Saturday, 31 January 2009

Oh My!

Look at these crochet budgerigars, from a pattern by crochetroo. Crochet and budgerigars, what a perfect combination! I love birds but I don't like them in the house or anywhere near my hair so a crochet budgie would be perfect for me!

As you can probably guess, crochetroo is an Aussie crochet girl and she has a great line in crochet koalas, spiders and other Australiana (which I am told is making a big comeback in the fashion world).

Thanks to wee birdy for this find!

Tuesday, 27 January 2009

Cute ribbons

A sweet little parcel arrived today from my favourite ribbon shop! The aqua felt ric rac is my favourite. I am a ric rac junkie but this is the first time I have bought some in felt, it is beautiful. The gingham and striped ribbons are for making gift tags, the rest is just for my stash!

Monday, 26 January 2009

New things in our web shop

We now have the full range of Belle & Boo art prints for sale in our web shop, and they will also be finding their way to some nice independent retailers around Australia over the next few months.

Belle & Boo already have a small following here. Local fans include Frankie Magazine, who have featured Belle & Boo on several occasions, and Meet Me at Mikes, whose pretty shop sign and logo were specially designed by Mandy Sutcliffe, the creator and illustrator of Belle & Boo.

Last September I exhibited at a trade fair in London and was lucky enough to have my stand placed opposite Belle & Boo’s stand. Mandy and Kate (her friend and business partner, whose first baby is due any day now) are lovely girls and they kept Angela and I entertained throughout the fair. I am so excited to be working with them to introduce Belle & Boo to Australia more widely.

As well as the art prints, we are also working on a very special collaboration between Lark and Belle & Boo, to be launched next month at Life in Style: a range of Belle & Boo gifts, hand-made here in Daylesford, featuring Mandy's illustrations. The range will include pretty badges and mirrors, soaps, magnets and gift tags. They are going to be oh so lovely!

Find Belle & Boo art prints here

Friday, 23 January 2009


THANKS everyone for your supportive comments about our IKEA nightmare - after being very nice to the warehouse manager (through gritted teeth) we now have our Expedits! There are still a few left at Richmond if anyone needs them.

Thursday, 22 January 2009

The CFA are my heroes!

Tyldon CFA Shed - Victoria, originally uploaded by spacountry.

A very hot, very windy day today. The power was out all over the district for two hours. Bush fires are happening nearby, at Drummond and Woodend. Thank goodness for the CFA and the amazing work they do. Last week our house started to catch fire (it wasn't from a bush fire but it was caused by hot weather) and the CFA fire truck and volunteers were here within two or three minutes. Support them please!

Monday, 19 January 2009

IKEA HELL - why do we bother?

So it's the first day in five weeks of school holidays that we've had childcare for the full day. Finally we sit down together and start to plan our stand at next month's trade fair and make a list of things we need to buy.

Item one: six IKEA shelves. But oh dear, the IKEA website says they are out of stock. So I ring up to find out when they will have more, and the operator reminds me of that character on Little Britain ("computer says no"). But apparently they ARE in stock, despite what the website says. But only eight of them, and no more for another 3-4 weeks.

This sets us into an immediate panic, as our trade fair is in 4 weeks and we need six shelves. Paul hooks the trailer up to the car and makes the 1.5 hour trip from the country into Melbourne. And when he gets there, yes, you guessed it, no stock! And worse - 80 units are due in tomorrow.

Unsympathetic warehouse manager shrugs and of course does not apologise for the complete failure of IKEA' s stock inventory system. Nothing can be done. Nothing for it, but to make the trip all the way again tomorrow, probably with the kids this time. And what if we get there before the stock arrives? Or if it doesn't arrive at all?

I understand IKEA's cash n' carry business model, and I appreciate that the lack of basic customer services like delivery means that we get to buy affordable furniture, but really, can't they at least sort their computer system out so that their warehouse manager, website and customer service team are giving consistent information? Surely this can't be good for sales - but then again, does anyone ever give up on IKEA? I wont give up, we will be driving another 3 hours every day until we get the blasted shelves...

I wondered, can it be true that people really keep forgiving IKEA endlessly for the shoddy way that they treat us? I think it must be.

Which led me to undertake some scientific research on Flickr. And my thoughts are confirmed - the IKEA Lover's Group has 3075 members and the IKEA Hater's Group has only 8.

IKEA WAREHOUSE HELL, originally uploaded by tesselate.

Friday, 16 January 2009

Today's Harvest!


I am very excited about this book that will be published in March, written by my friend Pip and featuring lots of lovely Aussie crafters, including me!!!

It is not the first book that I have been involved in - I was a publishing exec in my previous life and have even written a couple of books for Lonely Planet, but somehow this one means more to me as it is very personal.

We were each asked to send in a box of our favourite bits and bobs along with our project instructions (I'm not allowed to say what my project is yet!).

I carefully filled an old biscuit tin with all my special mementoes and sent it off via Australia Post. I am expecting it back any day now, what a delight to see my most-loved little things again after all this time! I can't wait to see how the book will look when finished, Pip is so clever, it is bound to blow your mind with loveliness. Roll on March 25!

Wednesday, 7 January 2009

I've Got Mail!

Don't you love it when it's a sunny day and the postie brings you more than just bills and junk?

Top is a special parcel from Belle & Boo (more about this soon), below is a Fisher-Price Schoolhouse, sent to me by the awesome Anna-Maria, after reading my post about adding to our little collection. Isn't it great to be part of a blog community?

Saturday, 3 January 2009