28 Feb 2009

What did I do today?

Tidied the flat

Ripped about a 100 albums to my hard drive

Listed t-shirts on Etsy

Got a trojan virus on my brand spanking new computer

Broke a tooth(I hate the dentist, but now I realise the error of my procrastination)

Used a rain forrest worth of tissues as I'm a little under the weather

27 Feb 2009

Mens Clothing Photos

My wonderful boyfriend John eventually agreed to model those mens t-shirts I made a few weeks back. You guys get the preview before they are posted on Etsy. PLEASE; does anyone know how to change the dpi of an image without using photoshop?
Update: With an awakward mix of 'painter' and picassa I was able to edit the pic of John, and I just listed them in my shop on etsy

26 Feb 2009

The Joys of Modern Plumbing

Our hot water has returned, along with the heating and the use of my washing machine. I was so inspired by this moment of domestic bliss that I cleared out my chaotic sock drawer. Yey for the joy in the little things! I had the longest most satisfying bath of my life, and John is presently having an extended shower.

UpDate: The bolier is broken again!!! As in, it was never properly fixed, the saga continues

25 Feb 2009

College Reminiscing

There have been lots of ads on tv as of late for college, and college choices, and it made me think back and get all dewy eyed about my college days. So I thought I'd take a little trip down memory lane for you guys...
Firstly I'm not from Limerick I'm a Dublin/Kildare hybrid who had aspirations of moving beyond The Pale(for my non-Irish readers that means outside Dublin),and away from my parents, it's not that I didn't love them they are just very strict. The choice was pretty easy, I always knew I wanted to do art, so I applied to everywhere in Ireland and made my decision after the interview stage. The Limerick School of Art and Design seemed like hard work, and that they would push me really hard, so I chose there( i cried in the interview). Now for the benifit of the non-Irish among you I will explain that Limerick has a very bad reputation for stabbing, murder and gangs. I deserves some of this reputation,in my time here an aquantance has been beaten to death, another stabbed, and my place of work was burnt down due to a gang fued , but a lot of the time it's over blown to sell newspapers. So my parents were more than a little nervous when I informed them of my new choice of residence. So at first I rented a room in a family house and, got food poisening from the landlady, and locked myself in my room for months drawing or texting on my phone. Not a good way to start college.
It took me a long time to make genuine friends, and found the first year very difficult, socially. When I look back I see someone who was very young, and wanted to be accepted but I was tired of pandering to a cool crowd. Somehow I thought these things would cease to exist in art college, and that all the bullshit of school would be left behind. Thankfully in my second year, I made some really great friends that suited my more bookish(less partying) sensibilities. We sat in old man pubs, drank guinness, talked art and philosophy, and were generally blissfuly pretentious. The friendships I made over those tasty pints have seen me through the past 9 years, and I'm sure will continue for a lifetime. I think being down here without family has enabled me to make really strong bonds with people, it forced me out of my comfort zone.
As for the actual art side of things, it was amazing, I learnt so much, and yet I could have done so much more. I was a pretty swotty student, but even now looking back I realised I squandered most of the facilities/time/information. I suppose hindsight and age are a great things. I took in as much as I could, but sometimes I wonder if it would not be better to be a mature student. I could see myself valuing it all a lot more if I did the course now. But I don't think I could would like to be in college in my late 20's, in a way there are somethings only life-not college-can teach you.
It's taken me 5 years to come close to figuring out how to make a living off my art/craft. When I finished college there was a huge anti-climax, especially after I had done so well. I felt cheated to go back to working a part time minimum wage job, and yet I couldn't see a way forward into doing what I wanted creatively. It's been a long meandering path, but at it's centre there has been the knowledge, that I am compelled/addicted/need to make things, be it digitally, photographically, painting,drawing or sewing. I'm really glad I made that random choice of coming to Limerick, I've found this crazy sense of home here, a city that feels like a village, with warts and all, but I love it.

A document of random memories before they disapear into the ether:
Popping giant bubble wrap with John for hours waiting on assessments results, sneaking into the haunted attic and finding loads of human hair all over the floor,doing all nighters and ordering pizza, living with a german ex hermit who thought he could time travel, flinging a packet of butter out my kitchen window that had been infected with slugs, climbing down 'that' cliffside, getting that wonderful surprise of The Lord of the Rings book smuggled into my luggage on the trip back to Limerick, hiding under a coffee table while my landlord busted in on a house party of 200 people, daytrips to the freezing seaside with Sharon, butter pasta with black pepper at 4am, no heating for 3 years relieved by the odd fire when we could afford coal...and so many more

24 Feb 2009

What I'm up to

In answer to my question what do I do now...custom orders.I'm working on a black coat at the moment, that's making me miss the callouses on my fingers I developed before Christmas(there is lots of hand sewing in it and it's hurting my silly girl fingers).I'm getting another delivery of a large custom order tomorrow, about 5 pieces. And also last week a friend was saying she has picked out lots of things from her wardrobe she wants me to revamp. So when it rains it pours, and I'm delighted. I really like doing custom work because it makes me think outside the box, towards what the client wants. At the moment the coat I'm doing is meant to be unusual but restrained enough to wear to work. It's been a challange but I'm enjoying it. I called the market man, Tom, and I found out the Sunday Market starting back in April, so I've one month to get cracking on lots of new stock. I think that will be fine as I've lots of time off in the restaurant coming up, the are doing a refurbishment and I'm taking a few days off too. That said, I hope I won't be linking back to this post the week before the market when I'm moaning about doing all nighters trying to get work done.

21 Feb 2009

Sorted, done, complete, finito..now what do I do?

So it's all done and dusted,I got the order in on time, and I'm really happy with the clothes I produced. I try not to work right up to the last minute, but sometimes I end up making my most creative stuff in the 11th hour. Sorry guys there are no more photos of the other things I made, it was a choice between photos or a shower, and my stinky levels won that fight( yes our boiler is still broken and I'm still having freezing showers).In total I delivered 11 garments, and 9 handmade broaches...now that I've written that down it doesn't seem like much, but it was a feck load of work. So now I'm free to sit down ,chill out and relax...but I can't, I've been restless all night, I feel like I should be working, or feeling guilty for not doing stuff. I had this feeling over the whole build up to Christmas, I had forgotten how frustrating it is. I suppose that's the pain in the ass working for yourself, and from home, it's hard to turn off sometimes. The Sunday papers, the sofa and John might help me relax tomorrow afternoon, until then I'm gonna try and catch up on some much needed sleep.

Ps: Sadly I didn't win at the blog awards tonight, but that's ok this really good blog won instead, I'm just chuffed I got nominated, especially since I only started blogging in September '08.

19 Feb 2009

New Work

Here are some quick snap shots of what I've been up to. For the first time in ages I feel like a computer idiot, it turns out I have no idea what to do with out photoshop, how can you make the dpi smaller with Picasa? I'm looking forward to next week when I have time to sort out my new computer, and blog at my leisure.

17 Feb 2009

News update, and Shortlisted

I'm super, super excited! Imagine me, half mad bed hair, half pjs half winter warmers, I shuffle into my computer room, log onto my blog, check my stats( I know I have a pathetic addiction),huh what's this,I says, loads of viewers early in the morning this can mean only one thing...I have been shortlisted for the Irish Blog Awards. I really never expected to get this far, I only started in September. My other big decision was to pick fashion or business, it was good to have to choose I think it's brought some focus to my blog. So thanks to the sponsors,RedCardinal.ie, and all the judges for all their hard work. Congrats to everyone else who was nominated and good luck on the night. Sadly I can't make it as I didn't book my place early enough, note to self be more organised next year.

In other news:
A;our heating is broken, so our shower is freezing and I'm just about to hop into it and freeze my lovely bits off.
B: I had a customer call over yesterday and she bought lots of things, a nice surprise
C;I'm still beavering away on the order for the shop, but got nothing done yesterday, but plan to make up for that double fold today
D; Oooh and did I mention I was short listed, yey

16 Feb 2009

Clean up

There has been a bit of a clear out of my links section, I deleted a few sites I never look at or blogs that hadn't been updated in yonks. I added quite a few from the list of blogs that I follow, and also some new finds from the Irish blog awards list. If you want to be included in my list of links just leave a comment on this post.


It's my 2 year anniversary today with my wonderful boyfriend John. So this post is in hommage to him(although he will never read it as he thinks my blogging addiction is mental). Here is to that quiet customer who shyly ordered pints off me for two years and didn't say anything. To my friend Cecily who decided to go home early and leave me in the nightclub by myself with nobody to talk to. To John's brother,Paul, for getting us talking and then tactfully disapearing for a couple of hours. To Paul's girlfriend for insisting that we come back to hers for beers even though I lived next door to the club. To me for having the balls to get his number and text him a few days later, cos this one felt different than all the shit I'd been through for the previous few years. To both of us for being brave and not putting up walls, when sometimes that seemed like the safest thing to do. To John for taking a huge risk and moving in with me after 4 months of going out together. To John for staying strong and quiet when I needed to cry and rage against how hard this business has been. For the night I shouted and screamed at him because I was so angry at everyone because Dad was sick. For getting up every Sunday, on his only day off, and hauling all of my stock down to the market, and not complaining....and all the rest in between.
(Ps: the photo is a bit odd because I haven't transferred all my files from the old computer yet and this was the only one I could find, it's after a Celtic reconstruction weekend, he smelt like charcoal, mead, sweat, and dirt)

13 Feb 2009

Busy bee who likes eggs

The busy season has started again. I should be excited after my well earned break, doing bits of clothes at a leisurly pace. But now I have a deadline, I have to get new stock in the shop in Ennis. We had talked about mid-feruary as a giudline, but it's amazing how quickly that snuck up on me. I've just made a list of the things I need and it's a bit daunting. It's a different clientel in that shop, slightly older, and more into the things I do with tweeds and lace rather than neon colours and buttons. Which is fair enough really, and I love doing both styles. But the lacey romantic stuff sells better so I tend to have less of it lying about the place. So I'll be a bit off the radar for the next few days, unless I'm feeling very bold, and 'take a break' by arsing about on the internet.....I've just forgotten I have some eggs on the boil. no really I do.

10 Feb 2009

The Winner is ....

And the winner is...
Red Lemonade
I used random.org to pick a number at fairly, and the lucky fashionista won. Congratulations!! So all I need now is your postal address.

Best of luck to everyone else for next time...

8 Feb 2009

Last Chance Saloon

This is just a little reminder for my great give away on Friday. The closing date is this Monday night. You can simply enter by A) start following my blog B) being a regular reader and C) leave a comment on this post. These are my entrants so far, if you are not on the list and still and want to enter the draw for some lovely Nice Day Designs goodies then get your skates on and do one of the above.

Doe Studio
Nick Carswell
Laura O'Mahoney
Declan Shalvey
Red Lemonade
Hippie Dippy Designs
sMac Thoughts
Made Marian
No Nonsense blog
The Fresh Prince of Kildare
The Biologista

Bad Day at the Office

Image Source
I was in two minds about whether to write this post or not, but this an account of the good and the bad of my business, not just a sugar coated ad in disguise. As my previous post mentioned I was selling at Baker Place last night at the launch of Crude magazine. I was a quiet start to the evening, and we thought that the cold would keep everyone at home with the radiators and a bollte of wine. But a crowd gathered eventually, and the music was pretty rockin'. The launch for the magazine seemed pretty successful, but I'm not convinced a loud sweaty pub is the place to be selling clothes. On one hand it makes sense, go out and meet the exact people who would buy my stuff. Unfortunatly the demographic that likes distressed colourful, button laden clothes, tend to be poorer that church mice, and in the choice between beer or clothes; beer won.It's the first time I went to any market and sold absolutly nothing, and it was a bit depressing to wake up after a hard days preperation with nothing extra in the wallet. On top of that I even got abuse from a few people! I suppose mixing beer with peoples frustration at their lack of money can make them pretty irrate. I thought it was a bit much shouting at me like I was a fat cat business man, really the reccession is not my fault I swear.
On the upside it did push me to make 5 mens t-shirts, which I'll convince my boyfriend to model, and hopefully I'll have some photos by the middle of the week.
At their next Crude launch they said they would advertise the clothes bit a lot better, and apparently they will have live tattooing, so that should be pretty cool. I think I'll give it one more shot, it's always worth giving things a second chance. If I gave up after a few crap days I would never have gotten this business off the ground in the first place.

6 Feb 2009

Baker Place Gig and Market Tomorrow

I'm going to be selling my clothes at a gig tomorrow night in Baker Place in Limerick city. It looks like it's going to be a really good night. It's the launch for the second publication of local magazine Crude. There is going to be live music and I'm sure it will to be packed as their last event sold out. I know it's really late notice (I only got the call last night), but if you're around the city you should check it out. It starts at 9pm, the cover chrage is 6 euro, but this includes copy of the magazine. Also selling there will be Maria of Mia Designs who used to sell her rockin clothes at the Sunday Market on Bedford Row. And also Orla Redican of Crunchy Granola, of the bedford row market, and she will be selling handmade(and very reasonably priced) jewellery.

5 Feb 2009

Computer Heaven

I'm riding the beautiful wave of a purchasing high, as I have just bought this beautiful machine. As my regular readers know I have been dangerously close to murdering my aging computer, and so I've been planning on buying a new machine for quite some time. Because I need such a high spec computer price was a bit of an issue during the present climate. Then low and behold my good friend John text me to let me know that Aldi were selling a great tower for only 499 euro!I have been told that to buy the equivalent computer elsewhere would cost about 1100 big ones. So in my logic to hell with the recession I just saved 600 quid...that said I'm feeling the pinch a little, I'll need to sell a whole lot of buttons to make up for that.

If you are reading this A)In Ireland B)Today, thursday and C) In need of a computer....head down to aldi..or just check this out and drool

4 Feb 2009

Mens line has begun

Well I was true to my word, I went straight upstairs and started work on my mens t-shirts. I got 2 patches made. I plan to sew the breakfast one onto a blue t-shirt and send it to Ian Dempsey as a thanks for mentioning me on his breakfast radio show. I figure I can't really afford advertising at the moment so smoosing up to media people may be a good second best option. The second is a hand sewn felt burger, I must admit I'm really happy with how this turned out. I'm deciding whether to put this on the back of a hoodie with some other stuff, or to have it on a t-shirt. They took just under an hour each, and attaching them will take only about 10 mins each. I'm thinking 35 euro for a t-shirt, or maybe 40, any opinions on the price?
Sorry for the poor picture quality, I have the worst scanner known to man, but I was just so excited and I wanted to share.

Nationwide Video

At long last I am able to offer you the Nationwide piece I was featured in, on Jan 5th. Thanks a million to Eoin Madsen for all his help with getting this onto youtube.
Here is the link if you want to watch it in higher definition.

3 Feb 2009

Mens Clothing, suggestions, comments, ideas....PLEASE

I have decided to do a line of mens clothing. Firstly because lots of men have seen my work and asked me to make clothes for them, and also because I like a challange. It will make me think completely differently about the colours, materials and styles I have been using over the past year. I'm in the research stage at the moment, but I would like some input from my trusty readers.
Are you male?
Or a girlfriend who chooses all your boyfriends clothes?
What is important to you in your clothes, style/functionality/originality/price?
Where do you shop?
What is frustrating about mens clothes, and the selection, or lack thereof?

Obviously I'm thinking of doing some cool t-shirts and hoodies. I would like to be a bit more adventurous with colours that the beige palette that seems to permeate the male section of shops. I'm also thinking of doing some funky stuff with old suits, tweeds and pistripe, take them apart and put them back together. This is all at the very begining but I'm pretty excited about it.

Past the first round of Judges

Yey I'm so excited I made the long list nominations for The Irish Blog Awards 2009,but there is a catch Im nominated in two catagories and apparently I have to chhose which one I want to go for the next round of judging. I've been nominated in the fashion section and in the business section. Which one do I pick? The fashion one had pretty tough competition with some fantastic blogs in it. Help I need advice please!!

Most Amazing Fantabulous GIVEAWAY!!!

I've decided to start having a monthly giveaway!! I've seen this lots on other craft blogs and I think it's a lovely thing to do. Basically I'm going to reward my lovely regular readers by entering them into a draw, and one lucky person will win lovely freebies from my shop!
'Sounds fantastic' you say,
'How to I enter this amazing draw?' you say.
Well it's easy, just start 'following' my blog, or put a link in your blog to mine. I know the 'follow' option doesn't always work, so just leave a comment on this post and I'll add you to the draw. Easy peasy as all the kids say.

The Winner will be chosen on the 10th of Feb

2 Feb 2009


It's been a long time since I did some sketches, but I always find it gets the brain going again. So here are a few examples...
Also if you want to see more of my artwork go to my website
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