Thursday, December 31, 2009

Summer on the coast

Last day of December, last day of 2009. How was your year?
Down here I've been having a little holiday with my old bloke, the lovely Ray, and my gorgeous friend Pia has been for a visit.
It's been hot, so there's been a bit of swimming. There's also been a bit of craft and market talk, and a bit of workshopping of new ideas...not to mention a few coffees and a coupla beers. We got out to the pictures up at the Mechanics Hall too.
What fun!
I can only wish for more of the same for 2010.
Happy New Year!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Fresh from the market

How about these beauties, eh?
I was back in the saddle at the Apollo Bay market yesterday morning, even though it was Boxing Day. It was a nice way to debrief Christmas, there were lots of stallholders, the sun shone, the wind didn't blow, and there were plenty of people around, all in a holiday mood.
Lots of seasonal food stalls were back, these raspberries come from Otway Organics, up the road at Kawarren. I also scored some new season apricot jam from Pat's Place - it's so good we have Melbourne friends who stockpile for Winter! And some free range eggs too.
I think I'm going to have these with some cream and leftover Christmas pud....

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Santa's little helper

My very own Rayndeer!
(sorry, it was irresistable)
Merry Christmas!

Monday, December 21, 2009

It feels like holiday time

I'm home again from another marvellous weekend in Melbourne.
Shirt & Skirt was a treat. Great weather, lots of people, but the best thing was spending some time with Pia and all the other crafty girls. Thanks ladies!
Everyone seemed to be pleased that Christmas is nearly here, and we're all looking for a little holiday.
Here in Apollo Bay things are starting to pop up around town that show that it's Summer holiday time. The carnival has arrived and is nearly all set up on the foreshore. It brings back memories of my own childhood holidays down on the Mornington Peninsula, where a trip to the carnival at Rye was always a highlight. For some reason I'm thinking about toffee apples, that must have been something my sister and I were allowed as a special treat!
The other thing that gets me very excited is the cinema that runs in the Mechanics Institute Hall every Summer from Boxing Day until the end of the school holidays. The program came out this week, and I can't wait to get down there and see some films and eat some choc tops!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Last stop

We're nearly there, only a week to go!
This Sunday I'll be at the last Shirt & Skirt market for the year, and it promises to be a goody with lots of stalls and a forecast that makes for perfect market weather.
This will be my last Melbourne market until the next Shirt & Skirt on February 21st next year, although you'll find me at the Apollo Bay community market on the foreshore during January and February, and next week up at the Catholic Church Hall for last minute Christmas shopping.
I have to confess I am looking forward to staying close to home for the next month, and not doing so much driving, but, by golly, I've had some fun this year in town!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Tips for keeping your cool

Find the coolest spot in the house.
Lie on your back on the floor and rest your legs against the wall.
Quite relaxing really.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Plenty I should be doing

Oh, I'm procrastinating today.
The sun is shining, there's a little sea breeze blowing, I'm finally feeling a bit Christmassy. We've got our driftwood 'tree' up, I've sent all my cards and wrapped the presents.
Apollo Bay is getting a little busier every day, it feels like holiday time.
I found this lovely wreath over here, it's made from felted jumpers!
I must go and make some skirts...

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Not a pretty picture

I've been sewing this morning, listening to the sound of chainsaws.
Three mature gums are coming down across the road.
Two months ago a block at the corner of our street was completely cleared of about 8 mature gum trees too.
We live on a part of the coast that has been declared one of the 52 townships at high risk in a bushfire, and there are now no restrictions on felling trees within 10 metres of a dwelling.
All the blocks here are just a normal sort of houseblock size, so technically every single tree could come down without any sort of permit.
To be honest, if we had a day like the terrible Saturday of February this year, nothing would save the houses here, and I worry that there is a deal of exploitation of the new regulations on tree clearing. Or rather, the lack of them.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Christmas is coming

Here's a little look at the new skirts I'll have ready for Shirt & Skirt next week.
I'm very happy with the way the new linen pockets look against the stripe. I'll be working on having some red stripe ones ready too.
A call from I Dream a Highway for more stock made me realise that it's only 2 weeks until Christmas! Some more t-shirts and belts have gone to them in today's post.
A big stocktake of t-shirts has left me in a small panic, but never fear, my fantastic suppliers are pulling out all stops to get their orders filled before closing for the break. I seem to get caught by surprise at how quickly December goes by every year.
I've also ordered some more fabric today, and am looking forward to working with something new for my red 3/4 sleeve t-shirts.
Oh, it's going to be a busy week!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

More postal happiness

A nice fat pile of new GeorgieLove postcards by Beck Wheeler! Cute, eh?
Appearing on my table at the very next market - with good weather fortune, this Saturday down at the Apollo Bay market.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Something to get me going

Monday blahs. I was having a bit of trouble getting going this morning.
It's been a busy few weeks with lots of markets, and then we managed to go to 2 parties in Melbourne over the weekend. Great to see some friends and catch up, but all the driving has left me feeling a bit lazy today.
I'm just back from town (Apollo Bay town that is), where a parcel in the po box has revved me up with some fresh enthusiasm. I realised that using my tea towels for skirt pockets was rapidly eating up my stash, so I thought I'd try an alternative.
This is a gorgeous linen that will work a treat, and I'm itching to get to it with my scissors!
ps. Hello Eliza, I have somehow managed to delete your comment, oops! You can get the fabric
from Duckcloth, it's a Japanese linen.

Friday, December 4, 2009

The week that was

Friday already.
I think I may have to rename this 'The Tea Towel Blog'.
Here's one of the 6 new bags that have been posted off to The Local Shop. Big thanks to Mel for that one, isn't it fabulous? Great font, colours, artwork, linen. Everything that's good about a vintage tea towel!
I had a day off from the sewing machine today, but I did get around to some long neglected paperwork, and now I'm feeling very organised and on top of everything.
We're back off to Melbourne tomorrow, but this time it's for a couple of social things. It'll feel quite odd not to be at any market, but it won't be long until the last one for the year, Shirt & Skirt on December 20. Looking forward to a Christmas catch up with everyone there!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

No rest for the wicked

I had some notion that I might be putting my feet up with a magazine this week. No such luck!
The Local Shop are in a tea towel frenzy and have ordered 10 cushions and 6 bags.
I finished the cushions yesterday afternoon, and they'll be off in a post satchel very soon. Bags will follow in a day or two.
Here are just 2 out of the batch that I was especially pleased with, if only you could feel them! They are pure linen, which makes them really, really nice to the touch.
Ah, that yellow wildflower one is my favourite I think, a special one from Sally, and, as usual, hard to let go of. I console myself with the knowledge that there are always more coming!

Monday, November 30, 2009

What a hoot

Hello! Yes, I'm back!
Golly, I had a good time in Melbourne at Magnolia Square. It always seems like a lot of hard work getting there, but once I'm there and unpacked ready to go, it's all just one good time.
I caught up with so many other people I only seem to cross paths with at this event, it was like a big happy family reunion. I had lots of friends pop in too to say hello, thank you all.
My only regret was that I was just a bit busy to get out and do more shopping than I managed.
I did snaffle a couple of items from the gorgeous girls at Sunday Morning Designs. This owl shirt is going to be one of my wardrobe favourites. I also got the old bloke his Christmas present, some of Annie's beautiful soaps, and some cards from the very lovely Pip.
I was so lucky to be neighbours with Morgan, it makes it so much easier to have someone to just keep an eye on things from time to time. Plus, we had lots of laughs!
Oh, in case you were wondering, the deckchair skirts were very well received, and I've come home with only 3. 1 has gone home with the lovely Michelle, so I'll get to see it again from time to time!
Ah, it is nice to be home though.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

All done, ready to go

So, I finished everything I needed to do late yesterday. What a great feeling that is!
We woke up to the most beautiful morning, so we decided to go out and have a hit around the golf course.
We are fairly hopeless at this game, ahem, sport, but always manage to have a laugh while we're out there. Plus, Apollo Bay golf course is rather scenic, and on a gorgeous day like today it's pretty good to be out of the house.
Ok, time to give the house a little once over, polish my toenails, check my list, and pack the car!
Magnolia Square, here I come.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Coming up for air...briefly

It's less than a week to go now until Magnolia Square.
I've been locked away in my workroom getting my stock ready, and I've finished a marathon skirt week. I have 6 deckchair skirts, and 12 denim skirts all packed away and ready to find new homes. Hooray!
I am looking forward to an evening in tonight with the old bloke in front of a bit of telly, and a well earned glass or two of wine!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Sneak preview

I am officially in pre Magnolia Square mode.
Early up this morning, no dawdling over breakfast with the newspaper, a bit of grocery shopping done before 10am, and straight to my workroom.
I've started work on my new tea towel idea, Summer skirts with vintage tea towel pockets.
I'm calling these my Deckchair Skirts, because that stripe reminds me of that lovely canvas stripe that was on some timber deckchairs that we had at home when I was a young girl.
I have 2 colourways, and hope to have about 4 skirts in each ready to go by this time next week.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Frankie & Ray's market weekend

What a weekend. Two markets in two days.
First up Maribyrnong Makers Market on Saturday, a great day as usual, if a little hot.
It didn't deter our visitors, fantastic bunch they are.

Louise came for a visit with a friend, wearing her Frankie & Ray t-shirt and skirt. What a girl.
Eliza came with her family and got herself a skirt. She has a lovely blog with oodles of gorgeous pictures to look at!
Jen stopped in too to get some more goodies from Pia.

Here's Pia at our stall. The market is held in the grounds of a sweet little church and hall right in the heart of Seddon.

We caught up with so many wonderful girls we hadn't seen for a little while, I'm not sure if you could call it work!

Sunday it was on to Shirt & Skirt at the Abbotsford Convent.
We caught up with lots more of our market friends.

Lucy and Zoe from Beehive, makers of fine frocks.

Rochelle of Little Red Duck. The cutest kids t-shirts around, all with Rochelle's amazing designs printed on them.

Squirt Baby's beautiful stall, packed with the prettiest clothes for little girls. Hi Fiona!

I'm concentrating all my attention on Magnolia Square now. It's only a little over a week away and there's lots of sewing to be done between now and then.

I always get a little nervy at the idea of enough stock for 3 days, but I know I'll get it all done. I am looking forward to spending time with friends, doing a little shopping, and meeting some new people as well!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Cooler, and a big weekend ahead

Maribyrnong Makers Market
Saturday November 14
10am - 3pm
Corner Gamon & Mackay Streets, Seddon

We have a cooler day down here today. A sea mist came in last night, and is still lingering. Just as well because I realised I needed to make another skirt to take to Melbourne this weekend, and I'm not tempted by the beach today.
I am also in the grip of a new idea, which will be impossible to have ready for the big market weekend I have looming, but needless to say it involves tea towels! Stay tuned.
I'm also in a bit of a dither about how much stock I might need to take with me. Doing two markets in two days is not something I normally do, so I'm erring on the generous side of things.
So, there will be plenty of goodies to choose from!

Shirt & Skirt Market
Sunday November 15
10am - 4pm
Abbotsford Convent
1 St Heliers Street, Abbotsford

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Hot, hot, hot

I had a haircut this morning. It's short and I feel as frisky as a shorn lamb. I like it.
My workroom, which is like a fridge in Winter, has become the best room in the house today.

Two new tea towel bags hot off the machine. Thanks to Sally for these beauties.
They'll be going to Melbourne with me on the weekend, where I will be at two markets, Maribyrnong Makers Market on Saturday and Shirt & Skirt on Sunday. Phew.

Back to the beach for a swim now!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Playing hookey

The weather's been so nice this past few days I've given myself a little break from the sewing machine...
We enjoyed a really fabulous lunch up at Sunnybrae in Birregurra with Melbourne friends on Saturday, then met up with Lou around at Lorne yesterday to take a walk along the foreshore and look at the sculpture.
It was hot enough to go for a swim when we got home, and today as well.
After suffering through what 'locals' are telling me was the worst Winter in many years, I'm not feeling too guilty about spending a bit of time at the beach today!
Back to it tomorrow, I promise.

Friday, November 6, 2009

More tea towel (tablecloth) love

Pearl & Elspeth skirt from GeorgieLove

Sometimes things just all come along at the same time. This week seems to be turning into a tea towel week for me. I stopped by GeorgieLove this morning, and look what has just been listed!

I am in total lust with this skirt from the very talented Pearl & Elspeth, fellow GeorgieLove artist. Alas, it's too small for me....

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Tea towel love

I had a lovely surprise waiting for me at the post office this morning. I couldn't wait another minute to share these with you.

Aren't they fabulous?
A huge thank you to Sally for making my day!

Feeling cosy?

I'm off to the post office soon with a parcel for GeorgieLove.

I'm sending these cosies off to find new homes!

Monday, November 2, 2009

Frankie & Ray Blog HQ

It's Monday!
This week's theme for My Place and Yours is Blog HQ! Clever.
Here is where the Frankie & Ray blog is written from, the end of the dining table. Location driven by dodgy internet access at Skenes Creek and the need to have an external aerial and power point close by.
I am quite happy to be in the main living area, I can pack it all up and put it away if I need to, and I have a nice window right next to me, and I can look at Ray snoozing on his bed, and I can see out to the street too.

Grant, my voodoo bunny keeps me company on the window sill.

He was made by the talented Mel of Textile Allsorts.
All in all, not a bad place to be!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Green is good

A new t-shirt. Green. Green as grass, green as an emerald. Nice.
I only have a very limited number of these at the moment, so they'll only be going to the market with me for now. I will be making an order to get some more in though, because, well, they're green. Oh, and they have a nice fitted sleeve, scoop neck, and great length in the body.
Frankie & Ray will be in two places at once on Saturday! I will be down at the foreshore market in Apollo Bay on Saturday morning, but I will also have some stock up at the Church Hall Market from tomorrow through to Tuesday.
Pop in to either or both to say hello.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

I digress

Picture courtesy BBC

I've just had a little exchange with my friend Crayon Chick about Ashes to Ashes.
We've been loving this show.
The music, the hair, the fashion. Gene Genie, DI Alex Drake, the whole package.
We've decided that Philip Glenister is indeed a bit of alright...

Monday, October 26, 2009

Playing along on a Monday morning

Inspired by Sally from GeorgieLove, I've decided to join in on My Place and Yours. It looks like a bit of fun! So, this week's theme is's mine.

In the spirit of things, I haven't tidied or arranged anything here, though it was a little hard not to! This is a fairly typical collection of things - reading glasses which are essential now for me to read almost anything. I resent them, but we are coming to terms with each other.
Two books. They are The Riders by Tim Winton - second hand from a Geelong op shop if I remember rightly. I love Tim Winton unreservedly.
Second book is Nurses with Altitude: a collection of stories compiled by Gaye Richardson. This actually belongs to my Aunt, and I've had it for a bit too long I think! She proof read this book for Gaye, who is a friend of the family and had a long career with the Royal Flying Doctor Service in Western Australia. I have read about half of this book, all stories told first hand by RFDS nurses. Amazing experiences, and what incredible women.
Other than that, my alarm clock. I do like to know what the time is when I wake up.
Lip balm by Natio, a little Australian company that makes wonderful stuff. Not tested on animals, great price, Australian made, available at nearly every chemist shop I've been to.
Do all of us have dry lips? Is there an epidemic of lip dryness happening out there?
Our bedside lamps have been with us for the entire history of our shared bed, I bought them from Myer a million years ago on sale, and have never grown sick of them. They've come with us from Brighton to Elwood to Middle Park to Albert Park to Skenes Creek.
The bedside tables belonged to Emily Victoria, my late mother-in-law. They were stripped of paint and restored by Alan, my late dad. How nice is that?

And finally, the view from the bed. The cats have their playpen out on the front deck. They have always had a cat cage, and this one has a very nice view over the street. I do love my cats, but I do also think they need to be kept away from our lovely wildlife. And down here we are lucky enough to have lots and lots and lots of birds!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Market day

I was back at the Apollo Bay market this morning. It was only my second time back after a long break for Winter. It was kind of sunny and cloudy, warm and cool, breezy and not breezy! A kind of mixed up weather morning.
It was good to see quite a few stallholders coming back, and we had reasonable crowds too.

Matt the bicycle smoothie man. He is a tourist attraction on his own, pedalling his bike to drive his blender to make great smoothies and fruit juices.

(I had mango, watermelon, and orange juice this morning. Yum.)

Ellen and her amazing scented candles.

(with bored looking bloke in this pic!)

Judy from Otway Herbs Nursery, one of the founders of this community market.
There are many more fantastic local products at this market - jewellery, pottery, photography, plants, body products, soaps, cakes and jams....all handmade, and all produced by residents and property owners from the immediate region.
It's very much a seasonal market this one, but I'm very happy to be able to be here again when I'm not travelling up to Melbourne.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Weather report

I can barely believe it.

We are enjoying our third day in a row of beautiful, warmish, sunny, and still weather.
I had a lovely walk this morning in the sunshine, but am finding it hard to knuckle down and do some work.

This is the view from my sewing machine. In both directions.

Better get back to it I suppose....

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Making me happy today

A sunny morning with no wind.
The first rose of the season, Just Joey (of course).

Baby nectarines on the tree.
Unexpectedly finding Frankie happily asleep in the pile of clean laundry waiting to be folded and put away.