It was HOT in July, but these lovely ladies braved the sweltering atmosphere to make my cotton candy-colored fashion fantasies come true. Maddox Boutique provided the wardrobe, Katie Childs captured the moments, and Bang-Up Betty added the handmade Arkansas jewelry. Here are a few fiery shots and some funny outtakes, because that's what happens when a bunch of badass babes bond over salty handmade jewelry and boob sweat.
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Over the past several weeks, I've launched a lot of new products, and many of those products give back to local and national nonprofits. Thanks to you purposeful shoppers, I've been able to donate around $2,000 to progressive causes near and far in the last year. This convenient gift guide shows you how to shop consciously and what causes Bang-Up Betty is supporting.
I Believe in Science
You're probably not going to believe this, but Christmas morning I was in the shower thinking about work, because I always think about work in the shower. I was thinking about what pins I'd make in the new year, and I had been planning to make a George Michael pin at some point because he is everything to me. I started thinking about "Last Christmas" and feeling optimistic. I decided to go forward with the pin right then. Fast forward several hours later, after Christmas lunch, I'm opening gifts with the family, and the most precious thing on earth is handed to me... a Wham! Make it Big record. Fast forward LITERALLY 10 MINUTES and my phone lights up with a text: "I'm sorry about George Michael." And that's the story of the best and worst Christmas ever.
Anyway, I knew I had to make the pin, and to honor George, $1 from each goes to Lucie's Place, and LGBT homeless shelter in Little Rock.
On a much lighter note, I made this Strong As Hell bracelet to benefit Arkansas Women's Outreach, a nonprofit that provides feminine products, underwear and much more to homeless women in Arkansas. 100% of the proceeds from this bracelet go to AWO. So far given them more than $1,500!
When I ran that "Top Nine" app on Instagram for 2016, my most-liked posts were all sad (in retrospect) posts about the garbage election. So, I chose my own top nine to commemorate the standout moments of arguably everyone's worst year ever. Here are some of the precious moments that, for me, saved 2016 from being a completely unpolishable turd.
1.) Bang-Up Betty Gave Back
Thanks to everyone's generous support of my Strong As Hell Bracelet for Arkansas Women's Outreach, I was able to raise $1,295 for the nonprofit that provides feminine hygiene supplies and support for homeless women in Arkansas. I was also able to donate $106 to AVAC (AIDS Vaccine Advocacy Coalition) in George Michael's memory through BUB sales. Throughout the year, I was able to provide auction items to support Lucie's Place, the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra, and Rescue Road animal rescue. And by partnering with Get Bullish and The Outrage, money from the sale of BUB products was donated to Planned Parenthood, the ACLU, and Malala Fund.
3.) I Helped With a Proposal!
Adam and Shelley drove to the Grand Canyon, where he popped the question using a handful of BUB jewelry and a stunning engagement ring. Congrats, you two! Read more about it here.
4.) The Best Wedding Favors Ever
Speaking of weddings, last summer I stamped dozens of these to be wedding favors at a feminist wedding. I still die of shock and am completely flattered anytime someone wants me to be part of their big day!
6.) Arkansas Times Best Artisan Crafter
Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU for voting me best artisan crafter for handmade jewelry in the Arkansas Times 2016 Best of Arkansas. It was seriously such a surprise and honor!
7.) I Voted
I can't not mention the dumpster fire election. While the outcome is a nightmare I never wake up from, I still remember every wonderful second I spent in that booth voting for a woman for president for the first time in my life. Hopefully I get to do it again.
8.) I Met Andrew W.K.
Last fall I met Andrew W.K. and gave him this bracelet. And he Instagrammed it. And he listened to me talk about my big brother. It was so party.
9.) Partnering with The Outrage
A few months ago, a sweet soul named Rebecca reached out to me about her new website to promote feminist messages while funding feminist causes. It's been fantastic watching The Outrage blossom, and I'm thrilled to introduce three enamel pins I created exclusively for them. This Nasty Women Unite pin came first, and I'll be announcing the other two later this week.