Friday, December 18, 2009

Last Big Holiday sale at SF Renegade!

This is Jean here! I'll be at this weekend's San Francisco Renegade Craft Fair! This will be our last sale of the awesome 2009 year! We're very excited for this show since I'll be doing some X'mas shopping myself!
But we'll have some great selection of....well...EVERYTHING!! plus sale items! Woo Hoo!

And also I'll have a special friend accompanying me at the show...Our great track jacket model! Dylan!
Yes, this handsome dude in this photo will be appearing at the show with me. and this is a rare chance to see him in person modeling our track jackets. What a treat! These jackets will also be marked down at the show. So better get them soon!

But hands off, he's mine!
Unless you pay me....then he's all yours. :D
See you there!

Friday, December 4, 2009

Chikabird + Piano Nobile Line Debut this Weekend at UCU!

If anyone is around this weekend in Seattle, please come by and say hello and check out our exciting new line of notebooks and cardcases with Piano Nobile at the BIG holiday Urban Craft Uprising show!
December 5th & 6th, 2009
11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. both days
Seattle Center Exhibition Hall
Admission: FREE!
Isabelle and Nickolas of Piano Nobile runs a multi-faceted design studio where they could be described as professional designers and colalborators. Isabelle has a painting and printing background with a great sense of material, color, and texture. Nickolas on the other hand has an architecture background with mad building skills in all realms whether it be funiture, design build or a large scale printing table. I'm pretty sure he can build a pyramid.... I remember reading that in his resume somewhere....
Not only do they have the perfect print studio with their self-designed and welded textile printing set up, they're also just a short bike ride away from our studio in Ballard! It's almost too good to be true!
(and yes, convenience does matter...)
Did I mention that they have a dog named Bauhaus, and also owns a sweet vintage Vanagon and Volvo?
Can you stand it?!....I can barely keep my composure thinking about all their awesomeness.

So here it is! Our collaboration line with PN! Okay, so come to UCU to see all the goods in person! You can also go to our shop to check out the entire PN collaboration line.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

LiT's Holiday Bazaar TODAY!

Isabelle of Piano Nobile will be doing a Holiday Bazaar at LiT Shades, Today Thursday November 19th, starting at 5pm with refreshments.
As you know, Chika & I have started a wonderful collaboration with Isabelle in creating some new printed notebooks and card cases since this summer. They will be available at the LiT shopl!
We're also currently working on some even more exciting stuff.....which we'll have to wait to share the full detail in a later, stay tuned! I know....the anticipation...

1906 E Prospect St - Capitol Hill
Save 30% on gifts for the home byKaarskoker, La Rousse, LiT Shades and Piano Nobile
Store hours 10am - 8pm

Monday, October 19, 2009

Look who made the papers!

Or should I say, magazine. Specifically, Do It Yourself Magazine - a Better Homes & Gardens Special Interest Publication - available at Home Depot, and perhaps at your local news stand.
It's a cute magazine, and we're in great company within the article, titled, "DIY:Best in Show". What can I say, I certainly love and rely on the blogosphere - but there's something really satisfying about seeing your work on a glossy magazine page. I guess that's my preference for paper talking.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Chicago, Here We Come!

Up late packing as usual before a show! Jean and I hop a plane to Chicago tomorrow to give the Chicago Renegade Craft Fair another go.
Last year we survived some brutal weather, and still did pretty well. Those Chicago shoppers are tough - willing to come out and support their crafters in flooding rain! Jean and I were impressed by the locals while we shivered in wet socks and tried to keep our books dry.
Not to jinx it, but the weather report is calling for the good stuff - so here's to dry socks and Fall Hoodies, and we hope to see you in Chicago!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Summer Urban Craft Uprising!

This weekend we'll be at the first Summer Urban Craft Uprising (UCU) indie craft show!
When: Aug 1st-2nd, Sat/Sun 11am-5pm

Where: Seattle Center Exhibition Hall (map)
What: Seattle's biggest indie craft show with a wide array of handmade goods, workshops, book signing, and more!

Why: Do you really need to ask? My answer to you is....why the hell not? it's gonna be 100+ degrees in Seattle this weekend (miserable!!), and why not come hang out inside at UCU to cool off and check out awesome stuff? You can do some shopping, meet some people, and then go back out to the giant dome fountain at the Seattle Center to have more fun! I think I might even do that during my lunch break. :D
We will have some new items like these wooden plant labels for your garden or plants! Every plant needs a friend just like all of us!
Another new exciting items we're gonna have are these notebooks we're debuting at UCU! These are made with LOVELY hand printed fabric by Isabelle of Piano Nobile. We recently befriended Isabelle and Nicholas and they're wonderful enough to print these fabric in time for us to sell at the show! I'm drooling over them myself....don't worry, I'll wipe off my drool.
We'll also have tons of other items marked down, too! I mean, who doesn't like to brag about how good of a deal they got, right?AND our dear and super talented friend, Ingrid will be selling her awesome bags at our booth as well! I'm totally excited to see what she'll be bringing!
So lot of exciting come by to check out our stuff and say hello!!..... and while your at it bring us some ice cone or treat, too! :D
Hope to see you there!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Meeting the Neighbors: Piano Nobile

Through a series of events and connections this Spring, we've been lucky to meet some nearby and very talented neighbors! Isabelle and Nickolas, founders of Piano Nobile are a short bike ride away from us in Ballard - and we have some exciting things brewing with them.

If you're in Ballard this Friday or Saturday, stop by Piano Nobile's home/studio for a Summer Studio Sale. Part of the City Stimulus event running all week to encourage folks to shop local - it's a great opportunity to do a little shopping and check out a stellar transformation in the Ballard industrial zone. Prepare yourself to get incredibly jealous of PN's space, talent, resources, furnishings, dog, Vanagon, and Volvo. The sale features handmade goods by some fantastic local designers and we feel flattered to be included in such a group.
We met with Isabelle last Monday. Over coffee, berries, and coffee cake - we decided to do some collaborating! Isabelle has been printing her own textiles for home and personal accessories, so her scrap bin contains a lot of high quality fabrics. The following pictures feature the various patterns and pieces she gave us, and what we did with them.

Anyone want a silk dupioni notebook? Perhaps taffeta or linen is more your style? These beauties make their debut at the Piano Nobile Studio Sale and are just the teaser for what we have in store for the Fall!

Piano Nobile Studio Sale
Fri&Sat July 17th&18th
11am - 6pm
908 NW 50th St
Seattle WA 98107

Friday, July 10, 2009

Bleach Fun!

New Chikabird bleached hoodies and track jackets! We got inspired by our friend, Dave, who used this process. We just love how every print is different with subtle variations.
We'll be selling them at the LA & SF Renegade show!

The process is pretty simple, but the result looks more than ordinary. The possibility to play with layers makes it super fun. It's easy to do and the materials needed it is so minimal that you can literally do it in couple hours. Here's a step-by-step instruction, so you can try it, too!
Step 1: Make a stencil with waterproof sheet. We used a medium weight Mylar here.
Step 2: Mix 50/50 bleach & water in a spray bottle.
Step 3: Spray back of Mylar with light adhesive spray to keep stencil secure.
Step 4: Use a the mist setting on spray bottle and try to spray evenly over the areas you want to cover. Dab any extra residue on the surface with a rag.
Step 5: Wait and watch the magic happen! You can see the color change immediately. It's so much fun to watch.
Step 6: Peel off stencil when you've achieved the result you want. The time can vary since you can play with something really subtle with less time, or let it sit longer with more contrast.
Step 7: Wash it in the washing machine right after to set the bleach so it doesn't continue the bleaching process. Ta-da, you're done!!

The best part about this process is that you can really play around with the bleaching time, layering, and even different texture. I like to overlap the stencil so it just adds another layer of visual interest.

Oh and look!! It's Hammer pants! Get it?'s a Hammer...with pants??
That was a little funny accident where the fold was....
Have fun!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Chikabird is going on tour!

Any volunteer roadies out there? We compensate with snacks, grateful smiles, barked orders and frazzled misdirection. Ha... ha... just kidding! I think we're all set with fantastic hosting and helpers for our 10 day tour of Southern California, and have plans to meet up with friends along the way. 10 days feels like a long time to be away from Seattle in the Summertime, but here we go!

This weekend we'll be in Los Angeles for the Renegade Craft Fair! Come see us and our new sweatshirts, Patch Kits, wooden buttons, and Plant Pals(tm). These haven't made it to Etsy yet, so get 'em while they're hot! The following weekend, we'll be in lovely San Francisco for Renegade, where I'll try to set a personal record for burritos eaten in a 5 day period. Sorry Jean.
Side missions: Jesse has give us the assignment to scope out the new Intelligencia "concept store" on Venice Beach. Visiting our fave shops in the Mission - Little Otsu here we come! Any other must-do recommendations?

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Chikabird in the news!

OK, so we're not credited anywhere (nor did we expect to be), but it's still a thrill to see our work mentioned in blogs like Remodelista!
By working some connections (aka Jean's fella, Dylan) we did the design and prototyping of the soft goods accessories seen in the latest home wardrobe system from Henrybuilt. In short, we did the leather handles, felt accessory pockets, and laundry basket! Take a look:
Leather Drawer Pulls with hand stitched reinforcement detail
Felt Accessory Storage Pockets for the interior door rail system
Hamper Drawer with integrated basket, constructed from mesh + recycled leather
It's great to see it all together, since we were designing a little in the dark (maybe we had a desk light on ;) and knew nothing of all the other lovely details that make the system so classic and warm.

The features around the dressing area are particulary appealing - the wooden jewelry knobs, the lighting, the shaping of the sliding tray tops - ahhhh having a system like this would make me an early bird.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

The Dog Days of the Birdhouse

What's this?
Another satisfied customer!
Jared asked me to make a custom bed for Riley, the office mascot, and Travis' roommate. I was planning on dragging my feet a little, but Jared took up a collection at the office, did all the fabric shopping, pattern layout, printing, transferring, and cutting. All I had to do was the stitching - easiest custom project ever!
One last pic, because she's just so sweet.
Thanks to the General Assembly fellas for the fun project and the dough!
p.s. That's the General Assembly logo on the bed.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Current Fave - Green Pornos!

If you haven't seen these (very) short films by Isabella Rossellini - they are really worth watching, especially if you like the idea of animal kingdom sex-ed videos with low tech props and costumes AND Isabella Rossellini's uniquely alluring line delivery.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

The randL Wallet Lives On....

An "old school" Square Root from the first 1000 batch of wallets that Chika made (about 5 years ago!?). I believe the color was originally baby blue and red. It doesn't look anything like that now, but still looks pretty awesome nonetheless, especially with all that wear!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009


We're happy to announce that our notebooks are now available at the Bellevue Arts Museum Gift Shop! How great is that? Especially since they ordered mostly covers from our collaboration with local artists, Slow Loris.

To save on shipping and take in a little cul-cha, Jean and I decided to personally deliver the order and check out the current exhibits.

Prepare to be hypnotized by this video by Etsuko Ichikawa. It shows her process of drawing with molten glass on paper.

Traces of the Molten State from Etsuko Ichikawa on Vimeo.

It's tempting for me to use this paragraph to discuss the appeal of the organic forms resulting from such an elemental process - but I think I'd take away from the work. It's badass that she draws with liquid fire, but when the results are stunning and grand and meditative and calligraphic and visceral and remind me how much I dig skilled mark making in drawing - how can I not share a few words that come to mind?

Friday, April 3, 2009

Comment dit on... Always Sunday?

Ahhhhh.... le sigh.... Je veux aller a l'existence.... That's how I feel when looking at the photos of pastries and places on the French Canadian blog, Toujours Dimanche
Oh la la.... pretty pictures of pretty things, but also a journal about opening a bakery in Quebec. A tour de force of our favorites at Chikabird: food, design, and renovation! The BEST part of Toujours Dimanche (pour moi) is that it's written bilingually in French and English. I can brush up on my rusty high school French while reading about opening a bakery. A sugar coated pill of multitasking... if you categorize blog surfing as a task... or a pill...

(p.s. When I write things like "pour moi", in my head I say it like Miss Piggy)

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Bowling Collage

I'm trying to improve my blogging and picture taking habits. Do and share more of both. Here's an attempt I made last Thursday, when I not only brought a camera on an outing, but also took it out of the case and used it! 

I'm a terrible photographer - I have no patience for settings, and a lousy eye for composition. I have a history of filling rolls and rolls of 35mm with unmemorable, unshare-able garbage - so I also can't shake the feeling that I'm wasting even digital space with lousy pictures.

Borrowing a little from Hockney and Muybridge I tried to turn 19 bad pictures into 1 interesting one. It's funny how repetition or excessive quantity can increase appeal. It's sort of an art school trick - if you make 200 of something - you've got yourself an installation! It's a pretty good trick.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Stalking the Interwebs: The Village Mews

The rabbit hole of the blogosphere can lead you all over the world, and sometimes it leads you to... yourself! And your friends, and your friends of friends, and your favorite things, and your own neighborhood!
That's where I found myself after an interview on the Design Sponge guest blog led me to google Chelsea Green's blog - The Village Mews. The Village Mews focuses on art and design in the Pacific NW - what's going on, who's doing what - with occasional mentions to other noteworthy happenings happening elsewhere.

I tend to use my blogroll as a way of mentally acquiring design and imagery from far away or long ago. One of my pitfalls is allowing the vastness of great works out there make me feel more wistful than inspired - "The Australia design scene is so cool.... So-and-so's already doing that thing I was thinking of doing.... I wish I lived in Brazil/Tokyo/Copenhagen/Cape Town.... How is that guy selling so much of THAT thing?.... I wish it was the 60's...." All very milk-toast thinking and certainly not productive.
So it was both exciting and encouraging to scroll down the Village Mews and see a lot of people and projects to which we are directly or indirectly connected, some work I'd seen online but didn't know was local, plenty of work that was news to me, and ourselves! In addition to reminding me of all the strong work in Seattle and nearby, it reminded me to not get discouraged by the vastness - but to focus on what I do in the pond I'm in.

Chelsea started The Village Mews in hopes of luring her NYC friends out for a visit. Once Summer starts, I'm sure she'll be hosting non-stop.