Thursday, February 23, 2012

It's Cake Day People

Birthday cake is one of the best things ever. When I was about 7 or 8 my Mum made me the pool cake from the Woman's Weekly Cake Book. I was a bit obsessed with pools so I was very very excited and still remember it better than any other cake I had as a kid. I also remember it made me sick and I vommed for a few days afterwards, but I still have fond memories of that cake.

This card goes out to those who have stuffed their face with someone else's birthday cake only to realise that you can't sing happy birthday with a gob full of the soft sweet stuff. Mr. Cake Eater is available on Etsy and is also available to come sample your birthday cake or any occasion cake.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Fineliners are a gateway pen that lead to harder inks

Sometimes I think it is really easy to get into a bit of a drawing rut. You stick to a certain style, then when you look back over other work you wonder why it's so much better than the current stuff. I've been playing around with using a brush and ink for a few weeks and was enjoying it, although the brush was a bit too thick. I wanted a nib, so I could get a much finer line. Our office is pretty much round the corner from Dean's Art Supply on Sydney Road but for some reason I kept putting off going and getting me some nib. The other day I went with Bridget (which was good as she knows a bit about them) and got a couple. I think my motto in life should be "why didn't I just go do that earlier?" because I think I say it on a daily basis.

The nib and ink is really lovely, I love the raised surface it creates on the paper and the line work feels a lot better. I drew the guy below and Gareth commented that it was a really good one (this hasn't happened in a while....). Once the ink started flowing so did the ideas and that is when I'm happiest, when the ideas are coming think and fast.

Here is the finished card below, he is available on Etsy, perfect for moments when you just want to sit and stare into a dreamboats eyes.

Friday, February 17, 2012

February Sale - Part Two

Did you know we are having a February Sale? We have a few different items, old stock, seconds and things we want to move to make room for new things.

We have a few boxes of mugs and some of them have bashed up boxes, like the poor little guy in the pic above. The mug is okay, you can still drink warm cups of milo from it, or a seafood bisque cup of soup (have you tried that flavour, it is THE WORST), it's just the box that looks bad. But they usually get thrown in the bin so it is a bit of a case of who cares, really? We will be selling them for $11, along with the tea towel seconds, red dot special cards and girl calendars (she was either the least popular or I printed loads extra).

We will have all our sale items at our four markets this weekend. Yes FOUR markets. We will be at Rose Street as per usual. Gareth will be there manning the hot tin room, making sure people don't faint (and if they do it is into his arms) while I'll be at the Roller Derby on Saturday night and North Melbourne Market on Sunday.

Monday, February 13, 2012

February Sale

This week we will be having a seconds sale at our market stalls. We have a bunch of old stock and seconds to sell and you can save some money. We have a bunch of seconds tea towels, perfect for actually doing the dishes because they'll end up with splodge marks on them anyway. Lots of people tell us they NEVER use the tea towels because they don't want to mucky them up. Fair enough, but now you can have your cake and eat it AND use the tea towel to wipe up the mess. Some only have little tiny marks, others have bigger blotches (like the one above) but they are all still perfectly okay and the linen is rather lovely to use to dry things and they get softer with each wash. We have a bunch at home that we use for testing as I feel a kitchen should always have ample tea towels. Our kitchen sometimes has 6 sitting around for various uses and actually drying dishes is often last on the list (they can drip dry!).

The sale/seconds items will be at the following markets this weekend:

Wednesday 15th Feb
When: 5.30pm-10pm
Where: Queen Victoria Market, Melbourne.
Enter via Queen, Therry or Peel Streets

Saturday 18th February
When: 5.45pm - 9.15pm
Where: Grand Pavilion, Melbourne Showgrounds

Saturday 18th February and Sunday 19th February
When: 11am - 5pm
Where: 60 Rose Street, Fitzroy

If you are wanting to buy a tea towel and you're not in Melbourne or can't get to the markets just drop us an email and we can email you a paypal invoice or bank details. They will be $11AUD plus shipping ($3.50AUD in Australia/$7AUD overseas). Just let us know which one you want. There will be a flaw with the tea towels, we can let you know what it is when we know which one it is.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Roller Derby Bout 1 - We will be there selling cards

People in Melbourne, what are you doing on Saturday the 18th of February? Because the Roller Derby is back on and we will have a market there. Super whoop!

You can buy tickets from Moshtix here and they are $22.50 including booking fee. Often it sells out, so I would buy tickets beforehand rather than on the door and get all sadface because they sold out. Doors open at 4.45pm and the first bout is at 5.45pm and it is at is at the Grand Pavilion at the Melbourne Showgrounds. Last May we did a post about going to the Roller Derby, which is well worth a look just for the laughs you will get from the photo of my brother's Megahand.

We also have a roller derby card that we made last year and forgot to put up on Etsy. We made it especially for the first roller derby market we did. You can also like the VRDL on Facebook for more updates.

Things For a New Home

Our range of "things" cards has expanded over the last few years. We started with the birthday card and it has since grown to include pregnancy, Christmas, wedding, leaving work and now new home.

Coming up with the things is one of my favourite parts of the job. Although it is sometimes hard to begin with, but it is like being an inventor without having to go to all the bother of making it.

The card is available on Etsy as well as our markets this week.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Game on Game - Triple Town

Just before Christmas my phone totally died and I'm still mourning its loss. This is rather significant as I went from an iPhone 3 operating on a very old system that prevented me downloading most new aps to an iPhone 4S with Siri (OMG SIRIIII!!!! I call it Suri and I never really use it much except maybe while in the car. It does impress parents when you say things like "I love you" and "how are you?"). After 2 years of owning an iPhone I stopped downloading and playing games. Then I downloaded Triple Town and I was back into game addicted full throttle.

I wonder if they have done studies on game addiction and if it is similar to the drugs going round your body when you fall in love. The ones that are meant to be like cocaine. (BTW have you seen cocaine bear? It has swear words. Now you have been warned you can look.)

Back to Triple Town. It is like the smarter cousin to all those 'match three objects' games like Bejewelled, but you have to build a city and not run out of space. Things turn into bigger and better things when you match three of more of the same object. So three grass becomes a bush, three bush becomes a tree, three trees becomes a house and so on. There are weird bears and annoying ninjas and little tricks to help/hinder you along the way.

Cost: Free, then $4.99 for more "moves" (a bit pricey for a phone game).
How long till you get the hang of it: A few games.
Play it when: Anytime.
Platform: iPhone/Android (apparently it was originally on kindle?)
IQ Improvement: 15
Addictiveness: High
Honeymoon is over: When you don't see much improvement in your skills.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Good Books: Julia Rothman and Lee Crutchley

I got a couple of arty books recently and thought I should blog about them seeing I think I found them on Pikaland.

I had seen the Julia Rothman book Farm Anatomy all over the internet after it came out late last year and had a feeling that I would really like it. As farm kids we would often hear stories about 'city kids' thinking milk came from a factory and we all thought this was totally hilarious and maybe a bit untrue. But the truth is, when it comes to farming it is a bit of a mystery to a lot of people. The book has so much good information and I don't think there would be a household where it wouldn't come in handy because everyone consumes things that start off coming from some kind of primary producer. It has recipes, how to instructions on a whole bunch of stuff (who hasn't wanted to build a barrel smokehouse?) and information that I am sure will help if you ever a) go on Farmer Wants a Wife or b) get asked what a wether is*.

I had to include the shearing picture from the book, coming from a sheep farm.

The other book I got is by Lee Crutchley and is called Quoteskin Volume 1. It started as a way for Lee to stay creative and draw while looking for work after returning from time spent overseas. It features illustrated quotes from all sorts of places (Tegan and Sara below) and it was created with 'no master plan and no intention to create ultra finished illustrations'.

What I like about this and a whole bunch of other books out there (and TV, Film, Music and Art) is how Lee put his work on the internet, gained a following and then got to turn it into a book. Rather than trying to turn it into a book in the first place and probably having to change a whole bunch of stuff to get it to appeal to demographics and make money. Isn't it great how the internet can give people the power to put stuff out there and gain an audience on their own terms?

I found this on my phone when getting the pictures I took of the books and thought it was farmy appropriate. She has grown so much since last Christmas!

*This is not a wether, this is a gilt. A wether is a castrated male sheep.