There are probably many many weirder foods in Japan than what I’m showing here, and I did not photograph all the food I ate or saw (or wasn’t willing to eat!). However, I did really enjoy eating in Japan, and I think my favourite food of all was brown rice with gomashio. Oh wait, no there was also the miso vegetables that Mune’s grandfather made… and the Saba sashimi in Fukuoka… and and… oh it was all very delicious.

Least favourite food I ate – jellyfish.

I should have taken photos of all the novelty foods. Next time!

Food in Japan

What a wonderful surprise it was to come home to not one, but TWO packages in my mail box last night! One was a giant package full of goodness from overseas, and the other was a smaller, but also exciting, package from San Diego, California.
Postal Service
I ordered this cute little to-do list from BoyGirlParty during the most recent shop live event on etsy, hosted by Marichelle from Heart Handmade. It was my first time in the virtual labs and I was there with a bunch of other newbies. I didn’t have a lot of money to spend, but I’ve always loved BoyGirlParty‘s illustrations so when I saw that she had something small and affordable, I had to grab it!
boygirlparty package!
(sorry the photos are a bit blurry and dark, I took these with my phone)
Now I’ve just got to write some lists, then do the stuff, then check “done”!

This past month I participated in a craft swap, organized by Donna and Sara at Kindred Crafters. I know I’ve said I got bored with swapping for a while, but this sounded really fun, and who can’t use more coasters? Actually, I don’t think I had any coasters!
Now check out this most wonderful assortment of goods that my amazing swap partner, Sazzie, sent to me all the way from England! It made me blush when I opened it because I certainly wasn’t expecting this amount of extras, and also because I didn’t send that many extras. I sent one. Just one measly extra it was a matching bar towel to go with the coasters I made. My limited knowledge of craft etiquette tells me that I will have to find a way to even things out…
Holy Shmoly Coaster Swap!
You can see more of the coasters and other neat stuff that was sent in the swap in the flickr group. I will add more pics of the coasters and the fabric tray to flickr tonight, when I put these in action.

By popular demand! actually only requested by Craig, but maybe others will appreciate my photos…
Since it is almost summer, I thought I’d remind us a bit of winter so we can appreciate the warm weather.
frozen
The next 2 are taken with the Lomo Fisheye camera, the first is in Toronto on Dovercourt Road, and the second is in the Yukon, at Jackson Lake just outside of Whitehorse.
Winter Houses on Dovercourt Road

doctors office view

Woo! so last night just after midnight I got my first scarf order on etsy. I made a bunch of lightweight spring scarves and put them online last week. I’m really happy that someone found something they liked in my shop and they didn’t even know me!
Squirelly Scarves
I’m also really excited about the Garden Party Trunk Show hosted by the workroom and City of Craft later this month, Sunday, June 21st, to be exact. I always love shopping at the trunk shows, and during my very first time as a seller at a craft fair last August, I met so many wonderful people. It was so rewarding to have strangers give me feedback on my crafts. Of course my friends and family are always really supportive and positive, but they have to be, they are my friends and family!
This trunk show is not to be missed, it will be inside/outside with free snacks, and vintage treasures on top of amazing local handmade goodies! Just look at the list of people I’ll be rubbing shoulders with (list below)!
**news: Karyn has written about the Garden Party and has beautiful photos of peonies.
Garden Party Trunk Show, by The Workroom
Garden Party Trunk Show flyer by the workroom.

good neighbour/bad neighbour

good neighbour/bad neighbour, originally uploaded by moon angel.

It’s true. I’ve taken a zillion (plus or minus a billion) photos in my life. I had supportive parents who allowed me to take photos with their film camera since I was about three years old. Maybe when I go home this summer I’ll dig around and find some of these old shots and scan them.
You can see on the right here <—– links to my flickr account. Right now the most recent photos are those I’ve taken of products for my etsy shop, but if you dig around, there are a few gems like this photo I took of a duplex on my old street, Palmerston. I was surprised to see it used as the photo for this article in Torontoist on loud neighbours.
Then, this photo was also used, but now I can’t find the link! I think it was used by the DesignExchange for some online thing…
toronto stock exchange
And this is one of my favourite most recent photos, a magnolia blossom.
a blossom

Orange and Blue, aren't you?
Last year after I discovered crochet and went nutso making stuff, I searched for an outlet for all of it, and came across swap-bot.

Swap-bot is an online service that organizes group swaps and a community of creative individuals. Swap-bot takes the hassle out of participating in group swaps by organizing all of the participant information and doing all of the partner assignments. On Swap-bot, you can host swaps, join swaps, and chat with other swappers from all over the world. Give it a try!

I made lots of stuff, and sent it off. Got lots of really cute stuff in return, a couple of less-than-cute things, but in general it was a good experience. I got a good rating, but eventually I just got bored with it and preferred making things for friends.
However, I did get something pretty amazing out of this: my crocheted starfish. I participated in the Octopus Amigurumi swap sponsored by Octopus Revolution. The idea was for everyone to start with a really basic pattern, and give it their own twist. The octopus I received was a super-cute Japanese geisha-octopus with little origami paper crane buddies. It was also stuffed so tightly, I don’t know how people do this and crochet the toys closed! I guess it might be the type of yarn because I always use natural fibers which stretch more than acrylic.
So the octopus I made was green, made with Cascades Pastaza llama yarn, and I designed a little starfish buddy for it.
octopus & starfish buddy
Everyone who saw this loved it, and I was asked where I got the pattern and if I could make more. So this is what inspired me to make starfish in a whole bunch of colors and to make more octopi, but with longer legs.

Here’s a photo Karyn took of me selling my wares in my very first craft fair, ever! I sold about half of my “stock” that day at the Kid’s Trunk Show at the Workroom. You can now get your own starfish in one of 8 colors, at my etsy shop, thanks again to the Workroom and City of Craft for giving me my start!
Trunk full of Starfish - photo by Karyn of the Workroom.
(looking at this photo reminds me that I really should make more of the albino starfish!)

yay! I’ve been accepted into the Etsy Ontario Street Team!

So when I first learned to crochet, I kinda went nuts. After the blue bunny and the happy poo, I realized I could basically crochet any shape I wanted, and started crocheting all kinds of things. My friend Chris asked me to make him a bearded cap like the one made by Vik Prjonsdottir.

The beard caps refer to a traditional cap called “lambshed-hood” which was used in Iceland by farmers who in heavy snowstorms had to walk long distances between their sheds and to the neigboring farms. The cap covered both head and neck and had only a small opening for the face.

The Beard Caps, 100 % icelandic wool, 3 different colors and shapes
Bearded Cap by Vik Prjonsdottir of Iceland

The thing is that Chris is vegan, so he chooses not to buy wool (sorry Iceland sheep farmers!). I told him to find some appropriate animal-free yarn and I would make a bearded cap for him. Well, months passed and summer came and went, so I finally bought some brown 100% cotton yarn and got on with it! I created my own version of the bearded cap, and crocheted a separate cap & detachable beard with mustache. This way, Chris could use the hat all the time, and the beard only when he felt like putting some extra fun in his day, or some extra warmth on his face. The beard has a small mouth-hole and two buttons, and the hat has two buttonholes just above the ears. There is also a built-in mustache, but now that I look at it, maybe it should have been a little bit bigger!
beardo recipient

p.s. go vote for Chris & Stu at hypercube.ca! (Only an hour left, help these guys win some cars!)

Vintage Ironing Board

Ironing Board, originally uploaded by moon angel.

Well not always, but I do love sweet finds on garbage day like this perfectly pink vintage metal ironing board. It was in a pile in the sun, this past Monday, just waiting for me to come rescue it.

Of course, I’ll have to clean the cobwebs out and give it a little makeover, but this is a nice, sturdy replacement for my old chipboard wobbly unit.

This Windsor Ironing Board touts as its “Best Buy” features:

  • easy-rolling wheels, factory installed
  • finger-touch adjustment
  • offset legs for sitdown ironing
  • ventilated top for cooler ironing
  • sturdy, strong construction

It also has a built-in extension cord, but due to its age, I don’t think I’ll be using it.

I have a bunch of spring scarves I’m making that all require ironing, so I can’t wait to get this recovered!

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