July Etsy Finds  July 18, 2014

Two themed Etsy treasuries for you again this month, take a gander:

Seventh

For the 7th month of the year.

Number Seven Print Vintage Style Sports Decor Birthday Decor Coastal Beach Decor Surf Decor Baby Nursery Beach Nursery Decor Kids Room Decor
$20.00
Lucky 7 Jewelry- Upcycled Number 7 Black & Brass Pendant
$30.00
Number 7, Plastic Wood like Finish Number 7, Vintage Number 7, Self Standing Number 7
$14.00
The Lucky Seven 7 Number Monogram Linen Cotton Pillow Cover - Throw Pillow - Number Print - 17" x 17"
$19.90
Number Seven Tape Measure Photo Printable Graphic
$3.00
Vintage Metal Number Six or Seven Price Sign Double Sided 6 or 7 Old Gas Station Bent Number Blue & White Address Sign Plate
$16.00
Typewriter Key Oak Leaf Ring Number Seven
$9.00
Lucky Number Seven - Fine Art Photo on 4x6 Bamboo Panel
$47.00
Modern House Number Aluminum Modern Font Number SEVEN 7 in Bronze
$33.99
Number Seven Ring
฿550.00
Birthday Shirt - 7 year old shirt - 7th Birthday - Number Shirt - Birthday Boy, Birthday Girl - Party - Kids Tshirt Size 8 - Gift Friendly
$15.95
Number 7 silver necklace - Perfect 7 number seven pendant necklace with a petite freshwater pearl - personalized jewelry gift idea
$53.00
Retro Number Seven Poster - Number Poster - Custom Numbers for Your Home - Vintage Typography Posters - Number Prints
£6.50
Instant Download Digital Commercial Use CU Printable Art House Number Seven Black White Street Address Sydney Australia
$5.00
Vintage brass tag necklace, Lucky #7
$28.00
One Vintage Three-Inch Aluminum Number Seven SHIPPING INCLUDED
$4.50

Julius

The 7th month of the year was renamed Julius (July) after the death of Roman emperor Julius Caesar, as it was the month of his birth.

Julius Caesar Bronze reproduction medallion - relief sculpture - decorative art
$45.00
Julius Caesar Quote Cufflinks - I Conquered Cufflinks - Men's Anniversary Gift
$33.00
Julius Caesar Quote, Beware the Ides of March Cuff, William Shakespeare Quote Jewelry
$38.00
1895 Roman Art, Antique Print, Tivoli Temple, Colosseum, Porta Aurea, Jupiter Temple, Julius Caesar, Agrippina, Caracalla, Pompeii, Rome
€12.95
Shakespeare's Tragedy of Julius Caesar - Gollancz - McKay - ca. 1900
$4.00
Antique Hand Made brass, steel and horse hair Replica Roman Centurion Helmet Prop
$180.00
Roman Emperor JULIUS CAESAR Tie tack or Cuff links or Ring or Pendant or Brooch
$13.00
Quote 8x10 Print, Julius Caesar  quote print Wall art Quotes and sayings Print
$13.50
Bronze Green Chrysolite Veni Vidi Vici Caesar Roman Sun Jupiter Arrow Victory Ring Size 10
$42.99
Caesar in Gaul. Written in Latin. Early 20th century vintage hardcover military history
$9.00
Julius Caesar "Et tu, Brute" cuff bracelet Vintage style brass or stainless steel
$30.00
Julius Caesar Bust (Stone Gray with Earthy Green Roman Ivy on White Tee) - Boys Tee size 4T-5T
$17.00
JULIUS CAESAR – A marble bust of the Roman Emperor, after the antique, Italian studio, 1880.
£320.00
Repurposed Art from Shakespearean Book of Quotes - Julius Caesar
$5.00
Tiberius Caesar Cufflinks in solid sterling silver Free Shipping
$95.00
Julius CAESAR, The Noblest Roman of Them All - General, Statesman, Consul, Author, Original 1933 Book plate
$9.00

What does July make you think of?
 

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Book Review: Archon  July 17, 2014

Archon (The Books of Raziel #1)

by Sabrina Benulis.

Archon Archon is book one in a series about Angela Mathers, a troubled young woman who dreams of angels and is apparently unkillable (she knows, she’s tried). The book starts as she’s released from a mental institution and starting out at a new university, West Wood Academy, a priest-run school for blood heads like her (red-headed children with powers). Society sends all such children to one place, because one of them is going to be the prophesied Archon, who will unlock the lost book of the archangel Raziel and have the power to remake the universe. And seeing as Angela dreams of angels, she is attracting attention from anyone who has a stake in the Archon prophecy, whether they want to stop her or control her.

This was a breathless, strange little book. And I mean that in a good way. Breathless because things happen so fast and even the characters that the narrative is following don’t fully understand everything as it’s happening. Strange because it’s this odd blend of alternate reality, dark fantasy, theology, mystery, and YA romance. There are red-headed witches, evil angels, half-demon priests, and a whole lot of surreal gothic ambiance (somewhat unclear, but I think it’s supposed to take place in the future). Also a whole lot of bloody violence, shifting alliances and trust issues. It makes for a compelling read, because you’re never quite sure as a reader whose side someone is on or what their end game is. It’s not the type of read you can skim- you will miss important details if you do that, and probably be confused. But if you pay attention, enough questions are answered that you will be drawn into the world of the story.

Overall it was a satisfying read in itself, but also sets the stage for a pretty sweeping fantasy series. It’s definitely on the darker side, though, so if you’re looking for something light and fluffy, this may not be for you.

I give it 4/5 stars.

Archon


Anjolee Jewelry  July 16, 2014

I was provided a free necklace from Anjolee in exchange for an honest review.

anjolee-necklace

Ok, let me start this off by saying that my clothing/jewelry budget does not leave me in any position to be buying diamond jewelry, of any kind. However, I like to window shop as much as the next girl, especially online. And Anjolee jewelry provides an excellent daydreamy window shopping experience. When they approached me about doing a post, I was hesitant, because I wasn’t sure I’d find something that was my style (I mean, the first thing you think of when you think Amanda’s Style isn’t diamond jewelry, be honest). But I was pleasantly surprised! They have quite a range, from more affordable simple stud earrings to uber-fancy necklaces like the Riviera Necklace (that’ll be 13K, thanks!).

I ended up getting this necklace (though with CZ’s instead of real diamonds, and in sterling silver) and the whole process was easy. I got to pick my gemstone (garnet), my chain length, and all of that. The site makes it super easy to see what your options are and how that affects the price. And if you’re going with real diamonds and fancy metals, their site lets you pick your carat weight and karat marks for even more customization. Sidenote: I never before noticed that gemstones are carat with a c and metals are karat with a k. The more you know.

Once I had picked out my options, I just had to wait for the necklace to arrive. It came packaged in a beautiful box, and I think the necklace itself is dainty and classy. I love it. I had thought about going with a purple gemstone, but I already have a necklace with a purple stone, and I don’t have one with red, so red it was. And I’m happy with my choice. I haven’t had a fancy occasion to wear it on yet, but who says you can’t class up a jeans-and-tee day with a necklace like this?

anjolee-necklace-2

Now if only I could get Ian to do some window shopping in that diamond ring section. ;)

What’s your favorite kind of gemstone? Are you a diamonds girl?


Tuesday Treasure Trove  July 15, 2014

Tuesday Treasure Trove: this week's round-up of read-worthy links.


Things of Note:

Not much to report here. Our weekend was spent lazing about and binge watching Scandal on Netflix, alternated with me printing a bunch of stuff for my shop, and visiting Trader Joe’s for the first time. And yes, I tried cookie butter. Honestly, I don’t see what the fuss is about. It’s an ok flavor, but I can’t imagine what I would actually eat it on. It is, at least, more palatable than Nutella.

The boy has (suddenly) decided to take the week off starting on Thursday, so we’ll be getting up to some staycation / housecleaning shenanigans. Exact ratio TBD.

What are you up to this week?
 


New Design: Frangipani  July 11, 2014

A new design! Here’s the flower that I based it off of:
frangipani-black

And here’s my design:
Frangipani

This is a frangipani flower, though you may also know it as plumeria. I had never encountered it before doing my study abroad in Australia, and then I fell in love with it. It’s still my favorite flower, both for appearance and for scent. This design took me a bit of a different route from my norm, very minimal. But still stylized and bold, so it still fits with my other designs. Right now I only have the customizable listing ready to go, but I have a stack of art prints waiting to be photographed that should go up in the shop soon.

What do you think? Did I capture the flower well? What’s your favorite flower?


Book Review: Dark Paradise  July 10, 2014

Dark Paradise (#1)

by Angie Sandro.

I received a free copy of this book for review from NetGalley.

Dark Paradise If you’re in the mood for a New Adult murder mystery romance with ghosts and Louisiana swampland ambiance, you might want to give this book a whirl. It’s the story of Mala LaCroix, last in a long line of “witch women” – except she doesn’t believe in any of that nonsense, and wants nothing to do with it. She just wants to get by: working, saving up for her criminal justice classes, crushing on George the deputy, and avoiding her drunken mother. But when she finds a dead girl on the bayou, everything changes. She’s being haunted by what is undeniably the dead girl’s ghost – and so is the victim’s hot brother, Landry (who, unbeknownst to Mala, has had a crush on her for years). Now the two are thrown together trying to solve a murder, while the ghost’s rage grows alongside their attraction to each other. Between the ghost attacks and whoever really killed Landry’s sister, and the ever-present prejudice of the small town’s residents, Mala is not sure she’ll make it out in one piece. Or with her heart intact.

I will say this for the the author – she doesn’t pull her punches when it comes to hurting or putting her characters in danger. Not to a GRR Martin level, but nothing to sneeze at. Particularly towards the end of the book, there’s a good amount of adrenaline and oh-shit moments. The down side of this book is that it falls prey to oh-so-overdone Love Triangle syndrome. Not every male-female relationship in books for young people needs to be a romance! The chemistry between Landry and Mala is believable and built well over time (though Landry is a bit bipolar-seeming with his mood swings). The chemistry between Mala and George is very much not believable or built up well, which makes certain scenes in the latter part of the book just baffling. But the ending did throw some intriguing curveballs, and the southern bayou atmosphere comes through strongly throughout. And I liked how the narrative switched between Mala’s point of view and Landry’s – I like getting to see both sides. Overall, I enjoyed reading this and do want to see where the story goes, so it’s a successful first-book-in-a-series hook.

I give it 3.5/5 stars.

Dark Paradise