Friday, February 18, 2011

Mt. Pleasant Temporium Opens Today!

The Mt. Pleasant Temporium Grand Opening is tonight at 7pm! There are over 30 artists displaying work, and there will be a DJ and lots of great people there. If you're in the area, head over and check it out at 3068 Mt. Pleasant Street NW, right next to Ercilia's.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Homeward Bound

Joe and I are leaving for Hong Kong tomorrow! This trip has seemed really far away for so long, and all of a sudden it's time to pack. I haven't been back in more than two years, so I can't wait to get there and see everyone and walk around the city. Since my parents no longer live in our house we'll be staying in a hotel, but we'll be right downtown and in walking distance to everything. Especially my doctor and dentist appointments which I have waited two years for (oops).

The plan is to eat a lot. All day. And then we are heading to Thailand for a week of more eating. I will attempt to post pictures while I'm there, if I can get out of my food coma.

All photos via my dear brother Charles' flickr. Thanks Charles!

See you from Asia!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Around the Studio

I've been busy stocking up while it's cold outside and things are slower, but it's definitely warming up and that means show season is right around the corner! Also, thanks to my handy new drying rack, we are no longer tripping over cards every time we take a step. It's amazing.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Temporium Dates Are Up!

The Mt. Pleasant Temporium dates have finally been announced! I'm heading over there now to set up my goods, but take a look at the schedule for the coming month to see all the great events they have planned. Unfortunately I will be out of town for the grand opening, but I'll be back to attend the later events. It should be great!

Friday, February 11, 2011

New Print!

I may not have been posting them regularly, but so far I've been keeping up with my resolution of making one new print per week. Here's one that will be making it's debut at Eastern Market this weekend:

They'll be available in the shop soon!

Eastern Market this Sunday!

I'll be at Eastern Market this Sunday, and the weather is supposed to be beautiful, so come stop by!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Coming Soon (I Hope)

A few months ago, I sewed together some strips of fabric I had collected (the patterned pieces were bought in Senegal, the blues are leftover from an exhibit at The Textile Museum that I took home when I interned there, and the red was a Christmas present from my brother last year, purchased in Nepal) into a modified log-cabin pattern quilt. Since the pattern was so simple, the top of the quilt was finished in a few hours, and left without a backing on our couch until now, when I felt inspired to do something about it.

Rather than buy quilt batting for the inside, I decided to use the big scraps and leftover pieces of fabric I had lying around as the filler. Last year, Joe and I went to Philadelphia to see the kantha exhibit at the Philadelphia Art Museum, and I have been thinking about trying something like it (although 1000 times simpler) since. A kantha is a traditional quilt from West Bengal, India, where scraps of old clothes and fabric are sewn together and embroidered to turn them into a thick quilt. By using thousands of stitches, all the layers of fabric are secured together to single piece of fabric.

The tiny stitches are decorative but also functional (excuse the blurry exhibit picture). I won't be attempting anything on this scale, but I want to cover the top of the quilt in stitches to bind all the layers together.

The first step was to cut and sew all the inner layers together (since the top was already finished). I just laid the quilt on the floor, and then laid the inner pieces on top to fit them together.

Once all the pieces were laid out, I pinned them together and sewed a border and some criss-crossing lines to hold them all in place.

I had originally thought I could cut down the total time of this project by doing all the embroidery on the sewing machine, but it only took a few stitches to figure out that that was not going to work. The quilt is way too thick, with all ten layers of fabric inside, to fit into my standard sewing machine. So rather than being a quick one-day project, this is now going to take months. But that's ok! Now I have something to do while watching Law and Order: SVU. So I will (hopefully) have more pictures of this project to post soon.

It's almost Valentine's Day!

Valentine's Day is just around the corner, and I have been printing furiously for the last few days.

You can still order them right here!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Hindi Lessons

Rachel and I have been doing Hindi lessons on Rosetta Stone twice a week for the last few weeks, and that combined with an episode of Anthony Bourdain in South India really have me itching to travel again. Last night, our Hindi lesson ended in us looking at pictures from India and dreaming about selling all our belongings and buying a plane ticket. While that might not be happening in the immediate future, a girl can dream, right?

So I thought I would share a few pictures I took in Amritsar and Pushkar, just to get you in the traveling mood.

Shall we book our plane tickets?

Monday, February 7, 2011

Homegrown Mushrooms

Since our apartment is too dark to grow leafy plants, and many rounds of cilantro and basil have withered and died, we are growing something a little more dark-friendly this time around: fungi.

All they need is a daily watering, and you will have enough mushrooms to use in every meal for weeks.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Travel in Stitches

For Christmas this year, I decided to make Joe a map of places we have been together. I bought some map fabric from Etsy, collected a pile of embroidery thread, and started.

I didn't really have a plan when I started embroidering, just a needle, thread, and a general idea. I started by outlining the continents, and then added things from there. I wanted it to be something I could add to as we visit more places, so turning it into a quilt was out. Originally I wanted to make it into a pillow with a removable cover so that I could slip it off and add more embroidery, but after sewing the pillow together, I decided it looked better just to leave it flat.

It ended up taking weeks to finish, but the hardest part was working on it while Joe wasn't home. I couldn't just pull it out while we watched a movie, so I had to be very sneaky. Luckily (for this project only) I got sick a few weeks before Christmas and that gave me the perfect two-day stretch to work on it.

So now it's hanging on the wall as is. I could frame it, finish the edges, or add it to a larger quilt, but I like it the way it is. And hopefully there will be a lot more to add to it in the next year!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Home from the NYIGF

This week I took the bus up to New York to see the New York International Gift Fair. It was my first time at a trade show, and I loved it. One good thing is that you can't actually buy anything at the show, so it was like shopping without the pressure of buying. I met so many people I knew from reading blogs or seeing their work, and it was great to see the people behind the products.

The purpose of my trip was to get ready for the National Stationery Show in May. I wanted to see what sort of booth displays and setups people had so I can start working on my own. The range of displays was huge, from booths that looked similar to what you would see at a craft fair, with tables and curtains, to fully recreated houses you could go into.  I don't exactly have the budget to something for that scale, but it gave me a good idea of what works and what doesn't.

The things that stood out while I walked around were scarves from Patch NYC, picture frames from Shiraleah, cards by Sanna Annukka from Vigo, and necklaces from Jane Hollinger Jewelery.

I'm sure I missed a lot of great stuff since there was a seemingly endless number of vendors at the show, and if I were a buyer I probably would have gone for the full five days rather than just one.

Now I know how much work I have to do before May: there are postcards to order, price lists and order forms to assemble, shelves to build and products to finish. But if the Stationery Show is as exciting as the NYIGF, then I can't wait.
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