Ordinary things somehow turn amazing when in the hands of the right people, like Christopher Elbow, Bird Sings Boutique, Brady Vest and Keri Smith.
Christopher Elbow’s Sweet Canvas
Sometimes there’s nothing better than a box of chocolates, except maybe a box of chocolates that look as good as they taste.
Christopher Elbow’s artisan chocolates are tiny, edible works of art. Each piece is created to perfectly mix unique flavors with decadent chocolate. Traditional combinations, like almond and ganache, are included with more surprising, yet no less pleasing, options like the lavender-infused caramel and strawberry and balsamic vinegar.
With intricate colors and designs that match each flavor, these chocolates might be too pretty to bite into, but once you do, you’ll be glad you did. These works of art come in 4- to 48-piece assortments. This 21-piece box ($42) contains all of Elbow’s original 21 flavors and makes a great gift.
Buy in-store at 1819 McGee or online at elbowchocolates.com. —Jill Powers
Sitting Pretty in Pink
Local boutique Bird Sings is an asset to artists in the community, selling their work and the inspiring work of others.
A pop art take on Louis XV style, the Queen of Love Armchair (Pictured above, $895—on sale for $650 through the end of September) is a statement piece to end all statement pieces.
Made entirely of recyclable linear polyethylene, the Queen of Love armchair can be a mood-boosting spot to sit indoors or a luxurious place to rest outdoors. Either way, this armchair is built to last. It’s made in a rotational mold, making it seamless and incredibly durable.
It also has a UV coat rating of six, allowing it to resist color fading, scratches and weathering. Add a pop to any space with this chair by visiting Bird Sings online at birdsings.com. For other artistic goodies, visit Bird Sings online or in person at The Plaza.
Late Summer Kicks
Summer isn’t quite over yet, so it’s not too late to grab a great pair of sandals. Off Broadway shoes has a great selection, including “Draztic” from G by Guess ($34.90).
The simple style and neutral colors make these shoes perfect for almost any outfit. Wear them with your bathing suit to the pool or the beach. Or, pair them with brightly colored shorts and a printed top for a flirtatious night out. Their flexibility doesn’t stop there; these sandals are the ideal accesory for a flowy, floral business-casual dress, so you can show them off to all of your office friends, too. Plus, you’ll have a head start on next summer’s wardrobe, as well, because this classic design will compliment next season’s trends well, too. “Draztic” and other summer styles are available at Off Broadway’s warehouse stores. —Jill Powers
Craving an artistic outlet but in need of some direction? Pick up “Wreck This Journal” ($12.39) and let your artistic temperament run wild across the pages.
In this journal and sketchbook hybrid, author Keri Smith encourages creators, young and old, to decorate and deface each page according to the prompts that she gives.
“Collect fruit stickers here,” one page says.
Another asks creators to “Pour, spill, drip, spit, fling your coffee here.”
One of Smith’s goals is to eliminate the public’s fear of the blank page through outlandish requests and a lot of encouragement. Smith has also inspired a rich, online art community. A simple Google search reveals several blogs filled with photos of “Wreck This Journal” pages, each one more artful than the last.
Find the “Wreck This Journal” series at Barnes and Noble, but make sure you purchase it before you begin designing and destroying.
Shiva Artist’s Paintstik (prices vary by color and set), a solid, oil paint stick, is a different approach to painting.
Using paint in stick form can be useful to the innovative artist on the go when it comes to sketching, painting and blending on canvas or paper. The Paintstik is actually oil paint—stiffened by wax—but it does not produce any odor and dries within 24 hours.
Shiva Artist’s Paintstiks come in a variety of colors, making them the perfect tool for any painting project. Shiva Artist’s Paintstiks can be found at Artist & Craftsman Supply (229 Southwest Blvd.).