July 31, 2008

O me O my...

I was thinking that 'O' might be a bit tricky but looking here at my list, I already have notes for about ten ideas! Sometimes when I am feeling a bit stuck, I browse through the dictionary to see if it will spark some ideas, or a memory of something I've seen...and it has! A bit further down is 'Oil Cloth'.. I've made some exciting discoveries!

But first off...as I promised yesterday, some more about Rona Ngahuia Osborne -

Rona Ngahuia Osborne

Rona Ngahuia Osborne is the driving creative force behind Native Agent. Her work references her Maori and European heritage, and is rich in symbolism. The recurring use of the icons of historic trading - including muskets, hei tiki and feathers are strongly represented in her work.
Rona exquisitely hand crafts quilts, blankets and pillows and currently supplies several retail outlets as well as showcasing her collection in the Native Agent retail store.

Formally trained as a painter, Rona graduated from Elam Art School in 2001. Her paintings are regularly exhibited at various galleries throughout NZ.

(images from Native Agent)

visit Native Agent online.
visit Native Agent retail at 507 New North Road, Kingsland. Auckland
contact Native Agent for stockists
see Rona's paintings

Oil Cloth

I was pretty excited to reminded about Oil Cloth after my browse through the dictionary, I had a scout around. I have found these amazing oil cloths from the Scandinavian Design Center...- these ones blow their kitschy oil cloth cousins out the window!!

(images from the Scandinavian Design Center)

see more Oil Cloth at the Scandinavian Design Centre

Getting Organic at Mod Green Pod

Nancy Mims and Lisa Mims, (co-founders and sisters-in-law) grew Mod Green Pod from their love of swank design and sustainable goods. Not able to find anything that combined the two, they started their own company.

Mod Green Pod offers a range of hand printed organic fabrics and vinyl free wallpapers. With prints that take their cue from nature, Mod Green Pod's print collection is the perfect combination of whimsy and sophistication.

(images Mod Green Pod, Domino and Harlands Organics)

see the Mod Green Pod collection
contact Mod Green pod for stockists
read the Mod Green Pod blog

I thought I'd finish the week (and the O's) on a fun note - don't these shadow puppets by Andrea Everman of Owly Shadow Puppets look great! My kids (and some grown-ups I know) would get a huge amount of fun out of them! - enjoy!

Owly Shadow Puppets

In her day job, Andrea Everman is an architectural model maker. Using a laser cutter to produce her model making pieces, Andrea decided to try cutting out one of her own doodles. And, what-do-you-know??? Andrea took the plunge and purchased her own laser cutter, and an Owly Shadow Puppet business was born! I think they're fabulous!!

(images Owly Shadow Puppets)

shop for Owly Shadow Puppets
visit Andrea's website

Oh it's the weekend...

and the weekend rolls around again!

I love it when we are all energized enough to make a plan for the weekend...so often the days just fly by and we feel like we haven't done anything adventurous.

This weekend we are going on a family outing to Te Papa (the Museum of New Zealand). Jetson and I went there on Monday and he is keen to go on a special 'date' with his Dad to show him the Pacific Island drums he had so much fun playing. Phoenix was highly disappointed that he missed out on the Monday trip, so he and I are having a special date too, separate from his brother - no doubt we will end up in the same Planet Pasifika Discovery Centre!

I hope you get to do something special this weekend too,

See you Monday x

July 30, 2008

N is for Nice!

Well, here we are, officially past half way in our first alphabet journey!
Enjoy 'N'!


There's not much to say about SweetNellie as it has been pretty tricky finding info about her.. what we do know is - her name is Trish and that she is incredibly talented!

Check out some of these gorgeous critters!!

above: tulip peep

above: Hugh

above: summertime peep

above: grace

(images from SweetNellie)

Shop SweetNellie
Read SweetNellie's Blog

Native Agent

Native Agent was launched in late 2004 to support and nurture NZ designers, craftspeople and artists.

Only stocking work designed and made in New Zealand, Native Agent has become a platform for emerging designers.

"When we established a business along creative lines, we wanted it to mean something, to embody the essence of our colonial and tribal histories, to celebrate the patterns of our lives in Aotearoa (New Zealand) and recognise and respect the creative minds that design and make beautiful things for us all to enjoy."

(images from Native Agent)

Visit Native Agent online
Visit Native Agent at 507 New North Road, Kingsland Auckland
See tomorrows O's for Rona Osborne, a creative force behind the Native Agent Store.

Nature Baby

For the last ten years, Nature Baby has been establishing itself in the New Zealand baby market. Long before the words "organic" and "sustainable" were used in every day conversation, Nature Baby was providing its customers with innovative and modern products for the conscious parent.

Those first ten years have seen Nature Baby grow and transform into a thriving retail business, online store and wholesaler. Their product range has constantly evolved and continues to expand, giving all parents the opportunity to provide a healthy and positive environment for their children to grow.

above L-R: svan mini furniture, teepee

above L-R: baby's first ball, eco merino handknit blanket

above: miss buttons sew your own kit

(images from Nature Baby and Sew your Own)

Visit Nature Baby online
Visit Nature Baby's retail stores in Auckland (NZ): 433 Richmond Road, Grey Lynn and 4 Morgan Street, Newmarket.
Contact nature Baby for Stockists: telephone 09 630 8394

November Moon

Cathy Cullis's blog November Moon is a showcase for her variety of creative works.

I am in awe and enormously inspired by her mixed media work. Cathy creatively and meticulously works with a range of materials - in particular, vintage haberdashery, papers, threads and yarns.

What looks to be quite simple machine stitching is no doubt a focused, deliberate and highly practiced skill, combining a sense of whimsy with immense artistic ability.

above: random poetry bird

above: timeless - mixed media collage

above: brooch - her ceaseless desire

above: mixed media brooches

(images from Cathy Cullis)

Visit Cathy's Etsy Store
Read Cathy's Blog

Okey Dokey.. I hope you enjoyed N! O is tomorrow...see you then!!


Hello there... here are some Mmmmmmmmm's to get you through the day!
Let's start with


In 1994 Shelley Simpson started 'mud Australia'. Fourteen years later, with an international stockists list, mud Australia has opened it's flagship store in Sydney's eastern suburbs.

Their new showroom gives Shelley and co-owner James Kirton the opportunity to showcase their range of globally loved porcelain. The mud collection boasts perfectly combined minimalist aesthetics with a clearly hand made finish.

I love the warm colours and simplicity in design of the mud products. The colour palette is soft, yet modern. My pick would be a mismatch of colours in a combination of these timeless pieces...

Visit the mud Australia website
Shop at mud Australia retail at 134 Edgecliff Road, Woollahra. NSW
See mud Australia for stockists


There is no doubt that Melamine dinner and serve ware is back in full force. Countless producers are making products that are suitable for more than just your picnic basket.
One company famous for its striking and modern melamine range is French Bull.

French Bull debuted in 2002, and in its short years has revolutionised and reinterpreted the use of melamine in the home.

French Bull continues to be ahead of the curve offering customers a wide range of storage, serving and kitchen items in bold, graphic colours and patterns.

Other producers of melamine products that I enjoy are:

Oksana Badrack

Thomas Paul

Marco Cibola

(images from French Bull and Poketo)

Visit French Bull
Shop for Oksana Badrack
Shop for Thomas Paul
Shop for Marco Cibola

Madder and Rouge

I was pretty excited when Madder and Rouge opened their new store in Wellington - and I wasn't disappointed!

Even though I probably wouldn't decorate with their popular French Striped Fabrics, I do appreciate it's appeal.

It is their French bath products, contemporary French fabrics and toys that I really love...and their effortless mix of old and new.

"We believe interiors should contain some element of quirky and have some sense of fun."

See the Madder and Rouge website
Visit Madder and Rouge retail outlets - Wellington: 19 College Street Wellington. Auckland: 25 Teed Street Newmarket.


The first Mozi collection "The Secret Garden" was launched in August 2005. It was from this point that Mozi's owners (and sisters) Camilla and Olivia Tipler were inundated with an overwhelming response. Wholesalers, consumers and the media couldn't get enough, and it was this public enthusiasm that earned them credibility throughout Australia and overseas.

It hasn't stopped. Just three years on, Camilla and Olivia have firmly cemented their place in the Homewares industry. Their catalogue currently offers over twenty-five products that fall into six main categories - from kitchen textiles to stationery.

I have been finding it hard to come up with words to describe the print style at Mozi - it's kind of 'Exotic meets Backyard' - and after reading their information, I guess that this description is about right. Olivia and Camille site their childhood pets, far away places and their love for all things exotic as their major influences.

"Mozi's designs are a fusion of colour, pattern, theme and subject that inspire the imagination."

Here's a peek...

(images from Mozi)

visit the Mozi website and online shop
See Mozi for stockists
International shipping is available

And good ol' 'N' joins us tomorrow! - see you then!

July 29, 2008

L is for...

Hi.. sorry this is so late today.. my computer is on the go-slow so everything has taken AGES to load! It is full of interesting bits and bobs though, so please do take a look - and enjoy!

Lindsay Pemberton

When I first came across Lindsay Pemberton's work, I immediately ear-marked her for the L's...(P was too far away!)...

Lindsay's fascination with 'taking' tea', lead her to experiment and give new life to the humble thrift shop tea cup.

These surprisingly sturdy bangles are made from the most delicate of china and are an unexpectant and beautiful piece of jewellery...

"I love the reaction from people when they realise that you can wear a dear old teacup as adornment on your arm."

Lindsay graduated with a Bachelor in Art and Design, and began experimenting with old china. She discovered, after dissecting them with a diamond saw, she could give them a new lease of life. - Aren't they just divine!? It is pretty hard to choose a favourite!

(images from Clever Bastards)

Buy Lindsay's Bangles and other ceramic pieces at Clever Bastards

Little Lark

Little Lark is one of our HOT sellers over at Apple of My Eye. It has been nothing but a pleasure to do business with it's owner / operator Christy Nyober.

Designing, producing and selling baby clothing and letterpress cards (and some adult clothing too), Christy's unique style isn't limited by traditional motifs and colours - each of her designs are modern, hip and fun!

The newest additions to the Little Lark Collection are an extension to an already fantastic range. Christy uses slightly more complex prints, but keeps the same winning combination of simplicity and style.

I LOVE the horse print!...And the Robot and Bike prints are a fave in our family (my husband Steve has a Bike Tee, our youngest son has a Bike Hoodie and our oldest son decided he wanted the Robot tee and put it on in the shop to 'claim' it!)...and Christy's cards never go a miss to give at celebrations.

I suggest you check it out!

(images from Little Lark)

Visit Little Lark online to see the whole collection and to shop
In NZ, Little Lark tees and cards can be found at Apple of My Eye

Oh how I LOVE Letterpress!

Letterpress is my favourite form of printing. I so so wish it was a viable option for me to print this way in NZ.

Doing the blog rounds lately has been Sycamore Street Press, with their letterpress Frames and Mats. They look fantastic grouped together, and make such a nice change from the usual white borders.

Some other favourites include (the previously written about) Tara Hogan, and of course the Little Lark range of cards... and here are some more clever letterpress products that I really like from Etsy...

above: hand shadow cards from honeylux

above: coasters from 12fifteen

above: alphabet print by Sycamore Street Press
buy from Honeylux
buy from 12fifteen

Luna Gallery

Beverly Armstrong, the founder of Luna Gallery, has created a range of gorgeous knitted textiles in simple, yet stunning contemporary designs. Her luxurious, practical bedding a homeware accessories are knitted (with love and expertise) in Australia out of Cotton and Wool.

Beverley has designed a range in diverse hues, styles and textures and the complete collection is the perfect compliment to any interior.

I particularly like the Tree Blanket. Not only is it aesthetically fabulous, it is knitted out of 100% pure combed cotton. 10% of profits from its sales are donated to The Wilderness Society in Australia - now that's got to be a good thing!

here's a sneak peak at the Luna Gallery collection...

(images from Luna Gallery)

Visit Luna Gallery's website
contact Luna Gallery for stockists

Book of the Week:

I mentioned this book last week (in J is for Lotta Jansdotter), "Simple Sewing: Patterns and How-To for 24 Fresh and easy Projects"...it really is worth the look.

Click through to the Design Alphabet Book Store to read the latest reviews and to add it to your collection.

Tomorrow? you guessed it - M!!