Tiny things Tuesday #26

So Indietracks is over and I have a slight case of post-festival blues. I eased myself back into the working week today but I have Friday off so it’ll be a nice short week for me.

I’ll write a proper post about Indietracks soon but for tonight, here’s this weeks things;

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1. I found this cider in Tesco at the weekend. I love coconut and lime flavours but I wasn’t 100% how they’d work together but this was a perfect drink to have after we’d put the tent up on Friday.

2. I have been watching Pretty Little Liars on Netflix for the last few weeks. I wasn’t sure what to expect when I started it but the stories have really suckered me in. I like how all of the main characters are pretty empathetic and have more than one dimension to them.

3. I made this ink stamp a few weeks ago. I’m really pleased with it – specially as it was my first attempt. I used a Lino cutting tool and this soft cut print block which seems to work really well for ink stamping. I drew out my design in pencil (remembering to reverse it) and then just got on with the cutting.

4. I started reading this book at the weekend. So far I am really enjoying it. It starts chatting the history of twee from just after the war. It’s giving me a lot to think about as well as a list of books, movies and films to check out. Nothing like reading a book that inspires you to look at other things.

Till next time…

Tiny things Tuesday #25

My life is quiet at the moment. I’m spending a lot of time resting, working on simple but satisfying craft projects and thinking about what I really want from life. I’m trying to learn what I really desire and crave in life rather than what I think I want or what I think will bring happiness.

I’m gearing up for Indietracks this weekend – I’m crossing my fingers for good weather.

Here’s this weeks list…

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1. These vimto lollies taste of childhood summers. I’m not sure about the description of them as “water ice” but at 99p for 6 they are a lovely treat on a muggy summer evening.

2. The retro flower pattern on this washi tape makes my heart sing. It’s got all of the things I am enjoying at the moment – bright colours and retro patterns. It’s by mt who make some amazing washi tape.

3. On Friday I spent some time walking around the cathedral part of Coventry. I saw lots of friendly squirrels including this guy. I love how he looks like he is pointing to himself!

4. I’ve managed to keep the bedroom floor clear for a week so I celebrated by putting down this great rug I picked up a few months ago. I think I have been saving it for some so called perfect day some day in the future but I need to allow myself to use these things and enjoy them now. It will give me some good motivation when I get up each morning.

Till next time…

Tiny things Tuesday #24

I had a lovely evening out chatting with a friend I hadn’t seen for a while , drinking Rose lemonade and eating chips. We got soaked walking across the city to get a lift home but it didn’t really matter because it wasn’t cold.

I’m almost ready for bed but before I go, here’s todays list

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1. My outfit felt a little plain today (all black, I blame a lack of laundry organisation!) so I decided to wear this necklace to bring a bit of colour and fun to my work clothes. This oversize pencil pendent was a gift from a friend and was made by Tatty Devine. I’ve never seen anyone else with one, so I love it even more!

2. Not so long ago, I used to skate for the Coventry City Derby Dolls. A variety of circumstances lead to me leaving (and I’m still not 100% sure I’m truly done)A lot of it was to do with my health which is something I’m really focussed on improving at the moment but it takes time and being battered around on skates wont help right now. Anyway, someone has made a taxonomy of roller derby names and mine made it on there! Yup, I was known as Amperslammed (number 2007) when I skated for the dolls.

3. It only took me 6 months but I finally settled on “colourful” as my word of the year. I made this little graphic to remind myself of it. Having more colour in my life feels “right” and energising for me.

4. This is my current pile of books to read as well as some copies of Flow magazine that I want to look at again. I tidied our bedroom at the weekend and it feel so nice to come home to a clean room. Having this little pile gives me an easy glance at what I have waiting for me and reminds me that it’s not true when I find myself thinking I have nothing to read and want to buy new books.

Till next time…

Tiny things Tuesday #23

Hello July! Even though the weather can’t seem to make up it’s mind what it’s doing, I’m feeling summery.

Here are this week’s tiny things;

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1. I am in LOVE with this Brow Box by Urban Decay. it was a gift from my lovely friend Donna and have I have the Brown Sugar version. I usually use pencils for defining/emphasising my brows but this product is so much better. It’s also really, really cute with its tiny mirror, angled brushes and mini tweezers*

2. I got home tonight with energy to spare so I made this bread. The recipe was also in a vegan book that I was given for my birthday by my partners parents. They gave me some carrots and courgettes from their garden when I saw them last week, so I’ve put them to good use.

3. We got new bed linen last week and I picked up the matching bottom sheet today. I love the bright colours and the bold pattern. I’m pretty sure this year is all about embracing bright colours into my life. It really does seem to helping with my mood too.

4. This weekend I had a lovely time on Saturday hanging out with some friends at the Godiva Festival that Coventry puts on once a year. It was lovely to sit in the sunshine chatting with friends. We had a BBQ afterwards at a friends house and I was presented with some belated gifts. One of them was this cuddle version of the Prince from the Katamari games. I love playing Beautiful Katamari when I’m in the mood to relax and they have the best soundtracks.

& now I’ve worn myself out with baking and cleaning, it’s time to relax with my feet up, some fresh bread and Netflix.

Till next time…

* It’s really hard to find information about which Urban Decay products are vegan any more it seems. I’m not 100% that the brow wax included in this box is vegan but I’ve emailed to check.

IZM 2015

It’s July which means it’s International Zine Month! This celebration of all things self published and zine-like was dreamed up by Alex Wrekk (who writes the long running zine – Brainscan, plays in the zine themed band the Copy Scams and writes zinester bible Stolen Sharpie Revolution – she’s basically THE zine queen)

So what are my zine themed plans for this month? I’m going to be taking some inspiration from the list below (but due to energy and boring stuff like work, I can’t commit to doing ALL of the things)

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I hope to get a new zine finished by the end of the month, write lots of mail to my zinester friends, get all my for sale/trade stock up on this site and make a flyer with info about my perzine – ellipsis, and my comp zine – Rebel Rebel. I also want to write some posts on here about favourite zines, distros, my own history with zines and just generally give a lot of zine love.

Tiny things Tuesday #22

Oh hey! I wasn’t here last week. Well, I was here (as in, at work and in my house) but I wasn’t here online. My laptop is *still* not working and I had no easy way to get my pics online and make this post.

Today though, I was prepared for it and took my photos before I left for work and then uploaded them on my break so they are all here waiting for me when I came to post this evening.

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1. I’m in love with my latest craft project. This is my 3rd full size crochet blanket and I got the yarn from the Attic24 shop (http://www.woolwarehouse.co.uk/attic24). I’m using the Original Stylecraft pack but excluding 3 of the shades (the dark purple, the red and the mossy green) because they didn’t quite fit for me. The bright colours are so fun to work with and I’m really enjoying sitting on my bed with 14 squishy balls of yarn in front of me and trying out different colour combinations. The pattern for the squares comes from this book.

It feels weird in some ways to be working on a blanket when it’s so hot, but the summer colours are perfect for my mood and it’s also nice to have something I can work on in small parts. Hopefully by the time I come to joining all my squares together, it will be cooler.

2. I went to visit my friend Sarah in Stafford at the weekend and we had an impromptu trip to TK Maxx before I got the train home. I picked up these shoes for £16. I really love the pattern and how round the toes are. I’m looking forward to wearing them with cute skirts and dresses.

3. It’s July tomorrow which means Indietracks is really, really soon! I brought a camp stove last week for making coffee and noodles and the 2015 compilation is now out on bandcamp. It’s such a bargain at £3 (although you can pay more if you are feeling flush) it’s getting me in the mood for camping, dancing and hanging out with some of my very favourite people.

4. I spent my lunch break today laying on the grass in the shade near where I work, listening to podcasts and eating my lunch. I have been diagnosed with a vitamin D deficiency this week so I stood in the sun for 5 mins too. It really relaxes me being around grass, trees and blue skies at the moment. I need to take a blanket next time though as I got an ant bite on my boob! Ouch.

Till next time…

Tiny things Tuesday* #21

*Yes, yes this is still titled Tuesday but is posted on Thursday because half way through writing this my laptop decided it had to install urgent updates which unfortunately went wrong and meant the laptop wouldn’t start again. I’ve only had the time to carry on with it this morning so that’s just how it is.

Sleepy, slow week. I feel like a sloth. Still, it’s Tuesday which means it’s time to write. Then when I wake up it’ll be Wednesday which means the weekend is coming in to view again.

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1. It’s summer! no, really – even if the weather is more grey skies than sunshine. Summer means ice lollies and cocktail – so why not combine both of those with these lollies I picked up from Tesco. Both flavours are pretty delicious and they only taste a little boozy which means you aren’t going to be suddenly over the limit after enjoying one of these!

2. I’m listening to a lot of podcasts at the moment. Undisclosed is one of the post-Serial podcasts that I am really enjoying. Yes, there is bias towards Adnam in this but I feel like they make this clear at the start AND there is so much interesting evidence that is being uncovered that I feel like most episodes end with my jaw flapping open and me skipping straight back to the start of that episode to listen again. I’m also really enjoying Serially Obsessed for the snark and general commentary.

3. I got this game for my birthday one or maybe two years ago but recently had a renewed energy with playing it. The first time I got what I thought was a fair way through before stopping for a while and then forgetting all the story and wondering what was going on when I returned to it. I started played this again from the beginning a few weeks ago and seems to have raced through it in a way I didn’t on the first play through. I’m really enjoying the story and the missions and have got really into levelling up my weapons and adding on all kind of stupid mods.

One thing I enjoy about not being an up to date gamer is that I can pick up some amazing titled for usually less than £10 and have hours of enjoyment from them. I currently mainly play on a Xbox 360, but also have a 3-ds XL, a Wii and a PS 2 which I use for various different things. Although a newer console may be fun, right now I’m pretty happy with what I have.

Till next time…

The busiest week (and a half)

A little catch up on some things I have been up to lately. It was my birthday on the 27th of May and I turned 35. It was a good but incredibly busy week socially on top of a really busy week at work so everything that wasn’t sleeping, already arranged social engagements and finishing up stuff ready for North West Zine Fest fell by the wayside.

Some highlights of my birthday and surrounding days
(I didn’t really take many pics so there wont be many in this post)

☆ I went to see the Alice’s Adventures Underground play in London which was really fun and well put together. It was part play and part interactive experience. We went in at our specified time spot and then got separated off further into smaller groups. Each group had a different story although there was a lot of cross over. I would definitely recommend checking it out while it’s still on. The location under London Bridge works really well too.

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☆ I went to see the Julie Ruin (also in London) The gig was wonderful – it has been so inspiring to see this band and Sleater-Kinney play this year and to be reminded that there is nothing at all stopping me making music except for my own fear.

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I managed to not see anyone else I knew who was going though sadly and we had to dash off very fast after the gig to make the last train back to Coventry (on which we had a fairly eventful journal speaking to a lovely lady from New York who then missed her stop – eek!)

☆ I went to Birmingham with Joe and ate at Café Soya, brought stamps and browsed bookshops (aka my favourite type of day out)

☆ I went to NWZF and debuted my new zine (Rebel Rebel) I didn’t make it to any workshops in the end. I heard really good stuff about them all though. I had a lovely day hanging out with old friends and chatting to some new people. I really enjoyed tabling in between Emma Jane and Emily (who writes D&D virgin) so thanks to both. I shared my table with my friend Sarah who was selling her zines and some super cute brooches she made. She gifted me her last one at the end of the day so it wouldn’t be a lonely typewriter on it’s own.

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I found my scrappy list of possible things to do this year on my phone earlier and one of the items was having a zine fest in Coventry. Going to NWZF made me want to do this. I did go to a zine fest in Coventry this year BUT it wasn’t really a positive experience for me. It came over as more of a self publishing/small press fair and I was looking for something more DIY/radical/not for profit. I can’t relate to events where an A5 photocopied zine is being sold for £5.

☆ On my actual birthday I had to work but look at allll the vegan chocolate and sweets that my work colleagues gave me. They also got me a lovely coloring book, new pencils and some Alice stickers and post-its. I felt really spoiled and also like they very much get me!

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☆ and finally, I went to see the Moomins on the Rivera film which was lovely. The voices seemed a little weird at first but I soon got used to them and it was just a lovely relaxing film to watch on a Sunday morning.

Tiny things Tuesday #20

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1. I got these headphones for my birthday and they are excellent. The sound quality is really good – lots of bass and they feel comfortable to wear. It’s actually making old songs sound new because I can hear different parts that my old crappy headphones didn’t pick up on.

I also love the bright orange colour of them. I have found myself really drawn to orange and yellow accessories and stationery lately – more so that I have ever been before.

2. I was meant to see No Ditching at the weekend but their Birmingham gig fell through so I was feeling a bit glum. Luckily my friend Sarah visited for a sleepover and craft session. On Sunday we spent a few hours at a guinea pig and rabbit rescue cleaning out the piggies and cuddling some of the babies. I love the noises that guinea pigs make. It’s so cute to hear them chatting away to each other. It was so lovely and relaxing and I’m looking forward to going back to the rescue again soon to help out again.

3. Sarah also taught me how to DIY screen print at home using muslin, an embroidery hoop, acrylic paint and grease proof paper. I made this little print of a silver Totoro outline last night when I got home and I’m pretty happy with how it came out. I haven’t had much luck attempting to add further details on top yet but I need to experiment further I think. Learning new skills (especially ones that I can do at home for little money) really energises me. I have been thinking about other ideas since the weekend.

4. There is yet another free Moomin app out and this one can be used to add cute Moomin themed borders and pictures to photos. I will of course be decorating all my pictures this summer using this app.

(also, the link says it’s coming soon on iOS but it’s now out)

Till next time…

Tiny things Tuesday #19

There was no post last week for reasons I will explain in my next post (the short version – I’ve been really busy) I missed writing in here though. I have lots of ideas for things to write about and changes I would like to make to this website but I lack the time to properly sit down and do them.

Here’s this weeks list;

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1. Ready Player One – this book was recommended to me by stall mate at NWZF – Emily (who writes D&D virgin) I’m absolutely loving this so far. It’s been a while since I felt so engrossed in a book and I’m reading on the bus and at lunchtimes to squeeze in any extra time I can.

2. Brooches – In the last year especially I seem to have a growing collection of brooches that I wear on my coats/cardigans/jackets. I’ve been enjoying how much these brighten up my mostly plain clothes and add a focus point to some outfits. My favorite one is this little guinea pig dude who was made by Inki Designs. Also pictured is the glittery lips brooch from February’s Lucky dip club.

3. My Stay Home Club top just arrive and I’m already wearing it. I love the design and it fits ok (despite it being my most hated “one size fits all” style) This is pretty much my motto at the moment. I’m living my days at work just looking forward to getting home.

4. I just got an order of zines from Fight Boredom distro in Canada*. With these, my haul from NWZF and all the books I got for my birthday, I am going to be set for a while. I’m feeling so fired up about zines at the moment so having loads to read, is really giving me energy, inspiration and strength.

& now, back to my book.

Till next time…

* the website is actually offline at the moment, hence no link.