Saturday, December 27

Before 2008 is Over...

Before this year ends, I thought I'd give some love to all of the great albums I've acquired and were released in the last 12 months. In no certain order:

Sam Roberts Band: Love at the End of the World

When I first started listening to this album, I was very disappointed in the lack of keyboards, and the fact that it wasn't epic like Chemical City. After I decided to drop my expectations, and embrace the album for what it was, it has become one of my favorites.

The Black Keys: Attack and Release

This is a great record. We were over at a friend's house and he was playing this album and I instantly loved it. It's almost like everything Ryan Adams should've become. The crazy-ish vocals, the rawness, the sloppy instruments...

Fleet Foxes: Fleet Foxes

I decided to hold out for this one until Christmas. There's something about denying yourself that can make something even more special. I'm glad I did. It may be one of my favorite records of all time. The sound textures, especially on vinyl, are so amazing.

Blitzen Trapper: Furr

I fell in love with this band as soon as I heard the title track. I didn't even sample the album... we were in the music store, I saw the record, the rest is history.

I've never been a fan of Rilo Kiley, but when I first heard Jenny Lewis' first solo release, Rabbit Fur Coat, I knew that she was an artist I could respect. The release of Acid Tongue took that love to a whole new level. This album is right up my alley... the multi-part songs and flawed crooning, I adore it.

I had to let this album grow on me. There is so much good content, but there is also some weird stuff: crazy-high miss piggy vocals, double bass, things I wouldn't typically love. I gave it a chance and ended up loving all of the funny stuff. I can't decide if it's because it really is good, or because it's novel.

Conor Oberst and the Mystic Valley Band:

I was torn on whether or not to even include this album in my post. Do I think it's one of the best albums of 2008? No. I do enjoy it, though. And, it's one of the best things that Conor Oberst has ever done, short of his Bright Eyes album Cassadaga. Most everything else I would call mediocre... excluding some of the very beginning, which would be classified as unlistenable...
I just have a hard time seeing it in any grouping with Fleet Foxes...

Death Cab for Cutie: Narrow Stairs

Death Cab is a band that I can never get sick of. Maybe that's why I like them so much.

That's all I can recall for the time-being. I'd love to hear any feedback about these albums, or your own personal favorites for the year!

Thursday, December 25

Merry Christmas, Lovely Friends!

Have a happy Christmas, from my family to yours!

Thursday, December 18


Do you hear that? That's me, breathing a sigh of relief. I just finished my last order for Christmas and it feels amazing. I've been sewing morning, noon, and night (literally), sometimes meshing those together and skipping the sleep completely. I got pounded with holiday orders and realized that if I didn't take control of it, I was likely to really disappoint someone on their holiday. Now I'm finally done. It feels so good. SO. GOOD.

In other news, Jay McCarroll from Project Runway featured my own little Nels Narwhal on his favorites list, and since I've been getting lots of Etsy love. Too bad my shop is closed. I've had to disappoint a few people. I promise, though, I will be back as soon as I have time to stretch out and relax, and I'll be ready for tons of sewing. That is, if the government doesn't shut us all down with the new CPSIA thingy that is soon to go into effect. Here's an idea-- be neglectful of safety regulations and allow China to poison a bunch of our kids, then overcompensate by reaming toy makers with ridiculously high costs to test their products, so much so that you put the little guy out of business. Ah, America. The land of opportunity, right? No, I realize that is unfair. I'm just a little bitter about what could happen to a lot of really talented, amazing artists that can't afford the cost of this regulatory testing. Keeping kids safe is an important goal, I completely agree. But there has to be a way to do so without running entrepreneurs out of business. Then we just allow corporations to completely take over. I will be contacting my congressman and signing every petition I can. I would encourage you to do the same.

Anyway, to step off of my soap box, when I return to my shop in January, I will have new photos and (hopefully) new products. Here a few to satisfy your taste buds for the time being :

Sweet little Gallop

Longer legged Ophelia

And, my favorite tall drink of water-- Betty

Thursday, December 11


I love you and miss you.

(I'm always late, right? Hee, hee...)

An Earlier Date

Due to stress and the amount of orders I'm backed up on, my shop will be closing down @ noon central time on Saturday (Dec. 13). I'm taking a break after that, so I won't be reopening until after the new year, but when I return I'll have photos of my new "studio" (or the spare bedroom that is being turned into a neat and tidy storage area for all my stuff) and tales of a six year old and her new tappy shoes (they're for Christmas, don't tell!). Have a good holiday, everyone!

Oh, yes, and I made it to 300. Yay!

Wednesday, December 10

Oh, Those Numbers

Man, I'm so close to 300 I can taste it. I never would have guessed in a MILLION years that I'd hit 300 sales in my first year. I think it's wonderful, and overwhelming, and something to be proud of. I'm 3 away. I'll be a little bummed if I shut my shop down next Monday and end up being 1 or 2 shy, but I need to keep in mind all of the hard work this year and remember that a number is just a number, and the love I've received from all my new friends is the very best part. So, thank you. All of you.

Tuesday, December 9

I Heart You, Charlie Kaufman

I don't know that I've ever met a person that has seen Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind that hasn't liked it. Okay, that is actually untrue, but I have so much love for that movie that it covers all of the bad feelings. Last week we went to see Synecdoche, New York and I thought it was amazing. Charlie Kaufman is a writer that really makes you love his characters and encourages you to take more from a movie than what you may get at face value. I recommend it, for sure. Actually, all I want to do is go back and watch it again...

oh, yes... BONUS! When we got there we sat through a short introduction and surprise, surprise, Jon Brion did the score! Swoon. Swoon again. He also did the music for Stepbrothers, which I found rather odd...

Monday, December 8

A Date for Closing the Shop

I believe I've picked a date for closing my shop. It will be Monday, December 15th. This way, I'll have plenty of time to complete all my holiday orders, and still have time to enjoy my own holiday.

I will be offering one lamb in the shop before closing, so if you'd like to snag him, you can do so tomorrow, Dec. 9, @ 10 am central time. That's all for now. I hope your season is as lovely as can be!

Thursday, December 4

Custom Delight

I really am a lover of custom orders, they give me a chance to be creative. Here are photos from two custom orders I just completed:

These two penguin ornaments are a gift for a bride, to celebrate her first Christmas with her husband. I think that is so special... and, I love them so much, I just may offer them in the shop (if you couldn't tell, I love pairs).

This lamb was certainly the favorite around my house. His pink nose and sleepy eyes make him so sweet, and his soft coat makes him so snuggly. He will definitely be offered in my shop in the next week or so.

Design This Design That Issue 3

If you're in need of some reading material, you could always pop over to Design This Design That and get some behind the scenes on some great artists. It's a toy issue, and I'm there along with Penguin and Fish, Fantastic Toys, Hasenpfeffer, and many others.

Wednesday, December 3

I'm Running Out of Time...

I know it's getting late to still be introducing ornaments, but I made this little guy and I thought he needed to be shared. My pictures aren't fantastic, yesterday was dreary and I was in a big hurry.

Soon, maybe I'll steal some time to speak of enchanting movies and rare vinyl. Hopefully...

Saturday, November 29

Birthday Party

What's better than a tiny Skunkboy Creature? One with removable clothing, that's what:

This little bear gets to meet her new 5 year old owner in a couple of hours. I think she's really going to love it.

Thursday, November 27

Mmmmm... Turkey...

I hope everyone has a wonderful day, family or not. Eat tons.

Monday, November 24

Another Ornament

He's a gentleman kitty with a velvet cape, and he will be making his debut in the shop in the next day or two.

Saturday, November 22

The Best Day EVER!

Since I can remember, I've wanted a kitty. Growing up, my parents were "dog people" so a cat was out of the question. I knew that when I went out on my own, the first thing I would do was get a sweet little kitten....

Then I married someone who was allergic to cats. He still is. Today, we got to give Hope a cat, anyway. It's the best feeling in the world when you get to do the impossible for someone. She was so confused at first and then completely ecstatic! "You mean I get to keep her?!"

Johnny's mom found her in the woods, crying so loudly you could hear her inside with all of the doors and windows shut. When Vickie went out to find her, the cat didn't even run. Instead, she climbed inside her vest and snuggled up. Apparently, someone had dumped this 5 week old kitten, and left her to starve out in the woods. It makes me feel a little sick, honestly.

Johnny loves a good underdog or rescue story. He has a soft spot for both of these. Hope was supposed to get a kitty for Christmas, in a box, under the tree, but Johnny knew that this little sweetie belonged in our family. And, she is exactly that: a very sweet addition to our family.

Oh, yes, and Hope has named her Lucy. Perfect.

Friday, November 21

Adventures in Tiny Town

Okay, so nothing's tiny except the piano. Tonight I had the pleasure (and frustration) of recording toy piano. I guess I can check that one off of my "Things to do in a Lifetime" list.

I'm glad my dress got to be a part of it... hee, hee...

A Smidge of Randomness...

As I get through yet another month feeling schizophrenic, I thought I'd share some of the things that have occupied bits of my time.

Lots and lots of ornaments. Surprisingly, I'm not sick of making them. I actually really enjoy it.

A very fun pair of owls I got to make as a custom order. They turned out so cute in person, if only my pictures were better... (in my defense, Blogger has been loading my photos in very dull and hazy)

This dress. Oh, this dress. It's funny the way you may hear a tidbit about a designer or artist, and then all of a sudden it blows up around the blogs and it's all you hear about. I kind of feel this way about Dear Creatures. I found this dress a while back, and now I can't stop hearing about this clothing line and it's designer... which I absolutely am not complaining about. I LOVE this dress, and am the proud new owner. It's even more beautiful in person. The fabric, the styling, everything about it. So, my day is made. Now I'm going to get dressed.

Tuesday, November 18

Party Penguins

I'm ready to share my penguin couple. They are both dressed up for the holidays, the boy with his bow tie and wool belly, and the girl with her matching bow and shimmery tulle belly.

Monday, November 17

A Lovely Sunday

Yesterday we had the opportunity to have an evening at home. We decided to do family-ish stuff, and put up the Christmas tree. Some people scoff at the idea of having it up so early, but Thanksgiving is right around the corner. And besides, two or three years ago, Johnny had to lay down the law about absolutely not putting up the tree before Halloween. So, if you consider that, I'm doing pretty well this year. I tend to get a tad (overly) excited about festive things like holidays and parties. It's been so crazy busy this year, that this was the first "free" weekend at home to even consider something like that. Anyway, my tree is gorgeous... it's so much brighter than my old one. Like I said in previous posts, I've never had a white(ish) tree before-- this one is "champagne"-- but it's lovely.

That's really all I have for now. It seems I eat, drink, and breathe sewing right now. Sorry if all my talk of Skunkboy craziness is getting old, it's just my first Christmas season, and it's really starting to pick up. So, I'll try to keep it to a minimum, but do forgive me if it slips out more than once.

Oh, also, I should have some new friends in the shop sometime this week, plus photos of a custom order I've had up in the air way too long. I'll leave you with this:

Blitzen Trapper. I've been obsessed lately. This has nothing to do with their name + Christmas love. They just play great music.

Saturday, November 15

New Ornaments!

I have two new ornaments in the shop! They are both very dear to my heart... maybe it's because I'm starting to get that Christmas bug...

I also have a penguin couple that I will be ready to share in a day or two. They are dressed for Christmas party fun.

Thursday, November 13


Recently, I've become infatuated with terrariums. I see them all the time, but one day I was searching Etsy and one struck me funny. After that, I've been wanting to buy terrariums for everyone in my family. Johnny thinks I'm crazy... maybe he doesn't understand the beauty I see in them. Maybe it's just another passing phase, who knows? What I do know, is this is my new favorite:

Check out the Oak Leaves. Her shop is wonderful.

Wednesday, November 12

Mmmm... Apples...

I hate it when I'm following a blog, but the person running it never (rarely) updates. So, I suppose this is my attempt at updating, though I don't have much to say.

Yesterday I received my dream coat. Though, in person it was not that at all. It was too big and too frumpy, and the color wasn't at all the same as the online picture. So, that's that, mattress man. Maybe it's my brain refusing to like it, because wearing something on my body that costs that much is more than just a little wasteful. Whatever the case, I'm not keeping it.

In happier news, I did find my Christmas tree. I didn't end up with a white one after all. It's a champagne colored tinsel tree and it is lovely. Hope and I are going to set it up on Sunday (yay!).

Yesterday was baking day. Our fruit market was closing for the season, so we stocked up on apples. Last night we made homemade applesauce, filled our bellies, and then followed that with baking wonderful apple pie, and stuffed ourselves. All in all, it was a fantastic night. I mean, you can't really go wrong with homemade goodness.

I must go back upstairs and do some work... I do have plenty to keep me busy. If you are planning to order from the shop, the sooner the better. I am getting very backed up, and I see it only getting worse before it gets better. Hmmm... I think I hear some apple pie calling... better go for now!

Monday, November 10

Farewell Little Friends...

I've been busy, busy since I started posting my little Snowbuddy ornaments last week. If you've ordered one, it's one it's way! Here's a batch I shipped out today:

Also, here are the additional pictures of my Christmas Deer, as promised:

I think I'll post two for sale in the shop on Friday, so if you'd like to get one, that will be the time to do so.

Sunday, November 9

Christmas Deer

I am so excited about this Christmas Deer! I'll try to shoot better pictures of him tomorrow.