Monday, 30 May 2011
I celebrated my 38th birthday last week. Yep - somehow the little girl running around Thornbury in Melbourne and rebelling at RMIT university in her teens is now in her 'late 30s'. Somehow that girl was woken up to breakfast in bed made lovingly by her husband and the most glorious roses chosen by her eldest son. And there were also some cute hand-drawn cards by both of her little boys. And lovely gifts and wishes from all over the world. And cake. One must always eat cake.
I have never truly celebrated my birthday - well, never rejoiced in it. Until I turned 37, that is - I was ever so grateful for turning 37. I had a health scare and thought I wouldn't see that day. But I did and finally understood what it was like to be thankful for being my age. I don't get the peeps who don't like aging and who don't want to look old. I do! It's a right of passage, I think - a gift for being on this earth so long. A visual reminder of how long you have been here for. I don't ever not want to look like my true self.
Every year until I turned 37 I would casually glance at my birthday and think, oh how lovely, another little birthday. But then when New Years Eve came around I would madly think of how to make the next year better and what plans I could have for it. I celebrated the New Year more than my own age.
Now I realise, in my life, NYE means nothing. It's just another year on a calendar. But being blessed with another year to live life and love my family and friends - well, that is something special and something that should be thankful for. I am so thankful to be 38. And I have plans for my 39th year of being around these parts...
Friday, 27 May 2011
In our digital era of seeing everything (whether you want to or not) I think there is one element that is dying. Mystery. Where is mystery going? I love a little bit of mystery. I think our ladies past knew exactly how to put a little mystery into their looks and lives. Isn't a little bit of mystery good? Not knowing everything is challenging and exotic and it gives you impetus to want to know more.
A little bit of mystery is a hint of what is to come. How romantic.
Thursday, 26 May 2011
In this age of digital communication we are hit by constant information and infinite choices. What about this? What about that? Not right? Then look at this? Too much? Then this might be best for you. You want red? No, then how about blue. Blah...blah....blah...the drone goes on and on. To escape it you have to log off the internet, your email and every other page on your computer - in short, you have to turn your computer off.
I am realising the minimalist - or simple - pathway is the best one for me. The simpler life is the happier I am - a simple equation, really. For breakfast I ate our homemade bread lightly toasted, local pumpkin, local potatoes, local onion and our own free range eggs (lots of it left over from dinner). It was delicious - and made all the more delicious as I knew where most of the ingredients came from.
I have been thinking about the KISS principle - keep it simple, stupid. I heartily agree with this premise. It appears to be a worldwide trend to simplify, to minimise...to alleviate choice and confusion.
The internet will only get bigger and more complicated. We can buy products down the road at the local stores or the local stores in thousands of cities around the world. The world is now our backyard, our community. What an exciting - and scary! - time.
The last time I looked on our website we had more than 1000 vintage fabrics for sale. That is a lot of fabric! Upon talking to some long term customers there really was only one thing to do to make it easier - simpler - for people to purchase (and for us to manage). And that was to give our customers minimal options and all the time in the world to browse.
Retro Age is changing this year - and this is just the beginning. I am totes excited about it. We don't pretend to be anything else but business owners who love vintage fabric. We don't want to do anything else but sell you vintage fabric - no other products, no other services, no other vintage stuff, nothing made from the fabrics blah blah. We are, from the bottom of our little hearts, vintage fabric lovers and sellers. That's it - that's the sum of us. And I love that sum of us, I truly do.
In order to manage our fabrics online - and to offer a streamlined shopping environment - customers now have exactly what they are after. Minimal pathways to lots of stock. So, from today, we're starting to adjust the website - now you can shop by New Arrivals (which we're changing to the past three months of stock), View All Vintage Fabrics and we're now starting to really focus on Vintage Fabrics On Trend. So, if you're after the latest fashion or interior look, you'll be able to buy sustainable and purchase the vintage - original - alternative.
So much to talk to you guys about - and so much to do. For now, it's back to work for me...
Wednesday, 25 May 2011
How often do you study the way things are woven together?
Do you study the construction? How things are built? How things lean on each other and have an influence on each other?
Do you study your life like you would a novel to write an essay on?
Do you evaluate your mood like you would the quickest route to your destination?
I am known to over-evaluate and study everything - the nitty gritty of life, the foundation of why things are the way they are. I like to look at the construction of situations and events to understand why they happened and why things are just so.
Everything has a beginning and an end - it's just the unique weave of things in between giving individuality and the individual spice of life.
Tuesday, 24 May 2011
I am such not the morning person - I am at my best at night and sometime after 10.30am. Before that it's not pretty. I need two vanilla coffees to start the day and then I am somewhat functional. I think I need a teasmade. It seems to do everything bar bake the bread and get the kids up - but I am sure a modern version does all that, yes?
Image sourced from Tatler and Bystander magazine, November, 1951
Monday, 23 May 2011
Sigh. I love glamour. Love a little bit of sexiness and something chic and timeless. Love it. Love some sparkle and a gorgeous, shimmering dress with some gorgeous, shimmering baubles to match. I wish I could see this dress in colour. I wonder what colour it was? A white, a pale lemon, a pale rose pink. Silver, perhaps? Funny how I love a bit of the glam and I'm such not the glamorous sod. I love the Cinderella moment, though. But I hate dressing up. I don't even wear make-up anymore. I love a bit of a sloth rather than a bit of a to do, you know?
These images are taken from a 1951 Tatler and Bystander magazine (November 15).
Posted by xx Ness at Monday, May 23, 2011
Friday, 20 May 2011
Each night we are travelling down the rabbit hole, all huddled up after dinner and listening to the eldest read.
The book is from 1956 and has been loved my many kiddies before, I am sure....
Childhood should have that element of magic and spirit, with little imaginations allowed to run wild. Even the three-year-old is listening in to the rabbit rushing about with his little fob-watch...
I love a good poem before the story actually starts - this one sets the tone perfectly...
Yes, childhood must be special. Special memories is but one part of our youth. And I hope my boys remember these nights of reading Alice with their Mum and Dad snuggled beside them...
Thursday, 19 May 2011
I am thoroughly enjoying the intricacy of textile design and textile weaves at the moment. As I love design so much I forget about the construction of the cloth underneath. I forget the cloth is just as important as the design on top....perhaps even more so.
Weaving is so beautiful, when you really think about it. Crochet is weaving, knitting is weaving, embroidery is weaving, sewing is weaving, basket weaving is...well...weaving. In...and...out....top.....and...bottom. The rhythm of this art form really does soothe the soul. For, as you weave, you create. I think that as modern cloth is made from machinery we forget about the art form in it. But these days I am rejoicing in it.
Wednesday, 18 May 2011
I have had a fabulous afternoon photographing vintage fabric for the website. These are my two favourite shots - both fabrics are 1930s pieces and are just the sweetest things. But what I love about these shots is the light in the polka piece above - and the eyelash embroidery peeping out on the lavender piece below. Such small things can make my heart truly warm and gooey, I have to say...
Tuesday, 17 May 2011
Last night we took some time out to enjoy the almost full moon floating above our backyard. My camera didn't capture the bright beauty of it - but it was a large moon with clouds floating around it, ever so bright and ever so ethereal. Every time I look at the moon I remember those of us who have already walked this earth who have looked at that same moon...whether that be a dinosaur, Shakespeare, Buddha, Eleanor of Aquitaine, Cleopatra etc etc. It never ceases to amaze me that billions of us through centuries passed have stopped and looked at (and been guided by) that same moon at some time or another in their lives.
It was a beautiful end to our day - we stayed out there, in the quietness of night, for a long time, just looking at the beauty of our sky and whispering thoughts.
I hope you get some beauty in your day today xx
Wednesday, 11 May 2011
I woke up yesterday morning with a virus-y, cold-y, flu-y thing and it decided to get worse today. We've had Winter-like conditions here over the past 48 hours, so it looks as if it's going to be a cold year (bah!).
So what better way to give me a little pep that to get my bling on, I say! Of course, seeing as I sloth around in either a) black or b) black or c) jeans, my version of bling is the vintage fabric type. Ohhh errrr.
This is a kitsch bling piece, vintage 1980s lurex and black cotton - as light as a feather and soft, to boot. This is Dynasty 80s glamour to me, a little trash and treasure kind of thing. Have a look at the weave of this piece - there is so much detail there.
Now I can get over my Krystal Carrington meets Alexis Colby-Carrington bling for the day, 'tis time to return to work and my box of tissues.
Hope you're feeling better than me!
Monday, 9 May 2011
I love being a Mum.
I love being a daughter.
I love being a wife.
I love being a lover.
I love being a worker.
I love being a friend.
I love living each day just so.
I love being me.
Mother's Day is not much different to us than any other day - but it is different to our boys as they love a celebration! It's a day when I feel like a 'Mum' more than any other...
Thank you to much special Mum for my pink 'mums, thank you to my special babe for my yellow gerberas, thank you to my gorgeous boys for my homemade flowers and cards. Thank you for brekkie in bed, a wonderfully cooked roast lunch, our first foray into homemade sushi and for making my first Mother's Day without my 'Nanny's Day' component wonderful, indeed.
PS. I don't think I am a very good housewife, though xx
Thursday, 5 May 2011
Things are changing around here - in the retail world, the online world, the singular 'just you' world and the familial world. Can you feel it? I am changing - my drive, my motivations, my reasons for working - are all changing. I am living away from the online community more than I have for almost a decade. I don't feel the need to blog, status update, tweet or see what others are up to as much. There is no 'you have to do this today' online stuff like there used to be. Perhaps my love of the online way of communication is waning? Perhaps I am enjoying 'living' rather than 'existing online'? I am not sure. I have been thinking about it, but I have come to no conclusions as yet.
Putting fabric up for sale on the website won't change, that I can promise you. I haven't been doing as much of it as usual in the past couple of months, but I have a renewed vigor and am putting up more and more fabric. And still buying, too, if you can believe it.