TwentyEleven – weeks One and Two

Hey Hey!


my sister rocking a christmas gift beach bag like a true champion.

The year is off to a flying start, with Dani and I printing out some MASSIVE calendars for each of our studio/rooms so that we can get to work on some serious time management and business planning. Being the stationary nerd that she is, Dani even bought us a new set of coloured Sharpies so that we can colour code our plans and lists. Bam. That’s how you get things done!

In an effort to not have another “as long as I do something shoe related each week it counts as shoemaking” year I have asked Dani to set me deadlines and enforce them with some sort of no internet or no drums/guitars punishment for slacking off. Goal #1 is to have a pair or more of shoes, that are actually / reminiscent of what I intend to sell, ready for a big birthday BBQ we have planned at the end of the month. So with 3 weeks to go I have lots to do! Designs, refinement, material choices… eeeek… then i have to make the damn things!

So, it’s late now and tonight isn’t going to yield much in the way of design genius, which means I may as well do this update and keep you all in the loop.

Weeks one and two of 2011 have so far produced the following : A new desk for shoe designing, a new ‘mood board’ for my inspiration, a test fitting of Lauren’s long-overdue raffle winning shoes and plenty of business lists and plans. I also managed to score some vintage shoe making tools from a local 2nd hand shop… rasps, edge shapers etc. I’ll post some photos next week.

| New Desk |

Q. How do you know if you have mild O.C.D?
A. You BUILD a desk  just to draw on, then photograph it in the making, then decorate it, then photograph it again, then post about it on your blog.

Seems my clippings gathering has lead me towards :
black/grey + red/yellow/orange + cyan/purple/turquoise + redhead girls + short haired girls +  more yellow + high, high, high heels.

So, that will be the style direction of my first range, and it will (at the moment) be aimed towards the archetypal Melbourne ShopGirl… ie. must be wearable for a few hours whilst working (with some exceptions for a few 100mm heeled showpiece shoes), must be able to be worn in Melbourne when it may rain at any moment, must work with black clothes, must kick major ass.

I’ll put up some sketches next week when i’m in the pattern making stages….

| Lauren’s Shoes|

I also have managed to knock up a test-fitting shoe for these, and have just found out it fits! yay! measurements = success.


test fit + pattern adjustments


…lasted, but with a bit of an error in my pattern – too loose around the throat.
Tightened it up with a cool little moccasin stitch, and will have to adjust the final pattern.


I put a few heels under it to see how much it changes the look (quite a lot apparently) and am still a little undecided on which one i’ll go for. I like the fat heel (bottom left) but it’s a bit too Louis Vuitton, and may not be right for Lauren. I’ll see.
..

This is what I have been thinking… in Patent Black, Mary Jane strap, silver heel, 10mm platform. Not sure about colour/details yet, but they’ll come to me when i’m making it.

| 3D printer |

… not too much on the go here. I am missing a part, and the next stage = electronics which is kinda blowing my mind…. so maybe more next week?

Lastly, we got a new camera for ourselves for Christmas – an Olympus EP-2 – which is beautiful to look at, heavy, stylish and takes much better photos than our old clunker. So look out for some nicer photos springing up this year, once we learn how to auto-focus, and deal with the no-inbuilt-flash situation.

Rock on kids, until next time……

Listening to :  Luomo [shout out to Tom + Jess]

happy new yeeee-ar.

This year is our year kids, plans are in place and wheels are in motion to get this show off the ground, a store opened and some long-planned and well earned success (and money) coming our way for the first time in years.

Keep watching this space as we plan to step things up ten-fold and really make the most of 2011…

See you in our shop later this year for a beer a high five and hopefully a purchase of the latest and greatest in shoes, jewels and fashion that Melbourne town has to offer.

Thanks for tuning in, we appreciate your support and comments (i’m looking at you Claire) and we’re looking forward to a lot more pics, a lot more rambling on and whole lot more local shout-outs this year.

Steve + Dani


no reason for this photo other than the fact that i’m a little obsessed with it and finally get what the big deal is with all the Kate Moss worship. She is beguiling and intriguing, and just, well, nice to look at. yeah?

… and how good are yellow dresses? 10 out of 1o I say…

As a new years gift to y’all, here’s my most clicked links in my bookmarks folder.
Check ’em, daily.

http://shoelust.tumblr.com

http://rawshoes.wordpress.com

Let’s get this year under way!

listening to : Tame Impala – Expectation (on rage right now, in all of its 360 camera view glory)

High Tea Exhibition

hi lovely readers…dani here. i’ve been busy getting some work together for an exhibition that just opened.

although i started the work ages ago, it was a long process of trial and error- so i was unsure if it would all come together.

IT DID!  major major sigh of relief.

i tried a new technique (for me) of applying decal images to porcelain. it was WAY easier than i anticipated…cut around image, soak it and the piece in warm water, separate image from backing, slide in place, let dry and fire in kiln!  AND you can custom print, so i think decals may feature in my jewellery and other work in the future.
now that i know this, i am surprised how much ceramic jewellery is out there with the same 5 blue japanese prints!  ah well, they are so missing out.  oh, and i almost forgot to mention…for this work, i wanted to match the rose print from my nan’s tea cup.  AMAZINGLY, we found the print and it looks almost identical (colour is a little off but you can’t really tell).

so, when asked to respond to the concept of taking tea- i was a bit worried.  i don’t ‘take tea’ EVER.  i drink tea like its going out of fashion, but the ritual of it is no longer around.  does anyone formally sit down and drink tea with cakes and napkins?

i started to think about madam brussels and the novelty of being proper and formal…because its SO far removed from how we live today.  in the end i decided to create fun and whimsical objects to emphasise that when we do these rituals now, its like we are kids again dressing up and playing pretend.

anyway, here’s the finished work and some ‘in the making’ shots. i guess now i’m an artist too! yay!

high tea on till feb 6 2011 at bundoora homestead

a little help…

coop’s never too far away when i need an extra hand….

model…

…and photographer’s assistant.

Special Delivery! (or, How to make a robot in 2,347 easy steps)

Hey kids, my Rapid-Prototyping-robot-printer-of-plastic-parts arrived today!!!!

So far I have :

1. Received the package.

2. Rearranged our spare room to fit in a new desk.

3. Opened and (in true OCD style) photographed the contents of the package.

4. Stared at the overwhelming amount of wood, electronics and indescribable parts that were in the package.

5. Had a break.

6. Looked online, then back at the parts, then looked online, then back at the parts.

7. Got a headache. Had a drink of water.

8. Uploaded Photos to my computer.

9. Started a blog post about it…

… which leads me to here. I am currently making confused/ squinty eyed faces at the desk full of parts, as if that will somehow make it allllll make sense.  No luck so far.

So, bear with me over the next few weeks as I attempt to apply my limited knowledge of engineering, electronics, hardware and software assembly to a thing that I have never seen complete with my own eyes. It should be fun!

Below are some pics of what I unwrapped today, so you too can get an idea of how daunting this is.


Listening to : nothing today, sometimes silence is golden.

Monthly Musings

Hey kids, seeing as my RepRapper hasn’t arrived yet (long story, but it IS coming… at least I hope it is) I don’t have too much to show off at the moment… but I do have some news, I have given notice at my computer nerd job and in two more weeks I’ll be starting a new casual/freelance job the whole shoe making machine will rattle in to gear again! Fuck yeah.

I guess the best I can offer is some social news, some photos of things and some images from my ever-increasing folder of inspiration shoe images, so grab a cold drink and sit down for a read.

First up, we hosted a second-time-around grand final bbq (for those of you not from Australia, our equivalent of the Superbowl was a draw, so they… wait for it… played it again the following week??? who understands these sport people?) and it was a glorious sunny day. We got to fire up the bbq and officially welcome the onset of sunny weather!


suburban backyard BBQ crew…

Prize winner #1 Lauren was at the party, so I managed to measure her (very well manicured) feet and suss out a little on what sort of shoes she’d like.
Lucky for her I have a high-heeled last in her size, so the current plan is to make a nice pair of Mary Janes, something like this:

.. I’ll work out the colour/details/finish etc once I’m back at the bench, but at the moment I’m liking the metallic heel + dark upper.

We also managed to plant our vegie garden, so here are some shots of it… this is the biggest amount of land we’ve had to utilise so far, but decided against planting 10 of everything as we usually find we end up with lots of undernourished vegies, this time we’re gunning for quality over quantity.

In true Yarraville (aka stuff white people like ) style, we have planted ‘heirloom’ tomatoes and a whole lot of basil for summer salads in alllll the colours of the rainbow (well, red and green and yellow). Dani has a bunch of cucumber plants in there now too with plans to make pickles New York / Katz Deli style. Yum.

For those of you who are interested and non-vegetarians, here’s how our home made salami turned out.

They’re too small, my fault for buying the wrong sausage skins, but they taste AWESOME, sweet, a little bit salty, a little bit spicy…. mmmmmm
You will also notice our attempt at Pancetta on the board. It kind of worked, but the recipe I was following suggested a week in salt… the Italian family members suggest a DAY, so of course it is so salty it makes your face hurt when you eat it. We’ll be saving that one for cooking…..

We bid farewell to Paulius last week, and he should by now be a week or so in to his big trip.
I am planning on getting in touch with him today to offer to update his blog for him as I think Internet Cafe’s are going to be a bit thin on the ground as he crossed the NULLABOR… my goodness.

In music news, I went to see the Boredoms play their Boredrum 10 at the Forum last week……. 10 drummers on stage letting rip = a spectacle, astounding, loud…and then very tiring. I stuck it out, but my poor ears were yearning for some riffs! We also went to see Dead Meadow last night and unfortunately had to leave after 3 songs. The mixer was possibly listening to something else, as what I was hearing SUCKED BALLS and was so dissapointing we left. They may have fixed it later on, but my mojo was ruined.


The Boredoms + an army of drummers = a glorious headache.

So, thats the social update, now on to some shoooooes.

These aren’t in any particular order, just a dump of what I think kicks ass at the moment, which should give you a decent idea of the direction I’m hoping to take my first range / first designs :


some Versace madness from earlier this year…


Balenciaga, I dig these, but I’m thinking the tech-y stacked up platform look will date pretty quickly…


I reeeeeally love strong coloured suede, so expect some in my range for sure.


I’m a fan of the small-amount-of-colour idea too… especially with neutrals and perforations.
These ones are from “Ports 1916”


These are siiiiick. I forget who they’re made by… sorry!

… I think these are by, like, Ruthie Davis or someone?


Chanel, and Cerruti… I’m a fan of the warm yellow-y red cowgirl / Deadwood colour palette(s).


This picture makes me want to throw in some matching socks with each pair of my shoes….

LEFT : I’m still hoping to design something ‘fierce’ like these for my sister in the next month or so.

RIGHT : How awesome is that rubbed back yellow toe?? The rest of them I could take or leave, but that detail is GOLD.


Big fat Alexander Wang boots. I’m not a big boot fan, but the suede + raw leather here is niiiice.

… and next up is my pick for Steve’s-favourite-shoes-of-the-year-so-far… Dior Fall 2010!

I just looked online and they come in white / beige too? Faaark, they are killer.

…and to finish, Mr Galliano himself.
That man knows no boundaries when it comes to pirate-y fancy-man runway posing, but dammit he designs some nice stuff.

I have a lot of respect for someone who can rock that man/lady look with such conviction!

So that’s it.. it’s late… I need sleep. Adios.

Listening to : Black Sabbath – Black Sabbath

An excuse to day trip

Sunday Steve and I went to get some country air in our fav town- Daylesford.  Fellow ceramicist Bridget Bodenham was having an open studio, and since I have not met her before, thought this would be a good time to introduce myself…and pick hers brains about living and working in the Hepburn area.

So, she was lovely!  And lives in a bunch of cleverly arranged shipping containers!  It was truly awesome.  She welcomed us into her studio container where the pot belly fire was cracking (it was cold in Melbourne, but you need to prepare for a few degrees less-when will i ever learn), and we were indeed inspired.

Bridget is clearly happy making her home wares and jewellery as the walls were lined with delicious looking goodies.  We exchanged a few tips (she even lent me a book!) and I left feeling inspired and a little more confident in our idea of moving there.  I was also relieved to find out that two ceramicists that make jewellery can get along.  Sharing is hard for me- and that comes down to my insecurities…is there enough room/ideas to explore?  Although our work may cross over in areas, we both have our schtick.  Bridget does amazing things with form and texture and experiments with many clay bodies.  I’m a little more focused on the form and colour and exclusively (not sure why) use Southern Ice porcelain.

Anyway, Bridget is opening her studio again this weekend 23rd and 24th of October and stuff is for sale!

90 Ajax Rd Hepburn Springs 0434 030 931

RepRappin’

Aloha!
Finally, some real news, but still no pictures from the ol’ workbench. Those will have to wait until the weekend.

First up, the Fundraiser party was nuts, the bar was packed all night long and we managed to raise over $700 that evening in raffle tickets alone! Dani deserves a special thankyou for being a trooper and hassling pretty much everyone there for their spare change.
The raffle was drawn on the night and the ever lovely Lauren Murphy was the winner of a yet-to-be-made pair of shoes from me, and Dani’s jewels went to Martha… thanks to you both for chipping in!

< <   FREE SHOES! FREE SHOES!! WOO.

I will do a thorough job documenting Lauren’s shoes, so keep an eye out for that in the next month.

On a nerdier note I have just purchased my RepRap rapid prototyping ‘robot’ – or 3D printer for those who like less wordy descriptions – and it is currently being packed and shipping in a million little pieces to me from the USA.


This is what I (hope) I’ll end up with. Laser Cut wood = the budget starting point, and I will then be able to print a full set of parts in colourful and hardwearing plastic to rebuild him into version 2.0.


…with a quick coat of some white paint I assume it will look something like this?

I will also take lots of photos of the build process for anyone out there who is interested… and hopefully in a month or so I will be able to start printing out parts to make more machines! Self replicating! Genius!

I’ve been trawling around the internet for shoe+3D+prototyping sort of searches and have found a few pics to show (in lieu of some real photos of my own)


… 3D surface modelling + rapid prototype output = full plastic 2 part shoes.
These ones are by Sjors Bergmans.


… these ones are also fully rapid prototyped, showing the range of (ugly?) styles people have come up with so far.

… and finally these rockers by Pauline VanDongen are showing some style + nerdiness, as I hope to achieve.

Note that i’m not planning on making complete shoes, but there isnt much internet chatter about rapid prototyped heels and buckles as yet!

Anyhoot, that’s enough for now, thanks for coming back if you dropped off the reader list after the last month of silence, and if this is your first time reading my rambling, welcome! We like new people.

Listening to :  Om – Meditation is the Practice of Death
Perfect sitting-up-late-at-night-making-robots music…

Putting the FUN in Fundraising…

Hey hey!
Dani and I have decided to pitch in and help a good friend of ours raise some money for the Bicycles for Humanity project by donating some goods to his fundraising raffle / party night!

He (has possibly lost his mind and) is currently in training to ride a SINGLE SPEED BIKE from PERTH to MELBOURNE.. with our other pal Luke planning to meet him half way and keep him company for the rest of the trip. For those of you not good with geography, the trek is 4500km and will take SIX WEEKS non stop. Bananas.


man and machine, getting aquainted before the long haul.

You read it here first, you could WIN the first pair EVER of not-just-for-my-family-members-now Steven Phillips shoes by buying a raffle ticket for $2.00! Whammo!
Dani has also coughed up a top of the line gold necklace set for the raffle, and for those you who aren’t jewels or shoe crazy, there is a maaaassssive meat tray on offer. Heaven.

So, here’s the flyer, and the web address is

http://onespeedryder.wordpress.com/

Check it out, donate, and then come to the party for a helluva good time.

The raffle tickets are being printed as you read this, so you want in on the raffle but can’t get to us in person, or they’re not up on the website yet (or you cant track Paulius down) the tickets are being  sold in books of 10,  for $20.
Just email Dani and I here and we’ll get you as many as you want – you can even pay via credit card, just ask nicely.

Go for it! We would love for the prize(s) to go to someone who reads this blog, so get donating and i’ll get my measuring tape warmed up.

Steve + Dani

Listening to : Bicycle Race – Queen

It starts…

Just a heads up, I’ve registered a domain name, so this whole ‘me as a shoemaker’ thing is starting to gain momentum.
This here blog will be the #1 place to go for in-the-making information, and eventually it will act as an online storefront for our wares, but it seemed better to lock down a proper web address for when the calls start flooding in from Vogue and Harpers…


Screen grab and a link, but the link just shows you the screen grabbed website, you know what I mean?

We’ll be back in a few days with some more photos and updates (and a special showcase of  our now cured and EDIBLE salami!)