Tuesday, 28 April 2009

Wesley would LOVE your Vote!

Wesley is canvassing for votes :)

The Wesley Art-Accessory Rabbit Bag which gives 10% to the rabbit rescue Wesley came from is in a Storque Vote Article.

Wesley says 'Please Vote For Me xxx'

He would be very happy to hop into number 1 spot, but he knows albino eyed lop rabbits are not everyone's cup of tea.

Infact he is wondering if that is why he spent sooooo long waiting at the rescue centre for his forever home?

Even the bag had a pensive look for a minute there!
But I have told Wesley that the reason he waited so long was because we were meant to be together and time had to pass for this to be so.
Wesley wishes all the contestants well and he assures me that he is going to behave himself impeccably, and will not snip any loose threads he sees sticking about.

Monday, 27 April 2009

WIN a Grey Hare Birthday Card from me

I have been interviewed by Nathalie from etsy shop Recupe Fashion on her blog Women - Preneurs. Thank you Nathalie!

I ramble on a bit about me, infact quite a bit, now that I have read it again. It's not that I have a lot to say about me, just a lot to say in general.
Anyway, I hope you find it interesting - please have a read here - and at the end of the interview please enter the free prize draw to WIN one of my Grey Hares It's That Time Again !!! Happy Birthday Cards.

These lovely (and sometimes embarassing) cards have one grey hare for every year of the birthday person's life. Yes, I spend hours cutting out all the hares! and sticking them on! and yes, I can fit lots of the lagomorphs onto a card - so there is no 'oh! I'm too old / there would be too many hares' excuses!

These cards are for sale in my etsy shop. I have two kinds - for those 65 and under and - for those over 65 which have to have another card extension! That's ALOT of grey hares!

Grey hares are very, very adept at hiding under hair colourants, bouffants, wigs, toupes, hats, scarves and whatever else is trying to hide them - but they Never Go Away!
(Some of you young ones may be smirking, even laughing by now - but grey hares can hop on by at Any Age! even in your 20's!!!) Your 'hip' hairdresser may even refer to them as platinum highlights - but don't be flattered - a grey hare is a Grey Hare!

So don't pussy foot around at yet another birthday, and tell it like it is - give the recipient this adorable card, and they will be 'over the moon' at your honesty and great sense of humour - even if they have neither, when they first see the card!
Please visit my interview at Nathalie's blog and leave a comment there to be entered in the draw to win a card with goodness knows how many grey hares!
(I'm cutting them out already!!)
Good luck and thank you

Saturday, 25 April 2009

Baby Hare Puppis Brings on the Zeds

The other night I was explaining to Wesley how I chose the name for the newest Baby Hare and all I could hear was an even, relaxed breathing - uh-oh!

He hadn't even heard half of what I was going on about! tut tut!

So then I thought I would share my little gem of wisdom with Arabella - but uh-huh, just look at her too after 3 minutes!

Puppis didn't want me to give up so I've been (forced) compelled to do a blog post about how she was named.
Being so unusual and pretty I knew that she had to stand apart from all the other baby hares that have been named so far.

That day I had received an email (as you do, passed on from forwarder to forwarder...) about the insignificance of life on planet earth compared to the celestial giants out there - like Antares (the 15th brightest star) and Arcturus (the 4th brightest star in the sky) -
and I realised that the naming problem was not a problem at all - especially when earth's sun was now a pixel in size compared to these supergiants!

So I did a search on celestial names and came across the wonderful name Puppis. It is derived from Latin to mean a doll or small image and the Romans and other seafarers way back then had small deity images affixed to the stern to watch over the ship. Just perfect I thought!

So Baby Hare Puppis was born. Looking rather hare-like and rather sea-dragon-like! She has an amazing tuft of fur on her nape and shoulders, and her nose! One of the advantages of being a self-taught and self-mend sewperson. (Sounds better than sewer.)

Puppis was born on a bright starry night and her mother named her after one of the star constellations. Mama knew straight away that Puppis was a special and unusual baby – she has huge eyes and a white fur tuft on her shoulders and one on her nose.
Every night little Puppis stays up later than any of the other babies and she makes sure that they go to bed first.
She loves to gaze up at all the stars and one day wants to visit them.
To help her achieve her dream she has enrolled in advanced mathematics and physics, luckily she is finding it easy!

By this time Wesley is definitely away with the fairies!

and Arabella is out for the count! (That's my hand holding her head up slightly - she was on my lap)
Little Puppis is in my etsy shop, studying hard!
Want to see the starry Puppis? Visit here - and if you can spot the real Puppis please let me know :)
It has obviously been written by an astronomer with a good eye!

Sunday, 19 April 2009

Arabella and North American Whitetail Applique Rabbit Bag

This is my latest Arabella Art-Accessory Rabbit Bag.

Deer are a favourite animal of mine, as well as rabbits - and having both together is very nice. This bag has been earmarked for me (so far I only own one Arabella bag!) and I think it is time I added to my accessory collection. After all - a girl can never have too many (rabbit) bags!

I love printed animal images - isn't this deer just so grand. I have sewn this applique on fleece padded cotton separately before then stitching it to the outside cotton. This was all done before the lining and padding were added. (These bags take a long time to make!).

The deer are North American Whitetails - if I have understood this article correctly at Mother Earth News. This is also another informative page. And this page for a comprehensive list of all deer species. (Only true deer lovers will be checking out these links!)

The antlers are protruding over the top of the bag and the edges of the applique are left frilly and ragged with bits fraying off.

Even though Arabella just adores attention - she is also rather shy - though you would never guess it. Here is a deer just like her - hiding behind her jowl.
This beautiful bag will be accompanying me on my trips to the rugged cold Scottish beaches, the botanical gardens, small wooded walks and many exciting car journeys (sitting upfront with me). Not to mention numerous visits to my grandmother with cups of tea, stories, anecdotes, words of wisdom and endless cakes!

Also - another baby rabbit in my shop. Baby Rabbit Angel -
Angel was the smallest of all the baby rabbits when she was born.
Her mother was very concerned and put her into the special crib nursery for extra warmth and feedings. She took longer than any of the babies to open her eyes and her growth was slow. Many nights her mother looked up to the moon and asked the rabbit angel to protect and nourish baby Angel.
Her hopes were answered for tiny Angel soon grew fast, ate non-stop and is now one of the fatter babies in the nest.
Every evening before she falls asleep she gazes up at the sky with mama and gives thanks for being here. As does mama too.
Little Angel is a soft sculpture and loves to snuggle into pillows (of all sorts!).
I want to thank Lynn and beautiful Sophia, of Lynn's Musings and Mumblings, for kindly mentioning the support I have been giving to rabbit rescues. I am thankful to be able to highlight the great work that the rescues are doing and to let people know more about rabbits.

Friday, 17 April 2009

The Wesley Art-Accessory Rabbit Bag

Here is my first Wesley Art-Accessory Rabbit Bag.

Wesley is my rescued albino lop rabbit. He came from The Rabbit and Guinea Pig Welfare in Rugby, Enlgand. I spent 18 hours in a round trip from Scotland to take him home and now, one and a half years later, he is very happy and content living with me.

Wesley is a very friendly rabbit, little bit hard of hearing, some upper respiratory problems that we handle on a daily basis and the best sense of smell ever! He makes tiny little peeping noises when I give him his meals and when I was making this bag up he lay on his fleeces and watched me!

Here you can see his wonderful long eyelashes and little tuft of crest fur! Plus his nonchalant look!
As soon as I saw the photo of Wesley on the UK rabbit rehome website I knew immediately that he was meant to be with me. I had to wait a couple of months before I could meet him as he was battling a bad respiratory infection and was on very powerful antibiotics. (Something Zai, my first rescue rabbit would not have been able to handle with his weak immune system).

Wesley is a fighter and he made it thru his repeated infections. On this art-accessory bag I used a North American Grizzly Bear applique. This grizzly symbolizes Wesley's innate strength and protects him.
The applique bear has real golden safety eyes that glisten, as he watches out for Wesley.

On the other side is a huge walking grizzly, and behind the lop ear is another shy bear. Even though Wesley is bold and unafraid, he is really a little bit shy and if I even act as if I am going to scoop him up to kiss and cuddle him - he will dart off, as fast as the pronghorn antelope - on the end of the bag!

This is a very special bag indeed, and the first of my albino eyed lop Wesley bags.
If this is The Bag for you - and it is one-of-a-kind - then please visit my etsy shop.
10% from the sale of this bag will be donated to Tracy at the RNGP to help the other rabbits and guinea pigs waiting patiently for their forever homes.

Thursday, 16 April 2009

Baby Rabbit Snowdrop is Welcomed into the World

Please meet Baby Rabbit Snowdrop with the most beautiful blue eyes.

New Baby Rabbit Snowdrop now in my shop. These are soft sculptures and like my baby hares are profile sculptures.
Baby rabbits like to reside by soft cushions and pillows (but for my friends over the pond - that would be pillows and bed pillows!!. Infact I don't know what the cousins call sleeping pillows - is everything a pillow?)
This is my very first baby rabbit, done to my own design.

Baby Rabbit Snowdrop was born when the snowdrops were first opening and her mother named her after them. She was going to be called starry because of her blue eyes, but snowdrop was a nicer name.
And like the delicate flowers they are, little Snowdrop is also a gentle, delicate rabbit.
She spends many hours running amongst the flowers but would never think of trampling on any or nipping the stems in half. Nor would she tear at a leaf in the passing.
When she grows up she would like to have her own garden of snowdrops, to play in, as you are never too old to play.
Snowdrop wants everyone to know that baby rabbits are called kittens.
She is 14cm high / 5.5" , healthy and plump, and just the same size as a weaned baby rabbit and therefore safe to go to her new home.
If you are yearning for a rabbit please consider a plush first, and remember that rabbits live for up to 14 years.
Rabbit rescues have many rabbits available for adoption and they come in all age groups and all have huge hearts filled with love.
If you would like to have Snowdrop as a forever member of your family please visit my etsy shop.

Monday, 13 April 2009

Interview with Laurent from etsy shop Lambert

Please visit here to read my interview with Laurent.

Unfortunately the dynamics of blogging are still baffling me and I have befuddled the posting order thru my own bumbling!

Never-the-less - please visit the Interview with Laurent and meet his two beautiful cats, thank you!

Thank You kindly

I want to say Thank You to Heather from etsy shop Bebe and Alice for kindly featuring me on her blog Bebe and Alice.

Heather's shop motto is Recycle Renew Rejoice which I completely agree with! I really like her amazing 'scratchbooks' - have a look - I was delighted to find out what they are!


I want to say Thank You to Maureen for featuring me on her blog All Things Jewelry and Then Some. Maureen makes jewellery which she sells in her shop The Jeweled Rabbit.

I found Maureen's blog packed with very informative articles posing useful questions and answers and I also enjoy reading about her Heroes of Handmade series.


I want to say Thank You to Kim from etsy shop Midnight Rabbits for so nicely writing about the prize she chose with her Buckeye Spring Raffle Voucher from my shop on her blog Midnight Rabbits Vegan World.

You can see one of Kim's brooches down below in an earlier post. It is the delightful hamster.

All of these ladies' blogs may be found on my List to the right hand side.

thank you!!!

Saturday, 11 April 2009

Interview - Meet Laurent - from etsy shop Lambert

and felines Tipu and Fefe!

I first noticed Laurent when I came across his painting of a pair of cows, in his etsy shop Lambert, which I immediately loved.

I had seen photos of these 3D Japanese style papier mache models before - but never a painting of one. I was intrigued. He told me that they are Japanese and every prefecture has their own variation of these little models. (A collector's dream, my heart quickened!)

Not long after this discovery Laurent then introduced small chicken figurines to his shop in the same style.

Wearing Japanese cloth tied on with bright cords each chicken looks just so adorable! Who could stop at one?

Someone who creates such charismatic characters must have a love of animals?
I asked Laurent if he would answer a few questions for me and the people who take time to stop by here. He kindly obliged.

You have two cats - tell me a bit about them?

My first cat is a siamese mix and just turned 5 years old recently, her name is Tipu (tee-poo), a traditional Indian name.

Tipu - with the most amazing ice blue eyes!

I adopted her from a shelter in Brooklyn, she was very skinny and barely weaned at the time, we fed her a milk formula with an eye dropper for the first week. Like all rescued animals, with a lot of love and the proper care, Tipu grew into a beautiful healthy cat.
There is a wonderful place in New York City called New York Siamese Cat Rescue that offers mostly (but not only) Siamese cats for adoption.

My second cat is Fefe.

Fefe looking very regal

Fefe (fay-fay) was a gift from a friend of mine who got him to keep company to a cat she already had but the original cat rejected the kitten and became dangerously aggressive towards him. My friend decided not to keep the kitten and I gladly offered to take him!
Both my cats get along very well.

Tell me about the rabbit you found on the street corner?

I have two rabbit stories.

I had a rabbit growing up. I got him while I visited a farm in France when I was 6 years old and I remember begging the farmer not to kill this one rabbit and let me have him!
I named him Popov, he was huge! We kept him uncaged in our house and he used to play with our collie dog in the backyard. They were best friends and he came on vacation with us in the summers. He lived to old age.

Laurent at 6 with sizely Popov

Two summers ago, a friend of mine and I found an abandoned rabbit in a cardboard box in front of her apartment building wall, as if it were garbage, in Manhattan.... shocking! Which was very bizarre!
The poor rabbit had barely any hair left, only on his paws and was very skinny. A visit to the vet informed us he was healthy but extremely malnourished and dehydrated.
He did grow back his hair and put on some weight and "blossomed" in a beautiful brown rabbit. My friend had named 'her' Marigold. She was convinced the rabbit was a she. My friend then decided to send Marigold to live with some people she knew Upstate NY in a better, greener environment than what she could have provided in a NYC apartment.

What is your full time job? and how did your etsy shop come about?

I work in the movie business and decided to take a year off last year to get my life back a bit, slow down and focus on painting, drawing which I really never had time to do.
I was (and still am) a buyer on Esty, so I was very familiar with the site and I thought I would open a shop and see what happens.
When my tempera paintings started to sell, it motivated me to keep going.
There is something very gratifying in having people appreciate what you create.

Some of Laurent's paintings. They are adorned with wool threads and recycled materials.

What is tempera?

Tempera or "egg tempera" is a type of paint made by mixing powered pigments with egg yolks, it is the oldest paint known and was used in ancient Egypt, Greece, the Renaissance …
The colors are rich and luminous and perfect for the kind of paintings I like to do.

Where does your inspiration come from for all your paintings and chicken figurines?

I love Japanese folk culture and folk art in general. I like the use of bold colors, simple shapes and the childlike quality of not adhering completely to figurative reality. There is something endearing about folk art and very accessible.
I obviously love animals and they are my main painting subjects.
After a while, I became curious to go from a flat surface to having a 3D representation of something I could paint.
I came up with the idea for the chicken figurines thinking of a cross between those old prizes you could win at carnivals and fairs and the folksy souvenirs that were very popular in 50s-60s Japan.

Just so adorable! and I do believe that chickens like their own company?
and if you would like to try decorating one yourself ?

Do you have a painting/figurine 'ritual'? if so - what is it?

Not at all, I just need good natural light and to have a precise idea of what I want to do.
I never improvise!

What has and hasn't worked for you?

Drying the chickens in the oven was my biggest mistake!
That’s how I burned my first batch of chickens …

Good quality brushes do make a big difference.

What is your favourite item in your etsy shop and why?

I have no favorites. I like all of the items in my shop now because what I do is completely my taste.
Everything in my shop could find a place in my home but it would be bad for business, wouldn’t it?
I did have a whale painting that I really liked and thought about keeping for myself for a while and then it sold!

What ideas / works do you have planned for the future?

I will go back to my “real job” soon, so I will have to see how much time I will have left for painting before making any big plans.

What do you collect? and why?

I am not a collector at all, my mind is not wired this way :)

How many of your dreams have you achieved?

This is a tough question.
I never had a master plan. I am making up goals as I am going along.
I feel like I am getting closer to where I am supposed to be and I have learned to recognize and seize opportunities as they present themselves. I think my dreams are taking shape along the way.
I am pretty happy of where I am at the moment.

And any dreams you would like to share?

I really want a beach house.
I love the ocean, I love the summer, I have this perfect vision of a cozy little cottage filled with friends, family and pets close to a beautiful beach.

Anything you would like to add?

I think you are doing a wonderful job for animal causes on and off Etsy. So the first quote that comes to my mind is naturally animal related.

"We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals."
Immanuel Kant

Thank you Laurent!
It was a pleasure to get to know a little about you, your amazing work and two very beautiful cats Fefe and Tipu!
and don't forget - if you live in USA, in the New York area and are looking to give a safe and loving home to a siamese cat then please consider The New York City Siamese Rescue as your first port of call.
Thank you

Thursday, 9 April 2009

Put Your Foot Down - Say NO!

Arabella and Wesley say No! to Live Easter Rabbit Purchases - Put Your Foot Down!

It's that time of year again - Easter - and most definitely the very worst time for a rabbit. Especially rabbits sold as a commodity in pet shops and goodness knows where else.

If you are being pestered by a youngster for a rabbit (and you have no particular love for, nor fascination with them) then Put Your Foot Down and say NO!

Rabbits live for up to 14 years. They are not suitable for young children, they can bite and scratch and they are demanding and needy animals. (I can go on - the list is long..) and when your child is 20 will they still want 'the rabbit'?

Don't forget that the week after purchase the rabbit novelty will have worn off and you will be cleaning, feeding, paying bills and going to the vet with the rabbit - not your child.

If however, you do honestly like rabbits, then please wait at least a month after Easter and then enquire at your local rabbit rescue - they will have been inundated with rabbits that were bought thoughtlessly then abandoned, dumped or ignored. (Many rescues do not adopt out at Easter time).
Rescues do not give out free rabbits - all rabbits are spayed and neutered and the prospective owner is assessed for suitability and a fee has to be paid.

Not everyone makes a suitable rabbit parent (don't take it personally - some habits and lifestyles just don't go).

The fee helps cover some of the cost of the rabbit - please consider adding on extra. If the fee is putting you off then you probably aren't going to make a suitable rabbit parent. They are expensive to keep properly and vet bills can be very high.

I paid a princely sum for Arabella and Wesley - well over and above the adoption fee - and was glad to be able to give more to help some of the rabbits that were staying there.

Please read The Rabbit Muse - Just say no to the Easter bunny


Heart of a Cowgirl - Make Mine Chocolate

for their rabbit experiences and check out some great rabbit information here - Make Mine Chocolate and visit the Interactive Bun

Thank you for helping rabbits at this time of year - and if your youngster still wants a rabbit then there is a very affordable choice on etsy -

want to know a bit more about me?

Thank You Maureen!

Tuesday, 7 April 2009

A Bouquet for the Spring Bride

Well, um, er, an Arabella Art-Accessory Rabbit Bag that will look a lot better than a bouquet!

WILL NEVER wilt, shrivel up and fall off.

Nor leave sap nor plant milk on your hand.

Will not put pollen on your silk.

Nor get tangled up in your train.

Will not fly into a a hundred pieces when wheeked up into the air to the bunch of butterflies eagerly waiting to grab it (note: Arabella requests that you carry a small wild flower posy inside the bag - so that this may be tossed instead, elegantly, ... into the seething throng...).

WILL accompany the bride on her walk up the aisle and give reasurring murmurs on the way.

Will press gently into the bride's side to warm her trembling body.

Will smile calmly at all times through out, even when the bride is crying uncontrollably with happiness.

Will amuse the small flower girls, even the naughtiest one, and keep them from misbehaving and making rude noises.

Will mesmerise the even smaller page boys and nuture in them a love for all animals and the desire to be vets when they grow up.

Will dumbfound the mother-in-law, at last, thank goodness! and put an end to her meddling ways.

Will be the envy and desire of all the future brides, the groom's gay bestman and astonishingly, the old priest himself!

Only One made - in this wedding bell and crimson heart material. Will Arabella complete your wedding??

This beautiful material came from the lovely Felicity's etsy shop http://www.bluewhimsy.etsy.com/

where she has this wonderful felted pin 'I am all in knots over you'

Sunday, 5 April 2009

Arabella Crosses the Big Pond Again!

AND THE WINNER of Arabella Blue Star White Star IS .....

AMA of etsy shop MakeMeSmile

yeahhhh yeeeeee hheaaaaayyyy wweeeeaaaaaa

Congratulations Ama! I hope you will love Arabella when she arrives after her journey from Ohio, USA to the Netherlands. I hope she fits in well with your two felines - Arabella is a pretty cool lady and she can chill with the kittys!

and in Ama's own words "I'm really happy. But the real winners are of course the animals." =^x^=
I couldn't agree with her more!


K.Haering * * T.Herrod * * H.Baker * * P.Brant * * K.Shay

yeeeeaaaaaa yahaaaay weeeeaaaah

I hope everyone enjoys spending their $10 voucher!

Thank you to everyone for purchasing a ticket. It was fantastic that $362 was raised and will go directly to looking after the rabbits being fostered out at The Buckeye House Rabbit Society.

This will cover the cost of spaying does, to prevent the onset of uterine cancer and unwanted pregnancies, and neutering males to prevent unwanted pregnancies.

Spaying a doe is vitally important and in 90% of cases an unspayed doe will suffer from uterine cancers, cysts and tumours and will shorten her life span by at least 6 years (rabbits can live for 14 years) and cause terrible pain and suffering.

Am I just saying this? No, sadly I am not. I am talking from experience, nearly 20 years ago when rabbit care was very basic, misunderstood and often backward. My first house rabbit Burns contracted uterine cysts and passed away after having an operation to remove them. If I can help change the quality of life of one rabbit by changing someone's understanding then I have achieved everything.

I am honoured to be able to support rabbit rescues that work so tirelessly and hard, often in very trying and upsetting circumstances and I know that there are many very kind, caring, generous folks supporting them just like me.

Thank you for being so interested in purchasing a raffle ticket and helping to make a great contribution to a small lagomorphs life. It was a pleasure to donate my bag!

and talking of donating - Ama, the winner, also donates proceeds from her etsy shop to her local animal no-kill shelter Stevenshage in the Netherlands.

She makes the most noticible humourous scarves (I have ever seen!)

- no wonder her shop is called Make Me Smile!

and Kim of etsy shop MidnightRabbits, one of the voucher winners, also donates to animal charities from her shop proceeds. She makes, amongst other things, beautiful little animal brooches

I am fortunate to know many of the winners, and they care deeply for their own animals and other animals in need :)

Thanks for supporting charitible giving and handmade!
kindest regards,
Annette, Arabella and Wesley xxx

Friday, 3 April 2009

Arabella Says THANK YOU :) xxx

Saturday 4th - LAST DAY!!!
to WIN the Arabella Bag Blue Star White Star
and not forgetting the 5 x $10 vouchers as well, to be used in my etsy shop

and as a THANK YOU from Arabella herself (my amazingly beautiful rescue rabbit) and me - we have created this treasury which features many thoughtful animal lovers and caring people who avidly support rescues and animals around the world.

Viewable on etsy until Monday 6th at GMT 9am.

the sellers are - by row - from top left
















thanks for joining in the fun !

- soon to be announced - the lucky Arabella Bag winner and 5 voucher winners!