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Sunday, December 30, 2012

Pantone Color of the Year looks good in the Pacific Northwest

 Thank you style gods that be, Pantone has selected their 2013 color of the year and it is  green!!!!  (Hello favorite all time color)...and not just any green, a deep rich, green with a lot of blue....a jewel tone..emerald they call it.  I say enough with this honeysuckle and tangerine (pantone's colors for the last two years).  We are not 14 and not all of us live in Miami.  Don't get me wrong, I love a pop of pink and tangerine first came to my attention as a trendsetting color when I saw John Derian wearing a pair of orange boiled wool pants at NYIGF.  (Seriously, the first time I met John Derian, before I knew who he was, and when he really was a small NYC manufacturer, he was wearing those pants and I remember thinking, "Now who is that unassuming guy over there in those fabulous pants - ?")...it's not that I don't think orange and pink (read tangerine and honeysuckle) have their place, it's just that manufacturers look at those Pantone predictions and start making everything in those colorways and, frankly, those colors don't really fly too well in the grey and moody Northwest.  So yeah to emerald!!!!

all images courtesy pantone

Saturday, December 29, 2012

My Crabby Christmas

 I love setting a festive holiday table......it usually starts with the food.  In this case -crab....typically what I would think of for New Year's but somewhere got it in my head I wanted to have crab. I was going for something sort of earthy but bright and happy....a little bit clean and not too fussy.  I decided we'd serve ourselves most of the food  buffet style in the kitchen and then just have the crab and accoutrements on the table.

 I went out for a  walk in the filbert orchard behind my house and came home with some goodies for the nature part of the table- lichens and moss and a sweet little licorice fern (something very special about licorice fern) ...starting to look a bit like Christmas.

 But uh, oh, starting to get a little crowded on that table with all the crab paraphernalia - you know crackers and pickers, and lemons and aoili, and the crab itself and places for the shells. Plus we needed candles and  I wanted to have three little mossy vases down the table but I was definitely running out of room.

 Problem solved, I would just run red and white string up and down the table.....lots of color punch and it wouldn't take up any space. 

Keeping with the new design directive that all decorative elements must lie flat on the table, I added these  masks I was going to give away as party favors.....a little devilish for Christmas perhaps but the red seemed just right.

What can I say?  Try as I might (never), I'm not a minimalist......
And the food hasn't even made it to the table.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Blessings on this Day

A healthy and happy holiday to you and yours from the deep, green woods of Oregon and all of us at
Passionflower!  We love the holidays, we love our customers,and we are so thankful to have a lovely day off to celebrate with family and friends! 

Sunday, December 23, 2012

The Amazing Becky Tonkin

 I want to say a few words to Passionflower's amazing store manger, Miss Becky Tonkin.  

 First off , you are a great sport and let me post all sorts of quasi flattering  photos of you for Pflower promotional purposes.  And I super appreciate that. :)

 I also think you could have a second career as a make up artist (I really do,that is if you lived in LA I guess)...just one more of your many talents.

But what I really wanted to say is that I thought you looked spectacularly beautiful at our Holiday Party this year - and you kind of rocked my world with all those jewel tones - the red of the rose, the deep plum of your lipstick and the emerald green of the ayala barr necklace were all just reverberating!!  Thanks for being the most beautiful manager a girl could ask for. 

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Lovely Little Holiday Sachets

We were happy to find these lovely little bee themed , lavender filled sachets to add to our apiary themed section of the shop.

Bees and all things bee derived (like honey and propolis and beeswax and even pollen) are near and dear to my heart!
I used to have a friend who kept hives in my backyard in Portland and (fair warning I'm about to launch into a woo woo interspecies communication experience) the first time i worked with him, I was covered from head to toe in a layer of bees.  Beekeeper friend said he'd never seen anything like it.  Mostly it made me move in a very thoughtful and slow way as we worked.  Plus there was this tiny humming/buzzing sound all -
 around me and surprisingly I didn't feel scared that I would get stung.  I just felt sort of safe and contained.  Afterwards, when I was all desuited and de-beed, I had that feeling  like when you've been on a boat and you get off and the ground seems to be still rocking around you.  It was kinda like that - kinda.  My friend says bees and the hive are about pure love energy and that's why all bee products have such healing properties.  Seemed about right to me after my bee encounter.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Krampus at Passionflower

Passionflower's quirky little version of Krampusnacht......the devil santa who takes care of bad children....
well actually it's from our Halloween window but we thought he could do double duty.  This is the first year, this myth has crossed my path and it seems to be popping up a lot.  Here's what Wikipedia has to say:

Krampus is a beast-like creature from the folklore of Alpine countries thought to punish bad children during the Yule season, in contrast with Saint Nicholas, who rewards nice ones with gifts. Krampus is said to capture particularly naughty children in his sack and carry them away to his lair.
Krampus is represented as a beast-like creature, generally demonic in appearance. The creature has roots in Germanic folklore.

Solstice Greetings

It really is such a beautiful time of the year.  Santa Lucia, Guadalupe, Solstice, Christmas, Hanukkah and more. People around the world really know how to celebrate.
photo courtesy Right Livelihood Award, the Alternative Nobel Peace Prize FB page (so random that I stumbled upon this image but I love it)

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Fun Stocking Stuffers at Passionflower

Best little stocking stuffer ever or fun to use to decorate a package, our friend Peggy Flynn from Portland has re-invented her business and is offering these super fun buttons. Besides 'Earth Steward' , you can choose from 'Loyal Friend', '#1 Hostess', or our favorite  'Excellent Human'.....

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Holiday Jewelry Bling at Passionflower

 I am suffering from world's most annoying headcold.  And so, because I can barely put two sentences together, thought I would leave you with a little photo montage of some of our holiday jewelry from some of our favorite vendors.

Gorgeous cloisonne pendant from Swallow.

 One of a kind Susan Goodwin.

Gypsy makes this dramatic pearl turqouise lariat.
And longtime vendor Exstasia with a handcarved mammoth ivory acorn on a carnelian chain. 
Like Becky says, we're glamourous nature girls, because after we come home from that lovely trek in the woods, we want to take a hot bath and put on some velvet and bling and go celebrate the season ((As soon as the headcold goes away!)

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Ordering flowers Online in Eugene

Okay folks, this is kind of some big news here :  You can now order flowers online from us!!!!  You asked, we listened....so the next time it's midnight, and you remember that you forgot your Mom's birthday, no worries,  you can get online and order!  And don't freak out,  we haven't gone all FTD on you.  In fact,  there's not even a cookie cutter photo gallery of arrangements to pick from because well, flowers are always changing and every arrangement we do is custom just for you!  So it's an open ended order form - you tell us the occasion and a few details and shazaam, we make it all beautiful.  But you do kind of have to trust us that we will use the most beautiful flowers available and make it spectacular.  Because we will!
Click here to go to our website and then click on the "order" button on the top right of the page to get started.  And you know what?  If you want us to follow it up with a phone call to confirm all the itsy bitsy details, we're happy to do that too! 

Hosting a Holiday Party

 A few ideas for great holiday parties.  Tis the season and we're here to help with just about everything but the food.  I love entertaining
 Hello, start with candles.  I start with a big lantern outdoors to welcome people.  And in my world you can never have too many candles - the more the merrier.  I scatter these beautiful cast iron Sequoia candlesticks down the center of my dining table.  They're dramatic but delicate and people can still talk over them. I like the beeswax candles because they put off just the subtlest hint of honey without being overpowering at the dining table. Plus candlelight always makes your guests look good.  And if you have one, make sure that fireplace is all aglow.

 And flowers - again the more the merrier although I think you can do just fine with a few dramatic and strategically placed blooms.  Don't be shy.
And music counts, for a lot!!! Live music is best, so welcome friends young and old who like to play but have a good selection of CD's already cued up.  Music totally sets the tone.....

 And try to have something slightly nerdy & ridiculous for folks to do......it loosens people up and puts them in the party mood.  Mistletoe, a guessing game,white elephant, sparklers, sing alongs and more all work.   If there's going to be lots of kids, considering hiring a sitter and have a play place for kids to hang out (and I don't mean putting them in front of a TV). 
So there you have it candles, flowers, music, (and food too) but really the most important ingredient at your party are your guests!  So enjoy them and have fun!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Thoughts of Mexico

I thought that since today is the day that, all over Mexico, people celebrate the milagro of the Virgen de Guadalupe, I might share with you notice of a little tour to Mexico I am organizing.   My pal, the teacher and artist, Jill Cardinal and I are planning another art making adventure to Oaxaca Mexico this coming March.

Find out all about it by clicking here
And get in touch with me if you'd like to go and explore and make art.
Last year was our first tour and it was amazing. This year ought to be even better.  If you have always wanted to go to Oaxaca, or tour with a group of women, or make art amongst like minded folk, this just might be the trip for you.

Photo above is a journal page I  made on the art adventure last year.  I think I am going to use it for my journal cover for this years trip. 
Stay tuned.


Saturday, December 8, 2012

Favorite 2013 Botanical Calendar

It's funny how sometimes you see just one little thing and it sparks a whole story. You know, like those decorators who say they built a whole room around a painting.  Well such is the case with this Snow & Graham calendar that I spotted during August at the New York International Gift Fair.  Charcoal grey (or very light black as Becky might say), green and pops of white. Who would of thunk?  I've built a whole story right at the entrance to the store around this colorway.  Oh and I popped just a dusting of silver into the mix to give it a little holiday sparkle.   Here's a charming blog post from the maker about her whole process in designing the calendar.  And she's right....you can never go wrong with white flowers.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Decisions, Decisions

I am trying to decide whether to have a tree this year.  And whether I want to do all white flowers or all red flowers.   And I know, whichever way I go, it will be fabulous and smell good and twinkle.  I just love decorating for the holidays.  Even if it's a single paperwhite or a rosemary wreath, there is something really wonderful about bringing a bit of something living and bright into your house during this darkest time of the year.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Considering All that has been and all that will be

Greetings on a perfectly and very rainy Tuesday morning.  It is the beginning of my work week and I am feeling happy and pensive at the same time.  And this Julia Margaret Cameron photo of a woman and a Passionflower seemed just right.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

It's Party Time

Hello All -  A short note to inform you that It'S PartTy Time chez Passionflower!  This is our biggest party of the year and you're invited.  We'll have live music and bubbly and we'll all be dressed in our holiday finery.  Plus this year we've invited Paper Moon Photo Studio to set up a little photo booth.  So get dressed up, come  out and have   your photo taken and enjoy the convivial holiday spirit that is known as downtown Eugene during holiday season. Come put a little bubbly in your sparkle!  We would seriously love to have you join us.  And bring your friends!

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Buying Local and Smelling Good

The buy local message resonates with me for the obvious reasons  (I'm a small local retailer !)....but I have also been taking it to heart and trying to do more of my buying locally.  Florists in Oregon are lucky in this respect because we have a lot of great growers working here....but I am trying to refine the local to get even more and more local.  (Like buying in Eugene instead of having it shipped from Portland).   And while I didn't gather the greens for my holiday wreaths in my backyard ( I was too busy, raising the sheep and spinning the yarn for my holiday gift giving (ha)), I think they are about as close to local as I can get.  And here's why that's good news for you - that means these are fresh, fresh, fresh, as in cut and made within a week from when you get it.  Which means they're going to last longer and smell better.  Just one more example of the win / win that comes from buying local.  So come buy a fresh, local wreath from us and we'll customize it for you with ribbon,fruits, cones, and flowers!