Archive for the ‘Fabulous Dames’ Category
Feeling at home in the Artlife Centre for Community Arts & Lifestyle courses!
Pretty aprons, cute bunting, and my nan’s treasured antique Singer sewing machine.
Thanks to Pictures by Clair for the lovely photograph x
Carly and I have been having the most fabulous time teaching our sewing class at Artlife these past few weeks! Suffice to say we were pretty darn nervous on our first day but we soon got the hang of things- our students are just darling and absolutely thirsty for sewing knowledge! It is a privilege to share what we know with these wonderful women who are so eager to learn and create.
However it’s with a tinge of sadness I write this post; the morning of our last class, 23rd July 2011, my beloved Nan, Nellie Lorraine Wright, passed away at the age of 90. The feelings that come with losing a loved one are always inexplicable, but it is just impossible not to smile when you think of her. My nan was such a firecracker, sharp as a tack and so quick to laugh. In her heyday she was strong as an ox and had the resilience that can only come from having lived through the war years and the depression. She was resourceful, a brilliant cook and so deft with her hands, a talented knitter, seamstress and crocheter– in fact she taught herself to crochet by examining existing stiches, because she couldnt figure out how to decipher the crochet patterns! (Oh i am a girl after her own heart)!
My nan taught my mother Lynda to sew, and she in turn taught me. So on the day my Nan passed away, I was so proud to turn up to the day’s sewing lesson, shoulders back and a smile on my face, ready to give the class my best and to pass on the skills and knowledge she had learned from her mother before her. Isn’t that a wonderful legacy?
Love you always, Nannie x
Nellie Lorraine Wright 1920-2011
The gorgeous “Little Sisters” studio, at the Museum Village Esperance, is fitted out with lots of repurposed vintage treasures thrifted from op shops and garage sales!
On our recent trip to Esperance for Festival of the Wind, we were absolutely delighted to discover Marisse Hotop’s “Little Sisters” studio in the museum village! The studio has been just beautifully decorated, with all of the fittings made from repurposed vintage furniture and curios. So imaginative and inspiring! The overall look is so indie kitsch/granny chic and WE LOVE! (How fabulous is the bureau with red drawers?)
At the time of writing, Marisse made the hard decision not to renew her lease and move back into her home studio. Aswell as the venue change, Marrise is changing her business name to “Cactus in a Teacup”, and you will know from our Spring Festival post, that cactus’ in teacups are among our favourite things.
It was really fabulous to chat with Marisse and get her insight in running a retail space, because as you know, the Two Crafty Dames will soon be opening our own store, Fossick Handmade. Of course we told Marisse that we wanted to carry her gorgeous creations, especially her awesome softies (i couldnt resist the little denim bat or velvet Mr. Slug, and Mr. Whale with his zippered mouth almost came home with me too)! So if you want a little Cactus in a Teacup softie to call your very own, watch this space!
Look at this old beauty- Marisse’s lovely old Bernina sewing machine. The little artwork in the corner was given to her by a friend, to celebrate the new business name “Cactus in a Teacup”
Even Marisse’s swing tags and backing cards are hand made- gorgeous. I couldnt leave this beautiful card behind, complete with handmade envelope using vintage golden book pages. The saucy little pin-up girl magnets are proudly displayed in my studio, complete with backing board (I couldn’t bear to remove it!)
Left: This lovely little bat softie was made with upcycled jeans and tablecloth fabric- his little feet are fabric loops that you can use to hang him up by, and you can also fasten his wings shut (when it is bedtime).
Right: more beautiful details from Marisse’s retail studio.
I cant remember exactly where I first read this quote but as soon as I did, it was love!
“I love to eat, and I love to eat healthily. I love pasta. I love starch. Everything I am, I owe to spaghetti!” SOPHIA LOREN
This watercolour, ink and coloured pencil tribute celebrates Sophia and her relationship with food as a fabulous example for young women. Ave Sophia!
As anyone who knows me will attest, my absolute favourite food in the whole wide world is pasta. I could happily eat it every day, and have been that way since I was very small. (Nothing beats Mum’s spaghetti bolognese…) So as soon as I read this quote on Sophia Loren, it launched a love affair with this strong, sexy female role model.
I didnt know a great deal about Sophia before, only that she was this bombastic Italian screen siren from the 1950s, 60s and 70s. After doing a little more reading I found out she stood at a towering 5′ 8½” (1.74 m) with ultra-curvy measurements of 38C-24-38. In fact she cut such an impressive figure that many male actors refused to work with her, saying she was too brash, too ballsy… and just plain intimidating! In one film the production crew had to dig a trench alongside her male co-star for Sophia to trundle along next to him in a beach scene- all to make Sophia look more petite than her leading man! Have you ever heard such a thing…?!
I found this great article on the Daily Mail UK website where Sophia talks candidly about her diet in comparison to modern starlets of the screen and catwalk. I found it inspiring that someone revered as a sex symbol by men and women alike has such a relaxed and healthy approach to food and diet, and is not afraid to make friends with food. For so long we have been told the carbohydrates are the ENEMY and here is the gorgeous Sophia Loren saying it is perfectly fine (in fact, encouraged) to enjoy carb-laden foods like pasta. She even recites one of her favourite pasta recipes to the interviewer. What a woman!
Speaking of recipes, here is my FAVOURITE way to eat pasta, with just a simple sauce made with good olive oil. I first made this dish when presented with a big container full of plump cherry tomatoes that were overflowing from Carly’s vegetable patch. After cooking enough pasta for one (I think this recipe actually works better with spaghetti of the dried kind), just heat up a saucepan on high heat and douse it with generous lashings of lovely cold pressed olive oil. Take enough cherry or grape tomatoes to fit in your cupped hands and halve the toms with a sharp knife, add these to the hot oil with one clove of crushed garlic (must be fresh). Add a generous pinch of sea salt flakes to bring out that lovely tomatoey flavour. Reduce the heat and sweat the tomatoes and garlic, squish the tomatoes against the sides of the saucepan using an egg slice/spatula to squeeze out the tomato pulp and juices. Simmer for a couple of minutes and then turn off the heat, toss the sauce through the cooked spaghetti with a handful of fresh herbs, my current favourite is basil but you can also use marjoram for a nice variation. Add some fresh or dried chili flakes if you like, and serve with cheese- parmesan is ok but I love to indulge with a small handful of bocconcini (baby mozarella)! Mmmmmmm… mangiare! Buon Appetito!
Welcome to our very first post! We started this blog as a precursor to our Etsy shop, and as a way of documenting our involvement with a fabulous local art exhibition entitled “Food for thought”. If you find yourself in Kalgoorlie WA before the 23rd of May, make sure you pop in to the Goldfields Arts Centre to see a dazzling array of local artwork