27 February 2010

Pin me!

I've been meaning to do a post on my Mum's brooch collection for a while now. Most of these are op shop finds but a few Mum already had in her collection before it officially became a 'collection' (if that makes any sense at all haha). I can't really remember what sparked the beginning of Mum's brooch collection. We always keep an eye out for interesting jewellery at op shops and I think it just grew from there, as collections do.

I found this guitar brooch in an op shop on Chapel Street in Melbourne and thought Mum would love it. The back is stamped with 'BROOKS' but I haven't been able to find much info on it's significance. I thought the design was really unique and love the gold wire strings and pearl on the base.

Mum found this one in our favourite op shop. The gems are such a beautiful blue colour and so sparkly. I can't remember the exact price but it was under $4 which is amazing because once we got home we inspected the back and it's stamped with '9CT' - 9 karat gold! It has one of those fancy little chains to make sure it doesn't fall off. The gems could be real, who knows?

This last one is one of Mum's most recent acquisitions and a definite favourite. I was looking on Etsy for vintage Avon brooches and came across this artiste's palette for $15 plus postage. I decided to try my luck on ebay first and see if anyone was selling any on there and found someone in Adelaide who had it listed for 99c. Thought I might as well try my luck so placed a bid, and after a few days when the listing ended no one else had bid! It turns out the seller actually lives in the same area as me so she dropped it in our letterbox free of charge; how lovely is that! It also came in its original 1970s box with a pair of stud earrings that match the red stone on the brooch.

So there's Mum's brooch collection. Most of the jewllery in the op shops lately seems to be from Diva and the likes so we haven't bought any for awhile. We always keep our eyes peeled though. Is there anything you like to collect or look out for when you go op shopping? I've started collecting Frankie magazines but don't have much luck finding them in the op shops. Always keep my eyes peeled for Avon jewellery and Glomesh of course =)

24 February 2010

Sew cute

I mentioned a couple posts ago that I wish I could sew. Well, I've decided I'm going to teach myself! I've borrowed a sewing machine off a friend of my Mum's and have been pouring over sewing books from the library. So far I've managed the small achievement of threading a bobbin on the machine :) The next step will be actually threading the machine and having a go at some practice stitches. I emailed Brother and got them to send me a dvd of how to use the sewing machine so hopefully that will help! The last time I sewed something was in year eight or nine when I made a pillow and a pair of boxer shorts which actually turned out quite well. I'm hoping that's a sign I'll have a knack for sewing.

I found this sewing basket at my favourite op shop during their half price sale the other week for $2.50. I love the cute flower pattern on the inside :) At the moment it's just housing some material scraps I found at another op shop for $1.50. Still on the hunt for a smaller sewing box I can keep all my bits and pieces in.

I also found this old sewing book for $1. The instructions inside look nice and clear so it could come in handy. I've ordered a copy of the Reader's Digest Complete Guide to Sewing (couldn't find an old copy in an op shop, bugger!) as I've been reading the one I borrowed from the library and found it really helpful :)

If you have any suggestions of particularly helpful websites/books or easy sewing patterns I could try do let me know, I need all the help I can get! I think my first project will be a headband, I should be able to manage that surely.

In other exciting news my Mum has just started volunteering once a week at one of our local op shops. Make sure you're extra nice to the op shop volunteers you speak to because it could be my Mum that's serving you! :)