Thursday, September 13, 2012

Time Flies!!

Well, they say time flies when you're having fun - not sure about the fun bit though as I've had to neglect my bear making for a little while to concentrate on finishing assignments and complete my Diploma of Logistics.

All the hard work has paid off (yay!) - I've just received an email from my training assessor to say I've passed and my Diploma Certificate will be issued shortly!!! I am sooo relieved - you'll never believe it: it's taken me 2 years to complete this thing and certainly pushed me beyond my boundaries, studying and reporting on things like carbon tax and reducing greenhouse gas emissions in a warehouse and supply chain. Easy you think? Not for us in Australia - when I did this assignment my country didn't even have a carbon tax!!! How do you study something that doesn't exist in our country!!!

So ..... what to do with my free time now???

Planning and final preparation for our daughter Kel's wedding early in November has also been a priority in our household - invitations are all made and sent, flights and accommodation for wedding party and our family has been booked and paid for, bridal gown and bridesmaid dresses are all here; shoes, jewellery, veils ... you name it: it's here in my house!!!

Here's a peek at the wedding invitations Kel and I made ... all of my stamps finally got a work out, and we also made matching RSVP cards and a Directions card to go with each one - beautiful card stock from the fabulous people at Discount Wedding Papers in Melbourne, Australia in a pearl/gold white card - very elegant with black ribbon and sparkling heart buckle.

I'll let you in on a secret though: I actually haven't been completely idle as far as bear making is concerned - a pair of wedding bears for Kel and Chris are in their final stages. Kel doesn't know I'm making them, (which is hard as she comes over every Sunday with our beautiful granddaughters) but I'm going to sneak them over in my luggage to have sitting on the wedding table inside the organza pavilion on the beach. Will post some photos here once they've been completed.

I have more fabulous news to share with you all, but I'll leave that for the next post ...

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Wedding Preparations in Full Swing!!!

We're very excited in my household as we prepare for the wedding of our eldest daughter in November! As some of you close to me will already know, Kel's wedding will be held in Phuket, Thailand - plans are in full swing: we have recruited the help of the beautiful Nanya from Wedding Bliss Phuket to help us 'on the ground' in Thailand - Nanya is an expert at all types of beach weddings - you can see her fantastic work here! But back to us: decisions, decisions, decisions??? What style of cake? There are so many types out there - all I know is that Kel and Chris would like to have a chocolate mud cake. Easy, I hear you say ... well, it is if you're anywhere but Thailand!!! They don't really have mud cake there - their own version isn't really what we are aiming for. But ... problem solved! We will make it ourselves!!! My Swiss friend will be bringing an authentic family Swiss Chocolate mud cake recipe, creamy Swiss chocolate (yum!) and cake pans home to Phuket with her, so the two of us will cook up a storm and then send the cake out for decorating (Nanya will take care of that part). Here's some beautiful cake designs Kel likes: Kel has also chosen her bridesmaids and I had their dresses made to measure last time we were in Phuket - what do you think? Such a beautiful colour - watermelon - for a beach wedding. We're going to start making and sending out the wedding invitations very soon so guests can make their holiday arrangements - with only 5 months to go, it will come around before we know it!!! Kel has decided on a butterfly theme, and tonight I bought her these beautiful toasting flutes online: they are a perfect match for her guest book and pen set - now we only have to find the matching cake serving set!!! Well, it's back to bear-making for me: I've been teaching myself to needlefelt: what an absolute joy to use this craft to create expression in bear's faces - I'm really enjoying this new-found skill!! Stay tuned over the next week - I'll be presenting a new Imperial panda (with needlefelted face) and a quirky twist ... I think you're going to love him!!!

Monday, May 14, 2012

Melbourne Teddy Bear Fair Weekend

Hi everyone! Well, it's taken me a week to get organised after my whirlwind trip interstate to Melbourne on 5th & 6th May. With my girlfriend (and neighbour) in tow, the weekend started out with a 2.5 hour drive from my hometown to Sydney's Kingsford Smith Airport - lots of fun spent chatting and laughing. We treated ourselves to a glass of wine and some cheese and crackers on the flight (something I wouldn't normally do, but am so glad we did!) Arrived in Melbourne to dreary skies and cold weather - so glad I rugged up and brought my thick jacket and a couple of scarves! We picked up the hire car and found our way to the hotel in the city - easy when you have a GPS ha! ha! As promised, we met up with Wayne Lim (Wayneston Bears) and his family who flew all the way from Singapore to attend the show - our first stop: The Eureka Skydeck on Melbourne's Southbank - 88 floors up and nothing in between us and the road below except a glass floor!!!!
Exceptional views all across Melbourne as you can see - that's the famous Melbourne Cricket Ground all lit up in the foreground with a game of Australian Rules Football currently underway!
After our extreme adventure, we decided to meander across the Yarra River enjoying Melbourne's cityscape and made our way to Chinatown where we all enjoyed a wonderful dinner with Wayne's family before heading back to our respective hotels to get ready for our early start in the morning.
The show venue was an hour's easy drive from the city where we quickly set up before the doors opened at 10am - people were lined up outside waiting to get in!!! I had a fantastic day catching up with my beary friends and fellow artists, plus some new bear friends and welcomed a whole new bunch of people to my mailing list - but before you knew it time had ticked by and it was time to pack up. This is my table.
Here's Wayne and his lovely Mum, Dad and cousin.
Here's us with my wonderful friend Linda Benson (Benson Bears)
And here is Wayne's mum, me and my friend Aggie.
I was sad to head home - we'd had such fun! Until next year ....

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Melbourne Teddy Bear Fair - a preview!

Hi everyone - as some of you know, I've been away from home for a few weeks in Phuket, Thailand which was absolutely bliss!!! This meant no work, no answering phones, no planning and cooking meals after work, no washing or ironing (yuk!) and beautiful warm and humid weather. It was lovely to enjoy summer weather, at least for a couple of weeks - we seemed to miss out on summer here in my part of the world this year. Of course, the break away meant a hiatus away from my beloved bear making - although I did manage to stash a couple of cut out bears into my bag to sew up while I was away. Those little bears are from my newly developed pattern, and they will be making their debut this Sunday (6th May) at the Melbourne Teddy Bear Fair in Berwick, Victoria.
These little pandas are Asian-inspired, as you can tell from their custom-accessories which are all hand made by me - what a lot of fun that was! I rather like designing little hats for my bears that are different and quirky! I thought I'd show you a little sneak peek right here on my blog - I hope you like them. Please let me know what you think by leaving a comment here. For those of you who will be in Melbourne this weekend, please drop by to say hello. The venue for the show is the Berwick Leisure Centre, 79 Manuka Road, Berwick, Victoria - doors open at 10am until 4pm and all traders tables are sold out! It's going to be a fantastic show - I can't wait - I'm here in Melbourne and just about to leave for the show! Hope to see you there!!!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Brand New Bear!

Hi everyone! I'd love to introduce you all to WILLOW - my latest available bear. He's hand-sewn from the most adorable silky wavy Shulte mohair in a gorgeous honey colour - I hand painted his glass eyes in muted shades of brown, greys and sparkling black. New for me: he's 6-way jointed with a double jointed neck, and I've found that allows him enormous posing possibilities!!! His quirky and inquisitive expression really comes to the fore in some poses LOL!!! Cheeky guy!!
He's available now on Bear Pile, and you can read more details here Glad you like him - thanks for taking a peek!

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Sydney Teddy Bear Fair - After The Show!

Phew! I'm finally home again after a 3.5 hour drive from Sydney. What a lovely show we had today - I met lots of wonderful collectors and now have not only new collectors but lots of brand new people on my mailing list - wooohooo! I managed to sneak in a few pictures while wandering around to chat to all of my lovely bear artist friends, and I thought I'd post my pictures here so you can meet them too! This is my stand before the show:
This is the lovely Susan Mitchell of Blue Valley Bears:
The table of Merrilyn Willets-Pursell of Bearwildered Bears (footnote: Merrilyn was being a bit camera-shy!!!)
Silvia Durrer of Durrer Bears and More ... Silvia travelled all the way across the country to Sydney from Perth!
The fabulous Robyn Gan from Gunnies Collectables:
and aren't these cheetahs fantastic that Robyn made?
The unstoppable Lisa Dopking from Megelles Bears - all the way from Brisbane, Qld:
Here's Susan Mitchell, myself and Lisa Dopking:
My wonderful understated friend Lorraine Almond of Almond Bears - who makes the most fantastic bears!
The very talented Lesley Stipanov of Les Bears:
And last, but not least, my great friend Susan Leigh of Bearleigh Bears:
Hope you all enjoyed sharing a little piece of Sydney Teddy Bear Fair and meeting my fabulous bear artist friends! Hugs, Marg xx

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Sydney Teddy Bear Fair Preview!

I'm just so excited ... only 1 sleep left until tomorrow's Sydney Teddy Bear Fair to be held at the Lower Town Hall in Sydney City from 10am-4pm! My bears and I have travelled up from home to the outskirts of Sydney to sleep at my wonderful friend Heather's house, and we're going to be up for an early start into the city. Unfortunately, it's STILL raining here on the East Coast ... we're all a bit over it by now (it has rained for more than one week constantly, with another week to go we're told ... hope it doesn't keep our lovely collectors away from the Show!) I thought I'd just give you all a quick sneak peek at a few of my newer bears who will be coming with me to the show ... I also have kept some other new beary surprises exclusively for the show so that way no-one misses out! Little Hobie is a brand new design - just a quirky little 10" bear with lots of character, and dressed to kill in his custom hand-made polka dot tie and matching fez! He's going to also be available at the show for AUD$295 + postage, so if you're interested, just email me.
The lovely Serenity is also making her appearance tomorrow - the fur on this girl is just so soft: it was an absolute pleasure to work with this fur - available for $325 + postage as a Show special!
Last but not least ... introducing Willow: another brand new design for me. This bear has loads of personality, with his custom hand-painted English glass eyes and double-jointed neck for lots of posing possibilities! Willow will be available for AUD$345 + postage.
Well ... it's off to bed for me: it's an early start tomorrow and it's been a very long day of travelling and getting ready for the show. Hope to see some of you there: stop by and say hello if you're at the Show. I would love to meet you! Hugs, Marg