Touring Lamarelle’s Gallery of Delicious & Delectable Purses Curated by Lady Violette Saturday, Sep 13 2014 

This is a visual feast! These beautiful vintage purses have been artistically embellished  and reinvented by my dear friend and soul mate La Marelle. La Marelle is a designer who “coutures” vintage purses and other vintage items that she finds to create new works of wonder each as delectable and enticing as the incredible pastries in a deluxe French bakery. Every one of her designs looks good enough to eat!

Last night I dreamed that I was having tea with Marelle in an elegant turn of the century tearoom in Paris named Pastisserie La Marelle; and these purses were actually little cakes that were brought out to guests to select from a pastry tray and served to actually eat on exquisite antique French flowered china plates. Elegant teas served in magnificent ornate tea pots and delicate vintage bone china tea cups and saucers, each one a unique design, accompanied the delicious purse cakes made of butter cream and chocolate and vanilla cakes and icings and filled with rich custards layered with tart berry souffles and layers of candied oranges and lemons. Some were embellished with cherries or peaches and nuts and other fruits, and some with sugared flowers and leaves. These miniature purse shaped cakes were wheeled out on an ornate antique pastry cart by child waiters dressed in tiny tuxedos with coat tails who asked guests with impeccable manners, ” Would you like to choose a cake Madame?” And of course we did! They came ’round again when you had finished one to offer you another.

Our little waiter was named Aubrey, after the artist Aubrey Beardsley. He was about six years old and he explained, “You can eat as many as you like because these cakes have no calories! They just look good and taste wonderful! ” Of course we chose another, and another, and another as soon as we had eaten the one that came before! Marelle and I feasted on purse cakes and talked for hours and at the end of the afternoon agreed that we must come here regularly, once a week, and do this again. We made a reservation to return for another tea and cake date next weekend.

Now let’s have a look at some of the delicious purse cake selections on the pastry menu and while you are visually feasting on these delectable designs keep in mind that these cakes are available as a real purses in La Marelle’s couture store. The details and location will be given at the end of this story.

There is my favorite, the Lady Violette, named after me, and our miniature waiter Aubrey expertly explains that is concocted of rich but light chocolate and mocha cakes layered with chocolate and raspberry butter cream inside and elaborately decorated with glace frosting in two shades of chocolate stripes, light milk chocolate and dark bittersweet chocolate, on the outside. It is then trimmed with a pure dark chocolate coin purse, a butter cream ruffle along the closure flap and an edible marzipan perfume bottle. The handle and strap are made of edible caramel and chocolate flavored strips! The gold and silver accents are made of edible metallic gold and silver dragoons. The label of the perfume bottle and the woman’s portrait face on the coin purse are made of almond flavored marzipan! He assures us these are not at all fattening saying, “We make these cakes without calories because this is a couture bakery and we know that our customer’s love to partake of elegant deserts and designs but must keep their figures in order to wear their couture ensembles.”

Aubrey shows us cake purse after cake purse, each one as different and as interesting and intriguing as the one before. Each one looks incredibly delicious!

We ask how they have managed to remove the calories while retaining the integrity of these elegant deserts. He explains that this is a top secret scientific process! He also assures us that it is done without removing any of the taste you would expect from an elegant European pastry!

He does tell us that he and his artist father developed it in their California cooking laboratories using all organic ingredients and the latest scientific baking methods, then brought these to France at La Marelle’s request.

He further explains that they decided to unveil the results of their research in Paris because this was the home of the world’s best pastries and couture, and, if it was a success there it would ultimately become an international success. He had quite the business acuman for such a young man! We were very impressed!

He also tells us that he has always loved international cuisines and teas and is able to pursue his other interests in the arts while working at this restaurant in Paris. He is studying sculpture when he is not working. We ask him if he is not a bit young to be living away from his parents and siblings and his home in CA and working in Paris?  As ladies, we have begun to feel motherly concern toward him as he is such a sweet and intelligent little boy.

He assures us that he is fine living in Paris and loves it here,! Plus, he says, his little sister, Madamoiselle Coco who really is named after Coco Chanel, will soon be joining him to study fashion design. He is a year older and wanted to come ahead to establish an apartment on the Left Bank and get everything set up for her before she arrives. We ask him how old she is. He tells us she is five years old! And he goes on to say that she is already well known for her fashion designs and styling capabilities in Southern California! She even owns a La Marelle Couture Purse which was personally made for her by the designer herself because she felt an instant report with Coco and wanted her to have it.

Coco is the youngest fashionista owner of a LaMarelle Couture Purse that we know of. He told us that many people stop Coco on the street to ask her about her La Mareele handbag and find out who designed it. It has been quite the conversation piece! I am sure that happens to anyone who carries or wears one of La Marelle’s couture creations!

Again we express our concern that they are both a bit young to be leaving home, aren’t they? He assures us that their parents visit often because their mother loves Paris and their father is an artist who shows in modern art galleries around the world. Young Aubrey tells us he has helped his father set up his art in his shows all his life. He explains that that is one of his areas of expertise so he is always available when a show needs to be hung. He also loves to attend the gallery openings and explains that he would never miss one. He also explains that he himself loves to dress up in special attire to attend these events. We are charmed by him of course!

Young Aubrey assures us he is mature enough to handle this adventure, “Look at me he says, I have a job, I support myself, I am a specialist of sorts already.” We are quite impressed!

And he tells us he is ageless from eating many of these cakes! Aha we think! Women ( and men) will like that aspect of these delicacies as well! Will they not?

He keeps showing us more and more cake purses and describing the ingredients and flavors with amazing baking expertise. Honestly, we are quite impressed by his knowledge! He also tells us we can eat as many as we like and that it will make us all the more creative, fashionable and colorful if we eat more of them. Wow!

I ask him, ” Is it okay then to be a glutton for both designer handbags and pastries?” “Yes, definitely!” he assures me,”It will make you very healthy and very beautiful!”

As he serves us, pouring more tea whenever we need it without being asked, and assures us that he feels quite capable of taking care of his little sister after she arrives! He says, “We have always been best friends as well as brother and sister and I am eager to see her develop her design talents. She has always expressed herself artistically with her clothes. She does such amazing things that people stop us on the streets to give us compliments. She is a natural!”

“Where?” we ask, “is she going to study?” As we continue to daintily devour beautifully decorated and deliciously flavored ornate and tasty purse shaped cakes!

“Right here” he answers, “where I can watch over her with The Great Couturier La Marelle!”

I was quite surprised! I looked quizzically at Marelle, herself, sitting right across from me and asked, “Is this a dream or is this really happening?”

And she smiled like the Mona Lisa and said in her charming voice,  ” You shall see! You shall see! Time Will Tell!”

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Then I woke up! And I wrote down the details of my dream immediately so that I would not forget this fantastic story. And who knows? It very well might come true! Parts of it already are happening for these delicious looking purses are already available to purchase and carry as real calorieless fashion design indulgences from La Marelle’s Shop Hopscotch Couture. And all the people cast in this dream story are real people with the real names and the real talents described and attributed to them in this story.

Here is where you can view more of Marelle’s work and purchase many of the purses featured in this post as well as others. Marelle is cooking up new ones on a regular basis. She is always whipping up some fantastic dreamy new frothy creation! Feast your eyes and visit her shop. And remember that these delicacies have zero calories! Just as the fantastic little waiter in his tux and tails described them!

Marelle’s work is so diverse and extensive – she currently has over 400 pieces listed for sale in her Etsy shop alone.

By the way, La Marelle means hopscotch in French, so Marelle named her shop on Etsy Hopscotch Couture. To visit her Etsy store and view the entire gallery go to: http://www.etsy.com/shop/HopscotchCouture.

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Royal Roar Lion Pendant… Saturday, Sep 13 2014 

Statement Lion Charm n Chain Necklace. Antique Brass Lion Head Accessory. Adorned with vintage jewelry and chain. A bold statement piece for the Lion or Lioness at heart.   https://www.etsy.com/listing/203298887/large-lion-pendant-bold-brass-narnia?ref=shop_home_active_2

 

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This head turner pendant measures 5 inches long by 2 inches wide and 1 inch high. The chain measures 24 inches long.

**To see other lion pieces by Marelle click here…. https://www.etsy.com/shop/HopscotchCouture/search?search_query=lion&order=date_desc&view_type=gallery&ref=shop_search

To Catch A Plagiarist Tuesday, Sep 2 2014 

To Catch A Plagiarist

I wanted to share some tips on how I keep track of what websites my pieces are on and how I have found a couple plagiarists.

Maybe every month or so I search my name and shop name in Google and click images. If you scroll your mouse over each image the website address will show up at the bottom of the photo. If it isn’t one of yours then check it out. Many times it is just someone who likes your works and is innocently sharing the link to your shop. This is a good thing.  The more links the better.  😉

I hope you never stumble across a site that is taking credit for your work. You would be amazed how blatant some people are. Remember, if it is true and you have proof that it is indeed your piece, you can speak up and out them. BE CAREFUL not to let emotion get the better of you and go on a rampage. Short and to the point….this piece is my work and here is the proof….that is where you can put the link to the item sold. The picture will show up even though the item is no longer in your shop.

One last tip….if a potential sale feels wrong then Google the client. The internet is a vast source of information on everyone.  This is how I caught Bradley Scott Marlow blatantly taking credit for my work.  He had his attorney purchase his pieces for him.  The have both been reported and will have to face their actions.  Please keep in mind mail fraud and internet fraud is rapidly on the rise and patience is key here.  Simply move on to your next project…Thanks for the great photos Haliz Photography.  All of their websites have been shut down.   

 

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I will be posting more tips when dealing with photographers, stylist, and any other people that wish to photograph your pieces…..What to do when they steal them or damage them….in the meantime, I recommend you not deal with Anna Jefferies, she has stolen many of my pieces, she too is awaiting her fate with criminal charges.   Theft is theft and the amount can be high enough to warrant Federal charges. http://annajefferiesphotography.com/  I also recommend you not do business with Christa Dickson…my pieces were shipped back to the UPS store not to me.  They were completely damaged and not one photo resulted from this endeavor.  https://www.facebook.com/ChristaDicksonPhotography.  What she didn’t anticipate is that the manager of the UPS is a very dear friend of mine and photographed the whole mess.  Again another one that is being dealt with. 

No matter how much you look into these photographers, (I spoke with them on the phone, did checks on both of them) it still can happen.  The majority of the people I have worked with have been stellar and the experience with them was wonderful.  I have done multiple collaborations with some of them and formed some great friendships. 

Don’t let fear stop you.  It is sadly a part of this business and if it was easily prevented you wouldn’t see so many high end knock offs. 

Just keep going forward and do what God intended for you to do…..create.