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


Archive: Jan 2013

  1. GIVEAWAY :: The Future of Inspiring Design seminar tickets

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    Next week the Australian International Furniture Fair opens here in Sydney and a definite highlight will be the seminar series. A select panel of internationally renowned experts will be sharing insights into the latest design trends from around the world. This event is industry only, so before I go any further I must stress that this is a trade event in Sydney from 6th – 8th February, so the giveaway is for people in the industry or the media only. Sorry everyone else – but do read on because I’m sure you’ll find it interesting.

    The seminars will run over 3 days and cover interior decorating and design, reimagining colour, rethinking the way we live and interact with design. The line up of speakers is stellar:

    Abigail Ahern will speak on Decorating with Style, sharing her unique approach to interiors, and her belief in the power of decorating to make us happier and more relaxed, and ultimately change our lives.  Abigail is an influential tastemaker, highly acclaimed for her trend-setting designs  and as a ‘style spotter extraordinaire’. I can’t wait to have the opportunity to hear her speak.

    Sydney’s own Amanda Talbot has recently released a book titled RETHINK: The Way You Live – which looks amazing and is top of my book wish list. In her seminar Amanda will look at reconsidering the way we live and global design trends.  Amanda is an internationally recognised authority on interiors, style and design and is the Ex Associate Editor of British ELLE Decoration, & Home Editor of Livingetc. I’m very keen to hear Amanda’s thoughts.

    Amanda Talbot via the red thread

    Specialised ‘health focused’ interior design professional Melissa Wittig will give insights into creating healthier spaces, and how products, design and sustainable practices can provide a competitive edge.

    Mark Woodman is a dynamic designer, writer and speaker, who lives his life immersed in colour and design. He is the North American representative at London-based consultancy, Global Colour Research, the President of the International Association at Colour Marketing Group, and a designer of residential and corporate spaces. I’d say he knows a lot about colour!  I’m looking forward to hearing him speak as part of World Colours – The Tour.

    Melissa Wittig Mark Woodman

    Award winning interior designer Greg Natale will be interviewed by Lisa Green, Editor in Chief of Australian House & Garden and together they’ll explore the evolution of Greg’s work: his influences and inspiration, and new projects.

    Greg natale via the red thread

    Five experts over 3 days – sounds fantastic. If you are in the industry or the media and would like to attend one of these seminars I have 2 single tickets to each seminar (worth $44 each) to give away. All you have to do is email me before 9pm Friday 1st February, with SEMINAR TICKET in the subject line and nominate your first and second seminar choice – tickets will be given out on a first in best dressed basis. One ticket per person.

    Seminar details:

    Sydney Exhibition Centre, Darling Harbour

    Wednesday 6 February
    Decorating with Style, Abigail Ahern (UK), 10.30am – 11.30am
    Design Philosophies, Inspirations and Trends, Greg Natale (AUS) in conversation with Lisa Green, Editor in Chief of Australian House & Garden,12.30pm – 1.30pm

    Thursday 7 February
    World Colours – The Tour! Mark Woodman (USA)10.30am – 11.30am
    Rethink – The Way You Live, Amanda Talbot (AUS), 12.30pm – 1.30pm

    Friday 8 February
    Decorating with Style, Abigail Ahern (UK), 10.30am – 11.30am (REPEAT)
    Healthy by Design, Melissa Wittig (AUS), 12.30pm – 1.30pm


    All images via the respective designers. Image from Rethink by Amanda Talbot, published by Murdoch Books, photography (c) Mikkel Vang.


  2. TUTORIAL :: How to carve stamps from an eraser


    Have you ever tried to carve a stamp? It’s fun, not too tricky, and it’s a great way to make your own wrapping paper, cards and tags. An inexpensive way to start and to practice is using erasers – even the simplest designs and shapes can be combined to make wonderful designs. The patterns below have been created using just one circle and one leaf-shaped stamp.

    Carve a few simple stamps and you can use them to great effect.

    the red thread carve your own stamps the red thread stamp giftwrap

    You can see my full tutorial on Crafttuts+.

    the red thread carve stamps from erasers

    Click through to my tutorial on Crafttuts+ for step my step instructions on how to carve your own stamps from erasers, as well as ideas and tips on using them.


  3. ABCD Sydney Summer Meet-Up :: Save the Date

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    Sydney art, craft and design bloggers mark the evening of Thursday 21st February in your diaries to join us for our abcd summer meet-up. Steph (Bondville) and I have organised this abcd meet-up in conjunction with Life Instyle. We’ll be meeting for a glass of bubbles on the opening night of this fabulous trade-only lifestyle event. As part of the abcd meet-up we’ll have access to check out all the exhibitors’ stands and the latest products and trends. We will follow this up after the show with panel discussions featuring some of our fave Life InStyle exhibitors. If you’re curious about trade shows and wanting to take your business to the next level of wholesaling this is one not to miss. We’re excited that Life InStyle has offered our abcd meet-up access to their trade only event – usually only retail buyers, wholesale stall holders and press can attend – and we’d love you to join us.

    I’ll post full details and RSVP info next week. But for now, save the date!

    If you haven’t been to one of our abcd meet-ups before you check out my previous posts.


  4. Sponsored post: A Very Aussie Arvo Tea


    You should all know by now that I don’t need much of an excuse for a good old-fashioned tea party, so when Twinings sent me a box of their limited edition Australian Afternoon Tea it didn’t take long before I had (a) cracked open a packet of Iced Vo-Vos; (b) whipped up a batch of wattleseed cupcakes; and (c) dug out some of my choicest vintage Australiana china and linen. Add half a dozen lamingtons, a knitted cockie teapot handle cosy and a pot of Twinings full-bodied Australian Afternoon Tea and I was set: a very Aussie arvo tea. Heaven!

    A vintage Aussie afternoon tea via we-are-scout.com

    A vintage Aussie afternoon tea via we-are-scout.com

    A vintage Aussie afternoon tea via we-are-scout.com

    A vintage Aussie afternoon tea via we-are-scout.com

    I used this recipe for the Wattleseed cupcakes, and I decorated them with handmade sprigs of marzipan wattle.

    A vintage Aussie afternoon tea via we-are-scout.com

    They’re dead-easy to make: just grab a packet of marzipan, dye three-quarters of it yellow with food colouring, and roll tiny balls with your hands (about 7mm wide). Then add some yellow food colouring to a bowl of caster sugar, and roll the balls in the sugar for a fluffy wattle-like coating.

    For the leaves, add a drop or two of green food colouring to the rest of your marzipan, and roll it out to 2mm thickness. Use a sharp knife to cut out leaves and use a bread and butter knife to imprint veins. Arrange your little wattles on top of your cupcakes and you have a rather sweet tribute to Australia’s indigenous national flower.

    A vintage Aussie afternoon tea via we-are-scout.com

    A vintage Aussie afternoon tea via we-are-scout.com

    As for the tea itself – well, let’s just say it was the little Aussie hero of the party. I like it. I like it a lot – it’s a brisk pick-me-up blend created by Kevin Rudd, of all people, and funnily enough it’s a feisty little character. Kevin won Twinings’ challenge last year to come up with an original brew that best reflected the taste of Australia. The top five blends were put to a public vote and Kevin come up trumps with a blend that stands up against the most languid of Aussie arvos.

    A vintage Aussie afternoon tea via we-are-scout.com

    A vintage Aussie afternoon tea via we-are-scout.com

    A vintage Aussie afternoon tea via we-are-scout.com

    Twinings has raised over $120,000 to date for the former Prime Minister’s chosen charity, the RSPCA, through on-pack donations. It’s a timely cause as the RSPCA needs extra support at this time of the year with poor wee injured animals from bushfires.

    A vintage Aussie afternoon tea via we-are-scout.com

    Limited edition Twinings Australian Afternoon Tea is available in Coles stores now, while stocks last. So best be quick! You can purchase it in a splendid keepsake tin (as pictured above), or in a twin pack with either English Breakfast or Early Grey. The lovely Twinings people are also increasing donations to the RSPCA, with 50c from every tin and $1 from every twin-pack going to the charity. Tea-riffic! (sorry, couldn’t resist.)

    A vintage Aussie afternoon tea via we-are-scout.com

    WIN! Twinings Australian Tea
    I have five tins of this lovely limited-edition Twinings Australian Afternoon Tea tins to give away. To enter the giveaway, simply leave a comment below telling me in 25 words or less what you would serve with a pot of Australian Afternoon Tea. The giveaway is open to all Australian residents 14 years and older, and it ends at 5pm AEDST on Feburary 1, 2013.

    Entries will be judged by Nuffnang and the winners will be the ones deemed most creative. There will be five winners, all of whom will receive a limited-edition tin of Twinings Australian Afternoon Tea. Click here for the full competition terms and conditions. Please don’t forget to leave your email address in the space provided in the comments section – it will only be visible to me.

    This post is sponsored by Nuffnang.

  5. Digital printing :: Rosso Forte scarves


    I’ve been using digital printing for my own the red thread products for some years now and I’m continually inspired by how others are using it to amazing effect. These beautiful cashmere, wool and modal scarves are by Italian designer Franco Armilla for Rosso Forte, Italy and feature moody photos from around the world. In addition to wearing these exquisite creations, they are works of art in themselves and would look perfect on the wall as art pieces.

    Rosso Forte scarf via the red thread
    Rosso Forte scarves via the red thread

    They’re breathtakingly beautiful, right? So what do you think? would you wear these Rosso Forte scarves, or hang them as art?


  6. INTERIOR STYLE :: a gorgeous Danish home


    The sparing yet dramatic use of colour in this Danish home practically makes it sing with joy. The vast blank canvas of the white walls and ceilings and the use of pink throughout the house tie the spaces together. It feels like a welcoming and happy home don’t you think?

    Danish bathroom via the red thread Bolig Magazine colourful home via the red thread Bolig Magazine home chlds room via the red thread

    All images : Bjarne B. Jacobson for Bolig magazine

  7. INSPIRATION :: Magda Sayeg aka Knitta


    Late last year at the Finders Keepers market I saw some fabulous and very large crochet and knit spheres which somehow popped into my head again over the weekend. So I went off to find them online, and there they were at Page Thirty Three. Yoga balls covered with upcycled rugs and throws, each one unique. Wow!

    The yoga balls are the work of Magda Sayeg of Knitta – believed to be the instigator of the whole yarn bombing movement. Magda works on community projects, and her own yarn bombing on her travels, as well as taking on commissions from around the world.

    Knitta 1 via the red thread

    Magda Knitta via the red thread

    Knitta sidewalk via the red thread

    Knitta stairs via the red thread

    Knitta via the red thread

    All images via Magda Sayeg

    I admire Magda for her wonderful sense of fun and for taking what used to be a fairly staid craft right ‘out there’. Thanks to Knitta, yarn bombing can be seen the world over and it spreads happiness… how can you not smile when you see such a delightful out of the ordinary sight? What could be better?


  8. INSPIRATION :: Pia Jane Bijkerk


    Super talented stylist, photographer and writer Pia Jane Bijkerk announced a lovely new project earlier this week: a book called Little Treasures : Made by Hand.

    Little Treasures : Made by Hand has the most wonderful premise: gratitude and love. It is a book documenting all the beautiful and unique handmade gifts received from all over the world for her daughter Laly.

    Pia wrote: “Imagine if I could create a book, photographing and cataloguing each unique object, writing a little about each person who made and sent the gift, sharing links to their websites so others could also buy their beautiful creations or find out more about them. It would be a collection of little treasures, connecting creative souls around the globe. I thought, Yes, this would be the most wonderful way to say thank you…”

    To fund this labour of love, which will be printed here in Australia in an environmentally friendly way, Pia is has launched a crowd funding campaign. If you’re interested to find out more you take a look at Pia’s blog post about the book and the campaign.

    I love Pia’s photography and styling – she has a very distinctive and easily recognisable style. Below are some of my favourite images from her portfolio.

    PJB_blackmagic via the red thread

    pjb_magic via the red thread

    pjb_paris_via the red thread

    PJB_via the red thread

    All images via Pia Jane Bijkerk.

    Visit Pia Jane Bijkerk’s website and beautiful blog for more inspiration.


  9. INSPIRATION :: Emma Davies


    Melbourne artist Emma Davies creates these stunning vessels using vivid synthetics and traditional weaving methods. At Emma’s hands everyday industrial materials (polypropylene netting and packaging) are transformed into precious objects of beauty: non-functional vessels, delicate sculptures.

    Emma Davies via the red thread

    Images: Emma Davies


  10. MAKE IT :: String Art Tutorial


    String art is another one of those ’70’s crafts (like macrame hanging planters) that is experiencing a contemporary makeover. Forget the brown and orange swirly patterned string art from the ’70s! Random geometric shapes, an ombre effect and the inclusion of type bring string art right up to date. I created this tutorial as a fun, contemporary and low-cost way to add art to your walls – just follow the step-by-step instructions and you’ll have a gorgeous new art piece ready to hang in an afternoon.

    the red thread string art thread

    My tutorial includes a printable template so there’s no need for you to do the tricky bit of calculating and measuring for the nail placement. I created this string art tutorial as one of my craft projects for Crafttuts+, so head over there for the detailed instructions and the template.

    the red thread string art template

    the red thread string art side view

    the red thread string art complete

    I’m so happy to start the new year of craft tutorials off with this string art – I’m love how it turned out and it was so much fun to make. What do you think? Are you going to give it a try?