Gather Create : Summer's Harvest

Some of my really favourite things to do are gathering with other creative people; connecting, making, sharing, collaborating, learning, teaching, delving deeply into new ideas. Laughing. Drinking tea and eating cake. And making - stitching, dyeing, weaving… it doesn't always matter what the making is. Mostly it's about the connecting. Gather create connect. 

18 months ago I was so so lucky to bring a group of people together, alongside my sister-friend Leah, and share in a similar day Gather Create : Unfurl. I see people even now and we talk about that day. How amazing it was. How beautiful and connective and sharing and creative. How fantastic the food was. There aren't many photos from that day, which is testament to how deeply everyone was actually immersed in the day - not looking from the outside and taking photos, but being involved in being there. 

Due to…ummm - having a baby - I wasn't able to organise one last year, but it's been in my mind, heart and soul…. and I've been waiting waiting for the right time. And now I'm so pleased that it's happening again. Oh golly. I can't even begin to imagine how good - truly truly good - this day will be. 

This time we'll be gathering along the banks of a creek, set in the rainforest. At my neighbour's home & (new) cooking school - Jean, of Artisan Wholefoods. This will be the first gathering event for her place, which is a little bit exciting, don't you think. Jean teaches workshops in nourishing foods, the whole food journey being paramount to her recipes, but highly delicious. Jean's food isn't about trends or fads, but about real food that is good for your body and soul, while making your eyes water, your mouth smile and your tummy grumble (you'll probably want to get out your camera too - cause her food is beautiful as well as delicious - seriously win win win when you're being fed by Jean).

Our day will begin with a morning tea cake table - uh huh…. a cake table. Oh my. Can you imagine it…. All natural whole real foods (no refined sugar or horrible fake colourings). And water kefirs as well as organic tea and freshly brewed coffee. We'll gather and fill our tummys and talk and connect - we plan on an informal talk about finding your creativity, sharing on social media (mainly Instagram), and staying honest and true to yourself throughout it all. 

Jean will give a hands-on cooking demonstration of our lunch - a wholegrain pastry recipe for a Summer's Harvest tart. You'll learn how to make this at home, to nourish your family and impress your friends. There's be lots of hands-on photography time during this session, so you foodies will be able to explore the light and beauty with your camera. 

While lunch is being prepared, we'll slip outside to the back deck and garden to create some magic in the dye pots. Using all hand harvested botanical dyes - from this region - we'll make colour on fabric and yarn. Zoe and I will share all our experience, tips and how-tos at the dye pot… and you'll get your hands colourful and be delighted with the results. While our materials are dyeing we'll devour the lunch that Jean has prepared and linger over it while chatting and exploring the creek nearby. 

And then slowly slowly we'll do some stitch work - using assorted fabrics (some pre-dyed by me, some vintage & special pieces from my collection, some we dye on the day) we'll hand stitch a piece for you to take home, to keep working on, to create in your moments of time. There'll be a few projects available - a hand stitched scarf, notebook cover, drawstring pouch or small pillow case… or you can simply stitch samples to eventually sew into a quilt cover. If by any chance you're still hungry there'll be cakes and biscuits from morning tea, endless cups of tea, coffee or water kefir - or just beautiful fresh from the forest creek water. And we'll spend the afternoon settled into the beautiful stillness of creating and stitching, conversing and connecting.

This day is about more than just a regular workshop. It's a feeling, an emotion, a time to reconnect with yourself, with your creativity, with your inner quiet and slow… while also meeting other people in the area, in your creative fields. We truly can't wait to share this day with you - to experience a community of connectedness, a sharing of experience and skills, and whole lot of delicious cake and natural dye magic. 

All the details and booking info is on my website, but please, if you have any questions at all - don't hesitate to ask me via email ( or through Instagram. 

Saturday 12th March, 2016. 9.30am - 4pm (Day light saving time)
Full price tickets $225, early bird tickets $180 - still available until Valentine's Day. 

And if you can't come along, but want to share in the stitch-natural dye experience I have Gather Create stitch kits that will have the fabric and projects as well as some special tea so you can share with us. Available here. 

* outdoor photos by Jean Martinez Artisan Wholefoods. 

create learn connect share

One of the things I love doing the most, in my creative outlet, is teaching and sharing. 

Have I ever told you that when I was a kid I wanted to be a teacher? Of course, I always thought that meant being a primary school teacher - sitting at a desk with a vase of flowers and the chalk board to draw or write upon. We used to play schools during our holidays, and I was always always the teacher. And all the dolls and teddys and animals and my sister were the students. 

So now, that my creative job - career! - has evolved into being a teacher. Well… I think it's a whole lot of lovely, and little bit strange. Of course, I don't sit behind a desk and teach the times tables or English language or about Roman clothing. Now I sit beside my students, I walk amongst them. My hands guide their hands, my voice shares my skills, experiences and knowledge. And my students go away after a day's lesson knowing how to work with their hands, so create something heart felt, meaningful, beautiful. And, hopefully, how to tap into their own innate creative self, how to express their creative vision and discover their own way of working, rather than following someone else's or copying pinterest.

All this is to say…. I have some workshops coming up soon and I hope that you can come along, that I can guide your hands and converse with you, and share my love of making and discovering your creative journey. 

Loom Weaving ~ oh my, you ready to become addicted to something soft and cuddly and seriously good! I love weaving in a way I haven't quite ever connected with the other yarny crafts.

Natural Botanical & Indigo Dyeing with Shibori ~ eeekkk eeekkkk. Yes. This will change the way you look at plants, flowers and leaves and you'll be dyeing every piece of pale fabric and yarn in your life. Seriously my full love for this way of working. 

Product Styling & Instagram ~ So… the real reason I haven't been at this lovely little blog for the past of 4 years is Instagram. If you follow me (and do… please do!) you'll know how much I love it so. In a good good way. Because it's so good for connecting with other people, and having a creative outlet and somewhere to share and learn and inspire and be inspired. Anyway, in this workshop I will share my way of styling products and things for selling and for fun, and also how I go about 'doing Instagram.' It's seriously going to be GOOD. 

You can find all my workshops and creative event info on my website here. Or join my mailing list… (send me an email to and I'll add you to the list). 

Get your Weave on - workshops in weaving (and finding your own creative voice)

I've long wanted to do some weaving workshops with adults, to share my own way of working with yarn and making pretty wall hangings and pieces of art. I've finally found someone who makes looms in Australia that I can share with you.

Weaving is just the teensiest bit addictive; I've actually been dreaming about new weaves and wanting to get up at mid-night to finish the current piece on my loom..... The house can stay messy for all I can. I guess I'll have to eventually feed the family - though they're pretty good at making do themselves.

Anyway. I'd love to share the fun and complete satisfaction that comes with making your own weaving. It's like making your own piece of amazingness. Yep - it's that cool!

I have a couple of workshops coming up really soon (before this baby pops!). Would love love you to come along if you can. To learn the basic skills and techniques and to spend time with me and hopefully soak up some of how I work - by breaking rules, making my own rules, experimenting, having fun, conversing with my materials...

Oh yes indeed. I do have conversations with my yarn and fabric. Sometimes they tell me they want to be just so and I really have to listen. I do think it takes practice and quiet and being fully involved in your work to listen to your materials. But when you do, when you discover how to, I think it brings an emotion and a uniqueness to your work. It brings yourself to your work. Not copying someone else's stitches and patterns and ways of doing things, but doing it your own way. Telling your own story. Allowing your own voice to shine. 

That's important. I hope that during all my workshops (be in children or adults, screen printing or weaving or sewing or....) I can help you to open up and find your own inner voice. To allow you - give you permission indeed - to shout your own creative visual voice. That's so important to me. That we all share our voices, that we all feel confident that we can share our voice, and not hide behind copying someone else, or worse still not making and creating because we don't think our voice is valid. 

Part weaving workshop / part find your creative visual voice workshop. Yep.

Details are: Get Your Weave On!
Brisbane - Saturday 20th Sept, 12.30 - 4pm. At Tangled Yarns in Newstead. 
Byron Bay - Saturday 27th Sept, 10am - 1.30pm. At Bubbles at the Head Studio in Byron Bay. 
Cost is: $145 for 3.5hr workshop. You go home with your own new weaving loom + accessories (those lovely wooden needles), instruction booklet, scissors and yarns. You'll have a beautiful day with new friends (or bring a friend along to weave together), nibbling cake and treats and creating an amazing special piece to take home. 
Bookings are essential as spots are very limited. Bookings through our online store. Click here. Or email me for more info if you want. ( 
I'm also open to private classes if you'd like to gather some friends and have a weaving workshop at home.

gather :: create ~ creative workshops for getting lost and found

I want to tell you about a beautiful and really special new 'thing' I've been working on. And finally launched. It's full of heart and creative making and connections and joy and play and lots of colour, and maybe some mistake making too. Just the way I like my days I think!

gather :: create is the collaboration of myself and my sister Leah. It's the start of events and workshops that are a little different than the usual. It's about immersing yourself into the process, of learning new skills, of learning new ways to rework old-known skills, and also - very important for me - of not needing to worry about the outcome.

For our first event we are hosting two very inspiring visual artists, both who work a similar way, yet their different styles and personalities bring completely different viewpoint to their work. By similar I mean, they both have a relaxed and play-based approach to their work, their are willing to let go and see where talking with their materials takes them, they are ok with mistake making, with learning on the journey, with sometimes being wrong and learning something new about themselves and their practice. 

Different approaches? Well, you only have to look at their work to see that while process and journey making is vital to both of them, they are absolutely on different journeys. 

Unfurl :: small scale conversations with textiles by Alex Falkiner.

Poetic Collage :: where words, paper and pictures collide by Karina Jean Sharpe.

The day will be two workshops, one with each of these talented and fascinating creatives, as well as a long lunch, endless cups of tea (nibbles for morning and afternoon tea - cake!!), a goodie bag and SO much more. It's to be held in the beautiful ceramic studio of Pinky & Maurice in South Golden Beach, Northern NSW. 

I'll be back soon with more info about the whole day, with details about each workshop, who is making our delicious food and lots more. For now, please do check out the bookings site for some extra info and our facebook page. Spaces are very limited for this event, as we want to have connections made between the participants, rather than a giant party! 

{images used with thanks from:
top left - me, top right - Leah, middle: Alex, bottom: Karina
these are all links to our Instagram feed. Go have a look at the pretty over there!}.

why Instagram is so much more than pretty pictures

I just realised that the freaking amazing thing about Instagram is that it's a whole lot more than itself.

When I talk to people, who are my Instagram friends, and my real-life friends, they get what I'm talking about. You might not be an Instagram person, so I wanted to explain it a little more to you. What Instagram really is!

Yesterday someone said to me that Instagram is for the kids, she meant teenagers. And yeah, for sure IG is for the kids, the teenagers. But so much more than that. Oh golly. SO.MUCH.MORE.

This is why I think you *need* to come along to the IG talk I'm hosting as part of Creative Business Talks.  Some of the reasons anyway. I'd be here forever if I shared all the reasons. So I'm narrowing to the main reasons. Mostly they come from what I get out of my personal experience with IG, and from what I've seen other people get out of it. And what we all put it.

1. It's fun. So fun. Part of the best ever. But there's no horrible initiation rituals, there's only a whole lot of lovin'. For sure. Don't believe me? Join up to IG now and find out for yourself.

2. You'll meet people. Yep, like old fashioned penpals. Except you can say good night to these people with sweet thoughtful and lovely messages, and someone on the other side of the world will get it when they wake up in the morning. Or even your friend up the road who you haven't run into for a few days.

3. Every single day you'll be inspired. Not only by the amazing beautiful interesting unusual stunning images that people share - from everywhere, all over, all walks of life and all parts of the world - but by what you put into it. By what you give. It makes me think about my daily adventures in an excellent way. I want to share the beautiful in my life with others, and that makes me *see* it more clearly. {And no, it's not about ignoring the mess of life, or hiding the truth, or pretending we're all superhumans. It's about seeing the beauty in everyday}.

4. You'll get some great contacts that may or may not turn into customers / clients / collaborators / connections / cool fun people (that one yep, the cool fun people bit will happen for sure!).

5. People will support you. Having a bad day - let people know and they'll send you love. I know it - it's happened to me. A simple heart and x from one of my IG friends is sometimes the biggest thing that gets me going. There'll also be a lot of love for things you make. People are supportive and friendly and caring and sharing.

6. You have a record anywhere you carry your phone of all those inspiring things you do and make. You can show people what cool stuff you do and make. You can keep a collection for yourself, in a really cool and easy to access spot, of the cool-eo stuff you make, do, see....

Ok. There's a start. Why I really really do think you need to come along and hear all about IG. For me, I've been loving seeing all the flowers blooming across the world - I never get to have peonies in my house as they don't like the heat, but ah ha - I can see them on IG by those who share with me. And woah - the stunning, simply spectacular magnolias that are flowering all up and down the east coast right now (but not in my garden), oh just too good.

Please send questions or comments. I know some of you may not be IG converts, but I'm on a mission to help us all find the beauty-full in every day and share that with our IG friends.

Ready to sign up? Book here for our workshop.  

*All of these images are used with kindest thanks from the IG stream of Ally, IG Sapa, who blogs over here at everyday miracles. Check out her Instagram feed for so much more than floral love.

Screen Printing Workshops

I'm getting back into the swing of workshops. Excited to be sharing my screen printing skills and tricks. I haven't done any workshops all year, so it's great I've finally found a space to have some fun and teach some fun techniques. 

I recently made a little trip up to a sweet fabric shop at Palm Beach, Qld (sorry, not the Sydney, NSW Palm Beach, as I mistakenly lead a few astray on Instagram!). It's called I Just Love that Fabric, which is exactly what Susie the owner does - loves fabric. Boy it was lovely walking into a fabric shop that "gets" beautiful real fabric. Someone who knows all the designers and their seasons, a place to see and feel hand printed fabrics - a place that supports Australian designed and made fabrics. Oh yes, such a place does exist. It seems that fabric shops are becoming few and far between, what with online buying so easy. But nothing can beat chatting with a real person who loves fabric as much as you do, laying out the roll of fabric along the beautiful wooden cutting table and talking about projects and possible uses. And just oohing and aahhing about fabric in general. 

Susie and I hatched the idea of me running some screen printing workshops in her lovely shop. I met Susie when she came to one of my workshops that I ran at Hey Maker last year, and it was so good to chat with someone who knew fabric, and loved it so much. How exciting to be doing some workshops within the walls surrounded by all the goodness of that fabric. 

So, for all those people who have been asking me when I'm going to do some more screen printing workshops. Here you go! We have three dates scheduled. Each class will be small, with only 6 bookings maximum, which means more time for printing and asking questions and actually learning a new skill. My aim is for you to be able to continue printing at home, making gifts for family and friends, or zhoosing up your home or kids' wardrobe. Let me tell you, seeing your design on fabric is such a great feeling. A Jumping up and down with excitement feeling! Watch this lovely video which gives you a small feeling of a printing day with me.

The workshop is $125 - dates are Sunday 8th Sept 9am-1pm, Sunday 27th Oct 9am-1pm and Sunday 24th Nov 9am-1pm. 

You can make bookings through my online shop, or contact Susie - details on her website.

le tour Eiffel, cupcakes, coffee pots, trees & flowers

I had another lovely group of screen printing ladies last weekend, at my little studio. Everyone arrived early, and got stuck straight into some design thinking, and a bit of chatting too!
Despite the heat of the day, we got a lot done and finished up on time.

Deb (above left), who had recently returned from Paris, hand drew this fantastic stylised Le Tour Eiffel. I love that she also hand cut her initials into the stencil. A true artist! These printed up beautifully, and will make excellent gifts, and a great keepsake memory of her time in France. Deb also cut out this wonderful, and quite intricate, little moose head with antlers and a heart face (top photo).
Eryn (above right, in the black) came to the class with a few rough ideas for a design, and started sketching different ideas. She came up with this lovely swirl shape, which she rotated to make three different angles, hand cut them all and then printed them up in deep grey onto the black linen tea towels. (The lighting in the photo is not doing justice to the great print or colours). Eryn also had time to cut out some more from her sketching ideas, and came up with this lovely little cupcake, tea cut and pot design. It looked so cute in bright pink. Both of these designs are a perfect example of how a simple, crisp and bold design is just suited for stencil cut screen printing, and gives wonderful results.
Georgina (second-to-top photo, wearing the pink) arrived with a geranium leaf and some photocopied leaf-image inspiration, and starting drawing and cutting her shapes. Her persistance with cutting the intricate little shapes really paid off with this stunning pair of green geranium and fantastic orange flower prints. She did these are two different cut stencils; waiting for the green to dry before printing the orange flowers. Can't wait to see what Georgina stitches this up into.
Sue brought along a beautiful tote bag she had made (which I forgot to photograph, but it was so sweet), of a tree with bright red apple buttons. She cut and printed this as two stencils, first the chocolate brown trunk and then the bright green leaves over the top. We planned it that when she printed the top design, there would be some overlap of colours, and some sections where it wouldn't overlap leaving a little bit of fabric showing. When you're lining up designs by hand, and have to move the fabric between prints, it's best to work with that and plan for the beautiful little imperfections that happen. I think it really added to the print, having them all be placed just a teeny bit differently to each other. Once these t-shirts have their red apple buttons stitched on, they are going to look super-duper cute on Sue's neices. Yah.

Jacki (who writes the lovely monkeemoomoo blog) had her husband size these images up to perfectly fit a tea towel. What a wonderfully cute idea (the coffee pots and spoons, rather than using her husband to do the design work - though I must admit, I do that with my husband too!). This turned out so well, the pots, spoon and mixing machine looked excellent in a deep grey print on white + black linen. What lucky family and friends, who'll be getting this for their presents. Jacki also cut this simple, retro looking design and printed it in red (this image is the one I printed on our backing fabric, with an orange mixed through). Jacki told us her son had them all drawing and cutting designs, which is what lead to her pebble shapes with negative and positive cut-outs. Take it from me - young kids are some of the best art instructors and inspiration around, use them if you have them!

I had such a lovely time watching everyone come up with their designs, and learning the techniques of printing. Some of them were a bit nervous for the first print run, but had totally slipped into the fun of it by the time they got their second printing done. I do hope they're all inspired to go off and keep printing at home. Sorry Sue + Jacki, somehow I didn't end up with a photo of either of you.

If you are interested in learning how to screen print, then I have a few spots left in the last classes of the year. You can bring your own fabric to print on (like Sue's t-shirts for presents), or print onto tea towels - which make excellent gifts for local and overseas friends and family. Full details are here, with info on how to book. I've decided to cancel one class due to the year running away from me too much, so only have two more classes left.

Printing weekend -

I had my first printing workshops this weekend. And had such fun, I do really hope you all had fun too. It's so lovely to see the amazing different and individual designs that people come up with. And how different colours make such a difference to the overall look. These are some images from Saturday's workshop. I totally forgot to take any on Sunday, for the Brown Owls printing day.

above image :: many hands helping. Was so great to see how everyone jumped in and helped each other out with the mechanics of learning to screen print. Things that I have learnt to do over the years (hold the screen and the squeedgie and not get blobs ink on the fabric all at once), was like a little operating theatre - with tools being past and held as needed.
below :: Bree's perfectly cut little pots. The colour looks black here, but is was actually a deep redish  / maroon / chocolate colour. She repeated the pots at the opposite end of the tea towel. She also printed some of our berry hemp with deep grey pots, which she plans on sewing into placemats. Bree's design came from an all-time favourite Lotta Prints.

above :: left - Michelle's beautifully cut tree design. right - Michelle + Estelle, cutting their intricate designs. Michelle's was a round branchy tree, and Estelle's was a mangrove (below left). Both of them came with ideas, which we talked about and decided to make them opposite of the original design. The negative background was cut out to form the design, rather than the actual tree shape itself. They both turned out as beautiful pieces of artwork, esp the grey ink on black linen tea towels.
below :: right - Doreen's sweet little houses. Crisp blue on white and black tea towels - was amazing to see the difference the same ink looks on different fabrics. I can't wait to see the details Doreen's going to add to these houses - a talented quilter, she has a big list of gifts to make before she can start on the sashiko flowers and clouds she was planning on adding to her houses.

above :: Geraldine's leafy-vine shapes, printed in a eucalyptus green / grey colour, which looked super lovely on the black linen. Our little visiting friend thought it melded into the backyard just perfectly, and came for a bit of a look around and laugh. This design had a second print run, to put a third leaf in the middle.
below :: Geraldine and Christine printing the most amazing aqua colour, onto our berry hemp. Christine's hand cut seed pod design looked excellent as a repeat pattern along the width of fabric. Unfortunately, I didn't get any more than this photo of it. Can't wait to hear what you make with it Christine!

above:: Michelle's tree design, which also looks like a leaf with veins. Deep grey on white and black linen.

And all the lovely, friendly ladies enjoying their finished pieces (and hair drying them so they wouldn't smudge on the car trip home). From l - r :: Christine, Geraldine, Doreen, Bree, Michelle & Estelle. (sorry the photo quality isn't too good....).
I love this photo, that Bree took, of the screens drying in the sun. These prove that simple, bold, graphic designs make for fantastic results. Sometimes it's the littlest and simplest shapes that really do make the best impression. I'm always so inspired by how everyone's designs are so totally different, the colour combinations they choose, and the planning of what they'll make it into, or how they're going to keep printing at home. Yah!

If you're interested in learning how to screen print - Come along to one of our fun beginner's workshops at our little studio. You'll hand cut your own stencils, using your original designs (I'll be there to help with design inspiration!), and then print using a blank screen and toxic-free printing ink. All materials will be provided as well as ongoing help, and access to extra materials at wholesale prices. We'll be printing onto sustainable and organic fabrics. You're welcome to bring along your own materials for printing onto (t-shirts, pillow cases, baby onesies, etc).We'll talk about designs suitable for stencil cut printing, as well as exposed screens.

I'm opening bookings up for the following dates:
Saturday 27th Nov, Saturday 4th Dec & Sunday 5th Dec. Gather some friends and have a crafty day out together - a yummy lunch is included, and perhaps our little kookaburra friend will come along too. Bookings and further info here. Or email me {} with any questions.

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.

screen printing workshops

Are you interested in learning how to screen print? If so, I'd love to invite you along to our new studio space for a fun little day of designing and printing.

We'll spend some time working on a design, then hand cutting the stencil to turn into your screen printing image. We'll be printing onto 100% linen tea towels, fabric pieces or any other medium you'd like to bring along (pillow cases, t-shirts, etc etc). Our new table is very lovely to print on - come and add your mark!

Our studio is located in inner-city Brisbane, and close to good transport as well as ample parking. It's a lovely location, with a good backyard for morning / afternoon tea and chatting. We'll probably have about five people or so at each workshop. {Dates I'm working towards are 9th Oct, 30th Oct and 13th Nov - how do these fit with you?}

Looking forward to hearing from you. I'm super keen to do some more printing workshops as they are so fun, and I get really inspired by all the excellent designs you come up with. For more info please  read this or contact me {}. I'm also offering a 20% discount to the first 3 people to book.........


The beautiful Megan from (my favourite childrens clothing) Blossom Child just posted the lovely images of her dandelion she printed at our workshop on Saturday.

Megan, Narelle and Kim came to the workshop with their designs ready to start, which gave them a headstart on most other people. It meant they had time to cut out those intricate designs really neatly, and get perfect results. 

I think this design would also look lovely on pillow cases + sheet sets. And t-shirts. Very simple and effective - the best sort of designs, don't you think?!

*image used with kind thanks to Megan.

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)

easing back in

i am not doing a terribly terrific job of easing back into "life after holiday"

11 days without kids,
without having to cook, clean or look after myself

oh - it's hard to come home to the noise and mess and life of a home with two busy little ones

since flying back home on Tuesday morning, i've barely been at home at all
no time to unpack a suitcase, heaving with dirty washing, dyed fabrics and memories of time away
no time to email new made friends, or catch up with old friends
barely time to even look at my photos

so today, Saturday, i've had to say no to a few things so that i can settle into the week afresh, tidy the house, and clear my mind ready to make all those 11-days of dreaming come to life. {tidy my desk and work room as well, ready for lots of new work to be designed and produced}.

here's some images from my time away in NZ.
i'll be back later this weekend with an account of my time spent on that beautiful organic farm, amongst apple and pear trees, sleeping in that sweet little caravan, finding wind blown treasures to wrap up in the luscious wool and silk fabric and simmer and boil in the pot of leaves.

printing in all it's glory

Day two of the Stitches and Craft Show is over, and I am soooooooooooooo tired. But feeling elated and can't wait to go tomorrow.
I'm really having a lot of fun. I'm much more relaxed than at Melbourne, and I'm getting to hang out with the coolest crafters on the block - who actually also happen to be people that I feel I can now call my friends!
Yesterday Sam and I did a printing workshop. I had a lot of fun with this. It felt like sitting in art class with some super arty friends, and making beautiful pieces together. We had two of the loveliest pupils anyone could ever want in a class; two beautiful people to hang out with and chat and laugh and create together. Firstly, Holly (who we met in Melbourne, at the craft show), and has a stall again here in Brisbane; and secondly Danielle, who we discovered lives in our suburb and has a cool blog to check out. (She's doing so many of the wonderful workshops available, that she's organised them in Excel - that's crafty + science, for sure; her blogs called Craft Laboratory).
I actually remembered to take some photos during this workshop, but you can also see a wrap on each of the girl's blogs.
So, if you live in or near Brisbane, and have been considering visiting this show - you still have three more days of fantastic crafters, fabrics, parades, workshops, chatting, learning, exploring, looking, soaking it all in, watching............. Head on down to Convention Centre and support handcrafted love!
PS - we still have some spots in our workshop tomorrow, you can book directly from us at stall #150.

the crafting countdown...

Did you know that some of the best crafters and bloggers are going to be hitting town this coming week! If you didn't know, you'd better sit up and take notice.
The Stitches and Craft show opens in only a few more sleeps. (well, I'm saying sleeps, but I'm not sure if I'll be getting much of that!).

Apart from the fantastic stalls you can spend hours, even days browsing and chatting with (chatting itself could take the whole week); there are also a heap of great workshops going on each and every day. Check them out here.
If you do see one here that catches your fancy, you really should pre-book, some of these workshops are so popular they will sell out (don't say I didn't warn you). Book through Ticketek, or by calling the Stitches hotline on 1800 770 222, or on the day directly from each person's stand, who'll be running the workshop.

A few of the workshops that have caught my eye:

Handsewn Felt Donuts with the beautiful and talented Holly from Two Cheese Please.
:: Create the perfect guilt-free fun treat and enjoy the ideal introduction to hand-sewn softies. The yummy results makes a great pincushion, decoration, toy or gift and is a great way to kick off crafting with felt.
(my kids love theirs, that we got from the Melbourne show - super cute).

Kit $17.00 1 hour. Beginner

Craft Lab 7 -Thursday 11.00am

Craft Lab 2 -Friday 11.00am

Craft Lab 2 -Saturday 11.00am

Craft Lab 2 -Sunday 11.00am

:: :: ::

Hand Carved Rubber Stamps with Holly from Two Cheese Please.
:: Learn how to make your own personalised stamps in this class, where you will carve your own unique designs for scrapbooking, card making, craft projects and more!

Kit $35.00 1 hour. Beginner

Craft Lab 2 -Wednesday 11.00am

Craft Lab 8 -Thursday 1.30pm

Craft Lab 3 -Friday 2.00pm

Craft Lab 2 -Saturday 1.30pm

Craft Lab 7 -Sunday 2.00pm

:: :: ::

Button Bracelets with Dearfii
:: Are you infatuated by coloured buttons? Well, this is the Craft Lab for you; Fiona will supply hundreds of coloured buttons as well as her extensive craft experience and skills for you to construct a gorgeous button bracelet.

Kit $15.00. 1 hour. Beginner

Craft Lab 2 -Wednesday 12.30pm

Craft Lab 6 -Wednesday 2.30pm

Craft Lab 3 -Thursday 11.00am

Craft Lab 6 -Thursday 2.00pm

Craft Lab 5 -Friday 11.00am

Craft Lab 3 -Friday 3.15pm

Craft Lab 2 -Saturday 12.15pm

Craft Lab 6- Saturday 2.45pm

Craft Lab 6 -Sunday 11.00am

Craft Lab 8 -Sunday 1.30pm

:: :: ::

Kumihimo using Disc with Trish from Trishalan Designs.
:: Come and try this creative Japanese Braiding Technique. Using a durable and portable disc create 2 braids for your craft and jewellery projects.

Kit $3.00 1 Hours. Beginner

Craft Lab 3-Wednesday 12.30pm

Craft Lab 2 -Thursday 12.30pm

Craft Lab 3 -Friday 11.00am

Craft Lab 3 -Saturday 11.00am

Craft Lab 3 -Sunday 11.00am

:: :: ::

1950s One Yard Aprons. Presented by Melissa of Thread Den.

:: Cutest aprons ever! In 2 hours you will construct a genuine 1950's apron. Imagine the baking you'll be able to do in these pretty little numbers. Basic sewing skills necessary.

Kit $33.00. 2 hours. Intermediate

Thread Den Craft Lab 10 - Sunday 2.00pm

:: :: ::

No Sew Fabric Flowers. Presented by Louise of Made by Miffy.

:: Learn how to make the sweetest fabric flowers! These flowers can be used as hair clips, t-shirt embellishments, brooches, to sass up your handbags, headbands for starters, and a great little gift for your friends all made by you! When you see how easy it is you'll surround yourself with a handmade fabric flower garden in no time at all! In this Craft Lab you will make 2 fabric flower brooches or hairclips or one of each. Your Kit will have enough supplies for you to create a further 2 flowers and a customised supply list and inspiration guide for you to keep creating!

Kit $18.00 45 mins. All Skill Levels

Craft Lab 8 -Wednesday 2.00pm

Craft Lab 3 -Thursday 2.15pm

Craft Lab 7 -Friday 1.45pm

Craft Lab 7 -Saturday 1.45pm

Craft Lab 5 -Sunday 3.15pm

:: :: ::

Stella’s Cousin- Making a Sock Monkey. Presented by Kristie of Rourke and Henry.

:: Combining machine embroidery and hand sewing, learn how to turn a pair of socks into your very own funky sock monkey. Basic sewing machine knowledge is required.

Kit $15.00 1 Hour. Intermediate

Brother Sewing Craft Lab 9 -Friday 1.00pm

:: :: ::

And lastly, these couple that Sam and I will be presenting (if we can find someone to baby sit the store and the children!).
We will be having lots of fun in the printing class - learning new techniques and talking about design ideas.
And I have some beautiful fabrics - organic and reclaimed cottons, etc - to make some unique and special bags to show off to your friends.
We'd love to see you at both or either of our workshops. (If you do the printing one first, you will print a piece of fabric that you can then use in the tote one to make your own bag!).

Hand Printing and Design with Sam and me.
:: Learn composition and style elements to create designs suitable for screen printing, stenciling and handstamping. Using your own hand cut designs (or ours if you like), hand print, learning different techniques you can easily replicate at home. You will complete three projects to take home. You may wish to bring additional items for printing such as a plain pillowcase, clothing or a plain cotton/linen tea towel.

Kit $47.00 2 hours. Beginner

Craft Lab 5 -Wednesday 1.30pm

Craft Lab 5 -Friday 12.30pm

:: :: ::

Organic Cotton Tote Bag with me.
:: Learn to make a fully lined tote bag, using beautiful hemp / organic cotton fabric. Turn your bag into a work of art using different design and crafting techniques and reclaimed materials. Perfect for taking to the market, library or everyday use, the tote bag is an ideal beginner project, or for those looking for new inspiration. All materials provided.

Kit $32.00 1.5 Hours. All Skill Levels

Brother Sewing Craft Lab 9 -Thursday 1.00pm

Brother Sewing Craft Lab 9 -Saturday 1.00pm

:: :: ::

Can't wait to see you there. Please come and introduce yourself; love to meet you.

reverse garbage silks

These are a few of the silk swatch books I found the other day.
At Reverse Garbage. Such a great place to go - for the kids and the adults. And for those of you who don't sew or craft or tinker about with things; there is a shop there that sells the wares of some amazingly crafted reversed garbage. Everything in the shop has to be made of a certain % of recycled goods; there's handbags and purses, lots of beautiful jewelery, clothing, softies, and all sorts of other treasures.
These silks are destined to be a new skirt for me - I'm reworking a pair of jeans, which will have some silk panels. Making it all up as I go along, so a bit tentative to cut into this beautiful silk.
Some pieces will be part of my Tote-Bag workshop at Stitches & Craft Show. There'll be hemp / organic cottons and reclaimed pieces for people to have some fun with bag making.
(Bookings here - for our tote workshop + the printing & design workshop. Both should be lots of fun).
Okay - kids have gone to grandparents house. I have a pile of paperwork and receipts to wrangle into some sort of order.

Enjoy your day. It's sunshiney here, after some rain last night. I'm looking forward to day of quiet working.....

come and visit us at...

We have lots of new ideas and different pieces. New products and designs and fabrics.
So, if you're nearby, please come and visit us. Stand 150 in the Incubator Section. We're lucky to be spending the week with Peppermint Mag. What fun.
We will also be presenting some great, informative and fun workshops.

Hand Printing and Design - Learn composition and style elements to create designs suitable for screen printing, stenciling and handstamping. Using your own hand cut designs (or ours if you like), hand print, learning different techniques you can easily replicate at home. You will complete three projects to take home, using hemp / organic cotton and recycled paper. You may wish to bring additional items for printing such as a plain pillow case, clothing or a plain cotton/linen tea towel.

Organic Cotton Tote Bag - Learn to make a fully lined tote bag, using beautiful hemp / organic cotton fabric. Turn your bag into a work of art using different design and crafting techniques and reclaimed materials. Perfect for taking to the market, library or everyday use, the tote bag is an ideal beginner project, or for those looking for new inspiration. All materials provided.

To book either, or both workshops, please contact Stitches & Craft for details.

PS - I have just launched our new look website. Go and have a look, please do let me know what you think. (Still working on some sections).