winter accents

the first snow fall is always the most magical. especially when it comes at night and you awake, peek out the window after hearing the winds blow all night and you're greeted with a white cityscape. quelle surprise!

i spent the last few days in peterborough baking, drinking lots of tea and catching up with girlfriends. playing cut and paste and making gifts from hand in a bright orange room. we walked through forests, collecting winter greens to make floral arrangements with.

appreciating bright red dogwood and how festive it is, the sound of the word bullrushes on my lips, how easy it is to make delicious gluten free cranberry cookies and the smell of drying sage i forgot about in the porch //

my pile of kraft paper packages is slowly growing the more projects i complete. im doing an entirely handmade christmas this year, safe a few edible treats that i couldn't resist to buy (chocolates and imported liquorice).

more to knit, more to paint, more to sew.


cowl knitting

the last days have been foggy and grey. romantic though
in the way that the tress are laid bare amidst the silvery hue of mist
winter has its way of making magic in my heart
has knitting season officially started? it feels like its here
since my last pair of circular needles broke in my luggage this time last year,
i need a new pair.

already have some soft cream wool

time to knit a cowl//

(the first cowl i ever knitted, using a pattern from yarn over movement)

(in the works)

what are you knitting? socks, scarves and tuques?
on another note, im really mesmerized by all the holiday ideas circulating. but more on that later.


whisk lighting

the sweet paul holiday mag is out.
and im scouring the flea markets to find an old industrial whisk, to no avail.
but i've seen a similar project with an old cheese grater, and that i have


have you ever made a recycled lamp before?

make it yourself:
-one old industrial whisk
-hanging lamp set

1. make sure lamp set isn't plugged in
2. unscrew socket until it comes apart, unscrew the screws holding the two wires in place
3. pull cord through whisk, then reassemble socket
4. wrap one wire around one screw and tighten
5. do the same for the other wire (make sure the two wires are not touching)
6. screw socket back into position, twist in a light bulb
7. hang it up and turn it on!


remote islands, an atlas of

"Paradise is an island. So is hell,"
The Atlas of Remote Islands: 50 islands I have never set foot on and never will

written by Judith Schalansky

"The absurdity of reality is lost on the large land masses, but here on the islands, it is writ large. An island offers a stage: everything that happens on it is practically forced to turn into a story, into a chamber piece in the middle of nowhere, into the stuff of literature. What is unique about these tales is that face and fiction con no longer be separate: fact is fictionalized and fiction is turned into fact."

all mapped images are hand drawn and shaded to scale by the author //
awarded the most beautiful book in Germany

can you wonder why?


sewing homework

im taking quite leisurely sewing classes from my talented aunt. she even sewed my mother's wedding gown (once upon a time) and now she's passing on her drapery, hemming and dress-sewing expertise on to me. first lesson included hemming 101, the basics, the dirty basics and some tips.

task one: hem one pair of pants

remember that denim wine bottle holder i made earlier this week? she ripped the stitches out, not good enough. so with a new strategy to master that french seam, i will make it again and make an entire new one.

task two: re-sew first bottle holder, sew another one

i got my hands on a copy of the japanese stylish dress book. not speaking japanese, i'm happy the instructions are so clear and precise. she's going to guide me through one pattern with buttons, gathering and piping so that we can cover a few skills in one project. i have my eyes on dress G.

task three: translate pattern and convert japan sizing chart to canadian and then trace pattern, cut it out

for monday.


akos major on budapest

bone chilling photographs from akos major.
i don't remember winters in hungary ever being so powerful.

chain bridge looks motionless for the first time in history.
and parliament like an angelic mansion from a fairy tale story.

the danube is quiet and grey, it loses its brown/green tinge when winter arrives.
for a self-proclaimed "amateur" akos creates some beautiful images.

find more here
found via smallsight


denim wine bottle tote // diy

found this charming pattern on design*sponge
for a bleached denim wine bag

now, my fingers smell like bleach (even though i wore plastic gloves)
the pattern, relatively easy although pulling off a tidy french seam with denim and twill at a half inch isn't easy and mine certainly isn't tidy.

in the end the denim is too yellow for my liking but my mum said it's great. is it just because she's my mum? it's a good thing i've been invited over for dinner at a friends later this week, so i can tote a bottle of red in good hand-sewn style.

[find the pattern here]