Friday, January 29, 2010

Routinely Routine

I am a sucker for routines. I love reading about the routines of other people, particularly self-employed folk who work from home. More particularly still, creative entrepreneurs who work from home. But, really, any kind of routine porn is good.

That's why I practically squealed with joy when I discovered this site: Daily Routines. I mean, seriously, could this be more exciting for me? Unless it involved Agent Booth from 'Bones' cleaning my house while I sipped French champagne and read a whole magazine without interruption, then no it could not.

Strange fantasies of fake FBI agents cleaning my house aside, I have also just discovered a blog I love very very much.

It talks about routines and creative-entrepreneurship, among many other wonderful things, so I love it by default. modernemotive is ace. I read it every day.

I never used to be but I'm now quite pedantic about my routine. I'm afraid that if I don't stick to it then the whole day/week/month will go down the chute.

At the end of last year I wrote out everything that is a constant to-do in my life, both business and home-related. I then divvied all those tasks up to one of five workdays. Now I have a standing to-do list for each day of the week and add to that as needed. For example, Mondays I have the following on the list - exercise, clean kitchen, sweep, vacuum, mop floors, laundry, ironing, email catch-up, plan blog posts, stocktake inventory and supplies, list anything requiring re-order, write up the week's production list, tidy studio.

Then every day has a running order that I like to stick to, but I won't bore you with that. Suffice to say, it starts at 6am and finishes anywhere from 5pm to midnight.

Image from here.

Rings and Things & Warts and All.

Hi-di-ho blogarinos!

It's been quite a full-on week at Trove HQ - with the living room painting, the preparing for the Life in Style tradeshow, the hustle to get orders out for stockists new and old (Nook, i dream a highway, Maubourg, deNada), the production process overhaul, the inventory restock, the teething, the grouching, etc etc.

Productivity is high though. I'm feeling quite good about everything. Which is scaring me because the whole 'I've got this under control' thing almost always results in last-minute panic when I realise I've forgotten some majorly important thing. Like stock. Or my display. Or pants.

Aanyway. This week saw me make an absolute TONNE of Cercle Rings, as I've been waiting for word from my acrylics man that my Grafica neckpieces were ready to pick up (they were picked up today, which is excellent as it gives me all weekend to pour pour POUR!). The rings always have been and continue to be one of my absolute best sellers, and I find myself wearing one almost every day. I'm actually not a huge jewellery wearer myself (although I have been known to get about town wearing one of my Small Neckplates - Pinks quite frequently this summer) but the rings are just plain old fun to wear.

Also, I decided to post some images of the newly painted and decorated studio AS IS, rather than waiting for a time of rare calm where I could tidy and style and decorate the space to Modish-like perfection, then photograph it knowing it will never look like that ever again and would not actually function well as my studio.

So here are some shots of Trove HQ, warts and all:

There is more to it than that, but that makes up the majority of the space as I use it. And I love it. I seriously cannot believe the difference having a space that I like makes to my productivity. I have plans to make it a little prettier over time, adding some more touches of my own, but it's great. There is room to grow, more space for storage as it's needed, lots of fresh air and natural light, plus Bosci is very fond of curling up at my feet while I work, which is something I'm very fond of too.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Do You Know What's Awesome?


Blocks are awesome.

Tell you what else is awesome?

This blog. Girl crush: Rachel Denbow.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Adventures in White Paint Land (oh, what... it's actually grey)

So over the long weekend, Sparky and I emptied the front room of furniture, sugar-soaped the aqua-hued walls and got down and painterly.

We chose a colour called Frosted Ice, which was in the whites section of the paint shop, because it was a cool white, perhaps even a tint grey and that's what we were after. After two coats and a full day of drying, it turns out that the grey-ish tint was actually pretty much just grey. So our crisp white walls are... well, not. They're a thoroughly modern grey though, which I rather like.

Some mediocre before and after-ish shots:

The fun part begins now, where we can focus on decorating our crisp, grey walls, sprucing up the chocolatey lounge and bringing our own feel to what once was a pretty bland space.

We're planning to paint our own canvas to put above the TV, and if finances allow, would love love L.O.V.E to buy a piece of art from Jason Wing to hang above the 3-seater.

The other wall will have a collection of photos, prints and bibs and bobs hung, gallery-style. And as for the soft furnishings, I do have fondness for these cushions from DwellStudio:

And I'd also rather like to find a bright red ceramic vase. Something a bit dramatic. Guess I'll just have to keep sniffing about online...

Friday, January 22, 2010


Currently reading: 'The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes' and 'The 60-Second Procrastinator' (and yes, it *is* awesome and it *does* work).

Currently drinking: Water. It's too hot for wine.

Currently working on: Designing a wholesale order form. And it is as boring as it sounds.

Currently listening to: The Shins, 'Wincing the Night Away'.

Currently wishing for: The weather to cool the eff down.

Currently hating: Our internet. Which craps the bed every time the weather is over 30C and doesn't come back until midnight.

Currently daydreaming about: Fiji.

Currently planning: Our paint-attack on the living room. Bye-bye hideous aqua walls!

Currently happy about: My feature on Modish.

Currently writing: A list of pieces to send to Vogue.

Currently unhappy about: The fact that someone spoiled the Hottest 100 winner for me by posting a blind link on Twitter. I'm currently *very* unhappy about that!

Lame post. I thought it would get better as it went along.
Currently wrong.
Currently sorry.

Monday, January 18, 2010

We Are Go For Launch

The new website is live live LIVE!

I'm so chuffed with it so far, and haven't come across any glaringly obvious faults, but if you do take a look and notice something that needs a-fixing, I'd be delighted to hear it.

Otherwise, let me know your thoughts, suggestions etc.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Hottest 100.

So, at 9.18 last night I submitted my vote for Triple j's Hottest 100. For once, I was not Captain Latey McLatepants. (There was three hours left to vote. Positively earlay.)

I struggle with this yearly because there are a million songs I love throughout any given year, but do I know the names of them? No. Do I know who sings them? Often not. So until Triple j include sound grabs with each song listed, I can't be 100% certain that I got my top ten for the previous year totally right. In fact, I'm sure I never do.

Not to worry! Here are the 10 that I came up with last night:

Dan Sultan - Letter
Flight of the Conchords - Too Many Dicks
Florence & the Machine - Drumming Song
Jamie T - Sticks n Stones
Lily Allen - Not Fair
Lisa Mitchell - Red Wine Lips
Mumford & Sons - Little Lion Man
Regina Spektor - Laughing With
Vampire Weekend - Cousins
Vampire Week - Horchata

Already, I realise one error. Washington Cement. I missed it.

And I don't like double-voting. But I do love Vampire Weekend. The dilemma!

(Flight of the Conchords photo from here.)

When Good Babies Go Bad...

Or get bored.

I hope your weekend was...neater.

Busy here, but good. I've been checking through the new website (to be launched this week, so keep an eye out) with a fine-toothed comb, getting everything ready. I need to have that done before a scheduled media push, and it needs to be running perfectly before Life in Style, which starts in around five weeks.

The lookbook is being designed, the stock is being made, the linesheets are being fretted over and the packaging is soon to be ordered. It's getting there.

Other exciting news - two new stockists for Trove! Stock will be hitting the shelves in Maubourg (Sydney) and DeNada (Wellington, NZ) at the beginning of Feb. I'm so thrilled with both of these retailers - the first for inner-Sydney and the first in New Zealand!


Thursday, January 14, 2010

Renovation Nation.

2011 will be the year Sparky and I extend and renovate our teeny-tiny little 2-bedroom house (yay!), so 2010 will be the year we find our inspiration and make our plans.

We're actually painting the living room (the only room that will remain structurally unchanged when we renovate) over the long weekend, and have been looking at a gazillion home-y design-y blogs for inspiration. In the end though, we didn't have to look far because the people behind one of my favourite blogs gave a tour of their beautiful apartment on Design*Sponge and BOOM! we're in house-love.

White walls are a definite (with a child, yes, I know) because I love how they look with our timber floors, and how they will look when we eventually get a new grey lounge or two. We have quite a few interesting odds and ends that we haven't yet unpacked (I guess we were waiting for the walls to paint themselves) and I love the whole 'gallery of interesting photos and things' look on a crisp white wall.

I also have to finish decorating and organising the studio, even though it's tempting to get stuck straight in as it is, which is infinitely better than the gong show it was last year.

But I know that another half day getting EVERYTHING sorted will make such a massive difference. I've got a huge amount of work coming up and to be organised will make life a breeze (relatively speaking).

Plus, 2010 is the year to get organised and stay organised. And the year to exercise more.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

A Day of Goods

It's good when you have a day of goods.

Good = New Camera = New Photos First Thing in the Morning

Good = New Discoveries

Good = Surprises = New CD (thanks Sparky!)

Good = Discovering my rings were featured in the Courier-Mail just before Christmas

Good = A Cool Change

Good = Getting organised

This, too, is good:

Sunday, January 10, 2010

First Musical (re)Discovery of the Year

None other than the wonderful Mr Paul Kelly.

The soundtrack to our recent holiday - he played all the way up the coast, and all the way back. We're a bit obsessive like that.

My 3 favourites (currently) being:
- Deeper Water
- To Her Door
- When I First Met Your Mother

And Sparky is quite the guitar fiend, so my favourite sound in all the world right now is him singing 'From Little Things Big Things Grow' to Miss Isla. Gorge.

The first musical (re)discovery of the year. Last year was a good one for us and music, so I'm hoping 2010 will be too.

Have you made any musical discoveries so far this year (re- or brand new)?

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Hot and Not...

Hot: The weather.
Not: The frizz.

Hot: Camping holidays.
Not: Packing up in the rain.

Hot: Beach days.
Not: Ruined camera.

Hot: New camera.
Not: Paying for it.

Yes, we're back from our delightful camping holiday. The first with bubs in tow. And it was surprisingly relaxing and a lot of fun. Except for The Attack of the Insane Bushrat, Parts 1, 2 & 3. Ergh.

We stayed at a national park on the North Coast - real camping! No showers, pit toilets, BYO water, buuuumpy dirt access roads, cheap as chips. It was fantastic. We spent the time with my sister and her family before they head off on a year-long around-Australia adventure, and I had planned on taking many photos of the beautiful surrounds (crystal water, rainforest, heath), people and wildlife along the way. Unfortunately, forgetting the memory stick made that somewhat difficult, and packing up in the pouring rain (the only two hours of rain the entire 5 days we were there, and it's when we're packing up. WTH?!) while our camera sat, unnoticed, out in the weather, means that there'll be no more photos of anything until we get a replacement. Annoying.

Despite that, it was such a wonderful break. Just to completely unplug for a few days, check out, switch off, it was incredible. I found myself thinking more about the year ahead and getting excited about our plans. It's funny what a little breathing room can do for you.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Ivy & Bird

For those of you in Brisbane, my newest (and quite possibly loveliest) stockist is Ivy + Bird.

I first met Maria (an amazing jewellery designer herself) at Fashion Week last year, where she kept me sane during the quiet times. She has impeccable taste and is certain to unveil all sorts of loveliness upon opening her brand new store.

Hopefully a flying visit is on the cards for the not-too-distant future!

The Year That was a Year.


We welcomed a brand new person into the world.
We said goodbye to someone we loved dearly.
We went on holidays.
We gardened.
We loved.
We laughed.
We cried.
We had the privilege of watching Isla grow from a tiny baby into an independent (almost) toddler.
We saw first smiles.
We cried at first giggles.
We cheered at first rolling overs and just before Christmas, crawling.
We celebrated our first Christmas as a family of three.
We are fuller and happier.

We had successes.
We had failures.
We had many, many markets.
We took thousands of jewellery photos.
We sent hundreds of packages.
We launched a new range.
We made plans.

It's always a good year when the positives outweigh the negatives, and a particularly good year when you can take lessons from both the good and the bad. I'd classify 2009 as an excellent year. And I feel it in my bones - 2010 is going to be even better!