December 31, 2012

2012 has been fun

{wishing you all a late happy Christmas and an early merry new year}

I've been taking a break from the wood and doing a little cake making instead. And a lot of cake eating. And as a last minute thought I figured it to be the perfect time to wrap up the year with a few of my favorite instagram moments. Wishing you a year full of succulents and cactuses and cake and whatever your hearts may desire! Cheers!

 Happy New Year!

December 18, 2012

tables and time

{on not forgetting how it all started}

Many of us are probably feeling a bit of nostalgia right about now, with all these holidays full of memories and whatnot; Family recipes, pulling out the old ornaments, the yearly hustling of furniture to try and squeeze a pine tree into your house. For me, I felt nostalgic when I built this table. This little dining room table is a near twin of one I once built a long, long time ago in an apartment far, far away. Those of you who have been with me for a while now may remember {though I don't assume you would remember!} that there was once a table quite similar in pattern and size alike, that was, in essence, the beginning -- the first decent-sized commission I ever got. Hot damn. This meant that there was actually a person out there who found my work and liked it enough to want it. Other than my mother. And I remember feeling like "wow, is this a thing? People give you money to build things for them?". Whereas before I was pretty sure that you just built things and they would sit in your own apartment taking up space and collecting dust. And nobody needs three coffee tables laying around. Unless you have three living rooms. Yeah, it was a good day the day I got this commission.

What has changed since then? A lot. Sometimes I forget that I started out building things in the middle of my living room. Sometimes I forget that I couldn't cut a single piece of wood without getting sawdust on my couch. Sometimes I forget that I ran power tools six feet away from our dining room table and only had eighty square feet of total space to move. Most of the time, I forget that there was once a time when I didn't own a chop saw. *gasp!*

Yes. We forget things. And it's good to remember them. With this new year that approaches it's the perfect time to remember where you came from, where it started, and to appreciate where you are now -- wherever that may be.

Happy holidays! And what are your plans people? We are celebrating with our new-found tradition of Quitsmas, where we don't go anywhere or do anything in particular except a whole lotta nothin'. Which is exactly what I need right about now.

Merry Quitsmas!

December 12, 2012

headed for the shop

{a few more panels plotting their way into your lives}

It's getting crazy close to Christmas, and just in the nick of time nine more little wall panels have materialized, up in the shop this morning {Thursday} at 9 am EST. Only nine panels! That's it! That's all I could manage in the time allotted so it will simply have to suffice!

And a huge thank you to all the lovely people who snatched up the previous batch of panels. What fun, what fun! I sincerely hope they all arrive safe and sound, and that everybody loves them as much as I did during the short time they were hanging on my own walls. I will indeed miss being surrounded by so much art / wood / patterns while they were with me,  but to fill the little hole in my heart I will definitely be attempting to make these apple cider caramels this Saturday {found through Apt. 2B Baking Co.} and will proceed to overdose on sugary deliciousness {hopefully} in the days to follow. Yum!

December 9, 2012


{my thoughts on it}

We've lived here six years. My feelings for this house consist of a deep love, the self-inflicted misconception that it's ours, and constant wishes of big, dreamy, self-tackled renovations. I've made a few superficial attempts already: de-carpeting and painting the stairs, tiling the kitchen, wallpapering the hallways -- but I've stopped there. This house isn't ours even though it's ours. That's an odd feeling that so many of us easily-attached people have to live with when our feeling of ownership surpass what we own.

I want to know what this house is made of. I want to see it's insides -- even though that makes me sound like a creepy-ass serial house-murderer, that statement is well intentioned. This building itself is sheathed in total mystery. It's outer face is hidden by vinyl siding, the walls have been thoroughly covered beneath drywall, and floors have been redone in oak or masked with carpet and a layer of plywood hiding whatever lays beneath. Even the white marble fireplace is cloaked in no less than nine layers of paint, I've counted. Everything is covered. I'm constantly knocking on walls and ceilings and listening for signs of beams, scuffing my feet over floors and wondering, trying to crack off a little corner of the outside vinyl to peek beneath. This house is like a girl with too much makeup on her beautiful face. Remove what's hiding her and she will certainly glow brighter. X-ray vision would be helpful right about now because then I wouldn't have to utterly destroy everything to get my way. Alas.

We go on long walks every night, and our talk recently has consisted of what exciting thing we'd want to fix up around the house if anything was on the menu. Hypothetical renovation discussions that get the blood flowing and make you want to work, hard. So far our first things would be de-carpeting the carpet that's left, building new counter tops in the kitchen, knocking out a wall in the bedroom, moving an irritatingly placed closet and switching the placement of a certain problematically placed door. All things we'd love to do with our own four hands. Oh, and the roof needs to be re-roofed. Not fun, but we're even willing to do this ourselves ---  that's how much we freaking love this freaking house.

I have pondered the damn carpet-in-the-bedroom dilemma for years. Years dammit! And I still haven't done it. Ugh. I'm literally petrified to remove it out of concern that it would upset the landlord -- a very lovely man -- when he inevitably sees it. It will look five-million times better without it, yes, yes we all know this, but... still. That, coupled with the fact that it doesn't bother the ol' boyfriendy nearly as much as it bothers me {in that he does not pine for it's immediate removal and subsequent burning and refuses to look at the floor whenever we're in the bedroom, as do I}. This is an utter pickle, a pickle I have certainly contemplated many times before. Does one invest time, money, feelings {and risk feelings}, just to make something prettier to live with for whatever time one might continue to live there? Harumph.

What does one do, people. WHAT DOES ONE DO!

December 3, 2012

panels, panels, panels

Hey peeps, come get some art! ------->

Well here they are, people. The Kittypants and I have been working on these goodies for the past month, and I'm super excited to show them to you all. It has been so much fun making these, I can hardly tell you.

Those of you on instagram would have seen this a little ways back, but for those who missed it, this here's the pile of lath in my car. I may have done a wee bit o' dumpster diving for these beauties and looked like a crazypants while doing so. You never really get over that feeling of looking through other people's "trash", but hey, where these materials come from is a huge part of my work and I'm proud to show it. In fact, an even cooler fact {to me at least!} is that this particular car-full was gutted from a house just up the street from my own. These panels are Madison-Street-made.

 Brooklyn to West, saving wood from the landfill since 2011. Boom!

A few FAQS you may like to know:
       - panels will be shipped within 5 to 7 business days. 
       - international shipping / shipping for the large panels will be payed through separate paypal transaction.
       - ships through UPS
       - all panels have been signed
       - wall mounted, includes brackets 
       - some other great gifts: these earrings, these postcards, this wallet.

December 1, 2012

just to let you know...

{a shop update has been scheduled!}

My long-promised shop update will be happening on Monday morning, at 10 am EST. Finally for sale will be most, though not all, of the wall panels I have been making for the past month. I originally intended only to make small panels, but, you know, my hands and excitement got the better of me so there will be some larger panels available as well {as pictured above!}.

I'm so excited. Farewell until Monday then, when we will speak again!

- A

November 19, 2012

Table Day

{a little table heads for Queens}

Thanksgiving is sneaking up on us, eh? Last time I checked it was three weeks away and I had plenty of time to finish up a few dining room tables before the big feast -- a crucial time-period for the table in general, this Thanksgiving thing. It's a time when the word Table is just as much in the vocabulary as Pie. Well, almost. We are gathering, drinking, cooking and looking forward to sitting on couches for extended periods of time, creating our various dishes of deliciousness and making sure we wear pants with a little extra room. But before we eat, the table gets some serious attention. It gets loved and decorated and fussed over, and every table I've ever met has told me it's their favorite time of year!

So here's a little guy that's headed to Queens to enjoy his new life, just in time for his biggest holiday. And I'm really looking forward to taking a short break and migrating to Maine for some much needed rest, food, and nature. Let's all eat our hearts out, shall we?

Hope you have a lovely Table Day!

November 5, 2012

wall panel giveaway: WINNER!

Seriously people? Does this mean I have to build over three-hundred of these things because you all want one? Must I dedicate the next two years of my life to constructing little squares of patterned wood and graciously donating them to each of you to fully show my appreciation for your collective enthusiasm? Is that what you want of me? Huh? HUH?

But seriously. You all are just lovely and I'm deeply grateful and a little surprised at the level of excitement shown for this piece and the ones to come. I would happily give one to all of you, if only. I could go on about my general feelings of gratitude, but I won't, as I'm fully aware that all you want to know is.... who won?

{How I selected: I wrote down numbers on little folded pieces of paper, mixed them all up and randomly drew a number. Then I counted down the comments starting at the top, and voila. We have a WINNER!}

Congratulations to Emma Kruch Morris!  You were commenter number fifteen and this wall panel is yours! Send me an email with your mailing address and I will have it flying through the post in no time.

And thank you to everybody. This was seriously fun and I will totally be doing another giveaway sometime in the future. Other wall panels available for sale will be announced on the blog sometime soon. And to all those who were in the path of the hurricane here, I hope your families and friends are safe and you are getting the help you need if you were affected. There are some great links towards the end of this lovely post if you want to donate or volunteer, or perhaps you just want to bake the marvelous quince cake recipe and give it to someone who's lost their functioning oven.

Oh, and this wall panel has been Shop Cat approved.

October 25, 2012

wall panel: giveaway

That's right, I said GIVEAWAY!

It's almost that time of year when you start thinking about the impossibility of getting gifts for the people you love. Gifts! Ack. They freak me out. In fact, my end of the family have pretty much called a truce when it comes to purchasing or wrapping. We will have non of it. We had one crazy Christmas where we went all out and everybody cried and that was that. No more. But if I'm going to be on the receiving end of something, I'd prefer it to be pie or Lucky Charms. And if I'm going to give something, well, it better be handmade and it better be wood.

So here you have it! I've been getting so many requests for my cheeseboards recently that it's been driving me nutz with a Z. Not because tons of emails are annoying when they all ask the same question, but because answering a ton of emails with the same answer totally sucks -- when the answer is No. But I get it, we need something small. We can't all buy everybody we know a dining room table for christmas. I hear you!

       A limited amount of small patterned wall panels will be available for the holidays. Soon.
       They will be about 14"x14" and will be for sale in the SHOP section of the blog, TBA!
       All different patterns.
       Shipping included anywhere in the U.S. On me!

Leave a comment here to enter {not anonymously of course!}
ENTRY IS NOW CLOSED! I will announce the winner Monday morning, thank you all!!

       Entry will be open for one week, until Friday, November 2nd. I will pick a winner at random!
       And will announce the winner early the following week.

       {shipping anywhere to the U.S. is on me! International winner will pay shipping}.

       Easy as pie. Or as Lucky Charms.

       Good luck lovelies! 

October 19, 2012

space, zigzags, and brief talk of brief travel

It finally happened the other week that I realized I was used to having space. It was such a gradual transition for me, learning how to have a separate studio, that I got accustomed to it without even noticing. Thinking back to when I was building furniture in my living room already seems like a year ago, and likewise, seems impossible. Did I really do that?! Crazypants. But there's still sawdust in the corners and old square-nails turning up on the floor as proof. Thoroughly sweeping the house? Who has time for that!

Aside from endlessly / repetitively cutting little pieces of wood, I also: Went to California to visit the restaurant for it's one year birthday party. It's booming! It's blooming! Ate a lot of pasta, tried not to eat too much tiramisu. Spent a day in Big Sur among some much-needed towering redwood trees and clusters of lively succulents, some placed artfully in mother-made pots that I covet thoroughly

When I returned to Brooklyn I made sure to cook us a pasta dinner because I can never-have-too-much-pasta-seriously-oh-my-god, and then got back to work and played catch-up. Oh no wait, I'm always playing catch-up, right, I forgot. And next on the list was a wall panel, which was exciting because this pattern had me thrilled! And, I'm always in the mood to not build table legs.

So once again, the newest piece I build becomes my favorite, and I would very much like to take it home and hang in on my wall. My wall. But I try to be a nice person and do what I say I will, which means... not stealing art from myself -- what a clever business plan! So, dear Empty Wall somewhere in Virginia, meet your new friend! She will be in the mail on Monday.

Have a lovely fall weekend!