Thursday, August 28, 2008

A little shop update

Mmmm organic cotton/hemp texture....

Things have slowed down a bit when it comes to my little shop. I'm holding back on printing any new designs or doing any large runs until Ink & Spindle is all set up.

Getting the new business ready has been a lot of fun, but has also had it's really full on and stressful moments - all those anxieties that come with starting something new in a field that I'm not completely familiar with. I'm learning a lot about myself in the process too - like realizing I have a tendency to stress about small things, especially in situations where I don't know how precise something needs to be. Screen printing isn't rocket science, but I know it's important for us to get our setup right in the beginning, to prevent problems down the track.

Anyway, amidst all of that I've managed to update my shop with a small amount of new fabrics. And I know I've said it before, but this really is the last time I'll be printing Riverstones & Dots fabric... unless I decide to reimage them onto a screen again sometime down the track.

The new fabrics in the shop

Bulokku in Lime

Riverstones in Robins Egg

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

A date with the quick unpick

We have a cute shiny red quick-unpick. And it's not even mine. It's Pete's! But I think we're going to get well aquainted over the next little while when I (sigh) unpick the binding on my quilt and start over.

Thank you everyone for your feedback and advice on the quilt binding - the general consensus basically indicated that I need to start again. At least machine stitch from the front and hand stitch from the back (my machine stitching is on the back, not the front).

Anyway, onto lighter things, check out these cute little dresses by Pollipop using my fabrics!

They're Blythe/Lati doll dresses by Pollipop. I love seeing my fabrics in different contexts, it gives me such a buzz. Thanks Grace!

Speaking of fabrics, I do have some new stock to add to the shop (soon), but I'm limiting the amount that I print until the new printing business is up and running. I also won't be printing any new designs until that point.

Aaalso, I get a lot of enquiries about the Birch Forest fabric. It's definitely my favourite and the most popular. I will be reprinting this design at the new studio, but better than ever before! It will be avilable full width (!) and oriented so the trees run the length of the fabric. Perfect for projects like drapery - yay!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

A change of heart

We've talked about it before. I've always had issues with the colour purple, and many of you agreed. I don't know why - it was just this irrational dislike. But then something happened. I bought two purple tops - and quite liked them. I did some pattern designs. In purple. They looked good! And then this:

Our brand new feature wall at the studio. Aubergine! It just went so well with the green that we used for the windows. And I really like it!

The studio office is really starting to come together. This weekend Bianca and I tackled Ikea and came back with a carload of shelves and desks and drawers. Two bruised palms and one purple fingernail later (ahh how ironic) I'd put together the whole lot in an allen key frenzy.

Myself, Bianca and Tegan in our studio office. Plenty more to be done but it's definitely on it's way :)

Friday, August 22, 2008

Sprout Design

Okay I'm really slow in posting about this too, but the new Sprout Design designers range is now available! The new range features exclusive prints by Aussie textile designers Kristen Doran, Shannon Lamden, Myself, Bianca van Meeuwen, Naomi Murrell, Danielle Smeets, Caitlin Klooger, Moyra Proudfoot and Tiel Seivl-Keevers. Info on all the designers can be found here.

The designs were launched at the Life in Style trade show a few weeks ago (where I got to meet the lovely Tim & Bek for the first time) and got a great response. Here's my contribution to the range:

My Little World in Powder Blue and Green Bean

My Little World Cooordinate print in Green Bean

Both available in the Sprout Design shop right now :)

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Bias binding woes

You might remember a little while ago I started making my first quilt. I'm yet to actually finish it (I know, shameful) but i really enjoyed the process - so I decided to make a couple of small baby quilts to sell at the design market:

It was all going really well, until it came time to attach the bias binding. There was no way I was going to hand stitch these little ones, so I went for the machine stitch approach. I decided to stitch in the crease of the bias on the back side, and then edge stitch from the front, so I could make sure the line was nice and neat.

But this is what happened:

What did I do wrong? It looks like the front side of the bias binding is misaligned with the back, causing that twisting effect. Should I have used a walking foot for this? Or did I just tack my bias badly and therefore if one end starts misaligned the whole edge gets out of whack?

I got to this point about a month ago and i totally stumped me. The quilts have been patiently waiting in the corner ever since ;)

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

10.8 metres of printing table goodness

Today our yardage printing table arrived! Well, in bits and pieces. It was just like playing with grown up Meccano, but on a giant scale:

All the pieces laid out, and construction begins!

The frame coming together

The bottom shelf in place (yay storage)

Et voila!

The next big step is to prepare the surface. If you're interested you can keep an eye on our proress over at the Ink & Spindle blog.

It's starting to feel even more real, now :)

Kelani Fabric Obsession

I'm a few days late in posting about this, but say hello to Kelani Fabric Obsession!

Kelani has bunches of unique designer fabric, including exclusive colourways of some of my fabrics (birch, gingko, rainy day to name a few) and also some exclusives of Shannon's fabric. Kelani is having a 20% off launch sale so pop over to snap up some goodies :)

Monday, August 18, 2008

Royal Park

10 minutes walk down the street from our apartment is 188 hectares of inner city park goodness. Granted it exhibits some large expanses of drought stricken nothingness, but there are some really lovely native garden pockets if you know where to look.

I didn't think it would actually happen, but I did manage to get down to Royal Park this weekend to take some photos of plant life for pattern inspiration. My lovely friend Katrina was my backdrop assistant and patiently held the cloth in place behind various specimens.

Anyone know what this species is??

Maybe a botanical pattern will be inspired by the trip. We'll see.

Sunday, August 17, 2008


Caylie from birdprint tagged me a little while ago to write 6 random things about myself. It always takes me awhile to come up with 6 things that are actually vaguely interesting... (and still might not be, hehe).

Anyway, the rules:

1. Link to the person who “tagged” you.
2. Post the rules on your blog.
3. Write six random things about yourself.
4. Tag six people at the end of your post.
5. Let each person know that they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.
6. Let the tagger know your entry is up.

Here are my things:

1) I don't like sultanas in my museli. Every morning I pick them out. They're too sweet and hurt my teeth. I'm pretty sure I'm not the only one who does this...

2) Often I wake at 3:00am with completely blurred vision only to realise that I've left my contacts in and they've become covered with goobey eye stuff.

3) Lately I've been obsessed with a particular Indian curry place (The Classic Curry Company) that home delivers. It's so freaking good that I do a little jump-up-and-down dance when it arrives. It can't be good for you if it tastes that good ;)

4) My favourite TV series of all time is Dexter. I'm not into blood and guts but that series is really, really well written. It's much better when you watch all the episodes back-to-back though.

5) Recently I've taken to turning the radio up really loud in the car and singing along (badly) to songs.

6) I know this is a really petty, middle-class thing to complain about, but I hate it when I go to the supermarket equipped with multiple green bags, and the checkout person goes all tetris on me and stacks everything in one bag, including all the milks, yoghurts and other heavy stuff.

Today I'm going to tag some lovely recent commenters: Michelle, Rachel, Emma, Fer, Lexy and Katiecrackernuts. All with lovely blogs worth checking out :)

Thursday, August 14, 2008

The absence of making

Lately it's been too easy to spend so much time researching and thinking and plotting and planning and forecasting and organizing... that there's no time for actually creating. I feel like I haven't had time to sit down and do my own thing in aaaaages.

The closest thing I've managed to do is spend some time in the kitchen making biscotti (recipe here):

Biscotti, Shinzi and steadfastly NOT a Mac

I would like to spend some time this weekend down at Royal Park drawing some native plant life. That would be nice.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Design*Sponge Regional Roundup

Okay, this is totally starting to look really bad, but there's just one more bit of recent press that I can't not mention:

The Design*Sponge regional roundup!! They're tackling the whole of Australia, first stop Melbourne:


A massive thank you to Anne from Prêt à Voyager for interviewing me :)

Monday, August 11, 2008


Ooh and thank you to Modish too, for this really cute looking post about my work! I love the way she's formatted the pics:

Awwh I'm feeling the linky love today :)

A Studio with a View

Stephanie Levy - A Studio with a View

Thank you so much to Stephanie Levy from A Studio with a View for posting an interview with me as part of her 'Artists Who Blog series'! I'm very flattered to join a line up of such talented bloggers as Heather Moore, Karin Eriksson, Lisa Solomon and Patricia Zapata.

Stephanie is a very talented artist herself with a range of very gorgeous collage artworks in her etsy shop :)

You can read the interview here. Thanks again Stephanie :)

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Postage oops!!

Oh dear - today a customer alerted me to the fact that one of the items in my shop (the Houses & Bicycles print in half width) added a crazy amount of shipping charge to her order. I had a look and sure enough - the weight for that item was totally incorrectly!!

So, if you've ever tried to order the Houses & Bicycles fabric from my shop and have baulked at the crazy shipping - rest assured, that's now how it's supposed to be and all is fixed. And the few that did end up paying too much will get a refund :)

So sorry about that! I wonder how many people got scared off by it and never said anything - eep!

More mix packs

I love making mix packs. Puts me into a kind of zen state choosing all the fabric combinations and packaging them up all pretty. The last batch did well so I just made a bunch more which are
up in the shop today :)

Fabric mix pack # 31

Fabric mix pack # 34

Excuse my numbering system - they all need a unique name so I know which one people ordered. Maybe I should give them pretty names like 'florence', 'beatrice', & 'abegail'. hmm that really doesn't suit the designs though :)

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Studio space, anyone?

You've heard me rave on and on about how cool our new building is - the old Kensington Wool Store with its old school warehouse lettering. Well how would you feel about the opportunity to have a studio space of your own here? With neighbors such as Crumpler, Australian Ballet & Ink & Spindle (hee).

If this tickles your fancy, well I have good news. The very lovely and talented metalwork sculpture chick Laura Woodward of Like Butter is planning something, and if there's enough people interested then fingers crossed it will go ahead. Details below!


I am currently looking into establishing a Studio of about 20 individual spaces, and am very keen to hear from anyone who may be interested in a space towards the end of this year.

At this stage:
- each space will be an individual room
- sizes will range from 16 to 32 square metres (larger available if required)
- cost from $40 to $80 per week, according to size
- cement floors
- located 15 minute train trip or bike ride from the city, very close to station
- good street access for moving large artworks
- suitable for a wide range of artistic practices

If you may be interested in a space, or would like any more info, I would love to hear from you! I can be contacted at laura(at)laurawoodward(dot)com(dot)au.

I personally would love to see our building turned into an awesome creative hub, so if you know anyone who might be interested in what Laura is planning please pass this on!

Monday, August 04, 2008

Slowing down

A lot of people resonated with my recent post about perspective, and can understand how hard it is to just slow down every now and then.

I have finally begun a week without a to-do list that stretches multiple pages, and can feel myself winding down slightly. And fittingly, whilst in the dentist waiting room this morning (yes some good things can come out of the dentist!) I discovered this very apt book:

"The Slow Guide to Melbourne is for anybody who wants to slow down and live it up, seachange without shifting postcode. It celebrates all that’s local, natural, traditional, sensory and most of all gratifying about living in Melbourne."

It's great! I didn't get much time to read it so just ordered my own copy - but this is very much my sort of book. I tend to take delight in small things, like watching pods appear one by one on the new ferris wheel :)

Saturday, August 02, 2008

I am not spam!

Yay, I can finally access my blog again! A few days ago Blogger's robots decided that my blog looked like spam and BLOCKED ME from posting!! I had to contact them within a certain number of days or they'd DELETE MY BLOG!! Oh my gawd, that was really quite scary. Note to self - back up blog just in case (if that's even possible?).

I am having my first weekend off in a long time and it's so great to just do nothing for once. Fortunately enough someone else is doing some 'making' that I can post about instead:

Check out these awesome little purse frame purses by the lovely Nikki of Nicole Mallalieu Design! So cute! We're talking collaborations at the mo so you may be seeing more things along these lines. Kits maybe? Oooooh.