Sunday, November 29, 2009

Your Place and Mine…That's Nyoice, That's Different, that's Unewesyewl!

It's time for a new theme on My Place and Yours via Pip. The Theme Queen for this week is Toni from Little Suitcase. Her theme is 'That's nice, that's different, that's unusual*'... she puts it a little better and more authentically than I do, however! Read on....

Being the foxymoron that I am, I decided on the theme - That's nyoice, that's different, that's unewesyewl!*

Does your home have a quirky feature or several? Something you throw a strategically placed coat over if people are visiting or avoid telling the real estate agent about? You might be very proud of your house flaw. Maybe you have issues with plumbing, and give the Meryl Streep toilet speech from Mamma Mia, "Now about the toilet. If it doesn't flush right away, just go, then take a walk and...." with a hand wave.


Ok then….Tricky much? I have to admit that our home is a small three bedroom, 1960’s Conite totally non quirky house and it’s cream, all over, inside and out! Alright people move along nothing to see here….

Does anybody mind if I digress just a little because I can share other nyoice and unewesyewl  things that could really go under the collections banner, is that OK?

As a Graphic Designer you tend to have things your particularly fond of doing, mine happens to be packaging. Design meets craft what’s not to love! As such I am always on the look out for interesting packaging and have quite a picture file collected. But I do like to have the actual package if I can get it, so below are a few I have managed to get my hands on, and a couple of my own designs.


I just love Firefly packaging the colours the shape, don’t they remind you of the old milk bottles?


A new product Raw has lovely lines the way the curves run around the bottle just super!methodKid Method Kid I just love it not only a great product but sooo cute and they even come with a scratch and sniff sticker!


Morrocan pos copy

This was an assignment from last year, packaging for takeaway food. My box was designed for storage in mind, it’s perforated half way down so when you can’t eat it all you just rip off the top half and place the lid back on to store in the fridge!

Hapicat package copy

This was designed for a competition and assignment but I didn’t bother to enter we had some issues with being so remote, never mind next year. This is a repackaging design for 1 kilo of dry pet food. It is similar to a washing powder box with a re-closable lid and comes with a portion control scoop.

So, is this unewesyewl enough? Hope you think so.

Till next week…

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Goodbye for now…

As mentioned in an earlier post my Grandma was 103 last birthday. Sadly she passed away late Friday night so rest peacefully now Grandma, we love you.

Grandma kenny oval copy  The thing I loved most about Grandma was she was a bit of a feisty bird with a grand sense of humour the photo below is of her(on the left) and her mother and father and two brothers  she wrote a note on the back of the photo saying “I told them I wouldn’t go in it (the photo) as you can see I was pregnant and very hostile”.      

              Grandma Kenny and family copy 

We made it to Grandma’s 100th Birthday party, five generations of women a very special party indeed. A photo of her and my daughter even made it into the local Townsville paper.

Grandma Kenny's 100th five generations

Thursday, November 26, 2009

My Creative Space

My creative space tends to meander around depending on what I’m doing. Painting and messy stuff takes place in the studio, knitting and crocheting in the lounge room when the family are watching TV and sewing happens at the kitchen table.

creative space2054 

Sewing seems to be the order of the day at the moment with two quilts on the go with salvaged woollen blankets from the Op Shop and a   Japanese Knot Bag from ‘little gem session’. Pattern can be found at its a beautiful soft little wrist bag just big enough for the essentials.



The smaller of the quilts is a very simple brights patchwork but it has inspired me to do a large line embroidery of Edgar  meets Lola from  the children’s book’s Edgar and Charlie and Lola.

Edgar elephant

I Want a Wife…do you?

I’m sorry I am having a bit of a moany moment after just washing my floors and the bathroom,putting on some washing and putting out the garbage at 12.30 at night.good_wife

Apart from the last three years I have been a full time stay at home mummy. It was grand.

At times I admit we struggled financially and there were days I was climbing the walls but overall it has been a very nice, happy time. I was one of those wives that did everything.

perfect wife 

Actually I will digress a bit here, I like being a woman, I like that I have more choices now because of what women have done before me, however what is with the idea now that just because we can do it all we have to do it all. I don’t want to mow the lawn, change a tyre, screw in new light bulbs atop ladders or wash the car. It’s not that I can’t (well I can’t change a tyre) it’s just I’M DOING ENOUGH ALREADY.

I remember reading somewhere that ‘Yes we can have it all, just not all at once”.

perfect wife2Yes, I did everything. House, garden, children, school, church. Entertainer, cook, designer,nurse, teller of stories, maker of toys, painter of walls, builder of decks, packer of bags…you get the picture.

But I’ve decided the guys have it good and I want a wife too!

housewife Someone to make sure I have clean socks (bra’s?) and undies and that they are actually put where they live. Someone to know where warranties, bills,appointments and school supplies can be found. Someone who notices that the fridge is growing alien life forms and that the sheets may be ready to walk themselves to the wash. 

over housewife2 Superwoman I am not, I’ve tried at time but have ended up as a quaking mess rocking in a corner somewhere muttering wildly about  lists of things to do. The problem is these Superwomen do exist, I know one or two, but I’m sure they are ADHD or they have some strange anomaly where they never sleep.

Sometimes I think we women have shot ourselves in the foot, it’s a fantasy we/I try to live up to that is only real in glossy magazines or the movies, it’s time for a reality check and to stop giving myself such a hard time.

husband Now hang on, this is more like it, hmmm I wonder how the man of the house would look in a nice floral pinny?

Not feeling so moany now!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

What’s Hot What’s Not

Its Loobylu’s What’s Hot What’s Not too can play along!


Getting out of the house to visit friends, nice to look at other peoples mess and not my own.

Sumo Salad opened here in Mildura, very nice extra yummy salads and very cool nice people who run it. Went in there for lunch yesterday and saw the guy who runs the place sitting down to a quick bite to eat while chatting with customers and rocking a pram with twins in it!!! A multi-tasking man (the heavens open and heavenly music begins), I have witnessed a miracle.

A husband who cooks, every night, I love you, I love you, I do!!!

3575988081_b7a598eaacI have found water balloons at last. After walking all over town I finally found them, they will soon be an essential piece of one of my next projects paper Mache lanterns as seen here. My daughter is very excited about this one.

Op Shops are the hottest. Today I went into a store outside of town and picked up two very nice woollen blankets which have been washed ready for making into the insides of two quilts I am working on….are you ready for the price $2 each. OH YEAH!

Creative spaces like this one over at Jolly Allsorts sooo beautiful!6a00d8341c5c8953ef0112790d2d1f28a4-400wi


Mess…kid mess WHY!!!!!!! And then Miss Eleven has the nerve to say she loves going to Nanny’s because its so clean and tidy…WHAT DID YOU SAY????Have you seen your room lately, hmmm?

By the way what do you think of my new banner? How spunky is Mister Fox there, I'm slowly getting better at digital illustration must keep practicing.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Magical Christmas Gifts

Just received this email from one of my favourite shops with all the lovely gift goodies. Also, a few ideas for projects with the kids, enjoy!

Dragonfly Toys - Keeping the Magic of Childhood Alive
Somehow a year has passed and it is again time for me to be preparing for another busy Christmas season at Dragonfly.
I have some great new items available in the shop and online, and plenty of old favourites back in stock too.
As always there are some fun craft activities for you to try at home with your children - both crafts can be done before Christmas to be used as gifts or decorations, or save them for the holidays when you have plenty of time and need for all day craft activities that will hardly cost a cent.
I am currently unpacking some great new products that I am very excited about.. so I will try and send another update as soon as I have added them to the site..

Warm wishes,  Linda
Jamtown has arrived..

jamtown junior percussion kitJAMTOWN fair trade world music instruments bring fun of hands-on music to children and music lovers of all ages.
Pictured right is The Jamtown Junior Percussion Pack which contains 3 instruments that are perfect for small hands - Junior Coconut Claves, Junior Shaker and Junior Double Drum.  Combined with an Activity Guide, Learn-Along Songs CD, Simple Rhythm™ Cards and Travel Bag, this kit should have your kids jamming in no time...
I have been admiring these fantastic kits from afar for some time, and I finally unpacked my first shipment last week. Pre-Christmas stock is very limited, so if you are interested, please place an order soon or you may miss out.

   Eco Christmas Cards

Earth Greetingsearth greetings christmas cardsSpread Christmas cheer with these bold, folk influenced designs from Earth Greetings. Printed carbon neutral in Australia, using vegetable ink on 100% post-consumer recycled paper, Christmas cards don't get much greener than this...
Each pack of 10 Christmas Cards contains 2 each of 5 great designs and each one  Plants A Tree through a donation to Trees For Life. Equally gorgeous Christmas wrapping paper and cute little gift tags are also available.

Felt Fruit and Veg...

These beautiful felt fruits and vegetables are safe and natural - made from 100% pure wool. They have been hand made with care, using fair labour and fair trade in Nepal.

They are just beautiful and would be perfect for playing shops, cooking and other much loved role plays. My favourites are the banana, which actually comes out of the skin, and the little peas in the pod, and of course, the delicious sandwich...

Felt Fruit and Veg


  Summer Crafts at Home
As always, thanks to my friend Tracie for these great summer crafts...

Crafting in summer means some outside fun. If you live near the ocean this will involve some trips to the beach, lots of sand castles and dipping little toes in the water. Away from the beach the calming and absorbing effects of water set the scene for the hot and dry months of the Australian summer. Bring that play inside when you need to escape the heat and incorporate it in your crafting.

      Sand Art

Collect a bucket of sand. Make sure the sand is dry before you start the dying process. Mix some food colouring in with a couple of scoops of the sand and mix until the sand is evenly coloured. Children love to help with this step but be careful with the food colouring; it lasts on the hands quite some time. Less than half a jar of food colouring is needed to get a lovely bright effect. Leave to dry in the sun. I also put the sand on trays in the oven to completely dry the sand out.

Once dry lay out the coloured sand in trays and using a funnel (or a piece of cardboard made into a funnel) pour spoons of sand into small glass jars. Make sure the sand is filled right up to the top so that if the jar is tipped the layers will stay in the same pattern.

Salt Dough Beads

I love salt dough, how easy it is for little hands to manipulate. It turns into an all day craft, making the dough, forming the shapes, baking and waiting for them to cool and then painting.

I like the simplicity of making beads and making the holes (quietly making them a little bigger when backs are turned). For colourful Christmas decorations, paint the beads in your favourite Christmas colours and hang on your tree.
300g plain flour
300g salt
200ml lukewarm water
1 tablespoon vegetable oil

Dissolve the salt in the warm water.
Add the flour and vegetable oil. Mix until stiff then knead with your hands to form a firm dough. Tear off pieces to make the beads and, using a skewer, form a decent sized hole.
Bake at 100 degrees Celsius for one hour. When hard turn the oven off but leave inside to cool.

More Fabulous Felt..
Initially I was just going to buy some of the gorgeous felt food.. but the more I saw, the more I loved, and I have ended up with quite a collection of gorgeous handmade felt toys...
The felt crowns are a favourite at the shop.. they come in a variety of styles and colours and simply tie at the back - so they will fit anyone including my 1 year old, her two big brothers, or even their me! They are a great addition to any dress up collection, and at only $16.95, they also make an affordable gift for nieces, nephews and friends.

There are also the finger puppet collections - a boxed set of four beautiful puppets - choose from the Little Red Riding Hood, Pirates, King & Queen or Wizard & Witch.
For bright and long lasting decorations there are felt happy flags (pictured above), or flower garlands and bird chains.
The felt play mat with the little river flowing through the middle would also make a perfect setting for a farm or enchanted garden.

Holiday reading..
With Christmas and School holidays on the way I have plenty of great new books in stock - here are a few of my current favourites

Curious Fish


Other items now in stock & ready for Christmas shipping - Family Pastimes Co-operative Games, Seedling Creative Kits, Wooden Weaving Frames & Knitting Spools, Needle Felting Kits, Stockmar & Lyra Art Materials

Our Shop:
Dragonfly at Organic Feast
10 William Street
East Maitland NSW 2323

Monday - Friday 9am-5:30pm,
Saturday 9am-2pm