Category Archives: yay! I win!

the mister – ftw

Miz D got to gloat about her stunning amber bobble and now that I have pictures I reckon it’s my turn.

Historically my romantic interests have been in one of two camps when it comes to buying me jewelery: those who hem and haw and ponder and fret only to drop the idea in favour of a gift certificate out of intimidation of the gusband’s brilliant (dude has amazing taste) successes in finding me lovelies, or those who take the leap and fail miserably.  I have a stash of expensive shiney things too fugly to pawn.  Does that make me sound spoiled?

This year the mister tried* and passed with flying colours with this number:

Here’s why he wins:

1. It’s not a ring!  Rings are too personal (and scary – remember I cling tightly to my matrimonial prophylactic) and unless it was one he’d seen me oggling over at my favourite silver shop, which I almost never do and when I do I almost always make the purchase myself, it’s not going to be right.

2. It’s not gold.  Dude pays attention.  I’m a well-pierced, well-adorned chica and all of my shinies are silver which gold refuses  to play nice with.  I’m not going to wear something if it takes me 18h to take out every bit of silver in my bod to replace them all with stuff from the stash of gold fuglies.

3. It’s not a bracelet or earrings, which are what the gusband generally buys.  By opting out of at least that part of the competition he levelled the playing field.

4. It’s the perfect length, sitting nicely between my collar bones and creating a flattering line which leads the eyes up the neck.  Sometimes I think guys buy necklaces just so they can go dipping into cleavageland to fish them out.  Guess what?  I’m onto that.  I only wear long necklaces with turtle neck sweaters and I stopped wearing those in the mid-nineties.

5. It’s not amber in one of those overly ornate & whimsical settings with fairies and leaves and curlyques.  Nice, simple, curvy lines are another favourite.

6. It’s slightly asymmetrical. I love me some asymmetry.

7. It’s amber.  I adore amber.  It’s my favourite even before my beloved garnets and opals.  Admitedly he’s seen me swoon over the oodles of amber pieces immediately inside the doors at the gemboree each year, so maybe it’s kind of the easy choice.  He noticed and that’s all that matters.

*He also gave me a lovely pair of earrings which I love last year, but they’re just not in the same ball park and I kind of picked them out.


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I’ve been a busy bunny

But I’ve got a moment or two to update and show you lot what I’ve been making.

I know my partner has received this so I can post pics of my goofy son modeling the flying monkey inspired hoody I made her for the All Things Oz Swap over at Craftster.

I just used a basic hoody pattern and drew new pieces to applique on as the elements of the flying monkey costume from The Wizard of Oz.

It’s a little large on him so some of the details are missing, but you get the idea.

And of course it has wings!

I had so many ideas for this swap I didn’t know where to begin.  As always, I never suffer a lack of inspiration, just the time in which to see it all to fruition.  This was a lot of fun to make and a real learning experience.  I’d never worked with polar fleece before let alone tried to applique anything to it.  I’m glad I went with the three step zig zag for that part to maintain the stretchiness.  Of course every seam is serged and topstitched which made the project a little time-intensive but that sucker is not falling apart any time soon.  Now everyone in the house wants one.

I had a table at the arts week street fest at the weekend which was a rather fun experience.  I made some good money and it’s nice to know that people like my stuff.  I made a bunch of lounge pants out of re-purposed sheets with cute appliques for the fest.  There are two pair I want to steal from my stash but I’m being good and staying away from it for the moment.

There are more and I’ll be getting them into my etsy shop as soon as I can get better pics of them.

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mine x 1000 x a googolplex x infinite cubed

Image courtesy of

A whopping 33″ x 44″ print of Aubrey Beardsley’s The Ascension of Saint Rose of Lima has been snubbing its sarcastic little nose at me from its spot in my sister’s hallway since the fateful day a few years ago when my normally equitable thrifter & gifter of a mum brought it to her and to me a(nother) book on Frieda Kahlo.  I’m not sure whether it was her failure to recognise it as a Beardsley print, my sister’s then recent interest in furnishing her home with art, spite, or an early onset of senility which caused this grievous error but the print was clearly meant to go to the sister who does recognise & appreciate Beardsley’s work in all of its saucy glory (that sister being me, of course – I’ve had the limerick which goes with that particular illustration off by heart since I was 16 and believe me, it’s a fun one to pull out in mixed company) and the book to the sister who clearly needs to broaden her knowledge of Frieda’s life and who doesn’t already own 3 books on the matter.  I’ve been pissing and moaning about this for 3 years.  Until now that is.  Now it’s in my living room waiting to be hung because I, being the opportunist that I am, saw an opening to cut an underhandedly shadey deal with my sister which landed me the painting and her a bare hallway wall.  I have no shame.  The print is mine.  Mine mine mine mine mine.

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the fish are jumping and the cotton is high

So yesterday was a little more than a little surreal given that it started with putting to bed a two-day long semantic argument with a wholesaler (which I think I won) then a surprise drop-in from a dear friend from London.  Much time was spent on the front porch, catching up, drinking beer & taking photographs of peonies inspired by these lovely works by Kari Herer:

Hers – courtesy of her etsy store which you should check out and buy some stuff from.

My not-nearly-as-moody-or-arty peonies.

The daughter gave me shit for snipping a couple (only 2!) on the basis that they ‘better left in nature.’  Screw that; they’re my peonies and it’s my prerogative.

And an obligatory (still in nature) ant pic because ants love peonies and I love all things buggy.

The surrealities came when we were visited by a door-to-door star salesman (which I could try to explain but it would get long and sordid and I’d rather just leave that up to your imaginations – we did buy stars, though, it has to be said) and Wayne Coyne’s doppleganger walked by.

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mindless busy work

Why wouldn’t a girl want to spend the entirety of a gorgeous, sunny Wednesday afternoon putting lightly gathered pin tucks into fiddly satin fabric while waiting anxiously for a prognostic phone call from a pediatric orthopaedic surgeon?  Nevermind that I could have been out helping to paint a mural with a mum-to-be for the room of her babe-to-be and interacting with actual adults.  Nevermind that I’ve only just learned that said pediatric orthopaedic surgeon is not in the office until Friday (yet lead me to believe there was a sense of urgency on this score and would be calling me today.)  Nevermind that I spent $30 to have copies of the xrays couriered to him after spending 3 and a half hours waiting at the hospital to get them done because the poor sprog requiring the surgeon was due to go on a camp trip with her class and Columbian pen pal and that was sort of, kind of hinging on the current state of the bolt in her hip.  Nevermind all of that, I have pin tucks.  Pretty sure they’re the only thing keeping me from going bat-shit crazy right now.

p.s. I sent the sprog to camp anyway…with her stepmum to keep her in line.

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a lowly lemon + a zipper foot + bloody brilliance

I’ve made a couple of fun discoveries over the last couple of days. One I’m completely sold on and the other…well…possibly not so much.

The first is this baby:

It’s a rolling invisible zipper foot by H.A. Kidd (or Unique depending on which area you’re in) and it’s my new BFF. Anyone who knows anything about my sewing habits knows that I abhore installing zippers and absolutely despise replacing zippers which is why, when asked, I give a quote of 123 bajillion dollars to do such a chore. Well this puppy changes everything (and reduces zipper replacement prices to 118 bajillion dollars) as it nicely makes those lovely invisible zipper folds and it will make an invisible out of a visible and has universal attachments for just about every type of presser foot shank for an entire $3.79 CDN. The only bother is that I actually have to unscrew the foot snap from the shank on my machine in order to use it, but that certainly beats ripping out seams any day. Thank you, thank you lovely fellow Fabricland customer for introducing this to me!

So the other thing is two-fold; firstly there is Victory Art Supplies – a new art supply store on Rubidge Street, downtown (yay!) A proper art supply store, you know the kind where you can smell the oil paints before you make it through the door? Yeah, that kind. My favourite. So I went in a picked up a set of watercolour paints and some paper. My first set of watercolours ever. They’re intimidating. I mucked about with them for a bit on the front porch saturday, just playing with mixing and colours and brushes. I managed to produce a lowly little lemon before I had to call it quits for fear of sunstroke and after lighting the newspaper which was on the ground beside me on fire (we won’t talk about that.)

It’s not finished yet, obviously (I fully intend to put it on a plate with a little lowly fish or something) but wanted to post as evidence, really, that I just don’t ‘get’ watercolours…yet…hopefully that qualifier applies. I’ve always stuck to the kinds of paints which have me making rough outlines and filling them in, see? It’s difficult to make the mental renegotiation of positive and negative space as one has to with watercolours (because using white paint is cheating.) So you can see here that I layer colour in like I would with acrylics or oils. Ugh. So frustrating but I will push on.

Beyond that I spent a good chunk of time frollicking in the fields of eye candy that is the Director’s Label series and being reminded that Jonathan Glazer‘s treatment of Rabbit in Your Headlights is likely my favourite music video ever.

You should go watch it.

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today I win at motherhood

So one of the wonderful things which happens when ones children near pubescence is that said children inevitably develop social lives independent from the play dates, sports & gatherings parents arrange for them and inevitably forget to include parents in the itinerary for such events and so get invited to birthday parties which they conveniently forget to tell parents about, make said parent broke after paying for all of the social expenses and lands the parent(s) mere hours away from committing the ultimate in social faux-pas; sending one’s child to a birthday party without a gift. Today was one such day, I was surprised to find out through a phone call from a panicky mum looking for RSVPs. Luckily I’m a crafty mum and was able to save the day, or at least my sanity, if you don’t mind my saying so. A trip to the local liquidators for a $10 yoga mat, a rifling through the fabric/trims stash and an hour of drafting/cutting/sewing time later; behold the magnificent yoga mat & carrier!

And the only reason I get to be all smug about it is because my daughter, upon seeing the gift I’d made for her friend exclaimed ‘Ugh! I was hoping it was for me!’ and hasn’t taken it off since.

Yay! I win!

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