I forgot to mention this the other day, but an assortment of my pint glasses are now available for sale at Powell's Books for Home & Garden (3747 SE Hawthorne Blvd., Portland, OR). Yay! It's right next to Pastaworks, if you happen to be in the neighborhood looking for cannoli shells.
February 28, 2009
February 27, 2009
[This video contains lots of F-Bombs. Don't watch it if you are sensitive to that kind of thing. Also, it's kind of long, but full of AWESOME.]
I like video games. I don't play all that many of them, and I'm usually content to play the same game multiple times. I've learned that I'm kinda picky about the type of game that I enjoy though. I like puzzle games, and hack-and-slash senseless violence types of games. Not so much one-on-one "fighting games", although Dead or Alive is pretty fun. Graphics don't really matter at all. I like Mario World, Zelda, Fable and the X-men games.
I've recently gotten sucked into the world of Ninja Gaiden (for Xbox), and I've been obsessively playing it every day. What could possibly be more fun than fighting evil ninjas and monstrous fiends with sword-chucks (*ahem* I mean, the "Vigoorian Flail"). I die a lot, but that just makes it more satisfying when I win.
I just discovered The Adventures of Duane and Brando, a pair of guys who rap about classic video games, over top of the game's soundtrack. I do love me some video game music, so this was a pairing I couldn't pass up! I really wanted to share their Ninja Gaiden video, but YouTube wouldn't let me embed it here, so hop over to their Myspace page to see it and other videos and songs about Zelda, Sonic the Hedgehog and more!
Laughing Squid has a post with other nerdcore rappers with video game themed music videos.
February 26, 2009
Ever since my good friend, Caitlin, gave me some marscapone cheese she couldn't use, I've been searching for cannoli shells to make some of these creamy treats! I finally found some at Pastaworks, and I rushed home to whip some up. I'm pretty sure I could have found a recipe for the shells, but I just didn't have the time. I modified the filling recipe on the box to include marscapone as well as the standard ricotta, and these completely hit the spot.
You should be able to get your own shells from a local bakery or specialty food store. The filling is super-ridiculously easy to make, and you can still fill them without a pastry bag. You just spoon some into a plastic sandwich bag, twist the open end of the bag closed, and snip off the tip of the other end to create a spout. Garnish with chocolate curls, dried fruit, or powdered cocoa (like I did). Enjoy!
February 25, 2009
I've been trying to figure out the safest, cheapest way to ship my products since I started over three years ago. I still haven't found a fail-proof method, but I think I'm improving things.
Currently, I'm trying to find a way to insure all packages against loss or damage, but without making shipping costs unaffordable. It costs a lot to ship glassware (especially pint glasses) because they're large, often heavy, and need a certain amount of padding to keep them safe. I have a few options that I'm considering, but I'd like to know what you think too.
Option 1: You can ask for insurance to be added to your order for an extra $1. If you don't insure you package, I can only replace a limited amount of goods if something were to happen, but you save a buck because accidents happen rarely. (This is the way it is now.)
Option 2: I can raise all shipping prices by $1, and everything will be insured by my shipper, but there will be insurance claims to fill out if anything happened, and they may not cover all situations. More bureaucracy = More hassle for everyone, but your package is safer and it's not that pricey.
Option 3: I can raise all shipping prices by $2-3, and basically insure everything myself. No claims to file or third party judgements. I'll replace anything at all, and everyone goes home happy, but all orders are more expensive.
I was going to switch over to option 2, but I don't know if everyone would like that. It's economical, and filing a claim really isn't that hard. It's just annoying to do, and they require that you hold onto broken merchandise until the claim has been dealt with (could be 1-3 whole months).
I'm also looking into shipping through Fedex for larger orders (4 or more glasses), since they're a bit cheaper and include insurance. This would only save you a few dollars, and be more work for me, so I'm not ready to switch over just yet. If there are any experienced shippers out there with some advice, I'd love to hear it! Please answer the poll on the right sidebar (or leave a comment) to let your voice be heard!
February 20, 2009
[Glasses spotted in the Las Vegas Urban Outfitters by Erin Crane. Thanks, Erin!]
I've been on a bit of a creative streak, digitally speaking. I just created my first Google Map (which was fun and easy!) for the Urban Outfitters locations that are carrying my licensed hi-ball glasses. There are only two locations so far, but the map is open to the public, so please add your own location if you see the glasses! Or you can send me a quick email and I'll gladly add it for you.
I also created a gallery on Flickr for fans of the all-mighty Mustache. Do you have one of our mustache glasses? Send us a picture of you (or a friend) drinking out of it! Upload your favorite facial hair photos to the group, or send them to me directly, so I can share them with other fanatics.
February 16, 2009
W00t! Someone on Etsy just pointed out that my glasses are now listed on the Urban Outfitter's website. Wow! I hope they sell a lot of these, since I only get paid when they have to restock (and their initial order was kinda small). At only $10 each, they're a total bargain though!
The only tiny problems I found with the online listing are that they photographed an older version of the glasses, which has the mustache placement about 1/2 inch too low (because I'm totally anal), and the logo on the bottom of the glasses (which you can just barely see in the photos) is black instead of white. Also, the description says the design is engraved into the glass, which isn't the case with these licensed ones--they're actually a simulated-etched-looking decal which is permanent and dishwasher-safe.
But, y'know. I like to nit-pick.
[If you want to buy my actual honest-to-goodness etched versions of these on pint glasses, you know where to get them.]
February 15, 2009
Rupert helped a little with the drawing. And the winner of the free pair of Bread and Badger hi-ball glasses from Urban Outfitters is...
Yay! Feel free to make that Sloe Gin Fizz now, Heidi.
This drawing was really fun, and I'm blown away by the amount of entrants! I'm definitely going to do this again. If you didn't win this time, then just wait until next time!
It was super fun to hear what you all would drink out of my glasses. There is some creative beverage-consumption going on out there, and it makes me proud to be in the drinkware business. ;)
In case you're wondering, the hat that I used for the drawing is one of the awesome reversible Flipside Hats that I own! Even with two hats in one, I could still use a few more of these guys. I wear this hat all the time (I've got it on right now, even) and I love it.
A little story about Kori, the designer of Flipside Hats: Not only is she a nice person, but Kori is also a doctor! She hopes to use her hat business (which uses mostly salvaged fabrics) for her main source of income, in order to start a non-profit health clinic to provide care for those who may not be getting it. It doesn't get much better than that!
February 14, 2009
Rupert is fascinated by the simplest things. Most cats learn not to play with fire pretty quickly, and he singed his eyebrows off during the first encounter he had with a candle. I took this candle away after I finished filming (he'd been batting at it for a little while without injury) and went straight for the nearest lamp to stick his face into. He also likes to put his toes into the heater grate.
I didn't realize until later that he'd singed his brow whiskers off again. No more candles around the house unless they're far away from where he can get his little face!
February 11, 2009
My friend, Mary of Lolly-tots, inspired me to write a post about how I got here. This is her original post. Here's my story (it's pretty long):
My dad is very artistic, and tends to go through phases of interest where he becomes really interested in one subject/instrument/medium for a while before he switches gears. I've inherited some of this, but I seem to be learning how to stay focused, as an adult. He's always been really helpful at encouraging me to try new things, so I got to experiment musically and artistically at a very young age. He also taught me about computers, so I was trying out html and graphic design as early as I can remember. I always knew I didn't want to work in an office, or for someone else. I'm fiercely independent.
As a Child
I enjoyed writing as much as drawing, and my favorite assignments were the weekly illustrated stories we had to write in second grade. I took special lessons in grammar after school with my 3rd grade teacher, because I thought I'd be a writer. I wanted to write and illustrate children's books, and I started creating my own.
I learned to love digital photo restoration--I borrowed magazines from the library with my favorite bands on the cover, then scanned them in and "fixed" the tears and missing areas. I designed a fan website for the Smashing Pumpkins, and I made friends online (I met some pedophiles too, but it was nothing).
In High School
I thought I wanted to be in the spotlight, and I became obsessed with music. I learned some things about playing the guitar and I took some voice lessons. I recorded a few songs (original and covers) and performed at a bunch of school events. I discovered that tattoo artists are well-paid, and I bought my own equipment.
My boyfriend and I drove across the country with the intention of moving to Arizona, where tattooing was legal. Arizona was miserable, we had $600 between the two of us, and Massachusetts decided to legalize tattooing, so we went back (after months of working in restaurants and coffee shops to save up the cash).
Tattoo artists didn't need more apprentices, and the artist I wanted to work with told me to go to art school. I got a job selling shoes, but didn't know what to do artistically. When my shoe store offered me a salaried position, I decided instead to take some art classes and work part-time at another shoe store.
School was a lot of work, but I learned so much in my classes! I only took three classes towards a certificate program, but I never completed the certificate. Instead, I started drawing a weekly webcomic to let off some steam from the frustration of a retail job. I worked more, so I could save up for the inevitable day when I'd quit my job to do something artistic. I had to get OUT!
Taking the Plunge
In 2005, I quit my job to start a business, even though I didn't know what I was doing. I read business books and thought I knew a lot from being an assistant manager for a really small store, plus I'd taken some management training at my previous corporate job. I had no idea what I was doing.
I was making beaded jewelry, because it seemed easy. I couldn't sell it, even though people liked it. I desperately wanted to draw, but I was getting tired of doing the webcomic. I didn't have a lot of confidence in what I was doing. One day, I discovered that I could draw on little glass marbles with my Dremel tool. Somehow, that blossomed into a little business for hand-engraved vases and pendants.
Since that day, I've been reading everything I can and talking to anyone who might offer me some information about running a small business. I work hard, I do a lot of marketing, and I'm very frugal. Ironically, I've never had to borrow money in my life until this past Christmas, when the business was booming. We just couldn't pay rent at the same time as buying all the new equipment the business needed to keep up with demand. Crazy!
Now the economy is crapping out, just when things are taking off for me. I've worked up from basically nothing, with no experience and little training. I will never underestimate the amount of hard work and sacrifice it takes to run a business. I don't own a house. I don't have kids. I don't go to bars or clubs or out to dinner. I'd love to have all these things, but I guess my place is elsewhere.
I want to see this business truly succeed, especially since my husband is now working for me. I don't give up easily! But I think I can accept defeat graciously, if that day ever comes. I may not have an impressive resume, but I think I could find something else to do with myself...
February 10, 2009
I got a fantastic email the other day from a man who received some of my mustache rocks glasses as a holiday gift. Not only did he tell me how much he likes the glasses, but he also sent me a screenshot of the glass in action as his avatar at allrecipes.com!
At first I thought, "cute picture!" Then I thought, "wait, I love allrecipes.com!" Then I realized, "the cool guy who writes the cocktail blog at All Recipes likes my glasses!" It was a great day.
I love to cook, and I like cooking interesting things. I don't have an overabundance of cookbooks, since we tend to move a lot and I like to purge the belongings that haven't been used much. Online recipe databases are the way of the future! They're great to browse for ideas (with great photos!), and reading other cook's reviews has become essential. All Recipes even has a great search feature where you can input the ingredients you want in a recipe, plus the ones you don't want included! Brilliant.
[Don't forget to enter to win a free pair of high-ball glasses! You have until Valentine's Day, which is the 14th. Instructions for entry are here.]
February 8, 2009
I'm a secure enough person to admit when I'm wrong. So, I'm totally okay with saying that some of the shipping prices on the new website were extraordinarily off until I just took a peek at them. Holy baloney!
Not only were some of the shipping prices way too high, but some of the items (the new rocks glasses, in particular) were set with a weight 4 times higher than they should have been, which caused the shipping price to skyrocket uncontrollably.
I think I've fixed the problems, but feel free to let me know if something seems ridiculously expensive for shipping. Sometimes, the problem is that the cost of shipping really is out of control, but it could just be a human error on my end of things. Sorry for the screw-up!
February 5, 2009
The high-ball glasses that Urban Outfitters are making with my licensed artwork are about to hit stores across the US and Canada! They look fantastic, and I've been using some of the samples for a few months now. They're not etched, but the simulated decals look pritty dern fantastic, (I even had to look really closely to tell that they weren't etched!) and they've held up to lots of dishwasher cleanings. Very cool! They've actually become my favorite cocktail glasses.
I finally got a few of the final products sent to me by the amazing Urban Outfitters ladies (thanks Lindsey and Emily!), and I'd love to give some of them away. Just comment on this post with your favorite beverage that you plan on drinking out of these rad vessels. Please include an email address or some way for me to contact you!
You'll have until Feb. 14th (Valentine's Day) to enter, after which I will draw a name randomly from a hat (or a big vase or something) to pick the winner. I'll contact you to find out which two glasses you'd like to receive, and then I'll ship them to you for free! What's better than that?
If you see these at your local Urban Outfitters, please let me know! I'd love to create a list of stores that are carrying them so people can find them easier. I've specially requested that my Portland store have them, but I dont know where else they'll end up.
Everything seems to be running smoothly on the new site, but please report any bugs or broken links if you find them. I haven't had time to test every single link on the site, but I'm working on it. ;)
New products are being listed on Etsy as fast as I can add them (which doesn't seem to be all that fast, for some reason), and added to the site as fast as I can photograph them (and edit all the photos and create webpages and de-bug the webpages...).
BUT you can already order any of our 16 designs on any product from the main Shop page. So don't wait around for me...