24 June, 2009

ww dot ...

task of the morning was to stitch up a pair of special order monogrammed towels, and i'm pleased with the way they came out!

the trickiest part about this job was that i didnt have a W in my letter set for this font, so i had to make one. at first i was thinking that i was going to have to do a lot of cussing and swearing as i sweated through cuts and pastes in illustrator to make the letter. i am terrible at those computer programs and i have no patience for them at all, so i was not looking forward to this part of the task. but then it hit me that, duh, i could just print out an M and a V and do some old fashioned cutting and pasting to make my W. so i did, and i'm sure it was way less painful than going about with the computer.

(i love these polka-dotted towels!)

23 June, 2009

front page news

just got an email from my friend melanie (and a facebook note from my friend jen j) that my little f made the front page of etsy this morning. thanks for the heads up, ladies!

and, speaking of melanie linder, look at how sweet her prints look on my little fabric-covered embroidery hoop bulletin boards (which, if i am not mistaken, was an idea that several of us z-town girls adopted via mel's inspiration):

i scored the pink hot air balloon and the PA barn cards/prints through a trade that we did while sharing tent space at the recent rainy emmaus craft fair. they're great, aren't they? i'd been oogling them since artstar. (want your own? get them here.)

20 June, 2009

for papa bear

father's day is on sunday. it's one of those holidays that stresses me out because i never know what to give to my dad. golf gifts and neckties definitely do not work for my papa. he's got every tool and every bar and grill accessory, and i can't afford to get him a new sports car, so i never know what to do.
here's this year's gift:

ugh. it's small and kinda pathetic, but i kinda love it anyway, and i actually think that he might like it, too. papa bear knows that i'm going through my starving artist thing and that i've got no money, so i know he's not expecting that sports car this year.
my dad is not a fancy guy and he doesnt use hankies all the time. when he does, they are the simple cotton kind, like what i remember his father having in his back pocket all the time. i have poignant memories of all the times that i've been standing next to my father with my eyes spilling over with tears, at weddings or funerals, and he notices me wiping my face with my hands and quietly hands me his simple cotton hankie. so i stitched this up thinking that he won't use it too much, but when he does, he'll be carrying a little bit more love in his pocket.

19 June, 2009

maybe it's patriotic fever, but probably not.

as i was stitching this,

the last of the custom orders taken at renegade, my eyes went all full of love for the colors. why is it that i love the combo of blue red and white so much as i do?!?! is it the upcoming july 4th holiday and me thinking of fruit tarts that i will soon make? is it my love of france and the films of godard (who made big use of the blue red and white)? is it the nautical trend that's all over this season's fashion (which i dont seem to pay attention to, anyway)?
i dont know why. i dont really care why. i'm just saying - red stitches look as good to me on blue and white as they do on just pure white.

great color choice, cristina!

quick stitches

these are on their way to new york, hoping to make it into one of my new favourite magazines...

we'll see!

18 June, 2009

what the f?

i also just listed this little guy:

it is tiny, but i think that this piece just has so much personality and punch. i gotta say, it is one of my favourite pieces i have ever made, but i just have no reason to hold on to it. i want to see it go to a good home.

this was one of the pieces that i stitched up for readymade magazine for the chez-sucre-chez how-to feature in the december 2008 issue. (see the details here.)

i used a satin stitch on a background fabric which comes from a piece i inherited from my late great aunt mary's fabric stash. i love this fabric so much that i only use little cuts of it from time to time, and only for very special little projects. see, this really is a very special little piece! the etsy listing is here.

17 June, 2009

letter(s) go

also now in the shop:
the monogrammed towels that i had stitched up as display samples for the recent craft fairs. i usually do these as custom orders, but these babies are in the shop at 15 bucks each and they're pressed and folded and ready to go to you.

you can get this stripe-y letter A monogram: (here)

how about this fancy red stitched H? (here)

this F can be yours if you act now: (here)

i only did a few of these dotty monograms, if you're a C, you're in luck; here it is:

love this L on the navy blue towel? get it. (here)

i've already got a couple of K's for myself. you can have this one if you want it: (here)

one more H, this one crisp black on white: (here)

i'll be doing more listings soon, but this is it for the ready-to-go monogram towels!

carrying on

task of the day is taking stock of my inventory and supplies and updating my shops. i just put this item (the keep calm and carry on piece) in my etsy shop.
as ubiquitous as that saying/poster is these days, and as much as i do count myself as part of the camp that is a bit over it, having this piece above my desk is a nice little reminder to breathe and keep on keeping on. and i do need that reminder and that motivator around here sometimes! so i'll maybe be a little sad to see that one go if someone buys it. but not really. so if you want it, get it! (here.) (my moustached octopus may be a little lonely without it, but i'll find something else for him to reach out and rest his tentacles on.)

16 June, 2009

greg, don't look!

inspired by my good friends greg and alec, i've got a new tea towel design.

greg and alec just moved into a new place and i wanted to stitch them up something for a housewarming gift. as i was just there helping them paint a few weeks ago, i kinda knew their color scheme and was trying to come up with something that would work in either the kitchen or the bathroom. i didnt want to do monograms -- i wanted to do something new. and this is what i came up with -- the anchors:

and then once i did it, i realized that i kinda love it. i love it for the simplicity -- the clean dotted line and crisp colors.
and i do love that the design and the towels work for the kitchen:

and they work for the bathroom:

so i put the original set in the mail (you'll get it in a few days greg -- i know you didn't heed my post title) and put listings for the towels in my shops. you can get the blue towel, or the white towel, or a set of two (you choose the colors).

new old letters

encouraged and inspired by the amazingly awesome response and feedback i got about my cross-stitched pieces at the recent craft-fairs, i've picked up needle and thread and gone on with a new little collection as i've been wanting to do for a couple of weeks. tipped off by one of my blog readers via a comment left on one of my posts, i discovered the antique pattern library. holy shazaaam - what a resource! (i send a million thank yous to emily for this info!) well, scrolling through all of the pages and links, i found these patterns and kinda fell in love. i really adore the old fashioned roses and the subtle flourishes on the letters. i thought that if they were done in that colour palette that i love so much, pink and green and black and white, that they'd look pretty spectacular. and i think they do.

the other thing i like about this is that they're so large! there are two size options, each only slightly different, and they're both charted to be a bigger scale than a lot of the other cross-stitch letter patterns that i have. they aren't so difficult, either, but they do take a considerable amount of time due to the scale of each piece and thickness of the letters.

to start, i just did this little selection of letters. i put them all up for sale in the shop, but i dont intend on doing custom orders for these ones at the moment. love 'em? buy them here or get the pattern here to try on your own. and if you really really really love them and would like me to make a specific letter for you, send me a note and i'll let you know if i can work it out.

15 June, 2009

kid stays in the picture

the other week i worked with my friend paul to make a commercial for his website, dineindie.com. ever since we shot it, i've been meaning to post these stills and do a little commercial for the commercial, but i've been so darned busy with the craft-fair madness that i've not had a chance until now.
these are totally just teasers. they don't really give any idea of what the commercial is all about -- and that's the point. he only sent me these two stills so that i didn't give away any secrets or let you see or know too much.

(i'm kinda giving the camera the old crazy-eye in this one... eeks.)

wanna see the commercial? well you're gonna have to come out to the virginville film festival this saturday night! woo-hoo! this is like, the biggest event of the year around here. it's like the prom -- everyone does it. (wait! that came out wrong! i meant that everyone comes out to the event! that was what i meant! honestly!)
a little more about the virginville film festival: people like you and me (and some a bit more skilled with the camera and editing and storytelling and all of that) make movies and then they get shown on the big screen which is set up on a hill out in the middle of beautiful farmland. it's a really great event that's been happening for a few years now. last year was my first and let me tell you -- it was quite magical. people bring blankets and chairs and snacks and drinks and the movies start around dusk and then go for a few hours. that night last year i saw more fireflies than i have ever seen in my entire life. it's way amazing.
and now a little more about dine indie: it's a website that gives info on local independent eateries -- restaurants and grocery shops and farmstands and wineries and bed and breakfasts and cafes and bars and stuff. it focuses on pointing people to the good independently owned stuff rather than the icky chain places. it's definitely a great resource and they keep on expanding the areas served by it.. check it out! (here)
ah -- yes, so now craft-fair madness is over and i am very much looking forward to getting back to life as a little more normal. i've got lots in the works --- stay tuned.

11 June, 2009

never bagged a babe.

(oh my goodness, i tried not to use that as the title, but it just kept popping up in my head! i couldnt help it! sixteen candles quote = irresistible, no matter how inappropriate it may be!)

new bags printed. i thought i had printed a lot, but ran out half-way through the second day at renegade!

10 June, 2009

local lovin'

so, artstar and renegade have passed and now i've got one more weekend craft fair to go. this one's a local one and i will be there with my fellow z-town crafty gals.

hey -- i dont think i've mentioned that we've got a new logo and a new website!

yes, yes, it's true and very exciting! jen worked for weeks to make the new website happen and i can't believe i'm just now linking to it! duh! (sorry jen!). anyways, you should check it out (here). z-town made is the little craft collective here in town that i am so so so thrilled to be a part of. each of us has our different sort of crafty business and we're all working together to keep inspired and motivated and to support each another the best we can. it's great. i really love that i've found such wonderfully talented women and that we've formed this group and have become this little band of friends who believe in and support what one another is doing. (i love you, guys!)
well, you can catch us all this weekend at the emmaus best in bloom festival. we'll be set up somewhere along the way (i'm not sure exactly where --- it can't be too big, though, so come on out and find us!). the event is being held both saturday and sunday from 10am-3pm. more info here.

how could i have forgotten...

...this guy?

this was a present bought for me at renegade.
it's a stuffed animal!

(obviously! dont you see the stuffing?!)
we dont know the name of the stand from which he came, but i was told that it was made by a little girl who had set up shop in front of another vendor's stand (maybe that of her mama or pop?). pretty awesome, right?
(if you do happen to know the name of the artist who made this brilliant piece of work, please do leave it in the comments so i can give her credit!)
thank you! xo.

08 June, 2009

recap of renegade

it's monday afternoon and i'm back home from the weekend and i gotta say, i'm totally exhausted! renegade was a hoot!

this was my first time doing one of these bigger fairs all on my own; i kinda loved the ability to set up the whole tent and bring everything out and set it all up like it was the chez-sucre-chez shop! i think i really lucked out with my booth location - under a couple of trees right by the park entrance at bedford and north 12th, so it was cool and shady and had a constant stream of people walking by. plus, i was right across from the renegade info tent, so i got to meet and talk to danny and tara from the renegade team in chicago. they're totally great and i'm thinking maybe i'll see them in chicago?

i started to take some little detail shots of my booth set-up, but i didnt get too many before getting distracted. these past two weekends have taught me that i am terrible at craft-fair-booth documentation. (here are a couple more detail photos that anna from sub-studio took and also posted here on poppytalk.)

(i think my chez-sucre-chez sign could be a little bigger, no?)

(check out the hilarious fake sandwich i made to demo my sammy wraps -- haha!)

i didnt get to walk around too much (i think i've also realized over these past two weeks of fairs that i've got a bit of a paranoia about being away from the booth for too long) but i was really happy to have been able to see so many friends and to meet some great new people, (like elise of argyle whale!)
i was also really happy that on sunday morning we picked up not just six, but a dozen donuts from greenpoint's peter pan bakery. oh peter pan donuts, i love you.

thank you to everyone who stopped by and big hellos to all of you new people i got to meet and talk to. it really was a great weekend.
kim and dana and b -- thank you SO much for your help with set up and break-down. i was happy to have you there with me!

05 June, 2009

renegade -- year two for chez-sucre-chez!

hey y'all -- -i'm running out of here to get my butt to nyc for this weekend's renegade craft fair.
come and see me --- saturday and/or sunday. the event is being held in mccarren park (the park this year, not the pool) and it goes from 11 - 7 both days. my booth is right by the entrance at bedford and north 12th. come on over!

04 June, 2009

art starry cap

i know this is a little late, but how about an artstar bazaar recap, shall we?

i had the pleasure of sharing my tent space with the lovely and uber-talented melanie linder of spread the love and love your invite. her illustrations are so good they give me the happy freak-outs and i really really love the way that our work works together. (i love it so much, in fact, that i'm taking some of her cards to renegade so that you nyc peeps can see for yourself how sweet mel's doodles are!)
as if having mel as a tent-mate weren't cool enough, we got to have our fellow z-town pals karen and sara right next to us. it was great, we got to share sticky-buns and muffins and popcorn and french fries and swedish fish and mixed nuts and pina coladas. we had a fantastic location, the weather was lovely, and i think we all agree that it was a successful event. kudos to megan and erin of the artstar team for all the work they put into organizing the fair -- it went off without a hitch (as far as i know....)!

it was good to see tara (of handmade in PA) and it was great to meet jen (of indiefixx), these ladies have both done some sweet little write-ups for chez-sucre-chez and it's really nice to put a face to a name. i also had the pleasure of meeting sue, of giant dwarf. i have been coveting one of her facinators for months and months and now, because she's awesome and we heart each other (etsy lingo, there) we totally worked out a trade and now we've each got a piece of one another's work -- i've got the fascinator i wanted and she's got a little bit of bunny love to hang in her studio. yay!
love and thanks to grade-school pal amy, and to mom and pop and stacy and sweet baby aidyn and baby bella, and to the k-town posse, and to b for stopping by to see me!

{okay -- in attempting to put this post together, i realize that the photos that i took are total crap, and that the pictures and the recaps that my fellow z-towners have posted on their blogs are way better than what i was working up. check out karen's recap (here), and sara's post (here) and mel's (here).}

03 June, 2009

twice apron a time

(i already used the title "once apron a time")

whew! it's been a whirlwind couple of weeks!
the latest is that i've just returned from a quick up-and-back trip to nyc to drop off a very special commission. my friend cori is getting married on saturday and instead of the traditional bridal party, she's having a whole bunch of kids (32 of them!!!) walk down the aisle as her procession. later in the celebration, they're gonna be decorating their own cupcakes and cori thought it might be a fun thing to give them all aprons that they could wear to protect their pretty white outfits and then take home with them as part of a little thank you gift for each child. she approached me with the idea and asked if i'd be interested in making the aprons. well i'd never made aprons before (just these smocks) but i was so psyched about her idea and about the challenge and the thrill that i happily jumped in. it took some experimenting and a lot of fabric, but i'd say i'm pretty darned pleased with the results.
here are some of them set up for photos the day before i drove them to nyc; first the boys':

(the backs:)

and the girls':

this was one of my favourites:

i especially love the pink rickrack with the brown polka-dotted fabric.
they are all reversible -- here are front and back shots of one of them:

a little pile of girls' aprons all tagged and ready to go:

there is one wee baby (just a year old), and i made a smock-y style "apron" for her. isabella's apron:

(love it? i got the pattern here!)

i wish i had taken better photos, but i was just way too busy to fuss over them last week. (and the sun and rain have been so unpredictable and fickle these weeks!) i'm pretty sure there'll be some good shots of the children wearing the aprons this weekend, though -- so i'll be sure to post them if/when i get them.
i'd also like to do a tutorial post on these aprons; i did so much research and took the time to make the patterns for different ages/sizes that i feel like i should share. i'm hoping that i'll get around to that within the next month.
i also need to do an artstar recap post! but now i'm frantically working to get ready for renegade brooklyn this weekend... it'll all come together... deep breaths...
cori --- good luck and congrats and thanks and enjoy this weekend! xoxo-k