coe & waito final studio sale

I recently read about Coe & Waito's final studio sale via Toronto Craft Alert (it's worth subscribing to, Toronto).  Since it was going to be my last (-ish?) chance to get my hands on some of their beautiful ceramics, I made sure to go by today.  There was so much I wanted to bring home with me, but I was only able to pick up these pieces.  I didn't get a pine cone or an acorn or an owl lamp (or a coral vase, or a cup with handle, or or or...), but I did get a pretty cup that is so delicate & such a beautiful colour, a tiny oyster shell-like pinch bowl, and one of the scalloped bowls that I have coveted for a while now.  All three are seconds, but they are perfect to me.

Even though the sale brought me the opportunity to get these pieces for next to nothing, and even though the sale had a happy atmosphere, I'm still a bit sad.  The biz is tough, guys.  I look forward to seeing what Carly and Alissa do next, however.

Sonja was there, as lovely as ever.  She asked if I was going to blog about the sale, and ha ha!  I did!



About a year ago I was visiting New York, eating cupcakes and shopping and walking around. You know, like you do. One of the shops we visited was Jumelle. They had Sven clogs in the window and the prettiest clothes, and I remember pouting a little that Toronto didn't have a shop like it.

So, I was excited when I heard that Robber was opening. I finally, finally had the chance to stop by today, and I am so glad I did, despite being all, uh, dewy from my bicycle ride and despite feeling shy. It is the sweetest shop, such a beautiful space. Best of all, the owners, Erin and Robin, are so lovely (hi, girls!). I picked up the Dace blouse above. It's silk and so, so beautiful. Look at those pretty little pintucks! I always have a hard time finding pretty summer blouses -- this one is as light as a feather, I love it. The shop is filled with beautiful summer blouses and dresses. And wolf rings and feather necklaces and all sorts of treasures! So many things that make it worth saving up your pennies. If you're in Toronto you really should stop by and say hello!

It was the perfect little outing for my perfect little day.


catching up

I wanted to thank you for your very kind comments on my sewing room. I wish you all had a special space of your own -- even Geoff has admitted to me that he's a tiny bit jealous! Sometimes, when I look at pictures of homes that are gorgeous and perfect, I feel jealous. I don't like to feel that way (such an overwhelming, stifling emotion), but there you have it. At least now I can think about the fact that I have my own place that reflects a bit of who I am and what I love. And apparently, who I am and what I love includes junky antique chairs, ancient stuffed rabbits, and lots and lots of ribbon. Maybe now that I have that little room it can be my anchor, and it will help me feel more settled. I am such a homebody that I find moving deeply upsetting!

This morning I flipped through some Japanese pattern books. I thought about how nice it will be when I have a free afternoon in which I won't itemize all the things that I still have to do ("paint trim paint trim paint trim" runs through my head all day long), in which I can sit in my sunny, lace-filled room and sew and sew and sew.

I have been out of sorts lately. I have so many posts drafted that I haven't been able to finish; my mind just freezes. Recently I discovered that my debit card had been skimmed and that $2000 was stolen from my accounts. I should be covered (incidentally, I do love my tiny, hippie bank, I really do), but they've launched an investigation and it hasn't been resolved yet. It was a sad thing and I've felt really disturbed since I made my tearful phone call to the bank.

Oh, the lovely Jen from The Haystack Needle posted a little interview with me today as part of her Lost + Found series. I am by no means a master organizer (I am going to be in serious trouble when my memory goes!), but it was so nice to participate.

The picture above is completely unrelated to this post but I think it's beautiful. Via gingerlillytea)


my little room

One of my favourite things about this new apartment is the fact that I have my own little room, which is my sewing room. It's a tiny thing, about six feet by five, and I am happy to have this hobby -- the room (really an anteroom) may have been fated to be a storage space otherwise.

It's a work in progress, I suppose, but last night I finally got everything tucked away. I think the close-to-the-end result is something that is very me: a little cluttered, an organized mess, with lots of things to see, and, obviously, a lot of lacey bits!  And a lot of bits in general.  As anyone who sews knows, you accumulate a lot of little things.  I'm pretty amazed at how many sewing notions I've accumulated in a year and a half (ahh, so that's where all my money has gone).

Oreo likes in it there, too.

If you're interested in the details, I've written them out on Flickr.


building outfits 6

I'm sure you've all seen these pictures of Maryam Nassir Zadeh hanging out in her shop, looking totally amazing and just, you know, sittin' on a bench she found on the street, wearing an Isabel Marant jumpsuit. She is the inspiration for this outfit.

Jumpsuit with smocked waist from edwardvintage

Caramel corduroy vest from darlingbrigade

Floral bow studded bracelet from persephonevintage

Red t-straps from santokivintage


victoria day

What a great day today has been!   It's Victoria Day in Canada so I'm listening to fireworks at the moment, which is quite lovely although not so cat-friendly.  Today we did two double loads of laundry, went for a nice long walk, ate some Italian sandwiches, and I tackled more of my sewing area.  It's starting to come together, which is good because I have a lot of sewing to do.  Anyhow, every day I am falling more and more in love with my neighbourhood.  I have always loved this neighbourhood, but now I'm starting to feel more proprietary and not as though I'm drifting through in a dream.   We had some friends over this weekend and they were able to walk over!  We keep bumping into other friends while we're out and about!  Mercy.

A couple of additional things that have made me happy today: this post on Decor8 and this post on A Cup of Jo.  I have been so humbled by all the lovely mentions on other people's blogs (I don't always mention them here, because, I don't know, it feels like bragging?).  It's just little ol' me and little ol' Geoff making these things.  It's so nice to know that people like them.  Thank you, thank you.


building outfits 5

I got rained on on my bike ride to work today and I feel like the humidity is lodged in my hair and face. All I want is cotton dresses and bare legs. Belts and other accessories? Bah.

Sweet topknot headband from foliage

Kicky lil' cotton dropwaist sailor dress from redemptionvintage

Bamboo-handled purse from persephonevintage

Woven white sandals from secretlake

These two are a couple of recent favourites:

Oval wooden frame from littlebyrdvintage (why buy the fake antique version?)

Gingerie, a pretty print from bluecocoon (I ordered this last week -- apparently Anja, who I reference a lot, has a huge influence in my life! I found this Etsy shop through her post)


valerie and her week of wonders

I have been meaning to watch this Czech movie from 1970 since Caitlin first posted about it around Hallowe'en a couple of years ago.  She posted some stills that creeped me out so much that I thought "I have to watch this."  I love creepy movies.

Recently Anja posted about it here, and despite the fact that I work in a library with a well-stocked audio-visual library, I never got around to signing it out. Part of the reason why is because watching movies on a 10" laptop isn't really ideal, but we have a proper, hand-me-down television set and a DVD player now (although I am still so annoyed that we can no longer get PBS via rabbit ears).

Anyhow, Geoff and I currently live around the corner from Marquee Video, which I am so excited about; we stopped in the other day and I rented Valerie and Her Week of Wonders.  I watched it last night and it was fantastic.  It made absolutely no sense to me, but that didn't matter.   It was captivating, it was creepy, the look of it was beautiful -- everything I want in a film, really.  I also adore the way the Czech pronounce "Valerie."  Kind of "Vah-leree-yay."  It's singsong-y.

Broadcast, a band I really love, have a song called "Valerie," which was inspired by the movie.  It's based on a theme that is repeated throughout.  I've been listening to this song since 2003 without realizing its original inspiration!


i am so lucky

I have been getting the most amazing mail lately. Really, just thinking about it makes me want to cry (I am an emotional girl!). Remember this? And then the things here from Erin and Erica (the package from Erin had all sorts of tiny treasures in it, which I didn't photograph). I also got a package from Sue the day before I moved but I'm saving that one for a little while before I share it.

Yesterday I came home to a package from Karyn in the mail and a package waiting at the post office from Chad. The best part was that despite the fact that one came from a few blocks away and one came from almost a thousand miles away, they were related!

Chad sent me this oh-so-pretty doily mobile, which I hung in the dining room. The delicate little doilies sway and spin so gently. They've caught Oreo's attention a few times.

Karyn sent me this beautiful piece of fabric. I need to make something special with it, or perhaps I will incorporate it into a quilt. I want to look at it every single day.

Thank you, thank you.

always / never

I was tagged by the lovely Missa of Thrift Candy to write my list of five "always-es" and five "nevers." I was excited to do this as I have seen quite a few so far that I loved reading (in addition to Missa's list, see here, here and here). The rules are that these must be fashion-related, that I have to tag three people, and that I can post any pictures I would like to post.

(n.b. - This was started by Lauren here!)

Please remember that this is what works or doesn't work for me personally, and I don't mean any offense by this list! I don't consider myself to be a particularly stylish person, but after 30 years, I have honed my tastes a bit.


1. Long, straight hair with bangs, in its natural colour. In that great year of 1995, I discovered Serge Gainsbourg. This was incredibly formative for me. I went on to discover all the beautiful singers & actresses who had long dark hair and bangs (eg. Françoise Hardy, Anna Karina). I always, always wanted their hair (and their gazelle-like grace, but oh well). No one would ever cut my bangs, so about a year ago I did it myself. To paraphrase Mandy Moore, finally I feel as though I have found myself in a hair style. I like my hair. I leave trails of it wherever I go. Also, I haven't dyed my hair since I was 20 and I don't intend to start dyeing it any time soon.

2. The high-waisted pencil skirt. My favourite thing to wear with a pretty blouse. This is my version of jeans (I don't wear jeans, although I wish I did).
3. Old lady-style sandals. I love these APC ones, but I have a few similar versions that I have thrifted. I found some tan leather Ferragamo ones recently, and I'm excited to wear them. I've been wearing Worishofers for years -- you used to be able to get them super cheap in Kensington Market.

4. Tights. I went to a Catholic high school where I wore a uniform, and since then, I have worn tights for what feels like every day of my life. I would wear them in summer if I could.

5. Scarves, preferably of the silk, hand-rolled hem sort. Now that they're kind of trendy I've been wearing them a bit less (I don't want to look like a desperate oldster taking her cues from the teens), but I have always had a large collection of scarves. I don't wear much jewelry but a scarf is always a versatile, useful accessory.


1. Jersey. I have mentioned this before, but I just cannot do jersey, especially not in dress form. I caved and wore a jersey dress last Friday and I felt as though I was wearing maternity clothing.

2. Capri pants. I am not tall (five three and one quarter), and these pants, they are not good. Also, my general rule of thumb is that if it's all the rage in north Toronto, it's not for me (cf. Juicy Couture, Lululemon, huge Chanel sunglasses, tiny shivering dogs, TNA duffel bags, aggressively-chewed chewing gum, etc.).

3. Cheap ballet flats, most often found in metallic colours. I love flats. I need flats. I cannot wear heels for long stretches of time, and I have to wear flats or low wedges almost exclusively. I also walk over 8 kilometers a day now. The cheap ballet flats I see most often have no support, and the extremely rounded, short toe box does no favours for those of us who do not have long, lean gams. Basically, I find these shoes totally pointless except as room shoes. If one wants to look like Audrey Hepburn, one needs higher quality flats!

4. Large geometric prints. Oh my Orla! On other people, j'adore. On me, I cannot stand.

5. Old lady perfume, or rather, what I consider to be old lady pefume: YSL's Paris & Opium, Estée Lauder's White Linen, etc. Sometimes I wonder just how bad the air smelled when these kinds of scents were au courant, & when everyone smoked. P.U.!

To recap:

1. Long, straight hair with bangs, in its natural colour.
2. The high-waisted pencil skirt.
3. Old lady-style sandals.
4. Tights.
5. Scarves.

1. Jersey.
2. Capri pants.
3. Cheap ballet flats.
4. Large geometric prints.
5. Old lady perfume.

And now I tag Karyn, Caitlin, and Tara-Lynn! And Kater, too!


rain light

Through our bedroom window

A gift from atlantictreefox

Receipt from a cotton dress I bought yesterday at Franny Vintage

Erica sent me some back issues, how sweet


make good: crafts + life giveaway: winners

Thank you all so much for entering the giveaway!  I hope you won't be too sad if you didn't win.  The books will be readily available via the usual book outlets, and as I mentioned in the giveaway post, there are some free projects on the website.  

And so, without further ado, via random.org:  

Here are your random numbers:

69 5 

Timestamp: 2009-05-09 01:32:44 UTC

The winners are  Karyn and Amy! Congratulations, you two. I laughed and called out to Geoff when I saw that Karyn had won -- I was just at the Workroom for a visit.  I don't need to get your address from you, Karyn: I know it!

Incidentally, how sweet does one of the upcoming books look:  Carefree Clothes for Girls?  So sweet.


building outfits 4

Today's outfit is simple but it tells a little story. I am picturing this story playing out in my new apartment circa 1962 (although some of these items may not be quite that old). I am also picturing a beautiful Deco vanity table, one that I wish I owned.

Madame de la Lune cocktail hat by whiteapple

1960s two-toned dress from douxvintage

T-strap heels from estatesale

Princess phone from domestikate


make good: crafts + life giveaway

A little while ago I posted about the new series of Japanese craft books in English, Make Good: Crafts + Life. I am pleased to announce that I am hosting a giveaway of two sets of the first two books in the series, Linen, Wool, Cotton by Akiko Mano and Patchwork Style by Suzuko Koseki. That is, two winners will receive two books each, thanks to the generosity of the books' publisher.

I am loving these new books! Suddenly I am seeing how charming the original text of the Japanese books is. Also, they are basic enough for people who are new to sewing, with simple but lovely projects that anyone can try (although there are more complicated patterns as well, including quilts). If you have always wanted to pick up a Japanese craft book but have felt intimated by the lack of English text, these books are perfect. I am excited to see what other books will be released in the future.

You can also try a number of free projects on the series website.

Please leave a comment to be considered. I will choose two winners at random on Friday evening.

Good luck!