Thursday, December 29, 2011


15% off everything in the Yardage Design online shop until the end of 2011 (or midnight Saturday night!).
Simply enter the code word SALE at the checkout.

Happy new year! I will be back in Melbourne by then, and I cannot wait!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

merry christmas {feliz navidad}

It's just turned midnight here, which means it's officially Christmas eve! I shouldn't be surprised, but it seems like it's snuck up on me again! We have a full house of Aussie friends and family here in Madrid for Christmas. There won't be any snow this year (devastated!), but it's cold and we're enjoying the northern hemisphere approach to the season's festivities. In Spain, there's not much Santa Claus - it's all about the nativity. Instead of "merry christmas", Spaniards say "feliz navidad", which literally translates to "happy nativity". Christmas day is similar to the way we celebrate, but no gifts are given. That is done on 6 January when the three wise men apparently came to give gifts to Jesus. We can't wait that long - we'll be doing gifts in Christmas day! Our letter to Santa this year included instructions about how to find us in Spain - just to be sure (this was very important to Little Mister Yardage).

Thanks to everyone who reads this blog - for your support, comments and enthusiasm about Yardage Design and my own little adventures this year while living in Spain. I really cannot tell you what a sanity saver this blog has been for me at times! We're going home for a few weeks in January, but we'll be returning to Spain after that, so the adventures will continue. I'm looking forward to some new challenges and projects next year - both for me and for Yardage Design.

Wishing all of you a very happy, safe, hassle-free and fun christmas break. Best wishes for a very creative 2012!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

seville {sevilla}

We spent the weekend in Seville ...

We sat under orange trees eating Spanish pastries, wandered the artisan markets, admired the architecture, rowed a boat around the Plaza de Espana, took a horse and cart ride to see the sights, stayed in an old palace, and enjoyed time together. A weekend wasn't long enough ~ we'll be going back to Seville. It is a lovely place. The mosaic of photo's are the ones I posted to Instagram (which I love!) while I was there.

This is me, trying to row a boat ... and laughing so hard that I forgot which oar to use to steer us straight!

It's hard to believe it's going to be Christmas in a few days. It almost doesn't feel like Christmas because it isn't summer here, and we're so used to warm weather at Christmas time. Snow is forecast in Spain for Wednesday, so fingers crossed we get a little more on Sunday so we can have a white Christmas!

Have a lovely Tuesday!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

union jack cushion ... my way!

I've had a plan to sew a union jack (British flag) cushion for ages. It's not an original idea (union jack's are on just about everything these days), but I really just wanted to try out this lovely, iconic design in my own way. Using my own fabrics. As you do!

The first thing I did was buy a rectangle shaped cushion. Then I printed a union jack out on paper and worked out all of the dimensions to suit the cushion, as well as being true to the proportions of the design. Then I cut lots of strips of fabric and sewed them onto a rectangle base.

Circa (navy on natural linen/cotton) and Swizzle (deep red on natural linen/cotton) and plain natural linen/cotton were used to create the flag and correspond to the red, white and blue theme.

I really enjoyed sewing this cushion and I love the end result. I think I might sew some more and experiment a little further. In the mean time, it's nice to have prototypes to scatter on the lounge!

A final reminder ~ just a few days left to take advantage of the Yardage Design online store free shipping offer ... until 20 December there is FREE SHIPPING worldwide for orders greater than $35. Simply enter the code word CHRISTMAS at the checkout and your shopping cart will automatically update once the order is over $35.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

wordless wednesday ... wrapping with fabric

Taken with iPhone using Instagram
Taken with Pentax K-r digital SLR
Joining in here. Fabric here.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

recipe :: peanut butter hummus

Twitter is an unlikely source of recipes, but the other day I saw someone mention this recipe, so I googled it, realised it would taste better than it sounded, and made it ...

Y.U.M. It is a really lovely combo of flavours - the peanut butter works well with the chickpeas and the cumin, with a dash of lemon juice and greek yoghurt for extra zing! I halved this recipe and it still made quite a large bowl plus a bit extra for my lunch that day! It was an instant hit in this house ~ perfect with a glass of vino!

Peanut Butter Hummus is the creation of one of my favourite foodies ~ Nigella. I was extra especially thrilled when she actually commented on my tweet about this recipe (I know ~ I'm easily pleased!) ... 

You will find more recipes I've made if you scroll down the righthand side of the blog. Have a lovely Sunday!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

stocking fillers

After a couple of weeks travelling, I must say it's been nice to just sit down and make something. Yesterday, I started making some stocking fillers for friends and family using a stamp I carved for the handprinted fabric swap. Some little recycled notebooks got stamped in christmassy red and white ink ...

I always have a notebook like this in my bag and next to my bed for writing things down or drawing, so I love giving them to others to encourage them to do the same. You just never know when you might need to record that amazing idea!

{exclaim} handprinted fabric in cherry red used as gift wrap available here
A quick reminder ~ free worldwide shipping for orders greater than $35 from the Yardage Design online shop from now until 20 December. Simply enter the code word CHRISTMAS at the checkout ~ all orders posted from Melbourne, Australia ~ enjoy!

More creative spaces here each Thursday!

Friday, November 25, 2011


We've been in Italy for the last 5 days ... here's a bit of a taste ...

Sorrento, Amalfi Coast
Pompeii, near Naples
The Colosseum, Rome
We're lucky enough to have been to Italy a few times before, but it was our first time visiting the Amalfi Coast ... seriously lovely. I could really see myself spending LOTS of time there ~ it was just so beautiful and relaxing. (Side note ~ Naples is not great ~ fly in, pick up a car, drive out!). Pompeii was also amazing ~ I was surprised how intact some of the buildings were ~ still with remains of their frescos. I saw the Pompeii exhibition at Melbourne Museum earlier in the year which was a great primer as the actual site doesn't have many artefacts, just the town itself. It was quite sad to see the poses of the bodies frozen in time by the ash and gas. Rome, as always, does not disappoint. It was great to see the expressions on my parents faces when they saw amazing things like the Colosseum or the Pantheon for the first time ~ priceless. I took a few more pics while I was there and posted them on twitter (via Instagram) incase you're interested.

Have a great weekend! We're off to Barcelona for a couple of days ~ looking forward to it!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

block printing

I've been block printing this week. Drawing designs, carving them and printing them on natural linen for the handprinted fabric swap. I was thinking of just screenprinting my designs for this swap, but I think swaps are a good opportunity to try something different and take some time to "play". So that's what I did! Here is the end result ... four pieces of fabric ready to be posted to my swap partners ...

All of my swap partners liked blue, so I tried to stick with mostly blues, but it just wouldn't be right not to have a bit of red in there for good measure ~ it's my fave!

While I also tried to get away from geometrics (and I sort of did ~ see further below), I find them hard to resist - especially little circles.

Clearly, I am not a block printer. My prints are not perfect. I tried a brayer to apply the ink to the larger block, but found my make-shift stamp pad (disguised as a kitchen sponge) the most consistent and even application of ink. (I think one of the reasons I love screenprinting so much is the precision of the print ~ no offence to block printing ~ it's not you, it's definitely me!)

I did make a small leaf/petal block too ~ just to prove I could get away from geometric design (although you might notice that this design is just a pile of shapes on top of one another - shhh!).

There's a great flickr group of the work by swap participants here, and more creative spaces here!

Also, don't forget that there is free worldwide shipping in the Yardage Design shop until 20 December for orders over $35AUD ~ just enter the code word CHRISTMAS at the checkout.

Have a great Thursday!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

want to wander with me?

I'm over here today, sharing what I love about my beloved home city of Melbourne, Australia.

I'm one of many designers working with the lovely Piper from one sydney road who are sharing their favourite places to see, things to do and food to eat as part of the 60 days of Wanderlust celebrations. Pop over to find out the inside info on lots of the worlds great cities, and stay tuned as there are many more to come. I love the idea of getting a local perspective before visiting a new place!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

while i was away ...

We've been travelling during the past week or so ~ showing my parents Paris and London. It's been wonderful to see these cities we have visited many times through the eyes of people who have never been. Taking my mum to Liberty was a real highlight - talk about kids in a candy shop! Some of you might have seen some random snaps on my facebook and twitter pages that I posted while I was away, but I wanted to share a few pics I took in London, including one with me actually in it (don't pass out with shock!!) ...

Autumn sun through the archers window at the Tower of London
"The Gherkin"
The park at Russell Square
"Meeting" Richard Branson at Madame Tussauds!
Squirrels in Hyde Park
A cold afternoon in Hyde Park
Medieval stained glass
Have a great Tuesday!

Sunday, November 6, 2011


Enjoying autumn and taking a little time to spend with family ... back soon!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

christmas craft + free shipping

A few weeks ago I was embroidering a Verano "Petals" motif, and this is why ...

I wanted to make a christmas ornament for the annual Yardage Design Christmas e-newsletter (which subscribers would have received yesterday). After embroidering the motif, I cut it into a circle and backed it with some contrast Liberty Print, including a matching loop to hang it from a tree, then loosely filled it with some stuffing so that it sort of ended up a puffy disc shape. I really like the scandinavian vibe of the finished product, as well as the red, white and blue colour combination.

I really enjoyed photographing this project in Retiro Park, much to the amusement of the passing Spaniards! It was fun trying to find the right tree, the right branch, with the right sort of light ...

... and then wishing I'd made a hundred of them to fill a whole tree ~ how excellent would that be?!

Now that it's November, Christmas feels close! Between now until 20 December, there is FREE SHIPPING worldwide for orders greater than $35 from the Yardage Design online shop. Simply enter the code word CHRISTMAS at the checkout, and  your shopping cart will automatically update once the order is over $35. Enjoy!

Playing along here today.