Things I Like!

Day 76/365

It’s been two weeks today, since the end of the One of a Kind Show.  I’m finally getting around to tidying up and organizing and in the process I re-discovered all these amazing items from the show!  While this isn’t the full collection of all the things I purchased, these are the items that aren’t being given away.  So if I share them online I won’t ruin Christmas, you get the point.


The roundup:

On the left is a gorgeous stationery set and gift tags by Gotamago, you know I love putting pen to paper and sending real mail, these cards fit the bill perfectly.  To the right of that is a beautiful and ingenious spoon/spatula/tasting utensil by Elzner Originals, I cannot wait to make my famous noodle soup with it!  Then a super moisturizing spearmint-eucalyptus lip balm by From the Blue House with Love, honestly it smells soooo good! Below that are a pair of sweet wooden earrings by Ugly Bunny, the geometric patterns and pop of colour had me at hello.  Below that is another wood piece; a hair barette by The Woodlot, using only Ontario wood.  Right of that is the cute, well-crafted and totally appropriate (for me) ‘book nerd’ banner by Embroiderwee.  And last but not least, a super sweet, cutie-patootie dachshund brooch by Leikey Designs.





Top 5 Things I Learned at the One of a Kind Show

Day 63/365

Top 5 Things I Learned at the One of a Kind Show: 

1. Wear comfortable shoes, no one really looks at your feet anyways.  Worst case scenario: kinda-comfy shoes with inserts or orthotics.

2. Eat healthy, eat often.  Lots of tasty, healthy snacks saved me from becoming Cranky Carolyn!!  (and, yes I’ll admit it, the occasional handmade almond toffee, or organic chocolate covered nougat)

3. Stay hydrated.  In a place as large as the Direct Energy Centre, it gets dry fast!  Luckily they had a huge drinking water station with several bottle-filling taps to rehydrate throughout the day.  And with so many awesome body care makers at the show, it was impossible to have dry cracked skin!  (yay new organic spearmint-eucalyptus lip balm!)

4. Listen.  I learned so much from both customers and other makers by listening to their stories, advice and thoughts.  So much has developed from these insights: I’ve already got new projects mulling for the new year, new booth design ideas for next Christmas and I learned some painful yet necessary lessons about when to speak up and when to stay quiet.

5. Enjoy it!  I worked so hard to get this far, to design items I felt my customers would appreciate and get excited about, and to hand craft each book carefully to the best of my abilities.  So why not share this and let my enthusiasm shine through?!  It was so affirming to watch people search my display looking for just the right journal, asking questions and holding the books.  Even more so when they found the right book, clutching it and then deciding to give it a new home either as the perfect gift for someone else or for themselves.

Wordless Wednesday 3.12.14

Day 57/365

The Studio on a Sunday 30.11.14

Day 54/365

photo 1

I’m not actually in the studio today.  Instead, here’s a picture from not that long ago of the studio in full swing.  Maybe it’s because of the state of messiness in here right now, but I’m reminded of a saying I once saw on a co-workers desk.

It read: ‘If a cluttered desk means a cluttered mind, what does an emtpy desk mean?’

I have no idea who wrote or said this, (if you know, please share below!) but it makes me smile whenever I remember it.  Yay for messy desks!!

Wordless Wednesday 26.11.14

Day 50/365


Even More Projects!!

Day 41/365

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Today I’m posting about a project I’m pretty proud of: books that are case bound using bookcloth I made!  This is something I’ve wanted to do for a while now, especially with all the fabric choices out there.

I decided to stick to solid colours, with linen and linen-like fabrics, I love the texture and richness of the colours.  photo-10

I finished these journals with sewn-in ribbon bookmarks, and corners to protect against wear.  I focused on two styles: a landscape journal filled only with 140 lb watercolour paper (I want one!!) and a portrait-oriented daily journal with a lovely large page surface to capture the day’s thoughts.

Since they are a limited edition binding (only 10 of each style) they are only available at the One of a Kind Show from November 27 – December 7, 2014.  If you want one, come find me at booth D49 in the Rising Stars section!

Wordless Wednesday 11.19.14

Day 43/365


Books, Photos and Paper

Day 42/365

This is a project that started a long time ago.  It’s had a few reinventions, these are some of my favourites.  There is a deeper meaning to these pieces and as a result they have morphed into other objects, but for now I’ll just touch on them briefly.  Perhaps I’ll revisit the longer write up in a later post.


They are books sculpted into dioramas featuring digitalized photos from special moments in my life, moments that I feel many people can relate to.  I’m talking about things like nostalgia, yearning and sometimes regret.  OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Consider the crowds in an Italian Piazza, the grand archway in the distance and the top of a carousel tucked in a corner.


One last close up that shows the paper cutting that went into these pieces.  They are detailed and intricate.

There is a small selection available at the Arts Market, and I will have a select few at the One of a Kind Show at the end of the month.

The Studio on a Sunday

Day 40/365Image-1

A journal mid-production; this is the coptic binding variation I tend to be using more and more.

Loving the brown linen thread on the navy cover and spine, a lovely natural journal.

Contest Time!

Day 37/365


It’s contest time!  Who doesn’t love to win free tickets and a handbound notebook?

This contest is a draw, to enter simply ‘follow’ Sprouts Press on Instagram and leave a comment on which notebook is your favourite (pink & gold, indigo & silver, red & burgundy or black & gold).

The winner will get a pair of tickets to the One of a Kind Show here in Toronto, and the notebook they commented as their favourite!  Woo hoo!

Bonus Entries: If you follow Sprouts Press on facebook share this photo for another entry!  If you follow Sprouts Press on twitter retweet this photo for yet another entry!

The contest starts today and ends on sunday evening.  A winner will be drawn at random and announced on monday.