Friday, 7 November 2008


I want I want I want

made by

Wednesday, 5 November 2008

fact not fiction

I am OBSESSED with finding strange oddities on etsy. I really don't want to offend anyone by blogging that something is wierd, because I mean it as a huge compliment. I love all this bad taste stuff and hope one day to have a room dedicated to it..."Amy's retired to her study to be surrounded by her stuffed fake-animals with googly eyes, and flourescent doll heads..."

I feel like I should document my finds regularly. Or at least semi regularly.
So today's finds include....

topical russian dolls from

A needlefelted version of your own cat from

...And finally I must metion angelacatirina's shop, which I did mention a few blogs down in my favourite new items but which I must mention again because there are a whole host of AMAZING strange knitted hats.



We stayed up til 4am and went to bed sleepy eyed but merry. It really did feel like living history to an extent that only negative landmark events have in my lifetime (9/11, Diana, protests before Iraq etc. etc.)

It amazing that such an obviously media-led and biased and flawed election campaign has made me SO excited about democracy! I'm just so inspired by all those Americans who voted, and all those Americans who got excited about voting and excited about democracy.

I'm suprised by my own pro-American sentiment this morning. I just wish I was there last night, I bet it was such an amazing p-a-r-t-y

x x

Tuesday, 4 November 2008


Me and Liam are staying up tonight to watch the American election. We've gone all American and bought dounuts, pretzels, and we're getting some take-away pizza. It's so exciting! So much more exciting than any British politics.

Any way, in the spirit of all the manic madness I've got some new favourite weirdly wonderful items on etsy....

x x x x x

Sunday, 2 November 2008

red robin

I've started making lots of robin tree decorations and brooches, they're SO CUUUUTE. I can't wait to sell them in sets at craft-fairs.

I've listed a robin brooch on etsy, but think I'm going to be pretty slack on the etsy-front for a while because I've no internet at home and no money to get it :(

Here he is any way, I used lovely buttons for his eyes the handsome fella....

x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x xx x x x x x x x x x x xxx x x x x

Sunday, 26 October 2008

Busy Buzzy Bumble Beeeee

I have been BUSY this month and managed to totally drop of the face of the earth internet-wise. I need to put in some time on etsy and get the wheels back in motion. Plus I've finally faced the reality of how broke I am, so I'm determined to actually start making some money flogging my wares online.

My craft-fairing has gone so well lately. The vintage tea party thingy was so so lovely and despite paying a whopping 40 quid table fee I still sold enough to make a reasonable profit. It was nice to sell to a different crowd, although I think that the children at craft fairs are my favourite customers as their reactions are so sweet :)

Here's a photo of my stall ...

x x x x

Tuesday, 7 October 2008

Rayon Rose Vintage fair and Tea Party

I've just found out about, and decided to take part in, a rather exciting tea party themed event. It's called Rayon Rose Vintage Fair and Tea Party, and not only do they have lovely stalls, but they also have an attached tea rooms where you're served tea and cake on cake trolleys by your own waitress. I am so so happy about taking part in something like this because it really signal braching out into the vintage lovers market, and I think that although my brooches aren't strictly speaking part of the "vintage fashion" scene I do think that they'll fit in just fine there. Plus the event is at Leeds Met students union, so is bound to be a very busy affair.

It's on the 18th October, so I'd better get sewing like crazy just as soon as I get all my stuff unpacked in my new flat =)

Exciting times

x x x x x

Sunday, 5 October 2008

Christmas kitty

This is the cutest thing I've seen all day. He sums up how I want Christmas to look this year. Cute, felt, red and white, and cat-shaped. Tis the season

It's by inkypaws (

x x x x x

holidays are coming

I'm part of a holiday gift-guide at

I really really hope that people look at it and that they're interested in my wares. Fingers crosssed.

x x x x


It's October already! Crazy! September whizzed by and I achieved very little. But a whole new month a whole new outlook; I've got high hopes for October. I want to make myself some little targets so that when things happen I can tick them off and feel like I've achieved something.
So... targets for October 2008:

1. Approach 4 more shops face to face and ask about selling brooches there. A yes or no from them isn't part of the target, just getting out there and being pro-active is.

2. Go Christmas crazy and make 30 tree decoartions so that there's the option of packaging them up into sets.

3. Do at least one stall and book at least 2 more for later in the year. (This is a semi-cheat as I'm definetely doing a stall on Saturday any way).

4. Make up some kind of decent looking "press-pack" and email a couple of record labels and the Leeds Uni student paper.

5. Make 30 badges.

6. List 10 badges on etsy during October. (I've already started on this target as I've listed 2 already)

7. Enter the OWLS contest for October

The last target is not some kind of wierd bird-lovers code...I've joined an etsy team. It's very exciting! I'm now a proud member of the etsy OWLS team which stands for Off The Wall Ladies, but is also full of people who craft owls so I'm right at home. I'm not entirely sure what being in a team with be like, or what it means, but I do know that they blog at, have a team shop which has items donated by each of the members at, and the team all promote each other in a friendly and usefull way. Hurrah I'm part of a community. And the exciting bit is that they set monthly challenges every member can take part in. I'm hoping that I'll be a fairly active OWL; I'm already worried that I'll somehow let the team down!


Monday, 29 September 2008

Headingly Arts and Crafts Market

I'm counting down to the 11th Oct when I'll be selling at Headingly Arts and Crafts Market. The Marvellous Tea dance company have made some rather marvellous posters/leaflets for the event so I'm hoping that lots of money yeilding people shall be tempted along

x x x x

last of the summer

On Saturday I ventured over to Sheffield for "Last of the Summer" where I was kindly allowed to set up a stall. I sold a few brooches, loads of bookmarks as per usual, and a couple of cards and badge packs. It wasn't a roaring success compared to other stalls I've done, but it was exciting to branch out to a different city and to hear all the lovely compliments people had for my wares. Plus I love that I've affiliated myself with indiepop music and that people often ask if I was at indietracks....its great to be part of a little community of music lovers.

Someone included my little felt train brooch in a treasury :)

I finally finished a disposable camera which I bought for indietracks. There was a cute photo of the food van at indietracks on it....

And one of Liam looking like a prisoner of war behind my stall on Saturday...


Sunday, 21 September 2008

etsy update

I've put three more beautifully photographed brooches up on etsy...I decided to stagger slightly listing items because I think that way they reach more people.

One of my favourite things to buy as a treat for myself is charity shop books. A while ago I found a really cute big hard book Singer Sewing Book (I'll take a photo of it sometime) and some of the opening paragraphs are so funny. It really is designed to help cultivate the perfect housewife. I'll give you a quote

"TO SEW SUCCESSFULLY...physically.When you sew, make yourself as attractive as possible. Go through a beauty ritual of orderliness. Have on a clean dress. Be sure your hands are clean, finger nails smooth - a nail file and pumice will help. Always avoid hangnails...if you are constantly fearful that a visitor will drop in or your husband will come home and you will not look neatly put together, you will not enjoy your sewing as you should."

I could go on because the whole first chapter is full of similar tit-bits but my typos are appalling...every time I look up I have to re-type so much! It's obviously offensive to a modern woman how the book sets out her "duties" to be prim and proper, but I have to admit to loving the opinion that sewing is her pleasure and her pride and joy. I would have failed so miserably at "knowing my place" and at being organised in everything I do. Such a cute book though.

x x x

Saturday, 20 September 2008

I just read this essay by David Foster Wallace on the guardian website

I'm quite cynical about this type of philisophical writing usually, but he's actually very unassuming and not at all know it all, but at the same time he somehow manages not to cross the line of being annoyingly self depreciating despite clearly deeply questioning how to live his life. And it's all the more sad when you read it within the context of his recent suicide. I've never read anything by him before but I think I will, especially the non-fiction essays. After a quick look at some of his obituaries he sounds like a really interesting guy. I guess that's the point of an obituary though. I think he's the kind of person who'd find the irony of me discovering him through obituaries interesting.

I sold another badge on etsy hurrah! And I've paid to be on a holiday guide blog, more info to follow. I've never paid for any kind of ad before. Is it cheating? I don't think so, I may as well try just the once. Plus it's nice to help out a fellow blogger and lover of all things handmade

Here's a cute little flask set I saw on etsy, makes me long for winter picnics...


x x x

Thursday, 18 September 2008


I have horrible horrible tooth-ache. It's swollen my little face. Owwwww. I'm giving myself a full dose of painkillers, two paracetemol and two ibuprofen every alternate two hours. I'm so self consious about facing the world with my wonky whale face =(

I made a custom fox terrier badge for a lovely etsian yesterday and I'm posting him today. I'm a cat person at heart but it did turn out so darn cute that I think I'll be making more.

Gotta go jet off for a job interview, ciaow


Tuesday, 16 September 2008

doe a deer

I've just realised that when I add to my favourites on etsy they change on this blog, so the post I did yesterday on red autumnal delights was filled with deer when I went on a deer rampage on etsy today. I've edited the post and just put some of my fave red items as pictures, it's a shame I couldn't leave the links to the items up but I'm not sure how to find a way around it.

So today's favourites are of the bambi variety. I've been slowly but surely been falling in love with images of deer and stag for a while now, there are just so many pretty illustrations of them around. Plus I'm a fan of vintage toys and they're lovely fairytale animals. As a devoted (but non-preachy) vegetarian I shouldn't want a big dead stag head on my wall and yet....oh dear! I'd prefer some kind of non dead-animal version though of course.

Here are my current etsy favourites, I'm going to have the same problem of them changing once I add more favourite items so I'll be careful not to add any new favourite items for a little while.

In the wonderful world of amypanda badges I have little news. I got a rejection email from a shop in town after sending them photos and wholesale prices of my badges =(


the animals came in two by two

My new favourite etsy shop this morning is berkley illustration. They have amazing prints of drawings of animals in clothes. I love them. They'd look so lovely in a big old frame. The obvious choice for me would be the panda, but lots of the other ones have tickled my fancy's a couple....


Monday, 15 September 2008

rosy red cheeks, glowing red nose

I nearly forgot...I've been putting together some new favourite items on etsy because I'd love to do a treasury, but keep missing the key times when there's space for them, so incase I never get to post it on etsy here are my exciting choices. My theme is red for autumn, inspired by my red nose and cheeks! They are rouge whimiscal items to take the attention off my face! Also a few items are very "back to school"....sigh...those were the days....


picture perfect

Liam's created some new badge "promo-shots" for me. Some of them have little tiny plastic people gazing lovingly at them, and all of them are bloomin ACE. Some I've listed on etsy (so go see! and here are a couple...

I love them!!


this little piggy went to market....

Yesterday was the grand debut of my Leeds craft market career. It wasn't a total failure, but it wasn't a total success. It was just too quiet. And too cold....I thought that my feet were going to fall off. I did make more than I spent on the pitch though and it was worth it just for the nice feedback people gave and a couple of good contacts which I made. I absolutely love the buzz of seeing reactions to my work especially as invariably people at least smile at them. Also usefull to see what sells 50p bookmarks sold out and the cards were pretty popular too. There's a market in October in student-ville (Headingly) and I'm going to buy a 10 quid small stall there. The people who run the market I was doing are called "artsmix*" and they're moving their market indoors for the run up to Christmas. I think there are about 5 markets run by them between now and Christmas and I'm fairly sure I'll do at least 4 of them (possibly not the first indoor one as I'd like to gauge how busy I should expect it to be and also it's a bit early for the Xmas rush).

Here's a photo of Liam behind my stall...

and another of the stall....

Wednesday, 27 August 2008

let the countdown begin...

I've applied for a stall at an arts and crafts market in Leeds, if I'm successful then I only have about 3 weeks to get myself ready. Nervousssss! I want to make bunting and other such decorations.

This morning I checked my etsy and I had almost 300 views on one of my owls which is completely out of proportion with all my other items (I'm very lucky to hit 50 views usually) so I googled myself (saaaaaaad) and there's a website called stylehive which is featuring said owl. YAY! It's so exciting! I've never come across someone talking about me before apart from on anorak forums after indietracks. It's very exciting. Onwards and upwards. It also motivated me to post some new badges up on etsy today despite wanting to save them all up for the stall. I've gone for a slightly different style on my photos.....

I'm not sure how effective it is but a change is as good as a holiday =)

Sunday, 24 August 2008

bonnie wee scotland

I'm back from a short cottage-sitting holiday in Scotland. It was so pretty. And we dog-sat the loveliest golden retriever. I'm a cat person but I completely fell in love with her. I feel inspired.

In badge news, I've decided to start making a couple of larger items with the hope that they'll fill a stall better and also make a bit more money. I sent off my cassettes and ipods to john at wiaiwya =) and the lovely Liz from The School wants me to send her some badges for her to sell at gigs she puts on in Cardiff. Woo! Here are some of the "mixtape" badges for wiaiwya...

I've made some cards and I'm super super pleased with how they look all packaged up, I'll post photos at some point soon to show them off.


Tuesday, 12 August 2008

Do you want to work in C and A 'cause that's what they expect...

I am still jobless. But still inspired by everything around me and still SO excited about the wonderful world of felt.

I have new to do's....learn how to do "real" felting with raw wool and needles, finish my batch of mixtapes and ipods THIS WEEK for wiaiwya and post them off, polish off my packaging skills so that I have nicely uniform items to post off to etsians.

I have excitingggg newssssss. I emailed a bunch of people about craft fairs and YAY there's an art and craft fair in Leeds every two weeks and it's 25pounds a stall and yay yay yay. In around three weeks there is a tea dance themed event and I really really want to be ready to sell by then so that I can bake up some cakes and set up a really cute table of teaparty themed items and wow I'm just so excited I can't even find a full stop. It does mean that maybe I'll have to abandon etsy a little bit for a while. I think I'll aim for listing one new item on etsy every three days and dedicate the rest of my time to filling a stall with felt wonders.


Thursday, 7 August 2008

night time musings

I can't sleep. This blog is constituted of the nocturnal ramblings of a tired bored panda. I can only apologise. I suspect that I'm already making little sense and I'm only three sentences in.

Well, since joining etsy I have begun foraging far deeper into the wonderful online world of craft blogs and creative websites than ever before. I'm intrigued and delighted, and above all massively inspired, by what I've found. Etsy itself is so so useful both in browsing through other peoples' shops, and the storque area which acts as a gateway to outsiders blogs and sites, and the forums where everyone is super nice and super helpful.

During my first adventures into the craft blogosphere I've become fascinated by gocco prints and I want to buy a gocco machine. I did a little research and found out that a gooco is a self contained printing machine made in Japan. This makes me love it more. Anything which sits in most Japanese households should sit in mine. It seems a pretty easy system, basically a less fiddly version of a screenprinting machine. You take a photocopied image, put it in, it flashes and burns the image onto a disposable screen, you put the ink on the screen, and press it onto the paper/fabric where you want it to go. Very poorly described, but just take my word it seems a) not too complex and b) very exciting. Ohhhh I'm going to throw caution to the wind and try some old fashioned prints cutting out potatoes and see if I can create anything nice looking on paper. Not that I'll ever abandon felt.

My favourite new found lands in the wonderful world of blogging are which has really nice, really useful, and really interesting to read blogs. and also so much inspiration from all over the internet. and it's such a huge blog once you start clicking on the links...from advice on choosing a creative life to looking at inspiration and other peoples' blogs and etsy items. is again just a really fun to read, inspirational, and informative site.

And I have almost hundreds of new favourite blogs that are just plain nice to look at. Maybe it's just that I'm sinking deeper into unemployed philisophical bum status, but I'm finding the world so inspirational right now.

My favourite thing to buy from charity shops is cheap books. They are just SO expensive new. I'm at "home" in (my mum's home) in kendal for a few days and I've been going through books so quickly. I love it. It keeps my brain alive. I read Orlando by Virginia Woolfe, I thought I'd read it before but maybe I didn't finish it because the story seemed familiar until halfway through and then it was fresh as a daisy. I really enjoyed it, she has such a lovely and funny style of writing in it. Lovely. I wish that I had a decent vocabulary. I wont list the other books, but I've also started a penguin classic version of Hurry on Down by John Wain. I love it. The cover has orange srips down the sides and when I was on the train I noticed that it matched the train ticket I was using for a bookmark =) What a design classic. And the book itself is so easy to read and entertaining, it's a similar style and subject matter to Lucky Jim by Kingley Amis which I also love. So funny.

Okay bed tiiiiiiime

Sunday, 3 August 2008

I have some exciting indietracks I was asked by John from wiaiwya to make some badges to sell as merch for the label. I'm so excited by this because I've been thinking for a while how nice it'd be to join up with people in the music world on projects. I love that I've sold badges at clubnights I genuinely LOVE, and gigs I'm passionate about (indietracks being the most exciting). I might even be makng some mini rose melberg'!

I've begun attempts at wiawya stuff and these are my two first mixtapes....

This is how my etsy is looking...I'm going to try to add at least one item a day for a week or two just to see what kind of success I get. I'm still only on 5 sales on etsy but I've also sold a few through myspace so I'm definetely not giving up on the internet to use as a tool for selling.

My current obsession is colourful stationary. Look at these tickets...(but what on earth would I use them for?!)

these are from schOOLLOcker on etsy.


Thursday, 31 July 2008

One of my current obsessions is Matryoshka Dolls (or Russian Stacking Dolls). They've been a quiet favourite since Liam bought me some panda stacking dolls from a charity shop last year, and I think it was probably the sight of hundreds of brightly painted ones in Stockholm in January which really cemented their popularity with me. I love that they stand side by side in order, I think it appeals to the same part of me which arranges her bookshelf into alphabetical order and sorts her buttons by colour into jars. I also love that they can be bought as a souvenir from a country, although regrettably I didn't buy any from Stockholm despite it being the painted woodcraft capital of the world. I'm a HUGE fan of tacky souvenirs...pens, keyrings, lighters, and the all important SNOWGLOBE.

Any way, back to Matroyoshka Dolls. They're such a cute image as well as a decoartion, I like that they're so rounded and can be all different characters, some of them are really creepy with pinched lips and big eyelashes. Plus patterns and colours used for some are really beautiful. It seems that they're a popular choice with etsyians too and my love for them has been fuelled by some adorable finds online. I have yet to buy any of these but they're nice to look at. And decorate my blog with....

I've just spent about half an hour looking at them all! I wont post more pictures, but if you like russian dolls go and search for them on etsy....especially if you like cute printed paperware or fabric. I am in love with so many Japanese fabrics at the moment, is one of my favourite places to browse and drool over it. They even have several fabrics with russian doll themed prints...

I love it!!

Other favourite ways to spend time on the world wide web at the minute include looking at photos of creative people's apartments. I've got a book which I left at my mum's house which looks inside Paris apartments (I think that it's called Paris Apartments!) and I love looking through it. Most of them have pet cats too =) Design*Sponge have a whole section on previews of people's apartments (and they're all SO pretty) >>

I like looking at little details and feeling inspired. I'm definetely going to make myself some really simple cute artwork to frame when I get a house I can make my home.

In the "real" (non internet world) my biggest news is that I've started volunteering at a playgroup in a refugee and asylum seeker centre. The centre is where new arrivals to the country stay for 2 to 3 weeks while they are found somewhere to stay and given a series of medical and legal checks. The government feed them but offer no thing for them to do, so some voluntary organisations have got together to open up a playroom for the kids. Tuesday was my first shift and I was SO SCARED. I'm not a natural with children by any means, so I knew it was going to be hard for me to act naturally and have some fun. But it went alright. I made a little friend which was nice, and I didn't drop any little toddlers. I'm doing two shifts next week so I'm sure I'll be super nanny in no time. It's nice to do something good as I feel that since arriving in Leeds as a student all those years ago I haven't really been involved in any real "community". But now I am. Hurrah. Plus while between jobs it makes me feel useful for something other than making badges!

Think I'll post some of the leftovers from indietracks onto my etsy this afternoon so keep checking =)

Monday, 28 July 2008

I'm on a steaming train and I'm driving into your heart... Well badge selling-wise it was such a HUGE success. I sold about 75 badges, which almost cleared me out. And more importantly people were just so so nice and sweet about them. I really did have such a great time just standing behind my wares and seeing peoples reactions. I can't imagine a nicer feeling. I feel like my hard work has been appreciated. I get SO much pleasure from people admiring my little creations, and when I see people WEARING them....ohhhhh it's just lovely. There were too many perfect moments for me to tell any heart warming anecdotes about badge appreciation. I might be doing something for an independent record label in London who have Shrag and Rose Melberg on them, which is superrrrrrr exciting =)

Music and fun-wise the weekend was a roaring success too. I was most excited about Ballboy and they more than lived up to my high expectations. I loved that everyone was so twee and typically indiepop that they wilted in the sunshine, it was so geeky. I only managed to see one act on a train, a guy (sorry I can't remember the name...the shame) from Wimpy Milkshake, but that was fun. I somehow kept being in the wrong place at the wrong time for Darren Hayman despite him doing 3 sets throughout the weekend including little acoustic things, but did manager to sit at the back of his acoustic set in a tent thankfully. In fact Darren Hayman was arriving at the campsite just as we were on the first afternoon, so he was kind of the theme of the weekend...Darren Hayman sightings accomanied by excitement. I enjoyed the outdoor stage for The Deidries and The Smittens, hopefully it'll be the "main stage" next year. Well only if it's sunny. I'm not even going to complain about all the times for everything changing constantly because that's no-ones fault and added to the "who's it going to beeee" excitement. If I'd missed Ballboy then I'd be complaining. Oh and Comet gain didn't play. I was pretty gutted about that.

I think I was tucked up in my sleeping bag by 12.30 every night despite intentions to party til dawn, what a geeeeeeek, sunshine and daytime drinking proved lethal. I talked to more people than last year (thanks to the stall) and I can't get over how lovely and friendly and sweet every single person there was. I loved it. Why can't the real world be more like an indiepop steam train station? I almost feel silly for being nervous about the whole thing because when I first arrived everyone was so helpful in sorting me out a space on the merch table and checking that I was okay. I regret not seeing more bands but to be honest, and probably totally self obsessed, I can't imagine getting more pleasure from that than from standing with my badges and playing shop keeper. I hasten to emphasise that I did feel like I was playing shopkeeper...I loved it. I want to go backkkkkkkkk.

I guess it means that the pressure is on to keep up the hard work and keep sewing so that my etsy looks good...especially as I'm hoping that some of my flyers given out over the weekend lead to internet sales. Here's my etsy.....

Etsy: Your place to buy & sell all things handmade

Saturday, 12 July 2008

the run up to indietracks

I've been trying like crazy to get enough badges made for a decent looking stall at indietracks. I'm SO excited! I've made a couple of larger badges which I think it'd be fair to sell for a fiver rather than the usual four pounds. And I want to bake up some cupcakes to make the stall look all the more appealing. I wish I had the time and energy to make some more adventurous items. I really want to have some aprons to sell but don't trust myself to spend enough time on all the important finishing touches to make them look good enough.

I've recently joined etsy and after an initial super busy 24hours (I sold TWO badges almost immedietely) It's been very quiet. Mostly because I've not listed anything since the first items. I did get lovely feedback though and even a request for a radiohead minotaur from a girl who bought an owl. It's so flattering to hear that people like them. And I can't get over the amazing feeling of knowing that someone I don't even know is out there wearing something which I made from scratch.

My etsy is at

I'll post photos soon x