…now, what was I talking about?

Still no real shoemaking or crafty news for this week… it seems moving house takes up every spare moment of our time, and when it’s combined with packing up / disassembling our studio space, nothing much is getting done.

On a more interesting note, I dropped in to visit James at his fine establishment Captains of Industry yesterday and things have really taken off! He has staff working the coffee machine, a backlog of shoes to get made (something like 20 pairs!!) and there was a comfortable little lunch crowd in there. I had a Chorizo sandwich and a mandarin juice in an enamel mug… and it reminded me how damn good simple food can be when I / we get so caught up in Mastercheffing and it’s evil opposite McDonalds. I need to remind myself (and you all now) to have a sandwich instead of a burger once in a while!

Actually, that was my second recent sandwich revelation… the other was when I saw these pictures on Joanna Goddards excellent blog A Cup of Jo :

apple-cheddar-sandwich-melt best-sandwich-cheddar-apple

… and proceeded directly to a supermarket for some smoky ham, an apple and block of vintage cheese = Toasted sandwich dinner! mmmmm.
Putting apple in there is a masterstroke. Try it sometime.

Oh, and once we move (ie next week) we will begin preparations for the DANI AND STEVE STYLE ANNUAL SALAMI MAKING FESTIVAL!

Dani’s family are Italian, and have a recipe for some awesome home-made, air dried, salty cured salami.
We have our own meat grinder now (its carnivore central around here) and a recipe in hand, so we’ll be mixing, smacking, poking and prodding a huge pile of pork in a few weeks time to make our year’s supply of snacks.

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** If anyone reading this is genuinely interested in joining us, send me an email. It’s not a glamorous process, but its fun and you get to drink wine and listen to Dean Martin (so I have just decided). We’ll do the prep on a Saturday and make the sausages on a Sunday. **

Seeing as I’m on a roll here with non-shoemaking information and anecdotes, I’ll take a moment to mention Tame Impala’s new album Innerspeaker (< you can listen to it all here).
It kicks some serious ass, and anyone who likes music with guitars and drums involved should check it out.  We saw their concert last week and it was killer, we also saw them swap instruments and do a gig as their other band Pond, and that was almost better! At the risk of sounding like Molly Meldrum – do yourself a favour and get on the bandwagon now before they blow up and become the next Silverchair / Kings of Leon / big assed band.

Oh, and I’d also like to thank my pal Nick King for putting me on to this mad man…Datsik.
This new breed of dubstep stuff puts a stupid grin on my face and makes me say “fuck yeah” at least once a song.

[note : it kicks in at 30 seconds, the intro is a bit weak]

Who would have thought Transformers sound effects could be a musical instrument?

Short Attention Span Steve here -  signing off to go pack stuff and get more dust borne allergies!

Listening to : Tame Impala of course…

Homewares are back!

9 years ago when I started working with clay- I created a range of vases and vessels.  First in white, then in pastel colours.  I stopped because they took too long (bad mould= need to sand the surface for ages) and even though I made them BEFORE Mud, I didn’t stand a chance since the owner of Mud is mates with Donna Hay.

Anyhoo, enough ‘o that.  Some peeps have been asking me to make stuff again, and now that I work at Craft Victoria, I can see where the gaps are.  I’m also gearing up for a couple of exhibitions- both are related to tea drinking.  At least I drink tea like there’s no tomorrow.

I have to say, I’m totally enjoying making the original shapes by hand.  I’m using the coil technique.  Its where you roll long bits of clay and coil them into a shape, then smooth the sides.  These will be fired then sent to the masters of mould making at Northcote Pottery.  I have made moulds before…but I don’t want to screw it up.

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Finally NEWS!

Hey people,

Dani and I are soon to be Yarravillians, we have just signed on to a new lease on a house in Yarraville with 3 bedroom AND a garage.

Dani will be working from the 3rd bedroom (the first is for sleepin’ and the second is for my collection of awkwardly large bits musical gear and for me to sleep in when I’m in the bad books) … and I will be setting up the garage to be shoe making central. I assume there is some sort of man’s man rule against setting up a garage workshop and then filling it with pictures of high heeled shoes, but if I don’t tell any manly men, no one will know.

It has been about a 3 week turnaround from deciding to look for a new place and getting the keys, so it’s all a bit frantic at the moment around here.

We’re packing up things already, and looking forward to our first stroll to Ballarat St for a coffee and Smoked Cod pie at Hausfrau… mmmm…

On a nerdier note, I have also discovered that there is a little handful of people out there putting their years of practice making Lego and jigsaw puzzles to good use and creating something that was – until recently – completely out of the hands of the home craftsman… RAPID PROTOTYPING!

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http://reprap.org/wiki/Mendel

For those of you who aren’t industrial designers, Rapid Prototyping = 3D printing = a machine that can create ANY form from plastic that you can imagine once you model it in a computer.
Luckily for me I am:

a. A nerd – with nerdy friends
b. Good at Lego and building model cars
c. Employed as and therefor quite good at being a 3D animator / modeller
d. About to move to a house with a garage
e. An Industrial Designer

… so with those powers combined I hope to make one of these bad boys before the end of the year, and then I’ll be able to manufacture my own heels and shoe parts at home in ANY shape, size or crazy assed construction that I want. Ahhh… that makes me happy, as I hate having my designs dictated by what I can find laying on the shelf at Lefflers.

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this is the sort of stuff I’m talking about.. all printed in 3D from plastic… AWESOME.

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Throw some hand-dyed leather into the mix and I’ll be equipped to make 100% custom shoes that wont be the same as everyone else’s.
So things like this will be possible, rather than “oh yeah, like that’s gonna work”…

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Oh, and one last thing… Sydney ladies, I applaud you.
My god, we were there on the weekend and the ratio of jaw-dropping beautiful shoes to ‘crushed to death ballet flats with my foot hanging out the side’ was the opposite to what I’m seeing around Melbourne.
Granted, there are some very snappy dressers in Melbourne, but Sydney was killing it last weekend with the “I’m popping out for coffee in my Chloe’s” stakes.
Lucky for me Dani knows that my roaming eyes are locked groundward, so I don’t get a slap in the head for checking out the ladies when it’s ‘business related’ hahaha.

Anyhoot, back to packing for me….
Listening to : Beck – Bottle O’ Blues (not intentionally, it came on the iPod just now)

Still no news

Sigh, this whole blogging thing is no fun when you pack up the tools and head off to work for a few weeks! No making stuff means no photos, which means no content… boo.

Dani and I have just finished a month of full-time working for ‘the man’ (an attempt to clear up a few getting-a-bit-stupid credit card debts) and now we’re walking head on into a month of moving studio, and most probably our house too.

We’re thinking of combining home and studio space again, so we’ll need to move a little further out to the ‘burbs to get something with more space than we can find in inner city Melbourne at the moment.
So, if you are one of the few souls who checks here for shoe making news and gossip, sorry! Give me a few weeks and I’ll have a studio attached to my house which will DEFINITELY mean at least 2 or 3 shoe making posts a week… I’ll have my computer and my shoe stuff in the same room = blog central.

For now, check out the link below… this is what I’m talking about when I say nice shoes.

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Raphael Young’s new range – Image from Refinery 29.

Listening to : Earth  – The bees made honey in the lion’s skull

Music for listening to in an office when the days drrraaaggg onnnn….