blog title flat final resized

Wednesday, 10 December 2008

Almost 2009

I made a calendar.

If you like the look of it, and would like one to hang on your wall all next year (or give it to someone you like), email me: magter[at]

14 cm x 29.7 cm $17 plus postage (Aussie dollars. A bargain if you live o/seas!).

Wednesday, 1 October 2008

Tuesday, 30 September 2008

Oooh, Aaah, Eeee!

I'm being featured on Craft City Melbourne!

I am very excited and a little nervous.

There's even a pic of (some of) me.

Friday, 19 September 2008

I Done Made Soap

The unsliced logs. Top is Indian Chai with cardamom (ground and whole), and all the chai'y essential oils (cinnamon, clove, nutmeg, ginger and black pepper). It smells just like a warm creamy mug of its namesake -- mmmmmm! Bottom is coconut which is made using extra virgin coconut oil, and it smells very toasty and beachy.

Love both of these. I will be listing them in my Etsy store when they cure at the start of October.

Next in line is a mint-aniseed blend which is the freshest most energising scent I think I have ever smelled (can't wait to make it, and more so, use it), and the classic springtime scent of Lily-of-the-Valley. I am May-born, and that's my flower. Another divine scent. Yummy yum! I love soaping!

Thursday, 11 September 2008

Illustration Friday: Clutter

Not finished, but I've run out of time, and didn't want to fill the spaces with just anything. I guess it's cluttered enough to qualify.

Thursday, 4 September 2008

Illustration Friday: Memories

Because I wanted to avoid cheese, and didn't want Barbra Streisand's mug on the second page of my sketchbook. It's a bit cryptic.

Tuesday, 2 September 2008

Illustration Friday: Routine

Too late to submit -- last week's topic, but wanted to draw this one.

The legs are too short! Ran out of room :-) The first pic in my brand new sketchbook.

Wednesday, 20 August 2008

Illustration Friday: Detach

The exposure of the photo from which this was drawn made her head look detached from the rest of her.

Also, I love the Olympics. I get so excited every time it's on -- I am the opposite of a cynic (what's that? I could just look it up). I watch it as much as I can, I cheer, I shed tears occasionally.

I firmly believe that the Olympics should transcend politics and unite people in spite of, yet respecting, cultural, religious and personal differences.

I know that these Olympics are particularly tainted with political issues, and while I think it's crucial to address these issues (and loudly!) I really wish the western media would back off on the many gratuitous attacks against Chinese culture. All it will achieve is ill feeling, and we do, not, want, that, because it will piss off a billion people, and make dealing with the real issues that much harder.

Tuesday, 1 July 2008


I'm taking a blog break. Not that this blog was ever a burden or even a commitment, but I feel the need to let it go at the moment.

Thanks for visiting, reading, commenting, and getting in touch, and see you round the traps. I think I will focus more on Flickr from now, so if you miss me (heh heh) come by.

Photo by marketamedkova.

Tuesday, 24 June 2008

Wot Blog?

Here is something I carved yesterday and today. Have to say, I'm pretty happy with the result! Except for the little bit of bun I accidentally Speedballed off.

Its purpose in life is to decorate the front of Miss C's pink windcheater. She reminds me a lot of Little My. She often frowns and smiles at the same time, she's small, and she bites. Feisty!

Thursday, 12 June 2008

Apple Charlotte

Yum. In my top 3 fave cakes (along with Pavlova and Polish baked cheesecake). This is a recipe I got from mum, who has been making this since I remember.

500 g plain flour
8 eggs
250 g butter, softened
300 mL (yeah...go figure) sugar
6 large Granny Smith apples, cored/peeled, quartered and sliced approx. 5 mm thick
Extra sugar (to taste) to sweeten apples

Layer apples, sprinkling each layer with sugar to taste, in a sieve. Cover and leave to drain over a bowl while you make rest of cake.

Bring a small pot of water to a simmer. Break eggs, separate yolks and carefully slide each yolk into simmering water (I do it off a tablespoon). Simmer until hard (but don't overdo it). Cool and press yolks through a sieve.

Chop butter into flour until resembles breadcrumbs. Add yolks and sugar, and combine with hands into a dough (add a little water if needed). Take a bit over half the dough and roll to fit a square oven dish/tin (about lasagne dish size).

Fill with apples (discard drained liquid). Sprinkle with a bit of cinnamon.

Roll out rest of dough and cover apples, sealing the edges. (You can save any offcuts to make decoration/s for top of cake!)

Prick all over with a fork (I go in lines like a farmer's field).

Bake until golden brown in a 180 degree C oven (about an hour).

Serve (warm or cold) sprinkled with icing sugar and with cream (whipped or not).

Tuesday, 10 June 2008

Meet Me at Pip's!

Hotty (hot tea)
Originally uploaded by Pink Thistle
Pip is having a lovely e-get-together so we can all introduce ourselves and meet each other! Nice!

Hope to see you there.

Friday, 6 June 2008

The Flickr Game

1. María Magdalena Guatemala, 2. mash and gravy, 3. Cambridge mums: Mummy, I like those patterns!, 4. Two for the Road - Lilac and Iris, 5. Edward Norton, 6. Milk Street, 7. A perfectly ordinary beach in Finland a sunny day in May, 8. Lavender crème brûlée with fresh berries, 9. Mrs. Erika Bartos, graphic designer, children's book illustrator / Bartos Erika, művész, grafikus, gyerekkönyv-illusztrátor, 10. Snowmen family in TX, 11. don't worry be happy new year, 12. Top of Lavender Patchouli bar

Pip from Meet Me at Mikes got me into this. Fun!

This is how (in Pip's words...I think!):

a. Type your answer to each of the questions below into Flickr Search.
b. Using only the first page, pick an image.
c. Copy and paste each of the URLs for the images into fd's mosaic maker and make a lovely mosaic to put on your blog or flickr! Simple pimple!

The questions:
1. What is your first name?
2. What is your favourite food?
3. What high school did you go to?
4. What is your favourite color?
5. Who is your celebrity crush?
6. Favourite drink?
7. Dream vacation?
8. Favourite dessert?
9. What you want to be when you grow up?
10. What do you love most in life?
11. One Word to describe you.
12. Your flickr name.

These...ahem...last few days!

Ok, so I can't stick at something for one measly week. Never mind! It's been a busy week.

So here are a few pix from the last few days, taken mostly in the mornings.

Desktop, taken by MissM (red due to finger over flash) (my desk is an ex-door from the 40s, complete with handles, albeit one fallen out).

Made for lil' Isaac born on Monday. Used a thrifted felted jumper. There is a fine line between quaint and lame, and I can't decide on which side this guy falls. Not that it matters, as he's made with lotsa love.

I made this cut-out birthday card for James, then took a pic of it while holding it over the monitor with some gorgeous Koji Tomoto illos behind it.

Making butter bikkies.

And a cheesy 70s tune which apparently Asia is going nuts for, and makes me bop a bit in my chair.

Sunday, 1 June 2008

This evening...

Today I went straight from bed to work (where I was going to take a pic of the shelves of medications, or some ace measuring flasks, but forgot), then straight from work to a 1st b'day party, and straight from there to mum's for dinner, so the first time I had head-space to think was when both girls sacked out in the back seat, and I was driving home tonight in this soupy fog.
So here is this evening, not this morning, and taken with my not-very-good phone camera.

Saturday, 31 May 2008


I have found so many amazing blogs lately. I feel scared clicking links within them pointing to new exciting inter-places, because it makes me feel like I am teetering on a precipice and about to fall into a bottomless canyon of exhilarating inspiration, and my children need me.

Here are a few beauties:

fine little day

emma adbage

kindra is here

hoping for happy accidents

lena corwin

And some nutty Polish experimental radio music via hoping for happy accidents.

This morning...

Friday, 30 May 2008

This morning...

It arrived!

Wednesday, 28 May 2008


Inspired by this, I have decided to make "A Week of Mornings" here, starting today. Join in if you like!

This morning...pollen.

Letterbox Joy

These arrived in our letterbox today. From Pomadour24 at Etsy (check it out for more pix).

This one's ISBN978-4-579-11194-7 (oops forgot to crop)

This one's ISBN978-4-277-72252-0

Monday, 26 May 2008

This Past Fortnight

Where did those two weeks go??

Here are some places they went:

Popped drawn-on balloon

Mothers' Day angel (awww! MissM chose it for me!)

Found on creek bank

Couple of cute cats

Our dog's 7th birthday torte

Manic post-dinner crayolathon

Ominous autumn afternoon sky

Birthday present (1 g of paracetamol...caught whatever is doing the rounds)

My dad's present for me! Yeehar! A serotonin molecule necklace. Testament to my geekiness. Found here



Monday, 12 May 2008

Illustration Friday: Electricity

We all know this feeling.......right?

Tuesday, 6 May 2008

Free Softie Pattern: Calico Kitty

Just print out to whichever size you like. For my calico kitty, I just fitted the pattern onto A4.

Have fun, and if you make one, let me know -- I'd love to see it!

Friday, 2 May 2008

My Vintage Australiana

When I was six years old, my parents decided to come to Australia. They didn't tell me until we were at the airport. Not only was I uprooted from my idyllic peaceful childhood existence, but I didn't get to say goodbye to my friends, most of my toys, my room, my pet dog. This might sound very unfair, but we were living in Communist Poland where people had very little freedom and things were becoming very restless. To cut a very interesting story short, we got out HOURS before a "State of War" was declared and the borders were slammed closed. My parents had been too scared to tell me in case I mentioned it to anyone, or chances are they would have ended up in jail (or "disappeared").

We arrived in London and stayed six weeks over Christmas, during which time we applied for a visa to Australia, which was granted just days before we would have had to leave England back to Poland.

Thus we came to Australia.

My last memory of Poland was of sitting in the car at the airport, clutching a few coins in my hand and refusing to get out, and my parents pleading and threatening, themselves feeling on a knife-edge.

My first memory of Australia was the impression of a martian landscape. There had been a drought, and as the plane landed I peered out the window looking for kangaroos jumping over the dead red-brown landscape (mind you, we were landing at Melbourne Airport heh heh!).

Some other things I remember clearly of that time are the HEAT of that summer, the first huntsman I ever saw, and watching Playschool (Bonita, Noni and John sure sounded funny when they sung their guttoral la-la-la's compared to the flatter European "la" sound).

For the first couple of weeks we lived with some (distant) family friends who were very generous to share their house with us, then we found a house to rent in Springvale. This is a picture of me enjoying the summer at the Springvale house (the days before water restrictions! Remember?).

So that's my little piece of vintage Australiana. It means so much to me -- I'll never tire of declaring my deep love for this country and the incredibly rich mix of people who live here peacefully together.

Tuesday, 29 April 2008

Alphabet Joy

I have a big smile on my face thanks to this...

Found on Drawn! via A Little Hut.

In primary school among my favourite books were "The Lettering Book" and "The Lettering Book Companion". I would flip slowly from page to page and for hours admire the different fonts and borders, waiting for (and imagining) the perfect opportunity to use them.

The more I explore the interweb, the more I realise (remember?) just how deep and strong my passion for graphic design runs, in particular, lettering and fonts.

The problem is, these days there are very few excuses for me to design anything. So I download billions of fonts. And I design lists which I print out and stick on my pinboard, and in December and January I very excitedly design the invitations for my daughters' birthday parties...but I want more.

I love my profession working as a pharmacist -- I find the intricate workings of the body and drugs inside it fascinating, and it's satisfying when I make a positive difference to someone's health, but there is this huge part of me which I feel is lying dormant. Maybe I want too much? We all have different interests and talents, and maybe we can't fulfill all of our drives? But more and more I feel dissatisfied. Maybe, as my wise mother has always said, things will follow their path and fall into place. I feel exciting things coming on.

Monday, 28 April 2008

Meet Me At Mike's is hosting a week of Vintage Australiana, with Gemma Jones. I've jumped aboard as we have quite a few vintage Aussie kids' classics on our bookshelf. Here's the first:

Banjo Paterson's, "The Animals Noah Forgot." First published 1933, this print from 1983.