Inspired: Angie Lewin

One whole year ago I thought I should blog about this amazing lady. Finally I am getting around to it! Angie Lewin, a British Printmaker/Artist business woman extraordinaire . I brought her book with my birthday money when wandering around my favorite bookshop “Minerva” in Wellington last year. I saw the cover and was drawn in. LOVE her work, I get it… It makes me want to make stuff.Angie Lewin book
Angie Lewin book
Angie Lewin book

To be honest I only recognized her work, I didn’t actually know who she was. But now I do! I have read the book cover to cover and spent much longer looking at all the pictures. It never stays on the bookshelf long before I take it down to flick through and feel inspired to draw, paint, design.

Here are some piccies of some things I have made pretty much directly inspired by her work.

A wardrobe door mural for Quinn’s room.
Quinn's wardobe

A baby mobile I drew then traced in illustrator – this has been printed and glued together several times as gifts for people having babies. Something fun for baby (the black and white picture) and the print is a bit more grown up for the big kids suddenly surrounding themselves with loads of baby stuff. Seems to go down pretty well with both!
baby mobile

Poor Quinn got the slightly more messy prototype (as will probably be my kids lot in life) I found the best one was one with proper thin nylon rope from a hardware store and small pom poms as the ‘beads’ great way to use up yarn, much quicker than these crocheted beads and the nylon thin rope looks much tidier. But you get the idea!

There are quite a few random sketches and things aswell, none really that interesting! But the point is I am getting my arty self moving.

You don’t need to book to be suitably inspired – just go to her website. Or buy all sorts by her and similar artists through this online shop.

Baby Quinn

Baby Quinn Hills 6

Its been a very long time since I have had anything to say here. I guess with baby making and working hard to get all the important stuff done before the arrival of the little guy I might have had the time but certainly not the brain power! Infact I am posting now to see if I can kick back some brain power. Because I am currently OBSESSED with my wee guy. I felt it happen too. I still had my facilities even after he was born, but in the last three weeks all I can now think about is Quinn Quinn Quinn. Talk about some funky amazing hormones to make sure this guy thrives. When he is napping elsewhere but on me in the Moby wrap (where he is snoring right now) I just collapse on the sofa and watch TV! This is my attempt to kick start myself back into brain use, through blogging. I can perhaps fill you in on all the things I have been making in the last few months… which is MANY, mostly of the baby persuasion! First though here are some piccies of the coolest thing I have ever made. EVER (thats the baby). After this I will try to refrain from too many baby photos…

Some knitwear I made a wee while ago:
Baby Quinn Hills 13

Bright eyes:
Baby Quinn Hills 5

Auntie Cara:
Baby Quinn Hills 2

Sporting a muma made bib
Baby Quinn Hills 17

Sweet baby face
Baby Quinn Hills 15


raglan 1
A stormy weather weekend had me wanting to go to the sea. So off we went to Raglan. The beach was blustery and quick showers threw themselves at us as we battled our way for a walk. I tried to take photos of the windblown sand making a sort of miniature dust storms around our feet. Turning back we forced our way into the wind getting peirced by rain that felt like pins the wind was so strong… as you can probably guess I found it exhilarating, all sorts of cheesy poetry and literature coming into my mind as I romanticised being really cold and wet. Needless to say I put the heaters on full when we got into the car and was glad we had a car to go to. Not sure I would of been as romantic if i had a pack on my back and warmth was hours away…
raglan 3
raglan 4
raglan 5

We then headed to a crowded cafe for lunch. Debating on scones or ordering off the menu – I ordered off the menu, with all the fresh sea air I was a bit too hungry for just a scone! Kylie follwed suit or he would get jealous… and we were SO happy we did. The food was so yummy! Kylie agreed – its not often we ware impressed with food at restaurants either – once you spend time cooking at home and trying to make things tasty, restaurant food often becomes a bit bland. Not this stuff, we speculated on ingredients and left feeling inspired to cook like that ourselves! The cafe is called “The Shack” if your in the area check it out.
thefalls 1
After we filled our bellies we headed home, on impulse we decided on taking the detour to see the “Bridal Veil Falls”. We descended the many stairs and climbed back up… amused at my lack of fitness! They were beautiful, and tall!  The Waikato RAINS so much I don’t head out for as many little runs like I do in Christchurch. I still dream about earthquakes, and don’t miss the shaking at all, but I miss Christchurch. Its still an awesome place to live. Glad to be heading home soon!
thefalls 2
thefalls 3
thefalls 4

Our journey up north

Before the break of dawn at what seems like yesterday, but is actually at least two weeks ago, Kylie, myself and cats set off to spend three months in Cambridge. Needing to catch a ferry we drove pretty much without stopping until we reached Picton.

the journey 6

Cats had a good portion of our space with a large dog cage. Distressed as I was at having to put them through this – we knew they would cope. Malieka looked the most perplexed about it all, Mischief just slept.

the journey 5

I put on some sea bands and had my knitting with me on the Ferry – almost no point for I quickly fell asleep. Much to my relief because I get quite ill at times. Sea legs I do not have.

Driving up the landscape changed and although I tried to drive, in order to give relief to Kylie, I was far to sleepy to do so safely. So gave up that idea fairly quickly (poor Kylie!) On one of our petrol stops I thought at how much this station looked like it was out of a 70’s american movie. Loved it, mid-century modern-‘esque’.

the journey 4

We arrive in cambridge just before bed-time, quickly chose the mattress (five bedroom house!) and fell asleep. The next day we unpacked and explored the town. Pretty! Good coffee at the coffee shop above the gift shop in the big pink old church.

The next day I dropped Kylie off at his new work:
the journey 3
and went for a walk and took these shots of the lake and church. I like wooden church’s now! For reasons obvious to us that live in Christchurch!
the journey 2
the journey 1

A walk around the city

We went for our first walk around the cordons about a month ago, I know late posting! Here are some pictures I took. I did not break down or get all emotional or anything, in fact amongst the broken bits there is still our beautiful autumnal city, the streets are the same, trees were loosing their leaves and the seasons continue. That alone is a huge comfort. Band aids have been applied to the favorite buildings that are no doubt among the ones people would like to save. Empty lots are not empty gapping holes but an opportunity to put in something beautiful and/or useful.

I must say the media seems to be grasping at negative straws for stories these days and I am getting a little over it. I wish we could just get some facts on the quake and the rebuild and not the whining emotional tripe we are getting right now. All I see is “not fast enough”, “why are they gardening in the red zone?” and more equally as silly articles. Think this though please journalists and editors: for example Gardeners cannot fix roads or buildings, but if the city gets over grown, then when it come to reopening – how much work will it be to get up to scratch then? Just because they are keeping things tidy does not mean work on other things in the city goes any slower. AND Why should our people be working seven days a week? Surely they are as entitled to have time with their families and loved ones as you or I? In fact now more than ever they need to be their fighting best, which requires rest and happy times. Its no longer a disaster people, its just a job to get done. One last point, how on earth will we get people down here to help build if whats on offer are seven day weeks?

Hanmer farewell

hanmer-april-2011 2
A good friend of ours (the one who made it up first – in the first photo) is set to move away to the beautiful Cromwell. So a girls trip away to play is organised. As per usual when I go away with these ladies I come back needing another holiday to get over it!

Day one: I woke up late, some of us didn’t – but nicely didn’t wake us up! We then had a yummy cooked breakfast. Then up Mt Isobel it was for us. Hard work to start with but we made it up with enough energy to have a snowball fight with the dregs of snow melting at the top. I managed to get a good one on the lovely ladies bottom whom happens to be leaving us. Punishment!

hanmer-april-2011 6

We then headed down via a waterfall route. Which was lovely. Eating chocolate we made great progress going in a nice and easy downward direction. Getting home a little later than planned I put a roast bird in the oven – which took about three hours to cook! Argh, old ovens! we were slightly ravenous by the time we ate.

hanmer-april-2011 1

Day two: another sleep in and pancakes for breakfast (it is not a girls weekend without pancakes) then we took our bikes up a new single track and came down and oldy but a goody. I need to bike more I think… going up was hard work for me! One of us had a sparkly new mountain bike, making me very tempted to upgrade my bike. I had to borrow someone’s old bike because my brakes failed on my last ride and I had not got around to getting them fixed (didn’t want to because I JUST had them fixed – so i was miffed. And just had an earthquake and moved house) as it turns out mine are bad anyway – because I hopped on this bike and almost went over the handle bars when I tried the brakes… mmmmm…. think my reputation for going faster downhill might have something to do with the fact that I have no other option! I did say that once… I couldn’t see how I could go any slower..

hanmer-april-2011 5

A great weekend away – a day off needed to recover!

A little bit of Paradise – Our escape to Te Puke


I have given myself a stern talking to about not avoiding blogging anymore and that replacing that last post before Latimer Square turned into Civil Defense Central 2 was completely ok with the blogging universe.

Kylie and I booked a trip to Te Puke for his Dads birthday quite awhile ago – before quake – so by hook or by crook, weither we owned the house we lived in or the fact that it was waterproof or not, we were going. Off we went and wasn’t it lovely to wander around a town and soak in the normalcy along with the sunshine and warmth.


First things first we were taken around some Rotorua hot pools, which most of the photos were of. I had fun taking shots and just wandering around smelling the sulphur and enjoying being a tourist.



We also swam, drank coffee by the beach, went to town to pick up a gift, baked a cake and….

The Mount bathing in Sunlight

Feet enjoying sand and water

Bright and Warm Beach

even played with kittens! This is quite common – as Kylie’s mum fosters cats and kittens to make sure as they grow up they are used to humans so that its less stressful for everyone involved when kitten finds home. I am usually pretty happy to help out and take photos.

Kittens in a Basket

Oooo look he is as hairy as me!

I mustn’t forget to mention Tall Dog, Aniken the St Bernard of the Death Star paddling pool. He is such a sweet dog. I was very nervous when I met him (so large!) but once I chilled out and fussed him, he instantly relaxed and leaned into me, I was then handed his chain and we went for a walk in the orchards.
Aniken the St Bernard

Aniken the St Bernard

Thanks Peter and Gill for a perfect getaway!

Another Quake in Christchurch

Hello everyone! First things first Kylie and Myself are well. My Dad and his Wife and Daughter are also well. All immediate family in Christchurch accounted for! We have a full house at the moment. The unit seems to be standing strong for the moment. The cats are a little more clingy and after taking off last night but still staying close I am reassured they are not going to go missing when they get a fright!

To recap what went down yesterday after the quake in my little world, the shakeup was not so bad out here as in town. I knew it was big and would damage afterwards, but being in a single story house is alot less worrying than Kylie in a six story building! After frantically checking in on people, I got word quickly from Dad and Kylie that they were well and on their way home. So I went around the house collecting water storage vessels and tidying up the glass that broke all over the place. Once I had what water I could store stored I paced and worried and kept in touch with people via text and email on my iphone (loving the iphone right now).

Thankfully I can do something and we now have people staying whose houses are now questionable if they should sleep in them or not. We have a few more people un accounted for, but the texts are flowing in thick and fast about everyone being ok! I am getting more optimistic by the minute! We have lots of work to do now and and I am sure the news will not all be good. But we have power, next essential thats pretty critical if we stay in christchurch or not is water. We will see what the day brings… NZ is getting loads of help and assistance from all over the world. Its very overwhelming!

To everyone including all my clients stay safe, dry and warm. Look after you and yours. Right now I am on hold work wise, but in emergency call me on the cell phone 021 610 706.

Forced slow down

marlborough sounds
Hello all! I have been away from the blog for awhile as I recover from being sick for about 10 days. I am not quite fully right yet but almost there. Funny thing, now in my well moments I feel a crazy urge to embrace life and give up everything to become a hippy. Or something. Have no fear I love designing too much to give everything up but the thrill of having energy and no headaches makes me feel so much lighter and the in action for so long makes me want to DO SOMETHING like go bush or start a new garden.

Not only have I been sick but before succumbing to the nasty virus I attended a wedding in Marlborough Sounds (see photo above). It was beautiful and so much fun. Had a bit of a mountain bike and got a little relaxing in.

Aaaand before all that I have been super busy and have a few new designs to share! They each deserve their own blog post. So these will follow in the next few weeks. Lots more work is thankfully in the pipeline, so all in all a busy few months are ahead of me.

Just wanted to checkin and let all you all know life is ticking along…. about to amp up for Christmas, so this forced break was probably for the best. Next CHRISTMAS… how fast did that creep up?

Photos and things

The weeks have been full of activity and projects.
Below is a picture I took on the way up to a party at a lodge close to Craigiburn Ski field.
castlehill 1
This is my favorite shot and one of the first on the day (always the way) I have been hankering to go back and try and duplicate only this time with a tripod!

Here is one of the closeup shots i always go for:
tuesday 3

Here is some yarn i am thinking of knitting into a lacy scarfy shawl.
I have been knitting, sewing even embroidering! But have yet to take pictures. I went on a bit a craft bender after I unravelled some socks that didn’t fit. 🙁 So before starting those again i wanted to do some other things that have been looming and boy have i been loving the light relief!

As for light relief, those on facebook saw this little face I couldn’t resist taking a picture of.