Wednesday, May 22, 2013

The Uzbek Version of Salem Lot

I enjoy our summer vacations in the small town high in the mountains: we rent a cottage there and it is very convenient for our big family. There is not much to do, and we spend days swimming, playing, reading... There are not many places for walking the dog, too, but some of the existing ones are quite unusual. For instance, these abandoned buildings that we found during one of our walks.

We came there at the sunset and I gasped when I saw these abandoned buildings. They looked more than strange... Most of the windows lacked glass and even frames - just dead black holes; but some still retain their skewed wooden frames with pieces of glass, like broken glasses on someone's face.
However at least two flats on the top floors were definitely inhabited. In one of the houses, there were many of flower pots on the window on the top floor; the plants looked green and well cared for. In another house, similarly, on the very top, there were colorful children's clothes drying outside the window, like festive flags. Goodness... who could live in such a place with a child?

I looked around - the landscape could be coming right from a Sephen King's novel. Waste land full of dry sage brush and strangleweed; wind playing with torn plastic bags; abandoned plant behind a concrete wall... one of the flats on the first floor was definitely on fire... no doors in the porches, too.

We went around this cluster of buildings and went down the street. When we were going home after a walk, we had to pass the building again; with the corner of my eye I saw a movement in the empty window to the right of me. It looked like a white spot - a pale face looking at us - and then it dissolved in the darkness. When I turned my head to see more clearly, it was just a hole in the wall, an empty flat, with debris and dust on the floor.

I thought of coming again to roam the dark staircases with the dog,  but then decided that it was too dangerous. Instead, I came with my brother for a fun photo shoot outside.

Stunning, is not he?

 And these two local boys waved us good bye when we finished taking photos.

I learned later that these houses were build to house people who worked on the construction of the huge hydro power plant at Charvak water reservoir nearby. Once the project was over, most people went home and left the empty houses behind. There might be another project and new life one day, who knows.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Our Favorite Rug Pillows are Back!

I was so happy to find a vintage Uzbek rug similar to one we have had before! Our rug pillows are very popular, and this specific rug was a bestseller. We sold all the cushion covers made from it in a very short time, and our customers were very happy. Just look at these lovely pillows full of ethnic spirit:

A similar pair graced the Front Page of Etsy, and the remaining rug cushions were sold immediately. They ended up in different parts of the world - so strange to think of it!

These pillows are made from a huge vintage Uzbek rug with a sophisticated pattern and fields in different colors, so individual pillows can look quite different - it is like having four pillows when you have just two. For instance, the other side of these kilim pillows looks like this:

...Or even like this: 

A single kilim pillow looks great, too, and is in a perfect harmony with my vintage chair (I used it for callanetics,and now it is an invaluable photo prop). 

Our kilim cushions are perfectly coordinated and very well made, with great attention to details. My mother sews them at home, using her antique sewing machine (50 years old - counts as antique, no? anyway, it is quite old).

So, the bottom line is: we do have these stunning carpet pillow cases in stock, and they will not last. Besides, right now we are offering a promotion coupon code for 10% off - MULBERRY10 - which will be active till May, 26, so this is a great time to buy at Mulberry Whisper.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Summer Ikat Silk Scarves at Mulberry Whisper

We have some new silk ikat scarves in summer color - juicy, fruity, grassy, sunny! Playful, bright and amazingly smooth to the touch, they can become your favorite companions this summer. All of these scarves are hand made by my mother, and each one is unique - no copies!

This silk infinity scarf reminds me of strawberry or cherry, because of its deep red and emerald green.

This silk infinity scarf with bright ikat design is a meadow full of wild flowers. Gold and green - meadow, grass, honey, bees! hear them humming?

And this silk snood is a summer evening - the last rays of sun streaking the purple sky; indigo blue shadows, black silhouettes of trees. These rich jewel colors are soothing for the eyes.

You can buy any of these silk circle scarves and so much more in our Etsy shop called Mulberry Whisper - click here! 

For a 10% discount, use coupon code MULBERRY10 at the checkout.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

MULBERRY10 - Unique 10% Cross-Shop Discount on Etsy!

I loved the idea of Mary of the NeedleInTheHey, who kindly offered a 10% off coupon code - MULBERRY10 - for her beautiful shop with many unique vintage finds. For instance, besides the stunning silver rose, that first caught my attention (you can see it in the post below), she has these lovely earrings

We decided to run a small cross-shop promotion campaign: the same coupon code, MULBERRY10, is now active for our shops, MulberryWhisper with its lush ikat silk scarves, luxurious silk clothing and lavish suzani pillows, such as these

 ...and our vintage branch, MulberryTerrace, bursting with rare treasures - vintage toys, decor and housewares. What about this vintage Sheffield kettle? A great opportunity to buy it with a discount! 

Our campaign will last for 10 days - MULBERRY10 coupon will be active throughout the period - and there might be other shops joining. We hope you find something to like in our shops! Thank you!

Monday, May 13, 2013

Looking for a Sterling Dogwood Flower

I love dogwood, with its perfectly simple and elegant flowers, and regret we do not have it here. I thought it would be nice to have at least an artificial flower, a beautiful copy of the real thing, so I have been looking at sterling dogwood flowers on Etsy for a while.

There were some beautiful silver dogwood flowers, like these ones, by Stuart Nye.

A beautiful and elegant set, somewhat Japanese in appearance - so regular, with precise lines and perfect symmetry - like a ritual piece. It dates from 1950s/1960s and is a beautiful example of Stuart Nye sterling jewelry. As far as I know, this designer was most famous for his dogwood jewelry, and I can see why. It is so clean, stylized and striking in its simplicity. Somehow it looks very serious to me.

I contemplated buying a set or a single sterling dogwood flower by Nye, but decided to keep looking. I wanted something more life-like, botanical, accurate in all lines and details. 

Then, in handmade jewelry section, I found this lovely dogwood necklace

Even though it is also much stylized, it looks more relaxed and playful than rather formal flowers by Stuart Nye. However, even though my first finds were beautiful, I was determined to find my perfect dogwood flower - something which would strike me as being the one, that very piece I needed. 

I turned to the vintage section again, hoping that old masters would provide me with a realistic botanical piece. And there I found this dogwood antique silver spoon necklace:

That was some spoon! The pendant is two inches across!  The repousse is amazing: it could come from an antique botanical print (Jacques le Moyne?), so exquisite and with a lovely patina. I loved the design, but wanted something smaller, to be able to wear it to the office. 

And finally I found this. The ideal dogwood flower, so light in appearance, so effortlessly elegant, with its clean lines and minimum of details. The satin petals with softly drawn lines are amazing. The asymmetry makes it look alive and trembling in the wind.


The listing says it is by Harry S. Bick and son: this was a business located in New York which was active from 1940s to 1980s. However other sources say that this mark - HSB with a line through it - was used by a Danish silversmith Hans Saugmann Bjerregaard, who designed between 1921 and 1937. I am not sure at the moment what information is correct, and will do more research on the subject. In the meantime, I just enjoy looking at this tiny piece of art. 

By the way, there is a similar brooch for sale here, at  Silversafehouse, and it is even cheaper than what I have paid. Fortunately I do not need another one. There are also earrings from the same set at Rarejewelsvintage.

Now, I am thinking that owning a sterling rose would be nice, too. So far the ideal sterling rose necklace for me is this one, by the same designer, whoever he was: 


These roses and stems and leaves are so amazingly detailed - you could almost use it as a teaching aid - but only "almost". They do not copy the nature, they retell it, and is not it what the art is about? 

I am only sharing it because I cannot afford to buy more jewelry now. However, lovely Mary has made a COUPON CODE for a 10% DISCOUNT specially for me and my readers - MULBERRY10 - thank you, Mary! Check her shop, NeedleInTheHey; there are many other beautiful items in addition to these roses.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

A Happy Mother's Day to My Mother and Everyone's!

This is me and my mother, about 33 years ago. Walking in the Vorontsov Park, Alupka, Crimea.

Her life has not been easy - I hope the recent years have been better, after resolving some family issues - but she has always been kind, patient and strong. I do what I can to make her happy, but the most important thing is that my mother knows how to be happy, and tries to teach all of us. She is inherently happy: she has a strong source of light inside her. That is why she is still shining, and we love her so much. In the second photo she is with my daughter and my younger sister - and I am with the camera, equally happy!

A Happy Mother's Day to everyone!
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