Thursday, July 1, 2010

Tales of Toot and Bubby

Have I mentioned how much I love headbands?
Anyone who knows me knows that I almost always have a very large, obnoxious bow on my head.

My friend Leanne sells adorable headbands in her shop 

She also sells necklaces, baby beanies, infant headbands, and adorable lampshades... for starters.

Where do you live, and where are you from originally?
Born and raised in South Orange County.  I have lived in Laguna Niguel, Dana Point, Aliso Viejo, and now for a short time in North Carolina due to my husbands time spent in the United States Army.  The South for me was love at first sight.  Although I must say it did lose a bit of it's initial luster with the freakishly large insects and unbearable humidity, I do love it's character and history and the charm of it's lightening bugs, architecture, and the pastime of sipping sweet tea on the porch.  Our lives have been blessed with plenty of broadened horizons and a several unforgettable people, but we know from the experience that California is our home and always will be.  We are hoping to be back by years end.

Tell me a little bit about yourself and your family.
I have been married for nearly 6 years to my best friend.  We have 2 children who we adore, our 4 year old daughter, Adalee Shannon (after Shannon, Ireland-where daddy was stopped over on his was to Kuwait during her birth) and 3 year old son, Radley (Danny loves To Kill A Mockingbird).  A few of my favorite things are the beach -anyway I can take it- gloomy with coffee and jeans, or sunny with sunblock and towels, it's my place where the world seems to stand still.  My heart is in spending time with my family and friends,  outdoor dinners by candlelight,  working in the company of a glass of red wine and Billie Holiday, Etta James, Nat King Cole (Gramps favorite), Gypsy Kings or any other music that moves me at the time...don't get me wrong, I'll turn up Lady Gaga to keep me energized when I need it too ;)  I have been called a "vintage junky"..I love the charm of most things vintage and find it so gratifying to repurpose or refinish a piece that has a story.  Most pieces of furniture in my home are either a family piece or an old piece that I have refinished to make my own. 

When and why did you start your business?
I started Tales of Toot & Bubby as an artistic outlet for me after my little ones went to bed.  My husband served for 5 years in the 82nd Airborne Infantry at Fort Bragg, North Carolina -half of which was spent overseas in Iraq.  Often times when Danny was home he would be out in the field training for 2 weeks at a time and my hobby became good company to me.  I started my Etsy shop shortly after Danny was out of the military as a means of helping to support our family during the transition.  What started as just lamp shades and clips for little girls has become hair pieces for bridal parties, accessories for all ages, a little of this and a little of that ;)  My children have been home with me through the journey and have been my inspiration for every small detail.  From the name, to the logo.  My kids used to wake up and each pull a step stool to the side by side windows in our dining room and just perch themselves with their chin rested on folded hands just watching the squirrels and birds through the yard.  There were so engrossed.  I just loved to watch them and wondered where their imaginations had taken them.  You will notice in my shop logo these details, the squirrels, the birds, our trees, the riding cap Radley wouldn't go anywhere without, or the rainboots that Adalee went exploring each day in.  Each piece I make somehow or another, in my mind, has a small reminder of one of my little ones.

 What is your favorite part about running your business?
Without a doubt that I can be with my family and work around our life, which in turn, makes my work nothing but enjoyable and fun for me.  My favorite task lately has been doing bridal parties.  There is something so cool about creating a piece that is a part of such a special day and lasts forever in pictures.  This coming for the girl who subscribed to Brides magazine since the age of 15, is no surprise to many.

 What is your favorite item that you sell?
I would say right now my favorite piece is the chiffon bloom bib necklaces.  I love that I can wear it with a t-shirt jeans and flip-flops, my sister wears hers with a suit to the office, and my mother has worn hers to weddings and formal Christmas parties.  You have to love a piece as versatile as that!  The pop of color just makes me happy when I wear them.

 What is your biggest dream for your business?
Just that it would continue to bless and provide for our family.  It's been a comfort by paying the electricity at times and also been a gift in taking my husband and I out to dinner and allowing us to spend a fun day with our little ones.  That it would continue to be a joy.

Leanne donated an Infant Headband and a Chiffon Bloom Bib Necklace.

The headband can be found in the For the Kids basket, 
and the necklace can be found in the All Grown Up basket.

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