Sunday, September 30, 2007

it has arrived...

sure it looks awesome, but is it?

ok, so the crop-a-dile arrived last week and i said in an earlier post that i'd let you know how it performs. so i will.

after all the hype i'd heard about it, including a plug in the latest issue of craft, it was disappointing overall. it definitely does small grommets/eyelets well (emphasis on small), and punches through surprisingly thick stuff. but if you're looking to use it for snaps don't bother. and i know that i have very small hands, but the handles are seriously huge and wide - it was a struggle to try and hold them in one hand and even harder to apply a good amount of pressure, definitely not comfy. although i can imagine that they could be comfortable in a larger pair of hands, since they have nice cushy handles.

of course, whether it's worth your money depends on whether or not you have a lot of projects requiring little eyelets and novelty snaps (and perhaps whether or not you're a shorty like me with elf hands). all in all, definitely not for cipolla.

there's my two cents worth :)

♥ m.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

bottoms up!

a load of lovely grape tomatoes that i picked while watering the garden this morning. i had begun to get a bit sad at the prospect of winter and the subsequent goodbye i'd soon be saying to the garden. but today's hot sun made it almost unbearable to stand out there long enough to take pics of my new totes... so it seems i'll be harvesting new goodies for a while longer still.

♥ m.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

knitting novelties...

these awesome little glass stitch markers arrived in the mail yesterday and i'm in love! could they be any cuter?
seriously, there's even a tiny little detailed head of garlic. ahhh...

i bought these guys from fellow etsy seller DragonLadyDesigns. if you like to knit, check her out - she has tons of different glass lampwork bead stitch markers to choose from. beware though, you'll definitely fall in love with something!

♥ m.

Monday, September 17, 2007

daily swank!

just stopping in again today to share a little newsbit... one of cipolla's tony booklets was chosen as today's "daily swank" by the lovely folks at vintage indie.

check it out here :)

♥ m.

cotton lovelies for your nose

just in time for my own cold, cipolla hankies are in the shop.

after finishing up a stack of hankies this weekend i noticed i seem to have my own case of the sniffles... a perfect excuse to make one of them mine! - my last one has been lost since the move from montreal.

these hankies were inspired by the ones i often made for myself and vic years ago... the first one i ever remember making was a red flannel one with a print of hammers and wrenches on one side. i loved that ratty thing for years and years. i think i creeped out a couple people with it... and then juice chewed it to bits. (i actually still have it as a sort of memory keepsake of juice actually). anyway, later, when i met vic, one of the first of many handmade gifts was a hanky made with a dorky cotton print of little white ducks on blue. awww... how cute was i!?

this time i've made them strictly out of new cotton. more durable than flannel, and light and natural feeling on your nose. many of them were made from reproduction print fat-quarters that i bought this past year at craft fairs and little quilting shops. i think these vintage-inspired prints go especially well with the old school feel of a hanky to begin with. then add a cute applique and it's almost irresistible...

fun and functional... my favourite!

back to the machine.
♥ m.

Friday, September 14, 2007

I can almost smell autumn...

this is one of two scarves called morning ashes, to be listed in the shop soon :)

it's been a bit cooler, and quite windy here lately - invoking thoughts of autumn. and although I dread the subsequent thoughts of winter, i really am looking forward to the cold crisp feel (and smell) of fall.

fittingly, i have become addicted to etsy's hand spun yarn artisans. i can't get enough! i've ordered over 20 different skeins so far from at least five different shops... in all kinds of great colours and shapes and materials. seriously, you haven't lived until you've seen and felt some of these amazing yarns.

this one i'm calling dear violet,
it was knit from snowberrylime's yummy provence yarn.

knitting has been a great way of pulling me away from the machines. and for more then just a few hours sleep, or a quick meal. in fact, lately i've spent entire evenings away from the workshop. vic is in shock that she's had me on the couch beside her for a few nights.

i think it grants me back a little bit of my sanity. and it couldn't have been at a better time. lately i've come dangerously close to smashing the computer, i've exhausted my will to curse and swear at the sewing machine (which is quite significant for me) and even contemplated giving up on a few custom orders...
but it all had come through, and now that i've finished just about all the custom orders, i have a free weekend to play around at the work table with some new ideas. (and then relax a little with the new yarns that just arrived!)

these two skeins arrived from twirlgirlfibers this morning.

most of these knits will soon be listed in the shop, since vic and i only need so many scarves... and i'm excited about supporting fellow etsians by creating items with their amazing spinnings. it can seem a bit pricey for a skein that will make just one scarf, but it's definitely worth it. i used to hate yarn because i always found it to be scratchy, but these yarns are soft and fluffy and... okay enough gushing.

here's one that i don't think i can part with, knit from insubordiknit's awesome art yarn vitreous humor.

pics can't do that one justice. it's simply awesome.
a bit pricey at $46 for a skein (makes one medium-sized scarf), but definitely something you won't see anywhere else!

if you knit yourself, go check some of these (and many more) spinners out on etsy.

if you don't knit - well keep an eye on the shop ;)

♥ m.

Friday, September 7, 2007

spaces for spectacles...

a batch of eyeglass cases will soon make their way into the etsy shop. of course, i made a few cases from two of my favourite japanese fabrics... the spider web cotton and the "cat-thedral" dobby cloth. mmm.

it was fun to play around with them, making something so simple for once -- no fussing with pockets or zippers or appliques. though i did fuss around a bit with the closures, making some with velcro tabs, some with snaps...

and then my snap/grommet pliers bit the dust!

the stupid things bent -- i couldn't believe it!

but then i smiled, cause they had always been crappy and left my hand in pain after a batch of snaps. and this meant that i could go get a pair of the ones i had just read about in craft magazine.

so at about 2am i found them online and now i sit patiently while they ship out to me. seriously, i can't wait... grommets and snaps without a swollen palm afterword... lovely!

i'll let you know when they arrive
and how they live up to their promises.

now stop distracting me!
i have to get a load of custom orders done. sheesh.


Wednesday, September 5, 2007

school treats

check out my fishy clutch in zestyb's back to school treasury.

♥ m.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

it doesn't get any better than this...

drinking coffee made in our camping percolator
on our ranger cabin's little propane stove
hundreds of kilometres north of toronto.

it really doesn't.

a pic from our little slice of algonquin last week. i must have taken a hundred photos of our little "dock" and view of the lake.

so much to say, and nothing seems to describe it well enough!

suffice to say that i now understand why you can barely get a cabin, even when calling five months in advance. but if you ever have the chance, jump on it. they are surprisingly affordable - our cabin was $80 a night and could have easily been shared by four people (4 single bunks in two "bedrooms") - perhaps more if you wanted to camp out in the main room.

though the campsites are also beautiful... everything is so well spaced out. we didn't see another human (except while canoeing) the entire time we were there. awesome!

though we did see a lot of chipmunks, mice, rabbits, blue jays, hummingbirds, magpies, ravens, and one very vocal squirrel who wasn't happy about us encroaching on their space.

we rented a canoe - you can't stay at algonquin without one - and took a trip around rain lake (vic's first time in a canoe!). we stopped to take pics of some very cool trees and go for a swim. the water was gorgeous... crystal clear and warm and amazing. again, you really have to go!

predictably, i was almost in tears when it came time to leave - vic had to drag me into the car. thankfully i was already in sewing machine withdrawal, so the drive home - though full of promises that we'd be back soon - was happy and hopeful... i really was anxious to get back to cipolla.

speaking of which... time to get to bed.
orders await me in the morning.

♥ m.