Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Bon nuit, little bunny

Milly gazing out across the streets of Paris

First, Riley traveled to New York, and now Milly has taken up residence in one of my most favourite cities in the world, the unmistakable Paris.

When new mom and talented photographer Carine Tyler sent me this photo, I couldn't quite believe my eyes at first.

"Milly, is that you?? Wait....wait. Full stop. OMG. Milly is that you in PARIS??!?!"
She wears her new city well, by the looks of it.

Whenever I package up one of these little misfits and drop it off at the post office, I imagine the journey that lies ahead: over land (over sea in some cases) and all the points in between. I imagine the small manilla package tossed in a cargo bin, in some random holding place, and then I imagine X-ray vision seeing through the package at the little critter inside.
I imagine the parcel being to delivered to the door of the recipient, and its contents placed in the hands of a little boy or girl.
I imagine this new friend being toted along on trips to the park, the library, the dentist. I wonder if one might ever be left behind, destined to become a stray and lost forever.
But approximately one year ago, around the time that Koo & Poppet came to be, could I ever have imagined that I would receive a photo of one of these bunnies high atop a balcony in Paris, looking in the direction of Sacre-Coeur? Absolutement pas!!!

I hope this doesn't come across as me putting too much importance on these things. Afterall, they are just toys, and they are just things. But it's what these things have come to represent for me. They are a means of connecting with people I've never met (that's you, by the way), a stitch from one place to another, a journey that I would otherwise have never known.

And photos just make my day. Please keep sending them!

Bisou, bisou,

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Marvelous Mousepads

I stumbled upon these dressed-up mouse pads today....just some gorgeous fabric is all it takes to turn the mundane into a thing of beauty!

There's more beauty to behold at SHIM + SONS' shop.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Illustration Friday: "Rescue"

Scott is from Prince Edward Island, so when we got married we named our tables after places from his home province (which those of you who are Canadian and paid attention in grade 11 Social Studies will recognize as the birthplace of Confederation. Actually, that had to have been the most boring subject in high school, right? It may have had something to do with my teacher, who was about as dry as stale bread. I'm sorry Mr. Machonachie, but I have to use your name here in order for the next part of this story to make sense. But for the record, I liked you, I really liked you!
Mr. Machonachie was a very nice person, but the poor guy was not exactly known for painting vivid pictures of the past for his students' educational delight. But in his defense, COME ON, Sir John A. MacDonald would not likely have made Barbara Walters' Most Fascinating People list. Anyway, the highlight of the term was when one of my classmates brought in a Chia Head (if you click on one link in this post, may it be this one) and we cultivated it on the windowsill for weeks, affectionately referring to it as the "Machonachia". Back in those days, we could not have cared less about Confederation).

But I digress.

Charlottetown, Little Sands, Cavendish, Beach Point and Flat River, are just a few of the lovely little spots in PEI that we named our dinner tables after.
We included corresponding illustrations on each table card, and the illustration above was for "Wood Islands", the spot where you catch a ferry to Nova Scotia.
And here is "Charlottetown":
And now I am off to make a Sunday night apple pie for that very same husband....

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Fright in the Night

First thing's first: From a random draw, The. Winner. Of. The. Giveaway. Is. JAMAISE!

Both Emily (BFH) and I would like to thank each and every one of you who entered. It is sad that there can only be one winner.... so to thank you for participating, I would like to offer a 20% discount on a future Koo & Poppet purchase. Just mention the code word GIVEAWAY.

Emily and I so enjoyed collaborating on this giveaway. We think we should do it more often!

Now, to a more ghostly tale....

The other night I was taking "after" shots of my office in its fully renovated form (save for the window which is being replaced) and I had that eerie feeling I was being watched....

A set of eyes was glued to me. A phantomly figure tracked my every move. And then, in one horrifying moment, I locked eyes with the backyard being....

Cujo meets Casper meets....Bambi?

(this probably wouldn't be so scary if the window wasn't so Amityville Horror-ish).


Sunday, March 14, 2010

It's a fabulous GIVEAWAY!

It's a bird! It's a plane! It's a BIG FAT KOO!

The brains behind Big Fat Hen (that would be Emily & Lee) and the brains behind Koo & Poppet (that would be me) have come together to present to you, dear readers, a totally spectacular GIVEAWAY. Emily and I got to talking, and since hens lay eggs which in turn are delivered by bunnies at a certain time of year, we thought HOW ABOUT AN EASTER TREAT?

Here is your chance to win a coveted Big Fat Hen baby blanket with a coordinating Koo & Poppet bunny. Think nursery, think style, think cozy little baby.

There are two sets to choose from:

Combo #1: Bunny Bronson and Ben's Wheels
Bunny Bronson is made from a navy blue natural wool and has white corduroy ears and white stitching.
Ben's Wheels is a multi-functional blanket designed to fit perfectly in a stroller, car seat, or bassinet. Warm, stylish and plush, it measures 29" x 31".

Combo #2: Bunny Rosalie and Ruby Blossom
Bunny Rosalie is made from a natural grey wool and has cream corduroy ears and cream stitching.
Ruby Blossom is a multi-functional blanket designed to fit perfectly in a stroller, car seat, or bassinet. Warm, stylish and plush, it measures 29" x 31".

Here are the rules for entering:

Leave a comment, specifying the following:

1. Which combination set you prefer (Ruby/Rosalie or Ben's Wheels/Bronson)

2. Your favourite item from Big Fat Hen's online shop and your favourite item from Koo & Poppet's online shop

3. Tell your friends! Post a link to this giveaway either on your blog, twitter page, or facebook page, and leave us your link in the comments field.

The deadline for entries is 11:59 p.m. PST on Wednesday, March 24th. A winner will be announced on Thursday, March 25th.

Thanks for entering and good luck!

Featured Artist: CABIN + CUB

My home office renovation is almost ready for its grand unveiling - and it is a HUGE improvement. I'm doing all the fun stuff right now like organizing bookshelves and deciding which art to hang on the walls. I'll post photos as soon as it's complete!

In the meantime, I'll be eagerly watching the mailbox for two prints and an original collage (pictured above) from cabin + cub. Owner and designer Valerie Thai is a Vancouver-based graphic artist and illustrator. Her popular collages feature illustrations from vintage children's books as well as her own creative embellishments.

I can't remember how I first stumbled upon cabin + cub, but I've been admiring this shop on Etsy for quite awhile. I'm pretty sure the name had me at hello because I'm instantly drawn to anything that conjures up thoughts of coziness, and who doesn't love cabins and who doesn't love cubs? But of course, Valerie's beautiful work was the real reason I became a fast fan. These collages aren't just for kids either, I plan to hang mine in my sparkly new office!

See more cabin + cub here and here.

oh and p.s. : remember a few weeks ago I mentioned an exciting giveaway involving Koo & Poppet and Big Fat Hen? Well it's JUST AROUND THE in this week! Check back in a few days.....

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Illustration Friday: "Perspective"

Style icon: Mignon

Remember Kollector Koo "Mignon" from blog posts past? A die-hard Parisian, she likes revolution and dislikes tourists. I was always quite fond of her and I think it must be due to her irrefutable style: sophisticated yet playful, ever so slightly asymmetrical, and oh-so-French.

So it really should not come as a surprise to you that I may or may not have intentionally dressed Sadie in a decidedly Mignon-esque ensemble today. And no, we did not go out in public like this.
Or perhaps it is a case of art imitating life. Did Mignon evolve based on a personal penchant for navy blue & white polka-dots and lop-sided bows?
Probably all of the above.

(If only I had used a baguette as a prop for this photoshoot! Zut alors!)

Okay, so not everyone dresses their child like a stuffed toy (hey, at least I don't put bedazzled sweaters on my dog!)......but I'm willing to bet a few of you are guilty of the odd episode of "mini-me" syndrome. Baby Frye boots, perhaps?
So, for future inspiration, Koo & Poppet wants to know: what is the most ridiculous thing you've ever dressed your child in?
(think Ralphie's pink bunny suit in A Christmas Story)