Thursday, July 30, 2009

random catch up

things have been busy (as always) the past week. among work, art, puppy time, house chores, friend time, gun store work, bfff & i have managed to find little bits of time together. being on opposite schedules doesn't help either. it would be nice to have a whole weekend together...maybe when the summer is over.

speaking of which, what happened to the summer?! the last couple of weeks have been rainy/cloudy/drizzly and generally pretty dark. is this the end of the summer? at least it's still warm out. the weather has been somewhat conducive to getting things done around the house though.

the puppy just his is eighth month old mark! i can't believe how big he is. my parents watched him the other day and they said he's definitely calmed down a lot. we went on a walk and he met another puppy. this one was so small still he could have walked underneath vito. it was really cute. they were both wagging and wanting to play. here vito is, helping me with laundry (meaning he rolls around and nabs folded clothes):

yesterday i finished another is a wedding gift for one of my old college roommates who is getting married this weekend. unfortunately i can't make it because a ticket from the arctic is ridiculously priced. i won't post pictures yet because i don't know if my friend reads the blog or not and don't want to spoil the surprise if she does. so once i know for sure that she received the gift, i'll post pics. i must say, it looks darn gorgeous.

other projects...i started a knitting project (since winter is looming right around the corner). i'm making a hooded zip up sweater. i got the pattern from knitty - if you like knitting, check this site out. it's awesome. had to adjust everything based on my swatch of aqua blue yarn. finished the back of the sweater and it actually measures what it is supposed to, for once.

i'm also doing some preparations for my upcoming fall shows: bad girls of the north & crafts weekend at the museum. got some books bound and have been working on a cost sheet so i can come up with a wholesale list & introduce a new line of products. lots and lots of number crunching.

more soon...

Thursday, July 23, 2009


last weekend, i went fishing...on a boat. now, i know in alaska, it doesn't seem like that big of a deal because so many people do it. i fish a little, usually with my dad, and am fairly decent. i can aim and catch salmon once i get into my groove (which gets goofed up when i look over my shoulder and see a hungry bear). i digress...our friends have a boat and were nice enough to take us out. i was armed with a bland breakfast, bonine (drug for motion sickness), anti-nausea pressure point wristbands, saltine crackers, and ginger ale, determined that i would not "feed the fishes".

side note: the only time i can remember being on small boat in the ocean was when i was probably 4 or 5 years old in hawaii. i vividly remember feeling horribly seasick and have stayed away from boats ever since then.

so we went out and began trolling for salmon in drizzly weather. there were puffins floating around, which was pretty cool. they're so cute! fishing was slow (we only caught 3 salmon) but still a lot of fun. i caught one and bfff netted it for me. that was about the extent of what i did. i don't like whacking the fish. fog descended around us so we decided to pack it in for the day. the waves picked up a bit on the way back in, but overall, i felt pretty good. i considered it an extremely successful day since i didn't get sick! LOL!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

custom order done!

sooooo it's finished!!! the customer picked it up yesterday and she really liked it :) i used gold japanese book cloth with a crinkle design, espresso brown ribbon, and japanese paper with two tones of pale green parasols outlined in gold with flecks of brown. the "W" monogram was hand carved from a linoleum block and printed on my press. here are the pictures of the custom box and photo album. it turned out great!

the box

inside of box

the photo album

perfect fit!

the set

so there you go! let me know what you think!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

custom order progress

last night was a productive evening! after taking the puppy for a nice LONG walk, i sat down to work on the last part of the custom order box. it is now assembled and is drying under some weight. i also printed a monogram (from a linoleum block) and am waiting for that to dry too. the last thing i need to do is glue on the monogram!!!! then it's picture time!!

also discovered a great site called paper source today...paper HEAVEN! i'm always on the lookout for new paper sites, plus this one has book cloth. haven't had a chance to really browse it, but so far, it looks wonderful.

ok, more soon...

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

lost lake adventure

sorry for the short hiatus - here's what's been happening:

i should be receiving the last sheet of book cloth for the custom project today, so i'll be able to finish that in the next couple of days. will post pictures once it's completely done!

and here's the big story! bfff, puppy, and i went on a hiking/camping adventure over the weekend. we hiked to a place called lost lake. it's about 8 miles in from the primrose parking lot wher
e we started. this was my first overnight trip - anyone who knows me could tell you that my nickname certainly isn't "nature girl". (we won't go into what my nickname is either.) i've never been huge on camping or hiking (adventures on guam is the exception). however, bfff loves it.

here is the start of the trail:
vito and bfff heading down the trail:
we stopped off the beaten path and followed another trail to this incredible view of a waterfall:
we hiked through the trees for quite a while:
as we cleared the tree tops, this was the view we saw:
vito ran back and forth on the trail - he must have ran 3 or 4 times the distance bfff & i traveled. i'm sure he's saying "what is taking you people so long??":
after getting above the tree line, we took a break and ate some lunch:
then back on the trail! vito leading the way:
then getting sidetracked...
our first view of lost lake:
we hiked around a bit to find the perfect spot for our camp. we discovered a great area right next to the aqua water:
tent is set up and we finally get to relax and enjoy alaska's scenery:
puppy FINALLY ran out of energy and fell asleep during dinner:
when the wind died down, we moved into the tent to escape the bug attacks. vito immediately made himself comfortable...on my bed:
cozy in our tent:
in the morning, the lake was so still, we could see the reflection of the mountains. vito went on morning patrol:
one more gorgeous picture of lost lake as we left:
vito is once again waiting for us...
and we are back!

so the hike was a complete success! the weather co-operated...the views were incredible...and we didn't run into any bears (just bear scat). i had so much fun with bfff. and vito was in his element out there! i think this trip will be the first of many.

Friday, July 10, 2009

most amazing dresses EVER

i was browsing online the other day and came across a clothing designer named Chrissy Wai Ching, located in seattle. from what i read, she draws inspiration from a very diverse background that is reflected in her work. the colors are vivid, shapes flattering, and each custom made item is unique. she makes a number of wearable pieces, but my favorites are her dresses. INCREDIBLE doesn't even begin to describe how gorgeous these dresses are. go here and look at her line.

next time i go to seattle, i am definitely going to her studio.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

cake boss

so last night i'm working on my website and had the tv on...and this show called cake boss came on. since i've had a ridiculous craving for cake lately, i started watching it...and WOW those bakers can make some amazing stuff! i think the family that the show is based around is italian and it reminded me of how bfff is when he's cooking in the kitchen.

i still want cake.

i got another page on the website posted here and am working on the links for each of the separate card sets. hopefully those will be done today. oh and i also added a little visit counter on the site as well.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009


a quick note about my bfff...(yes that's 3 "F's")

i was working on my website last night, had just uploaded the homepage and the pictures to go along with it, and of course it didn't work. the pictures wouldn't show. i didn't know why. and just when i was about to pull my hair out, bfff came to the rescue! he tried a couple of things and *waa-laa!* the homepage was up!

and he was about to go to work, i know he was in a hurry, and yet he took the time to help me. how awesome is that?


alright, i managed to get the homepage of Tama Press up and running! i wanted to make sure the pictures and everything look right and so far so good! however, i have a bunch of work to do. loading pictures and getting everything organized is a big task...and since i'm not terribly good with html, i have to go through piles of code and add some things to it. yuck. but i am excited about the site. i worked last night on the japanese stab binding page, edited down some pictures, and think it's just about done for now (until i make some more books). the pics are small right now - i would like to make it so that someone can click or scroll over it and have the pic enlarge. one step at a time.

the current links work but don't lead anywhere as of yet...except for the blog link. i will get up some "under construction" pages for those in the next couple of days. i would also like to figure out how to make a link open up in a separate tab.

over the weekend, bff & i went to the girdwood forest fair. we bought an awesome red swirly octopus print by katie sevigny - i saw the original at her gallery a month ago. go here to see it (and check out the rest of her work too - it's amazing). i had a chance to talk with her for a few minutes and might have an opportunity *fingers crossed* to have some of my work in one of her galleries. i'm extremely excited about the prospect. i gave her a business card and then thought "i had better get cracking on this website." so that's that.

if there are any comments or feedback about the website (or anything else for that matter), i would love to hear it. thanks for reading and more to come soon...

Monday, July 6, 2009

busy weekend

so bff works a weird schedule and due to that, has a hard time adjusting to a sleep schedule...and i was woken up at 6am on my day off!!! we got a ton of stuff done - cleaned out the garage, donated a bunch of stuff, bought a file cabinet, took some clothes to a consignment store, ate lunch at a new cafe, bought some art at a great gallery, went to a friend's house for a bar-b-q, and i worked on the two photo albums. i'll keep one of them a secret until after it is given as a gift...but here is a picture of the custom order:

it looks great! i'm currently working on the custom box in the gorgeous gold crackle japanese bookcloth on the spine of the album.

more to come when more bookcloth arrives!!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

weekend catch up

the weekend was extremely busy, so i didn't have much time to post anything. i was at a gun class over the weekend, line coaching. for those of you that don't know what line coaching is - basically i watch everyone in the class, make sure they stay safe, and help them adjust or fine tune their shooting skills. we had two days of women's classes and everyone did pretty good! they were overwhelmed with information and learned a ton. the weather co-operated & i even got a slight tan/burn!

bff & i also house/doggie sat for our friends. so lucky vito had a chance to play with his two black lab friends! he also managed to knock the lid off of their dog food container, eat to his little hearts content, and then have an awful upset stomach for the next couple of days!!! what a mess...literally. but he is better now, back to his normal, bitey, playful self.

and here's the update on the custom order - i have the cover almost finished and will be gluing in the book block in the next day or so. it looks GREAT. and i'm already inspired to make a wedding gift for my friend getting married in august.

until next time...