We Are Scout - Hunting. Gathering. Making. The Good Stuff


Archive: Nov 2010

  1. Mathilda's Market this weekend


    Ah yes, that’s right, I am doing back to back markets this weekend. On Saturday in Canberra (8 hour market + 2 hours bump in and 1 hour bump out + 6 hours round trip!), and on Sunday I’ll be up early again for Mathilda’s in Sydney. Luckily Mathilda’s in only 10 minutes drive from home. Needless to say I’m grabbing every second I can this week scrambling get things made and ready.

    If you haven’t visited Mathilda’s Market before and you have children in your life then you’re missing out on a fabulous opportunity to buy beautiful handmade gifts from these talented people. Come by and say hi on Sunday… I’ll be the one with matchsticks holding my eyes open, drinking copious amounts of green tea. Hope to see you there.

    All images: Mathilda’s Market.
  2. Handmade Canberra this weekend

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    Will you be in Canberra this weekend? I’ll be there with lots of Ooshkas, Ooshka Boys, Sweetie Petites, pattern kits, hand printed Christmas cards and tags, and a few other new things, for the fabulous Handmade Market on Saturday from 11am – 7pm. See all the details here, and come by and say hello if you make it there. I’ll be in a little room just off the main one. There are a few indoor areas as well as lots of stalls outside. It’s worth a day trip from Sydney to check it out – there are lots of fabulous things to buy and good food too. Check out the list of stall holders.

    All images via Handmade Market.
  3. Wee Christmas finds: Gifts for romantics


    My top picks of the best wee pretties around, starting at £10.

    1. Charbonnel et Walker pink Marc De Champagne truffles (oh dear god, my favourites), £11.50, from Liberty (ships internationally).

    2. D.L. & Co Le Pomme rose mini candle, £30, from Liberty (ships internationally).

    3. Stella McCartney Knickers of the Week camisole, £65, from Net-a-Porter (this links to the UK store, so be sure to select your own country before purchasing).

    4. Bourjois limited edition Paris-themed blush pots, AU$20, for Australian stockists call 1800 181 040 (available from Boots in the UK).

    5. Guerlain Or Impérial Sublime Radiant Powder Face & Body, US$85, from Sephora.

    6. Pink Rob Ryan journal, £12, from John Lewis (only ships within the UK).

    7. MOR Lychee Flower Lip Delight, AU$14.95, from MOR. (UK readers can purchase MOR products from Space NK).

    8. Strange Invisible Perfumes in Prima Ballerina, £120, from Content (ships internationally).

    9. Day Birger et Mikkelsen pearly knitted open-ended necklace, £60, from Net-a-Porter (this links to the UK store, so be sure to select your own country before purchasing).

  4. Wee Christmas finds: Custom illustrated Xmas cards


    Are the days of the dodgy family photo card behind us now? I certainly hope so, and these exceptionally charming cards from the Rifle Paper Co prove that you can still go to town with your annual family portrait Christmas card – just with a lot less cheese. Featuring hand-painted portraits in your likeness and lettering by Anna Bond, you can expect a one to two week turnaround for your card.

    Thanks to India Knight for her tip about Rifle Paper Co and their genius customised business cards.

  5. Wee Christmas finds: Gifts for him


    Some of my favourite wee finds for blokes, including some good blokey present cliches, like socks (but look, they're Happy Socks!), chocolate (but look, it's shaped like a penknife!) and shaving stuff (but look, it's beautiful old school English stuff!). How did I do?

    1. Chocolate Swiss Army Knife, £2.75 each, from Pedlars (ships internationally).

    2. Taylor of Old Bond Street Manicure set in leather case, £49.95, from Selfridges (ships within UK only).

    3. Handy Dad: 25 Awesome Projects for Dads and Kids by Todd Davis, £11.89, from Wee Birdy’s Amazon book store (ships internationally).

    4. Hand-crafted wooden micro radio, £150, from the V&A shop (ships internationally).

    5. Music Balloon speaker for MP3 players and phones, £35, from Pedlars (ships internationally).

    6. Hand-crafted wooden desk set, £75, from the V&A shop (ships internationally).

    7. Taylor of Bond Street Sandalwood shaving soap with wooden bowl, £16.95, from Selfridges (ships within UK only).

    8. Lazy Oaf for Selfridges Fats Dom T-Shirt. £28, from Lazy Oaf (ships internationally).

    9. Five-piece chocolate bar library, £27.50, from Fortnum & Mason (ships internationally).

    10. Mustache on a stick, US$36, from Something’s Hiding Here’s Etsy store (ships internationally).

    11. Five Colour 01 socks, US$10, by Happy Socks (ships to selected countries. Sydney readers can find Happy Socks at Incu).

  6. Wee Christmas finds: Fortnum’s Advent Calendar


    I can't help missing London right now, with all the sparkling Christmas lights, glowing department store windows, mulled wine in little shops, and a sprinkling of snow. I'll especially miss the little traditions I started over three years, like my annual Christmas shop at Fortnum & Mason, where I stocked up on pretty tins of biscuits, Fortnum's potted stilton and special Christmas tea.

    So my Advent Calendar pick this year is a very special Fortnum's one, depicting the beautiful facade complete with festive windows and the famous Christmas trees lining the awning. An unfilled calendar is £95, but you can refill it every year with your own treats, like homemade sweets and chocolates. The filled calendar is £125, and is filled with Fortnum's treats including sugar mice, chocolate coins, jelly beans, truffles and Fortnum's chocolates. Pricey for an advent calendar (and I still have a soft spot for the humble cardboard nativity version) but it's a lovely keepsake and souvenir of London.

    Fortnum's Advent Calendar, from £95, from Fortnum & Mason.

  7. Giveaway Winners


    Ladies, email me with your postal address and which additional faces you’d like (Ooshkas or Ooshka Boys) and I’ll pop them in the mail to you.

    Thanks everyone who entered. I’ll have another giveaway next week. Happy weekend!


    Winners chosen by random number generator.

  8. Paper Wreath and Garland Tutorial

    You will need:
    * Thin paper. I used paper squares bought from Chinatown – I love the unbleached colour of the paper with the vibrant orange and red, and the metallic gold. The photo doesn’t capture the vibrancy of the paper in this wreath. It really is beautiful. Alternatively you could used pages from an old paperback book, origami paper, or even squares of tissue paper.
    * Cardboard to make the backing ring. I used ivory card, but as it will be hidden you could use any light weight cardboard.
    * Scissors
    * Stapler
    * Pencil or pen
    * Bowls or plates to trace around
    * Blu Tac to hang your wreath
    * Optional additional decorations, embellishments, ribbon to hang the wreath.
    The directions to make this wreath are the same as my Paper Doily Wreath Tutorial. For this wreath I folded most of my paper with the printed design on the inside, but for variation I made some with the colour on the outside – maybe one in every 12 or so.

    Even though the method is the same, his wreath looks quite different to the one I made of doilies because the paper is rectangular instead of round. I’ve seen wreaths made from book pages very similar to this selling in shops for a few hundred dollars. I can’t remember how much the Chinese paper is, but I would guess it would only be a few dollars for enough to make this wreath. And it’s easy. Give it a go.

    I hope you enjoy making it. Email me photos!

    The garland is so easy it hardly needs a tutorial… but here goes.

    You’ll need squares/rectangles of paper, a needle and embroidery thread (or similar), decorative tape (I used Japanese washi paper tape).

    Gather the paper squares from the centre like you did for the wreath. Thread the needle and pass it through the centre of a paper square.

    Wrap a small piece of tape around the thread on the under side of the paper so it doesn’t pull through.

    Wrap a small piece of tape around the centre top of the paper so it will keep its shape.

    Repeat until you have your garland to the desired length.



  9. Paper Doily Wreath Tutorial


    You will need:
    * Small paper doilies. I used about 200, but my wreath might be just a bit too dense I think. If you’d like yours to be more ruffly use less and let them fan out a bit more. See what you think as you go along. The paper doilies cost a few dollars for 100, so it will still be a budget wreath whether you use 100 or 300.
    * Cardboard to make the backing ring. I used ivory card, but as it will be hidden you could use any light weight cardboard.
    * Scissors
    * Stapler
    * Pencil or pen
    * Bowls or plates to trace around
    * Blu Tac to hang your wreath
    * Optional additional decorations, embellishments, ribbon to hang the wreath.

    1. Trace around your bowls or plates to create the wreath shape on cardboard – directions are here if you need them – and cut it out.

    2. Pinch your paper doilies in the center so the edges curl up and together. Make sure you only crease the doily in the center so the edges aren’t flattened. Get a pile of a few dozen ready before you start the wreath.


    2. Now you can start assembling the wreath.
    Staple 2 doilies onto opposite edges of your cardboard ring. The open edges of the outer doily should be facing diagonally up and to the outer edge of the ring and the inner doily’s edges will face up and diagonally into the center of the ring. You could also use a hot glue gun to attach the doilies… but I realise not everyone has the same tools as Martha Stewart!


    3. Add doilies to fill in the space between the first two. The top edges of these will face up the ring.


    4. Continue adding doilies around the ring in the same way: 2 on the outside edges first, then fill in the space between them. The stapled points of the doilies should always point in the same direction: down the wreath for the inside doilies, and diagonally downwards and towards the center of the ring for the outer doilies.


    As you go you’ll get an idea of how close you want to place the doilies to each other. Just make sure that you spread out the edges when you’ve finished so none of the cardboard ring is visible between them.

    Add decorations if you like, or stick to the minimal white look if you prefer. An interesting variation might also be to add some colour with light strokes of a paintbrush over the edges of the doilies. Or a light spray of metallic paint could look fantastic too.

    The finished wreath is so light you can hang it with Blu Tac.

    Happy creating!


    If you’d like to link to this tutorial that would be lovely – I’m always happy and grateful for that and I’m all about sharing. But first please take a look at the FAQ page about using my content. Thanks!