Filtering by Tag: painted shoes

Week 19: Creative Challenge 52

Classical oboist and textile designer, Telena Routh, has been embellishing necklaces this week. Her daughter, Rachel, is getting married soon and they've been out shopping for bridesmaid dresses together. Rachel has also been draping her belongings around the house to see what she really wants to take with her into married life, so there's been lots of cleaning and sorting activity too. The downside of this is that Telena's studio is now quite full! She plans to remedy that in the coming week.

Telenas Dreadlocks
Telenas Cat

In the meantime, she's taken some of her dreadlock necklaces and added felted balls to create another dimension of interest. The autumn toned neckace is going straight to Telena's private collection, I'm told. Telena has also shared photos of some of her other bead necklaces, and there's a picture of her special studio helper too - just what you need when you're trying to sew knitted squares into blankets. As you can see, Hazel (the cat) has claimed them as her own. Who's a nice, warm kitty, then?

Telenas Felt Beads

Trish Urquhart

Trish Urquhart, who runs Allaboutwriting, works as a documentary producer for Left-Eye Productions, and tries her best to live up to the title chef extraordinaire, has been delightfully creative in her kitchen again.

Her masterpiece this week is an innovative sage pesto, which she served with a roasted garden butternut, fresh out of her garden. Trish's sage is going crazy at the moment and her first butternut was ready for picking yesterday, so she was determined to find a way to combine the two.

She often fries the sage leaves but, after the success of her recent tarragon pesto, she wondered if sage pesto would also be good. As it turns out, it was delicious.

Trishs Sage

Trish took two loosely packed cups of sage leaves and blended them with about a cup of olive oil. She then added six cloves of garlic, salt and pepper, and blended that. She stirred in around two handfuls of chopped walnuts and another two handfuls of ground almonds - thinking that the powerful sage needed this degree of taming - along with two handfuls of mixed grated cheese. She added a couple of teaspoons of honey, and served the pesto with slices of roasted butternut. Do visit Trish's fabulous food blog for more news of her food adventures.

Roasted butternut with sage pesto

Dinner wasn't served until about ten o'clock, however, because Trish was multi-tasking - arranging a bookcase that she'd moved into the living space from their ex-writing room. This, of course, turned into a bigger project than intended and the photos here are a work in progress as she didn't have time to move all the books. Looking good, Trish. Love the paint job.

Bookcase renovation

Kanen Breen

Kanens Gold Shoes

Opera singer and Strange Bedfellow, Kanen Breen, has effected a five minute shoe transformation this week - a crazy work week for him - and he says he's very happy indeed with the results.

He bought these ultra-conservative shoes last week and wore them to rehearsals where he was roundly mocked for his 'plain Jane' footwear (people can be so cruel). Until then, he hadn't intended to mess about with the shoes but, upon reflection and with a little bit of a nudge from his friends, he decided that they weren't very 'him' after all and something had to be done. Five minutes with his So Soft gold paint and he now has just enough razzle dazzle to satisfy the naysayers and put a smile on his face as well. He says his creative output this week is hardly groundbreaking, but the best his schedule and energy levels would permit. I'm just glad to see him back in the shoe game. Flamingos are all well and good, but I'd definitely being missing his ultra glam shoes. Perhaps a well shod flamingo for next week?

Kanens Shoe Transformation

Georgia Bennett

Singer, guitarist and song writer, Georgia Bennett, has delighted us with another culinary delicacy this week. Always keen to make new things, she had a go at a German Apple Cake and the results, I think, speak for themselves - yes, it tastes easily as good as it looks. To serve, she invented an apple and blackberry sauce using fruit freshly picked from our garden and the combination couldn't have been better. It was a wonderful dessert.

Georgia hasn't done any recordings this week, but she's been prolific with her song writing. She has four new pieces to add to her repertoire once she's refined them to her liking, and we'll hopefully get to hear them in the coming weeks. Keep 'em coming, Georgia.

Georgias German Apple Cake

Stephen Bennett

Grandfathers Chest

Stephen Bennett has had a busy week attending meetings for a new job as choirmaster at Canberra Grammar School, so his creative work this week has been somewhat curtailed.

He inherited an old chest from his grandfather and has been intending to turn it into a bedside table for at least 25 years, so he got on with the job and now can't figure out why he took so long to get around to it. It looks fabulous, doesn't it?

Finished Chest

The tapestry stand he made for Hannah needed a re-design and a few modifications, followed by staining and varnishing, and he completed that job too (not bad for a curtailed week).

Hannah's tapestry stand
Doors in progress

The kitchen re-build is still hanging around his neck like a noose, so he tried to make some progress there. He cut all the rails and styles for the door frames, and when the panel raising router bit arrived in the mail from the USA, he raised the first two panels. He's also gluing up the next panel to be routed. It will be a slow job but he swears he'll get there by next Christmas. All in good time, I'm sure.

Kitchen Panel Doors

Scarlet Bennett

I could take a photo of my computer to show you all the writing I've done this week, but that wouldn't be very exciting, so you're going to have to take my word for it. My fingers have been flying across the keyboard with pleasing fluency, and long may that last is all I can say.

Determined to create something visual, however, I tinkered with some polymer early in the week, making a rose using a few different shades of red. I then added some wire and resin to make the piece a bit more interesting. It's an unusual design and I must say it's growing on me. It looks striking on and the steel wire stops the flower from looking too girly. An industrial passion theme, perhaps, and you've gotta love that.

Scarlets Red Rose

Week 2: Creative Challenge 52

TrishsBraaiedPineappleDessert

Trish Urquhart, who runs Allaboutwriting, works as a documentary producer for Left-Eye Productions, and tries her best to live up to the title chef extraordinaire, has had a frantic week. With her Allaboutwriting hat on, she's had responsibilities with the Parkview Literary Festival and the Jozi Book Fair, along with her usual managerial work to keep the business ticking over successfully. Her former husband fell off his roof while cleaning his gutters. He's injured, but not fatally, thank goodness, and Trish drove her son over to render assistance at the accident scene. It's hard to picture that as a relaxing experience. She's been working through the Ugandan footage that was taken on her documentary trip last week - think Left-Eye Productions. She attended a music theatre performance that the editor working on the documentary was performing in. And she made supper last night for her daughter's new boyfriend. Phew. I'm knackered just thinking about it. And that's before I get to the extraordinary meal she prepared.

Trish's sumptuous week 2 creations

Trish's sumptuous week 2 creations

She decided - making a virtue of necessity by the sounds of it - to use the supper last night as an opportunity to do something creative, and boy has she succeeded. It was Heritage Day in South Africa this week and she was inspired to adopt an Africaans theme for her creation. As Heritage Day was also National Braai (barbecue) Day, the solution was obvious - the result, however, is certainly not. The new boyfriend, Nate, took up his position at the barbecue, with delicious results. Trish's daughter, Maria, prepared some yummy salads. And Trish produced a virtuosic starter and dessert.

She'd decided upon braaied peaches, using the first peaches of the season, but her green grocer had run out of stock. So she opted, instead, for pineapple. She made a starter consisting of barbecued pineapple, lovage tempura and crème fraîche garnished with chopped pistachio nuts, passion fruit and a drizzling of chilli oil. For dessert she made barbecued pineapple dusted with chilli and ground star anise, served with chocolate ice cream, caramelised chilli walnuts, a dusting of cayenne pepper and star jasmine flowers. Seriously? That makes me hungry! Check out Trish's blog to see more of her amazing cooking adventures.

Trish's delicious starter

Trish's delicious starter

Trish's braaied pineapple dessert

Trish's braaied pineapple dessert

Kanen's light and spacious bathroom - how big is that space? His next project is more storage...

Kanen's light and spacious bathroom - how big is that space? His next project is more storage...

Opera singer and strange bedfellow, Kanen Breen, has returned to his home base in Sydney and launched his reno project almost as soon as he walked through the front door. This week's creative contribution is a major bathroom overhaul that he undertook, determined to make the tiny room look less tiny. His bathroom has been bugging him for three years and, with his blood up and his adrenaline pumping, he went off in search of some left over wall paper that he used on a project a few years ago (he's promised to share photos later, just for fun). And...drum roll... he now has a fabulously light, clean, and - above all - almost invisible bathroom cupboard that previously overpowered and dominated the room, sucking out all sense of light and space.

Kanen's bathroom: Before and in-progress.

Kanen's bathroom: Before and in-progress.

Ever the fashion guru, he's also found time to paint a pair of shoes. Contain your envy. These classy dazzle-dazzlers are a sight to behold - and there's not a sequin in sight. I'd love to see Kanen tap dance in these...

How sexy are Kanen's shoes?

How sexy are Kanen's shoes?

FlowerBombs2

South African born writer, florist and cake whizz, Keryn Clark, has produced an entirely fitting spring masterpiece this week - three magnificent flower bombs. Keryn was a partner in a successful and, as you can see, highly creative floristry business - Bloom by Design - until their premises were sold in the aftermath of the GFC. With the mining boom in Perth sending real estate prices into la-la-land, Keryn and her partner were unable to find new, affordable digs and they both had to go and find other jobs. They think of this business as a plucky Aussie battler because they still get calls for flowers seven years after they closed their doors.

The exciting news is that they've decided to re-brand as an online florist, and Keryn has been creating arrangements to post to her blog to build an online presence before the new shop goes live. Expect to see more of these gorgeous flowers in the coming year. Bring it on is all I can say. They're exquisite.

Keryn's flower bombs

Keryn's flower bombs

The loveliest postcard you could ever hope to receive from Perth

The loveliest postcard you could ever hope to receive from Perth

Classical oboist and textile designer, Telena Routh, has had the sort of week that will make you feel exhausted just reading about it, but she's still managed to churn out an impressive creation.

Telena's husband, Peter, has had a milestone birthday this week (a number ending in zero; Telena, of course, is quite a bit younger) and this was the trigger for a major clean and tidy. Telena reacquainted herself with their vacuum cleaner - hello? remember me? - and much was achieved, including a major re-ordering of her textile studio.

Telena's new, improved studio.

Telena's new, improved studio.

Telena then cooked for 60 people (ugh! I'm having palpitations just thinking about it): 4 pavlovas, 2 chocolate coffee cakes, numerous salads, chicken kebabs, 3 slow cookers of Moroccan lamb, enough rice to feed an army, and 2 large fruit platters.

Having accomplished all of that, Telena still found time to needle felt into the bag she knitted last week. She's felted it in the washing machine today, and here it is, still wet - hot off the press, as it were. Bravo, oh textile goddess!

Before and after: Telena's knitted bag turned into a cheerful spotty bag.

Before and after: Telena's knitted bag turned into a cheerful spotty bag.

Singer, guitarist and songwriter, Georgia Bennett, has been right in her element this week. She's spent the past week on work experience at Better Music in Canberra's south. Surrounded by guitars and other musos, she's been as happy as a pig in mud. The guys made her feel very welcome, and she learnt how to repair and maintain her guitars, as well as making herself generally useful wherever she was needed. She received very positive feedback so I gather she made herself as indispensable there as she is here.

It's a tradition, apparently, that the work experience student brings a cake for morning tea on the last day of their placement. Always quick to spot an opportunity, Georgia decided this was a great way to fulfill her creative challenge commitment, while feeding the hordes at the same time. She made the best chocolate brownies that have ever been produced in our kitchen - a triple batch to make sure there were enough to go around - and they'd disappeared before the last arrivals reached the tea room. Having tasted them, I can understand exactly why. It took all my self-discipline to stop at...gulp...three...or maybe it was four. I can't remember now (that was actually a lie).

Saturday brunch: Hot chocolate to accompany Georgia's awesome brownie

Saturday brunch: Hot chocolate to accompany Georgia's awesome brownie

Stephen Bennett has been an absolute legend this week, creating extra infrastructure to support our urban farming project. He's built two big vegetable beds, along with a bed for Hannah's roses. He's put up wire for our berries, and he's fenced our vegetable plot and orchard to keep the dogs out of mischief. It's been hard, heavy work and you can see more details here. My weekend gardening award goes to Steve. This is a gift that's going to keep on giving.

Steve's garden beds

Steve's garden beds

Happy berries attached to their new frames

Happy berries attached to their new frames

Hannah's ring: rose quartz with brushed sterling silver

Hannah's ring: rose quartz with brushed sterling silver

I've had a mixed media kind of week. My top priority was a jewellery project because it was Hannah's 21st birthday on Saturday and I wanted to make her something special. She's been hankering after a rose quartz ring, so that was at the absolute top of my 'to do' list, and I was just hoping I could do the occasion justice. Hannah's thrilled with the result and it hasn't been off her finger since I gave it to her, so that creative effort has ended happily.

I was determined to do a pastel painting of an image my friend Jackie created. She took a picture of Duke 'Kissing' Casanova (our kissing horse) and added a picture of a white mare wearing an exotic bridal veil - a Casanova getting married theme, if you like. I loved the image and wanted to have a go at recreating it with my pastels. There are lots of things I wish I'd been able to execute better, but I can see that I'm improving and that's encouraging.

I've also spent a lot of time out in the garden, helping where possible with the infrastructure and working to create an abundant summer harvest. See my urban farming blog for details. It might be a day or two before I can move again, but it was worth it.

Scarlet's pastel painting

Scarlet's pastel painting