Thursday, April 30, 2009

loose ends.

well, plans are coming together and we are just about to slither out of this newly spring-like city. aitor leaves tonight with the toronto pipe club (oh, did i neglect to mention that we are starting our trip in chicago so that aitor can go to the chicagoland pipe convention? - best use of the word tobacciana ever) and i set out tomorrow morning.

i dropped my cat off with the lovely emma and gill last night. i'm such a weird old cat lady that i get strange without her around. i keep expecting her to curl up on my lap. boo hoo hoo. if only i had a pet who could travel.

if you feel the need to stock up on sweetie pie stuff while we are away, i just did a late-night restocking at the good catch general store. type books has also just decided to carry the mores buttons at all their locations and the knit cafe has a new batch of knit till you die buttons. so that should tide you over.

the sweetie pie press will also be represented at the next trampoline hall with our ubiquitous merch table, thanks to the gracious help of the lovely laurie mcgregor. the next show will be monday, may 11, and is curated by trampoline hall inventor, sheila heti. thanks for picking up the sweetie pie slack, miss laurie! you will be the best emmissary.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

heft in the mail.

i love you, drawn & quarterly.

i wish i could drop everything right now and live inside this book.

Monday, April 27, 2009

a return to business as unusual.

well, in a few days, this blog will return to its most popular roots as a chronicle of strange travels and independent art on the road.

this upcoming trip may be shorter than previous outings but it is no less manic, crazy and potentially pointless.

this time, however, i hope to be able to publish our travel plans in advance so that you, a sea of friends and strangers, can help us shape our journey into something mildly less insane than we would create on our own. tips and recommendations are highly valued in this pursuit.

until then, i will just leave you with one of the many ways that aitor has become more famous while i have been languishing in endless illness (swan flu?).

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

sick leave.

i took the picture above of my busy living room coffee table trunk back on friday when i was planning on regaling you, internet, with boastful tales of all the crap i was about to accomplish - two craft fairs in two days (one in brantford), a fundraiser show around the corner and other marvelous wonders.

but then i went to a meeting on friday, came home, took a nap and woke up not knowing where i was. this was the beginning of the most delirious fever i have had since being very little. it's been close to a week and i am just coming out of it now. i did manage to medicate myself enough to make it to the hunt and gather trunk show but otherwise, i have been a shut in for days - and not a particularly ambulatory one, at that.

i do have some pictures and things to go through from last week and the trunk show so i should be filling in some blanks here over the next day or so. but i should also mention that my first big outing will be to haul my weakened ass over to the knit cafe tonight to celebrate earth day amid the plastic corals of our reef display. come, won't you. you can experience my new bedraggled look in person.

but for now...i will attempt a triumphant return to solid foods.

Friday, April 17, 2009

potential in the form of seeding pots.

this is me trying to be useful in that craft blog kind of way. see? i am sprouting things (hopefully) and had to come up with some brilliant way to line all these seeding pots up on our narrow kitchen window sill. after some chin scratching and eyes darting around the apartment, i came upon an answer - the glass tops from old mason jars. i have a pretty big collection of these canadian classics and have even amassed a bunch of jarless tops just in case i happen upon topless jars (and also because we are a bit clumsy around here).

don't worry, this temporary usage won't ruin them. they are glass, after all.

and there you have it. domestic craft lady blog tip.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

public art.

i saw two things on my way to get groceries today.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

security envelopes: regrouping, reimagining and renewed effort.

above is a big collection of magnets used for the diwhy/ security envelope installation at the ontario crafts council. until this evening, these magnets were sitting in a bag with an equal number of big huge nails. but with the workroom window display coming back to my home shortly, it was time to get things squared up on the security front so that i can wake the project from its hibernation and get back to going through submission and cataloguing.

i should also say that during this fallow time i have come across a few new postal/security projects of note that i wish to share with the world...

1) signature security envelopes by the esteemed tara bursey.
obviously, tara would share obsessions with me - design, art, zines, mail, personal touches, collecting...just to name a few overlapping territories. her totally perfect self-made security envelopes really bring thoughts of safety and identity to the next level. and, as always, she does it with infinite grace and attention to detail.

2) insecurity envelopes by jk keller.
i actually stumbled into this project after being sent this by a friend (pretty amazing in its own right). this mr. keller fellow seems to be onto a great many interesting things. his entire online portfolio was worth the steadfast peruse i gave it. my other favorite project is the paulette ribbon typeface. you'll see. i really get a thrill when math and craft collide. and it's a plus when the results are pretty.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

brokeback pontiac approaches.

i just got all the final artwork from the magnificent tyler brett for the upcoming fundraiser i have thrown together to make some much-needed car repairs after the last sweetie pie tour. the show, named brokeback pontiac (thanks, emma), will be a big evening of comedy, art and craft. i am very fortunate to have a lot of talented friends, many of whom have borrowed my car or benefited from it in some manner. so playing the guilt chip, i got to book a pretty superb line-up - not to mention the small silent auction of very special goodies.

for both a mini web page about the show and a preview of the items up for auction (a growinggallery), please look here. and mark your calendars! it's going to be a pretty fun evening.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

stolen images from last night's event.

...from mr. graeme bunton. thanks, bunts!

piggy bank/lawn ornament from serena mccarroll's set/honest ed's

Becky's Buttons

Trampoline Hall Buttons
beautiful bokeh + low depth of field buttons.

Andrew Gardiner
andrew gardner predicts the future with a big bag of money in the background.

thanks to everyone, i had a great time! and special thanks to misha for putting up with me, my demands and the discomfort i put him through.

Monday, April 6, 2009

the trampoline hall money show is tonight.

i have written quite a bit about tonight's show (or, more so, the stuff i have made to go along with it) but i did want to make sure i gave one last rundown of ticket stuff and, most importantly, thank all the people who worked/will work on this show.

first, the tickets: i know they are sold out at soundscapes and have been for a few days. door tickets go on sale at 6:30pm at sneaky dee's (info here). because this month's tickets were printed on five dollar bills, it seems that there could be a few more rush tickets available at the door than usual. usually, tickets can not be spent on other things like...chocolate bars or gum. also, we never told anybody but i also stamped a few twenties and tens and then just spent them on things. if you find any of those bills, you can just show them at the door and come in for free. this seems very unlikely to me but i would be excited if it happens.

and the fine people who helped bring the show together are...

for this installment only -
lectures by sara peel, andrew gardner and peter stevens
readings by rebecca northan and anand rajaram
set design by serena marie mccarroll (with help from chris mccarroll)
shredded money donated by jeannie kamins
fedexing by john td keyes and anne garber

for all installments -
hosting and being in charge by misha glouberman
art direction by margaux williamson
door and insight by carl wilson
door and tickets by lauren bride
set up and break down by laurie mcgregor, rev. aitor, michael higginson & rebekah hakkenberg
sound engineering by matt smith
inventing the show by sheila heti

see you there!

ps - buy buttons. i made extra this time.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

experiments in bribing people to be nice to me: a success (or, surprise, surprise).

first off, i would like to thank everyone who replied to my impromptu secret contest. it was nice to lure so many of you out of lurkerdom and also to hear you say nice things about me. to be honest, i was only expecting things like "you make nice buttons" and was blown away by all the responses. i actually felt a little guilty reading all this nice stuff - as though i had demanded that a group of friends and strangers be kind to me for a prize. in spite of any guilt, the appreciation was also avariciously absorbed. early spring always makes me a little blue and hearing that people look at my work and like it is helping me slough off that winter shell.

it is also wildly thrilling to me to find out where the things i have made end up. i know through my record keeping that i have made over 100,000 buttons. once you add all the zines and hats and neck warmers and drawings and shirts and prints and miscellaneous things, it works out to lots and lots of stuff. it boggles my mind to think where all that stuff ends up. and i find it calming to know that one button was on a streetcar and one button was in peterborough and two are at petra's place, etc. etc.

which brings us (in a roundabout kind of way) to our impromptu contest winner. it seems that the early bird gets the worm in this case and my mysterious care package (don't worry, it is full of 100% stuff) will be going to tina of a tiny studio. although everyone who commented would have been deserving of gifts in his or (who are we kidding?) her own way, i am glad to be giving a nice big care package to someone brand new to craft blogging. i visited tina's blog and was happy to be able to read the whole thing in under fifteen minutes. welcome to the fabulous world of obesessive self-documentation, tina. and get in touch to arrange delivery/hand-off of your goodies. if you are a fan of the workroom, maybe you want to pick it up at the hunt and gather trunk show that karyn and i are putting on together.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

what's right is wright (or vice versa).

above are some new custom buttons for the doug wright awards. the images of nipper originate from doug wright but were drawn by seth, the comic strip title text was scanned from a newspaper and pigskin peters is by jimmy frise.

i was very happy to get to contribute in some way to this year's wright awards, which annually honour canadian comics artists. doug wright, himself, is an artist about whom i would have know nothing were it not for these awards and a great amount of effort (done in large part by seth, i believe) to bring his work back into public knowledge. you can and should read more about mr. wright here as well as learning more about a growing list of northerly comics artists here.

i won't be in toronto for the awards proper, so i also want to make sure that i give a big shout out to sweetie pie pal, ray fenwick, for his nomination for excellence in what amounts to the deviant/weirdo category. there is no better place to be!

correction pointed out to me by sean craig - pigskin peters is a jimmy frise character but was drawn for these buttons by seth. thanks, sean!

Friday, April 3, 2009

a week in review.

white heart by shannon gerard
(has nothing to do with this post but hangs on my wall when not pinned to my sweaters).

my sweetie pie brother has been in town all week so, in spite of heaps of work and a major postal disaster i have been untangling, i managed to go out more this week than i normally would in a year. i ended up struck by the incredible amount of talent possessed by the people i know in this town. we didn't do anything that i hated (rare), so i will just run down the week's itinerary. i recommend all this stuff.

sunday -
ghost jail theatre. okay, i am pretty hard on improv so i will say that the improvised soap opera that opened for this show should find its own weekly slot somewhere. a serialized show that runs erratically as an opening set for another show doesn't make much sense. but this company and all involved are very charming and funny.

monday -
#1: ryan kamstra's murder folk night at katharine mulherin gallery. great! wonderful! amazing! terrifying! fun! engaging! murderific! pretty!
#2: danny shapiro's awkward show and tell at the victory cafe. awkward! squirmy! voyeuristic! funny! thrilling! weird! everything!

tuesday -
night off

wednesday -
jewish food from st. lawrence plaza and then the gravity wave volunteer appreciation show. it opened with a hypnotist! the most laughs i had all week even though my brother doesn't hypnotize easily. their set was great and i enjoyed the new video for buffalo jump by kristen white most of all. it is simple and involved marching around (two things that appeal to me).

thursday -
the phonemes + laura barrett at the tranzac. a perfect show from top to tail with one particular song reaching a state beyond perfection through the theremin virtuosity of john tielli. laura and magali are leaving on tour together right now and heading west, go find them!

go see everything in toronto, too!

and thank you to the people i know for being so full of great ideas, energy, pluck and vinegar.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

trampoline hall and money buttons.

i know there is something terrible in always liking newest thoughts best (and this is a personal tendency that i am trying to work against), but i just hammered out some special custom buttons for trampoline hall's money show (happening on monday). they are made with actual shredded money that was graciously donated to the show by jeannie kamins.

home run! well, in my self-congratulating opinion, anyway.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

money monday.

these are the tickets for this coming monday's installment of trampoline hall (curated by me). the theme is money. tickets go on sale tomorrow morning at soundscapes on college. they tend to sell very fast so i would recommend going early if you would like one. all other ticketing information can be found here.

this show has been a lot of work. i am really looking forward to seeing it.