Thursday, 31 December 2009

Christmas gifts and personal new year's resolutions

Santa visited again today.  How exciting! I got my gifts from my not-so-secret Santa, Jen! We all know who is buying for who, but we draw names from a proverbial hat, just so we buy one good gift rather than gifts for nine.

This is what I got, effin ace!

Cath Kidston, Sew! Ideal for when I get around to buying my Christmas sewing machine!

And the Harajuku Lovers, Love fragrance

I'm super chuffed, she really excelled. Love!!

I have been thinking about new year's resolutions. I don't think I made any last year. Sometimes I think if you want to change something in your life, you don't have to wait until the first day of the year.  But then I think 'what better time to start!'.

The first thing I decided was that I'd stop buying eggs from battery hens. I'm going to mainly buy organic from now on. I used to, but then got really skint.

Secondly I decided I'd buy more t-shirts. I have started already, by purchasing a t-shirt I saw on my cousin. She kindly let me in on where she got it from and it was a bargain!

Queen T,

My third started that I was 'giving up men - til around March'. A BFF asked what I could possibly gain from such a resolution,
'I need a rest', being my response.
'So, when we go out for my birthday and you look hot and boys talk to you, what are you going to do?'. I had clearly not been thorough in my thinking.  I'm not rude...
So I decided that it would instead be 'I'm going to play the field, HARD' as recently I have just been generally playing it 'friendly'.
I discussed this with a colleague, and we have agreed that it should be tweaked to 'play the field hard, but keeping clear of men who have a penchant for Cath Kidston and/or curtains, wear golden boots or are called Paul'.  There's been A LOT of Pauls.

I'll be sure to keep you updated on those... O_o

What are YOUR new year's resolutions?


Wednesday, 30 December 2009

2009 - Part One: Looking back

Eeh what a year. I set myself a few secret goals... here they are and here's how I did!

By the end of the 2009:

1) I'll stock five bricks and mortar shops
Done! KitschenSink is now in Projeto, Silsden; Picture This, Bradford; The Bowery, Leeds; Leeds Met Civic Quarter; and Cherry Cherry, Norwich!

2) I'll have sold at three big markets
Done! I sold at The University of Leeds Fair Trade Fair twice, their Staff Festival, 100% Handmade and Designers' Marketplace to name a few.  I really wanted to sell at the Bust Craftacular, but didn't make it this time around.

3) I'll have had 75 online sales (total to date)
I reckon I made that. Folksy currently stands at 42, DaWanda has 13. I also did a few over the Twitter and Facebook t'interwebs.

In order to meet my goals I set some short-term, medium-term and long-term goals:

Short term:
1) Prepare lots of envelopes and boxes (as both are handmade)
2) Schedule 2 months' worth of blogs in advance (for promoting other designers - Folksy Friday, etc)

Medium term:
1) Design repeatable stock - I thought this was essential to get right this year. When I book fairs I need to be able to get some shiz together without the design process getting in the way.  Also, if I am to create a bit of a 'brand', my pieces must all tie in together.
2) Get some good display gear for stall - Yeah!! I had some specially made in the shape of cherries and an anchor. I also got a cool heart shaped mirror as some people like to try on the jewellery.  I have a comic strip table cloth. It's all very cool and I am quite content with it for now.
3) Research and book markets - Yep. Love Designers' Marketplace and 100% Handmade! Want to do more in 2010!
4) Open a DaWanda - I did and I love sending packages to mainland Europe!

Long term:
1) Get my own website - did I ever?! was launched and it's absolutely awesome. It's be recognised by lots of design forums and it's loved by all.

Further to all this, I also had some awesome photos taken by a photographer!!

So, what's in store for KitschenSink 2010? That's another post, for another day!

What's your biggest success of 2009?


Wednesday, 23 December 2009

Florals and Cupcakes and lovely things

I received a sweet email yesterday, from Hollie-Anne of Florals and Cupcakes blog, to advise me she had blogged me after finding a Death by Comicide necklace via Twittering. Read her post here.

I'm looking forward to discovering new blogs over the Christmas break and that's where I'll start. I'll read through Holly-Anne's and then I'll go through her links! If you can recommend any too, let me know!

I love blog comments, OK? You should leave them more often. They cheer me up during times of PMT.

Sorry there's no visuals here. There will  be later on hopefully.


Tuesday, 22 December 2009

The Bowery makes The Times' Top Ten Coffee Houses! (& celebration voucher)

We were pleased to hear that one of our stockists, The Bowery (in Headingley, Leeds) has made The Times' list of Britain's top ten coffee houses!

In celebration, they are offering a free coffee with any purchase of food or cold drink until the end of January 2010.  What better accompaniment to coffee than cake?!

Reckon I will take some friends on our time off between Christmas and the new year.

If you would like a voucher, please email me on and I will gladly forward!


Sunday, 20 December 2009

What's cooking in the Christmas Kitschen?

There's a lovely wintery scene from the Penthouse patio windows right now. Flakes of snow and twinkling lights afar. Perfect. Earlier, Christmassy barges turned outside on the canal too, and we occasionally get a festive steam train pass on the other side. Lovely.

I took a snowy walk to my friends earlier (I really enjoyed it. I'm going to walk places more).  This is what happened to a certain naughty Mr Cat who insisted on sitting on wrapping paper whilst his 'mum' wanted to wrap gifts....

This fuelled cat-mum further... how happy does Bailey look about this? Fun times.

Just want to say a public thank you to Julia who has done a hand-delivery for me today. My car park and road is absolute Torville and Dean and I didn't want to drive today but needed to drop something off, and Julia has very kindly helped out! I am returning the favour by looking for a special gift in Leeds for her tomorrow. I am doing most of my Christmas shopping tomorrow... :-/

I'm very fortunate that I get all the time over Christmas and the new year off work.  I tend to get a lot of creative urges, but as I am so busy with social engagements and being away from my own home, I can't usually realise those urges!  So this is what's going on at the minute:

Some new images ready to embed into hearts after being coated.  They will all have glittery layers, as those sold the first at recent markets! I am very excited about these and have lots of other new images to use! Yippee!

My post has arrived from Japan at long last. The crap photo above has red riding themed decals. Hopefully they'll look as good as the Alice ones.

How cute are these? I'm looking forward to combining them into fun shapes and coloured glitters and resin. Hooray.

I just had my dining chairs delivered and they are absolutely gorgeous. I can't wait to get my table. I hope to get it as soon as Christmas is out the way, then I can have lots of VIPs round whilst I am off work for civilised dinners. Super.

Look out for my next couple of posts because *hopefully* I'll have a voucher for you if you live in the Leeds area, for something nice!. Just had it sent to me but it won't open, so fingers crossed she'll re-send it!


Thursday, 17 December 2009

Quick! Have you been bad for Santa this year?

Just noticed this Bad Santa competition over on the Indie Quarter blog.

"Here’s how it works. Instead of writing about how good you were this year, Evil Santa (aka Locher) wants to know how bad you’ve been. That’s right. He wants to know about all your naughty deeds and dirty dealings."

Here's the prizes. It was the gorgeous clutch that caught my eye...

photo from Indie Quarter

Get your letters emailed before the 20th. All the info on the Indie Quarter post.

I don't think I can enter this year but it's certainly something I'll aim towards for next year! Mwahahah


Monday, 14 December 2009

Eeeeee! Arne Jacobsen Series 7 Chairs!! And Lego wallets.

Feeling quite pleased with myself again! I have ordered some dining chairs, something I have had on the back burner for the almost-two-years I have lived in the Penthouse.  I have drooled over the Arne Jacobsen's Series 7 chairs whenever I have done lunch in Salts Diner in Salts Mill, and now I have bought some! Yippeee! Mine will be in green and yellow.

Photo from Bonluxat

Also, a friend just made me aware of some Lego wallets in the Metro today. (Do you ever think... 'bugger, I should have thought of that'. Anyway, wallets will be back soon, I'm getting a sewing machine for Chirstmas!).

How cool are these? Love them (althougha little bulky for some handbags)! Picture from today's metro.

I have only 'done lunch' once at Salts Diner. I'm open to further offers.


Saturday, 12 December 2009

Market round-up :D

In short: I am very pleased with myself!!  Not takne any photos of my stall as now it tends to look the same each time. Makes it so much quicker setting up!

KitschenSink tip: when your stall is set up and how you like it, take a photo on your phone. For every event after, you can just refer to that!

Friday 11th December - University of Leeds Student's Union Christmas Fair

Chivalry is NOT dead. All my stuff packs into a small case (one that drags. It's really noisy actually. So sorry to everyone who lives in my complex!) and a big shopper bag. I can dilly dally a bit. On Friday three different people offered to help with my bags! I'm a big girl though. I declined.

It was the second year they've run this. They have proper reindeer outside and a snow machine. It's sweet.  Anyway this year it was held in a hall (rather than outside).

It started with people walking past, looking, but about 3 feet away. Like, if they came any closer I might try and give them the hard sell, double-glazing style.  Then I got 'hmmm that's weird' comments... then someone asking 'why are you selling a photo of a girl'.  That's right. A students at a top university.  This type of activity lasted most of the day, and I hard a feeling I was going to go away having sold nothing.

Then I had a returning customer from when I sold last month in one of the other buildings, who came to see me (well KitschenSink, I don't know them personally) specifically. Loved that.

It all went crazy at 3.05 as I was packing up... one person (girl A) asked 'oh you're packing up, can I still buy something' O_o  Erm! Yes! She picked a necklace and rushed to the cash point, at which point another girl (girl B) says 'Oh, I wanted to buy that', so she picked something smaller and went to the cash point.  Girl A returned, and changed her mind about what she wanted to buy, and also bought a pair of earrings.  Girl B returned and saw the necklace she originally wanted, and got that one (more spends!) and her pal bought a locket. So all in the space of 10 minutes, I had sold some of my most expensive items and up-sold even more.

That evening, a couple of friends came to hang out at The Penthouse and one was wearing one of my large heart comic necklaces. I kept staring at it thinking 'I like that necklace'.  Weird.

Saturday 12th December - 100% Handmade, the Green Sand Foundry, Leeds

I was looking forward to this very much. Upon arrival I was a bit disheartened, there were only 8 stalls! I was expecting something much bigger... and it made me think about that awful fair I did at Ripley.


There was a steady stream of customers. I had comments along the lines of 'amazing', 'fantastic' and such. It warmed my cockles (something had to, the place was freezing!).  A couple of customers mentioned that they had seen KitschenSink before, which is really cool! Glad I'm making an impression!  I also had a visit form friends and little G, who is taken by the Tooth Rot rings. She can have one when she's older (she's 15 months) :)

I sold out of large comic hearts!! The cameos went down a storm too.

I enjoyed today so much, I booked another on the spot for March, which will be in Ilkley. More on that nearer the time!

Remainder of the weekend will be spent with BFFs and scrubbing my flat down.  It's got a bit out of hand the last couple of weeks whilst I have been busy!

Right now I am celebrating success with a brew and an M&S cupcake. Yes!


Friday, 11 December 2009

Kreativ Blogger Award

I was awarded this by the lovely Maartje, over at Tizzalicious. If you haven't already, you should check her blog out.  She updates it often (some sort of superman, along with doing all her own web stuff, making, selling, posting, having a boyfriend and shopping...) and it's got the perfect mix of finds, promotion and personal.

Anyway, the award has a few rules.

Put the award with message on your Blog.
Little message and link to the one you got it from.
Tell us 7 things about you we didn't know.
Choose 7 other bloggers who you want to give this award,
link to them and let them know you gave them the award!

7 Things about me you didn't know.... well it depends who is reading? And if you have read here before...

1.  I do the craziest things in my sleep. The usual walking and talking, but also texting and even spitting on one occasion. You can read a little more about it in a previous post here
2.  Footballer Lee Sharpe once tried to impress a friend and I on the way home from school. Eugh that's like, ten years ago!!
3.  I absolutely hate McDonalds.  I have only eaten from there once in about five years, and that was because a friend bought me ice cream to cheer me up, and I love him more than I hate them. Bless.
4.  I have three half-brothers and two half-sisters but was brought up and only child. Every Christmas I asked for a baby brother or sister (hold back the spew or silence the violins).
5.  I am addicted to buying dresses.  I had a think about all the dresses I own today, and I am very content with my collection.  Oh and I bought one marked down from £150 to £11.50 the other day.
6.  A friend sends me texts with excerpts from trashy magazines like 'Take a Break'. It makes me laugh til my ribs ache.
7.  I have 37 cousins (on the last count which was 27 January 2007).This does not include their children or even their grandchildren.

 My nominated bloggers are:
Elegant Journey - The Art Blog of Jennifer Katherine
Mamutopia - Cute crafts
Berrysprite - Download her desktop calendar! So cute!
She draws - Draw, glue, glitter, make
Hawaii Kawaii
Midge's Mind - Margaux gave me some very good advice a few days ago. Her work is superb.
Knit and Destroy - Knitted aceness

Have a super weekend. I will be!


Thursday, 10 December 2009

Hi Bonnie!!

How cute! I had to share this with you. This is Bonnie, she's a Westie and I can't wait to meet her! 

She's not mine. I live on the top floor of a block so it's not practical.  She will belong to one of my best friends very soon (the best friend that I'll be a bridesmaid for next year!!).

I can't help thinking the girl holding her needs to wash her hands... look under her finger nail O_o   eww

Say hello to Bonnie!! Hi Bonnie!


Tuesday, 8 December 2009

The good, the bad, and the hopefully not too ugly...

I went to see the plastic surgeon today, to follow up that mole thing that was removed from my chin.

The good news: biopsy results are fine

The bad news: he wasn't happy about how it's healing. 'A bit lumpy'.

The not too ugly: I think it looks OK. It's just when you press it, it's hard. Lovely!

If we meet - don't press my face, K?


Monday, 7 December 2009

Love for Lego leaves fan in hot water!

I just read an article (original here) about some geek who bought a gun replica made from Lego and got raided by the firearms squad.

Photo from here

If you know anyone with a ridiculous love for Lego then get them some cufflinks or earrings for Christmas... no need for police involvement...


Sunday, 6 December 2009

100% Handmade... this weekend

SO excited.

I'll be selling the old faithfuls and some new bits and bobs at 100% handmade this weekend.

I'm reet looking forward to it, I am. See you there??


Thursday, 3 December 2009

Extraordinary sources of inspiration

I coordinate network events in my 9-5.  I went to one the other day for people who support (admin wise) Learning and Teaching.  It was about career development at the uni I work in.

Anyway, bizarrely, one of the women talking ran her own hat-making business 'Shes All That', until she was credit-crunched.  Rather than inspiring me to develop in the 9-5 workplace, I have come away with loads of KitschenSink ideas. So I am starting to put together some goals for 2010... and I'm really excited.

Where do you get your motivation from? Have you had the best ideas in the most random places? Tell me!!

I'll tell you more about my ideas in January!


Wednesday, 2 December 2009

'Me' time!

Right then, my good illustrating and crafting friend Littleclouds pointed out to me on Twitter today that I'm not blogging so much anymore.  My bad.

I do enjoy blogging about what I am finding and getting up to and stuff, and, I mean, who wants to follow a blog that's all advertising? You wouldn't subscribe to a cold-caller now, would you? (Maybe if you were a total loner... errrr nope).

So let this post be a KitschenSink free zone...

Fun stuff
I went to see the Yeah Yeah Yeahs on Sunday, and had pasta for tea at a restaurant. The Yeah Yeah Yeahs rocked... and Karen O has the most amazing spirit. I think I fancy her a bit.

Photo by Nick Pickles

People have told me in the past week I look as though I have lost weight, so in celebration...

... they are from M&S and orgasmic.  Woops there appears to be some craft sneaking in there (E6000)!

Ho, ho, ho... you wish... but here's something I sent to a friend a week or so ago (she took this photo for Facebook, bless her)...

Anyone who knows my Dad knows he's a bit crackers and nothing has changed. He wants me to make him a pendant. I am thinking 'no'.  My Mum brought me round a bag o' swag yesterday that included an advent calendar, two spanish comics (oooh boderline KitschenSink talk) and three jars of Ragu.  What a woman!

And, whilst I have not been blogging properly, I thought you had all stopped blogging too... so I am now going to attempt to catch up on what everyone else has been doing, starting with Littleclouds :)