Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Was it Monday already?

I can't believe today is over and I didn't really get anything done, was it Monday already? When I say anything, I actually mean anything boring like bookwork, tidying up the store room or ringing around for quotes for the silk organza that I need. All these things need to be done pronto but I skillfully avoided doing any of them. Instead I did a little rearrange of some stock, took pictures of some of our braid collection and new stock, and spent at least an hour looking through my neighbour's new copy of the fabulous Pirelli Calenders by Thames and Hudson. 

Fab 60s, 70s and 80s trim

 More fab 60s, 70s and 80s trim

Some of these are older, 50s and 60s

We loooove these vintage Italian cotton flowers

New extra wide vintage moire ribbon, guipure lace motifs, silk milliners fur, extra wide broderie anglaise and lovely vintage pink silk for our new lingerie bags.

Basket of yarns (flea market find), I bought them for display. I think they may have been for carpet manufacturing and are too scratchy to use, but the colours were so great I couldn't resist.

I really loved this series of photos from the 70s very grainy and diffused, the colors and the styling are beautiful. It's a great book, if you want to find it try Borders/Thames and Hudson.

Tomorrow I will do my other jobs, promise.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Something in the air

Our fortune telling dolls house is always right, this week has been no exception. It has been a week of surprises and happy arrivals and crazy communications. All our phone calls have been coming at once, so phones are ringing and beeping call waiting and making other odd sounds announcing messages, my mobile keeps dropping out, text messages are going missing, there is definitely something odd in the air. It must be a national phenomenon, there seems to have been a few surprises and a lot of phone calls happening in Canberra too.

The surprises this week included the miraculous flow of water through the tap in our sink, previously we had to prevail upon our lovely neighbours to fill the kettle. Plumbing, much like phone cables and various other utilities are a little mysterious in our building, they do not necessarily follow the laws of logic, however we are blessed with wonderful tradeys who always seem to sort it out. The other big surprise is an unexpected business trip to Buenos Aires and Rio de Janeiro, unbelievable! I've never been and am soooo excited, I am already working out if I will have time for a little haberdashery hunting.

The happy arrivals have been a lovely work experience student for the week, a very talented young woman who has been a great help making patterns for fabric birds, helping me haul trolleys of vintage haberdashery on and off trains and making endless l'uccello swap card business cards (really must get those stickers printed, it's getting a bit boring gluing our details to the back of all those cute swappies

Of course the other happy arrivals have been loads of more gorgeous stock, including a stunning new collection of vintage ribbons, balls of lovely green hemp yarn, reels and large cones of mercerised cotton and linen thread in great shades of green and khaki, beautiful guipure lace, Swiss woven straw millinery trim, gold soutache, vintage buttons, vintage fabrics and fab Italian cotton flowers with guipure stamens.

Quite a week don't you think?

Fabulous French vintage ribbons, beautiful moires, picot, stripes and plaids, some of these beauties are well over 10cm wide and all are in lovely unused vintage condition

Lovely vintage casein buttons on their original cards

How cute is this original cards of carved mother of pearl buttons!

My favourite vintage fabric at the moment

This one is to help warm you up


So many pretty colours

The view from the counter looking through the glass top, how lovely.

you can check out their details through the link at the top of our blog, it's on until Saturday

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Kokeshi Crush

This is my new crush, my last one sold a couple of weeks ago so we were so excited about the new delivery of vintage Kokeshi dolls this week. It is a lovely collection from Japan, they are mostly mid to late 20th century. They are all so sweet but this is the one I just couldn't resist, so she is now my new Kokeshi crush ( I say crush because every delivery there is a new favourite it's hard to just love one!)

She is looking right at home already

This baby in a basket Kokeshi is a little trinket container

One of the bigger girls

Such a happy face, too cute


We did actually manage to get some other work done this week, we have finally collected enough lovely vintage haberdashery for our new Vintage Sewing Collections. The new version includes a measuring tape, line threads, vintage ribbon, vintage buttons, vintage sewing needles, a vintage card of mending thread, vintage wooden cotton reel, hooks and eyes, press snaps and French General fabrics. It has taken quite a while to source such of a variety of items, especially in mint unused condition, so it's lovely to see them put together.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

About a bird

A while ago I noticed a blackbird in our cumquat tree, she was trying to build a nest but the bits of straw etc. kept falling through the fork in the tree. For days she flew back and forth, only to see her efforts fall to the ground. I decided that she needed a little help, I put a little platform of twigs tied together with wool in the fork of the tree. The next day she looked a little confused, checked it out for a while and then got back to work. Over the next couple of weeks she went on to construct the Taj Mahal of nests, and then settled in to lay and hatch her family. Every day I watched her and her partner, he came to take over when she went to eat. Then disaster, I heard her squawking in alarm and lots of rustling in the tree, I raced outside only to see a cat running off down the street. My friend was gone and and there was nothing left but for a lot of feathers and 3 perfect turquoise eggs in her beautiful nest. For the next couple of days I was so upset, made worse by her partner waiting on his own in the garden, apparently they mate for life. Then miraculously she returned, but it was too late for the unhatched eggs. This year she managed to build her nest all by herself and had 2 healthy chicks who have now left,  my friend and her partner are still there every morning and often at night.
 This is one of the reasons I called my business l'uccello, it means bird in Italian.

This is her nest, it was even more perfect when she had to abandon it, it took me a year to take it down. I was deciding whether to call my vintage haberdashery business l'uccello, I was already producing a range of scented home wares for Kleins Perfumery under the name, so I took it as a sign of good luck. Like the bower bird l'uccello collects lovely things to arrange artfully, so it seemed an appropriate name for a vintage haberdashery.

There are lots of lovely birds at l'uccello, here a few of our favourites.

Part of our vintage haberdashery and craft collection

Our Favourite Penelope Durston pillow

My absolute favourite piece of fillet lace

We have a series of these plates by Dierdre Hunt, so well known from the Tuckfields Cards that we love to collect.

Like all good former ballerinas we love swans

More birdy stitchery

These little vintage millinery birds are so cute!

It's the swan thing again, think I must have an Odette complex.

Birds are lovely don't you think?

Saturday, June 5, 2010

My treat

It's been a pretty average week, I won't bore you with the details- let's just say always measure twice, cut once and don't try to do more than 2 things at once, it will always end in tears. All of that however gave me the perfect excuse for a treat or 3.

A huge bunch of the prettiest pink roses from Vasette

A gorgeous new candle from Kleins Perfumery.
Tocca candles are one of my favourites, this one is casablanca lily, the studio smells divine!

A new copy of Selvedge, what more could you want?

Well a few more fabrics for my collection, this is my palate for a new project I'm about to start

If that's not enough to cheer a girl up more fab stock arrived yesterday.

Exquisite silk and velvet flowers, so romantic

Beautiful oak bobbins wound with silk fibres in gorgeous colours, the edges of the bobbins are wrapped in copper

Perfect for the season, vintage wooden buttons

Brilliant buckles in casein, celluloid, diamante and bakelite

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Kind of blue....

When the weather starts to turn chilly I seem to end up thinking about travelling, it reminds me of my winter holiday in Paris. I had to look through my holiday snaps the other day for work, I use them like a visual diary of ideas, colours and inspiration. I love the soft, muted colours and the gentle light in the European winter, when it's misty and cold I couldn't be happier, and if it snows... well that's why I'm kind of blue.

On the fabulous Rue du Faubourg St Honore

I don't generally love green, but this damask wall covering was so stunning, it's at Versailles and there is just room after room furnished with the most beautiful textiles.

Ceiling of the Royal Chapel, Versailles

Petit Trianon at Versailles, Marie Antoinette's private retreat, is painted the most beautiful, delicate shade of blue, combined with the cherry red on the suite, heaven!

Kind of spooky and ironic - there are so many statues of Diana, goddess of hunting

Mesmerising, a rare and perfect combination of art and achitecture, the Musee de l'Orangerie

Metro entrance on a rainy night

I spent my last day in Paris walking, I always get a bit melancholy on the last day of a holiday,
my friends leaving before me made it worse, so I just walked for hours.
It must be time to start saving for the next trip.