Winter Baby Shower

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Well here we go…truly the best part of hosting your own shower is the cosiness and love which remains behind long after guests have gone home. (And the left over sweets!)

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Clockwise: Handmade signage; beautiful floral from Cecilia Fox; mini champagne tower; virgin long island iced tea with floral straws from Emerald & Ella.

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Clockwise: more handmade signage; ‘order your tea’ cups; yes! the champagne tower worked!; painted stools for extra seating…aka: giant confetti.

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Clockwise: Gluten free chocolate cake & raspberries; mini honey cakes with cinnamon butter….a donna hay favourite!; chocolate mousse was a hit…served in mini quilted mason jars with wooden tea spoons from Emerald & Ella (recipe will be on the Emerald & Ella blog shortly!); home made lemon tart….Stephanie Alexander recipe to die for…including home made pastry… I highly recommend trying it’s too easy!.

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Guests took home little bags of family recipe honey biscuits lovingly baked by Steve’s sister. They were simple coloured ‘confetti’ circles of course! Flat bottomed brown bags from Emerald & Ella.

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Our simple hand made invite set the tone. (Was emailed!) It’s kind of grown up but still kind of fun.

Baby Shower Mood Board

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When do I ever share a mood board…? Apparently not often – so it’s nice to share my baby shower mood board AND then I get to show you how it panned out!  As it was on the first day of winter I wanted it to feel warm and cosy and most importantly relevant to us and our group of friends.  In saying that it wasn’t a serious occasion so it was balanced with colour and a few fun traditional, festive elements. I.e confetti! I loved Beci Orpin’s (thanks Beci!) idea of giant confetti, which is in the board below (confetti on the wall) and had ideas of putting that into the event scape….when you think of giant confetti….the mind reels…there is so much you could do!  Of course we ended up keeping it pretty low key but there is no harm in letting the brain wander before reigning it back in!  Stay tuned for the next instalment!

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You can find actual image sources here at Pinterest

Out & About: Pop & Scott Workshop Open Day

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I’m going back to the vault here (only Nov 2012) as I wanted to share some snippets from the Pop & Scott Workshop open day.  Great! Sweet is a friend of the Pop & Scott Workshop Cooperative and when we’re working on bespoke pieces for clients special occasions….this is where you might find us!  So the open day was a nice opportunity for the public to come through the workshop to meet the makers of various furniture & wares and also a fun opportunity for us (occasion!) to put a little something together for Great! Sweet & our sister business Thomo & Coach.   I didn’t take enough pics unfortunately but the one I was super excited to show you were the black ceramic light shades from Anchor Ceramics (below)….amazing, as were the rest of his pieces, which I can’t wait to utilise for an event or interior asap.  You can see more from Bruce (the brains behind Anchor) and Pop & Scott as well as the rest of the gang here at the Workshop Cooperative.

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Those light shades are divine! How cute were the Pop & Scott cactus christmas trees?!

We made a little hay bale topper tutorial for the Emerald & Ella blog....which you can view here!

We made a little hay bale topper tutorial for the Emerald & Ella blog….which you can view here!

Thomo & Coach furniture

Thomo & Coach furniture

Wednesday Crush on 2013!

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Greeting Card + Image from Rifle Paper Co.

Greeting Card + Image from Rifle Paper Co.

Happiest of new years to you all!  I wonder if other January kids agree but being born in January I always feels like it’s a super fresh start and the dawn of a new era.  No wonder it’s my favourite month of the year.  Especially in Great! Sweet land the new year is filling us with excitement….as a new business the latter half of last year was spent setting things up, so now we feel like the world is our oyster and exciting things are afoot!  Early this year we’re working on a super duper exciting wedding, collaborating on some beautiful furniture projects, building our website, creating and shooting a series of DIY event posts for our friends at Emerald & Ella, and looking forward to filling our events calendar throughout the year.  Fun times ahead!  At some point I was kind of hoping, I won’t go as far as to call it a new years resolution, but I’m hopeful of reaching a whole other level of organisation where I have a perfect selection of greeting cards on stand by for every occasion.  All in the name of spreading snail mail cheer.  So here I’ve gathered some of my fav ‘go to’ card companies in case you’re feeling my vibe.  Thanks for hanging out & Cheers to 2013!

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1. Rifle Paper Co. Florida USA; 2. Splendour Vendor Australia; 3. Hungry Workshop Melbourne Australia; 4. Sugar Paper, Los Angeles USA; 5. Me and Amber Sydney Australia.

Wednesday Crush: 15 shades of grey

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Okay I haven’t read the book, so I’m either missing out or I’m justified in saying there are 50 other things I would rather have by my bedside.  Here are just 15 of my fav shades of grey for the bedroom…

1. Muuto E27 pendant light $135 AUD via Kido; 2. Small Town macrame plant holder; Brita Helmi rug $255 AUD via Safari Living; Uashmama paper bag from $22 AUD via Safari Living; Delphonics linen 2013 Diary $79 NZD via Douglas & Bec; Bemboka angora & merino blanket $650 AUD via Southwood Trading Co. All images from respective websites.

7. Luckyboysunday knit cushion $125 AUD via Kido; 8. Aura by Tracie Ellis ‘Gatsby’ linen cushion $49.95 AUD; 9. Resin vase by Phil Cuttance $386 NZD via Douglas & Bec; Urban Outfitters chevron duvet cover $79-$99 USD; Bemboka linen sheet $245 AUD via Southwood Trading Co; ‘Same same but different’ glasses by Norways Says for Muuto set of 3 $105 NZD via Douglas & Bec; Castle printed cotton sheets $135 AUD each; Silver Gelatin print Diptych by Marlene Siegel $225 USD at Outre Gallery; Dinosaur Designs resin vase $96AUD.  All images from respective websites.

Five Minutes with: Sean Cook aka: Mr Cook Florist

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image scan courtesy of mr cook – vogue living editorial

I was delighted to meet with Sean recently at his 10 month old Mr Cook shop in Sydney’s Double Bay.  Let’s be clear however, Sean has been flowering the world for more than  15 years – so the beautiful shop and resident handsome orange canary, Cookie are merely the most recent evolutions in his world.  We chatted weddings, travel, flower markets, Grandiflora (Sean Cook’s previous home of floral wonderment), Sydney-side magnolia trees (stunning!) and a mutual love of Alliums and then our five minutes officially started…

You have been ‘out on your own’ for two years now – what would you say is the greatest reward?  The greatest challenge?

The greatest reward would be receiving recognition when you have finished a job.  That may be a happy bride or mother of the bride or someone walking into the store commenting how much they love coming in. There hasn’t been one great challenge more little hurdles to overcome along the way. Also making every decision yourself has been a huge reward but can be challenging at the same time.

I imagine each day and each project is different, and projects vary in scale – what excites you most – the brief or the scale of the project?

I love a project, large or small. I recently installed a big birthday party in Thredbo for a guy. The two words I received for the brief were driftwood and masculine. That was enough to get the creative juices going. They were a dream client and let me have free reign to create my vision. It involved 2 trucks of product and a team of 4 to install over 4 days. Everybody was thrilled with the end result.

Is there a holy grail (project)?

I dream of doing Kylie’s wedding!

Are you inspired by other florists or do you tend to look toward finding inspiration in other areas?

I love the work of Saipua. They are based in Brooklyn and I follow their blog and on instagram.  I get so jealous of some the flowers they get to work with and are not available here. Inspiration can come from the most random places. I received the most incredible old farming fencing yesterday. The timber has a beautiful patina and I can’t wait to use it on a job.

What flowers are you looking forward to working with this spring?

It is the most special time of year for flowers. My faves would have to be lilac, ranuculas ,anenomes and helebore.

Upcoming project you are bursting with excitement for?!

I just received confirmation yesterday for an amazing  big secret wedding. I wish I could say more but at this stage my lips are sealed.

Mr Cook Florist is a lovely haven in Double Bay…I look forward to visiting again with a photographer in tow.

Flower Files: Ranunculus

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I adore Ranunculus.  To me they’re the stunning Holly Golightly of flowers – they will take on the personality of whatever situation you put them in – whether elegant or wild and free.  A few male friends of mine have also commented on how ‘good’ the ol Ranunc is…hot tip ladies…?  I hope this provides some weekend flower inspiration – Happy Friday! x

Styling Great! Sweet. Thanks to Poppy for collecting the lovely flowers and Steve Gourlay for his patience and beautiful images.

Wednesday Crush: KATE SYLVESTER X DOUGLAS & BEC

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THROW OUT YOUR OLD FURNITURE THIS INSTANT!!!

Hmmm…yelling online?….advocating wasteful furniture removal?…must equal:  beyond excitement furniture discovery!!!  Kate Sylvester is one of my long standing crushes – generally satisfied in a sartorial sense each season.  There’s a story of a beautiful Kate Sylvester cape, which came to me one winter….okay, not for right now.  For now I have happily discovered an old crush teaming up with a new crush and making some amazing things that make me yell and leave all my other furniture on the street.  I’m not overreacting am I?

1. White Oak & Leather Mirror $620 NZD 2. Solid Oak & Linen Lamp $1,448 NZD 3. American Ash & Brass Coffee Table $725 NZD 4.Woven Canvas & American Ash Chair $1,075 NZD 5. Brass & Leather folding stool $289 NZD. Available at both Kate Sylvester and Douglas & Bec.

Five Minutes with: Designer + Illustrator Shannon Graham

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Shanon at her Melbourne city studio. Photo – Steve Gourlay

Shannon Graham is a talented illustrator, graphic artist and textile print designer amongst other things and heads up a Melbourne based design studio under her name.  Shannon is of the artisan ilk whose craft mega amazes me…the hand eye thing…pen hits paper (or drawing tablet in world 2.0) and suddenly things appear almost perfectly formed in draft phase.  Hmmm…some kind of wizardry me thinks.  I have seen what Shannon creates in fashion world (see the beautiful textile print below snapped up by Portmans!) and long for opportunities to commission her talents within events or interiors.  I am however lucky enough to have a Shannon Graham Great! Sweet logo!  I recently spent 5 minutes with Shannon at her Elizabeth Street studio and here’s what happened…

I’ve seen you freehand draw an illustration and I am in awe. I just don’t understand how the image travels from your brain to the paper and you don’t even break a sweat.  Please explain?

Ha! Well thank you. I suppose drawing is my language so it just makes sense to me.  It’s what I know so it doesn’t scare me.  I think it just comes down to trusting your style and instinct, and understanding the end result.

Hmmm yes it is this wondrous end result i want to ask you about….i am intrigued by your process can you talk or is this considered trade secrets?

I think every creative has their own formula. For me, I like to respond to a brief firstly by returning a written concept. Then I move to a draft stage and once I’m happy then it’s final artwork. I find I get the best results when I just put pen/pencil/ink to paper, then I’ll finish off the artwork digitally.

you left the comfort of a job as an illustrator/art director within the commercial world – how and why did you choose to go out on your own?

An opportunity presented itself to work for a new client as a freelancer and I was also able to keep freelancing with my employer at the time.  It was a logical step and it meant I could also make the move to Melbourne.

you have a successful BOUTIQUE textile print collection (KASBAH) for the fashion industry,what is next?

It would be amazing to eventually be developing prints and designs for interiors and home wares.  At the moment what I know is fashion but there seems to be a cross over and similarities in trends.

What is the greatest reward and the greatest challenge in doing what you do?

The greatest reward is two fold – I feel like each client I have pushes me to a new level in creation and then also seeing my work come to life in an actual garment or print is rewarding.  I guess the more clients you have the more rewarding it is!  The greatest challenge is probably working with curve balls – the changes in direction – which inevitably get thrown, whilst keeping your whole workload on schedule.

is there a dream world project or end goal?

There are endless goals and projects.  Illustrating a book, working on a range of amazing pillow cases, collaborating with clothing designer Dion Lee, creating album artwork for all my favourite acts….ummm where do I stop…?

Illustration and digital tee prints for Volcom

Swimwear textile print for Mambo

Kasbah Print Collection textile print courtesy of Portmans Spring/Summer 2012

Wednesday Crush: Oh yes I’m turning Aussie now I really think so!

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I still have a New Zealand passport and I won’t be supporting the Wallabies anytime soon but I am definitely enjoying some native Australian action around the house.  I can’t really put my husband up for grabs so instead here a some other nice Aussie crushes I have going at the moment.  Four out of five have been fulfilled…am I really turning Aussie now…?!

1. + 2. Cushions and Shadow Box – Bonnie & Neil; 3. Ltd Edition Screen Print – Illustration by tattooist Mark Lording, Screen print by Danger Fork; 4. Sequined decorations by Caroline Mitchell via Museum of Contemporary Art store; 5. Treats at Vue De Monde in Melbourne.

 

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