Wishing you a perfect 10

Happy New Year!

Winter issue preview

Amid the Christmas shoppers clearing out my shelves, I've been working on the design for the upcoming Winter issue of UPPERCASE magazine. The final files will be sent to the printer by the first week of January and I'll keep you updated about the expected ship date to our subscribers.

Enjoy the previews below: it's a glorious issue! Thank you to Leigh Wells for the beautiful cover illustration.

We'd love to welcome you as a subscriber for the new year! Just click here for all the options. Thank you.

Have a happy Christmas. We'll see you soon!

Hula Seventy Holiday Home

Regular contributor to UPPERCASE magazine, Andrea Jenkins gives us a tour of her holiday-decorated home. Look for great photography by Andrea in the upcoming issue, where she shares images from her experience at Squam Art Workshops.

Magazine Library in Japan

In late October, UPPERCASE was part of a big exhibition of international magazines at a design festival in Tokyo. Look at this amazing event! How fun to roam through the suspended magazines and what a thrill to know that our magazine was there.

Online orders

Today is the last day that orders placed online will be shipped before Christmas (please note that these orders WILL NOT arrive in time for Christmas). Orders placed between December 23-January 4 will be mailed early in the new year. Thanks!

New site for Orange Girl!

Kirstie Tweed has a new website for her beautiful photography and blog. Kirstie and Kevin have also welcomed Leroy into their home. How adorable is he, braving the cold mountain winters?

Olimpia Zagnoli exhibition

Italian illustrator Olimpia Zagnoli was recently the focus of an exhibition in Vice Gallery, Milan. What a stunning exhibition! (We profiled Olimpia in Issue 2.)

One cool cat...

Toby has fine taste in reading material. Thanks, Kate!

Free cabinets

I'm transforming my home office into a nursery, so a few things need to find new homes. These filing cabinets, for example! I spent a lot of time sanding them down and then collaging old newspaper clippings on the faces... back in the day when I had time for such crafty things! Anyway, the pair are free so if you're in Calgary and willing to pick them up from my home please email me at info@uppercasegallery.ca. More photos on flickr.

I've also a Billy bookcase (also free if you come get it) and matching cd/dvd/trinket tower.

Back to painting the walls!

THANKS FOR ALL YOUR INQUIRIES! everything has been spoken for.

The Typewriter Christmas Tree

I've been getting emails about this tree! Sorry, it is not for sale. Here's the post I made last year about it:

There couldn't be a more perfect tree for me! (Yes, this is an artificial tree coming out of a typewriter base. The most homely but wonderful thing I've ever found on ebay. I have no idea how old it is or where it was made.)

The Animals Christmas

I am the sentimental type who goes joyful to the sounds of Christmas music but each year it gets harder to find that rare gem of an album, old or new, that pricks up my ears.

This year my pick is 'The Animals' Christmas' an 80s concept album composed by Jimmy Webb, performed by Art Garfunkel with Amy Grant and backed by the London Symphony Orchestra and the Kings College School Choir.

The concept of this cantata is to 'tell the story of the Nativity from the perspective of the animals who were there.'

To listen to sample tracks, click here.

And if you have recommendations for other special Christmas albums or songs, please share them!

Holiday Treasures

Reading Dylan Thomas's A Child's Christmas In Wales is a holiday tradition for many. The story's lush evocation of sights, sounds, smells and tastes of his childhood experience gives one a sense of being there among the cats and the snow, rhum tea and butterwelsh, dodgy Uncles and elderberry wine.

I am such a fan of the book that each year I delight in buying it, giving it a pre-love read and then wrapping it up and gifting it to a friend or family member. Last year I gave it to my sister Lani who read it on her flight home and immediately wrote me to sing its praises.

Can't think of many things finer than listening to Dylan read it himself and it looks like some of the old lps (image above) are kicking around on ebay!

For a quick feel of the story's charm, click here. Of course, I urge all to buy the book -- or the album!

Expansion Sale!

There are lots of great gifts in the store—and it is ALL on sale! Why wait until boxing day? Let's have the sale now while people are out and about!

Pantone things are 50% off, Moleskine journals and sketchbooks 25% off, Russell & Hazel 50% off, all greeting cards & calendars 50% off, books are 25% (with the exception of books and magazines published by UPPERCASE which are 10% off*). There are fun stocking stuffers, just $1-$5.

Plus: Special treats for UPPERCASE magazine subscribers or those that mention the blog!

*in our Calgary store only.

Veer Remix Notebooks!

If you were wondering who we were making 10,000 notebooks for, the amazing client was Veer, the excellent source for stock images and distributor of typefaces! They've posted this preview image (above) on their blog today.

A while ago, I proposed a custom notebook for Veer, using their old print catalogues as the interior pages, interspersed with lined pages. They liked the idea—in a big way! (I had thought perhaps we'd make a few hundred or a thousand and didn't imagine it would turn into such a huge order.) The cover design, by Anna Coe, uses various logotypes, dingbats, and illustrations to spell the word REMIX. The cover is printed on transparent cellulose acetate, so with the randomness of a Veer page showing through, each cover result is unique. The majority of the notebooks we made are for loyal Veer customers, but some notebooks will be in their Merch store in the new year.

Thanks, Veer!



Another magazine favourite has seen its last days. F+W (they also publish How and Print) are ending the 55-year run of I.D. magazine. "Certainly the downturn in print advertising has contributed to this decision," says the company's president here, "but other factors include the fragmentaton and specialized information needs of I.D.'s core readers (product designers) and the plethora of information resources available to them—some for free (online and B2B) and others that are highly specialized and targeted to specific industries served."

I'm really saddened by this news; that yet another magazine with really great content and a long history has been shuttered. Even though I publish a magazine, I NEED other magazines in my life! They offer other perspectives, other ideas, other worlds of inspiration.

But UPPERCASE carries on with its small, streamlined staff (hey, that's me!), talented and enthusiastic Editor-at-Large Deidre Martin, the ever-helpful Jenny Tzanakos and the generous family of UPPERCASE writers, illustrators, photographers and collaborators. Thank you to our amazing subscribers (954!) who believe in our content and vision.

Although we offer a few pages of ads in each issue, our model for sustainability is based on subscribers, not advertising. Please keep your subscriptions and renewals coming in! As the magazine approaches its first anniversary, it has surpassed all of my expectations—and hopefully yours as well.

This past week I have been immersed in the design of Issue 4 and I am very happy with how it is shaping up. (The cover is almost ready to be revealed!) I will post some teaser images soon.

Type Tuesday: Bluebird

Bluebird from Cameron McKague on Vimeo.


I recently received an email from Cameron McKague (his work was featured in our "The Lost Art of The End" makeover series in issue 2), to let us know he has partnered with designer Jennifer Griffiths to create a typography-driven film based on a poem by Charles Bukowski. "It's filmed in one continuous shot and all the lines from the poem have been integrated/designed into elements of the scene by both of us. We were trying to give it a timeless mid-century feel." It was an ambitious project that involved designing each of the artifacts and then filming it so that each would coincide with the narration of the poem.

Cameron has some beautiful business cards for his company, Vitae Design. Visit his site for more from his portfolio.

Thank you, Marilyn Patrizio

When I was working on the pages highlighting the many products that incorporate Camilla's drawings, I was looking for a photo showing her decals (made by Third Drawer Down) in use. Marilyn Patrizio had just the perfect image in her flickr stream! Since it was only low res, she was nice enough to reshoot the image for the book. That's one of the many stories of generous, collaborative and thoughtful people involved in the making of the book.

Marilyn has received her copy of The Suitcase Series: Camilla Engman and has shared images on her blog and flickr. Visit her Etsy shop So Softies for cute crochet characters and illustrations, and spend some time admiring her photographs of her apartment and its brightly coloured treasures in the Shelter set.

All the pretty typers...

I would have titled this post "No typewriter for old men," but The Guardian beat me to it! Cormac McCarthy, author of aforementioned novel, All the Pretty Horses and The Road has auctioned off his trusty old Lettera through Christies. His workhouse machine since 1958, he has composed all manuscripts with it. It sold for an incredible $254,500 to an anonymous bidder: over 10 times the estimated price.

"I have typed on this typewriter every book I have written including three not yet published. Including all drafts and correspondence I would put this at about five million words over a period of fifty years..." he claims in the accompanying letter of authentication. He also states that the only maintenance done over the years involved "blowing out the dust with a service station air hose." Hmmm, maybe that's how he came up with Anton Chigurh's murderous weapon of injecting compressed air into his victims?

Read more about the Lettera at The New Yorker.

Saturday hours

Good morning! I'm going over to the Market Collective show this morning (in the old Ant Hill Fabrics store in Kensington), so I'll be a bit late getting into the shop downtown. UPPERCASE will open at noon today.

On the Christmas wish list...

There's something about a well-designed handbag that makes me happy... a bag is like a great book: it has a lovely, enticing cover, and you just want to know more about what's inside! The story of what's inside might change with your life and seasons, but if it has good structure, you'll love it for a long while. Some time ago, I came across photographer Kelly Moore Clarke's website and she was blogging about her development of a stylish camera bag. There is a distinct lack of good-looking, feminine yet functional camera bags — especially for those of us with big cameras (Canon EOS 5dmkii!), so I signed up to be alerted when her designs became available.

Kelly Moore Clarke describes her idea: "About three years ago, I started sketching and dreaming about having a handbag/lens bag line of my own. As a photographer and a woman, I was always left wanting more when it came to my options for a stylish, functional bag that I could use to carry my equipment while I photographed. I sat down and made a wish list of everything that I wanted in a great bag, and now 3 years later, I'm so excited that my wishlist has come to life!!"

The result looks pretty great (hint hint, Glen!) and I wish Kelly much success in the launch of her bags. (She's getting the word out by asking bloggers to help spread the word, click here for more info on how you can help and get a discount towards your purchase. I've done something similar with promoting our magazine in the past, and it definitely helps to broaden the traffic to your site.)

UPDATE: Kelly emailed and the discount code is "bloglove" and is valid for $50 off until JANUARY 8. Thanks, Kelly!