31 December, 2008

Happy New Year!

I'll be spending my evening at a glamorous, black tie wedding with lots of champagne. I hope you all have a wonderful night, and a happy new year!

*Image from Martha Stewart

22 December, 2008

Tattoo Pics

I got my new tattoo on my birthday. It was done by the wonderful Jen Lee, of Tattoo City in San Francisco. I think she did an amazing job- isn't it beautiful??? I love it, and I think she captured the Victorian spirit of the image perfectly.

My friend Piper took these pictures yesterday while I was getting inked. I never realized how small my feet are.

Happy Chanuka!

In addition to being my birthday, and the winter solstice, last night was the first night of Chanuka! I celebrated by eating donuts from Dynamo Donuts in San Francisco with my friend Piper and the guys at Tattoo City. This year my family's having our latke party on the last night of the holiday, so I'm going to have to do my best to eat my share of fried food on my own until then.

21 December, 2008

I'm 28

Today being my 28th birthday, I thought I'd share a Toni Basil (yes, she of later "Hey Mickey" fame) song from 1966 that always makes me laugh. I certainly don't think that being single at 28 is any cause for desperation, but I am wondering if I should start wearing heavier makeup and more fur to attract men? "I'm 28" was the B-side for Toni's "Breakaway" single, which inspired artist/ filmmaker Bruce Connor's film of the same name, and helped launch Toni's career as a coreographer for many famous artists such as the Talking Heads (she coreographed this video), David Bowie, and Tina Turner. The lyrics to "I'm 28" are below, and you can listen to the song here.

I'm 28, it's getting late
What have I got to do?
My time is going, my fears are growing,
My chances now are few
Lacquers, lotions, sprays and potions
Scented, unguent, mild and pungent
Lipstick, pancake, shadow for the eyes...
It's all been advertised
But... it's getting me nowhere

I'm 28, it's getting late
What have I got to do?
My time is going, my fears are growing
My chances now are few
Dress revealing, sex appealing
Fur and feather, suede and leather,
Naughty, haughty, sure to glamorize...
It's all been advertised
But... it's getting me nowhere

It's nice to be respectable,
Saintly, sweet and fair
But I don't want to finish off alone...
In a rocking chair

I'm 28, it's getting late
What have I left to do?

(image from here)

17 December, 2008

Farewell, Lamp

This lamp always been one of my favorites. I loved the turquoise color, the teak details, and the tall, slender shape. Then a couple years ago, I made the mistake of bringing it with me to New York for a trade show, and it cracked in my luggage. I managed to get it home without any further damage, and the crack was so fine that I was able to hide it when I put the lamp back in my living room. But last week, after having moved things around a bit to rewire my speakers, I bumped into the lamp and it fell and broke cleanly in half. So now I am on the lookout for a replacement, I suppose... I haven't found anything I like in the usual places, so I guess I'll have to wait until January's Alameda Point and hope that something there will catch my eye. In the meantime, farewell, lamp.

14 December, 2008


Between the chilly weather and the holidays, I may not be posting here as often during the next couple of weeks. I'm planning to check in here and there, but in the meantime, I want to share some of the things I've been drooling over on Etsy (links below, as usual).

Quail egg necklace, felt hydrangea hairclips, "Drowsy" etching, felted nest pin, embroidered trees, pussy willow earrings, bearded guy card, miniature embroidery, feather necklace, hand-carved yo yo

Keep In Touch

I've been eyeing the address file above, from Lovely Design, for a long time, but they've been out of stock for just as long, so I decided to take a look for something similar. I'm not sure who came first here, but I can't help loving all of these, made from recycled paper and wood.

Lovely Design,

Ugly Kitty

Something's Hiding In Here

Sally Bean

11 December, 2008

Behind the Scenes

When I asked what you would like to see more of on my blog, a couple of readers told me that they'd like to see more about my business, and my creative process. So, here we go! I'm going to show you how my "Artichoke" card came about.

I was inspired by these artichokes from my dad's yard, but I wanted to capture the more classic, pointy artichoke shape.

I started with a photograph of artichokes (top). Then I took the artichoke I like best, and recomposed it on the page. You can see that I had to add a stem to get the look I wanted.

In Photoshop (I know, I know- Illustrator is the proper program to use for these things, but I'm set in my ways), I trace around the different parts of the image to create three separate layers. You can see them all here, lined up.

When they're layered on top of one another, they create my final image.

I then send the files to my good friend Richard, who turns them into negative images on film. He makes plates with a raised image area by exposing photo-sensitive material to UV light, with the negative on top of them. This process is a lot like making a silkscreen, only it's the negative space that gets washed out, as opposed to the positive. There is a separate plate for each color- in this case, three.

He prints the colors one a time on his Windmill press, which runs a lot faster than my little presses! It has little suction cups that pick up the paper, drop it in the press so it gets printed, and then pick it up again.

The cards are then trimmed and scored, and voila! A finished product!

I am going to try and take better pictures when we print next year's collection (in the spring), and do another post then. (In general, I spend most of the year working on my designs, and then we print them in time for the National Stationery Show in May.) In the meantime, I hope this gives you a better sense of how my cards are made! In the next week or so, I'll post some more pictures of the rest of my operation.

10 December, 2008

Special Delivery

This adorable file box from Etsy has already sold, but I wanted to share it anyways...

07 December, 2008


I just discovered the work of Oakand-based Emily Wick, whose state motto linocuts are just beautiful. I guess I never realized how poetic some of these mottos are, and how optimistic. Check out these ones, from Kansas, West Virginia, and North Carolina.

06 December, 2008


I love the print on this dress from Stella McCartney...

05 December, 2008

Wish List

It's that time of year again! Since all the blogs I read have been kind enough to post some amazing gift guides, I have been rapidly accumulating more and more items for my personal wish list. My birthday's coming up, as well as Chanuka, so if anybody is looking for the perfect gift, any of these would make me extremeley happy.

Wooly Embroidery book, vintage trophies, button coasters, bird pouch, porcelain milk bottles, gold doorstop, wood iPhone cover, Field Notes calendar