My Vintage Childhood

My Vintage Childhood: June 2014

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Polka Dot Dress and Public Speaking On Bereavement to Midwives.....

I mentioned a few weeks ago that I had been invited to speak to a workshop of midwives at the Gold Coast University Hospital about our journey with loosing our twin girls Elle and Meg. It was a bereavement workshop designed to assist midwives and other health professionals in having more insight and understanding  with the extremes when dealing with mums like myself.

Well Monday was the day that I addressed the workshop, it all went well of course. No need for imaging the audience naked or other tactics. Just plain old getting up there with some points of my speech written and speaking from the heart. Friends and family threw love and support at me as well as some pointers. It was suggested I should wear clothing and shoes familiar and comfortable to me, so I could focus on the emotionally heavy content.

Emotionally heavy content or not, I was having none of this familiar business and wore a new to me vintage style modern frock I op shopped recently for $2. I felt fabulous, professional, together and most of all me and still true to myself.

 Dress - op shopped
Nude Wedges - retail years ago
Mumma ad Daughter Brooch - op shooped
Painted Flower Brooch - car boot sale
1960's Bow Brooch - hand down to me from my Mother in Law

Wanting to keep jewelry and accessories on my wrist and neck to a minimum (because it would have annoyed in me during my speech), I decided it was best to bling myself out with brooches instead. So out came three of my favorite brooches.

I'm so pleased to of had an opportunity to speak in such a setting to professionals, and further opportunities look like they will be on the horizon. If I'm able to help doctors, nurses, hospitals and health professionals examine their practices dealing with bereaved parents suffering miscarriage, still birth or newborn death, and have parents well supported it's the least I could do in honoring my girls memory.

Overall it was a wonderful morning, topped with a massive bunch lilies which are divinely scenting my home. The morning was followed by coming home to an email about something that has been keeping me busy and away from the blog, which I'm busting to share (just don't want to jinx things just yet). But all I can say for now is that I'm doing back flips and am just a tad excited to say the least.

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Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Storybook Gift Wrapping Pouches & How To....

When July hits next month it will mark one year that my Etsy store MyVintageChildhoodxo has been opened. Although I've been collecting and selling vintage children's items for a lot, lot longer than I've had an official on line store, but it's an exciting milestone to mark.

One thing that has been on my to do list for my store has been to develop some unique or fun ways to package up people's purchases. You might know I have a thing with up-cycling damaged vintage children's books, so it only seems fitting that my packaging idea has come from some damaged books I have laying around.

I'm pretty pleased to say that purchases from my store are now going to be packaged up sweetly. These storybook gift wrapping pouches will be for small items and single pieces of babies clothes, whilst I work on complimentary packaging ideas for larger items that are sold.

Below I've included a simple pic and text explanation of how to create these pouches yourself, so you can set about whipping up some of these to have on hand and ready to go at anytime.
How To:
Simply remove single pages from a damaged vintage children's book. A craft blade and ruler will be handy in getting as close to the spine of the book as possible and cutting a straight edge. Then using your sewing machine and a straight stitch sew together two pages along a short edge followed by a long edge and then the remaining short edge. You can tack back a few small stitches at the start and finish to reinforce your stitch.

Now that you have the final long edge unsewn, you're free to slide in your folded garment or small item to wrap. Ensure your item is still small enough (not too wide or fat) so that you can still bring the final unsewn edges together to be sewn together. On your sewing machine slowly take care of sewing the final edge (tacking back and forth at beginning and end) being careful not to sew through the item(s) in the pouch.

Finally your pouch will look like the final product pictured and you can add some ribbon or gift tag details. The recipient of the parcel will be able to open their pouch simply by tearing a edge like a perforated section in magazine.

If you give this How To a go please let me know.

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Monday, June 9, 2014

Lessons from Sharing a Home Office & Questions to Ask Yourself....

I don't know about other couples, but in the evenings when Ben and I are working on our own projects, we like to be in close vicinity to one another so we can talk. With three kids we don't get much chance to have uninterrupted conversations, so in the evenings we like to try and make the most of it when the kids are in bed. But try as we might over the last few years to share work spaces, it just hasn't worked out. Ben's projects have grown and not to mention my stock levels and its become difficult to have a shared space. We have been getting in each others way for far too long and it's been disruptive to my momentum with the business.

So after spending much of the last eighteen months trying to share a work space together again, Ben and I finally made the decision it's no longer in our best interest to do so. So Ben has moved his projects and work space elsewhere in the house and I have been left with the entire fourth bedroom of our home for the sole purpose of running my business and blog from.

Just one corner of the office and what is happening at the moment, there is a wardrobe full as well as a rack of clothes large storage containers needing to be addressed. Things are seriously bubbling along and it's great having MY own space to work in.

I only wish now that we had made the change earlier as the move has made an immediate impact on both of our organisation and productivity. So much so it has freed so more creative and collaborative energies which has seen some wonderful opportunities come my way. Opportunities which had they come earlier would have left me stressed and concerned I wouldn't be able to fulfill appropriately and timely.

What's the lesson?

If you're in a similar situation having to share a mutual space in your home for pleasure or business, I'd definitely suggest answering these questions along with the other person.

  • Clearly define the use of the space in the first place. Is there a need for you or your partner to leave tasks out on work surfaces whilst you step away? A lot of creative people need to be able to this, so they can come back later with fresh eyes and not have to set themselves back up to carry on.


  • Do you need separate desks and work surfaces? Are your interests and projects similar, do you need to work on projects together?


  • Is there enough room to accommodate everyone's needs happily? This includes all of ones supplies to do what they need to do with relative ease.


  • Do you have the same attitudes towards keeping things organised? Are you or your partner a neat freak or are you more of a make a mess as I go and clean up later type?

Sharing a home work space with a partner or family member can be tricky, we've tried several different options over the years which I have documented here in the blog. It's taken until now with both Ben and I having full fledged very involved passions, interests and in my case business to establish once and for all it doesn't work for us. Sure we want to be near one another, but the ways in which we work are not conducive to our momentum, creative energies and at times our relationship.

Have you ever shared a home work space or office with your partner or family member? Did it or does it work for you?

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