Tag Archives: Ursa Major

Giveaway: Ursa Major x Skida

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Ursa Major and Skida are two peas in a pod. Two Vermont peas to be more precise that are  both making products that celebrate the greatness of the Green Mountain State. The two decided to collaborate on a product in time for Valentine’s Day. The result is a limited-run gift set with a selection of Ursa Major’s best sellers along with a cold weather bandana by Skida featuring one of their classic plaids with an Ursa Major twist. The “Queen City Plaid” is in honor of their shared city of Burlington and is perfect for any occasion, stylish around town or functional on the mountainside. I say it’s definitely a better gift option for him than a box of chocolates (although delicious, it’s usually gone within minutes).

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Only 200 were made so lucky for you readers, I’ve got one set to give away! Simply comment below and I’ll pick one winner at random on Thursday, February 6th at 12pm EST so that I can get an address from the winner and mail it in time to get to you by Valentine’s Day. Only US addresses please. Good luck and don’t forget to share!

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Vermont Gift Guide

Now for the cream of the crop, my home state, the motherland . . . Vermont! We’ll be enjoying a white christmas at my home this year after spending the holidays in Maine last year. Couldn’t be more excited to be home! Check out the rest of the New England Gift Guide here.

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Got someone on the list who loves to chase fresh powder and ride backwoods trails? A PowderJet Snowboard in West Rupert will make them jump for joy, out the door, and straight to the mountain. Jesse Loomis started crafting his own boards with the rugged Vermont mountainside in mind. His shop uses sustainably US grown maple and poplar laminates because they’re strong and lightweight, sandwiches them with bio resin and fiberglass, and then hand finishes each board. The boards are beyond simple and make for the most fun ride you’ll ever have. A PowderJet board is the ideal “East Coast powder jammer”.

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Skincare connoisseurs Ursa Major in Burlington have made holiday shopping easy with a wide selection of kits marked “Holiday Set” on their online shop. Sets range from $24 to $125, making them a great option for anyone on your list in need of a bit of a spruce-up. Founded by husband and wife team Oliver and Emily, Ursa Major was built from a desire to provide a healthy and effective skincare line that was an all-natural alternative to the toxic products that were littering the market. The result is a line of products that smell and feel great.

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For the syrup fiend and connoisseur, grab some Vermont Fancy Syrup from Bobo’s Mountain Sugar. Based in Weston, VT this husband and wife team stay true to the land and you can taste it in their syrup. Stock up till December 23rd with 15% off and free shipping off of all syrups. And be sure to check out their list of recipes worthy of some Bobo’s.

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Fellow Connecticut College alums Taylor and Misha (who is also a native Vermonter) started a farm in White River Junction called Free Verse Farm, specializing in culinary herbs, herbal remedies, and  herbal teas. They keep a very environmentally clean set up on the farm, using no chemicals or tractors. Taylor and Misha tend to their fruit trees, berry bushes, herbs, and six chickens on several acres using only hand tools (or just letting nature take its course and do what it does best!). I’m keen to try their Earl of Vermont tea and herbal remedies.

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For the sweet tooth on your list, you can’t go wrong with Fat Toad Farm’s goat’s milk caramel. This is a repeat stocking stuffer for me and my husband (who has a chronic sweet tooth). Fat Toad Farm keeps happy goats in Brookfield who are rotationally grazed on high quality pasture, which in turn enhances the delicious local flavoring of the caramel. The goats are milked twice a day, and their milk is then heated and hand-stirred with organic can sugar for 6 hours. For flavors, cinnamon sticks or Kentucky Straight Bourbon are added to the dissolving cane sugar before adding the milk. The caramel is then poured into jars which are then hand labeled and packaged, just for you!

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Gift the gift of letter writing with stationery from Scout’s Honor Co. Based in Burlington, designer Annmarie hand-letters each design which is then locally printed on FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) certified paper. Her whimsical work is inspired by the beautiful state of Vermont, classic Americana, vintage signage, and the nostalgia of New England. I love her Mountain Town design, it reminds me of home in the valley of Southern Vermont.

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Keep your loved ones warm with a Johnson Woolen Mills blanket. Just north of Stowe in the little village of Johnson, the company still makes the shirts, iceman’s pants, and jackets that they’ve been famous for for almost 50 years. The family that still runs the business traces their roots back to crossing the pond from England and settling in Vermont at the end of the 1700s.

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UK Wedding

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A bit of a personal post here, but hopefully it will be useful for readers who are struggling with the wedding conundrum. When we got engaged about two years ago, we started planning a traditional ceremony. But after months of agonizing over details and a strict budget, we wanted to do something a little different, but much more meaningful for us. We decided to essentially elope, but wanted to allow our family to be a part of our celebration in a way. We alerted them to our plans, received their blessing, and exchanged our legal vows in Maine this past August with our parents and siblings as witnesses and my dad officiating. When thinking of where to have our private ceremony, I remembered my childhood dream of exchanging vows in St. Andrew’s Chapel in Chaddleworth, England. As a family we spent some wonderful months in this place and it holds very fond memories for me. Memories of a time when my brother was still with us, and our innocence could never have comprehended a life without one another. Our ceremony in Chaddleworth was wonderful. The weather cleared for us and we woke calm and stress-free (not having to worry about the typical things one does for a wedding). After a light breakfast of toast and coffee, we retired to our room to get dressed. I wore a linen skirt I found at a vintage shop for $25 and a linen top I purchased from Creatures of Comfort a week before our wedding. I did my own hair and makeup and wore jewelry that featured Mitchell family heirlooms given to me by two of my dad’s sisters – the engagement ring was made with my great grandmother’s diamond, the earrings were made by our friend Kate Jones and featured diamonds from my great uncle’s cufflinks, and the barrette in my hair was also my great grandmother’s. Ted wore a suit from J.Crew’s Ludlow shop, Alden brogues, and a custom tie that our friend Andrew of General Knot & Co. custom made for him (the fabric is from a Laura Ashley dress my mum used to wear when we were kids). After we got dressed our photographer Ursy Burnand (a friend of the family friends we were staying with) arrived to capture our day. We took photos around the house and grounds before making our way to the chapel. My feelings of joy during the service were uninterrupted as I was able to completely concentrate on my husband and the vows we were making. We exchanged wedding bands that were also made by Kate. As we walked down the aisle as husband and wife, local bell ringers rang the steeple bells. We couldn’t help but be overwhelmed with joy with triumphant bells ringing in the background. Our union was cheered with glasses of champagne in the garden before we retired indoors for a delicious (very British) meal of cold filet of beef, fish mousse, and chocolate cake. I feel so incredibly lucky to have my husband, and to have the family and friends that helped us celebrate our union as we did.

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Chance for Summer

Chance is a gold mine for summer essentials – striped tops, espadrilles, beach blankets, totes. Everything you need to enjoy your days on the lake, by the beach, or in the hills and valleys. Their Summer 2012 collection boast a couple stand-out collaborations. Artist Elliott Puckette hand-drew stripes on a long sleeve tee. The placement of the lines makes each tee a one-of-a-kind. Also notable, is friend and designer Kate Jones’ second collaboration with Chance titled Cali. The collection consists of five pieces that embody the state of California’s desert, sky, and sea. Swing over to the Chance online shop to get your essentials for summer – whether you’ll be comfortable at home or on your way to new adventures and places.

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Ursa Major Omega Cuff for Of a Kind

I’m so excited to see a piece from friend and jeweler Kate Jones up on Of a Kind today. Every collection from her brand Ursa Major is absolutely exquisite and I’ve been slowly but surely collecting pieces over the years. I really love the simplicity of the Omega Cuff she designed for Of a Kind. Made of recycled brass with silver plated tips in the shape of the Greek letter, it’s understated yet elegant. Be sure to also check out a few bonus features up on Of a Kind about Kate’s first journey into jewelry design, the evolution of her aesthetics, and the sailing trips of her youth.

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