craft gifts of the week

The Birthday that never ends...
Just when you thought we'd stop parading the spoils it seemed silly given the glove-themed week to not show you the lipstick pink leather gloves Ramona's mother bestowed upon her! they are truly excellent - soft buttery leather, very sweet and sassy. Wolfie would like them (see yesterdays entry).
And finally on the birthday front. Ramona's long distance deary didn't think about the consequences of buying this decoupage vintage glass plate - 4 hour plane ride home with that teetering on her lap - instead he fell in love with the 19th century engraving and the very flash velvet back. These lovely things come out of the studio of a New York artist John Derain. It's become the perfect repository for treasure - and leather gloves of course!


wolfie redux

Long time readers will remember Wolfie from as far back as May 2006 but we thought he deserved another outing as he is 'vintage' Jenny Bartholemew and also one of Becks prized possesions. He kind of freaks the rest of us out tho. Not sure if it's a grin that says "mmm you look tasty" or "I'm going to woop your asses at Scrabble" either way he's quite the individual. Gotta sneak peak of Jennys show last night - David Lynch fans get down there on Thursday...



Bowled Over Managed to catch the final day of Mary Louise Edwards' show at Stephen McLaughlan Gallery on Saturday and was lucky enough to see the new work by Shane Kent. those of you not familiar with his work should really get along. He's a great ceramicist with a lovely painterly surface. Dots, lines and washes adorn simple vessels and strange sculptural shapes. Quite lovely.
Also on this week for all your potheads (we never tire of that joke) is the RMIT Ceramic Auction. This fundraiser for the end of year catalogue is sure to be easy on the eyes and hard on the credit card. Bowls thrown by Prue Venables, Chris Sanders and Chris Byrne have then been adorned by members of the Arts Faculty. There should be some beauties on show.
On Thursday night you can catch the HML staff at the opening of Jenny Bartholemew's new show Digitally Enhanced. Using found gloves Jenny has anthropomorphised these cast offs into strange creatures with the addition of stitching, adding and subtracting and intoducing all sorts of flotsam and jetsam. Jenny has a way with debris -you have to see it to believe it.

PS also saw Maggie Pereya and Lyndal Peakes fringe show at Platform that we recommended to you last week. those hml readers who are into toys, doll making, fairy tales and myth really have to get down there. Fantastic.


Lest We Forget

Highlight of the year...
Yesterday I was honoured to be the judge of the Veteran Affairs Writing Art and Craft Award/ Craft Division being held at the Red Cross Recreation Centre at the Heidelberg Repat Hospital. I had to chose 1st 2nd and 3rd and highly commended in ceramics, wood, textiles and needlepoint. I can't reveal the winners to you but I can show you some of the highlights of the day...
I took this photo espeically for Beck as you all know what a big fan of the knitted toy she is. I was devestated that it wasn't for sale as this would be the PERFECT Christmas present. It's by Mrs May Brown
This quilt was one of two made by the very talented Mrs Angela Grutzner
And I was very fond of the leather bag by John Alexander (who also stitched up an impressive biker vest)
A mosaic shoe is never a bad thing. Mrs Ellen Verrier has become famous for her tessere stylins
Last years ceramic winner Mrs Annette Pollard impressed again with her china painting...
This cinderella by Mrs Joyce Driscoll was actually one of those dolls that you flip to reveal another doll - in this case cinderella appears both before and after the ball.
I was humbled to be awarding prizes to handiwork I could only dream of producing. It was also great to be around craft that was not about stockists, marketing, labels, and getting into lifestyle magazines. This was very pure nanna and grandpa craft. A salient reminder of what it means to lead a handmadelife. I hope that they've passed on their skills to daughters, sons and grandkids.




as you well know we ladies love a bargain, and we LOOOOOOOVVVVVVE our Japanese textiles so when these two things come together at a ziguzagu sale you can bet your bottom yen that we will be there scooping up obi's by the dozen.

get some!



You all know by now how hml ladies love a road trip. Any excuse to get the thermos out and hit the open road. We've long been talking up the benefits of sea air and good craft so this weekend we are going to head down to the Mornington Penninsula to see the Industrial Strength Jewellery by Louise Aaron on now at Pomme

But before that we'll get urban and hit one of the first of this years Fringe Festival treats with the new Platfrom show by artists Maggie Pereya and Lyndal Peake.

Famously crafty gals who are better known for wacked out toys and soft brooches Eternal External promises to 'capture mortality, to suspend, analyse and dissect specimens - the dark art of taxidermy with a playful twist'....sounds intriguing. And it's a good opprtunity to hit the arcade and see the new range at the Cats Meow and drool of the zines at Sticky.

More Festival highlights in the days to come...


Readers Digest

Dear Readers, hml has been experiencing technical (not to mention emotional, financial, geographical and medical) difficulty this past week - hence the lack of posts. So to make up for our absence, today's missive will be jam packed with a weeks worth of pith and pictures. Plus we promise to be here same time same bat channel tomorrow!

Our show of the week is an unusual one but we thought you 'woodies' out there would appreciate the work of Phoenix born artist Jennyfer Stratman on show this week at Uber Gallery (no that is not a typo - that's how she spells her name). Her work is beautful and inspiring. The tree motif continues...
Our artwork of the week comes from our beloved Intern - now 13, who did this excellent painting for Ramona's birthday. Most impressive. We are constantly amazed at how skilled kids are at composition -free of the constraints passed on to us by sucky high school art teachers - the Intern is a talent to watch...
Meal of the week had to be the humble lemon birthday cake served as breakfast in bed. There is nothing better - especially when you know Chef has gone through not one not two but three White Wings packet mixes to get it right. Top Drawer Sir!
Image of the week comes direct from Western Australia where it is in fact Wildflower season. Masses of everlastings, strawflowers, wild freesias, daisies and even the evil but lovely Pattersons curse are just everywhere. The side of the highway never looked so good!
And finally a gentle reminder to all you handmadelifers - only 14 weeks til Christmas (holy jingle bells batman!)
so if your'e planning on crafting things for family and friends - trust us - now is the time to start.



banking on a nest egg

Ramona was beside herself with excitment at the springtime presentation of Beck's birthday pressie for her... little did she know that the gift within was just as impressive as the outside wrapping! a ceramic birdhouse money box and special one off Shah Ruhk card for madam.
We had planned on seeing the new Shah Rukh vehicle at the cinema as part of Ramona's birthday celebrations as we couldn't imagine anything better than watching the Rukh dancing around a hockey pitch in suburban Melbourne in short shorts, But we were saddened to find that bloody Hoyts had once again changed the screening times at the last minute so we were going to have to make do with our imaginations and the card to satisfy our Rukh cravings for now.
However it was such a nice day we decided to go for a trip to Gertrude street... we tried to get to an exhibition at seventh gallery only to find it had already closed, so we made do with a wander around the streets drooling at the Spacecraft store, buying up the last copy of Selvedge from Artisan Books, wondering what body parts to sell to procure a pair of Preston Zly custom red buckle shoes from the Bereau and eating a most delectable lunch at Enotecha...
In the end not such a bad birthday after all - especially given that everyhwere we turned we saw the most beautiful magnolia displays.
Ah spring... you have finally sprung!



up hill and down dale...
Ok so you are going to have to fully embrace Public Transport or the burning of more fossil fuel in your brum brums to catch our three shows of the week. The first is a must see: Mary Louise Edwards' new show at Stephen McLaughlin Gallery opened on Saturday and we are mad keen to get into the Nicholas Building lift to see her new work. Those of you lucky enough to have seen her recent show at Bendigo know that Edwards has a way with material- from the chux superwipe to the humble cork via the cardboard tube. The work above is called "Grand Gesture" so you can see why we are so excited.. We don't often recommend printmaking shows to you but we are thoroughly seduced by the etchings of Monique Auriccio so we'll be getting on the 112 tram to see her new work at Australian Galleries on Smith Street.
And for some fantastic examples of Melbourne Modernism - inluding some beautiful textiles by Frances Burke and great furniture by Fred Ward we'll be heading down the eastern freeway to Heide Museum of Modern Art - because quite frankly it's impossible to get to on PT - Rebecca could do it but Ramona just refuses. So into the Cherrymobile we go!
PS isnt this weather AMAZING dear readers? get out into the sun and get some Vitamin D while you can!