Thursday, June 28, 2007

toting crow

drawn from a generic pic of a crow...

(everything looks so much better in fabric and thread!)

made fresh this morning.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

48 hours later...

well, i didn't go to bed last night until 3:30am...

but they're done!

sometimes i wonder if they're more work then they're worth... what with the batting, pockets, compartments, and handmade straps (and the fact that i am the most easily frustrated person alive!). but, like all projects, when everything's finished and i'm clipping threads and attaching tags... i'm beaming like an idiot.

i love them all. and am tempted, as always, to keep one for myself. but all four of these will be put in the shop (considering that i already have two!).

gotta say though, that the nautical star bag is especially awesome! i had fun making the star applique, complete with five black triangular shadows. (though it was a great test of my patience.) and am so happy i found a sweet place for the cute nautical print that i bought months ago.

now... back to the machine to make a custom bag for Mely.



Monday, June 25, 2007

favourite indeed

a pic of my workshop and a quick post before i'm chained to the machine for the next two days.

lately i had been focussing on making a few new styles of bags. people especially had been asking for smaller, "going-out" purses like clutches and wristlets. so i had fun with those for a while and made some cute new items for the shop.

like this most recent one... the Elementary Crush Clutch

but it seems the favourite bag is living up to its name and the shop is selling out.

so the stack of fabric i've set aside for new favourite bags has been staring me down...

i'll be behind the machine for the next days.

we're off to montreal for the weekend and i won't be in any mood for family or poker if i haven't gotten these guys done. and i've got to maintain my card shark rep. ha!


Sunday, June 24, 2007

sunday market bags hot off the machine

these guys are popular. which is awesome because i carry mine with me whenever i'm shopping, so i know they'll be loved even more as they're used.

now, no more machine for me. i'm off to meet vic downtown for pride. but when i'm back at my desk it's applique time - which is the best time of all! two of them will be onions (as per requests)... but what about the brown one?


Saturday, June 23, 2007

parkdale giardino

one day i swear, i will have a little backyard where i can pay homage to the italian family gardens of my childhood.

for now i make due with a back porch in parkdale.


Friday, June 22, 2007

nel giardino...

if you know me, then you already know that people like to tease me by calling me a nonna. (inglese : grandmother... in this case a little old italian one who makes everything from scratch, dotes on her family members, and smiles in her garden).

i fully embrace my nonna-ness.

i'm happiest when feeding my brothers homemade pizza in my little back porch giardino.

which brings me to the reason for this post... the pics from my garden that i just have to share. (yes i am smiling ridiculously) every morning while watering i have to stop myself from taking more pics.

i have limited myself to photos only when things have significantly grown.

i've decided to take a break from sewing market bags and post some of my favourite pictures.

though i can't stand lettuce, i planted a bunch anyway. you can't have a backyard italian garden without it. it's the one thing i remember most in my nonno's garden when i was a kid.

cipolla indeed! i'm growing four different types (if you count leeks).

clockwise starting with bottom left... leeks, spring onions, yellow onions, red onions.

and of course a few herbs.

basil, lemon thyme, and a tiny rosemary that's quite suicidal. damn i'm cursed when it comes to growing the stuff...

back to the machine for me.


nella cucina di nonna

they were tedious... but damn do they look cute!

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

does this mean im a blogger now? cipolla's first post.

ok. so today is the day. the first official post. that’s a lot of pressure.

however, with the day i had today, it had to be. to use it as a catalyst to push past the intimidating empty page display and that little line reading "0 posts". so... ahem... now the way is clear for future pages of posts...

tomorrow marks cipolla's etsy shop two-week anniversary

today i sold two more items in the shop. yay! they got in just in time to make the grand total of 7 items in the first two weeks. not bad for a start. according to other etsians in the forums, that is well above average for a new shop.

but perhaps even more newsworthy... i was on cbc radio.

for those of you who know me, you know that it is extremely out of character for me to do something so keener-esque as calling into an afternoon radio show. but it was fate! (well, if i believed in such a thing that's what i would exclaim now).

the host was speaking with a woman who had organized some sort of museum exhibit of purses, and invited callers - as the cbc seems to always do - to share their "purse stories".

at that very moment, i was standing in front of my ironing board sketching an outline for the black ribbon spider legs i was about to appliqué onto a grey suede messenger bag.

i thought to myself (probablly even said it aloud)... this is one of those movie-like moments where i should feel like the radio is speaking TO ME directly... like this was a defining moment in my life.

no, i didn't feel all of that, just thought it. (i know you know what i mean). but then i also thought - if i don't call in i may think back to this "moment" in the months to come and wonder... why had i not taken the opportunity to plug the shop. sheesh, what if i could give out the site address and reach people that would never have otherwise known about my lovely spider bag, or etsy, or handmade lovelies at all?! so i did it.

the next time she read out the number asking people to call, i did. the person who screens the calls asked why i was calling, and when i said that i was just in the middle of making a bag, she put me through right away.

yes, right away! unfortunately, i had counted on waiting on hold for many minutes where i could decide on something fresh to say. so i will spare the gory details about how my voice was embarrassingly shaky, and how i stumbled when asked to describe what a "messenger" bag is. oh... and how she got my name wrong (surprise surprise) and called me monica.

but after all this i got to give out my shop address.

(plus a little plug to etsy and all of us who make handmade goodies. )

after calling vic, my mom, and then posting about it in the etsy forum (holy balls i am such a geek now) i checked up on my shop and hooray! i sold two more items... the cipolla sunday market bag and the "chill" version of the favourite bag.

i sold the sunday market bag to an awesome sounding woman in san francisco who was looking for a cool alternative to the boring canvas bags we always use for eco-friendly grocery shopping. (you know the ones i mean... usually free at some fair or conference, covered in logos). yay! i love this bag design. now to make more of them.

i sold the chill bag to a repeat customer. yes, that's right, i said repeat. already! i've got the warm and fuzzies just thinking about it!

amazing really... i've been getting rave reviews from customers who have received their items. and it's not just a simple rating and thank-you, but some of them have taken the time to send me an email. (not to mention come back and buy more!)

wow. i don't know what to say except that i have been in the clouds all afternoon. i can't stop smiling. this is really the best part! hearing back from people who really appreciate the time and detail that went into the item, and really love it once it is in their hands.

and it couldn't have come at a better time. my desk was not a happy place this morning...

many needles broken

pins spilt on the floor twice

stitch ripper used to take apart one whole side of the spider bag

photoshop slow as hell

nx (sewing machine nik) spit thread up in disturbing bubbles while i quilted potholders that took so long to finish that im making sweatshop wages

veggie burgers burnt.

but i can't stop smiling now.

and the spider looks fucking awesome!

hope your day is just as rockin'.