Friday, 25 September 2015

More Neutral Beauty - Old Letters and Cabinet Card

It's Week 3 of the Simply Neutrals Tuesday party, and I have been thoroughly enjoying taking part. Everyone's images images have been so exciting and different.  It's funny how a set theme with limits can give you more freedom than a blank piece of paper! I don't think I'll ever get sick of neutrals!

Thanks, Wen for featuring some of my pictures on your blog, too.

simply neutrals

Here's a cabinet card I bought off ebay a while ago. I like to keep the originals and use a print of them in my artworks. 

These letters are a special find at Kiama Markets. I haven't opened them, I just love them as they are, another person's private thoughts... The snippet on cardboard isn't finished yet.

Old letters

This huge moth flew into our window and I took some photos before letting it go again. It's a giant bogong moth, considered a good food source by indigenous people. I'm not tempted!

Here's a view of our nearby coast just after sunrise.

I spotted this old cottage from the road as I drove down the coast to visit Suzy when we were working on her video. I stopped on the way back to take some pics.

This is a simple fairy child I made. They look so sweet around my craft room...

If you'd like to join in or see some more gorgeous neutrals, pop across to AppleApricot 

Simply Neutrals Tuesday #3 linky party time

What neutral coloured beauty did you find or make or buy or receive?

Post anything in neutral colours,
be it cream, white, grey, beige, silver and/or brown.

A creation you made or received, home decoration, a statue or architecture, or anything out there that you were allowed to take a photo of.

You have till Monday 28th noon CET to link up.

Tuesday, 15 September 2015

Simply Neutrals Party #2 Vintage Wedding

Welcome fellow lovers of vintage style decor, pretty stuff, old lace and neutral shades! 
Today I'm joining Wen Sylvestre's Simply neutrals Party at

First up, a photo of Lillian Pearce the lady whose wedding dress I featured in my last 'Simply Neutrals' post. I've been volunteering to take photos at my local museum in Moruya, Australia. You can see the Moruya Museum here on Facebook

Lillian Pearce married William Hunt in Newtown, Sydney in 1913. She is wearing a cape over the dress, so it looks different here. You can see it peeping through at the bottom.

Some vintage lace and a rose up close...

Next, a collage of neutral objects and vintage lace. The vintage scales are an op shop find - sadly they don't work.

Some vintage doylies and a cotton reel....

A little glimpse of my craft room with the vintage scales....

vintage laces

I love this image of a pattern in the sand as the waves retreated from a rock half buried 
on the beach...

Finally, I had a play in Photoshop with a beautiful frame from

I love to sing traditional Irish, Scottish and English ballads and folksongs, and I hope I might pick up a few singing hints from this old book. If you'd like to hear me, I have just one recent recording of a simple folk song called 'Laddie Lie Near Me'. You can hear it here: 

Our band, Ballyhooley, are playing at the Turning Wave Irish Music Festival at Yass (NSW Australia) this weekend.  Ballyhooley's Facebook page is here:

Thanks Wen for hosting this Simply Neutrals Linky Party. Have a wonderful week, everyone. (smile) Spring is here - hooray! 

You can check out Wen's blog AppleApricot

The theme is neutral coloured beauty, found, made
or bought this week. You can post anything in cream, white, beige,grey, silver and brown. 

Until next time,

Monday, 14 September 2015

The Surprising Colour of Avocado Dye

Exploring the Internet one day I stumbled on how to dye with avocado. Since the colour was so improbable, I thought I'd give it a go. It was around the end of last Summer ( February, I think), when the roses were blooming beautifully.

First I sorted through some fabrics and doylies and sorted them into baskets - one for coffee, one for tea and one for avocado.

I'd been saving every avocado seed and skin as we ate them - I put them in the freezer in a ziplock bag. I'm not sure if that changed the result, but it worked, anyway!

So I boiled them up for about 30 minutes in a large saucepan, until the water turned a pinky brown. I strained out the avocado mess and put it the pink water back into the pot. Then I threw in a few pieces and pushed them under the water.
Here's a peek into the pot...

lace in avocado dye

Instantly they turned a gorgeous shade of antique pink, which dried slightly lighter. I hung them to dry naturally on an airer in the bath - this meant they looked aged - speckly, with darker patches where the water ran. So I did some more, and dried them in the clothes drier. These were more uniform in colour.

Vintage laces
Drip-drying avocado dyed laces

vintage lace

It's not a strong dye, so the original colour of the fabric still shows to influence the new shade. It mellows and ages strong colours, depending on the fabrics. The cottons took well, but the synthetics were not affected as much.

The colour lightens as it dries.

I love the natural antique look it gives - very subtle. I even tried dying some white fake daisies -you cans ee it on the edges of the petals.

embroidery flowers

The pinker doylies were white to start with, and the slightly browner shade were cream or beige before dyeing

pink lace
The perfect match - a rose from my garden.

They look great with this antique hat box lid and my David Austen rose.

avocado dyed doyley

I just happened to have a vase full of another favourite rose - a gorgeous pale apricot, so I had a play with my camera...

vintage hatbox lid with rose and lace


lace and linens

vintage lace linen and doylies

avocado dyed lace and rose to match

Here's a little wall hanging I made using some of the laces.

lace collage
Vintage lace wall hanging

 The colour looks different indoors... I tried to adjust it a bit below.

lace collage
Vintage lace wall hanging

So, start eating those avocadoes... guacamole (mashed avocado, lemon juice and crushed garlic) is great with corn chips!

Thanks for visiting.

Friday, 11 September 2015

Gorgeous Neutrals Linky Party # 1 Vintage Wedding Dress

Wen Sylvestre of 
               is having a linky party...

I'm joining in with some of my cherished neutral bits and pieces I've been collecting for years, some natural objects and some photos I've taken recently at our local museum.

I've been volunteering to take photos at my local museum in Moruya, Australia. My first few pictures are of a gorgeous wedding dress called 'Lillian'. It was worn by Lillian Pearce at her wedding to William Hunt in Newtown, Sydney in 1913.

wedding dress

wedding dress

wedding dress

Next, some beautiful sticks I found while walking on the beach...

I'm not sure if a black background is 'neutral'?

These scales don't work, but they are so beautiful...

I love this picture in its silvery frame.

A couple of special old books...

The theme is neutral coloured beauty, found, made or bought this week. You can post anything in cream, white, beige,grey, silver and brown. So pop over to wen's blog to see more at

Thanks Wen for giving us this opportunity to share our beautiful neutrals!

Take care,