Monday, October 31, 2011

Story of a pincushion

Yesterday I went to yet another auction to accrue yet more stuff. It was way out in the boondocks, at a farm on a very long straight road that went on forever, and disappeared into the haze. (I am not only being very poetic, but it my attempt to say it was bloody hot out there!) It reminded me of (what my idea) of Kansas must look like. Long straight  roads, massive plains, big farms with old farmhouses, decaying outbuildings and silos. We don't have the great barns that the yanks have, but the scenery still pulled on my heartstrings as I sang (repeatedly) "Wide Open Road" by the Triffids. Thanks goodness I was by myself,  I think a passenger would have throttled me by the fifth rendition!

A bit grubby...I haven't cleaned them up yet!
Anyhoo...the deceased estate auction was pretty good...lots of locals and only three dealers that I could see were present. I had my eye on a few items, gen-u-ine cowhide suitcases (got two out of three), stetson hats (got em), cute german vintage alarm clock (nada), vintage table top pinball machine (nada) and of course vintage fabric and notions. There was a goodly amount and bidding was fierce. There were about three other women and an older man, the husband of a lady who had an accent, vying for the the sewing items. I only got a small amount of the haul, the prices were quite high. The husband got most of the fabric, and when he won, he picked it up and place it on the ground in front of  his wife saying, "Here you go mother. This will keep you occupied." It was an incredibly sweet gesture.

I degress, this is the story of a pincushion. In one box of rubbish which there was a lovely little silver plate  pin tin (Victorian/Edwardian) with three thimbles in it. They weren't silver, and were much worn. Also in the bottom of the box was this pincushion.

I bid for the box, but pulled out when it got too high. Another woman who had bought some other sewing notions eventually won. I knew that she was after the thimbles and tin but I had my eye on the pincushion. This was a pretty laid back auction, so I approached her and asked if she would like to sell me the pincushion. She looked at it, and said....and this is the gist of the whole rant, "OK, it is only handmade!"

I will give you a few moments peoples to pull yourselves together. "Only handmade!"

This little pincushion (with the tin) were easily the oldest items at the auction. I would place them conservatively at 1900's to 1930's. Given their age and their personal nature, I would assume that they belonged to the mother of the person of the estate. I like to think that these were incredibly valuable items to the lady who died. Apart from rust marks from pins, and a bit of yellowing, this pincushion is in beautiful condition.

Also, given the high prices of all the sewing notions at the auction,  wouldn't you think there would be a high value put on the handmade, particularly this form of feminine history? But no. Silver plate is put before something that was laboured over, and beautifully constructed.

Oh well, it was to my benefit. I now own the pincushion and can construct many little pathetic and heart rending stories about its life. One thing is for sure...I value it and value the work and love that originally went into its construction. "Only handmade!" eye!

I am playing along with Sophie today.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas...

I have just stocked my Etsy shop with some Little Golden Book  Christmas banners, and one has already sold!

I had better get my elves together and start making some more!

Speaking of elves and Christmas, a couple of banners recently flew to the other side of the world to a town called North Pole, Alaska. I had to blink a couple of times when I saw the address. (Then I had to shake my head from side to side like a cartoon character until my lips made a blubbery sound)

North Pole is a tiny town in Alaska and is the official town where all the Santa mail goes! How cool is that! It would also be about the most far away you can get from my little valley, in the world. Isn't the internet marvellous!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

BrisStyle info session

I have been very busy making copious amounts of garlands for orders and suddenly  remembered via a bad dream that I had this morning that I am heading up to Brissie this Saturday for the BrisStyle info session From Hobby To Wholesaling(I knew all along...I was just in denial)

Don't get me wrong...I am very excited because I will be on the panel. However, I have always had a problem with public speaking. My dream reflected that. The stage ended up in flames, the audience had their backs to me, and,  a whole class of teenagers descended on the hall, while I looked on in horror as they scoffed a table full of cakes and sweeties. Needless to say, I didn't get past my introduction.

Others on the panel are:

Vicki Sinclair from in.cube8r Brisbane
Melanie Gray Augustin from Kimono Reincarnate
Kellie Christie from Kellie Christie Jewellery
Belinda Chisolm from Sybella Boutique
Amanda Whitelaw from Hungry Designs
Nicole Zupanovich from Collecting Feathers

It is sure to be a great session. It will be wonderful to learn new strategies and information from these inspiring women.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Punkin Head, Punkin Head

We don't really celebrate Halloween in Australia, but I have had such a visual overload of items from Etsy, that my daughter and I were inspired (at last) to  make a scarecrow for my garden. Let me introduce you to Punkin Head.

He is now living in my asparagus patch and looking out for any bad ju-ju in the garden.

I reckon he looks brilliant, a sinister and creepy and somehow innocent, with his big bulbous head.

We have just fenced the orchard and vegetable garden completely. The geese from next door and my chooks were destroying my veges as soon as I put seed or seedling in the ground.

Although I had to wait until the fence was up to begin my gardening again, I must have planted at just the right time last winter. We are enjoying an abundance of potatoes, sweet potatoes, peas, broad beans, rhubarb and carrots.

I picked the last of the oranges on one tree (we have four!)  to juice, and found some ginger that I had forgotten that I planted. Add to that the three grapefuit and two lemon trees and a lime, and I have not excuse if I develop scurvy!

We are going to double the amount of garden beds in the next couple of months. Money can't pay for the thrill you get from going to the garden everyday and harvesting the produce! (particularly long, straight carrots) It is sacrilege to throw away your own grown food. You realise how much work goes into creating it and so you are forced to eat seasonally and treat it more respectfully.

As usual my internet is playing has taken an hour to load this. Some days I have to restart the controller thingy ten times! Some days I can't even access this page, let alone log in! I am trying to leave comments but sometimes it is just too frustrating! So please bear with me if I don't reply to any comments for a wee while...I am visiting you in spirit!


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