Thursday, November 25, 2010

apt shadow

Things are slowly coming together down at the Harvest Workroom.
In between filling xmas orders for our stockists, setting up our print room for our classes, preparing for the MARKit at Federation Square this weekend, organising the Harvest Xmas Market, making a new website for the Harvest Workroom and juggling all of our respective family lives there has been barely a moment to take a breath which is why I had a giggle the other day after our signage was installed and the afternoon sun cast an interesting shadow on the floor.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

quilt by night

Ever since we installed our DRAWN QUILT in the Craft Victoria window during the day at the end of October I have been meaning to head into the city at night time to see how it looks when the sun goes down.
Last night I had the perfect excuse as my sister was down from Sydney staying in a hotel in the city. So after a yummy dinner, catching up and doing the sister thang we wandered past Craft Vic and had a little look see.
Here are some pics....
You've got till the end of November to see the quilt on display for yourself!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

xmas market

We just wanted to give you a bit of a heads up to pop this one on your calendar - Harvest Xmas Market, Saturday 18th December.
To launch the new Harvest Workroom we are throwing a xmas market. It's going to be a great chance to buy your loved ones unique presents and to support local makers. There will be craft, clothing, homewares, textiles and music stalls, as well as fun activities like "print your own wrapping paper" and craft activities for kids.
We have an awesome line up of stall holders. Find out more about them all here.
Plus you'll be able to come and check out what we have been doing all this time as we have been squirrelling away on our new digs.

P.S. By all means copy and paste this poster in as many places in the blogosphere as you can think of as it would be great to get as many people along to share the day with us!
Thanks in advance - the Harvest Girls xo

Thursday, November 11, 2010


We have a busy week of moving heavy equipment and furniture into our new studio to get it ready for our first official class at the Harvest Workroom on November 20 - Design and Print your Own Fabric.
This afternoon we had three helpers (two big and one little) - Pete, Teo and little Ziggy .
Thanks to all three of you - what a team. Every item moved gets our studio one step closer to being ready and we really appreciate all the help we are getting from friends and family to make it happen.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

print and make your own xmas decorations

This wee post is just to bring your attention to our Print and Make your Own Xmas Decorations workshop that we are hosting on December 5.
Students can use our little xmas angels and fairies and a whole range of other stencils we will have ready to use for the printing session in the morning. We will also have a large range of vintage fabric, printed scraps and wool felt plus all sorts of embellishments to make those little ornaments oh so christmassy during the sewing session in the afternoon.
Your tree will be the talk of the town!

Saturday, November 6, 2010

blue caravan

Have you checked out blue caravan?
It is a terrific australian site full to the brim with ethical, fair trade, beautifully designed products.
We have just listed as a seller and we are pretty chuffed to be alongside some pretty fab designers.
For our international friends you can now order our products with an international shipping option through blue caravan - yay!
Go have a peek.
Images above feature clockwise from top left: The Dharma Door, Paper Tree Design, Ola & Olek, Me and Amber.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

shelf / life

Images above courtesy of shelf/life

We have so many fantastic businesses stocking our wares and thought it would be great to share them with you. So a regular little post will be dedicated to introducing them to you. Our first talent is Jess Yee of shelf / life in Surry Hills Sydney. Obviously her shop is divine as you can see from the pics but read on and you will discover some depth to this beauty.

Describe shelf/life in three words? Ethically designed homewares

What is the philosophy behind your store? Shelf / life is a boutique homewares store with a focus on ethical design and production. We aim to support independent local and international designers who make things with integrity as well as companies that promote sustainability. Shelf / life aims to be a friendly neighbourhood store offering great design that also helps to ease the strain on the planet.

When you think of shelf/life what makes you smile? Receiving and opening new orders – it’s like Christmas all year round!

How long has your store been running? We opened a week before Christmas 2009 so we are almost ready to celebrate our first birthday.

You have a handcrafted bent to the products you stock. Can you tell us a little about some of the products, where they come from, who makes them, what techniques are used in the crafting of them? We have a variety of products that are handmade, environmentally friendly or fair trade. The Dharma Door provides us with beautiful natural jute bags and baskets which are handwoven by women in Bangladesh. We have a lot of items from local designers such as Rabbit & the Duck and Mingus Designs who hand sew purses, wallets, bags and pencil cases. Our huge range of greeting cards are either letter-pressed on tree-free paper or hand screen-printed onto PCW recycled paper.

Image above courtesy of Mingus Design

Have you visited many of your stockists? Any interesting studios or stories? I haven’t had a chance to visit any stockists yet but I keep up to date with our local suppliers by reading their blogs every day. A while ago I was lucky enough to have a visit from Shannon, owner of The Dharma Door who introduced me to Kohinoor Yeasmin, the CEO of NGO Tarango, an organisation that helps empower women in Bangladesh. Kohinoor told me about the lives of these women and how producing natural jute baskets and bags helped to give them an income and provide a better life for their families. Her stories were amazing and she was such an inspirational person to meet. Needless to say I am very happy that the Dharma Door bags are one of our most popular items.

Who are your customers and what are they generally looking for? Being situated in Surry Hills, our customers are a varied bunch. We get a lot of locals and people working in the area coming in regularly to buy gifts. Our customers love supporting ethical design and small business and always ask a lot of questions about where and how products in the store are made. We get quite a few people returning to the shop for our rather unique range of greeting cards.

Image above courtesy of shelf /life

What do you most enjoy about owning a small business? Is there any aspect that you don’t enjoy? We are still a young business but I think so far I am just enjoying making decisions that will hopefully guide the business towards success. I really like running the behind-the-scenes stuff like placing orders, sourcing new products and even the administration that comes with a small business. Unfortunately I never have enough time to dedicate to these tasks as I work in the shop 5 days a week as well. If I could wish for anything right now it would be to have just one extra day in the week where I could get a bit more done!

Do you stock many textiles products? Could you tell me a little about them? We stock a variety of cushions, tea towels, placemats, coasters and aprons, mostly made locally in Australia. All of our screenprinted texiles are by Australian designers such as Ink & Spindle, Pippijoe, Thea & Sami and of course Harvest Textiles. With our textiles products in particular we endeavour to stock locally made items that have hemp, organic cotton or natural linen as a basecloth and are printed with non-toxic inks.

Who/where do you look to for inspiration? I think most of my inspiration comes from just wandering around and seeing the sights. Travelling to different countries and cities always gets my brain swirling with ideas, as does reading lots of local and international blogs on a daily basis and swooning over the styling in magazines like Inside Out and Belle. There are so many people in the world doing crazy creative interesting things – it blows my mind sometimes.

Image above courtesy of Eveleigh Farmer's Market

Your favourite place/s in Sydney and why? At the moment I think it is Eveleigh Farmer's Market at Carriageworks. I’m not able to go that often as I work Saturdays in the shop, but I love popping in on a sunny Saturday morning to check out all the fresh produce and flowers. It’s a vibrant market filled with lots of people and their dogs and I’m not really sure why, but it just makes me happy to be in amongst that.

Favourite book/music/film? I think it would be hard to even narrow my favourites down to a top ten so I can’t really answer this one! But I can tell you that I’m currently reading Sellevision by Augusten Burroughs, recently watched The Assassination of Jesse James by Coward Robert Ford for the second time as I love the cinematography, and am listening to the Bronx on my ipod and Kings of Convenience in the store.

Favourite colour? It tends to change a lot but I will always love shades of grey. Colour of the moment is definitely mustard though.

Are you a maker? What do you make? I have dabbled a lot over the years. Every winter I pick up where I left off with the previous season’s scarf or crochet blanket, but I’m not very good. I love re-purposing old discarded furniture and thus end up hoarding other people’s old chairs and cabinets until I can find time to get out the sander and paint stripper.

Any exciting plans for shelf/life that you would like to tell us about? We’re just about to start work on getting our online store up and running. Hopefully we will be selling products online early in 2010!

Thanks Jess for your time. If you are in Sydney and keen to visit Jess and her lovely store you will find her at Shop 1, 50 Reservoir St, Surry Hills 2010.

Monday, November 1, 2010

drawn quilt

Our DRAWN QUILT was installed at Craft Victoria yesterday.
We are really happy with how it turned out and we would love it if you have a look when you are next in Flinders Lane and let us know what you think. It will be showing for the entire month of November.
The project is a reflection of how the three of us work here at Harvest Textiles.
We generally incorporate all of our individual designs to end up with a unified Harvest Textiles design. For this exhibition we have chosen to represent our collective making process by showcasing our drawings stitched together in a paper version of the quilt and then the final quilt design. The notion of the patchwork quilt was our inspiration - the three of us coming together with our scraps and ideas to contribute our own "patch" that then becomes part of the greater picture.
We are going to make the quilt into a DIY kit very soon so stay tuned.
Hop over to our flickr where you can view the making process for this project.