Tuesday, February 4, 2014

It Started With A Mouse...

I love making things for people. Especially when the right idea comes to me and I can run with it like a mad woman. For this past Christmas I decided that I was going to make a mouse for each of the editors at Pregnancy & Newborn. We've worked with these awesome ladies for 7 years and counting and they really mean a lot to me. If you met them, I know you would agree too. They are really amazing.

So amazing that I knew a couple of mice were not going to express properly how merry of a Christmas I wanted them to have. The project quickly evolved into what you see below, a top knot and doughnut for Lauren (and cowgirl boots for her inner love of country music), a long-lost lumberjack for Shea (complete with Yeti head and axe) and a bicycle riding bunny with a book for Steph.

(Everything is hand-sewn, except for the dress and the skirt which I used the machine to do.)

Click for larger image


Saturday, May 19, 2012

Our 5th Anniversary!

Tim and I have been married 5 years! FIVE years! I really feel like its been no time at all. To celebrate we decided to go to Europe for a whirlwind trip in London and Paris! It was our first real non-family related trip since we were pregnant with Harley almost 3 years ago. Definitely a long overdue vacation. It was also the first time being away from Harley for more than a few hours and I have to say that I was dreading that part. But we all managed fine with minimal tears. We tried Skyping for the first few days but it seemed to make Harley more and more upset so we held off until the last night, which helped me too because by that point I missed him sooooo much.

 The trip was like a giant breath of fresh air for us. We've been a little burned out on our day-to-day schedule and in need of new scenery to recharge. And recharge we did! Between my phone, Polaroid and "real" camera I took thousands of photos. I thought my button pushing finger was going to fall off, but I couldn't stop. There was just so many new things to see that my brain went into overload. It was awesome. I will have to break everything up into separate posts, however. Unless of coarse you would like for me to bring your internet to a halt with indefinite photo uploading.

Until those posts I wanted to share with everyone the amazingly awesome anniversary present my amazingly awesome husband gave to me. But first, a little backstory: a lot of the artwork that Tim has been making lately has included different kinds of insects, mainly bees. So for my birthday present to him I made a drawing of Abigail, Patron Saint of Bees. I really wanted to find him a preserved bee but didn't have much luck. About a month later we were going to our car and there was a giant bumble bee, dead on the ground, in pretty good condition, with wings spread out, waiting for us. So we brought him in and on our shelf he has remained. It was like he came to us knowing that we would carry on the beauty of his life.

So, Tim decided to put together a short, one page story about the two of us and our travels and search for the most beautiful bee. He printed out the story on a sheet of vintage V-Mail which was a sheet of paper that folds itself into an envelope that people used to send mail to armed forces during WWII. Tim tucked the story into an old tin crayon box along with vintage objects relating to the story that he found at antique stores. All of the objects are from around the same time period except for the photo that Tim took of him holding our previously found bee that he printed and mounted onto an old photo card. The bee was also included in an old salt shaker.

I can't even begin to described how much I love this gift! It just has so much that reflects who we are together, story, travel and our love of collecting random objects. I'm seriously over the moon about this and can't wait to find a way to display it all!

Thank you Boo! Happy 5th Anniversary and here's to 90 more! :)

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Words Are Not Enough...

So for Mother's Day, my husband extraordinaire got in contact with my absolute most favorite artist, the amazing Brandi Milne and asked her if she would sign a book for me that he purchased from her shop.

And she did! But she didn't just sign it. She SIGNED it!
(check pics below)
I was so excited to get the book alone but then to see that she drew in it to me, personally?! My face hurt from smiling so much, I was that excited.

I am a bit enamored with several artists and have been for years but Brandi's work has always stood out to me. As cliched as it may sound, her work really does speak to me. I feel deeply connected to her pieces. So to have a personally signed book from her makes me beyond happy :)

Two years ago I received a comment on one of my blog posts from the woman herself. I was stunned. I double checked (several times) that it was the same Brandi and it was! I went to her blog to thank her for leaving a comment and noticed she was having a giveaway. I entered and won! I know, I know crazy right? I guess it was just meant to be. Below are two cards that Brandi made and that I love. :)

By the way, have I mentioned how awesome my husband is?
Super awesome!

Harley's favorite character is Hoxie Clark, the big oaf.

She even decorated the packaging!

The winning cards. "Lucky You" descibes it perfectly! I love how she made them look aged and used. Nice touch!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Sophie Blackall (Illustrator)

I came across two new blogs by one new artist today that I absolutely love. Sophie Blackall is an illustrator in New York by way of Sydney, Australia. She has illustrated for children books, magazines and other various publications.

Aside from loving her light and graceful illustrated style, which I do, a lot, I am also fascinated with her her two blogs. The first one, Missed Connections, takes postings from the missed connections section of craigslist and brings them to life through her drawings.
Here is a video about her project.
And here are some of my favorites.

We Passed Each Other When The Sky Was Pink

-m4w - 29

I saw you for maybe a second or two.
I've read missed-connections before and wondered why people just didn't say something then and there. Now I understand... perhaps it's because the moment is extraordinary; containing a fullness of its own... and the thought that this person across from me is not a part of my everyday life, and at any second will disappear, didn't even occur to me... it seemed that we were in whatever it was together, and that sort of connection rarely, if ever, happens between strangers, so my mind was a little slow on registering that there would be no "some other time" if neither of us asked for the others phone or email.

Now, hours later, the ripples created by those few tender seconds still gently rock something within me...
and I become a missed-connections poster.

Would you be interested in having tea or going on a ride?

Long Curly Black Hair on The Q

- m4w - 36 (Brooklyn)

You had pink fingernails and got on the Q train at Atlantic (if not Dekalb). I felt an irrational desire to invite you out to dinner. I found you stunningly beautiful, but you'll probably never know. I think you changed trains at Times Square and I watched as you stepped between closing doors and disappeared. If for some reason you check this, It'd be nice to hear from you. Either way, I hope you're well.

You With The Hat

- w4m -28

I see you most mornings, and I think you've seen me too. I know how crazy this will sound, but I know exactly what our baby would look like.

Sophie has another blog, Drawn From My Father's Adventures, that I love where she illustrates her father's stories, "the grim ones from boarding school during the war, the exciting ones from being the son of a spy, the exotic and bizarre and beautiful ones from traveling to unpronounceable places long before there were guide books."
I love this one about the process of obtaining a Chinese Visa.

Gaining access to China in the 1960s was nigh on impossible without an invitation from the Chinese Government but I was determined to get there somehow.
Since the establishment of the Peoples’ Republic in 1949 nearly all foreigners had been expelled and there were relatively few countries that maintained diplomatic relations. Two academic friends had succeeded but they had letters of introduction from Chinese contacts whereas I had nothing. Despite that I still decided to give it a go.
I had been told that the only visa that I could expect to get was a transit visa and that would be for 14 days. When you think of it, there was really no reason why China should grant any transit visas for travelers from Europe so I had to create something.
The Soviet State travel bureau, Intourist was happy to sell me a ticket on the Moscow – Peking Express, so that was stage one. The next step was to send a reply paid cable to Luxingshe, the Chinese State travel bureau, requesting hotel accommodation in the capital.
Needless to say the Chinese did not reply but they did have my money for the replied paid cable.
With these two items in place I rocked up to the Chinese Embassy in London to apply for a visa.
As I approached the building I noticed that all the blinds on the windows facing the street were drawn and it looked as if the embassy was closed. However, when I rang the bell the door was opened and I was pointed up a long staircase to reception. There sat a man in a black Mao-style suit with a pair of scissors in his hand, cutting up papers. ‘Visa’ I said? And was wordlessly passed a form to complete. I filled in my details and attached two photographs and waited, and waited while the receptionist continued to cut paper. Nobody came and nobody went. Nothing happened. It was like waiting for Godot. Closing time came and the receptionist indicated that I should leave. I left.
The next day, Friday, I arrived at the opening hour and the blinds were still drawn. I climbed the staircase and said good morning to the scissor man and waited. At lunchtime he indicated that I should leave and pointed to his watch. I returned at two o’clock and continued to wait. Closing time came and once again I was politely evicted. The only interruption to my reverie had been the arrival of the post and a courier. This was real isolationism.
I returned on Monday morning and resumed my wait. After about two hours a man came out and explained to me that it was really not possible for someone to just decide they would like to visit China. ‘But, but, but’, I said, ‘I have bought a ticket from Moscow to Peking; tried to book a hotel, even sent money for the reply paid cable so at the very least the Peoples’ Republic should repay me that part’. The man nodded and walked out. Closing time came and I left the embassy.
The next day (Day Four) I resumed my place facing the scissor man and maybe an hour had gone by when suddenly in swept a new person.
‘Mr Blackall’ he said. ‘You are a nuisance’. His English was impeccable. ‘Why don’t you take the train straight across Siberia?’
‘Because the ports are all frozen up in winter.’ I didn’t know this to be true but he seemed to accept it.
‘Oh, all right’, he said. ‘Have you got enough money?’
‘Yes, yes’ I said, making a pile of Persian reals, Russian roubles, Japanese yen, a few hundred US dollars, and other assorted currencies. It was a large pile but the value was insignificant.
‘Give me your passport and come back in an hour.’

With passport and visa in hand I literally danced along the street.

Wouldn't you just love to have dinner with both Sophie and her father and just sit back and listen to all the stories they have?

Just had to share these two.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Baby Harley

Harley's birthday is coming up so I've been going through all of his early photos and such.
The first few weeks after bringing Harley home all we could do was marvel at him and think to ourselves how absolutely amazing he was. Throughout my pregnancy I imagined how awesome he would be but I really had no idea how far he would exceed those thoughts. Everyday my love for him increases exponentially and just leaves me speechless.
Happy Birthday a little early peanut!

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Ants Go Marching

Had a dream that big black ants were crawling over me and digging into my skin so that I was covered with large welts. I couldn't pull them out because it would pull theirs heads off and they would stay under my skin forever. The only way to get rid of them was to wait until they exploded and oozed out. I feel a weird bug phobia coming on. 

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

A Taste of What's To Come?

A hint of something I have in the works :)

Friday, January 15, 2010

Little Brown Bear

He's an angry little brown bear!

Birthday Girl!

Yesterday was my birthday and it was everything I wanted it to be. The day started when my sister kindly brought over some delicious Highland Bakery eatings. My favorite is their egg and cheese breakfast sandwich on rosemary garlic toast with soysage.
Along with my breakfast she brought a Starbucks and for desert an awesome raspberry cheesecake treat (as seen here). It was all a perfect way to start off the day.

Tim had a shoot that morning but it was only a half day so I made him take it. Paychecks are also nice birthday gifts :) So Kate and Harley and I hung out plotting and scheming our forth coming shop (that's right, we are joining forces! Stay tuned for more details).

After a day of sisterly bonding Tim and I dropped off Peanut at the grandfolks and went to dinner. We were going to do dinner and a movie but after dinner we opted for just sitting and enjoying more coffee and desert and great conversation. It was so nice to be able to have a whole conversation where one of us did not have to get up to change a diaper or make a bottle or change another diaper.

Tim surprised me this year with an amazing print by one of my favorite artist, the lovely Brandi Milne!

The print is called The Making and is hand embellished by the artist herself. As I unrolled the canvas the smell of oils filled the air. It was a magical moment :)
Isn't it beautiful? It looks even better in person too! I can't wait to get it framed and on my wall!!!

All in all it was a really great day. We were all happy and laid back and nobody needed to go to the hospital. Success!
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