LADIES!!! Have you got your ticket to Monarch Workshop yet? Tomorrow is the last day to grab one! I am SO excited! I always have an amazing time bonding with fellow creative lady bosses, AND I’m leading one of the breakout sessions this time. We’ll be talking natural beauty and making sugar scrubs, wooo!
Not sure what Monarch is all about? It’s a two-day heart-centered workshop that promotes positive thinking, self-reflection, and all around good vibes, with a focus on creativity, wellness, and entrepreneurship.
This is my third Monarch Workshop, and they just keep getting better. There’s always yoga, crafting, delicious food, inspiring speakers, and plenty of rad women.
I thought it was about time I come out of hiding and say hello. Life lately has been a wild ride, and I wanted to share a little bit about what I’ve been up to these past few months!
In January, I re-branded my product line and launched florapothecarie! (flor-uh-poth-uh-cary) Still 100% natural, but now with even more organic ingredients and beautiful new labels. I could write a whole separate post on my decision to rebrand (I may still!), but for now I will say this: it’s always a tough decision, but I did it for a few reasons: I want to be self-employed someday soon, and I wasn’t charging nearly enough for my products in order to pay myself, so I knew I needed to raise my prices. I also felt the name “Poor & Pretty” did my high-quality, handcrafted products a disservice, so I knew I needed a new name. I wanted to bring color back into my branding (I love color!), so I knew the aesthetic needed to change. I wanted to get away from Etsy. Anyway, it’s done and launched and beautiful and I’m so happy! You can shop the full lineup on my new website right here!
OH! As part of my re-brand, I launched a product I’ve been working on for months: a natural cream deodorant (or deodorant paste). BIG thanks to my team of testers for trying it out and giving me such great feedback. They were totally in love with it, and I think you will be too. Buy it here.
Last month, my wonderful incredible loving uncle flew me out to visit him and my aunt in Los Angeles. He thought I could use a little sunshine and warm weather, and he was so so right. The week I visited, it was sunny and 80-90 degrees every day (and I skipped out on a few New England snow storms). We visited the Getty Villa (above) and the Griffith Observatory, saw the Oscar-nominated short films, had dinner and a movie in the swankiest movie theatre I’ve ever been in, and relaxed on the beach.
Knowing me as well as he does, one day my uncle dropped me off at Zuma Beach (in Malibu, right off the Pacific Coast Highway), and left me alone while he went on a three-hour bike ride. The sun, the sand, the sea all called to me. I’ve always felt drawn to Southern California, and every time I visit, I feel like I’m home. I don’t know what this means quite yet, but I’m keeping my mind and heart open to the possibilities of my future.
I’m also totally in love with my pink ombré hair, which I can’t believe I never told you about! Of course, it was done by my super-talented bestie, Mish Jolie. IN OCTOBER. So yeah, I thought you should know about it. The photo above is from a boudoir shoot I did shortly after getting my hair done. Photographed by the lovely Cassandra Madeline, styled by Sammy Vigorito, hair & makeup by Rachel Toussaint. Truthfully, I’ve been struggling with feeling sexy and confident in my body for a long, long time. The boudoir shoot was my Christmas gift to myself, and worth every penny.
Also: I’m seeing someone new. His name is Rochan, and he is a red panda. Ha! Kidding. Sort of. I am seeing someone new. It’s very new, and very exciting, and that’s all I will say about it for now. Except that he took me to see this ADORABLE red panda at the Beardsley Zoo last weekend, and I almost lost my mind. He gets me.
Happy new year, friends! I hope your holidays were filled with joy, laughter, and delicious food. I’m coming out of hibernation for a quick update on the Apothecary. You know how I said I’ve been secretly working on rebranding? I’m so excited to share it with you! Say hello to florapothecarie!
florapothecarie is handcrafted plant-based beauty, inspired by natural healers and faerie legends of yesteryear. It’s stepping away from technology and into the outdoors, embracing the natural beauty surrounding us. It’s stopping and smelling the roses, and running in an open field. It’s picking daisies from the side of the road, and soaking in a tub sprinkled with petals.
The new product line will feature a few favorites from Poor & Pretty Apothecary, along with some new ones. I’ve still got quite a bit of work to do — new website, product photography, new business cards, and all that fun stuff that goes a long with rebranding! But, I plan to launch on February 1st! Yay!
You might have noticed I’ve been quiet lately. While the impending holidays have kept me very busy, the truth is, I’m also going through a pretty rough breakup. I’m okay, but it hasn’t been easy. Stan and I were together for 7 years, and our lives are very intertwined. We love each other very much, but as Adele sings: Sometimes it lasts in love, but sometimes it hurts instead…
I’m very lucky to have a great support group of friends & family. I’m taking one day at a time and reminding myself that I am a good person who does some pretty cool stuff, that I am beautiful and lovable, which we can easily forget (especially us women). I’m trying to find my center and look at the scary unknown future as a positive thing, stretching out before me and waiting for me to figure out who I am and where I want to go.
For now, I will be blogging much less. Blogging used to be something that brought me joy and fed my creative soul, but it has begun to feel like a chore. And with my emotions currently running wild, it’s very difficult for me to find words or to focus on anything other than what I am going through personally. I don’t think I will stop blogging entirely, because I do enjoy sharing beauty tutorials and other DIYs with you, so let’s just call it a hiatus for now.
As for the Poor & Pretty Apothecary, I will be closing down my Etsy and Scoutmob shops on Friday, December 18. Please place any orders by Thursday, December 17 or stop by one of my events this weekend. For the past few months, I’ve been secretly working on rebranding my product line. This took a back burner so I could focus on taking care of me for the last two weeks, and now I have to clear my head and decide if it’s something I’d still like to go forward with. I’m sure it is, but it does require quite a bit of effort and attention, and I’m not able to give it that right now.
Finally, I’d like to give a very heartfelt thank you for your support over the years. I’m not sure what the future holds for Poor & Pretty, but I’m glad to have fun, crafty, lovely people like you with me on this wild ride, and I hope that you will bear with me during this difficult time. We all struggle with demons, but when you do I hope you will remember that the pain is temporary and that you, too, are beautiful and lovable. Treat yourself with kindness.
I am on a crazy traveling/networking kick, you guys. I got home from New Orleans on Sunday night and pretty much collapsed into bed. This weekend is Monarch Workshop. And the weekend after that I am staying at home as much as possible, ha! Here are a few things I fell in love with in NOLA:
1. Being Boss. I’ve been obsessively listening to the Being Boss podcast since June, and drinking in every bit of advice imparted by hosts Emily Thompson (above left) and Kathleen Shannon (above right). Their mantra “Do the Work; Be Boss” is something I say to myself on an almost-daily basis. I get so caught up in research, self doubt, and trying to feel “ready” with my work that I become paralyzed and afraid to actually do anything. So when Emily and Kathleen decided they were going to New Orleans and inviting 75 bosses along, I didn’t overthink. I bought my ticket, and went, and shared my ideas with other badass creative boss ladies, and totally conquered. I gained so much confidence and self-awareness, and of course amazing connections! When I came home, I got to work finishing my natural beauty eBook and launched it on Tuesday. You can buy it here!
2. My roommate. I was a little nervous about sharing an AirBnB with someone I didn’t know, but when I discovered Jessica (alias Jem) regularly attends Renaissance Faires, I knew we’d get along just fine. And we did! Jem is a super talented comic book artist currently working on a weekly comic called Cap and Sable, a spacey pirate tale. We explored the city together, gave each other confidence, shared book recommendations, and geeked out about Harry Potter a lot. ANd her hair! It makes me want to put pink back in mine…
3. The food. Some of the food highlights from my trip were roasted chicken with jambalaya risotto at Bourbon House, chicken & waffles at Desire, pulled pork Po Boy somewhere on Bourbon Street… NOLA is another city of amazing food, pretty much everywhere you go. I don’t eat seafood, but there were plenty of delicious alternatives for me. I would have loved to do lunch or dinner at Brennan’s, but we didn’t make reservations and you definitely need them there!
4. The beignets. You can’t go to New Orleans without eating beignets! When Suzi and I went to NOLA in 2008, we waited in a pretty long line at Café Beignet for ours (expect to do so if you’re heading there too). Luckily, the genius organizers behind the #BeingBossNOLA trip grabbed a bunch for us one morning so we didn’t have to wait in line! They are amazingly fluffy and doughy and sugary.
5. The gelato. Walking around the French Quarter trying to decide what to eat, Jem and I stumbled upon Sucré, a sweet boutique on Conti Street. They had 14 different French Macarons, artisan chocolate bars, handmade marshmallows, personal cakes named after musicals, and gelato! Though we were tempted to have gelato for lunch, we hurried out, ate somewhere nearby, and went back for dessert. It made me want to start a bakery so bad!
6. The crêpes. Connected to the apartment building we were staying in was a little coffee shop called Merchant. They had amazing crêpes, which Jem and I ate every morning.
7. The Frenchmen Art Market. If you’re into supporting handmade artisans like I am, you’ll want to check out the art market on Frenchmen Street. It’s bit of a hike, but still totally walkable! Because it only runs in the evenings, there are string lights hovering above the artists’ tents. It felt so magical! The goods ranged from big painted canvas artwork to handmade 80s and 90s memorabilia to jewelry made of fish bones.
8. The dresses. While we’re on the subject of shopping, let’s talk about Dollz & Dames! It’s a small boutique on Decatur Street, filled with rockabilly dresses, shoes, skirts, tops, vintage lingerie… I spent a lot of money here, and I’m certain if Suzi were with me again, she would have too. I bought this entire ensemble there!
9. The Tarot Reading. One of my missions this visit was to seek out the tarot card reader Kathleen spoke about during an episode of Being Boss. We knew she had blue dreadlocks, a hat, and was in Jackson Square (as are most of the readers). We found her on Saturday, and she was wonderful. I’m keeping the reading to myself, but I will say it was powerful and I am very glad I found her!
10. The Ghost Tour. I was really excited about doing a ghost tour with my fellow bosses because that’s one thing Suzi and I didn’t get a chance to do on our first visit to NOLA. The tour was booked through Lord Chaz Ghost Tours, who were incredible. We were split into three smaller groups, so we didn’t have Lord Chaz himself, but the guy we had (I forgot his name!) was fantastic. We learned all about the voodoo, vampire, and ghost legends that haunt the city. That big shadow behind our tour guide? We dubbed him Spooky Jesus.
11. Halloween. NOLA lives for well, pretty much every holiday (and some they even make up), but this is doubly true for Halloween. Houses, shops, and restaurants in the French Quarter were covered in creepy clowns, skeletons, animatronic witches and vampires. We walked past the above clown-filled porch on our way to Frenchmen Market Friday night. I would have hated living next to those folks!
12. The Gemini Bermuda Triangle. While at a the Being Boss Bourbon House dinner Friday night, I wound up sitting across from and next to two fellow Geminis. Now, I don’t let astrological signs and horoscopes run my life by any means, but I totally buy into the fact that people of the same sun sign have similar personality traits. Turns out Fearless Fresh chef Stephanie Stiavetti (above left) and content coach Erica Midkiff (above right — I was so excited to meet her!) are also Geminis, and also can’t drink coffee because it makes them insanely jittery, and can’t help speaking loudly and excitedly, and always have a million different entrepreneurial ideas and creative paths they want to follow. So we called ourselves the Gemini Bermuda Triangle because non-Geminis could get totally swallowed up in the middle of our energetic, creative madness.