Sunday, December 28, 2014


CHRISTMAS! I had such a great Christmas. It is tradition that every year my Dad leaves all his shopping until Christmas Eve, and then he needs me and one of my sisters to help him do it all. This year was no exception. It's the most exhausting day, but I love the rush of it, and the fun and excitement. We went to the city (got a parking ticket... who gives parking tickets on Christmas Eve I ask!?) went to a speciality architecture bookshop on Flinders Lane, then to Metropolis in Curtain House where I got to choose a couple of books as my Christmas present from my parents. After that was the craziness of Myer and David Jones to buy my Nanna a mixer. Then the Chanel counter so I could get my other Nanna (I have two Nannas) a lipstick. I pretended I had to buy presents from Alpha60 so I could go there but really I just wanted to buy a dress for myself... sneaky. I bought this one.

Then we had to go to Doncaster which is a giant shopping centre in the suburbs. Flippers for my 8 y/o cousin, and a netball for her twin sister. Wrapping paper, tape, and then finally home. I love gift wrapping so then I wrapped everything and I know it sounds crazy because like *shopping!* but after all that, I was exhausted!

On Christmas Eve we go for dinner at my Nanna's house - just my immediate family. It's pretty relaxing but Nanna puts on a whole big roast dinner and has the table all set immaculately with bon bons and shiny silver cutlery that she only gets out this one time each year.

And I just realised I took this photo AFTER we'd eaten so the table doesn't look like how Nanna had it set!
On Christmas morning, we always go to my neighbour Len's house. He gives us shrimps and champagne at like 10.30am in the morning. He also gave our dog Soda a wrapped Christmas present with a card. Inside were some pigs ears. Soda was so thrilled.

For lunch, we went to my Aunty and Uncle's house with my whole extended family. That's always a big event, and there's always lots of food. Because I don't eat meat, though, it's easy for me to have a small portion for my main meal so that I can have HEAPS of desert. Hehehe. I've got it all sorted out.

Playing shops with my cousin

This is Mr.Perceval
After lunch ended (at like 6pm) we headed home. Simon came over to my place and we drank with my parents and picked at a cheese platter that none of us really felt hungry for. We exchanged presents (the last for Christmas 2014!) and watched a bit of a really weird brilliant show called 'My Christmas Obsession' before retiring to bed. On Boxing Day we slept late and had breakfast that was really lunch. We really wanted to go to Heide but it was closed. I gave Simon this David Shirley frisbee as a bit of a joke but we realised that frisbees were actually really cool and so we wanted to go to a park to throw it. Because we couldn't go to the gardens at Heide we just went to a local park. We also played with this weird electronic paper plane thing that Simon had been given as a gift. So outdoorsy! I felt great afterwards.

Soda really likes my new pillow... 
Yeah, get off.
Clockwise starting at top left: Angel Olsen record from Simon, 1 of 3 Toiletpaper mugs from ThirdDrawerDown from my sister, Pillow from Simon, 1960s fashion print book by Marnie Fogg from Mum and Dad, The Source Family book from Mum and Dad, more of the Toiletpaper mugs, '70s Style and Design book from Mum and Dad, Maison Balzac candle from Simon, Apron from my Nanna. Plus a bunch of vouchers and cards up the top!

And these are my *EXCEPTIONALLY* wrapped gifts for my friends and family. YAY. I had such a nice Christmas. Hope you all did too!

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

If anyone don't need to worry it's you

I have actually had the best weekend and I can say with certainty that I feel full of warmth and, well, I'm very content - maybe even happy.

On Friday night I had my friends over to my studio for drinks for the first time. I bought a slab of beer and carried it BY MYSELF like a muscle woman all the way from the supermarket back to my space, up the stairs and dropped it down on the floor shaking the very foundations of the building, ready for friends to come and help themselves. It was my last day of work at my part time job for the Christmas break, I'd just finished and felt pretty much like I could do anything. I could. If you can carry a slab of beer by yourself, any other task dwarfs in comparison, obviously.

I had also made some frog in ponds as snacks which was so much fun - I did two layers of different coloured jelly and as well as Freddos I popped some M&Ms in there too which proceeded to lose their outer casing of colour and muddied up the jelly. I was told despite the rather objectionable look of the deserts they were still delicious. Just channelling the suburban pub vibe in Fitzroy.

I had about 15 people around, just a small crowd of my most favourite people, and I just had a great time. It sort of doubled as a Christmas celebration and a belated birthday celebration as well as a studio warming. It was also my friend Georgia's birthday that day, and she bought over the most amazing cake that she'd been given at work which we all consumed hungrily off torn pieces of cardboard with our beers.

The festivities ended rather late as I swirled around a glass of white wine in those (what turned out to be) brandy glasses I mentioned that I bought in my previous post... I was in bed at like 2.30am which, for me, is VERY LATE INDEED! I was so pleased because I have such lovely friends who wish me so well and are funny and smart not to mention COOL and FUN. HEY.

Saturday morning, Simon and I went out for breakfast at Grub food van in Brunswick, which is actually becoming my new favourite restaurant NOT ONLY because my friend Jeremy works there but because the food is DELICIOUS and I may have ordered a chocolate milkshake with my breakfast which was AMAZING and it was sunny but it was shady and I read the paper and it was so relaxing and nice... then we went to see the current exhibition at ACCA - Menagerie. My favourite work in the show was Anastasia Klose's drawings. I found the quotes in vinyl on the wall to be very naff, but did enjoy some of the many taxidermy works and a number of the old oil paintings.

I literally had a nap in the afternoon (It's Christmas-time I can do whatever I want) before we went to Simon's friend's birthday dinner at a Spanish restaurant on Smith Street. After plates of paella, we all went to a strange abandoned warehouse party in Fitzroy which inside had a basketball ring that we tried our hand at for a while. It was fun, I met a bunch of fantastic new people and ran into a couple of fantastic old people too. That night wasn't as late as the night before but we definitely gave it a good go. And I scored a goal in the basketball hoop before we went home, too.

SUNDAY guess what... breakfast was had at a restaurant, again. This time Alimentari on Smith Street. I realised that I hadn't eaten a meal at home since breakfast on Friday and the fact didn't even disturb me. I become such a spend thrift over Christmas time. And a relaxation thrift. I think the latter I should do more often, though. After a spot of attempted Christmas shopping on Smith Street (not successful) - I went home, finally - after what felt like a mini holiday.

Today was Monday. Yes. Already losing track of the days. And I used my freedom (or rather my aversion to doing any work over the next few days) to start my Christmas shopping, finally. I went into the city by myself and was on my yearly mission. I actually got rather into the spirit. There was a cute dog on my train, I paid for something and it was half price, I got to buy all my gift wrapping stuff and got started wrapping my gifts this afternoon. That literally is my favourite part of the whole gift thing. Wrapping presents that I've bought for other people.

Finished product. Frogs in ponds with rocks and industrial waste.
Records flattening out my new Ikea rugs!
Starting to set up my studio!
My friend Max on my throne on Friday night
My Nanna bought my sisters and I a Chocolate advent calendar each. I bought mine to work and ate it there
Okay I don't even remember when this was but it was this week
DOG ON TRAIN I wanted to dog-nap it but refrained.
I also had some work go up on Rookie the other day, I illustrated a quote gallery which was compiled by Hazel. You can view it online here: but I'm going to post my favourites in this post :)

Okay! That's probably my last post before Christmas. So I wish you all a calm and relaxing holiday period filled with food and friends and family and fun... : ) X Minna

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Did you give the world some love today baby

I didn't mean to wait so long between posting! This past week has been SO crazy, I've worked every single day! This week I had the photoshoot for my book. In three days, we had to shoot EVERY SINGLE image that is to be used, so I had to be pretty darn organised. Because my book is based around clothing and fashion, I was elected to model a number of outfits I've created from my wardrobe. It was fun, and while at first being a bit stiff I gradually warmed into the role of "model" and I think we got some really good shots. We also had to shoot the cover, fabric details, objects, clothes on hangers, flat lay images, etc etc. All in three days. The people I was working with were fantastic, and the process couldn't have been any easier or more pleasant. This didn't stop me from being completely exhausted though!

Here are a whole bunch of phone pictures (naturally I can't share the actual shots yet! YET.)

I haven't been able to spend much time in my new studio this week, which is a bummer. I did however *host* a dinner there for Simon and I on Thursday night. I bought some amazing wine glasses that are really wide down the bottom, if that makes sense and they're super retro so I love them. I bought a nice bottle of Pinot Nior and made a quiche which we actually had to eat cold so was a bit disappointing... however was the perfect initial warming of the space and I felt very at home.

I'm going to have a mini party thing there this weekend so I'm really looking forward to that. I bought a new record player for myself and am going to get some really nice speakers this week. (So much for Christmas shopping, I'm just buying gifts for myself...!) I feel very at home in the space already.

Today I have a family Christmas party thing but I am waiting until the last possible second to get ready because I haven't had a lie-in for like, a month, and it is Sunday, and I've just shot ALL the photos for my book and done a few other things in between so I think I deserve it. I have a lot of deadlines to catch up on this week but knowing that I finish work at the end of the week and have my mini studio party will make it worthwhile.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

CH-CH-CH-CH Changes

Excuse the corny title but how could I sum it up in any other way! I'm now twenty-four years old and have a studio at Gertrude Contemporary. Big changes are afoot/have been afoot in the past week. I'm writing my book. The photoshoot for said book is next week. I am typing this on my brand new Macbook Pro that I bought for myself (with a percentage contributed by my parents as a birthday present) None of these things have sunk in yet.

On the weekend I celebrated my birthday. I thought the celebrations would be minimal but I actually ended up doing a number of things. Friday evening was a cocktail party at Gertrude Contemporary to launch this year's Gertrude Edition. I invited Simon and we made a brief *appearance* before birthday dinner at Cumulus on Flinders Lane. It was delicious and fancy and I really had a lovely time. We had intended to go to Chin Chin but the wait for a table was completely ridiculous - 2.5 hours! And to be honest I'm glad we didn't go there because we had a much more relaxing experience at Cumulus.

Saturday was my actual birthday and I had lunch with my Mum, Nanna, Aunty and sister somewhere local. Then I just kind of relaxed at home for a while before going out for dinner with Mum and Dad. Dad's birthday is the day before mine so it was a joint celebration. On Sunday I had to clean out my studio at Easey Street and it took the whole day. It was about 35 degrees outside which means it's about 45 degrees in our studio, so it was rather unpleasant. I reckon I chucked out 60% of the stuff I'd accumulated there. It felt good. That evening I went to my (other) Nanna's place and had dinner with more extended family including my two little twin cousins who are my favourite. We did colouring-ins together and they gave me a very sweet present and card "I don't know if you have notest but you are my favrot cosen in the wirld" it read.

Monday I ventured back to Easey Street to move and clean more stuff and that night I had dinner with my two remaining friends from high school. Today I had a 'Man with a Van' booked to come and move my big stuff to my 10 x bigger studio at Gertrude Contemporary. Despite the bloke-y nature of their business (WOman with a van anyone?) they provided really good service and it was pretty reasonably priced I guess. Because of my knee I didn't want to do any lifting so I "ordered" two mans to come with the van and they moved everything for me. It was the least stressful move I've ever experienced. I still have a bunch of stuff from home to bring in but I can get my family to help with that, and I guess I can probably start carting things in on the train.

I feel sort of overwhelmed with all the things that are happening at the moment. I even feel overwhelmed writing this blog post because there is so many things I am already missing or have skimmed over and I don't even have pictures of all the things I want to show you...

Birthday outfit - new Verner skirt and Dress Up top!
Cupcakes for my birthday baked by my Nanna
Piles and piles of stuff to sort through seemed very daunting on Sunday morning
The 'SKIP' pile
Unceremoniously un-stretching canvases  
Bye Bye
The end result. Quite a compact lot of things really. 
Cake made by my other Nanna
The only sneak peek of my new studio that you're going to get for the time being!

Ridiculous snaps to my buddies
So I closed the door on Easey Street Studios today and opened one at Gertrude Contemporary. I left my keys in my old studio for a young girl to move in with two of her friends from uni (not unlike how I moved in there two years ago with Georgie and Cheralyn) and dusted my hands of the place and the bizarre people who inhabited it. I don't think it's the end of Easey Street as a location for me though, I'd like to live in a little house on that infamous street one day. As things in my life always tend to come full circle in one way or another (For example - Arlene Textaqueen was my favourite artist in high school and now, well, without sounding too full of myself - I'm on a list of 'Five female artists you should invest in now' alongside her ) Anyway, I wouldn't be surprised if I ended up back on Easey Street (pun intended) eventually.