Francophile Friday : Paris Cuddles Au Casuale


Paris Au Casuale Kitty Cuddles & Frenchie illlustration © Shell-Sherree
{Paris Au Casuale Kitty Cuddles & Frenchie illustration © Shell-Sherree}

Today I'll have more luck making a peach cobbler than cobbling words together for a post.  {I don't know how to make a peach cobbler.}  So I'll let this pretty Paris picture compensate for the lack of a thousand words.

It comes complete with barefooted au casuale attire, kitty cuddles and a sweet French bulldog to spread the snuggle love around.  Hugs make every day better.  And on that note ...

Happy Francophile Friday to you.

PS:  Please search #TheCompassionProject and spread the word to help save animals from the atrocities of the Yulin Festival.  Please find out more here about Marc Ching's tireless work via Animal Hope & Wellness, donate here and sign the Humane Society International petition here.  Bless your fuzzy heart.  Thank you.

Fashionable Friday : Audrey's Roman Holiday


Audrey's Roman Cat Holiday fashion & fluffballs illustration © Shell-Sherree
{Audrey's Roman Cat Holiday fashion & fluffballs illustration © Shell-Sherree}

When in Rome, do as Romans do.  Or Audrey Hepburn.  I know which I'd pick.

Today's fashion & fluffballs illustration is inspired by Roman Holiday, a romantic comedy starring Gregory Peck and Audrey in her first film role.  A timeless classic blessedly conceived before the term romcom was coined, though if Audrey and Gregory had been an item, it might have rather lovely seeing photos of Peckburn out and about on the town.

When doing my scant research in an endeavour to earn my librarianish spectacles, I happened upon this very adorable clip on YouTube showing Audrey's first screen test for Roman Holiday, along with a commentary describing her fetching charms.  How true it was.  

So come, let us choose our respectively favourite gelato by the Spanish Steps, wander further askance to toss three coins in a fountain ~ and mix movies along with our metaphors.  And on that note ...

Happy Fashionable Friday to you!

Fairytale Friday: Angela, Mia Pomeranian & a Love Story


@MiaPomeranian and Angela's Fairytale custom illustration © Shell-Sherree
{@MiaPomeranian and Angela's Fairytale Fashion & Fluffballs custom illustration © Shell-Sherree}

Hands up if you're one of the gazillions following adorable animals on Instagram. {Me, too!}  Hours vanish in minutes and even mentions of puppy poo take on certain quirky charm.  {And poo and I are not friends, trust me!}  But behind every gorgeous Instadog and cat, there is a smitten pawrent, and today, I thought it would be fun to chat with one of the lovely mamarazzi behind the lens: mum Angela of @miapomeranian.

Angela engaged me to create a custom illustration ~ a memento that celebrated her special day and included her gorgeous pom Mia, who couldn't be there in real life because their wedding was in Disneyland {Orlando}! I only learned afterwards that their fairytale nuptials were part of the Good Morning America 'Wide World of Weddings' so it's a bonus that we can score an inside look behind that, too.

I had a beautiful time coming up with this illustration for you, thank you!  You gave me a lovely clear brief and free rein as well.  One of your 'must haves' was a reference to the Sleeping Beauty castle.  It conveys love and romance in a single glance, so it was a perfect fit!  Was the castle the reason you fell in love with Disney World in the first place? 

Disney is MAGICAL! Ever since I was a little girl, I have always wanted a Disney wedding, and never thought it would actually happen! My hubby and I have been together for almost 11 years, since High School, and coincidentally, we talked about getting married at Disneyworld when we were about 17! Who would have thought that dream would actually come to fruition?! The whole experience with Disney was wonderful.  Easy to plan ~ it felt like a true fairytale! I even got stopped by a few little girls whilst wearing my wedding gown who actually thought I was a Disney princess!

No wonder!  You're a beautiful couple, and your gown was very pretty ~ so lovely to draw.  Since the wedding, I’ve had visions of you on a roller coaster and whirling around in teacups!  Did you take your wedding gown for a spin on any rides?

YES! I am so glad you asked! We chose to do a Magic Kingdom photo shoot, where we got to get on the carousel and take a spin on the teacups! It was so much fun!

Photo credit © Disney Fine Art Photography & Video
Angela and Andrew take the carousel for a spin.  Photo credit © Disney Fine Art Photography & Video 

Photo credit © Disney Fine Art Photography & Video
Angela and Andrew with the best cup of tea they've ever had.  Photo credit © Disney Fine Art Photography & Video 

How did it come about that your wedding was part of the Good Morning America ‘Wide World of Weddings’?

It was such a random occurrence! My wedding planner at Disney called me the week before to ask my hubby and me if we would be okay with our wedding being broadcast on GMA, and of course we said “YES!” It worked out so wonderfully, as there were guests who could not make it to Florida and got to watch the wedding as it was streamed live! We did not know that Joey Fatone, former NSYNC band member and GMA correspondent, would attend the wedding until minutes before! It was all such a whirlwind!!

Did it change anything about the way you planned the day?

Not at all! I will say, it may have made my hubby and I a bit more nervous knowing we were being filmed, and that Joey Fatone was attending our wedding!

I love your gorgeous Mia !  It must have been so hard not having her with you for the wedding ceremony  ….  was it ever a possibility? 

Unfortunately, they did not allow dogs in the wedding venue, and while we could have taken her for our outdoor photos, my hubby and I felt it was unfair to fly her across the country for her to not be able to attend the wedding, much less all of the time she would spend in doggy daycare while we were traipsing around the theme parks! However, when we got back to Texas, we had a huge wedding reception for everyone who could not travel to Disney World, which Mia attended. I even bought a fancy white lace dress for her to wear! She was the hit of the party!

Angela, Andrew and Mia celebrate at their special reception.  Photo courtesy of @MiaPomeranian
Angela, Andrew and Mia celebrate at their special reception.  Photo courtesy of @MiaPomeranian
I'll bet she was! If you could single out one moment in the day when you missed her most, when would that be?

It is so hard to single out just one, but I would say - at the end of the ceremony when we were announced as husband and wife, I wish we could have each given her a quick kiss on the cheek as we were exiting the chapel!

Did you bring Mia a ‘kiss and make up gift’ from your travels?

Yes! Disney actually has a line for dogs, and she loves squeaky toys, so we brought her a squeaky yellow Mickey shoe toy, which she loves!

What essentials do you carry around in Mia’s tote bag when you’re out and about with her?

I definitely have to carry her treats (while she is wonderful, sometimes she can get whiney and treats focus her, hehe), her portable water bowl (especially in this southern heat), potty bags, and her favourite squeaky toy!

If Mia was ever stranded on a desert island (perish the thought!) and you could parachute-drop three foods plus a favourite singer to amuse her until her rescue, what and who would they be?

Her favorite three foods would be carrots, chicken, and cookies, and I would love to think she would want to listen to me sing – I sing children’s songs to her all of the time. Hehe.

How would you sum up Mia in three words?

Fabulous, Feisty, and Loving

I'd say those describe you perfectly, too!  Thanks so much, Angela.  It's been a pleasure from start to happy ever after! 

You can follow Mia the Pomeranian's adventures here.  Instant smile on your dial, promise!  And on that note ...

Happy Fairytale Friday to you!

© Disney Fine Art Photography & Video
Angela and Andrew, happy ever after. Photo credit © Disney Fine Art Photography & Video 


Francophile Friday : Paris, Baguettes et Bicyclettes


Paris Patisserie, Pink Bicyclette and Baguettes illustration © Shell-Sherree
{Paris Patisserie, Pink Bicyclette and Baguettes illustration © Shell-Sherree}

With the timing of today's illustration, I could be accused of fiddling in Nero-esque denial with my brushes while Paris is awash with the Seine, not watercolours.

But Chez Shell, we are dedicated to providing a happy respite from the worries of the world.   So it's a typical pastel day here, with no need to strap Floaties® onto our rose-coloured bicyclettes and crusty baguettes.  And after all, tomorrow is another day.

So come, let us stop to smell the narcissus, graze ourselves up a belt notch and wonder which Pantone shade would be perfect for our Malvern Stars. And on that note ...

Happy Francophile Friday to you !

PS:  Don't risk doing a 'Boo and Pistol' by smuggling your furry loved ones onto a plane.  Let me send them safely to Paris or any other dream destination with a priceless memento that will last forever and requires no vaccinations ! Please cliquer ici to request more info.

Fashion & Fluffballs Friday : Classic Audrey and Mr Famous


Audrey and Mr Famous Go To the Country, fashion & fluffballs illustration © Shell-Sherree
{Audrey and Mr Famous Go To the Country, fashion & fluffballs illustration © Shell-Sherree}

Even Paris daydreams need a holiday once in a while.  So let's go au casuale and head to the countryside.  I hear a cool change is finally blowing in.

Today's illustration is inspired by my evergreen girl crush, Audrey Hepburn, and her first beloved Yorkshire terrier Mr Famous, who shared screen time with his mum in Funny Face {possibly because they were all but inseparable!} Audrey is credited with introducing Yorkies to Hollywood ~ and such dear little characters they are, too! 

Audrey believed in pink.  And if she was alive today, I have a feeling she would appreciate the hashtag #KeepingItReal.  In that spirit, I figured if it's styling-appropriate to display a pink Mentos, it's only fair to include the wrapper.  So come, let us load up on pastel lollies and thermos flasks, pull back the roof of the convertible and see how far the blood sugar rush takes us. And on that note ...

Happy Fashion & Fluffballs Friday to you!


Fleurish Friday : Tiptoeing Around Tulips


Cocktails and Vintage Noir Fashion & Kitty Cat illustration © Shell-Sherree
{Cocktails and Vintage Noir Fashion & Kitty Cat illustration © Shell-Sherree}

Welcome to my tulip garden.  Not exactly earthy but highly appropriate for today's illustration.

Bulbs are supposed to be planted when the weather turns cold ~ traditionally known quaintly by historians as 'autumn' and 'winter'.  But Houston, we have a problem, as I sit here at my studio desk wearing a black cotton slip dress and no need of a cardi {albeit still daylight}. 

Aspiring tulip growers of Brisbane must have beads of discombobulation trickling down their furrowed brows.  Their bulbs are in grave jeopardy of ending up crushed and sautéed in a case of mistaken onion identity, loitering as they are in the dark recesses of fridge crisper drawers while the mercury decides whether to release its grip on the mid-20s of celsius.  And yet, for problems such as this, we should pray. I'm happy to dodge frozen extremities for a while longer.

So come, let us don our shortest sleeves and satin cocktail gloves, pull up a mocktail and speak of black tulips and unicorns.  And on that note ...

Happy Fashionable Fleurish Friday to you ! 


Espresso Yourself : Of Chihuahuas and Cafe Life


Chihuahua Cafe Life in Paris illustration © Shell-Sherree
Chihuahua Cafe Life in Paris illustration © Shell-Sherree

The only plus side of my coffee machine finally expelling its last puff of steam? The chance to name a new one.

When sifting through the glitterati of alliterative opportunities in my head, French names were high on the list ~ a logical default given my rose-coloured glasses are still fixed on Paris and inching towards the real possibility that the delicate macaron-tinted daydreams I've hand-held all these years {cough} decades can never be matched.

But in the end, I thought of my new machine's model moniker Venezia and dubbed her Violetta. In  honour of same, I included two tiny chihuahuas, tucked into the tote of today's illustration, who love visiting Venice.  {You can follow the adventures of Hermès & Hercules here.}  But we are detouring via Paris for today.

If you'd like to send your pups or kitty cats on a magic carpet ride to the destination of their dreams, let me know what you have in mind and I'll send you some info. What a lovely gift idea !  And on that note ...

Happy Fluffballs Friday to you!


May the Fourth Be With You


French Bulldog & Kitty May the 4th Be With You illustration © Shell-Sherree
{French Bulldog & Kitty May the 4th Be With You illustration © Shell-Sherree}

Say, "Hello," to Gary, the subject of today's Fashion & Fluffballs pet illustration.

If Carrie Fisher's scene-stealing French bulldog Gary had been on set back in the day, there's a good chance the Star Wars dynasty would have included a Frenchie.  I'm relieved that didn't happen, or I'd have been forced to abstain thanks to my golden rule of not watching movies starring animals.  Far too high a 'Weeping Inconsolably' risk factor for my EQ levels.

But here Chez Shell, transportation to your happy place is always a safe bet.  So come, pull up a cosmic lounger, roll up those side buns and clink glowing glasses of liquid aqua while pining for the caramel scrolls back home.  And on that note ...

May the Fourth be with you !

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