Friday, June 24, 2005

Another Banff Travel Blog by Dave

I knew this place (the Banff Springs Hotel interior which looks an awful lot like the Overlook Hotel in 'The Shining') was creepy, but I found this stained glass window.
The most interesting guy I've shot in Banff since I got here 6 days ago.
How do you know you're working for an American Company? When their trailers look like this.

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Leave the Magic Squirrels Alone!

While I'm super busy with sewing jobs this week, I'll regale you with Dave the husband's pics from his whereabouts in Banff Alberta.

Being 30 feet tall gives Smokey an advantage for seeing potential fires off in the distance.
I'm sure it's supposed to be a bear but it resembles a giant racoon.
Seems like a lowly gas station for sale...
Ahhh, it's a junk shop inside!

UPDATE: I'm wrong, Dave says it's not in that above mentioned gas station. He goes on to say as soon as he stepped inside the place the shop owner asked him right away if he'd like to buy a bear rug.

Monday, June 20, 2005

Baby, it's Cold Outside...

There's Bjorg standing on his little ice floe. Actually he's a foot high and the 'ice' are two slabs of 1 1/2" cedar. He also looks to be seeking out the distance for play partners to wrestle with.

Sunday, June 19, 2005

A Reader Asks...

Bettsi at Tender Arts asked me a question a while ago (Your life as a tribal leader sounds very interesting. Do you think you would have the same interest in bears without it?). Before I forget, which is often, I'll respond to it now. I've always liked bears and it so happened that I moved to a town that harbours +/-100 resident black bears living in the surrounding mountains and forests. I started carving bears as a way to use some of the better pieces of pine, cherry and cedar I salvaged from construction sites. The rest gets burned for indoor heat. The name came to me last winter while watching 'Dances With Wolves' on late-late nite TV, interrupted with commercial breaks consisting mostly of Lakota Vitamin Supplements endorsed by Chief Ten Bears himself, Floyd 'Red Crow' Westerman. At the same time my wooden bear population hit double digits. Like The Dude in 'The Big Lebowski' who was vehement about rug in his apartment tying its decor together, Chief-Ten-Bears ties this blog up for me.

Saturday, June 18, 2005

I 'heart' polar bears

I love 'em. They're the largest carnivore in North America and they look totally wierd out on the ice floes of Northern Manitoba. I'll still pump out black and brown bears... at the moment I'm entertaining the proliferation of polar bears on my fireplace hearth. That's where my bears live after they get two coats of clear varnish (for surface protection and brighter colour).

Wherever you go, there you are.

I don't like to keep away from posts this long but life has a way of buggering one's time away, like contract sewing gigs that pay and a husband who is leaving for a week long conference shoot on Monday. My mum is 'threatening' to visit me soon and I've got to get the mounds of serged fabric off the floor before she arrives. On that note, I thought I'd share to you this shrine I made for my departed Dad. HIs grave is a good 8 hour round trip from where I live and it's been years since I last visited. It upsets my mum that I don't go more often so I built this shrine to oblige her and have ancestor worship in the convenience of my own home. Some people might think it's a bizzare way to remember someone; it's common in chinese households to have a shrine of some sort. I made mine because I couldn't find one that wasn't overbearingly ticky-tacky, plasticy (Is that a word?) or expensive in Vancouver Chinatown. Here's to you, Dad.

That Ikea Pattern Again

The British Family likes to call this kind of duplication 'an heir and a spare'. I'm just happy to have another set to put on the bed while the green one is in the wash.

Sunday, June 12, 2005

That Ikea Pattern

This is for Tania who mused out loud on her blog about the quality of this particular fabric at Ikea. I've bought 19 metres (20 1/2 yards) of it in 2 colours and can say it doesn't bleed or shrink in the wash and comes out from the dryer nearly wrinkle free. It's a good buy for the width (155cm/62") wide and is a great compromise between the husband who doesn't want flimsy chintz and the wife who can't stand sports themes. Some people might find the canvas weight of this fabric too thick for duvet covers/pillowcases; I like it very much for the durability and warmth against Whistler's cold evening temps.

Latest Bears

These polar bears are the fruit of my latest labours. I've got to say, they are my favorite of all the bear species. I notice my body shapse has changed a fair bit since the first one carved 7 months ago.

Saturday, June 11, 2005

June Month of Softies

This is my bug themed submission to loobylu's Month of Softies for June.

Finally finished my Wee thingie

I meant to submit a wee to Wee Wonderfuls months ago but always forgot to buy a wooden egg whenever I do an errand at the local hardware store (usually once a week) until I made a special trip for just that, a 40km round trip. Whistler is techically rural so a car, preferably a 4x4 truck, is pretty much necessary.

Update: Hillary has posted my bear in her Wee gallery. I'm honoured!

Thursday, June 09, 2005


Hi Roscoe, how're you doin'? He loves a good fishing story and can't wait for the Fall salmon run. You can find him every October perched on a rock in the middle of a running stream, just a' catchin' those babies right, left and centre.

Why I tolerate Costco

In general I like to shop for stuff... with the exception of my bi-monthly trips to Costco. Ugh, it's an industrial warehouse with concrete floors and unnamed aisles. Shoppers run amok in alarming disregard. Case in point, once I was rummaging around for bed sheets and found a styro tray of warm, runny sirlion steak wedged between two rows of 480 thread count queen sheet sets. If I didn't spend so much time as a child tagging along with my Mum at Kelly-Douglas, buying wholesale candy and cigarettes for our little corner neighbourhood store on Vancouver Island, I probably wouldn't wince (as much). It's just that there is so much of all the same thing, all the time. Four years ago I made the mistake of buying a kirkland brand fleece vest and wore it for a little while, only to bump into 2 other woman in a one week period wearing the same item. Then and there I felt like ripping it off my back and burning it in the middle of the Village (also known as downtown Whistler). I couldn't afford to live here if it wern't for Costco and I do appreciate the fact that they pay their workers a living wage and have a great return policy. It's the labourious drudge of earning money and then spending it on the same nondescript stuff I got two weeks ago that bugs me (groceries, sundries, automotive), all the while going round in monotonous circles and playing bumper carts with every fourth shopper. Half an hour later I'm at the checkout and feel an underwhelming achievement as I fork out another $300. This place gives me the least amout of enjoyment for the most amount of money spent, bar none.

On a positive note I do like the fact that the Richmond Costco I usually go to is very close to the Vancouver Airport runway. Those planes fly over so close that you can get a real good look at them at the parking lot.

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Dedicated to Way Hot Apartments Everywhere

I read on Wee Wonderfuls about her need of cold scenery and I present to you a pic of Dave's 4 x 4 Jimmy (rest in pieces) between 15 foot walls of stratified snow. I'm guessing the locale is the vehicle access road on Whistler Mountain. Hope this cools you down!

Sunday, June 05, 2005

A Shout to my homegirl Jenny

... in Paradise Valley, Squamish that is. She called me about a garden party last weekend and I happened to mention about crafter blogs. Jen, here's a small list of the ones I regularly check on for inspiration:

Wee Wonderfuls
Rock, Paper, Scissors
Angry Chicken

I hope they pique your interest!

Update: There's more...
The Small Object
Naive Knitting
M. Patrizio Illustrations

Life, or something like it

Oy, I don't know what hit me... I think it's a bit of a cold/flu bug and it's a good thing it can't be spread from blog to blog. Life has been busy of late with a few wedding video jobs, helping with my mum's 3rd party property damage insurance claim with 2 different companies (it's a convoluted story, nothing very interesting except I have to help her with english portion of the matter) and Dave the husband being sick with an odd inner ear infection that makes him reel a bit on his feet. Anyway, I've still making bears in whatever spare time I've got. There are 3 polar bears and my June month of softies on the go and I'll get those pics up as soon as they're done. Here's an odd bit of craft I finished recently of a plaque made of just bear heads. It's a good way of using up scraps and carving for
practise (my thumbs thank me for this). Also, It kind of reminds me of the neat hobo art I've seen for sale on eBay.

Board detail

I really like this guy in particular. Watch for this one to be duplicated very soon.

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Lazy Dazy Bear

He likes to eat just enough to feel comfortable, and then fall asleep in a bed of fir boughs. Life is simple for my bears.

Update: Herb has a new home with local Bear Researcher Michael Allen, a small tribute to the large amount of importance his work means to all black bears and bear lovers everywhere.