Potholes Turned Art

To say that Chicagoans are glad that it’s finally summer is, well, a massive understatement. Though I’m of the opinion that listening to people complain about the cold is occasionally worse that actually being out in it, I have to admit that this year just about did me in. That is to say, I found myself complaining along with them. A bit. And rejoicing at the first sign of spring.

No surprise, the slog of a winter wreaked havoc on Chicago’s streets. Just about everyone I know has a new epic flat tire story from bike riding and car driving in the past six months. But, lest we devolve into complaining about the conditions of the streets now as a replacement for that weather bellyaching, artist Jim Bachor has created a clever response to Chicago’s pockmarked streets. Bachor is a mosaic artist who’s has been filling Chicago potholes with cheeky and clever tile installations. According to his bio, Bachor creates “mosaics that speak of
modern things in an ancient voice,” and while some of his pieces are straightforward in simply labeling the potholes for what they are, others give the hole a unique identification number and one reads out the number to a local repair shop. Bachor’s work is meant as a a bit of good-natured ribbing to the city rather than an actual complaint. And you gotta admit, it’s a pretty good looking solution.

via Colossal

Dear Old Dad

Father’s Day is right around the corner so in honor of all the great pops/grandpops/ uncles/ brothers/all around awesome dudes, I’m having a sale!Head on over to my shop and get 25% off your order with the coupon code “DEAROLDDAD.” There’s a finger puppet for dads of all types– the one who taught you to mix a cocktail, tell a good joke or play the banjo. Plus, if you check out my Instagram, there’s a chance to get free shipping to boot! Pretty swell, eh?

The sales ends on Wednesday so don’t dawdle– as Dad would say, the early bird gets the worm!

Buzzfeed Feature!

I found out last night that my Don Draper puppet was featured on Buzzfeed yesterday. We haven’t caught up on this week’s episode, but luckily there are no spoilers ; )

A friend noticed, but I later got an email from Etsy about the listing getting a lot of traffic– that’s a new feature, eh? Anyway, if you’re looking for the #4 best thing to get a Mad Men superfan, I’ve gotcha covered.

Now what do you think– time to break out Peggy and Joan designs again? Everyone knows those two are way better than Don anyway.

Desktop15Check out the full Buzzfeed feature (“Not great, Bob!”) here.


Prep Work

My first show of the year is coming up in a few weeks, so studio time is now all about prep and getting things ready. Now that shows are fewer and farther between, sometimes I forget how much work goes into getting ready. Like this time, I totally spaced how close the event was up until a week ago. Whoops!

Most of the year I’m concentrating on the pop culture character puppets, but for craft fairs I like to offer the simpler animal and monsters, too. They’re less expensive and kids, obviously, totally dig them. Many a kiddo has shown up at my table eyeing a puppet monkey and not sure how much change she’ll get back from her $10 allowance money.

May Studio

Though I say it every year, I’m also planning on debuting a couple of event-specific designs for Handicraft Exchange. Here’s a sneak peek that probably means nothing right now, but will eventually be familiar to any Hoosier worth her stuff.

Screen shot 2014-05-26 at 2.33.45 PM Though it looks like Annie, it totally isn’t, I promise. Stay tuned ; )

Ashley Percival’s Animal Menagerie

You know how sometimes you see a piece of art and you think, “Now there’s a party I’d like to be invited to.” That’s how I feel about Ashley Percival‘s work– serious-looking creatures in neon sweaters having a marvelous time biking, skateboarding and just generally hanging out. Who wouldn’t want to be invited to a party like that?

See more party animals in Ashley Percival’s Etsy shop.

A Little Gosling

Two of my very favorite people, Ellen and Allyson, welcomed a one of my very favorite babies earlier this year. Okay, so I haven’t actually gotten to meet Baby J just yet, but I thoroughly enjoy watching him bounce and gurgle and coo from 1000 miles away. The new little family recently had some beautiful photos taken and I was touched to see that bibs I made for the little mister made an appearance in the photos.


Of the bibs that were sent in the welcome package for the little guy, my favorite featured felt letters spelling out a play on their names, along with “Gosling,” which they sometimes called the baby before he was born.

G-GFamily-043 It’s funny how babies can be so different from each other– Henry didn’t wear a single bib until he was eating solid food, but Baby J, as it turns out, is quite prolific spitter-upper and wears a bib basically always. So they were a good gift : )

Screen shot 2014-05-17 at 8.10.15 PMOh, and these beautiful photos were by Ellie Leonardsmith Photography.