June came and went, part 3- Full Circle Festival and Avondale Art Fair

After a few weeks of fun family filled awesome-ness, Naryn and I took off to the country for the Full Circle Festival and the Avondale Art Fair. The two events are not related, but I had applied for the craft show and bought tickets for the festival realizing after that they were the same weekend. Luckily for me they were within walking distance, more or less.
The festival was such a great break from the past few weeks of running around and life in general. Sleeping outside and live music are two of my favourite things and so many of our buds were performing over the weekend, that it made for a magical couple of days. It was a bit chilly the first night, as we came just a wee bit unprepared (never trust the weather report, how many times must I learn this lesson…) but as the weekend carried on it got warmer and brighter. I think this is the festivals fourth year and from what I understand it was its busiest. I’m pretty sure the whole weekend was sold out. So many little families with dancing babies and smiling friends and beautiful scenery. I’m sure we’ll be back next year with the little bean. Here are a few images from the weekend. If it looks familiar it’s because the festival takes place in the same spot as the Heritage Artisans in Action even I did at the beginning of the month. (As always I should have taken more pictures…)

Saturday morning I snuck out from the festival to spend the day up the road at the Avondale Art Fair at the Avondale Sky Winery. A beautiful spot on a lovely piece of land, fields of grapes growing in the background. The winery building is an old church with lots of beautiful stained glass inside and funny church things left over like the collection box that has different holes for different types of donations like “poor”, “general offering” and “special offering”….Oy vey…

The fair had a great collection of artisans, lots of folks whom I met for the first time at last years NSDCC Summer Show. The weather around the province seemed to keep people at home despite the dry windy weather we were having at the winery. But I think over all there was a decent crowd and it’s always nice to chat with folks about what I do and send a few business cards out in the world. Here’s what the day looked like:

So there we go… June’s almost over and I’m flabbergasted at how fast that all went… It’s kind of terrifying…
Working on some fun custom pieces and projects, some more summer shows are coming up and hopefully I’ll get it together to organize a workshop by the end of this month, fingers crossed.

flute practice book repair

I’ve been wanting to write this post for a bit now! Finally getting to it…

I did this repair recently for a fellow named Henri I met at a craft sale in the summertime. The book was used for practicing the flute and was getting a bit difficult to use since the pages were coming out. From just looking at it, I assumed the book was sewn, but it was actually perfect bound (not sewn, just glued together) ! Derp…which makes it quicker to fix but is a binding that just doesn’t last as long as a sewn binding (10’s of years as opposed to 100’s I’d say…)


For some reason, when I see a hard cover and headband, I immediately think it’s a sewn binding… But if you look really close you’ll see that the pages aren’t arranged into signatures. Sneaky….

Anywho, I snapped a few images in the process. I love this kind of repair because Henri was interested in having the whole book be redone with a bit of leather and book cloth.

So here is the book before the repair.





That last image is the sticker of the last bindery who repaired the book a few years ago. When I got to taking the book apart, I started to wonder what kind of glue they used because it was really easy to pull some parts off, like the strip that covered the spine. Once I realized it was actually perfect bound, I decided I’d gently tear all the pages out, one by one, and then re-bind it it from scratch. The pages were also really easy to just pull off…

So I started initially by pulling the text block away from the cover by cutting the end papers close to the spine and detaching it.



Then I pulled that strip off the spine and started detaching the pages one by one…




Here is where I frustratingly stopped taking process shots… But my next step was to arrange the pages together as evenly as possible into a clamp and re-glued it. I gave it a good 3 layers of glue before glueing some mull and then a strip of mulberry paper on top. Next I used the handiest of little tools, a micro spatula  (which I just broke!) to scrape all the excess paper off the covers and the sanded down what I couldn’t scrape so that it would be flush when I attached the new end papers.

Henri chose some really great materials and left me to surprise him with the end papers. Here’s what I came up with…




IMG_0717 copy

Should give him at least another decade of use! (and hopefully more than that)

After this, Henri commissioned me to make some paper portfolios with some GORGEOUS marble papers he found and some really amazing leather.  Will make a post about it once I’ve finished them!

studio noise #6- Lady Metal Monday


I am still getting used to the fact that when I think of something I haven’t heard in ages, that I can just type it into YouTube and there it is…. Unless it’s not on YouTube, in which case, it probably never existed in the first place.

I’m sure I’ve mentioned this before, but my two older brothers very early on in life imbued me with the music they had at their fingertips from a very early age (no matter how appropriate or inappropriate) . I am only now realizing the full scope of how their musical influences have made me who I am today. Their most obvious influence is for sure the metal side of things. I think I listened to an inordinate amount of death metal for an 11 year old girl, but I connected with that music from an early age and perhaps it felt good to let go of some aggression.

My brother, Ryan, took me to see Crisis when I was about … 14 or so…? (I’m not sure exactly… I’m sure I was still in high school). Crisis was (is?) fronted by Karyn Crisis-this tiny, beautiful, dred-locked-maned, powerhouse. Her voice goes dramatically from melodic singing to growling/shrieking/ terror in milliseconds. Their songs and album art are dark and disturbing, all the things you’d expect from a death metal band.  The show was amazing and loud and awesome. Those first shows as a young teenager were so exciting!  I remember being terrified to say hello to her after her set, but when I did she was warm and welcoming.

The most important lesson from this time in my life was that “bad-assery” and “male” are not mutually exclusive; a lesson that has been reinforcing itself ever since. The disproportionate amount of men in certain genre’s of music and as a result, certain assumptions about women’s and men’s creative abilities is a theme for another post…

I’ve since departed from metal, I suppose, in the sense that I have no idea what is new, or good these days… Did I ever? Who knows….I’m still listening to stuff from the 90’s and early 2000’s. I don’t have the desire to listen to metal all the time every day ( I don’t really want to listen to anything all day every day….except maybe that new Justin Timberlake  album, but we’ll get to him on another post…) but I do love to, every now and again, blast some good metal in my ears. It helps you let go, helps you deal and makes you feel temporarily invincible.

** On a side note regarding blasting loud metal in my ears for YEARS-

I have been telling everyone in my life for years that I have awful hearing. At a Melvins concert once back in 2003 or so (?… I can’t seem to remember when anything happened…) I damaged my left ear pretty bad by standing in front of the bass amp and being too cool to stuff something in my ears. My left ear was muted for a few days afterwards… Anywho, flash forward to now… I’m always missing things, hearing them wrong, not hearing things my partner does, etc. So I had a hearing test done for an ear issue I’m having an it turns out I HAVE EXCEPTIONAL HEARING. Not just passable, EXCEPTIONAL. I was floored. Turns out, my brain is just constantly preoccupied and not concentrating hard enough AND a little extremely loud music never hurt anyone (Just kidding! Please protect your ears!! Losing your hearing ain’t no joke…)


studio noise #5- music for morningtime

Years ago after returning from my first trip overseas, I was crashing with some good friends and was starting to realize that I needed to get my life in order.

I got really into stretching… and not really “yoga”, I’m not even sure if I even really knew anything about yoga at the time… and whatever I did know I probably judged harshly as pretentious, elitist, culturally-appropriating and so on. ( These feelings linger about yoga, yoga in North America anywho… but I have to admit, yoga makes my body really happy… Stretching and exercise make my body happy…)

Anyways, my body just wanted to stretch… always… So I would get up with the sun, listen to this album of flute music from the Andes (It was called Magic of the Indian Flute I think) and stretch like there was no tomorrow. For some reason, it was exactly what I needed and I still feel so peaceful and happy when I listen to it.

This song isn’t actually one from the CD I had, but it’s still lovely and makes me want to close my eyes and fold in half.

Crazy Christmas Craft-ness Comedown…

The past few weeks have been a bit of a shit show… As much as you try to prepare yourself for any kind of deadline, there seems to always be insanity right up to the end (maybe this is just me?) As soon as Naryn and I got back form Toronto in September, we hit the ground running; him with his thesis in Architecture and myself with preparing for Xmas crafty business. So, in my supreme naivete, I actually thought I’d be sitting pretty, relaxed and ready to rock for the Crafters Holiday Market…. This was not (and will probably never be) the case… And then, my beloved grandfather passed away, with his funeral landing on the first day of the Halifax Crafters Holiday market, in Montreal…

Super boyfriend and in-laws to the rescue..!

With the unbelievable support of my partner and his folks, I was able to cut out to Montreal for 2 days, visit with my family, say goodbye to my grandpa and have my table set up and looking amazing with a total babe working for me (that’d be Naryn)…

Here’s what the set up looked like!


and here’s a shot of Naryn I took when I finally arrived on Sunday …


The show was amazing! There are so many unbelievably talented people in Halifax it’s incredible… Unfortunately, I couldn’t get around to some of the tables at the market because I wanted hang out at my table for the little bit of time left the market was open. There are so many folks there and it takes time to get around and see it all.

Every year I learn so many new things I should or shouldn’t be doing, what things are working and what aren’t and where I should be putting my energy and this year was no exception. It’s hard not to feel like I should be doing something every second I am able to with all these new ideas brewing…But for now I will relax and drink some rum (and eggnog), read a book and write some music.

Here’s some new ideas I’m thinking about for the new year…

-Teaming up with a photographer and making photo albums and guest books for whatever event they’re shooting

-New fabric boxes.

-Spring workshops

-Themed DIY book kits

…and probably so much more, but I’m on break so it’ll have to wait 🙂