Monday, May 23, 2011

Not Afraid Of These Monsters

I have a secret. I’m afraid of the dark. It’s not bad now, but when I was little my Mom had to leave the light on in the hallway until I fell asleep. Even now I can’t watch horror movies or I will have nightmares. So it may seem a bit odd that I have decided to do an entire blog post on monsters.

These are not the big, ugly, scary monsters you are see on TV or in the movies. These are the cutest monsters you have ever seen in your life with personalities to match.
It was a few years ago I saw the product offering from The Monster Factory for the first time. I was at the One of a Kind show with some friends who had been there before. We walked into The Monster Factory booth and I never wanted to leave. These monsters were so colourful, odd looking and adorably cute all at the same time. Each one has a tag with their name and a description of their personality. You have never seen happier people than the ones standing in this booth looking at those monsters, including the adults like myself.
It was love at first sight when I first laid eyes on Colin. I had to go through a lot of monsters before I settled on him. Even then it was much later when I decided to make a commitment to him. Since then I have been a very happy owner. He keeps me company in my living room alongside my favourite Vancouver 2010 mascot Muk Muk. I call the two of them “my guys”. Sometimes I’ll even talk to them but if you ask me to admit that in real life, I won’t.
After Colin and I had been together for awhile, I felt it was time to introduce him to my friends. After all he was someone special in my life. My friend was over for dinner one night and I introduced her to Colin. Her reaction wasn’t what I expected. She immediately started laughing, laughing so hard she was crying and kept saying over and over again, “he looks so funny, he looks so funny”. Well excuse me, I know he’s no model but he is not “funny” looking.
Fast forward many years and said “friend” is now married and recently had twin boys. My dilemma, what to buy these 2 sweet boys so they can remember their (favourite) Auntie Christina when she isn’t around. After much deliberation I decided The Monster Factory would be the best present. It is a present they wouldn’t outgrow right away, looking at monsters would make the boys happy and I would be on my way to solidifying "Favourite Auntie" status. I settled on Donny and Doyle for the boys. Donny and Doyle are funny looking, (Colin is not!) and I thought their funny faces and odd shapes would keep baby eyes occupied for awhile. Ordering was very easy. I did it online and chose to pick up Donny and Doyle when they were made. The Monster Factory emailed me when the order was ready and I headed to downtown Toronto to pick them up.  I added miniature versions of monsters Kyle, Todd and Mr. Jefferson. It really is difficult to limit yourself to only one or two.

Donny on the left, Doyle on the right

Mini Monsters starting left: Todd, Mr. Jefferson, Kyle

Now Donny and Doyle are sitting in my living room waiting to be given to their new owners. I know I bought them for the twins but I don’t want them to leave me. I like having this monster family around. Sadly the day will come when I have to give them up. I feel good knowing they are going to a good home. I'm sure the twins will love Donny, Doyle and friends as much as I do.
Monster Factory is a collection of plush monsters (I don’t want to call them toys) created by a group of 3 friends who have been building their monsters for years. Each monster is made with love in their downtown Toronto studio. Visit their website or visit them in studio (by appointment) or find them on Facebook or Twitter to tell them which monster you love.
Ps. I also get startled when there is a thunderstorm. I’m not scared though. Colin is here to protect me.

The Monster Factory
471 Richmond St. West, Suite 201
Toronto, ON
Ph: 416-913-6673

Written by Christina Wallaert

Monday, May 9, 2011

Glam Julz Accessory Sale

When you receive a request to do a blog post, how can you say no? I had mentioned on Twitter a few times I was going to head to Burlington, ON to check out the latest open house sale at Glam Julz and asked if anyone wanted to come with me. I thought I was going to have company until something came up and they couldn't make it. They did ask if I was going to blog about my "haul" as she called it, and I thought why not? Usually I blog about things I want, not things that I have purchased!

Last Thursday, May 5th I headed out to Burlington after work. I don't usually make an attempt to go to these sales. If you live anywhere in Toronto, you know how bad the highway can be heading west bound in rush hour afternoon traffic. Not sure if it was my lucky day but I practically flew there, barely stopping. Am I ever glad I did. I was expecting good prices but I had no idea! Earrings were $5, Bracelets $7 and necklaces ranged from $10-$20. Well worth the time to get myself there.

I have been a fan of Glam Julz for a long time and own many of their pieces. Every time I wear something from them I get asked about it. I swear I'm not exaggerating. It's like people can tell when something is handmade and better quality than the import stuff. I didn't buy a ton, I was trying very hard to be good. A recently employed person again, I didn't want to spend my first paycheck before I had even received it. But let me tell you when you see prices like this for Glam Julz product, it is tempting to go a little crazy. I ended up with 2 each of earrings, bracelets and necklaces. I love the bracelets because they are the kind you wrap around your wrist. Usually I never wear bracelets because I can't do the clasps by myself.

I highly recommend you check out Glam Julz and get on their email list. That way you'll know as soon as I do when they are having their next open house.

I have included some photos of what I bought. In doing this I realized how hard it is to take good photos of jewellery. If you don't think it looks great it's because of my sad photographic abilities. Glam Julz product is beautiful! I know I'll probably be buying more at some point.

4305 Fairview Street, Suite 137
Burlington, Ontario
Studio visits by appointment only. (unless they are having open house)