A Fairytale Beginning (1/9)

When @timetravelingpotatoast proposed a Captain Swan Enchanted AU, I couldn’t believe it hadn’t already been done (and apologies if it has), and I just had to take a crack at it. A Captain Swan romance involving Enchanted Forest AU, modern day AU, and 21st-century-man goodness? Um, YES PLEASE. So here it is - my take on a OUAT version of the lovable Disney movie (though, like all things OUAT, it’s a little darker than the Disney movie; Killian Jones is decidedly not a fairytale princess).

Special thanks to @lenfaz for letting me run my preliminary story outline by her. Chapter 1 is fairly short, but I promise the rest will be considerably longer. I hope you enjoy, and thanks for reading!

Find it on AO3.

Summary:  Killian Jones, the notorious Captain Hook, has been on a quest to kill the Dark One and avenge the death of his first love for over one hundred fifty years. But when he crosses the Evil Queen, he’s magically transported to New York City, a strange land full of fascinating wonders, the foremost of which is Emma Swan, a cynical single mother with no time for fairy tales, real or imagined. A Captain Swan Enchanted AU.   (Captain Swan modern AU, Captain Swan Enchanted Forest AU.  Romance & Adventure.  Rated G.)

Also tagging @piratesails at her request.

The thunder of hoofbeats fills the air as the roan mare gallops down the wide earthen path in the shadow of the needle-like spires of the Evil Queen’s castle.  Her rider urges her on, perched in the stirrups and leaning forward into the wind, his black leather duster jacket aloft behind him. The beginnings of a storm are curling on the horizon, the air heavy with the smell of coming rain, and, as accustomed as the man is to being soaked to the skin, he would still prefer to weather it from inside, rather than outside, the castle.  Besides, he’s survived quite an adventure to secure the prize that he carries now, and he’s eager to get his hand on the magical compass he intends to exchange it for.

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Gwyneth Paltrow was styled in PLATINUM jewelry by Tiffany & Co. for the “Blue Book” event in New York on April 18th. Platinum is popular on the red carpet since it holds diamonds and colored gemstones most securely. -Platinum and round diamond earrings ($400,000) -Platinum bracelet with sapphires and diamonds ($130,000) - Night-blooming flowers gather in a dramatic prelude to evening in a bracelet of Montana sapphires and diamonds.   -Platinum butterfly brooch with black opal, sapphire, and diamonds ($110,000) - A butterfly takes wing in elegant form. Brooch with black opals, Montana sapphires and diamonds in platinum.
Love yourself like Kelly Clarkson loves herself

Listen, this may or may not deserve its own post, but unfortunately, I am in control of this ship, and I decide what nonsense we spend time on, so we’re gonna talk about this ring that Kelly tried to buy in 2013. Specifically, Jane Austen’s ring.

One of the only known possessions of the brilliant author, one of only three pieces of jewelry that she once wore, and Kelly paid over £150k to own it, not as a collector’s item or a display piece, but to wear as her engagement ring to then-fiance, now-husband Brandon Blackstock. Unfortunately, the British government got all up in arms about “history” and “national treasures” or whatever, and the ring was held until the Jane Austen House Museum raised the funds to outbid her. 

Get mad at me all you want, but personally, I think it’s pretty admirable to wear an artist like Austen’s personal jewels to celebrate your own marriage. The sheer confidence and self-esteem that it takes to claim that with a shrug… whoa. She was called entitled, and a lot of other worse names, and I’m not saying it’s the best use of the ring, but it does show a level of self-love that I, for one, have been working pretty hard in therapy to even come close to reaching.

Blackstock, stand-up guy that he is, had a replica made for her, though, so at least we can all relish the sight of her wearing it and remind ourselves of a long legacy of lady heroines with great taste in jewelry. And she’s still got a first edition of Austen’s Persuasion to keep her warm at night.


We chat with the celebrated jeweler on his limited-edition collection with our very own SEPHORA COLLECTION.

This holiday season, SEPHORA COLLECTION teams up with famed jeweler Alexis Bittar to present Liquid Gold: a decadent three-piece lineup of gilded keepsakes, featuring the Beauty Brush Set + Stand, Beauty Brush + Travel Wrap, and Compact Mirror. “I am personally a huge fan of Alexis Bittar—his designs are beautiful, unique, and often unexpected,” says Elizabeth Hayes, SEPHORA COLLECTION Vice President and Divisional Merchandise Manager. “This is one of the most elevated product offerings we have ever launched and it was an opportunity to surprise and delight our client with something exciting.” The Sephora Glossy caught up with the Brooklyn-born Bittar to learn more his love of jewelry and the Sephora-exclusive precious pieces. RENEE TRILIVAS

How did you get started in the jewelry industry?
My parents were antique fanatics, they started the ball rolling, but then they didn’t know how to stop the ball. They were like ‘Okay, we’ve created a monster.’ On my birthday they bought me $300 worth of vintage jewelry, which I sold on St. Marks Place in New York City, and that’s how that got going. Then I started designing jewelry when I was 22. I remember I did two pins: One was a Victorian woman’s face with smeared makeup, then the other pin was a big carrot with a stalk. It was the ‘90s, so you’ve got to put it into perspective, but I fell in love with the sculpting behind it.

How would you describe design aesthetic?
It really depends—each of my four lines have such different personalities—each one demands different attentions. It’s like having four children: Fine, Lucite, Elements, and Miss Havisham. I begin a collection with sketching really rough drawings on napkins and papers and we put them all together, and then we start the fine-tuning with computer-aided design.

How did you come to collaborate with SEPHORA COLLECTION?
Sephora approached me to design a capsule collection of brushes. I was intrigued because it’s been 15 years since I designed any home products or furniture, and this seemed the closest to that category. I loved that this collaboration pushed me into a new area, both personally and functionally.

What was your inspiration for the collection with Sephora?
I got the idea of fusing glamorous disco-era nightclubs, New Wave, and liquid gold. Liquid gold is one of my signature aesthetics—I love the idea of mobility, fluidity and reflection of light. The liquid gold and my signature Lucite were a natural fit for these pieces: I love the gold with clear and high shine black—it’s so sexy. I wanted to do more than brushes and came up with a compact mirror with a black tassel, because it’s an essential when dancing into the late night.

Did crafting beauty products create any challenges compared to jewelry?
I asked for some advice from some of my dear girlfriends, I don’t wear makeup, so I needed a little help there.


The official logo of Baseball’s 86th Midsummer Classic features a nostalgic design, symbolic of the historic heritage of the Reds franchise in professional baseball. The iconic pill box hat and handlebar mustache is a playful reflection on some of the sport’s original players. The etched type celebrates the jewel event as a flying star punctuates the copy. The crossed bats represent a traditional baseball design, while the addition of deep red creates dimension to the Club’s colors of red and black.

- Cincinnati Reds statement on the 2015 All-Star Game logo