December // winner

Happy December to you all!

Thank you for a great response to the December giveaway, proudly donated by Alison of My Red Scooter! (Instagram @my_red_scooter)

It gives me great pleasure to announce that the winner of the beautiful enamel flower brooch is…..

@turquoiseshoes!!! This quirky novelty brooch is the entry that has scored her another brooch to add to her collection.

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Congratulations! Please email me with your postal address and I’ll happily send of the winning brooch in time for a Christmas delivery. eaenglish (at) gmail (dot) com

Keep your eyes peeled for some amazing brooch giveaways in 2014! If you’re a brooch maker/ designer or vintage seller that would like to donate a beautiful brooch to our giveaway and be featured on both this blog and The Tunabake Times, as well as getting a shout-out through Instagram, please email me with a little info about your designs, shop or otherwise and we’ll get you a spot on the calendar. Claire and I aim to support local and handmade wherever possible.

Peace and scary wreaths!

E. x

Novelty Brooch Friday // December

This December issue of Novelty Brooch Friday is close to my heart. If you’re a regular reader or know me personally, you will know just how much I love where I live, the Blue Mountains as well as my passion for supporting local and independent businesses and ideas. I freaking love both. So, it should come as no surprise that I take great pride in being able to offer a stunning enamel brooch designed by local, very well known jewellery designer and maker and all round lovely lady, Alison of My Red Scooter.

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Alison’s designs are simple, fresh and wearable with a nod to past eras, classic fabrics and designs. All her pieces are so wearable and I guess this shouldn’t come as a surprise given that she is a busy mum to three gorgeous young children and appreciates being able to just grab something simple and sassy to liven up the day to day outfit.

One of my favourite ways to spend a Saturday morning is at the Glenbrook markets with a coffee in hand and a keen eye for what the stall holders have on offer this month. My Red Scooter is an institution at these markets and you very regularly see her distinct designs brightening up the outfits of market goers of all ages.

Read on for a little insight into this Blue Mountains based label that has won the hearts of locals for years, I’m sure it will quickly win yours, too.

1) How long has My Red Scooter been around for?

My Red Scooter started back in 2007. Like many, it was just something to do when at home with small children but quickly became more than a hobby. In recent times, I have decided to focus purely on women’s accessories, more specifically vintage inspired necklaces, bracelets and rings handmade from gorgeous coloured resin.

2) As a Mum of three, how do you manage to make time to get creative and crafty with MRS?

It is very difficult. I will admit that I am the first to let the housework slip and allow the folding build up in the interests of my business. Coffee, coffee and lots more coffee and I am a night owl so this helps me a lot. I do wish that I had more time during the day as I would be more productive. My list of crafty projects outside of My Red Scooter is very long and I hope to be able to spend some time just creating things “just because” over the Christmas break.

3) Do you see a resurgence in local and handmade shopping in your area? If so, it must be wonderful to be a part of that community.

Absolutely. Which is wonderful for small independent businesses. Certainly after the recent bushfires that devastated the Blue Mountains, many are more willing than ever to support small local designers. We are lucky to live in such a close knit and supportive community.

4) What are you most inspired by?

COLOUR! We are all guilty of wearing far too much black these days. I also love vintage lace, linen and fabric, enamel, chandelier crystals and old china. The simplicity of yesteryear inspires me to create comfortable, classic and affordable pieces. These days, life is busy, we are surrounded by too much stuff, technology and decisions.. Accessorising should be easy.. A collection of timeless pieces that you can wear with anything. You don’t need to dress up to wear my pieces!

5) It must be a kick to see people walking around wearing your creations. What is the most rewarding aspect of your business?

Yes, I do smile when I see others wearing my pieces. It is very uplifting to know that others like what I do and wear my pieces year after year. One of the most rewarding things is seeing many a customer wearing my pieces for years not just a season.

Please join us on Facebook at facebook.com/myredscooter and keep an eye on our website at myredscooter.com.au. It is currently being re-vamped and should be live soon.

This month’s brooch is an amazing enamel flower! (I have one in yellow and green, I love them that much!)

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Now, this month is slightly different in that the entries will be open for Friday 6th December and 13th December only! I already have this hot little brooch in my clutches so it can be sent out quick smart to the lucky brooch wearer in time for Christmas!

Claire and I began this little thing quite by accident through a mutual love of vintage and locally made brooches, so what better way to end the year than to be able to send out a locally designed brooch for Christmas!

The winner will be announced on Monday December 16th and will need to email me at eaenglish (at) gmail (dot) com to claim this darling brooch.

Before I forget, don’t forget to follow Alison and My Red Scooter on Instagram for updates on her new lines. They’re amazing! @my_red_scooter

So what are you waiting for?! Brooch up, ladies and gents!

Peace and enamel.

E. xx

Novelty Brooch Friday

There is just something so perfect about a brooch. They’re travel friendly, light, an easy way to jazz up an outfit, they keep you company, I could go on. A little while back Claire, aka Tunabake and I were fortuitously brought together through our love of the humble brooch.

We began sending pics via Instagram with the hash tag #noveltybroochfriday as a fun way of sharing our little collections. Well, it turns out that a few of you are just as fond of the little devils so we’re taking it to the streets, OK, I’m getting carried away here, but we are giving all Instagramers a chance to win a beautiful brooch every month!

Claire and I will be taking it in turns to feature a designer that we just love and sharing the love on both blogs. Each month, everyone who posts a pic of themselves and uses #noveltybroochfriday will go into the draw to win a brooch from the featured designer! Tres cool, no?

So, without any more mumbo jumbo, it is my absolute pleasure to introduce to you our first featured designer, Kristen Devitt of Each to Own!

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5 questions for Kirsten:

How did you come up with the name of your shop ‘Each To Own’?

It was originally just a play on words but it did become a bit of an ethos. I really did want each piece to go to a home that loved it so I made sure that I kept the price points well within most people’s budgets and the designs accessible to a wide range of people.

When did you first start making jewellery?

It was just over two years ago.  I had been at home with a little tacker and not working full-time for the first time since I was about 21 (not that motherhood isn’t a tough gig at times) so I started fiddling about with assembled pieces.  A friend asked if I could make some necklaces and rings for her school’s Mother Day stall and it occurred to me that people actually liked what I did.  It sparked something. I joined a local craft and market group called Brisstyle and it all kind of chugged into a life that I now call my full-time job.

It seems like you are working a lot more with wood (when I first came across your work it was more synthetic materials) is there a reason for this? And are there other materials you would like to work with?

There was one big reason – we took the plunge and bought a laser cutter.  I had been getting my designs cut by other people, as machines are expensive and, even though they were my own designs, I wanted to have a bit more creative control.  When I met you I was just coming out of a phase of working with shrink plastic because I could play with it at home more easily – it was a fun medium.  I love working with wood – painting it, papering it in vintage wallpaper and overlay prints.  The machine is a tricky beast but it’s a fun ride most days.  I have just become mildly obsessed with acrylic and fabric combinations and am working a bit with those as well.  I feel like I never get all the ideas out but I think that that is common.

There are a lot of animal and plants/flower  motifs and  in your work, did you grow up in the country or have a lot of animals around you when you were growing up?

I did grow up in a country town and I was animal mad, as a lot of wee girls are.  I wanted a million dogs and horses and cats; I bought mice with my pocket money and dragged neighbours dogs home trying to tell Mum that they were strays.  I think I was safe to call it obsession. And on the floral side of things; my mum was a folk art hobbyist and I think her love of flowers and plants influenced me at some stage.  

Are there other jewellers/artists you admire and inspire you in your work?

There are so many brilliant designers and artists working in Australia at the moment but the jewellery I love to wear most would be Angus & Celeste, My Mother Mabel, Betty Jo Designs and Jettas Nest.  My favourite Australian artists are Bruce Reynolds and Kitty Horton and I adore all of the work of Tracey from Gretel Girl for everything from her artworks to her jewellery.

We’d like to thank Kirsten for taking the time to answer our questions and for offering us one of her brooches as our first months prize.

To enter the competition just post a picture of yourself with your favourite brooch on any Friday in June with the hash tag #noveltybroochfriday and we will choose a winner at random. Open to everyone, you can enter as many times as you like either new or vintage brooches.

This lovely brooch is up for grabs this month, so get involved, support local designers and share the brooch love!

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We hope to do this once a month and both Claire and I will take it in turns to showcase those designers we admire and love to wear ourselves. Follow us on Instagram for regular updates (and other totally cool pics, of course). I can be found at @fawn_tastic and Claire hangs out at @tunabake!

*If you are a designer or sell vintage brooches and wish to donate a brooch for an upcoming month and have your shop showcased, please contact me at eaenglish@gmail.com or Claire at tunabake@hotmail.com

Peace and brooches!

E.x