Sunday, July 31

Photography Challenge

My new friend Abigail from Shine On Child inspired me to do this photography challenge. She's going on Day Three already so we're not in sync but I'm still excited about it. She was inspired by a blogger before her and I'm hoping this becomes a trend! Maybe you could try it next?

I love taking pictures but I get stuck in ruts where they all begin to look alike. I'm hoping this will help me expand my creativity, learn a few new settings on my camera, and in the process come out with some fun photos to share.


Here is my Day One: Self-portrait.

I must say I do love the shirt I'm wearing. I bought it as an early birthday present (Specially gifted from me to me. Is that selfish?) and it has since become my new favorite. In this photo I'm sitting at the kitchen table taking a break from crocheting, thinking about what to make for supper. It's Sunday afternoon and I feel wonderfully relaxed.

Thanks for reading. I hope you'll stop back to check on my progress.

Filing Helps

School is starting in less than a month and I am feeling the pressure already. I have one semester of grad school left, a gigantic paper to write, and a full recital to prepare. Plus students to motivate and inspire, and a dear sweet husband with whom I love to spend time. And somehow I know it will all get done. But that doesn't always keep my mind from racing and my body from stressing.

Prayer helps. I love to throw all those complicated thoughts at God and receive His peace as His response. Definitely not a fair trade, quite obvious Who gets the rotten end of that deal. God's grace is incredible!

Preparing helps. I love to get busy, get moving, and feel a progression toward a desired end. Yesterday I spent some quality time emailing and organizing my schedule for the semester. It helped eliminate some of the stress. Emphasis on "some." Today's filing project eliminated even more of the stress and has me feeling nearly ready to start studying. Emphasis on "nearly."

Check out the fun file box. I love finding cute office supplies on clearance at Target. 50% off this little piece of goodness.

And of course anything looks beautiful sitting on the bench of an old upright piano... well... maybe not anything, but this certainly does!

And now that I'm finished, I can sit and type (something I love doing by the way) and drink tea (something else I love doing). Just found this new blend... not sure how I feel about it. Tastes a little bitter and agave nectar didn't do the trick. Any other ideas? What would you add to this wild sweet orange tea to make it sweeter?

Happy Sunday to you. I hope you've had a wonderfully relaxing weekend.

Saturday, July 30

Blog Buttoning

Today I tackled the long-procrastinated task of creating a button for my blog. And it is finally complete! What do you think? If you love it, I hope you'll share it. You can find the necessary scripting under "Share the FUN Button" in my sidebar. The dimensions are 200x121 pixels. Don't laugh, I had a little trouble with that part of the process. Couldn't quite get it to be exactly the hoped for 200x120.

While I was on a roll, I decided to make one for my mom's wonderful business since I've been meaning to share it with you all for awhile now. She (Carol Athman) is a natural health practitioner and very gifted at her job. If you're looking for an alternative health care provider, she would be an excellent option. She and Kathy Hagemeister opened Energy Health & Wellness in February 2008 and have since been doing a fabulous job of helping people feel energetic, healthy and full of wellness! The button below will take you right to their website.

Happy browsing. And happy weekend too...
Time for me to get some sleep. Church comes early in the morning.

Life is Beautiful

Snapshots from my apartment today...

dried roses
calming bubble bath
red ginger scented candle
zebra print lamp shade

Tuesday, July 26

An Evening of Bliss

Listening to...



and loving every minute...

Monday, July 25

A Beautiful Design

Step One for me is to make a sketch. This is definitely my starting place and I often revisit it as a design evolves. It helps me work out the complicated details that arise when I'm creating a pattern. I love how the paper and pencil help me calculate potential problems and ways around them. I am new to design so am still experimenting my way through the process, but I will try to share with you the steps I take that seem to work well as I discover them.

For now, I wish you all a goodnight and sweet dreams. Happy Tuesday when you wake...

Saturday, July 23

A Special Visit

My sister and my little niece are here for a week-long visit. We got to do some quality shoe shopping over the weekend.

And even found things to do in the car going from store to store. Charlotte loved the idea of taking snap-shots of our hands and feet.

She is such a sweet little girl. I wish we lived closer. Not to mention how great it would be to have my sister close by.

I love my family.

Thursday, July 21

In the Market for...

Shoes! Beautiful shoes to compliment my clothing creations! I would love to feature your cute shoes in my future posts! If you have any adorable unique shoes you'd like to donate OR lend, please let's talk.

I'm currently looking for a romantic style shoe, possibly rose red or a neutral ivory, preferably with a very high heel. I'll be photographing a sheer beige blouse (my own unique design) which I'm pairing with a long tiered black satin skirt. I love textures so a velvet shoe would be gorgeous, or a shoe made of thick woven fibers and a wooden heel might look sweet. But I'm open to other ideas so your input and creativity is more than welcome.

You can email me at feminineuniquenew(at)gmail(dot)com if you'd like to help.
Thanks for supporting me in my small beginnings of a very big dream. Can't wait to hear from you.

Wednesday, July 20

New Shades On

This is post number two in my fitness series. If you haven't checked out post number one, it's right here

Today for my workout I adorned myself in my new shades from Anthropologie. Cannot get enough of that store! I love their clothes not to mention all the other wonderful goodies flooding their shelves with delight. I feel happy every time I enter just to look about me... don't even have to spend a penny to thoroughly enjoy the experience.

I paired my sunglasses with a bright blue tank, light purple sports bra and my favorite black yoga pants. I drove to my gym, met with a trainer who happens to share my same name, and learned how to use all the fancy lifting machines. After the  tutorial, I did a full body workout so I wouldn't forget everything I'd just been taught. I wrote down all the details like weight, reps, sets and left it in a file cabinet for next time. I'll be keeping a close eye on my progress. 

If you've never learned how to use the machines at your gym it's worth asking a trainer to show you. Knowing what you're doing really helps take away the intimidation factor, which makes working out way more fun. I say throw on a cute outfit and go for it! Be a little crazy! Try something new!

Creative Space

My creative space today is filled with snippets of Bach's Toccata and Fugue in C and thoughts of fashion design.

I'm preparing for a piano recital just around the corner and the Toccata is the second piece on my program. I can now play the entire piece start to finish from memory but not without pause and not as quickly as I'd like. Needless to say, I have my work cut out for me these next two months. So today I am working on snippets...

My practicing is intermingled with thoughts of sewing. I bought some new fabric last weekend. I love designing clothes and ideas are never far from my mind. Can't wait to see what evolves from the two pieces sitting next to me.

Thanks for stopping by. I'm posting frequently so come again soon!

In the meantime you can read about other creative spaces by clicking here.

Tuesday, July 19

Tennis & Tea

That should really read 'Tea & Tennis' to be chronologically correct, since I did in fact begin with the tea.

Any Earl Grey fans out there? That sounds like the name of a singer when I put it that way. It happens to be one of my favorite teas at the moment. Just the right amount of caffeine to give me a boost before a workout. I usually try to avoid caffeine but am finding it difficult to resist a little black tea now and then. 

With this post I hope to begin a series of posts about exercise, fitness and overall health. Today for my workout I played my husband in tennis. Love that game and I love to sweat when I'm dressed for it! 

On our way to the courts we found a cool new walking path we'd never before explored. Adventure. I love the look of the tree in the left photo with that skinny long branch extending out over the path. 

 Tomorrow I meet with a personal trainer at my gym. This is my second session and I will be learning all about the lifting machines. Last session I had my measurements taken, took a cardio fitness test, and set a few long-term goals. Can you sense my excitement?


I got to go to the cutest baby shower last weekend. The hostesses used a 'Candy Theme' because "babies are just so sweet." They blew me away with their creativity. Aren't these cake pops adorable? 

 And tasty too I would imagine. I'm proud to say I maintained strict discipline and only allowed myself some of these yummy Trader Joe cookie dunkers. I think I could become addicted. They were that good.

One of my favorite details? The cool hanging ornaments made out of tissue paper. Not sure who came up with this idea but it made for a really fun atmosphere. 

I also got to meet a fellow blogger and talented craft maker named Sam. I wish I had pictures of the baby carriage she carved out of a watermelon and used as a fruit bowl!

Monday, July 18

My First Dress

 The idea came out of a Martha Stewart encyclopedia - a dress made from two rectangle pieces of fabric. As I sewed I got inspired to make a few modifications to the original design, but this is one I couldn't have done without Martha. 

 Can't wait to start my next project. I have a few ideas in my head patiently waiting to come to life. I even found some new fabrics today! 

What do you think of the dress?

I would love to pair this with a wide textured mustardy yellow belt, but I don't at the moment own one of those. I thought a wide textured brown belt was a close second...

Saturday, July 16


Can you guess which one is catching my eye? 

Friday, July 15

Before Sewing

It all began yesterday morning when I looked out my window and decided it was the perfect day to shop for a cute little sewing table that would fill the empty space in my den...

Thank you Goodwill for having a five dollar table just for me. Here begins the story of making it beautiful. I hope you'll check back often to see the result. And if you have any paint color recommendations I'd love to hear them!

Several weeks have passed since I originally wrote this post, so now you can click here to see the sewing table as it is now. Yay!

Holding Hands

 On our way to the Farmer's Market about to buy some deliciousness...

Thursday, July 14

Date Night

Last night my man and me had a spontaneous date night. We hit up one of our local events and enjoyed an evening of live-music-listening, photographing, and talking with each other.

We were both pleasantly surprised to see some healthy eats among the booths. Too bad we didn't bring any cash to stock up on fresh produce!

Now seeing these pictures I kinda wish I would've had my face painted.

Good old-fashioned country singin'.

Even the birds were on dates! Hence the term "love birds" I suppose.

Date night, it's a beautiful thing...