country :: city

 Some images I snapped this weekend.
Mostly from the passenger seat of the moving car.
Country - driving from our home up to Brisbane.
City - Story Bridge, Brisbane. In the rain.
Colour - skate bracelets + stacks skateboards.

in our {old} city

Last week we were in Brisbane for the wedding of my brother-in-law to my new (finally!) sister-in-law.

Our week was busy and rushed, with lots of wedding prep, sewing ring pillow, shoe-size changes for the little ones flower girl outfit, and my wedding-guest dress outfit disaster needing to redo my whole outfit two days before the wedding.

In between all this we had some lovely moments exploring our old city of Brisbane. Sometimes lovely to be tourists in a place you know fairly well. We stayed a few nights (for wedding purposes) in serviced apartments in the city; always good to 'need to' stay at a lovely hotel. And especially considering our bedding & bathing conditions back at home (one big room, where the kids sleep less than a metre away from us; and an outside shower, which while lovely and hot isn't the most luxurious).

The view from our big balcony was quite lovely. I actually was up at 5am with the camera to capture these images. They are mostly a bit sort of blurry or "moody" as they are all shot hand held and with super slow speed, and I've done nothing to edit them. Didn't get up as early the next morning (big night at the wedding, and then a bottle of sparkling bubbly finished off at the hotel later on!).

While walking along the riverwalk, the kids and I came across the enchanting HMB Endeavour anchored in (is that what you say?). We really wanted to go aboard, which you could do (for a reasonable fee), but our Brisbane days had run out, and the opening hours were over. We enjoyed watching the setting sun between those spectacular masts, and talked about all that may have gone on while on board in the olden days. Make sure you visit their website, as it seems Brisbane was the start of the Australia-wide tour, and you may find you'll be nearby a port one day. If you happen to hop on board, please take some photos and share the moments with us as well. {Perhaps we could plan a holiday around a future port call? Hobart? Melbourne?}.

I must admit that I was very impressed by the fact that the whole Riverside area had been totally fixed up since the January floods. A lot of damage was done there, with many restaurants having to be closed for the past three months.

Sometimes it really is fun to be a tourist in your own city. You must try it - do take us along on the journey, won't you!

{water} Brisbane Flood 2011

I don't really have any words to write. Cannot fathom how I feel about these floods that have ripped through our communities. 75% of the whole of Queensland State has been affected by these waters. Homes, businesses, belongings and most tragically of all, lives, have been lost as the rains and the water kept on coming. Kept on rising past the river banks, past the levies, past the front steps, past the roof-line of many many houses.

In our home, we are safe. As are the rest of my family and friends living in Brisbane. I feel blessed that we weren't in the flood lines. My sister's house had water come in underneath, but nothing seems to have been ruined too badly. The business where my husband works, in the city, was - still is - under water. The whole of Brisbane CBD is still in lock down, as the water stays not having anywhere to move to. 

I've started and abandoned many blog posts about this devastating natural disaster. I have felt heartwrenchingly useless. I have sat and watched 24-hr news, unable to tear myself away from the scenes of people's homes flattened.

We have walked about our streets. Seeing other people also walking - everyone has the same drawn, unbelieving, anxious face.

There are many news items, that you can read, if you want. If you live in another country perhaps you have seen some footage and know a little of what has been happening. Basically the many weeks of rain that this area has received has resulted in the biggest flooding disaster that Queensland, or even Australia, has ever seen. And there are more affected areas across other states - spreading down to NSW and Victoria. Reports of more king tides, mean that there is possibly more to come in the next weeks. 

What is to come now is the clean up. The city of Ipswich has already started to slow, tedious, terrifying job. Search and rescue workers are still looking for missing people - the horrendous job of looking through flood debris, cars, buildings..... hoping against all hope to find survivors. In Brisbane we are waiting for many more days for the water to recede. People are waiting, in evacuation centres, at friend's home, before they can go to their own homes to see what awaits them. 

There are many things I've noticed around the websites I normally read, of people doing the little things they can to help. First and foremost, donating money - any amount, even the $5 you would normally spend on your morning coffee. The Premiers Flood Appeal is probably the best place to donate (there are reports of scam charities, so beware). After you've donated money, you can help out in other ways too.

Monkeemoomoo is hosting a Dolly Drive, to make soft toys for local children who need a smile.
Bris-Style are holding a Handmade Ark Appeal, where you can buy directly from member's Etsy's shops with all money raised being donated.
Make It Perfect are hosting Auctions to raise funds, which start on Sunday.
RicRac is offering a beautiful giveaway - all you have to do to enter is make a donation to the appeal.
If you live anywhere near where rescue workers are, or people in evacuation centres, then do as Digella Emporium has suggested, and take some baked goodness (along with hand sanitiser) down to  SES, Police and other volunteers.

I suppose that any other donations - clothes, furniture, bedding, etc - will be well received at a later stage. Once people can move back into their homes, and assess the damage - and clean up all that stinky flood mud. 

I know, remembering other disasters in other communities, that it's the long term as much as the right now that matters. Look at your fabric stash, your bookshelf, your beautiful collection of vintage treasures and imagine it all g.o.n.e! For me, I think perhaps down the track a bit (once houses have been rebuilt) these may be the things that people will appreciate receiving. If you have fabric, yarns, knitting / crochet needles, books...... that you could part with to share with other people - perhaps you can start putting them aside for that day when someone in our community needs to have something to remind them anything other than the flood.
At this stage, I wouldn't know where to direct you to deliver or send these items - maybe in the next few weeks things will be clearer as to all the ways we can help.

I was really inspired by Anna Maria Horner's quilt drive, when her local community was affected by flooding last year. While I'm in no way a quilter, I am a sewer/crafter, and am trying to think of things that I can personally do to help someone (even just one family) start to rebuild their homes again. 

{All my belongings are currently packed into boxes, ready to move out of the city. And while I feel it's trivial of me to say that I can't unpack to start making quilts or dolls or any number of other things;  I also know that it's no use me promising to make something unless I physically can sit down and finish it. We do have lots of clothes, some furniture, kids books and soft toys that we will donate to whichever is the best place before we move. After that, I will start to make things as I can for people's homes - even a new cushion on their couch or a tea towel in their kitchen would be a welcome addition, I would think.}

*all photos taken either from the Green Bridge, UQ ST Lucia or Fairfield streets on 12th + 13th January, 2011.

{a handcrafted holiday} Pop-Up Market

When we moved into our new studio, both Nina and I said we wanted to have an open studio day - for fun, and to show off our space and also, really, I do love being a hostess (with the mostess!). Well, that didn't happen (due to markets taking over our lives, and then Nina dashing off to have the adventure of a lifetime in Vietnam). 
One day while chatting with a few of my crafty friends, I decided that I would actually like to indeed have a little open / pop-up day. With the collection of some of my favourite local crafting.making.designing.talented peeps, we're having ::

Please come along for an afternoon of friends, food, music and some of the best {handcrafted}shopping you'll have this side of Christmas. I'm so excited to be hosting this event, and getting just the teeniest bit scared that there's still no music, or coffee van (if you are local and know someone who would fit the bill of making great coffee or playing/singing beautiful and lowkey music, please send me an email Visit our facebook event, and invite your friends and family to come along too. Bring the kids, as we'll have a special area set up for kids crafting and fun.

The lineup includes ::
KW Ceramics, of Udessi fame. 
{Who'll be having a hugh studio sale on the day, with samples and seconds of her ceramics}. 

& Nook Shop, Lotus Flower Designs...... and more.

Hope yo see you there!

at the printing table {workshops}

Just wanted to let you know that my first workshop is now fully booked. I have another on 13th November 10.30am - 3pm. Places are limited, so don't dilly-dally.

Beginner's Screen Printing Workshops - You'll print your own design onto (organic) fabric pieces and linen tea towels (as well any other blanks you want to bring along). We'll have a fun, yet informative day where you'll go home with finished items - either for yourself, or the start of your Christmas shopping list. You'll also be able to purchase extra tea towels at wholesale prices. Full details of what the workshop will include are here.
Lunch and yummy snacks are supplied, as well as some laughs and a good day out. 

Workshops will be at my Woolloongabba, Brisbane studio. Close to public transport (trains + buses), and ample parking available.

Contact me for more info {} or book your workshop here.

If you can't make it for that date, but would like to attend an upcoming workshop, please email me as I'm planning some more dates late November or early December.

*image is card stock that was hand screen printed with our pear design, then stamped with our rubber name stamp.

tonight... abcd

 I'm heading out tonight. And leaving Sam at home with three kids (Ash will be having a sleepover). Sounds nice, doesn't it, esp. considering we're in school holidays and all three kids have been at each other for most of the day and I do believe they've really tipped me over the edge this time...........

I'll be hanging out with Kim and the other creatives who turn up at the Udessi + Bondville ABCD (artists + bloggers + crafters + designers) get together. (Unfortunately Steph won't be there, as she now lives in Sydney - but I do think she has events happening down there too). Check out the facebook page for upcoming events. {I'm not much of a facebooker, so I'm not really over there - but I do believe there may be a just a small handful of people who hang around there....}.

Details (if you can sneak out of the house later tonight) are: 7 - 9pm. Bar Alto, Powerhouse Museum, New Farm, Brisbane. And bring a little something to put in the wonderful gift bags that we all get to bring home.... (I'm preparing my little addition right now as I write).

*image used with thanks from ABCD Meetup.

finders keepers this weekend

If you live anywhere at all near to Brisbane - flying, driving, walking, skating distance - then you must come along to Finders Keepers design market this weekend.
I'm so pleased that this time around I'll be on the other side of the tables, not having the stress, tiredness, anxiety and anticipation of all the stall holders. Actually, to be truthful, I do really like many many aspects of market-life. The anticipation especially. But being on the other side means that I can enjoy the market in a totally different way. As a shopper. 
I'll be taking along some pocket money {hint, if you are heading there then take cash as a lot of the stallholders may not have their own eftpos machines} and expecting to bring home some new treasures. 
I love Finders Keepers because it is a very select group of local (and Aussie) designers. It's all of such a high quality, chosen through a very thorough process {believe me, it's possibly one of the longest applications for craft design markets around}, which means that everything there will be drool worthy and have that certain cuteness factor that is super popular and very covetable.
Check out all the designers, and even download a floor plan before you go.
I'm liking the look of Beattie, Birikini, Mainichi, Sanoii + Six, Mother Maria. hmmmm, they all appear to be clothing.
And of course my always favourites; some friends who I know well, others who I know through blog-land and the market rounds; Kindling, Udessi, Edward & Lilly, Chi Designs, We Are Messengers, Lauren Carney, and Pippijoe.
*all images used with thanks from (top-bottom) :: Udessi, Sanoii + Six, Kindling (x2), Edward & Lilly (x2), and We Are Messengers.

arquitectos del aire

This is where we will be this weekend.

Amococo is part of Out of The Box festival that has been running all this past week at Southbank, The State Library and Art Gallery in Brisbane. 

If you live near to Brisbane, then I suggest a visit to this place this coming long weekend. If you don't live nearby, head on over and watch the video.

I love the name Arquitectos del Aire :: Architects of Air

The luminaria are inflatable sculptures filled with natural light. Coloured plastics filter light in, creating a womb-like environment. Influenced by nature, geometry, light, cathedrals, the design....
 " takes Moorish architecture as its starting point and then, as Gaudí did in Barcelona a century or more ago, turns it into something highly organic and distinctly ambivalent. Not that Gaudí would have recognised it.  What Parkinson has done is treat the inflated object as an immersive art experience, in which light, sound and architectural form combine.”
Hugh Pearman, Sunday Times*

{anything that relates to Moorish, Gaudi and Barcelona must be something truly special}.

*quote from AOA site.

more popular than cake decorating!

Yesterday we had our stencil workshop at Bleeding Heart Gallery as part of Brisbane City Council's Saviours of the Lost Arts.
I had a rushed morning with the kids, and getting everything sorted to take into town. {Printing screens, ink, blank tea towels + hemp tote bags, brushes, inspiration books, etc, etc, etc} Thanks grandparents for picking the kids up for me - giving me pure moments of quiet! Oh, yes!!!
The set-up at Bleeding Heart is really lovely. So homely, trendy, stylish, perfectly livable. The building itself is a beautiful heritage listed space - it's been lovingly repaired and looked after. An excellent location for a gallery space.
Once the workshop started I didn't get a chance to even think about taking any photos. Which is a real pity as there were so many creative, talented people there doing some really fun, thoughtful and inspiring designs. 
One lady's design was two feathers. Before I knew it she'd expertly hand cut them out, and was ready for printing. There was a Marimekko horse - white on the natural hemp looked so Finnish. Some pears, two wonderful little birdies, some fantastic abstract shapes, 'I heart 2 op shop' (perfect tote bag, hey!). Two dear friends came along and took home a dandelion and a native Australian looking flower bud. 
The workshop was so full - we had 20 people booked in, but I think we ended up with close to 35 in total. And what a noisy, fun group of women they were. Yes all women. Most had left the kids at home with husband or grandparents. At times it felt like 15 kids were demanding our attention, calling for our help. The event organiser, Melissa, said that our workshop was even more popular than cake decorating - how about that, hey!

So wonderful to be able to work alongside my husband, Sam, in this way. For us both to be there with our own skills, experience, talents and pass our information onto willing listening creatives (or creatives in training - as some had never done much drawing or anything similar before). 
Then it was all over - people saying good bye, showing off their finished pieces. While others were still inking or waiting for ink to dry. (Cold wet day meant the ink took a long time to dry). 

I didn't get an end line-up of all the finished pieces. In fact, I did not get even one picture of anyone at the whole workshop - start to finish. If any of you are reading this and feel like showing off your  new designer tote bags or tea towels, I'd love to see them (and share them on this blog). {Please email me photos to redseedstudio AT gmail DOT com}
If you live near enough, check out the rest of the program as I think there may still be vacancies in some workshops. And come into town (Brisbane City) on Tuesday for the Craft Fair. I've heard there'll be a tea garden (by the same stylist as all these spaces shown here), and we'll be there, so will some of the Bris-Style gang, as well as beautiful ceramacist Kim from Udessi (yes, she's beautiful and her work is as well - I have a few pieces and will add more when I have better studio space to display them).

Saviours of the Lost Arts

Saviours of the Lost Arts is an initiative of Brisbane City Council which will provide lovers of craft, senior residents, young and emerging craft workers and professional artisans the opportunity to showcase and share their arts and crafts.....

This is a fantastic workshop series being presented in Brisbane City, and some outer suburbs. There are 'make and take', demonstrations and presentations by all sort of wonderful, crafty, experienced, talented people. It's about learning a new skill, remembering an old craft; taught by hands with a wealth of experience, learning from other like-minded creatives. 

How wonderful does this sound? The creative guilds of Brisbane sitting down and showing and sharing and teaching. Combined with the newer, younger crafting movement.

I just love the name. I feel that there is indeed a revival of lost arts happening around the world. This is something that people have talked about often, that I've read on blogs, magazines, books, chatted with people about....

There are so many skills that I wish I knew, could remember; some skills are being lost in our fast paced, ever changing world. Thankfully some are being saved, passed down to a new generation. Sometimes in the most unlikely circumstances, but happening none-the-less. 

You know the best part about this 2 week workshop event is that it's all free. A whole 2 weeks of learning to weave, spin, crochet, bead making, origami, felting.... right up to chats about online crafting arena, finishing up some UFO* and stencil and screen printing. 

Yup - you read it right. Stencil and screen printing with Sam + me! Are you excited or what. We'll be teaching how to stencil print onto a linen tea towel or hemp tote bag, using your own hand cut stencils (or ours if you aren't feeling too creative on the day!).

To tell you the truth, I don't even know if there are actually any spots left at any of these workshops, as being free I'm sure they were all snatched up on day one. But, just try your luck and head on over to the Bleeding Heart website to find out all the info you need. 

*(un-finished objects - those half started items lurking at the bottom of your craft basket)

events {exhibitions}

Here are a couple of interesting looking exhibitions this week around the area.

Stella Gallery is hosting a beautiful looking photographic exhibition which opens tonight (Wednesday). I've been meaning to visit this gallery space since it opened, but life hasn't sent me over to that neck of the city. I'm planning on heading over to the opening event (we'll see if family life lets me out the door!).
Exhibiting photographers include Elisabeth Harvey, who shot the beautiful photos of my sister for Peppermint mag.

Sophie Munns is this year's artist in residence at the Mt Cootha Botanical Garden. Her art theme is homage to the seed, and will focus on seed conservation and awareness for the future. Exhibition is this coming weekend at Embiggen Books as Noosaville.
Sophie has three different blogs to look at, so do check them out. 
visual artist - which is more like her personal blog
*images used with thanks from each blog.

sweet comments

All you bloggers out there know that one of the very best best bestest things about having a blog is meeting other amazing, friendly, interesting, lovely, creative, talented and sweet bloggers. Online friends are surely one of the best things around - being able to have a real and true relationship with someone who you have never met (in person), have never heard talk, and probably never will. Somehow this does not limit the friendship in any way. And we all appreciate that if we don't communicate or comment or email every second day, it doesn't mean we don't like you any more. 
Another lovely thing about having a blog is the super cute and sweet and meaningful and thoughtful comments you get emailed to you. Isn't it so nice having just a special little comment. And sweet smile; like a flower tucked under your front door while you're out for the day.
I just got such a comment. Oh, and it really made me smile. 
uhmmm excuse me,
but i just thought i'd do a drive by and tell you...

that i think your blog is great :)
x x

A new comment also means that I now have another beautiful new blog to look at, and feel inspired by. And she lives in Brisbane, so we may well run into each other one day........
Visit Lauren's website, blog and shop.  And I think she'll be at the Southbank Young Designer's Market this coming {Easter} Sunday, if you're about.

*all images from laurencarneyart, used with thanks.

a giveaway

Well, I promised a giveaway. And yesterday was filled with wonderful, busy, tiring things. So here it is today.
Can I just say, though, that yesterday I visited Nook, for the second time in a week. I bought a beautiful brooch, made by States of Nature, (also dropped off some Red Seed Studio stock). Nook has such an excellent selection of handcrafted items. Michelle really has done an amazing job filling her teeny little room perfectly - it's the sort of place that you want to take home at least one of everything. And in my opinion most homewares stores stock the same old thing, so it's lovely to see a local who is stocking beautifully crafted and sustainable items.
Then, we went and bought a new computer (still waiting for it to arrive - don't you hate spending lots of money and not being able to bring your new toy home then and there. Have to wait until Monday). After that the kids and I had d-e-lic-ious chocolate tart with gold leaf at Pearl cafe in Woolloogabba. I loved that Ari noticed the cart next door, at Nesting Bird Interiors, full of our Red Seed cushions. Was also fun watching people stop and pick them up while walking into the shop.
We headed up the old worn stairs, full of memories, to visit Danielle at Nesting Bird, and found a sweet little ceramic bird to bring home as a gift for a little friend. And a wind up old tin toy for Ari. I've written about Nesting Bird before, and each time I go in there I love exploring and looking. Such a beautifully styled place.
The Logan Rd section at Woolloongabba has finished all it's roadworks, and looks super cute with old-style looking lamp shapes for the lights, made of fun coloured plastics. Its a lovely spot to spend a few hours exploring.
So get out this weekend and explore your own backyard, and support your local shops and products.
But before you dash off, do please enter my giveaway for one of my little zip purses and a piece of fabric. I'll draw the winner on Sunday night, so I can get it posted before I leave for Sydney early Wednesday morning.This purse is made from our own hand screen printed hemp/organic cotton, printed with the Lipstick image. The back is an indigo-dyed denim, really great colour. And fully lined with hemp / org cotton as well. I've got one of our fabric panels in the bamboo print for you to do some of your own crafting.To enter, please tell me about your favourite local handcrafted store and why you love it. Or what you'd love to see if you did have a local store.
Enjoy your weekend, dear friends. xxx

Nook - opening tomorrow

19 Browning St, West End, QLD, 4101.

If you live in Brisbane, then you really must make the time to visit a new store that is opening tomorrow.
A lovely looking little shop :: handcrafted :: local :: ethical :: eco :: recycled :: funky.
I haven't yet seen the shop, but I've visited the blog many times. Enjoying the views of the setting up. And I've chatted with Michelle (of Pedrosprout) about it. About how she found all the fit-outs on Ebay - they look like great finds, beautiful piece, not regular shop fit-out at all.
And I've spied the pieces coming in. A few I know personally; Beckybean (sisters Bec and Jade), Edward & Lilly (beautiful and intricate embroidery), Hot Toffee, Scampsville, Peppermint Mag, Paper Boat Press... as well as a handful of others.
Red Seed Studio will be there, too. As soon as I get on top of all my orders and printing and sewing.
Brisbane really is a lovely place to live. So many exciting things happening and starting. The handcrafted movement is in full momentum. People are taking notice. Regular people. Not just crafty people.So, pop in to Michelle's shop and support a local business who is supporting handcrafted.

*All photos from the Nook site, with thanks.