Crap! It's cold! Idea #4 -Plant Garlic

I love being in the garden in winter. The soil is always so moist from the rain, and I don't get sun burnt!

It's a good time of year to plant next year's batch of garlic, at least where I live. I've not done this before, but I'm pretty pumped. I planted the garlic in our Community Garden in the hope that we can use it when we gather for community meals. After chatting to a few keen gardeners and googling around, I found the easiest way to plant garlic was to simply plant garlic cloves with the shoot facing up not too far from the surface, spaced about 10cm apart. I just bought the garlic from the local Organic food shop. I'll keep you posted on how we go with it!! Hopefully we will have wonderful fresh garlic next year, but if it doesn't turn out, I figure there's no harm in giving things ago, huh?

(I won't bother showing you the photos I took once I covered the cloves up with soil, I figure you all know what dirt loks like!)

I'll keep you posted with how the garlic grows.

Know of any other good things to plant this time of year?

Two Party Skirts for Two party girls!

Hi there. Sorry about the long pause. I've been wading my way through sickness, children's sickness, hubby's sickness, housework, getting ready for our UK trip, work, report writing....the list goes on. Needless to say, I haven't been feeling too motivated to get creative recently. But luckily for me, two very special girls (twins, in fact) turned one this week, so I though I'd better pull Mr. Janome out and make them something fun to celebrate.

Here are some swirly party skirts for the lovely girls, (complete with their own initial!! )

Materials used: Two pretty Opp Shopped floral sheets, felt, elastic, and and bias binding. (Their mum is a much better sewer then me, so I hope she doesn't look too carefully at the stitching.....oh, and whether the skirts are even remotely the right size!)

Happy Birthday, girls! Mezz x


My first ever adult size dress!!!!

Hey folks,

I made myself a dress! And I'm very excited. Using the fabulous "Miss Marlo Dress" pattern from
Pip Lincolne's book "Sew La Tea Do" I turned this floral vintage sheet from the local Brotherhood of St Lawrence into something wearable! The dress is very very simple, but you have to start somewhere, and I'm happy with the futher step I've taken towards making more clothes for my own wardobe.

I'm thinking of making a few more of these with different fabrics.

What sewing have you been up to recently?

Mezz xoxo

ps- sorry about dodgy photo, but you get the idea!

Shopping! (A rare occurance these days)

On a lovely day trip up to Maryborough on the Queen's Birthday, I stumbled across a little craft shop. With most things in the town closed for the long weekend, I was so excited when I realised this shop was actually open! Run by the local townsfolk, and selling only handcrafted things made by the locals, it was gorgeous!! I felt a little guilty about the prices (most of these things would have cost double or triple in a craft shop in Melbourne) but managed to cope with the guilt enough to buy a few things. As most of my shopping these days is Op Shopped, I felt a little indulgent, but it was nice to indulge and to know that all of these items were lovingly handmade (I presume!?) by a local.

Here is what I bought:

a "Roo" (Kangaroo) for Miss Coleman

Dinosaur finger puppet for Coleman Jnr

pickled Tomatoes for Mr. Coleman

and for myself, a crocheted pot holder and felt sunnies case. Couldn't resist!!

I also bought a cute little something for a future nephew, I'll wait til he comes along before I share!

Have you bought anything handcrafted recently? What was it?


PS Enjoy a few pics of Maryborough on a lovely sunny winter's day-


Crap! It's cold! Idea #3 Jane Austin!

With both little Coleman's sick at home this week, and the weather still pretty wet and wild here in Victoria, I have been feeling even more house bound then ever!! I couldn't leave my poor little Miss with anybody this Monday  as she was terribly unwell, and so took the day off work. After realising that I wasn't going to do ANYTHING that day without her crying, I resolved myself to the fact that my job for the day was to sit on the couch and cuddle her while she slept, woke, ate, threw up etc. On the outer, I was slightly put out at that I couldn’t use my day off work to get through my crazily long list of things to do around here. Inside though, I knew that this was indeed a precious gift, to sit and be with my little girl and comfort her, in a way only her mum could.

So Monday found me not only house bound, but couch bound. Luckily, Mr. Coleman (who knows all about my embarrassing love of a good BBC period drama-even though he doesn't share the passion!) had picked up a copy of "Emma" at the library for me, and I sat through all four episodes in the one go! It was great. So here’s my tip on how to enjoy a wet and wild (or sick) day...embrace the wonderfulness of a good period drama!! While I love to read many classic books (two all time favourite's are Charlotte Bronte's "Jane Eyre" and her sister Emily's "Wuthering Heights",) there is something quite satisfying about seeing these beloved stories come to life on the screen. If you're into this sort of thing already, I’m sure you've got your favourites, but if your new, promise you'll give it a go! Give your dull gray day a bit of uppity romance!!!

Some favourite's of mine:

Recent BBC versions of Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights.
I'm normally not a huge Jane Austin fan (in comparison to the Bronte’s, at least) but LOVED this version of Emma, and also the Pride and Prejudice film starring Keria Knightly.
For a bit of Aussie spookiness: Picnic at hanging Rock

Here are some lovely images of the recent 2009 BBC version of Emma I enjoyed on Monday.

Surely you can admit that that's just a little be lovely? Mezz


Goodbye, Taiwanese puffy sleeves!

We have been fortunate enough over the past few years to go on a few overseas trips (and currently planning another trip!) We don't take for granted how lucky we are, and are so grateful for the times we've had away exploring different places with the kids. Mr. Coleman’s parents have lived in Taiwan for the past few years, and we have been able to go and stay with them twice. What a place! We love it, the amazing city of Taipei in particular. The food, the people, the shared urban spaces, the public transport, the markets, the price of things! A great place to visit, and very underrated as far as tourism goes. (I'd recommend it.)

Anyway, the one thing I did struggle with whilst being in Taiwan is the lack of second hand anything. The markets and shops were pretty amazing, but everything was so new, shiny and packaged ...I admit I succumbed a few I times and bought some plastic fantastic jewelry, but we did find the newness of everything pretty full on, as we just don't "go there" very often these days ourselves here in Australia.

Well, lucky for us, Mr. Coleman's mum is an op shopper and garage sale hopper from way back. She has worked very hard to find a few places in Taipei in where she can get her second hand fix. The Taipei American school has a yearly "fair" which feels just like a gigantic school fete. It's not a very Asian experience, in fact it was quite bizarre walking around the school, literally feeling as though we were somewhere in America, but they have a big jumble sale at the fair. There is also another second hand market which we managed to visit as well. And, believe it or not, there are about TWO Op Shops in the whole of Taipei, and we managed to stumble across one of them. Hooray!

I bought this dress at THE Op shop nearly three years ago. I loved it, and probably paid about AUS 50c for it. It was very vintage, a great fit and pretty awesome material. Check it out! I felt like a Taiwanese Airline hostess from the 80's in this. The one problem was the sleeves though. The were just way too big and puffy, and while I do admire the trendy ladies I see walking down Sydney Rd in their Op Shopped puffy sleeves, I am definitely not cool enough to pull them off.

(scary sleeves)

(awesome vinatge material)

So after three years of putting this dress on, and then taking it off again at the last minute because I just couldn't handle the sleeves, I finally cut them off and neatened it up with the sewing machine over the weekend. So easy, and it looks great, so I'm wondering why did it took me three years to do this!!!???

What crafty project have you been procrastinating over?

Mezz xooxoxxo


Knit Roll

My poor mum had to wait a few weeks to get her Mother's Day gift this year. The nuisance joy of giving hand made is that gifts aren't always ready on time, but I'd like to think that there's a lot more love in my gifts then what I'd pick up at Big W, and when a present is late, surely I've just helped "stretch" the celebrations out a bit....?!

My mum is an amazing knitter (she makes wonderful teeny tiny baby stuff, I don't know how she does it!) so I thought I'd make her this roll to keep some knitting needles in. Using contrasting floral fabrics (both from the op shop) and a bit of bias binding (also from the op shop) to cover up some pretty dodgy sewing, I think it came out quite nicely.

Happy (belated) Mothers Day to all you mothers out there! (We are pretty awesome, aren't we!?)

mezz xoxo