Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Pencil in my pocket..

You wouldn't think it would be that hard to fit in just one more teeny weeny activity would you?
Oh, you would.
I must confess i have a couple of pencils sitting here that have been kindly mailed from Lea from "with a pencil in my pocket.. see here for my last effort.
This pencil was titled EARTH BROWN.

Here is my activity:

I have been itching to 'play' with my water colours for a while. Mainly 'cos i have a new tool. I saw the Stamp Trap using such a tool at the recent Sydney Quilt Show. They were using it with these gorgeous watercolour crayons (which it took all my restraint to NOT purchase). So i got sucked in and bought said 'tool' instead.

It's a pen. But it's also a paint brush. It's called a waterbrush. Hhmmm. A candidate for a little branding exercise me thinks.

So it feels lovely to use as the fingers grip it perfectly (like a pen, as opposed to those skinny paintbrushes).
The end unscrews, you fill it with water - but a valve stops it from all gushing down to the brush tip.
So you can blend the ink or paint instantly. Which may seem silly - it only takes a second to dip a brush into water after all. But it was great! No wiping, just a steady slight flow...
Don't you love new discoveries?

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Sew long...

These trees are at my bus stop, I had to do a quick iphoto before i boarded the 7.47 last Friday morning. They made me stop, as I enjoyed seeing such obvious signs of the season. It reminded me of this photo i took last October in Japan.

It was lovely to see window displays and street decoration that added to the mood of the weather..
Ok, so then i settled inside... and Saturday's Project was:
Luckily while Miss R and I sewed.. 28 'flags' to cover 5 metres of window...

Her twin brother had a friend over. After they had finished setting light to home made rockets on the lawn, hose in hand. (Mr R watching out the window).. they moved to the kitchen. By then i was hardly worried about knives.. they tackled the sushi kit.. which is a FANTASTIC way to occupy two 12 year old boys for an hour.. without flames...

We did take a break to see Toy Story 3 in 3D (at weekend matinee prices) which was amazing. (Friday night we recapped and watched 1 +2 so we were up with the character development). The third movie was wonderful. More toys, more plans from Woody. It had very tense moments and an evil looking baby.. Go see it soon!
But back to bunting.. the last month saw the installation of new windows and almost completion of faux wooden blinds for Miss R's room. I thought it would be nice to 'soften' it with some fabric. Bunting seemed the way to go!

I had found some horse fabric last week at the quilt show, the rest was from our stash.

A friend had told me about ribbons galore which have just about everything your bunting needs require.
For a previous post about Miss R's room before the redo see here.
Phew. So that's a relief. Got that out of my system..

As I popped into to see MR R jnr he was busy making trees:

For a diorama he is working on..

So that was half of the weeknd's projects.. I'll have to pop back with Sunday's soon...
But Dr Who calls and I have a school skirt to hem.

Note: fun family night ended in an argument in the car with everyone going to bed in a huff. Yes we are a creative lot. BUT it appears we are also normal... just so you know.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Phase 2..out + about...

Saturday i decided to pop (a 3 hour stop) into the Craft + quilt fair.. It's coming next to Hobart in July.
I'm not a quilter. BUT I do like to make things. I like to see other people soooo excited to be hunting down new supplies, new techniques, new creative friends. I'd like to be a quilter. I'd like to make things bigger than a4 (US Letter/foolscap).. I'd like to retire early. Anyway.. meanwhile i had a lovely time weaving in and out of the aisles.. It was great to see the usual and expected BUT also the new favs.. Kelanifabric had a great display - check out their site for a cool collection of Aussie kits, including Kristen Doran's Bunny pattern seen above.

It was great to see people: watching, taking part in workshops, stocking up.. I had a chat to Julie from the Quilters Barn, she had beautiful fabrics - from cottons with a 1940's feel to linens that looked like washed out teatowels. I had to sulk away after she told me how much she gets to travel to Japan + France... :( she does do tours though.. (i think she said they were updating their website).
One of my best discoveries was..
Room for Threads, where i purchased this little collection.. those little vessels are silk worm cocoons.. uh huh.
so what do you do with them? Well if you are a talented fibre + textile artist probably quite a lot. However.. this is what my playtime today produced..

then i added a bit more..
Here's the closeup..
Who needs bling, when you can have fibre + threads....?
Oh, so THEN i had to purchase some fabric too...
The top row, apart from the brown piece are cuddly wuddly flannelette! I'm pretty sure they were from Post Office Patchwork. I couldn't wait to make a vintage looking something or other... I was surrounded by people who needed to buy many squares.. I did offer myself up for adoption as one woman declared that HER daughter didn't NEED another quilt! So after the fibre play i made this..

Needless to say the sunlight had disappeared (hence lighting in shot) the floor needed vacuuming, the fridge had broccoli + carrots, the day had gone.
BUT I had a fantastic time - voices of discontent? what voices?

Whether you like it or not..

So Sydney is a bit chilly, but then layering, berets, scarves + boots are wonderful..
Sniffles are not. Feeling 'under the weather' is not. Knowing you have so much to be grateful for, but yet little pangs of restlessness are set in. The voices in the head. The questions: 'How can i have more creative time?' "What AM i going to do in said creative time?' Blah .. blah.. 'Where AM i going creatively?' blah blah...
Is this constant mind chatter just part of what it is to be living a creative life?
Phase one of dealing with it was to go for a walk...

..get some magazines, soup, ginger + cranberry juice...
.. followed by strawberries + organic yoghurt with lemon myrtle + macadamia..

THEN, just in case you're still unsure, finish with triple choc brownie + a green tea. Hmmm phase one (plus catching up with good friends did work quite well.. !
Phase 2 was visiting the Sydney Craft + Quilt Fair...

ps.. I read this week that some restaurants in New York have banned their customers taking shots of their own food. Particularly when other customers complained, or tripods were involved! Whereas some restaurant owners were torn, believing that bloggers of today can also be food critics of tomorrow!
Personally I'm just a sucker for journalling/personal documentation... What's your excuse?

Monday, June 14, 2010

Off to the post box...

Amongst all the hustle and bustle of working full time and having family responsibilities I'm trying to get out there and participate a bit, see a bit, do a bit...so thank you Pip for continually having the ideas! I couldn't resist the 'envelope' project.. Here's something i finished off to put into mine..

Funny how a sudden purpose can propel you into action and help force you to make decisions..
How do you decide which creative project to choose when time is limited?

the envelope project

Colourful nights in Sydney

Sydney is currently chilly and holding 'Vivid' it's festival of 'light, music & ideas. Part of that was "Creative Sydney". Sounds good, heaps of creative people getting together for various events...

Last Friday I listened to the panel discussion "Making it Happen". The speakers were Brooke Johnston and Sarah Thornton (The Finders Keepers Markets), Emil Vrisakis and Chad Ford (Bowl-A-Rama) and Dean Sewell (Oculi Photography Collective). It is encouraging to see + hear creative people getting together, you kind of know some of it won't be your thing - but it's nice to be surprised by how much you enjoyed listening to the dedication, trials and tribulations of what happens when you don't have the run of the mill day job.
What is life like on the other side, you wonder?
Sadly the time ticked on and questions were limited. What i wanted to ask was: "Is there room for more than one design/art market?" I guess there is, and we do have several: pyd design market, the young blood designers market, Everleigh artisans market, plus the established markets of Glebe, Paddington, The Rocks and Surry Hills markets that have handmade items amongst their mix. BUT.. (you knew there was one)
What happens to all the creative folk that get knocked back from Finders Keepers, or who have already had stalls and been replaced? As we turn away from mass produced, following handmade seems to be full of decisions: Online? wholesale? can you offer the same pieces to both customers? markets - but which ones + how can you plan when the goal posts shift?
I dunno, but would be interested to hear your thoughts...

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Let me out..!

So we are into 6 days of winter.. (which is lovely, yes). All that 'comfort food' etc. Last night it was braised lamb shanks.. BUT it has been raining for about a month. This shot was taken on my WAY to work. Before 9am.
So today was indeed time to GET out and ABOUT.
Miss R and I started here..

The Mitchell Road Auction Centre which is an Aladdin's Cave indeed.. as we wound our way through all its nooks and crannies, I saw this:

I guess it served something deliciously homemade, while families chatted on rugs without an electronic gadget insight. (They probably still argued in the car on the way home though).
I nearly bought these..
They do remind me slightly of the wallpaper we had in the lounge room when i was growing up. Went a treat with the turquoise carpet.. there was quite a lot of orange..

We are currently deep into Mad Men series 3, and it was great getting up close and personal to some striking lights. I was quite tempted to take this chap home..

Two hours later we needed sustenance.. in Erskinville, we stumbled upon ... the kick inside

It was the orange vinyl chairs, the cosiness and artwork on the wall that got me in.. It didn't disappoint. Simple and tasty with a little bit of quirk. I enjoyed my goat's cheese + leek quiche on mis-matched 70's crockery.
We then popped into the Everleigh Artisans market which seems to be building and then wandered a little bit of Newtown. Always good to see the favourites and then find some new ones.. Like Monster Threads..
I had to add this to my t-shirt collection..

Then the rain came back. So then did we. It was dark when we got home, but here are my purchases from the Antique place.. A little Japanese ceramic money box which reminded me of one of my favourite Japanese artists, Yoshitomo Nara

And I HAD to give into a little desire I'd been harbouring for German pottery..

Both were still cheaper than the tin Pinocchio. I did think it funny how overwhelming it is when faced with sooooo much - how hard it is to make a decision. But now they are back at my place (in isolation) I have to say I'm very chuffed! Miss R stuck to her horsey theme and this little wind-up tin piece is now next to her bed..

The last thing i have to share is.. guess what else i discovered? That you can chop up Mars bar and add it to a hot chocolate! Guaranteed to get you through a rainy day..

Hope you all had a lovely weekend too, whether it was inside or out...


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