Not Martha

H&M coat

This is my new H&M coat, which I like a lot. It’s a spring weight coat, fully lined in adorable polka dots, see the adorable? It’s perfect for a number of reasons, it’s cotton (I find wool itchy), the collar is cute but not too cute, it’s fitted but not too much, it hangs to the knees but it’s not too full and swingy, it’s not too trenchy, it’s not too military or vintage-y. And the pockets, which aren’t too shallow, are also lined in the polka dots. I think it was around $70. And it comes in red.

The scarf is my latest knitting accomplishment, it only took me four months to complete, ha ha. It’s the Lace Ribbon Scarf pattern from Knitty done with Comfort DK yarn, which is surprisingly excellent. And I’m thrilled that Comfort is now offered in a chunky weight as well.

· comments [9] · 01-30-2009 · categories:knitting · shopping ·

Orka spatula

While I’m talking about kitchen stuff this week I will also tell you about my favorite spatula. I have a bunch of spatulas in my kitchen including a Chef’n Switchit, one of the substantial Williams-Sonoma silicone spatulas, one of those KitchenAid mixer-shaped spatulas and various orange generic spatulas but the one that I consistently reach for is a small Orka all-purpose spatula. It’s got the killer combination of being seamless silicone with a sturdy embedded metal handle, not too floppy on the end and really really easy to clean because you can just drop it in the dishwasher without worrying over hurting a wooden handle. It recently met with a food processor blade (sob, also, duh) so I went back to buy another and discovered they also offer a larger spatula and spoonula, silicone turner and slotted turner and a wide fish turner. Now, if only they still made them all in orange.

· comments [16] · 01-29-2009 · categories:food · shopping ·

links: food

mushroom bourguignon and smashed chickpea salad at Smitten Kitchen

Melt-in-the-Mouth Cookies, a brief history at Justinsomnia

Homo Sapien Tool at Better Living Through Design

Eight-Week Online Introduction to Food Writing Course with David Leite, it’s expensive but probably well worth it

How to Read A Wine Label at Chow

I just discovered lapsang souchong , which might be the greatest drink I’ve ever encountered. What other smoky things can you recommend? at Ask Metafilter

Chicken Tikka Masala approved by Alicia at Posie Gets Cozy

My Favorite Tomato Sauce recipe at Eating Well Anywhere

Why does my Ikea SENIOR casserole, which has a “matte enamel interior”, come with instructions for seasoning? at Ask Metafilter

· comments [3] · 01-28-2009 · categories:food · recipes ·

Breville Variable Temperature Kettle

Breville has come out with a variable temperature electric kettle with five temperature settings — 175F for Green Tea, 185F for White Tea, 195F for Oolong Tea, 200F for French Press, and 212F for boiling and black tea. It also includes a Hold Temperature feature that will keep the water at a desired temperature for twenty minutes. I have the regular Breville Electric Kettle and I really like it, we use it daily and haven’t had any problems at all. I like it well enough that I’m not quite hoping it will break so we have an excuse to buy the variable temperature version.

· comments [17] · 01-27-2009 · categories:food · shopping ·

OXO Santoku knife

A few years back Scott bought me a Wustof Classic Chef’s knife and ever since we’ve been scrambling to be the first to grab it when we cook dinner together. I finally got a second knife so chopping vegetables will cease to be a competitive event around here. I got an OXO 6.5 inch Santoku knife, it’s sharp and inexpensive and has those hollow areas to allow food to fall away from the sides of the knife and at the shorter length it feels nicely whippy. Peace has been restored to our household.

· comments [11] · 01-26-2009 · categories:food · shopping ·

links: beauty and shopping

Free weight loss resources at Bodies in Motivation, which you should be reading if you need to hear some fitness and weight loss stories from real, actual people.

Uncle Beefy announces that Flourish is back! Flourish was a card shop in the Wallingford neighborhood of Seattle that I used to visit often. They closed the physical store but have opened their online presence, and I’m glad to see them again.

Eye glasses online? at Ask Metafilter

This thread at Ask Metafilter lead me to the perfect iPhone cases at Vaja. What holiday can I use as an excuse to ask for this as a gift?

Scotch Transparent High Performance Duct Tape at Uncrate

Message in a bottle kit and Paper flower kits at Paper Source, both from Mighty Goods

A whole lot of non-alcohol-based perfumes have been appearing in front of my eyes: Episode 127 of Lipgloss and Laptops pointed me towards Sweet Anthem handmade oil based perfumes, who just happens to be here in Seattle. The Sweet Anthem site links to I Hate Perfume which are oil based and sound very intriguing, Aftelier Perfumes which are pricey but just look at those antique cases, and Pacifica who offers solid perfumes. offers this nice sounding Fragonard French Creme Perfume Gift Set that would work well to keep in your bag and for travel. And of course I just want to mention again how much I’ve liked the oil based perfumes from Yosh. update: Karen, thanks Karen!, reminded me about Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab which makes an overwhelming number of scents and has a cult following. They have a regular schedule of limited edition scents, a line inspired by the writings of Neil Gaiman, and sell smaller amounts, called Imp’s Ears. The number of scents they sell can be a bit much to browse, but if you know something you like the search feature works really well to narrow things down.

· comments [23] · 01-22-2009 · categories:beauty · shopping ·

Sew Bettie fabrics

I really like the fabrics made by Sew Bettie. It’s run by Cara and Mark in Chicago, they release 100 yards of each design printed on quilting weight cotton fabrics and sell it in fat quarters (if you want a full yard you can purchase four quarters). They also carry craft kits, patterns and tees in their shop. I think I’ve fallen for the Le French Bulldog fabric, and I’m pretty sure the Chain Link Fence fabric is destined to be a pillow in my house.

· comments [9] · 01-21-2009 · categories:craft ·


I hope you all had a great inauguration day. We got to watch the swearing in while sipping coffee, it was about 9 a.m. here, which was only slightly less preferable to being there. During the 2000 elections we lived half a block from Bush Street in San Francisco and people had slapped “Stop” stickers up on the street signs (to read Stop Bush). I’m glad to see that SF followed through, this time declaring it Obama street. Wish I was there. Flickr photo via A Whole Lotta Nothing.

added: these photographs from The Big Picture are amazing. I only wish they had included one of Obama and his daughters making the hang loose signal to his Hawaii school marching band.

· comments [3] · 01-21-2009 · categories:mumbling ·

links: misc


Lifehacker’s Guide to Catching the Inauguration from Anywhere

What time will it be when Obama takes the Oath on Tuesday? at Ask Metafilter

My Dinners with Dubya at Vanity Fair


What’s the most unique feature you’ve ever seen in a bar or pub? at Ask Metafilter. There is a bar is Portland, the Triple Nickel Pub, that has a giant game of Jenga made out of lengths of 2x3s, it stands about six feet high. As people walk past they pull out a piece. I really want to return so we can stay long enough to watch it come crashing down.

Dutch canals freeze for the first time in twelve years at Neatorama. I’d really like to ice skate on a Dutch canal!

Your personal moon, at Magpie & Cake

What’s your favorite two-person game? at Ask Metafilter

I spend most of my work day listening to interview and essay type radio shows on the internet. What else would you recommend I listen to? at Ask Metafilter

· comments [9] · 01-19-2009 · categories:misc ·

links: food

Napa Cabbage Salad at Pro Bono Baker

New flavor from Dry Soda! Juniper Berry, at Imbibe

Molly’s book cover!! at Orangette

Foodzie, via Pink of Perfection

homemade Light Wheat Bread at Smitten Kitchen

Save Those Tiny Bubbles, best way to preserve champagne, at Seattle Weekly

How did I miss this? Clare Crespo, author of the site Yummyfun and the books Secret Life of Food and Hey There, Cupcake! has some DVDs out: The Yummyfun Kooking Series: Episode 1 Spring Has Sprung, Episode 2 Monkeying Around in the Kitchen and Episode 3 Spookyfun. Via Swiss Miss, who offeres us video.

· comments [3] · 01-15-2009 · categories:food · recipes ·

Grassroots Business Association class tomorrow

Oops, I nearly forgot to mention that the Grassroots Business Association is having a class tomorrow night on How to pick and form your Business Entity, details and location on the schedule page.

Our monthly meet and greet will be Wednesday, January 21st, the topic is Share your resources and those coming are requested to bring along their press and marketing contacts. We have another class on January 28th called How to build a relationship with retailors.

You can find the schedule on the Grassroots site and if you’d like to get handy reminders you can join our group, details on how are here.

· comments [1] · 01-14-2009 · categories:events · seattle ·

seeking a tinsmith, I think

I would like to have a specific baking form made out of metal. I need a tinsmith, that’s what it’s called, right? The shape I need is fairly simply but I do not possess the know how or the tools to make what I want. And there is a band called Tinsmith so you can only guess how well my Google searches are going. So, does anybody know a good tinsmith? Preferably in Seattle but if somebody farther away is willing to work with my amateur ideas from afar I’m game. Any tips or guidelines on getting something made out of metal? This is entirely new territory for me so I’m not sure if I’m even asking the right questions. Anybody?

· comments [51] · 01-13-2009 · categories:mumbling ·

Color-Helper giveaway at Shelterrific

The kind people at Shelterrific are giving away five Color-Helpers. A Color-Helper is a truly cool gadget that allows you to scan colors from nearly anything and then provides you with complementary paint colors in a range of spectrums, along with paint brand names and numbers. It also comes with hardware that allows you to upload your colors to your computer.

To win one Shelterrific wants to see how badly you need it, and is asking for pictures of your interior space that is in need of a coat of well chosen paint. The five best of the worst will win a color helper and be featured in a follow-up story. For details go see the giveaway page at Shelterrific.

· comments [0] · 01-12-2009 · categories:the home ·

links: the home

Da*xiang on lucky bamboo

SimpliSafe, this “security system uses wireless technology to let the keypad, remotes, motion and entry sensors, and panic button connect to the main base station, which emits an 85-decibel siren and wirelessly contacts the service’s dispatch center in the case of an emergency or break-in.” at Uncrate

Porcoino Piggy Bank at Target

Lampel, a lampshade that you grow a plant in, at Better Living Through Design

Lightboxes at Mighty Haus

Urban Soule, goods for your home, on Etsy

Wall decals on furniture, at Ikea Hacker

Can anyone tell me about underfloor heat with tile? at Ask Metafilter

Door Sixteen’s Xmas pictures, which I bookmarked because I really really like the painting in this picture.

· comments [1] · 01-12-2009 · categories:the home ·

links: misc

Knytt Stories design tour, via Waxy

How do I talk to my doctor about meds for a plane trip? at Ask Metafilter

Biz Watch: 5 Job Interview Questions That Mean You’re Not Getting Hired…And One That Means You Are via Swiss Miss

Welsh Fail, my favorite fail, at Fail Blog

Throwing a Doctor Who Christmas special party! I’m in need of clever ideas. at Ask Metafilter

Help me learn about other peoples’ lives through blogs. at Ask Metafilter

100 top sites for the year ahead at the Guardian

Disneyland for guys, at Neatorama

Snow chain recommendations? at Ask Metafilter

Radio Public via Peter Sagal

2009 Independent Games Festival Finalists

· comments [7] · 01-9-2009 · categories:misc ·