Sunday, December 29, 2013

Last few days for the Bears and Conservation Northwest fundraiser

I received a note yesterday from a customer in Vienna, Austria: 

Thank you...for supporting the bears. I have been thinking of buying the dress for a long time, but the thought of getting pretty things and supporting these beautiful animals at the same time let me finally buy it.
Photos of grizzlies in the Khutzeymateen Grizzly Bear Sanctuary, BC. © Heather Johnson 
Speaking from my own experience, it seems that there is a great appreciation for what we still have here in the Northwest from places that once had much more wilderness.

If you want to help preserve this beautiful corner of the world for the grizzly bear and all living things, one great way is to support Conservation Northwest and that organization’s efforts on so many fronts, from grizzly bear recovery in the Cascade Mountains, to wolverine reintroduction on the Olympic peninsula, to range riders that protect livestock and wolves, to remote cameras for monitoring wildlife, to conservation easements that allow wildlife the opportunity to pass through the territory they need to survive. The organization’s expertise, advocacy, coalition building and tenacity makes it the best friend our wilderness has in this magnificent region.

I can’t get to the remote cameras, and I do not have a law background, or scientific expertise. I have never seen a grizzly bear in the wild, but I want to know they are there, with all the other animals that can live in a region that can support grizzlies. That’s why I set aside 25% of my income in December for this cause.

There are still a few more days for 25% of your purchase price to go to Conservation Northwest. You may also donate directly through my YouCaring page, with 100% of your donation going to the cause.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Can you bear it?

If you have been following the progress of our For the Bears and Conservation Northwest fundraiser, you will notice that the goal of $500 donated was reached yesterday...the best gift on Christmas day!

Since there are still five days in the month, I am extending the goal to $550 and I certainly wouldn’t stop the fundraiser until the new year. The truth is, every cent is needed and appreciated for CNW and the grizzlies.

25% of your purchase price from the denisebrain web store and the denisebrain Etsy shop is going to the cause...or if you like, you can donate (with 100% of the donation reaching the cause) through my YouCaring page.
My brother and little me with a teddy bear...I have always loved bears

For more about this fundraiser, please see this previous blog post.

Monday, December 23, 2013

I’m dreaming of a pink Christmas

I am unabashedly fond of pink, and vintage pink greetings just make me smile. See a whole lot of pink Christmas on Pinterest:

Sunday, December 22, 2013

I’ve been called many things before, but... Unfamous, Should-Be-Famous Generation X’er Pin-Up?

I've also been asked many kinds of questions before, but not most of these. The woman who is the writer of Timeless Style for the Middle-Aged  is someone I know well enough to say I believe she is a soul-searcher and I think she was searching mine a bit. I’m really honored for her kind words about me.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Go vintage! Go bears!

I am back, if you will bear with me, to update you on my fundraiser for Conservation Northwest. First, a treasury collection of grizzlies I put together on Etsy: 

click on the image to see more about each of these artful characters
The Northwest has many treasurable creatures, but the top of the food chain, where the grizzly bear stands, is always the most precarious place for any creature. I’d like to say that grizzlies are a symbol of this area’s natural places, but the grim fact is that they are a vanishing symbol here in the Northwest.

Conservation Northwest is the organization I most trust to champion the cause of grizzlies here, so I am once again working to raise $500 for CNW this month. As you can see from the tally up in the corner, we are getting there, thanks to your care and concern. I am donating 25% of the proceeds on all sales from my stores during the month of December. In my Etsy shop you will even see jewelry items with 100% of the purchase price going to Conservation NW, thanks to a generous donor.

I love my customers’ reactions from around the world:

I'm so so glad 25% has gone to such a worthy cause

Glad to be able to help!

 I'm thrilled to know 25% is going to a conservation charity - bless you

Grizzlies and conservation? Let me go see what else I can find to purchase...

And it's doubly delightful that the proceeds benefit such a worthy cause.

Here are just a few of the vintage items in my web store and Etsy shop right now:

If you would like to contribute to the cause and don't find just the right vintage item, I'd be very honored if you would contribute through my YouCaring page. YouCaring takes no money whatsoever from your contribution—it all goes straight to the grizzlies. 

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Why bears?

OK, the bear hugger is back to let you know that I’m rather pleased at how well my fundraiser for Conservation Northwest is going with your great help—but this is no time to take it easy! I would like us to raise $500 this month and I know this is a time of year when everything can be too busy to catch a person’s attention.

Does this help?

Grumpy Bear by RandysWildlife

Seriously though, this gives me a chance to answer a question no one has ever asked me, possibly because you are too polite: Why bears?

After all, they are top-of-the-food-chain predators, with good-sized claws and teeth. What’s to like?

Besides everything you mean? Check out this great short film on the subject if you need a little convincing.

WHY BEARS? from Trifilm, Inc. on Vimeo.

Now take a moment to see if there is any vintage (recycled!) clothing or accessories you’d like from my shops, with 25% going to Conservation NW...and the bears they work to protect.

If nothing in my shops moves you, I would still be honored with your support through my YouCaring page, available by clicking on the widget in the upper right corner of this page.

Forever for the bears, denisebrain

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Latest vintage convergence, 1963 and Jean Shrimpton

I am always excited to find a vintage image to match one of my vintage finds, and this one surprised me. I sold this outfit, with tags attached, four years ago. The set had no maker’s label, but it sold originally (for the rather high price of $99.90) at Seattle’s Frederick and Nelson. I liked the outfit, especially its quality, but found it slightly oppressively matching and the colors were not obviously beckoning to me.

Then I found this image of Jean Shrimpton in front of the Statue of Liberty, dated 1963:

And suddenly it was hard not to love the outfit!

Have a look at my other vintage convergences if you like. 

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

The bears have friends

Recently I was sent a good-sized stash of vintage costume jewelry by a woman (Denise) who found the items among her mother’s possessions. There are many wonderful pieces! The best part of all is that Denise told me I could use the items to benefit Conservation Northwest...her donation to the cause. She told me she is a wildlife rehabber and seems to have an especially great fondness for owls.

One of Denise’s favorite “owl accessories” as she put it

Right now and for the next week or so, I’m busily listing jewelry from Denise, all with 100% benefitting Conservation Northwest. Some of the items available right now:

Chunky Lucite bangle bracelets
Oops, this one didn’t last long! Yay!
Glass moonstone brooch
Plastic or wooden bracelets with bakelite color schemes
Lisner thermoset leaves necklace
Hand-painted myrtlewood pin, souvenir of Oregon in the 1950s
Striped Lucite bangle bracelets...or owl eyes if you prefer!
Thank you Denise! The bears thank you, and the owls...well the owls think you are a rock star!

For more about my Conservation Northwest fundraiser, please read my previous blog post.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Bear in mind

Every December for the last five years I have donated a percentage of my earnings to a cause very important to me. Conservation Northwest strives to keep one of the most beautiful areas in the world wild for the good of all. I live in that area, and I am very fortunate, but with its soul-elevating natural beauty it is a place for the whole world to look after and enjoy.

Each year I grow a little more deeply impressed with the creative solutions to complex issues that CNW innovates, fosters and implements. They are gaining conservation easements with the help of ranchers; they are supporting the use of range riders as non-lethal control in land shared by wolves and livestock.

Most of all for me, CNW works to save the grizzly bear. Ever since I can remember, I have loved bears and the more I know about their importance in the environment, the more I care about them.

In 2013, Conservation Northwest joined forces with other organizations in founding the Coast to Cascades Grizzly Bear Initiative. Grizzlies don’t stop at the border, and neither does this coalition, which includes the St’├ít’imc First Nation of British Columbia and Sierra Club BC among others.

Right now, and through December 31, 25% of all my sales will go to CNW. If you don’t see the right vintage item for you, I have also set up a page for direct contributions to this fundraiser on, which takes no money from the cause.

For the last two years I have been able to raise $500 for Conservation Northwest during December, and I know this is possible again, with your help.

Stop by my web store or Etsy shop and have a look at the offerings—and bear in mind the good we can do together!

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Not a creature was stirring

Happy December and happy all it means to each of us! My latest theme...

click to view, sound up