where do our clothes come from??

vintage sheet dress made for me my by my hubby (yes, he is awesome!) and a thrifted cardi..

Where do our clothes come from?
Who made them?
What were they paid and what conditions were they working in?
What impact does the making of my clothes have on the environment?
Which big businesses (whose ethics I don't agree with) benefit from the purchases I make?

undies made by me, using fabric and elastic found in op shops!

These are just some of the questions that my husband and I started asking ourselves almost 10 years ago, which has led us on a journey of choosing to buy and wear (apart from the odd necessity) only second hand clothing. Sure, it helps that we both adore op shopping, and we're the arty farty types who can get away with the alternative look that happens when you don't go for what's in fashion, but the "opshop" look is much more then a look for us, it's a statement. A political, ethical and spiritual expression for us. I know that sounds a bit over the top, but it really is that significant for our family and the way we do life.

pretty collar made by my clever sis in law Taz, opshopped tshirt.

The purchase of a sewing machine a couple of years ago expanded the ways in which I thought about clothes. Suddenly I wasn't only wearing second hand clothes, but I was actually attempting to make my own with all the wonderful thrifted fabric I kept finding on Op Shop jaunts. I had (still have) very limited sewing skills, but determination, creativity and KEEPING IT SIMPLE made it possible to make quite a lot of the clothes I now wear. Sewing clothes really highlighted to me once again the patience and skill that must go into each garment we buy. And it really has me wondering how a shop like Kmart can charge $5 for a packet of 3 pairs of women's underpants, for instance. What percentage of that price are the factory workers receiving, I wonder? Surely, not much. And surely they deserve more.

thrifted sheet dress made by me, cardi from op shop

So we wear second hand. And handmade. Often upcycled handmade. Most days I feel like one of the Von Trapp children in Maria's curtain-come-playclothes creations (gotta love the Sound of Music!)Sometimes our clothes are made by us, and sometimes they are made by other wonderful folk we know. If we hear of an ethical social enterprise type clothing company, we try and support them as well. I have a real passion for justice and I feel like I am literally wearing my heart on my sleeve each day that I get dressed.

crocheted slippers made for me by my friend and old neighbour, Lily

As a bit of extra fun, I have been wearing something handmade every single day, as part of an online challenge called Handmade 365 put together by the inspiring and original Granny Chic, Rochelle, who writes the wonderful blog Ted and Agnes. Come find me on Instagram and perhaps join the fun!! The photos in this post are all from my daily Instagram feed. Pip Lincolne has also been getting the conversation going about many of these matters over on her kick arse blog Meet me at Mikes.

necklace made by my bestie Ash, shirt/head scarf are secondhand.

I'd love to hear your own thoughts, stories, ideas on this topic...... I understand that what works for me not work for everybody!!

Mezz xo


how to make a boring cardie less boring!!

Here's a quick little crafty upcycling project. It's pretty nifty, I think.
Take one tired and uninspiring cardigan.

Take one cute thrifted doily (this one isn't a typical lace crocheted doily, but either kind would work nicely.)

Cut the doily in half, like so.

Pin it onto your cardie around the neckline so that it looks like a little collar.

Stitch in place with matching thread and a strong zig zag stitch.

Wear your un-boring cardie, feeling quite  clever and pretty.

Mezz x


Mezz Coleman by Request!

Exciting new recording project!! Head on over to www.mezzcoleman.com for more info..

What Aussie song would you like to hear me try??

Mezz xo


Some pics from my recent photo shoot!

You may know me online as a bit of a crafter, an op shopper, a tea drinker, a zine maker and blogger. Yes, I am all of these things, but first and foremost I am a musician. A singer and a songwriter. My music mojo has lain dormant for a few years now, but 2014 is full of exciting new projects which I can't wait to share with you!!
The promotional photos I've been using for my website were looking a bit tired, so we headed out into the garden last week to take some new photos. I think I'm happy with how they turned out. Mr Coleman took them, he is quite a clever chap, don't you think??
By the way, my outfit is completed thrifted!!
I've had a music website up and running for about a year, but have found it quite blah and uninspiring, so I have decided to write it much more like a blog, coz I quite like blogging as you probably know!! Feel free to head on over and let me know what you think of it!! You can follow all the links on the site to have a listen to my music as well.

love Mezz x


Home is...

Home is..
Colour. Thrifty. Messy. Occasionally Tidy. Sanctuary. Calm. Music. Laughter. Community. Food. Creativity. Evolving. Nuts. Family.

Home is, quite simply, home. And I love that we can make it where ever we want. We don't own our home, in fact we live in an upstairs apartment of a community house run by the Salvation Army in Footscray, Melbourne. I absolutely love living here, but I can see why some people may wonder why we would choose to raise our family in a place like this.  The community house is full of other housemates, guests, programs and it even has an office for 2 employees! But I'm never going to wait until I have my "dream home" to make my space a special place for our family. That "dream home" (whatever that is) may never come.... or perhaps this is my dream home!!?? Who knows, but I do know we can make any space beautiful if it's full of love, family, creativity and joy.

What's your home like??

Mezz xo


hello, 2014!!

I try to keep this blog pretty upbeat and not too overly personal, but to be honest with you, dear readers, 2013 wasn't the best year I've ever had. It's in the not so great times though, that you tend to learn how bloody amazing your friends and family are, how strong you are, and what things you need to prioritise in your life so that you can be happy, healthy and fulfilled. I feel like last year was a year of figuring some of that stuff out, and so it is with a deep sense of joy, gratitude, excitement and energy that I look forward to plotting and planning what I'll get up to this year!!

I have only one real resolution, which is a Healthy Mezz. 2014 will be the year of prioritising exercise, eating (or perhaps not eating) certain foods, seeking help when I need, deep breathing to calm a stressed out mind and lots of other things....  My physical, mental and emotional health is my number one priority this year, and I am totally unapologetic about it!

However, I'd be lying if I didn't say I wasn't excited about heaps of other things this year too! So here are some of the hopes/goals/dreams I hold for 2014

-Record and release a 5 track acoustic EP (We have started recording already)
-Start an all female band!!
-Keep our home less cluttered
-Say positive things
-Don't put off the things that just need to be done
-Spend more "fun" time with my kids
-Sew a couple of dresses for myself
-Go get the new new tattoos on my wish list
-Lose the fear of sharing my music with the world and just totally GO FOR IT!
-Craft with friends regularly
-Plan the most perfect party for my 30th!
-Spend lots of time with my wonderful friends
-Start planning a trip back to the UK
-Do something special with Mr Coleman to celebrate our 10 year wedding anniversary!!
-Make my bed everyday
-Fill my home with fresh flowers
-Continue to care for Asylum Seekers in our community and voice my concerns about the way they are treated in this country
-Keep working with my inspiring and lovely sister in law Taz on our handmade crafty zine "Hundreds and Thousands." This project was a true life giver for me in amongst a bunch of crappity crap crap, and the response we have had from our readers has been totally overwhelming, so I'm pretty sure we are onto a  good thing!!

Linking in with one of my all time favourite blog Her Library Adventures...

What are your hopes for the new year??

Mezz xo



Wow! This blog just turned 2!! It's been super fun. I've loved sharing ideas, being inspired by the crafty blogging community, and working on projects that I never would have even dreamed of if I'd never started this blog. My internet has been pretty unreliable this past month, which is why I haven't been posting much, but hope to be back with you more regularly soon!!

Hip Hip Hooray!