For the love of all things vintage, clever, designed, and/or delicious, we celebrate objects and rituals in all their glory!


Cut - It - Out

Some randomness for you:

I was searching for some images of scissors and happened to come across a lovely piece of artwork entitled just that by this sweet little artist (can't you just picture her saying "I'm a PC and I'm 4 years old"?):

Feeling Hot! Hot! Hot!

This weekend I'll be at the first Summer Urban Craft Uprising (UCU) indie craft show!
When: Aug 1st-2nd, Sat/Sun 11am-5pm

Where: Seattle Center Exhibition Hall (map)
What: Seattle's biggest indie craft show with a wide array of handmade goods, workshops, book signing, and more!

Why: Do you really need to ask? My answer to you is....why the hell not? it's gonna be 100+ degrees in Seattle this weekend (miserable!!), and why not come hang out inside at UCU WITH AIR CONDITIONING...need I say more?
But come check out awesome stuff, do some shopping, meet some people, and then go back out to the giant fountain at the Seattle Center to have more fun!
I might even do that during my lunch break!! :D

Here's a little sneak peak!
We will have some new items like these wooden plant labels for your garden or plants! Every plant needs a friend just like all of us!
Another new exciting items we're gonna have are these notebooks we're debuting at UCU! These are made with LOVELY hand printed fabric by Isabelle of Piano Nobile. We recently befriended Isabelle and Nicholas and they're wonderful enough to print these fabric in time for us to sell at the show! I'm drooling over them myself....don't worry, I'll wipe off my drool.
We'll also have tons of other items marked down, too! I mean, who doesn't like to brag about how good of a deal they got, right?AND our dear and super talented friend, Ingrid will be selling her awesome bags at our booth as well! I'm totally excited to see what she'll be bringing!
So lot of exciting come by to check out our stuff and say hello!!..... and while you're at it bring us some ice cone or treat, too! :D

Hope to see you there!

Garden update

We're kicking some major gardening butt thanks to all the amazing summer weather we've been having.

Above: our very own bright orange cherry tomatoes! Heirlooms and many more cherries to come very soon.

Chinese Eggplant almost ready to pick

Green Peppers beginning to show their face.

Cucumbers are going crazy! We had our very first batch of cucumber cookies when I picked the first ripe cuc' today. Yummy!

Special thanks to the sun for finally taking the time for a long-term stay in Seattle...keep it coming, but try to keep it under 90 degrees...pleeeeeaase...



We're Big Carteling it up again and posting the AlphaBrass side tables that appeared in JOIN's Ctrl Alt Design show. The table's bases are made of modules from vintage brass table lamps. We're adding these tables to our other previous AlphaBrass lamp and bench.
Check out our new shop to buy buy buy. We'll be producing a limited run of them with Paperstone, walnut, and white oak tops. Each will have a slightly different profile and height according to available brass lamp modules. Hooray!


Chalk it to Me!

With the JOIN show behind us, our pieces are back in our possession, so I wanted to share this series that Jean put together of chalkboard coated figurines. It's called "Chalk it to Me" and it debut in our recent show, Ctrl+Alt+Design show last month. These figures are one offs from rummaging through thrift stores and spending hours on ebay looking for the right figures. Now you can interact more with figurines a little bit more on a daily biases...bunny figures has needs,too....they like to feel special every once in a while, too. Just like all of us. :D
Here are some more figures we have:
Pretty Panther Shepherdoodle Buddha Gone Wild. (AKA, Raise the roof Buddha)Limited pieces are up for sale on our test Big Cartel shop we're currently piloting. More to come soon!


We've got shelves!

2 more shelves done and I think I might not need the 4th one. Here are some pics installed with goodies on the shelves.

Above is a before shot with blue tape outlining the proposed shelving arrangement (the TV was originally going to go here). Months and months later the dream is nearly realized! Just have to figure out how to finish the shelves, but not change the color of the wood (I don't want it to yellow...any ideas?).

More on Flickr


One Step closer to shelving...

Anyone who has visited our side of the dupe in the past 2+ months may recall the seemingly purposeless white wood textured panels on our wall. The panels were the beginning of our built-in of those projects that has taken way too long. We got one step closer recently. Finally, I have 1 shelf of 4 sort-of-kind-of ready. I'm pretending it's ready at least. 3 more to go! Plus notching for the brackets and finishing them.

I am building the shelves using this great bracket system from Rakks and using the wood-textured wall panels (actually planks of primed house siding) as wall panels that hide the the required vertical brackets in the gaps between. The shelves will be lightened white oak and will be adjustable in height using the clever camming action of the Rakks bracket. I'm planning on routing channels in the shelves to partially hide the brackets.

More on the whole project when I finally get the damn thing done.


Chikabird + Piano Nobile (New Friends in Ballard!)

Through a series of events and connections this Spring, we've been lucky to meet some nearby and very talented neighbors! Isabelle and Nickolas, founders of Piano Nobile are a short bike ride away from us in Ballard - and Chikabird have some exciting things brewing with them.

If you're in Ballard this Friday or Saturday, stop by Piano Nobile's home/studio for a Summer Studio Sale. Part of the City Stimulus event running all week to encourage folks to shop local - it's a great opportunity to do a little shopping and check out a stellar transformation in the Ballard industrial zone. Prepare yourself to get incredibly jealous of PN's space, talent, resources, furnishings, dog, Vanagon, and Volvo. The sale features handmade goods by some fantastic local designers and we feel flattered to be included in such a group.
Chika and I met with Isabelle last Monday. Over coffee, berries, and coffee cake - we decided to do some collaborating! Isabelle has been printing her own textiles for home and personal accessories, so her scrap bin contains a lot of high quality fabrics. The following pictures feature the various patterns and pieces she gave us, and what we did with them.
Anyone want a silk dupioni notebook? Perhaps taffeta or linen is more your style? These beauties make their debut at the Piano Nobile Studio Sale and are just the teaser for what we have in store for the Fall!
Stop by, check out their amazing space, do a little shopping, enjoy some snacks and drinks, and meet some talented people!

Piano Nobile Studio Sale
Fri & Sat July 17th&18th
11am - 6pm

908 NW 50th St
Seattle WA 98107

Unfortunately, neither Chika & I will be there, and we sincerely apologize for the fact that we're unable to be there to support and see everyone....but don't let that get to you. We'll be there in spirit while we do the Renegade craft sale in San Francisco. :)


Ultimate Freedom Meal 09'

Oh! What a glory day it was to celebrate the day of freedom. The dupe (our house) celebrated honored our country with great pride by coming together to make an awesome freedom meal.....well actually, to be honest, we really just needed an excuse to convince Jesse to make his infamous burgers made with red wine reduced sauce and shallots. Ever since he first mentioned the process on how to make those burgers a year ago, we've been dreaming about it ever since. So what better time to make a burger than on July the 4th?
Chika on the other hand took charge of making some homemade french fries & curry ketchup! You'd think that making fries is easy as cutting it up and just throwing them into a giant pot of hot oil...well, not these twice-fried-perfectly-crispy-outside-with-soft-inside-fries.
Chika peeled, sliced, and soaked them in water the day before to take out some starch. This was an important step to ensure the best result for the ultimate fries.
At the dupe, we don't joke around. We don't just do the most obvious and quickest cooking technique. We like to prolong the process, add more steps, or reduce whatever liquid we can to make these seemingly simple dishes more than awesome.
The burgers and fries were beyond my expectations. Burgers were juicy and well flavored...the fries were crunchy and soft at the same time. It was just heavenly. Burgers+fries=Freedom=Food coma in heaven.......with burger angels. ooh yeah.....
For dessert, I made Chocolate croissant bread pudding. This also required an extra step of pre-toasting the croissant so it's extra crunch and buttery! This is not a dish that's highly recommended for the South Beach
I used a recipe online, but altered it a little by adding sherry to the sauce and used 97% dark chocolate. I topped it with some toasted hazelnut and homemade cinnamon whipping cream. But here's my slightly altered recipe:

Dark Chocolate Croissant Bread Pudding
  • 4 to 5 large croissants, cut into 1-inch cubes to measure 6 cups
  • 5 tablespoons softened butter, divided
  • 2 cups half and half
  • 8 ounces dark chocolate, chopped
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 / 2 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup sherry or brandy
  • chopped toasted hazelnut for garnish
  • Fresh mint for garnish

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Cut croissant into 1 inch cubes. Spread croissant on a baking sheet. Bake until lightly toasted; set aside and turn oven off. Spread 1 tablespoon butter in the bottom of an 8 or 9-inch square baking dish and add toasted croissant cubes. Heat half and half and remaining butter in a medium saucepan until almost boiling; add vanilla and sherry; cool to room temp. Whisk together sugar and eggs in a medium bowl and slowly whisk in chocolate mixture. Fill bottom of baking dish with one layer of croissant (use about a third of the croissant cubes), sprinkle with chocolate. Pour sauce over croissant cubes, making sure that all are coated with mixture. Repeat step until the whole dish is filled with croissant, chocolate, and sauce. Let stand for 1 hour and preheat oven to 350°F. Bake for 35 minutes. Serve warm with whipping cream or ice cream!

After our meal, we enjoyed a bike ride to Fremont and watched the amazing fireworks by Lake Union. It was a good freedom day.


Built with Love...

This happened about a 2 months ago, and I've been putting it off. But Chika and I did a special project for Henrybuilt.
It was for their new wardrobe system and we did the design and prototyping of some leather handles, felt pockets, and hamper bag that's cleverly integrated with the whole system.
Our work got mentioned in blogs like Remodelista!

Check out all the sexy beauty shots below.....
Leather Drawer Pulls with hand stitched reinforcement detail. They're minimal but supple. We heart leather!!
Felt Accessory Storage Pockets for the interior door rail system
Hamper Drawer with integrated basket, constructed from mesh + recycled leather
Dylan designed the wooden jewelry knobs, the lighting, the shaping of the sliding tray tops. I can only imagine how satisfying it would feel to use that....

As funny as it sounds, we actually never saw the entire system as a whole in person. We only saw parts of it here and there, and now it's all the way in the NY showroom. So, unless we go there to see it, or order it ourselves, we'll never get the real experience....
But actually we're just happy to see all the photos and all the blog mentions of HB's extraordinary work...and I have to admit....Chika and I's work looks pretty darn good with it, too. :D


News Update at Chikabird

Tomorrow Chika and I are gonna leave for a long 10 day trip hitting up 2 major city in Cali for 2 shows in 2 weekends and it's gonna be 2 awesome!
This weekend, July 11th & 12th, we'll be in Los Angeles for the Renegade Craft Fair! Come see us and our new sweatshirts (read further down to see our new design), Patch Kits, wooden buttons, and Plant Pals(tm). These haven't made it to Etsy yet, so get 'em while they're hot! The following weekend, we'll be in lovely San Francisco for Renegade, July 17th & 18th.
We got lots of new stuff...but of course we didn't get around to take photos of other stuff like the plant pals, buttons, and patch kits.
But we're super excited about these new Chikabird bleached hoodies and track jackets! We got inspired by our friend, Dave, who used this process. Thanks Dave!!
I designed the stencil...we love tools....
Th process of bleach stenciling is SO simple, but the result looks more than just ordinary!! The possibility to play with layers, time, and ways to apply makes it super fun, since the results can look so different!
It's easy to do and the materials needed it is so minimal that you can literally do it in couple hours.
Here's a step-by-step instruction, so you can try it, too!
Step 1: Make a stencil with waterproof sheet. We used a medium weight Mylar here.
Step 2: Mix 50/50 bleach & water in a spray bottle.
Step 3: Spray back of Mylar with light adhesive spray to keep stencil secure.
Step 4: Use a the mist setting on spray bottle and try to spray evenly over the areas you want to cover. Dab any extra residue on the surface with a rag.
Step 5: Wait and watch the magic happen! You can see the color change immediately. It's so much fun to watch.
Step 6: Peel off stencil when you've achieved the result you want. The time can vary since you can play with something really subtle with less time, or let it sit longer with more contrast.
Step 7: Wash it in the washing machine in cold water right after. This is to set the bleach so it stops the bleaching process. Ta-da, you have yourself a awesme shirt!!

The best part about this process is that you can really play around with the bleaching time, layering, and even different texture. I like to overlap the stencil so it just adds another layer of visual interest.

Oh...and this was a little funny accident I had during the proess where there was a fold.... It's Hammer pants! Get it?'s a Hammer...and it looks like it's wearing pants??I think it's adorable...I actually might just make a print of JUST that.
Have a good weekend!


Day Before Freedom Day

Last Friday, the day before the official America's Ultimate Freedom day, Dyaln was lucky enough to get a day off!
We wanted to do something nice and thought about getting a nice brunch in Ballard to gear ourselves up for a nice & rare 3 day weekend together. But then at the last minute, we decided to eat in and make our own brunch instead! It always seems easier to eat out, but in fact making breakfast/brunch is about the easiest meal to make! Also there's a less likely chance to cause food comas (more on that matter for the actual freedom day)

I made some french toast using some thick artisan bread, and made up a simple mixed berry compote and some vanilla mascarpone. Also some fresh peaches and yogurt! It was pretty simple but totally hit the spot!
We didn't plan anything big for the freedom weekend. Instead, it was nice to just stay a home together, get some projects done, reorganize and do some doing the laundry. I usually put off doing my laundry, but I finally decided to it, as I was about to throw them into the dryer after washing, I stopped and realized that I haven't hung my clothes out to dry for at least a decade!
I grew up always having to hang dry my family's clothes as a kid, and that was one of the chores I was responsible for. As much as I dreaded doing my laundry, I still enjoyed the simple pleasures of hanging the clothes and putting clothespin on's somewhat meditative.
I was especially stoked when I found my giant bag of vintage clothes pins that I got from a year ago! Those vintage clothespins are simple and adorable! I just love how the soft subtle form is justified to allow such ease of use, and the shape itself is seems so refined and pure. simply perfect.
Since I'm on the topic of our house, I'm gonna give you the latest garden news at the Dupe! Past couple of weeks I've been talking about Peas....and about how know..."pea-ed in my plants"... well, FYI, Pea plants are so last week and is totally OUT! The pea joke is totally tired and I'm bored. Now what's IN are these fabulous heirloom tomatoes and mixed salads that are growing! Just look at how fabulous they look! So healthy and fresh looking! The tomatoes of course are too early in the season, but they look like they're well on their way to become sexy tomatoes! The mix salads are starters that we got from the Ballard Farmer's market, and the flavors are just AMAZING. We don't even use dressing with it since there's nothing like tasting the bitter peppery flavors of these greens.
yeah....summer in Seattle is pretty good.