Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Bits and bobs - the garden in July

Hello friends, I felt bad that I didn't post a Friday Flowers last Friday, but I've been knocked about by a yucky virus and haven't had the energy to do anything, not even blogging! I know, I was sick :)
I dragged myself outside to pick a few bits and bobs from the garden. It has been so rainy and cold here, but the flowers look nice with raindrops on them.
So what have we got here?
Jonquils, earlicheer, a daffodil, violets, white daphne, a simple daisy and a stem of love in the mist (I love that name). Any of your favourites?
I am joining in with Karin's July flower moodboard :)
I am going to aim to do a Bits and bobs post this coming Monday so I hope some of you might like to join in.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

A job done

Finally! I have curtains in my studio.
I made some simple sheer curtains that means I get some light and don't have to stare out the window at the car and boat in the driveway. Not the most inspiring view for an art studio :)

When we renovated this room, I chose silver fittings to go with my pale blue and white walls. Little did I know how difficult it is to get silver window fittings, expecially in a heritage style. I had the choice of one! It's a button style and thankfully I like it. Even finding silver finish curtain rod was difficult. "Silver" means a lot of different things it seems and in fact, most of them were an antiqued, brushed finish - not what I was after. Lyndon suggested I check out a metal pipe supplier and I ended up finding a length of marine grade mirror polished satinless steel at about $7 per metre. Great!

Dodgy pic above, but you can see the fittings (and how simple my curtain construction is!).

It's such a relief to get these finished and now I can move onto my next job. I have a length of pale blue linen which I am thinking of making into a chair cover. Do we want to take bets on how long that will take me?

I'm loving neon pink and bright blue at the mo :)
Thank you for your comments about cameras on my last post. I really appreciate it. If any more of you would like to share what sort of camera and or lens you use, I'd love to hear it.
Sar xx
ps I'm joing in on Jane from Life on Planet Baby's

Monday, July 23, 2012

Camera dilemas - how do I choose?

Here I am holding onto my lovely new Olympus OMD (oh my darling) Em-5 camera.
In my dreams :)
Call me crazy but I think this is one very beautiful camera. Look at that great retro styling!

Oh yes, come to mamma!!

Sadly, I think I am dreaming. I have been hoping to buy a new camera for a long while. Since I last bought a camera in 1997 (it used film!!) I have been making use of Lyn's digital camera, the dslr from work and my iTouch. I really would like my own digital camera.

But how to decide which one?
I have ALWAYS loved taking photos. As a little girl I would sneak Mum's camera out of the car glove box and snap people walking down the street. I ended up studying photography as my Major at Uni. It was still all film back then and I loved it.
Hence, the reason why I love the retro styling on the Olympus pictured at the top. It reminds me of Mum's old Pentax K100 - the first slr I learned to use.
There is such a proliferation of different brands and types of cameras on the market. Big dslrs, smaller compact systems and point and shoot styles. I just want something that can take a great shot. I'm not interested in sitting in the 'digital darkroom' for hours sprucing up shots. I'm old school like that.

So, what to do? Well, I wish the young boy at the store hadn't showed me the Olympus "oh my darling". Starting at $1200 it's beyond my budget. Maybe I wait for a few months and hope it drops in price?
Or do I go for a dslr, but something not too heavy, as I know I'll just end up not using it?
What do you guys use?
Advice and opinions gratefully accepted!
But whatever it is, it positively must have a viewfinder. Old fashioned me likes a viewfinder :)
Wishing you all a lovely week.
Hugs xx

first two images via the Olympus website

Friday, July 20, 2012

Friday flowers... hyacinths

Happy Friday friends!
Who's looking forward to the weekend?
I am! Hopefully we can fit in some relaxing, a spot of gardening and an little outing.

This Friday I wanted to show you how my lovely blue hyacinths are growing.
A couple have just taken off and are well ahead than the others. They're so thick with flowers too! Not to mention the amazing fragrance!
I'm so pleased with them :)

Have a lovely weekend and I'll see you on Monday with my camera choosing dilemma post. Why am I so indecisive?!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Studio chaos + UFOs

I just took these photos so they are a little dark and grainy.
Do you have an abundance of UFOs like I do? Everywhere you look - things that are waiting to be finished. Those UFOs (unfinished objects) are such a pain in my side.
Granted, I have been a tad busy at work recently and before that I was unwell, but I just want to get some of these things finished!

I have been procrastinating with these sheer curtains for a long while. I think it's because they are a tedious job. Metres of sewing with a pesky fabric that just wants to fray and slip on itself.
I WILL get them done this weekend, or at least by next Tuesday.

A pile of fabrics (and more pesky curtain) on my ironing board.

That Parisian Postcard purse that I am still working out!

And an abundance of pendants that I am working on for the gallery as well as a project for myself.
Adding to this I am waiting on samples from a printing company in India. At least I think I'm waiting on samples - the communication was a bit of a challenge :) Then today I read that the Indian postage system can be a disaster, so might have to do some more research on printers *sigh*
Gosh, it will be good to tick some of these things off my list.
Do you have the same problem as me??

Monday, July 16, 2012

Bits and bobs... optical

Hello friends! I'm glad to say I survived my manic week at work and now have a couple of days off. So, it's time for Bits and bobs!

This time I have photographed my collection of vintage optical pieces. If  I had to guess, I'd say most of these bits date from around the 1940's. The majority came from a set I purchased a couple of years ago and came from USA, complete with photos of the optometrist and all the charts. A nice piece of history.

Well, I hope some of you can join in this week. I was so pleased to see that last time you popped around and visited each others' blogs. I for one am really looking forward to seeing some of your Bits and bobs!
*Penny from Plaits and Paisley has photographed a beautiful collection of vintage lace :)

Friday, July 13, 2012

Friday flowers... Angel Face

Hello friends!
 Thank goodness for Friday! My word, I have had the most exhausting week at work, hanging 270 artworks in 2 buildings. I feel a bit rabid! My brain is frazzled and my muscles are sore from climbing up and down ladders and lifting heavy frames. It is all go work-wise until Sunday evening when I can finally relax and have 2 wonderful days off. I can't wait!
Instagram friends will have seen my Angel Face rose, one of the few left in the garden. It's such a pretty colour and I like it against the rough texture of the old fence, but just look at the blackspot!

 Here's an update shot of my hyacinths, still growing in their vase. I was thinking they weren't going to be the blue they were packaged as, but I can see them colouring up now. Won't be too long before they're in bloom. I am most definitely growing more of these next year. I think they'd make a wonderful mantel display if planted in rustic tins - though the heat of the woodfire might get to them.
Well, Bits and bobs.... I really enjoyed it last Monday and loved seeing what you came up with. It was nice to see some pics on Instagram as well.
I had originally thought I might do it monthly, but I'm thinking now that fortnightly might be better, though having said that I think I will have another go on Monday coming. What do you think? I hope some of you can join in again and then maybe I will then go back to a fortnightly routine :)
Are you up for it?

Monday, July 9, 2012

Bits and bobs... neon pink

Hi everyone!
It's Bits and bobs time! I've gone for a neon/fluoro pink theme this time. I was never really into neon when it was fashionable in the 80's but I am loving it now.
In this image you'll see my bricklaying twine, a bracelet I made from said twine, paint, stationery, a print by artist friend Christine Scott and the paper Airvase. The vase is such an odd thing, typically thoughtful Japanese design. I expected it to be made from plastic, not the paper that it is, but it has real strength to it.
Well, now I hope that some of you join in. If you do, please either send me an email with your link or post it in the comments and I'll edit it into the body of this post so we can all check each others' Bits and bobs out. I think this could be fun! I for one am really looking forward to seeing your Bits and bobs....

* The lovely Marian from The Hut Chronicles has joined in with some beautiful autumn colour so please pop over for a look (and check out her amazing garden). Thanks Marian :)

* Yay for Edwina for The Weekend Island who has photographed part of her fab collection of haby. Thanks Edwina. I'm a big fan of blue :)

My New Zealand friend Amanda of Small Acorns has posted a lovely group of saucers with a real kiwi feel. Thanks Amanda! It sounds like you have a LOT of bits and bob collections :)
Wishing you all a great week. I have a very busy 7 day working week ahead so not really looking forward to that :)

Friday, July 6, 2012

Friday flower... pretty pink

Yay, it's almost the weekend again! I'm excited as this is my second weekend off work in a row, but it's the calm before the storm as I have a huge week at work next week.
The weather forecast looks ok so I might try to get out in the garden and get rid of a heap of green waste. The roses and fruit trees are all pruned - I snipped the above Brilliant Pink Iceberg off by accident, so now it's on the mantelpiece.
What have you all got planned?
I'd really like to post a Bits & bobs on Monday and I'd love you to join in if you wish.
As there might only be a small handful of us, I might not do the Linky thing this time, but if you leave me a comment or email I will edit your link into the body of my post, so we can check out each other's posts. Would that be ok? It just seems like overkill to do a Linky at this point. It's just a casual thing anyway :)

Happy Friday to you all and I wish you a wonderful weekend.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

New wall art + a familiar story

Some of you may remember the lovely hand-stencilled wall button (on the left) I had hanging in my studio
  (boy, it was tidier back then). It's by local Tassie textile artist, Penny Malone. Well, the other day I finally added another to my collection. There is it below :)

The design is based on a building at 80 Collins Street, Melbourne. It's funny as I'm not a huge fan of the colour orange, but I just love it in combination with pink and red.

I decided to hang them in the lounge room as we have a couple of big bare walls.
Bit of a quirky combo but I like it.

I'm not sure if I'll leave them there, or even together, as I like the idea of the geometric one by itself or even hung with a pink/red graphic print or two. I suppose that's the beauty of picture rails, you can move art around and not have to patch walls :)

And my familiar story?
 Well, you know the old story about the plumber's house without decent plumbing, or the builder's house that is never fully built? Same goes for electrician's homes. We have been here for almost 3 and a half years and I had a power point in the kitchen that had only one switch that worked. I have been juggling appliances, constantly unplugging and plugging in again. The other night I was cooking on "George" the grill and wanted the rice cooker going at the same time. Lyndon decided on that moment to fix the power point.
Would you believe after 3.5 years it only took him 5 minutes to fix that darn thing?!!
I was so excited. Now if I could only get him to replace the power points in the lounge room...


Monday, July 2, 2012

In the garden + safety warning

The one downside to having a good number of roses in the garden is all the pruning that one has to do in winter. I had done one or two bushes out the back recently, but with Sunday being a nice, sunny day (or at least parts of it were) I thought I'd make a dent in the rest of the pruning.
You may remember we have 20 Iceberg rose along our front fence.
Well, I got stuck into them and they're all done now, as well as the two massive standard roses out front as well. I didn't cut them well back as we are after a sort of hedgy look.

I couldn't bring myself to chop off this huge rosehip. The colour is a deeper red in reality.
Molly with the pile of prunings
I have a bit of a safety tip for you all. If you want to be a stubborn woman and chop kindling for the fire, do yourself a favour and wear safety goggles and perhaps a helmet.
This is me on Thurday evening. It was a very close shave!

The latest avante garde eye look
I got to go to work the next day looking as though I had been in a pub brawl when in fact a piece of timber I split, flipped up and split my eyelid and bruised the outer area of my eye.
Would you believe that I managed to do it again over the weekend? Molly, Lyn and I went out to collect fallen sticks to use as kindling and whilst snapping a stick in half a piece managed to flip up and hit me in the forehead! I now have a scab there as well. This time I was wearing my big sunglasses so that was handy in protecting my eyes.
We did have a laugh but really people, be careful :)

Look what I found out in the back yard just now. I pretty blue anemone. I just adore these.
Have a lovely week friends.