Saturday, 27 February 2010

Vertical Shadows

It was getting dark, so I turned on the Evil Bedside Lamp (more of that in a couple of days) and closed the vertical blinds.

Up until now the lamp, in its old guise as the Good Bedside Lamp, had not thrown a shadow, but it's amazing what a touch of evil can produce.

Tracy of Hey Harriet has some spectacular shadow shots on her blog, so please go and take a look.

I have had a somewhat interrupted week, but now it's the homestretch to the BrisStyle Indie Designers Market next Saturday.  So much to do ... so little time ...

Have a wonderful Sunday.

Wednesday, 24 February 2010

The days dwindle down ...

Brown paper bags are good.  They are eco friendly, they don't run amok in supermarkets, nor do they use offensive language.  They are also handy for breathing into when you are hyperventilating.  They are my best friends today as I contemplate the precious few days left to sew before the BrisStyle Indie Designers Market hits town.

Layered skirts have been the order of the day.

Twirly layered skirts.

And now I think I need to work on some dresses.

If you are into skirts, however, do drop by and say hello on 6 March.

There will be so many stalls to choose from - over the next few days I will feature some of the wonderful BrisStylers and their fabulous goodies which will be on sale.

But for now, it's back to the paper bags.

Saturday, 20 February 2010

One Bright Golden Moment

When you come from the Land Down Under, the Winter Olympics is usually a time to sit back and watch in awe as all those cold nations vie for the ultimate prize - a gold medal.  Yes, we did win our first gold way back in 2002 when our hero Steve Bradbury was the last man standing in the short track ice skating event.  And yes, we did win two golds in 2006 which was pretty remarkable for a country covered mainly in desert.  When Torah Bright stood up to the pressure and won the Snowboard event after suffering three concussions and a dislocated jaw in six weeks, we all went a little crazy.

This is the beaming face at the medal presentation today.  I do hope Mr Samsung is impressed with my product placement.

So here is my effort for Shadow Shot Sunday, again courtesy of Mr Samsung:

The medal reminded me of my favourite handbag:

All this Olympic activity has brought back some painful memories for me.  It is a little known fact that in my mid teens I was an elite athlete.  No one was more stunned than me, apart perhaps from my parents, when in my last year at school I was elected captain of one of the sports teams.  I was the sort of runner who blacked out if I ran more than 50 metres.  However, I found my niche and after many months of training, it all paid off.

I was too young to be chosen for the Melbourne Olympics in 1956, so I bided my time for the Rome Games of 1960.  You can imagine the devastation felt when the Egg & Spoon event was dropped from the Olympic programme.  All those years of training down the drain.  To this day I don't have sugar in my coffee because I can't bear to pick up a teaspoon.

So here's to our golden girl - her beautiful smile helps to take away my pain at the thought of what might have been.

Sunday, 14 February 2010

February, the month of birthdays

We have three birthdays in the family within four days of each other this month, which was pretty bad planning, don't you think?  First cab off the rank is our grandson in Sydney who turns three tomorrow.  Sadly, we won't be there to help in the celebrations - if only we could move our cities a little closer together.

Next comes our eldest grandchild, who turns seven on Wednesday and he is within driving distance, so we had a family celebration lunch today.

He did a mammoth job blowing out the candles, as there were 13 cupcakes, spelling out Happy Birthday on the candles.  A couple of hours earlier the cakes I had baked the night before looked pretty ordinary.

But a little bit of magic was about to take place. The very talented Bel of Enticing Icing had made some fabulous icing toppings to dress the cupcakes.  This is the second time Bel has created fondant adorableness to make my humble cupcakes sing, and it won't be the last time.

They came beautifully protected and in perfect condition.

Once they were introduced to the cupcakes, it was love at first sight.

Light the candles and the show was ready to roll.

And the third birthday?  Mine.  I never regret my birthdays, in fact, I am quite grateful to be around to celebrate them!

There was a BrisStyle committee meeting yesterday and I was delightfully surprised to receive gifts from two of the lovely committee members, Helen and Ali. I was also a little embarrassed, as I never seem to remember anyone’s birthday (apart from family and my best friend) unless I have it written down in front of me.

The first gift was an eco-envelope which can be put to many uses, such as fun gift wrapping to be sent in the post, but I will be keeping this little number firmly in my own bag.  You can see that I have already unbuttoned it for closer inspection!  The second gift was from Helen - a Moleskine style notebook with a cover featuring a map of the border towns of New South Wales and Victoria, as Helen reasoned that as I've been travelling a fair bit over the past few months, it would be ideal to jot down my travel notes.

You can't buy these, because they are exclusively mine, but you can find similar wares at Ali's Etsy shop here.  Thank you so much girls and apologies for all the birthdays I have missed.

The BrisStyle committee meeting was pretty full on, with the BiDM being a matter of only three weeks away (eek!), and there was so much to discuss ...

... and decisions to be made.

Like what to eat for lunch.

I was going to make Vegemite sandwiches, until word got around that Bel was going to make a batch of macaroons.  That lifted the bar a little, so I changed the menu to fresh asparagus and fetta tart.  I am here to report that the macaroons were absolutely heavenly, unlike those seen in a certain TV kitchen competition show last week!

Of course, we needed all this fuel to give us the much needed stamina to finalise details for not only the 6 March BiDM, but  plans for an exciting year for BrisStyle.  Stay tuned.

Got to love February.

Wednesday, 10 February 2010

Time out ... for a day

I HEARD A FAINT and piteous cry emanating from my machine when I sat down to sew this morning.  I'm sure I heard a plaintive "Please ... I need a day off!" coming from inside the engine room.  With our BrisStyle Indie Designers Market  far closer than I had planned it to be at this stage (surely it's still a couple of months away) I have to confess I drove the poor Bernina just a little too far and fast.

I put the finishing touches on this little swing dress tonight.

It comes with matching pants to complete the outfit.  Here are some other dresses which have whizzed through the machine in the past week or so.

They are currently for sale in my Etsy shop and will also be available at our market on Saturday 6 March.  It's shaping up to be our biggest and best to date, so do come by and say hello if you will be in Brisbane on that day.

I am giving my sewing machine the day off tomorrow as we Fudges do a little shopping.

And now as Samuel Pepys would say, and sew to bed.

Saturday, 6 February 2010

Shadow Time

It's Sunday and that means Shadow Shot time over at Hey Harriet's.  However, if you were within coo-ee of the east coast of Australia over the last few days, you will know that rain tends to put a dampener on shadows, so I have had to delve into pictures taken late last year.

This Florentine gentleman was making easy work of the River Arno.  He looked about my age, but super fit.  I felt a few pangs of guilt and thought maybe I should be doing what he was doing.  Then I bounced back to reality and realised that I'd probably drop dead after ten strokes, so I contented myself watching him gracefully glide through the water.  I love the colours of the unseen buildings reflected in the background.

There are some stunning shadow images on Tracy's Shadow Shot Sunday, so do pop over and take an admiring look.

Wednesday, 3 February 2010

A couple of recipes

Today we celebrate our fortieth wedding anniversary.  I am pinching myself as I write this, because I KNOW it was only yesterday that we walked down the aisle on that hot February evening.  So here is my first recipe.

Easy.  Pick a good man.

My second recipe is for some new dresses in the planning stages.

Enticing new fabrics, of course ...

... and some pretty trimmings.

Mix all ingredients together, place under a sewing machine, set sewing room temperature to moderate and bake for about a day.  Results available soon.

I know the second recipe won't take forty years, but the first one has been such a joy.  Happy anniversary Mr Fudge!