Sunday, February 28, 2010

And......we're out

Scott, Sadie, Coco and I went to Vancouver yesterday. We immersed ourselves in the sea of red and white that had taken over Robson Street, and walked down to the waterfront to see the cauldron. But other than that, we didn't do anything too "Olympic" like see an event or win a gold medal. HOWEVER, one of us proved to have more star power than the rest. Our skinny, white, terrified little whippet was an apparent celebrity. Dozens of people asked to take photos with her and, trembling, she submitted to the puparazzi. Coco, country mutt though she is, found herself smack in the middle of an international metropolis, bewildered amongst tens of thousands of people. Poor sweet skinny thing.

Pretty soon, Vancouver will feel pretty lonely. The closing ceremony is winding down on TV as I write this (how many more performances can there BE???). I like how they poked fun at the cauldron malfunction of the opening ceremony, afterall, we Canadians don't mind laughing at ourselves now and again. But I wasn't much for Catherine O'Hara's speech. Weird? Or weird? Kind of mean? And how great were the Sochi performances? Moonlit water as a backdrop for an ice rink? Damn.

I may have been skeptical about these games in the beginning. But now, upon their conclusion, what I will remember about them is that the world really did descend on Vancouver for 17 days, in a way that was peaceful, unifying and cheerfully chaotic. It's true, Canadian pride has never been greater, so let's hope this land of loonies, twoonies, and puck-slappers can keep it up. A little enthusiasm, eh!

Saturday, February 20, 2010

It's a small world

It has recently occurred to me that I am on a perpetual quest for the perfect world map, especially one that is kid-friendly. Although this one from Children Inspire Design only labels continents, it is definitely in the running. In fact, the lack of text is a nice change.

It reminds me of my sixth grade geography projects. My teacher showed me how to shade coastlines with blue pencil crayon and I spent hours perfecting my technique.

I also distinctly remember the moment when someone pointed out to me that Italy is shaped like a boot. Well whaddya know.....

Friday, February 19, 2010


Burrard Bridge, Vancouver 2006

Without a doubt, as of last Friday, the city of Vancouver is forever changed.

I've enjoyed watching these games more than I had anticipated, and if Sadie were a little older I think we would be making last minute plans to hop on the ferry and take in a piece of the action and the spirit. Some unforgettable moments have occurred there in the past week: Bilodeau, Ricker and tonight, Montgomery. But these moments, golden as they are, are simply that - GOLDen. I just heard on the news that the Canadian Olympic Committee's goal for these games was "to win the most medals". The news is, it ain't gonna happen. 'Cause OH GOD, we'll still be dwelling on our medal count this time next year. And anyway, is this where all the Olympic pride comes from? Has it always been about winning? Maybe the hard and fast answer to this is "DUH", or maybe all this humanity, all this BELIEF is a little misdirected. Is it just me or has 2010 media coverage of sportsmanship and triumph over adversity (whether there's a podium involved or not) been underwhelming at best? The 56th place finisher in the women's 15K pursuit is A PARTICIPANT IN THE OLYMPIC GAMES. Isn't that what matters? Kuddos to ALL the athletes.

I don't mean to be a poo-pooer. In fact I admit to feeling truly patriotic this past week and have even shed a tear or two on behalf of some of our athletes. But let me ask you this: next time you see a crowd of spectators or a mass of people in the streets of downtown Vancouver waving the flags of every country, cheering loudly, embracing each other, spontaneously bursting into song, imagine that instead of celebrating a glorified sporting event, those people were united by some other humanitarian oh, say, a CURE.

Still, I know sport is more than just a win or a loss. I get it. There's dedication, discipline, blood, sweat and tears, and all these things are deserving of admiration. But at the same time sport is a game, a race, a performance. And without forgetting the importance our society places on entertainment, SPORT can be just that - at least for the millions of spectators.

I think the spirit is wonderful, I really do. And I think it creates a genuine sense of togetherness, for which our world is always better off. I just have a hard time watching someone throw a rock in a curling match and connecting that victory with the unabashed pride and pandemonium going on in the country and all over the world.

Valid? Trite? Cynical?

But who am I to say? These are simply the meandering thoughts of a poppet-making former figure skater who used to have a far-fetched Olympic dream of her own.

What say you? Do you have maple leaves [stars and stripes, union jacks, other national emblem] in your eyes or are you scratching your head too? Oh, what the hell, GO CANADA!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Kindergym Haiku

Oh, green bouncing ball!
I will take you everywhere
Can we stay all day?

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Big Fat Hen: Canadian-made

How cute are these quilts?

Big Fat Hen is a growing Canadian company based in Calgary, Alberta. Owner Emily's story is a familiar one: Big Fan Hen originated after the birth of her first child, when her quest for a cozy yet modern crib set proved elusive. So she did what any creative mama would do and started a company, finding her own niche in the marketplace.
I am very excited to announce that Koo & Poppet will be teaming up with Big Fat Hen for an exciting giveaway. Big Fat Koo? Hen & Poppet? Big Koo Fat Poppet? It's a surprise for now, but all details will be released within a month. Check back soon, you don't wanna miss this one!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

KLUB KOO: Ember and "Ruby"

photo: Sarah Ferguson

Just in time for Valentine's Day, here's an adorable photo of 2-month-old Ember and her Ruby bunny. It looks like they make a wonderful pair!

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Koo & Poppet archives

Sylvie was one of the first bunnies I ever made, and proved to be one of the most popular designs of 2009. I think she's a keeper for the 2010 cast of characters too...

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Ork - City Neighborhood Posters

san francisco neighborhood poster mapboston nieghborhood posterbrooklyn nieghborhood poster
I love these Ork Posters.
There's at least a dozen U.S. cities to choose from (Toronto is "coming soon"), each with several colour schemes.
I've got my eye on SAN FRANCISCO. It might be a great way to honour the city where Scott and I were engaged. I'd love to go back there soon.....the food, the shopping, the vistas, oh my! It is one of my top three places I'd like to live one day.
What about you? If you could live anywhere else for one year, where would it be?

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Kids with Koos

Newest Klub Koo inductees, Sophie and Gavin live near the University of Victoria campus, and for those who don't know, the campus is absolutely hopping with little cottontails. When I was a student there I simply could not resist the urge to say "Hi bunnyyyyy!" everytime I walked past one, even though I'm sure I got a lot of sideways glances.
I love seeing these photos of Sophie and Gavin opening their very own bunnies on Christmas morning. Great jammies too!

Thanks to Sarah for the photos!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Photobooth: "Sven, International Koo of mystery"

I had this idea a while back to photograph some of the misfits in old-style, black and white photobooths. The only problem is that the old-style black and white photobooths don't really exist anymore. They've been replaced with crappy mall photobooths that spit out low-quality glossy pictures and really just don't do the old ones justice. They don't even print in a vertical strip! You know how sacrilegious it is that Halloween candy has shrunken by 50 percent in the past fifteen years? I feel the same way about this photobooth situation. Find me one person who prefers these new "modern" imposters! One person!!
But I tried anyway with "Sven" and I'm sorry to say I am disappointed with the results. However, considering I subjected myself to the public embarrassment of being seen in a mall pumping loonies into a machine to photograph a stuffed animal (HELLO CRAZY CAT LADY), I figured I couldn't let it go to waste. So for the first Koo & Poppet photobooth session, this is as good as it gets. I plan on searching the city for a more authentic photobooth for future sessions.

Here are some better photos of Sven. He will be the first Kollector Koo of 2010 to be added to the shop!
Likes: gardening
dislikes: bug bites