Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Wardrobe Wednesday

Top: One of Mum's old uns
Skirt: Sailor Spy
Feather Fascinator: Handmade by me
Belt, necklace, bangles: Op shop
Leather sandals: The Warehouse

This is one of my outfits from a double day spent at the Busker's Festival last weekend. Channelling the bo-ho fest vibe, as you can see! 

My hair doesn't usually look so bed-head, by the way. That took some serious teasing (and pleading) to make it do anything other than lie obediently straight. Funny how the 'I just woke up and my hair looks like this' style is so hard to achieve!

Looking pretty pale here. Wait til you see next week's WW. I've actually got some colour now (but mainly because factor 30 sun cream doesn't really cut it in NZ!)

Sunday, 27 January 2013

Kite Day

What do crafty girls do at the beach? Crochet hearts of course!
Martin's loving our new camera
A flying bamboo bear!
Loads of kiwis!

So, I've had a pretty flippin' awesome weekend! My week started a bit rough and we've been going through a bit of a homesickness recently so I really needed some serious fun times to change how I've been feeling. And Christchurch and our dear friends delivered.

After a hilarious night of cocktails and bad karaoke with some girlfriends on Friday night, we turned up a little worse for wear (well, I did anyway!) at Naylor Love's annual family day BBQ in the beautiful settings of Spencerville park on Saturday morning. After some yummy grub and an ice cream, we took a stroll down to the beach and walked along the sea front. In the evening, we met a couple of friends at the World Buskers Festival in Hagley Park for a tear-jerkingly funny night of stand up comedy from around the globe.

We awoke on Sunday morning to find just as beautiful a day as the one before so we decided to make a picnic and get down to Brighton Beach for some sun-bathing and admire the kites at the annual Kite Day. Gabby, Tom and I lost Mr Bear for nearly an hour as he wandered through the string holding crowds to take pictures of the giant kites. 

After another quick stint at the Buskers to watch some jaw-dropping acrobatics - involving a picnic bench suspended high above the crowd - it was home to prepare for a BBQ and drinks with G&T (our kiwi friends, not the beverage!)

Sometimes all you need when you're really missing friends and family is a day at the beach to refresh in your mind all the reasons why you travelled so far from home. We've been through many ups and downs this past year and in no way has it been an easy ride, but if we had that time again, I wouldn't change a thing. Travelling is helping me become the person I want to be and achieve a future for myself of my own choosing. I miss everyone back home like crazy and think about you all the time. But I know when we come home, we'll be much more broad minded, laid back, world wise people and we'll have so much to talk about with you :)

Thanks to everyone who has sent messages of encouragement this week. You are amazing and really helped me be strong and think positive. Lots of love,

Saturday, 26 January 2013

Love Birds Embroidery

Next month at The Make Cafe, we will be hosting 'Love Month', in celebration of St Valentines Day and, let's face it, as a lovely excuse to make something cute for our special someone. 

Each month, our workshops will be geared around the theme for that 4 weeks and, in keeping with the romance in the air in Feb, I will be teaching an embroidery class featuring our mascot, Mr Serge, and introducing a Mrs Serge!! Love is in the air people, even between birds!

It will be the first class I've taught so far and I'm feeling both very excited and a little nervous. Be nice to me students!

Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Wardrobe Wednesday

Blue Bird Blouse - Handmade by me @ Mako Mako
Skinny Jeans - Miss Selfridge
Black Velvet Platforms - KMart

I've been having a few 'figure-fitting issues' these last few weeks, hence why there was no wardrobe wednesday last week. I think it's probably part of a pretty common self-esteem circle that we females are all prone to sometimes.

I took some pictures of something I wore to go out for drinks with Mr Bear and, when it came to editing them, had a real 'cringe, why did I go out in that' kind of moment. The clothes I am drawn to and really love wearing seem to be the ones that don't flatter my shape at all and make me look even shorter than I actually am!

So the next time we went out for dinner, I was determined to wear something that made me look taller and slimmer, and I think I'm getting there! The dark colour of these jeans are much more flattering than the pale ones I usually wear and their fit shows off my slim calves and ankles. Wearing stuff I've made myself often helps too, as the fit is more suited to my shape. This blouse is one of my favourite pieces and I like to wear it for that effortless but stylish casual look.

Oh and, of course, the platform shoes help in adding that wee bit of extra height for my low stature!

Wow, you'll all feel like you've been reading something written by Trinny and Suzannah now. Apologies!

Sunday, 20 January 2013

Project Log: Duvet Cover

Whilst we were in Melbourne over Christmas, Martin's Auntie Sandra kindly volunteered to take us for a trip around IKEA (we don't have them here in NZ and I really miss cheap Scandi design!) 

I was keen to check out the fabrics, since I've only really been buying fabrics in large quantities for the past year, I'd never really paid them much attention in the past. Well, I was pretty much like a kid in a sweet shop. Martin and Sandra were really patient and let me run in circles for some time until I had arms full of bolts and, let's be honest, a bit of a stitch in my side (haha, get it??) Sorry.

I got a couple of real bargains, including this nice contemporary floral stuff at $2.99 a metre! I got 4m and I'm planning on making a duvet cover and pillow cases with it (bordered with green as it's not quite wide enough). What dya think? Keep checking in to see my progress!

Saturday, 19 January 2013

Daughterly Love

My Mum received her christmas/birthday presents in the post this morning and opened them whilst we skyped so I thought I'd share some pics of what I made her with you now they're safely in her care.

This is a fabric I bought from work that is one of our more recent additions. I knew straight away it was just my Mum's cup of tea and it reminded me of a blouse she has with blues and greens on a white background. I decided to make another blouse from my Blue Bird pattern, with a variation on the collar and sleeves. It's probably my neatest and most precise work. I also managed to find some buttons that matched the flower motif of the fabric perfectly!

As a little extra, I whipped up this obi style belt from Frida Kahlo fabric (my Mum is a big fan, as am I!)

Feeling Inspired

Ok, I realised recently that I have yet to do any wedding related posts and I know how my readers like to be kept in the loop, so here you are! There has been lots of wedding planning going on behind the scenes in the Bamboo bear household and it's probably well overdue that I share some of these thoughts and schemes with you!

The realm of wedding daydreaming has been largely consumed by thoughts of the dress, obviously. As you may or may not already know, I plan to design and make my dress for the big day (here's where you wish me luck!). I'm feeling quite nervous about the whole thing, predominantly as this will be the first garment I've ever made from scratch (starting at the pattern drafting stage) so I'm trying to keep it simple and incorporate stuff I know I can do well!

In my hunt for inspiration, I came across one of my favourite pattern designers, Leanne Marshall, on Etsy and delved to a new depth of admiration at her skill: she also designs wedding dresses. You genius, Leanne. These are truly some of the most awe-inspiringly beautiful gowns I have ever seen!

I love that she creates a very simple gown and layers delicate lace and just a smidgen of frills over the top. Certainly food for thought....

And, of course, let's not forget the bridesmaids dresses. Something like this would fit the bill just nicely I think.

Stay tuned for more updates!

Friday, 18 January 2013

BBQ Delights

We had a bloomin' hot day in Christchurch today! Mr Bear and I spent the afternoon in the park, enjoying the annual Busker's Festival and, by the end of the day, felt in need of some barbecued yumminess to revive us after sitting out in the scorching sun (yes Mum, we had suncream AND hats!).

Steak and kebabs were the obvious choice, along with a bottle or two of nicely matured home brew! Oh and barbecued pears with maple syrup to round it all off. Delish!

Hope there's plenty more beautiful days before summer ends! I definitely feel like we're living the dream on days like today.

Sunday, 13 January 2013

A Few Of My Favourite Things

Pin Cushion that was my Grandma's
Collection of Frankie magazines
Monster Threads Mouse Pad
I recently read an article in my favourite magazine, Frankie, about the nature of the things we covet and whether having 'stuff' adds or takes away from our enjoyment of life. It instantly had me thinking about the things I hold dear and whether they are worth my adoration or just simply 'baggage'. 

The author of the article, Megan Auman, discuses the way in which she believes the stuff in our lives helps us makes sense of our worlds and connects us to people, the past, present and future. She says, 'On a very basic level we need very little, but on an emotional level, we need things to enrich our lives. We need things to make us feel good. We need stuff that gives us tactile experiences. We need things that are beautiful. Beauty is a very important part of the world!'

Another important point Megan makes is to do with the way in which we spend our money these days. Too much of what we buy is disposable and of little value sentimentally. 

But we shouldn't feel guilty about the stuff we own that we build relationships with; that stuff that we can link to an important time in our life, or simply just the things that make us smile when we see them sitting next to us as we type (I'm looking at you, Mr Owl Pen Pot!)

The interior designer in me loves the simplicity of Scandinavian design. But as much as I admire minimalism, I just LOVE trinkets. I love going into op shops and coming across charming little figurines and novelty items, such as my thatched cottage tissue holder. It's part of who I am and everyone who knows me knows I'm a bit of a kitsch collector! 

I also believe that having items around your home that express something about you makes your space unique and a place where people will visit and see how much your home reflects you.

Here are some treasures, new and old, that share our little home here in Christchurch and add to my enjoyment of everyday life:

My Owl Pen Pot
Leather Sandals from Melbourne
Fox Eye Mask
Lace Tea Cup and Origami Elephant Ornament
Christchurch Ring (present from my Fiance for Christmas)
My Engagement Ring