Category Archives: Strange Stuff Saturdays

Humane Anatomy 101 – Strange Stuff Saturdays

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Lungs Brooch by Your Organ Grinder on Etsy.

As a nurse, I always have an eye out for alternatives to standard methods of teaching about the anatomy and human body, especially when it comes to teaching kids. Visual aids, interactive digital applications, and medical illustrations have come so far in showing us the structures we seek to know more about, we need no longer go through the act of dissection to understand them. Unless you are planning to become a medical practitioner or coroner, an embalmer or funeral director, you need not see an actual cadaver either.  So when I spotted these fabulous and fun items from Your Organ Grinder on Etsy, I was smitten. I know dozens of doctors and nurses that would love to have a pin like one of these attached to their boring white lab coat, not only cute and funny, but also a visual aid they can use to describe things to their patients. WIN – WIN!

Rainbow Hand Screen Printed Brooch by Your Organ Grinder on Etsy.

  

Plant Cell Embroidery Hoop by Your Organ Grinder on Etsy.

I remember my Grade 11 Science Lab well, not so much for the students or the teacher, though I do remember him, he was a real hardcore nerd.  I remember the room itself. There were dying plants on the window sill, there were boxes full of slides showing the various stages of mitosis and cell structures, and then there were the jars and cases containing preserved specimens. Slices of a cancerous lung, and various strange creatures, from insects to sea creatures. Oh yes, and then there were the fetal pigs that we had to dissect in pairs. I was luckily absent due to illness, in hospital actually, at the time of that section, and didn’t have to participate beyond the final day, when all the class had their piggies out on trays, the smell of formaldehyde was overwhelming, and we had to label a paper diagram with all the organs and major structures.  I aced it, proving to me at once that you need not dissect a poor helpless fish, frog, or piglet to learn about anatomy.

Kidneys In A Jar by Your Organ Grinder on Etsy.

 

Pelvis Brass Necklace by Your Organ Grinder on Etsy.

 

I went on, as many of you know, to become a registered nurse. I not only studied human biology in my Community College Diploma course, but also at the University level as I got my Baccalaureate Degree.  I went further and studied Neonatal Anatomy, specifically, as well as work on my Master’s Degree and learn Anatomy and Physiology on par with any medical student.  I never had to harm so much as a flea, and never saw a cadaver. I studied in books, I had hands on experiences in the Operating Room and with post-operative patient care, including wound care.

Animal Cell Brooch Biology by Your Organ Grinder on Etsy.

Placenta Jar Anatomical Curio Specimen by Your Organ Grinder on Etsy.

After having my own series of surgeries, starting at the age of 16, I also understood from a patients perspective and through long discussion with my Health Care Team, what was going to be done, how the body heals, and what tissues would be involved in the trauma of surgery.  I am always thankful for the great care I received, but I strongly object to the use and abuse of animals to learn about anatomy. I am now a vegan, and find an even more compelling rationale for this belief  rooted in compassion.  This is where compassion, cute, and fun geekery all meet up.

Breast Brooch by Your Organ Grinder on Etsy.

Pancreas Brooch by Your Organ Grinder on Etsy.

  
Your Organ Grinder is the amazing creator of all of these fabulous and smart “soft curiosities”, and I was a fan from the day I first spotted the shop on Etsy.  Self described as;

“Handmade Specimens in Jars, Brooches and Displays. Anatomical Curios, Medical Marvels, Taxidermy in Felt. Felted Brains and other Organs and Parasites.”

the items are handmade in felt and hail from Australia. This shop offers pure fun, and makes for a great gift for the medically inclined people in your life, be they physicians or nurses, science teachers, med students, or even a friend recovering from surgery.

Appendix Brooch by Your Organ Grinder on Etsy.

Heart Specimen Jar by Your Organ Grinder on Etsy.

I find this use of felt to be absolutely genius, frankly.  It takes “guts” to wear a Colon as a brooch on your jacket, pun intended. The newer brass editions to the line are fabulous too, giving a brilliant framework for skeletal projections. While many items are ready made, some are made to order, and Your Organ Grinder is willing to work with you to fulfill custom organ orders too. There are also plenty of tongue in cheek zombie organs, perfect to add to your own collection of oddities and finds, without harming a single zombie in the process.

Zombie Brain Specimen Jar, Green Brain by Your Organ Grinder on Etsy.

Tooth Cross Section Brooch by Your Organ Grinder on Etsy.

 
Brooches and Jewelry, Hair Accessories, Pillows, and Jar Specimens are just a few of the fabulous items on offer. Make sure you take a look into Your Organ Grinder on Etsy, and see if you can’t find the perfect specimen to add to your wardrobe or curio cabinet today, and show everyone that you have a heart, a spleen, an ovary or a prostate, or even a brain for that matter.

Eyeball Hairclip Green Iris by Your Organ Grinder on Etsy.

Gall Bladder Brooch by Your Organ Grinder on Etsy.
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Marvelous Mounts – Strange Stuff Saturdays

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Rhinka The Rhino – Amigurumi Rhino – Faux Taxidermy Crochet Wall Decor by Sanda, Pepika Amigurumi Patterns on Etsy. [Pattern Only]

When I was a child, my parents purchased an old but formerly grand small hotel in cottage country. After one season in that strange structure with a giant kitchen and tiny winding staircases, creaking floorboards and peeling white paint, my father had that sad hazardous fire trap of a building torn down and worked with an architect to build a modern winterized cottage in it’s place.

Faux Taxidermy Rabbit by Sabine Alpers, FAUX FAUNA on Etsy.
Custom Mounted Animal, Hand Sculpted OOAK by Ashleigh Burbidge, The Burbs on Etsy.
Yellow Pig – Mounted by Taylor Hart, Nothing But A Pigeon on Etsy.

One thing I remember distinctly from one of the drawing rooms in the place was the two mounted Stag Heads on the wall. They had been there for decades likely, with sad looking glossy glass eyes and majestic raised heads.  I am not now nor have ever been a fan of taxidermy. I don’t know anyone who actually owns a gun, much less hunts, and I care far more for the ecosystem and all it’s creatures to ever dare approve of hunting for sport alone. But there is something very rustic and traditional about having these sorts of items in a cabin or cottage setting.

Orange & Robins Egg Blue Dear Head Wall Mount by Hannah Reed, Banana Tree Studios on Etsy.
The Hooper – Blue Raspberry Resin Shark Head – Chic & Trendy by White Faux Taxidermy on Etsy.  
Captain Moose-Stachio – Faux Taxidermy Eye Patch and Mustached Deer/Moose Trophy by Bree Y., Anatomically Incorrect Creatures on Etsy. [Made To Order]

Our family, though no longer cottagers, still has one of those mounted stags, long ago named ‘Charlie”. It resides in my sister’s family Ski Lodge, with a place of honor. It reminds us to respect the animals, wild and otherwise around us, and makes us aware that the number of those majestic animals is in serious decline.

Custom Mounted Deer Head – Animal Friendly Taxidermy by Stephanie Garcia, Pockets with Posies on Etsy.
Custom Mounted Animal, Hand Sculpted OOAK by Ashleigh Burbidge, The Burbs on Etsy.
The Calhoun – White w/Silver Glitter Horns Resin Rhino Head – Chic & Trendy by White Faux Taxidermy on Etsy.

However you feel on the subject, you cannot deny that sometimes a little reminder of the traditions of the past, the whimsical side of our natural environment is often something we are missing.  We mostly live in the city and rarely see wild animals, unless you consider the odd squirrel or chipmunk, even a raccoon raiding your garbage bin ‘wild’.  Today’s strange stuff post takes a fun look at a much more magical ‘faux’ taxidermy that while strange to some, definitely has it’s share of charm.  Check out these wonderful offerings and consider if there is a place in your home for a little faux friend on the wall.

Wilbur Head Mount OOAK by Ghoulie Girls, Shop Ghoulie Girls on Etsy.
Needle Felted Cow Head, Style Faux Taxidermy by Sabine Alpers, FAUX FAUNA on Etsy.
Foxy (Orange & White) by Taylor Hart, Nothing But A Pigeon on Etsy.    

No Strings Attached – Strange Stuff Saturdays

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Hand Puppet – Jack (Rabbit) by Nicole Ponce, Ponster on Etsy.

I have a very long and somewhat bizarre history with hand puppets. I find them to be a very interesting form of art, but there is something almost creepy about them, and sometimes I find them a little bit off putting, I am not sure why.  It really depends on the individual puppets, and who is making them speak. Perhaps that is why they make the perfect subject of today’s Strange Stuff Saturdays post. 

EMMETT Hand Puppet by Megan, Furry Guys on Etsy.
Henry the Hand Puppet Made of 100% Recycled Wool by Margaret Nathon, The Creative Frog on Etsy.

Hand Puppet – Dog – Pink by iasio on Etsy.

In my earliest recollections, I know that I watched Mr. Rogers Neighborhood on television, perhaps it was the mid-seventies. I was just a little girl, and children’s television was a new genre.  I remember when Mr. Rogers would transition into the land of make-believe by following that little trolley car, there were the creepiest looking puppets in this “make believe” land. Even as a child I knew it wasn’t really a dream state, it was just that dude Mr. Rogers in another part of the studio, talking to a bunch of creepy puppets.  I was particularly weirded out by King Friday. I have no idea why, but I knew his voice was the same as Mr. Rogers.

Forget-Me-Not, A Bunny Handpuppet by clothmoth on Etsy.
Gorgeous Hand Felted Puppet ‘Donkey 1’ by Gladys Paulus on Etsy.
Troll Hand Puppet of 3 Billy Goats Gruff by Mary-Ellen O’Neil, at Meoneil on Etsy.

At the same time, Sesame Street was taking off in popularity. I found those puppets, a version of hand puppet, to be really adorable, and I was always trying to figure out how they were controlled. I understood that they were puppets, but I often got lost in the magic, since the voices seemed so original and the characters were all very well defined. They didn’t bother me at all, and to this day I love Muppets in all forms.

Fairy Godmother Puppet by Jessica MacLean, Geeky and Cheeky on Etsy.
Roofus Dog Hand Puppet or Ventriloquist Puppet Custom Order by Bob Wolanin, Bob’s Imagination on Etsy.

Handmade Large Green Octopus Hand Puppet by Mike Artelle, Artelle Puppets on Etsy.

My mother was always very crafty, and we did several projects that involved making puppets.  We used wooden spoons to make a very simple puppet with a face on the spoon end, wrapped up in a tea towel. I remember her buying “DAS“, which was one of the first commercial clay products for home use. It would air dry to a solid but light finish, and then you could paint it. My mother had us all make “Clown Heads” out of DAS, with small plastic eyes and mouths you could stick right into the clay before it dried. We then painted them, and she actually sewed up a bunch of tiny clown costumes for the puppets. It was a bit creepy, but still a fun activity. You can apparently still buy DAS. Who knew.

Klotild, The Witch – Handpuppet by Agnes Abraham, AgneShop on Etsy.
Hedgehog Glove Puppet by Ruta Staseviciute, rstaseviciute on Etsy.
Figgy The Upcycled Bird Puppet by Amy Hofacker, Funamals on Etsy.

For one of my siblings birthday parties, my mother decided that my twin sister and I should provide the entertainment, in the form of a puppet show. I don’t remember what the story was, perhaps it was “The Frog Prince”, but my father built a huge puppet theater for us to stand behind and work our magic, I can’t imagine it being a very successful show for an audience of children no older than 5 years. 

Subhadra Puppet by Leslie Howard, Govinda’s Peace Farm on Etsy.
Bird Eco-Puppet Made With Upcycled and Post Consumer Waste, Handmade Felt by Natasha Henderson, HendersonArt on Etsy.
Yellow Monster Hand Puppet or Ventriloquist Puppet (BigOOdle 49cm) by PuppetOOdle on Etsy.

So here we are, I have a mixed bag of childhood memories involving hand puppets. Some good, some weird, and some just strange.  So I decided to take a look about Etsy to see if anyone had some great hand puppets, made by hand, that I could share with you and thus redeem myself from ‘puppet ambiguity’ in decades past.  I was surprised at just how much I loved looking at these charming and odd puppets, they just look like a whole lot of fun. I could see them being used to make up some silly and fun stories with children and family members, or perhaps used in a classroom setting.  I could also see a drama department at a local high-school going crazy for some of these puppets, I can only imagine how insane that puppet show would be. Some of these sweeties would just be fun to use for play.

Hand Puppet Large Aqua Blue Monster with Moving Mouth by Sarah, OnHandByHand on Etsy.
Bitsy The Rug Monster Hand Puppet – Promises Not To Bite by Anne M. Thorson, THE PUPPET REGIME on Etsy.
Sarah the Foamie Puppet by Sharona Reouveni, Raisinlike on Etsy.

However you see yourself using hand puppets, if in fact you can see it, I just had to show you some of these amazing Etsy finds.  If for no other reason than to make you smile, you need to check out these amazing puppet makers. This is just the smallest collection of puppets, there are many more to be discovered at these and other Etsy shops, so take a wander over with the links provided under the images and take a little look-see at what other marvelously strange and wonderful puppets you can literally get your hands on, and in, as the case may be. Call me a puppet convert, I just can’t help but love this crazy band of characters.

Pukeko Hand Puppet by Sara L Johnston, NZ Creatively Crafted on Etsy.
Hand Puppet Awesome Cute and OOAK Green Creature From The Blackberry Bush with A Sweet Little Violet Cloak by Holle La Luna, Priestess Design on Etsy.
Deborah The Trophy Wife – A Sock Zombie Puppet with Pink Hair and Aqua Eyes by Erin Glaser, Underroos on Etsy.

NOTE: All images and products in the post are the intellectual property and copyright of the individual artists and Etsy stores indicated. No infringement is intended. Please follow the link under each image for more information on each puppet, including price, availability, and shipping rates.

The Curious Curiosity Box – Strange Stuff Saturdays

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Altered Art Tall Taper Handmade Box
by Patricia Hecker, Tattoo Dreams on Etsy

 Everybody needs somewhere to put all those little bits and bobs that manage to accumulate throughout the days, weeks, and months. You know the things I mean; concert ticket stubs, interesting coins, pebbles, bits of beach glass, marbles, buttons, broken jewelry, little handwritten notes, and other tiny treasures. The fact is, tossing them into a kitchen drawer or a bedside table means they are out of our sight and eventually out of our thoughts. Some items are too special to seal up in a plastic bag or shoe box, and sometimes things just get shuffled into the wrong pile and thrown away.

Wooden Trinket Box With Skeletal Hand
by The Curi-Oddity Shop on Etsy.

 Today’s Strange Stuff is also practical, all these “Altered Art” Boxes are not only strange and wonderful to look at, but a special place to hold all your own strange and wonderful things. All created by different hands, they would definitely stand out on a coffee table, dresser top, or desk.  Not only will you have somewhere to put all those small things, but it might help you edit your existing stash down to just the most special things that will fit into your new box of curiosities.

Box Altered Art Handmade With Secret Compartment OOAK
by Petrina Case, Petrina Case Studio on Etsy.

 Some of these are way out there, it is the day for strange and odd items after all, but the idea still holds.  There are many wonderful storage boxes and Altered Art boxes on Etsy, and they range in size from tiny Altoids Tins to an entire chests of drawers. You can find something to fit every taste and style, from contemporary to shabby chic, but I particularly like the odd little boxes in today’s post.

Piano Keys That Hold Treasures
by Doug Sorenson, Traveling Inkwell on Etsy.

 Does everyone collect the little bits of things they come across? I know it’s not just me, but some people don’t have the sort of sentimental connection to objects that others do. I am by no means a hoarder of everything I find in my travels, but I do like to hold on to things that have special meaning. What do you hold onto and what are your most treasured objects? Do they have a fitting place to stay? If not then you need to start thinking about where they belong, and how you can keep them safe and still enjoy looking through them every now and again. As a girl I would visit with my grandmother, and we would sit at her amazing vintage wooden vanity with it’s huge mirror, and go through the one drawer in the middle where she kept her most wonderful things. The gloves she wore to my parent’s wedding, the beaded handbags she used in her younger days, some fabulous “paste” rhinestone jewelry, and a collection of linen hankies, some with embroidery accents made by herself or her sisters and friends. Such wonderful memories.

Tarot Box, Witch Witchcraft Wiccan Pagan “Dratxx
Pippenwycks Wildwyck Woods on Etsy.

 In my mother’s home, there is a vintage box that is covered in a opalescent blue mother of pearl mosaic, it has a hinged lid, and if you open that lid and peek inside, you will find the most astonishing things. All collected from her yard, there is a monarch butterfly that somehow lost it’s way, a real fuzzy bumble bee that met a similar fate, along with a dragon fly and some other specimens. It sounds a bit macabre perhaps, but when you look closely at these amazingly preserved found “bugs” you get a real appreciation for the awesome beauty of nature.

Decoupage Box Keepsake Trinket Jewelry Storage Box
by Briana Lee, Blissful Treasures – Blushing Peach on Etsy.

 What do I love best about this little box of curiosities? All these tiny corpses were found by my young nieces and nephew as they explored their grandmother’s backyard, and the box sits in my mothers somewhat formal living room, along with all her other prized possessions. Every time the grand-kids see it, they feel compelled to peek inside and revisit those amazing creatures, and remember who found which one. I can only imagine the surprised looks of her contemporaries as they come over to have a luncheon or card night, and open this lovely little box and find, well, dead insects. Only those with a true appreciation for the precious and delicate creatures of this world will understand why they belong exactly where they are.

Vintage Altered Cigar Box – Let The Games Begin
by Kelly B., Kelly Bee’s Place on Etsy.

 Treasure the little things and place them in a fitting home, it is a wonderful tribute to the memories they trigger. Your children or grandchildren will treasure them all the more if you spend a little time sharing your collection with them, telling them about the items and where they came from.  You will smile every time you see your box of curiosities, and seeing the box alone will begin to remind you of what is inside.  It will be even more fun if your box is one of these strange and wonderful finds from Etsy.

“Rare” Raw Meat Jewelry Box OOAK
by Amarynth, Dead and Undead Horror Couture on Etsy.

NOTE: All artwork, products, and images in this post are the intellectual property and copyright of their respective creators, and the Etsy store indicated in the links under the items.  No infringement is intended.

It Can Be Munday Everyday – Strange Stuff Saturdays

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SNORTING COKE

When I happened upon the Etsy shop called Boopsie Daisy I did a full-on double-take, and then another. Then I literally doubled over laughing. How can I express the absolute joy, retro-kitsch, colorful silliness that is the work of Missy Munday of Kelowna, British Columbia. It’s like some wonderful childhood dream, enchanted little dolls and creatures playing with everyday objects all on their own. It may seem to be utter silliness, but there is some serious skill involved in the astonishing Fine Art Prints created by Missy. Pay attention to the names of each print, they are just as brilliantly strange as the image itself.

DIRTY BERTIE
MACKIE
OLIVIA

Toys and characters that are so familiar juxtaposed with elements of nature, foodstuffs, and a myriad of pop-culture references make for a purely fun experience. Eye-popping colour and perfected lighting techniques make for the most amazing captures.  Some images are cute in there Kawaii kitschy-ness, others are evocative in their Sad-Eyed Style.  Then there are the images that seem to have vaguely hidden cultural commentary running through them, making them a tad bit disturbing.  Missy’s work is simply spectacular.


DIGGIN THE DOG
MY SUNDAE BATH
WETTY BOOP

All in all, the body of work displayed by Missy Munday is incredible. I can only image what her studio must look like, and how much fun she has combining crazy elements to create her day-glow bright visual feasts.  With close to 300 items in her shop, Boopsie Daisy on Etsy, I can only show you a very tiny sample of her wonderfully weird work.  Her Fine Art Prints feature all the elements I love in strange and odd creations, and some I didn’t even know I would like until I saw them.

LET THEM EAT CAKE
FLOSSY LOVE AFFAIR
SINFULLY SWEET

 Make sure you visit Missy’s shop, Boopsie Daisy, and browse her work. You will laugh, you will do the double-take, and you will more then likely find a favorite from among her marvelously weird fantasy works.  Priced from just $4.00 USD for an ACEO Sized Image [Artist Trading Card] to  $55.00 USD for a Trio Set of 8″x12″ Prints, there is something for every budget.

READ TO ME NANA
HELLO MY NAME IS KITTY
PIG OUT

Missy will create custom listings for you if the image you want is not listed in the size you are looking for, so just drop her a note. What a wonderful gift these prints would make for that oh so hard to buy for friend. You know this is one gift they will never forget. Oh how I love these Saturday posts. Have a strange and wonderful day.

LITTLE BURGER MONSTER
JUNK ON THEIR TRUNKS (TRIO)
COOKIE THIEF

NOTE: All Images In This Post Are The Intellectual Property & Copyright of Boopsie Daisy & Missy Monday and Available For Purchase On Etsy. No Infringement Is Intended.

SUGAR HIGH
CONEGREGATION
CLICKSTART MY HEART

Shaking Things Up – Strange Stuff Saturdays

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They are quite a pair, those salt and pepper shakers we all have in our kitchens or dining rooms. Sometimes salt and pepper shakers are beautiful crystal antiques, perhaps they are very kitsch, others are mostly utilitarian, and sometimes it is a large grinder that requires a little elbow grease to get the perfect seasoning. In my place, I just use the sea salt in the spice bottle from the market, and my pepper comes in a little bottle with a grinder on top, also supermarket bought. How terribly boring and wasteful, really. Ugly labels, they are not really refillable, and even if I recycle the bottles, it isn’t an ideal situation. So I need to get myself a cute set of Salt & Pepper Shakers. I decided it was a good time to see what I could find on Etsy, so many great vintage picks and handmade or upcycled options. So I ran a search, and of course, came up with oodles of listings. Let me say, before I begin this post, that it is all about the images, I wanted to show you the ones that really stood out, for a variety of reason. Now remember, this is “Strange Stuff Saturday”, so what is strange in today’s post is my immediate reaction to the salt and pepper sets. I am going to show you a pile of great ways to spice up your kitchen, and give you my exact first reaction in a caption below the image. All the individual item Listing Details and Etsy shop links will appear at the bottom of this post, and while my comments might seem odd, or negative, they are in fact the very reason these shakers are fabulous. I don’t want boring, I want funny, ironic, creepy, or just plain strange. Let’s Shake Things Up!

  1. First Rule Of Zombie Land – The Double Tap. [They look like crawling Zombies to me, with bullet holes in their heads!]

  2. Because Everyone Wants To Think About Dirty Laundry While Eating.

  3. There. Are. No. Words.

  4. “I Bagel Your Pardon!”

  5. “Pass The Toe Jam?” [These are a Canadian souvenir set, I am so proud of my country!]

  6. Good Morning. You Are Not Dead Yet.

  7. A Freudian Rorschach Test. What Do You See?

  8. Nothing Classes Up A Kitchen Like A Piddling Puppy

  9. Please Pass The Ass

  10. From The “Bunnies On Acid” Collection

  11. [They are Vintage Nuts, do I actually have to make a smart-ass comment on this one?]

  12. The Eyes, They Follow You No Matter Where You Go. Creepy!

  13. The Fru-eats Of The Day-vil. [“The Fruits of the Devil”, So I Married An Axe Murderer – Mike Myers quote from my very obscure sense of humor.]

  14. If The Salt Looks Like Dandruff… What Does The Pepper Look Like?

  15. Urns. Pepper Flakes. How Wonderfully Macabre!

  16. I Now Understand Why Some People Are Afraid Of Clowns.

  17. This Is What My Eyes Look Like After A Night Of Heavy Partying.

  18. Little Critters in Carbon Freeze, Just Like Han Solo [Star Wars.]

  19. Bam Chicka Wow Wow – Makin’ Bacon!

Pardon my rather odd and extremely obscure sense of humor, but those were my exact thoughts on seeing these strange and wonderful shaker sets. It strikes me that these are almost all, if not entirely, vintage items. It makes you wonder, why is it we get such a kick from these bizarre kitschy items? Were they intended to be funny or is it just a matter of the esthetic at the time. I haven’t seen nearly as many modern salt and pepper shakers that made me laugh as much as this random selection did. I could have gone on and on, there are so many more treasures to be found over on Etsy. Have a great weekend everyone, and next time you look at your own S&P shakers, think of Foraging For Fab!
Image Credits:

  1. Vintage Pushup Salt and Pepper Shakers by Out Of The Pink Sky on Etsy.
  2. Vintage Westinghouse Washer and Dry Salt and Pepper Shakers by Random Voyeur Vintage on Etsy.
  3. Vintage Salt and Pepper Shakers Retro Holt Howard Grant Pixie PixieWare Elf by Magpie Antiques on Etsy.
  4. Holt Howard Lefton Bagel Donut Salt and Pepper Shakers Two Peppers holt howard strange crazy anthropomorphic by Retro Chalet on Etsy.
  5. vintage salt and pepper shakers – feet – Canada souvenir set by Forrestina Vintage on Etsy.
  6. Pair of Tombstone Salt And Pepper Shakers by Dusty Attic on Etsy
  7. Anthromorphic Mushrooms Salt and Pepper Shakers 1970s by Melony’s Whimsy Daisy on Etsy.
  8. Vintage Dog and Fire Hydrant Salt and Pepper Shakers by Lady Ivy Vintage on Etsy
  9. Texaco Souvenir donkey Salt and Pepper Shakers by Chelles Treasure on Etsy.
  10. Weird and Wild – 1950s Vintage Rabbit Salt and Pepper Shakers – by Goodlookin’ Vintage on Etsy.
  11. Vintage Pair of Nuts – Salt and Pepper Shakers – Nuts by Strange Vagaries on Etsy
  12. Vintage 70’s squirrel salt and pepper shakers with wiggly eyes by Belle Epochalypse on Etsy.
  13. Vintage Garlic Head Anthropomorphic Salt and Pepper Shakers by Two Little Owls on Etsy.
  14. Set of Vintage Salt and Pepper Shakers Monk Plastic Hong Kong Japan by Ye Olde Antique Shoppe on Etsy,
  15. Vintage Salt Pepper Shakers 22k Gold Warranted China Porcelain Shaker Set by Carlea Pink on Etsy.
  16. Vintage Salt and Pepper Shakers, Clown Teapots by The Dish Dash Kitchen Company on Etsy.
  17. Vintage Salt & Pepper Shaker Set Plastic Rooster by Magnolia Vintage on Etsy.
  18. Vintage Salt and Pepper Shakers, Circus, Japan by Lulu’s Five and Dime on Etsy.
  19. Vintage Black and White Pigs Salt and Pepper Shakers by Salt and Pepper Mania on Etsy.

Strange Stuff Saturdays – The Lovable Uglies

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There is a large segment of the general populace that finds cute in the ugly, and I am one of those people. It’s almost a “runt of the litter” complex, we want to rescue the irregular, the odd, the strange, and the left behind. These items make us want to take them and give them a home. There was a recent attempt at creating an upscale and widely-marketed “Ugly” stuffed toy, you know the ones I am talking about. For me, the product missed the mark because it broke the rules of the Ugly Cute. The items were not unique, they were meant to appeal to children and create a collector frenzy, and they were quite expensive for something so mass produced. Today’s Strange Stuff post is dedicated to the truly Ugly Cute handmade Art Dolls and Plushies that hit the mark, and maybe even go a bit beyond it. You may like them, you may not, but you may just fall in love with Ugly Cute.



Valentine Creepy OOAK Art Doll- Monica- Valentine Heart Balloon – Lilac Linen by Sandy Mastroni, Art by Sandy Mastroni on Etsy.



PAX – 9IN Strange Artist Mohair Bear by Emma Nicholson, Emma’s Bears on Etsy.



Aberdeen the monster Art Doll Plush By ThEm DoLLz by Jen Musatto, ThEm DoLLz on Etsy.



5-inch Nebulous Bunny – GREEN by Brittany U., Nebulous Frog on Etsy.



Art Doll Soft Sculpture Handmade Oddling Dax by Elizabeth Matlack, Oddball Art Co. by Lizzy Love on Etsy.



Sgt Snickers The Plush Pug Dog Tan and Brown Stuffed Animal by The Jae Bird on Etsy.


Have you fallen for one of these Ugly Cute creatures yet? I have a few on my “To Adopt” list. What’s great about this kind of item on Etsy is that the prices range vastly from under $20 to over $100 USD. That makes Art Dolls so accessible to just about everyone, and you can build a collection of special dolls for very little cost. Many of these dolls are not meant to be played with or handled excessively, but others are durable and make nice toys, it is very important to find out that information from the creator if you are buying for the little people in your life.


Rainboid – Plushie with Rainbow – Small by Sezen UYGUR, yumusakseyler Soft Sculptures and More on Etsy.



Martin, Soft Art Toy, Bear Probably by Eve Leitch, orangeni Soft Cuddles on Etsy.



Plush Toy Little Critter – Rocket by Little Critter Plushies on Etsy.



Alvin the Llittle Owl OOAK Pose-able Art Doll by Misty Currie, Amidst My Imagination on Etsy.



Buddy and Pal- A Custom Creepy Cute Plush WonkyDoll by Kelly and Joe, Jellykoe on Etsy.



Handmade Plush, Primitive, OOAK, Softie Doll with Button Eyes and Daisy Ways by Shawn Lee Jennings, Ribbons and Rust on Etsy.


By now I am sure “you are picking up what I’m putting down” [how hip is my lingo?]. What I mean is, you get my point. There is an undeniable charm to these handmade OOAK dolls, and you are likely to see at least one in this very tiny tip of the Etsy Art Doll iceberg that you respond to. It made you giggle, it made you smile, maybe it made you want to click that link below the image and see more. And that is the point for me, the purpose of this blog really. To present a sample of amazing and inspiring items that you may not have even known you would like. Maybe you didn’t even realize that these items were so easily accessible outside of a gallery or studio. The dolls I have selected to highlight appeal to my personal taste, and many other people’s I suspect, but there are many more to be found that might be more to your liking, so don’t be shy, head over to Etsy and take a look around.

Strange Stuff Saturdays – Kooky Creatures

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It’s hard to define what makes something truly strange, or at least strange enough for a Strange Stuff Saturdays post. What I might think of as strange may be quite ordinary to someone else, and knowing when something goes beyond strange and into disturbing territory is similarly a personal perspective. I am willing to bet, however, that we can all agree on the items in today’s showcase. These are truly odd in the most fabulous sense; they are whimsical, creative, upcycled items that rarely are found outside a child’s toy box. The circus has come to town, so to speak.

Decorative figure Boxer – The Strange Planet created by The Good Machinery, in Rimini, Emilia Romagna, Italy. These bright and whimsical animals will bring a punch of color to any room or work-space. Check out this Etsy Shop for some truly stunning upcycled toy animals and collect a menagerie of fabulosity.

Bring the prehistoric back to life by snagging yourself a Run 2 The Wild Live Dinoterrarium. These uniquely upcycled dinosaur toys feature glass mini-terrariums with live Kentucky Moss inside. They can be opened for watering and include full care instructions. Berea, Kentucky resident and Etsy Shop owner Kourtney has created a truly Green use for these colourful dinosaurs.

Even though it is just past the holidays, some ornaments can be displayed year-round and this shimmering hippo is one of the above. Meant to adorn your festive tree, and tied with a ribbon, yarn, jingle bell, and star charm Little Plastic Menace offers this Bronze Plastic Hippo Ornament and other wonderful decorative beasts. Just one of Barbara Hart’s Etsy Shops, you just have to see what this Buffalo, New York artist is up to.

LizAArt, another Etsy Shop, offers necklaces, wall-hangings, scarves, folk art and more in a variety of styles from the ridiculous to the sublime. This Leaping Lizard Necklace features three plastic wrigglers, and a bounty of beads in Jasper, Unakite, and Howlite. Definitely a statement necklace if I ever saw one. I am just not certain what that statement is exactly. And speaking of Jewelry, check out the images and shop lists below to spot more of this quirky wearable strange stuff.

Gold Fishey Go Earrings by Pussycat [Hot Chick Psychics] on Etsy.

Gold Crush Dinosaur Necklace by Lapineau on Etsy.

Camel Brooch by Plum August on Etsy.

Puppy Necklace by Ultra Horse on Etsy.

Purple Turtle Ring by PURPLEGUN on Etsy.

Half a Bandit Earrings by Uncle Fun on Etsy.

The final fab item for this Saturday is really attractive, and that is a scientific fact considering it uses magnets. Upcycled plastic animals become magnetic photo or memento holders with the help of Gallivanting Girls Vintage Home on Etsy. Check out this The Wolf Vintage Animal Magnet Photo Holder and others like it and bring new meaning to the term “Animal Magnetism”.

While we have all likely all spotted a little boy walking his toy dinosaur through his mother’s garden or been *cough* entertained by the little girl trotting her rubber horses up the arm of your chair as you wait in for your doctors appointment. Maybe you have watched your own children toss around plastic sea creatures in the tub. The genius here is turning these items from toss-away plastic or rubber toys and thinking fabulously outside the box, instead turning them into sculptural art, functional and funny terrariums, or terrific and whimsical wearables. It may just make you think twice about passing up that 25 cent plastic giraffe at the next yard sale or swap meet, and there is nothing strange about that at all.