Friday, 23 August 2013

Pretty Pleas

Sinamay is a straw-like fabric derived from a particular banana plant. I use it frequently. You've seen it in my swirly, leafy fascinators, my diskettes and buttons, creased berets and more.

A company I purchase millinery supplies from is sponsoring a contest on Facebook for hats made from sinamay. I have entered the piece shown above and I could really use your vote! The response it's been getting at St. Lawrence Market and beyond makes me think it's already a winner, but I'd love to be able to prove it. Please help me to do that!

Voting takes place between August 23 and next Thursday, August 29. If I make it to the next round, there will be more voting, and I will call on you again.

Here is the link:

Thank you!

Saturday, 17 August 2013

O Happy Day!

This day deserves a bouquet, and Salome has provided this one.

It was another spectacular weather day with everyone at St. Lawrence Market feeling groovy. Or, at least, mighty fine. The subways were running, the Canadian National Exhibition has just begun, the farmers' stalls were bursting with produce and flowers, and it was great just to be alive.

Jollity in a nutshell. Or photograph. Stephen is teaching himself to juggle, and after only a day or two he is nailing it! Must have something to do with his other life as a tennis wiz. All that hand/eye co-ordination. I am all admiration.

Here is the lady from last week's photo, this time without a wagon. Unless it's her friend. There were two of them today, playing interesting instruments and singing charming old folk songs. (If you're new to this blog, St, Lawrence Market is Toronto's oldest market, dating from colonial times, in a neighbourhood where historical preservation is still a value.) I told Scott he should consider hiring them for his book launch. (In case I haven't mentioned it in the last five minutes or so, my indispensable Scott Kennedy is having his first book, a history of Willowdale, published by Dundurn Press on November 23. You can pre-order it! Go ahead, I'll wait... )

I was having a wonderful day, with lots of lovely customers who were not camera shy! Let's meet them.

Jessica found the perfect mint green linen trilby waiting for her. She tried on others, but this one wouldn't be denied. Apparently it really wanted to live in Texas, where they have more summer. I'm so happy for them! Thanks, Jessica!

Judi had modeled a hat for me a couple of years ago, and today she bought this comfy, breezy, seagrass cap. My best new innovation this season. Thanks, Judi!

Lovely Virginia chose this grey silk calla to accompany her to a party this weekend. Excellent choice! It looks wonderful on her. Thank you, Virginia!

Dog break!

This is Lily, a French bulldog puppy, and the daily dog. Squee!

My old buddy, the fountain bulldog. How I love him.

Henry, with his girls. The light-coloured pooch is Kasha and the smaller, darker pooch is Sophia. They are wonderful passengers on the scooter, jumping next to Henry's feet on command. Good girls! Biscuits!

Okay, back to all human people.

I don't seem to have a record of this customer's name. She was at my table during a small blizzard of activity, and I guess I let her slip away with her anonymity intact. Bad milliner! No biscuit! But I am so glad she chose this natural linen trilby with mother of pearl buttons. Neutral, but distinguished and glowing. Thank you, nice lady! Please email me your name if you would be so kind and I'll update this post!

Marla was taken with this red, white and blue fascinator, so she took it. Yay! Thanks, Marla!

When I saw Marl's mom, Aggie, work this brim, I knew she was of my tribe -- the people of the hat. Awesome choice! Thanks, Aggie!

And that's the kind of day it was. Here are Carl and Salome to bid you adieu until next week (weather permitting):

Friday, 16 August 2013

Sirius Silliness

Last Saturday was the almost the end of the dog days of summer. As if on cue, many lovely pooches made their presence known, which is always a present to me.

Like this happy fella! What a winning smile!

It was another perfect-weather day, good for biking or walking or getting around town other than on the subway, where the north-south trains were out of commission for maintenance. Despite the inconvenience, everyone seemed to be fairly jolly. Maybe the Caribbean festival's spirit was in the air.

There was a general silliness abounding, as the photos might suggest. I myself am extremely silly, so I felt right at home.

The indispensable Scott, on princess purse detail. (It belongs to Isabella, for whom it is an absolutely appropriate accessory. Context is everything.)

Robyn wasn't silly. She chose this saucy little fascinator, which looks great on her auburn hair.

This is Kisses, the Pomeranian.

Pom de terre. (I am hilarious.)

Another non-silly moment: Vivian chose this diskette fascinator to wear to her church's wear-a-hat event. Love this on her!

Tiny band, tiny drum set.

A child wearing an inflatable life saver as a hat. And really, why not?

The best image of the day.

Tuesday, 6 August 2013

Late July and August Beginnings

July 20 at St. Lawrence Market was a bit of a snooze, despite the beautiful weather. But that's okay. I always enjoy the social aspect of just being amidst my fellow vendor buddies, shopping the farmers' market, eating pizza for lunch, etc.

Not many visitors wanted their pictures taken. Here is the exception, the ever so photogenic Pam, in her new wide-brimmed linen chapeau, that's off to live Stateside:

A group of youths amused themselves by trying to time the fountain's jet and leaping over it without getting soaked:

I amused myself by taking photos of doggies:

And then I went home. The end.

Fast forward to..... August 3

Much better! Very pleasant weather, just right, and a festive, long weekend vibe all around. Lots of visitors, almost all camera-shy. Thank you, anyway, Eleanor, Helga, Nancy, Kristine, and Ann.

Salome was back from her lakeside sojourn, so it was good to catch up with her. A returning customer ordered two new bespoke hats and made me the most astonishing offer I can't tell you about until it comes true. Possibilities are percolating and it's very exciting. I will talk about them when and if they actualize.

But for now, here are some photo souvenirs:

Barbara is the newest purchaser of a seagrass cap. Cool, comfortable, casual.

Jill was promoting Segway tours at the Distillery district, and giving 50% off coupons. And a good thing it was, too: those tours normally cost $40 for half an hour. Yoiks!

I have a longstanding longing to try a Segway. But not at that price.

Maggie! I'm a sucker for Westies. Maggie was not named after the dog in the commercial, thank you very much.

Happy, wet bulldog.

A schnauzer with an underbite. How adorable is that?