December 31, 2009

Do you love books?

How about an action-packed crime story about books? In comic format? What could possibly be better?

My friend, Liana, shared Shiga's first webcomic with me a long time ago, which I highly recommend for it's pure comics genius: FLEEP.

I don't really do the whole New Year's Resolution Thing, but I do always wish I had more time to read. I read all kinds of things, even cookbooks (the Best Recipes books have entire chapters on each recipe, so it's easy to get lost in there).

*    *    *

Since I'm still in business mode right now, (Sean and I have been making our 2010 projections and analyzing our sales and things today,) I thought I'd share some of our top sellers from the last year with you (my data is based on the last quarter, but it should be pretty accurate for the whole year):

Top Selling Pint Glass Designs:
1. Mustache
2. Bicycle
3. Robot
4. Guitar
5. Yarn

Top Selling Products That Aren't Pint Glasses:
1. Mustache Mugs & Teacups (assorted styles and colors)
2. Mustache Rocks Glasses
3. Mustache Double-Old-Fashioned Glasses
4. Robot Double-Old-Fashioned Glasses
5. Shot Glasses (the Robot is the top seller here, but we sold a good assortment)

So, Mustaches are still in vogue, as it were. And we will continue to put them on glassware. I think we may have sold about 1,000 mustache pint glasses this year. That's pretty crazy to think about. As far as our income goes, Sean and I earned a little more than we would have at minimum wage jobs. Which is sad, but we were still able to buy a house this year, and we didn't have to do any work on the side. We're still going strong, so this year should be even better.

Our more masculine designs seem to do well on all our products, so we'll be sticking with that theme for the future. If a guy would like it, and it's funny, or geeky, or kinda cute, then we'll be putting it on drinkware for you.

If you've got a great idea for the next big design, send it our way! We're in the exciting brainstorming and development stages right now, and we love hearing what you think. Thanks for reading the boring stuff I have to say, and above all, have a safe and joyful new year!



December 26, 2009

BOGO Clearance Sale!

Buy One, Get One 1/2 Off!

All Pint Glasses & Soap Dispensers on Sale!

Pirate Skull and Crossbones Pint GlassesGet the best deals of the year during our BOGO Sale through Jan. 1st, New Year's Day. Every pint glass and soap dispenser is Buy One, Get One Half Off on our website and Etsy shop (prices are already reduced for you)--including our top-sellers like the Mustache, Bicycle and Robot!

Stock up on gifts for the rest of the year, or treat yourself to a full set of drinking glasses for under $100! Mix-and-match designs to get all your favorites, and snag the last of our retired designs before they're gone (more details below).

1 Pint Glass: $15.00
2 Pint Glasses: $22.50
4 Pint Glasses: $45.00
6 Pint Glasses: $67.50
8 Pint Glasses: $90.00

1 Recycled Glass Soap Dispenser: $25.00
2 Recycled Glass Soap Dispensers: $37.50
4 Recycled Glass Soap Dispensers: $75.00

Steady Snail pint glasses* * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Out With the Old - In With the New
We hope you had a joyful and relaxing holiday! We spent the day eating, playing video games, and putting tons of items on sale in our shop. We need to make room for new designs (we're in the process of collaborating with other artists to create some really exciting art!), so a bunch of current designs are being retired and replaced.

Koi Fish recycled glass soap dispenserPlease say good-bye to the Dogwood Flowers, Dragonfly, Koi Fish, Seahorse, Pirate Skull, Steady Snail, Tree and Winged Heart. All these designs will be on sale until they're gone. Get yours now, before it's too late!

We plan on releasing a new series of designs (including a staggering ZOMBIE) in January, as well as starting to accept wholesale and custom orders again. We just need a little time to clear our heads and our workspace from the holiday chaos. :)


December 25, 2009

Holiday Cheer

Today, I'm relaxing with the husband and the kitties, planning to eat a massive homecooked meal (based on the brunch at East Coast Grill). There will be video games, and a video chat with my family. It will be cozy, and we may even find some holiday music that we don't hate.

I want to wish all the best comforts to you and yours. I'm endlessly thankful to every single customer we've had over the past year, and every single person who's given me feedback or encouragement about what I'm doing. I feel like I'm connected to a much larger family with all of you.

Now, let's eat!


December 22, 2009

Zombie Apocalypse on the Horizon

As the countdown to Christmas draws near, we here in Badgerland are finally able to take a breath, collect our thoughts, and start cleaning up the chaos around our house. I'm not much for long breaks, so I've already got a huge post-holiday sale ready to start on Dec. 26th. Select items (including pint glasses!) will be Buy One Get One 1/2 Off until New Year's Day.

We're going to retire about 6 different designs, so we can make room for lots of new things for 2010! Discontinued glassware is in limited quantities, so don't hesitate to snatch up your favorites now!

Not only are we working on our own meme-themed art for the spring, but we're also collaborating with a number of local artists to bring you brand-spanking new barware and homegoods you've never seen before. Stay tuned for more details.

I wanted our newest design to be a surprise, but I just had to share it with you! We all know that the Zombie Apocalypse is just around the corner, so do yourself a favor by stocking your stronghold with shotgun shells, baseball bats, and lots of your favorite beverages. You wouldn't want to be thirsty during your final hours, would you? (This zombie design will be available in January!)


December 11, 2009

Gift Guide Thingy (a little late)

I started this post before Thanksgiving, thinking I'd add a ton of fantastic gift ideas to it. Well, it didn't exactly work out that way. We've been shipping record-breaking numbers of orders, every two or three days, and it's kind of insane. Plus, we traveled to Seattle for 3 days (which was awesome!) for Urban Craft Uprising, and we're preparing for Crafty Wonderland's Super Colossal Holiday Sale this Sunday.

If you're still shopping online for holiday gifts, then maybe you should check out a few of my recommendations:

Because I need to wear something, and I'm not really a fancy dresser.

Robot Juice T-shirt
This has been one of my favorite Diesel Sweeties shirts, right alongside the CSS { Rules Everything Around Me } one.

Bone Earrings
I like my slightly stretched piercings, but the steel jewelry I have is pretty boring. I found out last year that natural materials are much better for your body (bone, wood, horn), so I got some really beautiful hand-carved bone earrings, and promptly broke one of them. I'm hoping to get a new pair that are less fragile.

Black Horn Earrings
These are especially cool because they have little posts so that anyone can wear them, even if you're piercings aren't stretched!

As someone who has too much yarn, I can say that fiber whores like myself can never, truly, have too much yarn. 

Monarch Light - Traveling Rhinos
I've used a bunch of different hand-dyed and hand-spun yarns from Eling at Traveling Rhinos, and I've loved each one. Her color combinations always seem perfect to me.


November 30, 2009

Cyber Monday Sales!

To celebrate Cyber Monday, for today only, we're offering FREE SHIPPING on all pendants and accessories in our Etsy shop, plus FREE SHIPPING on absolutely everything in our second jewelry shop on Etsy, Silver Squirrel!

The discounted beaded jewelry at Silver Squirrel is all one-of-a-kind, and I won't be making any more like it.

Since pint glasses are our biggest sellers, and shipping is a bit expensive, we thought we should offer discounted shipping to you guys. So, for the rest of the day, you can get HALF PRICE SHIPPING to the U.S. or Canada on all pint glass sets of 2 or more. That's right--shipping is actually cheaper if you buy 2 or more pint glasses, than if you were to get just one.

Don't wait! This sale is only going on for a few more hours!

We were going to save these Musical Heart Note recycled glass corked bottles until Valetine's Day, but I thought we should release them early. For a limited time, they'll be on sale for only $6 in our Etsy shop.

Fill it with your favorite candy and give it as a gift, keep one for yourself and put colored sand inside it, or use it as a scented oil diffuser. My brother-in-law designed the graphic, and we put it on these cute little bottles for his wedding.

(Discounts and shipping prices have already been adjusted, so there's nothing you need to do to get the sale prices. The shipping calculator on our website works differently than the one on Etsy, so if you order from, we'll send you a refund through Paypal, or discount your order before processing your credit card, depending on your payment method.)


November 26, 2009


I'm thankful for my wonderfully generous family, my supportive friends, and my kitty companions.

I'm thankful for all the amazing food that I'm still discovering, and learning to cook.

I'm thankful for my customers, who continue to support this little business that keeps on growing, which is still fun to work for.

I'm thankful for my dishwasher, which may be as old as I am, but it seriously cleans dishes without pre-washing.

I'm thankful for cardboard, because it's the best free cat toy ever.

I'm thankful for coffee, without which, life is not worth living.

I'm thankful for commercial shipping software.

I'm thankful for Portland, Oregon, for being the perfect place to live.

I'm thankful that robots have continued to allow us to live in peace for this long.

I'm thankful for Netflix, because I prefer watching tv shows as if they were trade paperbacks anyway.

I'm thankful for all the people and places that I can get recycled packing materials from.

I'm thankful for digital photography.

I'm thankful for reading in bed.

I'm thankful for webcomics, and art, and humor and imagination.

I'm thankful for all the new things that I'm going to get to try in the next year.


November 25, 2009

1000 Ideas for Creative Reuse

I'm in a book!! It's pretty crazy to see a bunch of my products in a real live printed craft book, but it's even crazier that one of the photos actually has me in it! My fantastic mustache pint glass model, Zoe, (screenprinting helper and daughter of Salmon St. Studio owners) is also featured in the book, and I can't wait to give her a copy.

Garth Johnson's 1000 Ideas for Creative Reuse book is a huge image collection of re-purposed crafty projects, products and art. There aren't any instructions for remaking anything in the book, but it's a treasure-trove of glossy, colorful inspiration.

 I would have bought this book, even if I wasn't a contributor. It's great for setting on the coffeetable (or in my case, next to my computer), ready to browse for a little creative boost. I've flipped through it a dozen times, and I'm still discovering new things I hadn't noticed before!

Check out Eye Pop Art's Recycled Record Mandala bowl on the left page here, which is in the same colors as the clock she gave me!

I love that this book includes such a wide range of projects, from wearables to installation art. I keep getting new ideas for furniture and decor items that I want to make (or shop for--let's be realistic, now). I really love the cinder block drawers on the left page above.

This book would make a perfect gift for any crafter, hobbyist, or consumer interested in sustainable design, and looking for some eye-candy. Buy your copy on Amazon, or support our local bookstore, Powell's.


November 18, 2009

Recycled Tots Packaging

We're very lucky, here in Portland, because we have Carton Service. I've been stopping in there about once a week to get recycled packing peanuts, large shipping boxes and whatever other awesomeness I can fit in my car (I can't fit a whole lot with 2 enormous bags of peanuts in there). Carton Service buys and sells packaging products for shipping or moving, and I wouldn't be able to run my business without them.

When we package our glassware to ship out to customers, we use a lot of crumpled newspaper to fill the boxes. Last holiday season, we kept running out of newspaper to use, so we had to buy unprinted newsprint in sheets and rolls.

We discovered that Carton Service has rolls of unused plastic-coated paper, which apparently, came from a frozen tater tots company! This paper is fantastic for our packaging, and I always keep a spare roll on hand in case my newspaper supply runs out. We got this roll recently, and it weighs a full 60 pounds!! If you order something from us online during the holidays, don't be surprised if you find this recycled tots paper in your box.


November 16, 2009

New kitten!

We adopted a new kitten! Somehow, I thought that having a second little ball of fuzz and claws would help us be more productive during this busy time of year. Really, the point was to occupy our other cat, Rupert, who's almost 2 yrs. old now. He hates playing by himself, and insists that we entertain him constantly.

We picked this little muffin-face up at the Humane Society a few days ago, after a thorough screening to make sure she'd have the energy to keep up with Rupert and wouldn't be afraid of him. We named her Triana, and she's a dainty little thing at 3 months old.

The two of them are pretty fascinated by each other, and are getting along fantastically. They chase each other, play with shoelaces together, and Rupert likes to lick Triana's head. She's already a lap cat, preferring to sit in someone's lap to anywhere else in the house. We're getting a lot of work done, I swear.


November 10, 2009


We've now reached that point in the year when Sean and I are completely incapable of cooking, washing dishes, laundry, or ourselves. So it's a good thing we had our housewarming party a few weeks ago, back when we had time to vacuum the kitchen carpet.

I don't think we've ever had that many friends over at the same time before! It's such a great feeling to have the space for kids to run around in, and adults to talk or sit or eat food, or whatever adults want to do. We had a fabulous evening, and can't wait to have another gathering. Thanks to everyone who made it, and super huge thanks for all the gifts. We loved your company, but fancy food, beverages and thoughtful home decor were extra appreciated.

The psychedelic clock is an Eye Pop Art original, hand-painted by our friend, Christine, on a recycled vinyl record. We keep changing our minds about which room of the house it should stay in, since we want one in every room! I love that the copper paint is metallic, and gives an unexpected shine when you're walking past it.

Mary of Lolly-tots gave us some prints of her newest artwork, which have taken up residence next to the seagreen glass hen on a nest that I discovered at a thrift store as we were painting the house. Our plans are still in the works, but Mary and I are working on collaborating this spring on a new project! Stay tuned for more details...


November 9, 2009

Wholesale Updates

Last year, all I wanted in the world was to have wholesale accounts to sell to. It would be great to ship out a whole bunch of stuff at once, and then get a big check for it. For some reason, it was really hard to find stores that wanted to carry glassware at first. Over the year though, we've added quite a few awesome shops to our list!

Just this past month, we've gotten swamped with new requests from stores (and coffee shops!) across the country. I'm thrilled that there are so many brick and mortar stores supporting handmade businesses! It makes me even happier that they'd like to support mine.

The only problem is that these orders are wiping out all of our holiday inventory that we've been stocking up on. I've already hired our first independent contractor to help us out, and there may be more in our future. Even so, we've had to change our wholesale ordering policies and cut down on the products that we're able to make. We also decided not to accept any new wholesale accounts until we can reevaluate our situation in the springtime.

If you've ordered from us in the past, and would like to restock for the holidays, please download our latest order form here. If you own a shop, and want to add our products to your shelves for the first time, we'd really appreciate it if you contacted us in the spring. If you just can't wait that long, we can work out a discount for you, but we won't be able to give you our standard wholesale prices.

We'll be adjusting our wholesale policies and prices again in the new year, as soon as we're able to catch our breath!


November 5, 2009


My favorite way to get inspired is to talk to new people. I have a lot of friends who run small crafty businesses, but it's nice to get a new perspective by bouncing ideas around with people in a different field.

Today, we had lunch with Rich Stevens and Meredith Gran, who are both self-employed webcomic artists. (If you're not reading their comics--Diesel Sweeties and Octopus Pie, respectively--then you should be. Also, buy some of their stuff while you're at it.)

It was really refreshing to hear what other artists are doing to expand their businesses. There are a lot of opportunities for merchandising, cross-promoting and collaborating. Rich is a fountain of ideas, and I came away feeling excited about creating new products (as opposed to feeling overwhelmed and stupified by my options, as I have been).

I feel guilty that I haven't released new designs this fall, like I'd wanted to, but too many things came up this year that effected my plans. I'm storing up energy this winter like a fat, hibernating bear, only without the restful part. The holidays are going to kick ass, and I'm hoping to be revitalized come springtime.

I've been focused on keeping my business really specialized, and I'd like to expand into some new projects. Exciting new projects. Projects that involve other people, new art and whole new product lines. I hope next year can live up to my expectations.

[I mentioned recently that I was working on a secret art project, and this robot pint glass was it. I stole Rich's Clango artwork from his website, and turned it into a sandblasting stencil to make this gift for him. I plan to make more gifts like this for other people that I admire. All in due time.]


November 4, 2009

A Real Mustache Mug

Can you believe this?? I scored this mug while shopping for other reclaimed mugs at the Goodwill today. It's a classic mustache mug (made in Japan), with a protective bar for keeping your mustache dry while you drink your beverage. I've heard rumors about these, but hadn't seen one until today.

Oh, and speaking of mustache mugs, I just listed a couple coffee cups and espresso demitasse cup and saucer sets in our Etsy shop, and I'm working on adding more soon. We're not taking any new wholesale orders anymore, so that should give us some time to work on filling the shop for early holiday shopping.


November 3, 2009

Fan Art

Originally uploaded by gbot

This is so brilliant, I'm sad that I didn't think of this myself. A customer bought a mug from us, then turned the skull and crossbones artwork into a jack-o-lantern for Halloween! Then she took some incredible photos.

Thanks, Geniva!!


October 26, 2009

Can Your Car Do This?

Finally put this sticker on the car. LOVE IT! Get your own here, if your car is worthy.


Pop-Up LEGO Buddhist Temple

I've always been a huge fan of LEGOs, but I was the type of kid who followed the exact directions on the box and then never dismantled my structures. I bow to those makers who can create their very own design with LEGOs as their medium.

This replica of the Kinkaku-ji Zen Buddhist temple in Tokyo actually pops up out of its "box", and was made by the very talented talapz.

[via Laughing Squid]


October 23, 2009


It's that time of year where our "to-do" pile fills a room, and the "done" pile is very nearly as tall as I am. I took some time to clean the house for our housewarming party tomorrow, and I'm going to spend a good while baking goodies. It's a good thing we've gotten Lea to help us get some work done!

I'm about to unveil our new policies and rates for custom orders, so join our mailing list here if you'd like the scoop. Only newsletter subscribers will be able to order custom items, so don't miss out!


October 21, 2009

Keeping Up With the Johnsons

Our house projects seem to have stalled out for a little bit since we went on our trip, but I'm relieved and inspired to know that other people are dealing with similar projects at this very moment!

Garth Johnson (Extreme Craft) and his wife, Claire, have a fantastic new blog on the ReadyMade website, which is all about the purchase and remodel of their first home. The house is a lovely Victorian in Eureka, CA, (complete with 100-year-old wallpaper) which the two artists are giving a total makeover.

Luckily, we didn't have to peel wallpaper in order to paint our own walls, but we did have to do some minor plumbing work under the kitchen sink, and I loved reading about Garth's similar experience where he used a paintball gun barrel to attach his dishwasher to the garbage disposal. Our house may not have the same character as their classy Victorian, but their story is helping motivate me to keep working on it!

[all photos are Garth and Claire's from their blog.]


October 16, 2009

There and Back Again

Boy, has it been a busy week. We just got back from our trip to Massachusetts, and I haven't quite processed the mounds of work waiting for us at home. Today is Sean's birthday, so it's a good excuse to take it easy.

Speaking of taking it easy, I hurt my back on our second day out (re-aggravating an old injury in a pretty severe manner), and I've been walking around with this awesome cane every since. Pretty great. I hate feeling crippled, but I should be back to normal in a month or so.

Portland has pretty much everything, as far as I'm concerned, except for a few foodie favorites. We made sure to each a bunch of Italian-style subs while in Boston, plus some fantastic pork and veggie burritos from Anna's Taqueria, Indian food (I had goat vindaloo for the first time!) from Punjabi Dhaba, and the obligatory Dunkin' Donuts iced coffee. If you find yourself in New England and haven't enjoyed any of these simple delights, please try them immediately.

I'm thrilled that we were able to make the wedding favors for my sister's wedding, and we spent our first afternoon filling them with candy and curling ribbons. The musical note heart design was the groom's original artwork, which we etched onto these fantastic recycled glass bottles. The M&M's and chocolate mints were a huge hit with all the guests!

We ended up making too many bottles for the number of guests that could attend, so we'll be adding these to our shop for Valentine's Day next year. They'd make great bud vases, or vials for holding decorative sand or super-mini terrariums! I think I'll have to keep a couple for myself...


October 6, 2009

Pre-Vacation Stress

Wow, this is my 200th post! Pretty exciting, eh? I feel like I should celebrate somehow...

Instead, I'll ramble a bit about the crazy stuff going on in my life, in case you're interested. Because I like lists, I'll format it so it's easier to get through.

1. Every day, we fix something important on our house (rewiring electrical outlets, caulking windows, patching missing siding, removing broken garbage disposals, etc.), and every day, we discover something new that needs to be done (broken ductwork in the crawlspace, more scary electrical outlets, doorknobs that don't fit on their doors, etc.). It's rewarding, but exhausting.

2. We're about to travel across the country to my little sister's wedding. We have so much planned for this trip, including visits with all manner of friends and family, for every minute of our excursion to the east coast. I've even got business meetings scheduled, just to cover all the bases.

This will be a long time away from our cat, and from the business and the house and all the projects we've started. It's really difficult for me to leave, even though I'm excited about the vacation. There's so much we have to do to get ready for this trip.

3. My friend, Lea, has just started helping us out with business stuff. She's a total life-saver! We're really behind on making stock for the holidays, and she's started coming over to lend a hand. Yay, Lea!!

4. Even though we're going away for a week, I don't like to shut down my website. I don't want people to think we're out of business, or anything. Instead, I pray that people don't mind waiting a few extra days for items to ship. Then, when we return, I drop everything and spend 2-3 days packing and shipping everything like a crazy woman. It's a fabulous system.

5. I want to organize a housewarming party for our friends, but I'm still kind of embarrassed about the disaster that is our house. I hope people can look past the fugliness and see the potential that we see. DETAILS TO COME.

6. I feel out of sorts, discombobulated, and topsy-turvy right now. I'm really grateful that people are so forgiving, but I wish I could be more on top of things. I'll make it up to everyone, I promise. There will be baked goods.


September 29, 2009

Neon Skateboard Tetris

I haven't shared anything random and fun in awhile (what with all the packing, moving, unpacking, losing my mind that's been going on in my world), but I thought you might enjoy this. The music makes me wish I were skateboarding in S.F. right now too.

[via Laughing Squid]


September 21, 2009

I Am Carpet Destroyer. Also: SOCKS!!

Guess what I got in the mail today!! It's an amazing pair of pixellated knee-sock-y perfection, courtesy of webcomic guru Rich Stevens! Not only is Diesel Sweeties one of my favorite all-time comics, but this dude also designs wearables. Srsly, who doesn't need a pair of these??

Rich generously included this pair of stickers in my housewarming package as well. I've been coveting these guys since I first saw them, so I was completely overjoyed to have them in my (grimey, paint-spattered) hands! Sean and I are trying to decide if we can put the transformer sticker on our leased car, and if the penalties will be worth it. (They totally will be.)

Since you may (or may not) care about what I've been doing all week (I'm curious too, since this week has flown by!), I can assure you it's been time well-spent. It took us a whole week to paint the house, and I'm disappointed that there are still areas that need touching up. (See the "Fresh Water" color my new office/craft room is? I LOVE IT! Most of the rest of the house is "Gentle Rain", which is a light gray.) We've decided to move onto carpet removal, however, since we'd like to actually get some of our belongings moved in some time this month.

Remember this room? It had spectacular hardwood floors underneath all that moldy shag carpet! We discovered that it's not the removal of the carpet that's the hard part (although, that's some heavy crap to haul around), but it's the wood staples and nailed-down spikey edging that are the most work.

The pry-bar (this one is named "Wonderbar") has become my best friend. We're going to get to know each other better for half of tomorrow, too. This tool (which Sean found in a gutter at a house he was roofing awhile back) can remove nails, staples, molding and most other things that are securely attached to a floor or wall. It doesn't get much better than that, folks.

We'll be living on the sub-flooring until we can afford to replace some of the carpet, but it's still a huge improvement over the mustard and lime infestation that this house had before. If the kitchen carpet weren't glued down, we'd tackle that tomorrow too. Right now, we're just trying to make this house habitable, so we can move our furniture and our sick kitty over here as soon as possible.

More photos on Flickr!


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