I’ll be at BlueBazaar this Saturday in Pilsen with some nerdy plushies and geeky gifties

Pop-up retail events are super trendy these days, and I’ll be part of one in Pilsen (through Fractalspin) on Saturday just to maintain my credentials. I kid! It’s actually a craft fair called Blue Bazaar, a fundraiser for a neat entrepreneurial technology-slinging non-profit called Blue 1647. It’s a year-old nonprofit technology innovation center focused on “education, workforce development, business acceleration, and economic development in technology”-related things. What that means is they have classes, office space rental, a incubation program and three (3!!!) 5th generation Makerbot 3D printers, free computer usage for members, classrooms, and office rentals to entrepreneurs and budding organizations to aid in making their visions reality (as if the 3D printer thing wasn’t enough). Also, Harper Reed–who might have helped with a presidential thing a while … Read More

Intercouple domestic nerd-hiliarity, with some Post-It Notes and a Slow Cooker

I gotta say, it’s probably taking title to Soul-Mate Land when one can write a request in PHP for the slow cooker procedure and have it executed flawlessly by the significant other. ^Translation = “If it’s 8:00 am or later AND the onions are caramelized, please turn this thing off. If that’s not true but it’s 9:00 am or later, please turn it off.” Proof =

Free Circuit Board Gift Tags!

So my store Fractalspin has been carrying these cool Circuit Board Ornaments for a while, and there’s now a quantity discount if you buy 10 or more. We learned from some of our customers that they were using them as gift tags for presents, and we were buying quite a few at a time, but unfortunately last year we ran out of stock to get them out by Christmas. This year we’re starting the promotion early enough for larger quantity orders in time for holiday madness. I also designed some free gift tag templates you can print out and attach to gifts, right away, for free! [Download Stars Gift Tags PDF] [Download Dreidels Gift Tags PDF] If you want smaller tags for smaller gifts, just print them out … Read More

New art site! Also, you can support pit bull rescue by buying an art print

I’ve finally gotten together my visual art portfolio site (lizmcleanknight.com) and figured it would be great to launch it with a campaign that supports Pit Bull Awareness Month (October). Buy an art print and support pit bull rescue! This marker drawing is of Charlotte, an insanely sweet pit bull terrier whom I adopted from Chicagoland Bully Breed Rescue in 2011. From now until the end of 2013, I will donate 10% of the proceeds from sales of the archival art prints of Charlotte through Society6 to Chicagoland Bully Breed Rescue. [Read More] {Buy an art print from Society6} The smallest size (8″ x 10″) starts at just $19, and you can choose from larger sizes as well. We’re getting close to the gifty season, and it would be … Read More

Zebra “Pencils”

I was going through pencil lead like mad from working on various sewing projects (I’ll share these soon, promz!) so I went to my IRL Staples for lead and found these guys instead. I find it positively hilarious, and I wonder why they haven’t thought of this before. I have been a long-time fan of Zebra mechanical pencils because 1) they are stainless steel and look pretty techno and 2) they last forever. So, while poking around to look at replacement lead I spotted these and thought I’d give them a shot. I love that they put the little aluminum eraser-binding bit in, but the parts that wear down are completely replaceable. They’re much lighter than wood pencils, but the length is cool because they feel a bit … Read More

Leaf Blowers: Are you kidding me?

I realize I’m going to become like that old man who screams “Get off my lawn!” but this subject is just one that has to be addressed. I love my neighborhood. I’m lucky to live a few short blocks away from a segment of the the brilliantly designed

Charlotte the Pitbull: Third Place for Best Costume at Wicker Park’s Boo-palooza

Aka “Pitbull in a Tutu,” Charlotte won third place at Wicker Park’s Boo-palooza, and we took home a sweet gift basket of dog delishiousness. She then had a vet appointment and then amused many people over in Retailland (Logan and Elston strip mall), even while in traffic in the car. Hooray. Check out these photos of all the cool stuff that came in her gift basket. I got her when she was a puppy from Chicago Bully Breed Rescue, or CBBR as they call themselves, a rescue and fostering nonprofit.

“Glowfest” .. or “what to be aware of”

Sexy video, right? So, Glowfest is basically a campus-touring electronic music marketing event, geared to snare in young people and capitalize on their attention for other means. By “other means” they’ve attached a job fest to it (actively seeking startups to participate, mind you), to seduce these young people who they feel are attracted by the emotions created through electronic music to then pursue careers in their highly technical fields. Oh, and I’m sure they’ve done the numbers and expect to make bank on it. So you probably are wondering why I would even spend typing time on such a thing if I don’t want it promoted. Consider it a warning lesson to those of us in the industry: anything can be commodified and its original purpose subverted … Read More