Saturday 29 September 2012

World of WearableArt 2012

oooooh, it was some tired little campers that woke up in a blur this morning! The show last night was of course amazing, although admittedly, disappointing for us in that we didn't place in the awards. I really did think we has made something special this year, but..... you just never know! As I have said before, I make things for WoW that I otherwise wouldn't make, so it is all worthwhile in the end.
We ran in to a few of the designers on the way down to the show, so had a photo opportunity in the foyer of Rydges.  Then it was off to the Intercontinental for pre-show drinks - an excellent idea!

Then off to the show.... After the Awards Ceremony, we trotted back to the Intercontinental for more Designer drinks - and didn't we need them! On our return to our hotel I had another beer to drown my sorrows, then off to bed around 2am.
We awoke to another sparkaringoo day, and visited the carpark markets, where I was thrilled to find that talented designer Nadine Jaggi, maker of Ornitho Maia, had a stall selling her leather accessories.
Ornitho Maia
I was thrilled to buy a leather feather necklace from her, a direct link to her award winning piece! I can't wait to get home and get playing with my new leatherworking kit!!
Nadine Jaggi leather necklace
From here it was on to Te Papa to hear the Judges Forum, and to learn the sections for 2013. There are a few to tempt us there.... entry kit gets released November 1. Check it out at their website then.
Tired, hungry and a little bit whingy, I was dragged from the sunny waterfront to the Hoegaarden, where we found a sunny nook, cloudy beer, and a giant venison burger whilst Matt had huge plates of mussels to his great delight!
After rolling our bellies out of the door, Matt and I spent the afternoon walking off this giant meal, then back to base for a bit before I went out for a walk to try and catch up with mother - seeing as it was her birthday an' all! After 3 goes, I still haven't managed to! I enjoyed a stroll along the harbour in the stunning weather, and another passionfruit Cosmo.
It seems like everyone was out soaking up the sun after weeks of rain - I imagine it's like this in England when it's fine! There was even a piano out on the waterfront for people to play at will - an absolutely lovely idea!

I also enjoyed seeing the WoW crowds enjoying their pre-show drinks and meals at the various establishments, and the throng of VIP's flocking to their tables at the Arena. They were all off to see our work on show - pretty cool!!
Well, this time tomorrow we will be back with our cat Mishka, and back to reality. Luckily we have a public holiday to recover, but unfortunately I have to go to work to prepare for our meeting on Tuesday - it all seems so unreal right now! Then Tuesday it's loading up the kombi with mannequins and helping ATASDA to set up their exhibition 'Beyond the Surface' at Robyn Bauer Gallery, Paddington.

Thursday 27 September 2012

International Designers Day in Wellington

Before I start, here are some pics of the lovely park we found at Nelson, and at our favourite establishment, 623.

and Matt & I at 623 in Nelson
Another superb day hosted by delightful WoW representative Esme Palliser, and Sarah Hume of Wellington City Council. It was an unfortunately early start, especially after the Preview Show last night! We met for introductions, and were then taken to Te Papa for a very special Maori welcome, and lovely nibbles (but I was full of the excellent Rydges buffet breakfast!) Sadly, the Australian Embassy representative did not accept the invitation to attend, nor did they extend one to us for any kind of hospitality. Previous years have included cocktail functions and breakfasts at the Embassy, but I can only assume that because we aren't doing anything to do with sport we're just not worth the effort. (Sorry, a lifetime grudge against the tradition of funding and accolades for sporting activities rather than artistic achievement raising its head there!!) It was, however, a nice opportunity to meet the American and Israeli Ambassadors, and to speak to Dame Susie Moncrieff (Instigator of WoW) and the wonderful Heather Palmer (Manager of WoW) again.  Then it was off to the backstage tour of the venue, and a reunion with Wardrobe Mistress of wonder, Ingrid Peek. As I hugged her hello, I said "I'm sorry, I'm sorry", as I know my piece has given her some grief - again!! Even though I have done the tour before, it was interesting to see the slightly different set up for this years performance, and seeing the narrowed gangway to accommodate the musicians I asked Ingrid "How do you get Euphony up here?!!" The answer was "Sideways'........
....sorry Ingrid!!
From here it was on to Massey University, where they have an enviable creative arts department in a gawdjuss historic building which used to be the Museum. Most enviable of all was the warm, well lit 4th year room where students actually get to set up a workstation for the term whilst working on their final collection! Not to mention their design facilities, printing, weaving, and knitting equipment. It's sad that Australia has seen fit to eliminate nearly all such practical courses from our institutions and continues to privatise 'educational' facilities.

Amazingly hungry again by now, we were bussed to Zealandia Cafe for lunch, where we enjoyed a lovely meal accompanied by equally lovely wine. I noticed a film crew lurking around, so was not surprised to see footage of our luncheon on the local news tonight! It's opening night tonight, and no doubt there will be even more coverage tomorrow in anticipation of the big night!
From here it was off to the Mt Victoria lookout for a group photo, where rain and freezing winds led to many smart  comments during the picture taking process! My gem stolen from Morgan was "Booo, Unprepared!!" when one device required taking out of a cover before use - Gold!! There were also many laughs amongst us and fellow warm-climate designer Wendy Moyer from Mexico, and I couldn't resist a photo opportunity with fellow bright haired and all-round lovely lad, Christopher Davis, as we left the Weta Workshop.
A pair of peacocks!!
Now to back track to Preview night...... After arriving in Wellington on the tiny plane (eeek!!, and thank you boys for humouring my fears...) and a day spent traipsing all around town, and seeing some of the shop WoW displays,
A vintage shop with a beautiful creation made of dressmaking patterns
it was time for a bath, some bubbles, then some cocktails at One Red Dog - oh the Passionfruit Cosmo! Oh, and for you, Miss Jenelle, keeper of our precious Mishka at home, here is my dinner - 3 kinds of cheese!!
You can smell that Munster, can't you?!!!
We made our way over to the venue and in to our front row seats, where I met up with previous designers Kerri Gelmi, Bonnie Begg and Christine White, Sadhana Peterson, Sean Perucker and newby from Oz, Erica Gray. I think the show was great - I'm not too sure as it is all now a bit of a blur! I spent most of my section in a panic wondering how Euphony Iridaceae would work, but was relieved to see her looking magnificent and making... some kind of sound!!
BioLumina in the TSB Bank Arena
Matt & I in front of the newly installed programme pictures in the foyer!
It was also lovely to see BioLumina in the foyer of the TSB Bank Arena - somehow looking smaller and less impressive than she does on the posters, but good to see her all the same! It made up for not seeing her at the World of Wearable Art Museum in Nelson!
Finally made it to the WoW museum!!
We enjoyed the display there, but were disappointed not to see more garments from the past - it seemed a fairly small display of largely recent works. I've seen so many in books over the years, that I would relish seeing closer up!!
OK, that's it for now - time for sleep in readiness for the Big Night tomoz!! Whoooot!!

Monday 24 September 2012

Nelson NZ 2012

Greetings from sunny Nelson! We have been absolutely blessed with the weather - although crisp for a sunny Queensland girl, it has been clear and bright. All has gone smoothly, from our initial getaway from BNE (for the first time at a civilised hour!) to our arrrival in Wellington in the afternoon, where I was delighted to see the WoW banners featuring BioLumina! OMG!!

 First stop was the Intercontinental to visit Fimbria Figura, who was set up near the front window and looking fab.

Then it was on to the 3C's for a beverage -aaaahhhhhh, then to Mac's brewery for their delightful Great White beer (I LOVE it!!) and a dericious lamb burger! This was Matt's 'Apparently, I look ordinary' face, after the lady at Hanne Andersen in Wellington accused him of being so!
Then back to my favourite old haunt, One Red Dog (affectionately known to me as the Dead Dog) where we indulged in a Passionfruit Cosmo, an Apple Martini and a Long Island Iced Tea, before trying the Cactus.

Tuckered out, it was an early night with an early start the next day to catch the ferry to Picton. It was a beautiful trip, again with magical weather, and it went in a heartbeat.

 We picked up our rental car, and set off for Nelson, keen to set up home base. With no actual address for home base, we kind of just drove around until we found it, but that worked!! After settling in, we walked around town, exploring the gardens at the top, where I found daffodils, freesia's, snowdrops and gardenias. I also found a funky tree.....
 Matt was keen for refreshments, so I left him and continued on walking, and found the lovely Queens Gardens at the end of town. I continued on to walk along the river - what a magnificent back yard for these residents!
Saturday morning we ventured out - me in my running gear, Matt on the hunt for breakfast. We found the markets just setting up (around 7:30 -  little different to our market 4am setups!!) and agreed to meet back there after I had gone for a run. I enjoyed running around the town with the anticipation of markets ahead of me! Athough I didn't purchase anything, I saw lots of lovely crafts, including some lovely nuno felt scarves with lovely Leceister fringes, and some gawdjuss hand carved mushrooms in wood - some low and squat, some on long sticks to drive into the ground. I could just imagine them after a few years in a garen, all covered in moss and lichen! After some German sausages for Matt and a simple egg and bacon brekky at home for me, it was into the car and off towards Abel Tasman National Park. We stopped off at the Hoglund Artglasss studio on the way, which was absolutely magnificent, and had a wonderful entry of blossom trees.
Then onwards towards Mapua wharf, a magnificent sight on such a gorgeous day. We then continue on to Abel Tasman Park, and ventured in a short way in the midst of a big race! We had to wait at bridges for entrants to run across, and even had our photo taken!!

On the way home we stopped off at the Sprig and Fern at Motueka, where the lovely Publican sat down and had a chat with us,, whilst we sampled their fine beers. Matt is keen to sample their rum cask aged beer which gets released this Tuesday, with an alcohol content of 9.7%!! On hearing we were WoW designers, she was very keen to get out signatures in the visitors book, and we were more than happy to extoll the virtues of a pub that had no screens and no pokies  yeah!!!
We went to 623 for drinks and dinner, where Matt enjoyed 'as good as American' BBQ ribs and I had a decadent Spanokopita. A band with 3 saxophones, a clarinet and goodness knows what else was setting up, but they took so long we couldn't wait for them!
Sunday dawned gorgeous again, and we headed off to Blenheim, which we later learned was called 'Blenhole' - yup, we totally get it. Nothing was open, it was too early for the main attraction of wineries, and the one happening cafe was seriously underwhelming, including once again, the coffee. Merlo, please come to NZ and introduce a proper, well rounded, not bitter, gawdjuss coffee!!
Off then to Picton, a typically quiet town, on yet another gawdjuss day. The highlight for me was Seaside Gems, a lovely shop with your typically lovely host NZ man, plus beautiful glass and jewellery works. My heart was stolen by a crazy silver work and pearl ring, which I should have bought, but sadly did not....
It was then back to Nelson for a late lunch with WoW Designer Julie Brawley at the Boathouse Cafe, where I enjoyed scallops whilst looking at the sparkling ocean. After seeing photos of her entry, I could not reciprocate with photos on my phone as planned, so invited her back to our abode o show pics from the hard-drive. It was great to catch up - still not entirely sure how we ended up talking about shots of bull semen at the Hokitika food festival.......
Being Sunday night and on holidays I though bugger it, and stayed up until midnight drinking and watching Family Guy, South Park and music videos - I know, MIDNIGHT!! I am one crazy lady.......
Up slightly later than usual, brekky at the Morrison Street Cafe where I indulged in the pancakes for once - wholemeal, which gave them a great texture. Served with a ricotta and berry mix and maple syrup, they were delicious, yet I craved the naughty creaminess of some cream or icecream with them! Having eaten more then my fill ("I feel sick"!) we wandered off heading towards the walk to the lookout at the centre of NZ.  After 20 minutes of near vertical walking, Matt was devastated to see a sign pronouncing '30 minutes to lookout', and so we headed back down.

 We walked a bit more around the town and river, and visited the lovely jewellery gallery Lustre, where I found a pair of earrings that looked so lichen inspired and something I would like to make. Still considering.....
After deciding to save the WoW museum experience for tomorrow, our last day here which is supposed to be rainy, we decided to blob, and after some enjoyable reading in the sun, eating of cheese and a wee kip, I headed off in search of a massage. I ended up walking all around town, visiting the FlameDaisy glass shop, and stumbling across a lovely ceramic art gallery, where I bought some gawdjuss ceramic mushrooms and sea urchin inspired bowls. I also very much enjoyed talking to the gallery owner, who filled me in more on WoW's previous years in Nelson, even admitting to being one of the 'BIG' sponsors in the early years for the grand sum of $500! A bit different to the patronage now of Air NZ and the Brancott Estate!!
Today was finished with another dinner at 623 - didn't have the scallops as they weren't from NZ (WTF?!!) but had a delicious pork backstrap with parsnip mash and prosciutto salad. Back tomorrow for dessert only - I want cheesecake!!!
Night all!!

Tuesday 18 September 2012

Two more sleeps!!

Excited much?!!!!! We received our tickets in the mail last week, along with the tourist brochure which feature a designer profile on me - yay!!  Lovely pic of Fimbria Figura, which we get to see NEXT WEEK on display at the Intercontinental Hotel in Wellington!!
We have brilliant seats - Preview is front and centre, and the Awards night is to the side and 5 rows in - fantastic!!!-
(Apologies for the dodgy photos in this entry - having a few issues which I will sort ASAP!)
Fimbria in brochure - sorry about the bad upload!
The BioLumina billboard!
Last night I was absolutely astounded and excited to see the new cover picture on WOW's Facebook page  - it's the advertisement featuring BioLumina which is plastered all over billboards, buses, bus shelters and flags all over Wellington!! It's such a beautiful image, I am thrilled! I have also been told that BioLumina will be on display outside the media room (of which hotel I'm not sure!). So although I won't get to see her in the museum at Nelson, it will be lovely to see her up close again!

Saturday of this weekend was spent at the gym in the morning, doing the new releases of Body Combat and Body Pump - I can't believe people do these 2 classes together every Saturday!!! After an enjoyable catch up with the girls at Urban Espresso, where I had an extremely yummy scrambled eggs and turkish toast, I cut out my leather and fabric to make a corset to wear to Preview night - bit of a last minute decision I know, but I had the beautiful shibori shrug already made.....

Leather cut-out corset and shibori shrug
The afternoon was spent cruising in Wendy-Jo, the fabulous cream Buick, and we dropped in to see my mother, who gave me this beautiful purple bag to take to WOW.

Beautiful purple bag with dress
With a few sequins and beads, it will match my dress perfectly! Thanks Maman! Sunday saw a successful foray to the markets, where I scored fantastic platform pumps for $20 and a beautiful sequin bag for $5. On the right are the hideously expensive new WOW shoes (3rd pair?!!) but SO perfect!
Market bargains and WOW shoes
After a lovely brekky at Cream (Eggs Benny on a croissant - yum!!) it was time to stitch the corset. I knocked off for the day early afternoon, enjoying a few bubbly's with Matt whilst we watched crazy Russians on Youtube....

Mishka took the opportunity to enjoy a good sprawl in the sun - I don't think he's going to like us much after we get back from NZ! Luckily we do have the fabulous Miss Jenelle and Mishka's brother, Matts' son, lined up to feed, medicate, scratch, cuddle and clean up after him, but there's going to be a lot of inside time....

So, this is just a brief update before we leave for the Land of the Long White Cloud........
Talk to you from there!
And look out for me in Brisbane News this week....

Monday 10 September 2012

10 more sleeps till New Zealand!!

It must be Spring, ‘cause I’ve been cleaning! Saturday I finally attacked my horrendous wardrobe, and beat it into submission!! A massive task exacerbated by constant op-shop and market scores. Yes, I have a huge wardrobe, but most of it cost around $5 a piece! And you never know when you might want to wear that piece….!!
Not only that, but I half packed for NZ!! Yay!! Following that, I headed off to our local piece of bushland, Seven Hills Reserve, in search of photographic locations for future shoots. After much hard walking, interesting discovery, and some geographical embarrassment, I headed home, and continued on with making my new leggings to wear to the WOW awards night. Black lycra leggings and mini, plus diamonte satin shooz, with draped felt bodice….
Diamonte shoooz!
Stitching on the verandah
Last weekend I did much of the stitching of the drapery on this as I sat at the ATASDA (Australian Textile And Surface Design Association) meeting. It was wonderful as always to catch up with all my fellow textile nuts, and it was great to get something done at the same time! There was also a very interesting presentation on the Golden range of artist products, in particular the mediums. Turns out you can make ‘skins’ out of them, and put them through the printer, or embed things in them, or paint on them, and as they are flexible polymer, stitch through them! Hmmmmmm……
Printing on a 'skin'
Crackle medium
Sunday was the Studebaker Concours, and we took a contingent of 5 cars down to the event at the lovely Fort Lytton. I enjoyed another walk around the fort, and Matt was very happy to end up with a trophy for third place overall as well as people’s choice for our beautiful truck Fred (who was my drive for the day - whoooh!!).
The award winning Fred and Matt!
This Saturday being International Drive Your Studebaker Day, we felt duty bound to take one of the fleet out for a drive. Feeling quite lazy, we only went as far as the Storey Bridge, but scored an awesome park right out the front so we could admire the GT Hawk as we quaffed our wine. Then it was home for a fire and some Mojhitos….. and so endeth Saturday night.
The Hawk and Matt
Up early Sunday for some boxing with Miss Jenelle, which always has a marvellous effect on me if I’ve been a tad naughty the night before. I did refuse to skip, however, as I could feel my poor dehydrated brain bouncing around in my skull. Owwwww. Then off to the markets for supplies, to return home to a lovely brunch of ocean trout and poached egg. And champagne…..
A pleasant few hours were then spent drinking cocktails and sewing on the back deck, with only the welcome disruption of Miss Jenelle breaking the slothful reverie. She had arrived to school myself, or failing that, Matt and Paul, to use the straightener on my hair – however, we all failed. Jenelle did a superb job though, and even stuck around to help style me for an artist profile picture shoot.
Moi Stoilish Stylist!!
New profile shot
(Having done the styling in the kitchen, the spray had gone all over the wooden floor making a super slick patch, which yes, managed to catch me in my stockinged feet later in the evening – faceplant!!)
Although good things were achieved, and fun times were had, as usual I would have liked to have achieved more. Such as starting work on creating with these beautiful feathers that arrived last week – or starting my leatherwork!
Finally – a photo of my additional wings, and a photo of my next design……
There's another set on my shoulders, too!
Booked in for October - Happy Birthday to me!!