Rosalie has been away for a little while now, and she won't come back until January. Luckily she managed to replace herself before she scarpered into the sunset. I have a new flatmate: Marina. The other day we did a lot of photoing; including putting things on our heads, which is always a good game. Some more photos on Marina's beautiful blog.
Marina is an exotic beast, not only because she comes from far off lands but because she loves pink. Imagine that. When she came to Peckham we had one pink thing in the house: a small plate. But now we have lots of pink things and I might be a convert.
Marina and the pink plate.
Pink things on head (and blurry arms).
Pink socks and slip-slips.
Marina hails from Germany - it is nice to live with someone from a different country because they can tell you things about your own country that you might not notice because you're so used to it- for example, had you noticed how nice and descriptive English weather forecasts are? They're all full of lovely words like 'brisk' and 'breezy'.
Do you live with someone from somewhere else?

It takes Toot to tango.

A nice lot of toot this week - though I attended one car boot where I didn't buy a single thing, imagine that. Here's what I got elsewhere.PhotobucketThe sweetest little jumper for a kid - I like that it's good colours, none of that pastel crap: no pink or blue, just characterful stripes.PhotobucketSome more characterful stripes - switswoo.PhotobucketIs it a hanging basket? Or is it a drawing? . . . it's both.PhotobucketAnd here's another with it's arms still attached, I love them. Something about hanging baskets (were you around when this one turned up? That was a long time ago)PhotobucketA sick-up swan for the Pileas.PhotobucketA 70s dressing gown in nice patterns. And what's that next to it? . . . PhotobucketOh it's only the best damn Christmas decoration ever. I feel this Chritmas I might finally decorate the house, after many years of feeling a touch too nomadic to make a real effort with any abode.PhotobucketA slightly chilling Goofy mask.PhotobucketAnd a painted basket - I love it when folks give wicker a thick coat of garish gloss, it makes such a wholesome and rustic looking material seem so Pop. And I've not seen one example of it done tidily to date - which is part of the charm. (Like Craigie's pink cabinet)PhotobucketTalking of charm: here is my Dad modelling the new Gansey I got him.

Will's studio.

Had a little look in Will's studio the other day. It is always exciting to get to nose around other peoples worky stuff. Will recently converted the studio space from an old garage - it was a squat garage with it's back to the garden before so he turned the whole thing around by making a window and door on the garden facing side. It's turned out stonking. There are still tweaks and alterations happening all the time - everything's custom made or salvaged. 
The studio and the works that Will makes sit together really nicely; both are art.
The view out.
A butterfly piece in progress on the desk.
An eerie hand at the window.
Smaller butterfly machine against a nice red.
Bit of salvaged cat-gut. Always handy.
Beautiful vintage tools.
Amazingly dainty wire mechanisms.
Dainty/spiky things.
And a surprise visit from Moss.
I love getting to nosey in studios so much. I'd like to make a habit of it, this blog being the perfect excuse. If anyone has a studio they wouldn't mind me noseying get in touch - I'll bring biscuits, you provide tea.


There's a set of cards I made up in the shop now.PhotobucketAlso the naughty alphabet got a link from Fine Little Day today! How nice.

Top Tootie

This week I have only photoed half the Toot because my camera died today - 'R.I.P. you utter P.I.T.A.'. Never mind.PhotobucketFirstly, I found another one of these, so similar to the one I found about a fortnight ago - would you believe it? It's funny how that happens. I'll probably never see another again now. This one is a bit nicer than the other - less of a flattened bum and with a funny charm at the base of the dandelion stalk.PhotobucketA folding chair with a wacky mechanism. It's nice that its painted black, I like things that are graphic and black - very sculptural.PhotobucketA jug that is both very conservative and completely barmy - the jug equivalent of golfing attire.PhotobucketA roll of nice thick copper wire, I don't know what I'll do with it but I had to buy it: I got that habit from my Dad I reckon. On a mildly related note - this year a man told me that the scrap value of copper has gone up so much 'it's now worth twice as much as gold'. Jeez! what a Dunce . . . I smiled and nodded, naturally.PhotobucketThis dress has now been washed and is beautiful - it's covered in tiny neat mends. And the collar is so minimal - two petite triangles on an otherwise round neck, so sweet. I think it's a child's one but maybe there's a lucky slender adult out there who might fit it.PhotobucketThis one is adult size and nice, a slightly squared neck. Not so many nice mends on this one: she was probably too busy patching up her daughter.PhotobucketA beautiful bit of ribbon - I think I might save up little pieces like this and pop them in with parcels from the shoppy-shop.PhotobucketA canvas water bucket, beauty.PhotobucketFinally some new sheets for me, a pounds worth of treating myself - decadent.
In other news: the shop is going well. I sent off a couple of parcels this morning which feels really good! Got stuck in a massive queue at the Post Office though, I'll have to learn their peek times - so many things to get the hang of.
If you take a fancy to any of the above you can leave a comment and then I'll list it on Etsy. Smart.

(And thank you Madeleine for the title)

I'm bringing comfy back.

It is winter and my slip-slips are back in full force. I have a beautiful pair of Odette slippers that my mum bought me.
PhotobucketI've always called them my Step-Outs. When I was doing care work I used to look after a lady who called all plastic soled slippers Step-Outs the because if you needed to step out, for a bottle of milk say, you didn't have to change into your shoes.
I only found out their proper name recently when Maddy told me it. Maddy is a second generation Odetter it turns out - she tells me that the buttons used to undo so you could pull them up in to bootees, which sounds superb.
Also Tracey has some Odettes next to her bed and on my travels through the internet I found this amazing Flickr stream - it's quite mesmerising.
Do you wear slippers? I'm only a recent convert (since the Odettes in fact) before then I was sloshing around in stupid socks or even just my outdoor shoes - can you imagine? What a fool I was.

A shop!

Oh gosh, I've started an Etsy shop. I feel quite nervous. You can look at it if you want.
There's some choice Toot, of course, and I'll start trying to do Toot posts earlier in the week so if you folk like anything I can pop it in there for you (because you bloggists are my favourites, don't tell the others).
And there's also some things I've made! Well . . . so far only two things I've made - more coming soon though.
Cuddly fish!
Sexy alphabet . . . phwoooaarrr.
Here are some photos of the process . . .
Dale and the prototype fish. Dale's been my main encourager.
Covering the place in fishy prints.
Trying to get the photos right for Etsy - harder than you'd imagine. (Beautiful pink knees.)

It's taken a while to get in gear - and to feel bold enough to make things in multiples with the hope of selling them. There are so many makers and designers and you probably don't realise it but they're all nuts brave! So, with Christmas coming up and all, you should go buy stuff from them.
That's it, I guess I'm part of the real world now. Not just ambling down to Spitalfields, all snotty in the face: not just loitering in a public place, cruising stalls for banal conversations about weather and then eating a Twix. No. An internet shop - that the world can see.

Power dressing.

This morning I whipped up my costume for the No More Page 3 protest tomorrow. The idea was to dress up as fine British institutions - you know - because some people claim page 3 is a bit of an institution when in fact it's an ugly crock-o-shite.
Honk! I'm a Jumble Sale! The finest of all British institutions!
I'm looking forward to it now, really quite excited. Come on down if you're in London, it's happening tomorrow (Saturday) at midday outside News International HQ (which is quite near Tower Bridge, just so you know).
Onwards and upwards!

Too much nature in the house.

Recently all this plant's leaves fell off - it had a lovely purple flowery-job sort of head. Then each leaf just started withering and plopping off and I couldn't work out what was going on. I was sad and angry - 'stupid bloody plant, what's it's problem?' - it was like a rollercoaster of emotion. PhotobucketThen just last week the last leaf tumbled and a moth flew out it's bald little head: some caterpillar had made it's home right inside the poor buggers noggin. I made a clean chop at the top and crossed my fingers that it would survive.PhotobucketAnd, hey, it's starting to grow lots of leaves, and really quickly! Further proof for my theory that plants are all filthy little masochists. Are you a killer of houseplants? If so, maybe you're just being too nice to them.

Helping out at the Jerwood.

Life these past weeks has almost been like real life - I've been doing work, real work, using power tools and stuff . . .
Ok it hasn't been much like real life because I've been working at the Jerwood Space on a project with Grizedale Arts and Marcus Coates.
Jerwood and Marcus Coates
Official exhibition stuff- signage.
The exhibition is called Now I Gotta Reason, I'm so happy I got to be involved. It's a very fine thing - there is a shop, library and printing service and there are lunches and performances.
You can come to Lunch Club between 1pm and 2pm every day - and you should (if you can).
Marcus Coates
Library furniture being made.
Blackboards - for writing topics for lunch discussion.
If you'd like you can also put items to sell in the Honest Shop - the only restriction is that they must be handmade and useful. I put in some Pilea because they re-oxygenate the air in your home and make you feel better: useful. And also I grew them with my hands. Hmm.
Toot at the shop
The Honest Shop - my contributions.
It's been good to work alongside others and to see how organisations and groups of people work too, as a Toot-monger I'm so used to working away by myself - sometimes I can feel a bit like one of these.
Lunch Club
Lunch Club.
If you're in London at all you should go and take a look. I'd recommend going when there's something happening - maybe Lunch Club or a class, you can find all the events here
All the photos in this post are by Hydar Dewachi (clever sausage).

Saturday Drawing.

The last Saturday Drawing was a very fine Saturday Drawing indeed - I've just updated the blog. The highlights included a Paper Pilea . . .PhotobucketAnd a surprise visit from Louise Bourgeois . . . PhotobucketVery good.

Photos - for holding.

Last week I felt a bit glum and to cheer me up Jack got out his collection of slides to peruse (sometimes it's almost disgusting how wholesome that boy can be). Slides are a very beautiful thing, the colours always come out about a million times more vivid than reality - they make your life look like a Bognor postcard from the 70s. And there's something really absorbing in taking the slides out of their little folders and pushing them into the viewer so you can see them. There's only a small bag of slides (they're quite expensive) so Jack knows which pictures he has and when and where they were taken, it's so good.

Also last week my Mum pointed out an affectation of speech that I've managed to cultivate without really noticing . . . I say 'photo' instead of 'photograph' on all occassions. It's horrible, mucky language. 'Yeah, I photoed all of them', 'Sit still so I can photo you'. And so on.
I don't know when I stopped saying photograph but I can't seem to start again. I think it's because my camera use is so frequent and casual I can't bear to use such a formal term as 'photograph'. I never really get to hold any of my pictures and most of them get deleted.

I'd love to use an analog camera but I'm a chronic giver-upper, I got back one blank film once and wrote off using film ever again. Do you folks use 'proper' cameras - do you have collections of real life, touchable photographs or even slides? I applaud those that do, I think it's so important - photos you can touch are so much more precious. Would you agree?

Of course the Queen of Toot wears a vintage polka-dot swimming cozzy. Goes without saying
The Putting Green at Southwold.
Reading Huckleberry Finn to Jack on our epic cycle around Ireland.
That Jack with one of his many mistresses.
A game of Christmas cricket. My brother is wearing the Christmas Leotard I made him - sometimes it's hard to think of presents to buy when you've only got stinky brothers.
Paddling in the Dart.
Walking on Dartmoor in that yellow scarf that I loved.