Sunday, February 27, 2011

Guest Bloggers! Isla and Violets Earthquake Stories

In the kombi van - temporary home!

Violet's Story – About the Earthquake.

When I was at school I feeled the earthquake and our teacher came inside with room 3 because the earthquake was still shaking.

I was eating my sausage and the sausage fell out of the bread.

And we had to go on the field to be safe.  We had to walk over to another school field and Mummy came to get us in a stranger’s car.

I felt brave and my teacher said I was a brave girl.

We heard all the Mums and Dads come and get all the kids.

Isla’s Story – The Big Earthquake

On Tuesday there was a big earthquake at lunchtime.

It was so big it knocked me over on to the concrete.  I felt sad because it hurt me.

Then all the school had to go onto the field.  Then I found my friends and my sister and I checked that she was ok.

I was crying because I was worried about my Mum and Dad and my dog Eddie.

Then we started to walk over to Van Ash School for safety.

While I was walking there I saw my Mum and she came to pick me up and that made me feel really happy.  Then we went to find my sister – she was already at the park. 

Then we went home and the house was a mess and there was no power or water so we stayed at our friend’s house for a night.

That night there was a lot of aftershocks in the dark and that was pretty scary too.

The next day we left Christchurch to stay at my Aunties house in Blenheim.  I feel pretty safe here.  My Dad has gone back to help Christchurch.  He's brave.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Ellerslie Flower Show update

Just an update peps

Ellerslie has been cancelled this year due to the earthquake this week.

Darn mother-nature, it was our year to shine.

If you do hold tickets then you can donate them to the Red Cross through this link

To quote this fellow:
Never thought in a million years that I would use this image but thanks to these guys

We'll be back!

Friday, February 25, 2011

Our darkest day - 22nd Feb Christchurch Earthquake

I'm sad, I'm teary and I feel at such a loss for my city  and it's people.

It's time to write as I can't do anything else.  My leg is still healing after surgery so I'm on crutches still and I have never felt so helpless in all my life.  I want to dig, shovel, tidy, clean and fix our community but I can't.

We have left and are staying with family in Blenheim.  Our beautiful Sumner is a ghost town and we have all left to re-group and find safety with our loved ones.  I miss you all my dear friends.

My tears come at unexpected times.  They scare me  because they are for friends and our homes.  I let them come because it's better than feeling numb.  With my tears I release my emotion of hurt, grief and shock.

Once my daily gratitudes included things like "thanks for my beautiful home", now it's simple "thanks for my family to still be alive".

The emotion of this events is coming out today for me.  I am recalling the moment when the quake hit and all the feelings that accompanied that dreadful event.  I want to tell you just so I can let it out.

I was sitting on my bed (which was put downstairs as I was on  bed-rest).  I was alone.  I was speaking to a fabric supplier on the phone.  I felt a shake and immediately thought it was one of many aftershocks.  Quite quickly I realised it wasn't.  While still holding the phone I grabbed my crutches and took off to the under the door-frame.  It was the noise of the house being violently shaken and all our "stuff" being thrown around the place - a noise I will not ever forgot.  

The phone call went dead.  I tried to call my husband Jeff.  No connection.  He texted me to say he was ok but in town.  I replied that I was scared and needed him.  I said please come home.  Again the phone disconnected.  I realised I was alone.  The kids... Oh my god.

All the doors were shut closed and I had to force the front door open to get outside.  It's the weirdest things you re-call.  I smelt nail polish.  I saw ornaments from the hallway sitting outside on the front porch.  My wee dog Eddie whining and shaking - not leaving my side.  I looked down at my own legs and they too were shaking.  I could hardly stand.

The aftershocks continued but I felt better that I was outside now.  All I could see what that our front yard was filling with water and fountains of sand were coming up from the ground. It didn't make sense and I just stared at them thinking "how odd".  I was jolted out of that weird thinking with screaming - it was coming from the school which was 3 blocks away.  I needed to get to my girls.

I glanced over to the direction of the school and all I could see what the cliffs of Richmond Hill falling and huge clouds of red dust filling the air.  My urgency to see my children was all consuming.

I started hobbling down the road.  I just wanted to see my girls and know they were ok.  It was this raw and all-complelling feeling which I would never forget.  A friend pulled up in front of me in their car.  They had been in the supermarket.  We hugged and I cried for the first time.  Her hug was so comforting but I had to let go and  find the girls.  I looked down and she had blood in her feet.  Her mum said that she would take me so we got into the car and headed for the school.

When I got there all the kids had been moved back into Van Ash park - I guess a safer area.  There was no one at school.  We drove through mangled streets and finally found the kids and teachers in lines walking.  In the last group was my eldest daughter - she was clinging to her class-mates and they were hysterical.  I grabbed her and hugged her to hard.  My dear wee daughter was safe.  I had to find my youngest daughter Violet now.

We made it  to the park and their were parents, children and teachers swarming to find each other.  I heard my name and it was the head-boy, Jackson Murray calling me to say that Violet was safe and she was here.  The relief was insane.  He showed me where she was and her teacher said she was the bravest girl.  She was smiling and told me she had not got to finish her lunch.  I laughed.  I'm so lucky.

We got dropped off back home and I made the girls sit outside while I raced around inside trying to make it safe and to collect essentials.  My mind was fuzzy and it was hard to think.  The after-shocks continued and the girls smiled through them.  Smiles on there mouths and bravery in there eyes.  I could tell they were being brave fro Mummy.

My phone rang - it was my Mum.  I cried again as it was so nice to hear her voice.  I told her I didn't know where Jeff was and I had to stay off the phone.  I was so worried about him.  I had been texting him telling him that I was going to get the kids so I hopped he knew that we were ok.  He was trying to get home.

We all sat together outside and hugged each other.  Isla told me she was worried about me and Eddie the dog the most and that's why she was crying.  The love that envelopes you when you here that kinda thing was just enormous.  I'm not really sure how long we were like that when Jeff walked in the gate but he ran to me and I told him "Thank god you are here".  We were still a family.

From then it was survival mode.  We packed our bags with supplies, grabbed passports and got out of the house.  There were many after-shocks and the house just rocked so badly.

We went down the road to our neighbours house where we seemed to all be gathering.  It was now time to be together and wait for family and friends to return to Sumner.  We were alive but something in the back of our minds told us many where not.

The rest of the story was being told all over the internet and the news.  Of course we had no access to any of these things as power was out.  We were cut off.

We gathered around the radio and gradually we realised that we had been directly in the line of this new earthquake.  We were hit bad.  Town was bad too with already unstable buildings from Septembers quake were now rubble.  People were hurt too and we knew that this time it was a lot worse than in September.

I now sit helpless watching the news.  Some stories of survival but all too many with bad news.

Thank you for letting me share my story.  It will be one of many.  We are lucky but many are not.  Send your love and support to our courageous city because we will need every bit of it.

Stay safe x

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Marilyn and the big tooth...

Found image from Modern Interior Design

This is a new concept to me and one I will consider as we often struggle with wall space.  Is that right to hang art like that?

It seems odd, but it kinda works.

That wall colour rips.
I also heart the fabric used on the sofa - three cheers! to whom ever designed this room.  It would have been too easy to go plain.

I am however, betwixed by the large tooth object (I'm assuming it's a chair)

Monday, February 21, 2011

Obsessed with Obsessilicious

I had a heart-skip moment when I saw this print.

Instant love by Yumalum

Then my head fell off when I saw this:

Instant Rainbow by Yumalum
They tick all my boxes:


I get so jealous that I didn't have that hiding in my head (that's now back on)

Goodnews:  The Prince of Print that created these master pieces does a whole lot of others too (all on Esty under the Yumalum name).  Mostly based around a self proclaimed "obsession" with all things mid-century.

The logo

The even better news is that you can share in that obsession with his fully-hip blog and 
tres-amusing tweets.

He also tells me that all said prints can be fully color customised AND can be sent to 
New Zealand.

Go people go.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

When is a shoe not a shoe? When it's a banana!

The Banana Slip-on:  Bahahahaha

Ok.  So you know how I can't wear shoes at the mo (sorry to go on)...

The mastermind behind these walking wonders is footwear designer Kobi Levi.  This guy has studied design, development and making of footwear.  

Massive props buddy 'cause you certainly have pushed some Podiatry preconceptions.  Your clogs are certainly clever.

Here are some of note:

Market (as in basket)

Blonde ambition (as in Magde)

Blow (as in job)

Chewing gum (as on pavement)

Olive Oyl (as in Popeye)

Slide (as in obvious)

The Sling (as in shot)

The Tulip Shoe - of course taken inspiration from the famous Eero Saarinen Chair
I had to have some link to design (this is it)

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Jonathan Adler: Ode to the Demi-god Design Druid

I just have to talk about Jonathan Adler again

He is my fav and his products just fill me with joy - as he says "Anti-depressive living"

The Barbie Room

His new thing is that you can now customise his throws, rugs and cushions.  Not that you really have to as he is the master of colour combos - but it is fun to have a go!

Mr Druids NEW customize range

I designed this cushion (like shoes one cannot have two many):
I like to call this creation "An apple a day" TM

And I would team it up with this these wee beauties.  Don't cha just wanna pinch their cheeks and mush them up? 

Fantasy JA room - all images from the demi-gods website

I want to marry this room

If you want to know more - clever clogs Raina Cox of If the Lampshade fits interviewed him ever so cleverly for Curbed Magazine.  Frightfully exciting as he's so uber coolio.

Monday, February 14, 2011

I got the Blues (shoes)...

...and can't even wear them.

Boo for me.

Don't worry you wee beautie boots - once I'm not longer handi-capable I will wear you.  Promise.

Until then you are a display item.

High Heeled Jodhpur Boot from Swedish Hasbeens

Friday, February 11, 2011

Ellerslie Flower Show featuring: ME

Ellerslie International Flower show starts on the 9th to the 13th March here in Christchurch.

We start setting up our design for the 10m x 10m exhibition garden next week.

Not ideal when you are on bed-rest and crutches.

Luckily I'm teaming up with local Landscape Designer (and previous Ellerslie award winner) Scotty Fletcher. 
Without him, Bryce, and the rest of the Beavers from Beaver Landscaping I would be fudged.  I'm designing from afar and should be able to get onsite on the last week of setup.

Just to tempt you, I have put together a wee snappie of the garden.

The theme of the garden takes the well-used phrase "indoor-outdoor" flow to a new level.

There are Chesterfields outside and a living-wall inside.  A carpet that looks like grass, and a coffee table that looks like a hot-tub - trippy.

Please come visit us on-site and say hi.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

God save the Queen

The end of January heralds the yearly Fulton cup (which we host a tennis tourney during the day) and a huge shindig in the evening.  Each year it's different theme and this year it was "Britannia".

There was no better place to pilfer props than from our very own local (well Lyttelton) "God save the Queen" shop.

Small but well-formed, this shop of loveliness shares with another equally yummy shop called Milou (Tintins dogs name).  They stock loads of local craft goodies  - I was even lucky to meet one of the designers the day I was in there...Notchka from The Wardrobe

Loving the stripy wall

Please note the duck-heads on the wall - made my a local bird who works in costuming

Back to the party and... "God save the Queen".  
Being half-English I'm particularly draw to anything britishy.  

Then you can imagine my utter joy to have practically free range to borrow anything in the shop.  

The owner is the super lovely Rebecca who is a Sumner local that decided to move to Lyttelton and open a shop to show her wears.  At the time she felt there was not enough "Britiannia" stock available to buy (in NZ) so she started doing her own.  Great call when you know that Sumner's nickname is "Pom-ner" (so many English peps living here).  I call it paradise but that's another blog.

She went on to make plates with QEII heads, matching framed images and tea towels. 

Rebecca's prints and plates (in a frame)

Of course that was before the dreaded "Keep calm and carry on" so, go! her and her pioneering ideas.

Other treasures included old magazine and books on the Royals, old flags, photos, prints etc etc.  You can spend hours there!  Tally-ho the fox.

Her supply of mini wavey-type flags, standard flags, bunting and tea-towels were wiped-out by our party attendees so I hopped that was payment enough for borrowing half her shop!

Out house looked amazing
I brought two flags and my super-creative bud Charlie Hudson fashioned them in a dress = The Queen
Huge night at the Fultons

Me and my real life english mate Lucy Hone I'm wearing my new discobeads

Me and my lover

Queen Me!

Next year I'm will have to wait and see!

**All photos taken by moi!**

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Blog alert - SwissMiss

Found a goodie today.

SwissMiss is good.  It's a design/blog studio run by Tina Roth Eisenberg - a "swiss designer gone nyc"

Great aesthetics, super content and a matching iphone app.  Now that's nifty.  Of course I downloaded it super quick from itunes.

It's called teuxdeux and is "simple designy to-do app"
Love a good amalgamation of design and technology.

Go look see people.  Look and love (and to do).

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Can Hop-a-long be stylie?

Being that I'm of limited mobility, it does get one a-thinking... especially when the longest "journey" I do is  bed to bathroom.

Could I be disabled and designerey?  

Not what I had in mind

My musing lead me to find a pretty innovative company that has designed a range called "Aids For Daily Living".  

Omhu does a modern take on tradition - none more so that the Omhu cane.  This wee gem is inspired by the efficiency of Scandinavian furniture and the glossy aesthetic of high-end bicycles, skateboards and hockey sticks.

  Once I'm outta bed I could rock one of these!  
You want to know what makes this even cooler?  You can buy it's accessory - an accompanying illuminated cane dock. Coool.

If that's not enough - on the website they even add a cane twirling tutorial.  Do I hear a new party trick a-calling?  Could and probably would end in disaster.

Yup Omhu is Danish and the name means "with great care".  There motto is "Life is imperfect and beautiful".  

It was founded by some big hitters - Susy Korb (formerly of Tiffany's, Chrstie's and Harry Winston), Rie Norregaard (Microsoft, Nike, Samsung) and Susan Towers (Kiehl's 1851, Time Inc., Assouline), and are all working towards progressive design for an aging population. 

 I hope that demographic also includes hyper-showoffs-that-do-the-splits-at-weddings types.

Other goodies on their site include a $6000 (USD) robot that evokes memories of babies and pets and is used in rest homes in Japan (not surprising) to help dementia patients.  If you do buy one, they point out that gift wrapping is not available (odd).

Other mention ables are the "Stop talking" cards, the extra long shoe horn and the kitten hot water bottle (not made of real kittens).  All things I could use these days.

May design continue in daily needed things I say.

Tell me if you know of anymore?