Tuesday, March 31, 2009

A Taste of the Orient

I think it's because I would really really really like a kimono myself that I've been dreaming about them. Since I don't think I'll be getting one anytime soon, I thought the next best thing would be to give Pippa, Imogen and Anna their own kimonos.

I've had a lot of fun designing these, and especially playing with the patterns and colours. I could really go on forever, but I thought instead that it was time to share them with you. For those of you who own your own Pippa, Imogen or Anna, you can download the kimono of your choice to give "the girls" a new outfit for dressing up.

I still have more to come for these paper dolls. In particular, they are going to need some summer clothes soon, and then I have a few ideas and surprises turning about in my head. But for the moment, I just felt that a kimono is a lovely between the season type of ensemble.

I hope you will enjoy them!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

New Prints

I've been such a busy little bee lately. Or at least last week. This week hasn't been quite as productive unfortunately... but we push on!

I wanted to share a few new prints I've put together for spring. I haven't listed them yet in my shops, but I'm getting around to that. Slowly..... They will be up soon. And yes, there are a few in there for the wee men in our lives!

And now... onwards and upwards! Or maybe just one more cuppa....

Friday, March 20, 2009

Thank You ... AGAIN!

Oh goodness, I've been given a prize again. In fact, I've been given three of them. And yes, as is my usual custom, I've let things pile up around here and am only just getting around to thanking people.

So I'd like to do it now...

A huge thank you to Star of the East for awarding me the Honest Blog Award. The rules of this award are the following:

When accepting this auspicious award, you must write a post about it, including the name of the misguided soul who thinks you deserve such acclaim, and link back to said person so everyone knows he or she is real. Choose a minimum of 7 blogs that you find brilliant in content or design. Show the 7 random victims’ names and links and leave a comment informing them that they were prized with “Honest Weblog”. List at least ten honest things about yourself. Then, pass it on!

10 honest things you say? Well, let's give it a try
I have attempted to fly like Mary Poppins
2) I did not succeed in flying like Mary Poppins
3) Mary Poppins remains one of my all tim
e favourite films, despite the disappointment of not being able to imitate it.
4) I am currently taking driving lessons and recently had a small altercation with my instructor.
5) I am the only driving student who drives herself to lessons.
6) I am not, however, the oldest driving student.
7) I absolutely love the country and fear there are not enough cows in my day at this point
8) I miss the ocean and dream of living by some source of water some day
9) I used to have my head shaved though no one who knows me now ever believes me
10) My parents used to call me Tweety Bird when I had my head shaved in reference to the tuft of hair left in the front.

And another huge thank you to Annie at My Minimocs and to rkdsign88 for for thinking of me with the Kreative Blogger award. The rules of this award are to list 7 things you love and then pass the award on to 7 people and let them know they won. You can copy the picture of the award and put it on your sideboard letting the whole wide world know you are KReATIV.

Here are my seven things:
1) I love chocolate ice cream
2) I love feeling the summer sun on my shoulders
3) I love 2 year old snuggles
4) I love 6 and 9 year old logic
5) I love tulips direct from Amersterdam
6) I love polka dots
7) I love wellie boots and umbrellas and big puddles

I hope you will all forgive me if I don't pass these along this time. Not because there are not bloggers out there who merit them, there most certainly are! But because I fear the bloggers I know and admire have already received these awards. Congratulations to everyone!

I'll take this opportunity to say that I've also been featured on BlogInterviewer (click on the image on the left) and you can vote for the BoulieBlog if you would like. Apparently you can win a prize, which I didn't know when I received the invite for the interview (so much for reading the fine print). I'm truly not interested in winning the prize, but I thought I would let people know that is an interview there anyway. Thank you if you choose to have a peek!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Luck of the Irish

So I's sittin here twiddlin me thumbs and it suddenly came to me that I'd not posted anythin for the embroidery this month. "Shameful," I says to meself and I set about fixin that situation.

So while I's sittin here doodling, I also remembered that I'd had me some comments sayin I don't have no dogs in me shop or me illustrations. And you know what? It's true! I can't tell you how that happened, but I thought that it was time to fix that situation as well.

So two situations that need some fixin. What's one to do, but doodle a dog to embroider, I say! So that's what I do.

So while I's sittin here doodlin a dog to embroider, I also remember that today's the day of Saint Patrick! Blimey O'Reilly! I has to put me thinking cap on for this one, but I thinks the cap was workin today. And then, of course, I had the luck of the Irish with me.

So I says to you all, as you slide down the banister of life, may the splinters never point in the wrong direction. Oh, and you can download Padraig for your own embroidery pleasure over there on the right!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Drumroll Please....

First off, let me apologise for getting around to this so late in the day. The little bits of paper have been sitting on my desk for several hours now, just waiting to fulfill their destiny. And they waited. And waited. And waited.

Until I got my wee man into bed because honestly, when he's about, there's no getting anything done. But now he's tucked away reading his Bruder tractor catalogue with a bit of nice warm milk and his favourite soft toy (it's a donkey - how little we knew when we chose this particular toy how fitting it would be to his personality), so I've asked middle child do the honours for the random drawing.

And so with no further ado ... *insert drumroll here*... the winner of her choice of paperdoll set is JUDYBRITTLE. Congratulations, Judy! I'll be emailing you to let you know and you can choose between Pippa, Imogen or Anna.

But wait, don't go yet! There's more! As promised there is a second giveaway to the winner of the idea contest. I have to be honest with you. This part of the giveaway was probably a very bad idea for me to have done as I had such a difficult time deciding. There were so many great ideas submitted and so many that I will tuck away for use in the future. In effect, I've put myself between a rock and a hard place, but oh what what lovely rocks and hard places they are!

I have to admit though, that there was one idea that stuck out for me and that I've clung to over the past few days. Maybe it's because I feel like it reflects me so well, both in my love of foreign cultures and well, because I had all the Strawberry Shortcake dolls with pets when I was little. The idea just fits so perfectly.

Here is what she wrote:
I am wondering about a series of children from different countries/states. Maybe each could have a little mascot? For example, a child from Alaska with a little penguin friend, a child from Australia with a koala friend, etc.

If I could just ask for a second drumroll please *drumsroll in the distance* I will announce the second winner as HOPE SPENCER! Congratulations, Hope! And yes, you too can choose between Pippa, Imogen and Anna.

Gosh, I feel a lot like Kermit the Frog on the Muppets... arms in the air waving madly and shouting YEAH!

That was fun!!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Giveaway Time!

Time is still flying and I'm still not catching up! I can't believe how long ago my last post was. I look at my blog every day and think "I want to post about X" and yet somehow I don't ever seem to get around to it.

So since I've must scrubbed my kitchen floor and I'm now exiled into this part of the house until it dries (which should be ages given the current outside humidity), I have forced myself into sitting down and putting into words what has been floating around in my head for the past few days.

I want to celebrate with you! Why you ask? Well I've recently signed on with an agent in the US and so, fingers crossed please, maybe someone or some company will purchase my designs to be used elsewhere. Unfortunately I can't share the newest designs with you as they are now....shhh.... top secret (and I'm so frustrated about this part because there are a few that I'm really quite fond of and would love to show you), but I can share something else with you.

And to do that, I'm going to have a giveaway. It's been quite some time since I've had one and I think now is a good time since I'm celebrating. So I'm going to give away not one, but two sets of Chichiboulie Paper Dolls - your choice of Pippa, Imogen or Anna. All of them are really sweet and come with some fabulous outfits (that I, of course, would wear myself if they weren't made of paper and weren't only 7 inches high...sadly my thighs won't squeeze into them).

All you have to do is post here about an idea or a subject you'd like me to illustrate. I'm looking for new ideas at the moment and would be most thankful for your help.

Here are the rules:
1) Post your idea and your email (this is very important so I can get in touch with you if you win) in the comments section on this article.
2) All names will be put into a hat (a real hat because I do so love them) and the winner will be drawn at random
3) Entries must be received by midnight on Sunday, 15 March - beware the Ides of March - EST (making it easier for those of you in the US)
4) The winner will be drawn and notified on Monday, 16 March.
5) A bonus winner will be chosen from among the ideas submitted - for the idea that most inspires me.

So two sets of cute paper dolls all for so little work! Spread the word and get your thinking caps on!

Friday, March 6, 2009

Spring Fever

Help! Does anyone else have this? Is spring fever going around?

I've been back from holidays for 5 days now and I have to admit, not much is getting down around here.

The sun has been out (a rarity at any time of year in these parts) and the days are getting (slightly) warmer. And I can't concentrate! Granted, I do still have a minimum 3 children running around here everyday, some days more, as they are still on holidays. That may have something to do with the concentration issues. But still. I have a massive pile of things to do and it's disappearing at about the same rate at that banana and green jelly concoction that auntie Edna brings to the family gathering every summer. I don't actually have an auntie Edna, but I do have experience with bananas and green jelly. It's not something I would recommend.

However, in celebration of the arrival of Spring, I have listed 2 new prints that I think reflect the season pretty well, both in colour and theme. Has anyone noticed that I have a slight obsession with umbrellas?

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Back to Work

I can't believe my last post was already over 10 days ago. Time certainly does fly when you're having fun.

I'm back from our what seems like very short holiday, but was actually 10 lovely days. And it's now time to get back to work. But first, how about another installment of my very own Walt Griswold à la National Lampoon's Vacation? Ready? Pull up a chair and pour yourself a good cuppa. Here we go...

As any of you who has read some bit of my blog knows, there are moments in my daily life when I just have to stop and wonder how this ever happened to me. I'm a pretty level-headed person. Logical. Feet on the ground type of person. And yet somehow, hubby knows how to get the better of me.

Today's tale takes place in a small ski resort in the Pyrenées in the south of France. The children are all tucked away: the two oldest in ski lessons, the littlest in the garderie. We finally have a few hours to ourselves to ski. And so off we go.

Now, neither one of us has skied in what must be eons for various reasons so we were very happy to have some time to conquer something other than the beginner slope we had been skiing with the girls. We headed for the chair lift to take it to its destination. But that destination, I was told, was not good enough. We must go higher. And so higher we went, up to the next elevation. Still not high enough. We must go ALL the way to the top, I am told. And so to the top we head. At this point I was beginning to understand what Gladys, my pet guinea pig when I was younger, must have felt when at the slightest sign of danger she would scamper up to the highest point she could, usually my shoulder and beyond. Higher must be better.

If, as they say, hindsight is 20/20, I definitely need new glasses. Based on past experiences, one would think that I would have at some point stopped and thought about this venture. Had I done that, memories of getting lost in the forest, having to steal napkins for toilet paper, and watching innocent kitchen appliances meet their untimely deaths would have come rushing back as blatent reminders that things don't always go as planned when the planner is my husband. I don't know why I didn't stop to question him but perhaps it's like that other well-known expression, hope springs eternal. Maybe this time will be the time when things go as planned. Or perhaps it's just sheer naivete. Whatever it is, once we reached the top of the mountain, I once again found myself in a bit of a pickle.

I had made one and only one stipulation to my husband when we first started out on our few hours of skiing. One single request. No mogels. I thought it wise given the time that had lapsed since we had last skied, given the fact that it was our first hour on a real slope, and given the fact that if any bones were to be broken, we had no other adults around to get us and the 3 children back home.

I thought I had clearly stated my request. In fact, I'm sure I did. On several occasions. No mogels. Not today. And yet, upon reaching the tippety top of the mountain, I was greeted by a glistening slope covered in what looked suspiciously like large bumps. Big bumps. Mogels. I was not pleased. Not wanting to transmit another potentially cryptic message to him, I was sure to be very clear about my opinion on the current state of affairs. I'm pretty sure he understood and as a result, he set about trying to amend the situation by skiing over the other side of the slope and up to the top and assuring me he had found the solution for us. All I had to do was ski over and we were home free. No mogels.

Bells should have started ringing in my head you're all thinking. Like when you hear the scary music in a horror film. As spectators we wonder why the actors always look behind that door or stop the car to check or answer the phone. Well, I can tell you it's because they, like me, don't hear the warning bells. Once again, my bells failed me and I'm blaming it on the altitude. I skied over and up. And was greeted by a great pack of pine trees. Masses of mogels behind me. Packs of pine trees in front of me.

But I was determined to avoid the mogels (most likely out of sheer obstinance at this point), and so I choose the latter and we were going hors piste as we say here in France. I will have to admit to being slightly less than gracious as I sputtered and swore my way through the trees and unpacked snow. This will not be translated into a Chichiboulie illustration anytime soon. It wouldn't fit the PG rating.

We did eventually make it to a genuine slope where hubby tried to assure me that there used to be a path that would have allowed us an easier cut-through than the pine trees "path". He was sure of it.

Except, as I reminded him, things change in 10+ years. And if he wasn't convinced of this, he need only look at his head where, 10 years ago, there used to be hair.

20 minutes to make it to the top of the mountain. 5 minutes to ski down. A memory, once again, to last a lifetime.