Saturday, May 31, 2008

an engineer's guide to cats

Today was spent in a massive organization frenzy in my apartment workspace. While alot of stuff goes on down at the studio, I still do quite a bit at home since I tend to get alot accomplished on weekends when I'd rather stay away from downtown. I did, in fact, find the surface of my dining room table despite the piles of collage paper and bits, things to be sewn, broken cat eyes to be harvested for restoration parts, jewelry findings in little plastic bags, and all sorts of odd things stuck via glue to the surface (It was accomplishing an interesting decoupage effect, but I had to nix it.)

In other news, it was the first really nice sunny and warm day in a while where I could throw open all the windows.....

Thursday, May 29, 2008

cranky circulation desk rant

Stupid weather. Stupid paper store that no longer has purple sparkly paper I planned to use for an upcoming chap. Stupid South Loop and its tourists, and bums, and you can’t stop on the sidewalk 5 seconds without being hassled or spare changed. Stupid cold apartment. Stupid headache. Stupid harpies on the etsy forums. Stupid poem. Stupid revision. Stupid job and annoying people who don’t want to shell out cash for textbook. Stupid Chicago, where every place that makes my favorite things (coffee, sandwich, Italian soda, raspberry smoothie) gets shut down in a couple years. Stupid unreliable men. Stupid clingy men. Stupid me for being attracted to them…

now available from dgp

Deep in the Safe House:
Ten Poems After Henry Darger
Maggie Ginestra
dancing girl press, 2008


Wednesday, May 28, 2008

We are just aflush with cute little woodland creatures in the shop lately ...these are my current favorites, they actually have little faux fur tails. Watch for more in the coming week or so...

Monday, May 26, 2008

anxiety dreams

I'm curently working on a series of poems inspired by them. Besides all the recurring dreams that a lot of people have (plane crashes, tooth loss, dreams about work, test-taking without having ever been to class) I also tend to have a couple, in different variations, over and over again. They are actually similar, and I know, stem from the same anxieties. In one, I have to move suddenly, or leave during a distaster, and have to pack up my stuff in some easily transportable way, which is never easy. Now granted, these anxieties travel over into real life. I hate moving. I’ve lived in the same apartment for eight years and can’t even imagine gathering the impetus to be able to psychologically handle a move. Moving into the studio was draining, but easier since I was buying new stuff and moving it in, and not really as stressful (of course there are still a few things that haven’t yet made the move, since car access is limited.) Saturday, as I packed things to go to the antique fair I felt that same anxiety, even though we had use of a van and plenty of hands, I still was anxious about getting everything from the studio to the van, the van to the tent, and all back again. I don’t know why it freaks me out. I’d say it’s being much too attached to things, but really, as far as that stuff goes, I’m much less attached to it than my things at home. The other , and rather more common variation on this dream involves me having to wrangle up scattering things. Occasionally papers, sometimes children, often kittens for some reason. Because we have to go. Because nothing can be left behind. Needless to say these dreams tend to occur when I’m stressed. The fear they evoke is similar to the dreams I had when I was a kid of sitting n the middle of traffic and knowing I had to move or get squashed by an eighteen wheeler, but being unable to will my legs to move (thank god I outgrew those..)

Thursday, May 22, 2008


1. The dulcet blog has in fact been resurrected. I still feel like I have multiple personalities, but I need something more connected to the store and perhaps a little less, well, private than this one. Not that I air all the dirty laundry here or give anyone a unique glimpse into the inner depths of my soul (if I had a soul), but I can just post pictures of pretty things there and link to all the other cool little style blogs. (which reminds me, I still have to, when I have a couple hours, redo my poetry links on this blog..)Besides, I'm sure you all get sick of me nudging you to go buy things (though I do adore those of you who do!) Plus, I am probably boring to death all you manly men out there...I promise to talk more about sports, or cars, or porn or whatever it is you guys do and less about boxy purses and vintage s&p shakers (two of my current obsessions)..:)

2. in the bird museum is ever more nigh...we have a spectacular cover, I have a final proof in my hands I am working through with a fine tooth comb, and we may have a book, indeed, before the end of summer if all goes well. Which also reminds me, there is a feature on the chapbook kollecktiv up at Jacket.

3. I am still printing Maggie Ginestra's Darger book, Deep in the Safe House, , and hope to get the cover scanned and the webpage up in the studio tonight. I'm working 9-5 this week, which means plenty of work time, so I'm milking it for all it's worth. Also on the agenda today, to finish laying out the next two books. Mind you, I'm on the verge of falling asleep at my desk at work this very moment, but I have been busy at night...

4. In the past week I have made approximately eighteen paperweights, 5 reliquary boxes, 1 pencil box, dyed 35 odd slips, and made about eight sets of hairpins, 8 naughty little notebooks (you guys will love these) five cool new necklaces with watchparts, and designed and printed three new notecard designs. Left to do before Saturday's craft fair: Make more flasks and those cigarette case wallets. Make a few repairs and embellishments on some of the slips. Cut and package all the new notecards. Also, I wanted to get some new collages done, but I'm not sure that's going to happen.

5. Tuesday night's reading a Series A was a small crowd, Getting down to there in Hyde Park from downtown was actually less of a hassle than I imagined, and the arts center is really cool, a big modern building with all sorts of things happening. Sarah Rosenthal was great and I traded her for her chapbook sightings(a+bend press). Next up is a feature at the Cafe in a couple weeks, but that is always fun and rather familiar and non-threatening.

6. I will repeat...Starbucks is fuckin evil..I've been there twice today...

7. Unreasonable-sleep deprived-over caffienated-poetry primadonna-pouty moment..I just walked by front door display case here in the library and someone upstairs put together a display of books and dvd's made by CC alumni. The most noticeable fiction alumni is Joe Meno and a couple other fictioneers who actually still teach in the department. No poetry. I know there's at least a couple big CC alumni poets out there. And I KNOW for a fact there's a freakin copy of the fever almanac upstairs..but what do I know. ..

new & lovely

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

I SO...

am in the wrong business/art. Co worker A today asks co-worker B (and very awesome newly minted Photography MFA) how much to purchase one of the prints in her thesis show. Apparently $1500 if I overheard them correctly (and I think I did though I may have been choking on my coffee). On the other hand, you will be able to purchase my ENTIRE thesis late next year when Ghost Road publishes it for a mere $13.95...

I'm just saying...


wicked alice | spring 2008

featuring work by:

Rachel Dacus, Jen Blair, Bethany Carlson, Elizabeth Bruno, Elizabeth P Glixman, April Dressel, Kelii Rush, Suzanne Grazyna, K Goodkin, Amy Bracken Sparks, Kirsten Holt, Amy L Sargent, Juliet Cook, and Lily Scarborough Heehs.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

This Saturday we will be here. I've been making things like a madwoman the past couple weeks, so we will have tons of luscious new slips in delicious summery colors like lemon and tangerine. Fresh new notecards, paperweights, boxes, notebooks, and all manner of other lovely things (you can see a sneak peak at flickr.) Whatever doesn't sell this weekend will be in the shop on Sunday, so watch for an update.

I also hope to have more of these finished in the next day or so, hairpins made from vintage beaded earrings. My grandmother had scads of these kind of earrings when I used to raid her jewelry box, so I'm unusually attracted them (moreso than my usual attraction to pretty sparkly objects..)

Friday, May 16, 2008

series A

I will be reading with Sara Rosenthal on Tuesday night (provided I don't get lost trying to navigate myself via public transportation to Hyde Park)..details below.


Series A is held at the Hyde Park Art Center in Chicago at 5020 S.
Cornell (easy to get to from Metra or the #6) at 7:00.

Sarah Rosenthal is the author of three chapbooks: How I Wrote This Story (Margin to Margin, 2001), sitings (a+bend, 2000), and not-chicago (Melodeon, 1998). Her work has appeared in numerous journals including Bird Dog, Milk, Xcp (Cross Cultural Poetics), can we have our ball back, 14 Hills, Tripwire, Shampoo, Tin Lustre Mobile, Mirage/Period/(ical), Tinfish, and Bombay Gin, and her work has been anthologized in hinge: A BOAS Anthology (Crack Press, 2002), the Faux Press Bay Area Anthology (Faux Press, 2005), and The Other Side of the Postcard (City Lights, 2005). Her interviews with Bay Area poets have appeared or are forthcoming in Aufgabe, Jacket, How2, Rain Taxi, and Xantippe.

Kristy Bowen is the author of the fever almanac (Ghost Road Press,
2006) as well as several chapbook projects, including feign (NMP,
2007) and at the hotel andromeda, a collaborative book arts project inspired by Joseph Cornell. Her second collection, in the bird museum is forthcoming from Dusie Books early this year. Another, girl show, will be published by Ghost Road Press in 2009. She edits the online litzine wicked alice and runs dancing girl press & studio, which publishes work by women poets.


For more information, please check the web site: You can find a link there to listen to past readings.

Thursday, May 15, 2008


"On my birthdays for the past couple of years, I’ve looked in the mirror and thought about how I’ve outlived her. Like so many girl poets, I thought I would be famous, and I thought I would be dead, and here I am, none of those things."

(thanks for the heads up, Daniela...)

Wednesday, May 14, 2008


new in the shop...

I am, sadly, behind on just about everything, so bear with me.

There is the spring wicked alice, a couple chaps a bit behind schedule, and no doubt several things I’ve flagged in my e-mail and forgotten about…so feel free to nudge me …

Instead of working on these things I’ve been battling a love/hate relationship with etsy, trying new sites, building a website, deleting a website, trying new approaches to no avail. Last week, they basically hid vintage items rather trickily in the search, all based on some rather vocal whining by strictly handmade sellers who apparently have a problem with vintage (and supplies) being on the site. The result was catastrophic for a lot of vintage shops (one clothing shop like a 90% drop), and seriously punched a hole in my sales (I only have some vintage in my shop, but it’s a big seller.) Thus also, letting the air, temporarily out of my dream of maybe, if I work my ass off, doing all this poetry, editing, art & craft stuff full-time at some not too distant point in the future. It was a possibility two weeks ago, not so much anymore given the slowdown…I’m looking for ways to regroup., and even considered leaving etsy , had to stay away from the forums all weekend lest I say something bitchy and get banned. I even had another shop in the process of set up elsewhere, but in no way would it get the sort of traffic etsy does. I'm just scared they'll eventually push it out altogether, or split the site. But I’ve decided to dig my heels in, partly because I love etsy, shopping and selling, and it works for me most of the time, and, honestly, partly out of spite for the people who want to drive vintage & supplies out. I have a sexy new banner, some awesome to new thriftstore goodies (eek!), and I’m not going ANYWHERE…

In cheerier news, I am so psyched to know that some of our little billet-doux's are gracing the inventory at jan & aya in NYC . I hadn't yet visited their site until this afternoon, and the place looks rather lovely (and they have cake!!) If you're up around those parts, definitely stop in. If not, you can still get one from us--there are about 20 or so left, but once they're gone, they're gone for good...

This weekends plans are making stuff for Handmade, which is moving out of the bar and into the Chicago Antique Market through September. We'll be there Memorial Day weekend and in July and September with books and other fine loveliness...

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Last week was a clusterfuck of week which started with slow etsy sales due to the search change (and all the attendant drama) and ended with a sick kitty and a hole in my kitchen wall...

While sales are picking up again, the kitty is better, and they repatched hole they punched to find a phantom leak yesterday..I still feel off kilter, subject to disaster at any moment...

Monday, May 05, 2008

Thursday, May 01, 2008


Some spring like weather and it seems everything has bloomed over night, the magnolias in front of the catholic school, the azalea bushes. For once, I was not freezing whilst waiting for the bus. It's crazy how good weather so influences my mood, hell even what time I manage to get out of bed and the difficulty thereof...Plus, not only was it absolutely gorgeous out, but I managed to arrive at the studio at the exact same moment as the UPS guy, who brought me all sorts of exciting goodies like bubble envelopes, a badly needed toner cartridge, more white paper, and, the piece de resistance, a killer tape dispenser. (actually I am seriously thrilled with this one, having been battling a rather sucky handheld one I never quite figured out how to use...)

May is my favorite month, nice weather before the humidity kicks in. Always the end of the school year (whether I'm in school or not, working where I do, it's always nice to see the place clear out..) dgp, as always has much planned, including the hightly impending (as in the next week or so) release of Maggie Ginestra's Darger poem series, a chap by Anne Heide, and a collaboration by Miriam Pirone and Edward Smallfield towards the end of the month. I am also gearing up for our booth over Memorial Day Saturday (courtesy of Handmade Chicago) at the Chicago Antique Market. I'll be making new stuff for that all month, as well as stocking up on chaps for the Printers Row Fair a couple weeks later.

I get to spend the whole day in the studio tomorrow since I'm library bound on Saturday, so I hope to make some progress on a few things there and at home over the weekend. I have some new collage and notecard ideas, some shadowboxes aching to be filled, and, of course, chaps to be printed. (*sigh*) Just thinking about it exhausts me...