Today I’m happy to be a stop on the blog book tour for CakeSpy‘s new book: CakeSpyPresents Sweet Treats for a Sugar-Filled Life. Yay Jessie! I live in Seattle and feel very lucky to know Jessie and see how she has grown her business into a real life shop how she manages to spread bits of joy wherever she goes. The book is filled with her sometimes silly and always awesome baked goods reflect her certain style. Cadbury Creme Eggs Benedict? S’moreos? Cupcake stuffed cupcakes? Deep-fried cupcakes on a stick? All these wonders can be found inside along with her illustrations. It’s more awesome in one place than you could hope for.
· comments  · 10-17-2011 · categories:books · food ·
I’m so happy to let you know that my friend Kelly Wilkinson, Make Grow Gather has a new book out! Congratulations! It’s called Weekend Handmade it’s it’s full of useful and fun projects. Congratulations Kelly! And with her book tour stop here today she is sharing some thoughts on Saturday afternoons, enjoy:
Hi everyone! I’m so thrilled to be here at with Not Martha as part of the
blog tour for Weekend Handmade. Over the course of the tour, I¹m breaking my
ideal weekend into its different parts, and posting about each part on a
favorite blog of mine. I’ve been lucky enough to spend a leisurely weekend
afternoon with Megan so it only feels natural to be here for the tour
An ideal Saturday afternoon for me is equal parts action and leisure. And
nothing embodies that more than being in the garden. There are plenty of
weekends that require errands or full days of work, but if I can being
completely indulgent and moving at my own pace, you¹ll find me in our little
vegetable patch in the fresh air, with dirt under my fingernails, planting
or weeding or harvesting.
I created a whole chapter of projects inspired by the outdoors, including
decorated planters and a tea towel apron that¹s equally at home in the
backyard as the kitchen. If I feel particularly ambitious, I¹ll even set up
some sunprint cloth to ³print² while I¹m out back. But inevitably, I get
thirsty. Megan and I both love a good shandy and I happen to think they
taste best sipped out of a big Mason jar. This requires some planning ahead
for me, because I live in a San Francisco apartment. Our garden access is
out the kitchen door, down two flights of stairs, and through a little
alley. My husband and I like to mix half ginger ale (or lemonade), half
beer, and a lot of freshly-squeezed lime while we¹re up in the kitchen, and
bring it downstairs. But if you like me don¹t regularly keep lemonade or
ginger ale, here¹s a quick little trick so you¹re never without shandy
Squeeze 1-2 lemons or limes into a Mason jar
Add a couple tablespoons of sugar, fill halfway with water, screw the lid
closed and shake to dissolve the sugar. Open back up, fill the rest of the
way with beer and you have yourself a homemade shady!
Photo credit: Photos by Thayer Allyson Gowdy.
· comments  · 10-6-2011 · categories:books · craft ·
I bought the Clarisonic Mia last spring after reading about it on a few sites of people I trust. I read the hype from the company (your pores will be smaller! your wrinkles will be fewer! you will glow from within!) but I didn’t really believe it. I’ve been using it all summer and last week I realized that despite faithfully applying SPF 30 I’ve had way fewer breakouts than I normally would. In fact I’ve stopped worrying that I’m going to get an inconvenient pimple (is there any other kind?) before an event where I need to look halfway decent. Which is so, so nice.
I have noticed that my pores seem less horrible than they used to. I think this is the result of a consistent cleaning routine rather than the Mia working magic. But that consistency turns out to be what I needed. I never skip thoroughly washing my face because it’s convenient and quick and right within reach (no more running out of fresh wash cloths). It did seem like a lot of money to plunk down for an oversized toothbrush but I’m hereby declaring it worth it.
I briefly looked at the larger model, the Clarisonic Plus, because it can also be used as a body brush (it holds larger body brushes as well as the smaller face brushes). But I read reviews that the larger one is bulky enough that it is awkward to use on your face. I also considered the Clarisonic Classic, which is as small as the Mia but has two speeds. For the added cost I didn’t think I’d miss that feature. You can easily compare the models over at the Clarisonic site.
One thing I don’t like? The Mia is all smooth rounded lines, which actually makes it difficult to store in or near the shower. I could use a flat end so it could stand up, or at least a little loop so I could hang it. As it is you put it down and it sort of rocks or slides one way or the other.
It comes in a bunch of colors. Most of the colors are in the pastel range, and there are a few patterns that might be exclusive to specific retailers but I bought the basic white one. Since I bought mine they came out with a poppy red model and a fetching Kelly green color that would have been my choice. My other pick is the charcoal gray. You can also buy replacement brush heads, sensitive brush heads or deep pore cleaning brush heads (which I’m going to try next). I’ve seen the Mia at Sephora, Nordstrom and Ulta stores, which all have great return policies. As I type this the basic white one is being sold on Amazon for only $105.
· comments  · 10-4-2011 · categories:beauty · shopping ·
Last night Grace was here in Seattle on the Design*Sponge at Home book tour and I was lucky enough to get to attend the crafting class that she’s holding as part of book tour.
Here is Grace demonstrating stamping our designs into wax. Hi Grace!
Know what we did? We wood burned our own wax seals. And then we got to practice stamping them into the hot wax.
In retrospect it seems incredibly dangerous. I mean, we were sitting in a store with wood floors that was filled with clothing and hanging paper decorations. Our tables were cluttered with exacto knives, hot pokers, matches and flammable wax. It was incredibly fun.
I managed to not accidentally set fire to myself or Melanie, whose hands you see here demonstrating how to do some wood burning. I’m very clumsy so reporting I didn’t burn Seattle to the ground comes as a great relief as well as a point of pride.
If you’re headed to one of the book tour events all I can advise is that you get there early, the line for her book signing wound through the store, down the stairs, out the front door and down the block. Congratulations Grace!
Also in the store that night was this installation by Matthew Parker. These were all hand folded geometric paper shapes and it was, there is no better way to say this, really cool. His business card says “stay rad” on it. Awesome.
· comments  · 09-30-2011 · categories:books · events ·
I want to invest in good quality lady’s undies that are not too frilly but also well made and will be comfortable. Do these exist? | Ask MetaFilter. Target stopped making my very favorite undies so I’m also searching for a new brand.
Cheap, Cheerful Flowers For Your Next Party | The Awl. How to juj grocery store flowers.
swissmiss | BuckyCubes. Cubes! I think I have just found my go-to Christmas gift.
Splurge vs steal! « Door Sixteen. The iHurst DIY kit for a make your own diamond encrusted replica human skull.
The Crazy Target Experience :: Missing Missoni. – Modern Kiddo. The Missoni stuff was so gone from my Target as well. I got there so late that they’d even taken down the displays indicating where the stuff used to be.
Cool Tools: Coby CV198 Noise Cancelling Headphones. Noise cancelling headphones are an absolute must have for air travel. Must.
The Cat Ball. I don’t have cats (allergic) but I suspect they’d get a big obsessed over this. It’s made by a local Seattlite! I’m thinking presents for your feline pets, yes?
Cool Tools: Fels-Naptha.
· comments  · 09-29-2011 · categories:links · shopping ·
As you might know the Missoni for Target stuff was briefly in stores earlier this week. I say briefly most reports it was all gone about an hour after the stores opened. Modern Kiddo has a great report from the scene, complete with a spy picture from Shutterbean showing some shopper taking four whole carts of stuff.
When I saw the Missoni line I saw something familiar. The picture above shows a skirt I bought from Erin MacLeod. I think the skirt was made from a vintage fabric and is similar enough that when I put a picture on Twitter last Thursday Natalie asked if I was sitting in the Missoni for Target pop-up shop that was going on that evening. Sadly, no, I didn’t make it to the pop-up shop.
By the time I made it to a Target the day it was released the shelves that formerly help Missoni items were bare. I encountered one other Missoni hopeful and by the time I left she’d only found one child’s sweater. So, do you think Target will do another run of the Missoni stuff? Should we all brace ourselves for round two?
· comments  · 09-15-2011 · categories:shopping ·
suspect and fugitive: Inigo Montoya Now Availble as a Shirt, Etc, Etc. It’s funny, you love it, now you can buy the shirt!
WHolman Design by wholman on Etsy. Bowls made from old road sights. I want to display my fruit in one of the blue arrow bowls.
Cool Tools: Kryptonite Evolution U-Lock. What to use to keep your bicycle safe.
Shopping for Men: The Stores (NOTCOT). Where do men find all those good clothes? These places.
Back to School Supplies (for Adults!) | Family Style. Great sources here.
Fallen Princess: Costco. No go. While I myself have a fondness for Costco because it’s local (Cotco #1 Kirkland holla!) I have to admit there hasn’t been many memorable Costco purchases other than my many flats of canned foods for our emergency kit.
· comments  · 08-25-2011 · categories:links · shopping ·
Jordan Ferney (Oh Happy Day!) has a very talented husband, Paul, who creates amazing oil paintings. Last year they took a bunch of orders for paintings at half price and this year they are doing it again! It’s called The Commission Project. It’s simple, you send a photo that you’d like as a painting by September 1st and you’ll get it back as an oil painting by Christmas. It’s the perfect present. And just think how relaxed you’ll be knowing you’ve gotten that awesome gift thing checked off your list way in advance. Go see the gallery. I love how he can pull emotions out of a photograph and amplify them in the painting.
This year Jordan asked me to contribute a photograph that could be used as an example. I sent in the photo above, and yes I know that it’s horribly blurry. Let me explain, I took this photograph using my very first digital camera while sitting in a cafe at a moment I didn’t really mean to take a photo. It was shortly after Scott and I moved all the way across the country to San Francisco and we were exploring our new city. I was holding up the camera but wasn’t expecting to take a picture when I saw this moment where the colors behind Scott seemed to compose themselves so I hit the shutter button. For me it represents that time in our lives, shaky and a little impulsive but everything worked out. I’m so glad to be able to take that moment from a decade ago off of my hard drive and give it a home on our wall. Yay!
· comments  · 08-23-2011 · categories:shopping ·
Giant Washi Tape at Design Mom. So many possibilities!
Unique Geological Papercuts by Crafterall | Paper Crave. These are gorgeous.
There is a relatively new fancy technology in eyeglass lenses: free form lenses for single vision, which some manufacturers are calling “like HDTV” for glasses. Really? Will I notice that much difference with MY prescription? | Ask MetaFilter. I had no idea these existed. I don’t wear glasses much any more, but I might if I felt like I could see more clearly out of them.
swissmiss | Desk-It. A paper to-do list that is as simple as Swiss Miss’s TeuxDeux. I need this, I still only remember things if I’ve written them down on paper.
Keep Our Secrets is a children’s book printed by McSweeneys that uses heat sensitive ink that will reveal secrets as you touch it. I love this! Their children’s imprint is called McSweeney’s McMullens.
· comments  · 08-9-2011 · categories:links · shopping ·
Are you at Comic Con right now? First: I’m jealous. Second: Allow me to suggest heading to see Kirby Krackle perform tonight, Thursday, at The Third Annual San Diego Comic-Concert: A Night of Geek Rock at The Stage in Downtown San Diego (6 blocks from the Convention Center) from 8:00pm – 12:00am. You can get tickets here. They put on a damn good show and you will love it, promise. Disclosure: My husband Scott plays bass for Kirby Krackle, but even if not I’d be telling you about this because as it turns out a dear friend of mine grew up with Kyle, one of the founders of the band, and Kyle plays guitar with Explone, which Scott also plays bass with. Seattle is a big-small town that way.
Kirby Krackle is also debuting their shiny brand new album, Super Powered Love, at the con and you can buy it right from them at booth #1803. There is one song in particular that is worth the purchase, you’ll know which when you hear it. Tell them I said hello! And if you speak beer geek ask Kyle about his Charging Hippo Brewing Company. I’m a picky beer drinker and can confidently say you’ll be hearing about it in the future.
· comments  · 07-21-2011 · categories:shopping ·
Welcome – Stitch & Hem. A brand new online marketplace dedicated to custom made clothing, that is all made to measurement. As a pear shaped petite woman I would love to find a dress that actually fits and this site looks like the perfect resource for that. I think I have a crush on this gingham dress.
Martha Stewart Faux Bois Tree Stand – Grandin Road.
If we had real trees at Christmas I would absolutely buy this. It’s a wide fake tree trunk that waters your real tree. Oops! It’s actually for artificial trees.
How to Buy the Perfect Gift for Your Niece or Nephew | The Hairpin.
CB2 – bamboo dry erase. I wonder if I could fit this into my office room?
swissmiss | Just launched: Tattly. Awesome temporary tattoos created by designers.
· comments  · 07-18-2011 · categories:links · shopping ·
Hi there! Today is a stop on the blog book tour for 1, 2, 3 Sew: Build Your Skills with 33 Simple Projects—Bags, Accessories, Home Accents, and More written by Ellen of The Long Thread. The book is filled with happy and useful projects and has a whole section for organizers. If you head on over the the book’s page you can find a preview of some pages, and you can also see the book trailer on YouTube. It’s stop motion and I’m sort of in love with it.
There is also a free tutorial for the Market Tote which is completely adorable. I must make one.
Next up on the blog book tour is Modern Kiddo, and you can see the whole schedule right over here.
· comments  · 07-14-2011 · categories:books · craft ·
We went to Urban Craft Uprising on Saturday and on the way I discovered that there was no memory card in my camera, so I didn’t get to take any pictures. But I did find a bunch of businesses that I liked:
Morse code necklaces by Coatt. (Secret messages!)
Posters by Row Boat Press, this Night Flight diptych is also glow in the dark.
Simple jewelry by Foamy Wader. I bought myself these in silver, they are delightfully light weight.
Really fun bias tape from Polly Danger.
Gorgeous enameled jewelry by Alisha Louise, you get to chose your color for each piece. I have my eye on this pull-though necklace.
These chiffon earrings from Muchodesign, she had a whole tree of them and they were delightfully flitty. Is that a word?
An LED Sewing Kit from Sternlab which was sold by the lovely Moxie, who offers this Needle Felted Coin Cell Battery Pack tutorial so you can create your own glowy pendant.
Jewelry by Dottyspeck. I have some earrings similar to this design that I picked up from the CakeSpy Shop and adore them.
See also: I listed businesses I went to see there in a previous post. Love them all.
· comments  · 07-12-2011 · categories:seattle · shopping ·
Urban Craft Uprising is this weekend here in Seattle! They are stuffed full of my favorite vendors, here are just a few:
- CakeSpy, paintings, cards, cute stuff
- Crystalyn Kae, fabulous handbags
- Devout Dolls, wonderfully strange dolls
- Erin MacLeod, snap together skirts (I have a skirt of hers and it gets more compliments than any of my other clothes)
- Ex Libris Anonymous, blank journals bound from old book covers
- Idolatre, perfectly different clothing
- Jill Bliss, paper and fabric goods printed with her lovely designs
- Matthew Porter Art, childrens books, illustrations and goods (he made the poster you see above)
- My Paper Crane, adorable and fun plush goods
- Sam Trout, screenprinted t-shirts and sweatshirts
- Schmancy, handmade pins and pouches
- Slow Loris, t-shirts and silkscreens with distinctive designs
- Texture Clothing, comfy, flattering cothing (my purple shirt is from Texture)
- This Charming Candy, lollipops in deliciously grown up flavors
- Yarnia, custom DIY yarns
There are so many vendors this time around that I have not heard of, and lots of them are foods (ice cream! cake pops! preserves! gluten-free treats!).
update: See which businesses I found and loved at the show.
· comments  · 07-8-2011 · categories:events · seattle · shopping ·
For our anniversary Scott got me The Badass Perforated (aka Egg) Spoon. It’s made to allow the runny bits of egg white separate so you can make a tidy looking poached egg. It works!
· comments  · 07-5-2011 · categories:dailyphoto · food · shopping ·