31.7.12 RENTING = MOVING = ADDICTION

I am a renter... I wish I wasn't but I am! Being a renter means moving a lot and in the last twenty years I have lived in sixteen different houses... oh dear, that looks even worse written down than it does when spoken! To be honest, although all I want to do is stop I think I am somewhat addicted to moving. Many of these moves have been out of my hands for various reasons, the others I am putting down to my 'habit'. New environment to explore, new walls to hang from, new, decorating styles to explore according to the style of the house... it's sounding more reasonable now isn't it?!

My current pad is not a style I've ever lived in before. It's open plan, floor to ceiling windows and very humble (aka needs a lot of help). It has a lot of exposed timber mostly in that honey colour which gives it a kind of 70's feel. Fine by me considering I'm a child of that very era. I painted the walls fresh white before moving in and keep my decorating colours very grounded with lots of dark chocolate but lately I'm obsessing about getting some hard hits of colour in here. The brick exterior of the cottage is a pale sky blue so I can't help but feel influenced by that. Am feeling quite inspired by the colours in this painting by Caroline Wright...

30.7.12 SURROUNDED


I am surrounded by twisted cotton cord, dye baths and timber beads today. You guessed it, I am in macrame owl territory. I love my previous boys but this lovely peachy lady is my first girl and ain't she delicious?! Macrame owls hold so many childhood memories for me and it's wonderful to see them continuing to be loved by others three years after I designed and launched my modern version. Remember To John Denver With Love?


I originally made one in this colour for the Nannageddon exhibition at He Made She Made gallery in Darlinghurst. And now there are going to be another couple available on The Six Week Boutique in a week or two. Laura and Pat from He Made She Made are super lovely and curate fab exhibitions. Their next Who Shot The Serif, opens on the 1st August. Typography based it is right up my alley but unfortunately I haven't had time to pull anything together for it. Big bummer... check it out anyway if you're around, it'll be a corker no doubt.



27.7.12 CONJURING JACK WHITE

It's midday, I'm only just surfacing and it's all Jack White's fault! For those of you who don't know who the hell Jack White is, he is one of my three favourite musicians (ex White Stripes, Raconteurs, Dead Weather) and last night he rocked my socks off at his show in Sydney. I can't see much work getting done today considering my ears are still ringing and I can't get the man out of my head.

I love my rock n' roll  and being married to a muso am happily surrounded by it every day. This Stud & Bone work by super lovely stylist Jane Frosh is something I already had on my wishlist and now I'm wanting it even more post Jack's gig... it reminds me of him and something tells me he'd be a fan of this piece himself.

Jack is a Detroit rock boy turned Nashville rock master and has the most envious entourage which until recently included kooky model Karen Elson as his wife. He doesn't have the best dress sense nor is he the most handsome but boy he has some serious charisma. I'm in love in case you can't tell. Luckily for me he and Karen are splitsville (see crazy 'positive swing bang hum dinger' divorce party invitation above!), not so lucky for my husband.

Anyone out there off to Splendour In The Grass this weekend you are in for a treat!

26.7.12 REQIUM FOR A CHAIR


On my regular second hand sourcing trips I have found and lugged home many a fab chair. Always in need of some help but fab nonetheless. I have also missed out on some. Oh the gut wrenching sadness to see a sold sticker on a chair that clearly was meant for me! Late last night whilst peering through the window of my local op shop there it was, the chair find of all chair finds... a set of worn leather chesterfield armchairs with the dreaded sticker. It is a sad day my chair loving friends.




My most adventurous chair find was this old timber swivel style office chair. This thing weighs a tonne and after finding it on the side of the road in Bondi I lugged it five blocks home to my apartment in Tamarama. Let me tell you there was pain... but oh how I love this chair! Ten years on and 60hrs of stitching later it sits at my desk proud as punch reupholstered in black leather with a custom black and white typography tapestry upholstered to it's back. Captured above right at our previous home see the rest of the shoot here by Inside Out Magazine.

25.7.12 BLACKENED TIMBER... MMMM

Rushing off to Sydney this morning, lots of beautiful fabrics from Designers Guild, Ralph Lauren and more to collect from Orson & Blake to be made up into even more beautiful cushions. Some of the fabrics I get to use are just so incredible that I used to shake as I took the scissors to them!

Having the fabric reps visit to show me the latest and greatest available means I also get to keep up with what's happening in the world of designer wallpapers.

Due to my continuing love affair with blackened timber it comes as no surprise that I am SERIOUSLY in love with Scrapwood by Piet Hein Eek above. You wouldn't believe how realistic it looks in the flesh... now to persuade my landlord!

24.7.12 FIXING THINGS

All that mental mulling I did yesterday resulted in the physical organising of part of my website. I am always fiddling around with my site but my projects page in particular just always seemed too big to tackle. Enter yesterday with it's introspective rainy energy and busy mind and voila, done! 

It was almost like doing a CV really, rummaging around my laptop gathering together clients and images from projects past and present to compile into some kind of ordered fashion. I don't seem to have images of everything but a tally of 71 ain't bad. Somehow I managed to disable the feature to make images larger when clicked on so it certainly isn't perfect but hey. Please jump over and have a look!

The image above is a Why Don't You project I did for Inside Out Magazine and their sister site Homelife.com earlier this year. Styled by Vanessa Colyer Tay and photographed by Sam McAdam, two of the most talented girls you could come across I love how this project came out and it now sit's proudly on my new projects page. If you fancy making these yourself you can do so here!

23.7.12 I DO LIKE MONDAY'S

I love Mondays, I really do. If I have managed to take Sunday off I especially love Mondays. It has such a 'fresh start' ring to it and anything feels possible. 

This Monday finds me in my head. I am thinking, mulling, pondering, planning, shifting, all in a very 'fresh start' kind of way. There is SO much I want to achieve and it seems today I am attempting to do so mentally. I attribute this not just to Monday's lovely energy but also to the rain... the very snuggly, peaceful, introspective kind.

Yesterday I taught my tassel garland workshop at Megan Morton's The School in Sydney and I did a quick loop around the Koskela showroom before I headed back to SoHi. It doesn't surprise me I am mentally stimulated, have you seen that place? Super inspiring! 

Above, another Pinterest find from Douglas & Bec over in one of the most beautiful places I've ever visited... the land of the long white cloud.

20.7.12 DON'T FORGET YOUR WALLS

How great is this idea for DIY art from Apartment Therapy. After joining Pinterest recently (follow me here) and beginning the slow, highly enjoyable process of  hunting through the millions of images pinned by others I came across this which fast became one of my favourites. Not so much for it's raw aesthetic but the execution of the concept is genius.

Most homes I go into seem to forget their walls and the power they hold to 'finish' their interior spaces. I on the other hand am somewhat obsessed with decorating my walls and getting more so. I find myself focusing on it without even knowing it. I will and do put anything on my walls that is able to be hung so I'm not specifically talking paintings or framed pictures. I love nothing more than hanging a grouping of oddly combined op shop finds with my own craft pieces. Dresses, shoes, plates, lighting, postcards, trinkets etc. To me these groupings pull an area together and convey a story, give height, depth and substance. Also, you will be happy to know I do all this as a respectful renter... I have a very intimate relationship with 3M wall mounting strips.

This week really has been all about wall art in the studio as I've been making up wire wall type orders and sampling new designs. I have three new ones for your walls which I'm really loving. The big unveil is next week all going to plan.

Well there you go, my first week of daily blogging done... back Monday!

19.7.12 COLDS & GIGANTIC POM POMS

An even later start today due to the one thing I hate about winter, a cold... great. In the hope that it might be super short lived I will attempt to ignore it and move right along to talk about how much I am loving wool right now.

I have been wanting to do some knitting all winter and what with all the projects I've been working on just haven't had a chance. Now we are half way through the season I'm going to be pressed to find any nice wool if I don't get onto it.

This cascade of pom poms and tassels Nikki Gabriel did for a window installation has me wanting to re-visit my macrame work and experiment with weaving wool. It's images like this that cement my passion for using modern craft as an interior decorating tool. Whether I will have time to experiment or not remains to be seen but in the meantime imagine how incredible something like this might look in your interior?

Btw, Nikki has opened her first store 'Gather' in Napier, New Zealand which also stocks some of my kits. Check it out if you can.

18.7.12 CLEVER WOMEN

Oh dear, a very late start today. I always struggle the day after a big Sydney trip. There's so much to fit in and with the hours spent behind the wheel I get home around 9pm completely exhausted.

Once I get it together today is filled with more painting of my wire wall type. I am working on a new piece for The Six Week Boutique... more about that next week.

To my inbox... this morning I had a super lovely email from Clare Lancaster who writes the blog womeninbusiness.com.au. Inside Out Magazine featured my blogroll in the current issue and having listed Clare's blog as one of my favourites she contacted me to say thanks. So love that.

Working for myself I need to feel connected to other creative people in my situation and Clare's blog ticks that box. I also follow women like designer Abigail Ahern above who inspire me to reach higher, though I can't help but compare my studio to hers! Connected good, comparing not so good. Theodore Roosevelt said 'comparison is the thief of joy', you nailed it Ted. Happy with me and mine, though just quietly I really must have that table!

17.7.12 CITY VERSUS COUNTRY


Getting going early to Sydney this morning to manage production for the Orson & Blake store in Surry Hills. Living out here in SoHi I'm rather undecided about whether to continue living in the country or maybe head back to the city one day. The 3hr round trip there and back gives me plenty of time to think about the good and not so good in both.

The country is incredible for being creative, for some reason you feel no boundaries  and find yourself just plunging in to all sorts of wonderful projects. Though with wonderful projects comes lots of commuting, which of course is not so wonderful. The city is bursting with so much collective creative energy which mostly feels amazing but at times I used to find myself feeling lost in the sea of it all. Not surprising the goal is to somehow have both...

Lucy Chadwick does both very well. Todd Selby captured the best of both her worlds in the little film above. It's inspiring to say the least.

Anyway time to get on the road and dream about the city as I head towards it then dream of being back in the country once I get stuck in the traffic!

16.7.12 SOMEWHERE BETWEEN CHAOS & ROUTINE

So hard to get up this morning... why did I break my no computer on Sundays rule last night... damn Pinterest, why are you so good?! 

Working for yourself, despite it's many advantages, is tricky. Switching between hats tends to create chaos. Friday I was an accountant, Saturday a researcher, today a tradesman. Before the week is out I will have been a sample maker, designer, writer, photographer, web developer, graphic artist... you get my drift. Being a creative person means chaos will always exist, it's part of the creative process. But, I crave routine and order and am on a mission to secure some semblance of it in my world.

Enter drastic measures. Yes this is a tattered old oil painting I picked up at an op shop but it bears a striking resemblance to a boss I once had. Hilarious I know but she now sits overlooking me in my studio acting as the death stare of authority I obviously need to work more efficiently!

Ok, time to put on my tradesman hat. The wind has died down and today I have a pile of wire wall type to spray-prime. Insert whip crack here...