Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Simple Pleasures

I wanted to post another couple of photo's while away on our trip to Sydney.
We were lucky enough to go out in the boat. The weather was perfect and this was Hudson's first boat trip. We went up the river into the National Park, found a nice spot to stop, enjoy a coffee and a biscuit, and we also got to get out and have a look around.

Hudson driving the boat was pretty damn exciting for him.

Also wandering up and down the water with his dad with sand in between his toes,
and spotting little fish was very exciting.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Sneak Peak

With some mad sketching yesterday finally with new ideas, I have started one of my new pieces. Once this is complete, my plan is to turn it into a few different products.
Armed with some watercolour paints, paper, printed fabric, pens, I am ready for my new challenge. Wish me luck all works out!!
Below is my sketch I have drawn, I can't resist owls, and my fabrics which are from all my scrap box.

Monday, March 29, 2010

My Plants Are Thriving

Melbourne had another drenching this morning.
With all of this fantastic rain, my plants in the front garden are absolutely thriving.
I am hopeless with plant names so I am not going to start reeling impressive botanical lingo at you. I know you are supposed to pop the little label that comes with the plant when you buy it, but I always forget to. I love mixing shades of purples, burgundy's, black and charcoals together. To me it's modern yet still pretty and floral.
This purple number below is my favourite. It started as an itsy bitsy ground cover shrub and is now cascading down the retaining wall, what's best it attract butterflies.
Not that any appeared for today's photo!!

This other burgundy number I know is called "something grass". It was only a few sprigs big when I bought it, and now it's blooming left right and centre.
I love the texture of this one, the creamy burgundy fluffy ends are adorable.
Now that I have absolutely humiliated these two plants by calling them 'numbers', I hope somebody reading could identify them for me please.
Or maybe I should just look them up myself?

Sunday, March 28, 2010

My Creative Workspace

So we have all been there I am 100% sure, stumped with inspiration that is.
I don't know anybody who hasn't found that brick wall. If you haven't, half your luck, and I would love to know what special creative beans you have to prevent this.
Generally, most well established artists recommend letting inspiration find you, when it comes it happens when you least expect it. Since Friday I have been waiting, waiting, waiting for it to come knocking on my door, or should I say my head...
Nothing has bowled me over yet, but I have been utilising my down time wisely, surfing the net, spending time with great friends, most of whom are creative souls themselves.
Also with my shop being in a bit of a transition period, from being 100% children's dominated, to introducing some women's designs and other new areas, is a creative challenge within itself.
One though I am very excited about establishing.
Today I put myself in my works space, printed off some amazing floral photo's I have seen on flickr (I love brightly coloured flowers), got my pencils out, some paper I have had for ages and have been playing. I need some new designs and think I am going to introduce some other mediums.
As I said it's a creative workspace and a place to experiment. Things are slowly coming, but nothing set in stone yet. I did however find a flower today I had never heard of before a "Dogwood"? It's so beautiful and sparked some interest, I will keep you posted if anything comes of it.

Above are some pictures of my recently "tidy" work space. Normally it's a damn mess, so I thought getting some kind of order happening may help the creative ideas flow.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Fab Friday Find - "The Handmade Market Place"

My 'Fab Friday Find' today is a book that arrived on my doorstep this morning.
I have been waiting for nearly 4 weeks for this to arrive. I am so excited to get into it and start reading, you can never stop learning so I hope this little gem gives me some new and exciting pointers, on mastering a handmade business.

For those who may be interested in purchasing it, I ordered it at Borders online. If you subscribe to Borders newsletter you should have received a 25% discount emailed to you. If you didn't the code is BAU-MAR25 to receive the discount, or the link is here.

Now I just need some quiet time to read in peace!!
I will let you know how I go with it.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Website Live

I mentioned the other day my new website being created.
Well it is finally up and live and I am very excited!!
It's fresh and everything that I want it to be.
Down the track I would love to add lots of new pages, shopping cart and other information.
But for now it's a fantastic splash page that has links to all of the important things like Shopping, blog, facebook, gallery and of course contact.
I would love you to take a look here.

A New Designer Doona Cover

I may have already mentioned that Hudson is in a single bed now.
It's been nearly a month since we took this scary step of putting him in there. It's been challenging to say the least. I was given a mountain of advise, and found one solution to getting him asleep and keeping him there. My hairdresser told me what she did with with her kids. She had her back to them whilst sitting beside the bed so there was absolutely no communication. She even took a book in, which I do also! Well it's worked...... I am not at the stage where I can leave the room yet as comes out after about 30 secs, but he is drifting off now within 20 mins to half hour.
After that triumph the point of my blog today......
Have you ever tried to find a nice doona cover for toddlers in a king single bed? The fact they
aren't even made, and you have to use a double bed doona makes it very challenging.
Everything is either too adult or for a teenager.
So I made my own. A trip to Lincraft saw me come home with a pirate theme and some
tiny red polka dots.

The fabric I bought wasn't the size required and after some measuring, and a bit of a pattern plan (doona size is 180cm x 210cm), I came up with this. The main fabric is in the centre with a 20cm border all around the edges. Some silver snaps as the fasteners as I hate making button holes, and I was done.

I am pretty happy with the result so I have bought some more fabric to make a 2nd doona cover. I bought some Sesame Street print as Hudson loves Elmo, so I will keep you posted when that project is completed.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Weekend Sydney Trip

We a great trip to Sydney over the weekend. We stayed with family friends and had a ball.
I hadn't been to Tooronga Zoo since I was a kid, hubby had never been and obviously Hudson either. It was sweltering but worth every hour. I forget how amazing the harbour views are, every corner we turned was another angle of it and it was breath taking. We caught the train, ferry and cable cart it was a very, very, very long trip not just for me but Hudson. Well I would love to share some zoo snaps with you all.

We also did a boat trip down into the National Park. It was our friend's boat and again we had a fabulous time. That was such a great experience as well, which I will share later in the week.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Branding Changes and Expansions

I have been contemplating this for a while, a branding change and a little bit of business restructure.
The first being some product expansion. I have looked at my sales over the last couple of months and have noticed a trend in my magnetic bookmarks. They are growing, which is great. But in saying that I have lost several sales due to not having as many options in the 'womens' and 'mens' category. Customers always flick through my selections, and I have lost several sales as I didn't cater to those areas. As you know my initial focus has predominantly been in kids design. I get told I love you work, but wish I could buy something for my mum, dad, aunt, uncle, sister friend and so on. I also have the same problem with the artwork I sell.
I am building up those areas and can't wait to show you all what's coming.
I have a few more projects also in the pipe line to compliment them, but they're still in the early stages. At the moment they are only thoughts on paper.
I am still making my beloved iron on transfers, softies, bags, and accessories. I could never stop those.

My logo has also been revamped also, making it a lot more universal and not so kiddy looking.
Here it is.... I have also upgraded my website. It will be a lot simpler and far more professional looking. It's live but my links I need are still being formatted. I will keep you posted on that.

My email and website name hasn't really changed I have just added on the au. and

It's a very exciting time.

Monday, March 15, 2010

10 Things To Achieve Before My Baby Arrives

I know you all know I am having bubba number 2, and it's a girl.
I am just so busy trying to do everything before she comes. I keep being told "1 is easy, wait until you have a 2nd". To be honest with you I don't know how to take it.

Should I be worried?
How much harder will it be?
Will I be chained to the house more than normal?
How many more restrictions will I have incurred?
Aaarrgghhh!!! Questions? Questions? Questions?
I am trying to view this scenario "Glass half full" I am taking on the challenge of meeting a few goals before she comes. A lot of them revolve around Hudson, but that makes me happiest.

1. Go to Sydney to see family friends & combine a visit to Toronga Zoo. - I am checking this off early as I am going this weekend YAY!!
2. Make sure I get into a routine of Hudson having 1 hour outside play daily.
3. Visit the Melbourne aquarium.
4. I still strive to grow my business. I just need a little more organisation to do so. that means less time reading too many blogs, writing TO DO lists, and being a lot tidier.
5. Have a SUPER EXCITING market launch with Modish. I want success for everyone involved as well as myself.
6. Start selling my bookmarks to retailers. I get enough enquiries about them, it's time to get cracking. Well at least start with a few and grow slowly.
7. Finish reading all of the True Blood series. There are eight & I am on to number seven. Number nine is released in May, I would love to have it in my hands before bubba comes.
8. Start making my little unborn Missy Moo a few things before she comes. I need to make her personalised bunting, paint the big letter of her name for her shelves (yes I have picked a name), and just get her room organised.
9. Take Hudson on a train. He loves "Toot Toot" Thomas.
10. STOP PROCRASTINATING!! Don't know about you I have all of these great intentions and then something else catches my attention & I am off on to something else.
I am treating this like a legally binding agreement.
I am relying of you fabulous readers making me accountable for each one.
I know I am not the only one who does his, maybe we should all take on a personal challenge like this more regularly.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Monday, March 8, 2010

Polka Dot Treasury To Cheer Me Up

I needed a cheer up today.
My car got caught in the floods on Saturday on the way home from Yarraville Market.
I got caught in a ditch of water that went half way up the side of my car, well my mother in law did. She was driving so I am not impressed to say the least.
So I have no car and waiting on insurance to find out the damage extent aaarrrggghhh!!!
I know worse things could have happened but who knows the dollar damage of the car yet??

I opened my email today to find the lovely Stacey from Sunweeds featured my
Polka Dot Nappy Compact. It was great to be amongst Duster company.

Thanks Stacey for brightening my day.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Yarraville Market

Black and White Treasuy

This weeks fab Friday find was ME!! Well not exactly me but one of my products.
The lovely Rachel from Elchra Designs featured my Black and White Stripe
I love black and white for it's classic and timeless simplicity.
The rest of the product selections are great as well.
Thanks again Rachel xx

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

My Market Stall Revamp

I am attending Yarraville Market on Saturday and felt I needed to update my stall.
It can be hard thinking of what you want, and what you can afford money and time wise to invest into it. Previously I have had my iron on transfers and magnetic bookmarks displayed in little suitcases with them all randomly thrown in for customers to search through. Although it looked effective, I found it quite messy as both items ended up being spread all over my stall table. So my goal has been to come up with a cleaner, neater and far more organised looking alternative. I have been reading some of my favourite bloggers the last few weeks gathering inspiration from their stall revamps. While I haven't got everything finished yet, (as there is nothing like getting prepared at the last minute), I have come up with some really inexpensive and simple resources.
Starting with a carrier for my Magnetic Bookmarks.

A pack of 3 small draw dividers from Coles, for memory just under $5.

Some foam left over from unpacking Hudson's bedroom furniture, cut to size with my big kitchen knife.

I drew and printed up some card covers and wrapped it around the foam, using doubled
sided tape to stick it down.

Another card cover for the front of the box. Slide the foam in leaving a perfect width for the bookmarks to site upright. Now easy access for shoppers to flick through.