Skipping Stones Records

A small indie label with big ideas.

Monday, September 08, 2008


What's Christine Been Up To? Critters, Crafts 'n Cupcakes

Lately our house has been surrounded by a species with quite a reputation. Recently a few dramatically marked spiders have set up existence on the back deck. First there was one and we were in awe of its size and ability to whip up a web in no time. It would build a web, then build another one somewhere else, going back and forth. Then one night I noticed that there were two spiders making webs. This is when it started to get creepy.

We took a flashlight and one night looked at them closely. The fake eyes on the underside of their bellies is enough to give anyone the frights. You can get the googley-eye effect in this picture:

Now I'm a personable Buddhist-type when it comes to little creatures, but these guys were starting to take over. Then I noticed one had set up camp in front of the house and it startled me. We have since decided to do a little "re-location" project. We enjoyed a little nature show for a while, but it started to feel as if these small arachnids were weaving webs all around us, with no way out. It was downright dangerous to step out the door.

Popfest! New England 5th Anniversary Comp CD

The webs may have gotten me feeling that I should start on some projects of my own, particularly one of my overly-ambitious, utterly inconceivable, but not impossible, Christine projects. One of my favorite classes at good 'ole Purchase College was bookbinding. It's actually something that I did in art school that I still do today, and at one time I did a bunch of craft fairs way before they got punk.

The project is a Popfest 5th anniversary comp CD. This may sound mundane, but I am actually making 100 of these by hand. It will be a 2-CD cover in a digipack style, utilizing bookbinding methods to put it together. I was thinking of making the inside of the CD covers the same, but "to hell with it," I thought. "Dammit, I'm making all of these one-of-a-kind!" Why not? I'm 90% there already. I've got the blisters to prove it. I wanted to document this crazy project to make sure that everyone out there understands the actual time and energy involved. Yeah, it was a crazy idea, but I'm starting to have fun.

I was inspired by all of the people who have traveled from all over to come to Popfest New England over the past 5 years. People have attended or played in a band from the UK, Iceland, Germany, Sweden, Seattle, St. Louis, MO, San Francisco. Philadelphia, NYC, Vermont, Maine . . .

I'm also inspired by vintage suitcases, and my own in particular which I use for merch. I drew the suitcase above based on this:

I went to triple-A with our dear friend Matthew and got a bunch of FREE maps. That's the cover:

Then I collected all of the memorabilia that I've saved for the past 5 years and asked people to submit their own little snippets of nostalgia. Now I've got a huge collage basket to do the inside of the CD, which will be a 2 CD set. Here's my sample, which includes Matthew's airline itinerary, some mailed-in submissions and buttons:

Now to back up a little bit, every cover is cut out by hand from Davey Red Label Binders Board. This is somewhat difficult, considering that I have a cutting board and an xacto knife. At Purchase we had gigantor cutting machines. Once I get the big sheets cut down, they go through my paper cutter, but the spine is the hardest and has to be done by hand. In my latest cutting spree, I developed quite an attractive blister on the top of my hand, go figure:

In more less-than-reasonable expectations for myself, I'm also designing and making (by hand) a box for the CD, in a clam-shell type design, as well as a booklet to go inside. I'm not sure if I will get this far, as just getting the songs from all the bands is a giant hurdle. Wish me luck and hopefully this will all come together. I just ordered more board!

In my latest idealistic-feat-of-creative-ideas, I've also decided to bake for Popfest New England in November. Dumb, huh? But what could be more cute than cupcakes? Or I was even thinking of making cookies to spell
"P - O - P"!!!!!!!!! How cute would that be?!?!

The image you see above looks impressive, but I have shunned my puritan ways in favor of 21st century cooking:

I am downright obstinate when it comes to packaged baked-goods, I rarely buy them. But I gotta give myself some slack here. William said that he's never seen me bake anything from a box - evah. I should be proud. At least I got to use my mixer.

The fun part was going to the Candy Store in the mall and picking out all sorts of decorations, thus the result below:

And my favorite:


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