A Very Monkey Christmas

A couple of weeks ago, I took a sock monkey making class at Love, Me that was taught by the lovely Lesley of Hello Pineapples. It was a great morning, filled with sewing, tea and cookies, and I think that I have myself an addictive new hobby! I love the fact that the monkeys are really quick to make and are so cute - even with my (very) limited sewing skills. I am spending Christmas at my grandmothers with lots of family, and we all exchange small gifts - so I thought that sock monkeys would be perfect. So, without further adieu, I introduce:
Delores Jr. - this is the first one I made, and I'm giving it to my mom, whose name is Delores.
Cappuchino - for my cousin, who runs a coffee shop where they roast their own beans - yum!
Harley - for my mom's friend who is spending Christmas with us. She rides a motorcycle, and Harley is one tough biker dude. Hee, hee. His "muscle shirt" is also made out of a sock.

Whether or not your Christmas involves monkeys, I hope it is a very happy one! Now, I'm off with a million things to do before noon time - like wrap up all these monkeys - but I'll leave you with one more monkey related Christmas tidbit - enjoy!


New Things in Shop!

I've finally finished a little shop update. I've got some of my organizers in there - I know it's a bit late for Christmas, but this is the kind of thing that you can use to keep up with your resolutions in the New Year.

I've also got a print of the teacup papercut I completed a few months back. I'm really pleased with how this print turned out - the colours are really vibrant.

I will probably be taking a short break from making things from now, to the New Year. I've got to finish preparing for Christmas, and we've got a few things to work on around the house (more on that later). I've also got a mountain of receipts to enter into my accounting program for tax time. But - the shop will remain open with the items that I currently have for sale. Right now, I'm looking forward to the New Year, and developing more new products to sell in the shop!

Popped up on the Grid

My husband Martin (aka Mr. Trudi) has started his very own blog! It's called popped up on the grid in reference to his favorite spy movies and novels - eg - "Jason Bourne has popped up on the grid in Tokyo." I think it's a fitting name, because he's posting about things that have popped up on the radar whilst doing research for his job as account planner for an advertising agency. He's got some interesting things on there - I really like his recent post about the horses of Sable Island. Above is a photo of Martin popping up on the grid in his hometown of Sydney.


Christmas Canvas

My shop update is taking a bit longer than anticipated, so I thought I'd share this cool idea with you in the meantime - a glittering Christmas canvas that appeared in Blueprint (RIP) a while back. You basically just take a stretched canvas, paint it, punch holes and insert fairy lights. I think it's really sweet, not just for Christmas, but all year round.

And, speaking of great magazines that have gone by the wayside, Wish has just published it's last issue. I really liked that magazine - it had a great combination of shopping, food, fashion and decor - I guess it was a bit like the Canadian Blueprint. Apparently, they will be keeping up the website and continuing on with popular feature the 20 minute supper club. Sigh - the only upside is that I will not spend quite as much on magazines each month.


Me, on sfgirlbybay!

I was just scrolling through my bloglines and got the nicest surprise - Victoria from sfgirlbybay featured my cherry blossom album in a round-up of this month's Poppytalk Handmade! It was really lovely to see my work on one of my favorite blogs - thanks Victoria!

I've been working away like a busy little bee on getting some more items ready for the market today - I'm hoping to do an update either this evening, or tomorrow morning. So, back to it!


Visit me at Poppytalk Handmade

I've got a table this month at the Poppytalk Handmade Holiday Madness and Boxing Day market - hope that you can drop by soon! I've got lots of albums at my virtual table, and hope to have a few more surprises as the month goes on...


Getting Dressed

Dog Walking Day by doublehappiness

Before I started working from home, I used to fantasize about working in my PJs all day and not getting dressed. Now that I have been working at home I few days a week, I realize that getting dressed is really important. If I wear my PJs, I tend to have a lazy attitude - things get done a lot slower - but, I find that if I get dressed, I can get down to business faster. I also feel better about myself when I've put a bit of effort into my appearance - I'm not talking about getting dressed to the nines - but just fixing my hair and putting on something that I would not be embarassed to go to the grocery store in. The outfit I created on Polyvore (above) would be a perfect day at home outfit for me - working in my studio, with trips to the post office and walking the dog thrown in. The rubber boots are necessary in our Nova Scotia weather - but they are Kate Spade rubber boots - not too shabby. For details on all the other bits, follow the link.

What do you think - is getting dressed important when working from home?


Decorating Fever

I've got a case of decorating fever right now. We bought our house about 5 years ago, had a flurry of decorating when we first moved in, and then things have been pretty much static since. We got a quote on remodeling our (horrible) bathroom over the weekend and are moving forward with that - but that won't be until the spring. Right now, I'm focusing on smaller changes like fabric, artwork and wallpaper to try and make our main living space look better.

This brings me to wallpaper - I've decided to do a wallpaper feature wall around our non-working fireplace. I didn't realize how many amazing wallpapers are out there - I'm trying to choose from about a zillion. Right now, I'm loving the Daydream Wallpaper by Julia Rothman. It costs a bit more than I was planning to pay, but I'd just need one roll, and it's really like a work of art I'll look at every day - right? Sigh - still can't decide...talk to me tomorrow, and I will have changed my mind again!


Cute Acorn Lamp

One of the advantages (?) of working from home is being able to watch daytime tv. As I sat in front of my laptop loading up photo albums to etsy, I managed to catch Martha, and she and one of the crafters on her staff made these cute acorn lamps. They are a balloon, covered with paper maiche and then topped with a utility lampshade that's been covered in felt. This photo doesn't do them justice - they just look so sweet lit up. The level of detail was great too - the cords are covered in felt and have little oak leaves hanging off. You could also do all kinds of designs, not just acorns - maybe beehives, flowers...on the show they suggested clowns, but I think that's just downright creepy.

Albums in the Shop!

I've spent all morning tweaking photos and uploading items in my etsy shop, but it's finally done! The shop is chock full of photo albums - just in time for Christmas. And, it's literally just in time, because the Canada Post deadline for International shipping is today, and for Canadian shipping is December the 12th. So, get them before it's too late!


The (Craft) Show Must Go On!

Sorry for my absence over the last little bit - just recovering from the craft show! I had a really good show this year - lots of great customers and fellow vendors. Unfortunately, I didn't get much of a chance to visit and shop. I was on my own most of the time, and when Martin did pop by to give me a break, it seemed to get busy. If I did get time to shop, I would have loved to buy a painting from Lynn Rotin (especially the "Broken English series) or anything from the brilliant Sleeping Forest Studios.

Unfortunately, my photos all turned out crap, but the booth was pretty much the same as last year, with the addition of "the Lady" - above. I made some paper and resin necklaces and displayed them by hanging off her skirt. They were really popular, as were my pocket organizers - I have none left!

Perhaps the most interesting thing that happened was we had a major snowstorm hit us Friday night, leaving over 30 cm of snow on Saturday morning. The drifts were well past my knees in places! The road was completely impassible - especially since we don't have snow tires on our car. This photo was taken after some of the snow was cleared away - it was actually worse than that. The craft show wasn't closing down though, so I broke out my parka, long johns and boots, and hiked down to the ferry. On a nice day, this walk would take about 15 minutes, but on this particular day, it was a harrowing walk down an icy road which took at least half an hour. It was a beautiful sunny morning though, and I made it to the craft fair in time - after another half hour walk once I reached the other side of the harbour. It was a quiet day at the show, but Friday and Sunday were so busy that things turned out just fine.

Now - back to normal life - as normal as it gets anyhow. I'm taking lots of photos of my work to do a big etsy shop update over the next couple of days. I just want to finish off by saying thanks to everyone who stopped by the booth and offered their support!