Monday, June 29, 2009

Frustration Overload and New Friends

I have been unable to access Etsy for the last 5 days. Nothing. Nada. Zip. Zilch.

Excuse me a moment...



In other news, I had the pleasure of receiving an order from a new store (yet to be opened, in fact) in Brisbane, called Nook. The store Michelle is putting together sounds wonderful and you can keep updated on the building works and renovations on her blog. I can't wait to see it up and running!

There is the most gorgeous sunrise happening outside my window, so I think I need to go and admire it with a cup of chamomile in hand. I will return at some point...

(Late) Weekly Goal Round-Up Round Up

Yes, yes. I know I suck. Very sorry for the lack of blogging love and all that.

Let's cut to the chase and see how spectacularly I failed my goal list this week:

- SUCCESS! Finish the mother-of-all pours from last week (now only 400+ pieces)
- SUCCESS! Assemble 300+ pieces
- SUCCESS! Polish 300+ pieces
- PARTIAL SUCCESS! Prep stock for markets (price, tag, etc)
- PARTIAL SUCCESS! Finalise display for Mag Square
- NEGATIVE. Finish 75 samples for magazines
- SUCCESS! Place packaging order at Rio Grande
- SUCCESS! Visit local stockist
- NEGATIVE. Research sales rep

So that looks to be six from nine, or 66.6%. An improvement on last week's effort anyway.

(And the image above has nothing at all to do with this round-up other than it was the second image found on Google Images when searching for '66 percent'. Makes sense.)

This week I may take a rain check on my weekly goal round up as I am doing nothing much more than feverishly getting prepared for Magnolia Square, which starts in a couple of days.

I guess I could sum up this week's goal list with:

- Arrive at Magnolia Square
- Set up award-winning display
- Sell out of all stock by Saturday
- Drink champagne in celebration
- Eat delicious cupcakes .

I hope you all have a wonderful week!!

Sunday, June 28, 2009


I have been rather absent the past week and I am very sorry. Things have hit a new high of hecticness and I am currently sprinting up and down on the spot, trying desperately to get ready for Magnolia Square.

It's slowly getting there - I have around 400 pieces that will be ready to go come Thursday, plus qute a few samples to be included in the media bags going out at Friday morning's media breakfast. Should be fabulous!

Anyway, my Weekly Goal Round Up Round Up will be coming up shortly. Stay tuned! I know you're waiting with much excitement!

Monday, June 22, 2009

Today is Tuesday.

I really love Tuesdays. I do. So much.

I'm about to tell you why and embarrass myself wholly.

Australia's Next Top Model is on Tuesdays. This. I. Love. Clare should absolutely win.

I also love this particular Tuesday because yesterday I finished my mother-of-all-pours (600 pieces in total) and now I can get onto the fun part of production, which is assembling my pieces. All 300 of them. Yep.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Weekly Goal Round Up

In follow-up to my less than stellar 50-percenter last week, I'm hoping to have a more productive week this week. I actually have to have a more productive week this week. The Magnolia Square markets are fast approaching and I have muchas work to get through. Plus we have visitors staying next weekend, so the work getting done will be minimal.

The major tasks on this week's list are:

- Finish the mother-of-all pours from last week (now only 400+ pieces)
- Assemble 300+ pieces
- Polish 300+ pieces
- Prep stock for markets (price, tag, etc)
- Finalise display for Mag Square
- Finish 75 samples for magazines
- Place packaging order at Rio Grande
- Visit local stockist
- Research sales rep

So that's what I've got coming up. Fingers crossed I get through the majority of it, and fingers crossed I don't see the bottom two items on next week's list.

Tally-ho! The week awaits!!

My Weekend...

While fairly ordinary on the weather front, and not a lot of work work was undertaken, I did manage to do some wonderful things over the weekend.

Sparky and I went for a walk to the markets and while yes, we got saturated (Issy was tucked away in her little pocket of dryness, not to worry) and missed the bagel man, we did stop for a coffee, had wonderful chats and laughed lots.

We also got to catch up with my lovely friend who's not long back from a wonderful trip through SE Asia. It was so nice to chat and catch up and hear all about her trip. Sounds spectacular. Sounds life-changing. Sounds like I really want to pack up the family and head to Thailand immediately.

I baked, which always makes me happy. This weekend it was another batch of the delicious choc chip biscuits and a honey nougat slice. Which is delicious. I should now. I'm eating it right now. Mmm.

I also managed to list some new pieces in my Etsy store.

The Stork Earrings.

The Fluidity Ring.

The Travers Necklace - Atomic.

Weekly Goal Round Up - Round Up

So, it's D-Day. How did I go with my weekly goal list?

Prepare to be underwhelmed:

- SUCCESS! Finish Youngblood application and send
- SUCCESS! Send samples to Channel 7, in follow-up to Fashion Week meeting
- NEGATIVE. Prepare 75 samples to send to magazine folk
- SUCCESS! Complete another gluing/trimming session in preparation for
Magnolia Square
- PARTIAL SUCCESS! Complete the mother of all pours (600+ pieces)
- PARTIAL SUCCESS! Finish putting together display for Magnolia Square
- NEGATIVE. Visit local stockist and place re-order
- NEGATIVE. Research the ins and outs of signing up with a sales rep

So it looks like 4 out of 8. (If you combine the two partials into one whole.) Not horrendous, but not good. The week really got away from me, and that was quite disappointing. But there are good weeks and there are bad weeks. Let's just hope that this one is a good week.

I'll be back a bit later with the Round Up for the coming week. (Try to contain yourselves. I know it's exciting!)

Friday, June 19, 2009

Rain, Rain, Go Away

So I'm a summer girl at heart and find the short days, cold mornings and icy toes of winter to be rather uninspiring. The only upsides I see to winter are wearing hats, drinking a lot more tea, slow-cooker meals and snowboarding. (Not that I've been anywhere near the snow in about four years. Boo.)

So this grey, cold, drizzly weather has made me a bit cranky. First of all, the bagel man wasn't at the local market this morning, Sparky and I got soaked on the way to said market and the paper was wet this morning when I went to open it. (I know, right. These are my problems. Life is real tough.)

Anyway, I completely forget the reason for beginning this post (that's what happens when my train of thought is interrupted by coffee and biscuits) so let's just say I hope you have a smashing weekend. Rain or no.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Most Excellent News!

I know I said I wouldn't re-visit my Weekly Goal Round Up until the end of the week, but I got some fabulously exciting news that I couldn't quite wait to share.

As I mentioned at the beginning of the week, I needed to send some samples to Channel 7, after meeting one of their Sunrise hosts at Fashion Week. So on Monday I sent off three necklaces:

(Both of these)

(The creamy one in this shot)

And lo and behold, yesterday, I received an email from Natalie Barr of Sunrise, thanking me for the necklaces and telling me to keep an eye out for my pieces on air. She's hoping to incorporate them into her on-air wardrobe soon! Yayayayay!

So we'll see what comes of it, but needless to say, I'm quite excited!!

(And on other, less excellent news, I think I killed the trackpad on my laptop as I was writing this post. And, no, of course it had nothing to do with chamomile tea. Pfft.)

Studly, I'm Sure.

New stud earrings have hit the store!

These little beauties always get a lot of attention at shows and markets and they look so so sweet on your ear. The size of them reminds me of the pearl earrings that classy ladeeez wear, but much, much funner. (Yes, funner is a word).

The Phoenix are my personal favourite, just for the way the colour pops. Shazam!!

Also new in store are this and this.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009


I initially discovered this most excellent site over on the FindersKeepers website but it wasn't until after I saw thewhitebook pop up in the RAFW delegate list that I decided to investigate a little further, and I'm so glad I did.

thewhitebook is a website and directory that catalogues and showcases the best of Australian fashion - both up and coming labels and established brands. It also lists retailers, sales and services and Sapna, the creator of the site, puts out a fabulous newsletter each month which highlights new label additions, events and other things of a fabulous nature.

Trove has been fortunate enough to be added to thewhitebook, and I have to say, I'm incredibly proud to be listed alongside some of the best up and coming labels Australia has to offer.

Some of my favourites are:
Eduardo Calucag

Gina Kim

Mr Rose

Mrs Smart

Joy! Glee! Yay!

Monday, June 15, 2009

The Evolution of Studio

A long, long time ago (well, before Isla was born and that feels approximately 158 years ago) Sparky decided to build me a fabulous studio in our garage. Essentially we were very tired of tripping over my boxes of paper and fabric and plastic and resin and cups and glues and findings and... You get the picture.

So we set about making it happen with the help of some very clever and wonderfully generous relatives.

This is the garage pre-studio:

(You'll notice my favourite feature here, the Dancing Sparky with Lawnmower. Fabulous.)

And while there were many steps in between the above photo and the ones below, I was heavily pregnant and it was the middle of the hottest summer EVER, so I was far too busy eating Frosty Fruits to take any further progress photos. I'm sorry.

This is what the studio looks like now:

and while it clearly isn't finished, I want to document the evolution of the space from here on in. I like being able to look back and see where I've come from and I don't know about you, but I find the art of designing a workspace to be ridiculously exciting.

So if you have any fabulous ideas or websites filled with creative workspaces that I can perve on, please let me know!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

This Week:

Inspired by Modish's Monthly Goal Meet-Up and not underestimating the driving force that is shame, I have decided to post a list of the highest priority tasks on my weekly to-do list at the beginning of every week and then revisit them at the end of the week, to see how much I actually achieved. I do not hold great hope for my results because I usually put about 237% too many tasks on my to-do list and never-ever-ever see the end of them, but we'll see how this goes.

- Finish Youngblood application and send
- Send samples to Channel 7, in follow-up to Fashion Week meeting
- Prepare 75 samples to send to magazine folk
- Complete another gluing/trimming session in preparation for
Magnolia Square
- Complete the mother of all pours (600+ pieces)
- Finish putting together display for Magnolia Square
- Visit local stockist and place re-order
- Research the ins and outs of signing up with a sales rep

There are about 30 other items on my list but they are incredibly boring to all but myself so I will not burden you with such minute details.

My Weekend...

Again, it was fairly spectacular!

I had a self-imposed computer ban over the weekend, to give my brain some time to think without constant bombardment from emails, Twitter, orders, etc and I've gotta say, it really did the trick. I'm back into the working week feeling rejuvenated, re-energised and excited.

So instead of rushing about the house doing my domestics and checking the computer every 10 minutes (lest I miss something earth-shattering, of course) I had time to read the whole paper (both Saturday and Sunday), bake delicious choc-chip cookies, do a spot of gardening, finish said domestics, spend lots of wonderful time with Sparky and Is, watch half of the third season of Arrested Development, go for an enormously long and lovely walk, drink good coffee and generally have a fabulously lazy, uncomputered time.

The walk was a highlight because I was finally able to live out a year-long dream. When Sparky and I first found out we were having a bub I daydreamed about going for lovely long walks, the three of us, on crisp wintery days, each of us wearing a hat. Yes, seriously. That was my daydream. The three of us in hats. On Saturday, the hat walk happened. Issy looked adorable even though the hat we chose to put her in was a tad too big:

Such a delicious weekend!!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Adventures in Music:

It's a scientifically proven fact that I have not a musical bone in my body.

I once sung karaoke at a pub and was shamed into NEVER singing in public again when Sparky had to take the female part in Mustang Sally and me the male. Then my friends all stood up, pointed and laughed. So, yeah, not. a. musical. bone.

But I really love music. I love live music, I love new music, I love dancing to music and I love old music.

Triple J are currently running the Hottest 100 songs of all time and I'm enjoying listening to it so very much! (So much so that I hold Triple J solely responsible for my very unproductive week.)

Anyway, it's inspired me to put together a list of my favourite music moments.

First concert I ever went to without a chaperone (so excluding John Farnham and Girlfriend): Smashing Pumpkins at Sydney Ent Cent (and so began a decade-long obsession with bald men - Billy Corgan and Ed Kowalczyk namely)

My favourite concert ever: Impossible to pick just one. It's a very serious toss-up between Kings of Leon at The Enmore, the Beastie Boys at The Hordern, The Beach Boys at the Capitol Theatre and Brian Wilson at The Opera House. Oh, and Brian Wilson at The Domain.

Most epic concert moment: Dancing joyously in the rain while U2 played 'City of Blinding Lights'.

Most surprising concert: Vampire Weekend at the Metro. They were a little meh but Little Red who supported them were delightfully catchy. Little Red formed the basis of summer 08/09's playlist.

My Top 10 Songs of All Time. (Subject to change at any given moment):
1. 'God Only Knows' by The Beach Boys was our bridal waltzy song, so that's up there by default.
2. 'Girls' by the Beastie Boys.
3. '1, 2, 3, 4' by Feist.
4. 'Work It' by Missy Elliott. (Weird, huh?)
5. 'No Cars Go' by Arcade Fire.
6. 'We Crawl' by Polyphonic Spree
7. 'No Woman No Cry' by Bob Marley
8. 'Rainy Day Women' Bob Dylan
9. 'New Slang' The Shins
10. 'To Her Door' Paul Kelly

Apologies for boring you!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Giveaway!! Giveaway!! Yay, yay, a Giveaway!!

So I'm having a wonderful, wonderful giveaway for you, my delightful customers and friends.

For your chance to win $100 worth of Trove jewellery (any pieces from my website) you simply need to sign up to receive my newsletter. Now, I promise I won't bombard you with 50 emails a week, but I will send out about one email per month letting you know about new products, sales, giveaways, new stockists and events and markets I'll be attending.

If that sounds like something you'd be interested in, please head on over to my Guest Book, say hi and you'll be in the draw.

Also, if you plan to attend Magnolia Square at the beginning of July (2, 3 & 4 July at the Tea House @ Royal Randwick) you can sign up and enter the giveaway there, in person.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Doctor, Doctor, Give Me the News...

So I'm suffering from quite a bad case of crappy-day-itis and have been desperately searching for a remedy. Fortunately, I stumbled across something online and I am so happy with the results, I just wanted to share my secret.

This was me before:

Apply the following tonic liberally:

And within minutes you should see some improvement:


After such a fabulous long weekend, I'm sad to say the week itself has been hideous thus far. Hid.e.ous. Ugh.

Doesn't really bear talking about much more than that though, so onwards we travel!

One of my major jobs this week is to put together my application for the Youngblood Designer Market at the Powerhouse Museum. It's a market I've always wanted to try out but never had the confidence to actually apply for. And that's one of the great things to have come out of Fashion Week - I know have more confidence in my jewellery and myself, so hopefully I'll start to see results.

I actually have a to-do list for this week with, let me count...

..33 items on it.

ONE of which is crossed off. And it's Wednesday. Already. And that doesn't include any home stuff or Issy stuff or sanity stuff. Just work stuff. But I signed up for this gig so I will power on through.

I have another couple of exciting features coming my way this week and another that I heard about last night, which is fabulous:

The lovely Brooke of Magnolia Square told me about their little piece on Trove when she emailed to put one of my Theatre Rings on hold. Lovely, no?

The Magnolia Square Market is rapidly approaching (I can't believe how quickly this year is flying by!!) and I'm in my pre-market state of perpetual panic. So much to do, so little time, but I'm confident that I'll get it all done. I have to!

Monday, June 8, 2009

Lovely, lovely Lucy.

One of the other major things that happened over the long weekend was that Sparky's sister and I had an impromptu photoshoot, which was lots of fun. I needed some shots of my jewellery on a human person to use as display shots at markets, trade shows etc and this is what we came up with:

What is lacking in creativity was made up for in beer...

I'm so happy with the way the shots came out, particularly considering there was next to no preparation, the model was sick and it was raining. Despite that though, it was lots of fun! (Partly because the boys were all inside cooking up salt and pepper squid and seafood laksa - DEEEEELISH!)

My (Long) Weekend...

..was so delightful! Sparky had four days off and it was just one of those magical weekends where you get a whole heap accomplished but also feel incredibly relaxed. It. Was. Bliss.

We (finally) dug out our vegie garden and planted it out with lettuce, peas, snow peas, beetroot, silverbeet and leeks and while I don't think it gets enough sun for winter planting, so far, so good. And at least the leeks are likely to survive - they grow in most conditions.

Please excuse the craptastic nature of both the photo and the rest of the garden - one step at a time!

We also started to plant out a herb garden. We've got rosemary, oregano, thyme and coriander (we'll see how that goes, I've never had any success growing it before but it's my favourite herb). We also planted lavender because it just smells delicious and I have grand illusions of recreating the best dessert I've EVER had, which was a lavender creme brulee. So we've got the lavender part, now for the creme brulee tree...

Aside from dinking about in the garden, we cleaned out the garage, went through Issy's clothes because she's (sniff) growing out of all her tiny baby clothes, went through our wardrobes and came out with FIVE humungous bags for St Vinnies and spent lovely time with lovely family.

It was, indeed, delightful.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Features = Happiness

I've been fortunate enough to be featured in another two fabulous blogs over the past couple of weeks. (Awesome, huh?)

The first was a spot on the wonderful Scoutie Girl:

And last week I received an email from the delightful Andrea of Little Designer Book who requested an interview for her fabulous blog. I was delighted, as this is my first interview and I am so, so pleased with the post Andrea put together. Thanks, Andrea! It was a delight to work with you!

So in keeping with the theme of features/marketing, this week I have been putting together a list of magazine folks (the editorial co-ordinator, editor, fashion assistant and fashion editor) of a number of Australian mags who will be soon receiving a parcel of Trovey goodness. The hope is A) they'll like what they see and B) they may be inclined to wear their piece and/or include it in their publication at some point.

My focus is squarely on increasing my wholesale business for the remainder of the year (with a few large, one-off markets and events thrown into the mix) and I've been assured that this is one way of getting attention from the right people. Any mag features would be additional fabulousness. We shall see how it goes...

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Music I Love...

Have I mentioned how much I love the Fleet Foxes?

No? Well, I do.

A lot.

That's why!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Preview Night

I know I said aaages ago that I'd tell you how my first-ever preview and shopping night went, so I will finally comply!

We set up in the fabulous barn at my sister's house, asked around 100 people from the local area, invited them to bring friends along, let the champagne and chocolates flow freely and... watched the rain pour down ALL. DAY. LONG. At around 5.30, when the rain was particularly heavy, I assumed the night would be a bust and braced myself for the task ahead - eating a lot of chocolate and drinking some lovely champagne. Oh well.

To my surprise though, we had over 50 people turn up throughout the evening (it ran from 7.30 - 9.00, although the last ladies left at around 10.30) and the whole event was a massive success. I sold a tonne of stock on the night, took over 40 additional orders and had quite a few requests for similar showings at private homes. I was so busy taking orders throughout the night that I only had time to take one photo of my set-up, and this is it:

It was a really enjoyable way to meet my customers face-to-face, hear what they liked, what they wanted more of, what they thought of my prices, etc. I've decided I'd like to hold another similar shopping night in late-November to provide Christmas shopping options for my lovely customers.

For now though, it's back to the studio to finish off the orders from the party. I need to pour around 100 pieces today. A small selection:

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Photo Joy!

I'm playing around with some new photo styling for images to be used in my Etsy store and website and, by gosh, I do believe I may have it!

I know it may be boring, but I really, really love classic black, white and grey, and all my Trove branding has been based on it, so I wanted to carry the theme through into my images too. I know some of them are a little clunky, but I'm pretty happy with them.

What do you think? Are they boring? Too drab? Or do the muted backgrounds help my pieces stand out?

Monday, June 1, 2009

My weekend...

...was spectacular!

Sparky, Miss Is and I took the weekend off, headed to the coast and did a whole lot of eatin', coffee-drinkin', laughin', relaxin' and g-droppin'.

This was the view from the comfy daybed in our room. Not bad.

And while the weather was tres ordinaire, we did not care. The weekend papers were read, the coffee was excellent, the meals were fab and the company was the best.

Miss Is has decided to celebrate her three-month birthday by becoming much more engaging, delightful and, at times, challenging. It's far more difficult to convince a three month old that yes, it is in fact time for a sleep, than it was to convince a two month old. The pay-off is that she's discovering new things every day (some of the sounds are amazing, considering the size of her) and we get to tag along for the ride. Pretty sweet deal I think.