Monday, 24 October 2011

Gifts from Osaka

My husband has just returned from a short business trip to Osaka. He has been buzzing with interesting observations about the city and culture. One novelty that he brought back was this water bottle - read the label below! It is actually bottled TAP water from the city Water Board.

He also brought a selection of gifts - lacquered rice bowls, chopsticks, the most fancy package of teabags ever seen (from a department store) and a furoshiki (wrapping cloth) from the City of Osaka. His major purchase was a new camera but that was from Hong Kong.

Alas he had no luck finding a shibori item, despite many time consuming enquiries I fear.

He did come back keen to visit Japan again ... which definitely suits me fine!

Friday, 14 October 2011

Workshop at Vickery Retreat

We have just completed another successful Lisa Walton workshop at Vickery Quilt and Craft Retreat. This one was a 2-day Luscious Landscapes class where the participants used a landscape photo for inspiration and built up a collage of fabric scraps in various textures on a piece of backing fabric.

They then sandwiched this with wadding and backing covered it with a sheet of soluble film and machine stitched all over. When the film was washed out and the quilt dried it could be further stitched, beaded and bound. Lisa also taught hand dyeing of threads and small pieces of fabric which could be used in the landscapes or other projects. The ladies were enthusiastic and productive (top marks to Sarah) and Lisa again proved to be a very encouraging and attentive tutor.

We will be holding another of Lisa's workshops next year (19-20 November, 2012) - the very popular "Textured Treasures".

Monday, 10 October 2011

Australian Orienteering Carnival

My 16 year old son and I have just returned form the Australian Orienteering Carnival. He was representing the Victorian Schools team, me I was just keen. It is a good sport for all ages as anyone can compete in the "nationals" - in their own age class and they even have shorter distance classes for those who are less inclined to run and prefer to walk or jog/walk (me). You still get all the fun of challenging navigation and experiencing different terrain all round the country! It was combined with the Oceania Carnival so we had a team of new Zealanders along too (great at running hills ....).

We visited Wangaratta, Rowdy Flat near Yackandandah, Warby Ranges, Murraguldrie State Forest near Wagga Wagga, and "Gaerloch" a sheep grazing property near Badja State Forest east of Cooma.

We both made a few errors here and there but had some very satisfying results as well. 5th in the W45 AS Australian long distance event was my best and I also was happy with 10th in the Sprint and something like 4th female in the 4.7 km event that was the same as the schools junior boys event mid-week.

After so many years of drought the countryside was picture perfect! The drive across the Snowy Mtns Hwy to Cooma was interesting with wildlife such as kangaroos, emus and brumbies seen and I stopped at several lookouts and to visit the Yarrangobilly Caves and  Thermal Pool.

The town of Talbingo reflected in Blowering Dam.