Friday, 31 December 2010

Seeing Red (In a Good Way)

I dig the colour red. I dig red shoes and red lipstick. Especially when it contrasts so strongly with a dark ensemble.
In a city of dark shadows, people will dress to blend in with their corporate surroundings. Then comes that startling moment, a streak of inferno. A red car zooms past. Or a woman in a red dress.
There is after all a reason why Lady in Red was a hit song.

It's a Wonderland

I will be brief. Check out the Alannah Hill website, which has been designed by Paper Stone Scissors and built by Flint Interactive. It is like a cute, modern, delightful, messy wonderland after little children have run wild in it. Simply fantastical…

Monday, 20 December 2010

Where is my art book?

Doodly Noodle: Pink Yellow Girl

Not long now. Christmas morning is almost upon us. Things are ramping up around here — getting excited about the big day. And that is just me.

There has been seeking, painting, wrapping, cutting, taping, and baking. The usual carry on for this time of year.
The one thing out of the ordinary has been the non-Australian Christmas season weather the past few days. In fact it has been cold enough to pull out the winter clothes and turn the heater on. I have wondered what it would be like to have a traditional (season wise) Christmas. I just might find out.

What else is going on? Let's see. Having a bit of down time this afternoon. Though I really would like to know where my art book went. A while back there was a lot of shifting of things around the house, what with some of the house projects going on. And now I can't find some of my art supplies. What's an artist to do? I resort to my computer doodling, which can be fun, but isn't the most natural place for me to start my work in.
Barbie Dream House, 1961
I borrowed from the library Barbie: a visual guide to the ultimate fashion doll. It's been fun flipping through the book, finding the Barbie dolls that I once owned, and following the timeline of this doll. Did you know the first Barbie doll house was made of cardboard (including the furniture) that folded down into a portable suitcase? This was wa-ay back in 1961.

Friday, 10 December 2010

Garden Dream

My garden dream is protected by moonlight.
There are a scattering of gardenias and palm trees. Rose bushes filter through amongst the tropical blooms.
The air is potently fragrant.
Is this paradise? Or is this still just a backyard?
Millions of grass blades cushion under foot as I step across the space.
Nearby, a coupling of volcanic rocks and beyond that rests a pool of water. Jasmine climbs over the rocks and conquers the wall behind.
Lit Tiki lamps dispersed around the pool do their fire dance — shimmer and glow.
The water is still.
The garden is still.
It is there in my mind. Waiting for me.

Thursday, 9 December 2010

DIY Update

The past couple of weeks have been a busy period. A lot of DIY work at home has prevented me from blogging. Partly because of the time factor, but also because the computer was unplugged for a great part of the work we had to do.
Me being back here doesn't mean the work is done, but it does mean I have some breathing space. So I thought I'd share some photos of what we've been up to.
The focus at home has been removing the old stinky carpet in the Master and replacing it with nice new shiny floorboards.
The second activity has been replacing the Living Area blinds with pretty, lined curtains. These new curtains will make a massive difference with heating and cooling in the home, particularly this summer.

Next on the agenda: There are still quite a few things to get through around the home. Namely installing some ceiling fans, hemming the new curtains (just waiting for the material to drop), fixing the tiles in the Ensuite, doing a general spring clean, improve the kitchen. Then hopefully we can begin to focus on the backyard area (Yay!). It's amazing seeing how all the work is coming together.


… I finished the embroidery project. See below some of the progress it took.

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Busy Days Ahead

The next few days are going to be crazy busy. As of today I will be sewing like the Mad Hatter, making curtains.
On top of that there are big plans to remove the carpet from the only room that still has the nasty stuff. Once that is done, work will begin laying new floor boards.
It is an exciting time, but will mean that you won't hear from me hear for about a week.
But before I go here's a little something that I wanted to share. Something from my childhood…

Over and out.

Wednesday, 17 November 2010

Everyone's Taking A Chance

Who remembers the The Safety Dance? I remember hearing this on vinyl when I was a lil‘ kid. Lord, I loved this song. Other songs I remember hearing on that particular vinyl included Making Love Out of Nothing At All (Air Supply), Reckless (Australian Crawl), I Walk Away (Split Enz). Those were the days. I really loved the 80s.

I didn't know. Did you?
The Safety Dance writer Ivan Doroschuk, explained that The Safety Dance is a protest against bouncers stopping dancers pogoing to 1980s New Wave music in clubs. New Wave dancing, especially pogoing, was different from Disco dancing, because it was done individually instead of with partners and involved holding the torso rigid and thrashing about. The bouncers didn't like pogoing so they would tell pogoers to stop or be kicked out of the club. Thus, the song is a protest and a call for freedom of expression.

Tuesday, 16 November 2010

Run Silent, Run Deep

After yesterday's blog entry I still have Shakespear's Sister on my mind. Siobhan Fahey and Marcella Detroit so totally rocked.

20 Questions

I noticed Pip's blog entry for 20 Questions, and thought I'd play along:

  1. Sweet or Savoury? Sweet & Savoury — I love eating it all.
  2. Dresses or Jeans? Dresses & Jeans — I am a casual dresser, but love the opportunity to get all dressed up. 
  3. House or Apartment? House — I like having space to move and breathe.
  4. Shop Online or Offline? Offline (& Online) — Online does have it's appeal when I struggle to find those rare items. But nothing beats walking around inside Borders and touching the books before I buy.
  5. DVDs or Downloads? DVDs — I like having the pretty package to go with the film. But when it comes to PS3 games I am into the downloadable packages, because they are so economical.
  6. Cocktails or Juice? I fantasize about trying those tropical cocktails, but so far have stuck to my juice.
  7. Chocolate or Strawberry? Chocolate & Strawberry — it causes me pain to make a choice.
  8. Laptop or PC? Labtop in a heart beat (if I had one), I love that you can do your work anywhere, with a labtop.
  9. Magazines or Newspapers? Magazine girl.
  10. Facebook or Twitter? Facebook — I like to keep it simple. With my blogging I don't have the energy to share every brain fart that I have.
  11. CDs or MP3s? CDs & MP3s — I go both ways. I like to be economical in this department, but sometimes you just can't beat the album artwork.
  12. Kids or Pets? Kids & Pets — Why choose, when you can have it all.
  13. Macaron or Cupcakes? Cupcakes — I have no idea what a macaron is, but I do know what a cupcake is, and I love eating those.
  14. Walk or Run? Walk — running is hard on the joints, and besides you can burn the same amount of energy walking the same distance that you might have run.
  15. Breakfast in Bed or Breakfast Out? Breakfast Out — Someone else cleans up the mess.
  16. Market or Supermarket? Market & Supermarket — Depends what groceries is needed.
  17. Sourdough or Grainy? Sourdough & Grainy — It's all good.
  18. Heels or Flats? Flats mostly — I like to be comfortable. But the heels come out when I dress up.
  19. Late nights or Not? Late nights — I am most definitely a night owl, and not a morning person.
  20. Coffee or Tea? Tea — I generally find Coffee to be way too strong for me. So much as one sip of coffee and I am bouncing off the walls.

Monday, 15 November 2010

It's All About The Albums

I don't think there has every been a time that I wasn't inspired by music. I was always surrounded by it. Whether it was the music I loved or hated. Funnily enough, some of the music that truly disturbed me during my baby/toddler years, has come to be amongst my favorites as a fully grown adult. I guess if you hear it often enough, you get used to it.
I would like to talk about the music that moved me. Now I couldn‘t go through it all, otherwise I‘d be here all night. So I‘ll do the next best thing. I‘ll just talk about the albums that changed and moved me…

When I was about 1O years of age I was blown away by a girl pop-rock band called Shakespear‘s Sister. About a year later, on a Friday night, my parent‘s took me to JB Hi-Fi. This was a monumental evening for me because this was to the night that I would hold in my hands my first ever compact disc album. I was drawn to Shakespear‘s Sisters‘ debut album, so my parent's bought that for me. I felt so grown up beginning my CD music collection with this particular album. The music had a hard edge, but was also very feminine. Sacred Heart is good for a listen if it is the end of the week, your boss has annoyed you, your boyfriend has broken up with you, you‘re recovering from that lovely time of the month, and you are about to get ready for a night in town with the girls.

As soon as I saw Vanessa-Mae: Violin Player being promoted on television I just knew that this was something for me. At the time of getting this album I must have been in year 10. Vanessa-Mae‘s album moved and excited me. Never before had I realised that a classical player could do for the violin what Jimmy Hendrix did for the electric guitar. In fact to describe this album with just one word, I would say — electrifying.

Harry Connick Jr made me sit up straight and listen when he came out with the album She. I was almost through high school — I‘d say about year 11. After hearing the same old, same old on the radio Harry's old school big band sounds blaring out of the radio simply blew me away. Such a breath of fresh air, was this album. He really made me wish I had been born on the banks of the Mississippi.

At the same time that Harry Connick Jr found me, Sheryl Crow was another to also enter my heart. My reaction to both these artists were similar. I just could not believe that commercial radio was playing anything as pure as these two. It was like tasting nothing but junk food, then somebody putting something flavorsome, spicy and wholesome on my dinner plate. For the first time in ages I was listening to something real and from the heart.

I wear my sunglasses at night… So I can, so I can

Fashion Blogger Isaiah Garza has this to say about his sunglasses:

If you liked this little video you can cast your vote to this sincere designer over at the Sunglasses Hut.

You can also check out Isaiah's blog at Fashion Munster —

Don't forget to have a look in at his website which is filled with images of elegant, lady-like garments and jewellery with feathery, flowery elements. You will also find a very personal opening statement. I love Isaiah's use of Kate Bush's music. Very appropriate, I thought.

Good luck with it all Isaiah!

Thursday, 11 November 2010

Where To From Here

The next few months there will be a shift in focus. Normally I have been able to work on lots of little art projects. But I am taking a break from that.
This of course does not mean a complete time out, from sewing, drawing, cutting, hammering and gluing. In fact there will be more of this.
The time has come for some “home improvements”. An expression that brings joy and can still make you shudder. We are filled with joy just thinking about the end result. As we shudder, anticipating the uncertainty, and anxiety that comes with fixing up the home.
These home improvements some of it will be DIY and there is a lot to do. Following are just some of the things we are looking at doing:

  • Replace old yucky carpet in master and replace with Gunstock Solid Maple floor boards.
  • Fix the tiles in bathroom.
  • Install shelving. Lot and lots of shelving.
  • Convert back yard space into a sheltered entertainment area.

Wednesday, 10 November 2010

Just Very Quickly

The toddler is napping and I have a moment to do a few of my own things — Some embroidery, drawing and mentioning this…

There is a blog giveaway over at Handmade Kids, for this gorgeous Poppy, Bean & Bloss doll. Check it out now.

Thursday, 4 November 2010

A Beautiful Trap

A few weeks ago I noticed this cobweb in my carport, and simply had to photograph this piece of work.
A cobweb is a spider's home and food trap. It's design is purely out of necessity. And yet from a human eye it is a work of art.
Funny to think that I am so terrified of spiders yet can stop to appreciate what they create. But alas as beautiful as this web is it isn't meant to last long. And sure enough it was gone the next day.

I am reminded of a story from Aesop Fables, called —

The Silkworm and Spider
Having received an order for twenty yards of silk from Princess
Lioness, the Silkworm sat down at her loom and worked away with
zeal. A Spider soon came around and asked to hire a web-room near
by. The Silkworm acceded, and the Spider commenced her task and worked
so rapidly that in a short time the web was finished. "Just look at
it," she said, "and see how grand and delicate it is. You cannot but
acknowledge that I'm a much better worker than you. See how quickly
I perform my labors." "Yes," answered the Silkworm, "but hush up,
for you bother me. Your labors are designed only as base traps, and
are destroyed whenever they are seen, and brushed away as useless
dirt; while mine are stored away, as ornaments of Royalty."
"True art is thoughtful, delights and endures."

That Which We Call A Rose

"What's in a name? That which we call a rose

By any other name would smell as sweet."

— William Shakespeare (Romeo & Juliet)

Tuesday, 2 November 2010

Tuesday Wafflings

Doodling in Photoshop

Progress on Noir embroidery
There are quite a few projects I want to get started on. Some are house sized and some small. Though I hardly know where to begin.
When it gets like this I know it is time to make a list.
I also have an embroidery project which I still need to finish. So I'll make that my priority for this week. Just so I can say that it is finally done.

Monday, 1 November 2010

Extra! Extra!

A few more pieces of my art have been made available for sale at Red Bubble. You can visit my Red Bubble profile right here…

Enjoy the Sunshine

I couldn't ask for a nicer day. After two days of near constant rain the garden is looking magnificent. With a bit of grooming back in Autumn the rose bushes have truly taken off and have dozens of flowers in full bloom.
The day is looking bright and warm. It is the perfect day to be spending out of doors, enjoying the sunshine. Whether that be with a spot of gardening, a walk to the local shops or even a trip to the park.
When it is like this one of my favorite things is to put on a hat, make a sandwich, grab a reading book and go sit in the backyard and bask in the mild sunshine. And if it gets to warm I just move a bit into the shade.

Tuesday, 26 October 2010


I have been a bit buggered lately, so I haven't had a lot to say or do here.
I am still quite a bit tired, so I'll just share something old with you.

The above photo was taken at school by one of the teachers. Each student had to write a little something about themselves, and include an illustration to go with the summary. These little pieces were the result.
I am fairly close to certain that this is from Grade 2, which makes it 1986.

What were some of the hits of ‘86?

  • Broken Wings (Mr Mister)
  • How Will I Know (Whitney Houston)
  • Addicted to Love (Robert Palmer)
  • Papa Don't Preach (Madonna)
  • Sledgehammer (Peter Gabriel)
  • Small Town (John Cougar Mellencamp)
  • Walk This Way (Run DMC)
  • Invisible Touch (Genesis)
Oh and the list could go one forever.

Sometimes I miss the 80s. It was an idyllic time for me and when it became ‘89, I felt a sadness that it was an end of an era.

Following is a clip from a loved 80s film — Electric Dreams.

Friday, 15 October 2010

Animation Friday — Rose

gif animator
Gif animator

Over a couple of days I followed the opening of a single orange-peach rose, from my garden.
I love flowers, especially tulips, roses, wisteria, jasmine,frangipani and other tropical varieties.
Flowers can freshen a room with their scent, or even greatly improve an ordinary property.

What is your favorite flower?

While you are at it, check out other creative animations over at My Poppet.

Thursday, 14 October 2010

Tuck Into That

I just finished preparing fried rice. Granted a certain ingredient was missing. But I essentially got it to smell and taste pretty close to the real thing.
Righto! I'm starving. Time to eat that fried rice, with a lovely side dish of spring rolls.

Fried Rice, Anyone?

Tonight's meal plan will consist of fried rice. And the above recipe is what I'll be following, with a modification here and there. I'll use chicken instead of pork.
Hmmm, maybe I could pick up some spring rolls as a side dish. Haven't had that in a long while.
I'll share the meal with you tomorrow. That is to say I'll share a visual snapshot with you.
What are you having for dinner tonight?

Tuesday, 12 October 2010

Ollie Ollie Ollie

Hats Off to Teri

Teri Redrup, a fresh face on the Australian fashion scene sits down to answer my annoying questions about her studies, work and dreams of fashion. 

Which fashion course have you been doing?
Currently I am studying costume at Ultimo TAFE in Sydney. I’m in my last year so we are just starting to research our final integrated project. I am pretty excited as this is the light at the end of the tunnel! and it is nice to pick a project that you are passionate about and that showcases all your strong points. It’s been a real pleasure to do the course, it has a good variety of subjects to work through and some amazing teachers.

Where did this love affair with clothing design begin?
:) I remember having a muppets toy when i was really young which you scribble over the top of to make an impression of different muppet character in different costumes... I also remember watching an episode of Oprah once where she had a fashion parade, also when I was very young, and I was totally blown away by this oversized orange jumper over purple leggings! so amazing haha. I’ve always been interested with clothing I guess, particularly the theatrical side of things.

Which work tools do you like working with best?
I have a tendancy to veer towards the more old-fashioned skills. I have studied millinery for a few years and really enjoy blocking a beautiful felt and the meditative quality of hand stitching. I’ve collected a few hat blocks and brims now and they are lovely even just as something sitting on the shelf.

Last year you worked with Romance Was Born making some hats. How did this come about? Describe the experience.
I was lucky enough to know Anna and Luke from RwB. Together we worked on a costume for a gorgous burlesque dancer  a few years ago. That worked out really well and then for the last 3 summer/spring shows I’ve been doing a bit of millinery and accessories for them. It’s always fun going in to their studio, they are inspiring and encouraging and I hope to be able to do more with them in the future.

Are there any fashion styles and eras that you have a particular fancy for?
The the first 50 years of last century are so elegant. I especially love the 30’s and 40’s. The sweater girl look is a fave of mine,I usually have a knitting project tucked into my handbag.

Are there any craft projects you haven’t already done, that you’d like to tackle one day?
A friend bought a knitting machine recently, and after having a little lesson on hers, I’m going to buy myself one for my birthday!

What do you plan to achieve for the future?
I change my mind frequently about what to do when I grow up! I love the idea of working as a milliner but I also enjoy working in fashion and bridal. I’ve met some great people in this industry that are very creative and enjoy what they do and have also managed to conquer the business side of things. Maybe one day I could do the same.
Photo © Six Photography

Monday, 11 October 2010

Dance to the Disco

When I was a kid I loved to skate. It was a real treat going to the Saturday morning roller discos way back in 87. I used to go with three other kids — and their mum would take us.
There would be a morning class, for which I graduated through 3 levels.

We then spent the rest of the morning skating to the sounds of Michael Jackson, Billy Ocean, Kylie Minogue, Cheap Trick, Queen, you name it.
When a romantic song played the main lights would go out, and the effect lights kicked in, and the centrally located disco ball illuminated the room — it was pure magic.
There would also be a dance competition (with or without skates) to “Walk the Dinosaur”, “The Birdie Song”, and “Time Warp”. I once won a bag of Fantails.
Eventually though those days ended. I jumped on the inline skate bandwagon. But was sorely disappointed, as my old roller skating skills and tricks could not be applied to the inlines.
After a few years I wanted to return to the roller skates, but by then I was in my teen years and it felt like my 80s dream was finally over.
That was a fair while ago, and I have long heard that disco is dead. Yet today, a quick glance at google images I type in ‘disco’ or even ‘roller disco’, and discover that it hasn’t entirely bitten the dust. I suspect, for some of the people who lived it, there is still something that lives on in their hearts.
With a bit more research, I came across sites selling skates — brand new. There are dance clubs around the globe that still offer roller disco nights. And there are [gasp] roller derbies again on the rise.
For your pleasure I have created a list of music and movies that fit the roller disco theme. You can have a disco themed party — celebrate the 70s or 80s at your discretion. Or if you are like me you’ll just combine and enjoy it all.

Disco (& Roller Disco) Film Marathon 

  • Roller Boogie (1979) 
  • Thank God It’s Friday (1978) 
  • Saturday Night Fever (1977) 
  • The Last Days of Disco (1998) 
  • Studio 54 (1998) 

70s Disco Music Mix
  • Don’t Leave Me This Way (Thelma Houston) 
  • I Will Survive (Gloria Gaynor) 
  • You Make Me Feel Mighty Real (Sylvester) 
  • Dance Dance Dance (Chic) 
  • Stayin Alive (Bee Gees) 
  • Please Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood (Santa Esmeralda) 
  • You Sexy Thing (Hot Chocolate) 
  • Hot Stuff (Donna Summer) 
  • Disco Duck (Rick Dees) 
  • I Love the Nightlife (Alicia Bridges) 

80s Roller Disco Music Mix 
  • Don’t Be Cruel (Cheap Trick) 
  • Thriller (Michael Jackson) 
  • Crazy Little Thing Called Love (Queen) 
  • Nutbush City Limits (Tina Turner) 
  • The Time of My Life (Bill Medley & Jennifer Warnes) 
  • The Birdie Song (The Tweets) 
  • Time Warp (Rocky Horror cast) 
  • Walk the Dinosaur (Was, Not Was) 
  • When the Going Gets Tough, the Tough Get Going (Billy Ocean) 
  • Rockin Robin (Michael Jackson) 
  • The Loco-Motion (Kylie Minogue) 
  • Hungry Eyes (Eric Carmen) 
  • Ghostbusters (Ray Parker Jr) 

Sunday, 10 October 2010

The Cat's Hour

The following story is an extract from my cat's journal (to be taken with a grain of salt).

Meow! My name is Piper and I am a housecat. So they tell me. I don’t want to be a housecat. I never did. I try to tell the tall creatures but they never pay attention. So I bide my time and I wait for opportunity to strike.
One day the see-through wall swings open, and it stays that way. This is new. The tall creatures have not noticed. No one to block me this is my chance.
I run. I run for all it’s worth. Down the stairs, round the smooth path. At last I am out. I am free, and I can go anywhere. Meow! This is too exciting. There is so much to choose from. Where to first?
I see an unnatural patch of grass. I wonder over there. Chewing on the grass. I don’t do this often. I notice big yellow smelly things amongst the grass. I do like. 

I move on further up the path and notice the largest scratching post I have ever seen in my life. There are birds at the top. I am going to make this post mine.
I leap into the air, claws out, ready to grab the bark. Meow! I’m on… Oh meow! I’m off. I hit the ground. The scratching post has torn away. I brought some of it with me. Dodgy scratching post! How am I supposed to play with the birds?
The birds are laughing. Laughing at me? I’ll show them. I’ll make them see. I look around. Meow! I see a wall. I can take it. One push off is all it takes. I’m up. The birds are closer to me, and they know it. They squawk and storm from above.
‘Yes, my lovelies, come into my mouth’, I sing to the birds. The noise continues, and I am being pelted with leaves.
I consider my next move. How to get closer to the birds?
I am surprised. Meow! Something warm and hard clamps down on me. I am falling. But I am not falling. It is more of a pull. I am off the wall. I am dangling. It is the tall she creature. She has a grip on me. She looks relieved, but she sounds upset.
She’s upset? What about me? I might not have this opportunity again.
I am carried up a familiar path, up the stairs and back into the indoor obstacle course.
One week later: The bloody tall creatures have put a collar on me. Meow!!!

Friday, 8 October 2010

Animation Friday - Swing

gif animator
Gif animator

This little animation is a response to My Poppet's “Animation Friday”.

Giveaway Alert!

I just found out about this lovely giveaway, hosted by Kirsten Grove of Simply Grove (funnily when I first saw her blog I thought it said Simply Groove).

So what does the giveaway include? You might ask. Well look here…

What do I need to do to enter this giveaway? You might also ask. Simply click here, to find out all about it.

Thursday, 7 October 2010

My Creative Space...

The past couple of weeks I have been working on a piece of embroidery. I am usually working on this in the evening or during the day when Gwen is having a nap. So it has been slow progress. It is getting there.

Embroidery WIP — So Cal Noir
The first few flowers in my garden have begun to emerge. Here are some photos I just took. The colours simply pop off the screen.

Check out other wonderful creative spaces and corners over at Kootoyoo's Meme — My Creative Space.