found out that you can’t just purchase a ream of scented paper at, say, Office Depot.
The only products I found that were even close to this mythical scented paper included:
I also found a couple of resources for do-it-yourselfers, so that you can either infuse a scent into existing paper or make your own scented herb paper from scratch.
I hope someone eventually makes inexpensive scented paper that’s suitable for printing. A savvy entrepreneur could fill some niche markets in the wedding, home crafting, scrapbooking, stationery, dining napkin or specialty paper industries. Maybe Martha or Kate — or, more practically, Wausau Paper or Gartner Studios — should look into it.
« Hide it
Posted December 28, 2005 by Mariva in bath & spa, business, decor, entertaining, gifts, home, innovations
robin’s egg soaps in apothecary jar
These soaps are so beautiful that you’ll have to convince yourself to use them — and you’ll want to. The aquamarine blue soaps contain fragrant chamomile and meadowsweet extracts, and the “speckles” on the eggs are bits of oatmeal and wheat bran for gentle exfoliation. Best of all, these French-milled, high-lather, vegetable-based soaps are "nested" inside an old-fashioned apothecary jar.
Posted December 21, 2005 by Mariva in bath & spa, decor, gifts, home