Helloweek. The week when Halloween is over for adults, but still hasn’t happened yet for kids. Its a holiday misfire. Are you happy? Oh I’m ready to unleash. When this month ends i will put on a disguise and go full hallow. Looking forward to something-different November
Sometimes my energy goes for a walk outside in Leslieville, and occasionally gets invited inside for drinks. Here i am going inside On the Other Hand jewellery shop at 1015 Queen St E. You have to buzz and wait. They look you over and will unlock the front door if they like what they see, just like they do downtown at the fancy shops in Yorkville.
The owners are halfway through painting a mural on the exterior of their abode, so today the store appears to be ‘molting’ into a colourful maturity, just like the rest of the neighbourhood.
Leslieville is an area of Toronto that is emerging. When people say an area is emerging it means condos are emerging. When condos appear it means the cool artsy shops and cafes that were struggling a decade ago, and now thriving, will soon disappear. One by one they’ll be gobbled up by bigger businesses. Franchise outlets will devour the cute sandwich shops and the indy cafés will go Starbucks and On the Other Hand jewellery store will … probably survive. These gals are survivors, and what they do is very unique.
On the Other Hand jewellery shop is run by two girls. Below is Karen MacRae who’s a big name Canadian jewellery designer and gemologist. She’s fun because she’s happy and she’s happy because she has a great job and super interesting life making things with her hands.
She took me a behind-the-scenes tour of her craft studio, which soon after became a shopping spree in the front end of her store.
On the Other Hand Jewellery in Leslieville makes Custom Jewellery
Too broke to buy new bling? Can’t afford hand-crafted keepsakes made from gold, silver and Mexican wood? Me neither, so I was thrilled to be bribed. It was a bribe the scribe scenario. The goods are certainly not free to me, as you understand reading this artful text that took so much time to compose.
While Karen tends toward traditional fine gold and silver and she uses the best diamonds and gemstones to make superb World class custom engagement rings, Sabrina likes to ‘break the mold’ and use more unconventional materials – like wood.
Above is silver ring with a Bocote wood insert. Each piece is beautifully unique, with striking patterns of swirling grain. Native to Mexico, Central and South America, this wood is also used to fabricate musical instruments and gun stocks. Sabrina just wrote about breaking tradition by using unconventional materials to make jewellery on the OTOH blog.
I had an idea for a TV show – Is this the End of the World? Thirteen scenarios. Every episode would be a meltdown of some kind. Start with Trump in Episode One – a deranged US president makes an apocalypse to get re elected. Second episode – environmental disaster – Trump again. Third episode, economic meltdown. That episode follows Trump’s America First economic action plan to its logical conclusion – class warfare.
unfinished skull ring at On the Other hand jewellery
Is this the End of the World? series would have Metallica ‘Four Horsemen’, as theme song. That’s whats this ring is about. Its one of the first things that caught my eye when i went inside the jewellery studio in the back of the shop. Its a ring for the end-of-the-world.
Sabrina Melendez is a Swiss trained and certified goldsmith. Together with Karen they’re a team and a couple of kindred spirits who frequently collaborate. They’re inherently happier than the rest of us because they have fun and interesting lives and as such they seldom argue with each other. Its easy to get giggling and have a blast with people who are happy.
Sabrina is a work horse who is always doing something. While I was messing around with Karen in the back she was doing engravings and setting a ring. She never stopped, except to come out and give me one of her pieces. a necklace
Sabrina took a break to give me one of her necklaces, a silver Slinky-like band on a black leather cord. It has a great weight and sophistication. It has a subtle charm. I love it.
Sabrina wrote this abo0ut the necklace in an email she sent to me later that afternoon,
…usually when I make a piece of jewellery it’s around a pretty stone. That’s my starting point. The point of the exercise with those necklaces was to use metal pieces that I had available for something cool. So I had this silver metal tube available. (making tube is a labor intensive process). The tube sat at my bench for months before I decided to make some really simple necklaces with them. I also had this beautiful Japanese cord ( the necklace part) It’s made in Japan, it’s great quality and the cord has this sort of shimmer to it, you can tell it’s well made. So I decided to put these 2 simple elements together, the cord and the silver tube, and one shows off the other I think.
What’s so cool about On The Other Hand jewellery is that anything is possible. If you have an idea or some materials and a sketch these gals can breath it into life. On the Other Hand jewellery makes luxury in Leslieville.
Hello my demographic. Now that I’m midway through the process of over-analyzing what blogging is and my approach to it, I’m prepared to dip my toes in the water and you are invited along for the swim.
I’m going to keep my captions as minimal af to get through it. I’m not going to say things, explain things. I will omit. I’ve a lot going on, I have been busy and work-focused and yes it is harder to personally blog when you have a FT but because I’m a “mood based” blogger, emotional, and ultimately not phony, I can’t fake it. I get pleasure from this so if I am miserable in real life I cannot do this. I need to be inspired.
A blog is a mirror of your life. My friend, who is also a famous blogger, told me she is an emotional mute when it comes to business, referring to her blog, she just gets’er done. Which I fucking admire. I haven’t left the game I’ve just let it gather time, space, and change. The last year of my life has seen much, I can’t even.
I was just speaking to a writer, an editor, who said he loves his privacy. He is also a fan of mine. From a distance. I said by the time you write about someone they can already be gone. Well actually, here is the entire chat transcript because yolo. I’m bold. As well as my writing is the writing in bold.
Yeah. I’m a morning person
I like to get up and do creative work early with a coffee
I’m a writer / editor
Editing in the afternoons
I lurked you know
sorry my laptop is ancient sometimes letters i type dont make the cut
Im actually planning to write today
blog. its been ages
Hahaha, don’t worry. I totally understand phantom letters
I’m a total fan
The way you capture the version of a life.
I admire your storytelling
thanks. it has been so long now that i overthink it. i usually write about normal to crazy things but in my manner i feel like people get caught up in the emotion, as they should, but i feel too exposed.
i should just do it and think less
anyway we will see how it pans out
Exposure is a price, certainly
i just came up with my blog title
People like a story, tell it.
I couldn’t do what you do for that very reason
yeah u have to omit a lot of things
I like my privacy too much
I just want to keep my job
I can imagine
HAHAHA, of course
I am just so comfortable with anonymity
I’d never want to lose it
well why the hell are you talking to me then
You spoke to me first!
I’m sticking to that
life moves so fast by the time u want to write about someone they can already be gone
but yeah u can own it raymi followed your breadcrumbs (he liked my picture first, fact)
Oh I’ve definitely felt that
Actually, I find it easier to write about people / experiences that are deeper in the rearview
I need the time to tell myself the story over and over again
For it to get interesting
well they always come back to me and see ive written about them
or it feels like it
carries more weight
plus everyone knows everyone in this town.
so if i hang out with someone theyre like oh i know them, then go find out everything
or im paranoid
I find time shrinks the town
I’ve been here 20 years
And I know more people than Id like now
u have to like duck behind dumpsters and hydrants
Nah, I’m thoroughly uninteresting I think
And aim to keep it that way!
something tells me youre not uninteresting
One of the team is going away for awhile to travel, see the world, all that, so the week was spent (drinking) saying goodbye. I’ll feature all the pics of the goodbye pub party soon. I love my work fam.
Creepy. The overcast sky, ew. Not to be religious but isn’t it like playing with fire to destroy a church? A couple churches burned down in my hometown before by delinquants. If one believed in God they might fear death a little more if they demolished a church?
I work in Lesbianville, I mean Leslieville, sorry, am I that guy who is still making tasteless politically incorrect jokes…actaully I kinda am. I work with younger people and live with even younger people. I’ll be like sitting with them in the livingroom and their friends after work in my corporate clothes and it’s just pure jokes. I feel like I have lived many lives and it’s a thrill to live another one again and basically be Peter Pan forever. SOMEONE has to tell these kids what’s up. It keeps me young.
Kelly Bundy outfit day at work. I am going to go get some new office duds and by “new” I mean I’m going to Value Village and targeting fugly (adorable) eurotrash patterned, crazy loud sweaters to pop my collar through. I like to dorkify myself. What is wrong with me? An old friend of mine, when worked in an office, used to rock hilarious dress shirts and vest combinations… it commands respect and is a delight to the eyes. I just want to look like Frida fucking Kahlo goes to the circus.
Who else feels like they have to stay super busy or they’re going to explode? I think that is a good way to be, creatively ADD, to live a life like a painting, feverishly consuming one experience after another. We are like animals. Each night the sun goes down it comes up again and we rise to take on another thing to conquer, victory to achieve, level to rise. We always have to do better and build our little empires like ants who don’t know the apocalypse is coming.
If you maintain the ability to be enchanted by life then you will be alright.
I’ve decided to come out from under my rock and do things that I want to do again. See my friends. Be more social. Make new friends. New friends is where it’s at I am addicted to people. As much as I need my alone time. Anyway enough about me.
I have been told that what is wrong with me is my pleasure diet is too high but how much are you supposed to listen to what others say about you specifically that of old bastards. We all choose how we live our lives right? I indulge and then I like, starve. I don’t mind suffering as I am conditioned to it but I know that it makes the sweet all the sweeter.
Now that is one well done sausage.
How prophetic although I doubt they meant about the february heat wave we experienced last week.
Spotted in Yorkville. Someone’s Valentine’s Day was lit.
Greatest place ever. Authentic. I am all about escapes. I’m a culture sponge.
There’s a pub near work that has a donair on the menu cos they’re all Nova Scotians. Sick find bro. Although this meat isn’t legit thinly sliced and more of a “meatloaf” and it’s always a joy to watch the chef with his huge (un-netted) beard make it I mean, it’s a giant beard, long and scraggly and out of control but I am too shy to say anything. I will just calmly wait to find hair in my donair.
I am not one for desserts but this one I allow because I am a doormat. It’s a banana peanut butter pie and the bananas are still bananas it’s bananas. This is from my new locale that I am taking a time off from because I don’t like to be that girl although people always remember me. I need to start wearing disguises?
This day I treated myself to a pizza sub it was amazing. I think I saved a quarter to eat back at the office. Genius move. The owners of this particular location are insanely friendly, community-minded and sweet – it’s shocking!
They have cheap champagne here too I will have to bring Heather.
Plus this magical band. I call them, “Santa has an identity outside of Christmas”.
The t-shirt guys downstairs had this up on the wall. Love them. Getting shirts made soon and hoodies.
As you can see I am keeping busy. I went to a talk. About Mindfulness. Start-up Mindfulness. It was interesting and insightful. I really wish I had more time and energy to go into detail over all the facets in my life, what do you guys actually want to hear about though?
I love it. I wish it wasn’t hung above the preggo drinking warning ad though.
Hackernest. I go to events quite often these days. Maybe I will see you at one? Luckily I thrive in social awkwardity but I’m also great at taking the floor and control. People thought Lee and I were running the photobooth largely because we took control.
Pizza + booze + smart people = giddy-uppa.
East Side Mario’s really likes their Italian icons yeah. I love the glamour too.
My fifteenth birthday, my awful haircut (why did we do that?), my first serious boyfriend and a Boston cream cake. I will not say cream pie here aghhhh lol. I remember watching all of my crew walk on passed my dance studio that day, my birthday, was also the day of my jazz exam! I was so bitter. I passed with honours of course but still, I wanted to be a tomboy with my bros and walk home from highschool. I think we went to a movie. There was no booze or pot. Lame. Falconer whaaaaaaaaaat.
Do you like how I jammed my hoodie under my hat. It was cold. I hate the cold.
This was the day Trump came into power, a Friday. We had the inaugeration on. Pretty surreal. Tess brought in gold sparkles to add to our vodka. I love Tess.
I’d tell you why I seldom smile in photos but that would take all the fun out of it.
I want more designer shirts. Hook it up if you got it.
Blouses, belts, pants, dresses. Fix me! Benefit from my network.
We need to keep those who are also self-indulgent close to us. There is a kinship. We need to breathe life into the creative dust bag in the vacuum and sometimes likewise we need to have our breaths taken away.
How is that for a look. Rhetorical. In fact don’t say anything mean to me here ever.
I now own two of these ikea boudoir things. The price is right! My other one is in Burlington. Hi Burlington fam!
You know I love my collages.
It’s a ghost town on the weekends in this hood. CATWALK.
Went to a hipster place on Ossington and my date and I were accosted with hipster rudeness it was hilarious. Sorry but manners go a lot further than blatant snottiness. And no it’s not just us. The cloak of Toronto smug is a palpable routine for most in the service industry. So over it. I keep threatening to write a book about Toronto.
La Carnita is boss.
This speaks to me. A lot of funny shit went down here.
An interesting fashion day.
That’s my girl. We decided that we are best friends. Hopefully that will make my other friends battle it out and all like me more and call me to hang out bahhaa.
Oh hi again.
Oh jesus hi again.
The nut does not fall far from the tree. Hi mom.
That time I’m on a tv show that’s about to air as a Royal. Check ya later guys this has been great!
Omg you’re so welcome. I didn’t even receive my year in review facebook video montage, who cares. We know what I did. Can’t even stand what you guys all did the first time around right! Blah humfug. This isn’t going to be a self-congratulating (nauseating) I love myself end of year summarization blog post I see popping up all over facebook rn. It’s always by people whose lives are “good enough” so they should just stop there, done with gloating. We get it. Nice hair cut.
This is just going to be a fun post using whatever treasures I have hoarded on my phone the past little while.
After work every day I do not have the energy to write fluffy fanfare about myself, I apologize but whatever, you’ll get a post here whenever I can and today’s the day. I’ve suffered only a few distractions (play-by-play texts from my bored mother) and a few housecleaning duties while d/ling my collection of blog pics. It really is a process.
I will spare you the complaints about how boring it is going through my catalogue, emailing the best-ofs to myself then opening each one… scrutinizing each one and don’t get me started on mail batches it takes just as long. Ha guess I am not sparing you any complaining. Then I individually save images on my desktop, or a folder then upload them all to flickr THEN html for each image via there to here and some quippy stupid copy along with – it’s confusing. Life is too fast-paced and dramatic for this drudgery if you have a better system where I can be locked away without distraction, please tell me it. I mean, it starts out fun then it’s like please enough.
We had a great Christmas hope yours was swell as well. We did a lot. Have been on the run for weeks it seems. Will be nice to get back to the routine but am enjoying time off too. I really want to start eating better and exercising more now that it’s NYE and thus, one more party, we can get back to basics.
It was quite a delicious time all around.
Speaking about best ofs my mom and nana got out all the best crap we made.
I rememeber that year!
We have a champagne thing amongst ourselves my mom is into boozahol now and I love it.
I guess you could say I am rocking around the Christmas tree. Ten bucks says Nana invites us back to sleepover and take it down before she goes to Florida.
The girls on their way to mass. Auntie Winnie, my Nana’s sister, suffered two great losses recently. Her son a few months ago and now her husband, a week before Christmas. The older I get and experiences that surround me give insight into how fragile life is, time is fleeting, HOLY SHIT TAKE HOLD OF LIFE BRO. Every year I am told it’s my Nana’s last Christmas. That side of my family loves the dramatics but guess what? Rude gyal Eileen bi’gone to Florida asap. The secret to a long awesome life is to indulge the shit out of yourself and to travel to every pocket of the world that you can for as long as you can to the very end. Eileen is an inspiration and a bona fide testament to my papa’s love of adventure and travel, the world over. She has seen more than I have seen!
My mom and I dressed the same without even discussing it.
My outfit was a last minute idea I forgot I owned this thing, I had never belted it before either. I wore it the next day too it was working so well haha. The lighting at my nana’s is supremo ideal that lady knows what she’s doing.
We went to Julian’s uncles xmas party on xmas eve-eve holy gong show what a great time lol. I took this on the street before going up to their place.
Getting in a hair appt with Donna Dolphy just before the holidays was nothing short of war but I prevailed and it was her birthday no less. Oh we had a time.
Not a bad after pic/job she did no? Yes. Sizzling.
Donna made me beef patties. I had beef patties with Beyonce. It was the last day of work and thus, scotchy scotch I needed those patties yo haha.
I enjoy the height of my hair here.
The before wasn’t the worst either though. Donna called me fat the last time she saw me so don’t think I think too highly of myself, Donna took me down. She roasts me all the time, she is Jamaican haha. I was pretty thin when she first met me and my hair appointments are stretched out cos I like to let my roots grow (I am lazy) so people can gauge a difference when time passes between seeing each other. Probably why my Nana always roasted me… it all makes sense now.
We went to London the weekend before last. I work 9-5 m-f so doing weekend stuff is like a blitzkrieg in the schedule nahmean. I liked the scenery though sleep does me just fine.
we saw Arrival. How do I get free movie passes?
Our hood is pretty #respect.
I was called a Russian at the lcbo and this is what I looked like at the time I do not blame them.
The lighting all over Nana’s house is the best.
I think my mom is giving me this hat back hahaha.
Hi honey lol. This is Christmas day.
Our staff party was hilarious, fun, amazing. Margarita texted to see what I was wearing, I sent pics and she obvs figured it all out.
A coworker brought his mom and then they slaughtered us, well we won but at first it was very long and arduous plus they were only drinking pop so I kept having to drink the beer. I just had a disconap so it got me immediately drunk. Good times. That is my actual work desk too btw legit covered in beer on Monday lol.
Had to go to an event after work, changed before hand as these pants stretched throughout the day and I looked like a frump. Not bad on the legs however.
Went fer grub in town in the country a couple weeks ago I love this hidden gem pub.
Uber 5000 came over, made me a drawing on a canvas I prepped no big deal.
we played it cool.
Hi. Yes there is more.
This is my fav street selfie mirror. I do not overplay it tho.
Nice work dudes.
This was a fun night.
Got that phone for my Nana. And some lamps.
Forgot to post that I was featured on a girls with glasses website before haha nice.
Happy New Year’s Eve I gotta get in the shower now bud. See you in 2017!
I got mad work to do if I’m going to be all fit and fab for my thirtieth. @_@ not to be a genius or anything but I don’t think bone marrow is very good for you.
These will be the ONLY TWO instagrammed photos of the post. Promise. I’m keeping it real no matter how I feel.
The east end is a nice little town. That it is.
This joint is a cross between Dick Tracy meets Great Gatsby. Everyone was dressed the part.
Yes I made up dickhead observations like usual but I was right and all in all it is a lovely joint with a great vibe and had a good time. Invented a new drinking game rapid fire resto naming and if the other dined there they got to go twice in a row eventually it gave way to just any fucking place in the city from diner to dive to all the upscale pretentious snooty awesome ones. I feel like foodies are huge prickheads myself included – sure sure $23 tobacco Manhattan (W.Lodge) lay it on me, right? Dickfaces who don’t care if they die tomorrow. I love it. Perfect place for you!
Apothecary bev called a Penicillin. Scotch-based. Lemon tart sweet and medicinal in taste. Raymbooze approved. Scotch tastes like paint thinner to me and the lemon cuts through it nicely and there’s a zap of ginger too. Replete with garnish candy yum.
An old fascist. The names of these drinks definitely had a lot to do with why we came here. Place being Goods and Provisions.
Don’t prick your tongue with this bad ass metal toothpick like I did.
Do eat the korean fried chicken.
I should have warned you this post was going to be intense.
Then smoked ribs + a vielle carre. That’s that. Mi gone. Mi dun wid yuh. xoxo Workout tonight.
It was super foggy out last night so it was a little difficult capturing all the cray in its true essence glory and splendor. I feel like the owner of this house would really enjoy watching Texas Chainsaw Massacre, like every remake. Just a hunch. Have a nice lunch!
I’m getting full uniforms, in every size. Being me rules sometimes. Does this mean I can just walk in to any hooters pick up a pitcher and pour it in to my mouth? YES. Try and stop me. Take orders for tables and ahh I’m going to have fun with this. I even get the shoes and the weird socks and panty hose too. If you have not been paying close attention then you won’t know that in life all weird things lead to even stranger things so just roll with it and say yes when someone offers to print your brand name on their brand name.
One more thing, wanna come to this with us Feb 12?
Leave a vomment and you’ll be in the running for a pair of tickets. Last year’s event was a wild success. It’s a great opportunity to network, agency schmooze and champagne booze.
Now hump day it upppp buttercup.
Ah gad just wait’ll you see what I ate last night.
The diet starts today. And I feel like I’m getting sick again. This winter, I tell you.