Thursday, July 31, 2008

Winter warming Thursday: Kuma

Something new from Canberran designer, the lovely Amy Kerr...
This playful little kuma wheat toy is a wonderful companion. He is filled with wheat grains and designed to be a heat/cool pack as well as a fun-filled, functional toy. Like a juggling bag, he can be thrown, tossed and played with...and when you are all worn out you can heat him/cool him and sit down for a cuddle.
He is a lovely robust oriental-esque toy designed to provide amusement and comfort for all his friends. He has been lovingly handmade from a mixture of beautiful fabrics - original hand-dyed and hand-printed yukata cotton is used in conjunction with a variety of colour co-ordinated cotton & cotton/linen blend.
Get yours at Amy's Etsy store, or meet Amy at the Old Bus Depot Markets in Kingston on Sunday.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Under construction: Belconnen Arts Centre

Project Co-ordination is wasting no time getting started at the site for Stage One of the Belconnen Arts Centre on the foreshore of Lake Ginninderra.

"The inspiring sculptural design of the Centre, by Williams Ross Architects, will be a striking addition to the lakeshore and the Belconnen Town Centre, and will strengthen Canberra's reputation as a vibrant arts community and support the cultural needs of Belconnen and Canberra's northern communities"

Stage One includes a visual arts gallery and outdoor gallery, a large foyer and meeting room for community gatherings, dance and rehearsal studio, two classrooms for the visual arts, three studio areas for artists and arts-based organisations, a kiosk/café and administrative areas. Improvements will also be made to the existing Belconnen Theatre at the Belconnen Community Centre.

Stage Two includes a major performing arts theatre, additional studio, classroom and administrative spaces, and a major café restaurant.
Stage One of the Centre is scheduled to be completed in mid 2009. Display panels detailing the design will shortly be erected in a number of community sites in Belconnen.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Japanese Cherry: Arboretum plantings

Chief Minister Jon Stanhope and His Excellency, Mr Takaaki Kojima, Ambassador of Japan today planted the first Yoshino Cherry tree at the Canberra International Arboretum and Gardens.

"Today, we embark upon the planting of a grove of 320 Yoshino Cherry trees, to mark the 15th anniversary of our sister-city relationship with Nara, the ancient capital of Japan," Mr Stanhope said. "This is a significant milestone in the development of the Arboretum and symbolises the close relationship Australia shares with Japan." The iconic Yoshino Cherry is probably the most popular cherry tree in Japan and is most readily associated with the hanami cherry blossom viewing.
The Yoshino, a deciduous tree with an impressive spring show, can reach up to nine metres when mature. It has delicate almond-scented blossoms in white or pale pink which open well before the leaves. The summer foliage of young leaves is bright green, with hues deepening with the changing autumn weather to a palette of orange-scarlet, and yellow.

"The Canberra International Arboretum and Gardens will be a unique and lasting legacy for Canberra and the Australian community. " The Canberra International Arboretum and Gardens will feature rare and endangered trees from around Australia and the world, as well as a mosaic of permanent gardens.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Eco Chic: Enviro Sax

If you liked the Eco Silk bags I showed you last week, then you'll love these... Enviro Sax (nothing to do with instrumentalist Kenny G on the beach I promise)... thanks to my ever styling friend Barbara who pointed me to these Aussie Made beauties...

"Re-thinking the future of shopping, Envirosax stylish carry-all bags simultaneously rescue shoppers from the mundanity of unfashionable choices, and the planet from the dangers of unconscionable choices. Envirosax bags are an exciting new medium for the message of environmental sustainability and a move in the right direction for the evolution of a culture."

Envirosax are stocked here ANU Co-op bookshop, Wheel & Barrow, The Garden, Living In Style (Manuka), Bliss Garden and Gift (Pialligo), Unit Concepts (Braddon) and the Style Emporium (Gold Creek). Check out the website for all the info on how Envirosax are saving the world.


Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Carmen Steffens: Winter clearance sale

Carmen Steffens will be having a huge winter clearance this Friday night to make room for the gorgeous spring/summer collection arriving soon, so with plenty of chilly weather to come yet, don't miss this...


Tuesday, July 22, 2008

sick sick sick

The bad bad flu fairy has paid me a visit. Not well, not happy, can't speak.

Back to it when I can hold my own head up, Nina x

Monday, July 21, 2008

Fashion for the free spirit: Uttam

I came across this tiny temporary store at the Canberra Centre the other day and I fell in love with plenty of the fun handmade fashion inside. Uttam London is the label and the distribution for Australian stockists is run right here in Canberra, and only until 30th July, they are selling directly to you...
Bursting with felted handbags and crocheted jewelery and hand embroidered clothing, I love the fun playfulness and the colour. Seeing these clothes just puts me in a happy place! LOVE the coats: above, a fabulous mod geometric, and below, a plaid wool coat is hand embroidered... gorgeous.

Also on hand are these very cute cardigans. Don't miss out, Uttam is on level 3 of the Canberra Centre (directly above Portmans I think)
******only until 30th July******

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Loving: Cocoon Couture

While at the Canberra Centre working on a secret style project, I wandered into Little Sprout (adjoining the City Pharmacy), a small space jam packed with many, many adorable toys and things for kids. Now I have loved the Cocoon Couture Enchanted Forest Tree before, but my heart melted when I saw more from their range... the little bookends are to die for!

I still swoon whenever I see this tree. Adorable!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Coming soon? Handmade Market

***UPDATE***UPDATE***UPDATE*** 24/7/08
Email your supporting comments to

Since February this year, plans have been conceived, submitted then passed around like a political hot potato... plans to bring something exciting and new to Canberra (no, sorry, not Ikea)... I have been patiently waiting to tell you all about it so I can announce the launch, but now we need help...

Handmade Market, ear-marked for Linear Park in Gungahlin (perfect use of space!), plans to bring gorgeous handmade goodies, in the style of ETSY - with an emphasis on style (so you know, I'm all for it!). Jumping through hoops to make it happen is Julie Nichols, jewelery maker and Gungahlin local, who also wants the market to also raise money for Motor Neurone Disease Australia. Julie has town planners, council and local Govt members on her side, so what is the hold up? The Chief Minister's ok... So COME ON JON... give it the green light...
Lets start a petition right here in the comments...
leave your comment for Jon Stanhope here...

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Canberra Expats: Timothy Horn

I have just come across a fantastic article about sculptor and artist Timothy Horn. He initially studied at the Canberra School of Art before heading to the US where he now resides. His work is absolutely astounding, and he has built an amazing reputation in the art world in the US. I am completely enamoured with his play on scale...

"Sweet Thing" a 2008 work made of nickel-plated bronze and blown and mirrored glass. It measures 60 inches high by 44 inches wide by 9 inches deep and will be on display at the de Young Museum this summer.
“My precise interest is the intersection between beauty and grotesque, perfection versus vulgarity.”

"Medusa" chandelier, a 2006 chandelier made of silicone rubber, copper tubing, fiber optics, and lighting fixtures. It measures 72 inches tall by 102 inches in diameter. Photograph from Hosfelt Gallery.
In his latest exhibition in San Fransisco Timothy Horn: Bitter Suite, he plays with sugar, scale, and the legend of Alma Spreckels (the widow of the millionaire sugar baron, Adolph Spreckels, and founder of the California Palace of the Legion of Honor) in his reinterpretation of historical decorative arts from the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.

"I Want Candy," a 2001 Timothy Horn work made of nickel-plated bronze, cast lead crystal, and Easter-egg foil. It measures 35.5 inches high by 25.5 inches wide by 4 inches deep. Photograph from Hosfelt Gallery.;
"Silk Purse (Sow's Ear)" a 2005 work made of translucent polyurethane rubber. Measures 47 inches high by 34 inches wide by 6 inches deep. Photograph from Hosfelt Gallery.

Above, "The Motherload" decorative carriage is covered in sugar.
Horn uses the European decorative arts collections as the inspiration for three large-scale works in , on view at the de Young Museum. Horn relates, “The stories surrounding Alma were the sparks that ignited ideas for the work I’ve gone on to make.”

See the full article on The Aesthetes Lament blog and check out his website here. Fabulous

Monday, July 14, 2008

Recycle: Ecosilk

How gorgeous are these re-useable shopping bags? Designed by fashion designer Emily Hay who, dismayed with the wide spread acceptance of the plastic bag in society and the lack of a viable alternative... she uses parachute silk in a range of beautiful colours. Washable, re-usable and once finally unuseable (5+ years), the fabric will be recycled by Ecosilk.

Find out more at the Ecosilk website, and buy them in Canberra, here...

Duffy - Duffy Post Office.
Fyshwick Markets – Natural Health Centre. Ph:02 6295 1415
Lyneham - Lyneham Laundromat & Post Office. Ph: 02 6247 0331
Red Hill - Red Hill Newsagency

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Puuurge: Garage Sale!

A few items I'll be purging from my life tomorrow via garage sale, being hosted by my southside friend...

Above: Blue resin jug, teapot with purple plastic cozy/helmet (both extremely cute). Large original 'Jazz' pastel drawing with glass - ready to hang, my 'Noni Hazelhurst' tribute cushion, fluffy bathroom stool, black and white framed image, and 2 vases - formerly part of my expansive white vase collection.
and going...going... The 'almost famous' coffee table, with hole in middle for dish (sadly the dish has not withstood the test of time/children - but the placemats will be there!)... and maybe the rug too... still mulling that one over, hmmm.

Interested? There will be heaps more...I can't guarantee style, but there will be substance... from 11am SUNDAY [address removed]. Come and say 'ello darling!

Friday, July 11, 2008

Strike A Pose: with Lee Lin Chin

As part of the huge Vivid Photography Festival, starting today, I wanted to show you one show I will be sure not to miss... It is Strike A Pose: With Lee Lin Chin.

"Strike a Pose …with Lee Lin Chin is a vibrant photographic exhibition of 75 images that showcase the Australian fashion scene of the 1960s and 1970s – the celebrities, the trends and influences.

Co-curatored by Lee Lin Chin, SBS World News Presenter, host of Fashionista and fashion guru, the exhibition explores the key defining influences that shaped our Australian style, and the colourful events that are fixtures on the fashion follower’s social calendar. Posed fashion shoots are juxtaposed with images of exuberant street culture."

Starts today at the National Archives, Queen Victoria Terrace, Parkes, Canberra.