Friday, July 25, 2014

Other Blogs ~ Ellen Welty ~ Becoming a Real Rhode Islander: Learning to Clam

Rhode Island Monthly's blog has just added a new feature:

Ellen Welty will try some Rhode Island-specific skills and write about them.

Her first effort is clamming:

Becoming a Real Rhode Islander: Learning to Clam - ridaily blog - July 2014 - Rhode Island

photo via RIDaily blog
I've never been clamming, in Rhode Island or anywhere else, so it's on my list. This post just made me more excited.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Artists ~ Keri Ambrosino ~ Coventry

Artist’s name: Keri Ambrosino
Shop name: Design by Keri

1. Tell us about your work/self
I am intensely passionate about what I do and cannot imagine doing anything other than design for the rest of my life. Many would describe me as optimistic, honest, and incredibly driven. Being born the only Redhead in my family I’ve always stood out as unique, and love it!

As a Rhode Island College Graduate, with a degree in Graphic Design and a Masters in Media Design, I’ve obtained the knowledge to create inspirations for all types of businesses. As I’ve freelanced for over 10 years I love bringing fresh new ideas to the table by style and design.

2. How did you come to be a professional artist/crafter/designer?
Since I was a little girl I’ve always loved art and the smiles it would bring to those who were inspired by it. Drawing, painting and creating handmade materials have always been a passion. I fuse my creative abilities with the practical by putting my pencil and pad in hand, mixed with the modern technology of my computer. I create ideas for Marketing, Advertising, Weddings, Nurseries and Films.

3. Where do you draw your inspiration?
My daughter is my inspiration. Everything thing I do, I do it with her in mind.

4. What’s your favorite item to create?
I love drawing new animals and the smiles they bring to those young and old.

5. What’s your best seller?
I'm new to Etsy, but outside of Esty my best seller is my Modern Typography Birth Announcement Prints.

6. How long have you been in Rhode Island?
Born and raised in Rhode Island. Couldn't see living anywhere else.

7. What do you {heart} about Rhode Island?
I love the natural aspects within the state: Animals, plants, ocean and more.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Artist interview ~ Janine Connelly ~ Barrington

Artist’s name: Janine Connelly
Shop name: Clarobel

1. Tell us about your work
I craft jewelry made with pebbles, sand and shells, all sourced locally from beaches around Rhode Island. Many pieces are labeled with tiny sterling silver tags, showing which beach the material came from.

2. How did you come to be a professional artist/crafter/designer?
From watching my daughters' delight as they find (and hoard) their treasures from summers spent at the beach. After years of hearing, "can we make something with this?" I finally decided to do so.

3. Where do you draw your inspiration?
From any part of the Rhode Island coastline. Smooth, sandy beaches, or the shapes and colors of a rocky coast, and the water on a sunny or stormy day.

4. What’s your favorite item to create?
The sand-filled sterling pendants! I love looking so closely at the variations in the sand, and finding tiny bits of shell and stone to fill each piece and make it pretty and unique. The material that's collected from each beach is different.

5. What’s your best seller?
The wrap bracelets, using pebbles from local beaches as unique beads. They're fun and inexpensive, and cute when several are worn together.

6. How long have you been in Rhode Island?
I moved to Rhode Island in 1996.

7. What do you {heart} about Rhode Island?
There is so much variety, all within a short drive....great restaurants, shops, beaches, theater, parks, museums.

8. Please include anything else you’d like to add:
Custom jewelry is available! The sand-filled pendants make wonderful keepsakes from any special day...a wedding, anniversary, birthday, etc. They can be custom-made and tagged with the location and date of the event.
In addition to the Etsy shop, pieces are available at Whimsies in Warren, and Tula Tinkers in Richmond.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Events ~ #DownCityFlair Competition ~ Providence

#DownCityFlair Competition
DownCity participating merchants
through August 27, Drawing August 28

From ShopDownCity's site:
This one is big!

This Summer you can win one of the best prizes we’ve ever offered- how do you win? Collect a full set of #DowncityFlair.

Yep, that’s it!

Each Downcity member has their own button design (see below). To get a FREE button all you have to do is mention ‘Downcity Flair’ when you drop by.

Once you’ve collected all 37 buttons, upload your photos (or photos) on this page to enter and be in with a chance of winning the ULTIMATE Downcity prize!

The Prize:
One night stay at the Dean for two (subject to availability)
$150 gift certificate to restaurant of your choice (participating members only)
Rental bikes from Dash Bicycle
A spa treatment for two at the Biltmore Spa
A shopping spree worth $400 (participating shops only)
**Must be redeemed no later than October 31st, 2014

You must collect all 37 buttons to enter so we are giving you the whole Summer to get your collection together. The competition closes at midnight on Thursday August 28th with the winner announced on Friday, August 29th.

This sounds like a great excuse to check out all the DownCity shops!

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Events ~ ABC6's Sunsmart to begin at RI beaches ~ Statewide

ABC6 along with the Rhode Island Department of Health, the Comprehensive Cancer Center at Rhode Island Hospital and U.S. Sen. Jack Reed, D-Rhode Island, will launch the Sun Smarts Sunscreen Campaign Monday at Scarborough Beach in Narragansett, Rhode Island.

Full story: ABC6's Sunsmart to begin at RI beaches - ABC6 - Providence, RI and New Bedford, MA News, Weather

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Eat local ~ Tricycle ice cream ~ Providence

Tricycle Ice Cream
Providence, Rhode Island

One of the treats at PrideFest was my first taste of Tricycle Ice Cream sandwiches. They're a relatively new vendor on the scene, but I hope they stick around.

They had three or four flavors available, but I opted for Callebaut (a type of Belgian) chocolate ice cream, with a salty pretzel shortbread cookie.

They arrive adorably packaged.

It took a few minutes for the ice cream to soften before I started eating it, and it was worth the wait. The shortbread was excellent - salty and sweet, and I could definitely taste both the pretzel and shortbread in it. The cookie was firm and strong enough to hold up as the ice cream melted, but not hard.

The chocolate flavor of the ice cream was excellent, and the texture was smooth and creamy. It was a really great ice cream sandwich that I'd have again, and maybe try other flavors, too.

(my camera is acting up, so "photos courtesy Tricycle")

Monday, June 23, 2014

Shop local ~ Block Island Organics revisited

This is the post I hoped I wouldn't have to write this summer:

As I mentioned, PrideFest was big fun on a beautiful, sunny day. You'd think I would have remembered the sunscreen. You'd think.

Instead I came home a bit pink, and by evening my skin felt hot, tight and uncomfortable. I remembered my sample of Block Island Organics sunburn relief and gave it a try.

I keep my bottle in the fridge, so it was very cooling going on. The lidocaine took the sting out quickly. Although the aloe and cucumber left a sticky feeling on application, it absorbed quickly. Twenty minutes later I followed up with additional moisturizer. Of course my skin is still a bit pink this morning, but it's much more comfortable. A second application helped cool down the residual heat.

Definitely effective, especially straight from the fridge.

As a follow-up from my previous post about Block Island Organics sunscreen, it's been very effective when I remember to use it. Don't make the mistake I made. Find an effective sunscreen you like, and use it. Seriously.

*disclaimer: I received a sample of the product for free from the manufacturer.