down in lamington drive... The ladies of HML have always harboured not-so secret dreams of becoming great illustrators and we so hero worship peeps who just produce consistently jaw dropping work. We are very excited about the new gallery Lamington Drive
The new show highlights the work of genius penman Neils 'Nails' Oetjen and really I think we can manage to get to te corner of George and Gertrude St in Fitzroy...
well we'll give it a try. The weathers fining up, baby Maxwell is getting bigger (as is Ramona - Thomas is only 6 weeks away).



one day in september...

Oh yes it's Grand Final Fever at hml headquarters... oh hang on, no it's not, neither one of our teams managed to get through the confusing finals series surprise surprise... but nevertheless in honor of Melbourne's Grand Final party atmosphere we looked through the archives to come up with a football themed recipe for the big day. We needed look no further than Binny Lum's Favourite Recipes of Famous Men another op shop gem, that groups a motley assortment of local and international gentlemen and their favourite recipes together. From Rock Hudson's Bourbon Barbeque to Don Dunstan's Forced Meat (ooo errrr), Phillip Adam's Bazza Beef to Leonard Teale's Homicide Ham Slice it's all gold, gold, gold for the dinner table. We especially enjoy the numerous autographed pages (it seems the former owner 'Babs' was quite in the know with the local glitterati) but couldn't go past Louie the Lips' Chicken a' la Magpie as the top pick for today's festivities...

Oh and if any of you out there actually want to know what Graham Kennedy, Don Chip, Don Burrows, Andrew Peacock (caviar and cheese balls - too perfect) Derek Nimmo, James Last or Dave Brubeck like to eat we're more than happy to send out the recipes., just shoot us an email.



a time to remember This week has been so fruitful craft wise. One of the great highlights for Ramona was being Craft Judge for the Veteran Affairs Art Award at the repatriation hospital in Heidelberg....
It was great to see the Mrs May Brown had again got out the knitting needles to create these beautful topsy turvy dolls (they turn upside down to reveal a second character - Holly turns into Ivy)
And the hand stitching on this large quilt by Mrs Elizabeth Templar was amazing...
And how about this gorgeous sampler by Anne Hope? so beautfully done....
Mr Raymond Hector had a crack at creating and entire coffee table out matchsticks (!!!)
It's always a humbling experience when you see such fine nanna and grandpa craft. Here is last years HML entry for those that want MORE



the best of the best

The ladies of HML are immeshed in the fabric of Craft Victoria so we don't often promote the shows there citing conflict of interest (board member/retail manager). But this month sees three of our favourite people of all time grace Melbourne with new and thrilling work. We can't think of makers who consistently thrill us more than Stephenn Gallagher (above ), Irene Grishin- Selzer ...

and Anna Davern...

We are a bit beside ourselves with excitement. Three shows at once opening this Thursday night at Craft Victoria. We think this will be the best month in Flinders Lane this year. This is Craft with a capital C. Be there or be square...



bluebeard's revenge...
In honour of yesterday's standing as International Speak Like a Pirate Day celebrations we've got an excellent weekend project that combines two of our favourite things... burly swashbuckling fella's with big beards, and the skull and crossbones. This "we call them pirates" hat comes from the excellent HELLO YARN blog, and given the weather seems to have turned blustery once again it might be time to whip out the needles and whip up one of these beanies for the Jolly Roger in your life... although given it's currently school holidays (again!!!) you might find the milk carton spanish galleon below an easier all hands on deck crafting activity.YAAAARRRR!



Today is International Talk Like A Pirate Day - long awaited in the hml calendar. Because, let's face it, an eyepatch, a woodent leg, pieces of eight, not to mention Johnny Depp... all very attractive accoutrement!
We also found this fantastic Craft Like a Pirate website truly inspiring. We'll be attempting the pirate themed embroidered diorama and then dressing up our Blyth Dolls like Long Jane Silver. Or maybe we'll just hit the rum and watch that pirate muppet movie this afternoon...



they have what in their fridge!!!

There is nothing better than nosing about in someone else's house, but now that we two are getting more and more time in our own homes the opportunity to stick our beaks into other peoples living rooms has been seriously curtailed - enter Normal Room - the ideal website for nosy parkers providing a virtual window into the homes of people all over the world. Search by country, room or Inhabitants or keywords... Genius! Normal Room is also perfect antidote to all those designer blogs and websites that showcase the impossibly perfect rooms of famous people that make us all feel like complete slobs... By the way the fridge above is from a house in the US inhabited by a couple, no kids.



first place

Number three in the impressive library of self published works by Melbourne's And Collective is A Place Tells A Story. Both a book and CD project engage with subjective notions of place and community via visual art, text, music and artefact. Produced by And Collective members Marc Martin (illustrator/photographer/graphic designer), Justine Ellis (production assistant/photographer) and Dan Rule (writer/editor and go-getting man about town) the book will expose "Milk bars, street corners, neighborhoods, roads within the context of an increasingly globalised consciousness, reconnecting with locality and specificity... exploring these sites' histories and narrative; posing questions about their future"...

Mmm sounds HEAVY but we'll forgive the earnestness as we look forward to seeing some of our favourite corners of Melbourne up in lights while finding some new nooks and crannies to wander down. After all there's nothing like being a tourist in your own town, and this seems like an ideal new guidebook. Oh and don't forget there's a soundtrack too including Perfect Black Swan, Nadia Combe, Saddleback, Bird Traps, Chris Smith, Lee Memorial and Jon Tjhia, which is excellent news because we love nothing better than loading up the ipod with site specific sounds before heading out for said wander.

And Collective publications are notorious for showcasing the best and brightest of Melbourne's emerging art scene, and this their newest project is no exception, featuring works by Warwick Baker, Tom Civil, Oslo Davis, Kubota Fumikazu, Rachael Wenona Guy, Andy Jackson, Kyle de Kuijer, Brigid McCarthy, Meg Mundell, Mandy Ord, Liza Power, Memuzin River, Lou Smith, Salote Tawale and Eve Vincent. Get some.

A Place Tells A Story: the launch happens this Thursday, September 18 between 6pm-9pm at the Metropolis Bookshop Lvl 3, Curtain House 252 Swanston Street, Melbourne.



you take a jump to the left...
The ladies of HML are not in the habit of promoting crap radio stations or bad musical revivals but the Intern insisted that we check out the Guiness book of Records attempt for the number of people doing The Time Warp from Rocky Horror Picture Show...
Of course we knew there was a chance of spotting some top outfitting and the weather was truly glorious, perhaps a little too glorious for some of the full goth make up on display...
Of course Beck is the real photographer at HML and is still a wee bit housebound with baby Max so it was up to Ramona to catch these images. That's why all the shots are from behind- far too chicken to approach people face on...
We don't think they reached their goal (something like 5000 people did it in Trafalgar Square some years ago) but a good time was had by all...
Nice to see them out and about in daylight hours. Bless!



Weird beards

Nothing says "Check me out, I’m jolly trendy” more than experimental facial hair. However, not everyone is endowed with the neccessary equipment to 'grow their own', so alternatives have always popular. You may have seen this in the good weekend a couple of weeks ago, but we liked it so much we had to do a little more investigating and thought some of you may have missed it - so here it is... the beard cap.

Vik Prjónsdóttir are an Icelandic collective making super cool high-concept knitted designs in a weeny village in southern iceland with an equally eccentric knitting mill... and isnt it just like those crazy icelanders to come up with range of products that would include such genius as the beard cap... all the fun of the neo-folk facial fuzz but with added removable convenience - go hairy for the weekend then head back into the office on Monday clean as a whistle. Alongside the beard cap the collection includes a brilliant knitted Sealpelt jumpsuit above that makes you look like a giant baby seal in a psychedelic beanbag which is just what we're both after at the moment.

And then there's the Regional and Sea blanket's, each resplendant in their respective oversized bold topographic and anchor patterning and the Twosome above - a sofa-sized snuggle blanket with double ended hoods especially handy for watching those northern lights that draws on the icelandic tradition of sharing beds during the coldest winter nights. Yes these are definately our kind of people.

The Beard Cap comes in grey, brown and black in two lengths - although you might have to make a special order if you want the full ZZ-Top hillbilly length number. The design was apparently inspired by a traditional farmer’s balaclava... except of course those didn’t have the moustaches attached. At the moment their gear is only available outside Iceland from one shop in Williamsburg, Brooklyn... so you know it's super hip. Personally we'd like to see some seapelts out there on high street before spring really kicks in with the warmer weather, but we'd be just as happy with a couple of beard caps at High Vibes in a couple of weeks.



A stitch in time...
And its a handmade hat's off to the fabulous cover girls of the English 1950's ladies home journal Stitchcraft. An excellent little periodical providing everyone in the village with deliciously nipped waist knit patterns, hot tips on jacobean screen embroidery, how to's for cheval cut work and teneriffe lace, 'contemporary' quilting techniques and testimonials on the benefits of worcestershire sauce as a super flavour boost for winter soups. We think Stitchcraft was undoubtedly the golden hands of it's day- and probably staple reading mothers of the boys own annual era (featured recently on Miss PenPen's Cottage Industry). We picked up these treasures at a ridiculously cheap 10 cents a pop on a recent pre-baby road trip... which of course involved an absolutely wizard picnic on an tartan wool blanket with cold ham sandwiches and lashings of ginger beer.



pretty in pink It would seem that this year there are many small people in the world of HML. Of course Max has already arrived and Thom is just 8 weeks away but there also seems to be a gaggle of girls ranging in age 1- 14! Some of them are getting an extra little something to hang on the tree and mark the occasion this year. Their names are painted on the back (always exciting). Sometimes the best things come in small packages anyway! Like kids...



paper or plastic?

The ladies of HML are really only visiting shows in the virtual world as time seems to be the enemy of late. For those of you with more freedom of movement we'd love you to go to Sutton gallery to see this work by Elizabeth Gower that's part of her Paris Project and inspired by snatches of wallpaper seen on her travels. Looks delicious...
And who can resist a dork in x-ray specs - not us that's for sure and we do need to make the effort to support the independently run space Until Never (in Hosier Lane just opposite Fed Square). Who is this Jesse Hogan and is it too super cool for us or in fact ultra daggy? Those in the know tell it's waaaay cool. So get along if you dare and let us know...



popcorn and pakora's

Usually this time of year sees us stuck to our chairs in the Nova cinema - which is about the only time you'll find us there, because let's just say... its not our favourite cinema, although the location that allows brunetti stops, trawling through bookstores and ti-amo across the road for a mid festival feed does have its charms!

This year sees have a retrospective of brilliant humanist auter Satyajit Ray as part of the festival as well - which adds a whole new 'highbrow' dimension to the spice fest that is the usual fair of delicious dancing, drama, and diva's. Pick of the festival is Om Shanti Om which for ours is about as good as it gets - all nods and winks to the genre which spawned it, including half of the film in 70's flashback mode, and an uber buffed Shah Ruhk doing his best Hrithik in a fireman dance scene that has to be seen to be believed. Genius.
Unfortunately it will be festivus interuptus for us this year as it appears that our young one and young one to be are having some scheduling trouble of their own!

Bollywood at Cinema Nova Septmember 2-17...
a festival that's well worth putting up with the crappola service and dodgy seating.
Full breakdown of times and titles are available online here.


I MADE (some of) IT MYSELF

Spring has sprung!
Ramona has used this chunky lace pattern from and old issue of Vogue Knitting for about 5 scarves. One day she'll have the $200 spare to by the 8 cashemere silk balls to knit up the wrap in the photo - but for now the trusty cleckheatons washable merino will have to do.
Maybe she should give it to her neighbour who caught her snipping a bit of her blossom off in the back lane - She was very nice about it but now Ramona is racked with guilt (of course).
Also finished this commisioned painting for the lovely Miss M - who missed out on purchasing the drawing version of this crazy girl on a dog at Ramona's show last month. Slowly ticking things off the list...


Craft craziness of the week

sidewalk surreal

The ladies of HML hear that these images of 3-D sidewalk chalk art have been circulating the net for ages but in case you're like us and you delete all those joke emails we thought we'd show you these freaky non permanent artworks from around the world.
Kind of the urban cousin of the sand sculpture these extraordinary optical illusions will be gone with the first rain shower. We hope the artists put out their hats before the work dissapeared
Oh lordy there's Santa. better get back to work...



A Pinch and a Punch...

Those of you in the Sydney area should try and catch the new show by Sally James at Freeland Gallery in Paddington - her ceramic and fibre based work is very understated and lyrical. Of course we'll be crossing the river here in Melbourne to catch the new show by Gracia Haby and Louise Jennison at Imp Gallery

We hate the phrase dynamic duo (the ladies of HML get that a bit and it always makes us think of old school Batman and Robyn) but we admit that Haby and Jennison are the real deal. We admire them both close up and from afar!
Speaking of afar, to celebrate the first day of spring we thought we'd show you the head offices of the Longaberger basket company headquarters in Ohio. We're known for a passion of 'big things' at HML so we were really quite impressed with this ultra kitch 7 story replica of the 'famous' longaberger picnic basket. It's 16c and rain here today - not exactly picnic weather but we live in hope...