Friday, 30 May 2008

Grand Salvo

Ahh! My musical heart is all a'flutter again as I have been listening to a wonderful album called "Death" by Grand Salvo, the work of Australian singer Paddy Mann.

Now I know the title "Death" doesn't sound very wonderful, but the album is a story that focuses on a bird, a rabbit, a man, a rat and a bear whose lives are intertwined throughout the album to create a kind of magical fairytale. The instrumental arrangements are evocative of life in a forest like landscape as the year moves slowly forth with beautiful string, piano and guitar arrangements (makes me think of Lewis and Clarke), harmonised vocals and poetic narration detailing the loves, losses and hope of the creatures as they come across each other and cope with remorseless mother nature.

The artwork in the album is so pretty too! I love the paper cutouts and the strange little twists...

Visit the Grand Salvo Myspace HERE to listen....or go to their website HERE to see more artwork and lyrics and find out about where you can get the album. I don't know if it released over here yet as I was sent it by my friend Eeebeejeebee (who also goes by the name Ian) who lives in Melbourne, but you may be able to get it on import...

Wednesday, 28 May 2008

Heart Balloons!!

I have finally managed to get my newest Bonbi Forest tee for sale in the Emporium... Welcome the Heart Balloon tee!!

I made these shirts a while ago back in April, but what with going on holiday and other bits and pieces I have been working on it has taken me a while to actually get these up for sale. I love the shape of these t-shirts, they have a very deep V neck and are rinsed in an acid wash which gives them a mottled and vintage look and feel. the hearts are printed in bubblegum pink, juicy grape, peach, pale grey and shimmering metallic gold with dark grey balloon strings...

This week I am working on the rest of the heart art designs which I'm really excited about! As well as the heart speaking birds of a couple of posts ago, there are cats and pegasus too, toot!

Tuesday, 27 May 2008

Clocks and sad cats

The sunshine shone today, hurrah! After the washout that was yesterday it was a welcome warmth. It was so horrible and blowy yesterday it seemed like twilight at 3.30pm and we had debris and branches down all over the place. Horrible.

Look at my new studio clock! It was a wonderful birthday present from Mark and is perfect for the high back wall of the studio with it's big face and lots of colours. I love the hot pink clover shaped pendulum.

I have wanted a clock for the studio for ages and was going to get a dull one from Viking, which is why I'm so pleased with this one. It's a much more pleasant thing to look at and I won't be searching around the studio for my phone and it's tiny dark digital timepiece anymore, yay!!

We had an almost cat catastrophe today! I was inside and heard the tiny thundering of cat paws galloping franticly past the window and looked out to see Clifford cat darting past, then I heard more tiny thundering cat paws and looked out again expecting to see Lou Lou cat (things often frighten them and they come running for shelter) but instead saw a scrawny black feline in hot pursuit of poor Cliff!

We live in a very remote place and there are lots of wild cat families living in the hedges (in fact that is where Clifford and Lou Lou came from but that is another story which I will save for a rainy day...), and I think there must be a younger male trying to muscle in on Clifford's territory. Anyway I ran out after them and found the black cat at the bottom of the garden and Cliff mewing high up in a tree, the poor little thing wouldn't come down until I had chased off his pursuer. When he finally came down he went all floppy and sat on the sofa.

He has a black faux leather studded collar which is meant to make him look tough but it obviously doesn't work, hehe!

Sunday, 25 May 2008

Bank holiday birthday!

On Friday it was my 27th birthday!! It's pretty good when your birthday falls on the first day of a bank holiday weekend because it gets easy to stretch it out, yay! Friday was great as I spent the day with Mark, then had birthday cake and wine with my family and then went for dinner and drinks with some friends with a big fry up yesterday morning. Then last night we went for another birthday dinner with my family...(For some reason my birthdays always seem to revolve around food...!) pretty good going and still 2 more long weekend days to go.

I haven't posted much of late as I have been working away on my latest products which are little 'Heart Art' mini canvasses! They are hand screened tokens of love or friendship. I have one design ready which will be in the store very soon, with 2 more designs on the way...Heres a peek at the stack I made last week...

I have given little paintings of birds to friends as gifts before and I have been meaning to make some screen printed ones for AGES, finally I have gotten around to it. Hurrah! I will hopefully have them ready to go in the store next week...

There have been lots of bird related posts lately. Perhaps it is the time of year with all of the migrating birds coming home to nest that has made me more aware of them!


Tuesday, 20 May 2008


Over the weekend I added four great new tees from Pinecone and Chickadee to the store: two for kids and two for adults! They are in wonderful paintbox bright colours with really cute prints.

Have a lookie HERE!

It's a beautiful sunny day here, but we have a really cold East wind rattling through so I'm all wrapped up! Roll on the days when I can take a blanket, paper and pencils outside and enjoy the sunshine...actually that's not always idyllic as it sounds here because if I'm outside, the dog or the cats usually come over to say hello and end up rolling around on my drawings and books. Especially Lou Lou cat, who has a penchant for playing with pens and pencils!

At least I can open the studio windows and let the air blow through. It's an animal free zone no matter how much they may want to come in!!

Friday, 16 May 2008

Apples, acorns and plenty of chirrups

I managed to get the little birds in the store yesterday but I didn't have time to post, so: Ta daa! They have settled in the eaves of the Emporium and are ready to fly to new and loving homes.

They are created by our newest artist Zosienka Coombes and are painted in the tiniest delicate detail. You can see more of her wonderful creations on her blog which is filled with drawings and paintings and snippets of animations and other projects. Have a peek HERE!

You can choose from a wonderful selection of the lovely birds including Redstarts, Songbirds, Warblers and Piptits and they are great as decorations and gifts either on their own or grouped together in little aviaries of 2 or 3...or 4...or 5... Deciding which ones you want will be the hardest part, they are all so sweet!!

On notes of sweetness (as most things Bonbi related are!) we also have another brand new designer in the store today, Gugaw!!

Gugaw jewellery is the creation of miss Claire McAlpine who uses beautiful semi-precious stones and sterling silver to make her delicate pieces and I am pleased to welcome them to The Bonbi Forest Indie Emporium. We have a selection of nature inspired pieces with apples and acorns and more little tweeting birds alongside faceted and shimmering stones galore. It's pretty stuff and you can see and shop all our Gugaw pieces RIGHT HERE!!

This afternoon I will be adding even more lovely items too (I said it was going to be a busy new item week!) from Cat and Bang and Emma Ferguson and over the weekend we will have some super bright colour tees for guys, girls and the little 'uns from Pinecone and Chickadee too. Toot!

Wednesday, 14 May 2008

Sneak peek: tweet treat...

Ok, just a quick post with a sneak peek of tomorrow's additions to the store...

I love these birds, they are just SO sweet and detailed...but anyway, more about them and their creator tomorrow.

I have been taking lots of pictures of all the new items for the store today and hopefully it will all be online in the Emporium by the weekend!! Woot!

I'm back!!!

Well we got back 2 days ago, but the first day back at work is always a crazy one with lots of email answering (of which I have managed about half so bear with me if you haven't had a reply yet!) and order posting.

The holiday in Lanzarote was wonderful and I managed to get lots of reading done. I don't get nearly enough time to read and it is one of my favorite things. The thing I love about holidays is that you can take time to sit back and read a book pretty much none stop from cover to cover and get really absorbed.

It wasn't all sitting about though, we did lots of walking and swimming and hired a car for a day to take in some sites and re-visited the old home of Spanish artist Ceasar Manrique. It's a place I have been twice before and I blogged about it a while back when I found some postcards I bought on a previous trip to the island. You can read that post HERE!

The house was almost empty of visitors this time around and I got to take loads of photos. Lanzarote is a volcanic island and much of it is volcanic rock so everywhere has this landscape of hard black rock that has solidified en route to the ocean. The rock has natural 'bubbles' that would have been full of gasses when the lava flowed from the volcanoes but are now like caves and dips in the landscape. Ceasar Manrique built his house using these bubbles and knocked passages between them, filled the bottoms with concrete and created a wonderful living space that fuses the natural world with more contemporary living.

It was wonderful to see it without there being hoards of other people around (probably not so wonderful for the Lanzarote tourist trade however...!) and really get a feel of it. I don't normally pay much attention to architecture but this place has something different which I think is the stark contrast of plant life and rock and the way that the house kind of sinks into it's natural environment. It is somewhere I don't think I will ever tire of looking at anyway!!

So on with the long post (!): After our sunshine hols we headed off to All Tomorrow's Parties at Camber Sands which was BRILLIANT as usual. I have been really looking forward to it as my favorite musician of the moment Bon Iver was playing which made me rather over excited for the weekend!!! We managed to stumble into the large stage when he was sound checking and got a taste of the show to come which was such a magical and full sound and definitely my favorite show of the weekend. I saw Justin Vernon in the merch room afterwards and hovered to say thanks for the wonderful show, but he was busy selling records and I got shy...

My other favorites were Shit and Shine - a crazy wall of sound with 5 drummers and spooky rabbit masks and also a band called Dirty Projectors who made music that seemed to come from every which way with beautiful harmonies and angular sounds.

Anyway it was a fun weekend as always, with the weather boiling and lots of laughing and after this long post I'm going to leave you with this:

I will be posting again later today about the exciting additions I have coming up for the store so stay tuned!!