Shop the neighbourhood

Saturday, November 30th is Shop The Neighbourhood - all across the country. Well really this can translate to any city in any country. But I don't know all the local shops in most other countries. So I'm going to list the ones I do know {and love}

If you're in and around Toronto here's some local shops for you to check out:
Artisans at Work - Danforth East
Arts Market - Leslieville & College/Ossington area
Beadle - Dundas West / Brockton Village
Freedom Clothing Collective
Labour of Love - Cabbagetown
Len - Danforth East

If you're in Hamilton, Ontario the Made by Hand show is holding it's Christmas Show featuring all sorts of fantastic vendors from all over Hamilton and the GTA.

Halifax, Nova Scotia
Dots & Loops
Halifax Crafters Society Winter Market

Dartmouth, Nova Scotia
Fiddleheads Kids Shop

Vancouver, British Columbia
Bird on a Wire Creations
Front & Co.
Oscar's Art Books {be forewarned you might get sucked into this store for hours ;}
Regional Assembly of Text

Feel free to share any of your favourite local shops in the comments!


Black Friday all weekend long!

As has become the trend the past few years, Black Friday sales are going online and have invaded the Canadian market. What was once a US based Holiday sale day, coming the day after US Thanksgiving, is now becoming a worldwide event.

Last year was my first year hosting a sale and it was well worth it. I wasn't sure if I'd do it this year, as I'll be at the show, with most of my stock. But last years sales during this weekend were too good to not do one again. Luckily for me I have a couple of great friends who are willing to help me out with posting the sales too!

Black Friday ONLY the entire etsy shop is 10% off BUT.... for the entire weekend (that's Friday all the way through to Monday night) I'm offering you FREE shipping*. And that's for EvErYoNe.... EvErYwHeRe in the world :)

So hit the Etsy shop tomorrow, stock up on all sorts of stationery goodies!

You can also get in on the sales this weekend in the thunderpeep Society 6 shop. Free Shipping all the way through Cyber Monday! That's all sorts of prints, phone cases, mugs, tees, totes and now.... onesies and kids tees.

Looking for more Black Friday deals from small creative businesses? Check out all the deals at the Poppytalk Marketplace!

*Unfortunately by Friday I cannot guarantee Christmas delivery to Etsy purchases outside of North America unless you purchase express shipping, which isn't part of the Free Shipping sale.


The weekend has been all wrapped up!

Wow, even I can't believe how quickly this month has gone by! This was the first weekend in the last year of my 30's (yes my birthday on Wednesday saw me turn 39 - holy crap) It's the last weekend before the One of a Kind show. Saturday was our first snowfall this season, it didn't last long but it's still awesomely frigid here! I finally have my living room back as the packing station was itself packed away, and all my stock is boxed are ready for move in on Wednesday. Lot's more happened in the past 24 days but honestly I don't even remember half of it, it's been such a whirlwind!

I started putting the final (and best) parts of the booth together. And man, is it looking sweet. I can't believe it looks pretty much the way it did in my head.

If you're in the Toronto area, come on down to the show to see the final booth, it's pretty fun! If not you'll get the whole post show wrap in a couple of weeks. I have some fun posts all ready to go during the show too.

I went searching and searching for a specific video for today's post. Unfortunately this one's an oldie (but goodie) so there's only audio. In honour of our first snowfall, this is one of my favourite Holiday songs. Because I love snow. And marshmallows. And sweethearts.


thunderpeep gift guide part 2

Thanks to the awesome peeps over at Society 6, I'm able to offer my designs on all sorts of fun surfaces!

All designs on Society 6 are available as prints, canvas prints, tote bags, tees, tanks, hoodies, pillows, iphone cases/skins, ipad/laptop skins, cards and MUGS! So much to choose from.

Snowflake pillow

Holly Goose tote bag

BergTroll iphone case

Polar Bear Canvas print

Midsummer Dreams framed prints

There are tons more designs to choose from, head on over to my Society 6 shop to browse.


thunderpeep gift guide part 1

need some help finding fun paper gifts for your friends and family....

1. All thunderpeep Holiday cards and gift tags can be found here

2. Get Shit Done and Honey Just Do it notepads

3. Holly Goose and Owlie letter writing sets

All these pieces are available now online and will be with me at the One of a Kind show (except for the tote bags) I'll also have a limited selection of the gift wraps that you may have seen over on the facebook page

You may have seen the sneak peek of the mugs on the facebook page, but come back on Thursday when I'll showcase some other exciting pieces that would make excellent gifts for your peeps


Weekend Rap

I had the opportunity to hang out and catch up with some of my crafty circle friends this Saturday and it was exactly the medicine I needed. I am truly blessed to know some extraordinary women who run creative businesses, all different mediums, at all different stages of their business. All inspiring and encouraging. I wasn't sure, when I first moved back to Toronto from Vancouver, if this was going to be the case.

I"m less than 2 weeks from a crucial time for my business and it's been a tough couple of weeks, for the business and on a personal level. But as I sit here typing on Sunday evening I feel like I could kick the crap out of anything the universe throws me.

But enough of the Dr. Phil moments. Friday I got to hang out with the Roses at Ikea. I love that place. I may have to cut out the Swedish dinners from now on (yeah, Ikea is most definitely NOT a gluten free friendly eatery!) But all my booth building necessities were acquire and some salty licorice seemed to have fallen into my cart as well (I can't leave Swedishland without some sort of treat ;) and the building of thunderpeep arcticland has started. Guys.... I am SO excited for you to see the finished product. Ao psyched about this display!

So, I'm on schedule. The product is all packed. I feel ready. I know I still have a ton to get done. But this is going to be the best Christmas season ever.

There's a couple of really fun posts coming up this week, to help kick off your Holiday shopping - that is if you haven't already started. Maybe some more extra ones as I'm feeling guilty about last weeks lack of posts.

Now... I've been saving this one for a few weeks, but now that the Christmas show season has started I figure it's safe. It's a bit more Solstice oriented and pretty funny.... enjoy!


Weekend Rap & Upcoming Fun

So, this happened on Friday. One of my Christmas cards popped up in the local Metro paper.  
That was pretty exciting. If you spot any OOAK ads with thunderpeep products feel free to send 
me a pic, it never really gets old!

My weekend wrap ups are getting boring. No seriously, even my Le Day Job coworkers don't bother asking what I'm doing over the weekend because they know the answer. Working (ie: packaging). Even when that awesome 80's cheese "working for the weekend" came on the radio, they accused me of requesting the song, because that was my weekend (all in good fun of coarse)

So, this post is going to be about some of the FUN things coming up in the next few weeks (and not all One of a Kind events!)

This week I'll be stocking up my stockists in Toronto with Christmas goodies, so if you're out shopping keep an eye out for them.

• November 16th is the Toronto East Rotary's Christmas Fair. I'm sad I couldn't participate this year but I'll definitely be there to shop. If you're in Toronto, check it out. One of my favourite shows of the year!

• November 23-24th is the Swedish Christmas Festival. Now, you know how much I love all things Scandinavian so I'm so PSYCHED to be able to attend this year. I always have a show the same weekend and miss out. I've definitely been missing all the scandinavian influences I had out West, this is going to be good for the thunderpeep soul. Plus they have a real St. Lucia parade. I'll have loads of pictures. Extra Plus it's my birthday weekend so extra celebrations.

• Oh yeah, it's my birthday on the 20th. Last birthday before the 4-0. Last year as a 30-something. Going to be a great one too (and of coarse looking forward to the massive 40th year trip - really must start the planning!)

• Of coarse I'll have all the thunderpeep goodness at the One of a Kind show (november 28 - december 8), but for all the non-Torontonians the Etsy shop will be open for business the entire time. Including during Black Friday / Cyber Monday. Sales all weekend long so be sure to save the date. During Black Friday everything in the shop is 20% off, and for the rest of the weekend it's 10% off - right un until midnight on Monday.

• Very important is the release of the 2nd Hobbit movie on December 13th. Can't wait for Bilbo and co. to continue on their epic journey.

New Years is fast approaching too. I never know what I'm doing until right before but if you're planning a party or dinner.... perhaps you need some swanky invitations. I have you covered. 8 pack sets are available in the shop, but if you need more/less that can be arranged as well!

Now I'm also prepping blog posts during the days of the show, so you'll still get thunderpeep reads. I have a few ideas, but if there is anything you would love to see me post about let me know. Ideas always welcome. Also there will be a ton of FUN updates on Instagram and Facebook so be sure to follow along there as well!

Now, it's time to break out in dance, because being an adult doesn't have to be such a bummer!
Happy Sunday peeps!


Reliving moments

Blogging has been a challenge lately. Not just to find time, but to find interesting topics!

This is leftover from the Blog Challenge I did in September.... Write about a moment you'd love to relive. I loved just thinking of what moment I would love to relive! What a great way to spend an hour. Plus today was one of those days.... if you haven't heard about Toronto's lovely Mayor, just google him. This is the "civilized" city I live in. It's definitely getting to be time for a move, so I was already thinking of all the lovely places I've travelled to and while there are a billion moments in those travels I could relive, my visit to Estonia is a perfect one for today.

In January of 2010 I took my dream trip. The one I'd been dreaming of and planning for years. I twas supposed to be a trip through Estonia / Finland / Sweden but thanks to a snow out at Heathrow I lost a few days and had to drop Sweden from the itinerary. So really it was a trip to Finland, with a day trip to Tallinn, the capital city of Estonia and oldest capital city in Northern Europe. Because I went in January when NO ONE travels anywhere near the colder climates, I was a lone traveler. Which I kind of like. It means I get the locals all to myself ;) Including my lovely tour guide, yes I had a private tour. You can't ask for a more perfect trip.

The reason that one day within my trip, was so memorable was hands down the people. Estonians are the warmest, most genuine people I've ever encountered. They truly have a zest for life. They've been to hell and back and embrace their freedoms like nothing I've ever seen. They know how quickly it can be taken away from you. Now growing up in Canada it's easy to take these things for granted, but that one day changed my life. I see the world in a very different light. Some days I forget that, but all I need is to look at the people around me to remember what it could be, and good even my shittiest of days would look to a whole other nation of people.

One day I hope to make it back to Estonia, and see more of the country. And eat their yummy food (I tried real homemade sauerkraut during that visit and it was delicious!!!) And get lost in the Estonian culture. It'll happen :)

I could write forever, but I thought I would share some images instead. My day there was pretty foggy and damp, but I got a handful of pics (just goes to show that the feeling you come home with is always better than the pictures you might take!) I'm sure at some point I'll write more about it, just not today....

One place I would just love to sit, and write or draw or just be is The Song Festival grounds. What a beautiful place and unbelievable part in the independence of the country. Read about the Singing Revolution in Estonia here

And what can I say about ALL THAT SNOW!!!!


Weekend Rap - not really

This weekend hasn't wrapped up yet. Even with that extra hour this morning, there is still an ever-growing to-do list, as I sit here and type. I was staring at it while trying to think about how I'd sum up my weekend for this post. You know, to make it more interesting than just saying "hey, I packaged a lot of shit this weekend". I did also do some crafting and burnt my finger with the glue gun. That was exciting, there is still glue stuck on my poor finger.....

But instead, I wanted to say something else.

I'm stressed. I'm not really sleeping. I work all the time. And yes, I'm happy. Maybe not in the exact moment I'm wondering if I'll have enough money in the bank to pay the bills or if I'll get my display perfectly built, or if I'll make all my money back at One of a Kind. But I love what I do and I'm doing it for myself. I'm not stressing myself out for someone else's gain (ie: someone else's business). I don't want to be one of those people who constantly complain about my job, but stay in it for YEARS without doing anything. Too often I hear them say - they're waiting for the right time, to get their portfolio ready, waiting for blah blah blah..... no excuses. There are too many excuses in the world and not enough doing. Been dealt a crappy blow, that sucks. I feel for you. We've all had rough times in our lives, some more so than others, but we've all had them. But it's how you react and respond to those bad times that makes you the person you are. I've always been a fighter. And I'm going to fight for my little business right now. I've made the conscious decision to take it to the next level and I knew there would be some tough times (and they are tougher than you ever think they are going to be) but it's not always going to be like this. The sleepless nights will turn into being able to set my own hours. The stress over finding money for all the things I need to get done, will turn into me being able to do all the creative things I want to do. And one day I won't have to work for someone else to pay my bills, I'll be able to do it all on my own, with my own little business (hopefully sooner rather than later) I'm always going to push for things to be better, so there are going to be good times and hard times. That's business and that's life. To all those people who keep asking me why I'm doing it all, is it really worth it, you are going to kill yourself (insert any stupid question you've ever heard) I feel sorry for them. Some people are happy to just go to work, come home, cook dinner etc. But most of those people I know aren't happy. At the end of my life, I'm going to know that I did something (I've done a lot of somethings already)

I guess this was a bit more of a rant than a rap. But you can blame my lack of sleep and social interaction on this one. Or you can just take it for what it is meant to be. Me just telling you that's it's ok to live your life the way you see fit, no matter what anyone else has to say on the subject. And if you don't understand someone elses dreams or goals, you don't need to. They're not yours.

I don't have a video to share, but I do have a song that has the same spirit as this post. The first time I heard it I was on a train trip and in one of those down moments where I started to doubt myself but I realized something. I've done a lot of things most people won't. I tried. Sometimes I failed, sometimes I succeeded, and everytime I had fun and wouldn't change any of them (except maybe moving back to Toronto - I really, really miss Vancouver) but when I die my life will be a pretty interesting tale - and it's not even half over yet ;) There is no video, so it's just a picture of pretty Ryan Tedder and the audio to the song "I Lived". You'll get it.


Meet the 2013 Polar Nights Collection

I'm super excited about this years Polar Nights Collection. I got so busy last year and didn't plan well ahead and well... you know the fallout. No Polar Nights at all :( I am such a bad winter lover.

So, this years collection had to be Extra Special. Super Awesome. SpEcTaCuLaR. And honestly I'm in love with this years collection, it's especially close to my heart (and not just because of that giant Troll ;)

The story started back in the summer when I decided I really wanted to expand upon my Troll characters, give them more of a story and maybe even a new Troll. And then I started watching Frozen Planet. Haven't seen it? You should. Since humans are doing such a great job at destroying the Arctic I figured a big intimidating Troll would be the best Defender of our frozen wonderlands. And he'd be the biggest and baddest of Trolls.... the GrandDaddy of Trolls. And he needed a catchy name (and leg warmers) As much as I'm inspired by so many Nordic and Scandinavian stories and design, I did want to try to do something a bit closer to home, and with a large part of Canada being in the High North this works perfect for an Arctic themed collection. So Arctic Troll's name is a Inuit and a bit Scandinavia. I found the word Siku, which in Inuit means "Ice" and this word is so close to a scandinavian name I love = Suki, so I figured it was the perfect name for this new Troll. His decoration is inspired by Norwegian sweaters and Inuit boots and his colourings are all shades of ancient glacial ice.

Here it is.... Starting with Suki - Defender of the Arctic, and his 4 Arcticland wildlife buddies. For the next 4 Fridays I'll be showcasing a different featured animal, to help you learn a little bit about all that is at risk right now, in our Arctic regions. If you are looking for more info, you can learn all sorts over at the WWF's website.

The Polar Nights will be available starting at the One of a Kind in Toronto (November 28th to December 8th) show with card sets and prints, and during the show $1 from each piece sold will be donated to the WWF and it's efforts to help protect the Arctic. As of Saturday, the Society 6 shop will have all the illustrations available as canvas prints, totes, iphone/ipad cases etc. The Arts Market will be stocking the card sets after OOAK as well as framed prints. Hopefully more venues will be stocking this goodness soon too!
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