Sunday, June 3, 2012

vintage teaspoon rack + sample pot of paint = very pleased with myself

I grabbed this (reasonably ugly) souvenir teaspoon rack for a bargain price in a local second hand shop with a vague idea to do something with it.

A quick sand and a pot of sample paint in gorgeous teal and ta-da! A jewellery stand. (Pictured with and.O ceramic jewellery in yummy candy colours.)

Given I lack a little skill in the execution of my ideas, I'm rather pleased with myself!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Maker Popup :: Gambled Genesis

Well it's crazy times out there and our home hasn't found a new yay for me as I can continue Maker Handmade, albeit in a slightly different format. From now on my little shop will host and profile one talented Maker for 4-6 weeks.

Our first Maker to inhabit the shop is Susan Gamble, the multi-talented artist behind the label Gambled Genesis.

Who is the Maker behind Gambled Genesis? 
Gambled Genesis is a boutique art + media studio + label for artist and musician Susan Gamble. An animator, composer, experimental filmmaker, fine artist and musician, Gambled Genesis is the umbrella under which her many and varied creations reside. Relevantly it is an art label for a range of handmade original works of art and whimsy - designed to be worn!

Tell us about the process of creating your products, from concept to finish?

Ingredients: wanderings, shutter box, clay, two creative hands, a 1930’s Metters speckled green oven, lacquer and a pinch each of love and luck! The initial impetus for Gambled Genesis' jewellery was born from the idea of making wearable photographic art, a way of taking art off the wall and into the street, making moving art pieces that each tell a story.

Most works are made using polymer clay, each is hand-shaped to form a ceramic base and baked in my vintage oven where images undergo a form of heat transference then, depending on the range, images are sealed with varnish and finished or button centres are stitched in matching threat. Other works involve collecting of plants, drying and pressing onto a birchwood base and then sealing with lacquer. 

What’s in the name?
Gambled Genesis’ is positive spin on my surname! By ‘gambling’ on my creativity one receives the flowering of an original ‘genesis’. Further I have two very green thumbs and grow a lot of my own food and love taking inspiration from nature and the majesty of found items of antiquity! The name and visual aesthetic of the label is intended to reflect this earthy and hands on ethos.

What do you make?
Gambled Genesis’ first range of jewellery - photographic brooches and pendants - features treasured images captured on my many and varied roamings, pieces come in a range of 3 sizes and each is accompanied with a small note of place - you could say each is a potential ‘conversation starter!’ If however you prefer your art more traditionally located (on a wall instead of your person!) photographic prints are also available in A4, A3+ and A2 sizes.

Next to genesis were brightly coloured ceramic cardigan and scarf buttons - a handmade playful solution to the ever roving neck scarf and the many lost cardigan sticks!

The latest range to manifest itself drew inspiration very close to home - from my backyard garden in the form of a native four-leaf clover. I figured we all need a little luck in our day and I decided to turn my pond flora into pretty birchwood brooches. A hardy native that is very adept at surviving Australia's variable conditions it can lie dormant for a century as a spore and when the conditions are right - lovely and wet - it sends its spores adrift sometimes resulting in a majestic carpet of four-leaf clovers that stretches for miles!

What do you love about what you do?
I love dreaming up new ideas, I love the tactile process of making and I love seeing people enjoying and wearing my creations!

The nitty gritty…
Gambled Genesis’ first range of jewellery - photographic brooches and pendants. Jewellery items start at $20 for a ceramic button, the photographic range comes in small $30, medium $40 and large $60 sizes in both brooches and pendants and a four leaf clover brooch for a bit of good luck is $30. Photographic prints range from A4 $48, A3+ $80 to A2 $120.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

For Lease - try a little POP UP in South Melbourne!

Well, it's been a wonderful wonderful year in my little shop in South Melbourne. Unfortunately though, two halves of a marriage relying on retail to support a family of four doesn't quite add up.

So, as the main bread winner I'm back winning the bread.  I've got a new corporate gig in the city that requires my full time presence. My office isn't quite the same as the shop - ie. a light filled, warm and visually satisfying space with a beautiful view down a tree lined street to the gorgeous South Melbourne town hall - but it's still not a bad place to sit with some pretty great people around me and a regular income. And when I work back and the afternoon turns dark the view of the carpark and buildings next door look kind of pretty with all those lights....

Anyhoo - here's YOUR chance to have a go at a little shop for a while.

We're trying to find a taker for our whole building (two shopfronts, self contained studio, garage, 2/3 bedroom dwelling and a very cool second story deck) but we're pretty sure that will take a while to lease out.

So in the meantime we're open to a month to month lease for one or a group of Makers who would like to get some retail space for the Xmas trade. We have a phone line and an eftpos all set up, and still have some display cabinets, plinths, tables etc here if needed.

If you're interested (either in the building for a long term lease, or my shopfront on a month to month), please shoot through an email to and I'll get back to you!

I've contacted my Makers to thank them HUGELY for jumping on board when I opened last year. I had so many wonderful compliments on the items that we sold here, which clearly only the clever Makers who made them can take the credit for!!

I'd like to take the opportunity to say thanks to all of the wonderful customers who also supported us. We developed some regulars pretty quickly and it was lovely to see their faces and have a good chat - and also see new additions with babies being born through the year.

We hope this isn't it for ever. I'll focus a little on this blog - which means I'll use it as a justification for shopping at every Makers market I can find - and I'd also like to look at a the occasional pop up shop perhaps at Christmas time next year. Because I love Christmas and I love gift wrapping!

So, please hang around, check in once and a while. If nothing else, I hope I can show you some new Makers or new markets from time to time.


Sunday, August 21, 2011

another country market find: Villa Hunter

Well, although I've been a tad behind in my communications I've still been busy behind the scenes!! A couple of months ago the Maker family headed to Daylesford for the day, primarily to check out the Farmers Market and the Makers Market.

We hit town just as the Farmers Market was packing up which was very disappointing, but saved by the purchase of some very yummy cookies which our youngest kept a very firm grip on.

We wandered up the hill to the Makers Market which, while small-ish, was well worth the visit in terms of quality.

The Daylesford Makers Market
Anchors favoured by Master Maker

Master Maker came across some wonderful cushions from Villa Hunter. We bought him one of the ship & anchor and he has loved it so much it was obvious we had to get some more for the shop. It took me a while, but here we have them....
Villa Hunter cushions. Birds for little and big girls.