Etsy. Bringing old Friends together again!

If you follow my facebook page (and if you don't you should) I had a really random post about the power of etsy bringing people together. Then I never followed up. Not because i forgot (which yes, does happen quite often) but because I didn't have the follow up story yet. Now I do...

Growing up I had quite a few penpals (shocking I know) but one of them in particular turned into one of my favourite friends. I met her in the summer between grades 6 and 7, at a hotel in downtown Toronto while my mom and I were moving from one house to another. It was a fun week of big city adventures, made all the more awesome by meeting my new friend, who was in town from Windsor, doing family things. We hit it off right away and had some great adventures and when the week was up we swapped addresses, as kids did in those days. It was the start of a friendship that would span the rest of our elementary school and most of our high school days. We wrote religiously, visited each other at least twice a year but eventually, as a lot of long distance relationships do, the letters started to be fewer and fewer. By the time we hit college/university we weren't writing. She did ring me up once in my last year of  college, and we had a great chat. But that was it. I used to think of her every now and then, and when the whole facebook/internet phenomenon took off I would search for her every now and then, but never found her. I was a bit sad, I wished we had never grown apart.

Then there came etsy. Now, if you google my name most of the hits are either from when I used to play hockey, or my etsy shop. And that's exactly what happened. One morning I woke up to an etsy convo message from her. She had found me!!! I was so excited I literally jumped up and down. Now, it seems she sent that message right before leaving on a big European trip so she didn't respond to me message until months later (which is right now). It was painful waiting for it. Literally everyday I was checking to see if she'd responded yet. But finally she did and we are planning to finally meet-up and do some serious catching up. Serious. Catching. Up. I'll be sure to share it all with you, of coarse.

The power of the written word. Through all those years, and all those letters we were such good friends. not to knock the power of the internet, you just don't make the same bonds with 140 characters.

It isn't a Monday, but I'm going to leave you with another awesome 80's ending... because this was the big hit the summer we met, and it's been our song ever since (apparently her husband even bought her the record, as she's always referred to it as the Michelle song)


speaking from the gut

The world of blogging is still fairly new to me. It's not a very natural thing for me to just openly chat with people I can't see.

That being said, I'm hoping that I can make my blogging space a somewhat personal space, you know the art, now you can know a bit of the person behind it. At least I'm going to try.

So here's a bit of a personal confession. I'm not a fan of food blogs or all the food "porn" pics that inundate my facebook/instagram. That being said, after 6 years of Dr's and tummy troubles, I have recently been diagnosed Celiac. Yep, I'm allergic to Gluten. And I LOVE sandwiches. So sad. It's been almost a month and it's been a struggle the whole way. I don't really like to cook all that much. I'm pretty basic. I do LOVE to bake though. So I thought something personal I could share would be my journey. Well, at least a little bit, you don't need to know the dirty details ;)

I'll be experimenting with recipes, as a very novice cook, so there could be some seriously funny stories. And you know, after having just admitted I don't like food blogs, that you won't be bombarded with food stories. Maybe every other week. There are so many other awesome things for us to chat about! Like kitty cats (my landlord upstairs just inherited 2, that I can play with and babysit, without the responsibility! I'm such a great adult eh?!)

How does that sound?

And if you're a gluten-free'er feel free to share your stories, suggestions and recipes. I need all the help I can get :)


Weekend Rap

This past weekend was the first of 2 Long Weekends for me. yay!

Last Friday I took off from Le Day Job to finish installing my new setup down at The Arts Market. Thursday night I worked (and sweated in the uncomfortable heat) away at painting and hanging the new shelving... all in preparation for the new collection. I'm so excited to just finally put it out there for all the peeps to have fun with. Lot's of new Birthday cards, Fun cards, Baby & Lovey cards as well as the introduction of Gift Tags and... Wrapping Paper. I'm so excited about the wrap. I've been trying to figure out a local and cost effective print run and finally have the first design ready. It's a Birthday wrap based on the Manon retro pattern. There will be more coming for the Holidays too! Here's a bit of a sneak peak for you.

I also got the chance to meet up for a coffee date, with a friend I haven't seen in a very long while. She's going to be in the One of a Kind show as well this Christmas, and one of the reasons I love coffee dates with this friend, is she's a great person to discuss all things crafty business with, and she's pretty fun too!

There was lot's of packing and detailing and finalizing and planning... whew I'm exhausted just writing that all out. So much to get done between now and the launch and next show (FYI that's the Danforth East Arts Fair if you're in the Toronto area). As well as getting addicted to the BBC show Broadchurch!

And since this is Monday... you know you're getting some super fun musical ending. There was lot's of singing and dancing while I worked this weekend - but I figured I'd share a bit of something from my evening down at the Arts Market during the stall update, with the blaring 80's mix.

Happy Monday Peeps :)


who you gonna call?

I have never been a chatty Kathy (hence the love of written communication). I didn't chat with my girlfriends for hours on end when I was a teenager. Well not unless there was a breakup involved! But I there is something I can't resist about these old rotary dial phones. I want them all over my house, and I want them to be able to dial far off lands. Here are some pretty ones that I love on Etsy... any of them your old phone?

vintage of all vintage phones! (you can buy it here from Cute Vintage Finds)

this is the phone I had as a teen. it would light up when it rang. totally rad! (you can buy it here from EMW vintage)

who else loved the movie Pretty in Pink? ( you can buy this phone here from Pretty Petal Studio)

perhaps you'd be a fan of the more office friendly rotary phone! (you can buy it here from Tomo Vintage)


Musical Monday + eats in the hood

it really wasn't until some friends came down to my end of town for dinner at a new pub, that I realized how much of a foodie neighbourhood I lived in (That new pub was The Wren - if you aren't vegetarian and you live anywhere near Toronto you HAVE to check this place out just east of Greenwood station)

A beautiful evening to have hundreds of people invade your neighbourhood!

The next visit my friends made to my end of town was for The Taste of Danforth. A yearly festival of all things Greek and all things yummy, that shuts down Danforth for about 10 blocks. I live just at the end of the festival and it's my favourite weekend, I don't have to cook once. I just walk up 2 blocks when I get hungry. Man, that makes me sound so lazy, but whatever, it's the only time of year I eat so much corn on the cob (unless I get invited over for BBQ's ;)

it's almost inevitable that all Festivals start to get commercialized,
but at least these 2 were fun ones (although it would be even better if it had been a Flames dressing room ;)

This year was the 20th anniversary and it was a year of world record attempts, sunny skies and all the meat on a stick you can handle. My friends (let's call them Steph and Derek) are somewhat new to Toronto (well about 8 months new) so it was their first time taking it all in. I'm pretty sure they had a blast - if not for the food, at least for the company. They'll be heading back to my hood for the best pizza and card packing (it's so great to have friends who are so keen to help you with mundane chores)

even with my fear of outhouses I still had to take a pic. all you Doctor Who fans will get it ;)

Sorry that there are no food pics... I'm not coordinated enough to eat and take pics! And as this post is going up on a Monday, which is usually musical mondays, I thought I'd give you something a bit Greek. But I don't know any greek music, so..... I though it would be fun to give you a bit of Momma Mia, since it was technically set in the Greek Islands (and honestly who can resist Colin Firth singing with a guitar  ;)

Happy Monday lil' peeps


weekend wrap

To be honest, this weekend wasn't as productive as it should have been. There was a Hell on Wheels marathon on TV. I got sucked in. I got some work done between lounging on the sofa. The September launch of a whole new line of product is coming together as well as some of the Holiday pieces. Oh yeah and there was a huge Food Festival going on in my neighbourhood, so i spent some time with good friends wandering and munching on awesome Greek Foods! I'll have to write up a bit more for you guys on that later this week.

The one project i was able to cross of this weekends list was a photoshoot of the new products, including my very first gift wrap (which I'm super excited about - but it was a challenge to shoot I do have to admit) You should be seeing sneak peeks of them in the next couple of weeks. The new line will for sure be up in the swanky new stall I am working of for the Labour Day weekend (that's the weekend of September 1st for everyone outside of Canada & the US) Hopefully up in the Etsy shop as well that weekend.

But I feel really bad not giving you some sort of musical treat so here's one of my favourite fun songs...

Hope you're having a Happy Monday Lil' Peeps :)


updating a classic

I wasn't the best student in school. I liked Art, English and Gym class... and sometimes Geography and History, depending on the topic. But one class I had tons of fun in was Typing class. Yes, I am aging myself slightly here. I took typing in grade 9 and by the time I hit grade 12 it no longer existed (was replaced with typing on a computer, which I believe was just called computer class!)

The class was a no-brainer, I'd been on the typewriter since I was a kid. I loved the clickety clack of typing letters to my penpals. All those stories just seemed way cooler being typed as opposed to hand written (um, did I really just say that?)

Typing on a computer keyboard has just never been the same.... so when I saw the USB Typewriter feature on etsy I was SO freaking excited. I could have the best of both worlds... clickety clacking away on my computer. Oh man, I am so adding this to my Christmas wish list for Santa this year :)

And for all my vintage peeps out there... what do you think about his comments about antiques no longer existing anymore. It's very true, once my ipod dies, it just dies. Will people be buying these gadgets 10, 20 years from now?


Learning to listen

A couple of weeks ago I had an event that was going to have super awkward me mixing with media types. I was so nervous... Not only do I dislike small talk and even more so talking about myself, but doing the 2 at the same time on one of the hottest days of the summer. Oh Man.

It just so happens my co-worker was reading Arlene Dickenson's book Persuasion so I asked her for some advice on how to be more assertive and to sell myself to the media, in person (it's a whole lot easier when you have the time to think about what you are going to say) She just looked at me, and in a matter-of-fact voice just said "you already have it, just be you" Her message, you aren't selling yourself, you're letting people get to know you, because you are a reflection of your product.

The one thing I don't have a problem with is being myself. In all my glorious awkwardness what you see is what you get. I like to think, no matter what kind of weird things I might say, that's what people like about me and as a result, what customers like about my cards!

 Another reason I think people are drawn to me and the second lesson my co-worker taught me.... to listen to a person's whole story before you speak. Thank you. That last one is a lesson for us all. Listen. I love to listen to people's stories, but even I sometimes jump to speak before someone is done (mostly because I'll forget what I want to say - my brain tends to run 10 times faster than my mouth!) But it's important, especially nowadays with texting, etc... we are always in such a hurry but taking the time to really listen, not just to the people in front of you, but the sights and sounds of your daily life.

All this being said, it turns out the evening wasn't so bad. Most of the media just came and went. I met some really great other local makers and bloggers, and got to catch up with some of my artsy buddies. Oh yeah, and made a super cute floral crown, which will be perfect for next summer's Midsummer launch!

And.... today's motivational message was brought to you by this awesome cutey I found on etsy
Jedi Master necklace by Rapscallion on etsy


music mondays

um... today isn't Sunday. Oops!

I was on such a good roll. But I am back on track, thanks to a lovely long weekend here!

As you may remember, last weekend I was up in Collingwood visiting my best bud, and taking in the "infamous" Elvis Festival. Well Elvis was a bust (except for that last ever bite of a cinnamoney mini donut... sigh) but spending quality time outside of the city with one of the most real women I know is priceless. Time to reflect and chill and enjoy drinks around a campfire :)

Said best buddy and I are both music fans with (mostly) the same taste in music. When she picked me up from the GO station in Barry (yes I once again survived Barry) we had to make a stop at the mall to pick up a DVD for her husband. It was a rock documentary. Made by Dave Grohl. How Did I NOT know about this?

Yep, a documentary about a recording studio in California called Sound City (fyi the movie has the same name) A TON of amazing records were recorded there, all done reel to reel before the digital revolution, including one of my fav records - Nirvana's Nevermind. Ah.... the nostalgic journey continues. Nirvana exploded at a pivotal time in my life so the album will always resonate with me, and Kurt Cobain's tragic death will always be hard to remember (I clearly remember that day and the feelings) But it wasn't a Nirvana documentary (can someone please make this soon!) The movie included interviews and recordings from Fleetwood Mac, Rick Springfield, Frank Black, Tom Petty, Barry Manilo to name a few. Some amazing performances. If you're a music fan... it's a must see. Here's a little Stevie Nicks for you!

PS. Dave Grohl, you are awesome :)
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