From the Archives: Children's Dictionary

I went to a secondhand book sale yesterday with Mark & Stevie, & this is one of the treasures I bought - a children's pictorial dictionary from about the late 1940s-early 1950s. I love that it's Australian & features some familiar images, such as the galah I included in my montage below & the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Stevie spotted the book first & knew I'd love it because of the incredible endpapers (above). I love the vivid colours & the weird juxtaposition of images.

Mark also found an amazing design book from the 1950s for me - I'll show you some pictures of that one another time. It's nice to rummage at book sales with friends who can keep an eye out for things you'll love!

In other news, I was interviewed for The Finders Keepers blog recently, where I talked a little about my influences & work process. If you're interested, you can read it here.

My Vintage Postcard Collection #1

I have a big collection of Victorian & Edwardian postcards, mainly collected in the '80s when they were cheap & plentiful. They're so pretty! I keep them in vintage postcard albums & nice boxes & take them out of the cupboard every so often to play with. Many of them are from this fabulous secondhand book shop called Edmonds (now sadly closed) where we'd spend wintery Sunday afternoons rummaging & foraging & coaxing out treasures. It was dark & cluttered & smelled like dust & musty old paper & gas from the fire & tobacco. I loved that place...

Rummaging Pays Off Yet Again!

Well, I set my alarm for an indecently early hour on Saturday morning (& promptly snoozed through it) because it was the opening day of an annual secondhand book sale, held every June long weekend, that I never miss. Arriving an hour later than desired with two friends, we set about struggling through the dense throng of rummagers in the hopes of getting our grubby hands on some coveted treasures. Side note: Coincidentally, the three of us were wearing fair isle jumpers (or sweaters, if you like to call them that) & so inadvertently set a new book sale trend. We're thinking next year everyone will be resplendent in fair isle, but by then we'll have moved onto houndstooth or paisley or something.

These book sales are brutal. Secondhand book collectors are a particularly aggressive breed. After jostling through the masses, feverishly (& rather possessively) stooped over trestles piled with dusty books, I finally unearthed a few bargains that made the struggle worthwhile. Actually, it was my friend Mark who found this little beauty for me.

Brimful of Interest, Excitement & Skill

Look at this great board game my friend Mark brought home for me from a secondhand market a few weeks ago. You're all invited to come around to my place on a rainy Sunday afternoon & we can sit on the floor & play Fairyland & have fizzy grape juice & ginger cookies. Hooray! Well it was just a matter of time I suppose...it looks like I've been tagged by the well-preserved & fabulously talented benconservato & illustrator extraordinaire Racheal Anilyse. I won't tag another 7 unsuspecting bloggers, but here are my 7 random or weird facts about myself:

  1. When we were kids, my sister Jo & I had a cardboard box with a human skeleton (Jo traded it at school for one of her Barbie dolls!), a scary black wig she got for Christmas, & a bunch of spiders (that escaped from my bugcatcher) in it.
  2. My sister & I used to play a game we called The Chocolate Nun. I'm not sure there were proper rules, but it involved hand signals somehow...& I think one of us wore a cape.
  3. As a child, I was obsessed with the trappings of bureaucracy & made my own stamps & forms. I glued homemade library cards in the backs of all my books.
  4. Ironically, this obsession was later quelled by 12 witheringly boring years spent working for the Tax Department.
  5. My family nickname is Weanie Beans & has many, equally embarrassing, variations - Beanie, Beans, Queenie, Queena, Kreenie, Reenie...& my Mum's personal favourite...Beans On Toast.
  6. I'm a neurotic perfectionist. People deliberately move my fridge magnets a fraction of an inch, just to torture me.
  7. I have slept through the room adjoining my bedroom being ransacked by a crazed burglar, & a speeding car careening through my neighbour's living room wall (the resulting evacuation attempt by the Fire Department, due to a gas leak, didn't stir me either).

So there you are! 7 things you didn't really want/need to know about Magic Jelly! Jot them down...if I ever become famous, they may crop up in Trivial Pursuit.

Recently Dick & Dora featured me in their blog...thank you! They also have an Etsy shop & make fab jewellery! And Fric de mentol included one of my Benediction collages in an Etsy Treasury list that made it to the front page. Hooray! Thanks Julian for getting a screenshot for me (a bouquet of parsnips is forthcoming) - it appeared in the middle of the night here in the Southern Hemisphere, so I would have missed it. Fellow Etsy sellers Anna Laura, Sherry Truitt & Salmon Street Studio also kindly let me know about it - thank you! It's so nice to see such a great collection of artists make the front page - it was an honour to be among them!

Finally, thanks again to everyone who took part in my giveaway - the winners' prizes are all in the post & on the way to their letterboxes.

Toodle-loo for now!