{Though I often promote artists here, I don’t often push products. There are exceptions to be made, however, when the product in question is created by an incredible person with such an extraordinary mission. Meredith, I adore you, truly.}


The Harpy of ancient Greek mythology is defined as a fearsome creature; part woman, and part bird, who thirsts for vengeance. Various tales describe how harpies would descend in screeching flocks to snatch up evildoers in their talons and deliver them, begging for mercy, to the merciless Furies. For several centuries, “Harpy” has remained a popular slang term, used to describe a particularly nasty or contentious woman.

These beautiful terrors are the inspiration for HARPYCORPS, a monstrous feminist art rage alliance instigated by a bunch of fed-up women and queers.

HARPYCORPS’ chief mission is to create a network of safe spaces, both virtual and physical, where brave humans from all walks of life can come together to explore the immense power inherent in our femininity. We strive to create artistic works –both as individuals and in collaboration– that express our non-compliance with rape culture, unapologetically celebrate our sexuality, elevate the public discourse around various civil rights issues, and purge the toxins of misogyny and kyriarchy from our bodies and minds.

Every bottle sold will help the chief agitators of HARPYCORPS to facilitate these goals. What better way to make our intentions known than on Inauguration Day, 2017, with a ferociously caffeinated beverage? We are fierce. We are femme. We will not flinch. Prepare your gullets and brace your cloacas for… BLOOD OF THE HARPY.

Currently {1.16.17}

spiritsSomehow the last month, give or take a few days, feels several decades long. I suspect that has much to do with the upheaval of the holidays; we hosted my beau’s family for Christmas this year, so I believe there were at least two weeks alone which were lost to the commotion of getting our slovenly butts in gear to make the place look presentable and figure out how to cook a dang prime rib. (If you’re curious, we served prime rib with roasted asparagus, garlic-parmesan mashed potatoes, and creamed spinach, and if I don’t have to do that again for another year, that will be fine with me.)

Also, I have never had a holiday thing/event/whatever in my own home, so I was freaking out. Quite honestly, I had volunteered responsibility for the holiday dinners because I was tired of feeling awkward and out of place/in the way at someone else’s house. If I’m going to feel uncomfortable, I’d rather it be in the comfort of my own home, you know?



Houses were lit, skeletons and bats were fitted with Santa hats, and a thousand star cookies were born, only to die bravely in several gulps. I can say beyond the shadow of a doubt that I made the world’s most amazing gingersnap cookies and that may never happen again because I don’t remember which recipe I used. At Jack’s suggestion, though, I under-baked them, which did away with the menace of the tooth-breaking “snap” and produced a cookie that was intensely chewy and full of delectable spices. I suspect under-baking any gingersnap recipe will yield a far superior result.




This past weekend was a bit of a whirlwind.  On Friday night I ventured into Orlando for dinner at Dandelion Cafe with some like-minded lady friends (whom I both met through Death Cafe!) and a jaunt to Etoile Boutique in the Milk District for the bloodmilk trunk show. It was so nice to meet the incredibly lovely Jess, whom I’ve known online for years now, as well as her whirling dervish, effervescent right-hand gal, Jen. And of course it was pretty spectacular to see glittering stacks of bloodmilk talismans and amulets on display. I may have purchased a thing. Okay…maybe two!

The next day I tagged along with my brother-in-law on some errands, during which we took a quick drive through Greenwood Cemetery which is utterly gorgeous, and which I had somehow never visited. Afterward we visited South Seminole Farm and Nursery and I poked along, haunting the herb shelves and spying on all the blooms and blossoms, while he checked out the boring stuff, like native ground cover.

disney disney1

On Sunday we went to Disney World. Though I am a FL resident now and have been for the better part of 30 years, I can count on one finger the times I have been to this theme park. When I was much younger, I was obsessed with it, and of course, with the various Disney princesses, but as I grew older I came to really resent it. Full disclosure: that was because I was a scumbag who was dating an even more horrible person who was married (with kids) and I grew to detest anything that smacked of Disney or children’s fantasy.

It took me several years to get over that. I’m still not super rah-rah jazzed about all things Disney, but I genuinely did have a wonderful time staying at the Polynesian resort, drinking all of the tiki drinks, watching spectacular night time fireworks across the water, and spending the next day eating too much sugar and going on all the rides with my Viking. I guess it all depends on who you spend your time with, right? And I have been spending time with this particularly excellent human for five years now (as of this Friday the 13th!) and that’s sort of what this trip was all about. I even got the sequined Minnie ears to commemorate the occasion! Although he’ll tell you it’s because he wanted to see robot-Obama speak before the Hall of Presidents is closed down for the next six months, but I know what’s what.

Blue Dahlia

BooksCurrently knitting: the German doily inspired Blue Dahlia shawl. I’ve been coasting on socks and mitts for the past six months, so I thought I would start of the year with something a little more challenging and infinitely more fiddly. So far so good!

Currently reading: all of the library books! There’s this problem with borrowing library books, though. You can’t really read them at your leisure, so you either race through them, trying to finish them before the due date that you’ve already extended two or three times already, or you just let them pile up because you get involved in other things and then you must return them unfinished.  There’s always one or two from my stacks that remains sadly unread and most likely not revisited.

I just finished The Magicians, which despite wanting to punch the main character in the face, I totally adored. There’s something about the magic of ordinary folks being transplanted into unfamiliar worlds that makes for some of my favorite storytelling. Unspeakable Things, though intensely edifying, is a bit of a slog, so I’ve been breaking it up with the equally feminist How To Be A Woman (which, while hilarious, it’s the sort of humor that might grate on one’s nerves after a while.) I also checked out every Carrie Fisher book that my local branch had to offer but so far I have only finished Wishful Drinking, which was a quick and wonderfully witty read. Note to self: still need to see her stand up version of this.


And of course, some one word film reviews. I am not sure how I got in so much in the way of movie watching since the 13th of December, but somehow there are 20+ titles on this list!

Beyond the Gates Yes (but mostly for Barbara Crampton)
Krampus Maybe
The Greasy Strangler DearGodNo (I didn’t even finish it)
Antibirth Yes!
The Magnificent Seven Maybe
Ghostbusters Maybe (don’t kill me, I didn’t love it)
SiREN Skip
The Autopsy of Jane Doe YES
The Handmaiden OMGYES
Gone Girl meh
The Girl On the Train Maybe
The Good Neighbor Probably (it’s on netflix)
I Am Not A Serial Killer Definitely! (it’s on netflix)
The Fearless Vampire Killers Wheee!
Rusalochka Pretty! (it’s on youtube, in six parts)
Train to Busan Intense!
The Skeleton Twins yesyesyes
The Happening meh
Zootopia yes!
Tangled um (if you have mother issues, this is a little triggering)
Goosebumps hrm

Demimonde Mitts Are Up For Auction!


Right now at @thecreepingmuseum on Instagram you can bid on the Demimonde mitts that I knit for their “Eviscerate the Patriarchy” fundraiser! The bidding is starting at only $35 dollars and if you knew the blood, sweat, tears, and cross-country, multi-person efforts that went into them, you’d know what a steal that is (with many thanks to Maika Keuben, Benjamin Brandt, Nevertold Casket Company, and blood milk jewelry! for the beautiful photo)
This auction is to benefit The Joyful Heart Foundation’s vision of a world free of sexual assault, domestic violence, and child abuse. 🖤

Elsewhere: Sister Spinster

Sister-SpinsterAt Haute Macabre I write about Sister Spinster Apothecary, helmed by herbalist Liz Migliorelli. Imbuing bouquets with symbolism and meaning, and encouraging self-care and empowerment through wild blooms and floral abundance, Liz believes in the healing that comes from our own gardens, the local land and our kitchens.

Read more about Liz’s philosophy, as well as about her potions, elixirs, and essences over at Haute Macabre. Plant Magic Made With Love & Ceremony: Sister Spinster

Also! Haute Macabre is up for best alt-culture blog of 2016, over  at Auxiliary Mag If you enjoy reading Haute Macabre’s dark/goth offerings as well, won’t you consider giving us a vote?


Friday Fripperies {Wishlist edition}


1. Haunted Castles: The Complete Gothic Stories $9.88 // BirdOvPrey tee shirt $33 // Sophie Reaptress velvet brocade leggings $70 // SOTMB Fjall Hoodie $150 // Adele Mildred Peggy sunglasses $220 // Catbird X Goest Smoke & Violets perfume $34 // Theeth Skull and mushroom necklace $250 // Julia deVille claw and 3 stones ring $570

Wishlist edition? “Well, isn’t that what Friday Fripperies is,” one might be inclined to inquire, “…just a never-ending wishlist?”

Well, yes, and no. Normally by the time I share my list of frips, I’ve already acquired at least one or two things that I’ve mentioned. It’s more a to-do list, really, for me to keep track of and check things off once obtained.

However, since I am currently on a No-Buy (OMG are you as tired of hearing that by now as I am of saying it?) everything is off limits, and none of these things will be showing up on my doorstep any time soon.

What’s on your wishlist right now?  I need to shop vicariously through you! Tell me all about it in the comments!

Scents of the week {1}

An informal reporting on the scents I’ve been wearing lately, in a concerted effort to appreciate and use what I already have, as opposed to continually adding another fragrance to the collection (and another, and another). Previous to now, this collection has grown, unchecked, and has reached a point where I will never wear all of it, even if I had ten lifetimes to scent.

For week one, we have Tokyo Milk’s Arsenic, Mississippi Medicine by DS & Durga, and Chanel Sycomore from the Les Exclusifs collection.


As strange as it sounds, I think Arsenic smells like fresh marjoram, which, in turn, reminds me very much of Christmases when I was a little girl. I think that’s because when I first smelled fresh marjoram (which to my nose smells a little sweet, slightly piney, maybe a touch of citrus, and vaguely musty?) I realized it smelled exactly like the worn, cardboard box of Avon Christmas ornaments, gewgaws, and tchotchkes that we’d haul down from the attic, dust off, and disperse throughout our home every year for the holidays.


Mississippi Medicine opens with an astringent, peppery cypress, and gives way to a pine-crackling, smoky fire, sweet birch, muddy grass and scorched leaves… and dries down to a sweetly herbaceous, woody, resinous scent that would smell devastating on either a man or a woman (I mention this because it is marketed toward men.) All told, this is the scent of waking with strange incense in your hair and the vague dream of descending into the dark, dancing and divining with ancestors, and having been part of rituals older than you can imagine. A scent of potent magics – both sacrificial and healing


Chanel Sycomore. Foliage and tall trees and rich, gritty dirt; soft smoke and damp greenery, and all the best smells of a forest ramble–but the hiker is garbed in expensive elegance, Prada boots, an Hermès scarf, Burberry coat, that sort of thing. This scent of a woodland spirit turned posh socialite; a dryad who quit the forest, now living on the Upper East Side.

How To Wear: Your Favorite Horror Film

crimson-peak-mainWith the new year comes new wardrobe resolutions: throw out/donate what you no longer wear or no longer fits properly, add more color and pizzazz to your outfits, swap your ratty stuff out for more high-quality pieces, invest in classic blazers and cashmere and so on and so forth. Blah, blah, blargh.

Ho-hum! I don’t know about you, but I nearly fell asleep typing that just now. Boo, hiss! Boring!

Now if one were to consult me, my sartorial suggestion for 2017 is to wear every day like it is your favorite horror film! Harnesses, spikes, studs, and torture couture to emulate beloved cenobites and malicious madams, the gilt headdresses and flowing silk worn by eldritch sea priestesses, or perhaps a velvet curtain-inspired antique, ruffled peignoir, to greet that poor, sweet vampire boy knocking on your window in the dead of night. Plumb the infinite depths of your terror to yield dark, fantastical prêt-à-porter revelations this season!

As always, click the image below to find a list of the apparel, accessories, and accoutrements used for each grouping.

Previous ridiculous installments of How To Wear:
👁‍🗨 How To Wear: The Arts
👁‍🗨 How To Wear: The Spring Equinox
👁‍🗨 How To Wear: The Winter Solstice
👁‍🗨 How To Wear: The Autumn Equinox
👁‍🗨 How To Wear: A Jean Rollin Film
👁‍🗨 How To Wear: A Gothic Romance Novel
👁‍🗨 How To Wear: Your Favorite Tarot Deck
👁‍🗨 What To Wear Upon Greeting Death
👁‍🗨 How To Wear: A Melancholic Holiday
👁‍🗨 How To Wear: A Date With A Monster
👁‍🗨 How To Wear: Dramatic Jewelry
👁‍🗨 How To Wear: A Tee Shirt








The Company Of Wolves

company of wolves

Let’s Scare Jessica To Death


Salem’s Lot


The Iron Rose


Crimson Peak


…and as a bonus, perhaps you might try a variation on this theme:
How To Wear: Your Favorite Horror Novel!





A Year In Fragrance: Month 12

It was my intention to write about fragrances on a monthly basis in 2016, but I’m afraid I rather lost the thread of that back in November. I suspect this can be forgiven. November, for my family at least, has always been The Worst Month–relatives die, addiction and depression run rampant, all sorts of good stuff–but this November was, as I think we can all agree, particularly horrid.

And so, as it happens, I have only posted 10 installments of A Year In Fragrance– which I will link to below, if you missed any and wanted to catch up. I began this project envisioning that it would be mostly fragrance reviews, but I think it ended up being more than (and perhaps a little less than) that.  It was a year of scented memories, scents that I utterly loathed, and even some of my beau’s thoughts on certain fragrances. I suppose I will never get to the point where my thoughts coalesce into precise, well-thought out reviews; I’m doomed to ramble, and meandering rambles these perfumed ponderings shall doubtless remain.

holy mountain

For November, I will tell you that I purchased a full bottle of of Apoteker Tepe’s The Holy Mountain. Notes include “…over seven precious woods and resins along with a rare extraction of Lapsang Souchong tea smoked slowly over pinewood fires”, and if you are in the market for a smoky fragrance that smells like maybe the smoke cleared after a super-beardy wizard threw a mystical resin into a fire to conjure an ancient dragon lord or something, but the dragon flew away and the wizard has gone to bed and the fire has burned down so that only the embers are smoldering and the deeply scented, resinous smoke has seeped into all the old wooden beams in the top-most tower room where all the magical shit is locked up…well, The Holy Mountain may be the scent for you.


In December, I tried to resume the practice of “shopping my own stash”, a handy idea and phrase I first heard over at EauMG; I mean, I am of course familiar with the concept of using up your own stuff before buying new things, I just don’t think I’d hear the process called that before. Clever! Anyway, I rediscovered some samples I didn’t even realize I had, and some of them are astonishingly gorgeous, Myrrh Casati by Mona di Orio and Etat Libre d’Orange’s Attaquer le Soleil Marquis de Sade chiefly among them. At the year’s end I realize: yep, still love those churchy incense scents. Perhaps 2017 will bring new loves?

A Year In Fragrance 2016:

January: Tea Rose
February: Willow & Water
March: Witch’s Workbench
April: A Dude Thinks On Stinks
May: Youth Dew
June: “Inexpensive” Stuff
July: Scents For Sleep
August: Hateful ‘fumes
September: A Tale Of Two Roses
October: Sweets For The Sweet



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