29 September 2007

eye-candy friday - the potential poetry of pears

Okay so it's a day late, but I just had to post this. I want to get back into eye-candy Friday because the truth is that I miss it. It has been so long since I have done an eye-candy Friday post because it's all been about the softies lately (well, that's pretty much the point of this whole bloggity thing), which is great because clearly, I love what I do, but you know, balance is important. Balance keeps you sane and helps to maintain your love for what you're doing. It prevents you from getting burnt out or bored. It keeps you fired up and inspired. I feel that these days, I've been trying to attain some balance. Although I don't post much about the other aspects of my life, there's more to my life than making toys.

Yesterday and the day before entailed a lot of running around, and I spent most of the day out of the house, which really, the weather could not have been more perfect for just that. And today has been like that, too. So this is a quick post and run here. I think I needed a couple of days to get things outside of this softie thing in order. Monday, I plan to throw myself back into the swing of things because I just found out last night that I got accepted to Boston's Bazaar Bizarre, which is happening at the Cyclorama (BCA) in the South End on Sunday, December 9th. Can I tell you how ridiculously excited I am about this? I am frigging ecstatic! I am so thrilled to be a part of this. Seriously, I am so happy that I was accepted. I really didn't know what would be the outcome when I applied (at Abby's suggestion), but I figured I had nothing to lose in trying. This does mean, however, that I have to buckle down ten fold and work my butt off the next couple of months (which is fine, as I have plenty of butt to spare). So being as production mode is going to be bumped up to double-time, I am just going to kick back and enjoy these last few days of Summer. Monday, I resume my madness. Hope you're all having a wonderful weekend!

27 September 2007

o frabjous day! callooh! callay!

the minis at rest

Thank you all so much for all of your orders! Everything is going out today, I am happy to report.

So the zaubermausi from yesterday's post are part of order that I am working on for Quiet Hours Toys. I am really excited to be working with Carey on this. Carey is absolutely wonderful, and her shop is is filled with delightful toys for all ages. There are more softies to come as part of this order, so you'll be hearing more on this in the coming days.

Also, I have been toying with the idea of self-publishing a pattern for one (or more, maybe) of my felt toys. Is there any interest out there for this? Would anyone be interesting in being a test-sewer? (Sewer? Is that the right word? Hmmmmm, sewer? I am not so sure. Seamstress, maybe? The point is I would truly appreciate if anyone is interested and available to test-sew a pattern.) Please let me know if anyone out there has any interest in this. Thoughts? Insights? Any and all feedback would be appreciated and welcome.

Hope you're all having a great day!

26 September 2007

am i at liberty to say?

These zaubermausi are the first part of my first wholesale order. I am not sure if I at liberty to talk about it all just yet, so ummmmmm, yeah, this is awkward.... Uh, anyway, I just thought I would give you guys a sneak peek at what I've been working on these days. More details tomorrow when I have the other part of the order finished and it's all ready to go out.

In the meanwhile, I updated the shop today. Please have a look - hope you like what you see!

25 September 2007

you spin me right round baby right round

Maggy in the sunset

Ever have one of those days where no matter how much you try to do, you feel like you're just spinning your wheels? I don't think I accomplished even half of what was on my to-do list (although, I must say, my list runneth over these days - in a good way). Anyway, you know that thing that I was so excited to share with you all today? Well, it's not finished yet. I have to be patient with myself sometimes and remind myself that it's better to take your time and get it right than to rush it for the sake of finishing it and do a slap-dash, half-assed, insincere job of it. Yep.... Still, it makes me feel bad, like I'm floundering.

Well, at least I took all the photos for tomorrow's shop update. I wish I could give everyone an exact time for the update, but to be honest with you, I am not sure when I am going to schedule it. All I know is that it will take place once I am done with this other project. Any idea when that will be? Someone? Anyone? Bueller?

24 September 2007

i'll take inspiration over perspiration today

It's so good to be back home. I picked this Gerbera from our garden today. Apparently, the plant is still flowering. I thought it was done a couple of weeks ago, but lo and behold, I was fortunately mistaken. I love Gerberas!

One of the cool things about this weekend was spending time with my great-aunt who moved back to NYC from Florida and with my uncle, a total character (like someone straight out of Seinfeld, despite the fact that he would resent such a comment) who used to photograph for different crafty publications and for several crafty books in the 70's and 80's. He gave me this amazing book, An American Celebration: The Art of Charles Wysocki. I had not heard of this artist prior to this, but his artwork is pretty amazing. I love the folk art influence in his work:





Funny, these birds totally call to mind the beautiful paintings of Amy Ruppel:

I have been busily working away this afternoon to finish up something that I am pretty excited about over here. Let me tell you, have I got something in my pocket to share with you all tomorrow? Oooooh, I am so psyched. Right now, I am pretty tired, so I think I am calling it a night.

Oh yeah! DOH! Before I forget to tell you, Wednesday will be my shop update, which will include all the mini-manti, Maggy, and hopefully a couple of surprises. Good night, folks!

P.S. - Have you seen this yet? This silly site has made me ell oh ell. In fact, I elled em ay oh. For reals. It's pretty hysterical.

23 September 2007

raw materials

Earlier today, we returned to Cambridge in record time (a 3 1/2 hours drive from Jackson Heights - it was great!) from a weekend with the family, and I am feeling all sorts of raw and awful. It really does my head in to be around them for more than 24 hours, which is sad because I love my folks. I love spending time with my nephew, and I cherish time with my sister. I wish I saw her more often, actually. My sister and I are very different people with different styles and interests, but we balance each other out and in many ways complement each other. There are times when she is the voice of reason for me, and vice versa. We weren't born friends, and for years there was bratty-ness, the usual teenage angst, and a bitter sibling rivalry fueled by our mother constantly comparing us to one another. As we got older, we nurtured our relationship and have become extremely supportive of each other. I adore my sister and have a tremendous amount of respect for her. It's just hard to be around our mother sometimes. I know our mother loves me; I know she's a sweet and sensitive person. I know she has the best of intentions. But the hurt that stands between us is too thick to breach. It feels like the damage is irreparable. I don't know how to fix it and all I want to do is move on. I feel so thrown off track right now. I can't believe that the Open Studio was only last weekend. I have been puttering around the studio with tons to do but not knowing quite where to start because I'm just so... spent? Exhausted? Emotionally drained? All of the above?

I can't wait to begin my week and immerse myself in my work, my home, my friendships, and all of the things I love again. I have been piling fabric, planning new projects, and cutting pieces in preparation for work tomorrow. Because after all, tomorrow is another day (and I hear it's only a cliché away ;-) ).

20 September 2007

tidbits and thanks

Maggy

Thanks to Anne-Marie of Massachusetts Mom for the lovely piece she wrote about my softies. You can check it out here.

Thank you to everyone who has purchased a softie lately. I am so happy that you folks are giving these critters good homes.

For anyone who is interested, Zorf will be up on my etsy shop later this evening.

I kinda took it easy the last couple of days, catching up on house-hold crap (seriously, who knew two people could use so many dishes? And all that mail that's piled up? Whaaaaaaaaattt?! Is that all for us???!!!), finishing up the pieces that didn't make it to the Open Studio, working on a surprise (tease tease), and just vegging out in the evenings because my eyes hurt and I'm too tired to do anything but watch Microcosmos (strangely one my feel-good movies) and whatever Netflix has delivered us for the day. Now it's back to work. I will have all the mini-manti and Maggy (seen above, watching over me and plotting) properly photographed and in the shop next week. For now, I am going to finish up what's on my plate and cross my fingers that I can finish it in time so that I can visit my family and celebrate my great-aunt's birthday. She just turned 81 and moved back to NY after living in Florida for the last 30 years. When I asked her what she thought of NY, she casually said, "Oh you know how it is. New York never changes, and that's because it's always changing. I love it here." I wonder if I would be able to say the same myself if I were to move back there in 30 years.

Right now, I love New England and its gorgeous pre-Fall weather. Could it be any more beautiful than it has been the last few days here in Cambridge?

19 September 2007

i turned into a martian (woooooaaah wooaaaah woah)

Zorf

"Greetings, Earthlings! I am Zorf, and I have traveled 5,176 light years to set the records straight on something. This:

is NOT TRUE! I have no idea who started this ridiculous rumor, but we have nothing to do with that man. For reals. That is all."

17 September 2007

ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhh, it's over....

thank you

Huge thanks to everyone who made it out to the Open Studio over the weekend. It was great to see you all. Thanks for showing up and checking it out. Thanks to everyone who emailed and left comments and sent us their well-wishes and support. You guys are the best! We really appreciate all the encouragement.

Although we did not experience a resounding success this weekend, we did meet our goals, both individually and collectively. And more importantly, we made a ton of connections and met lots of people. Matt's work was enthusiastically received. He got a lot of positive feedback and made a good amount of sales. For the most part, people seemed excited by my work, but I do feel I would have gotten a better reception at a craft fair. There was a small amount of art-snobbery. Or perhaps I'm just letting the two people who had something negative to say color my experience, which I really shouldn't because a) really, who the hell lacks such etiquette that they would say nasty stuff about someone's work in front of them? Perhaps they are not as "cultcha'd" as they would like to believe they are if they don't have enough art-viewing experience (not to mention common sense and respect for others' work) to know a thing or two about gallery-etiquette, b) one was actually not being nasty but just sharing her experience when she said that she found that making softies wasn't worth the time or effort she put into it, and c) almost everyone who walked into our studio commented on how fun and refreshing it was to stumble upon us, after they were done squealing or squeeing or oohing or laughing and hugging and squishing the softies. The positive response to my work far outweighed the negative, by leaps, bounds, and buckets. So I feel good about that much.

Just as I anticipated from the get-go, a little less than half of my softies sold, so I have updated the shop today. It's funny because I knew the woodchucks would sell well at the Open Studio, but I had a feeling that the penguins wouldn't do as well. It's interesting to see what sells well in person vs. what does better in the shop and what is more appealing to the art crowd vs. what appeals to the crafting community. Matt and I were joking around about making a Venn diagram to illustrate this. I think I will just because it's intriguing to me. For example, we noticed that men were particularly drawn to the woodchucks, whereas women loved the mini-manti. Half the zaubermausi sold right away, wheres they don't sell as fast online. And I noticed that the hand-sewn items were not as thoroughly appreciated in person as they are within the blog and Flickr communities and that they were regarded in the same manner as the machine-sewn pieces. (I did have a couple of folks who did appreciate them and who complimented me on the stitching and the design; they made my day.) Anyway, I think this is my long-winded way of saying, "There are penguins in the shop!" Please check 'em out.

I will add the mini-manti and Maggy to the shop later in the week. I'm a little beat right now and don't want to sit in front of the computer all day. Thanks again, you guys!

14 September 2007

the finishing touches

I'm off to the studio to drop off a couple more softies, to tag and label and hopefully pick up some bags along the way, to arrange everything on the tables in an appealing fashion - basically, to put the finishing touches on everything because I want to be done with all that tonight. When I walk into the studio tomorrow morning, all I want to do is turn on the lights.

Check out the official South End Open Studios site for more info on all of the other artists who will be showing this weekend. The South End Open Market is also happening this weekend, and Tadpole is having their trunk show as well. So there is lots going on in this part of town this weekend. Please come by and check out all the good stuff. Hope to see some of you tomorrow or Sunday.

I'm signing off for the weekend. See you all on Monday after all the madness. Have a great weekend, folks!

OH! By the way, for anyone who is curious, you can catch a sneak peek at what I will have at the Open Studio here. And Manny will be available for sale. I am over my sentimental attachment. That, and I have come to the conclusion that shelf-space in our apartment is more valuable than gold (because we have almost none - there are 6 boxes of books that we still have not unpacked since we moved up here one year ago). Once October rolls on in, I am taking a wee break (about one week) from crafting and softie-making and spending a little bit of time working on our apartment because it is a bit of a mess right now, and there are definitely ways we can make it look better and make it a more efficient space without spending too much money. After this weekend, I have two big orders to fill, then the break, and then it's stocking the shop for the holidays, with a few more projects thrown in for good measure, of course. And I am blathering again, thinking aloud. Sorry about that. Love ya! Have a wonderful weekend!

13 September 2007

and so the penguins begin their journey

the penguins are coming!

The penguins are all done and ready to go on their march to the studio, where they will be hanging out this weekend.

the penguins are coming!

Also at the studio will be this trio of zaubermausi:

Zöe

Mimi

Will

You know, I am just ridiculously excited about this weekend. I am so psyched and feel so ready. I'm actually a little surprised at myself because I am feeling so good about this and not letting the petty ugly things get to me. And there are tons of yucky little things nipping at my feet here, including the underwhelming response we seem to getting from our "real life" friends. I'm just not letting it get to me. I don't have the time or the patience for worry right now. I'm too excited anyway. My business cards and tags aren't here yet? No probs. I'll print my own tags on the computer tonight. I am still finishing a couple more works. If I can get them done - great. If not, no big deal. They'll go into the shop or towards something else that's looming luminously and bursting with hope on the horizon. I have to admit, as if you couldn't tell from my usual bouts of self-doubt and worry, my confidence is not the strongest. I question myself and my abilities (or lack thereof) at the drop of a hat. In this case, however, I just don't feel that way at all. I'm hoping this weekend will rock, because I am definitely bringing it! Woohooo!!!

12 September 2007

you can pick your friends...

and you can pick your nose...

and you can pick your nose

but you can't pick your friend's nose!

but you can't pick your friend's nose

Well, maybe sometimes you can, but really now! (Yeah, I know, I'm like a 5-year-old.) These little guys, by the way, are Vince and Ben, and they will be at the Open Studio this weekend. And yes, they will probably be engaging in all sorts of acts of raging immaturity.

11 September 2007

oh, stuff and this 'n' that

The other day, I asked you, dear readers, to guess which penguin was stuffed with wool and which was stuffed with polyfill. One of you got it right - it was the penguin on the right that was stuffed using wool, the one with the orange feet. The one on the left, with the black feet, was stuffed with polyfill. Visibly, I don't think there is too much difference between the two. Even when you hold them, they feel about the same weight and density. But in the long-term, there will be a difference. They will wear in different ways. There is also the more immediately tangible difference that one responds to your touch in a direct fashion and retains your warmth.

As inconsequential as it may seem, stuffing is clearly an important component of softie-construction. Afterwall, what are softies without stuffing? They would be nothing but hollow shells of fabric. *insert dramatic faux-swoon*

When I first started making softies, I wondered about what other people used to stuff their softies. I mean, I knew about polyfill stuffing, which is what I use to stuff my softies (is there really any way to make that last phrase sound nice?). However, the stuff I started out using was some super-cheapo polyfill that I got at Micheal's; it was very fibrous and super-filament-y and made me sneeze up a storm as tiny bits of it floated everywhere around me, finally clinging to my clothes, skin, hair, everything in a rather uncomfortable fashion. I eventually found a better brand that was not quite so filament-y. (It's Poly-fil, and I get it in the 10 lb. box.) That's what I've been using, but I still like to try new forms of stuffing every now and then.

So what are our options?

Polyfill - Tried and true, I would say that this seems to be the generally preferred stuffing. It has great sproing and retains its shape well after washing. If you pack it carefully, it doesn't clump and give you strange shapes. You can pack it densely for a firm shape or lightly for softer, more malleable shape. And it's cheap and easy to find. You can pick it up at your local A.C. Moore.

Poly-Pellets - The say these are great for weight, but to be honest, I have never really been able to achieve much weight (for balance) with these. They are great for filler and work well for squishy items that need a little bit of something to give more substance to polyfill or wool stuffing. I don't think I would ever use these alone.

Cotton - I like the way cotton feels, love the way it breaks apart, and you can stuff something quite nicely with it, like this squirrel:

The drawbacks of using cotton, however, are that it is not as resilient as polyfill, so your end result isn't as dense. It takes a lot of cotton to stuff something into a firm shape, which ends up being hard on your elbows. Plus, it's a little linty. I am not sure about how it washes, as I have never washed anything that I have stuffed with cotton. Any notes or advice from anyone out there who has? How does cotton stuffing hold up after a wash? You can find cotton stuffing here. (They also have an eco-friendly stuffing there which I have not tried.)

Wool - I was loathe to try wool for a while, mainly because the price tag on it has scared me away. I finally tried it, and I have to say, I love the way it feels. It packs firmly, and it is just as dense as the polyfill. I'm not sure if I can say it has the same "sproing," but it does fill out softie-parts beautifully. It works fabulously for softies that need to be stuffed rigid for structure and for softies that are floppy and squishy. It also wonderfully retains the warmth of your touch. The only drawback I can see in using wool is that you can't really wash the stuffed item. Have any of you used wool? What would you say about it? What about washing it? You can find wool stuffing here.

Kapok - Never tried it, but I dream of doing so. Also on the pricey side of the scale, but probably worth it. I can't imagine using it for anything but soft, squishy toys. I am pretty sure I would not want to use it for anything that needs to be packed firmly for structure (like say, the legs on one of my mantis softies).

The trick to getting a nice even density with any stuffing is to stuff a little bit at a time and make sure it goes just where you want it to using an object like the blunt end of a pencil, or in some hard-to-reach cases, the end of a paintbrush. Apparently, Clover has some nifty-looking instrument that you can use, which you can also find here. Some people use knitting needles, but I've ripped holes through fabric using knitting needles. I use this über-sleek and modern little piece of equipment:

Aided by this piece of high-tech gadgetry when some stuffing needs to be pulled out or better situated:

Yep, a blunt pencil and a crochet needle. Works for me!

What about you? What stuffing/filling do you folks prefer? What works for you folks out there?

10 September 2007

and away they go!

I am off to the post office to send these little guys off to Seattle for Plush You! Thanks so much to Kristen and co. for organizing such a fun exhibition and for including my softies in this year's show. I am psyched about being a part of this. Hope these minis are well-received.

Among my three entries is my favorite new softie, a mini Gongylus Gongylodes:

Gongy-Baby!

Gongy-Baby!

Gongy-Baby!

I took some liberties with the design and decided not to give it a little crown/head thingy because I thought it might be too distracting. Overall, I'm pretty happy with the way it came out. Hope the folks at Schmancy like it, too.

09 September 2007

see the difference?

Can you tell which penguin is stuffed with polyfill and which one is stuffed with wool?

More on this later....

08 September 2007

notes from the workshop

Yesterday, Matt and I did our first First Friday at the studio at 450 Harrison. I wish I had brought my camera with me because our studio looked great. I was really happy with how we arranged all the work and thought everything worked well together. I only brought 4 of the 16 mini-manti with me to represent what we would have available for the Open Studios next weekend, and I had Manny on display as well (of course). So while my table was not jam-packed with goodies, it was only to introduce myself and to give folks a taste of what is to come. We handed out cards, met some of the other artists in the building, and chatted with a whole bunch of people. It seemed that our work was very well-received. Not to pat myself too hard on the back (as none of the minis sold last night), but I do love it when people see my softies and react in a visceral way - when they gasp or squeal and smile openly, eager to hold the toys in their hands. It's amazing how they really bring out the kid in just about everyone. I can't help but smile when it happens.

I have to say I actually feel confident about the upcoming Open Studio. I feel like I am pretty ready for it. I am still working on a few pieces, as I am finishing up my submission for Plush You! (Hooray! I got a whole bunch of light-bulbs at Sears.) However, I am not experiencing any of the self-doubt or panic that I did the last time. I know everything will get done, and I know it will go well. If I seem a little punchy lately, I must apologize. There are other things going on behind the scenes that have been weighing down on me, and I am trying really hard not to let it all get the best of me. I missed a deadline for one project, I let an offer fall through the cracks, and another offer that I was totally on board for fell through on its own. My big thing for October is not happening at all now; I kinda wish I had never even mentioned it on here in passing. And that's not even to mention Matt's less-than-enthusiastic attitude about the Open Studio. He has been struggling with his art and with his feelings about art and the process of making art for a while now, and while I love him and believe in his work, it is hard sometimes to be supportive in the face of such overwhelming hopelessness. It knocks me off of my course a bit. Sometimes I end up questioning myself and wondering if any of this effort is worth it.

I love what I am doing too much to give up on it. I enjoy making things. I have fun designing a pattern and working out the kinks until I have what I want to see as my finished product. I enjoy just about every process of softie-making, with the exception of stuffing, which I loathe but only because it hurts my elbows so much (and sucks up sooooooo much time). I wish I could just wiggle my nose and have the softies magically stuff themselves. Some days are easier than others. Some days, I feel super-productive and happy out. Other days, I get stressed because I feel I am not working hard enough and allow myself to be distracted by all these other things, allowing myself to get sucked into the negativity and the hopelessness. Right now, I am trying to stay focused, and I am trying to think positively for the both of us.

I am finishing up this batch of penguins. So far, so good. I am using wool stuffing with these because I was thinking how wonderful it would be if they would retain the warmth of your hands. Granted on a day like today when it's 90º out, perhaps that thought is not so appealing. But I'm thinking ahead here. I'm thinking it would be great in the Winter. I am hoping to have these and a few other projects done tonight.

Hope you're all having a wonderful weekend!

06 September 2007

hand-stitching for sanity

and the penguins begin their march

You know what's a dangerous and volatile combination? Running a ton of errands on an empty stomach + taking more time than you originally thought you needed to run said errands because what you thought would be an easy one-stop in-and-out procedure has turned into a mad hunt for the right sewing machine light bulb + not being able to locate said light bulb even after visiting 6 different shops which are all in different neighborhoods = one shaky, pissed off, cracked-out looking-and-feeling me about to pass out in Harvard Yard while trying to walk around a group of very tall, storky-looking entitled turds who were seemingly oblivious to the fact that they were walking too slowly and hogging up the whole sidewalk (and that just maybe there were people behind them trying to get around their stank'o'privileged asses). Scary things happen when my blood-sugar level drops, my friends. In this case, I guess it wasn't so scary as I refrained from saying anything but just flipped them the long, lean bird right in their faces when I finally managed to walk around them, head spinning and bile rising. I haven't experienced this type of aggression since flipping off some MDB* in Grand Central Station who plowed into me and almost knocked me down while he was running to get off the Metro North platform and onto the IRT. Harvard Yard feels like the outdoors, academic version of Grand Central sometimes, because everyone is just flying through it super-fast to get to whatever class or job awaits them. I like that about it because I just go into auto-pilot and zoom through myself. I like walking fast, and I like walking with a purpose. So it suits me perfectly. I failed to notice that at the start of the new school year, there a ton of kids from out-of-town starting their first year who have no idea where exactly they are going yet. I need to be patient, and normally, I am. These kids, however, reeked of entitlement and happened to catch me at the wrong time. Oh how very wrong it was. I am feeling a little better now. I had a savory scone as a very belated lunch, so at least I am not shaking and feeling nauseous anymore. The scone didn't help as far as the sewing machine light bulb situation goes. I have to bite the bullet and go to Sears and cross my fingers that they have it (my machine is a Kenmore - what a dumb choice to make on my part as I should have known that Sears would make it difficult to find parts).

Did I mention I was planning to sew the big surprise and centerpiece for my Plush You! entry tonight? Yeah, that's what I was planning to do. Fortunately, there's always a back-up plan, and in this case it is to stitch up all the penguin bits you see in the fuzzy photo above. So that's all I'm doing tonight. I'm hoping that a finished penguin or two might make me feel a little better because right now, I am one stressed-out puppy.

*MDB = major douche-bag.

Side rant - Normally, I hate when people abbreviate things and just use initials. It's lazy, dumb, and thus begins the degeneration of language. I loathe the use of DH as "dear husband." Seriously, you have no idea how much it irks me. It is like fingernails dragging across the chalkboard of my soul. It makes me want to repudiate marriage, that's how much I hate that term and its usage. As much as I love Matt, I will never refer to him as my DH because I think it's fucking lame to do so. He is Matt, a multi-layered person, much more than just a DH. In this case, however, I didn't want to scream "Major Douche-bag!!!!" on my blog for fear of offending any delicate sensibilities and ended up using initials instead. Ew. I will avoid doing so in the future.

05 September 2007

busy as a....

lil' bee

I love this little guy! He was so much fun to make.

04 September 2007

7 up? 7 down!

Amelie
Mini-Manti of the day

Seven mini-manti went to the zoo. Seven mini-manti stand against the blue. Seven mini-manti shout in unison, "Woohoo!" Seven mini-manti want to meet you.

Pardon the goofiness here. These little guys will be hanging out at the Open Studio soon. Well, most of them, at least. Two will be going off to Plush You!, but I have yet to decide which will be going. Hmmmmm, decisions, decisions.....

03 September 2007

join us at our open studio

announcement - take2

We'd love to see you there!

uh-oh!

Looks like Lars Ulrich has crawled up my butt again. I am cranky as all get-out. (And please, get out, Lars!) I'm sure it wouldn't have anything to do with the fact that the graphic I was hoping to get out to everyone today for the Open Studio is still not done (and I am not the one with Illustrator, therefore when I do it myself on Photoshop, it is not going to be as slick and the type will come out all fuzzy and gross). Nor would it have to do with the fact that the glands in my neck are swollen and hurting, and that is probably because my allergies have escalated to the point where my throat is sore and my sinuses possibly infected. Nor has it anything to do with the fact that my chair broke and now has no back (so I am sitting here writing this on what is essentially a funny-looking stool on wheels). Much less with the fact that I am going to have to spend hours sitting on this frigging glorified stump working. Nope, I'm just a cranky person. With Lars Ulrich living up their butt. ***sigh***

Anyway, here are some pretty pictures that have provided me some inspiration over the last week. Hope they do the same for you:

1. Tina Fabric Applique, 2. Seaming, 3. mid-century drawer, 4. Saipan - red slumber, 5. Old LR, 6. peep peek, 7. kedah lomo-6-1, 8. echinacea, 9. september , 1, 10. faded purple, 11. Round up TTV, 12. Sunflower & Crocus, 13. Special Magic Glowy Sunset Dogs, 14. In my home..., 15. Beautiful ducks, 16. matryoshka halloween, 17. <3!!!, 18. chão de Pharmácia..., 19. Another one, 20. south pasadena: soldier, 21. coffee cozies, 22. on my shelves1, 23. more treelingssss..., 24. little chipmunk 2, 25. WAWAYAhao#1, 26. Sisters, 27. Crazed Kitten 1, 28. gwen2, 29. bianca7A, 30. Xana & Brownie, 31. Critter Charms, 32. fellows, 33. small print preview, 34. The Plush Department, 35. Paletas Quilt - texture, 36. Finished Miniature Quilt for Whiplash

P.S. - I promise I will be less cranky tomorrow, when I will actually have 7 new mini-manti finished and hopefully a couple of the garden variety partiers. I know I will feel better once I am back to work and getting stuff done. For now, I am going to try to knock out this announcement graphic. Guuuuuuuuuuuuhhhhh....

02 September 2007

le penguin revisited

le penguin - part 2

What sucks stinky donkey nads:

• putting off designing announcement cards until the last minute
• the unholy asshattery, buck-passing, and den of responsibility shirking (a massive circle shirk, perhaps?) that is UPS - I know it's a holiday, guys, but seriously, 10 business days for a Ground package from ID to reach MA is ridiculous. Are you using trucks or the aforementioned donkey to transport your packages?

What makes up for the sufferin' suckitude:

• my little penguin friend - this is the first of what I hope will become a whole flock of penguins for a little re-enactment of "March of the Penguins" for the Open Studio
• Anaïs and her pretty kitty eyes - she can be very sweet when she wants to be

Anaïs

01 September 2007

happy september!

Things that ROCK:
1 - We got the keys to the studio, where we will be working and showing for the month, including the weekend of the SOWA Art Walk, which I could not be any more excited about. Really, it is ridiculous - I am bursting!

2 - Two more mini-manti are done. Meet 1. Iris, 2. Wilmont. Also, there are 8 more minis in the works, which I am hoping to have finished by Monday at the latest. Perhaps I may squeeze out a few more before Open Studio, but for now, I feel that is enough mini-manti. I am moving on to the other critters.

3 - Speaking of which, I have 6 little guys that just need detailing. And there are a few more woodchucks in the works. I will be sharing several finished pieces with you all soon, which makes me feel a little bit better about the fact that I have been so scarce around these parts lately.

bird bath

4 - As of today, it is one year that I have lived in Cambridge. I LOVE it here. So much. I don't know if I will spend the rest of my life here (as my ultimate goal for the last 7 years or so has been to live in San Fran), but for now, it is wonderful. It is the change I so desperately needed to make. I've gotten quite used to life over here, and I kinda don't miss NY at all. I miss certain aspects of it, like the pizza from San Remo's, pay-what-you-wish night at the museums, and the quality of the fabric shops over there. Overall, however, NY is just like one ugly memory that I am only trying to extract the positive from - and there's not much positive to be had, sadly. Funny, because I never thought I could live anywhere outside of NYC. I was one of those New Yorkers who kinda hated it there but just couldn't see themselves living anywhere else. How silly of me. I'm glad we took this chance and moved up here. I have no regrets, and I have truly learned that a) art is everywhere; it's up to you to appreciate it, b) same goes for culture, c) community is where you make it (as Beth once said), and d) home is where the heart is. My heart is happily planted here now. Hope you're all having a great weekend! I can't wait to share with you all the new softies I will be finishing up in the next few days.

snapdragons