a farewell brunch

Since, as of today, the Hoof Café is closed and will re-open as a restaurant that no longer serves brunch, Katie and I went there on Friday to bid it adieu. We split three dishes (spot prawns with grits, pictured here; crepes; scrapple), as well as dessert. It was delicious, it was lovely, it was the perfect thing to do on a grey February morning. Goodbye to the best brunch in the city, hello to a really wonderful new brunch pal! Girls who have blogs always have cameras in their bags, and I can't wait to see what Katie's cat camera will produce.

If you can believe it, we were so full that we couldn't finish that lemon tart with the most perfect meringue and boiled sugar over top.

Now, let's all discuss how cute Katie's hair and nails are.


objects of desire

A few things that I have most recently added to an online shopping cart and removed with a sigh and a frown, followed by guilt for desiring so many things that I do not actually need. MODERN LIFE.


eternal spring & maypoles

If I could live in eternal springtime, I would. I would probably miss certain types of snowfalls, crisp autumn days, and the sultriness of summer, but it would all be worth it to live out my days surrounded by flowers in bloom and that fantastic spring light (although I am conveniently forgetting about the rain & damp that can come with springtime -- rain & damp make me cringe in a way that no other weather does, although, of course, I recognize how necessary rain is).

This stereoview card that I have had in my possession for a year was the main inspiration for the spring line that Geoff and I are working on. I think this card is one of the most beautiful things I own. I know that maypoles have a funny Renaissance Faire association in many people's minds, but I think they are so pretty, and if you've ever braided ribbons while dancing around one, you know how fun they are (I speak from experience). Maybe I'll erect one in my backyard this spring, or attach ribbons to the tetherball pole in Dufferin Grove Park. Just doing my part to make maypoles the new teepees.

I will share the completed spring items with you here just as soon as my fingers can make them! I am a little nervous about how they will be received, of course, but in the end I love them wholeheartedly.

For now I will dream of spring with the help of these images from others, with thanks.

1. hannahkristinametz, 2. little glowing lights, 3. emersonmerrick, 4. pearled,  5. me, 6. adriano sodré


at last, a record player

Yesterday I decided to buy a turntable, finally. I got this Crosley portable model at Sonic Boom in the Annex (thanks, Carly, for the tip). I did think about how Beth warned me against this sort of turntable, but I was feeling a bit down (for no good reason, or possibly the reason was "February"). When I'm feeling a bit down, I operate almost completely on impulse and instinct. I didn't want to wait to retrieve Geoff's old Bang & Olufsen (!!) turntable & have it repaired, I wanted a turntable in my hands right away. I also bought a copy of one of my favourite albums because it suited my mood so perfectly.

The turntable works and sounds just fine, but it's probably not the most well-made piece of equipment (the parts feel a bit flimsy). When we had it working, I put "Some Velvet Morning" on and laid down on the rug and felt really fantastic.

(But then I had to turn it off because our 14 year old neighbour downstairs was practicing her harp and I always love hearing her play her harp.)

So much nostalgia is wrapped up in those black discs. When I was little, my parents instilled in me a fear of dropping the needle down; if I wasn't careful, I would scratch the record. To this day I'm a little apprehensive about it. Many years ago I used to buy records because my boyfriend at the time had a turntable, so I would keep them at his house and we'd listen to them there; I'm not sure if he still has them. When Geoff & I stayed at the Ace Hotel in Portland we had a turntable in our room and we listened to St Vincent while packing calendars in their archival plastic sleeves. I really have no idea why it took me so long to get a turntable of my own. I miss listening to albums the whole way through, and I love the crackle-pops.

When I think of the records I would love to own on vinyl, these come to mind:

1. Slowdive, Pygmalion (currently $200 on eBay)
2. My Bloody Valentine, Loveless, or Isn't Anything
3. Serge Gainsbourg, La ballade de Melodie Nelson
4. Blonde Redhead, Mélodie Citronique (3 & 4 go together very nicely)
5. Stereolab, Refried Ectoplasm, Switched on Vol. 2
6. Heart, Dreamboat Annie
7. Fleetwood Mac, Tusk
8. Sufjan Stevens, Seven Swans (the first album Geoff introduced me to)
9. Kate Bush, Hounds of Love (of course)
10. New Order, Power, Corruption & Lies
11. the entire Smog catalogue
12. The Walkmen, Lisbon (I can't get enough of this one lately)

It just goes to show you how formative high school is, because I fell in love with most of these records before I turned 18 years old. If I have a "dreamy" aesthetic now, it's probably because I listened to so much Slowdive under the covers.

Additionally, I was one of the lucky girls who received a bouquet from Coriander Girl on Monday. Katie got one too!


love day

Poor Pony is not having a very good Valentine's Day! She's fine, but we did have to cancel some cool plans this weekend to keep an eye on her. At least her new collar/cape is very amusing. The saddest little flower.

Here is some pretty imagery I have been collecting for the past little while, because as far as I'm concerned, love and hearts are worth celebrating every day -- and at my house, we do. No one has a monopoly on love, so just let it flow.


beautiful soap

This morning I discovered the Etsy shop Morning Calm via Scout & Catalogue (who found it via Teenangster). I was immediately smitten with the pretty photography and the lists of ingredients. No one should take beauty advice from me, but at this point I have grown so tired of the endless amounts of beauty products available that all I want is a simple, well made bar of soap for my skin, coconut oil for my hair, and some lovely OLO fragrances. Sometimes less is a bore, but to my mind, when it comes to beauty products, less is more.

Handmade soap might be a little bit more expensive but it's so luxurious, and definitely a purchase I can feel good about (less packaging, better quality, longer lasting). We're always told never to wash our faces with soap, but I still love it. I've mentioned my love of charcoal soap before -- I'm completely addicted to it now. I love the grey lather even though it completely messes up my white soap dish!


love and rummage 3

Thank you, everyone! Sunday was wonderful. It was so nice to see friends & to meet some of you for the first time (although I have to apologize again to the person who asked about the Yashica Electro -- we decided to keep it. I'm sorry!). It was such a busy day that I didn't get to speak properly to a lot of you, but thank you, thank you. Our pencils are all gone but I've ordered more -- thank you all for your enthusaism for them!

Since it wasn't on my to-do list leading up to the show, I didn't have the chance to think about details such as what I would wear and what camera to bring. We wound up bringing only a Rollei black & white disposable camera. I hadn't used one before and wasn't sure what to expect, but once we got the pictures back I realized that the ones taken with flash look really creepy! Lesson learned. These were the only ones that I liked enough to share (taken closest to the window): the top is part of our table with a little spray of flowers from Coriander Girl, and the bottom is our wicker trunk (purchased from The Arthur) alongside our sweet neighbour Bookhou's table.

Karyn has some lovely photos here, and Bre has a few here.

I was thrilled that people liked the purposely generic love cards that Geoff illustrated, painted, and printed. We're not offering them online at the moment but they are available at Kid Icarus.

In other news, this little kitten (who now weighs 6.5 pounds) is going to get fixed tomorrow. I'll spend my evening tonight holding her close.


until tomorrow

You know what they say about all work and no play. Luckily for me, I love to do this particular kind of work.

I've been obsessed with custom pencils since Little Winter. I thought the custom pencils were such a sweet touch, and I wish I had taken one for myself as a memento (I did, however, take a few of the pencils from the Ace Hotel). I didn't have much luck finding a company that would ship a small quantity of custom hex pencils to Canada, though. Recently Matt posted a picture of the pencils he got for Wood & Faulk, which are so nice. I started up my search again, and this time was successful. We got these in the mail the other day and I love them! Part of me wonders who would want a pencil with the name of our company ("company") on it, but if you want one, they shall be found in the gift bags that will be given to the first 25 shoppers who attend Love & Rummage tomorrow.

Tomorrow! I hope to see you there.

(I so adore her dress. The scalloped sleeves are beaded.)


snow day

I enjoyed a self-appointed snow day yesterday. A sweet, quiet day, preparing for Love & Rummage 3, hanging out with some pretty sleepy cats.

Cat whisker jar for good luck.

I don't actually own a record player anymore but when Eva told me that she had a vinyl copy of Nancy & Lee at her shop, I had to have it. I hope to acquire a simple portable record player in the next little while -- if only I still had all those records I bought when I was in high school. Anyhow, Nancy & Lee and Colour Green by Sibylle Baier make up the perfect soundtrack to a snow day, although music files aren't photogenic.