Gift guide: For the birds

Hello, my name is Kristin and I am addicted to bird-themed accessories. There’s a 12 step program for this, right? First step, admitting you have a problem. Truth be told, I have no less than two feather necklaces, one bird necklace, two pairs of feather earrings, a feather ring and a feather bracelet sitting on my dresser right now. Oh, and a feather-print dress in my closet. So anyway, I see no reason not to continue the theme!

We’ll start with something practical. This transparent resin bracelet by Rosella Resin features a polka dot feather from a spotted guinea fowl. It’s graphic enough to spice up any simple, modern ensemble, yet earthy enough to appeal to a granola girl as well.

Now for something a little more fanciful—amazing feather headpieces by Arturo Rios. I know hats are just starting to catch on over here in the U.S., but these are really just too beautiful to pass up. If you can’t imagine placing them on your head, what about on a table as your centerpiece or affixed to a light fixture in your home?

Feather hair extensions were very trendy this summer, but I think they’ll stick around for a couple more months. Many shops on etsy offer them, including this set from futska. I love the look, but I’m still trying to decide if they’re worth it! Luckily, these are so affordable it’s worth the gamble.

We’re back!

As some of you were aware, until mid-April I worked full time at a local women’s magazine called brava (website is now a little outdated). It ceased operations and left about a dozen wonderfully creative people without jobs. Half of that group stuck together to try to figure out a way to work together to get brava back into production. I finally have good, no, great news to report: brava is back! Here’s the official press release:

Brava magazine confirms release date of August 1, 2009

Madison, Wis. — June 4, 2009 — Brava magazine, the monthly lifestyle publication dedicated to celebrating the lives of women in south central Wisconsin, announces it will re-launch the popular magazine on August 1, 2009.

Erickson Publishing, LLC, former publisher of brava magazine, its sister publication the annual encore edition and producer of the Madison Women’s Expo suspended operations in April.  The fate of the products was unknown. Kristin Erickson, owner of Erickson Publishing, LLC, is happy to have sold the business to a core group of former employees. “I am so proud of the impact brava made to our readers, our advertisers and the community as a whole,” Erickson says.  “It was extremely hard to suspend publication, and I am absolutely thrilled that this team of talented professionals will continue to take the products to new exciting levels. I am delighted to pass the baton to Laura Houlihan.”  Erickson will also remain working with the team as a consultant.

“The team is assembled and has been working behind the scenes for weeks in the hopes the purchase would go through,” says Houlihan, the newly named publisher of the magazine. Houlihan brings to the table her past experience running Skirt Magazine in Jacksonville, Fla., as well as her sales experience at brava. “The outpouring of support from our readership and advertisers has been amazing. We couldn’t let it die,” says Houlihan. “It’s like having our family back together.”

The Madison Women’s Expo, a yearly event produced by brava and held the weekend before Thanksgiving will also return for its 11th year. Marketing and Events Director, Michelle Page-Alswager, will remain at the helm.  “What can I say?  Women look forward to this event and exhibitors love the results they get from the thousands of attendees visiting them.   It’s the perfect tie in — the premier women’s magazine in south central Wisconsin, and the best Women’s Expo, I’m lucky to be part of both,” states Page-Alswager.

More information to follow.

For more information, contact Michelle Page-Alswager at (608) 235-3857 or Laura Houlihan at 608-609-9149 or

As always, you can follow our progress at our interim blog, hold that thought, although I can’t make any promises for regular updates since we’ll be working so hard to get this magazine launched. Feel free to leave any comments here or there as to what you’d like to see in brava as it moves forward.


Militario Tunic Top
Militario Tunic Top

Another great indy designer I’ve recently discovered is Bonnie of katsai out of Barcelona, Spain. I love her military-inspired girly tops: They really embody this great dichotomy of hard and soft. She always manages to add just enough detail and embellishment to create a piece that’s special and unique, yet effortless.

Dandy Halter with Jabot
Dandy Halter with Jabot