Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Christmas tales

Bob Dylan poster by Milton Glaser, courtesy of the Galerie Montmartre Website
The lovely Shelley of Femme De Montmartre has allowed me to do a guest post on her blog and talk about my Christmas traditions and tales....If you are in Fitzroy, and you have not already had a peek in Galerie Montmartre, then what have you been doing??  Shelley and her partner Stephan have some drool worthy advertising and vintage posters, such as the very cool Dylan poster above, which I borrowed from their website, not to mention the fantastic warehouse style space they reside in.
Speaking of Christmas we'll be near the beach again this year, well not that we are far from it here in the Bagel Belt......and looking forward to taking the wee one to the sand if the weather is good. Fingers crossed. And toes.....What are your plans??

Friday, December 11, 2009

This week I've been....

....hanging out with the wee one making gingernut biscuits,

....and pipecleaner spiders, that one with the green body has been named Billy Bob, thanks to those TEEF.

Transplanting tomato seedlings.....

.....and geranium cuttings from my Grandma's garden.

Admiring these little beauties.

And wondering what to do with the parsley that's starting to go to seed??

Any parsley growing experts out there???

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

My place and yours

This week's theme for Pip's meme is brought to us by Tania over at Myrtle & Eunice. Her theme is "Wherever I lay my hat, that's my home".  She's asked to see those things we have around us that really make our house "our home", and that we couldn't possibly be without.
I can think of many things actually, even though over the years I have tried to cull many "things", ie. dust collectors, from my house (and life).  Of course it goes without saying that my two boys (big and wee) make my house a home.
And then there are these little babes.  The German "cuckoo" clock was a gift from my Mum's best friend when I was a wee one. Her daughter and I share a birthday, and she also has the same clock....cute!
The round clock was made by my Grandpa, he turned the lovely Blackwood timber on his lathe. He wrapped it and gave it to me for my birthday one year....I think it was a teenage birthday, I can't quite remember.  Anyway these are two things that I would consider help make my house a home.
What do you have that makes your place home? Go on over to Pip's and join in the fun.
PS. Lately I've been doing a lot of this business " " in my posts....I don't know why, but I do apologise if it's irritating you.  I hope that's not the first step to using air commas in my conversations, if I did start let's hope someone would slap me out of my silliness.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

A little retro stylin'

I had to share this pic with you. It's the "name" on a block of flats in a nearby suburb, built in a Hacienda/Spanish inspired style, if you dare call it a "style".  I like the juxtaposition of the trimmed pine trees and the lone gum tree!
I remember seeing alot of this style of construction in a small beachside town near where I grew up in Queensland.  A favourite there was called "The Playa Concha".....all white textured render and mission brown trim....gotta love it.  A little taste of the 1970's.


This is what I have been nursing for almost a week now, and what's been slowing down my typing, AND my making...ouch.
I have 3 stitches in the webbing between my last two fingers, and I would share with you the reason however it's been suggested that I need a much better story (than the true one!). So.....any ideas????

Saturday, December 5, 2009

My place and yours

Ok, finally getting around to this one again...for Pip's Meme "My place and yours". And the hostess with the most-ess for this week is Toni, go see what's stashed inside her Little Suitcase.
Toni's theme is "That's nyoice, that's different, that's unewesyewl", inspired by a couple of Aussie foxy morons.....I racked my brain for this one.  The best I could come up with is what we call our "Svedish Sauna, yah" (spoken in bad Euro-trash accent) bathroom .  It is lined with lovely fragrant timber panelling, a la Sauna, and tiled with slate. It's on the list of "to do" around here, the one that is never ending. I think there may be some of that panelling retained in the renovation, after all, it does also lend a bit of a Japanese-y feel.

PS. Yes, that is the toilet roll and the toilet close by....I hope you're not offended!!
PPS. And yes that little stool did come from Japan, Kyoto in fact. We carried it with us onto the plane home, it flew business class, we flew economy...
PPPS. My excuse for not blogging much this week I shall share with you later. Let's just say for now that my hand hurts a little when I type....

Monday, November 30, 2009

Pssst...if you're up late.....

Photo by Edward & Lilly
...then head over to the Edward and Lilly blog, there is a giveaway, but you'll have to be quick, finishes today!! oh and there is another over at the Fede blog too.....off you go.....

Collections instalment number two

I had an idea, thanks to Fe's comment about my genetic hoarding, from a previous "My place and yours" post. I'm sharing some of my Mum's collections with you. She is a far superior hoarder than I. One can only aspire to achieve the dizzying heights of her grouped little collections.  But then, I don't think I could handle the dusting.

Old and reproduction irons.

Wooden and decoupaged shoe lasts.

Copper moulds and pans.

Shells collected during their first caravan adventure.

Nudes decoupaged onto canvas.

Teapots on top of the fridge.

And more teapots - mini ones this time.
You see, I told you, she really is an expert hoarder.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Promo alert!

I've just sent out my latest newsletter for Mainichi. That's a little snippet of it, just there, above all this text...And I almost forgot to let all you lovely people in blog land know about my Christmas promotion - shame on me!
In my Etsy store I'm offering a free gift with every purchase this weekend - for Aussie buyers you have until Tuesday to take advantage of this offer.
AND I'm offering free postage anywhere in the world until 25th December.
If you'd like your own copy of my e-newsletter delivered to your inbox just email me info(at)mainichidesign.com

My place and yours....late!

I'm one day late to post last week's My place and yours theme from Pip.....but better late than never! I have no excuse except that the usual routine has been tossed out the window, along with sleeps for the wee one. So not much getting done. But I digress...
Brought to us by Kate over at Foxs Lane (go say hello) the theme is "My Collection". I used to think that I left the hoarding habit behind when I moved to Melbourne. But alas this theme has made me realise that I have not. As you will see:

My collection of violet pattern English china.

Japanese fabric - a small selection!

My latest penchant - anything yellow.

Materials for my jewellery making.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Snap Happy

The wee one has resurrected my old Konica camera. It should be interesting when we develop these pics, I think the film has been triple exposed. Very arty.....photographer in the making??

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

An indie Christmas

Mainichi was very honoured to be included in this years Indie Christmas Gift Guide. Please do go take a squiz at the gorgeous indie selections over there on Carolyn's equally gorgeous blog.

Monday, November 23, 2009


....not laundry, no siree. But I DO love the blue of this bottle and the design of the label. If you have a packaging fetish you can see more on this site.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Another Treasury pick for ME!

Yes, I know, AGAIN with the Etsy Treasury, blah blah blah......
paperbella, Krislyndillard, mkendall
evilneedles, ThreadRare, CrochetDiem
cosmonautshop, LianaKabel, MichelleJunkin
EmilyGill, liradesigne, EmergeDesign

Friday, November 20, 2009

My place and yours

Hello blog. Yes, I have been absent. Guess what, I've been OFF my backside, away from the computer. Yes, I'm getting fit again. And I feel good.  But you, my dear, are looking a little tired.  Time for a spruce up. Is it cheating when my first post this week is for Pip's meme? Dreamed up by the lovely Shelley of Femme de Montmartre, it is "Through the Front Door".

Ironic that Pip posted a clip of Shakin' Stevens, because my front door IS green and I often have that little 80's ditty running through my head as I open it.  No "old piano playing hot" behind it though.  It's usually a few degrees cooler inside, so lately it's a sigh of relief when said door is opened.

My hallway is actually a little mix of old and new.  We've kept some* of the original features and added a few contemporary touches.  Just inside my door is an old meatsafe from my Mum's former antique shoppe.  On top of that is a serene gold Buddha and a couple of vintage knick knacks.  Above is one of my rare forays into painting, a piece I did in what my brother terms my "angry" phase.  I prefer to call it my "expressive" phase.  The walls are painted Dulux "Ploughed Earth", which is a deep, warm grey colour.  The floors are stained dark chocolate brown.  The door is usually chocked open with one of my Marc Newson doorstops.  Lights are by ISM Objects and that white woven panel on the wall was made by a friend. 

*If you are wondering why the glass around the door doesn't match, it's because someone liked my laptop and digital camera more than I did and they REALLY needed to have it. Lesson learned, deadlock and security door always locked.....and laptop replaced with desktop. A bit heavier and harder to carry.

Friday, November 13, 2009


YAY!! I got a treasury on Etsy. I can hardly believe it. Yes it is official, I AM an Etsy nerd. Although it was by chance this morning, it wasn't like I waited up all night to get one.....

In other news I got a copy of Faythe Levine's doco on DVD from Justine at Mixtape. It's fantastic, I watched it twice yesterday while the wee one had a record 3 1/2 hour sleep.  I highly recommend it. The DVD that is. 4.5 out of 5 stars. Oh and the record sleep time was ACE for Mum too.

Stay cool all you Melbournites....(and those in Adelaide too!) what IS going on with this early Summer?

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

An anniversary

It was my wedding anniversary on Monday. I won't tell you how long the pair of us have been married. But let's just say it was in the 1990's that it took place. And yes, I was quite young, actually!

In celebration, here's a pic of the back of my dress from said day. My Mum made it, and I helped to bead all that lace which we handstitched on. She also made my headpiece and veil. And the bridesmaid's dresses. And her own dress. And prettied up her garden for months prior so we could be married in it. Wonder where I get the project over-committment from??!!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

A creative saga

Do you know those moments when something you have been working on turns to disaster and it seems that it shall never, ever recover that glint of creativity that initiated the whole process? That it is bound to end up in the pile of stuff under the desk, or in a cupboard somewhere, forgotten and abandoned?

Well, I had one of those moments last weekend. I was studiously working on my piece for Craft Victoria’s “White” Christmas window theme this year, all inspired and enthusiastic, when it all turned to disaster. And then the wee one got a hold of it. It was promptly dumped in a heap, and abandoned on my desk.

So there it sat for five long days, bombarded with an occasional glare and snarl from my direction, destined to end up alongside all those other half baked projects crying weakly from the dark “saaaaave meeeee”.

Until last Thursday night, after another late one (why has ER returned to such a late timeslot??), I crawled into bed and *boom*. There it was. An answer. A solution. An epiphany. Call it what you will. But, as always, it was so simple and straightforward and glaringly obvious that I could only say to myself, why didn’t I just do that to start with??

And so here it is: the fruits of my labour, my impatience and my determination (sounds like motherhood!). It’s "Shades of White", consisting of a long necklace, made from white handmade rope, off white recycled upholstery leather and beige recycled felt. It will soon find a new (temporary) home at Craft Victoria. I hope someone likes it as much as I do.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

My place and yours

Well I was a little stumped as to what to choose for this week's theme over at Pip's blog, chosen by My Bricole.  It is "your secret weapon".  I thought and thought....maybe a tool I use in my sewing/craft adventures, maybe my sewing machine....but nah, not right, there must be something else, dare I say it, something NOT related to craft!?

Then I thought of this, my First Dan Black Belt in TaeKwonDo.  It is something that informs so many parts of my everyday life. The journey to earn this belt has given me many things: confidence, skills, strength, fitness, patience, stamina, stress relief to name but a few.  Pictured with my belt is a wooden board that I broke (yes, with my bare hands!) whilst it was being held by TKD Olympic Medallist in 2000, Lauren Burns (one of my heroes!) She has signed it with a few words that always manage to inspire me:

"What can be imagined, can be achieved - Dare to dream!"

I really think this little sentence has helped me achieve so much in my life, including starting my interior design business, starting Mainichi and home birthing a beautiful boy.  So, I say, go ahead and dream away my friends, for you never know where it can lead you.

Friday, November 6, 2009

I got a present in the mail.........

.....yes, I did, from Tess. It's a bunch of felt from my fave crafty shop in Tokyo, Tokyu Hands. Thank you, thank you Tess.  I hope that next year I might actually make the journey myself to add to the dwindling stash, fingers crossed.....

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Freshly ground

Sharing a few pics that have been brewing in my "Blog Stuff" folder. Pardon the pun.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

The quilt progresses

Yes, finally the boy's quilt, mentioned here earlier, has progressed.  The squares have now been sewn together into rows, as you can see from the photo.....next challenge after stitching the rows together is to sandwich all the layers.  I'm going to use the tutorials here on this lovely blog to help me finish. Wish me luck - and stay tuned for the outcome.

Monday, November 2, 2009

My place and yours - Blog HQ

Ok, a bit late for this one, but here it is - my blog HQ!   The desktop is very messy, with brooches ready to be posted to Artisan, and other bits of jewellery made and ready to ship off to another new retailer.  On the wall is a Dean Bowen print and a photograph of an interior I designed back in 2004.  Above the desktop is shelving that holds my interior design library and samples. I need to have a clean up, presently I can't tuck my chair in because underneath there are two huge boxes containing small felt samples for recycling into my jewellery.  There you go, that's a wrap up of all things messy around my desk!! If you'd like to join in go visit Pip's blog for a looksy.

Friday, October 30, 2009

New work, new photos and Friday's creation

New work:  recycled timber block and square brooches, and more typographic brooches - especially for those who love a font!

New photos:  I decided that my Etsy shop photos needed a little makeover. Slowly I'm updating the photos and making them a little more "artsy" - boy is it a tedious task (I didn't realise how much stuff I've been making and listing over the last few months). Love to see your comments on these......too artsy? not descriptive enough? want to see more?

Friday's creation: gingerbread cookies with the wee one. He ate all the uncooked dough I gave him to cut his cookies from. Ewww....well at least the cookie dough I cut out made it to the oven!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Colour inspiration

I have been asked many times where I get the inspiration for the colour combinations I use when making my jewellery.  Sometimes it is from the most mundane sources.  Like the other day when I was looking for embroidery thread for a new cross stitch project (I'll show you that soon!).  I thought the colours where so beautiful lined up in the box, I just had to share.  And that combination in the second photo definitely has bones for a whole scheme to be built around it! Yummy.