29 January 2013

Make: vintage hankie bunting and curtain

Do you have any cute vintage kids' handkerchiefs stashed away somewhere? (ask your Mum!). I have quite a cute little collection and as it's not looked fondly upon by institutions to have a hankie stashed in your sleeve anymore (oh the germs!), my old hankies from childhood have been collecting dust.

So! I thought I would come up with a few ideas to use them, and wrote an article about it for eBay's Mum's Business website. You can head here to read it.

First up was some very simple bunting, which I used for my little one's vintage toy-themed 3rd birthday party. I didn't even sew it together, and just used washi tape!

Next was a simple frame with a hankie inside for displaying in a toy room or child's bedroom.

And third is a lovely, light, airy curtain for my little one's room. I secured the hankies together with tape for the trial and will now sew them together as it's just too cute. It also makes a great little table cloth for the kids' table.

What have you done with your hankies, or vintage fabric scraps?

Images: Steph Bond-Hutkin | Bondville

26 January 2013

Celebrating Australia Day with Modern Australiana

Happy Australia Day! Of course every day is Australia Day here on Bondville where every product featured is designed in Australia or by Australians overseas. I'm particularly excited when Australian designers embrace our unique landscape, flora and fauna, incorporating some of our indigenous shapes, textures and colours to create a new "modern Australiana".

Local jewellery designers Polli have just launched a new Australiana collection that I am utterly in love with, and will be sharing with you in more detail in the next week, but for now, my favourite pieces are the Banksia earrings that are oh-so-chic.

And in the spirit of supporting our own authentic style, I've been inspired by these earrings to pull together a few other Australian designers embracing Australiana in a new, modern way that is stylish and never kitsch (although I love a bit of that too).


1. Banksia beding by Cloth Fabric
2. Kookaburra cushion by Bonnie & Neil
3. Rosella cushion by Cumulus Living
4. Banksia rug by Cloth Fabric
5. Kookaburra tea towel by Bonnie & Neil
6. Native flowers tea towel by Laughing Bird Designs
7. Gum leaf wallpaper by Catherine Martin
8. Cockatoo cushion by Bonnie & Neil
9. Cockatoo lamp by MOZI
10. Banksia lamp shade by Cloth Fabric
11. Bilby print by Renee Treml at Udessi
12. Gum leaf table cloth by Dandi
13. Grevillea cushion by Ink & Spindle

You might also like to check out Saffron Craig who has some gorgeous wombat, kookaburra and banksia fabric designs, the great lifestyle textiles products at Utopia Goods, and the Brown Trading Co. which has beautiful, vibrant cockatoo silhouettes in blue, green and pink.

Go ahead and embrace a little modern Australiana into your home - and send some to your overseas friends and family too. We need to be proud of our unique environment. Happy Australia Day!

25 January 2013

1000 posts!

Let's crack open the bubbly - I have now written 1000 posts on Bondville! The very first post was penned when we were living in New York City, on 23rd December 2003, which makes this my tenth year of writing. Now that's something to celebrate.

2013 is a milestone year for me personally, with big anniversaries, birthdays, my girls starting preschool and school and 10 years of writing Bondville in December. I'm coming up with something pretty special to mark the occasion. But in the meantime, I will celebrate the persistence, passion, effort and joy that comes with writing 1000 posts. Here's to many more to come. Thank you for joining me on this journey!

Image: Carmen Lee Platt

Save the date: Sydney abcd meet-up at Life InStyle trade show


Hi Sydney art, craft and design bloggers! Please pencil in and save the date for our first Sydney abcd meet-up for 2013. Lisa (the red thread) and I are hosting a very special meet-up at the champagne reception on the floor of the Life InStyle trade show in February!

This is usually a trade-only event, meaning that only retail buyers, wholesale stall holders and press can attend the show to check out all the latest trends and homewares, accessories, lifestyle and kids products for the year ahead. But if you would like to come with us as a special guest, you will receive a badge to check out all the exhibitors for two hours and meet up with us for a complimentary sparkly drink. How great.

Oh! And if the 5-7pm timeslot is a little early for you, or if you are too busy checking out the trends to chat at the show, come and meet us after in the Entertainment Quarter at Moore Park. We will be convening after the show closes for a de-brief and some panel discussions with a few of our favourite LifeInstyle exhibitors who will share some tips and advice on taking the next step to wholesale. What do you think? Pencil it in!

Date: Thursday 21st February 2013
Time: 5-7pm at the Life Instyle trade show, then 7-9pm at the Entertainment Quarter (venue tba)
Location: Life Instyle trade show at the Royal Hall of Industries & Hordern Pavilion, Entertainment Quarter, Moore Park, NSW.

RSVP for this event and find all the details here.

Graphic: Lisa Tilse (the red thread)

24 January 2013

Chalk Chook handmade chalk

My friend Kate (Katie Crackernuts) knows me well and when she sniffs out a great Australian-designed product for families, she sends it my way. Lucky for me, she found a gem with these Chalk Chook hand-crafted chalk products. So great for the school holidays and for parties too!

22 January 2013

Make: get crafty with old tshirts

I've been getting crafty over the school holidays. There is a big pile of Mr Bondville's tshirts sitting in my fabric stash that I have been meaning to upcycle for a long time. Well an article that I wrote for eBay's Mum's Business was the incentive I needed to start cutting into those tshirts and to get crafty.

As well as framing them, using them for rags, and making an apron, I cut the tshirts up to make tshirt yarn, and tried weaving, knitting and sewing with it. Here are some of my fun projects:

1. Coil bowl
After a bit of practice, I whipped up this cute coil bowl to hold my rings using this great tutorial by Lisa (the red thread).


2. Braided bracelet
I love my new braided bracelet, inspired by this tutorial by Henry Happened

3. Tea cosy
I knitted a simple rectangle using the tshirt yarn and secured with neon Brickie's Line to make this stretchy tea cosy for the tea pot. Super easy.

and.... Baby wipes
The simplest of all - I cut a soft tshirt up into 15cm squares to make a pile of baby wipes. Just add a little Sorbolene and you have an eco-friendly, inexpensive and kind-on-baby's-bum way to clean that little toosh when you're at home. (you could also parcel up in your nappy bag).

As my friend Steph (Moobear Designs) said, I'll never throw away another tshirt again. Head over to Mum's Business to read the whole article. How do you upcycle your (or his) old tshirts?

Images: Steph Bond-Hutkin | Bondville

17 January 2013

Laura Blythman art prints - love, lyrics, neon

I follow Laura Blythman on Instagram (oh how I love thee IG creative community!) which is where I drooled over her artwork for her Love, Lyrics, Neon exhibition at The Kaleidescope Gallery in Geelong until 23rd January 2013. And lucky for us - Laura has made beautiful prints of some of her pieces for us to own too!

16 January 2013

Sydney For Kids: Sydney Festival 2013


Today we took the train into town with a singular mission: to hunt down the giant rubber duck. And we were not disappointed. My girls both squealed with delight as we rounded the corner at Darling Harbour and this gorgeous yellow rubber ducky came into view. The duck is a five-stories-high and five-stories-wide installation by artist Florentijn Hofman (The Netherlands) as part of the Sydney Festival 2013 here in Sydney, and well worth the trip.

I bet the ice cream shop directly in front of the ducky is pretty happy about it too. Along with everyone else, we grabbed a cup of lychee and chocolate gelato to devour while we sat and contemplated the duck. As you do.

The rubber duck is on display until 23rd January 2013. Catch a train or bus to Town Hall and walk directly down to Darling Harbour. Find out more about the Sydney Festival 2013 on the website.

Image: Steph Bond-Hutkin | Bondville

14 January 2013

Extra 20% off eeni meeni miini moh and e3-M sale prices - code


The eeni meeni miini moh and e3-M end of season sale is drawing to a close, and you can save an extra 20% off the already reduced sales prices with a special code for Bondville readers: BOND20. How cool!

Simply enter the code at check-out in the online store. There is also free freight for all online orders over $200 (AUS) and $300 (NZ). Offer ends 28th January 2013 or while stocks last. You'll have to be quick!

Read more about this amazing Bondville sponsor and Australian kids' lifestyle brand for children newborn-14 years: eeni meeni miini moh and e3-M here on Bondville.




11 January 2013

Pouch Handmade artwork for kids

One of my favourite finds at the recent The Finders Keepers market in Sydney was Zoe Simpson's beautifully created artworks for kids under the Pouch Handmade label. I immediately loved the bright colours and graphic shapes, but on closer inspection it was the fabric collage and recycled elements that sold me. These are one-of-a-kind heirloom pieces for children to enjoy for generations.

10 January 2013

Zaishu art stool re-launch - new designs

I was so excited recently to discover that Australian sustainable art-furniture designers Zaishu were back in production with their iconic stools after a break of more than two years. I have dearly loved Zaishu's many collaborations with International and Australian artists including Julie Paterson (Cloth), Louise Olsen (Dinosaur Designs), Florence Broadhurst, Rachel Bending (Bird Textiles), Stewart Russell (Spacecraft), Beci Orpin, David Bromley, Angus McDonald, as well as local artisans through their social art projects. I'm sure that you've seen a well-placed Zaishu stool in cool interiors over the last ten years, as well as in the permanent collection at Sydney's Powerhouse Museum.

Zaishu has recently re-launched with new designs including these beauties - the third stool in collaboration with guest artist Nicola Cerini:

The Zaishu blog also shows sneak-peaks at some amazing designs featuring photographs of India, and I can't wait to see the new collection, releasing in March 2013.

You can find Zaishu stools in the online shop. Read more about Zaishu here on Bondville.

Images: Zaishu

9 January 2013

Budget 3rd vintage toy birthday party

We got home from our summer road trip on Saturday afternoon and after some unpacking, thought we should probably get ready for our little Miss 3's birthday party on Sunday.

I had picked up a few vintage toys from Kmart on the way home for only $5 and some $1 lollipops, and had already sent out invites with a cute vintage paper doll on the front. With limited time we thought we would theme it loosely around old school/retro/vintage toys/games/food and use what we had on hand in the house. It was our easiest, simplest party yet, and very low budget. All the details below...

Party: 3rd birthday party
Organised by: me! (Steph Bond-Hutkin and Mr Bondville too)
Location: Sydney
Theme: loosely based around vintage toys and games


7 January 2013

Sunshine Coast Summer holidays 2012

Happy New Year everyone! I hope you have had a lovely holiday and feel good about getting stuck into a new year. We had a great time at the Sunshine Coast with my parents, and drove home via Yamba and Forster, with a quick swim and a stop or two along the way. Here are a few of my favourite pics that I posted on Instagram over the last few weeks.

These were taken at sunset at Peregian Beach on Christmas Eve for carols by candlelight. The big surprise for the kids was Santa arriving by helipcopter!


Christmas Day was gorgeous and we spent it like many people - cooking and then eating way too much. Then we headed off to the beach. Here's a view from the Peregian Beach surf lifesaving lookout. This is really one of my favourite places on the Sunshine Coast. It's never too crowded and there is a playground, facilities and surfclub right there. I have high hopes for the park renovation too. And of course the cute shops (Evolve is right on the money for kids).

My little one's birthday is on the 28th December which is entirely unfair, so we make a big fuss on her actual birthday and also had a party for her the day after we got back. Her only request for her birthday was a "box full of babies" and a "baby cake". So a box full of babies it was. And for the cake, Mum made a sponge and I smothered it in buttercream icing and babies, which she loved.

We were lucky enough to go on a few dates to see The Hobbit and Les Miserables at Maroochydore. Here is the view heading back north at sunset from the car window, west of Coolum. So beautiful.

We also managed to catch up with a few groups of friends who were visiting the coast from different places around the world at the same time. We went for a swim and a walk through Noosa National Park with my friend Celia and her family where I took this pic. It's always breathtaking.

For New Year's Eve we seem drawn to Sunshine Beach where we spent our third NYE. This year we had a great meal at Embassy XO and watched the 9 o'clock fireworks from a spot amongst the locals near the surf club. Look! It's us!

We took our time heading back to Sydney - first stop Yamba. Here are some local kids jumping into a water hole at Angourie. I wish these photos had sound - insert here raucous black cockatoos and waves crashing against the rocks just metres away.

Turn around, and these are said rock pools at Angourie. Gorgeous spot.

And then it was on the road again, with a quick stop at Coffs Harbour for a swim with friends before arriving in Forster. We had a fun dinner with the girls at The Aztec mexican restaurant with this view of Lake Wallis. I can't believe that we didn't get a chance to try the local oysters.

By day three we were ready to head home, and get organised for Miss 3's birthday the next day. Needless to say, you can't go too overboard when you have less than 24 hours to put together a party, and I think it was my favourite one yet. I'll share pics in the next few days.

Happy 2013!

Steph
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