Monday, October 28, 2013

Novelty Brooch Friday - October winner

October's brooch for Novelty Brooch Friday was kindly donated by Babette of Broesj Etsy shop. Her shop is one of my favourites to brows and purchase from so I was delighted when she agreed to offer one of her sweet brooches to give away. Thank you again Babette.

This month we had 288 entries!! It has been so much fun and I know I am always on the lookout at fairs, garage sales and Op shops for unusual brooches to add to my collection like so many of you who have said they love doing the same. What a great bunch of collectors from around the world.

And so the winner for October's Novelty Brooch Friday being 44 out of 288 (selected at random by is:

Congratulations Kate!f  If you could email me at with the address you would like your prize sent to that would be great.

This Friday we will be announcing November's brooch and the vintage seller - she's a swell lady who some of you might already know *wink *wink. See you Friday with your brooches on and your stories of vintage, handmade and dearly loved pieces of joy.

So until then, get brooching x

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

A Touch of Gold

Last Friday my work held its annual dinner and the theme was 'A touch of gold'.  I was going to wear a gold and black 1960's brocade dress but when I saw this 1940's blue lace dress I couldn't resist.

Then it was just a matter of finding some gold accessories to match the dress and theme. I had this great goldtone 1960's charm bracelet that I hadn't worn due to it sounding like jingle bells but love.  I then found a gold headpiece at a high street shop that was perfect and very cheap which then tied into the ring I chose which has a leaf motif.

My current obsession with hoop earrings was an obvious choice and then....false eyelashes (I hadn't worn falsies since my University days) and some gold pigment for eye shadow.  Now I don't wear too much makeup normally so I was freaking out my daughter, or maybe freaking isn't the word, more like amusing her.

Standby for the glamour shot, channeling Phryne Fisher.

I was enjoying my night too much to remember to take any photos so the only one that was taken was on the dance floor (yes I did get up to have a dance, after copious glasses of champagne I am game for most things)

Oh and I did wear my fake fur jacket that I have been dying to wear woohoo! I love it. 

And then home in a taxi, yes this is a taxi not a police car as it might seem - I didn't drink THAT much to become a delinquent, just enough to have a good time and arrive home after midnight! Gasp!

I love dressing up and never get the chance, someone invite me to a fancy party please so I can plan my next outfit x

Monday, October 21, 2013

Tiptoe through the tulips with me

A couple of weeks ago we went to the Tesselaar Tulip Festival for Mr Ed's birthday.  Only a little over an hours drive from Melbourne and you'd be mistaken for thinking this little tulip farm was in Holland.  

Thankfully Melbourne's ever changing weather was fantastic and we sloshed around in the muddy puddles, and all of you who watch a certain children's cartoon know that 'If you jump in muddy puddles, you must wear your boots!' And so we did.

Because I have to dress 'appropriate' I wore my tulip print Swirl dress.

So many colours and shapes and patterns, it was really fascinating and pretty.  And if you have tulips you've got to have a windmill and clogs, of course. Mr Ed trying his best puffing action to get it working - yes Amelie and I were a bit bemused by this as well.

We will certainly return next year to see maybe more tulip varieties, drink some local cider and eat some poffertjes, oh and stop and smell the...tulips.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Dames of Distinction - a Vintage-style Lingerie Boutique & Beauty Salon

It was a few weeks ago now that Jacinta and Margeaux opened their shop Dames of Distinction in the wonderful Art Deco building, Mitchell House in Melbourne.  It really has been a labour of love for them both, sourcing a great venue, furnishing it and stocking it with all sorts of delights ready for their customers.

They really have done a wonderful job turning this space into something special and a delight to visit.

So what is Dames of Distinction exactly? Well it's made up of two spaces: a Vintage-style Lingerie Boutique & Beauty Salon.  

The Lingerie Boutique is run by Jacinta who has had an online lingerie boutique for the past year and a half, she now stocks What Katie Did, Rago and a carefully selected range of vintage lingerie. (she still has an online presence with Betty and Ginger if you are not able to visit her bricks and mortar shop).

The Beauty Salon in the back room has hair styling and makeup services by Margeaux who has been styling and creating wonderful vintage looks for 5 years. Wouldn't you love to sit under that pale pink hairdryer and wile away an afternoon of being made over for a special event or just have your hair set for the week.

Dames of Distinction is a wonderful space, run by two wonderful ladies who have a wealth of knowledge to share with all those who either know what they want or for those who are not quite sure what they need or what would suit them. 

Oh and I just happened to purchase a little something for myself on my last visit, how could I not?

For all their contact details, shop opening times and price list you can visit their website or I've popped a few details down here for quick reference: 

Mitchell House
Level 1, 358 Londsdale Street
Melbourne 3000

Tuesday - Friday 11am-4pm
Saturday 10am - 3pm

telephone: (03) 9640 0555

Dames soiree and discount day is taking place on the 26th October (Saturday) between 12 and 3pm. Maybe see you there for some pimms?

*The wonderful branding of Dames of Distinction was created by the talented Rebecca Hayes

Friday, October 4, 2013

Novelty Brooch Friday - October

I am so excited about this months brooch and seller.  Broesj is an Etsy shop I have looked at many times - oh you know a couple of times a month, and have bought a few brooches myself. Yep all three on my beret!

Babette is the owner of this fantastic shop and was so lovely in agreeing to offer one of her brooches as this months giveaway. Babette has answered 5 questions that, I think, give a little insight into her interest in brooches, the development of her shop and her favourite makers...and she loves Lea Stein's brooches just like I do and I know a lot of you do as well.

How did you come up with the name of your shop 'Broesj'? 

I'm Dutch. In the Netherlands we call a brooch 'broche', which is pronounced 'brosj'. While I was fantasizing about starting my own Etsy shop I came up with the name 'broesj'.
It has something from 'broche' in it and sounds a bit like 'babushka' (the mistaken name for the Russian dolls (they are called Matryoshka pop. A babushka is a headscarf). It also connects a bit to my name, which is Babette. The best thing about the name is that people will call brooches a broesj. So they ask me 'do you have any broesjes?' I love that!

When did your interest in brooches begin? 

My interest in brooches began at an early age. I accompanied my mum to flea markets. While she was looking for little treasuries I found out that it was a great place to search for unique fashion items ánd accessories. Searching for earrings I also came across brooches. Quickly my collection started to grow.

When did you turn your interest into your shop Broesj on Etsy?

In the Netherlands on Queens Day it's a tradition to visit flea markets. They are being held in every city and start very early. Every year me and my mom will go on the hunt for vintage treasures.
On one of these days we came across a mega large bucket filled with brooches. Since I'm very indecisive I was hovering around the bucket a while. The salesman asked if I would like to buy the whole lot. And I did.
When it was getting a bit slower in my job as an independent graphic designer I thought about my brooches again. I started designing a card. And then I thought: why not try to sell some of those on Etsy? Since I had some doubles I could try and say goodbye to some of them. That was in November 2011 and the start of my Etsy shop.

Do you have a favorite maker of jewellery/brooches?

One of my favorite brooch-makers is Lea Stein. She designs some of the craziest modern looking brooches with a magnificent material. The brooches are also quite large and recognizable.

What do you think it is about brooches that people love?

With brooches people can carry out a message without saying something. Since there are so many brooches in all kinds of forms and shapes, every day they can choose what they want to say or find a brooches that accompanies their mood. Look at Madeleine Allbright for example. Through her brooches she carried out a very strong message in politics.

So this ladies and gentlemen (I'm sure we have a few out there) is the novelty brooch you could win this month from Broesj - gaaaahhhh isn't it so cute!

So for your chance to win this cute brooch just post a picture of yourself on Instagram with your favourite brooch, entries can be submitted on any Friday from now up to  and including Friday 25th October with the hash tag #noveltybroochfriday and we will announce the winner (randomly chosen) on Monday 28th October. Open to everyone, you can enter as many times as you like, either new or vintage brooches.

Each month Erin and I will take it in turns to showcase those sellers of vintage brooches and designers we admire and love to wear ourselves.

*If you are a designer or sell vintage brooches (worldwide) and wish to donate a brooch for an upcoming month and have your shop showcased, please contact me at

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Easy-peasy snacky recipe

A little while ago on Instagram I posted a picture of Vegemite and cheese scrolls and I had a few people ask for the recipe. I make them for a quick snack or if Amelie has a playdate, they are good to whip up and she loves them.

So today I finally got around to taking some step-by-step photos - it really is the easiest to make.

Step 1: Take a sheet of puff pastry out of the freezer and defrost for a couple of minutes.

Step 2: Grate some cheddar cheese while you are waiting - a handful (how very Jamie Oliver of me)

Step 3: Now Vegemite isn't to everyone's taste so you could use Marmite but you need something with a bit of tang,  and we only had Vegemite in the cupboard so that is what I used.

Step 4: Spread a thin layer of Vegemite over the defrosted puff pastry and scatter the grated cheese over the top.

Step 5: Roll the pastry like a Swiss roll or sushi roll, trying to keep it quite tight.

Step 6: Once rolled cut (with the end of the pastry on the bottom to seal when cutting).  Cut into about 2cm sections.

Step 7: Place on a greased tray (I use canola spray) on their side and brush with some beaten egg to glaze and pop in a moderate oven for about 20 minutes (times might vary as my oven is rubbish but take them out when they are lightly golden).

Step 8: They come out like this, all puffed up but I like to flip them over...

Step 9: 'Cause I think they look prettier, just let them cool and eat.

If you do make them let me know how you go and remember, they are a sometimes food (puff pastry has quite a bit of fat in it) ^U^

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Novelty Brooch Friday - September winner

Well it's been a long time since I have posted on my blog, just been busy, busy, busy with life.

As some of you may know our Novelty Brooch Friday giveaway for September fell through however we had a lovely offer from Rebecca of @squirreljunkie and The Plaid Thermos who has donated one of these cute, vintage, wooden skunk brooches!! Just the sort of brooch I love!

(That's the only down side of being one of the organizers of #Noveltybroochfriday I can't win one)

I have been following Rebecca on Instagram for a while, she has the best collection of Bakelite, patterned prints and wears it all so well as well as being a lovely lass.  If you don't already follow her then pop on over and do so.

So because of her generous donation we have chosen a winner from 272 entries for September.  Randomly chosen with one of those automated generated apps......

Leonora Le Noire with a triple brooch entry. Please email me: and Rebecca will forward you your cute skunk brooch.

And so with October already upon us we will announce the new brooch to give away on Friday - it's a fantastic Etsy shop I have purchased a few favorites from! Sooooo exciting eeeekkk!

So until then get brooching!!