Friday, March 13, 2009

Surprise Birthday Giveaway
"It's my birthday and I'll have a giveaway if I want to!" 
We are off to Victoria, on Vancouver Island, for a long birthday weekend. I'll be back here on Tuesday morning and when I get back I want to see lots of entries to my birthday giveaway. Details below.

Up for grabs is a whole lot of Cartolina birthday cards. I'll make the draw on Monday night, winners here on Tuesday!  All you have to do to enter is complete this sentence .  .  .  .  "It's my birthday and I'll  _ _ _ _ _ _ _  if I want to!" 
Inspiration | Packaging | Type | Old | New
These items all have something in common. I am not sure quite what it is yet but if I was curating a show I would gladly hang all these images together - or if I was creating a vignette or a still life I would use all of these items together on a table top. I think it may be the calligraphic quality of the patterns and shapes used in the surface designs. I like the muted colours and the calmness that these curious, busy patterns can create. All of these were designed by very talented designers and typographers - could have been a few months ago and, for at least a couple, it was a hundred years ago.

This last piece is by artist Luca Lonescu.
Pretty Packaging | Mast Brothers
I have wanted to do a post on Mast Brothers Chocolate for months but I haven't been able to find any good images of the chocolate bars. I stumbled on these pictures yesterday and they are perfect(I'm rather picky about the images that I use here, as you may have noticed!) So now you can see the lovely paper that they use to wrap their chocolate bars in. I have never tasted their chocolate so I can't give you a review but they have a cute web site and look like quirky guys  - so they probably make good chocolate. 

Valuable Chocolate tip: We consider ourselves chocolate experts here at the Cartolina studios, in other words we eat a lot of it - and we are very picky(wow I've used that word twice in one post). Thanks to Lisa, who mails it to us, we are getting a good supply of my new favourite chocolate - from Cocoa Nymph(made in Vancouver) - 64% dark bar with sea salt and caramel - yummo! You can get it at the Vancouver Urban Fare stores - but don't buy it all  :-(

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Etsy | The Wren
Look what else I found on Etsy! I fully admit that I am normally not very good at finding things on Etsy - I get discouraged when my search results turn up pages and pages of unicorn art or orange afghans. But I have had good luck twice this week by sitting patiently and watching the little thumbnails of newly listed items scroll across the bottom of the home page - and when one grabs my eye I catch it, click it and off we go . . . fab recycled burlap bags from The Wren. Of course I'm also a sucker for good product shots - and these are great!

What have you ffffound recently?
Am I the last person to know about I noticed a lot of hits to my websites from the server so I went to investigate. I haven't quite figured it out yet(because I haven't had time)but it looks like a kind of online scrapbook to sort, save and share all your favourite online images. Image junkies like me have their own collections and by browsing through their pages and pages of random and beautiful images you really get a feel for who that person is. It's a bit spooky really - I checked out Emiliabird who had been occasionally saving some images from here at the cafe - along with hundreds of other random images. Her collection looks exactly like my collection would(if I was a member - which I am not - yet!) Check it out - would you not say these are exactly my cup of tea? Spooky.

Inspiration | Vintage Vogue
After seeing the harpers cover(above) I suddenly felt the urge to see more vintage mag covers. Doug has lots including loads of Harpers and Vogues - they are so  pretty - and so inspiring!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Etsy | Cookoorikoo
Look what I found on Etsy. Repurposed vintage jewelry from Cookoorikoo!. I love all these pretty things! They are so retro-pretty and granny-chic. I would totally wear one of these with a simple outfit like a white t shirt and faded jeans. What a nice little present for me! I think I like the 2nd one the best. And at $16 I can afford two  :-)

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Inspiration | pattern purge.
Mind if I purge some patterns? I collect images of patterns for inspiration when I am designing. This blog has become like a big scrapbook of sorts for me. I can flip through the posts and find all the inspiration that normally would be kept in a folder on my desktop. It's like being the style editor of my own magazine - purely selfish! Hopefully I can inspire some others by these images too. I have huge scrap books of magazine clippings that I drag out every so often and flip through them - I've collected for ages. It's always rather funny to see what ghastly  gimmick was a hot trend even 5 years ago - stay away from trends I say - they will come back to haunt you. Now THESE patterns have lasting qualities . . .

Style and personality
I have a friend that works as a stylist at one of the big home decor magazines(they call them 'shelter' magazine these days but I really dislike that name don't you?) Anyway she is part of a team that goes to beautiful homes and styles them for a photo shoot. She was telling me that they always show up with an entire collection of  props including slip covers, throw rugs and pillows, lamp shades etc. I find this kind of 'dumbing-down' with generic staging effects so boring. When I pick up a magazine I want to see personality in the rooms - I want to see how other people live. I think it's human nature to want to peek into another person's life. I think that's why Domino Magazine was so popular - their shoots were eclectic and unexpected - I am sure they were styled and staged but it was so appealing and intriguing. The following photographs were taken by British photographer James Merrell. I like these shots for their personality - fits right in with what we were talking about last week - making your space unique and personal  with found objects etc.

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