Sunday, July 27, 2008

August = ETSY Challenge!

My friend Cal told me about her plan to make August an ETSY challenge. I thought it was such a great idea that I wanted to do it too. The plan is to focus on uploading new items constantly to try to sell as much as possible in August. I decided to get a head start today with some items I have on hand.
Buy Handmade

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Music = Fuel

The new music purchases keeping me going these days...

She & Him
Volume one

Steve Perry
Street Talk
For this song

which became a favorite in college when I revisited and then obsessively listened to the We Are The World Soundtrack driving around Bennington.

King Wilkie
Low Country Suite
Listen to my favorite "Oh My Love" here
I have an extra ticket to see them at Joes Pub... wanna go?

Monday, July 21, 2008

New Blue Sky Pattern!

I'm really excited to see the response out there for this new pattern! I was really fun and fast to make... well, sort of. The blocking of these squares took a long time and pretty much covered my house. First, I didn't have enough towels to do them all at once and second, when your cats think blocking = bedtime, it makes your work take twice as long to dry. (Does anyone know why cats love laying on wet knitting riddled with pins?) But eventually it all dried and I pieced it together with a fabric backing. I look forward to checking out other people's color choices.

The interesting thing about this pattern is that it started out in my mind as a sweater. In fact, I actually made the sweater for Blue Sky, but it didn't turn out quite as I had hoped or imagined. Eventually Blue Sky decided to go in a different direction and suggested turning the motif into a blanket pattern instead. I think it was a smart decision on their part, but I do hope to develop this sweater idea somewhere down the line...

Saturday, July 19, 2008

That's what friends are for...

You know your friends are the right ones for you when they get inspired gardening one day to stop and sew little catnip treats to give to your cats. Thank you Seth for embroidering this gem!

One thing that I adore about Seth is his love of playing games. We were walking in a big group somewhere... going to get ice cream perhaps (yes it was after the Belmont Stakes race) when Seth announced he had a present for me. With the hugest smile and on his face he decided I should play twenty questions to guess what it was. He's infectious enthusiasm inspired the whole group to play along and for the entire walk we shouted out our guesses. We had narrowed it down to a dried plant of some sort and when he just had to tell me about the catnip treats he and Garth had crafted for their two friends with cats. This was many weeks ago and I had kind of forgotten about it until last night when Seth handed the gift to me.

Sometimes I am struck by the kindness and generosity of these two friends (who coincidentally have been pals since their single digit days.) To have friends who are thoughtful enough to give you great random gifts is one thing. (Garth has brought me back special Texan beef jerky on two occasions now.) But to have that thoughtfulness extend to your two, quirky cats is quite something.

Some of you might be wondering why the toy says "ANG" when my cat's name is Dinah. Well, that's because when Seth met Dinah he picked up on an uncanny resemblance....

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Recent Find

The last time I was at the Brooklyn Flea I scored this printers tray (plus another one) for $10!!!!! Thats right folks $5 each! I was shocked. I saw them in a booth nearby and wandered over at the beginning of the day to see how much they were (she had 4). My hope was to keep my eye on them from afar and cross my fingers sell enough to bring one home with me. When I found out the price I wanted to buy them all! If I had had a way to cart them all home, I would have done it!
My mom spotted a similar tray at home in Maine recently for $60, which still a pretty a good deal if you ask me. I think I really lucked out and couldn't be more jazzed about my new little collecting place!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

My new pal

There was quite a surprise waiting for me when I went home to Maine last week...My mom got a new kitten and didn't tell me anything about it! I walked in the house and he scooted on by like it was yesterdays news. Needless to say, I loved him immediately!

This was my temporary office on the one day I worked and sir kitten gazed at me through the screen...

Mom and I spent the week brainstorming names. My uncle was a big fan of the name trouble or Arizona. We considered a dogs name like Fido or Spot since, well check it out... he loves to play fetch!

My mom makes him these little tinfoil balls that he chases around constantly. He puts them in shoes, his water dish and every now and then right in your lap. Now, it's completely cat-style fetch, meaning he's in no way obligated to bring the ball back to you and you certainly can't expect it to be done quickly every time. He does love to play with the ball first, but then usually trots back and drops it beside you. This dropping, along with his little expectant wait for the your throw, just melts my heart. It make me feel proud. I can't wait to see him again!

Oh, the other names discussed:

Taz (I said no!)
Arcade (this was a late contender that didn't get a fair chance)

but I think we settled on Rascal, right Mom? Or have you thought of more?

Friday, July 11, 2008


First off, let me express my deep respect and awe for stylists. They are the ultimate merchandisers. They take products to new levels of desirability by placing them in dreamy lifestyle scenarios. Despite being completely fake and two dimensional, we covet these ideal lives and in turn, rush out to buy, buy, buy! Or so is the hope of companies like Crate and Barrel, Pottery Barn and Ikea.

All of the aforementioned companies make great stuff. Stuff that in the past I have really, really wanted, needed even. Stuff I was willing to stand in line for when my plate of Swedish Meatballs had all but won off. Seriously, it's not the stuff that bothers me. I love my Crate and Barrel Popsicle maker! The Pottery Barn shower curtain liner, that I got by ordering one too many for my friend's wedding, was the longest lasting liner I have ever owned. And dear Ikea, your cheese grater slays me! I wish I had cause to buy more, but alas, one is all you need.

In my opinion, this is how it should be. A girl or boy picking his or her favorite items based on need, desire and taste. The catalog images provide inspiration for the daily use of said items and maybe help you see things that you might not have noticed otherwise. Way to go stylists! For a while there you almost made me want to buy some giant wicker balls and cover all my books with white paper!

I feel a need to apologize for my first post in ages turning so negative. I don't want to be known as someone who tears things down, but after receiving the latest Crate and Barrel catalog, well, let's just say I'm offended and leave it at that.

Which came first, the carpet, the chair or the lime green books?
I think it's pretty common for lovers of green, especially when it comes to the pickle varieties, to always be drawn to items of that color. If I had an unlimited income, I might fall into this category myself, so maybe there is some truth to this styling technique. Still, I think it's pretty basic to stick to one pretty bold color. If you're going to go that way, really go that way and fill the room with even more green. If I were given these exact same props to use, I would have made the wall white or an almost yellow green to allow for another accent color. Then I would have added a few more props that weren't green. Maybe something pale yellow or blue. Then I would have tried putting all the green books on one shelf, because that seams like something a normal person might try.

Maybe people dream of color coded rooms, where book bindings match the carpet and the pen you leave angled just so. I dream of spaces that leave breathing room for all colors and the parade of items I'm sure to drag home from the flea market. I never want to be limited to jusst one color extreme. Yikes. What else can you put in this room?

It would have to be bright orange, green, or turquoise, right? Is my problem that I'm just not into bright, solid colors? I think the quilt is nice, but the room just reminds me of a transitional summer patio collection or something.

This room tells a similar story only at a different temperature.
Even a flower arrangement would look out of place up there. And flowers look good anywhere!

This carpet would be GREAT if it were the only colored thing in the room.
And this last room is just the hugest pet peeve ever! I can't really name it or put my finger on it, but I know it has a lot to with the shaker posed on the little shelf.
I never thought I would praise the Pottery Barn catalog, but at least their rooms are more neutral and inspiring [to me]. Ikea has the corner on inventive/inexpensive/stylish design and at least they send out fewer catalogs. The trees and I are very thankful for that.