The business of pumpkins (or “what I did this weekend”).

The weekend started right when we hosted Steve & Heather for a little pumpkin carving magic Friday night. This after 2 hours of lounging at the Wallflower, so we were a little punch-drunk when we got the knives out around 10PM. I was hesitant at first as I have had my fair share of pumpkin-carving related stitches over the years, but multiple times-bitten by a carving knife, twice shy. I made it out with my limbs in tact, as did my pumpkin compatriots, and we have these sweet sculptures to show for it (…and I guess, our fingers too…)

L-R: Heather, Steve & K's pumpkins

Saturday was a little slow to get going. Did I mention we drank a little while carving? If I didn’t, it was just so that my mom could get through the above paragraph without having a heart attack. So, post pumpkin party, I met la belle Dame Wallis for caffeine before heading out on Operation: Appropriate Dress for Sister’s Wedding. There have been a few false starts on the shopping front (I REALLY wanted the dress made from pink feathers…) and since Penn’s wedding is only 2 weeks away, it was time to get serious. One of my FAVOURITE things about Jenn (DW) is her frankness. She tends to be my fashion compass and since I probably would have ended up in a jersey dress (isn’t bamboo knit considered a fancy material yet??), I am darn delighted that our schedules aligned.

We did the Mount Pleasant/Main Street designer circuit, but aside from a single shortlisted (SAILOR-ESQUE!!) dress from Scout, nothing was really fitting (both in style & in bust line). Jenn was confident that the right dress was out there (and that it wasn’t a navy-blue form fitting pin-up dress), so she took me to Gastown. The big difference between the couture in Gastown vs. Main street is the pricing. I could still find local designers and sustainable fabrics, but the cost jump from within my budget to more than double what I was ABLE to pay was startling. The address really does count I guess. Since Chinatown gentrification is making both Gastown & South Main/Mount Pleasant more desirable addresses (again), I guess I should be expecting some price leaps soon in my local neighbourhood (unless they all move east, which is slowly happening).

Jenn had a boutique in mind as a mutual acquaintance of ours had gotten a dress there, but she couldn’t quite remember the name/address. We popped in and out of stores, much more quickly now, as I had an appointment at 3 and we’d been at it for 4 hours already. Finally, we came to Ric Yuenn‘s atelier & store front. This is the shop for which we had been searching!

Mr. Yuenn’s boutique has custom designs ranging from casual to bridal, and an amazing series of one-of-a-kind silk dresses made from reclaimed scarves. The service was really helpful & friendly and the selection was pretty varied! If I had had $300+ as my budget, it’s likely that I would have tried to talk Jenn into my buying the dress that the shop keep called “their Lady Gaga tribute” dress (HOT PINK), but in the end I only blew my budget by $80 and went with a sweet little red number with a flared skirt. To top off the service and awesome dress selection, Mr. Yuenn includes tailoring in all of his prices! This means that the design on the rack will be tailored to your measurements whether that is an upsize or a downsize. Holy awesome batman. For someone with my bust, this shop is now permanently on my dress-shopping list. Since most women I know suffer from a goldilocks body-part (my hips are too big, my legs are too short), I would recommend this boutique in a heart beat. I saw prices from $150+ on most of the dresses I looked at, and they have a selection of shoes, purses and other accessories. I am scheduled to pick up my dress next Wednesday, so I’m keeping away from the pizza and beer until then.

side note: Mr. Yuenn. If you would like someone to work on your website, I would be delighted to work with a local designer who’s work I admire. 🙂

After dress shopping, I rushed over to the CAG (<<the site is buggy // I suggest multiple refreshes if you’re having issues) to volunteer for a few hours. It’s really sweet to be “working” in a gallery. It’s such a different pace from that which I am used to. I like volunteering on Saturdays, especially when there is a special event going on as the gallery is all a-bustle with all ages visitors. The current exhibits are really awesome and if you’re into print making (traditional or screen prints) I would definitely recommend you come by before October 30th to see the shows.

Sunday was pretty chill after my whirlwind Saturday. I had class in the afternoon and I submitted my first homework assignment for review. My fish heads fell by the wayside when I was less than impressed at my shading results. I’m not giving up on the project, but in the end, I decided to go a different direction. Cas wrote a story a few years back and invited me to illustrate it. I’ve noodled with ideas over the years, but never really got serious about it. Since I’m taking a certificate in ILLUSTRATION, now seemed like the time to get it out. I mocked up a storyboard for the initial layout and I am going to try to stick with it throughout my classes. I figured I could pull panels from the storyboard and illustrate single panels for homework assignments. When I’m finished my certificate, I should have a completed illustrated story. From there, sky’s the limit.

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