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...