Category Archives: fashion

fashion spotlights

Spotlight: Tammy Wilson of Earth Lover

Back in June I featured the Batik diaper bag from Earth Lover.  A few weeks later I received a lovely email from the owner, Tammy Wilson, thanking me for including this item.  We wrote back and forth a few times and it became apparent to me that this shop was something special and I wanted to know more.  We set up a ‘phone date’ and talked our heads off about everything under the sun.  In her sweet southern drawl, Tammy told me all about her wonderful family and the journey through life that eventually gave rise to Earth Lover.  “Sometimes you just work your way to a place. It is not a lightening bolt. Not really a sudden brilliant idea- just a place that you find yourself on your personal journey, and then it evolves from there.”

Fourteen years ago, Tammy retired from a long career as a Respiratory Therapist.  Since then she owned and sold several small business – all of them born out of passion for the things she loves.  She took a few years off when her son started high school, but fears of an ’empty nest’ and a need to give back to the world won Tammy over in 2008 when Earth Lover was founded.  Her daughter, Micah Elaine, is working on her Masters in Teaching in Atlanta and her son, Spencer Ryan, has been working on restoring a ’67 VW Microbus [his recycling project] and plans to attend MIT after high school.  These amazing children were part of Tammy’s inspiration, as she wanted to set an example for them as they go out into the world and choose their roles in society.  Since she had experience importing goods and a love for handmade, starting a green business and working with Fair Trade products seemed like the perfect fit.  With the support of her architect husband, Tammy got busy searching for goods from all over the world, “that not only bring joy into the lives of the recipient, but give back so much to the world and the beautiful people struggling to live in many parts of it”.

Tammy calls Earth Lover an alternative shopping experience.  It’s a place to shop, to learn, and to give.  “If my site can make my customers think about how simple it can be to help others through a small purchase of a beautiful product, then maybe they will begin to think about ALL of their purchases and one tiny step at a time we can make a difference.”

You can find earth-friendly products at Earth Lover for your home, your pets, your children, yourself, and your friends.  Like these handmade Fair Trade Christmas Stockings – perfect for the upcoming holidays!  Handmade in Guatemala and Armenia, the stocking on the left is made from recycled burlap coffee bags and the stocking on the right is 100% cotton with a fluffy wool top!

Click on images for more info.


Wrap yourself up on those cold winter nights in the comfort of a Swazi Blanket.  Handmade from 100% cotton by the lovely women of Swaziland and made available in the USA through Creative Women [a Fair Trade organization based in Vermont].

Click image for more info.swaziblanket

Q & A

Tammy Wilson of Earth Lover [You wouldn’t believe how shy she was about sending me a pic!  For a while I thought she might have one eye, a warted nose, and horns! – LOL.  Soooo not the case – great picture, Tammy – thank you!]


What is your best selling item right now and why do you think it’s so popular?

jutebag“Right this VERY MINUTE my best selling product is the Recycled Jute Backpack– it is CUTE , colorful, unique, and a great price. It is starting to slow down, now that back to school has settled in, but still quite popular. Right behind that would be my Cruelty Free leather backpacks, messengers, and the Hemp Messengers. They are just great products, unisex, and really hard to find in cruelty free leather. I have a hard time keeping them in stock, as the Fair Trade makers in Nepal have limited production, and I ALWAYS sell out!”

Where do you find the products you sell?

“EVERYWHERE! I have products from Fair Trade members, local artists, small US companies, Non- profits. And I have NEVER been to a wholesale market!! (I KNOW!!)  SO much of what I have is found by web searching for hours on end, late into the night- and from networking. People involved in Eco products, and Fair Trade tend to be very open and helpful, so it is not uncommon at all to be working with one group or person, and they share with me about another – I love that!

What is your favorite way to relax?

“Can you define that word, I am not familiar….. I am only 5’2” – and I frequently remind my friends and family that I am actually about 6’ Tall- I am just wound very tightly!! Haha! I do quilt- by hand- I know, who DOES this any more- but it is very relaxing. And I cook. Too Much. (Not too often, just too much- can you say LEFTOVER?) In the spring I grow vegetables.  Organic, of course.  I can totally chill in the garden for hours picking weeds.”

Why do you think people should buy eco-friendly and fair trade goods?

“Why WOULDN”T you??? Maybe I am naive, but I really believe that if people are educated about their choices, it is just not a choice any more!  If I ask anyone if they would rather have this handbag, or flower vase, from a sweatshop somewhere in the world, or a filthy polluting factory- or this other product from a Fair Trade Co-op that is supporting the welfare of people and making products in a way that considers the impact on our environment…Really, WHO is going to say, “Oh. I really Prefer the Sweat shop, thank you!” I really do believe it is just a matter of OFFERING an option, and educating the shopper. Maybe I am just a True Believer- but I really do believe that people are inherently Good, and would much prefer to choose Good when it is effectively offered!”

What’s something silly that most people don’t know about you?

“I talk too much to have any secrets. Really!  Ha! I don’t know…I am a vegetarian (no surprise really).   I am terrified to fly.  So I may never see many of the places that I work so hard to support – how sad is that?  Maybe someday…but I am REALLY terrified.  I have flown- lots of times- but it is hardly worth the trauma and I am getting more terrified every year.
I also like to sing stupid made up spontaneous songs during any time of great stress for my loved ones.  Yea, they REALLY appreciate this.  I recently had a Greatest Hits  involving the SAT!  It is REALLY silly, but it does relieve stress when someone is making a complete fool of themselves on your behalf.  Shannon, that may be way too silly for ANYONE to know!!” –
Tammy, you are not alone.  I sing about diapers, going to the grocery store, taking a bath, and a few other things I won’t mention.

BIG THANKS to Tammy Wilson of Earth Lover!!! This shop is definitely one to watch!



Holiday Inspired [Handmade] Jewelry with Year Round Appeal

With the big holiday season approaching, I thought it would be fun to take a look at some selections inspired by major holidays that can be worn all year.  There is nothing like a great piece of jewelry to add a little flair to your outfit.  Jewelry can be very personal or just for fun. Like a necklace I have had since I was small with a tiny ruby hanging on a tarnished gold chain or a big chunky colorful bracelet that makes me smile.  Since baby Ava loves to tug on my necklaces and earrings [ouch!] I have been wearing more bold rings and bracelets … but still find it hard to resist a killer necklace.

Since Thanksgiving is right around the corner, I’ll start with this Wishbone Necklace by Lanyapi Designs.  Make a wish and this gold charm could be yours for only $23.00.


I debated whether this Candy Corn Lariat should be part of the Halloween inspired jewelry, but the autumnal colors made me lean more towards Thanksgiving.  Hanging on an antiqued copper chain, these agate stones are lovingly strung through a hand hammered brass and copper ring by Sally Stearns of SASessories$39.50.


I cannot believe Christmas is next month. There are some people in our neighborhood that already have their decorations and lights up – ridiculous!  If you can’t wait for that yuletide cheer, adorn yourself with this awesome “made from vintage” piece by That Jewelry Girl.  A rhinestone button attached to a brass locket and strung with a medley of brass chains make for an eye-catching piece.  “Hanging of the Greens” can be purchased for $32.50 [free shipping for November!!].


I looked at hundreds of snowflake jewelry trying to find something that didn’t look so ‘tacky Christmas’ and it was no easy task.  Finally, I found this charming little necklace by CrArt.  I love the copper patina snowflake pendant falling down the side towards the bluest of blue teardrop briolette.  It looks so delicate … just like a snowflake.  $29.00.


Next on our journey through the holidays is Valentine’s Day.  A day easily associated with jewelry.  I am hoping that this “Yes No Maybe Love Me Love Me Not” charm bracelet by A Likely Story will BE MINE soon!  Charm bracelets are so fun … I would wear it all the time [hint hint, Michael].  $39.95.lovemecharm

I had to include these beautiful earrings by Royal Princess Designs – they are made from REAL ROSES preserved in thin layers of resin.  How cool is that?!  $42.00.


All Those Threes is to thank for this gorgeous Love Mandala necklace.  Handcrafted from 99.9% pure silver and hanging on a fine sterling 17″ chain.  $58.00.


There are so many icons associated with Easter – crosses, colorful eggs, lilies, and of course bunnies. This adorable little bunny charm created by Mariska goes by the name of “Tumsy”$28.00.


This wonderful Easter Lily Bracelet was made from antique spoons [circa 1907]!!  Village Boutique, in my home state of Ohio, turns vintage silverware into amazing pieces of jewelry!  $44.99.


The Fourth of July doesn’t have to be all Red, White, and Blue.  Rebecca Dubay of Vernon Bea Studio created this Patriot Necklace – a hand cut star and stamped tag hanging from a 16″ sterling ball chain.  Love it!  $53.00.


Halloween is such a fun holiday.  Pretty much anything goes.  Maybe that’s why I was so taken by this steampunk “Gothic Owl” Necklace by Cosmic Firefly$45.00.


And the final piece of jewelry inspired by a holiday is this “Death by Citrus” piece, which conjures up images of Dia de Los Muertos [Day of the Dead].  I love the color in this necklace – that vintage enamel flower is awesome!  It can be your very own one of a kind Bionic Unicorn creation for $76.00.



I’m in Love with These SCARVES

I started writing a post about handmade children’s costumes for Halloween, but stopped dead in my tracks when I happened upon these totally awesome “Foks” scarves by Celapiu on Etsy. I can’t imagine a more hip scarf to keep me toasty warm … very sly.


The handmade scarves come in a variety of sizes and colors … all the way from Poland.  They also have some really cute gloves and hats to match.  Oh, and I can’t wrap this post up without showing you the “Golden Chain” scarf [comes in other colors too].goldenchain

How rad is that?!  I am in love with this brand … playful without being too silly to wear around.  Add these to my gift list!

baby / tots fashion

Get This Look – Baby Fashions for Your Little Girl

14 days until the big move and I can barely stand it! Time is moving so terribly  s    l     o    w.         I just want to be packed and unpacked and moved in already!  Patience is not my strong suit.

I know my postings have been sparse lately, but that will all change after we get to Chicago.  I have some exciting revamping planned for Furious Shirley … guest bloggers, shop features, dad’s point of view, and so much more!  In the midst of all this change, I was able to put together today’s “Get This Look” post from this pic I snapped of Ava looking cute as a button the other day.


To get this look for your baby, start off with a long sleeved onesie [if you have a baby, you already have tons of these hanging around].  Layer it with a cute tunic top or tank dress.  This is a great way to get more use out of summer tops and dresses and take advantage of summer clearance items like this adorable plaid top for only $3.98 at Target!


I also found this black and white polka dot set for $$8.48 at TargetTurn it into a fall look by layering a black long sleeved onesie underneath and then finish the look with a little white cardigan, socks and booties.


I love little baby leggings! They are so versatile and work for any season.  Pacifier has a great pair of American Apparel leggings that are cuffed around the ankles.


And these lace trimmed leggings [by Stella Industries] at Bubble are irresistible!


Ballet flats are the perfect cute and comfy shoe for your baby girl [if you can get them to stay on those wiggly feet!].  Tootsies Children’s Dance Wear has a beautiful pair of pink leather ballet shoes for only $11.95!


If you’re willing to splurge a bit, Couture Baby Boutique is where you will find these darling blinged out satin slippers.


And I just could not resist posting these handmade booties [“The Cicily Baby Shoe”] by The Vintage Clothespin.


Have a picture of your little one looking cute and stylish?  Email me for an upcoming fashion baby feature!!!!


More Stylish Maternity Clothes! Go Ahead and GLOW!

I know I promised this post to show up over the weekend, but we had such great weather here and spent our days out and about enjoying Brooklyn and sharing some much coveted family time together.  Today was supposed to be the kick off of my Monday’s Wedding Bells series, but I am postponing it until next Monday to finally bring you more maternity fashions!  My previous post, “Stylish Maternity Clothes – They DO Exist” has been one of my most popular posts so hopefully all of you pregnant readers will love these selections just as much!

Who doesn’t love a great pair of skinny jeans?!  Don’t rule out this style trend just because you’re expecting and may not be feeling all that skinny.  This dark wash denim by Maternal America [found at Apple Seed Maternity & Baby Boutique] are great paired with a bright baby doll tank and heels or a simple tee and some flats for a more laid back look.


I love this nursing top [also by Maternal America]!  Pretty and practical and would go great with those skinny jeans!


I love white for summer.  It shows off your tan and just looks clean and crisp and well, summery!  I found this white linen skirt by Motherhood at EVO for only $19.98!


This nursing dress I found at Japanese Weekend is made from organic cotton and will look great with a short sleeved white jacket and pumps or a pair of metallic sandals and a chunky bracelet.


I found this Momzee tunic on sale at Nordstrom for only $39.90!  Pair it with skinny jeans or leggings and layer a few necklaces of varying lengths around your neck to complete the look.


Feel free to feel beautiful round the clock in these pajama and lingerie styles from Belabumbum.  This bamboo chemise is soft and sexy and totally eco friendly!


Feel sexy [yes, sexy!] when you put on your nursing bra and panties [now that’s something you don’t expect to hear!] with this lacy copacabana set.   XO!


cooking fashion life

At Home Beauty Recipes

Not too long ago, just getting the chance to take a shower was a luxury for me.  Now that Ava is almost sleeping through the night I have reinstated my evening bathtime, but it’s still fairly difficult to get myself dressed and looking pretty in the mornings.  I have simplified my hair and make-up routines – hair up, dab of foundation, sweep of blush and eyeshadow, mascara, lip gloss [at lightning speed], and I’m ready to go.  That’s all fine and dandy, but every now and then I still need to feel like a girl and do girly things … like put a moisturizing mask on my face and paint my nails or style my hair or treat my skin to a lovely, scented, exfoliating scrub down.  What’s great is that many of these beauty treatments are really easy to make at home for so much less than what you would pay in the store … and they are all natural! So put the kids to bed or have your hubby take them out for an afternoon and take some time to make yourself feel pretty!!

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baby / tots fashion

Cute and Quiet

My latest baby obsessions will make your cute baby even more adorable and help to keep your little one quietly occupied [especially helpful in public].

First up, leggings.  They make for easy diaper changes and add a bit of extra padding for crawling on those unforgiving wooden floors.  Oh, and they are SO OUTRAGEOUSLY CUTEPork Chop Kids make footed leggings, which I love [because as you know it is close to impossible to keep socks on a baby’s wiggly squiggly toes!].


There are also tons of footless options at really great prices in the handmade marketplace.  I found these styles on Etsy.

Click on Images to be taken to Etsy Store!




And here is a picture of Ava sporting a pair of her own!


Now, this next baby obsession of mine has been a real life saver on so many occasions.  If you do not have a mesh feeder, run out and buy one. I’m serious.  Not only can you give your baby fresh fruit well before they are able to chew it up and swallow it on their own, but it also serves as a teether when you put a frozen piece of fruit inside.  These qualities aside, the thing keeps Ava busy and has prevented many a tantrum.  I do not leave home without one.  I recommend never putting banana in this, as it was close to impossible to get out.

Item shown, by Munchkin.



baby / tots cooking creativity decor fashion life

Birthdays and Things to Come

Thursday was my birthday [Happy Birthday to ME!].  Another year older and almost eight months into my first year as a mom.  The day started with a couple of iced coffees and a trip to the playground before Mike had to go to work.  I received a flower delivery from my mom and gramma in the afternoon and then Mike came home early so we could go out for a nice dinner at Walter Foods.  Filet mignon and wine.  After we put Ava to bed, Mike brought out my birthday cake.  He chose a flourless chocolate cake [tortino di cioccolata] from the award winning Grandaisy Bakery in Soho that was DELICIOUS.  I also got to do a bit of birthday shopping this weekend.  This was probably one of my quietest birthdays [I’ve been known to celebrate loudly with lots of friends and wine] and definitely one of the best.

This week is going to be jammed packed with tips and finds! Tomorrow I’ll be sharing all my latest baby obsessions and Wednesday we’ll be focusing on getting your little ones to eat their vegetables.  On Thursday, I’ll be posting more stylish maternity clothes [as this has been one of my more popular posts] and options for what to wear after your bundle of joy arrives.  And on Friday I’ll share some beauty recipes you can easily make at home instead of paying for pricy store bought treatments.  I’m also working on some more interviews with cool and interesting chicks for later in the month and starting next week, Mondays will be a new series titled “Wedding Bells”!  Lots to look forward to, so be sure to keep checking back!  Thanks to all of you for making Furious Shirley such a success!  XO

creativity decor fashion life

If I Can’t Make It, Someone Can

When I was pregnant with Ava, I wanted to make something for her nursery … something that I could look at and say with pride, “I made that”.  I dusted off the box my [never before used] sewing machine was in, figured out how to thread it, and one week later I had made a tiny pillow.  It is a very cute pillow, but to this day the opening where I inserted the stuffing has never been stitched closed.  I never quite figured out how to do that, and so it has become a “one day I will finish that” project – like so many projects I have started or thought about starting.  I see certain handmade goods and think, “It would be so easy to make that myself”, and maybe it would be, but I lack the patience and dedication of true craftsmanship.   So, I will stick to admiring and buying the items other people make.  Handmade things have a certain special quality to them that mass produced goods lack … maybe it’s knowing that someone put their heart into it.  Big thanks to all the crafty artists out there and your truly inventive goods!  Speaking of inventive ….

Cork.  I have seen bulletin boards made out of it and photo frames from wine bottle corks, but never purses!  The cute wristlets by aptly named, Cork and Cotton, are so cool!


Forks.  Artists have a way of looking at something ordinary and seeing something unexpected.  These fork easels by Dinner TIme Chimes are an excellent example of that.  Great for holding recipe cards or photos.


Paper.  These works by Julene Harrison are amazing … and done BY HAND.  You can order custom paper cuts for weddings, anniversaries, birthdays, and just because at MadeByJulene.  Beautiful, intricate works of art made out of paper.  Bravo.




Paperclips.  Now even your paperclips can have style – what a great idea!  These cute paper keepers by Jack and Jane are perfect for organizational freaks and come in sets of three with lots of patterns and colors to choose from.



In the Mood for Summer

It’s time for some fun fun fun in the bright summer sun!  I often find myself dressing to match my mood without even thinking about it.  Darker colors when I’m feeling down or it’s gloomy outside and brighter colors when I’m happy and the sun is shining.  Today’s playful fashion picks were chosen to put you in the mood for some summertime fun!

This top, made by clothing brand Crystal, puts me in the mood for watermelon and rainbow sherbert!


How can you not think about cotton candy and pink lemonade when you look at these luscious earrings by Wild Woman Jewelry?  So simple, and so pretty.


This fabulous pencil skirt by Alex & Ra was inspired by the movement of the waves and makes me feel like it’s the Fourth of July.  The color is so vivid – a definite head turner!


Feel as free as a butterfly when you wear this charm necklace I found at The Bonbi Forest.


I love this turquoise straw cloche [bell] hat – fashioned by the owner of New Orleans’ Funky Monkey Boutique.  The giant red poppy just screams ‘strolling in the park on a beautiful summer day’ to me.


One of my favorite summer colors is bright, crisp green.  When I look at it, I think of two things – freshly cut grass and lime flavored freeze pops.  Both of which are awesome in their own way.  This swimsuit by Emobi in Australia is also awesome in its own way … made using environmentally friendly water based dyes combined with breathable UPF 50+ fabric.  You can order Emobi online at BeachBliss.


The colors on this cuff bracelet by Strat Designs remind me of the smell of coconut scented tanning lotion and are the perfect scheme to accent a great [fake] tan.


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