this week

yellows

the weather has been cold and murky this week but the colours of the changing season take my breath away. it’s difficult not to fall in love with autumn! had to go to the Dutch Embassy in town today and while it was damp all day, Ballsbridge was  still very picturesque with the leafy street clad in amazing colours. (i have to take the language exam soon and my nerves are in bits already.)

didn’t get the chance to photograph my bedroom transformation this week, but i’m hoping i’ll have more time tomorrow. *sigh* my to do list seem to get longer each day. on other news, i was in the shops early this week to deliver orders to the post office so i dropped by the Dunnes to get some new pillows at the same time. our old ones look tired and lifeless and need to be replaced asap! anyways, back to the Dunnes, i am absolutely besotted with their new eclectic designer collection by Carolyn Donnelly. you have to check out their displays in the shop though as the website does not show everything they have in the collection. there was a lovely velvety mint green headboard on display i’ve been drooling for in the shop. here are a few more on my dream list:

right, off to bed for me now, i’m tackling the craft room tomorrow and i need all the strength in the world for it. it is that bad.

and lastly, i want to say a million thanks to everyone who bought from my shops this week, i love you all!!!

goodnight and have a lovely weekend. xx

the weekend

(there’s a pond we pass by on the way to the shops and we can’t resist taking some photographs)

what a productive weekend!

it all started with our decision to stop our cable tv subscription last week. we’re not huge fans of the telly as we only watch the news every night, although i must admit i will miss my Nat Geo Wild and Home channels, and of course, the programme A Place in the Sun from Travel and Living. 😦 anyhoo, with Ireland switching to digital television, the 4 free channels that came along with it are more than enough for us. so out with cable tv, in with Saorview!

we cycled to the shops on early Saturday morning and boy was it cold. before we started shopping for the electronics, we got ourselves a little treat by having Praline Mocha coffee at starbucks. it was good, but not as good as the Caramel flavour from last season. and not as good as Kj’s homemade coffee too, if i may so! okay, i digress. back to the digital tv: upon setting up our Saorview channels at home, we were so frustrated that we can’t get a signal unless we open the window and one of us stands by it, antenna in hand thrust out into the cold. in this irish weather? no.

we thought of trying the antenna upstairs in our bedroom, and voila, it worked! the rest is then history – we turned the house upside down over the weekend, dragging our desktop from the bedroom to the living room and the telly and our whole entertainment system up to the bedroom. we have completely re-arranged the house and it felt like moving to a new house, i can’t be happier! i may have a bruise or two from dragging furniture up and down the stairs but i’m very pleased with the results. i will post pictures soon, i promise! next up on the list: the craft room, which is a bit tricky as it requires dumping old furniture from the landlord (he won’t be happy) and a long shopping list for Ikea shelves and working desks. i can’t wait!

the cat was a little confused about the weekend flurry, checking every new nook and cranny. he seemed pleased in the end as he went around to give his approval “rubs”. here’s Tom keeping his watch on us.

New floral fabric tapes in the shop

I updated the shop yesterday with these lovely floral fabric tapes. Also available at my Etsy shop.

They’re gorgeous for sealing envelopes of your wedding invitations if you’re having a vintage, floral theme.

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Simplify

The house we’re living in is starting to feel small already. We’ve thought about moving out to a bigger house since the beginning of the year as I was craving for space. It took months for me to realize this – as I looked at everything I have hoarded through the last four years, most of them haven’t even seen the light of day, let alone used in years and are less likely to be used at all. Fact is, I am a woman of weird habits, wearing only my favorite clothes and shoes to bits. I rarely venture outside my comfort outfits. The irony of my frustrations over a bursting closet! I also have loads of supplies for hobbies I know I will never have the time to do. Ever. I need to get rid of all these stashed up trash to make room for my fresh stocks for the shop. Instead of moving to a bigger space, I have decided to make space instead. It will be economical foremost, and we get to stay in this neighborhood we’ve grown to love so it’s a win-win situation. It will be a gargantuan task and there’s always the possibility of getting sidetracked while sorting through old letters and greeting cards and photographs and whatnots. But that’s what a lovely cup of tea is for.

Today, the task at hand is my desk. It has 3 drawers full of crap stuff.

We’re only renting this house, but I believe it is possible to make it a home.

I will report back shortly of my progress, if any.

My word for the next few weeks: Simplify.

Being still

Where have all the months gone to? We’re now again almost to the end of the year. The seasons have changed, the temperature has dropped and it’s harder to get up in the mornings now. Time flies and life flies and I’ve been too busy this year to sit still and think. Even holidays were hurried and work was sneaked in one too many times. I’m my own ultimate slave driver when it comes to work but suck at minding myself well. It’s a painful wake-up call, but the grey hairs on my head are screaming for rest. “Mind yourself” is often carelessly thrown around as an afterthought, but I’m literally taking up that advice now. I’m sitting still and listening to myself, eating well and sleeping well and taking naps whenever possible. I have been feeling good and somehow the heart found its voice again to tell me where I must be.

Wherever you are in your own personal journey, I wish you all the strength you need. And hugs, loads of them.

xx Odette

Photo: sunset in Phoenix Park, taken a couple of months ago I think on a drive home from work with a friend.

Crochet Lace Tapes

I’m delighted to share that these crochet lace tapes are now available in the shop.

They’re available in 2 designs and 4 colours – pink and beige and white and pale pink.

These tapes are lovely for sealing envelopes (wedding invites!), wrapping up packages and even to embellish gift tags or scrapbook pages.

Please check out the swann&smerlin shop for more packaging supplies such as these spools of pink and purple baker’s twines.

If you have inquiries on new and upcoming products, please don’t hesitate to get in touch!

xx Odette

packages and strings

wrapping up packages would have to be my most favorite job in the world.

about 6-7 years ago i worked a highly stressful job. on rare moments, i’d wander in the shopping centre on a weekend and sigh every time i see the gift-wrapping corner. i know deep in my heart that was my ultimate dream job. i think know that is the reason why i love keeping my online shops despite sales being so slow. i love, love, love strings and buttons and tapes and brown paper! the nicest feedbacks i have received in my shop refer to my packaging and that is an accomplishment for me. i’ve done my job!

talking about packages, this lovely thing would make a useful addition for your crafting table. this spool of natural jute twine will go a long, long way for your packages. plus the little bird will keep your twine neat and tidy. available on my etsy shop.

treat yourself to something nice and sweet from the post.

shop here or here.

thank you for reading, have a lovely week! ♥