Monday, October 31, 2011

happy hallowe'en!


from your favourite spooky pies. this is a photos taken by sandi at her awesome party saturday night. what fun! stay safe tonight, goblins!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

awards for something.

canzine awards

the folks at broken pencil asked me to make some custom awards for next weekend's canzine. they also gave me total free reign and, other than the fact that they should be awards, absolutely no constraints. so i made these. yup, three glorious inches of isosceles triangles. these is no greater meaning or rationale involved in these except that i like triangles and i like colours. what fun!

i also have to admit to being so swamped these days that i don't rightly know what they are for. i am sure you can win one, i just don't know how. pitch a book? pirate a zine? discuss mental health? regardless, you should come to canzine, do everything and feel like a winner with or without a big fat button.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

laugh attack.

laugh sabbath (2)b

laugh sabbath (3)b

this is another knuckle-busting custom order for my buds at laugh sabbath. if you come to their show on sunday, you will probably be able to sweet talk your way into one. they are generous that way. the design is by emma segal. she's great!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

craftstock rising.

poster by selena wong

have you been dying to get your hands on sweetie pie press goods, old and new? do you like to be cool and listen to live music? if so, then your are doubly in luck. i will be setting up shop at craftstock 3 this friday night. an effortless fusion of indie pop and crafts, this quarterly event reminds me so much of the craft/art/music mash-ups of my youth (r.i.p. pedal to the metal). i love shows like this because the back and forth between music and craft makes for an easy evening and because i am so uncool that i get exposed to wonderful new music without making any big effort. you can turn with cool with me, too!

craftstock 3
friday, october 14, 2011
8:00pm - 2:00am
kapisanan philippine centre for arts & culture
167 augusta (kensington market)

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

night terrors.

brette gabel

oh, spookiness is in the air. on the way to the workroom's 4th anniversary party i managed to steal a quick peek at brette gabel's latest show, bad dreams, at gallerywest. brette has taken iconic images from scary movies and worked them into a series of quilts so that you can snuggle right into your nightmares (bigger image). although i don't know what movie it references (the omen?), my personal favourite was the black-on-black cross - creepy, subtle, cozy, cursed. eerily, the cross showed up red in my pictures but it didn't look that way in person. totally haunted.



fall is in the air, it is a bone-chilling 23 degrees celsius and the leaves would be turning and falling if it didn't feel like nuclear summer outside. that can only mean one thing - hallowe'en is right around the corner! i can hardly contain myself. for me, hallowe'en is the absolute best holiday of the year - it's all witchy and tricky and theatrical. so imagine my delight when i connected with sandi falconer this year over the city of craft design job and, in so doing, discovered a comrade in charms (you can see what i mean over on the city of craft website).

this set was created as an extension of our mutual love of all things superstitious. sandi selected five charms - a crystal, a rabbit's foot, two arrows, a wishbone and a watchful eye. not only will these charms protect you and keep you lucky but they also provide a comely set of accessories that you can wear to your next spiral dance or dark alley.

charms square

the charms sets are available in the etsy shop now and in person at all upcoming events. look for them in discerning independent shops near you sooner or later.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

chair repair.


this just in from the late night fixit files: tape your rotten old chairs up for fun and decoration!

i probably should have taken a before picture but tidying and fixing is so manic these days there is no time for such diversions. the point is this - chair + duct tape + washi tape = possibly temporary but nonetheless pretty repair solution.

this picture also illuminates the greater disaster that i am up against in my office. we use it as our storage room when we tour so there is always a pile of boxes being chipped away at for months after returning home. the mess is definitely adding weight to my psychic strain at the moment, but with non-stop city of craft tasks to attend to through december, i don't foresee this space being entirely clear until february. oh well, at least i fixed that holey chair aitor gave me! and i am back to work at the making desk.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

sneak peeks - new artist sets from andrew zangerle and sandi falconer.

maple, charms and sabbath

looky, friends! here are some special peeks at some buttons i have been working on - a set of charms by sandi falconer, a quintet of country homes by andrew zangerle and some to-be-punched custom buttons for my buds at laugh sabbath*.

i was excited to negotiate a few fall button set releases over my summer of touring. now that i am home, it's even more exciting to be back at my work desk watching them come alive!

i am hoping to have sandi's sets all packed and ready for sale after i get through this thanksgiving long weekend. drew's set should be coming out with another architectural set the week following. i love the newness. i also really love having such talented friends.

oh, and while you are waiting for all that stuff to get released, why not go grab some laughs on queen street?

*laugh sabbath logo by the incomparable emma segal.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

white night.

nuit blanche (2)b
harbinger by ryan livingstone

for those not from toronto, nuit blanche is an annual, city-wide (kinda), all-night art party. from sunset to sunrise, the city is encouraged to stay out and do stuff. some events are official and some are just chaotic ad-hoc happenings. it happens in the fall and usually i am away somewhere. but not this time! fresh back from tour, aitor and i decided to take in some night sights to welcome ourselves home. we both agreed that planning and research were recipes for disappointment and decided to just walk from roncesvalles east along queen street until we got tired of it and then come back. easy peasy!

the last year i was around for nuit blanche, i remember parkdale being a total wasteland. don't get me wrong, i prefer wastelands to club districts but it was really nice to find out about the parkdale bia's leitmotif cube van artist installations. the programming was all over the map as far as style, quality and realization (in my eyes), but i liked that about it. most pieces, even those with heavy concept, provided an easy entry point for observers/participants. a program that spans everything from white noise to a capoeira circle really expresses the community nature of bia activities. in this way, the vans provided a wide range of engagement to the actual community of parkdale, families included.

nuit blanche (3)b

nuit blanche (4)
brian's songs by caroline and gord langill

nuit blanche (7)b
infinity in the palm of your hand by quality slippers

nuit blanche (11)b
all night stitch and bitch at the workroom

nuit blanche (12)
chromatic high five by amanda browder

the vibe totally changed after we crossed dufferin. it no longer felt like the programming was for the community it was in, the streets were jammed with taxis, drunk people were screaming at aitor about his moustache and the 'art' felt like a thin decorative veneer over the normal drinking that goes on at all the bars that have overtaken the strip. in spite of all the really lovely things going on at the smaller galleries and spaces (like the knit cafe), the might of the big bars was winning out. by ossington, i was getting anxious and everyone was pointing cameras at aitor. our nice date was turning ugly. we strolled back along side streets and relaxed immediately upon crossing dufferin again.

the giant, flaming, bloody altar at queen and dufferin has progressed somewhat. a woman was now scrubbing the entire concrete seating area on her hands and knees, the foamy red spill-off trailing onto the sidewalk and into the sewer. everything smelled like lavender.

after bemoaning the growing night club culture of our neighbourhood, we found a party that was more our speed:

nuit blanche (14)b

nuit blanche (17)b
your special day by brette gabel

yup, brette gabel's your special day at gallerywest invited folks in from the street with balloons and signs promising an awesome party just for you. once an hour, the gathering became a surprise party for whoever walked through the door next - complete with sparklers, people singing, homemade cake, a pinata and a fresh-delivered pizza. up there is our birthday boy breaking his pinata. such a wonderful way to end the night - a party about people instead of posing and drinking. we went home beaming and said goodnight to the neon crow at the top of our block.