29 November 2012

TINYFOLK cardboard play houses and puppet theatres for kids

Would you love a cubby house for your kids, but just don't have the space (or wallet) for one? Super-clever Sydney theatrical designer and mother-of-two Genevieve Dugard has just launched a fabulous range of flat-pack cardboard play houses and puppet theatres for kids under the TINYFOLK label.

We all know how much the kids love cardboard boxes (we still can't get rid of the last packing box, nine months after moving!) and Genevieve has taken the humble box to a whole new level with her fun designs. The range includes a blank playhouse, ready for decorating, a printed playhouse with graphics and a puppet theatre with removable shadow screen, light and shadow puppets (also sold separately).

The structures are made from durable, recyclable PEFC certified cardboard that packs away quickly and easily for storage when not in use - perfect for smaller spaces too. I know that these playhouses are going to go gangbusters for Christmas.

You can find the TINYFOLK playhouses and puppet theatres in the online store. While you are there, have a look at Genevieve's great blog, and follow along with her fantastic pins on Pinterest too.


28 November 2012

Christmas Angels: Australian all-white Christmas dresses for girls

These Australian-designed dresses are gorgeous choices for your snow princesses this Christmas. Snowy white, festive and fun - these are my pick of the best of the best Aussie designs.

Christmas Angels: 1. Silver Service tutu from tutu du monde 2. Kaftan dress from Little Mouse Brown 3. Island white dress from Tea Princess 4. Giselle tutu from tutu du monde 5. Crown Princess tutu from tutu du monde 6. Pure white pleat dress from eeni meeni miini moh  7. Lace ruffle dress from ouch 8. Minihaha white silk dress from Juliet's Closet

I'll be bringing you more Australian Christmas fashion for kids over the next week - keep any eye out here for festive wear for babies, kids and tweens. In the meantime, you can read more about Australian-designed kids fashion here on Bondville.

Does your little one have a special Christmas dress? I'd love to hear about it (I'm always looking out for great brands!).

27 November 2012

Garage Sale: Oobi, Gumboots, Seed baby and toddler

Hi guys, I'm having a mini Garage Sale clear-out before Christmas and thought you might be interested in a few of the pieces including these baby and toddler clothes and shoes from Oobi, Gumboots and Seed....
Super cute original Oobi 1950's Signature Dot party dress, size 0
Silver Seed ballet shoes, size 25
Gumboots summer dress, size 6 months

Silver Seed sandals, size 0-3 months
Orange Seed mary-jane shoes, size 3-6 months
Pink Seed sandals, size 6-12 months

Grab a bargain!

Images: Steph Bond-Hutkin | Bondville

Minyaka Design 30% Christmas sale on now!

Wow - Michelle and Jamie from sponsors and fabulous Sydney-based kids clothing label Minyaka Design are having a huge limited time sale, just in time for Christmas.

All Minyaka Design kids clothes are made from eco-friendly fabrics including recycled hemp, organic cotton, bamboo and coconut shell buttons. These are beautifully cut clothes with a conscience, and a thoughtful gift for your loved ones.

Head over to the Minyaka Design online store now to get 30% off all clothing sizes 0-4, including the limited edition iconic Ripple Dress, the hoodie and cheeky bottom pants featured in a recent Studio Bambini magazine editorial, and the sweet Newborn Baby Gift Set.

Read more about Minyaka Design here on Bondville.

Image: Minyaka Design

26 November 2012

Loving: Neon Lights purses, wristlets and iPad cases by Bubala

I adore these Neon Lights purses, wristlets and iPad cases made by Jo from Bubala - hand-screen printed, and sewn with love here in Sydney. I've met Jo at one of our abcd meet-ups and follow her on Instagram, marvelling at her crafty ways, especially with three little ones! You can find Bubala products in her online store on Etsy.

Image: Bubala

23 November 2012

Premium Photo Christmas Cards from Milk and Honey Photography

Here's another great pre-Christmas special, this time from my friends at Milk & Honey Photography in Rozelle, Sydney. They are offering a limited time Christmas Package which includes a family portrait session, framed 7x10" print (custom black or white frame from Corban & Blair), two matted 5x7" prints and twenty luxury Christmas cards.

Photo Christmas cards are such a great way to send your love to family and friends, and they often stay on the fridge well past the holiday period. Most times, however, the quality is a little so-so. Milk & Honey Photography are offering a quality premium postcard-style Christmas Card for your nearest and dearest, printed on gorgeous stock and double-sided for a personal message on the back.

The Very Special Christmas Package from Milk & Honey Photography is $395 and available only until 30th November 2012, so make sure you talk to Anni, Matthew or Laura and book in quick sticks! For more details, head to the current newsletter here.

Image: Milk & Honey Photography

15% off all KatyJane Designs stationery

Gorgeous stationery designers KatyJane Designs are offering Bondville readers a generous 15% discount off all items in the online store (orders over $50) until 30th November 2012! You'll find a great range of party invitations, cards, gift tags, baby announcements, and party accessories.

For Christmas, KatyJane Designs have made these gorgeous advent calendar boxes and Santa signs:

Anyone with kids a school, preschool/kindy or daycare next year will love these alphabet bag tags (or keyrings) to set help your child recognise their bag. Perfect stocking stuffers:

And there is a great selection of Christmas stationery on offer including gift tags, badges, stickers, twine and Christmas cards:

You will find all these Christmas stationery items and more in the KatyJane Designs online store. Bondville readers can use the code BONDVILLE at checkout for a 15% discount on all orders $50 and over until 30th November 2012. Enjoy!

Images: KatyJane Designs

21 November 2012

Loving: Polli flower press

My friends at Australian jewellery label Polli have whipped up yet another must-have piece. This is a gorgeous flower press made from plantation hoop pine and printed with an original water colour painting over sketches of native flowers. Great for preserving flowers for crafty pursuits (framed flowers! greeting cards! set in resin! laminated mobiles!) and for teaching kids too. Totally my cup of tea. You can find the flower press in the Polli online store. Read more about Polli here on Bondville.

Image: Polli

20 November 2012

MAKE: a cool house doorstop with fabric scraps

I've been wanting to make a fabric doorstop for a while, with all my fabric scraps and lovely samples that I have picked up in abcd meet-up goodie bags and from textile designer friends. There were lots of pyramid-style doorstop tutorials online, but I wanted something a bit different. So I made my own! Presenting, my house-shaped DIY doorstop:

I love it! Useful, cute and reduces waste. I used some great fabric from Sydney quilter and crafter extraordinaire Siobhan (Beaspoke Quilts), and will make more with some upcycled tea towels and left-over deck chair fabric from my stash. I used bits and pieces that I had around the house - scrap paper, an old nappy box and a recycled ziplock bag.

If you would like to make one too, head over to eBay's Mum's Business website where I have written a tutorial for my house doorstop which includes instructions to make a house-shaped template. I promise, it's not hard at all - and may even make a fun handmade Christmas gift for family and friends.

Images: Steph Bond-Hutkin | Bondville

19 November 2012

Australian designers for Target - Collette Dinnigan ballet and Kzubi urban wear

So many large fashion retail brands are doing away with their Australian design teams and sending buyers to overseas suppliers to source their collections (many of which are unfortunately imitations of original designs - for which the designers receive nothing). For this reason, I fully support Target's initiative to work directly with designers to bring their original designs to the mass market. The designers are compensated correctly, and we all get to benefit from affordable design in the marketplace.

The latest two Australian designers to collaborate with Target are bringing fun collections to the market for kids. The first, launching on 21st November 2012, is Collette Dinnigan for the Australian Ballet's ever-so-sweet line of ballet-inspired pieces for little girls.

Created to celebrate the Australian Ballet's 50th anniversary, the collection includes tutus, dresses, skirts, tops, long-sleeved wraps and sequined bolero. Now wouldn't you rather have your little one dress up in these than in Disney Princess polyester? For more images, check the Target website. Ten percent of the retail price of every item sold will be donated to support The Australian Ballet's education programs. The collection will be available at select Target stores and online.

The second offering comes from cult jeans and street wear label Ksubi who have designed a more urban range for both boys and girls. The collection includes signature denim jeans, shorts, hoodies, tees, dresses and jumpsuits.
It's fun, bright and playful and I can't wait to see more images of what's in store. Ksubi Kids for Target launches nationally in selected Target stores and online on 1st December, 2012.

Images: Target

16 November 2012

25% off World Map Wall Sticker

You've seen The Wall Sticker Company world map removable wall decal here in Rowan's room, and now you can get this fantastic design for 25% off for 3 days only, with free standard shipping. Hop to it!

* Offer ends midnight Sunday 18th November 2012
**free shipping offer only valid for standard postage
Not valid for wholesale or trade customers

Image: The Wall Sticker Company (sponsored post)

15 November 2012

The Land Of Fig embroidered art and cards

Nicole Figueroa is the incredibly patient artist and crafter behind the The Land Of Fig brand. I spotted her hand-embroidered illustrations and greeting cards at The Finders Keepers market in Sydney this year (you may have noticed her gorgeous vibrant pom pom garland strands on her stall). Nicole's pieces made my heart stop - they are truly the work of an artisan. Here are a few examples of her at work...

Nicole's artwork is so beautifully executed - these are heirloom pieces made with love, enormous amounts of concentration and a steady hand. They are printed and stitched on Arches watercolour paper with DMC & Anchor embroidery floss. What a great gift for someone special. 

You can find The Land Of Fig greeting cards and original art at stockists around New South Wales and online.

14 November 2012

Nappy Bag Gift Guide from Tots n Tales

To everyone buying for a Mum-to-be out there - this one is for you! Bondville friends and sponsors Tots n Tales asked me to choose my favourite nappy bags from their extensive collection. I of course go for pattern and colour, but I also love some of the more subtle options that could take you well beyond babydom, including the ever-gorgeous Australian brands OiOi, Poppy Lou and Il Tutto. Let's have a look-see:

From top to bottom, starting with three great bags that are casual, functional and feature fun graphic designs. I love the adjustable straps to wear across the body and hang on a stroller. The mustard yellow and grey chevron stripe (Jonathon Adler of course) is killer:

Next are two very smart bags that are chic and ready for work/functions/parties/date night too. Fashion and function neatly packaged:

This punchy black and white hobo bag is a great blend of style and substance to take you seamlessly from playdate to party:

Finally, two hard-working bags that will last long after the nappy-changing years. These baby bags in distressed leather and canvas with leather detail are timeless and will double as stylish overnight bags and shopping totes. Dad may even carry them too:

You can find all these great nappy bags in the Tots n Tales Australia online store.

Images: Tots n Tales

13 November 2012

Loving: Greg Natale for Porter's Paints wallpaper

I get a lot of press releases in my inbox, but I couldn't resist this one from Porter's Paints who have teamed up with celebrated Australian interior designer Greg Natale to create cool-as-a-cucumber wallpaper as part of the Porter's Paints Stripes collection (handmade right here in Sydney). The real question is Which One? You will find Greg's designs in the Porter's Paints online store from early December 2012. Read more about Porter's Paints here on Bondville.

Image: Porter's Paints

9 November 2012

Loving: Saffron Craig Banksia Bloom fabric collection

 You all know by now that I am a sucker for Australiana, and I swooned when I spotted the Banksia Bloom fabric collection by my friend Saffron Craig this morning. Kookaburras and Banksias with a teal blue and grey colourway. Divine! Head over to the Saffron Craig online store. Read more about Saffron here on Bondville.

Image: Saffron Craig

8 November 2012

MeWe handmade homewares, jewellery and gifts galore

I met my friend Michelle from MeWe through our abcd meet-ups, and we have been following each other on Instagram, which is where I found her *amazing* geo rings. I was going to feature them in my Loving series, but then when I saw her online store, I had to show you more. Michelle's eclectic mix of handmade goodies are all perfect gifts. It's like going to an artisan design market, but you can get everything from one stall!

7 November 2012

Sweet blue and yellow picnic-theme first birthday party

Amanda of the Homely One blog is a long-time Bondville reader and I love checking in on her family and life from time to time. She recently hosted a birthday party for her daughter Sophie's first birthday - such a special one, as much for Mum and Dad as it is for the little one. Amanda shares with us her tips and hints for putting together a simple and perfectly sweet picnic party. Not too much fuss (who needs that for a first birthday?) but lots of sweet touches and lashings of love. Looks pretty perfect to me.

Party: Sophie's 1st Birthday Party
Organised by: Sophie's Mum Amanda (Homely One)
Location: at home in Perth
Theme: Picnic Party

6 November 2012

Sydney abcd meet-up Spring 2012 - afternoon tea, pink caravans and Polli saves the day

We had such a great afternoon on Saturday for our Sydney abcd (art + blog + craft + design) meet-up. If you were in Sydney you would remember it was cool, drizzly and a bit miserable. Our plans for an afternoon at the park were thwarted, until the amazing and generous gals from jewelley design team Polli stepped in to offer their design studio as a venue. We jumped at the chance.

 This time Lisa (theredthread) and I joined together with the new Sydney Instagram meet-up group and 25 of us brought a plate of handmade goodies to share with new friendsat the meet-up. We were so lucky to have Kelly from Sweet Jane's Travelling Teahouse on site with her gorgeous pink polka-dot caravan serving tea, coffee and an amazing berry punch.

 After chatting and snacking, we formed small groups to talk about the topic of the day - covering grey hairs and neon shoes. No! Instagram! (although there was a fair amount of time dedicated to shoes and the grey hair issue). Rebecca (Wee Birdy), Jayde (Little Paper Lane) and Jaclyn (Little Paper Trees) led the discussion groups and we talked through how to use Instagram to promote our businesses, privacy issues, copyright issues, and shared stories on how we were using the app. So much to absorb!

It was so fun to collaborate with Lisa (as always), Jayde and Jaclyn from the Instagram group, and with Tess and Anna from Polli. Lisa brought the fabric bunting, vintage table cloths and chalkboard, Jayde arrived with flowers from The Flower Drum, Instagram bunting, thousands of washi tape rolls and the great jars, Jaclyn brought flowers and her styling nouse, the Polli ladies provided the incredible space, ladder and water drinks station, and I brought a car-load of jasmine, bougainvillea, geraniums, daisies and cuttings from the garden. We all got busy styling up a storm to go with our vintage afternoon tea theme.

These are some more of the amazing ladies that we met, chatted to, and learned from: Catherine DuBois, Sophie (Scoops Design), Michelle (MeWe), Tessa (Down That Little Lane), Lisa (And A Day Photography), Tara (Dudley Redhead), Jodie (Apple Cart Co), Steph (Moobear Designs and OverIt! Designs), Sheryl Cole (twospoonfulsofsugar), Lamina (Do A Bit), Rachael (The Bowerbird Girl), Anika (Miss Luzi), Fiona (Fiona Kate Simple Gorgeous Storage), Makisa (Studio Luxe), Alyssa (Red Bow Designs), Babs (Patchwork Cactus) and Kirsten (Lilypad Designs).

Thank you so much to my ever-fabulous hosting partner Lisa, Instagram buddies Jaclyn and Jayde, and Anna and Tess from Polli for collaborating on such a fun and inspiring afternoon. Steph from Moobear Designs gave us the biggest compliment of all saying that the event was "an inspiring, friendly and truly unique event". We couldn't ask for a better response. Thanks Steph! Of course it's always about the interesting, fun, lovely people who come along each time and we can't wait to see you all again on 21st February 2013 for an extra special meet-up that we are sooooo excited about. More details soon!

To keep up-to-date on new events, join the abcd meet-up mailing list right here, and you can also find us on Facebook (although we recommend the mailing list as you may not see it in your FB feed).

See previous abcd meet-ups here. For more amazing photos, head over to Jaclyn's blog Little Paper Trees and Lisa's blog theredthread and check out the hashtags #abcdmeetup or @sydneyinstameet on Instagram.

PS: You can also find me on Instagram (sbond).
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