Snapshots

Just thought I'd take this Sunday to share a few more of my Montreal pictures. As you'll notice, they're very devout there it seems. Hope you are all in your pajamas relaxing all day today.

New Fabric Designs

Hey, friends. I got a swatch of my nesting doll fabric that I was finally happy with (after much tinkering), so it is now up for sale in my Spoonflower shop should you feel so drawn to it. I designed it thinking that it would be fun to embroider on top of the outlines, so I might play around with that tonight.

I also added a different version of my aviator pug fabric. The turquoise background on the other version was not as brilliant as I had originally thought, so this one, I think, gives the design a better look overall when printed.
For those of you who are excited about it, happy inauguration day! For those of you aren't happy about it... tough shit.

Burfday

Well, it's that time again! Every time I try to not like my birthday, I somehow end up liking it more. It's just a fun day. Maybe I'm not old enough to hate it, or maybe I'm one of those people who will never hate my birthday... even though the numbers may at times be disturbing.
I'm doing that make-your-own calendar thing again this year, but this time I'm doing pen and ink (with watercolor accents) instead of collages. This was January.

Happy birthday to me!

Animals in Sweaters

 I thought it would be a good idea to share this one before we get too far from Christmas. I gave this as a gift to my boss Zoe at Whipped. We're always joking about how animals (ALL animals, no matter what they are) are always cuter if they're wearing sweaters. This gift only seemed... logical.

It's a bit of a different style for me. I went for a more simple watercolor-y look, something that was a bit more charming than my usual work.

In other news, I just ordered a pound of composting worms! (That's about 1,000 worms!) I can't wait to meet my new worm army. My attack worms. This is all in preparation to grow some of my own food this summer. More on that mission in another post. For now, I have to sign off so I can draw up the plans for my worm mansion.

Drawing on Fabric

I did a little experimenting with doodling on fabric last night. This picture makes it look grainier than it actually is. I just used a regular micron pen and added some white gel pen for little pops of highlights on the off-white fabric. I haven't yet ironed or tested these materials against water, but they don't run on the fabric when you're drawing; it all stays nice and crisp. 

What to do with such a thing? I'm not sure yet. I thought maybe it would be fun to cut it out and use it to make a decorative pocket on a t-shirt or something like that. Or give as a gift? Stretch on canvas? Embroider around it? Put it in a drawer and forget about it for a few years? Tough decision...

Tiny House and Happy 2013!

Happy new year! Is everyone nice and hungover? Good. I had a nice, low-key new year's at the bar down the street eating $1 tacos (don't let the price fool you; they're the most amazing tacos on the planet).

But here's the strangest thing: I woke up this afternoon morning to find an inflatable dinosaur sitting on my scooter... just sitting there! I have no idea who put it there, and it wasn't there at 2 am when I got home last night. It was such a magical way to start the year off. I really wish I could thank the person responsible, but at the same time, the mystery adds to the magic. It was a new year's miracle!! (I don't have a good picture of it except on my Instagram account, which you can follow at @PhillyArtGirl.)

No one that I know personally has claimed responsibility, but I feel strongly that it's a sign of things to come in 2013. A year full of... inflatable dinosaurs! BEST YEAR EVER ALREADY.

My mom orchestrated a holiday cardboard house craft for me, her, and my sister to do together. I didn't want to photograph mine until I could take it home and see how it looked with the tiny dinosaur. Not bad... not bad at all.
While I don't really have concrete, list-able resolutions to share, I have some things that I want to work on; mostly relating to art or food (make more/better art, eat more/better food). I think those two things are things we can all get behind, right? Otherwise, I'm starting 2013 off by watching a Star Trek movie marathon and doing some light embroidery. Happy 2013, friends! Here's to another year of creativity!

Montreal: The Insectarium

I *just* arrived home not but an hour ago from my first trip to Canada! I  was warned extensively about the frigid cold, but I really didn't find it too bothersome. I just wore three coats. Really. 

I took a lot of pictures on my trip, but most of my camera "roll" was used up with photos at the Montreal Insecterium... and I'm not entirely convinced I took enough.

I actually have mixed feelings about insects. I think that's because the ones that show up at my home uninvited usually look like something that Sigourney Weaver would have to destroy with flame throwers and nuclear weapons. But if bugs around Philly looked like little 6-legged pieces of rainbow magic (like these ones), I would be more than happy to let them hang out in my house, eat my crumbs, and have little bug book clubs... or whatever bugs would do at my house.
Did everyone have a good Christmas? Any amazing toys acquired? Also: New Year's Resolutions? Who has them and what are they?

Wampa Bowling Cake

Hi, everybody!! I have returned. I took a little blogging break just to remind myself that objects exist in real time and not just in cyber format. That said, you haven't missed much because I haven't really had anything interesting to share... UNTIL TODAY, THAT IS! I was very happy to surprise someone with a cake that was pretty much the exact same cake that I would have wanted for myself. Isn't it nice when that works out?

The cake inside was pumpkin spice filled with old fashioned buttercream. I tinted the buttercream on the outside to get that nice "Star Wars Blue" (if that's not already the name for a paint or crayon color, someone has been remiss in their color-naming duties). I made all of the other decorations with fondant, except for the Wampa fur for which I used royal icing. And YES, that is a Death Star bowling ball that he's holding next to the two little Stormtrooper bowling pins. 
(Oh, and hey, bowling ball companies: why don't you start making bowling balls that look like the Death Star? I looked and couldn't find any online. If I had one of those, I would be the coolest bowling girl within at least a dozen lanes. Make it so, bowling companies.)
Thank you to the ever-amazing Zoƫ Lukas (no, not "Lucas," I know what you're thinking) and all of my awesome co-workers at Whipped Bakeshop for helping me make this cake an awesome surprise!

By the by: I appreciate the inquiries some of you have made regarding my absence; it makes me feel like people actually miss seeing what I'm up to... which is extremely reaffirming. So thank you! The holidays are always nice because I have lots of handmade gifts that, once given to their respective recipients, I can share here!

I hope you have all sent your lists to Santa; time is running out. I asked him for a crafting workshop weekend with my mom, and also for tickets to a class about Belgian beer. Merry Christmas to ME!

Sun Exposure Prints

A while back I bought this Sunography kit. The directions are fairly simple: throw some stuff on top of the paper in the kit and let it sit in the sun for about 10-15 minutes. I did my best to grab interesting things, but I think I can do better if I go on a proper scouting trip at the thrift and craft stores. Happily, the kit came with about 6 sheets of double-sided paper. So... huzzah.

These are two sides of a single sheet that I did this morning. I'll hold off for now on others. Apparently you can make it sepia-toned by putting it in a water bath that has detergent that has phosphates in it. I tried it, but none of my stupid environmentally friendly detergents have phosphates in them, so it looks like it's blue for now.

Dinosaurs!

1. Not a dinosaur, but close enough. 2. Brachiopod impression! It was so perfect. 3. Dinosaur boneses. 4. Me taking a break from sorting bones and making maps. 5. My cozy tent!

It occurred to me that I never shared pictures from my dig in New Mexico over the summer... DAMN, that was a great trip. If everything goes according to plan, if the chips fall into place, if my evil plot comes to fruition, we will be journeying out again next summer. Muahaha.... MUAHAHAHA!!!