Inkodye, by Lumi, is one of the success stories to come out of kickstarter, it is a clever product that allows you to expose an image on fabric. It is kind of like screen printing where you get to skip a step or two.
Ages ago a friend bought me an Inkodye pack. I was so excited, but it took me so long to get around and use it. I felt I wanted to design something worthy of the process, but this required some spare time(which I don’t seem to have enough of), so instead of putting it off any longer I decided to make some t-shirts with Ava using found objects. I had seen a lot of beautiful images on pinterest and instagram where they had used leaves and flowers but we decided to go with crochet doilies.
I did the painting of the Inkodye onto the t-shirts and Ava chose her doilies and put them down as she liked. Then we popped on a piece of glass (which I had pinched from an old picture frame) and took it outside. It was a lot of fun to watch the colour appear and grow stronger in the sunlight.
The edges were a bit soft because of the thickness of the doilies but with film or paper cutouts it would be nice and crisp. I am really looking forward to doing some new designs with this and there is no shortage of inspiration on the net, here are a few of my favourites from Urban Comfort and Jessica Jones at How about Orange.
After posting Our First Christmas Advent Calendar yesterday I felt like sharing a few of the lovely pics I came across in the planning process. There are so many creative people out there with beautiful ideas. Here are just a few.
Firstly there is the amazing couple at Young House Love who planted the seed of an advent calendar in my head over a year ago.
These simple white parcels on a grey felt pinboard are very elegant and show how christmas decorations can tie in beautifully with the existing design of a room. It is possible to be stylish and festive at the same time.
A bit of fun and a very do-able idea is this framed advent calendar with individually decorated pockets.
And finally another design that would fit in beautifully with your own decor, by painting the jars a colour to suit your room. I think the challenge here would be finding an available surface to display it.
If you haven’t then I think now is the time you did. Jennifer Jones is the amazing women behind ‘Have you met miss jones‘ a company that produces beautiful fine bone china, clay pottery and resin homewares.
Her quirky products have a beautiful tactile quality and playfulness I love. Among other things, the ‘Miss Jones’ collection includes some amazingly beautiful christmas decorations and I find myself lost in the pages of the website trying to decide what I love more, the delicate feathers or funky acorns? I can just imagine them hanging in the tree as if they are enticing a squirrel out for a snack.
Jennifer Jones has also launched a wedding business, Miss Jones in Love, creating a beautiful bespoke style for her customers.
I am just back from a lovely afternoon in Ivanhoe at a Women in Business Lunch. This was the first thing like this that I had been to but I am sure I will go to more in the future. It is a great way to meet like mind people, learn from others who have gone through what you are venturing out to do and have a nice meal at the same time. Normally working from home I don’t really wear ‘business attire’, if anything the days I spend working at the computer are more relaxed than the days I am out and about with Ava. So it was strangely momentous for me to don some tights with my grey dress and walk out the door in heels (even as low as they were).
The guest speaker today was Katrina Karlsson from the beautiful stationery store kikki.K. She shared with us the journey she took when originally setting up her business, the key elements that helped her through it all and how she overcame her biggest challenges. Those three main elements that got her off the starting blocks with her business and helped her through her challenges were her Passion, her Vision and Never taking ‘no’ for an answer. As she spoke you could see that the Passion is the overriding element there. She still gets excited about a new product that comes back from production and that is the kind of thing that inspires me. I love the same kind of things, all the little details, and I would like to think that excitement remains even when you have been doing it for so long.
Katrina started her business when she was 22 and it has now been running for 13 years. She has 83 stores, employs in the region of 600 people and has the goal of one day opening stores in her favourite cities around the world such as Paris and London.
Hearing her story was inspiring but also kind of overwhelming. Success seems to be so far away when you are just starting out and although my vision isn’t as grand as hers I have to remind myself to have faith in it and re-ignite my passion on a regular basis. Loving what you do is a darn good start though.
Wow, it is October, the sun is shining and i have been crazy busy with work, so I haven’t really been able to enjoy it. It was nice however to put on a skirt yesterday, gaze out the window from my spot in front of the computer and daydream about all the lovely summer days to come.
I read a lot of American blogs and they are all currently lamenting the end of their summer and bracing themselves for the cooler weather. It does feel quite strange to be in the opposite frame of mind to such a large part of the world and frustrating when it comes to fashion and styling blogs. But I can’t really complain, here in Melbourne we get a beautiful balance of weather, I would say the only down side is when it is too hot for day after day (hopefully we wont get too much of that this year).
With summer approaching, although I have very little spare time (actually I think I am in the red in that account) I having the growing desire to get sewing and make Ava and I some skirts dresses and hats for summer and all those blogs I follow are coming up with the goods. So here is a little wish list of things I would like to make over the coming months.
The pattern for thios lovely hat can be found here
As I put all these links in I get the feeling that I am biting off more than I can chew. However keep in mind most of these projects are fairly basic and shouldn’t be too challenging for a novice like myself.
When I started watching this lovely clip for the first time I thought it didn’t apply to me, but then it hit a point and brought back so many memories. Not stepping on cracks would be the one I played most often when I was little and counting at the traffic lights is one I do now.
A visit to the op-shop is, strangely, a lovely treat for the whole family.
Ava loves to check out the toys, run around the expansive space (worrying the volunteers as she passes the glass cabinets) and pick books with me. We always pick up about 5 or 6 books to boost her book collection at home and at Nan and Pa’s and I love the randomness of some of the things we find. We end up with one or two that end up going straight back next time we visit, some that are absolutely beautiful and quirky ones that we all love and probably never would have got if we had only bought books from the retail stores.
I generally look at the homewares to see if there is something I can use, spruce up or repurpose for the house and I look at the books for some sort of inspirational goodies.
Daragh will often find something quite random like old wooden tennis rackets and also looks at the books. (see the pattern here? We love the book section)
In my latest visit to St Vinnies I found a set of 1960′s encyclopedias entitled ‘How to do it’. There were 3 volumes missing from the set of 16 that we got for a whopping $5
I mainly get old books like this for the imagery and typography inspiration but these might actually come in handy, there are heaps of things I need to know how to do. But as I look further into it I am not sure how much they can help me.
I could learn how to tune and fix my vintage car(which I am yet to own), repair and rewire small appliances (which is not legal here in Australia) or build a conversation platform(What?). What I gather from these books is that they built furniture and spaces for very specific purposes but I just wonder – Are allowed to sit on a conversation platform by yourself without talking to anyone else? They must also be a handy bunch of people already as they only take 1 or 2 double page spreads to tell you how to make a ‘Housewife’s Desk’, ‘Music bench’ or ‘Cleaning Cart’ yet have dedicated 46 pages to water skiing.
While in search for that nugget in information I am just going to enjoy the images and be amused by the bizarre project ideas.
What an exciting day! Today was the day we received the illustration from Michael Shapcott that he had done as part of his drawing a drawing project. As I opened my email I was instantly amazed, proud and couldn’t help but show the picture to anyone in arms reach who would bother to look. I was so excited.
When I last wrote about this I mentioned how nervous I was. Picking a photo was hard and although he has done some beautiful work as part of this project you still never know how it is going to turn out. With this day approaching, my nerves grew, although, as it turns out there was no need to worry. Michael has done an astounding job, capturing Ava’s curls, lips and eyes beautifully (my favourite parts on Ava and the picture). He said in his email to me “Those curls!! Definitely a fun challenge!”
The picture has exceeded my hopes and left me feeling grateful for being a part of this project. It has been an exciting process and produced a wonderful outcome.
I have a few little blog crushes (I am a bit of a hussy that way) and one I have been loving for a long while now is Design Mom. She is an inspirational woman who seems to strike the balance of family and design beautifully. I love her style but really enjoy the honesty in her writing about how she pulls off her hectic life and that even though things may look simple and effortless they all take work and dedication. This applies to both design and mothering and it is a relief to read about the reality rather than just getting the façade so many seem to put up that leave you feeling inadequate as though you should be able to ‘do it all’ without letting your hair get out of place.
A project she has been working on with her family, that launched in May this year, is Olive Us TV and this shares the same balance of truth and beauty. It was something her family started to focus on their relationships with each other. These little films are beautifully shot, impecably styled and just make you want to be a child again (growing up in the french countryside wouldn’t hurt either)
Olive Us is named to inentionally sound like ‘All of us’ and to include Olive, the name of their third child and the star of the latest film. She is a natural in front of the camera and shines in all of the films in which she appears. My favourite is still the first episode – Garden Day but I also really enjoyed Episode 4 – Helping Dad
Someone had commented on the blog when the series was first launched ‘Olive us feels like a big, warm hug’ and I agree, it is a pile of lovelyness.
With all this instagram love of late you might be left wondering what the value of these little piccies is. Is it worth putting all the effort in taking all these photos that are only seen briefly by those who follow you on instagram or facebook? The answer is YES. I have already sung the praises of instagram for its fun factor and the little bit of creativity you can express in an instant while going for a walk or eating your lunch (which so many seem to do – including myself) but now I am going to show you a few nifty little companies that can help turn those babies into real world, tactile, hold-in-your-hands objects of art.
Sticky gram doesn’t have the most appealing name but I think their little magnets are cute. Canvaspop print your little images on to reasonable size canvases and Coastermatic make (can you guess?) coasters. But I think my fave is Printstagram. They have a nice little suite of products including small prints, big posters and teeny tiny books, among other things.