Last Day!!

Don't forget that today's the last day to get your 2012 Everyday Objects Calendar at the special pre-order price! For all of you who have ordered so far, thank you and your calendars will be shipping this week - yipee!

I hope everyone had a great weekend :) I have to say mine was pretty awesome, our gathering on Saturday night was so much fun and it just warms my heart to have such wonderful people in our lives. Hooray for good friends, good food and a cozy fall get together. I made this Beet Cake for dessert and it was really yummy if I do say so myself. Isn't this a lovely little video, too?!

Have a spooky Monday ;)
xx Bess


Happy Weekend!

photo by 280dg, from our wedding
Um... is it really November next week? Yikes! I hope you all enjoy your last weekend in October. Big Chuck will be hosting a little soirée chez nous this weekend. If you don't already know, Big Chuck is my personal chef extraordinaire and loves to share his passion for delicious food with others. We were doing a little menu planning last night and he acted out the opening party scene (you know, for authenticity...)

"Knock, knock.."
kiss, kiss,
"You look fabulous! Here, let me take your coat. Can I offer you a drink?"

That's how he gets his menu inspiration, and entertains his pregnant wife parked on the couch ;)

Bon weekend mes amis,
kiss, kiss,


Photo shoot : 2012 Everyday Objects Calendar

2012 Calendar
2012 Everyday Objects Calendar
2012 Calendar
June 2012

My giant paper order finally arrived last week (it's so gorgeous!) and I was all set to take some photos of the new 2012 calendar—the only problem: no sun. I waited for days, until yesterday morning the sun came out for a few hours, just long enough for me to take some photos of the calendar so I can start approaching stores and blogs and get this puppy in front of as many eyes as possible. I have a fear of styling and photographing my work in general, it always turns out kind of so-so. But, I think these shots are pretty good.

I've updated my English Muffin website too, if you'd like to take a peek.

Have a great Tuesday!
xo Bess

PS. Don't forget to get your 2012 Everyday Objects Calendar at the special Pre-Order Price


Baby Wants

What is it about babies and quilts? Maybe it's the first of many steps in the nesting process, wanting to surround yourself and your little one with beautiful things made with love. All I know is that now that we're planning for the arrival of our little boy I really want to make him his own special quilt. The only problem is that I've never made a quilt in my life. I have a sewing machine and I can definitely sew straight lines, but I have no idea how hard a quilt would be to make. Has anyone ever attempted such a project? How did it turn out? Any leads on super simple quilting patterns? How long would it take to make?

Here are some quilts I love...

Patchwork Baby Quilt by Crafty Blossom

Lovely Design's Forest Quilt via The Purl Bee

Modern & Colourful Patchwork Quilt by Red Pepper Quilts

Summer Meadow Baby Quilt by Two Corner Quilts

Have a wonderful Friday and weekend,
xo Bess

Ps. If any of you are stellar quilt makers and would like to trade some artwork (prints, calendars, custom work) for a pretty baby quilt, I'd definitely be interested :)


The 2012 "Everyday Objects" Calendar

2012 Calendar - cover
2012 Calendar
Oh boy! I'm so excited to finally be able to share English Muffin's 2012 Calendar with you. As you can see, I was inspired by the beautiful everyday objects that surround us in our daily lives. But, you know me, I couldn't stop there. I also wanted to incorporate an educational element, so each illustration is accompanied by its English name along with the French and German translations. A great way to impress your Oma the next time you see here working at her Nähmaschine (sewing machine).

To celebrate the launch of the coming year's calendar, I'm offering a special pre-order price. You can purchase the calendar in my shop for only $20 until October 31st, 2011. Calendars will begin shipping during the first week of November.

A little more about the 2012 "Everyday Objects" Calendar...

The 2012 "Everyday Objects" Calendar features 12 original illustrations inspired by the beautiful things that surround us in our daily lives. Each object has been labeled with its English noun, as well as the French and German translations, making the calendar a fun tool to expand your foreign language vocabulary, n'est-ce-pas?!


• the calendar measures a luxurious 8.5 x 11 inches
• 13 unbound sheets (including cover)
• printed on a beautiful 100% recycled matte paper using archival inks
• designed and printed in Montréal, Canada
• shipped in an eco-cello sleeve and bend-proof mailer


• illustrations can be cut down for easy to frame prints
• English, French and German nouns identify each illustration and each month
• makes a great Holiday gift; ship directly to recipient with personalized holiday greeting included
• great for classrooms, kids rooms... any room!

 Regular Price: $28
June 2012

Have a wonderful Wednesday!
xo Bess


Inspiration or plagiarism?

Whoa, heavy blog post title for a Monday morning—I know, but after seeing this video I think you'll be asking yourself the same question.

Beyonce's new song Countdown pays tribute to some of her biggest inspirations, Audrey Hepburn, Twiggy, Andy Warhol and Diana Ross. However, much of the choreography, sets and costumes appear to be lifted directly from legendary contemporary dance choreographer Anne Teresa de Keersmaeker's 1983 work Rosas Danst Rosas.

What do you think?

Personally, I'm leaning towards plagiarism. With all the money, talented people and wealth of resources at her disposal, I really don't understand how or why a 22 second movement phrase from de Keersmaeker's work appears in Beyonce's video. And, why—if you are so moved by the choreographer's extremely popular work, Rosas Danst Rosas—you don't contact her to work on or contribute to your music video.

You can read Anne Teresa's response to the Countdown video here, and Beyonce's here.

Have a great Monday!
xo Bess


Happy Weekend + A Sneak Peek!

Hi Friends! I just wanted to pop in to wish you a wonderful weekend and give you a little sneak peek of English Muffin's 2012 Calendar.

2012 Calendar - April

I thought the rubber boot would be a good sneak peek since it's been raining all day here in Montreal. And, did you notice? I've got the French and German words for rubber boot on the calendar too! Now, don't you feel smart?!

I hope you have a sunny weekend where you are :)

xo Bess


It's a… (part two)

cupcake1 cupcake2 cupcake3 cupcake4

Thank you to my lovely little sister for making the most special dessert ever! Papa Chuck and I are so thrilled :)

xoxo Bess

ps. In case you didn't read part one, it's here.


It's a… (part one)

Pink & Blue Vanilla Cupcakes
Photo: Becky Colletti ConsumedbyCake on Flickr
Papa Chuck and I are off to Toronto today, we're heading home for the Thanksgiving long weekend here in Canada. I'm really excited about this trip because this Thanksgiving is going to be extra special. Yes, it will be special because I'll be able to consume more turkey than most at the dinner table (thank you little Beast), and special because I'll get to show my family my growing belly and hopefully have them feel a kick or two, but the really super extra specialness of this weekend is that we are going to find out the sex of our baby. I know—so exciting!!

Back in September when Papa Chuck and I went for our 20 week ultrasound, we asked the technician to write down the sex of the baby on a piece of paper and put it into an envelope for us. I took this sealed envelope home with me and promptly (after some holding it up to the light) addressed it to my sister and dropped it in the mailbox. Earlier in the week we had arranged a Thanksgiving gender reveal dessert with my sister. She was going to be the only person to know the baby's sex and then bake a cake where the inside would be either pink or blue. When we cut into the cake we would find out if we were having a boy or a girl. 

Isn't that a fun idea?! I saw it on one of my favourite blogs, A Cup of Jo. Here's the video that Joanna posted...

Of course, I'm very excited to share the news with all of you as well. Tune in next week for part two :)

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving to all you Canadians out there! I wish you lots of food, love and crisp walks outdoors.
xo Bess


Perfect Pairs

I hope you're having a great week. Here are few perfect pairs for you to peruse...

Zen Corgi Mug • Mountains Note Cards

Wearable Planter No5 • Porcelain & Leather Hanging Planter

Knitted Baby Socks • Ribbed Bonnet

How darling are those baby socks and hat?! Now, if only I knew if we were having a little boy or girl. Well, actually... I have some fun news on that subject that I'd love to share with you, tune in tomorrow for more details ;)

Have a great Thursday!
xo bess


Just wondering...

Photo: Erin Monett
...if you've seen the new recipe cards I designed for Pure Green Magazine's website? You can find links to download some of our favourite recipes from the latest issue here. Scroll to the bottom of the recipe and click the "download this recipe" link, you'll get a ready-to-print black & white PDF downloaded to your desktop. Just print it out on 8.5" x 11" paper or card stock and enjoy!

Collect them all! It's fun :)

Have a great Wednesday!
xo bess


Canadiana: lucky 14

lucky 14
Whaler Bay Warmer

I was going to save these lovely knits from the Vancouver-based shop, lucky 14, until the leaves had changed colour and we were well into the fall season. It seems, however, like fall arrived virtually overnight here in Montreal. For the past few days I've been walking around the house in extra warm socks and fleece sweaters, stubbornly keeping the heat turned off—this can't really be the end of warm days, can it?!

lucky 14
Cannery Cowl

If we must bid adieu to summer breezes and long sunshine-y days, then I guess fall does have its fair share of reasons to love it. Number one on my list, knits. I love a warm wooly scarf or sweater wrapped around my shoulders, and I think a lucky 14 cowl would be right at home in my wardrobe too.

lucky 14
Whaler Bay Warmer

An interior designer by trade, Beatriz Rempel began selling her hand knit scarves, cowls, pillows and coffee sleeves in her Etsy shop after finding herself with some unexpected time on her hands. She chooses soft comfortable yarn and uses simple yet beautiful stitches to create easy to wear, versatile pieces.

To see more knits from lucky 14 visit Beatriz's Etsy shop, and make sure to check out her blog too.

Have a great Tuesday!
xo Bess


Fashion Weekend 101

Jean Paul Gaultier
(photos from my iPhone)

On Friday, I took the day off and went to see the Jean Paul Gaultier exhibit here in Montreal. It closed yesterday, and I'm so glad I got a chance to go before it left town. I'm not the world's biggest fashionista (not even close), but I definitely do appreciate inspiration, innovation and a strong point of view in any art form. Seeing some of Gaultier's most visionary pieces in one place was really quite breathtaking. I found myself being blown away by shapes, colours, patterns, textures and craftsmanship over and over again. On some of the more intricate pieces, like the beaded leopard gown made entirely from hand sewn beads, it listed the hours it took to create the piece as 1060. Unbelievable!

Jean Paul Gaultier Jean Paul Gaultier

My fashion weekend didn't end with the Gaultier exhibit though. On Saturday, Big Chuck and I watched Bill Cunningham New York. Have you seen it? If you love Bill Cunningham's On The Street column for the New York Times, it's a definite must-see movie! We both loved it and it left me wanting to watch more films about inspiring artists who are truly passionate about what they do.

Have a passionate Monday ;)
xo Bess