Monday 30 September 2013

Trying To Be Positive About The Weather

Love Is All You Need?

I wish it were so. Unfortunately we need a little money at the moment too so please pop along to one of my stockists and pick up these teeny love heart brooches or email me for individual orders and wholesale prices. This Xmas please support independent shops - they really struggle to compete with big chain stores and they are the ones who support and encourage indie crafters like myself.

What do you think of my new little tags?

Sunday 29 September 2013

Favourite Girls

One of my favourite girls has just turned 13 years old. Kudos to her beautiful mum for getting her this far. Happy Birthday Alice.

Saturday 28 September 2013

Tick Tock

The clock towards Xmas is ticking and I am trying to sort out my stock and get into as many shops as possible for Christmas. Here are pics of my new Australian biscuit tree ornaments. They will be available from my stockists by the end of the week. Otherwise email me for individual orders or wholesale prices.

Friday 27 September 2013

(Re) New

I love my studio again. It has been such a mess for so long. It had got to the stage that I would do anything rather than go in there. So I finally finished the tidy and now it is my favourite place again.

Thursday 26 September 2013

Bad Humans Vs Good Humans

Sometimes I look around and think we are totally F#**ed. And then just sometimes I think we might be ok. It is a pity that the bad humans generally have more control than the good ones. Ruth Krauss and Maurice Sendak for president (even though they are dead)! How delightful is this little book "Open House For Butterflies"? Thanks again Brain Pickings.

Dear Durban Weather...

I am so sorry that I took you for granted, everyday you woke the sun up, calmed the wind down and let us run around bare foot....

What is it about our species that we don't appreciate things until they are gone?

I am not really complaining because Melbourne spring is trying hard (today could use some work though). We have had some glorious days of late and I have been working in the garden. I am a bit of a reluctant gardener and so try to make gardens that are pretty low maintenance. It was with this in mind that I laid pebbles over the mulch in the back yard beds to discourage weeds, to keep the moisture in and make leaf blowing easier.

Here are some pics of our back yard.

The little bulbs that were pushing through at the end of winter turned out to be blue bells. 

Wednesday 25 September 2013

Gotta Love This Man

Having moved half way around the world, at the age of forty two I find myself having to build my artistic career from scratch. In Aus it seems, that in order to be noticed in the art world, one has to enter (and obviously win) numerous art competitions. I have always hated competitions for the arts because, while I realise their importance, the idea of competition in creativity is a strange one. The output of creative thinking is by it's very nature unique - how does one compare numerous unique items? Anyway this letter by Nick Cave is not exactly breaking news, but I stumbled across it and thought I would share. It appeared in an article in Dangerous Minds

Nick Cave’s polite, yet firm 1996 letter to MTV event organizers following his nomination for “Best Male Artist” for that year’s MTV Music Awards.
21 Oct 96
To all those at MTV,
I would like to start by thanking you all for the support you have given me over recent years and I am both grateful and flattered by the nominations that I have received for Best Male Artist. The air play given to both the Kylie Minogue and P. J. Harvey duets from my latest album Murder Ballads has not gone unnoticed and has been greatly appreciated. So again my sincere thanks.
Having said that, I feel that it’s necessary for me to request that my nomination for best male artist be withdrawn and furthermore any awards or nominations for such awards that may arise in later years be presented to those who feel more comfortable with the competitive nature of these award ceremonies. I myself, do not. I have always been of the opinion that my music is unique and individual and exists beyond the realms inhabited by those who would reduce things to mere measuring. I am in competition with no-one.
My relationship with my muse is a delicate one at the best of times and I feel that it is my duty to protect her from influences that may offend her fragile nature.
She comes to me with the gift of song and in return I treat her with the respect I feel she deserves — in this case this means not subjecting her to the indignities of judgement and competition. My muse is not a horse and I am in no horse race and if indeed she was, still I would not harness her to this tumbrel — this bloody cart of severed heads and glittering prizes. My muse may spook! May bolt! May abandon me completely!
So once again, to the people at MTV, I appreciate the zeal and energy that was put behind my last record, I truly do and say thank you and again I say thank you but no…no thank you.
Yours sincerely,
Nick Cave

Tuesday 24 September 2013


I spent the weekend being uber domestic. Kian and I baked biscuits. We also tidied the house and did some gardening. I have been trying hard to figure out what makes me happy. I know it should not be a difficult thing to do, but with all the media telling us what should make us happy, what we should be striving for, it turns out it is quite difficult. We watched such a sweet film on Sunday called "Seeking A Friend For The End Of The World" and it got me thinking about what we would really spend our time doing if we knew it was all to end soon. Anyhoo, here is a pic of our baking efforts and a little reminder that what we have is more than enough.

exhausted from all the effort

Friday 20 September 2013


Little Shop Of... DELIGHT!

I am so pleased that I stumbled across Bec's Little Shop Of Handmade. Not only have I found the place to go Xmas shopping, but I now also stock the Little Shop. Can't wait to work with Bec, she seems like such a creative person, but with a great business mind too and most of all (from the little I gained from our chat yesterday) a lovely sense of the world at large.

Thursday 19 September 2013

Enough Now!

I am so tired of winter. Today has made an extraordinary attempt to not be nice!

Wednesday 18 September 2013

Sad Day

It was a year ago we lost our darling Brandon, so it is a sad day today. Brandon's death reminds me that we must really try to live each day with as much enjoyment and love as possible. Today I am busying myself with finishing Xmas post and it is a nice thing to do - making contact with all those I love back in South Africa.

Tuesday 17 September 2013

Xmas Post

I can't believe I am already wrapping Christmas presents, but the airmail postal rates are so expensive I am packing up a large box to send surface mail to SA, and this will take a while so I kind of have to be organised. I have been having such fun wrapping the gifts and decorating the postal envelopes. I love all things stationary and so have as many stickers and ribbons and tapes as the Mt Eliza Mummies have shoes. Here are some of the gifts I wrapped today.

Friday 13 September 2013

Cushions & Quilts

Here are the results of our styled photo-shoot that we did today. Darren makes everything look too beautiful! It features my Magic Faraway Tree Cot Quilt and some denim scatter cushions I have been making.

Bear With A Sore Head

That has been me. I have been sick since the exhibition opening and altogether too grumpy for words. Here is a friendlier bear that will be on sale at the Abbotsford Convent Market on Sunday.

Rainy Days and Mondays

The weather has been icy here again and I have been hard at work restocking my market supplies. Here is my new sugar skullie with a little dark cloud hanging over him.

Cushions: Part One

I asked Darren to do some styled photography for me today. We have closed our Goodsie shop as the prices went skyrocket-ting and I am finding the effort involved in running an online shop is not worth the return. I am going to concentrate on stocking local shops and makers markets for now, but might open a very small etsy store in the not too distant future.
So we have changed the format of the blog slightly and have included tabs at the top where our products can be viewed. He did a marvelous job my clever husband did, don't you think?
These are two of my new cushions.


All my brooches now have the felt flower backing and make great present toppers for that special friend. I got Darren to photograph some of the new ones for me today.

Tie Totes

I made the prototype for this bag ages ago and have used it to death. It can fit an A4 notebook (32cm / 42cm) but is not too big and clumsy and can sling across your shoulder. It is made using vintage ties and found fabric, it is fully lined and each one is totally unique. I have made up a few for my market stock. In the first pic you can see our new little swing tag. Sweet hey?

Hair Clips

I have been making a few hair clips for the Abbotsford Convent Market on Sunday.

Monday 9 September 2013

Soft Denim

For now I will have to keep supplementing my income with handmade goodies so I made a cot quilt and cushion this weekend. I found some beautiful soft denim on a sale and using bleach silk screen created these image from classic children's books. I included one pocket from an old pair of jeans (handy for storing favourite bunny or soother etc). The quilt is entitled "The Magic Faraway Tree" for obvious reasons and I hope it sells on my market this Sunday to a beautiful pregnant woman full of hope.
I was silly and took these pics outside in dappled light - the denim is not patchy.

Sunday 8 September 2013

Forgotten Things

In the big studio tidy (which includes a file tidy on my machine) I found these pics of paintings from my first ever show. Kinda cool and kinda depressing to see them, because in my mind I have come far since those days, however that show opened and was sold out. Not so with my latest one. Maybe my work is less appealing now, maybe the world is just much poorer than it was ten years ago. Sigh. Oh well, life goes on and since I cant really do anything else I will just keep on painting.

Wednesday 4 September 2013

Commissioned Portraiture

I have decided to give commissioned portraiture a whirl, so I have set up a new gallery on my website. Please go and check it out, if only to get traffic through my site so that Google wakes up and realises that I no longer live in SA.

I will be taking the rest of the week off to tidy my studio and get my house in order, so there will not be any posts for a while.

Ol' Friends

I have been missing my old friend Penny so much lately. While tidying up my studio I found some fun things like the eyelet punch, glitter paper and rub on stickers I bought on a sale. I also found the old school embossing tape I was given for my birthday, so I decided to send her a little something in the post.

Tuesday 3 September 2013

The Wee Poet

Yesterday was Kian's last dentist visit. It has been a long haul and so to celebrate, he and I took the afternoon off and went to the beach. He is such a funny fish and says the strangest things. Yesterday's classic:
(staring out to sea) Kian: "I am looking for the lost brown city"
(turning towards the land) Kian: "In those blue mountains there are hundreds of butterflies hatching from their cocoons"
What do you say to that? "Yes Dear" seems unsuitable.

making sand soup and shell structures