at the shop

I men­tioned a while ago that my friend opened a shop across from the art col­lege we attend­ed, and I was rent­ing some space for my plush… I don’t think I’ve ever showed you pic­tures of my plush in the shop! 

Here they are! :D



That was back in April. I’ve added more stuff this past weekend.

Fierce octo­pus pins!


The pro­to­type had eyes made of beads from the gift pack­age that my friend sent me — they’re extra fierce, bul­gy eyes! So I had to keep it for myself :D


Close up of the extra bul­gy eyes…


Also made tea rose pins that can also be worn on a necklace.


And the updat­ed shop! :D


Mike brought the new items to the shop and took this pic­ture for me, because I did­n’t have time to go that day. If you look close­ly you’ll see that one of my snow mush­room lid has been pushed into the jar… I sup­pose a cus­tomer thought it belonged inside the jar rather than sit­ting on top of it. And I sup­pose that’s one of the risks of putting my beloved plush into a pub­lic, phys­i­cal shop. My friend kind­ly fixed it for me afterward. 

I actu­al­ly found it dif­fi­cult to walk away from all my plush­es when I put them into the shop. Felt like I was leav­ing them behind… :’( So I like sell­ing online for this rea­son, I can keep my plush­es with me indef­i­nite­ly, until some­one buys them. At the same time, sales have been extreme­ly slow at my Etsy shop, while quite a few things have gone to good homes at my friend’s shop. So I’ve been con­tem­plat­ing whether to keep the Etsy shop…

Also, I’ve been hear­ing a lot about unfair prac­tices on Etsy late­ly. The lat­est news came from one of my favourite crafters. 

I won’t repeat the sto­ries here (if you’re inter­est­ed in learn­ing more please vis­it the above and fol­low­ing links), but I will cer­tain­ly join the protest, because a lot of what has hap­pened is sim­ply not right and our voic­es need to be heard.

Some believe that clos­ing our shops for one day won’t make a dif­fer­ence. My shop, for instance, will like­ly not make any sales on any giv­en day even when it’s open. Thus, its tem­po­rary clo­sure pret­ty much means noth­ing to Etsy in terms of profit. But I sup­pose by join­ing in the protest I can at least let the com­pa­ny know that I’m not okay with its unfair prac­tices toward my fel­low crafters and its inac­tion toward reselling.

Some expressed con­cerns that all the shops that are involved in the protest will be closed down by Etsy. I per­son­al­ly don’t believe that will hap­pen. And if that hap­pens then I will def­i­nite­ly not part­ner with an orga­ni­za­tion that oper­ates through dic­ta­tor­ship and sim­ply seeks to elim­i­nate all expres­sions of oppo­si­tion. I sup­pose the stakes for me is not as high as arti­sans who depend on their hand­made busi­ness to make a liv­ing. So that’s all the more rea­son for me to con­tribute my voice to this protest, in the hope that things can change for the bet­ter espe­cial­ly for crafters and arti­sans whose inde­pen­dent busi­ness­es are their main sources of income.

Sup­port handmade!




earth owl and many blessings

My friend Nan­cy sent me a pack­age in the mail, full of trea­sures! :D

There were lots of craft sup­plies, each thing relat­ed to a blog post I wrote! I was so moved by the thoughts and kind­ness behind this gift. It meant so much to me. Open­ing all the tis­sue paper-wrapped and rib­bon tied parcels felt like Christmas!

Amongst the many things in the pack­age, there were beads! I love beads! I poured them out into a paint palette and mar­veled at each one. There were a lot of stone chip beads and each is dif­fer­ent. It was fas­ci­nat­ing. I par­tic­u­lar­ly love stones that are trans­par­ent with streaks of colours in them. Remind­ed me of the tiny bot­tle of tum­bled stone chips I got at the Big Nick­el when I was a kid.


It was a such spe­cial gift and I want­ed to make some­thing real­ly spe­cial with them. Some­thing that I can car­ry around with me.

And so the earth owl came into being! :D


I haven’t done a lot of wire work so this turned out bet­ter than I thought. I kind of just bent the wire into an owl shape in a free-formed man­ner. For the body and the wings I attached/strung the beads on by cro­chet­ing with a 2mm hook and thin wire. The eyes are also crocheted.

I found these gor­geous, sparkling glass beads from the pack­age for the eyes. 



And the best thing about the owl is that I had a super fun time mak­ing it. The beads inspired many hours of cre­ativ­i­ty and pure joy.

Feel­ing so very thank­ful and blessed.


Have a won­der­ful week­end, everyone!




sewing frenzy, episode honest ed!

Before show­ing you the blous­es and skirt I made, this is the place where I got the fabric.

Hon­est Ed’s! If you’re ever in Toron­to, be sure to vis­it Hon­est Ed’s, it’s one of the most awe­some places on my list! An old-fash­ioned dis­count store that sells pret­ty much every­thing. AND! All the signs in the store are still hand-paint­ed! It also has the most bizarre dec­o­ra­tions. This giant one-eyed zom­bie elk clock is locat­ed between house­ware and menswear. 

Any­hoo, I saw this tuto­r­i­al for mak­ing a blouse with scarves, so I wan­dered into Hon­est Ed’s with the inten­tion of find­ing scarves. They did­n’t have a wide selec­tion that fits what I’m look­ing for, but then I spot­ted the ban­danas! Loved the pat­tern on them, and they were 50¢ a piece. I thought if I stitch two togeth­er I would have just enough fab­ric to make a square top! :D


I like that there are brown stripes down the sides and at the shoul­der seams.


Also goes with my magen­ta cardi­gan! :D (And it looks much bet­ter when I ask some­one else to take full-length pic­tures of me. Look, I can even hold a plant as a prop.)


I did get two scarves to make a blouse from the tuto­r­i­al, but the scarves I bought were much wider than the ones in the tuto­r­i­al, so the blouse is very flut­tery :D


And then I bought more ban­danas to make a skirt! Basi­cal­ly I sewed 3 ban­danas togeth­er into a very wide tube. Then I made anoth­er fab­ric tube that was the same width but a bit short­er with some white light weight fab­ric left­over from an Ikea cur­tain for a lin­ing. I sewed the two tubes togeth­er along the top edge, then fold­ed down the top edge to make a cas­ing for elas­tic. And that is all :D 


The top I made last sum­mer from a men’s shirt.

Over the week­end my mom gave me a bunch of fab­ric from her years of col­lec­tion — some came from Hong Kong! :D I remem­ber going to fab­ric shops (and yarn shops!) with her when I was a kid. There was always a musty but strange­ly com­fort­ing smell amongst the bolts of fab­ric. I can cer­tain­ly keep mak­ing square tops but I think I’m going to try adding some small details or variations. 

Have a great day! :D





sewing frenzy, episode one


I spent much of last week sewing. My goal was to make sev­er­al light square tops in prepa­ra­tion for the super hot Toron­to sum­mer (although it’s rather unsea­son­ably cold at the moment. Also, there’s an awe­some super easy square top tuto­r­i­al by C&C if you’re inter­est­ed :D).

Bought this fab­ric at a very friend­ly and afford­able fab­ric shop down­town (will vis­it again!). I first made a square top, and then I thought it would look great if it were longer, so I added more fab­ric to the bot­tom. But then it looked real­ly wide and a bit tent-like on me, so I added two but­tons and cro­cheted but­ton loops on the sides so I could fold the sides in to give it some shape. 


So it ‘s more a rec­tan­gle than a square. And here’s how the but­tons and but­ton loops are placed.


More of a front view… 


On a sep­a­rate note, while tak­ing these pho­tos with a self-timer I attempt­ed to take lev­i­tat­ing pho­tos like the awe-inspir­ing ones by Nat­su­mi Hayashi (it’s fas­ci­nat­ing! Check them out if you have a moment :D). Thought this would be a nice top to lev­i­tate in style :P But it real­ly made me real­ize how very dif­fi­cult it is to not only jump at the right time but also look nat­u­ral­ly float­ing in mid jump! Plus the shut­ter speed of my point & shoot isn’t real­ly fast enough to take good lev­i­tat­ing pho­tos. I gave up after 10 jumps or so (real­ly out of shape!) and there­fore don’t have any suc­cess­ful pic­tures to show… but maybe I’ll ask Mike to help me with his super cam­era some day…

More sewing projects to come! :D

Hap­py Wednesday!