Wednesday, 28 November 2012

While we're talking about books...

I just found this blog post and thought - what a great idea!

Photo credit: Scottish Book Trust
The Scottish Book Sculptor has been back, and she has been busy.  This one (Whisky Galore) was found by a Katy, lucky girl.  Read all about it at the Scottish Book Trust.  Apparently Saturday is take your child to a bookshop day, but what made me buy some books this week was hearing the rhyme 'something you want, something you need, something to wear and something to read' which has pretty much summed up my approach to gifts this Christmas.  Hurray!  If only they could fit 'something to eat' in that rhyme, too...

Tuesday, 27 November 2012

A visit to Hay on Wye

As an avid reader, I've wanted to make a pilgrimage to Hay for a long time.  When I finally made it there last week, I wasn't disappointed, although making the rounds of a town filled with bookshops, traditional grocers, fancy cafes and lovely-little-thing-shops with a 2 year old who is only interested in bunnies or ice cream is quite the challenge.

So I don't have many photos but I do have this fantastic scan of the front of the local tourist guide map.  Hay is a gorgeous little village, totally walkable, and in the off-season, full of bargainous books to be had.  One shop I visited even gave me two free children's books for Amelia when I bought just the one.

I also picked up the funniest book ever, which gives details on how to spend $500 a day in New York before lunch - it's from the year I was born and shows you how to live the high life on a high-end budget.  Ironically, it cost me 50p into an honesty box in the grounds of Hay Castle.  If only I'd known about this book before I completed my New York reads zine.  Ah well, Volume 2, anyone?

Friday, 23 November 2012

New zine update!

If you're friends with me on Facebook, you'll know I've been working on a new zine for a while, and I've been putting the finishing touches to it over the last week or so.

I gave myself the unofficial deadline of a friend's New York wedding, which tied in nicely with the theme of my new zine.  Then that deadline slipped slightly, and I got a bit caught up in the will they/won't they drama of Hurricane Sandy, which made landfall on the day of the wedding, which had been arranged to take place in Central Park.  After a couple of days of frantic re-arranging, it eventually took place on the steps of the Met - both glamorous and romantic, and the photos were stunning.

So when I attended the post-wedding celebration party in Cardiff earlier this week, that became my absolute latest deadline and I only missed it by a few days...

Unusually, for someone who studied English Literature to Masters level, I never read much American literature until I actually lived there.  Now whenever I want to get in that New York state of mind, I just crack open one of my favourite novels, travel guides or history books, and I wanted to share them with people who love them as much as I do, or love the city, or the five boroughs or the whole entire state and want to be transported there every now and again.

For a limited time, a PDF version is available for a bargain $1, and the printed version is available to pre-order for $3.  First copies will ship on Monday, and are available exclusively in the girlindustries etsy shop.  The zine is 40 pages long, in black and white with a limited edition colour front cover.  It's A6 size, so handy to travel with or to pop in a Christmas stocking.  I've tried to write about the books in a way that introduces them, gives you an idea of what they are about and also a bit about why I love them so much and chose to include them in the zine, but WITH NO SPOILERS.

Now for the next project, watch this space...

Saturday, 10 November 2012

Where is November going?

A quick update as November seems to be whizzing by!

Folksy news: I am updating my folksy shop today with a small range of gift wrapping essentials for the festive period.  Go and take a look!

Amazon news:  I contributed a pattern for handmade gloves (that's them, in the bottom right hand corner of the image above!) to Alison McNicol's new book, Learn to Knit.  You can browse user photos, read reviews and buy your copy here (this is not an affiliate link, but only because I'm a bit pushed for time to learn how to do them!).  After having received a copy myself, I can confirm that the projects in it are super-straightforward for learners of all ages, and go way beyond your usual scarves and blanket squares learn to knit projects.  Handknit robot, anyone?

Etsy news:  Well, not strictly Etsy news, but my jolly red and white gift tags (which are available to buy here) have been featured on UK Handmade in their Christmas Showcase, and also on Cuteable, so go and have a browse of both and check out the fantastic homemade gifts and needful things for your festive home which are on offer this year.

Zine news:  I've been working on a new zine about my favourite books, which is very very nearly ready.  It was meant to be a wedding gift for two of my friends who also love books (although, doesn't everyone?) and  they got married last week at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, after their Central Park wedding was hurricaned off.  So we are off to see them next week (not in New York, unfortunately) and I am determined to give them their present in person.

More zine news, and it's sad news this time.  Marceline has decided to put Pushpin on hold for the forseeable future.  Hopefully it's a temporary hold, but in the meantime, do please go and have a look at some of the fantastic zines you can buy over there.  She stocks all of the Answers on a Postcard series, of course, but I can also strongly recommend work by Neil Slorance, Sarah Royal and of course, everything by Marceline herself is a great read.  She will continue to blog about her love of zines at Pushpin, and hopefully the shop will be back sooner rather than later.

Shipping news: I'm off on my holidays next week, so won't be able to post anything from Friday 16 to Friday 23 November, but I will keep my shops open and answer all emails, convos, messages etc while I'm away.  Last international shipping dates for Christmas arrivals are as follows, so please order early to avoid disappointment.

Wednesday 5 DecemberAsia, Australia, Far East (including Japan), New Zealand
Friday 7 DecemberAfrica, Caribbean, Central America, Middle East and South America
Monday 10 DecemberCanada, Eastern Europe and USA
Wednesday 12 DecemberWestern Europe

If you're in the UK, you have a little bit longer, until 20th December at the absolute latest.  If you want to place an order but aren't fussed about waiting a bit longer, my shops will remain open throughout the Christmas and New Year period, and I'll be making trips to the Post Office on days when it's open.