Sunday, May 23, 2010

Navy natterings

The hunt is over people. O-V-E-R. And my heart is singing like a wee little bird on a fine spring day. Here is the object of my affection:

That's right, I found a navy jacket. As documented here two months ago, I've been hunting around for everrr. Well, since I grew out of my last one anyway. I was looking for: a short style that a cold frog like me could get away with wearing inside (CHECK), a nipped in waist to give me a little shape (CHECK), long sleeves (CHECK), something under $200 (CHECK) and above all, something in NAVY (CHECK).

Now I can really channel Coldplay as I march around the house singing "I used to rule the world, seas would rise when I gave the word." Yes, I think I'd fit in nicely here, right between Chris and Guy.

During the search, I noticed more navy cropping up, including a few good styles that I seriously considered. Here's a run down if you're on the hunt. The Country Road double-breasted jacket ($299) below comes in a navy and the material is really nice and looks good quality. I found it gave me no shape though as it didn't taper at the waist. For a person with hips, this can make you feel like one big blob. Not good.

Saba has a nice navy jacket at the moment and the zips on the collar really caught my eye. I can't find a photo of it online but it is current season stock. Again, very nice fabric but at close to $500 it would want to be. Even though it was out of my price range, I tried it on and was almost relieved when it didn't look good. It's another bomber style jacket that has no waist, in fact it almost bubbles out.

At the cheaper end of the market, I came across a navy jacket by Sunny Girl. It may be my expanding frame but I swear cheap clothes are teeny tiny. This style pinched my arms as though I was trying on a child's jacket! No thank you.

In the end, I came across my own navy jacket in a rare trip to Just Jeans on a lunchtime meander. I'd decided to try on some casual jeans and was laden with styles on my way to the change room when my navy-radar zoomed in on it. Needless to say, the jeans were dropped and I didn't let that jacket out of my greedy not-so-little hands.  Co-incidentally, the lovely navy velvet jacket that is hanging in my wardrobe is also from Just Jeans. It must be around 5 years old now and far too small but I can't throw it away because I adore it.

So, one hunt over and now more time on my other current pursuits. These include a white desk, size 11 riding boots and long navy leggings without sporty logos. More often than not, I know what I want and where to find it but it's a matter of funding. Or funding over finding, shall we say?! When items are a little elusive I have to launch a full-scale hunt, as in the case of the leggings, the boots and the desk.  It can be arduous and I can annoy myself and others with such specific criteria but there is thrill in a hunt. Not forgetting how your heart sings as you hunt for, and then find the things you love. Yes, I am thinking of you, glorious navy jacket.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

In a spin about Spindleberry

When asked if I'm clucky, I usually answer in the affirmative and add that it started at age seven. That's when my second youngest brother was born and I spent as much time with him and his delicious baby skin as possible. As an adult, I've always thought I'd like children, maybe when I'm less partial to investing in the dining out experience and acquiring frivolous material possessions (will this ever happen?!) My maternal yearnings are in check and there have been no long-lived aches in thy womb. Nothing overwhelming anyway.

Until last week that is, when I stepped into Spindleberry in Moonee Ponds and shouted to myself "I need a child". In fact, I said something similar aloud to my husband to which he replied "about time". If having a brood meant having rooms like this for them, I would order myself three on the double. Everything is so delightfully co-ordinated and set out. We were hunting for a baby shower present, nothing too practical as the parents-to-be have the nursery well-equipped complete with nappys and baby cream to see them through the first months.

Spindleberry is sing-worthy. An oasis where children would never nag for licenced merchandise, rather they would shun Barbie and dream of locally made wooden toys in colours to fit their room palette. Beds would not be wet to ensure the continued perfection of exquisite quilting crafted in fine linen. A Spindleberry child would not be showered in plastic fantastic toys on birthdays, simply because they would not fit into their dreamy wooden toy box and every parent knows that children hate their toys scattered on the floor ready to play with at any opportunity. Mmm, somehow my little fantasy seems at odds with reality. It's nice to dream though and Spindleberry suceeds in sparking the imagination and creating a beautifully serene collection of rooms and products to bring the fantasy one step closer.

The styling in the store is so delightful that I found myself wishing my own bedroom looked like this and that I could squeeze into one of the red velvet jackets! Apparently I am not the first to say this.

Our final selection for the baby shower gift is pictured above. It's a little red drum (with a "mellow" sound according to the swing tag), a drumming babushka doll and a mini set of maracas. The bub's dad is a drummer so we thought it was fitting.

The shop assistant on the Saturday that we visited was very helpful and attentive when we needed, making the experience even more enjoyable. Maybe not nice enough to ignore the pain of childbirth and sleepless nights, but pleasant enough that I look forward to finding an excuse to go back.
276 Union Rd, Moonee Ponds, VIC, 3039
(03) 93706677

173 Ferguson St
Williamstown VIC 3016
(03) 9399 9727 

Monday, May 10, 2010

Blooming Bikes

The positive reaction to this bike has been documented on this blog previously so now I present to you this photo so your heart has a chance to sing as mine does when I clap my eyes on it. It can be seen in the flesh at Whitemoss in Flinders Lane, Melbourne.

That a bike used to pull your attention to a florist can provoke a reaction of happiness is both curious and heartening. Surely all retailers want you to fall in love with their displays and soak up the ambiance of their store? Sadly, this is not always the case, either due to differing tastes or very little attention given to visual merchandising. A gorgeous display is not going to make us rich, it’s not going to help us on our path to the perfect career, nor is it going to take all of our troubles away. But it may, just may, give you a short injection of excitement, a taste of possibility and a glimmer of hope. Little, amazing feelings that are worth more than a bursting nest egg. I live for those feelings and these moments.

So tell me, do you know of any displays that evoke a happy reaction?

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Colour pops in to brighten the study

The obsession with yellow continues and the time has come to expand from yellow handbags and fashion to interiors. Nothing like a pop of this sunny shade to make you smile and if returning home was not sweet in itself, some yellow in your living quarters is sure to brighten your mood as well as your home.

With the longevity of a hue facisination unknown, a yellow investment piece may not be wise. Find cheap and cheery ways to bring a splash of colour to your space. For those of us with zero sewing talent, wielding a brush and a tin of paint is effective and achievable. Stick to updating inexpensive furniture, wall hangings, linen, textiles and accessories before changing carpet, tiles and wall colour as they can be harder to change once your passion dies, not to mention expensive.

This solid wooden dining chair was picked up at Savers Footscray. The sticker read $6.99 but it scanned up at $3.50. Turned out to be 50% off furniture day! Bargain. After a quick dust and wipe down with a damp cloth, it was time for the first coat of paint. That's right, no sanding. The friendly staff at the Paint Spot Footscray had recommended oil paint if little or no sanding was taking place. A small tin cost $9.20 but this could do two chairs.

Visible streaks could be seen after the first coat. I'm sure sanding would have reduced the streaks, but no matter since the second coat did wonders. A third coat may eventuate in future.

This chair will live in the study amongst a lot of red accessories, a touch of navy and some mismatched furniture. I can proudly announce that I fashioned the curtain on the old IKEA robe in the background all by myself. I do not say 'sew' as this is not a talent I possess. Hemming web was used in the production of this product! Now this piece that had no where else to go ties into the room a little better and the heavier fabric is better suited to hide the plastic tubs of craft, stationery and computer bits that hide in there.

 The above photo is a 'before' picture of the robe. The red and white stripes have really livened it up.

An artistic homage to Roy Lichtenstein hangs in this room and has a touch of yellow, so the chair will have a kindred spirit to help it feel at home.

This painting was inspired by the 1950's True Romance comic and is by Desperate Damsels. It was a surprise wedding gift.
Now the walls in the study need to be painted white and the yukky, old carpet needs to be replaced. I'm looking for carpet inspiration. It's tempting to reveal the floorboards underneath, maybe even whitewash them, but some covering is needed since this and the adjacent living room are the only carpeted rooms in the house. Ideas welcome!

This child's chair from an uncle is also waiting for a coat of fire engine red to add another cute touch to the study.



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