Category Archives: household affects

Christmas Wish List One

I try not to promote the commercialism of this time of year. Yet, the thoughts of having more pieces of junk to clutter my room is stupidly appealing. This month I will present ideas that may help those who are at a loss of what to get me their loved ones.

For this week I’m bringing you the awesome website Japan Trend Shop.

The first thing that drew me there was the Liquid Lamp.

But lamps get weirdly expensive. Almost $500 for this plus shipping? Okay let’s see what else.

Sushi candles. This may not be quite my taste, but I know a lot of my Japanophiles would love these:

Now as you all know I like cameras and I like Legos. Why not effing Lego-Cameras???

(I know they are not technically “Legos”, but “Nanoblocks”. Close enough.)

And one more thing that caught my attention (everything did, but I suggest perusing the site at your own risk) was the set of melty coffee cups called Treasure Mugs. Coffee + pirate reference? Win:

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Bottle of Stars

A few months ago I fancied I could create a ball of stars in a watery globe. Since I’m apparently part raven, my eye for home fashion usually involves glittery objects (and skulls). The globe was an inspiration. Also, I had a ton of star confetti that I didn’t know what to do with. (Several years ago I did a “Space-Themed Party” and thought a huge bag of glitter was a good idea.) Logical idea: take bottle, fill with water, add stars. Done. … No. The first experiment was just a huge clump of wet star glitter.

To give you an idea about these stars, think of those little stickers your teacher might have put on good grade papers (when they weren’t using up their “pencils with sunglasses saying ‘cool!'” stickers). I bought a bag of non-sticky silver versions of this: 

I learned the hard way that large pieces of foil don’t tend to float and the properties of water sort of… push things together. (I wanted to check the composition of glitter and found e-How: How is Glitter Made? – which explains that glitter cannot be explained. As I thought.)

How to go about this? I figured there must be an interim chemical. To the Google! I found several sites that told me relatively the same thing. Here’s e-How’s directions which I went with. My prototype was a series of miscalculations. I was also trying to use the large stars. Apparently large pieces of foil were just too damn heavy for my purposes.

Second round: The measurements were correct. I switched to regular glitter. (I don’t buy the stuff; bottles of it just sort of… collect in my arts & crafts bins). The effect was about right. But. I didn’t use any food coloring so it was water, rubbing alcohol, and oil. Canola oil is a rather ugly, uriney sort of yellow. The mix was wholly unappealing.

Third round: I asked Meg if there was any food coloring in the house. She said the bottles she remembers were really old and they must have been thrown out during the last move. I believed her not. This is a house in which NOTHING gets thrown away. Once I was told to cook a steak we had found in the freezer that was two years old. Still edible, but had the texture of mummy flesh. Most of her kitchen appliances are from the 60’s and 70’s. I searched everywhere. Finally I located a box of party and cake supplies over the fridge. It was a treasure trove that contained not one, but two boxes of food coloring. I also found a bag of mini chocolate chips. Bonus!

Red + Blue – the water turned a dark purple hue. I hoped it wouldn’t make my third attempt null by being too dark. I measured carefully and water plus oil plus glitter equaled a night sky in a bottle. Even though it wasn’t what I had started out to do, it made me happy. It does separate every few hours, but that gives me the satisfaction of being able to shake it up like a snow globe. Here is my final project:

Now I still have that damned bag of stars. Any ideas?

If You Buy These Things For Me, I Will Pay You Back In Love

“Seasoning malfunctioning is just like a misery raining day that ruins everything.” – That is an actual tagline from the kedo website. It is from the Introduction of their TeruTeru product. What is it you might ask? A salt & pepper shaker. Or maybe you could get their other seasoning shakers! They come in a… small variety. But they are beautiful:

Everything on the kedo site is fun and imaginative, but replaces common household items, such as a tea mug that has buttons on the side! So cute, but useful. You wrap the string of your tea bag around the button. What? I don’t drink tea, but I know a hundred people who need this. Okay, maybe ten.

Their coffee cup is just as weird. “Has life been a drag? Over busy lifestyle makes us loose interest to anything. And even a cup looks like other million cups it has no interesting point to be brought into you visual field.” This looks strange, I know, yet each piece serves a purpose:

But I think my favorite has to be the ice cream bowls. There have been companies who thought of the bowl/spoon merge, sure. Yet, these spoons are not like any spoon I’ve seen.

(Ice cream not included.)

I tried to find prices or mailing info on this site, I really did. It is impossible. This damn artsy company (which seems confused on what it’s name means – one section says “Keep Experience Design Object” the other says “Keenness Experience Design Originality”) appears based in Taiwan? So any inquiries are directed there. Start saving up your yuáns because I expect all of these by the Winter Solstice.

Why I Miss VCRs And Why The FBI Is Reading My Blog

Today I would like to hail and honor the beloved VCR – a creature our progeny may never know. Since this blog is in part about my ancient history, so I wanted to reminisce a little here. VCRs were a staple in my home growing up, mostly because we didn’t have fancy things like “cable”. We had basic cable so that’s how I was fed all my life lessons, but if we missed a show… VCR. Also, if there was a movie being played on television… VCR. (About 3/4ths of our movies were off the T.V.) The VCR was vital and during some tough times in my life it played a role of friend and comforter. In today’s wild world of technomancy we have a lot to thank for from the VCR.:

There is no intention of beating the walls of our technological structures; we do need faster, smarter mechanisms to power our lust for unadulterated hedonism information. We have DVRs and TiVo that record our shows now, but there’s an alloted storage space and then you have to remind DVRs to keep what shows you want or they’ll delete ones you aren’t using. (It’s like someone going through your closet and getting rid of a sweater because you haven’t worn it since last Christmas.) You can see shows online, streaming directly to your computer or phone (someday directly to your eye, then into your brain!). You might want to get your fee’s worth out of it, though.

Or you can be the pirate similar to those from when VCRs roamed the lands. DVD recorders do exist and operate in a similar capacity to VCRs. Since the phone/Internet/T.V. company convinced us to buy the super-3-way package we might as well use one to record and keep shows, right? (The giant Industries would lose profits off of selling the T.V. series in bulk if we all spent a little bit of money on recorders, though.) There are many who would prefer that or any of the previous options or… can I get a show of hands from those who don’t mind the RIAA watching their every move? There’s an element of paranoia with downloading. Big Brother is Watching.

I have so many fantastic memories of VCRs. Like that time Mom couldn’t get hers fixed because the repairman told her we had managed to run it into the ground within a year when it should have lasted 2-3 years. Or when my VCR of 3 years finally told me it was time to go by playing Mexican radio. Or all those years when, in the pit of utter loneliness, I would watch & re-watch Power Rangers episodes over again because they would except me for who I am. Here’s to you, VCR, king of the original pirates:

Bear Throne

As you all know, I love bears. I found a bit of a bear-themed obsession on Boing Boing surrounding this one, weird hunter from the 1860’s that I thought I’d share. It started with a picture of the man in his beautiful bear chair:

And then goes on to feature the chair on it’s own:

You may say the chair is morbid or tasteless, but I find it unique and quite charming. It looks comfy. Although it might be comfy in a way that you think it might grab and eat you while you sit in it. Like Chairy from PeeWee’s Playhouse.

Who is the man behind the genius of the Bear Chair? His name was Seth Kinman and you can read all about the crazy old coot if you click on that first pic and visit Boing Boing’s bizarre showcase on him.

Death Becomes Me

Today will be my post to fulfill the promise of cute skull items. After this, however, I will be taking a brief vacation from real posts. I’ll still be updating, but just random pics… possibly even from my own Picasa collection! You won’t know what to expect, so keep checking back. I’m going to use the extra time to plan for better blog posts, read, catch up on real life, maybe look for jobs. I don’t know. What is it that real people do? Actually, I’ll be reading Facebook and posting to Twitter. Anyway, on to the post:

To detract from what was probably an eerie sight to some, I’ll remind people that I don’t have any real animal bones. While I would like them, my collection consists of plastic items bought or gifted. One great story comes from several years ago. During a “girls night” my two friends (K. & K.) and I found a skull at CVS that was malformed to look ~scary~. We named it Nigel and had the idea to take pictures of him all over our campus. We then sent the photos to a mutual friend pretending to be a stalker. The effect was not what we had hoped for, but the process was fun.

You could wait for Halloween to roll around and buy your expensive decor at those “Spirit” stores or crafting places or perhaps plunk down a chunk of change at my dear Martha Stewart’s Grandin Road. But why wait? I, personally, am constantly in the market to beef up my collection. Most mainstream stores will surprise you with skull icon socks (I just got a pair at A.C. Moore of all places) and stores geared towards the “younger” crowd, such as Claire’s, tends to have a goth section to cater to everyone’s tastes. (Let’s face it, though, they’re just posers. Amiright?)

For a starting point you can check the blog Skulls and Bacon. It updates only periodically, but it has a hefty backlog and includes delicious delicious bacon paraphernalia. Two of my favorite things! Plus they have a themed T-Shirt:

In the realm of direct online shopping I have found several options (sans *hisss* Hot Topic). Mom recently sent me the adorable link Plasticland which has “New Victorian” goods. I’m assuming that’s ad-speak for “Steampunk”, but their products are geared towards the everyman – they have a happy, cheery feel and the “Victorian” style is borderline cartoony. I still like it. Their “bone collection” has several items I wouldn’t mind having, such as this:

(They also have several keys & owl products. I really want half of their store.)

I located an Ebay seller with a store called Skull Treasure which specializes in… eh, you know. They are currently working on the supplies right now, per the site, check back in April! I also check Etsy here & there and find wonderful & sometimes bizarrely horrible skull/bone items. There’s a store that is specifically called Skull N Bones Clothing, but it doesn’t have a lot of Skulls N Bones in the clothing section. It’s got a lot of sexy clothes for the womens. There are accessories that have skulls and I wouldn’t mind this wallet:
I am not impressed with this store and it seems a tad overpriced. It has a supply of “Rockabilly & Swing Dresses”, however. Check it out if you need those. And… yeah. Here’s that Hot Topic link: summer skull dresses for all!

Owls on Bottles!

Did Grandma have some old glass baubles or bottles that you thought were ornate, but useless? They could be pretty valuable. Check them. Check them now. I’m here to help you on your road to compulsive hoarding.

Apparently I’m doing a week of collections (what with yesterday’s super-ring post). I was looking for more owl/bottle combinations as I’m a collector of both. Of course there are several types of wines with lovely owl icons (which I hope to try someday, but most of them I have to special order). Then I found the Owl Drug bottles. Owl Drug is still around in Texas and you can find more modern bottles, collectible through their site. Yet, there are older ones out. Beautiful ones.

(Via this article about collecting poison bottles.)

(This one is being sold for $175 on Antique Bottle Trader.)

Since these come from a drug store, a lot of them are commonly found on “Poison Bottle” sites. I have a new goal in life for my bottle hobby. If I ever acquire the funds to purchase these you will see items like this in my house:

(All of these found on Southeastern Antiquing and Collecting Magazine.)

This page has more pics of the Owl bottles, but the images were huge: Mysteries of the Universe – The Owl Drug Company Bottles.

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