Saturday, 30 October 2010

Friend Friday: 10 Random Things

I'm finding Fridays for me is outta whack because of the timezones. Hence me posting again on Saturday about Friend Friday (a weekly dose of things or questions or themes to write about provided by Modly Chic). Having checked the email group on Friday at lunch, there weren't any questions or notes, so I only checked again when I got home and I was way too tired to post. My Fridays are generally workie and busy drinks and dinner out and cause I'm in MELBOURNE Australia my Friday is kinda over by the time the questions come through!

So for today:

Instead of questions on a specific topic share 10 random facts that people might be surprised to know about you. Take whatever spin you like on it. 

My spin is 10 Random Things from my Facebook to share (because the photos are all ready to go!) so be prepared for loads of photos!

1. This was my Myspace Profile Pic, and was one of the first photos on my Facebook as well. It was a music festival in early 2007, and I made my dress and my Husbie's shirt so we looked original on the day and my highlight was watching Phoenix (the French band) who were totally the best of the fest that day.

2. I got this dress at a market in Sydney and it was such a beautiful day I got changed at the pub and wore it all afternoon. My Facebook album was something like 'Aqua Prom Queen Girl's Adventures' or something. Occasional extrovert? Not me. Sozz for the bad photo quality, it was on my dodgy work blackberry!

3. I have a nostalgic Facebook album and this is one of my little fash outfits! I love this because of the big camera, it must be a toy one right? And how cute is my brother, riding the bike and singing in the background? 

4. When I look through my profile pics on facey, this darling friend Claire is in most of them with me! Here's our 'We look great in gingham!' photo from another music festival. Our friend Dan Boud took it for his blog, and you can see other great photos on his website!

5. When I lived in Sydney I walked over the Harbour Bridge one day, it was closed off the for the anniversary or something and we all walked where the cars usually go, so it was a really great perspective on the bridge and the city. It really is a beautiful looking city. BUT, my fave of all fave places are these weird little apartments that are right near the bridge cause they remind me of Star Wars somehow. I love them, so it did make my whole life to get my photo taken with them.

6. I did play netball when I was younger, but I was pretty shit. I had to do Wing Defence and I was really bad. But we did make it to the finals one time and got a trophy (I think we came runner ups) but our team was called Team Pash (hence the little red lips on my teammates skirt).

7. Also when I was little (um, 6 years ago) I sang in amateur musicals. Here I am in Little Shop of Horrors, which was hilarious and I spoke in a Brooklyn accent. A *bad* Brooklyn accent, I'm sure. I love singing, and used to be in heaps of plays when I lived in the country. How cute are the three singers as well? Such good voices!

8. Here's the time when Elmo came to my work in 2006. Very cute! This is in a Facebook album called 'Hilarious!' and you can totally see why.

9. I tried to find a Facebook photo from when I had different hair, since on this blog I've only really had blonde. Here's when I was in The Importance of Being Earnest, one of the best plays to perform because it's Oscar Wilde! So fun! I got my hair coloured almost black (brown with darker black 'peekaboo' streaks) to see what it was like, but I had to wear kinda pancake make up all the time, because it brought out loads of red blotches in my skin, weird! It took about a year to get it caramel blonde again.

10. And one last Facebook Random fact - I give my camera to little children for them to take photos. Digital cameras are so great for kids, cause they can see their photos straight away, and I love seeing things from their perspective. Look how cute this 3 year old (at our friend's wedding in northern NSW) framed this photo and how everyone looks giant in the background. So amazing.

Have a lovely weekend! xoxo

Friday, 29 October 2010

On the way to work

Now that I'm working 9 to 5, I am going through a bit of a 'How to organise your day around those hours' kinda thing. I love my extra curricular activities (sewing, talking, watching films/tv, drinking and eating good food, and taking photos) and have to balance these things out with working those 9 to 5 hours, and doing sportz.

I'm not super keen on sportz but it's that old fable of those who love drinking and eating good food need to also love sportz! This week, I've been walking a few times (fast) with the dog and played on m Wii Fit (yoga mostly) so there's a bit of sportz. I'd really like to do dancing as well, as my friends do Go Go Dancing Class and everyone adores it appazza so hopefully I can hook into that!

These photos are from my walk to work, but they've just taken down the winter masterpieces (and the big letters that spell out the artists' names) so thought I'd show them to you. Melbourne has constant art events on and it's such a beautiful town, so walking around you feel so connected to the art and culture of the city. Even these kinda small detail of the artists' names like this on the outside of the building (instead of a poster of exhibition) makes you want to go in and explore art.

Today and Saturday are apparently going to be very hot and dry with humid showers at night, so could be very sticky for us! We haven't had hot weather in this new house yet (and our bedroom is upstairs) and we don't have a cooling system. Hopefully we'll be able to cope!

But back to working 9 to 5, I haven't got a proper system going for when I do my extra curricular activities through the week. I'm usually waking up at 6.30am, but read the news or listen to the radio and now am typing here (7.20am) and will go to the park with Doggie Darling and then it'll be time to go to work. I'm especially trying to find that time to sew. After work I can't count on because I either have drinks with peeps (such a networker!), go to the park with the dog, make tea and watch tv or go to a film with my Husbie... Maybe I could get up at 6am, go to the park first and spend 6.30am - 7.30am sewing a little bit? IDEAZ!

If you sew, and work 9 to 5, do you sew during the week? Or do you save it for the weekends?

Best, Veronica Darling

Wednesday, 27 October 2010

Roses in the Dressing Room

I've had a few recently purchased (or made) hair accessories!

They live in the 'Dressing Room' AKA bathroom AKA laundry AKA Doggie Darling's bedroom.

It's totes springtime in Melbourne and I got a a couple of them (the red one I'm wearing today - you can't really see it though - and the black ones on a clip) from Bexterity - who has a big cartel and the flowers are ON SALE!

YAY for made in Australia! The ones I made aren't nearly as good as Bex's!

Tuesday, 26 October 2010

My new mother

I love you mum, but can I also have two mothers, and share you with Carrie Fisher?

Well, hi guys! That's my new mum (above) wearing some comfortware and generally being fun loving. Tonight my Husbie and I went to visit Carrie Fisher at her "home" (AKA the Athenaeum Theatre in Melbs) and we hung out for a very LOLworthy 2 hours. 

Not sure when I'll see "Mum" again, but she'll always be very close to my heart. 

I'm sure she's toured her show all over, but if you get the chance, it was SO gorgeous/real/heartful and freaking funny. There's probably a different jokes in her head every night, and a bunch of interesting tales to tell that she will never tell. We're off to read Postcards From the Edge, and sticky beak at the film again. xoxo

Monday, 25 October 2010

Big Hairz: the 'before' photo

UM... you guys are so cute, and it's funny that mostly the hair we're born with isn't the hair we love... but did I show you the 'natural' hair style on my head (colour excluded, friends... this is just natural curls/frizz here)

BUT, I'm not afraid to whip it out every now and again and chuck a freaking victory curl at the front. No WAY. I like myself natural!

(please keep in mind, I got my friend to take a photo of me in her jacket, hence this photo... so realistically you shouldn't laugh at my hair, because it wasn't the main focus to begin with. Not at all. Ok, so you can laugh a little)

HI-LAIR-IOUS! Friends jacket, model's own dress (handmade), cheapie $2 shop tights and second hand Italian cowboy boots that are sadly falling apart.

But how cool is my friend's jacket? She rolls up the sleeves and it fits her a bit better than old shorty short pants here. It also has heaps of cuts (unintentionally, my friend fell off her bike today - car doored - so she's often in strife I think).

I was blog hopping a bit over the weekend, and in an effort to ditch tabs (I'm a tab obsessed mac user on firefox) thought I'd show you this blog... Inside Out Style and her notes on BODY SHAPES. In my examination of this, I think I'm an 8 figure, so no way can I suit oversized things like this. It's tight and all about my hella skinny waist and how to emphasize this. Hourglass all the way. But, it's like those Trinny and Susanna peeps, it's all their own perspective on style and shape, but is it accurate? Do fashion peeps really sit down and look at normal peeps' body shapes and conjure up the style that suits? When I wear this black dress, in my opinion I look really skinny and that it's a *bit* too short to wear to work, but I do anyways. From this photo it looks completely normal and I don't look like Heidi Klum. Hmmm, but I felt like Heidi Klum on the day?

Oh well!

Sunday, 24 October 2010

Big Hairz

Time to talk hair peeps! I get my hair updated a LOT cause it's platinum all the way, so I get the regrowth 'updated' every 4-5 weeks. If you leave it longer you get 'bands'. I know a LOT more about hair since I went platinum.

My friend Nina and I: Big Hair Rulz!

I talk a lot about my hair and it's SO boring, but it's a big topic of conversation for peeps, because I guess blonde is considered high maintenance and interesting perhaps. If I had a dollar for every time I talked about my hair (blah blah etc)... but seriously I never never never thought I would be this chit chatty about HAIR. 19 year old Veronica Darling would be LOL-ing all over the place. I guess it's part of growing up, but if I were to choose something that I bitched about the most (and got teased about the most perhaps) it would be my hair and my height.

Overall, I couldn't care less about my height, as if I can ever change that (please don't get me started about that documentary I saw once in the UK about a young teenager who was a totes short arse and got her LEG BONES cut and extended - OUCH)... but I sometimes do get annoyed about people talking about my height all the time. But with my hair, knowing I could do stuff to it ... but not sure what I could do... it totally annoyed me. I got different cuts, different colours and styles from when I was about 15 years old... but still it was frizzy and just annoying!

I'm now 32 and have probably spent the last 5 years totally happy with my hair, and it's because of the blonde, and because of straightening it out, and nowadays making the pin curls! Being able to control my hair is totes the best. It makes me feel so much better about myself and my day ahead when my hair is ok. It's so silly, but for me it makes a difference.

My Husbie and I often say that our kids are gonna hate us because we both have frizzy curly hair that's pretty yucky, but at least there are hair straighteners in this world these days. ANYWAYS, luckily for me I've been visiting Corrin's Hair Lounge in Brunswick, and they've been making the platinum THE best kinda white, and I was a little worried (what with the move to Melbs) about the colour, and how it would be to maintain... but with the girls at Corrin's being so lovely, it's totes fine.

Hope you've all been enjoying the weekend! I've been SO social and busy with out of towners visiting, I'm all talked out! Love my interstate friends though!


Saturday, 23 October 2010

Friend Friday: Product Placement

It's my first Friend Friday and I missed it! 'Friend Friday' is something I found out about through Franca's Oranges and Apples blog, and it's a series of questions that Katy at Modly Chic sets for a group of bloggy peeps, and then they answer them via a post on Friday. EASY. I tend to get distracted easily by photos in my blog, and often don't talk that much here, so I wanted to *talk* a bit more and share things with you, so it seemed Friend Friday is appropriate to get me started.

Here's my Friend Friday (on a Saturday) and hopefully it'll be ok:

1. As we watched the Chilean Miners being rescued last week, there were many things to take note of - the amazing faith of these people, the joy of life, love and family, and - interestingly enough - product placement. As you watched the rescue efforts did you notice the products? What were your thoughts?

I only watched a few miners being rescued via ABC News 24 and didn't notice any product placement because ABC is our government funded broadcaster here in Australia, and not commercial in any way. I tend to watch ABC above all other TV channels because they have no advertising and have way better content. I did not notice any product placement on the ground, were they drinking cokes or gatorades?

2. Product placement is all around us today, what do you think makes it such a marketing gold mine?

Personally, I don't really pay attention and prefer to ignore advertising (although I love watching Mad Men! That's different!) as I tend to make my own buying choices. As for product placement and tailored advertising (my gmail account shows me travel sites when I'm emailing about Bali at the moment, as another example), it does register, but I am in no way going to buy a brand of watch just because James Bond wears it. (Does he even wear watches? I've never even seen a James Bond film properly - I skipped through Goldfinger once for work!) I feel independent about my consumerism and am quite measured about what I buy. For example, I got a new camera last week on a friend's recommendation (her Husbie is a photographer) as to what would suit me, and had seen no advertising (that I can recall) about the brand.

As for 'marketing gold mine', I think it's done for peeps to make money. Other people don't behave like me... I've seen people click on all the google ads while searching, instead of the actual pages, so I bet they see peeps eating chocolate bars in a film and want to eat the same one. I don't know.

3. On your blog, either now or in the future, what is/will be your stance on highlighting specific products? 

At the moment, if I'm happy with something and it's blog related, I will tell you. Like my Melissa shoes this week, I love them (although I do have mini blisters today from wearing them in) and want to show you. I have never thought to take advertising or sponsors on my blog, but I don't really want to make it a money making thing, I blog because I love writing and taking photos and talking with peeps online and being part of a community. I have been offered to do reviews or blog posts (I actually can't recall what the product was, or who the companies were, but weren't really my scene) but I really like my independence from commercial products. It's more me, and what I think, than anything else. If in the future a shoe company was all like: We'll send you shoes to try on and can you write about them? I'd be like: I will be honest though, it may be free if it's totally shit I will say so.

Please remember that I actually don't buy any new clothes, and rarely buy makeup or other fash stuffs so that's perhaps also why I don't talk about products. I kinda don't tend to consume that much.

4. If the opportunity arose would you give a bad review of a product?

Yep, if it was shitful, of course.

5. Do you view your blog as a product? Where have you or do you hope to place it?

Nup, not a product. I view my blog as a conversation, and a community. I sometimes think I could sew full time, and make a living out of it, but it's more just thinking about the future and I love my day job and am confident in my career at the moment... so I'm not going to do that right away! Perhaps later on!

There it is! My first Friend Friday! The top photo is of flowers my friend gave me from her garden (cute!) and then another friend at work gave me this (real) flower and I wore it in my hair that day. THEN Husbie gave me some flowers today as well, so I'm totes in love with flowers at the moment!


Thursday, 21 October 2010

Shoe Lady

You can just call me the shoe lady from now on. When you can make all your own clothes, and follow the darling Wardrobe Refashion eco/sustainability/DIY lifestyle, you tend to hover around shops that sell things you can't make. Like OK OK in Brunswick.


They are Melissa OF COURSE (I'm so obsessed - as you can see here with the Troupe, here with the flatties and here with my first pair of heels) and I fully can't make shoes, so tend to love on the stores that stock up on the shoes I love. I am NOT getting paid to love on these shoes, I love them for heaps of reasons but mostly for biodegradeable/fair work practices and other ethical reasons.

But, OK OK is the best store as Emina has too many Melissa Darlings to choose from! I wanted (in this instance) something straight forward, something that could be worn with loads of colours and flattie in style... my little toes are getting a bigger work out in Melbs. I'm walking HEAPS.

Even Doggie Darling had to cuddle up with them!

I popped by next door (after leaving OK OK) to my HAIRDRESSERS: Corrin's Hair Lounge and showed my 'plain' shoes to the girls there... they decided these WEREN'T plain shoes at all... I wonder what makes me think they are! LOLZ

xoxo Happy Shoe Day to you!

Wednesday, 20 October 2010

Fabric Sorting Au Go Go

I got some tidying done in the sewing room! Hooray!

Sadly just a bit of it, and not even half. I love having some extra space in the sewing room, as I have a bench in the middle of the room for folding the fabric into these neat piles, but it just takes ages to do. I'd say 95 % of my fabric these days is thrifted, second hand and op shopped.

I'm in love with this dreamy green pile though!

I'm just giddy over what to make from some of those top green cottons. Sadly the black flecked fabric (second from the top) used to be white and black, and I had another malfunction in the washing machine that somehow turned it green.

Always wash your fabric as soon as you get it back from the oppie, but I guess it's best to wash it separately as well. Oops!

(Luckily these photos don't show you the piles of fabric on the floor that's left to be sorted. Mess!)

Tuesday, 19 October 2010

Patchwork anyone?

Hi, my name is Veronica Darling and I'm addicted to starting things I know nothing about.

Sound familiar? Maybe you're a bit ambitious. Maybe you like things you see online on the old craft blogs out there. Maybe you cut up heaps of material that 'kinda' looks similar in colour tone, but you're not sure, and you think you're making a quilt for your baby friends.

Here's a few sewn up pieces of a PATCHWORK quilt I've started. It's going to be about a metre wide, and maybe a bit more than that long, and for a baby I love and haven't met yet, but she'll be visiting Australia soon. I thought first up, I'd cut long sections of fabric and sew them up (as you can see here)... with the idea I'd press them with the iron along the way.

Sound right?

I thought after I'd sewn and ironed them all up, I'd get some quilting or padding stuff and freeform stitch it to this sewn up patchwork. That sounds right, right? Right?

Hee hee!

Monday, 18 October 2010

Twinnies: Baby Blankets

Awww, my friends had TWINS! They are a little girl and a little boy, and I made up these two crochet blankets (I have been working on them for a while, mind you, so made them up means doing the final granny square edging) on the weekend for them:

The burgandy black one is mostly of vintage wool, from op shops, and the brighter coloured one is from store bought wool and I used a hookie 5 in size. I really like doing these blankets, you can watch the Grand Final, True Blood, Tina Fey movies and 30 Rock. You can start them in July and finish them in October, if you fancy. I've already started another one, that is made entirely of scrap wool and looks AMAZING already!

 Doggie Darling wishes they were for her, but they'll go in the post tomorrow (I had too much work on today to pop out to the Post Office. Oh the woes of working 9 to 5!) for the babies.

As we're getting settled at our house, I thought I'd show you some of our darling things! My Granny and my mum threw these cats into the bin, and I rescued them. Granny had them at her house for years, and I remember looking at them with distaste when I was little (I didn't like these cats or her Siamese real life ones). But I know they'd make great decorations, and Husbie loves cats! They were seriously in the roadside big wheelie bin as well, not just in the bin in the house. I truly was a dumpster diver that day!

Sunday, 17 October 2010

Stopping and pausing...

Hey darls,

It's taken me a while to shake this head cold, and I'm trying to ignore it rather than get all hypochondriac like I usually do. So I've been reflecting a lot, reading a lot of blogs, and soldiering on at work. But, since my move to Melbourne I've been thinking a lot about my hobby of sewing, and how and why I blog.

This week, I was struck by Franca's 'Friends Friday' update (and heaps of the other notes on Friend Friday via ModlyChic) and have started thinking about why I blog... If you've been with me for a while you may know I have been blogging for years and years... mostly academically because I studied communications at university, and really looked at electronic writing and narrative online. It was also 1999, and the world was a little different. My first real blog came around in 2001 I think, and it was all about my school work, so my real normal writing voice (that you hear today through this blog) was always really postmodern or philosophical.

So! I've been thinking of posting regularly, and then what to post about each day. I actually can't finish a garment from the sewing room each day, and have it ready to post for the blog, but I can plan ahead and I guess my aim for this blog is to be ahead of myself... and Franca and others who have posted about blogging and fash recently have been a bit of an inspiration for me. I hope you don't mind, but I will be around a bit more often and I'll have a bit of structure here and there, but I promise I'll probably just be the same old dorky blogger ... so don't be too worried!

And what to show you today then?

A little sneak peak at what Lisa will soon get in the mail, as she won my giveaway (where I created a special little garment of her choosing!)... I hope she likes it, but I'm sure it'll make a great gift if it's not the right fit. It's an apron made from 100 percent vintage or recycled materials! Lace and pink fabric from the thrift store, and floral material from a former bedsheet.

But, back to this blog: My aim is to have fun. That's why I blog, and read blogs and take the photos for the blogs and write my posts. It's pretty fun to do it. Through the 'fun', I make stuff, I learn shit, laugh at stuff, have my mind opened and heaps of other fun stuff... so I hope to make your day a little bit more fun by posting here.

Best, Veronica Darling xoxo

Wednesday, 13 October 2010

Spring then Summer then Winter

It's a bit all over the place weather wise, and it makes it harder when I was kinda over my winter wardrobe so having to revisit it again and put stockings BACK on, is a bit annoying...

So today, I thought I'd reflect on those summer and springtime days of only 3 days ago, and show you my American Beauty (yes, I did have to google to check that film's name) photo:

And some more blossoms from the car park on Monday.

The good thing, I guess, is that when the weather turns like this, I'VE turned to my crochet blankies, and I've finished two baby ones, and have started another granny square one made up of little pieces of wool (Leftover Blankie!). AND, I've finished one of my giveaway items... I'll show you soon what it is before I put it in the post! Yay!


Tuesday, 12 October 2010

My fully sick day

I only popped out briefly yesterday to go to the Op Shop with my Husbie, as it was my sick day from work. Here's what I did:

On sickie days you can wear street casual, I reckon. It's a dress I made last year, it's pretty much stretch knit, sewn up at the sides, and on the shoulders. It's a tube with holes for arms and my head. I didn't even hem it or overlock the edges, because I'm so freaking cool.


Here's some things from our neighbourhoodz:

I made everything look like the 1960s because frankly, so much of my area has little remnants of the old 'bright' past of Melbourne. The trendy 60s/70s pop up here and there in signs, architecture and buildings, and perhaps even way of life in Footscray. I love it.

Thank you so much for your well wishes to me and my darling friend! You are too kind

Monday, 11 October 2010

Oh rats!

I got sick! Not the best sleep, and not the best throat and sinuses at the moment, but a sick day to recover. I HOPE. Well, this afternoon I feel HEAPS better than yesterday afternoon, so I think I have recovered by resting up at home.

But I'm such a woosy with sickness, because yesterday I visited a dearheart friend in hospital who had a tiny accident and had an even tinier operation yesterday... and my sickness is just so stupid to even ponder over in comparison... it was a brilliantly sunny day yesterday though, and I wanted to bring my dearest dearheart flowers from our garden:

Here's one of my first 'proper' dresses, I made it around 2005 to wear in Fiji where my friends were getting married. I love it because it's so easy and flattering and you don't have to wear a bra and for hot days, it's kinda like my version of 'traccie dacks' if you will. It's a 'proper' dress because it's a Vogue pattern of some sort, that even had lining, and it's a really great fit. I should make it again actually, and I think I've got some pattern pieces cut out somewhere so I'll have to find them.

I put some more flowers in my living room too, so my friend and I are the same.

Speedy recovering lovely love!

I'm so happy because I've read heaps of blogs this morning, and finished crocheting a couple of nice baby blankets last night while watching 'Date Night'. I love Tina Fey so much, and wish we could be more than just tv friends. It's just such a one sided relationship.


Sunday, 10 October 2010

Happy Octoberfest!

We had an Octoberfest BBQ to go to yesterday, so of course, I had to find a dirndl dress in my stash! My friend lives with a German chappie, and some of us drank from stein glasses and bought European beer to celebrate!

It's not a traditional dirndl style, but is one of the easiest patterns I have for fitted dresses:

It's Simplicity 4491, has a simple bodice, gathered skirt and back zipper. And I've made it HEAPS of times! I made a skirt gathered all around instead of flat at the front like the pattern.

I always have to alter the bodice to fit me, and always forget by how much and where... this time I shorted the bodice just above the waistline, and took only a centimetre of the middle bit of the front and the back (vertical). BUT, I probably should have taken more off the shoulder straps, and (for the sake of the German dirndl style) maybe dropped the neckline a bit more.

But what do you think?

Fabric: IKEA cotton remnant $4
Pattern: Simplicity 4491 (circa 1960s?).
Notions: Vintage zipper 20c, vintage thread, hand me down lace for the under hem bit
Time to complete: 2 hours
First worn: Yesterday to the Octoberfest BBQ.
Wear again? Yes, I love it. I will have to wear heels though, because when I wear flats, the shoulders are a bit large and go all bunchy
Total Cost: $4.20 AUS

I wore a white slip underneath, with a petticoat over the top to fill the skirt out a bit. I like the big flowers on the side (it gives the dirndl apron effect, without making it costume-y.. but of course the pigtails were just for perfect for Octoberfest!) and bits of red that popped up elsewhere in the dress.

Here's my new camera! YIPPEE! It's a Lumix GF1 and takes such good photos!

Hope you're having a nice weekend! I sadly have a REALLY sore and scratchy throat, so am lying in bed about to watch Running Wilde with my Husbie xoxo

Dongmen Lu Fabric Market

Happy Wednesday! Time to get some fabric inspiration from the Dongmen Lu Fabric Market here in Shanghai! Can't believe how quickly 201...