VOZ - had to pass this onto you!

The VOZ collection is something I have wanted  to bring to the shop for quite a while now and I just haven't been able to... I love her pieces, they are meticulously made with love and in partnership with artisan weavers. The mission of this company is pure and clearly to help these weavers do the work they love and receive a fair wage. The designer Jasmine Aarons works directly with the weavers to create the textiles and she then assembles them in her NYC studio - you really need to see them to believe.

VOZ means “voice” in spanish. VOZ is an ethical fashion company whose mission is to protect the livelihoods, well-being, and cultural values of rural indigenous women globally. They honor and empower artisans creatively, economically and culturally through a collaborative business model that showcases, preserves, and supports traditional art forms.

In addition they work in collaboration with politically and economically marginalized women to create beautiful fashion collections and to provide design leadership, training, and opportunity for indigenous women in the rural regions where they reside. They have a primary rural artisan education center is located in Temuco, Chile and supports Mapuche artisans. They have also scaled their operations to include Puno artisans in Peru, and Tangail weavers in India.

I just received an email from her, which I thought was a great way to introduce you to this beautiful talented woman. She is offering a beautiful solid poncho for a terrific deal... and I hope this will give you a taste so that you can come back for more and shop at full price - so that everyone benefits from the company mission. If we only buy things when they are on sale (at an incredible price) it's not necessarily helping anyone's bottom line - don't get me wrong we all love a good deal, but it's important to note that in support of these small creators making great things with artisans it only helps when we support the WHOLE business - that means shopping at full price from time to time.
This wool poncho hoodie, which is usually $525 - is now $210 - click here to shop!

 Shop the full VOZ collection here


USE CODE: 'winterclearance' for 20% off!

As new Spring items arrive they are not included in this Winter Clearance.

cold and flu season

 Just about each year I write about Cold and Flu season - you can read some of my history here - and just so you know many of the remedies that we have used over the years we are still using and I still believe in them so check out my old blog posts for more information. But lately I have been thinking about how illness usually follows an intense sugar time. For example Valentines Day - which I believe has turned into another candy-fest. It takes a toll on our bodies, and moreover our kids bodies. That amount of sugar can easily debilitate our bodies, lower our immune system and it becomes so much easier to get the cold or flu.

Our tried and true remedies that we still use are salt baths, Astragalus (I put a piece of the dried sticks into my tea for just about every day in the wintertime), exercise and a daily turmeric tea (see recipe below). You can drink this tea year-round!

mix a paste of 1/3 cup of honey and 2 tsp turmeric and keep in a jar, it will last you about a week.

1 tsp of turmeric/honey paste
drizzle of coconut oil
pinch of pepper
squeeze a wedge of lemon and then throw the whole thing in there (the oils from the skin are the best part for you - so be sure to use organic lemons!)
warm water

Nobodies perfect mind you and when we are given the okay to eat chocolate and candy with a holiday it's next to impossible to ignore it. I just find it funny when after the Holidays or after Valentines day everyone is so "surprised" that people get sick! Like they didn't see it coming... Well from now on you won't be surprised, you will remember these words and maybe the tenth time you will say to yourself let's try to have a holiday without sugar! I haven't been able to do it yet...

stay well!


Mt Washington Pottery - odds and ends sale!

I swear I try to pass this stuff on when I hear about it - but I don't often move that fast. This is one of my MOST favorite pottery people and she is having an ODDs and ENDs sale! YAHOO!

Mt. Washington Pottery
Odds & Ends studio sale
noon - 4 pm
2927 Gilroy St.
Los Angeles 90039

get your butt down there.....

Svenskt Tenn

old photo from our home w/ Josef Frank shoji screen

Any trip to Stockholm deserves a stop at Svenskt Tenn. You won't get bowled over by crazy interior design, but it will create a major shift in what you see in interior design from that day forward. Luckily there is a story in T Magazine this week about Josef Frank, the 1940's print maker/furniture designer who made a name for himself, as powerful today as it was back then. You can walk into one of the most elegant Stockholm urban apartment (of the wealthy set) and find his unique take on interior design.

this could almost be a photo of my sisters living room - Hi Linda!

Here is a link to the story in T Magazine.

It's unfortunate but in the last ten years there have been a few American companies who tried to knock-off the prints - Anthropoogie comes to mind, the last time I was in Stockholm I was talking to the Director of Exports and he was pretty darn furious about this blatant copy. It's my impression that innovative Swede's would never imagine an exact rip-off such as this, it's just not in their dna - so watch out for the UNoriginal.


My Lovely Pieces

top: small quartz crystal, medium smokey quartz and large tangerine quartz

No one can blame me for jumping into this with an whole and open heart - making jewelry with crystals is a dream of mine! Back in the 80's when I was in school I was such a huge fan of ME Stewart... anyone remember he 100% natural pieces - think a piece of wood on a knotted leather - she was my hero! I took many jewelry classes in school and explored different techniques but it wasn't until I saw a netted stone that I knew this epitomized it for me. I sold them in the shop over the holidays and no matter how fast I made them before I could have a photo shoot they would be GONE. They make terrific gifts, because what better thing to share with your friend of loved one than a beautiful crystal.

large herkimer diamond, quartz crystal, tangerine crystal

How to actually make these lovely pieces has been something that has eluded me for some time. I have kept that netted rock next to my bed for years (and years...) never finding the time to try things out and figure out how to do it... but then one day a few months ago I did it! I sat down and made my first netted crystal. It's evolved and taken on a few different forms, as I am sure it will over time. I am totally in love with these pieces - making them AND wearing them - I take the time to clear the crystal for you, because I know how busy we all are and if I do it for you it's ready to GO. I have the added benefit of living next to the ocean so heck, gives me a chance to jump in and clear the crystals in the open ocean. I say open ocean because it's not a bay (the Narragansett Bay is nearby) but I like to clean them in front of our home in Matunuck, where we look straight out onto Block Island in the distance. Then I take the crystals and leave them out to clear in the New Moon (for new beginnings) and finally I take a moment and bring the crystals with me to the beach on a sunny day and lay them out in the sun - it's a chance for me to do a meditation in the sunlight and with the power of all the crystals nearby it feels like a strong vibrational bath.

I have yet to come up with a name after figuring out that someone else had "enlightened pieces" *darn!* but something will come to me (email me with ANY and ALL ideas!) but in the meantime I wanted to offer them to you and all my friends! They are now on the website and I hope that you enjoy them as much as I do - you can wear them out, but I also love to wear them next to my skin, they get warm and feel wonderful inside your shirt! Cut them and tie a not to the length you like (careful to not make it too short - there's no going back!). Next I am going to learn to make a clasp... more exciting things to learn!

I can also do various colors of cord: gray, brown, white, natural, dark natural


A bit storytelling in the new year...

I am going to share a little bit with you, probably not appropriate by some standards but here I go.. coming into the new year was very rocky for our family personally. While the Holiday time is great for my store, we came out of it with just enough to pay off who we owed for my inventory - whew! This is living by the seat of your pants that is our life - the life of two self employed people. Needless to say in the coming year I am using my workbook "Many Moons" to work on asking for more, creating more and being stronger in the coming year.

Last night I was feeling so strong as I read my workbook and started jotting down my intentions for the Full Moon (Thursday nights full moon), I love the way Sarah writes because she knows what crazy lives we all lead and that we can't necessarily sit down on the exact night of the full moon and gives us space to work on it a night or two after - I am just glad that I am doing it. As I write things down I realize I am in a good space and the coming year has many surprises for me and that my new adventure in making jewelry, making a lot more things for the store, is going to be wonderful for me on so many levels. It will fill my heart, it will give to others and adding to the beauty in the world. Just what I wanted - so I went to bed content that strength was coming on many levels. I laid out my new crystals to bask in the light of the full moon, to drink in the energy of what the Cherokee call the 'Cold Moon' (the January full moon has many names). I made a small prayer and all was good.

That was in the quiet of the night. The morning brought chaos - it's Saturday so the weekend is usually swedish pancakes in the morning, I figured we could make it work even if we got up late for Franny's Basketball game - we "got'er done" and arrived just in time for the game to start. As Franny said from the back seat, it's okay because really this is the last year that she was doing Basketball, effectively saying "I'm not trying to impress anyone anyhow". Then we wanted to take a walk on the beach before I had to be in the store, so that we could wash the crystals in the ocean.

We took the crystals down to the ocean to wash them, I stepped into the water a bit to get them deeper into the water so that they could be submersed. Then a wave came in stronger than I thought, I jumped back just in time to trip, while holding my net full of crystals up and planted face first on top of the wave. Boots, socks, sweater over two t-shirts, cashmere scarf and down jacket - faceplanted on the sand and surf. This was not my beautiful crystal cleaning ceremony that we had done before... it had gone so well last time. We drove home in silence, I was caked in sand, soaking wet and cold - then Franny and I looked at each other, I had sand on my face too! and we started laughing. Well THAT must have looked interesting from the beach! (what the heck are those two girls doing!?)

Wet and cold I tripped on the stairs at home, dropped by tea all over the floor this was not my version of the day. Until today I had felt some momentum towards a 'things are going right in my direction' people were coming into the shop with so many good things to say, the Holiday season had gone well in the shop and I felt that there was an opening for a change. But the day had confused me and made my second guess my triumphant feeling. Then I realized I had just got my period. In Macroboitics I have learned that when you have your period your body can be clumsy, unbalanced and weak because it is basically out of balance - your CHI is off. This came as quite a relief to this day that I thought was going to screw up my good karma or my centered-ness about the coming year. Now I realize it's just a passing and that tomorrow, things will be better.

Bring Back the Cocktail Party - Hell YES!

One of my New Years resolutions is to WRITE MORE BLOGS... for gods sake! After twelve years of writing these things this has been my resolution for more than just this year. But I'm going to ease into it by sharing this article from the Huffington Post that I thought was pretty delightful and certainly very true - this may be the year that we all need to have more cocktail parties! Since everyone is becoming better cooks, eating more whole foods, making crazy good cocktails at home then really what better time to re-introduce the Cocktail Party!

The Article (link here) gives us nine, very good, reasons to bring back the cocktail party. Reason number one is enough for me to bring it on back! Remember years ago when you used to balk at a $10 drink, I used to say that's New York City prices if I saw that amount on a drink somewhere other than NYC. Now I can go to my local Rhode Island hang out and there it is.. the $12 drink! Not to mention NYC's $16 Manhattan. So here you go, the Huffington Posts reason number one.
1. You can drink what you want, without paying a ridiculous sum.
"I remember being aghast when the price of a cocktail hit $11 — and now we live in the era of the $15 martini. Even dives are raising their prices. Of course, I’m in the NYC region, where the cost of living has replaced pickpockets as the thing most likely to take all your money. Even still, when you think about a budget martini and the dubious ingredients mingling in the glass, wouldn’t it be much better to get one bottle of really good gin, rather than spend that money on bad drinks?" - Huffington Post - they go in with another 8 reasons...

I would introduce that it's such a nice thing to do in January, February and March when so many of us stay at home and cozy up. Why not get out and have some fun with your friends or host one yourself. This last holiday season we hosted a "Game Night" in the days between Christmas and New Year. We had a group of friends over and when they walked in the door they got a piece of tape with a name on it stuck to their forehead and they had to ask questions to guess who they were. Okay not the most unique idea in the whole world but it broke the ice and we had a good time. We went on with simple things that kids could play too like Charades and Spoons, most of the time simple is better when you have a crowd.

When we have parties I like to mix people around, it's not the same group of people every time, we mix surf friends, with my favorite shop customers, with some of our artist friends and then I like to throw a yoga guru in there for good measure. Never too many people, just a good number so everyone can talk to each other at least once. I like to serve a "cocktail" as people walk in and then we always end up hanging out in the kitchen - but hey that's fun too!

Read the article here and I hope we have 'elbowed' you into throwing a cocktail party!


SORRY meditation for tomorrow is cancelled :(

We will be back in the new year for more meditations! But you can do your own meditation tomorrow... It's the WINTER SOLSTICE you made it through the longest nights of the year and from now on the days will be getting longer - more daylight means more vitamin D time and I truly hope you will take advantage and give yourself some daylight.

I am in a rush to get home but I will post tomorrow some additional ideas for a good meditation on the WINTER SOLSTICE!

love - carina


our GIFT to you!

We want to thank all of our terrific customers with this special offer (for a short time only), I really think we have the best customers of all! We have gotten to know each other over the years and aside from sending all of you a loaf of my cardamom bread - I thought this was a more effective way to say THANK YOU! and we LOVE you!

*not included: black crane, Le Feu de Leau candles, Black Sheep Goods (weaving kits), new Lucky Fish + any Makers Market items are not included in this discount. This offer cannot be applied to past orders.

SEe you in January at the Million Woman March!

love - carina


Holiday Makers Market in the shop!

Now that we have a shop space the first thing I wanted to do was bring together all of our talented Rhode Island ARTisans for a shop-bop. We have some talented people showing their wares for you to peruse and shop this HOliday season.

Join us on FRIDAY + SATURDAY (12/9 AND 12/10) from 10am to 6pm
it's a part party, part shop, part art show!

Laura Kramer - glass blower in Pawtucket Rhode Island
Corwin Butterworth - woodworker making beautiful objects in wood including cutting boards, trays and candle lights
Maura - Potter by day and activist all the other time... She makes crazy things with clay, crazy BEAUTIFUL things!
Dennis Melucci - creating gorgeous pieces of jewelry by hand every inch of the way. His metal-smith work is divine in it's simplicity and grace. Bracelets, rings and more!
Karen - making delightful animals with clay that will amaze you. She has made literally thousands of animals, never the same one twice and they are OH so nice
Lucky Fish - Jann Cheifitz our favorite screen printer is here with goodies galore - pillows, ornaments, clutches, coasters -- you name it she's printed it!
Carina Schott - Jewelry with crystals that will bring you back to 'center' - her simple netted gemstones and smooth tumbled quartz crystals and cleared in the ocean and left out in the moonlight to charge and bring you peace and love (and a bit of luck too!).
Robin Mollicone - her fine art beaded pieces are the center of gravity in this crazy world we live in - she has sent some of her most unique pieces (including her sought after 'safety pins'!)

And lot's more....

Join us on FRIDAY + SATURDAY (12/9 AND 12/10) from 10am to 6pm
it's a part party, part shop, part art show!


Candle Dipping

We just made some wonderful candles today in the shop! It was a bit of a Holiday Workshop but really candle-making is for good for any time of year. As a kid we used to make dip candles, it's a big sport around the holidays and in wintertime in general in Sweden. It's been a real long time and I knew my mom was going to be in town so I thought she could help. This is a great craft that can involve the entire family and I hate to say it but it's pretty darn easy.

in this photo you can see I have my beeswax in the double boiler pan right (for dipping), and I am recycling my leftover ikea candles (left pan) that had burned down by pouring into cups.
You will need some tools, I would suggest going to a second hand store and see what you can get a hold of to use. I found everything I needed at my favorite store called 'Mine' in Mystic, CT (run by the most delightful man - if you are in Mystic don't miss a stop into this wonderyard of second hand treasures). I found a pretty large double boiler for $5 and a hot plate too. I got a camping coffee can to use for pouring candles when we were done dipping (it's nice to finish off the wax because you never know when you are going to pull this out again). Luckily the camping coffee can fit inside the double boiler so I could keep it hot.

I've been saving old wax from the bottoms of candles in a box for quite awhile so I was excited to recycle them. I also always clean my used votive candles from Ikea - so I have tons to reuse for this project. Just tie a knot in the bottom of your wick, make the length of the glass votive and use chopsticks to hold the wicks in place.

Here you can see that we got creative and sculpted peace signs and hearts

You will need:
double boiler (or some kind of pot in pot) you want it to be deep enough for the length of your candle we only got 6" - 8" tapers with our pot.
hot plate
wicks (I got wicks for 1" tapers and 3" votive candles)
beeswax (or recycle old wax!)
chopsitcks (if you are going to pour)
clean votives or glasses (you could get cheap glasses from a second hand shop to use for this as well)

It's nice to do this on a good size work surface, We have an old door that we put on two horses, we put this up wherever we need to create a work surface, be it outside or in, it gives you ample room to work and you don't have to worry about anything!

Add water to your double boiler and heat. Add your wax to the top double boiler and melt, as soon as it is finished melting you want to make sure you keep the temperature even and low so you don't burn the beeswax. As soon as all the wax is melted you can start the dipping. After your first dip you can pull your wick taught so that the candles will come out straight (it's okay and not very hot, my kids even did this part). It's important to dip - not to quick and not too slow. Too quickly and you won't get much, too slow and the wax will melt again and you will also go nowhere! They should not get thicker than an inch or the wick will not stay lit (if you are making candle thicker than 3" you need to give different wicks) - you will know when you get it right.

This is not a fast project and you need patience. Want to teach your kids some patience or the value in slow crafting.. make candles!

You can sculpt peace signs or hearts by dipping your wick once and then sculpting your shape then keep dipping like you would a candle.

GOOD LUCK and have some fun! put on some holiday music and go to town....
I got my wax and wick supplies at Brushy Mountain Bee Farm, they are terrific and have everything you need.


An inspiring young designer - John Alexander Skelton

Trolling T magazine this weekend introduced me to this inspiring young designer John Alexandar Skelton. He takes vintage fabrics and molds them into divine and desirable one of a kind pieces. His clothing looks like scupltures from a time past and I can't wait to see how this talented designer develops--or even better if he doesn't and just keeps doing this very same thing!

Sometimes I wonder why fashion has to move and change so fast. I am all for the slow fashion movement, I wear pretty much the same things they just evolve with me and I add new pieces here and there, the time for a new wardrobe every season seems so wasteful and old. Slow fashion is smarter and with the absolute proliferation of way too much I like to give you collections that don't have an expiration date. They are just as good tomorrow as they were today. And nothing is more so than Pip-squeak Chapeau. As we photographed the new collection I was reminded how desirable each piece is to my senses. Mostly because I know I will use it - wear it ever day!

After all, that's what clothing is for right? To convey our personality and that doesn't change season to season.

Don't miss reading this article on John Alexander Skelton, he's a name to watch.
and shop Pip-Squeak Chapeau here


crystals, herkimer, quartz... are more!

Crystals have been a part of my life since my 20's when I worked with one of the most interesting and inspired woman of my life, well besides my mom. She was in her 70's and I was 20 but we became not only work mates but very close friends. She was the first person to actually listen to me, hear what I said and we would discuss so many different topics, for hours on end. I learned through her how to meditate, she taught me all about crystals and how to weave baskets - among tons of other things about life in general that she taught me. It was a key change in my life and came at a time when I had just started to work at Esprit (in the late 1980's) so my personal and professional growth was happening at the same time. My love for crystals still goes on and is always growing, but Emily will always be at the heart of that growth.

With the opening of my shop I have started to include lot's of crystals - making necklaces for customers who pick a crystal from my bowl of various sizes and different kids of crystals to large tabletop crystals to keep near your bed or at work to bring harmonizing energy.

If your birthday is in November you are also lucky enough to have Topaz or Citrine as your gemstone, it is said that wearing your gemstone will give you energy. I believe that each person has a stone that strengthens their spirit, or heightens an aspect to your life that you would like to work on or give energy to. Crystals are very personal and that's why I like to have people choose a stone from a bowl, the stone will call to you and you can carry it around for awhile to see if it's something you want to wear to give you energy.

When I get a new stone I like to wash them in the ocean water, then I let them soak by the window in the sun for a few days. This will clarify and clean your stone and it will have optimal energy for you. You can also bury them in the dirt if you need more grounding energy. Lately, with all of the super moons I have been leaving them in the moonlight outside. I do this with all of the crystals in my shop so that you can be sure they are ready and charged.

I have a few Margaret Solow crystals that are ready and waiting for you. Her stones are never heated or tampered with and left in their natural state. The raw sapphires I had from her were so alive with color it was hard to believe their natural beauty. The Herkimer is perfect for this time it is a perfect conduit of the universal life force, they are exceptional healing crystals and are used in meditations, dream and vision work (great to have by your bed at night, but might keep you awake with their strong energy) The Herkimer diamonds are the most powerful of all quartz crystals.

I also love this tourmalated quartz it is a super lucky stone has the luck of both the quartz and tourmaline, it also protects against unhealthy energies by actually deflecting negative energy. It brings balance to yin and yang energies. Yes, this is a great stone for just about anyone.

I am going to review more stones, crystals and gemstones to look at their properties and how you can use them to enhance your life and your mind and spirit.