Monday, October 11, 2010

Art Supplies In Shanghai

Aren't these pretty?
I am trying to figure out a project for these, any suggestions?

I picked up a lifetime supply of crepe paper! I loved the chaos in this booth.

I recently visited the indoor art supplies market in Shanghai. It is a crazy, cramped, and claustrophobic place. Some commonplace items are still hard to find here, but random weird items are plentiful. Packages of tiny people and paper mache fruit can be found in just about every booth. I single handedly cornered the world supply of crepe paper sheets!!! I will keep you posted on what I am going to do with all of it.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Gang Of One

I came across the wonderful photos of Gangfeng Wang, the owner Gang Of One studio in Shanghai. Wang began photographing daily life in China back in 1981 with a "used camera and expired film". He is a self taught artist and his neighbors were his first inspiration. I am delighted every time I look at two of his photographs we have hanging in our home in China. A new friend of mine had Gangfeng Wang photograph her family in an old shikumen neighborhood in Shanghai. The photos are stunning. I hope you enjoy these as much as I do.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Joyeux Anniversaire Papa

Antique shop in the French Concession

Today would have been my father's 72 birthday, he died in 1996 at the age of 58. He was a big Francophile, and he even moved us to France when I was in the fourth grade.  I have celebrated his birthday every year with a special French dinner, and I will do the same here in China. We are looking forward to dining in the old French Concession in Shanghai tonight, he would have loved this very French area.
French Concession, Shanghai

It has been fascinating coming across some of the papers he wrote, as they are being digitized and released on the internet. I have also discovered that he held a patent on "Thermal Decay Time Logging Method", whatever that is! Sadly, I don't understand a word of what he wrote either. His titles include: "Neutron Scattering from a Solution of a Polymer", "The Effect of Long-Range Heterogeneities", and "Time Dependence of Neutron Pulses in the Slowing Down Energy Region", huh?  It looks like I inherited his love of France, his propensity for putting his foot in his mouth, his sweatiness, but most definitely not his brains.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

The Fabric Market

The Shanghai Fabric Market had been on my "to do" list since moving here, and I picked the hottest day of the summer to finally make the journey. It was an overwhelming experience of beautiful colors and patterns. I bought two silk pillows and I scoped out tailors to make some vintage inspired dresses for me. The prices are extremely reasonable and I may never buy off the rack again.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Sweet And Sinister

I am so thrilled to have been invited by Kari Ramstrom to participate in Artsy Mama's dazzling blog/swap event! Sign up for the festivities here.  Over a dozen artists are sharing their ideas for creating wonderful autumnal and Halloween projects.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Antiques + Warehouse = Love

My first trip to an antique warehouse in China involved stepping over small piles of burning garbage and one dead animal. That said, I was still thrilled with what I found under all of the filth. Today I ventured to a snazzier warehouse, no dead animals and no fires. I bought an old basket (below) and the large pink papier-mache pot (pictured above). I can't wait to return with a few more coins in my pocket!

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Big Stuff

The ones that got away

Giant Maos, you will be mine!!!
Migrating duck boats in Shanghai

You would think I would have learned my lesson! Why did I discuss with my husband my plan to buy a kiddie ride that was for sale in our classifieds? Blah, blah, where are we going to put it? Blah, blah, why do we need a kiddie ride? Blah, blah, how will we get it back to the U.S.? Sadly, the kiddie ride suffered the same fate as the Big Boy I wanted to buy in New York, and the vintage photo booth I was bidding on in Omaha, and the swan boat sale in Chicago's Lincoln Park.
My next big purchase is going to be large sheets, I will use them to hide the giant Maos and duck boat.

Monday, August 2, 2010

New House

Our new house in Shanghai looks like it could be just about anywhere. It is not exactly our style, but it suits our needs for the time being. I always imagined that we would live in an old lane house in the French Concession, but the kids weren't keen on the two hour commute for school.

We found everything at the flea market, antique stores and one very cool furniture shop.

Shanghai Junk Shopping

The Notions Market


 Opera Prop Store

The Cricket Market
The Notions Market

It has been a very long time since I updated my pals. We moved from an apartment to a house last month. It is nice not having to hush Deke every second or tell Lulu to turn down her music.  I am hoping to meet more people in our new neighborhood, but I will have to wait a few more weeks for our neighbors to return to their homes. We are apparently the only people on our street toughing it out for the summer. I don't plan on leaving the house until the temperatures get under 100 degrees, so I can finally update my blog. I have pictures of our house, and photos of some of the things I have found to make it seem like our home. I can't wait to show you!!!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

New Stuff

We are moving from our furnished flat to an unfurnished home in one month. I have the task of furnishing our new home in China in a very short amount of time. I lucked out with a wonderful shop in Shanghai called Kenas.  I could easily take two of everything!
We purged lots of furniture in Chicago before our move and put our collections in storage. I can see all of these pieces working beautifully in our home back in the States. I am guessing that we will have to rent an entire ship to bring everything back.

Saturday, May 8, 2010


Gorgeous people, scenery, pagodas, mountains, and a lake to boot!

We went on a little trip to the historical  city of Hangzhou, just a two hour drive from Shanghai. It is perhaps the most beautiful place I have ever seen. Italian explorer, Marco Polo described Hangzhou as "without doubt, one of the finest and most splendid cities in the world". The city has a history dating back more than 2,200 years!

Some of China's finest tea leaves come from the mountains in Hangzhou. I can't begin to describe the wonderful smell of the toasting tea leaves.

I want to live in this house!

We hiked up a million stairs to get to this pagoda, I almost had to live here. The thought of climbing back down all of those stairs was truly daunting.