Posted in Arty sparks, Fashion Sparks, Food sparks

Just add sprinkles

I am not embarrassed to say that I like sprinkles. I am not sure of the chemical process involved, but somehow, adding brightly coloured bits of sugar to your ice cream, cake, cappucino froth, or even just a piece of bread and butter turns it from ho-hum into an exciting party.

Which is why I was so pleased to find these sprinkle covered heels on etsy. Made by the clever people at MerloDesigns in the USA, these sweet shoes will liven up any outfit. But you probably shouldn’t wear them out on the town in the rain, just to be on the safe side. Although apparently, “the candy is 100% real, but 100% inedible! That’s right, these little guys have been glued and sealed to keep ants, mice, and other curious critters off your toes!” See, pretty and practical! You can check them out here.

Or there’s this fabulous rainbow resin bangle made by Nicola Williams in the UK – available from her etsy shop Made By Daisy here. Handmade to order, this beauty would make a great gift for any lass – although it will probably prove endlessly frustrating to hungry toddlers.

For summertime fun, you might like this 100s and 1000s giant inflatable Havaianas thong. Once you’ve blown it up, it’s 1.65m long and 65cm wide. Apparently it comes with a matching carry case. Surely it’s gotta be worth buying a pair, if only to scare other people at the beach or pool into thinking there are giants around. They are available at the Havaianas website.

Or for a slightly different take on art, here’s a piece by Joel Brochu – a recreation of a photograph of a dog getting washed. A recreation MADE OF SPRINKLES. Yep, for a Fine Arts project at university, Joel used jewellery tweezers to place each of the 221,184 sprinkles to form the image. Incredible. You can read more about this amazing artwork at My Modern Met.

And now, I’m off to make some fairy bread, with extra sprinkles.

Posted in Fashion Sparks, WWWhat?

Geek up your jewellery collection

A short while ago, I posted on the phenomenon of ear cuffs, which were fashion news to me. Then as I was browsing through the Think Geek online store (uh huh), I saw it: the Dragon Ear Wrap. Let’s be clear, the Dragon is to the standard ear cuffs what the Kardashians are to the Brady Bunch – bigger, more outrageous and a whole lot crazier. And don’t worry, the Dragon just looks as though it is permanently attached – it really clips to the top of your ear and then you wear the tail like a normal earring. Yes, just like a normal earring.

Or perhaps a scrolling LED belt buckle is more your style. It can store up to five messages, so you might want to pre-program it for a night out on the town and then you won’t have to worry about shouting over that pesky loud music – just point down to your buckle and let your belt do the talking.

For the old school geek, there’s a sundial ring. Apparently it works – although why you wouldn’t wear a watch or check your phone is beyond me. It seems very complicated and presumably much time passes you by as you fiddle with the dial to calculate the time of day. And what if it’s a cloudy day? Or you want to know how long to wait ’til the last bus home in the evening? You’ve been warned, my friends.

Or for less than $20, you could go back to a time when the concept of a wearable device that told the time and could add up the cost of your comics and lollies was MINDBLOWING. Yes, the Casio calculator watch is back and is sure to wow the kids of today. Or at least confuse them even more about that mythical time before iphones and Wiis.

If you would like to check out more geeky gear, then Think Geek is the place for you. There’s a lot there that goes way over my head, but if you’re down with maths and computers, or even if you just like weird stuff, it’s worth a look!

Posted in Sparky gifts, WWWhat?

A bit of geekery

A confession – I’m not really all that cool. I like gadgets, good spelling and other things that I guess could be described as ‘geeky’. So it should make me happy to know that I’m not alone – and my measure for that is of course the most popular craft marketplace in the world, etsy. There is a whole category of ‘Geekery’, featuring nearly 118,000 items, catering to crafty geeks (or crafty people who know and love geeks) across the globe. But I found a lot of the geekery to be kinda scary. Here are some highlights…Cool kids, consider yourselves warned.

For the geeky home accessory, or if you’re after a romantic trip down memory lane, here’s an Etch-a-Sketch cushion for your beloved. Sure, the white knobs don’t actually work and you can’t shake it to erase and start again, but the writing is still as wonky as the real thing. Part of a collection of geekery made by Cindy and Randy Green, this is one of the few things in their Yellow Bug Boutique that I actually ‘get’. They have a lot of chemical and periodic table type gags (!), but I’m afraid the memory of struggling through high school Chem classes means that I’ll never find that stuff funny. (I do also like this black & white cushion in their shop, but I think it would bug me too much to have it lying around. Which, come to think of it, is maybe why I need it.)

If you’re a Dr Who fan, you might appreciate this Tardis beanie (more than I do). The Gromidez shop also has other beanies that might appeal to geeks – including these cute and colourful numbers modelled on those ghosts in PacMan. And some other Pokemon things, which I am far too old to understand. The shop also sells a cool SpiderMan web blanket, just in case you’ve been looking for one to complement your new lounge.

Or maybe you’re looking for some geeky jewellery that also serves a practical purpose. If so, apparently you will really like the BitofSugar shop. Who knew that beautiful Hawaii could be a hotbed for so much geekery? They sell this ‘Zombie Antidote’ necklace, by asking: Are you preparing for the eminent zombie invasion/apocalypse? If you answered “yes,” this zombie antidote necklace is the most important component of your stockpile. Ah, the old marketing technique of scare tactics, gets ’em every time. But in a somewhat evil twist, they also sell a ‘Zombie Virus’ necklace, thereby cleverly creating the zombie virus market of supply and demand. Genius.

I’ve only scratched the surface of Geekery, but if you’d like to see more, you should check out etsy. If the cushions are to your liking, the Yellow Bug Boutique is here, and the beanies can be found at the Gromidez shop here, while the zombie antidote (and virus, if you’re so inclined) are for sale at BitofSugar here.

Posted in Fashion Sparks, Sparky gifts

Let’s ear it for cuffs

There’s a lot about fashion that I don’t understand. The whole concept of ‘ear cuffs’ would be an example of something that I just don’t get. They sound painful, like you’re punishing your ears for doing something wrong. But they must be popular, as there are 159 pages of them on etsy. (And, no, they’re not all made by the same person.)

In case you’re not familiar with ear cuffs either, they are different to conventional earrings, as they wrap around bits of your ear without piercings. So you can easily swap to a different ear cuff to suit your mood. I have provided a selection for you to consider here. And may I say, it has been kinda creepy to look at so many photos of ears – not our prettiest feature, that’s for sure.

I call the first cuff, “Wait, can you hear a peacock?” and it is made by Anna in London. For $31 you can buy your own and freak people out as you wait at the bus stop. Or you might prefer the spiky cuff that Anna has for sale for $18 – this one would come in handy if you are trying to tone down your punk rocker look at work (or if you are trying to convince people you are actually part-human, part-machine).

And then there is this gold number, apparently inspired by the movie Labyrinth and made by ravenevejewelry in Detroit. To my uncultured eye, it appears that a fancy bird has taken up residence on this lady’s ear. Either that, or the aliens have vistied and are using her ear to transmit messages back to the mothership.

Or maybe you’d prefer a bronze octopus crawling on your ear, from martymagic in Santa Cruz. I’m just not sure how comfortable it would be to have those tentacles tickling your ear all day and am sure your Granny would try to bat it away as with any other eight legged creature crawling on your ear. Eeeeek.

But I think my favourite would have to be this black & white feathered number by Mariya in Russia. It’s pricey at $90, but will surely keep you cool in summer and if anyone wants to start an impromptu badminton game, unclip the cuff and away you go.

With Mother’s Day coming up in many parts of the world, I’m sure it goes without saying that any of these would make a great gift for the mothers and grandmothers in your life. And I reckon you shouldn’t limit the cuff’s potential by explaining where it is meant to go – hours of fun as Mum and Granny Mac smile politely and try to work out if they’ve been given a brooch or a duster or some sort of new ipod accessory… You’re welcome!

Posted in Sparky gifts, WWWhat?

St Patrick’s Day, every day

And a very happy St Patrick’s Day to you. With so many cheesy Paddy’s Day products around, I struggled to pick one to feature today. But I settled on this.  Its full title: St Patrick’s Day Necklace – Tiny Terrarium with Lucky Liam the Leprechaun – Irish. It’s a mouthful, to be sure, but it’s also a pretty cool way to carry St Patrick’s Day around with you every day. Or just on those days when you fancy the company of a tiny polymer clay leprechaun tucked into a bush of preserved moss, stuffed into a little glass jar, corked and strung onto a necklace. Which, let’s face it, is probably every day.

I love St Patrick’s Day and I especially love the way that everyone seems to find some otherwise hidden Irish connection that entitles them to join in the celebrations. It’s a great day to catch up with friends, maybe drink some green beer and eat some green sausages if so inclined, tell some tall tales, listen to music and generally have a good time.

Whether you’re Irish or not, that’s a pretty great way to spend a day.  And even though it’s not a holiday outside of Ireland, it is a Saturday this year, so get craic’n and have a wonderful day.

(And if you’re totally taken by Liam the Leprechaun in his tiny terrarium, wander the website of Messy’s madness on etsy.)