Archive for March, 2010


Wednesday, March 31st, 2010

Aside from being the discerning palate behind Foodhogger, Smita Jacob is a talented photographer who can capture the tastiness in any scene or dish. (Trust me, I’ve found myself drooling at the screen even right after lunch). Just feast your eyes on these shots from a recent trip to India. You can check out more of her photos at and she’s a lens for hire! Always creative and enthusiastic, she’s great to work with whether she’s capturing a humble costumed potluck or hopping into golf carts and shmoozing with the stars!

~ Lurgs

Stationery Store Collection: O-Check Design Graphics

Wednesday, March 31st, 2010

The first time I came across o-check design graphics’ items was in Australia. I was at the Source on Queen Street in Melbourne and saw the cutest decorative tape! It’s clear but with a white “lace” print. I quickly noticed other cute o-check items like a stamp kit and some notebooks. I love finding new and fun stationery! And o-check ticks all the right boxes. Vintage-inspired? Check. Classic, clean designs? Check. Quality? Check. How about environmentally friendly? Check! Almost all of the items are made from soy ink and biodegradable glue, and a range of recycled and found papers. I like the small details they add to some of their items. Like the small cloth bits stitched onto their notepads.

Or how about this sweet “Library Card” journal?

The company was established in 2000 in Seoul, Korea and has quickly developed a reputation for stationery that is lovely and functional. Upon looking into o-check some more online, I came across some living and accessory items! It may seem the best way to get o-check items is through your specialty stationery/book shops. Basically places that carry various stationery items in small batches. I know that in Melbourne, besides the Source, Mag Nation, and Little Salon carries their products. But if you’re willing to deal with shipping charges and are keen on it, there’s actually this really fabulous shop called Notemaker (the sister shop to the Source) that apparently ships worldwide AND carries a bevy of cute things including o-check items! I actually found an o-check notepad at Anthropologie the other day (further proof that Anthropologie has some killer buyers working for them), so you can always keep an eye out there.

There’s a website in English, however, the online shop on the page leads to their shop in Korean. At least you can look through the nice pictures! There’s also a “wallpaper” link that is actually a wallpaper calendar with their designs, hence the leading picture in this blog with the girls and geese (for April). It’s all about the details friends, and o-check has it in spades!


World of Uglydolls

Tuesday, March 30th, 2010

(via jcsivy’s Flickr)

I have 5 Uglydolls. I’m in my late 20s and I’m not ashamed. What I like about Uglydolls is their cleverness in crazy designs but also in the characters they create. So although they’re totally soft and quite lovable for a small child, they’re great as decorations around the house. For all ages. Like their website says. If you search “Uglydolls” on Flickr, you’ll see some keraaaaaazy & fun pictures of them taken by people who are really into them. For example, Firebeetle’s pic below of Wage shopping for chocolates! Haha! Looks like some Uglydolls have a lot of adventures!

And have I mentioned the cleverness? Oh yes, I have. If you’ve ever read the descriptions of the Uglydolls, you’ll know what I mean. I want to be friends with this person who writes the descriptions. Who are you? Let’s be friends!

Here’s the description of Chuckanucka:

“Ok, you know what? Chuckanucka. That’s what. Chuckanucka worries about pretty much everything under the sun: What if the
phone rings when I go out? What if the mail man tries to deliver my Deluxe Ugly Earmuffs when I’m in the bathroom? Hey, I don’t remember leaving the closet door open Just a crack like that! What if I can’t ever stop thinking about my name over and over?

“Chuckanucka has a pretty strange way of looking at life. Sometimes he wonders if this is all just a hologram, and on other days he wonders what’s going to happen if they stop making CD players… How will I play my favorite CDs??? I have over nine of them!!! Poor Chuckanucka. Lucky Chuckanucka”

So funny. So cute!


(via Firebeetle’s Flickr)


Monday, March 29th, 2010

I have been fortunate enough to live in Japan for a little while. And if there’s something that the Japanese do well besides technology, it’s aesthetics and design.

MUJI has everything. Their philosophy is simplicity that focuses on functional design, infusing a complexity that transcends on a global scale. You can read about their history on their website but there’s also this beautiful book by Chen Jiaojiao about the MUJI brand.

MUJI has really gained momentum over the last few years overseas with stores opening in the States, the UK, Europe, and other parts of Asia. I think the Japanese realized they couldn’t keep such a good thing to themselves for that much longer!


P.S. I stocked up on their pens that 4 years after, I’m still trying to get through them!

MUJI book

MUJI coloured pencils: $24.95US

City in a bag (New York): $14US

Cardboard speakers (Kraft): $38US

Aluminum Low Table Wagon – Small: $111.50US

Stationery stores collection: kikki.K

Sunday, March 28th, 2010

Founded in Melbourne, Australia, nine years ago by Kristina Karlsson, kikki.K is a Swedish fashion stationery that has stores all over Australia with shops also in New Zealand and one in Singapore. I’ve been to Australia three times, but it was only my third and most recent trip that I actually stepped in and browsed around the store. Well I’m glad I did. Being a lover of stationary, I was hooked! How can you not love Swedish design? There’s something about it that is colourful, classic, and very special. kikki.K is all about the collections. Each comes and goes, so it’s really important to grab what you like while you can! There’s always a new design of something that is holiday-inspired (i.e, Valentine’s Day, Christmas) or just…inspired.

Here are just a few items that I enjoy. I hope that you check out the shop all you stationery lovers! It will surely be on your go-to list when you head over to the Asia-Pacific next :)


Wooden Magnetic Pegs (5 Pk): Host $9.95AUD

Canvas Pencil Case: Host $14.95AUD

Canvas Tote Bag: Love Mail, $9.95AUD

DIY Sticker Book: Love Mail, $19.95AUD

Sticky Tape (3 Pk): Cykel, &6.95AUD

Mad for Matryoshka

Sunday, March 28th, 2010

Russian nesting dolls. Babushka. Just a couple of other names for this sweet doll. They have them in all sorts of designs and people can’t seem to get enough of this trend. I certainly can’t. I kind of collect them.

Do you love them as much as me? Here are a few images of items I like and actually own.

What sorts of things do you like to collect?


Clips (via Kyoto General Store)

Clips (via Kyoto General Store)

Key covers via (Gadget Her)

Measuring cups (via Genuine Fred)

Plates (via Fred Flare)

Russian Newborn t-shirt (via Threadless)

Granny Squares

Saturday, March 27th, 2010

S has started her own craft project — a granny square afghan! (She needed something to do while she watched Fringe). Here’s a few squares she’s completed already and she’s on her way to becoming a crocheting machine. It’s simple to do and it’s gonna be a perfect blanket for summer naps or to wrap herself in for more Fringe viewing.

There’s some great samples of granny square afghans here.

And some patterns here if you want to start your own!


Like I give a frock

Monday, March 22nd, 2010

I like pretty things and have wondering eyes, so when I was over at my sister-in-law’s one night, I spied a very nice looking book and naturally, I started flipping through it. I COULDN’T STOP READING IT. I laughed out loud at many parts, my eyes got big at the beautiful pictures, and I kept saying “I’m going to buy this”. This book is so good, it made me almost anti-social. You see, I was over for a games night, and I placed the book conveniently by my side so I could go through it when it wasn’t my turn. I know, right? That’s a bit wrong.

Well, as you can see, since I put the picture first, the book is called “Like I Give a Frock”. The fabulous imaginary friend brought to life by Chloe Quigley and Daniel Pollock and beautifully illustrated  by Kat Macleod. Michi is quite the character, full of helpful little tidbits and opinions. She says some pretty funny stuff, mainly about fashion, sometimes about the weather.  And although I don’t necessarily share all her likes and dislikes, I do see the truth in what she’s offering. She also has a lovely website here.

I think the best thing about Michi is that she appreciates fashion but also questions & pokes fun at it. Which, in my opinion, is what it should be all about!

I just love how this book is laid out into the 4 seasons. And in addition to the amazing drawings, there’s also some crafty collage, mixed media bits that make it so eye-candy-wonderful that as I’m typing this, I’ve paused,  flipped through it, then kind of “ooh’d and aah’d” in my head. This book is really a sexy and pretty piece of art. Back and front is printed onto this cloth-like material that really suits the aesthetic of the book.

There are too many favourite bits for me in this book. But here’s a couple that I enjoy:

“There’s no such thing as the ‘new black'” – Darth Vader

to blouse. verb. The act of trying on clothes that you have absolutely no intention (or means) of purchasing; ‘I’d love to purchase this beautiful Miu Miu top but unfortunately I left my car in my car, which is currently on my boat. So today I’m just blousing thank you.’ “

Word on the street is, you can get this at Anthropologie. But I just got mine on good ol’ Amazon. Please support this wonderful book!


Sewing Bible

Friday, March 19th, 2010

I picked up The Sewing Bible this week by Ruth Singer after flipping through a copy at Winners. I haven’t had time to really look through it thoroughly, but so far, I’m very excited! This is a great resource that covers basic techniques with step-by-step photos covering hand and machine sewing. It deals with practical info like dealing with different stitches and seams, fasteners, hems, edging, and more decorative techniques like embroidery and fabric manipulation. Can’t wait to put this knowledge to use for some projects in my head.

~ Lurgs

Tiny Desk Concerts

Tuesday, March 16th, 2010

If you don’t know of them already, I’d like to draw your attention to NPR’s tiny desk concerts! These are fabulous, intimate concerts at the desk of Bob Boilen, host of All Songs Considered.  The recordings showcase a variety of artists and the casual stripped down atmosphere offers very unique performances.

This is talent — when you can hold court and captivate with the barest of instruments, a few voices perhaps, nothing fancy.

One of my favourites so far is K’Naan. These acoustic versions of his songs offer a more intimate, contemplative flavour. Waving Flag is the official song of the World Cup 2010  and it has been re-recorded by Canadian artists in support of Haiti (you can find it here), but I still like this version the best.

Other Tiny Desks Concerts worth checking out:

The Swell Season

Raphael Saadiq

Rodrigo y Gabriela

~ Lurgs