Thursday, September 27, 2012

Adventures / and / Versatility!

We're heading out for some adventures this weekend and we've got our Backpack's packed!  Literally! These are the most versatile bags.  I carry one to work everyday with my laptop, then I rearrange and re-stuff it full of everything I want when we're running around town or exploring the forest (which we love to do...can I talk any more about how much I love the Cook Forest before you guys tell me to stop??!)

These two new colors are super fantastic.  
The stone corded canvas, contrary to what you might think, weathers so well.  It manages to conceal dirt and grime better than some of the darker colors.  It's not as white as the photos make it appear and the corded canvas breaks in like denim...getting better with use. The same is true for the soft brushed slate...our assistant Drew has been carrying this one and he loves it.

Also, not to continue to rub in the fantastic Special Edition Yellow that is now sold out...but, I can't resist these great photos our assistant Jessica and her bf Dylan took while camping at Kinzua (not too far from the Cook Forest!!!).

And, while I don't have any photos to prove it, I take our assistant Gena at her word when she says the felt laptop sleeve in her Backpack will successfully hold 6 beer cans, two layers of three.  And, because the felt is a natural insulator, it keeps them cold! Very convenient and so versatile!   

Friday, September 14, 2012

on the verge of fall

Hello! I love summer so much…everything that it is:  I love the heat, the water activities, the vacations, the slightly relaxed schedule but, I am so excited for the signs of fall we've had this week!  The light is beginning to change and all this week I've been able to start my day at the studio with the most beautiful skies.  Yet another reason why I love our new studio so so much.  

Hope you're off to a lovely weekend!  I'm looking forward to seeing a few friends and having some time to play around in the studio. 

oh! and, i'm cutting off all my hair today around lunch.  I hope the ladies at PageBoy do a fantastic  job! (currently my hair looks like when white women are depicted in movies as all frizzy and too long to do anything Elizabeth Banks in that super depressing movie, The Next Three Days..very sad)

Sunday, September 9, 2012


This summer has been more of a challenge than I would like to admit to stay on top of our abundance of CSA vegetables.  Parker was away at camp for a few weeks and I did not cook as much during that time…and when I did, I was cooking for two rather than three (which somehow seems slightly more difficult..always ending up with too much (mostly fine, we just had leftovers for lunch the next day) or too little).  However, I recently met one of our neighbors at our studio and became so inspired by him!  He does pretty much everything and every conversation I have had with him, I have learned something new.  He roasts his own coffee (and totally made it sound easy and possible to add to my list of things I want to do), brews his own beer, forages for mushrooms, harvests from his extensive garden, canning and freezing everything for the winter, bakes his own bread, grinds his own flours, makes apple cider vinegar, taps his maple trees for syrup and works during the day as a mechanic.  An impressive array of things that I cannot even list in full here.  Seeing how easy he made everything look, inspired me to take whatever vegetables we did not use in time (hello super hot hungarian wax peppers!) and turn them into other things.  I have since turned so many vegetables into things you can dip other things into that it would seem we only eat dips and spreads!  But, when it came to the beets - we all love beets - I wanted to do something more inventive with them.  So, last night I made a beet cocktail.  Sounds weird, I know…but, I love weird sounding drinks!  Here's what I did:

  • Peel and dice one small to medium raw beet
  • Add to a tall liquid measuring cup so when you puree with your stick blender it does not fly all over the place
  • Add the juice of one lemon to the diced beets
  • Add about a ¼ cup of gingerale (or seltzer…you need the liquid to puree)
  • Puree with your stick blender until as smooth as possible.
  • Fill a mason jar with ice
  • Add 2oz tequila
  • Add 1oz St. Germaine
  • Add ¼ of your beet mixture
  • Screw on your lid and shake a bunch
  • Top off with more gingerale or seltzer (depending on how sweet you like your drinks)

Makes enough for about 4 drinks

Whenever I make inventive cocktails, I always make one for Parker…to make it non-alcoholic, simply leave out the alcohol and add an even amount of gingerale and seltzer (we always add more seltzer than soda)…she loved it!

You should give it a try! 

Friday, September 7, 2012

The re-issued Small Clutch

Many of you saw this last weekend...but, for those of you who have not - we have re-issued our famous small clutch!  Remember this one?!  It is from our very earliest days and is one of our favorite little bags.  But, they're really a bear to make so we don't offer them very often.  We have already sold out of the Yellow Waxed Canvas so be sure to snag the others before they disappear, will be quite a while before we make more of these.


Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Machinations: Kinetic Sculpture in the Age of Open-source

Tomorrow night there is an opening at Columbia College in Chicago - and you should GO!  Jeremy, an artist and educator and my husband, has some pretty fantastic work in this great exhibition of kinetic sculpture.  He has designed and constructed a new evolution of his self playing guitar (you can see a video of the previous version on It's visually and aurally incredible.  I hope you will go!