Not Martha

links: beauty and shopping

Free weight loss resources at Bodies in Motivation, which you should be reading if you need to hear some fitness and weight loss stories from real, actual people.

Uncle Beefy announces that Flourish is back! Flourish was a card shop in the Wallingford neighborhood of Seattle that I used to visit often. They closed the physical store but have opened their online presence, and I’m glad to see them again.

Eye glasses online? at Ask Metafilter

This thread at Ask Metafilter lead me to the perfect iPhone cases at Vaja. What holiday can I use as an excuse to ask for this as a gift?

Scotch Transparent High Performance Duct Tape at Uncrate

Message in a bottle kit and Paper flower kits at Paper Source, both from Mighty Goods

A whole lot of non-alcohol-based perfumes have been appearing in front of my eyes: Episode 127 of Lipgloss and Laptops pointed me towards Sweet Anthem handmade oil based perfumes, who just happens to be here in Seattle. The Sweet Anthem site links to I Hate Perfume which are oil based and sound very intriguing, Aftelier Perfumes which are pricey but just look at those antique cases, and Pacifica who offers solid perfumes. offers this nice sounding Fragonard French Creme Perfume Gift Set that would work well to keep in your bag and for travel. And of course I just want to mention again how much I’ve liked the oil based perfumes from Yosh. update: Karen, thanks Karen!, reminded me about Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab which makes an overwhelming number of scents and has a cult following. They have a regular schedule of limited edition scents, a line inspired by the writings of Neil Gaiman, and sell smaller amounts, called Imp’s Ears. The number of scents they sell can be a bit much to browse, but if you know something you like the search feature works really well to narrow things down.

· comments [23] · 01-22-2009 · categories:beauty · shopping ·

23 responses so far ↓

  • 1 greta // Jan 22, 2009 at 12:30 pm

    i used some of those paper flowers in my wedding (gosh, over 5 years ago!). the instructions were very easy to follow, and the templates they provide can be used with any paper you like. we bought one kit each in a few different styles, and then just copied them using additional supplies bought (more affordably) elsewhere. they made for a fun pre-wedding crafty party with friends.

  • 2 Seattlejo // Jan 22, 2009 at 12:35 pm

    I’m so glad to hear that flourish is back! I thought they were such a gem and was sad to see them go.

    I do not like the temptation you have led me into with the Vaja bag though.

  • 3 pam // Jan 22, 2009 at 12:39 pm

    like greta, those paper flowers were the main decor in my wedding 3 years ago. and then i made them again for my best friend’s wedding 2 years ago. they’re beautiful (and cheap, once you have the patterns) but lord, i never want to make one again in my life!

  • 4 morbo // Jan 22, 2009 at 1:43 pm

    The I Hate Perfume stuff is great. Just don’t ever read the creator’s blog. He’s kind of off putting. I bought several sample sizes and they’ve lasted forever. Revelation and Winter 1972 are hands down favorites.

  • 5 Anne // Jan 22, 2009 at 2:05 pm

    Valentine’s Day is coming up! And President’s Day, if that’s more your speed. :)

  • 6 tulip // Jan 22, 2009 at 4:24 pm

    I second the I Hate Perfume love. I love the Burning Leaves and Winter 1972. :)

  • 7 kitkat // Jan 22, 2009 at 7:32 pm

    Thanks SO MUCH for the shout out – lovely to get your support! We were so sad to close our boutique, and miss our customers terribly. We’re excited to be back and will be adding product regularly…

    Your blog is one of the very best and goes nicely with my morning coffee!

  • 8 Karen // Jan 22, 2009 at 7:57 pm

    Do you know Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab? They do nice perfume oils in fun themes.

  • 9 Uncle Beefy // Jan 22, 2009 at 9:19 pm

    Megan…isn’t it fab that Flourish is back! Thanks for the mention…for them and me. :) You sweet lady!

    Gotta check out the I Hate Perfume!

  • 10 Seanna Lea // Jan 23, 2009 at 7:40 am

    I’ve used Fitday, and it was pretty handy. More recently, I have been using Gyminee, which has a better graphical look and similar features. I love that you can add foods from recipes and other things as well as put together workouts. It also has forums and a blog.

  • 11 Sarah // Jan 23, 2009 at 8:21 am

    I bought my husband a Vaja iPhone case for Christmas, and it’s perfect. Slim, sleek, and beautiful. He loves it.

  • 12 Ket // Jan 23, 2009 at 10:13 am

    A note on perfume labs: I dove into scents last year and got dozens of samples from various perfume labs, including I Hate Perfume and Black Phoenix, among many others. What I learned is that many of the smaller indie labs produce scents that are too “head shop” for my liking, though they have exotic and wonderful names/concepts, etc. If you are really interested in beautiful and unusual scents, try places like, Now Smell This, and The Perfumed Court (love!) for reviews and truly fine indie and small perfumerie scents.

  • 13 RB // Jan 23, 2009 at 12:06 pm

    I am perfume obsessed…and one of the best ways to become a full-blown addict is samples! and both have a lot of fantastic samples (and pretty cheap too!). The guy who does the I hate perfume line started Demeter – so his stuff is always (at the very least) interesting. Demeter is another fun place to look…

  • 14 Kristi // Jan 23, 2009 at 12:28 pm

    Just wanted to chime in on the Vaja case – I’ve had one for my iPod for four years now and I LOVE it! The case is still in great condition after years of daily use and it does an awesome job of protecting my ipod. I’ve dropped my ipod a few times (not many – but still) and nothing happened to the case at all (or the ipod).

    Maybe Valentine’s Day or Easter will be a good holiday to try and get one???

  • 15 carol // Jan 23, 2009 at 12:46 pm

    chinese lunar new year is a great reason to celebrate, the year of the ox begins on monday! also, thanks megan for the lipgloss and laptops link (from awhile ago, i think, but recent discovery for me). i’ve become obsessed with their podcast, and i don’t even use much makeup!

  • 16 sarah e // Jan 23, 2009 at 2:04 pm

    If you find yourself overwhelmed by Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab, you might try the perfume oils made by Arcana which can be found at several online retailers like or – they make wonderful soaps as well!

    (the nice thing about the soap box co. is that they sell products made by other small companies as well, it’s sort of like one stop shopping where you can try lots of new things!)

  • 17 elaine // Jan 24, 2009 at 2:02 am

    i’ve actually been to the fragonard shop in paris. it was very interesting to see the history of perfume through the years and to hear about the people who have extreme noses to create the perfume. i have to note, they sell refillable bottles. how cool is that?

  • 18 CanadianChick // Jan 24, 2009 at 9:15 am

    oh, you missed my favourite small perfumer, Mandrake Apothecary

    She’s based in the Berkeley area, and has some amazing scent combinations. Sophia is a personal favourite, and I know several people who are addicted to Qa’veh.

  • 19 Anne-Marie // Jan 25, 2009 at 5:54 pm

    If you like perfumes and 100% oil perfumes, I’d be happy to send you a DIY Perfume kit from to try. I think you might like it – and you’ll start to learn the basics of perfumes (top, middle, bottle notes etc…).

    Drop me an email if you’re interested – or I’d be happy to host you up at our retail shop in Bellingham =)

  • 20 aarwenn // Jan 26, 2009 at 12:21 pm

    Glad to hear I’m not the only one that finds Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab too overwhelming. I love their site design, I love their creative drive, I love everything…except their perfumes. All these perfume options sound awesome, though–now I’m getting interested in mixing my own version of Dior’s Dolce Vita, which I’ve worn since high school.

  • 21 jenny // Jan 28, 2009 at 10:43 am

    along the lines of solid perfumes (and with the most amazing company name), I have a solid perfume stick from a company called crazylibellule and the poppies.

    I have this one (and it smells so good I want to cry):

    The online store is out of france but i bought mine at a local shop in nc.

  • 22 megan // Jan 28, 2009 at 1:45 pm

    Jenny – That looks fantastic, thanks for the recommendation. I’m trying to plan out when I’ll next be near an Anthropologie store in the hopes they have the scent you’ve linked to.

  • 23 michelle // Feb 3, 2009 at 9:14 am

    The Message in a Bottle kit can be found locally at Pirates Plunder on the Seattle Waterfront, Pier 57. They have lots of other cool stuff in there as well.

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