Wednesday, 25 December 2013

Vlad wishes you a Very Merry Christmas

A tsunami of organisation and emotion comes crashing down on Christmas Day. We were hoping that 2013 would be the last year renting, but given the challenges with council, it looks like we will be here for a bit longer.

It has been a tumultuous year for us. 

The most major thing being that Nicholas was diagnosed as being on the Autism Spectrum (ASD). He is turning 3 in February, and he is basically developmentally behind. No words. Great understanding and inquisitiveness, but lack of communication means plenty of tantrums. Activities need to be carefully planned and moved into rather than shifted into. We are getting there slowly, but the next three years before he goes to school will be hard work.

Tori has finished her first year at school and I am dumbfounded at the growth that she has displayed this year. Her inquisitiveness and ability to just absorb what is around her is phenomenal. In the last few months she has shot up in height, reaching my shoulders. Lucky her she will undoubtably be taller than me!

I have one year left on my study journey to get my M. Ed (Teacher Librarianship). It has been a hard slog, especially with the baggage associated with Nicholas' diagnosis, but I am still plugging away. 

Craft and my small business has taken a beating this year. Despite attempting some markets, the time and effort required has been in short supply. At the moment, it is important that I just focus on Nicholas. Here and there I pick up some custom handbag or baby wear jobs, but the dream of a sustainable small business is far from my mind at the moment.

Mishka has been a welcomed addition to our family this year. Despite her health worries early on, she has integrated well into our house and is certainly a personality to be reckoned with!

If you are reading this, I wish you all the best for the festive season. Take some time to relax, rejuvenate and recharge for the year ahead.

Sunday, 8 December 2013

BMC Grand Day Out 2013

It has been far too long between car shows for me (and blog posts). So when a friend told me about the "Grand Day Out", my Dad and I decided to go. 

Oh the bliss! Just me and my camera for a few hours (no kids). The weather was great, not too hot and slightly overcast and of course the cars were wonderful. It was just a shame that neither Dad or myself were in a position to take our Morris Minors with us. But there were plenty of Morries there to swoon over!

Here is my Top 5 pics of the day.

This Austin stood grand and proud and not too many badges on the front. Paint work was lovely and the touch of yellow badge and lights nicely set off the chrome work.

Little did I know that my Dad had a thing for the Morris 8 motorcar. The things that you learn!

Took loads of pics of this Mini engine bay. The owner had lovingly chromed everything that they could and it was lovely and shiny!

I could just imagine Bond arriving in this immaculate Austin Healy ..

The original 1964 Mini Countryman. A bit different to the monstrosity that was my 2012 Mini Countryman (someone else's words not mine) . The owner had one of those suitcases with speakers in them on the back seat, not sure if it was a Jukecase, but looked like it.

150 photo's later and lots of interesting shots of the inside of cars, badges and shiny rocker covers. A good day overall.

Thank-you Victorian Mini Club for running the event and allowing me to park my "Maxi" JCW Countryman in amongst the other shiny mini's ....

Saturday, 30 November 2013

Frivolous Treats

One of these days we will start building our new house. I can't wait to decorate my kids bedrooms with frivolous yet functional pieces of goodness!

I am drawn to heirloom products like the beautiful Hudson Bay Blanket or the gorgeous Vintage Model Propellers

Items that will stay with them as they grow up, perhaps move into storage during their teens and then they might come out again as they get older.

Please enjoy the treasury that I have put together.

Thursday, 14 November 2013

Goldfish Noren Curtains (Ikea Hack) #weekendproject

Ikea had this gorgeous tea towel. Love the design but I felt that something was missing.

It is part of a set.

I thought maybe some embroidery might fill the gap that exists in the design. So I spent 10 minutes in Illustrator to see what I could do ...

... and that I could use two of them as Noren Curtains in my bathroom.

I originally thought a cushion, but the cotton fabric is a little light on (although interfacing could solve that). What do you think? Have you got any crafty Ikea Hacks?

My crafty energies have been sucked dry by the application process for funding for my son so that he can get intensive treatment before he starts school.

But once my school reports are done, watch out world!

Wednesday, 30 October 2013

Do you celebrate St. Andrew's Day?

Quite a few years ago (before children) we used to celebrate St. Andrew's Day with friends. Scottish food, whiskey and appropriate music to celebrate a country that I was born in and also that I love.

With one month until the celebration, here are some "must haves" for your celebrations.

How I miss the full strength Irn Bru. The Australian brew has less caffeine in it than the scottish version

My mum sometimes gets some Tunnock's Teacakes for our morning tea.


Tunnock's Caramel Wafter Biscuits are a must.

If you have time before 30th November, head on down to Rob's British and Irish Butchery in Dandenong. An excellent range of both small goods, meats and sweets from the British Isles. If you want Haggis for St. Andrew's Day, make sure you order well ahead of time.

Head on over to Rampant Scotland to find some recipes that you might like to cook on the day.

Sunday, 20 October 2013

Springtime in Melbourne Etsy Treasury

I thought I would try my hand at a treasury. I love all the colours and textures in the choices that I have made, I would of course buy everything!

About 80% of them are Aussie Handmade's, so go on and support them!

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Life has gotten a bit more complicated lately

Yet again I have disappeared off the face of the earth, and no I am not pregnant again!

My son, Nicholas, has been diagnosed as being on the Autism Spectrum.

Before you ask "what type", he is 32 months old, 2 3/4 years old. At this age, all they do is place them on the spectrum and get them into early intervention programs. It won't be until he is closer to 4 or 5 before they start diagnosing him as high or low functioning.

But what this does mean is that I have been more than a bit pre-occupied with filling out forms, medical appointments, speech therapists, blood tests and paediatricians. And then there are the physical manifestations to deal with. Tantrums, anxiety attacks, sensory overload and no talking except for two words (Ja and Milch).

And well Konstant Kaos has been sorely neglected. 

I am still crafting away to try and keep my sanity, check out my Instagram feed for crafty goodness. But I fear that the possibility of markets is far out of reach for me at the moment. It isn't that I don't have the ideas, but the time and energy is being sucked out of me by my little ASD vampire and he will require all of my blood and attention to give him the best chance of leading a "normal" life.

Tuesday, 24 September 2013

You might be interested in what I pin ...

Pinterest is addictive.

There, I said it.

But for organising digital ideas, it is brilliant.

So if you have a pinterest board that you think that I should follow, drop me a message.

And enjoy!

Friday, 20 September 2013

My love of old cars

There hasn't been much action on the blog lately. It isn't that I don't still love blogging, it is that I have been so busy over at Instagram posting interesting pictures of old cars.

So here is my Dad's beautiful Morris Minor. He takes great pride in washing and taking care of her.

And in the Morris Garages in Moorabbin there was this Alvis sitting there getting repaired. I had never heard of an Alvis. Thorpe mentioned that it was the "poor mans" Bentley and that he rarely saw them now.

And the old Ford Falcon outside my work. Looking at it closely, it looked abandoned. Tires slightly flat, junk inside the car.

And the gorgeous, souped up Peugeot that I saw in Sydney, West End.

So come and join me over at Instagram.

Thursday, 22 August 2013

Catch Konstant Kaos Designs at the Mulgrave Makers Market August 25th @ The Body Shop Head Office in Mulgrave

One of the things that struck me about the Mulgrave Makers Market was that it was more than a craft market. Scattered in between the craft stalls are farmers and small produce stalls including hot coffee and yummy warm food.

With a focus in sustainable practice, the market encourages a "no plastic bag" policy and is located at the very picturesque "Body Shop" Head Office in Mulgrave looking out towards the Dandenong Ranges. It's lovely to see everyone walking around with their handmade shopping bags.

With an 8am start on Sunday, the market will be a bit cold, but it is lovely to see people all rugged up and enjoying the atmosphere. Last month I was indoors, but this Sunday I will be outside under a Gazebo .. so wish me luck!

Konstant Kaos has booked in for a market stall once a month until the end of the year. The Makers Market happens once a month and it is an opportunity to share my wares with you. Also an opportunity to get my business moving once more after a longer-than-anticipated hiatus.

The lovely people at Mulgrave Makers Market did a write up on me after the last market showcasing my "Horror Movie Badges"- eep!  It has been so exciting getting back into markets after all these years. 

Monday, 12 August 2013

Five things that I love about my Mini Countryman

It was inevitable that I would do this post at some point. It is coming up to four weeks since we took delivery of  my Mini Countryman and I am still gushing and swooning every time I drive her!

Such an enjoyable car to drive and zip around town in. Steering is nice and heavy and she is a manual. Why would you get a Mini as an automatic?

1. Alloys

I love a good set of alloys, it can either make or break a car. I also love that you can see through them and see the red brake calipers *Squee!*

2. Heated Seats

Heated seats are a luxury that I had never even thought of until I took her for a test drive. But after a day on my feet in the Library, a heated seat is better than a heat pack to ease the pain. Also rather nice on those cold mornings in Melbourne.

3. Badges

The branding on this car is quite prominent. The large badge on the front, the one on the back (that converts into a handle for opening the boot). I love the simplicity of the design and the fact that they have refined the old one into something nice and slick.

4. Colour scheme

Black and Red are my colours, very Konstant Kaos! I thought that the red stripes would be a bit garish, but I quite like the fact that the car isn't vanilla. The black shell hides the plastic rims quite nicely (which I don't particularly like).

5. Size

The fact that it is a 4 door and I can fit both kids in the back comfortably. Reality is that I am a Mum and it is easier with a four door. The target market for Mini seems to be young "fun" childless people, but I am seeing more and more of these on the road with kids in the back.

Visibility out the back is still quite good, just watch for those extra high child seats that you can buy. We did remove the head rest from the back to make sure that I had enough visibility.  The little side windows at the back make it a bit easier as well.

MC sits higher on the road than the Corolla did (previous car) and the AWD makes her a dream to drive, especially in the wet. The true test of size will be in a few weeks when I load her up to do the Mulgrave Makers Market on the 25th August. But I have managed to fit a whole load of shopping into the back of her with ease.

I guess when I am driving her around, I am thinking more Morris than Mini, the sound and handling all remind me of my 1962 Morris Minor and given that I can't buy a new MM1000, the MC R60 will have to do.

Interested in more pictures of my Mini? Follow me on Instagram!

Sunday, 21 July 2013

A new toy that John Cooper would be proud of

I've gotten myself a new toy, tentatively dubbed the "Kaos Mobile", my little JCW Mini is such a joy to drive at the moment. A heavier car than the Corolla that I had before, more power and of course she is manual (who would want to drive a Mini with an auto transmission?).

It is such a gorgeous morning here in Melbourne, bloody cold, but gorgeous. Tempted to take to the hills with the Kaos car and my DSLR ...

What are you up to today?

Friday, 12 July 2013

Come one, come all to the Night of Intrigue Bazaar

I am very excited about my first market in ages ... It has been quite liberating to throw myself into the process of dreaming, planning and then creating products that I love.

Often they tend to start off as something that I would like, and then they evolve into something that perhaps you might like.

Tomorrow night at A Night of Intrigue, I will have my Alternative Nursery Prints available for purchase for $40 each. They have been all printed on photo lustre paper with professional archival inks. They will look fabulous in your nursery or in your office. A3 size, it fits perfectly into the Ikea RIBBA Frame.

I'm very excited about these "Horror Movie" brooches. Funky and retro!

And equally excited about getting back in the game again. It's been too long between markets and whilst I teach and do other things, this part of my life ignites a creative fire that basically keeps me sane!

Tuesday, 9 July 2013

Interested in a give away?

I'm going to be doing a a give away of one of my Nursery prints over at my Facebook page.

All you have to do is "share" with your friends to be in the running ...

To be in the running head on over to the book of Face, and share away ... but make it fast, as the giveaway will end on the 15th July, 2013.

Monday, 8 July 2013

Comparing print quality: Giclee vs. Photo Lustre prints

It has been an exciting week picking up some print samples form Lantern Printing in Middle Park.

I was convinced that the Giclee print was the way to go, but comparing a sample against some photo lustre prints, the black is definitely blacker in the photo print.

The print on the left is the Giclee print and the left is photo lustre print. The shiny print is lovely, nice and crisp.

Framed up in an ikea Ribba print, it will look gorgeous on the wall of Nicholas' bedroom.

I can't wait to get the goth and steam-punk version of this finished, but I keep on getting distracted by other shiny things on the internet!

Saturday, 6 July 2013

What colour do you like your frames? Red or Black?

Having tremendous amount of fun with Illustrator. I love the fact that with Society6 you can play around with different styles of frames to see what the print will look like on the wall.

I have ordered a print from Society6 to check the quality and after playing around with framing options online, I am tempted to spray paint an old ikea frame red for Nicholas' room.

But which one do you prefer? Black or white?

Can't wait to see this up on the wall of my son's bedroom, I still prefer the black print though.

What are your thoughts?

Thursday, 4 July 2013

Are you following us on Facebook?

My blog posts are few and far between at the moment. But I tend to post my ideas, musings and thoughts onto the Konstant Kaos Facebook page.

For example prototype art pieces such as the Nursery Space Poster, do you think it would look better in white? Personally I think that it loses some of the effect, but some people don't like that much black in a nursery.

What about my new spider? 

I am currently working on a Gothic A-Z Nursery Print, sneak previews tend to occur via the Konstant Kaos Facebook page.

We will try not to spam you too much, tell us what you think of our new products.

Tuesday, 2 July 2013

Spaced Out Nursery Art Print

New to the Konstant Kaos range is this gorgeous Nursery Art print for those parents who are a bit sick of powder blue and pink.

These can be purchased through Society 6 in whatever size you want them in. They do printing onto archival print paper.

Take a look and let me know what you think!

Monday, 1 July 2013

Experimenting with Shrinkable Plastic for a knockout neckpiece

A crafty friend set me a challenge to help her with a neckpiece for Supernova.

She sent me through an illustrator file with ZZAP on it, but I wanted to try some other ideas. My groovy Year 11 class provided me with some ideas;  Splosh, Gooey, Kaboom, Crash, Crack, Splat, Vroom, Bam, Sock.

Biggest challenge with shrinkable plastic is to understand the shrinking characteristics of the plastic. Do what the instructions say, make a ruler, understand how it shrinks. Also to understand colours, make a graduated colour sampler with RGB or CYMK listed so that you can understand how the colour changes when you shrink it.

For example, below are a few shrinkable neck pieces done on inkjet. The colours look washed out, but when you actually shrink them the colour intensifies.

As you can see the colours become richer and more vibrant.

After they have cooled down, coat them in Diamond Glaze or Modge Podge Dimensional to give them a more luxurious feel. I prefer to drill my holes in after I have shrunk the plastic, so that they are nice and neat.

My daughter has also had a ball with shrinkable plastic. Experimenting, playing with colours and making her own pendants and brooches. Great holiday fun!

Thursday, 27 June 2013

Come one, come all to "A night of Intrigue: Festival of Dark Culture"

It has been ages since I actually prepared for a market. Luckily, with school holidays afoot, I will have the time to prep properly for A night of Intrigue, Festival of Dark Culture. I am so excited to be having a stall at this event, my ideas book is overflowing with all the things that I want to create and sell.

So I have been busy creating brooches, necklaces and dabbling in some screen printing projects, knowing that most of the people at the festival will have similar tastes.

I've been playing with neck pieces and crystals, enjoying the serenity of working with my hands, rather than typing uni essays with my fingers.

My poor hubby has been relegated to the role of "glue boy" given that he felt that the glue that I was using wasn't good enough. He sands and then glues with a two part epoxy each item ... guaranteed never to separate! 

I am looking forward next week to having a day or two of sewing to knock up some bags, pouches and baby shoes (what I started with).

So if you are interested, then swing by A night of Intrigue Facebook page and buy your ticket, as they are selling fast. It should be a fabulous evening with lots of creative and passionate people. It doesn't matter if you are not "goth" or "steampunk", just wear black, you will blend right in!