Monday, December 31, 2012

2012 wrapup - favourite blogs

I am the slackest blogger ever! You'd think that I would have blogged more while I was on holidays, not less, but I was so focussed on making stock for markets, trying out new markets, then making more stock, that everything else took a back seat.

Still, it was a very enjoyable time and a very welcome break from my day-job. Such a relief to be home in the peace and quiet and not have to talk to anyone for days!

But that makes for a boring blog, so I hope I'm forgiven for using this post to tell you about my Top 5 favourite blogs for 2012.

5. Tied at fifth place are Badskirt and Archie the Wonder Dog. Amy and Helen have completely different styles (bright bold moderns vs soft pretty piecing), but both inspire me to just go ahead and try something new. And whenever I need a pick-me-up, Archie is guaranteed to put a smile on my face and in my heart.

4. You Had Me at Bonjour is a beautiful beautiful blog. Kirsty's photos documenting living in and travelling around France would make a gorgeous gorgeous book, so we are lucky to get them for free. If I ever end up travelling I'll be using this blog as a travel guide, starting with the blogpost about Nice.
 3. Speaking of free, Frugal Queen is a daily reminder that I need to be much much stricter with myself. I have made some changes, but not enough, and another year has slipped by without much progress in paying down my debts. Oh well, tomorrow is a new year and a fresh start.

2. I want to say a big thank you to QuiltJane from Want It, Need It, Quilt. Without her friendship and support, I'd still be stuck inside my comfort zone.

1. The top spot has to go to Retromummy, who so openly and generously shared her busy life and beautiful family with us. Like a duck moving serenely across a pond while it's busy little feet are paddling furiously, Retromummy renovated, moved house, welcomed baby number five, kept the other four happy and healthy, had a blog makeover, spoke at events and met other challenges face-on, all with a positive mind and open heart.

Thank you Retromummy and daddy - it has been a joy to watch your children grow and flourish and be their own little persons.
To all these bloggers I wish a happy and blessed 2013, and to all those I've met this year (Quilary, Cherie, BACG, SIT and others), thank you for welcoming me with open arms and putting me at ease. I can't tell you how much it means to me.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Southern Highlands Christmas Fair

Hi All,

Just a quick note to let you know I'll be at the Southern Highlands Christmas Fair on Sunday 9 December.

If you happen to be at the Fair too, I hope you'll stop by and say hello. My stall will be close to the entrance, so I should be easy to find.




Monday, December 3, 2012

Markets good and bad

Despite the heatwave expected for Sydney last weekend, GF and I went through with doing our market stall at Ramsgate on Saturday. Luckily we were cooled down with a little rain early in the morning.

We had a lovely day and made a reasonable profit which made GF happy, but for me the highlight was seeing a shopper wearing a pendant she previously bought from me.

I wish I had taken a photo of the pendant. It was definitely one-of-a-kind. I made it from a vintage Czechoslovakian stamp that had a Praha (Prague) postmark perfectly centred across the middle.  The black postmark and the plain black necklace set off the red-and-white stamp really well.

So Saturday was good, Sunday not so much. We got up at 4am and drove to Maitland to do their busiest market day of the year. When we arrived, we found the longest queue of cars/trucks/vans ever! And when we finally got to the gate, we found out that they had booked someone else into our regular site. Hang on a minute - I prebooked and prepaid for that site three months ago!

Not only did we not get our regular spot, we didn't get any spot at all! And this didn't happen to just us. We waited almost an hour in a queue of other stallholders who had been bumped out of their spots, to find out where else the organiser could put us.

In the end, the organiser told us to go to our usual spot. I don't know why she did, when she had already told us they had put someone else there. But we weren't the only bumped stallholders she had to deal with, so I think it was just to get rid of us.

We drove to our usual spot and you guessed it, a stallholder was already set up there. Obviously we could not expect them to move. After all, they had paid their money (as we had) and had been booked into that spot (as we had) so it was not their problem.

It was clear from looking around us that there was a huge number of extra stallholders there that day, all spots were already filled up, and other stallholders were still trying to drive in through the crowds. We made our way back to the front gate but it was clear that the organiser had bigger problems than just us. 

It was a looooong drive back to Sydney.



Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Markets old and new

I've been on annual leave for a couple of weeks now, but there were so many things I wanted to get made and/or organised for the markets that it seemed like yesterday was my first real day off.

It may not be your idea of a relaxing day off, but I enjoyed it - sitting at my craft desk from 10am to 10pm making a new range of pendants. (Yes, I know I've made way too many pendants to ever sell, but doing craft occupies my brain enough to stop my usual worrisome thoughts which gives me a much-needed mental rest.)

Sorry, no photos yet as I've only half-made them. They are all retro/1950's-inspired pendants, as a new vintage-themed monthly market is starting up soon very close to my home.

All the stallholder spots booked out really quickly so I missed out, (that's ok, I'm not sure if my current stock fits the market's style) but I'll definitely be going to have a good look. I hope there's lots of genuine vintage stuff - and I'd be especially interested to see if anyone is into the "repurposing" thing, i.e. finding creative new ways to recycle old things. I love that!

The Now and Then Markets kicks off on Sunday 9 December at Bexley Manor Hall (Bexley NSW).


Photo


Oh, I haven't told you about last weekend yet! My good friend and I went to Braidwood for the annual Airing of the Quilts. (We didn't get much of a chance to look at the quilts though - too exhausted!) GF took care of the pendants stall as usual and I did the patchwork stall. I had no idea there were so many hexagon-mad quilters out there! It's good to know I'm not alone LOL.

Luckily our stalls were side-by-side, as I was run off my feet answering my questions so GF was working at my stall more often then he was manning his. He was amazing - he packed/unpacked the van himself so I could rest, (I feel so guilty when he does things for me - do any of you find it hard to accept kindness?) then did the whole 3-hour drive back to Sydney (don't worry, yes we did the stop-revive-survive thing a couple of times).

Gosh, it makes me tired just thinking about last Saturday. I need a rest LOL. Bye for now.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

A lovely day

I've had such a lovely peaceful day at home.

I moved my craft table out onto the balcony for some sunshine and fresh air and spent a few hours (ok, more than a few hours) finishing off a pile of pendants by adding some flowers and bead dangles.

My favourites are the ones made from vintage New Zealand stamps.




Tuesday, November 13, 2012