Tuesday, 26 March 2013

making @ koskela

Yep, I'm a maker. There is nothing like the feeling of crafting a creation out of your own two hands, even if it's just a simple card for a loved one. When I was younger, I can remember making personalised singlets and undies for girlfriends, colourful artworks for my bedroom and a thousand and one beaded necklaces. For our engagement party last year, I insisted on DIY lanterns made from recycled tin cans, with thousands of tiny holes hammered into them in different patterns. The more time-consuming projects like granny blankets are even more rewarding, and I love  the process of making 'a little bit each day'. 

For something a bit different (and because we heart Koskela), my girlfriend Fiona and I attended a class at the Koskela Workshop on the weekend, where we learnt a new creative skill. And with  recycled plastic bags and wool sprawled out in front of us, we started to make a basket.  

The super talented artist Michele Morcos so generously took us through her basket weaving process, with friendliness, clear instructions, repeated demonstrations, honest advice and lots of genuine encouragement. Her beautiful baskets sat as pieces of art in front of us, with such intricate detail only achieved through  hours and hours (and weeks and weeks) of dedicated weaving. 

Sitting, making and chatting among a mixture of ladies of all ages was so lovely on this Saturday morning, especially in the colourful and inspiring surrounds of the Koskela Workshop.

A trip to Koskela isn't complete without an excited wander around  the warehouse, oohing and ahhing at the gorgeous furniture, artworks, books, homewares and the colourful collection of other delightful bits and pieces. 

While we didn't join the queue for lunch at Kitchen By Mike, I have been lucky enough to try those canteen-style plates of deliciousness before and highly recommend indulging in the whole Koskela experience - it's a treat! 

We finished off our morning appropriately admiring the HUGE woven light pendants and baskets made by the Tjanpi Desert Weavers.

I'm now in the process of making my first ever woven basket, 'a little bit each day'. It's an exciting project, and I'm in no rush to finish. I love the 'no knots' rule and the idea of weaving in found objects to create a story. I started with a recycled Lebanese bread bag, and then moved onto raffia. I'm keen to dig through my wardrobe for a once-loved pretty pattern, and weave that in too. 

Friday, 22 March 2013

la lupita

Date nights are important. So is spontaneity. And Mexican food.

After reading this review in the SMH this week, I decided to surprise Chris with an unexpected date night. No details were revealed except for a text "taking you out tonight - be ready at 6.30pm." 

I had him stumped and it drove him nuts, but it was so worth it. As frustrated as he was, I could tell that he appreciated my spontaneity. It was fun - especially for a Tuesday night. Having moved to Marrickville recently, the look on his face when I started to drive in the direction of Canterbury, a place we hadn't really discovered yet, was priceless. When we got to 325 Canterbury Road, I pointed to the shop front with black windows and no signage and told him we were going there. 

When we walked through the door, the smell of charcoaled meats instantly made us smile, and from that point on, La Lupita blew us away. It felt like we had stepped into another world, and by the end of the night we didn't want to leave! A huge light box with a beautiful black and white photograph set the atmosphere perfectly, as did the industrial light fittings swept across the roof. There were candles in huge glass jars, long industrial tables, a street cart serving drinks and an open kitchen inviting all to see. 

The staff were extremely friendly and helpful in explaining the process of ordering (which is like yum cha - you want, they stamp) It was also great to meet the owner, and let him know how much we loved it.

The food - indescribably good. The best. The habanero chili sauce on our tacos ($6 each) was perfectly complimented by the sweet cinnamony sangria ($6 a glass). The charcoaled hot wings ($10) were insane. 

We had very happy bellies and we're craving more already. We'll be back and we're bringing our friends.

As much of a surprise as it was for Chris, I was just as excited and amazed to had discovered this little treasure. We had a fantastic date night in a truly awesome venue, and hopefully many  more to come! 

Tuesday, 12 March 2013

this girl

Miss Evie Joan 

Oh how you've grown! 

For the past six weeks

You've melted our hearts with those cheeks X

Thursday, 7 March 2013

tea + wool

It's only mid March, but I'm so excited to snuggle up in the new apartment, start a new crochet project and sip endless cups of tea!

New colours to choose, new flavours to discover.


There's also the chunky scarves, warm long socks, ugg boots, beanies & flannelette pj's to look forward to. 

A million soup recipes to be cooked. 

Endless warm cuddles to be shared. 

Winter adventures to be had.  

Friday, 1 March 2013

pho friday

It's raining, there's a new Autumn chill in the air and my belly is now perfectly content with the warm, flavour-bursting goodness that is pho! 

Pho Friday is back! 
The best way to end the working week.  

I'll definitely be living off this deliciousness through the coming cooler months, with some of the best pho in Sydney in Marrickville.