Monday, March 21, 2011

Handmade for Japan

As usually happens in difficult times, the handmade/crafting community is rallying together in many countries to raise funds and support for the relief efforts in Japan. Hooray for glorious handmade goods, made with love and shared with others for a good cause!

Handmade for Japan is an American-based online auction through which many exquisite pieces will be sold - check out their auction preview page here, and a little blurb about it here.

Lucky Charm is a Melbourne-based auction that will feature items made by jewellers from near and far. Check it out here.

More than a thousand Etsy sellers are donating sale proceeds to the relief effort (the one below is by Design Twenty-Six), and the good folks at Superbuzzy are safe and well and matching all donations made through their website.

So much creativity and love - greatly needed I'm sure!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

理解できないこと ...

I'm finding it difficult to comprehend the scale of the damage in Japan caused by the recent earthquake, tsunami, and now radiation from the nuclear reactors in Fukushima .... the survivors must be struggling to come to terms with these events, and I'm sure the freezing cold weather and lack of power, food and water are making this experience all the more terrifying. 大変恐いょ!  ~~不安~~!!

It's so sad to think of events like this - the horror of the 2004 tsunami, the devastation in Haiti and Pakistan last year, the recent Brazilian floods and landslides, the flooding throughout eastern Australia, and of course, all the chronic disasters in countries that are culturally and physically more distant from our own, which rarely (if ever) make the news at all.

It's hard to know what to do in the short term, other than donate to the Red Cross or MSF. In the longer term, I guess it's important to be generous with our time and resources at any opportunity, not just in response to extraordinary events. I'm very much aware that the circumstances into which we are born are dictated entirely by chance, and every day I feel grateful for the prosperous life that I enjoy.

My heart goes out to those in need ...

... peace and love to you all.

(image source)

Monday, March 14, 2011

Urgh ... feeling icky but still having fun

Apologies for my lack of blogginess recently. I've been quite sick for the past 5 weeks and haven't been feeling particularly creative or communicative....

Oh, that being said, G and I have been rather busy, hunting down homewares online and at local markets to furnish our new country estate (ahem .... well .... our little Port Fairy cottage). Gumtree and eBay have yielded a wardrobe, a tallboy, a queen-sized bed (almost new, with mattress, for $50!), a hall table, a dining table, eight wooden chairs, a fridge, a coffee table, two bedside tables, two little nested tables, an armchair, a vacuum cleaner, an iron, a new cutlery set, a block of kitchen knives, an electric drill, and a toaster.

Yesterday we ventured over to the Coburg Trash and Treasure Market - we scanned the rows of junk with our eagle eyes and managed to snap up more bargains! We bought:

- a lovely silver-backed mirror in a timber frame, perfect for sitting on a mantelpiece - $5
- an axe (to help us get our firewood ready) - $20
- a timber ladder, which we'll sand back, clean up and use as a library ladder - $10
- two old three-footed iron shoe-making lasts, which will likely begin new lives as doorstops - $10 each
- two small vintage suitcases (now I can extend my collection to Port Fairy!) - $10 and $15
- a timber chessboard - $10

(pics coming soon)

A lovely guy at a fruit stall even gave us some delicious apples for free. As I went to pay he made me put my purse away .... he told us he was like a drug dealer - his fruit was so good, he knew we'd go back after the first taste. Ha! They were pretty good apples.

I also found an old copper coal scuttle in a junk shop on Saturday, which I'll give to my mum as she's ruing the loss of a similar scuttle she used to fill with roses for professional displays. Only $10 for that baby too!

We've been boxing up painting supplies, carefully wrapping crockery and glassware, collecting bits of furniture from all over town, and I've started piecing together a slipcover for a comfy but rather bland old armchair that we found on eBay .....

It's been really fun, but I must admit that I'm looking forward to clearing all that stuff away from our verandah and the three cluttered rooms that we're still camping in!

Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Science gets a design makeover

Oh my!
Zoology, chemistry, physics and geology just got even more interesting ...

macro kingdom II from clemento on Vimeo.

macro kingdom III from clemento on Vimeo.

macro kingdom from clemento on Vimeo.

That's macro-beauty!

(via Bioephemera)

Ideal bookshelf

Illustrator Jane Mount draws 'portraits' of her clients by depicting their favourite books.

Which books would you choose for your ideal bookshelf?

(via Mostly Goodness)

Sunday, March 06, 2011

Andrew Pavitt

A while ago I bought a greeting card illustrated by Andrew Pavitt, and I recently found a few more of his designs. I like their quiet, retro-style simplicity.

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Um ... rewind a bit.

Let's just pretend that I did upload this before my post earlier today ...

I love these designs from Dior's dastardly (former) head designer. They're part of the Spring 2011 collection, designed as a tribute to Rene Gruau, Dior's fashion illustrator who was instrumental in bringing the 1950s 'New Look' to the world and creating an instantly-recognisable fashion icon. I like the modern twist ...

Check out these snappy little beauties from the Fall 2008 collection too:

I like the cloches, and can imagine Jean Harlow or Louise Brooks rocking these little numbers.
(I do wonder though, if women who don't have such super-slim pins could carry off the pearlescent/white stockings without their legs resembling freshly-steamed Bavarian Weißwurst!)

More here, here and here.

Hey Galliano! What the ... ?!?!

Dear John,

It's funny ... just a few days ago I was looking through some of your recent collections and planning to write a post about my long love affair with your playful creative spirit, sensual relationship with colour, texture, form and femininity, and notable design talents. I feel old when I realise that I've been interested in your work for more than two decades, but I guess it's fun to see what new direction your designs are taking every now and then as the years slide by ...

And then yesterday I found out that you're a bigoted idiot, have been arrested in Paris (of all places), and dropped by the House of Dior. You got some splainin' to do!

I mean, really .... what kind of stupidity can lead you to a point that has you dumped by Dior after 15 years of celebrated mutual success?

Oh.... This

I guess (as Chris suggests) it is nice to see that brilliance in art doesn't protect you when you're truly being an asshole.

I'm dumping you too. 

Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Ladies! Cover your eyes!

While we were out today, the rear of our (usually very modest) little house decided to get a bit naked!


Although it looks as though a tornado tore through it, we're actually quite happy because we finally see some progress on our renovations (after 5 months of having the main part of the house boarded up). And it's very well-ventilated.

Now I'm starting to get excited ... !

Lotus flower

Thom Yorke dancing?
Ha! Lovin' it! 

Lotus Flower has been a (welcome) Ohrworm for me for the past couple of weeks ...

... also ...

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