>>Frances>> Phoenix Favs

A Beautiful Mess Edited Photos (1 of 1)-3Frances, http://www.francesvintage.com/, a central Phoenix one-stop shop for decor, accessories, Indie Designer clothing, baby gifts, games, locally made jewelry, and Phoenician mementos.  This eclectically inspired boutique, located right off of Central and Camelback, has been critically acclaimed and has been named “Best of Phoenix” since opening its doors in 2006.  Georgeanne Bryant and her crew are vignette wizards and make each small space seem like its own separate shop.  I have undoubtedly stood for up to ten minutes at a time looking at the same two square feet. of  carefully curated trinkets and artistry; wandered around and then came back to look again, always finding something new.  Not only does Frances showcase amazing finds throughout their store but they host workshops as well, i.e. making buttons, flower arranging, Holiday workshops, blogshops etc.  They also host food trucks in their parking lot and put on an amazing Crafeteria show in the fall, featuring  the best hand picked local talent, to sell and share their designs.  A Beautiful Mess Edited Photos (1 of 1)-4

A Beautiful Mess Edited Photos (1 of 1)-16 Their jewelry showcasing will definitely stop anyone in their tracks.  And their range of pricing and style makes it easy to accumulate gifts, and hard to not splurge yourself!

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A Beautiful Mess Edited Photos (1 of 1)-13 I have purchased several of the Hello brand tops from their store. Comfiest tees I own!

A Beautiful Mess Edited Photos (1 of 1)-14Perfection.

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A Beautiful Mess Edited Photos (1 of 1)-8Before I had Evie, I would occasionally stop by and puchase a baby item for my “someday baby” stash.  My favorite baby items purchased have been an Orla Kiely diaper bag, Spaceman receiving blanket and a fairy blabla doll.

Frances (1 of 1)Baby Toms, so hard to resist (they carry them in every size, baby through adult, men and women)!

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A Beautiful Mess Edited Photos (1 of 1)-11Those latte bowls…

A Beautiful Mess Edited Photos (1 of 1)-12Frances gives it’s shoppers a sweet whimsy nostalgia, the kind you never had but wished you did.  The feeling of an inspirational aesthetic but without pomp or circumstance, that makes you linger to admire the patina of a plate, to take in the intoxicating scent of a locally made wax candle, to comb over a lace vintage dress, to attentively listen in as a Frances employee sincerely and expertly educates a customer on the unique beauty of any singular item.  It’s safe to say that I share Frances with everyone I can; visiting guests, family, friends and Phoenix natives who haven’t yet had the pleasure. She’s ever the perfect hostess.


Forest of Ferns

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>>Cleo & Clementine>> Phoenix Favs

A Beautiful Mess Edited Photos (1 of 2)-2 Lace, tulle, brass, pearls, sequins, ribbons, an honest understanding of the ethereal romantic woman.  This is Cleo & Clementine.  http://www.cleoandclementine.com/ Located in the Melrose District downtown, the shop consists of amazing handmade pieces both from local artists and the best handpicked vendors. The shop is also open in the back so you can get a glimpse of or speak to the sweet and friendly Monique Sandoval,  owner and genius behind the exquisite bridal and special occasion line OUMA.  She and her crew make their gorgeous pieces in sight, revealing just how brilliant they are. A Beautiful Mess Edited Photos (2 of 2)-2When I am able to venture downtown for some self indulgent shopping, I make sure to stop by and pick something up for myself or a special occasion gift for a friend/family member.  The shop exhibits unique and drool-worthy  jewelry, home decor, fragrances, stationary, fun odds and ends. Everything is custom chosen to perfection.  And, from a stylist’s eye, the place is heaven!  A Beautiful Mess Edited Photos (1 of 1)-4A Beautiful Mess Edited Photos (1 of 4)-2  I will have one of everything please and thank you.A Beautiful Mess Edited Photos (2 of 2)A Beautiful Mess Edited Photos (2 of 4)-2 Mint tulle gowns!?!?  Delectable!A Beautiful Mess Edited Photos (3 of 4)-2 A Beautiful Mess Edited Photos (4 of 4)-2Something so great about the shops downtown is the amazing sense of camaraderie, community, support and excitement that the small business owners have for one another.  The Melrose district is one of those affirming districts.  Great heart, amazing talent, and a keen sense of exceeding the customer’s expectations.  Thank you Cleo & Clementine.  You are a true romantic.

Desert Botanical Gardens

A Beautiful Mess Edited Photos (2 of 4)Every 2nd Tuesday of the month our amazing Desert Botanical Gardens http://www.dbg.org/ has a free day.  We LOVE culture events, museums, gardens, etc. and our lovely city has so many to enjoy, for FREE!  They open at 7am and do flashlight tours at night.  A great option if you want to avoid mid-day Phoenix heat.  A Beautiful Mess Edited Photos (3 of 9)A Beautiful Mess Edited Photos (4 of 4)A Beautiful Mess Edited Photos (1 of 1)Can’t believe how big my girlies are now.  They are the liveliest pair.A Beautiful Mess Edited Photos (4 of 9)A Beautiful Mess Edited Photos (8 of 9)We all need breaks sometimes.  😉A Beautiful Mess Edited Photos (9 of 9)A Beautiful Mess Edited Photos (1 of 4)

navy crush

Juju wallpapervia juju papernavy postvia bradpike interior and furniturenavy post via MadeByCassandraSmithnavy wallsvia interiorbreak.itavyvia Shannybeebo
navy postvia avdeeezykb4934842d49425509d9b59eb75c2a1devia Pinterest76c1bdd10fdd0c4e12ad6e2df7dcb609via Emily Henderson
il_570xN.445799605_7g80via upintheairsomewhere
1596440via sublime decor



Mother’s Day and Disney

IMG_20140513_140623Steve and I had always promised ourselves, when we had children, we would make it a priority to go to Disneyland.  I had never been to Disneyland, only Walt Disney World as a small tyke.  Since we have Queen Elsa and Minnie Mouse impersonators currently in our small Phoenician cottage, it was only fitting we open the gates, and release our homespun Disneyites to their respective Castle quarters.

First, we visited the beach, found shells, took naps in the sun and chased little rascals through the rippling waters.  We also had to partake in Ruby’s on the pier for lunch.  My little tank Wren ate an entire burger, “surprise surprise”.

IMG_20140514_204715IMG_20140513_145336  IMG_20140513_145105Everyone in their lifetime should visit a Disney theme park.  No matter one’s background, distance or financial situation, it should be a humanitarian gift given to all.  It superbly mixes the homey calls of childhood and nostalgia with the magical, technological genius and excellence one would hope and wish for.  Through the possible over glorification and commercial aspect of the place, there is a connection from the employees and fellow visitors that wishes to make and keep a meaningful connection to joy, love and silliness.  In our case, mainly silliness.  This could not be felt more than when meeting the characters.  The time, and interaction they had with my children was magical.  When I thought our time was up, the characters would pull my lovelies closer for more hugs, pats, or kisses.  It was precious.IMG_20140513_144527 IMG_20140513_144203 IMG_20140513_144434 IMG_20140513_143829 IMG_20140513_143727 (1) IMG_20140513_142057Nighttime was especially vibrant and lively.  We quickly found that firework time meant no wait in line time!  So we took advantage!IMG_20140514_212416IMG_20140514_211909My family is amazing  and I have relived these memories dozens of times already, even though it’s only been a few days.  It wouldn’t have been such a successfully fun trip without their help, love, humor, and graciousness to wait through toddler tantrums. 😉  Thank you Terri, mom and dad for loving on my babies like they were your own, and to Auntie Ashley for helping and smiling along even though she was sick most of the trip.  And thanks to my awesome hubby who gives so much of his time to provide for us and make this such a magical trip!IMG_20140514_211939 IMG_20140513_222640 IMG_20140513_144015IMG_20140513_144739IMG_20140513_142828 IMG_20140513_141844 IMG_20140513_143229 IMG_20140513_125818 IMG_20140513_144936 IMG_20140513_144853




Easter Part 2- Hanging with the Homies


We hosted Easter this year and had a blast just hanging out, eating yummy treats and trying on the Bunny Ears! Love our silly crew! Hope you all had a fun Easter Sunday!!!

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Easter Part 1

IMG_20140420_220650Nothing compares to Easter day.  The newness that comes in the morning.  The frenzy and furry that sometimes happens before celebrating the day. The zip of excitement in the air.  The zeal of the sermon. The added gusto from which we sing praises.  Everything about Easter seems crisp, sweet and tender.  Gathering of friends and family for supper, the egg hunts, wearing our “Sunday Best”.  It’s a season to remember, rejuvenate and regale in what was and what we have to look forward to. He is risen! Hope you and yours had an amazing holiday!


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A Simple and Sweet Toddler Blanket DIY


It was about time that we graduated from our stroller blanket to an actual toddler blanket and I wanted to attempt to make it myself (although I really don’t sew).  So I sought the sewing expert, my amazing mother who has crafted and sewn hundreds of items from pillows to custom teddy bears for help.


We have an amazing set of fabric discount stores called SAS here in Phoenix and they always have the best designer finds!  I found both fabrics there for $15 total and just needed my sewing machine, fabric scissors, straight pins, measuring tape and thread!

Lining up your fabric you measure about an inch longer around all edges than you want your blanket to be.  I made mine 36″x46″.  Simply turn the pattern inside out and lay on top of your others choice fabric and cut, then straight pin it every 2-3 inches or so to keep the fabric together while you are threading it through the machine.  Sew three sides and then leave about six inches in the middle of the fourth sides to be able to turn the fabric right side out after sewing.  Hand stitch that small stretch and you are done!  Since we live in the desert, I did not add any filler, the chamois and the percale cotton are the perfect weight for our winters through summer.


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This little girlie can’t get enough of it!




Copper Leafing


Metals are such an important part of a beautiful aesthetic.  They are reflective, opulent, and can compliment many other pieces in the home.  I am a huge fan of copper and was in the process of making something for a few friends of mine.  Taking a frame I already had I gathered my materials.IMG_20140307_154535

Frame, Sand Paper, Copper spray paint, Copper leafing, brushes and spray adhesive (you can use either a regular craft spray adhesive or a specific leafing spray adhesive.IMG_20140307_150815

Sanding down my previous paint job and wiping clean, I next spray painted the entire frame.  For fun, when you leaf, you can chose to leaf certain sections of your surface, allowing another color to show through.  I however, was keen on keeping this copper color so the paint proved to be an easy solution if my application didn’t cover  completely.IMG_20140307_150920

Once your spray adhesive is applied, simply take the paper (which should be sitting in between sheets of tissue) and press on the area.  You can pat a little, then slowly pull back the paper and finish with a brush.  Brushing away extra pieces and brushing the leafIMG_20140307_150947


Gorg!  I opted for more of a crackled look, so I let my imperfections show.IMG_20140307_151212

Such a simple and chic way to spruce up any drawing, photo etc…