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Natural Beauty Finds

Some Favorite Natural Beauty Products | Eclectic Affinity

I’m not a real stickler about regular, scheduled hair cuts, I’ve never colored my hair, and I can’t recall ever carrying “just in case” touch-up makeup in my purse save for maybe just before a job interview. My beauty “regimen” is fairly low-key, but if I find something worthwhile and natural, I like to pass it on. Here are a few recent favorites.

How to Make Single-Serving Iced Tea

How to Make Single-Serving Iced Tea | Eclectic Affinity


Making great iced tea is a cinch even if you don’t want (or are unable) to brew a large batch outside in the sun. How? You can easily make fresh, individual servings using a cocktail shaker. I learned this little trick when I worked as a barista while I was getting my business off the ground. (I’m pretty sure it’s somehow a prerequisite for artsy folks to have worked as a barista at some point in their life. There’s probably a rule book with that in it somewhere.)

Popsicle Stick Paper Dolls

Popsicle Stick Paper Dolls, free printable

Of all the paper dolls I had as a kid, I remember one particular set the most. It was just a few simple outlines of people in outfits that came as a printed sheet that I cut out. I can’t recall if there were directions that said to do this or if I just did it, but I glued them all to popsicle sticks. Paper dolls and their little outfit tabs are notorious for bending and tearing, but these were simple enough that that wasn’t an issue; plus, already having outfits meant they didn’t need to be dressed up. Because they were so small, they were also easily portable within a checkbook blank box.

Remembering how fun those were, I designed a set of paper doll people that I think I would have had fun playing with as a kid, in hopes that there are some little folks who will have fun playing with them like I had fun playing with my old set.

Freedom to Fail

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When I was a little girl, my mom liked to carve out time between her full-time job and the busyness of day-to-day life to sew dresses for me. If I had a preference, she’d let me pick out the fabric or pattern. One dress in particular, she let me pick the fabric—and I picked something that looked like it might not go together well. She asked if I was sure, but I was.

What’s In My Art Case

layout of art supplies, pencils, pens, rulers, erasers, etc.


I like that scene in Mona Lisa Smile where Julia Robert’s character wryly announces “it’s art!” to counter an objection about what made art worthy. I think of that scene when I hear someone express that they’d like to be able to draw but then promptly proclaim that they’re “not an artist”—as if there’s a formal process for being granted permission to create things.

Art supplies can seem really intimidating, so it’s helpful to have a starting point for tools. Here’s a micro-look into some of my illustration utensils.

Drawings: In Progress to Completion

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When you’re in the midst of creating something, there’s an anticipation you feel for seeing your vision come to life. Within that, it’s easy to rush past the beauty of the very process that created it—a tendancy that speaks volumes on life and art. I’m always intrigued by the reactions people give to seeing in-progress work. Some are fascinated by it. They look at that kind of work like a bud about to blossom. They can feel the anticipation, too.