LA Vaycay

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This Valentine’s day I spent the weekend in LA visiting friends and seeing my favorite band Sparks play at the Ace hotel. It was maybe the most ideal time to visit LA: the recent rains have spurred a fragrant greening of the hills, and the wintering songbirds gave the mornings a tropical feel. One of the best parts of the trip was my visit to the Museum of Jurassic Technology in Culver City, a place I’ve been dying to see for years. It was incredible, like a Cabinet magazine come to life. There was a room dedicated to creepy superstitions (eating mice on toast to cure bedwetting?), TWO rooms of microscopes for tiny exhibits (one dedicated to Hagop Sandaldjian’s sculptures INSIDE the eyes of needles, and a row for Henry Dalton’s rococo floral collages made with individual butterfly scales) plus a rooftop garden with white doves and finches. I can’t recommend it enough. It reminded me a lot of Flutter. Note to self: more microscopes!
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The Sparks show was at the gorgeously renovated Theatre at the Ace, and the creme of LA was there (I wish I was better with faces, all those well-dressed silver foxes were certainly distant rock royalty). Waiting in the line, I couldn’t help but notice that almost everyone was decked out in killer vintage and fancy perfumes. Like, really unusual, fantastic perfumes. I definitely, positively smelled Rien by Etat Libre d’Orange, and I’m fairly certain Jasmin et Cigarette was there too. It’s funny how you can tell sometimes not what a perfume is but only that it is a very fine and distinguished scent. Chandler Burr would have died.

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I had an awfully friendly daiquiri at the poolside bar and watched the sun set over the city, then explored the nooks and crannies of the gold-on-gold Spanish Gothic theater (a sign on the wall of the ladies room said “Ms. Mary Pickford removed this mirror so, out of respect, we left it that way”). There was also this amazing sculpture in the lobby, her name is “Ladyfingers” by Kevin Will (photo by Spencer Lowell; not pictured: a posse of turquoise ceramic kittens). Sparks delivered a perfect set: their breakthrough album from 1974 in its entirety, played with a 38-piece orchestra… plus bonus material! It was heaven, if you like that kind of thing.

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Five Photo Writing Prompts, #1

photo 1Hey there! For the longest time I’ve been wanting to scan some of our old photos and post them as writing prompts.

photo 5Since I don’t have a scanner, but I do have a decent camera on my phone, I decided to seize the day and post away.photo 4Here’s the inaugural post, with five snaps that once were lost and now are found.photo 3 Lucky you! It’s a peek into an oft-overlooked stack of treasures that begs to be mined for ideas for a poem, script or story. photo 2 I’ll try to do this regularly, since we have so many good ones come through here. XO Sara

Flutter + Emerald Petals = Extra Lovely

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By now you may have heard the news that Emerald Petals, purveyor of flower and plant delights extraordinaire, has moved in to share a roof with Flutter. They’re cozied up under the skylight in the back and we’ve magically jigsawed all of Flutter into the front 2/3 of the shop! We are so excited about this new development, which has been in the works for quite some time. It looks-and smells!-wonderful in here. If you are far away or haven’t been able to make it in yet, here’s a little tour of our place for your perusal.

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Inside the Artist’s Atelier

Our spring window display draws inspiration from an imagined artist’s studio … an ultra-bohemian, enchanting place with big sunlit windows, splashes of paint where they don’t belong, crayons and pencils mingling on a table with still life models, books and piles and piles of paper with drawings, paintings and collage on every inch.  

In the adjoining window, the creative energy (and artwork) spills over to a little sitting area with a table full of books (for inspiration) and a chair with tea waiting to provide a break (as well as a fat gray kitty resting just under the table.)

None of this would have been possible without the talent and vision of shopgirls Sara and Marta, who created all of these illustrations and paintings and designed the window display! 

Stop by the shop soon to see our newest effort in person!

Some Springtime Inspiration.

Good afternoon, Flutter friends! If you live here in Portland, you know that we’re having a rather gloomy rainy day, as well as many ones ahead. But do not fear, spring is right around the corner, which means there is hope! And even with the grey skies right now, you can sit inside with a cup of tea and dream of the colorful warmth that is soon to come.

These images just might help. They are making me feel great inside the shop this March afternoon…










And if you feel like embracing these classic Portland days, step out into the rain and come say hi to us at Flutter. We have colorful vintage umbrellas and fabulous old coats so you can look mighty fine until the sunshine is finally here to stay. xoxo.

What’s Your Sign?

Happy New Year everyone! I hope you all had a splendid week of holidays with family, friends, and plenty of sweet things. I love it when the new year hits- in a way, it means a clean slate. I look forward to seeing how 2012 unfolds with each month for each person in my life…

And with that, here are some 2012 horoscopes. I wish our dear Flutter-lovers an exciting and ever-so lovely new year!

Look forward to a calm year ahead. 2012 will be a year of financial success (especially in the early months) and a booming and sincere social life. You will feel a sudden confidence that your life is going in the right direction, and you’ll be right. This is a year of major personal growth. Getting back to the roots of family values, finding a more comfortable residence or adding to what you already have will all be areas of self expansion for you. It is the time to relax and enjoy your love life. After the never ending fights, you are sure to taste success.
(Famous Aries: Charlie Chaplin)

This is the year for the ones under the sign of Taurus to be happy with who they are. You may find yourself being more authentic and honest when you interact, which will bring people closer to you. You will feel a distinct increase in your creativity and sense of self-expression- it’s as if your energy is expanding. Your love life is in for better stability this year after much humdrum of the yester-years. There are high chances of finding your dream person. Stay focused on changing while appreciating the abundance in each moment.
(Famous Taurean: Fred Astaire)

This is the year of activities of all kinds for the Gemini. There will be lot of new work and new projects for you throughout the year. If you put in little effort, all your hard work will be recognized. You will be more adaptable than ever. You can expect your values about work and the routines in your life to change- there will be a deeper sense of purpose and understanding to what you do. If you’re thinking of bailing out of bad relationships now is the time, but for new people coming into your life, get ready for some absorbing intimacy. Exciting, grounding and liberating times are ahead in 2012.
(Famous Gemini: Marilyn Monroe)

New beginnings have indeed arrived in your favor with the onset of 2012, Cancer. Although the biggest changes in the love realm won’t arrive until autumn, romance will return as a central theme for you in 2012- just when you’d started to give up hope of anything new ever returning to your life. The mask you show others is dissolving for all to see the really real you. It’s highly likely that you will gain recognition for some sort of creative effort. Explore as many new avenues as you can, for in the coming years you will be turning these selected visions into concrete realities. Remember to pamper yourself through the newness and celebrate the changes a little every day this year.
(Famous Cancer: Frida Kahlo)

Renewed energy levels are predicted for you this year, Leo, which shall help you to achieve your long sought-after goals in life. Be ready to jump at any chances that come your way. Fast reactions will bring you there, closer to where you want to be. Much orientation would be seen in your career front this year. Though personal problems might drag your feet, you shall come out with good colors in the professional field for this period. Self-expansion via travel or an engrossing new subject should fire your enthusiasm over the second half of 2012. Take life as it comes by and live it simply in a positive sense.
(Famous Leo: Coco Chanel)

Big changes are afoot, if you haven’t experienced them already. They’ll appear in the areas of work or home- and if the two are inter-connected, then both. Make efforts to improve your lifestyle. Be optimistic this year and try to avoid all sorts of nervousness and negativity that might creep in now and then. Be patient and watch quietly whatever happens. This year will help you to understand and realize the importance of your loved ones, how important they are and how they care for you. Learning to balance the different aspects of home and family with work and the outside world will bring a sense of empowered peace. Hard won harmony really is an accomplishment.
(Famous Virgo: Sophia Loren)

Life should be much happier, contented and lighter for Libras this year of 2012. You are on a career high- opportunities are now available for you to advance in your profession. A shifting in your world view is happening. This dissolving process could leave you confused. You will cycle between inspired and plain old tired. Try and honor the need for rest as this is where much processing will occur. Avoid impatience of all sorts for this year. If already into a relationship, this year shall see a more matured you as far as relationships are concerned. This year you will find that you have all the tools you need to make things work out beautifully and peacefully.
(Famous Libra: F. Scott Fitzgerald)

With Neptune returning to your romance sector for the next several years, your love life is about to take a poetic turn. A deep, soulful connection becomes the prerequisite for meeting people from now on. This 2012 year will be pivotal for you, since change is happening in deeply needed ways. Be honest in your communications. This authenticity is what creates trust, and trust is something you can have if you open your heart this year. You’ll find yourself able to take vital steps toward your true calling and accelerate all matters pertaining to status, career and where you want to be.
(Famous Scorpio: Vivien Leigh)

This year, you shall be loaded with much potential energy which would take you into the road for success in life. You will be feeling good about getting into partnerships of all kinds. They will support your greater good this 2012 year, help you be a more creative and productive individual. This would be a decisive period in your love life. There would be a total change in your visualization of love, romance and emotions. Your charm shall be able to attract new partners into your territory. Change this year is inevitable, but you can rest assured that you have luck on your side this time.
(Famous Sagittarian: Frank Sinatra)

This year would be generally a year of low profile for you. It helps you to enter a serene and peaceful atmosphere. Matters concerning money and finance will be well-balanced, with incomes equaling the expenditures. You’re beginning to think more like a poet and a mystic, and with just a little practical application, this can easily translate into wondrous creations in the world. You will be connected in important ways to positive situations. Go with the flow and really appreciate all that is happening in your life.
(Famous Capricorn: Humphrey Bogart)

Aspirers are Aquarians and they never give up till they succeed. Horoscope 2012 indicates perfection, patience and planning as the key highlights for the year. Though occasional minor unhappiness are predicted for the first quarter, it will be a generally rosy year for you. Your romantic sector can expect plenty of planetary action in 2012, bringing an abundant supply of love and pleasure. You must awaken the inner child and play with life a little more than you’ve been used to. Out of that spontaneous approach will come inspiration and you’ll find you are capable of much more than you thought.
(Famous Aquarian: Lana Turner)

Your search for spiritual values in life will keep you going places. It is only by the end of the year, you will be able to satisfy your quest for knowledge. Involve yourself whole heartedly into any task which you undertake and ensure it continues and ends on a positive note. Communication plays a vital role in your romantic life, especially during the first half of the year. If you let your words drip like honey, you’ll be amazed at how many opportunities for love open up. A little discipline will bring great rewards in 2012- enjoy the strength you will gain from the effort you put forth.
(Famous Pisces: Anaïs Nin)

Painted Flutter.

I often find myself inspired while spending my Sundays at Flutter. Not only do I have some of my favorite music playing and get to meet some lovely folks, but there’s no denying that I am completely surrounded by beautiful things. Usually I find this inspiration being targeted to my camera, but this week I decided to do something a little different. During the few quieter moments in the shop, I broke out my sketchbook and doodled some of my favorite objects and garments. While curled up on my sofa during the evening (while watching some bad tv, I admit), I painted them in with watercolors.

Oh, pretty little things, I love thee. This coming week I’d like to pair some shop objects with some of my favorite old film stars. I have a feeling they’ll go together hand-in-hand.

It looks like it’s going to be a lovely weekend. I wish you all: cinnamon vanilla tea (my current favorite), warm apple crisp, a classic movie viewing with someone you admire, a great thrift store find, sweet scents, some bed reading, good crisp weather, flirtations, salted caramels, a cozy nap, bursts of inspiration, some ridiculous dance moves, and discovery.

Stop by and say hello- see you soon!

PERFUME


I love perfume. It is such an easy pleasure: practically guilt-free, completely mood altering and indulgent. For pennies a day anyone can slip on this subtle second skin, causing people to lean in and breathe deep. Hardly a day goes by without someone telling me I smell great. I used to hate the smell of perfume, I just didn’t know what I was missing. I told Cindy I’d help her choose perfumes for the new shop, EDEN, and it blasted open a new dimension of perfumes for me. My desk sprouted a forest of tester vials, and for a few weeks I was just swimming in new scents. I would spend quiet evenings at home spritzing my wrists, smelling, taking notes. I wore a different scent every day for a month. I learned a thing or two.

1. There is definitely such a thing as an evening fragrance. I gave the super-sultry ‘a la nuit’ by Serge Lutens a test drive on the PSU campus, and I felt like I’d gone to school in a slip. Which could be awesome, I guess.

2. There are places you really ought not wear highly discernable fragrance. Like, a martial arts dojo on a Saturday morning. One of my favorites is so volatile, so intense that I can’t really wear it out in the world. It’s the perfume equivalent of a black satin ball gown (Samsara by Guerlain).

3. I have no allegiance to one scent or brand or type. Choosing a scent to wear in the morning is all about my mood, the season, what I have to do that day. It’s nice to have a wardrobe of options, BUT there is something to be said for having a signature scent. Once I tried on a perfume and immediately realized I’d made a mistake- it smelled EXACTLY like a friend of mine, and I was going to be seeing her later in the day. Smell is such an intense way to recall events or people. It’s because our olfactory bulbs are strongly linked with parts of the brain associated with memory and emotion. Last time I got hijacked by scent was when I was unpacking a box and my old scented Strawberry Shortcake doll was in there. Oh Hasbro, tugging my heartstrings!

4. “Artificial” chemicals in perfume are ok with me- in fact they can be completely amazing (and use literally tons less natural resources). I wouldn’t trust a lab to make a decent rose or other single note fragrance, but for a complex, 9-layer spice bomb with notes of frankincense, pine needles, thyme, honey and figs, evocative of a campfire on a windswept island… well, that takes a certain amount of alchemical magic; a mixing of essential oils, plant waxes and lab-made ingredients. Yes, please.

FAVORITES:


Jean-Marie Farina by French perfumers Roger and Gallet is one of the first Eau de Colognes ever made (the formula was perfected in 1806!). Bright and botanical, it’s extremely refreshing and perfect for summer. As crisp and classy as a Bombay gin and tonic. Their other scents are equally compelling (try the Bois d’Orange), and totally unisex. It’s at Flutter.

Matin d’Orage by Annick Goutal is a terrific floral. It was inspired by the smell of a Japanese garden after a storm, broken leaves and gardenia and orange blossoms whipped by the wind. It is beautiful and wearable, and smells especially good in warmer months. Cindy will carry it at the new store, Eden, as well as three more Goutal scents that have enormous reputations. Eau d’Hadrien might be the most popular scent in France.

Cocoa Tamarind by Voluspa never smells wrong, on anyone, ever. It is the most flattering, versatile perfume I have ever smelled, and is such a good deal (oh, Voluspa!). At Flutter.

Dead Sexy by Tokyo Milk. Ok, It was hard to choose, they have such a range of scents, and I love what they do. I don’t know if it’s necessarily my favorite, but it is a standout. One of the biggest perks of working at Flutter is deciding which scent to put on in the morning. We have more than 30 Tokyo Milk perfumes, so I don’t get tired of any one of them. Shout out to Kabuki, Marine Sel, Bittersweet and Marie.

Encens Mystic, a little roll-on solid perfume by a French company called Crazy Libellule. It smells like the Hagia Sophia must have smelled 300 years ago: smoky myrrh, beeswax, straw and pine needles. It kind of takes my breath away. Plus, it’s so portable and affordable. It’s at Flutter.

Sa Majeste La Rose by Serge Lutens. The rose is so maligned. Horrible caricatures of it exist everywhere, in cheap perfumes and all manner of scented products (lemon knows how it feels). A really good rose is so difficult and costly to procure that it seems to only exist in really high-end perfumes. The Lutens version is so lovely, it is the kind of rose you just want to stick your whole face in. It is GORGEOUS. At Eden.

Vanille Sauvage de Madagascar- I put this one here because it’s the one I get the most compliments on (usually from men who would say that they hate perfume). I like it even though it’s not edgy or complicated (maybe the art house perfumes have spoiled me). I am always drawn back to its simplicity and one-note perfection. At Flutter.

Choosing a perfume is so personal. They react with your unique chemistry, so what smells great on your best friend might be just awful on you, or it might be great in a different way. For this reason, you should never buy a scent untested. That means: actually sprayed on your skin. When I go into a store with a lot of options, I’ll sniff the decanters to get an idea, and narrow it down to four (or less) to actually try on. This is something I can’t do often, as it’s a real gamble- I have to go the rest of the day smelling like the combination of these four, and it might be horrible. I’ll put one on each wrist and one on each shoulder, or the bend of my elbow, so they each have an anatomical zone to themselves to work their special magic. I save this kind of experiment for a trip to The Perfume House on Hawthorne. I can’t recommend that place enough.

Most perfumes will have a spectrum of scents, starting with the first spray (heavy on the alcohol until it evaporates, unless it’s a roll on). That’s what they call the “top note”, and they’re typically the brightest, most volatile aspects of the scent. Wait a minute or two, then smell it again… the middle notes are emerging. They are considered the heart of the perfume, and they are most noticeable after the smaller molecules of the top notes evaporate. These components combine with the heavier molecules, typically resinous or powdery smells. They’re the ones that are good at sticking around to create the lasting impression of the perfume, called the dry down. The dry down is the character of the scent after it dries, like maybe a full hour later. It might be a completely different scent. You may love the dry down, or you might decide you need a long shower. I’ve scrubbed and scrubbed my wrists, and there are some tenacious elements that really linger, usually the ones I can’t stand. Luckily, in the morning it’s usually gone and I can start the adventure all over again.

The Hot Seat: Personality Analysis via Chair Preference









Bear with me, now.. yes, personality analysis is possible via simple chair preference. Simple, I say, and yet much research has gone into this assessment, as much insight and professional development as this month’s Cosmo survey. For convenience and aesthetic purposes, the lovely chairs found within the brick and mortar of Flutter will be used in this survey.

DIRECTIONS: Take a good long look at all of the sitting implements pictured below. After careful consideration, chose one of the numbered chairs on which you would feel most comfortable. You may also pick a chair which you are ineluctably drawn to. Scroll to the bottom, and find the numbered analysis matching your chair. Repeat, share with friends, and please, post your epiphanies and indignant rebuttals for further consideration and development!

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8:

RESULTS:
1. Your charm and good looks have gotten you far in life. You like cocktail parties and getting dressed up, which is not to say that you’re without substance. Your joie de vivre is infectious, but not overwhelming. You could use this energy to throw fundraiser parties, intensify study in your area of interest, or pick up a new instrument. The world is your oyster!

2. You are a creative, spiritual visionary. Listen to your dreams and let them help you flesh out the utopia you know is possible, even if this extends only to your immediate surroundings. Live your life as close to those ideals as possible. Give yourself plenty of quiet reflective time, uninterrupted, perhaps with a pen and paper and a cup of tea.

3.You like to make your friends laugh. You are energetic and easily excited. You are patient have a lot of love to share, but don’t sell yourself short or get caught up in draining cycles or relationships. Take your ambitions and contributions to the world seriously, and be honest about the limits to your temperance.

4.You are thoughtful, classy, intellectual, and you love to people-watch. You appreciate art, pageantry, and tradition. Simplicity can help you center and avoid overstimulation, and spending time in nature could be inspiring and energizing.

5.Home and family are important to you. You enjoy games, puzzles, riddles and books. Your curiosity can take you on some very interesting adventures, if you let it. You are very easy to get along with, so don’t be afraid to engage with people on a more emotional level. You have much to gain from exploration and calculated risk.

6. You don’t like to take up too much space. You are respectful, spartan, utilitarian. You probably have a fully stocked emergency kit, and you check the weather before you leave the house. You wear thermals 6 months out of the year. To avoid being frustrated by the shortcomings of others, practice observing how their talents are different from yours.

7: You’ve got a lot to do. You probably have a moleskine full of sketches and notes. You love to spend a rainy day at the library. Time alone is important to you, but you don’t get enough. It’s time to invest in a cabin in the woods or a solo vacation, to really delve into your ideas and projects uninterrupted. Don’t underestimate the beauty and importance of interdependence.

8: You are a collector with a taste for exotic food and travel. You are independent, curious and a quick learner. You collect maps and books on other cultures, and can speak a few languages passably. Make sure your home is a place where you can feel productive and inspired.

The inspiration for this game is a very similar assessment in the wonderful amateur psychoanalysis boxed set called “Mind Games”.

Seaside Essentials

Oh, ocean breeze, take me away with you to a far off land of treasures and adventure…
anchor bottle opener
Cast Iron Anchor Bottle Opener
whale bottle opener
Cast Iron Whale Bottle Opener
mermaid bottle opener
Cast Iron Mermaid Bottle Opener
It’s officially Spring, ladies and gentleman! Why not bring a bit of the seascape home with you, this season?  Novelty bottle openers are available in many styles, at Flutter, including these ocean inspired lovelies. I love the idea of flipping a mermaid’s (or whale’s) tail to open a guest’s beverage, before presenting it to them, don’t you?  There are plenty of other sea inspired decorative items as well, check out these amazing selections!  
Ocean colored rug
Ocean Colors Hooked Rug
Handmade Jute Ship pillow
Thomas Paul Sail Seafarer Jute Pillow-This is my personal favorite!

Tokyo Milk
Tokyo Milk Marine Sel  #54 Solid Perfume-Wearing the scent of the ocean on your skin feels divine.
Seaworthy
Anchor and Pearl Locket by Seaworthy
paper treasure
Vintage Crystal Earrings by Paper Treasure
There is nothing like exploring the life in the ocean of the Tropical East Indies, from you sofa.  Beautiful color illustrations of fish are something I could look at all day, there is so much to see in this book.  You have never seen drawings like this, they are amazingly detailed, not to mention they would make awesome tattoos. 
Fish book
Tropical Fishes of the East Indies Book
paper captain
Paper Captain-Do It yourself punch out boats, just in time for Spring Break!