Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Marion handwarmers

I am currently working on a pattern inspired by my grandmother-in-law Marion who passed away recently. She was basically as adorable and sweet as you can get. But a little sassy too, just the perfect amount. She will be missed dearly but I will always think of her whenever I see these.

I was able to finish the first one this weekend and I hope to offer the pattern for free after I am done (that is if I can actually WRITE a coherent pattern after I am done).

I'm using leftover Nashua and Malabrigo from other projects so these suckers promise to be warm.

Monday, May 25, 2009

time flies when you're a sleepy fox

I can't believe it is already Memorial Day and the summery days of June are around the corner. Where does the time go?

I also can't believe that this adorable sleepy foxy plush is on sale this weekend and no one has scooped him up! (from bibelotforest.etsy.com)

Monday, May 11, 2009

contest winner!

Is Mia!

Thanks everyone for participating, I will have another contest in the near future :)

(Mia, can you email me gerrijo@gmail.com with your pin choice and address?)

Wednesday, May 6, 2009


Hurray for give.a.ways!!

Just sign up to follow my blog between now and Friday the 8th and you will be entered to receive a free pin :)

Your choice - choose between the bunny or squirrel pin. Both are popular products and both have been featured on etsy's front page. Winner will be announced and contacted Monday.

Just use the handy "follow button" on the right and you'll be set :)

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

I will be the May featured artist at the Electric Fetus!

How exciting!

The Electric Fetus is featured me as their "Minneconomy" artist-o-the-month for all of May. They will offer 10% off all my work and on May 14th they will have a big hullabaloo with me doing in-store demos, live sets by locals bands, and free treats.

I'm super jazzed since I have only been selling to them for six weeks - hopefully this means my jewelry is selling like hot cakes :)

I am a tad nervous about doing the in-store demo. I've never been good at public speaking, even if the "public" part is a total of a five people. My face turns red, I get a little shake in my voice, and I seem to forget even what my own name is. I always wanted to join one of those "Toastmasters" groups but even the thought of practicing public speaking gives me weak knees.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Beaner Beanie

I don't know what possesses me sometimes. But I like to make winter hats and clothes just as summer approaches. Is it a psychological yearning for warm woolens and cozy knits that I know I won't need for the next five months? Who the heck knows.

But I acquired this cute sweater for 25 cents at the goodwill outlet. It was felted a bit and too small for me but I loved the stripes and colors. The beaner received a similar styled hat two years ago that she has unfortunately grown too big of a head for (All dem brains!). But it's so simple to make it's sick. Just sew a two squares of sweater together along three sides (best if you use the bottom of the sweater for the head opening for an instant trim). Take ribbon bits and tie around corners to make ears. And now 10 minutes later you have a cute hat!

Of course now she won't be able to wear it until forever (assuming there will be no freak snow storms in July, you never know with Minnesota).

Thursday, April 23, 2009

New vintage shop!

Sound the horns and roll the drums, I've opened a new shop on etsy!

It's called apartment 1213 and will feature vintage clothes, shoes, and accessories as well as some original hand painted shoes I have been working on (like the ones above).

Be sure to visit :)

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Holga fun!

I finally got a roll shot and developed with the holga that I bought last summer. I am now addicted!!

You can see my whole roll at my flickr page here (will navigate away from this page)

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

new beaner shirt

Hubby was tossing some old shirts that no longer fit him and in the spirit of upcycling, I quickly grabbed them away and began turning them into shirts for the beaner! I did a similar project last summer and it amazes me how quick it is to whip this up - maybe an hour?

Here is our little model doing her best Tyra (or something) &hearts

Friday, April 10, 2009

Bathroom window "treatment"

I saw this post a couple weeks ago on design sponge and inspiration struck! Our bathroom window basically is a peep show when we are in the shower - we live in an old apartment that has a free standing tub/shower*. To give us a little modesty but let nice, natural light in, I used the same technique with a paint pen and contact paper. I had fun just doodling and now it serves a good cause too (aka letting me bathe and see what I'm doing).

*don't worry, we weren't the neighborhood flashers - we have ugly mini blinds that cover the window but also cover all the light.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Favortie cooking links

I am usually late on the train for hip, awesome, everyone-and-their-mother-reading-it blogs and cooking blogs are no exception.

But here are my favorite three, in no order:

smitten kitchen always shows up on those "best of the web" type lists and you can see why. Gorgeous photos that literally provoke your salivary glands to juice up and she follows the philosophy that you don't need to spend a lot of money on ingredients to cook well.

have cake, will travel is a vegan dessert blog. I am not vegan myself but love vegan desserts since I feel like they take a lot of creativity and I feel less guilty about eating them (ha!)

vegan dad has done a tremendous job of vegan-nizing childhood favorites and comfort food (think mac and cheese, hot wings, and chili dogs). Even as a vegetarian, good fake-meat recipes are hard to find on the web.

Are there any that I missing out on?

photo credit: flickr commons

Monday, April 6, 2009

Crocheted button fascinator

Photo: Linda Permann

So I think the universe heard my call last week when I post a short list of things I felted I needed. Because over the weekend, I found this pattern through ravelry for a similar-ish styled headband/fascinator. It also fulfills another need I have, figuring out something to do with my random yarn scraps and pretty buttons that I have accumulated. I think this looks like my Easter-weekend project, wish me luck!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Things I've decided I need

no, really, I think I need these

camera camera case from hine.etsy

I played clarinet all through school, so I have a soft spot for this card from FleurRendell.etsy

wee polar bear pendant, HeliS.etsy

felt floral fascinator, giantdwarf.etsy

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Presenting...*insert drumroll*

gerri jo jewelry at the The Electric Fetus in Minneapolis!

Yes, my jewelry can now be found at one of the coolest locally own record and gift stores in the Twin Cites!! MPR said the Electric Fetus is "widely regarded as the pre-eminent indie record store in Minnesota."

Here is a quick (and terrible) photo I snapped in-store:

It's the first time a local place has carried my work so it's the first time I have ever gotten a chance to see my work merchandised!! Can you feel my excitement through your monitor? :)

Monday, March 30, 2009

Crochet + shoes

Cross a crochet fetish with a shoe fetish and you equal crocheted shoes in every color. Can it get any better? Pattern purchased from sylver.etsy

Pattern is relatively easy, you just need to make sure you won't be interrupted much since most of the pattern involves carefully counting your stitches. The pattern gives you the option of working with help or jute for the bottom sole. I am happy I choose to go with the latter option. My hands are torn up enough from the jute so I can't imagine what they would have looked like after the hemp.

I am thinking yellow or spring green next...

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Homemade ginger ale

So the family has been struck by the evil stomach flu. And not the nice 24-hour-here-and-gone type. The full throttle, all out, sick for a week type. Yuck, yuck and more yuck.

So on the quest to find something to help ease the nausea, I came across this this wonderful homemade (and easy!) ginger ale recipe. I have always found ginger very soothing for my stomach but unfortunately most commercial ginger ales don't contain any real ginger. You may need to tweek the recipe a bit. It comes out a bit too sweet and too strong for my taste so I halved the amount of ginger and only used 2 tablespoons of the simple syrup in the final drink. I absolutely plan of making this again and again even after everyone finally feels 100%. It is really fresh tasting and so much better than anything you could find in a store. I think it would also be really delish spiked with a little vodka and some lemonade - perfect for a hot summer evening.

And if you are not interested in spending your whole afternoon grating ginger, look into getting a jar of minced ginger in a jar (I especially love the one from The Ginger People which I found at our local co-op for $2.50 for almost 7 oz.)

p.s. Photo above is from the Flickr group "The Commons", most easily described as pictures with no known copyright restrictions complied from the "...world's public photography archives."

If you are looking to spend an afternoon looking through amazing and inspiring photographs, this is the place to do it.

Friday, March 13, 2009

handmade battlestar galactica

Links that pay tribute to the show that has introduced "frak" into the vernacular.

"Well frak me" notepad
, pigseyart.etsy (shown pictured above)

Knit yourself a cylon centurion hat, a free pattern from Lick the Light Switch.

Maybe you are the final cylon? Button from ursulaandolive.etsy

Stenciled BSG shirt at craftster

Also from craftster, crocheted Admiral Adama and President Roslin.

Personally my favorite cylon, Chief Tyrol. Art print by geekboypress.etsy

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

wip - first gouache test

So I broke out some paper and my new paints and played around with them, I think I am really liking it! It's hard to get used to - fast dry time and new layers pick up colors from old ones like water color but they are brighter and the colors lay down more like acrylic or oil paints. I want to try them on particle board, that used to be my favorite back in school and I think the gouache would work really well.

Monday, March 9, 2009

One sock down and one to go

How exciting! I crocheted myself a sock! Okay, admittedly worthless until I have a pair but sometimes you need to celebrate the small milestones too.

Yarn and pattern are from epicurus.etsy. Pattern is listed for advanced crocheters but I didn't think it was too hard. And I was in doubt as to how a crocheted sock would look but since the pattern uses lace weight yarn, it isn't bulky or uncomfortable.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

My etsy splurge

Who am I kidding, this really isn't a splurge but I am so excited that I found this simple and gorgeous soap dish from urbaneden. I kept looking (foolishly) at Target or the like for a decent yet simple yet inexpensive soap dish.

*palm to forehead*

I should know better now to just check etsy.

Monday, March 2, 2009

painting bug

The painting bug has bitten me once more. And I am super excited for some cheap, student-grade gouaches I got from ebay. Mmmmm...dontcha just love new tubes of paint? They seem to just be like little vessels of creativity, just waiting to get out.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

thrift store art + acrylics = new art for our walls

So when I visit my local thrift store (LTS), I pretty much keep my eyes peeled for anything and everything. I adore thrift store art and was super pumped when I found this forgotten acrylic painting that someone obviously had spent some time working on. So it's no Mona Lisa but hey, in my book trying counts:

But it needed, hm, something. Some point of interest. Why not a shadow monster taking a nice bubbly bath? Seems good enough. So a couple hours and some tubes of acrylic later I came up with this:

Still no Mona Lisa, but now I feel like it fits in more with the decor of our apartment (and what exactly does this say about the decor of our apartment??). I still need to get a better full on picture of it, the flash is washing out the colors and reflecting off the paint. But that will need to wait until the weather starts to finally cooperate with outdoor photography.

So I highly suggest the next time you see a once loved painting sitting lonely at your LTS, see if you can give it a little new life.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

I love Lost

A Lost inspired Thursday post

Jorge Garcia's (aka Hurley/Hugo) hilarious blog: Dispatches from the Island

Speaking of Hurley...

As pictured above - the Lost numbers on basically the coolest handmade necklace ever

Lunch, Lost style

Awesome Lost themed plushies

Dharma Initiative coffee packs

Now you don't have to choose a favorite

Kudos to knit_core on craftster, junedesigns@etsy, sammo@etsy, lufah on craftster, finalscore@etsy, and popbangle@etsy for tickling my nerdy fancy.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Etsy finds...

There is finally a hope for spring in the air. After this long, terribly cold winter, I was beginning to wonder if it would ever come. So I am in the mood to find pretty dresses and imagine I have warm evening cocktail parties to wear them to.

I love love love love this dress. Super vintage-y feel and a super flattering waist line, plus completely custom made to your measurements. Really? It's like the shopping gods opened up the cloudy sky to smile down on me. From looseteeth.etsy

I covet this necklace from hollygems' shop, gorgeous aqua colored stone on a gunmetal gray chain. Eye catching but not over the top.

I wish I has this purse in every color of the rainbow but the turquoise one would always be my favorite. Recyclyed leather from the brit boutique

Finally some amazing vintage pumps to round out the outfit. I love the color of these and the toe rose detail. From cassie's attic

Monday, February 16, 2009

Dino pb & j

Wow, time flies. Been busy lately with even more 2009 Holiday presents (which can't be revealed at this time since we wouldn't want any surprises given away!). It was my birthday on the 1st of the month and it always gets me in a flurry of activity. I came to conclusion why I never make any new year's resolutions, I always treat turning a new age as a time of introspection and change. But anyhoo I wanted to share the awesome-ness of my new dino sandwich cutter. It was a total impulse buy but I have no regrets. I mean how can you when your regular peanut butter and jelly gets transformed into a cute creature that is so much more fun to eat? (note how only one dino guy made it long enough to the photoshoot, the other was tragically eaten instantly.)

You can find your very own here on amazon, rawr!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

mac and cheese spruced up

Everyone and their mother has little tips and tricks to make boxed mac and cheese seem, well, not so terrible. Like I remember my mom use to shred a little bit of real cheese into it when I was a kid. And when I am being lazy and really don't want to put much effort forth for lunch, this is how I pimp out my mac and cheese.

You'll need:
Boxed macaroni and cheese (pictured is Annie's organic shells and cheddar)
1 T of butter
1 T milk
1/3 cup fat free plain yogurt
(optional) 1/2 t of hot sauce, more or less to taste
1 cup of peas, defrosted if frozen
parmesan cheese

Cook pasta as directed on box reserving the bag of powdered cheese.

While pasta is cooking, put butter and milk in a microwavable dish and cook for 30 seconds (less if your butter was soft to begin with). Take a small egg beater or fork and wisk the bag of powdered cheese into the heated milk/butter mixture (the slight heat will help the powder dissolve more easily). Then add the yogurt and hot sauce. The sauce should be pretty thick at this point - if not, you can add small amounts of more yogurt as needed.

Drain pasta after it is finished cooking and return to pot. Add cheese sauce and peas. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese to "garnish"

Viola! My kid loves it and I don't feel bad about feeding it to her (she loves hot sauce BTW, genetic from her dad *smile*). Plus I find it muy delish myself!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Getting things done EARLY this year

Oh yes. No "last-minute-OMG-what-am-I-going-to-do!!!!!!!!!!!" moments are going to be happening to me this year when the holidays roll back around. I am getting started early and I will be working on it all year long. My first 2009 christmas present is for my dear wonderful step mother, who is a christmas-oholic and loves decorating to the hilt. Since her and my dad moved to Florida last year, I decided she would need some tropical flavor to add to her decked halls. (and I really hope she doesn't decide to discover my blog in the near future!)

Thursday, January 8, 2009

acorn hat (aka why I sometimes love mistakes)

I don't know exactly what got into me, but I have really been crocheting up a storm since I got done with the show and general holiday goodness. It was like I caught some kinda hooker disease (get it? crochet hooks? hookers? ah, never mind). But ravelry makes it so easy to find all these cute, free patterns and I have a load of random stash that I have been trying to use up.

Case in point: my acorn hat. I was trying to follow the pattern from Lion Brand's website for the "Aaron's Trick Hat" using some LO thick 'n' quick I had from another project. I don't know why it turned out so pointy on top, I couldn't even begin to tell you really. It just reminded me so much of an acorn that I went with it, I mean some times mistakes are happy mistakes right? I mean think of penicillin, microwave ovens, and teflon - all happy mistakes! I just made up some felt applique accents and voila - my acorn hat.

(me hamming it up, pretending to be a little woodland creature)

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

more cameras for my small collection

Last night was another successful trip to the thrift store. My trips are always to go to get baby clothes and I never expect to find another camera. But it always happens that I just end up over by the area where the electronics are and *lo and behold!* find something that I like. So of course last night was no different but I am super excited about my newest acquirement.

I got so giddy when I saw this one. It was actually not in the normal camera area but over by a mess of toys and old silverware. Not that I knew any history of it, but it just idealized a camera from the 1950s to me. It's solid and heavy and lets you have an incredible amount of control over aperture and shutter speed for such a (relatively) tiny camera. It's a Agfa Apotar Silette from Germany and was produced in the 50s through the 70s. Through some short research online, I am inclined to think this particular camera is one of the much earlier models. It was actually one of the cameras that made 35 mm film popular. It reminds me of my dad who took pictures while he was in the US Army. He was stationed in Germany during the 60s and I imagine he used a camera similar to this one. I'll have to ask.

The best part? As far as I can tell it is in perfect working condition! I don't have any professional background in cameras but with my limited knowledge the shutter speeds seem to work correctly and the body as well as the lens are in great shape. So you can bet your bum that I'm taking this baby out for a spin as soon as I can buy some film!

And this camera was just a novelty, it was so weird looking I couldn't help buy it. Plus it was a $1 something so who cares if it turns out to gather only dust on my shelf. It's a Kodak disc 3500 which was suppose to be *the answer* for people who felt loading 35mm film was just too much work. I can imagine a cheesy infomercial where they show people shoving film into their cameras, looks of desperation and helplessness. And the announcer does one of the over-the-top "Tired of the hassle of film?!? Is it just too complicated?! Try the Kodak disc!!" deals.

A small disc was inserted in the back which would hold 15 pictures. But they were of such crappy quality, people weren't buying it. They still produced the disks for the camera up until 1998 and I guess you can find used ones REALLY cheap online. I just think it's so goofy looking - I love it.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy new year!

Good bye 2008, hello 2009!

I don't do new year's resolutions really, I think they are a bit silly. But I have resolved to quit drinking coffee except on occasion. I was a four-cups-or-more-a-day type of girl (although, in my defense, it was only half-caf). But I am sick of the quick caffeine high followed by the crash. And I had to have milk and sugar in my coffee so it was just added calories. However, there is no way I can totally quit drinking caffeine so I am switching to black tea. I love tea but I just never was able to quit coffee. But tea is infinitely better for me so I guess that will be that.

Anyhoo - I wasn't able to post these since they were christmas gifts but now that the holidays are over I want to share two amazing crochet patterns I found.

The first is the vegan scarf by Julia Redman which is generously offered for free in her blog which can be found here.

I used lion brand organic cotton which is incredibly soft and chunky and is a new favorite. What I really like about the pattern is the neat knit-like cable look you get. It was made for my uber wonderful mother-in-law Ellen and I think she really liked it :)

And then this cutie was from another free pattern that can be found here at the Better Homes and Gardens website.

I did some modifications to the pattern since I used Lion Brand Wool Ease Thick and Quick instead of the Jiffy that it called for. It just so fat and cute! I'm making another for my friend Leah who is having (or maybe already had!) her baby today or yesterday. But this one was for my dear father-in-law who really likes sheep. Yay for homemade gifts!