31 May 2010

Mmmmm.... tastes like chicken

Holly has been helping me sew today, as well as channelling Ozzy Osbourne and gnawing on the head of her wee bird.

There will be a few more dribble bibs in store soon - I have been working away like a little chipmunk on a custom order for a lovely customer, Amy, who wants to buy twelve of the suckers. So, I am running up a job lot and will be listing more next week.

Also soon to be listed: some new shabby fabric wreaths I have been working on, something gorgeous from Michael Miller's Gnome Love fabric (a dress perhaps?), more bunting and more fang bunnies.

But now... to bed. I can't seem to shake this flu!

30 May 2010

Preloved Markets for Little Ones next weekend

Just a heads up - the Preloved Markets will be held at Dural Recreation Centre next Sunday 6th June from 10am till 1pm.

These markets cater for children between newborn - 10 years old with clothes, furniture, toys, books, prams and more in preloved condition all under one roof.

My good friend Heidi will be selling a load of her daughter Georgia's baby stuff (and with any luck she'll be selling our old pram too!).

29 May 2010

Inspiration: Tara McPherson

Oh how I love this gal's work. I first read about Tara in Frankie Magazine in 2009 and was instantly a huge fan.

She is an incredibly talented illustrator based in NYC who works with a range of mediums to create quiet, spooky, feminine artworks in a limited palette that are at once flat and three dimensional. I especially love the tones of pink, red and turquoise that feature in a lot of her work.

You can check out some more of her other-worldly work here.

25 May 2010

We eat ham and jam and spam a lot

Forgive the Monty Python reference, but I've had the Camelot song in my head for the last two days after taking the kids to 'My Lords & Ladies Medieval Fayre' at Nurragingy Reserve on Sunday.

Richard was reading out the newspaper article to me the day before and to be honest I wasn't overly keen, but when he said 'Ooo Noni, they have craft markets', I was a lot more open to the idea! 'Twas a good day out overall - and there's nothing like a bit of old fashioned hand-to-hand combat to get the blood pumping and refresh the senses. Ty enjoyed the horsies, Rich the jousting, I was just happy having a coffee and a nice walk.

The 'craft markets' were perhaps a bit too ambitiously named as such, although there was a lady using Australian farmed deer leather to make some beautiful shoes which were so strong and soft. And the three friendly maidens demonstrating tablet weaving were very talented!

I came away with a pair of silver bagpipe earrings for my mum (a bit of an in joke), and a pretty mint green knitted baby jumper for Holly which is sooo soft and only set me back ten bucks. Bargain!

So bravo for nanna knits - who needs to pay $30, $40, $50 or more on madeit or Etsy when you can just swing past your local Rotary stall or Lantern Club street market and pick up a genuine handmade piece of fuzzy love for peanuts. And why not pick up a few crocheted coathangers whilst you're there?

19 May 2010

Roses are red and smell like memories

I must confess I'm a bit of an old-fashioned girlie girl when it comes to flowers. I like 'em big, showy and smelly.

For me, some of the most intoxicatingly nostalgic scents are those of the flowers that used to grow in my nan's and mum's gardens - jonquils, daffs, jasmine, orange flowers, and roses like Mr Lincoln, Peter Frankenfeld and Blue Moon. Smell one of these when I'm not expecting it and *BAM*

I'm seven years old, walking up Essington Street with my dad on a warm summer evening, the cicadas droning. We've left our thongs at home and the footpath is still warm from the sun, even though it's getting dark now and the streetlights are on. We walk half way up the street and through the alley to Fullagar Road, and hanging heavy over a sagging paling fence is a jasmine vine, wafting that perfume into the warm breeze. I look up; it's huge and dark and wild with tendrils reaching all over the place and those waxy white flowers dripping nearly to the ground....

Or, *BAM*

We're at nan's for afternoon tea. There's scotch finger biscuits in a glass dish and lemon squash for me. Pa sits serenely at the head of the table, like a quiet fisherman, watching his mug of coffee. Bikkies gone; my brother Greg and I head outside to play. Nan and I walk behind the cool dank shadehouse at the bottom of the garden to the sunny fence where her roses grow, each labelled in her neat handwriting on a little metal tag. If I was lucky, she'd snip some with the secateurs for me to take home, especially my favourite, Mr Lincoln. Then I'd hide under a giant wine coloured weeping maple which curved to the ground and made a little cave underneath.

Yes, that photo is of me with our pup Cleo at mum's place, and that little garden running along the left hand side is where a Peter Frankenfeld still grows. I still always, always stop to smell those roses when they're in bloom.

Finally, here's some beautiful rose themed finds from madeit (and look at that cute little brooch, third row down on the right...!).

18 May 2010

Parra (clap, clap, clap)

Just because they won against Manly last night... some blue & gold Eels inspired etsy finds!

Hello Bunny coin purse from Pocket Carnival

Sunshine mini clutch by Redeem Designs

Bass & Flinders print by Elgarbo

Owl mama by Needlings

Vintage chenille scottie dog by Vintage Chenille

Chihuahua print by Lucy Snowe Photography

Underwater Girl & Eel print by Zyzanna

Seabots print set by Hamburgerpanda

Eel stuffed pillow by ADDCreative

17 May 2010

Music to stitch to... and a GIVEAWAY!

Whenever my computer is on, media player is running. I've just heard:

Exaltation - Matisyahu
The perfect drug - NIN
Disco 2000 - Pulp
Flower duet - Delibes
Joey - Concrete Blonde
Into my arms - Nick Cave (which I walked down the aisle to)
Hold me now - Human League
I love Tommy Motttola - Regurgitator
See Emily play - Pink Floyd
Clocks - Coldplay

Random, yes? But way cool. All faves, and all playing in a row!

What music inspires you to create?

Leave a comment naming your favourite tune to get crafty to, and you could win this cute fabric brooch!

The winner will be drawn at random on Friday 21st May 2010 at 9pm Sydney time.

12 May 2010

Fabric of the month: English Insults by Sarah Waterhouse

Ha! Fantastic.

Check out this cheeky hemp/cotton by Sarah Waterhouse from Sheffield in the UK. Perfect for making something for that special halfwit in your life. It's called 'English Insults' and although I have no idea what I would use it for, I think I need some in my stash for that special project!

Perhaps an Aussie version is in order...?

Let's see... how about bush pig; wanker; galah; dickhead; poof; arse... and you'd just have to make a dunny roll holder out of it!

10 May 2010

The fangs have it

Thanks to Nay from Moonangelnay who has kindly featured Elroy in her monday magic etsy finds, showcasing relatively new sellers.


Now for some post filler...  :)

Today I love
The smell of: lamb cutlets
The sound of: Deftones on Windows media player
The taste of: biscuits lovingly hand decorated by Tyler
The sight of: Holly's giant muffin top
The feel of: velvet ribbon

Good things about today
- I had two hours special time with Holly (thanks Heidi for Ty's play date)
- Scones with jam & cream... mmmm...
- I managed to get Ty away from the TV for the entire afternoon / night
- Most of the washing is done
- I'm in a relatively good mood for having had only 4 hours sleep and eating nothing but sugar all day

09 May 2010

The Finders Keepers wrap-up

As you may well know, the Sydney Finders Keepers market was on this weekend. I had the day earmarked with hubby for months and was soooo looking forward to it - I going, no matter what other offers came up for Saturday, I was going dammit! And I wasn't disappointed.

We got there just as the Eveleigh farmers market was coming to a close, so after a quick whip around the fruit and veg and other lovely things for sale, we stopped for a coffee and a belgian chocolate brownie from Fare Gourmet (NOM NOM NOM... so worth seven bucks), we headed across to the adjoining Carriageworks where the Finders Keepers was held.

Firstly, the location was fantastic. The historic building with its original machinery dotted here and there was heaven for a train-mad two year old, as well as providing a perfect foil for the funky stuff on display. The large scale knitted scarves adorning the building's internal struts set the handmade mood, as did the plush fabric toadstool arrangements near the entrance. Dork that I am, I thought the whole thing wasn't very big till I realised I'd missed two whole rooms. All up, there were around 90 stalls selling ceramics, papercrafts, jewellery, baby gear, clothing, shoes, accessories, artworks, textiles and more.

So - on to the purchases! I didn't go mad, even though Richard had given me free licence to buy 'whatever' for myself as a mothers day pressie. I did however, buy:

A piece of fuschia wool felt from B&M Felt (it looked too delicious to resist although I'm not entirely sure what I'll make with it yet), a delicate porcelain quote tag from Paper Boat Press, a fabric leaf brooch from Kindling, and a leather wraparound cuff for the man from Te.Mono, as well as picking up a Frankie mag.

My mum, hipster that she is, bought an intricate laser-cut acrylic elk brooch from A Skulk of Foxes - doubly hip because apparently the black-on-white layered acrylic was created especially for the market, and she was the first ever to buy one. Trendsetter!

The kids were cactus by about 2pm and thankfully both fell asleep in the pram so we could stop for another coffee. Then it was home time - all up, a fabulous day.

  • Miller & Harry - only just stopped myself from buying Holly a lemon yellow cardi from the softest cashmere blend
  • Bonnie Poplar - loved her Scandinavian style woodcut bird brooch
  • Natalie McWilliam - I'm a sucker for anything anondised aluminium, especially her purple brooch shaped like a bird of paradise
  • Printink Studio - their quilts looked stunning
  • Angus & Celeste - porcelain bangles *swoon*
  • Herbert & Friends - sweet little plushies, especially the goat :)
  • Sisken - a silky dress with a leather breastpiece caught my eye
  • Liana Kabel - knitting needle bracelets are the bomb
  • Sharon Muir's exquisite birds

  • People pushing to get a look in - c'mon people, be civil
  • Redfern station not having an elevator - lucky I have giant man arms and can carry the pram up two flights of stairs
  • A few stallholders being too uber-cool to smile
  • The lounge area near the music stage creating a bottleneck just inside the front entrance
  • A 25 minute wait in line to get coffee and a sandwich from the bar
  • Wet, soggy vanilla slice

P.S. - Happy Mothers Day to all the yummy mummies. Hope you all got spoilt for that five minutes in between doing the washing and taking out the garbage. It never stops. Even on our special day, it never bloody stops.

06 May 2010

BRAINS... brains.... BRAINS!!!

Mwah... a special thanks to lovely Etsy seller Jen from danceswithflowers who featured Elroy in her cute zombie themed treasury. Coz zombies can be sweet too!

Speaking of zombies (in a round about kind of way...) have you ever sold something on ebay and then kinda wished you hadn't?

Before the kids came along (ie: over two years ago), I had a big clean out and sold a heap of crap online, including a Roman Dirge Zombie Bunny.

Now, this thing was rad. The box read: 'Horrible! Hideous! Fluffy!'. He came complete with pink fleshy vinyl features and eyes, pre-dirtied fur for that real undead look, and even had a mini comic strip on the box with captions such as 'Look out! Zombie bunny is feeding off your brain hunk!' or something of that nature.

He may have been cool, however, common sense prevailed (Do I have room for this in my one storage cupboard? How often am I going to use a zombie rabbit?) and he was cast aside like a soggy tissue, on to the ebay pile and out of my life.

Now he appears to be out of production, and seemingly some sort of cult collectable, so maybe I am a Class A Sucker for letting him go for a measly thirty bucks. Then again, at least I got to enjoy having my brain hunk sucked for a little while.

Footnote: I have just had a flashback to when I was around 12, so my brother would have been 7: Greg squeezing his fingers up and down on top of my head a la Bugs Bunny in the classic Barber of Seville scene, saying 'What's this? A brain sucker. What's it doing? Nothing!'. Hahaha hysterical laughing ensues. Ah -  brothers. Gotta love 'em.