Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Designer Stamps (West Coast)

I went to the post office this morning to mail a package and I discovered some cool new stamps. I love the Charles and Ray Eames Stamps that have recently come out. I bought three sheets, and left thinking I should have purchased more. They are so pretty. Every once in a while a little something like this happens and it makes my day a bit brighter.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Weeeeeeee! (Midwest)

That's Sam. In his Spiderman underwear and red bucket helmet. Summer rules when you are three!

So... I started out with that photo because the next photo will be way, way too boring for most. But, just consider that my emotions looking at this second photo are what Sam feels in the first photo. Sheer joy.

Get this, thanks to Joey and his craigslist karma, I scored a box of 900+ sheets of chip board off craigslist today. For free! Weeeeee! Jump. Splash. Hop.

I may be letterpressing journals and notepads soon. Yippee!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Punchy (Midwest)

A couple weeks ago I had an early evening sitter, so off I headed to the Scrapbook Superstore. I have a yearly membership for using the die cutter there.

Yes. Yes. I know. At least I can admit these things to you.

Anyway, after I die cut a zillion fish cut outs, because the teddy bears were icky and the butterflies were too small, I lingered in the craft punch aisles. I have a growing stash of craft punches. I use these punches to make gift tags out of overstock and scrap letterpress cards. If something has a smudge of ink on it, it will go into the to be punched pile. Anyway, my favorites are the Whale of a Punch dealios because they stay sharp and don't require leaping off the table onto the handle to cut through card stock. I bought a sweet little scalloped circle punch. It has come in very handy, as seen on the Etsy shipment above, mailed yesterday.

We are in the final stretches of our swim team commitments. The All City meet happens the first weekend in August. Can I just say that I'm stinkin tired of getting up early every morning? I plan to print after that all ends. Also, I have a couple potential design projects lining up which I'm looking forward to. So, hopefully I'll have some fun things to post on soon. Until then Laurie is rockin her letterpress and has been such a diligent blogger. I'm sure she will be showcasing something new soon. Go Laurie. Go Laurie. Go Laurie...

Sunday, July 20, 2008

It's a bee thing (West Coast)

For the past 15 or so years, Amy and I have been collecting bee things. Now that I have a letterpress, and a Gocco, it has given me a new way to put a bee on everything around me. I have had a week of stinging little objects in my office with my latest bee. For the longest time, I have had only my rubber stamp collection to mark things. This week I put likely things into my letterpress to see what would work. My favorite was this little notepad. I did 10 of them for the upcoming Renegade Fair in Chicago that we be at. The pearl yellow ink background was Gocco printed first. The photo doesn't show that part well, but you can see the look.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Knock Out (West Coast)

{bee with the knock out}

{bee without the knock out}
Boy the days when we could just call out the knock out and our trusted printer was on it are over... As a printer, I am feeling the pain! I attempted my first few two-color projects this past week, and with a pearl metallic ink, I am feeling the pain! I have been working on this bee card for the past couple of days, and I think I am as close as I am going to get with my Kelsey, and my weary eyes. I created a background with my Gocco that I thought I would just overprint with the letterpress. I used a pearl ink on the Gocco, and I was getting a shadow effect where the two inks met. Sometimes it can be cool, but with these cards it just looked like a misprint. Something that in my designer days, I would have sent on back for a reprint... Being that I am the printer and the designer, I sent myself back for a redo. It has been a bit of a puzzle, but I think the results are getting there. What do you think Miss Amy?
p.s. I am still working on the white balance with my camera. Sometimes I can get it better than others.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Cool Finds (West Coast)

Saturday at Renegade San Francisco, I bought a few treats from a company called Treatzone. They a small paper goods crafting duo that had some unique offerings. I purchased a few little goodies that were Gocco printed, and touched up with some chalk details. Very cute in person. You can check them out yourself at treatzone.etsy.com.

I also bought a few cards at Pie Bird Press. Hannah Berman has a interesting take on letterpress. She uses hand-carved linoleum blocks in a letterpress, along with bright and beautiful color combinations. You can see Hannah's work at wetfootpublications.com.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Renegade San Francisco (West Coast)

Katie and I made it up to San Francisco Saturday to attend the first San Francisco Renegade Craft Fair. We had a fun day being two girls in the city. We made it up to the craft fair a bit early (no traffic), so we walked around as people were setting up, and got to see the booths with little interference. It was great to see the fair, and we had fun picking out a few treats for each of us. There were some incredible crafty people. On the way home we stopped off at Daiso of course. We can't pass by that store without at least a quick trip inside to see what we might find.

I came back itching to print and make something new. Lucky for me the kids still have one more week in camp so I can work all week on some ideas... Here is a peak at my first few items that will be for sale in our etsy shop.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

On Surfing (Midwest)

1. Enjoy your 4th of July..., 2. Starship Trooper, 3. meet mr.bones, 4. Forwaaard! MARCH!!!

I spend a lot of (wasted?) time surfing the Internet. Don't we all, though? I find that my habits change every few months. First, I was addicted to reading blogs, then came my addiction to the Etsy forums, right now I'm in a Flickr phase. I look at my contact's photos, comment here and there, post photos, read discussions, follow links, etc. etc.

This morning I came across a new Flickr group that I had to join. Then, I had to think about how to compose an entire blog post around a related topic just so I could mention this new group in the post. Aha! I think I have accomplished that. For those of you who are as immature as me, and like to be amused by other peoples silliness check out Unseen War. I Love it.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

No Trip New Agenda (Midwest)

Well, here I am, not in Germany as initially planned. Unfortunately, some family health issues popped up and I had to cancel my trip. Big sigh. But then again, if I choose to view things in a more positive way, I now have an extra week with nothing on my plate. A day trip or mini vacation could be planned. Or, I could do nothing, kick back and relax. I'll also be around for Art Fair on the Square. Yay!

Yesterday I delivered the custom letterpress wedding project I finished up several days ago. My wedding clients were really kind and interesting people. Part of why I enjoy design is because I get to interact with people and then design with their ideas in mind. It is very rewarding when you can show somebody something on paper that is a translation of their words and ideas but in 2 dimensions.

Anyway, I printed a soft chocolate ink on luxe paper. The bright yellow envelope coordinates with their color theme. The bee graphic was chosen because they "like bees" and will be giving local honey as favors (which is super cool if you ask me). It was a fun project to be involved in.

Tomorrow I plan to start sketching ideas for the Christmas season (fa la la la la). It would be great to be printing Holiday items in August. I have some new Stardream envelopes in yummy colors that will be my creative starting point. Laurie, I'll probably be calling you to brainstorm. :)

Ok. I'm off to tidy the kitchen and wait for my returning swim team kids with their soggy suits and hungry tummies. Bye folks.

Monday, July 07, 2008

Kung Pau Gocco (West Coast)

My drying area always reminds me of Chinese take-out...

Summer is zipping by quickly around here. Today is the first day since school got out (almost a month ago) that I have had a full day to print something. Both kids are off at summer camp this week and next, and I am optimistic this will be the first of many days in the next two weeks I will be cranking out some cards.

I dusted off my Gocco this morning, and attempted to make some plates. I blew the first two tries—one light bulb was a dud, on the second plate, the paper slipped and half of the graphic didn't get shot. The third plate worked like a charm. I printed the graphic in two different colors, to use as a background to letterpress over later this week. I have a secret obsession for anthropologie's adorable aprons, and came up with a design that to me reminds me of their wonderful fabric patterns. Now I am waiting for my cards to dry and my plates to arrive from Boxcar Press. Hopefully they will be here by the weeks end.

Friday, July 04, 2008

Happy Birthday USA (Midwest)

Cheers to the red, white and blue. Have a great Holiday everyone.