If you're not familiar with Etsy, then I pity you because you are missing out, but then I am also envious, because this means you still have a life. Prepare for that to change. Etsy is a global online marketplace for people to sell handmande and vintage items, and it has some of the best stuff out there. Admittedly, the better known it gets, the more it is being infiltrated by cheap imports that are neither handmade nor vintage, but hopefully most people can see past that. Anyway, Etsy has a TON of cool fox stuffs. This is just some of it. Sorry the prices are in $ (the site is American), but if you click on a link, the site should adjust to your local currency. Happy shopping, fellow fox aficionados!
Earlier this year I went for a weekend away with a couple of my best friends. We went to Cardiff, because the Doctor Who Experience is there, and we are comfortable with each other and our geekiness.
I thought Cardiff would be easy to get to but the trains took FOREVER (well, five and a bit hours) so it's a good job I like reading! However, it is really worth going to. It is a lovely city, and everyone there was so friendly! There was a genuine sense of community as we wandered about the terraced streets just outside the centre, and some of the big old Arts & Crafts houses are simply stunning.
On the Saturday we headed straight to the Doctor Who Experience because we were worried we'd have to fight hordes of kids, but actually the queue was pretty minimal. Now don't get too excited, but you actually get to go on an adventure with the Doctor. In our case, it was Peter Capaldi's Doctor, as the BBC recently updated the Experience. Amongst my adventures I helped fly the TARDIS, wrestled a Dalek, and ran like a screaming idiot through a graveyard full of Weeping Angels (in the words of one of the kids in my group, "NOT COOL!"). And that is all I am going to say because SPOILERS! - other than it did not matter at all that I am not eleven years old, I still loved every second. If you like Doctor Who, make the effort to go.
After the Experience, there is a slightly more sedate exhibition of costumes, creatures, sets, scripts, and props from the entire Doctor Who archive. Below is a selection of my photos: The First Ever TARDIS, Dalek Evolution, River Song's High Heels and Spoilers!, Eleven's (Matt Smith's) Costume, and The Face of Boe. At the end there is a mahoosive shop selling the whole world's Doctor Who merchandise, in which it was very hard to restrain myself.
After lunch we wandered about the city centre, visiting some really cute little shops in the arcades (including a super duper second hand book shop selling books, comics, and even old Smash Hits magazines!) and a pleasantly large Forbidden Planet, before heading to Cardiff Castle.
All three of us have degrees in Archaeology, and one of us still works as an Archaeologist, so we all appreciate a good castle! Cardiff Castle was originally the site of a Roman Fort, so it is surrounded by a large rectangular walled enclosure which you can walk around, and even housed air raid shelters during the Second World War. In the centre is a traditional Motte and Bailey castle built by the Normans, and there's also a small but ridiculously luxurious mansion which has been lavishly decorated in the Gothic Revival style. The architect William Burges was clearly obsessed with animals, especially monkeys, as they are painted and carved and depicted everywhere. We played spot-the-monkey as we walked round. I took loads of photos but I won't bore you with them all here - I'll share them on my Instagram account! Below is a select few: Lion Water Spout, bookcase (with monkeys!), hallway, the ceiling in The Arab Room (a bedroom!!!), view of the outside, and two shots of the decor in one of the window bays of The Great Hall (including a monkey in a hat, you're welcome).
The castle itself is on the edge of a lovely park which we wandered through, and we ended up having a mooch round the Cardiff Natural History Museum for the last hour or so of the day. In the evening we went out for a deeeelish meal and we all agreed Cardiff was definitely worth a visit, even if we spent over ten hours travelling! I'd really be up for going again, although not, as the boys suggested, when there was a cricket match on, no thanks! Perhaps next time we can explore the area surrounding Cardiff and head further out into Wales.
Have you been to Cardiff? What did you think? Have you been to the Doctor Who Experience!?
It is a well know fact amongst my friends that I was a hardcore tomboy when I was younger. I remember my childish outrage at the beautiful bridesmaids dresses I had to wear when duty called. Shopping with my Mum wasn't delightful mother-daughter time but instead a terse agreement that I would try not to moan if she bought me a new book to read whilst she looked at yet MORE clothes. And my Gran once cried (really!) because she asked me to wear a skirt on Easter Sunday, and I had to admit that, besides my school uniform, I didn't own one.
Nowadays I am reformed; just as interested in bags, shoes, and vintage pullovers as the next girl. I'm shocked I get anything done when I'm working on the twopennylane Etsy shop, because there are so many lovely and unusual things on Etsy to look at. I'm all about personal style, not fashion, so I made a Dream Wardrobe Pinterest board to save all these things in one place but now I'm sucked in to Pinterest too. It's a mercy I get any jewellery made at all!
Anyway, enough rambling, and to the point of this post: wrap your eyes around these beauties I came across recently:
These handbags, handmade from either felt or leather, are by krukrustudio on Etsy. Lyuba and Max are based in Moscow, Russia, and sell their amazing creations worldwide through Etsy, and on their own website, www.krukrustudio.com. If anyone would like to buy me one of each, then that would be awesome. Yes, that IS a Tardis Handbag you're seeing there. Personally I'm torn between the Piano Handbag, the Green Watering Can Handbag, and the strangely alluring Deer Handbag. You should definitely go check out their shop now, because there are tons more designs than the few I've cherry-picked here: think Sherlock, Rockets, Bananas, Instagram Logos, and even Jam Jars. And if you do succumb and make a purchase, DO share with me via facebook, twitter, or instagram, so I can be extremely jealous! :-)