Saturday, July 27, 2013

A trip along the old coast road

Hi Everyone, I have been waiting for a quiet morning when I can upload some photos that I took earlier in the week.  Sometimes I just "drop" pics into PicMonkey and just run with it, but with these I wanted to take my time.  Plus, I want to tell you a couple of stories that need links and access to more information (for those of you who are curious).  

I told my 11yo daughter I was taking her to somewhere spooky, possibly haunted and so packed some snacks and our cameras and headed up the coast along what is called "The Old Coast Road".  Our destination: Seacliff and Karitane.  

Seacliff is a tiny little settlement just north of Blueskin Bay.  A kilometre inland from the coast road is the site where one of the largest mental asylum's in NZ once stood.  It is a place of tragedy too because of the landslide in the late 1880s which caused part of the buildings to collapse (and brought about the ruination of the architect's reputation), and in the extensive fire which claimed the lives of a number of patients in the 1940s.  You can read more about the history of the asylum here and about Truby King, the superintendent here.  

Top left to tight: Abandoned cars, the old stables once the Dunedin Museum of Transport (now private property)
Bottom left to right: Wooden building once a ward block, recently a Backpackers  (also private property) and the gates to the reserve

In the main reserve little remains of the main building as it was demolished in the 1960s.  However, it was easy to imagine the remaining walls keeping in the patients, straight jackets, cold dark dormitories and other horrors.  But, in reality the walls are the remnants of the garden and exercise areas where different activities were arranged for the patients - without the spectacular view being compromised.  The reserve also has hundreds of native NZ and non-native tree specimens - further evidence of King's belief in fresh air and outdoor activity.  The hospital originally had a farm, orchards and tracks through the a woodland known as the Enchanted Forest. 

Ruined walls and steps at Truby King Reserve.
Thrifted skirt, top, boots, cardigan, belt and necklace

Left A windswept tree overlooking the sea,  top right, the Karitane peninsula in the middle of the picture, bottom right, looking south towards Taiaroa Heads
Further along the coast is the tiny fishing village of Karitane, where King started a small fishing fleet to allow for fresh fish to be taken to the hospital and the surplus sold in Dunedin.  At the end of the peninsula is a historic Maori pa (village) and the land is now all owned by the Department of Conservation.  

Compared to the serenity of the Truby King Reserve, this was windswept and dramatic.  We enjoyed walking along the tussock lined tracks around the coast after entering the reserve through an impressive carved archway into the reserve.  Signs along the tracks tell various stories about life at the pa.  

Historic Maori pa at Karitane.
One story in particular really touched me.  This is what overlooks  a fierce deep chasm:  

Nga Pehu

A long time ago two lovers eloped
Their parents opposed, the lovers cast out
Time Passed.  Once two, now three.
Home they came seeking forgiveness, forgiveness not granted
taken to the hill
thrown from the hill
Nga Pehu stand where the lovers fell
Listen for the story of a People, a Place.
Journey well Friends.  

The modern village of Karitane has a sandy beach on the south side of the peninsula and a fishing port on the north side.  We took a walk around the little harbour and watched some children learning to kayak, and then around to the jetty where the fishing boats moored.  

This gorgeous coastline inspired so many stories in my 11yo's imagination she came home and wrote them down straight away! We took the highway home, calling in to the famous Evansdale Cheese Factory on the way to get a couple of varieties of cheese to enjoy.  

Hope you have enjoyed this little tour of the Otago coast!  


Thursday, July 25, 2013

Getting used to my new-to-me laptop...

Hi Everyone, hope you are all having a good week.  I am slowly getting used to my new-to-me PC laptop - I have been using the iMac but bought a reconditioned laptop via work for me to be able to blog, read, watch movies etc without having to sit at computer.  It was cheaper than a ipad too.  

First up I want to show you today's outfit.  The refashioned Indian hand embroidered skirt which I bought from Toffs a month or so back was worn for the first time today.  Being on holiday and the nice weather has meant I have had the time and the light to sew.  The skirt is made of quite thick cotton and it originally was around a size 20 on elastic.  So I carefully cut two panels (based on an existing skirt pattern).  Then added darts both front and back for shaping and put a zip in the side.  

Indian embroidered skirt, Toffs
Atmosphere cardigan, Hospice Shop 
Bow Booties and belt, retail
Turquoise beads, Hospice Shop
Purple vinyl bag, Savemart
Lust object in red seen in window of motorbike shop LOL

While I was out and about today I passed a motorbike shop with the cutest scooter in the window.  It matched my outfit perfectly.  To make more room in my wardrobe, I dropped off a huge bag of items at the Hospice Shop.  It seemed a pity not to have a look around while I was there and I scored a copy of My Cousin Rachel by Daphne du Maurier for 50 cents and the turquoise beads above for $2.

Later I went to Savemart and although there were some intriguing items nothing called out "Buy Me! Buy Me!" until I spotted, underneath a pile of made in china bought from mainstreet handbags something purple and vinyl.  Sure enough a seriously cool vinyl bag!!  It had my name on it.  Well not literally.  It was $4

As it happens this was my second bag purchase of the week.....

Yesterday it was beautiful and sunny so 11yo and I went to the Dinosaur park (so named because it has a slide shaped like a Brontosaurus, I am annoyed I did not take a photo of it as it is a Dunedin icon) for some scootering and some sunshine.  I sat and read Don't Look Now and Other Stories by Daphne du Maurier while she happily scootered around.  Anyway, afterwards I dragged her to the Salvation Army, Toffs and Shop on Carroll.  At Toffs she spied a cute Kangol hat with pom-poms to which she said, "Its so you Mum" and she was right, for $2 it was me to a T.  Then, at Shop on Carroll I saw under a pile of handbags ...something pink and made of raffia. 

Main Photo: Denim skirt, Toffs
Socks from Sock Dreams (yes they have knitting needles and balls of yarn on them)
Patent shoes, Mount Cook Line cabin bag, Toffs
Right top to bottom: Pink cardigan, Savemart with Fake turquoise necklace, Salvation Army
Kangol hat, Toffs
Pink crocheted raffia bag, Shop on Carroll

Without asking how much it was I said "I have to have that!"  It is in quite good condition, considering its raffia (or Swiss Straw) and this one is made in Japan.  How many crochet or knitted bags from raffia equal a collection?  I have two now, one in blue and one in pink.  I think something good is happening!!  

So, how do you get started on a collection??  

Bye for now, 

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Belated Frock on Friday...and a blogger meet up

Hi everyone, I am a little late posting for Frock on Friday but I am sure you don't mind.  I am learning to drive my new-to-me laptop and its a wee bit different to the Mac I have been using previously. 

On Friday, I felt like had spent all my energy working so I found it a bit tricky to wear something a bit different.  In the end I decided to wear a relatively plain black and white dress and brighten it with accessories:
black and white dress, Hospice Shop
turquoise wide belt Presbyterian Support
tights, shoes, hair flower and earrings all retail

On Saturday I had a blogger meet up with the lovely Indigo Violet. We went to Broad Bay China, which is on the other side of the harbour to where I live.  I had driven past the sign on the main road a few times but never actually been there. 

There was so much to look at I almost didn't know where to start!

Afterwards we went for a cup of tea at the Macandrew Bay cafe and looked out across the harbour - just beautiful

I had a really enjoyable afternoon - it was lovely meeting a like-minded blogger like Indigo Violet!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Is that outfit fur real?

Following on from my last post I have to share news of a new fake fur coat which I scored at my all-time-favourite op shop - the Hospice Shop on Hanover Street.  

It was hanging up with other coats and I immediately wanted to snuggle it - sure enough it is lovely and soft.  To my amazement it was priced at $5.  Surely, it was a mistake, so I asked the lovely lady at the counter to have a look at it for me and see if there were any major flaws (cigarette burns, huge tears etc). Nope.  Nothing wrong with it, so I knew it was coat-karma!!

Vintage Osti Frock with Glengyle angora cardigan, thrifted beads and bracelets
Bow boots, purple tights and belt retail. 
 I have been busy at work this week covering for a colleague who is enjoying time off with her two little boys during week one of the school holidays.  I am off next week and she will be covering a bit for me.  

Anyway I have tried to incorporate some changes to my wardrobe this week, and that means tidying it up as well as wearing things I have not worn for a long time.  I hadn't worn the vintage Canterbury Knitwear vest for ages and it was close to being considered for the vintage stall that I have not got around to organising (ie too good to be just given away).  Here is is:

Velvet rose skirt and striped shirt both from Toffs $2 each,
Vintage Canterbury vest from St V de P
cute rose brooch from Trademe
Today I thumbed my nose at the silly rule of not wearing white after Queens Birthday weekend (or whatever silly rule I read in equally silly fashion mag while at hairdressers the other day).  When I was at Paperbag Princess grovelling around on the floor looking for the right shoe to go with the left one I found I liked and fitted me, I also chanced upon  a vision of creamy lovely polyester loveliness which begged me to buy it, wash it and wear it.  Today's outfit was inspired by creme caramel, jersey caramels and other creamy caramely gooeyness.  I layered a cream dress with cream tights, caramel boots, cream and gold adornments and topped it all off with the chocolatey caramelly fur coat:

Vintage Kenwood Polyester dress and vintage cream and gold choker
both $2 each Paperbag Princess sale
Caramel boots from Restore
cream and gold bracelets various op shops
gratuitous label shot from inside of new furry coat
close up of boobage (enhanced by new booster bra LOL)
 So to round off I thought I would show you a couple of photos of the new Hospice Shop in Jetty Street which I visited last weekend. It was a glorious sunny day which started out all frosty like icing had been poured over the world.  I spent a few hours in a union meeting and when I got out into the fresh air my feet just walked to the Hospice shop for a quick look around.  Nothing took my fancy (to buy) but the building on the opposite corner looked awesome so I snapped a shot of that instead. 
Hope you are all having a good week, tomorrow is Friday (thank goodness) and I'll be taking part in Frock on Friday.  
bye for now, 

Friday, July 12, 2013

Fur goodness sakes

Hi everyone, hope you have all been having a good week.  Thank you all for the lovely comments on my last post, they were much appreciated while I was recovering from the disgusting head cold.  However since then, I lost my blogging mojo a bit , so there was no Frock on Friday post from me last week.  To offer some kind of compensation I am going show you two FOF and a few things from this week.  

I have been yearning for a pair of those plastic booties with bows for ages.  So I bought a pair and I did not get struck down by lightning or anything (breaking my "buy nothing new" pledge): 

Orange paisley vintage dress - refashioned by me - with a thrifted Atmosphere cardigan, vintage necklace and bracelets.  The cream choker necklace was a lucky find at Paperbag Princess (previously Recycle Boutique) closing down sale - it was $2.  

This week I have taken a few photos - yeah, all in the same place in front of the back door with the key rack just sticking out of my head, or near enough!

Left: Osti dress with Glengyle cardigan, $2 each from Toffs.
Middle: Vintage velvet skirt, $2 Toffs with a black long sleeve top $2 from Hospice and a $1 waistcoat from Trademe.
Right: Red skirt Hospice shop $4, frilly shirt Savemart $8, vintage Glengyle cardigan from the St Vinnies.  

Here's some close-ups of the jewellery: 

The purple necklaces are both vintage and the red necklace and earrings are both retail purchases.  The earrings are made by a local artist.  

Today, was un-furgettable.  I wore my treasured Cordera coat.  The label says "wraps you in luxury" and I sure felt special wearing it.  

The coat belonged to my Husband's godmother and Aunty and I felt very special when I was given it.  I am wearing it with a vintage Osti dress, another Toffs $2 bargain and the grey Glengyle cardigan.  The necklace is one of those rainbow crystal ones, stamped made in Germany I think, which I found at the Hospice Shop.

I  had about 2 inches chopped off my hair earlier in the week and I think its looking a lot tidier!  

The weekend looks like it will be busy with a trade union meeting, washing and other domestic stuff.  Hope you all have a good one, 


Monday, July 1, 2013

Visible Monday and a few other things

Hi Everyone, its Monday night and I am trying to get my post ready so I can be part of Patti's Visible Monday.   I see that Patti's #103 post is "I am wearing the pants".  By complete coincidence, today I am wearing pants too!

Yes, today I decided to wear pants.  In the main photo the colour is a bit wrong and its blurry but I don't care because I really like this outfit.  

The black pants have a side zip opening which I find more flattering as it sits nicer than a front zip.  The legs are slightly narrowed to the ankle and then there is a tie.  I wore bright pink and yellow polka dotted socks for a splash of lower leg colour!  The blouse is actually orange and a vintage one I found in the hospice shop.  The jacket is Elizabeth Byrne (also from Hospice Shop) and has a cute sailboat pattern.  

I seem to be wearing red quite a lot.  Last week I wore what I call my 'volcano dress' with grey to represent the ash and red tights for lava.  My furry black shoes are like basalt.  I must have been on fire at work that day.  

Recently we have had lots of amazing weather and a huge moon:

I was so cold one day last week I bought a pair of earmuffs - wow, they kept my ears toasty and warm:
Vintage home-nade polyester dress, Hospice Shop
Vintage Glengyle cardigan, Toffs $2
Mother of pearl Brooch, stall at Art Deco fair $2
Boots, tights and earmuffs all retail
I have rekindled my passion for vintage jackets - here is one made by Canterbury (now famous for sportswear): 

Vintage Canterbury polyester jacket, Trademe
Boucle skirt, Presbyterian Support
Boots, SaveMart
Tights and giant pearls (below) both retail

To my delight I won a $1 auction on Trademe for 3 jackets, so even with postage they were a bargain.  Gratuitous tag porn included below:

The pattern on the Kendell one (bottom right) is the most outrageous lurex paisley and floral I have ever seen (detail top left).  The collar is HUGE.  The greeny-blue crimplene one (top right) came with a cute red and green brooch - the trader got a special thank you for the trade.  The Kit Parader one in the bottom left is a gorgeous colour that reminds me of the teal blue on ducks feathers.  It is 50/50 acrylic and wool.  All three are destined for a good wash and then a dry on the line in the weekend.  There is only one problem - there is no more room in my wardrobe :-(  I will have to ask my 11yo daughter nicely if I can store some of my clothes in hers!!

So there I am, in pants, on Visible Monday.  Hope you all have a great week,