I'm trying out a new look for my etsy shop! I decided to have the application shots of the bows being worn as the main photos instead of the bows themselves.

Check out the site HERE, and leave me a comment saying if you like seeing the bows on a person, or by themselves. Thanks!

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### * Christmas Recap *

Hope you all had a great holiday! Our Christmas was fantastic. Lots of food, drink, and merriment all around. Our annual Christmas Eve tradition is making homemade pasta, and Christmas day we celebrate with extended family after opening gifts. (by the way, the hat for my brother was a big hit! My shopping tips worked great!)

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### * Winter Hike *

My brother, mother and I went on a hike the other day at Pawtuckaway State Park in NH. It was freezing, but we got warm pretty quickly once we got moving. It was surprisingly beautiful. The ice made amazing sculptural shapes all over the place.

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### * Shopping Tips *

We can all use tips on how to make the shopping process easier this season. I've found it very difficult to choose a hat for someone else, especially if that person is the opposite sex and has a larger head than your own.

I used this tip a couple of times while finding the perfect hat for my brother: take pictures of yourself wearing a few while holding up a picture of the recipient and thinking of his/her face. Then, you can compare the photos and come to a better decision. With hats, taking photos is key, because mirrors are not honest.

It's probably more funny than useful, but it's worth a try.

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### * Nails Nails *

I rarely get manicures, but every now and again I'll go just for the fun of it. This is my christmas-y gold sparkly color.

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### * Outfitted *

This outfit was inspired by two things: Hilary Duff, and a new necklace I bought.

To explain, I watched part of a movie starring Hilary Duff while I was at the gym, and I noticed her wearing a simple white turtleneck with a large gold pendant necklace. It just seemed so easy and elegant, I had to try it.

I had recently bought this awesome gold necklace at an antique store for \$10. Change white to black, add jeans and comfy booties, and you get a great fall/winter outfit that can go from the grocery store to a night out pretty easily.

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### * Custom Bows *

For anyone interested, I also offer custom bows at Maebella. I recently did this one for a friend of mine. The specifications were "pink" and "Fleur de Lis". I think it came out pretty cool. I usually use round button accents, but I love the shape of this charm without a round button. I'll definitely have to try more like this!

If you are interested in a custom bow, email me at maria_torti@hotmail.com.

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### * Craft Fair Display *

Here is a look at my table from the craft fair last Sunday. Unfortunately, the weather was awful (I was sliding on black ice all over the place!), so there weren't as many people there as I had hoped. But, I met some nice people and sold some bows nonetheless. Thanks to all who came by!

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### * Vintage Necklace *

My Grandmother has a lot of old things, including a large collection of old jewelry. She recently gave me this gorgeous necklace.

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