Things We Find On Etsy: Crying R. Kelly Earrings

You can find just about anything on Etsy these days, but why would you want to spend all day looking through the weirdest and most shambolic corners of the site when you can just have people on the Internet show you all the best stuff? ReadyToStare, an Etsy store from Chicago-based jewelry designer Alysse Dalessandro, has been making the rounds online thanks to her signature item: stud earrings with an image of R. Kelly crying decoupaged on to them. The things is though, while R. Kelly is an artist certainly worth preserving in accessories and an icon, especially in the artist’s hometown of Chicago, why the crying? Certainly, there is a better image of Kells in happier times that would be more effective as a set of earrings. Also, people will probably wear them ironically and totally ruin the magic, but hey, what can you do?

But while the Kells earrings will probably get all the attention in Dalessandro’s store, she has also created stud-earring decoupage tributes to late R&B legend Aaliyah and also-legendary trio TLC. The TLC set, which features all three members in their prime and Lisa “Left-Eye” Lopes wearing her trademark eye makeup, are particularly awesome. Dalessandro should really consider matching cufflinks, for the most awesome matching wedding parties/graduates/prom groups ever. Your wallet’s telling you no, but your body, your body’s telling you yes. 

Dead Authors, Now Available in a Fragrance

Aspiring writers and bookworms will do just about anything to get closer to their favorite works, including blindly following the very bad advice of writers before them and feeding into the delusion that being a wanderlusty, irritable twentysomething white guy, drinking a lot and reading a lot of Ernest Hemingway will make you Ernest Hemingway.

For those who want to express their undying love of the printed word through essential oils, Seattle-based fragrance artists Sweet Tea Apothecary have released "Dead Writers,"  a unisex fragrance inspired by the literary luminaries of old. This "bookish" blend sports "black tea, vetiver, clove, musk, vanilla, heliotrope, and tobacco," which sounds like a pretty writerly mix, especially since you can’t bottle delusions of grandeur or immense self-loathing. 

As the team writes on their Etsy page:

"Due to popular request, the Dead Writers blend is now available in a perfume/cologne oil. This blend evokes the feeling of sitting in an old library chair paging through yellowed copies of Hemingway, Shakespeare, Fitzgerald, Poe, and more. The Dead Writers blend makes you want to put on a kettle of black tea and curl up with your favorite book."

The most recent batch has sold out, but maybe soon you will be able to buy it again, and wear it to comfort yourself when that next pile of rejection letters comes in and you realize you’re not exactly Ernest Hemingway after all. 

Here’s What Not to Get Your Significant Other for Valentine’s Day

Let me just clarify something: there’s absolutely nothing wrong with reading and loving fluffy vampire lit. Reading anything at all is (usually) ultimately good for you. There is, however, something wrong with impressionable teenagers being marketed a major book and movie franchise idealizing an abusive relationship and said teenagers thinking that’s okay. But there’s already enough on the Internet both intelligently criticizing and tearing down the Twilight series at large, so today, we’re just going to focus on this one really terrible piece of Twilight-inspired merchandise, and with Valentine’s Day around the corner, there’s going to be a lot of awful crap like this for sale.

Wall decals are kind of a hit-and-miss enterprise anyway, but this one is just a particular degree of terrible. I could understand wanting birds or swirly patterns or fleurs-de-lis or whatever, or one of those Fatheads of a sports team you like maybe (but not an actual athlete because who wants Kyle Beckerman on their wall gross) stuck to your walls, but a life-size silhouette of vampire in broody teen body form/girlfriend abuser Edward Cullen that stands in a broody pose over your bed watching you sleep? What? No. Of course not. Why would anyone buy this? Here’s the description, from Etsy seller vinylfruit:

“Let everyone know what team you’re on by giving Edward a home! Or you can keep him to yourself… put him on the back of your bedroom door so he can be intrigued while you sleep! He’ll be keeping an eye out for any roving carnivorous vampires searching for a snack, while reminding you to ‘Be Safe.’”

It’s not exactly clear what’s the creepiest part of this. The silhouette wall decal so it always looks like someone is standing menacingly over your bed and providing fairly high octane nightmare fuel, the fact that it’s supposed to be watching you sleep, the fact that it’s depicting a popular character who perpetuates textbook symptoms of domestic abuse, the ominous and almost threatening “Be safe,” or the fact that this is all supposed to be romantic? Romantics of the world, if your partner is really into Twilight, that’s fine, whatever, and I’m not going to tell you how to live your life, but please don’t drop $60 on a gift that says “Happy Valentine’s Day, baby! Here’s your Stockholm Syndrome!” 

Aprons To Bake and Be Seen Baking In

There’s no denying the overwhelming gluttony of the holiday season—Thanksgiving to New Year’s Eve is a non-stop binge of all the decadent foods you try to avoid the rest of the year. Whether you’re perpetually in front of the hot oven or the constant recipient of items fresh from it, someone you know would be pleasantly surprised by a new apron. From sweet and frilly to practical and functional, we’ve found our favorite aprons for the chef in your life. After the jump, check out our picks, including this better-when-messy linen apron from Jackson, Johnston & Roe ($55).

Anthropologie striped bib apron, $32. image

Etsy 1940s red checked apron, $42. image

Vat19 cooking guide apron, $29.95. image

Tying It All Together: Clip-On Bows

From hair bows to bow ties, party planning to celebrating, these dainty little clip-ons are the perfect way to accessorize the holidays. Add a touch of pink to primp your hair or clip bows on classic pumps. Bring some glitz to a basic belted look with sequin-studded ribbon or string on a necklace. Whether you add these clip-ons to your wish list or as the final touch to gift-wrapped presents, these itsy bitsy little bows from Etsy store No. 144 will be your go-to garb, whatever the occasion.

Shop No. 144 here.

Christina Hendricks Gets Crafty

The Mad Men season 4 premiere is nearly a month away (July 25), but in the meantime you can satisfy your Holloway hunger on Yes,, home of handmade baubles and all things knitted and hot-gun glued. Joan, aka Christina Hendricks, appears on the artsy-craftsy commerce site modeling a friend’s handmade scarf.

Hendricks wears a Shibori-style felted scarf in green, orange, and gold for the etsy shop of friend Tamara Mello. The scarf runs for $130, but the description notes, “This piece is a one of a kind original and will not be duplicated.” We’re not sure what we think of the scarf, but Hendricks sure looks good.

Mello was one of Hendricks’s bridesmaids when she married actor Geoffrey Arend in October of 2009. She’s also an actress, with credits on Psych, JAG, and Popular. She sells housewares and accessories on etsy under the name Blackbird Design House.

Hendricks has another bridesmaid in Katherine Heigl in the upcoming comedy Life as We Know It. Heigl plays her best friend and bridesmaid, who, along with Josh Duhamel, is left to raise Hendricks’s orphaned daughter when she dies in an accident. Funny stuff. (Or, actually, a pretty odd rom-com premise: see the trailer here.)