Tuesday, June 28, 2011

My Upmarket haul!

E and I made it to the Perth Upmarket this weekend. We had both skipped the last market so made sure that we were free for the June extravaganza. We enjoyed ourselves and there were some many pretty things to see and buy and exclaim over. Partway through the market we had to stop spending as we had run out of cash.

The photos shows my haul from the day, and amongst the goodies are cards and wrapping paper from Huckleberry Hill, chocolate coated orange segments from Whistler's Chocolates, gorgeous organic cotton blankie and onesie from inuk designs, organic cotton tea towel with instructional message by Tex & Joe, and fabric pack form Old Grey House.

We also played a small part in supporting the food stalls and sampled chocolate macarons from Rochelle Adonis, chai latte from Chai Baba and a coffee.

Making use of our limes

C came home from work on Saturday and asked if I would make a lime tart for him to share with his workmates. There was nothing on television so I was happy to get creative in the kitchen! He gave me a hand making the pastry and the curd, then went to bed and left it to me to roll and blind bake the pastry!

We have many limes, although they are starting to run low, and struggle to come up with creative ways to use them. So far it is all curries, corona and tarts!

You can find the tart recipe here.

Vintage Gibbons!

I am not entirely sure why I was thinking about the books of Stella Gibbons, but I decided to see if they had released any more of her novels. I did a quick internet search and was delighted to learn that there are several novels soon to be published by Vintage Classics!

I stumbled across Cold Comfort Farmwhen I was at uni. Penguin released a stack of classics that sold for $5 and I bought as many as I thought I could afford. Not all of them caught my fancy and I still have a few that I have not read! Cold Comfort Farm was one of those that I have read and re-read. I re-visited it a few years ago and was happy to find Nightingale Wood on a trip to Melbourne. After I devoured that book I searched for more Gibbons but sadly that was it for new prints at the time.

On Friday after work I popped into the New Edition Bookshop in Northbridge and enquired about the books. They have taken my details and will let me know when they arrive! I was told that there are 14 of her books to be published and I am looking forward to reading something new.


Sunday, June 26, 2011

A cross tea

A fair while ago I felt the urge to learn how to cross stitch. The best design that I could find at the local sewing warehouse was a sampler of teacups! I started it and gave up for a stretch after getting frustrated, of all things, by not being able to distinguish the three different thread colours V LT Mocha brown, Ultra V LT Mocha Brown and sometimes Winter White. The thread came all bunched together and I struggled to differentiate.

One teacup down, three to go!

I have no idea what I will do when I have finished it. If anyone has suggestions then please let me know.

Fabrics and table linen

In burst of enthusiasm I ordered some fabrics and table linen last night. The fabrics were from Ink & Spindle and the napkins from Thea & Sami. I thought that the fish were extremely appropriate as C is a keen fisherman.

Ink & Spindle have many lovely designs however at the moment they are experiencing a supply issue and the available designs are limited. I am still looking for inspiration for the fabric for my footstool, and I am thinking that I will grab the blue version of this Kangaroo Paw print once it is back in stock. They make use of organic base fabrics and environmentally friendly, solvent free inks.

Thea & Sami also use organic fabrics and print with water-based, solvent free inks. I thought that their fish motif was very cute, and E gave it the thumbs up.

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Saturday, June 25, 2011

Trying to inspire myself

On my wander up William Street in Northbridge last night I eventually made it to William Topp. They have a lovely collection of pretty items, including many Australian designed and made pieces. I was intrigued to find amongst the shelves a couple of glass Sunbeam Mix Master bowls similar to the one that I have! I now know where to go if I (or C) ever break my small mixing bowl.

The book Vintage Fabric Accessories caught my eye. It is a lovely collection of patterns for girly accessories like clasp purses, card wallets and bags. The book has gorgeous photos of different versions of the items in many fabrics as well as some great photos to illustrate step by step the process of following the patterns.

I have added it to my slowly growing collection of crafty stuff and hope that I will be inspired enough to make use of it soon. It has inspired me to purchase some fabrics and I just ordered some more from Ink & Spindle!


Friday, June 24, 2011

Miss Kylie Minogue

Last Wednesday E and I braved the Burswood crowds to take in the music and theatre of Kylie Minogue. It was a very well coordinated extravaganza and there was much to be amazed by.

Kylie made several costume changes throughout the show, and it appeared that she had a gold bodysuit that was the basis of all of her costumes. E informed me that Dolce & Gabanna had designed the costumes and they certainly spoke of catwalk styling!

The staging was fairly complex and there was a horseshoe section that enabled Kylie and her entourage to approach closer to the croud. There was a section within the horseshoe where the most devoted fans were. I was intrigued by the sections of the stage that rotated and lifted! Amazing. Kylie stood in the centre of the circle and was lifted up whilst her dancers were strapped to the circle as it rotated and tilted towards vertical.

We were disappointed to hear that the support band, Gypsy and the Cat, had not made it to Perth due to the inimical ash cloud that has been disrupting our air space over the last few weeks. The DJ that came on before Kylie was possibly not the best substitute and E commented that he looked like a geriatric man with a laptop rather than a cutting edge music mixer.

As we lined up to enter we were pleased to notice that we were by no means the oldest fans at the concert.

Kylie impresses me with her longevity in the industry and her agility to stay contemporary. The set list was a mix of old and new and we sang along whenever we knew the words! We heard a rock-y version of "Can't Get You Out of My Head" and grooved along to "The Loco-motion". I had seen Kylie perform when she was last in Perth in Showgirl: The Homecoming Tour. During that concert she had seemed very tired and was not particularly active on the stage. It was great to see on the Aphrodite Tour that she looked healthy and energetic. I was surprised to realise that it has been five years since I went to that concert! How time flies when you are having fun.

For another opinion you can read this review.

The most unusual event during the concert was unscripted, and generate a fair amount of publicity after the show. Kylie brought a couple up on the stage with her from the $400 "splashzone", and the chicken lifesaver man promptly got down on one knee to propose to his partner of nine years. The way that the laws are moving in this country they may see another nine years go past without any legal means to go beyond the engaged state.

E wanted me to take a photo of the performers as it looked like they were not wearing any underwear.

A tiny milk jug

I bought a second hand milk jug yesterday. Not for any particular reason, I just felt like it. The restaurant at the bottom of the building where I work is closing down and selling out all of their stock.

I feel guilty for not supporting them more than I have, although they are more of a fine dining restaurant rather than a cheap and cheerful lunch bar!

My patronage however would not have assisted in their decision to stay in business, as apparently the landlord wanted to increase the rent by half again and they chose to shut down rather than pay the rent raise.

At any rate I have a new little jug that I can use with my teapot - at least until I find myself a blue one! It sits in size between the cute jug that my sister E gave me and the generic jug I use when I have company.


Sunday, June 19, 2011

An afternoon in Maylands

E and I headed out today to check out a new lunch venue and shops! We made our way to Maylands and Sherbert Cafe and Bake Shop. We also planned to visit a shop we had just heard of called Out on a Limb. The store states that their "ethos is to sell predominantly australian and new zealand made eco friendly sustainable products and to support local artisan talents to create an interesting mix of gifts and homewares". Awesome! E and I found many beautiful items to admire while we were there. I came away with a stack of Blueberry Paper cards. There were so many lovely designs to choose from and so I grabbed a handful!
(I cannot find a website for the store but they do have a facebook page.)

Our tummies were rumbling by then and we headed into the Sherbert Cafe. Lunch was lovely and we finished off the meal with an enormous piece of Red Velvet Cake. Even though we were sharing we failed to finish the piece as it was so large and rich! The cake had a lovely texture and there were so many tasty looking treats that we will have to go back to try some more.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Chocolate cake and lashings of tea

A long weekend is always a good excuse for a lazy afternoon, and I invited some girlfriends around for a slice (or two!) of chocolate cake.

Nigella's Old Fashioned Chocolate Cake made another appearance. It is such a simple cake - measure all of the ingredients into a food processor and mix! Then bake. I also thought it would be a good time to christen the friand pan that M gave me as a birthday gift and make my first ever friands! A simple recipe for lime friands meant that I could make use of the abundance of limes on our tree.

It is so lovely to catch up with my girlfriends, and share news and stories. M brought her daughter LittleK, who appreciated the chocolate icing on the cake! Of the five of us who were around the table, three of us at various stages of housebuild and we caught up on the progress and shared ideas. N is learning the finer arts of cake decorating and she is always full of interesting and useful hints for improving your baking.

Photos of my baking efforts:
Chocolate cake
Lime friands

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

WWotW: Principle vs Principal

I was a little confused today. Actually it does not usually take that much to confuse me. I was handed the business card of a colleague that identified him as a "Principle", rather than a "Principal". It confused me enough that I referred myself to the dictionary to confirm my understanding of both words!

principle noun a basic idea or rule that explains or controls how something happens or works =

principal adjective first in order of importance =