Monday, June 30, 2008

Canada Day, all the way!

This map is for all you people who have argued with
me that Toronto is "central Canada"
and that everything west of it is "western Canada" and
everything east of it is "eastern Canada".
Come on people, get a map!

Wow, my ryhming skills have been sadly diminished by this stupid cold I seem to have caught while in Manitoba, or perhaps on the plane ride home...The important thing is that Tyson has now caught it as well, so the universe is once again balanced.

We just wanted to give you guys a heads up to the fact that we will be CLOSED tomorrow for Canada day. So sorry, but if you want something handmade tomorrow, you'll have to make it yourself. Besides, you should be sitting on a patio drinking some canadian beer/wine/rye, not shopping!

Happy Canada Day friends!

Tyson & Angie

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Girls Telephone Boys

Oh yes, the best girls certainly do. Especially the type of girl who is drawn to this gorgeous collection of hand printed dresses and shirts. This is clothing for the girl who likes to throw something on, be comfortable and still look amazing. This is clothing for that girl you know who always manages to look hot, no matter what she throws on.

Personally I love how these dresses can change dramatically just based on what shoes you're wearing them with. Picture them with chunky black heels for a sexy lady look, throw on some gladiators for a more casual yet citified look, throw on some leather sandals for a totally beachy look, or wear them with black tights and some flats for a cooler weather option. Seeing as we're talking about shoe options I could probably go on forever, but I think you get the idea...

We first met Erika (the designer) at our 2 year anniversary vernissage. Now that HQ has been open for a little while, we get approached by a lot of people who tell us they make stuff and want to sell it in the store. We have the same answer for everyone "send us an e-mail with some pics and we'll go from there". About 1/2 the people we talk to don't follow up, and of the half that do e-mail us about 1/2 don't fit into the look of the store. But every once in awhile a real gem comes along, and Girls Telephone Boys is definitely one of those gems!

The label started off as a “beach wear” label that the Erika designed for shops in Bali, Indonesia, and consists of women’s wear and sterling silver Jewellery. All the garments that she produces are 100% hand made from start to finish. So the fabric is hand dyed, hand screen-printed and hand sewn.

Erika also has a very close relationship with all the people involved in the process, which really shows in the quality of the pieces. Since Bali allows Erika to produce small minimums, nothing is ever mass-produced.

Erika flies back an forth between Montreal and Bali many, MANY times a year, and is constantly working on new designs and patterns. Her goals for her current trip are to use luxurious fabrics like silks and to experiment with hand painting and hand embroidery.

After seeing the quality of the fabric and printing, as well as the excellent fit and construction of the stock we just received, I am sooo excited to see what Erika comes up with next...


Thursday, June 26, 2008

Fringe Benefits

You know when you're into something, and then you start seeing it in a few places and you're not sure if you're just noticing it more because you're into it, or if you're into it because you've started noticing it more... I'm so right there, right now.

My interest in fringe goes a couple seasons back now, I had some white fringe that I put at the end of a long wrap belt on one of my skirt designs, but it never really got the reaction I hoped for, so I kind of gave fringe a rest. I would still stroke it longingly whenever I went to the trim store, but couldn't justify buying some since I thought I was the only one into it. Anyone who saw me this past New Years can also attest to the fact that I just would not give up on the fringe, I'm sure the fringed bodice on my dress tickled a few people that night...

Susie Bubble in fringed Bebaroque tights

But then, happy, happy day, I started noticing fringe details around some of the high end collections, and on a few of my favorite fashion blogs. Queen Michelle of Kingdom of Style and Susie Bubble of Style Bubble both went for a fabulous pair of fringed tights by Bebaroque.

Fringed tights by Bebaroque

Queen Michelle really went for the gusto and took on the fringe full force with this FABULOUS purple fringed dress, amazing!

Queen Michelle with the dress/skirt of fringe

Lastly Jennine from The Coveted got a little bit crafty and did up her own fringed tank top that is both simple and stunning, she even added a great tutorial to her site HERE.

Jennines DIY fringe tank

The award for longest fringe would have to go to Agathe from StyleBytes though. Agathe has been a huge fan of the fringe for awhile now, and has shown us all the way of the fringe. Sadly I can't link to her site as it no longer exists, it's an internet mystery! Seriously, just google "Style Bytes missing" and it will be amazing how many things will come up...

Agathe with the longest fringe of all...

So I've had a million fringe related designs mulling about in my head, and a million sketches done and in my purse, but I've been so busy sewing up logs, owls and custom orders that I haven't had the time to put any fringy goodness together yet! Luckily I'd been pondering over this fringed necklace idea for awhile, and thought it would be a pretty easy item to whip up, so I did! I've done antique silver, gold and copper versions, and they are available in my Etsy shop, as well as in Victoire boutique in Ottawa, and will soon be available right here at HQ.

Let's just cross our fingers and hope I'll have a few spare moments to put together some fun fringed dresses and tops soon!



Persuasion solo exhibit by Kevin Ledo

Join local artist and HQ friend Kevin Ledo for his solo exhibition "Persuasion" opening this Friday, June 27th at Ctrl Lab 3634 St. Laurent.I'll be there signing autographs.... just say'in.

love you,


Thursday, June 19, 2008

Gone for the Weekend

Just wanted to pop in to let you all know I'm going to be out of the town for the weekend, and I'm leaving tonight! Tyson will be manning the store, so feel free to pop in and keep him company.

I'm heading out to Manitoba for my 10 year high school reunion. Perhaps you've been confused by my girlish charm and milky smooth skin, but yes, I am that old. In honour of this special event, I'm sharing this video with you. Watch it and know that I will be dancing drunkenly to this song within the next day or so. I know what you're thinking "if you're listening to that, shouldn't it be your 20 year high school reunion?!"

Well, in the normal world yes, but I'm from a small town in rural Manitoba, so this is pretty much standard fare no matter how old you are. Wish me luck on my flashback weekend!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Hastings + Main Dresses

I did a little mini photoshoot on Saturday to get some pics of a couple of the great summery dresses we have in the shop from Hastings + Main. Maryanne developed these styles while in India and Africa, using the gorgeous local textiles as a jumping off point. They're so perfect for breezing around in during the hot and sticky months! Thanks to Jill, Jude and Amanda for modelling for me! Next time if you stop making silly faces and we can get outside to get less blurry pics, I'll put your heads in the shots as well, hee hee!


Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Facehunter in Stockholm

Just in case you thought the city you lived in was awesome...forget about it. It's nothing compared to Stockholm. I was there last fall, it's a fact. The Facehunter takes a trip to Stockholm and proves that no one has a leg up on them (except MAYBE for London and NY, but that's it)

The Facehunter Show Stockholm - Part 1

The Facehunter is doing a whole video series, so check out the blog periodically for new footage:

Outfits of the Week: June 17, 2008

I thought I would focus on two of the fun african/indian print dresses we have in the shop, and mix them up with a bunch of vintage stuff. The indian printed fabric dress is by Hastings + Main. The designer Maryanne is now back from India, and living in Montreal for awhile again, welcome back Maryanne! The african print dress is one of my designs. I like the idea of mixing the african fabric with a mod/60's silhouette. Enjoy! (as usual, click on the images for a bigger version to pop up)

Dress by Hastings + Main (Vancouver/Montreal/India/Africa), vintage ceramic necklace, vintage white leather shoes, vintage metal mesh purse.

African print dress by Norwegian Wood (Montreal), vintage elastic belt with wood buckle, vintage colourblocked purse, vintage leather slip ons.


Monday, June 16, 2008

The Cage Skirt Comes Alive

Susie Bubble just posted some outfits using the floral cage skirt I sent her. As usual, they are wonderful and inspiring, but also as usual, I have a fave. I've posted it above, but you can go straight to her blog to check out all the outfits HERE

Also, since I've had a few requests so far, I'm able to make more of these lovelies, in a variety of colours none less! I've made a post on my Etsy store for a custom one HERE, and I have a small black one already made HERE.



Saturday, June 14, 2008

Saturday Social Club

Many of you may be out enjoying the weather and not at home reading blogs, but I thought I'd do a little post in honour of what has become a bit of an HQ summer tradition, Saturday Social Club! Almost every Saturday during the summer some of my girlfriends will pop into the shop for some hanging out in the sunshine, clothes trying on and sangria drinking. If I won the lottery HQ would provide the sangria each and every time, but as it stands now everyone just pitches in a bit, and I provide the pitcher itself.

The "club" started out as myself, and my friends Jill, Judy and Amanda, but has now expanded into any and all girls who want to stop by and have a fun little saturday. Today we're doing an impromptu Etsy photoshoot, since I've been sewing up a secretary blouse storm. Hopefully we'll have time to also shoot some of the fun dresses and vintage sunglasses we have in the store, and I can post all the pics for you to see.

In the spirit of Saturday Social Club and all things girly, I'd also like to let you all know about some lovely music to listen to when hanging out with your lady friends. A lot of you will probably already know about She & Him, but if not you're in for a treat! Here's how they describe themselves on their website:

She & Him made their debut record as a love letter to the musicians who inspired it. Volume One introduces a boy and girl choir hell-bent on making music the old-fashioned way: by hand - and with as few machines as humanly possible. The She & Him story begins when in 2006 , renowned one man band M. Ward, recorded a duet with a girl named Zooey Deschanel. A delightful recording session, the experience lead to a dialogue between the two about collaborating further.

This, in turn, led to Deschanel admitting to secretly making dozens and dozens of home demos and hoarding them like acorns for the winter. Sick and tired of being stingy and secretive about music, Deschanel realized that if songs were acorns then this was indeed her wintertime: she sent the recordings to Ward and these demos became the basis for their first record, entitled Volume One. Ward’s unique arrangements and virtuostic guitar playing paired with Deschanel’s affinity for vocal harmony give Volume One its characteristic sound .

Ward and Deschanel share a mutual affection for the songs they grew up hearing on Los Angeles radio stations - and keep in their hearts the records that most DJ's aren't playing anymore: Les Paul and Mary Ford, The Ronettes, Nina Simone, Chet Atkins, Linda Ronstadt, the Carter Family and about a hundred others. Aiming to achieve the warmth and charm of pop and country records from the early and mid part of the twentieth century.

Ward, who also produced the record, and Deschanel, who wrote most of the music, called upon the help of a number of extraordinary musicians including: Rachel Blumberg, Adam Selzer, Mike Coykendall, Tom Hagerman, Peter Broderick, Mike Mogis, and Paul Brainerd. Without whom this record would just be two people with no drums, bass, strings or pedal steel.
California-raised and Portland-based, M. Ward has released 4 records with Merge, his latest was Post-War (2006). He has collaborated with the likes of Neko Case, Conor Oberst, Jim James, Nels Cline, and Jenny Lewis. California based Deschanel spent much of her early life singing in choirs, which is probably why she likes harmonies so much. She also enjoys reading, dancing and playing the piano. She & Him have performed together on occasion over the last year and enjoyed it very much.

Zoey Deschanel is also a super stylish lady, which is another reason I would totally invite her to come drink Sangria with us at Saturday Social Club. So if you're a lady, come on down on a sunny saturday, feel free to bring something delicious to drink! We'll keep it cool in the fridge for you while you have a little browse around the store, cool off in the gallery basement, or catch some sun on the sidewalk.


Friday, June 13, 2008

Rock on!

Yes! This weeks Muxtape is all about the rock! Crank it to 11 or 12 if you're really harcore and be sure to yell "Party!" every once in a while. No pussies allowed!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

I don't want to grow up....ever.

So I was on the metro yesterday, heading down to HQ to have a meeting with a customer about some custom dresses. On I hop, and take a seat. I notice a mom with a little girl in a stroller (about 2 years old) and she's playing with some little paper thing. Then I notice this quite old man sitting near me and he's smiling and waving at the little girl. Then he's pulling something out of his, pocket. It's a lotto ticket. But instead of looking at it, he starts folding it. Slowly it takes shape; it's a little boat, and he hands it to the little girl. She puts her other little piece of paper in it and I notice it's a little paper dog. The nice old man has been making her little origami toys out of scraps of lotto tickets and metro transfers!

I'm all smiles once I realize this, and the man sees me smiling, and then starts making a dog and boat for me! He didn't say anything to me or anyone else the whole time, just motioned with his hands and smiled and nodded a lot, perhaps he didn't speak any french or english. He got off at Place D'Armes, gave me a little wave and was on his way. It's nice to think that he thought I would enjoy the toy as much as the little girl. I think I did.

I wish more metro rides were like that! The dog and boat are at HQ right now, so if you're stopping by have a little look.


The Cage Saga continues...

So for those of you who remember my post about the cage dress I made for Susie Bubble, and the tragedy of the lost cage skirt, have no fear, the tale has a happy ending!

While out shopping for some trims for another custom job I was working on, I came across this amazing floral trim, and I thought "well, this has Susie Bubble written all over it, and it's practically custom made for a cage skirt, it must be a sign". So I promptly snapped it up, whipped up the skirt, threw it in the post and hoped for the best.

Well, today's the day it's arrived safely, I can now sleep soundly... and everyone lived happily ever after.

The end.

For those wondering, I've also added the cage skirt to my Etsy shop here
The one I have listed is a small, but I'm doing custom skirts as well, weee!


Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Tim Barnard is a nice fella.

4"x6" offset printed and laminated on card stock

HQ pal and teen heart-throb, Tim Barnard stopped by the gallery for the "HQ Turns 2!" show this past weekend and donated some of his postcards. You can pick one up here or if you bump into Tim you can buy one directly for $2! A larger printed version of this is also available for $40. Oh, and by the way, this image, titled "The Silent Edge of Death", was taken from pages from his sketchbook, which he somehow (I'm assuming it was sorcery) pieced together for the printed version. Tim is awesome.

Glow In The Dark Munny Show

This Friday, June 13th, Off The Hook will be hosting "Glow In The Dark" a group exhibition featuring various artists custom work on the ever popular vinyl Munny figure. I've taken part in a few custom vinyl toy shows and you really can't beat the feeling of the paint brushing over the primed toy surface. Smooth like buttah! Here's a sneak peek of my Munny. Hope to see you all there!

Forever yours,


Monday, June 09, 2008

Spring 08 Puces POP!

For those of you who braved the rain last weekend to head out to the inaugeral edition of the Spring Puces POP, I'm sure you were happy you did! The church basement was packed to the brim with amazing handmade wares, and the church kitchen was filled with delicious Polish food.

Here are a few pics we snapped of the tables Tyson and I had. I took a few videos as well (with the help of MTAF, Parnell and Broundoor) however I'm still working out the kinks with uploading and editing, so hopefully I'll get those up by tomorrow. For now, here are some old-fashioned "photographs"...

Tysons bowling pins and acrylic paintings on canvas,
all with his signature glossy finish

Tyson's been painting up a storm! He finished a whole slew of new handpainted shoes,
and found some real suitcase gems to paint on

Shoes, suitcases and paintings

My bikini girl keychains, and a couple of brooches

Logs, purses, owls and pillows

My new "stumpy" owls, somehow anything looks cuter when it's squashed!

My log pincushions with their new flower pins.
I made these pins out of some vintage plastic flower supplies I bought off of Etsy.


Wednesday, June 04, 2008

HQ Turns Two!


Time flies friends, it really does. This Saturday (June 7th) is the two year anniversay party of Headquarters Galerie + Boutique! Two whole years of art and design, in our little shop/gallery on Amherst. We've dealt with pepper spray & construction, but we're still here, and now we have a tree in front of our store, yay! We've worked our butts off, but still love working with all the amazing artists and designers and meeting our truly interesting customers who are always so happy to discover an exciting new designer.

My advice is that if you're interested in purchasing some art, come early. We've already sold a few of the new Garrett Van Winkles (how much do I love typing his name!?), and there are quite a few pieces by some artists that are brand new to HQ, as well as many of our old friends such as Aya Kakeda, Chrissy Chung, Aaron McConomy, oscar nominee James Braithwaite (this is how I now exclusively refer to him..) Jen Storey, James Kerr & Neil Doshi, all of The YPF Mimi Traillette, The Parnell Collective, Natalie Reis, Rupert Bottenberg, Angie Mason, Ray Fenwick.

Ksenia & Krissy

As usual the party will last from around 6pm-11pm, music will be provided by our great friend and resident DJ Garry Vickers, wine and beers will be available, and I'm going to be baking up a storm Friday and Saturday to get those mini cupcakes ready for you all! The boutique is open all night for your late night shopping needs, and we're stocked up with fun summer dresses, purses & jewelry for the ladies and t-shirts, Brixton hats and Broundoor belts and wallets for the guys.


Let's do it right folks, 2 years is something to celebrate!

Mary & T