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A NEW BLOG HOME FOR ME!!!!!!!!!!!!

25 April 2011
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Hello Everyone,

I have moved my blog to blogger triciafountaine.blogspot.com/ .  It is sooooooo beautiful (but then I am definitely biased as I created it)  I do so hope you like it!  It is full of color and pictures and great gadgets and fun design elements and so, so, so much more ME!.   I could never figure out how to create the look I wanted with my old blog… and me being a visual person…  so hugely frustrating!!!.  Here is a peak at the look of the new blog…

PLEASE, PLEASE,PLEASE  all you wonderful followers (whom I could never figure out how to show on this blog but are now front and center on the new blog) please come over and join up!  I have also for the first time been able to create a list of blogs that I follow which is so cool!  I am thinking about trying to put together my first give-away in honor of my new home so please become a follower on the new blog, read the “give-away” post which I will create today and I will put a fun present together for a lucky follower!   See you there!

Please check my

Winter whites,

12 January 2011

Some beautiful quiet winter whites with a hint of color for your enjoyment…

Terri Windling, untidy desks and the underwater Christmas wedding

21 December 2010
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I just have to tell you, I am so tickled!  One of my favorite people out there in faery tale land is Terri Windling.  She wrote a book I dearly love called “The Wood Wife”.

It is a wonderful story of a woman who journies to the Arizona desert in pursuit of a poet and his story and finds instead magic and a deep soul changing power.  I highly recommend it!  She also has a lovely blog that covers all sorts of manner of things not the least of which is her art (sort of a cross between Susan Seddon Boulet, Arthur Rackham and Brian Froud) and her life with her husband and silly black hound in Devon, England (does everyone wonderfully touched by the fae live there and can I too… please, please?).  She is blogging a wonderful series called “On Your Desk” and has asked for creative types to send in photos of their “desk”, untidied, as-is, in the middle of the creative process, or however it appears to be.  She has already featured many of my heros like Alan Lee, Charles De Lint, Rima Stains and more.  So… on a whim…  I sent in my desk top (workspace) pictures, as it appears in the middle of the wedding I just did, and…  she put it up on her blog!  How cool is that I ask ya!  Here are a couple of the pictures I sent her but please go and visit her site (and look for the blog dated 12-20).

I think it will charm and delight you and you can see yours truly’s completely wiped out work area.

The wedding I was working on that appears in the “desk top” photos was a really fun beachy Christmassy style with tons of red roses as well as other rich burgundy colored flowers mixed with driftwood.   Here are some of the completed centerpieces…

The tent was beautiful both glowing warm and inviting and yet wintery looking up above.  Here are a few shots of the tables and decor…

They also had some fun lounge ares…

The couple also had a thing for hearts so I made two 12′ tall driftwood hearts, decorated them with flowers and a mini chandelier and hung them from the tent rafters.

The tent looked beautiful as the night moved in…

And check out this desert spread!   The worst part was that I had to look but not touch (or eat!)

Now for the “underwater” part.  We here in Santa Barbara are in the middle of a week long deluge with another week or so predicted.  Absolutely everything is soaked, saturated, drowned and in every other way… wet!.  Now this wedding was held in an outdoor venue at the San Ysidro Ranch…  yes I said outdoor.  They had decided right from the off they would have a tent just to keep everyone warm.  What we all didn’t know is that the tent had to work in the driving rain as well.  I mean I think I saw Noah sailing the ark by at one point!  So not only did they tent the reception site and the ceremony site but they had to tent all the walkways and even the rented bathrooms.  They even had to build floors and sub floors for all these tents too!  What with washed out service roads and parking areas and huge tent and party rental trucks, delivery vans with trailers (us), and all manner of support vehicles jockeying around trying to keep to the only narrow road that was left…  lets just say that you could have shot the pilot for “Exstream Weddings” (pun intended) on this wedding!  Now I notice I said narrow service road…  what I should have said was narrow-fast-moving-river-with-rapids.  To unload you had to stand in the rapids with the water sending waves up to your thighs as you tried in vain to keep the items you were unloading dry.  After I set up the ceremony Chuppa I had to take paper towels and dry off the flowers and branches so it didn’t drip on the bride.  Quite the day let me tell you!  The pictures however show a beautiful serene and cozy wedding, which I guess is as it should be.  After all the craziness and a lot of completely exhausted vendors the bride and groom had a lovely time and were completely unaware of all the stress (that is until they read this).  So another wonderful wedding completed and thankfully the next one isn’t for a couple of months…  I need that time to dry out!

The Practical Magic… Looking Glass Trip

25 September 2010

For you my little witches…  A Practical Magic inspired  story…

Aunt Louise and Aunt Thelma are enjoying an afternoon of chocolate cake and goodies after spending the day working on their spells.

Conjuring is such thirsty work don’t you agree?

While they’re enjoying themselves let’s take a look inside their workshop…

It looks like they’re cooking up something fun…  lets take a closer look.

Aahh yes… a tincture of Bella Donna…

To be placed in the tiny vials.  Just the thing to help one get a little “shut eye” .

But what’s this?  Well it looks like they’re brewing up a few heavenly concoctions as well…  Crystalized Amber to be turned into the most delicious perfume…

Anise pods for another wonderful tincture…

Rose petals to make a lovely water for toning your skin…  maybe that’s why the Aunts don’t age?

Powdered Sandalwood for incense, that’s a bit of Bella Donna laying on the table just behind…

Bits and bobs for other goodies…  Sage and Ecanacia, lovely teas for the tummy and immune system.

Quail eggs, Dove and Eagle feathers,  you just never know what you will find…

What a magical place… loads of drying herbs and flowers…

Bunches of Sage and a jug of Lavender oil

As much as the Aunts are enjoying themselves…

They are thinking of wonderful far off places…

“Let’s pack our bags and go for a bit of fun…”

“Light the sage…  oooohhh see it’s working…”

The guardian at the gate watches…

“Are we ready?”

“Quick Louise look through the magic looking glass, do you see where we want to go?”

“Oh yes… there it is…”

“Sedona!”

“Only, something’s different…”

“We have wings!!!”

“Louise, look at your eyes!”

“Thelma, your hair!”

“Did you know this would happen?  I think our instincts are getting a little rusty.  Maybe we can find a physic work shop while we’re here.”

“However I do love these wings!”

“Shall we go for a stroll?”  “Oh do, lets”

“Tea time, not quite as good as midnight margaritas but much easier on the head!”

“So thoughtful of you Thelma to pack the china”

“Shall we go to another magical place?”

“What do you see Louise?”

“Oh that looks lovely over there…”

“Oh I completely agree…  Lets go!”

“After all our own home is beautiful and magical!”

“Just us, these two old bitties living in this big house with all these cats”

“It’s good to be home!”

To see other wonderful Practical Magic inspired blogs go to Practical Magic Blog Party and have FUN!!!!!

The faeries in my garden and Stevie Nicks…

12 September 2010

Well my goodness…  I didn’t mean to take such a long break but I guess thats what I did!  Lots of weddings this summer and lots of other things going on too!

First I have to tell you I am deep in faerie heaven!

“Faerie Head Quarters”

There is a huge fund raiser for the local Santa Barbara Community Environmental council in October and they hired me as the designer of the event.  Now some may not realize this but when people ask me for a “green” party that means something a bit different to me.  Not only will the party be as environmentally friendly as possible but green to me brings in the mythological forest beings as well.  Soooo…  This party will be a beautiful celtic themed forest complete with hundreds of trees and a faerie queen and the green man and loads of faeries and elves.  Therefore I have been buried in making costumes and fantastical table top “trees” as centerpieces.  Lots and lots of fun.  Here are some of our lovely actors being fitted for their magical transformation.

“Indigo”   

“Moss”

“Moss’s” wings

Details of “Indigo” and “Moss”

The Birch Faerie Queen who rides in on a Unicorn.

Detail of a set of wings made from Indian saris.

In the center where the wings meet I tucked in a birds nest.

Here are some of the mossy eclectic “trees” that will be some of the centerpieces.  They will have hanging candles and lots of small ferns and plants at the base with the addition of mushrooms and more moss.

I love putting in lots of details, here is a birds nest along side a pine cone.

All the while we have been working on the faerie party the house was being re-plastered and painted (it looks a bit like it snowed around here what with the plaster dust and overspray).  This meant that I had to rip off all the beautiful flowers on the front of the house and then in the process of the men working on the house the remaining garden was pretty much trampled.  Now I love an overgrown packed full garden so everything only looked lovely and complete to me in this last year having planted from scratch 4 years ago.   Well I guess I get to have a “do-over” on the garden.  The men just finished last week so I went out and splurged on several large plants (I am impatient and do not want to wait another 4 years!).

I got the most lovely trailing rose called “Flutterby”  with the most beautiful yellow and salmon 4 petal roses.  I also got all my favorites like sage, lavender, rosemary, scented geranium, penstemon, jasmine and a few other goodies.

This is the most wonderful smelling flower called snail flower (I think).  I placed it right next to the front door so every time you come in and out the scent wafts into the room.  I will take more pictures as the garden progresses.

Well if the outside of the house was having a makeover I felt like I needed to address the inside.  I mean if you wash the outside of the car you kind of need to clean out the inside too or it just doesn’t feel right.  Soooo on top of everything else I started overhauling the interiors.

2 years ago we had to evacuate in one of California’s crazy wildfires.  We had enough notice so we literally packed it all up!  It went into storage and I have only just started puling things out bit by bit.  Reworking the interiors meant that I got to pull out tons of stuff and redecorate.  It has felt like Christmas as I open box upon box of my precious goodies that I haven’t seen for 2 years!

My vintage suitcases and fun trunks.  I hung lots of saris and a beautiful Indian lamp.

More saris,  a vintage lamp and one of my pastel and charcoal drawings.  I tried copping one of Brian Frouds art pieces…  boy is that man an artist!!

I also made a Birch branch garland with twinkle lights woven in.  I also tucked in a few hanging crystals and a faerie or two (of course!). It casts the most beautiful glow.

Yea my dragonfly lamp is back!!!!

I hung the Faerie Brides wings from my faerie and elf wedding photo shoot over a lovely cabinet my husband got me for my birthday which is sitting on a vintage trunk.

My Indian Lion chair…

Or should I say Cat chair…

As with the garden the house isn’t finished yet so I will share more pictures as I finish each room.

I have also had the pleasure of creating several fun weddings that I will share pictures of when the photographers give me copies.  Mostly they were wonderful eclectic vintage affairs (my favorite!).

Lastly I will leave you with a picture my girlfriend took of one of my all time favorite rock goddesses, Stevie Nicks.

Remember a post I wrote a while back about wanting more magic in my life?  Well I got it in spades.

I got to go to a Stevie Nicks concert at the Santa Barbara Bowl.  We had sixth row seats but spent most of the evening dancing right in front of the stage.  Very soon I will tell you the full story which involves a set of faerie wings that lead to another set of faerie wings for a very special girl and tons of amazing serendipitous moments.  For now enjoy this picture, this is how close we were able to get!  Can you believe she is 62?  What an amazing woman!

Leslie Clark

30 April 2010
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I wanted to show you an incredible artist whose work I just revisited.  Her name is Leslie Clark and I love her paintings!  I went to Ojai the other day for a beautiful photo shoot with Elizabeth Messina (I will show you those photos a bit later) and afterwards I stopped in Leslie’s gallery.  I had first seen her work several years ago and admired it then but have not had an occasion to go back to Ojai.  It was such a treat to see her gorgeous work again!  She spends half of the year in Africa painting the people she lives among, capturing their beautiful faces and traditions with her magic.  She particularly focuses on the Sahara and the Niger regions but has traveled all over Africa.  She also has the Nomad Foundation, a non profit foundation that “… seeks to blend cultural preservation with economic opportunity”.  Feast your eyes on these amaizing paintings.

… and of course one of my favorite things, saris!

My imagination at work

1 April 2010
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I have some ideas rummaging around in my head, thought I would share them with you.  As you may know from an earlier post the ranch we live on has a wonderful old barn that my husband just restored for a wedding.  I was poking through some of the ranch’s old buildings looking for salvaged wood to build tables for the barn and my imagination started going off.  I have a couple of scenarios in my mind, both I would like to try, so here goes…

First thought would be to use some of the old doors and windows I found for an unusual ceremony look.   This site exists across from the barn and I have always thought it would make a lovely ceremony tree.   I drew a picture below…  see what you think.

I think hanging several windows from the old Sycamore tree with some flower garlands intertwined would be kind of fun.  I just inherrited two beautiful stained glass windows from my family that would make a beautiful “altar”.  The colors are very muted, not at all strong.  Unfortunately I have not picked them up yet so there are no pictures to show you.  The entrance to the aisle would be an old head board from a vintage bed that I have.  Just before the bride walks down the aisle it could be opened with a flourish.  We have some old church pews that I would use too.  One long Asian carpet would be the aisle runner, with another for the bride and groom to say their vows on. would be a long Asian carpet with another one at the vow site (of course I own lots of carpets too!)  A fairly eclectic look but beautiful I think.

On the left is an example of some of the windows I could use, we would need to replace the panes or knock them out, not a problem.

Here are some of my own windows along with a wagon, table, and bench.

The other variation would be more in keeping with the barn theme.

I would take an old window pane door I have (pictured above) and create a frame for it and set it at the vow site. I would then set next to it a hay bale or two with some beautiful garden urns with flowers.  I would also set next to it my old wagon filled with flowers. I would still use the Asian carpets and pews.   For the entrance to the aisle I would set some old fence gates I found.  Here are some pictures of various props I own and some of the old windows and doors on the ranch.

The large doors behind the gates in the first picture on the left we might be able to take down and use for the vow site.  They are huge and beautiful if a tad worn…   The white gates would be the entrance to the aisle.

My husband and I will be making tables out of these doors, I think they will be wonderful for the barn!

There are 7 doors like the one on the left.  It is hard to tell in the picture but they have a wonderful patina.

The ones on the right will be joined together for one large table.

This old grain bin we are going to turn into a couch.  We will take the front off and then make cushions out of white denim and filled with goose down for the pillows.  To this I would add lots of luxurious throw pillows in the colors of the wedding.

This door on the left has the most wonderful old paint on it.  I will wax all the doors so the color will really stand out and the finish will hopefully be nice and smooth.

I also have a few old benches that would be fun to throw in somewhere, maybe as a coffee table for the grain bin couch?

I also thought it would be whimsical to fill a few odd items with flowers like the top suitcase in a stack of suitcases, or a beautiful old steam trunk.  They could also be filled with blankets for the guests to borrow for a chilly outdoor wedding.

The stack of suitcases would also make a great check in table or cocktail table.

I would also use several of my own vintage wooden tables, may be for check in or gifts or a family photo display…

Pardon the mess but these tables I use as my desk and art table.  I believe the level of messiness directly corresponds to how creative you are…   that’s my story and I am sticking with it!

How fun are these old wagons?

Now lets imagine we go into the old barn for the reception and though the barn itself is very rustic with a dirt floor, the decor is very sophisticated!  I just love the unexpected mix of old and rustic with beautiful elegance.  I would hang from the rafters large crystal chandeliers and then have some of the old wood tables with sheer organza linens on them so you could see through the fabric to the table.  Some of the old tables would have a heavy damask runner or a beautiful old brocade.  I would mix in a few regular tables so I could have a gorgeous heavy linen all the way to the ground.  The centerpieces would be silver bowls filled with flowers and silver candelabras.  I have kept a few pictures from an old Anthropologie catalogue that has a great color story.  I also cut out an old photo that created lots of beautiful possibilities in my mind.  There are definitely some great ideas for table linens and colors in these photos!

Here are some fun fabrics of my own that would make lovely table linens or even curtains for the barn.

Well…   thats the way my imagination has been going, hope you like my ramblings!

beginings

5 February 2010
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Photograph by Elizabeth Messina

Hello and welcome to my musings on all things beautiful, magical and precious.

Not that many years ago I had no idea what a blog even was let alone imagining myself creating one.  When I discovered that they were not just a technological computer thing to be puzzled by but a magical creative forum for like-minded souls I had to have one of my very own.

So please join me on this creative sojourn, pack your vintage suitcase or your carpet bag, wear your best hat and climb through your magic portal and board my Gypsy wagon for a fun journey I know not where.  I only know it will be at times beautiful, inspirational, educational, and all the more magical if you join me.

Lets have fun!