dictionary magnets

January 22, 2012 § 1 Comment

This post is dedicated to the recent Wiki strike.

I like canabalizing things. Let me explain: I like to take old items that no longer have any use to anyone, collecting dust shoved into the corner of a closet somewhere or the back of a dresser drawer, take them apart and make them into something new. I have been doing this waaaaaay before people decided it was cool. Now all sorts of people are talking about being “green” and recycling old items. Canabalizing is much edgier.

Well, in the spirit of one of my favourite past-times, I took an old Webster’s dictionary I had found at Sally-Ann and used it to make some hip fridge magnets. I tore out pages and everything! Very liberating…and seemingly subversive in a weird way. They became Christmas presents for friends who I knew would enjoy the addition they would make to their refrigerators. The magnets aren’t the strongest, so I believe they may need to just be decorative, but hey, people take magnetic poetry and decorate their fridges with those, so why not dictionary entries? It’s educational and ecologically friendly. What more can I say?

Ever wonder what an ardvark is?

Two more…bachelor buttons!

and a charming chaffinch

Last but not least is good old Mr.Webster himself! There are 9 separate magnets that make up this picture and gives you some idea of the size of the magnets.


what’s new

January 19, 2012 § Leave a comment

Every so often I am getting time for more Christmas gift reveals. The one I just posted is Ben’s toque which has quite a story behind it. It’s in the “projects” pages, but here is an easy link for your convenient perusal.

What’s new then? Well, my friend Lisa and I waited half-an-hour or more to get into the big Three Bags Full yarn sale last weekend. We spent so much time in there oohing and aahing over the yarns. Petting them. It had to be done. While inside, we found a gourgeous yarn on sale 50% off. Two colours of pink silkwool Malabrigo…we just had to have them, but what would we make? Lisa had the genius idea to make a Valentines themed project we could work on together. GLORIOUS! So now, we are planning the details…probably not using a pattern again (which I usually regret later). Seriously, I never learn, but sometimes it has to be done. We are thinking, spring inspired cowls (even though the weather in Vancouver right now doesn’t provide much inspiration). We should get our acts together in the next week or so.

Other than that, I am starting another big project. A shawl. I am a little worried about having enough yarn for my desired length buuuut, here goes nothing!

Avie counting sheep

December 29, 2011 § 2 Comments

Now that all the surprises are out there, here is a Christmas present I finished a few weeks back. This a mobile for my (second??) niece, Avie, that I made using felting and one of my favourite techniques: glue gunning. (For details on this and other projects check out Projects on the left hand menu – click here for sheep mobile info)
More gift reveals later.

Avie counting sheep

paper back writer…

October 28, 2011 § 6 Comments

Well, actually this has nothing to do with writing and everything to do with repurposing…BUT I do believe that the medium justifies the reference. You can be the judge.

I recently moved into a new apartment. An essential part of making an apartment your own is putting up pictures, but I am not very conventional in this area of decorating. It may be because I am soo creative and crrrazy, but it could also be because I am poor and picture frames cost money.

Now, moving onto what would seem to be a completely unrelated event: when my brother-in-law moved away a few weeks ago he bequeathed an old typewriter to me. It is old. And it doesn’t work anymore, but as I had only moved into my place a few weeks prior, the addition of useless items seemed a completely rational thing to do.

Here we have the eureka moment: the broken typewriter sat on the top of my bookshelf, reminding me everyday of its uselessness and space taking-upness. Then one day it came to me, I could display my photos in a unique way and solve the problem of the useless typewriter that was nagging me. I began slipping photos in between the typewriter keys. And it was good. Then I decided to put photos under the rollers that would have held paper in place. And it was very good. I took a step back and I knew, I knew that the universe would never be the same again. I, along with my few visitors, looked at what I had created and said that it was very good. And so the typewriter-photo-disply-thing came into being. And then, I rested.

the keys display photos at varying heights

here is where the paper used to go

who says you can't teach an old typewriter new tricks?!

Skip to my Lu

October 14, 2011 § 7 Comments

These past few months have cerr-azy with readjusting to Canada, but I have finally found the time to sit and write a bit of blog inspired by the relocation of my niece, Lucy. Her mommy and daddy moved to Texas on Thursday and so Vancouver has lost a little brightness.

My last day of hang-out time, little Lu was wearing the sweater I knitted for her what seems like ages ago. I am pretty sure her mommy did this for my benefit. Thanks, Shannon. So I managed to get a few photos of her in the sweater while chilling in Starbucks and thought I would share them.

Looking surprised

Feeling like a big girl standing by the window

Thanks, Lu, for being such an adorable knit-model! See you in Texas soon!


bamboo fever

June 28, 2011 § Leave a comment

Every prefecture and every city in Japan has its “famous” things. Usually, these things are food related, Hiroshima and Osaka have their rival styles of okonomiyaki, Kyoto has a special kind of mochi. Well it seems every where there is a special mochi which my elementary level taste fails to differentiate but always appreciates. Mmmmm, mochi…I am getting sidetracked.

Anytime you go travelling in Japan, people want to know if you have done or tried such and such famous thing. So it would be criminal for me to live in Fukui for two years and still not have visited the bamboo doll museum. It must be done. So, about a month back, I had my chance.

The museum itself is quite small, but as you walk through you can watch the artisans working on their craft and learn a thing or two about how these dolls are made. I took a few pictures in the workshop.

This guy was slicing bamboo into fine strings to be used for the dolls hair. He was very friendly and wanted to explain what he was up to in his broken English.

Little bald bamboo heads.

After geting bamboo hair.

Though it is hard to tell in the picture, the flowers on this bamboo kimono are carved on. Actually, in order for the carving to be raised, all the bamboo surrounding it is shaved down. Wow!









Here are some ladies with wooden hair. The one on the left with the various colours of bamboo would be quite expensive, possibly around 5000 to 10,000 yen ($50-100 US). The ladies on the right are classic Fukui style holding the characteristic daffodils which come out every February on the hills by the seaside.

After the workshop is the museum itself. I can`t imagine how much some of these dolls are worth, but the photos are free!

And, my personal favourite:

The hair is amazing and the look carved into the face goes so well with the whole image. In the museum there were many framed magazine articles about this doll, so I must not be the only one who is drawn to it.

After all the bamboo adventure, we went through the souvenir shop. I wanted to buy a doll, but turns out I have expensive tastes and the only ones I liked were at least 10,000 yen. Ouch! So, I left with a nice set of chopsticks. How very practical.

babies dressed like animals are the coolest.

May 17, 2011 § Leave a comment

A few months back, should you recall, I crocheted up a little baby hat with bear ears by special request (post link here). My sister`s sister-in-law saw one at a shop, thought it was cute and my sister thought, “If Corinna could make a cat hat, she could make a bear hat” (side note: I cannot be held responsible for reading her mind at this particular point in time. Maybe Shannon has just heard me say `I could make that` so many times it has melded into her subconcious somewhere).

Well, since this hat was the first of it`s kind for me to create, I was understandably a bit nervous. Especially with mailing it oceans away, I would not have the opportunity to adjust anything if that would be required. Well, I mailed it off and crossed my fingers.

Today, I finally got to see the bear hat in action! Thanks mr.facebook.

Baby bear Avie

Aren`t babies dressed like animals the coolest? I am sure she is the envy all the hip Vancouver babies on her block.

Thanks, Christie for the pic!