Thursday, 1 December 2016

the horizontal gift

I have just returned from a trip to Muswellbrook where I had a radio interview. This coming Saturday December 3rd is the International Day of People with Disability (IDPwD) and parts of the interview will play on ABC TV on Friday and Saturday to promote the Createability short films, which are already available for viewing on ABC iview. There are 9 x 3 minute short films discussing the lives and art of people living with a wide range of disability - some with multiple disabilities! - including physical, cognitive and intellectual. The following link goes directly to the film Nicky Elliot made about me.

I was dumbfounded when the radio interviewer asked me if I liked being a spokesperson for people with Aspergers. In truth it is very awkward for these reasons - 1) I'm not an "expert" or have any special clinical knowledge about ASD so I fear the potential to say something about the condition which might be incorrect, 2) I am an individual and my experience and personal manifestation of ASD is likely to be quite different from others. While there are broad similarities there can also be divergences and I don't want to give the impression there is a stereotypical "Aspergers" personality.

However, apart from this discomfort I am simultaneously pleased to have the opportunity to publicly blast some stupid untruths about Aspies, in particular to clarify that it is NOT an intellectual disability and that we don't have empathy towards others. We have a neurological difference that means we process information in a non-typical fashion. Another way of interpreting that statement could be to say because we are in a minority (like people with violet eyes) its more obvious when we do something differently from the majority.

I may get in trouble for telling this anecdote, but it makes me chuckle because its a such a graphic depiction of how I feel about ASD. Decades ago I worked in a brothel and a regular visitor was a person of exceptionally short stature who had an enormous penis. The joke was that what he had been deprived of vertically he had been gifted horizontally.

Saturday, 19 November 2016

Adeline pattern makeover

A week ago I just released "End Point" which is my 11th PDF pattern since I started publishing my designs two and half years ago. I haven't yet officially announced End Point as I'm still working on grading it into a larger size range and will write that blog when that is completed in about a week. However, a few close observers have already purchased End Point....

In the meantime I was inspired to re-publish "Adeline" which was an early design released in 2014 because I realised the cover picture didn't do justice to what a fabulous garment this is. My technical skills with creating illustrations have improved vastly since the original clumsy effort. I also went through the instructions and tidied them up to make them more succinct....over the years of blog writing and pattern publishing I've been learning to curb my natural inclination to excessive verbiage...

Here is the cover of my new, improved version of Adeline

Adeline is now relisted in my Etsy and Shopify stores - see buttons on the right side panel of the blog if you want to get more information or buy.

A few months ago Rodney and I went up to the border of New South Wales to the lovely coastal town of Brunswick Heads to see the release of the "Createability" films. About 6 months ago(?) I mentioned in a blog post that I had been selected to feature in one of these 3 minute short films for ABC TV as I met the criteria of being a creative person with a disability. I'm ASD - on the Autistic Spectrum with Aspergers Syndrome. We have just heard that the 9 short films will be available on ABC iview next year and will soon be promoted on public ABCTV. Apparently I will be in a short cut for this TV promo....I am definitely a bit anxious that you will soon be seeing my face on national TV...please be kind!

Thursday, 27 October 2016

Wave Dress in expanded size range

Since publishing the Wave Dress a couple of months ago I've had a number of requests to offer it in a smaller size range. So I took a few days to grade it into a small size range and it's now listed in the Etsy and Shopify stores to buy. The new sizes are

Women sizes approximately equivalent to: 
Australian:   10, 12, 14 
USA:   8, 10,12 
EU/European:  38, 40, 42

Bust range:   92 - 107 cm,  36 - 42 inches

Maximum Bust measurement of the finished garment is: 114cm, 45 inches

cover page of the Wave Dress

Heres pictures of a new sample I made from the Wave pattern. It's in a lightweight black cotton knit with red overlocking and stitching turned to the outside. On the middle left panel I hand sewed some circle motifs on with red thread.

...and if you like the necklace I'll list that in the shop too

Tuesday, 18 October 2016

camouflage chook

Roger the rooster in my garden this morning camouflaging himself as a Salvia.....

Monday, 17 October 2016

Red Cross Garden Ramble

Yesterdays Red Cross fund raising garden ramble was a great success. The weather was pretty good, just a light breeze. Rodney and I were flattered to get many compliments about the garden.

Heres pictures of what it was like...

garden beds in front of the studio

pathway at side of garden studio, leading to the gazebo and ponds

door of my garden studio and some Yucca trees

front gate of our house

Bali style gazebo

house frontage from the footpath of Haydon Street, we planted the verges about 10 months ago

mondo grass and paving at the back of the garden studio

a bridge across a pond channel

Roger, our pet Bantam Rooster inspecting young tomatoes as a potential dietary supplement

looking down the garden to the home studio

Saturday, 15 October 2016

our garden today

I can't resist showing some more pictures of my garden, it's lovely at the moment

Today is the last day for preparing the garden for the Red Cross Ramble tomorrow. So this afternoon I'll take more pictures in the afternoon, when the light is at the best and show more views.

Thursday, 13 October 2016

New PDF pattern - Serenade

Today I've just published my new PDF pattern - the Serenade Skirt. I really love the flattering cut of this A-line skirt and the ever so practical elastic waistband. 

I had lots of fun making samples for Serenade. The multiple panels of the skirt give so much scope for creative mixing and matching of fabrics. As a sewist of many decades I have a big stack of leftover short fabric lengths and it was a delight to go through them to mix and match a heap fabric of leftovers to make the olive green skirt shown here.

Then I went all ecstatic Summery with the bright orange and blue cotton version, which is a mix of those 2 vibrant colours and one of my fabric designs printed by Spoonflower. 

pattern cover of Serenade Skirt

The main picture on the pattern cover shows a black skirt made in a crepe georgette that has red contrast stitching showing on the outside. This fabric has a lovely weight and drape and this skirt feels wonderful to wear. While the red thread was still on the overlocker I also made the bright lime green cotton knit version.

Serenade Skirt, made in knit from a variety of prints and solid colours.

uber Summer version of Serenade in lightweight cotton

Serenade in black crepe georgette with stitching featured on the outside

Serenade in medium weight lime green cotton knit and red stitching
I hope you like this new design. To go with it I've also designed a wonderful little sleeveless vest with applique detailing and hope to have that ready for publishing in 3-4 weeks. Will show you some pictures of the Serenade Vest soon....

On a completely different subject....You are all invited to see my garden! This Sunday October 16th my garden will be opened for viewing as part of the local Red Cross' annual fund raising Garden Ramble. There are 2 other gardens included and the cost is $20 to see all.

Here are the addresses

1. "Rosewood", 4 Debenham Street. Blandford 10am - 1pm

2. Swansborough Garden, 34 Haydon Street, Murrurundi, 10am - 4pm

3. Riverside Garden, 505 Pages River Road, Murrurundi, 10am - 4pm

a view of my garden at 34 Haydon Street

Thursday, 22 September 2016

new pattern - "Grecian Tunic"

This is my newly published PDF pattern - Grecian.

Grecian tunic made in grey 

I often have a hard time finding a name that feels right for a design but this one came easily as the way the fabric of the garment drapes and swirls reminds me of the way greek women in ancient times wrapped the "toga" cloth around their body.

The Grecian Tunic is a long line loose fitting pullover tunic with elbow length sleeves. The hemline is irregular, slanting to a V point at the right side front hemline. At the left front the side seam falls in looping soft drapes from the underarm to below the hipline. 

There are 2 versions of the garment to make, VIEW ONE has a deep round neck and VIEW TWO has a wide and softly draping cowl collar. There are no zips or button openings, it just pulls on over your head. Much of the reason why the garment drapes so elegantly is because the front pattern piece is cut on the bias of the fabric. This also results in any print lying diagonally across the front, offering the possibility for creative use of stripe fabrics.

Grecian Tunic pattern cover

Grecian Tunic made in an open weave cotton gauze

Grecian Tunic in a polyester elastane knit, note how the print lies diagonally across the front
because the pattern piece is cut on the bias of the fabric
back view of the Grecian Tunic

Thursday, 14 July 2016

in defence of chooks

I had to post this entreaty on behalf of KFC on my community forum this morning.....

As regards the matter of the feathered outlaw known as KFC:

The notorious complainant “Anonymous” has been roused to call upon the local Council by-laws to protect tender ears and the sleep they are entitled to. This morning I received a visit from “Compliance Officer” - Anonymous having turned me in as the party harbouring the feral noisome Haydon Street cock-a-doodle-rama.

KFC, as the bandit feathered throat has become referred to in our household, is a bantam rooster that did in fact find asylum in our backyard about 2 months ago. KFC found it an environment conducive to rooster flourishment, being able to avail himself of the water and parrot seed provided in daily abundance for his feathered relatives. We didn’t bring him here as a pet and initially tried to catch him, intending to turn him over to the border control authorities who would duly torture and punish him for his presumption….KFC however proved a wily escape artist capable of flying literally into the treetops to prolong his outrageous desire for survival.

After a few weeks we got used him, despite his enthusiastic proclivity for celebrating the arrival of daylight around 4 am (though Compliance Officer astonished me with Anonymous’ assertion that the immodest Rooster starts whooping at 1am and goes on to 10am…..)

I would like to sincerely apologise to Anonymous and any other residents of Haydon Street, who have lately suffered the affliction of KFCs awful assault on their eardrums, particularly for the infelicitious hour of the morning when KFC is aroused to perform his Olympic scale yodelling.

In the manner of bleeding heart latte sippers my husband and I would like to plead for “live and let live”. Can we beg the Rooster Intolerance Posse to pause it’s pogrom long enough – perhaps up to a couple of weeks? – while we seek to instigate a solution that has been put to us by a fellow dissolute  poultry lover. We have heard that a wide Velcro collar may be applied to the offending feathered throat, thereby obstructing the windbaggery from filling the bladder from which the opera of offence is subsequently emitted.

To perform this procedure we take on the challenge of capturing the wily critter and this may take several days….? This morning we are obtaining a cage to be able to enact this. Regrettably we are away this weekend as a relative is inconveniently turning 80….but promise to be back on the case Monday morning at whatever hour the 2 legged descendent of the dinosaur starts his furore…
In the interim we beg you not to resort to throwing poison into our yard as we have little dogs we adore (rescued from another canine prison camp….) Fortunately for them they aren’t inclined to noisome barking!

Compliance Officer is satisfied we are actively seeking to remedy riotous rooster and will give us a couple of weeks grace to capture and de-bark the aforementioned.

Anonymous, may all your eggs be fresh and praying you don’t choke on your next chicken roast dinner

All the beast,
Pearl Moon (defiant defender of the under-chook)

PS. Compliance Officer arrived at the door when I was in the middle of writing a letter of outrageous indignation to politician and local MP Barnaby Joyce after hearing him on Radio National this morning coming out in defence of maintaining the Greyhound racing “industry”,  which I’ll now resume……..