Archive for the 'MavisandFrank news' Category

Spring and secrets

I don’t remember spring having nearly such an impact in Australia. Come late August, I’d just be getting tired of the short, chilly days when suddenly a particularly warm one would make me think “Oh, sweet! Summer again!” In Germany, spring is a phenomenon. The effect of the change can be seen and felt everywhere. The bulbs appear, followed by the daisies, then the dandelions which give way to perfect hemispheres of wish-procuring fluff. Leipzig has woken from its slumber and come alive with bikes, canoes, cafes and BBQs. The market stalls are heavy with asparagus, radishes, rhubarb and strawberries. Life is very, very good, and the idea is to enjoy it now.

With all this new growth and renewal, it seems as good a time as any to let you all in on the biggest piece of news in MavisandFrank history. All things being well, baby number two will join us this September. As you’ll notice, I’ve been cooking up this particular secret for many months now. Rest assured my body is boldly displaying the fertile, fleshy joy of being not one, but two. In the process I’ve gained entry into the wonderful world of the frauenarzt and hebamme. Perhaps I’ll share these delights with you sometime soon. In the meantime, it’s time for ein eis.


MavisandFrank in print!

Good news for fans of MavisandFrank’s signature item –  the beaded necklace. All secrets are now well and truly out. For step-by-step instructions and special tips, see the most recent issue of Handcrafted Jewelry Magazine. Imagine my delight when Fed-Ex placed the following in my hands

Thank you to editor Danielle Fox for inviting me to be part of this issue. If you’re a collector of MavisandFrank memorabilia (Hi Mum!) and would like a copy, they can be ordered here from Interweave Press. You’ll find jewelry projects from many other designers to inspire your inner craftster.

Skirts for summer

At long last, my newly designed Liberty print skirts are now up in the MavisandFrank shop! The idea is to show off the beautiful fabric with as simple a design as possible. With a wide elastic waistband and girlish ruffle, they can be worn high on the waist or lower on the hips, wherever your heart desires. A big thank you must go to my model – the gorgeous Keren Moran.

Happy birthday MavisandFrank

Oh la la Liberty Bunting

I can hardly believe it. Today my little Etsy store MavisandFrank turns one. It started with a borrowed sewing machine, some pretty fabric, a little boredom; a way to rescue my brain from becoming something resembling the texture of cooked eggplant. Though it’s been tough and tiring at times, my little enterprise has been a lifeline in these first few months in Germany. Simple things have become harder (buying beads, filling out customs forms), but I still get a little thrill each time I send a package off on a long journey to somewhere I will probably never go.

In other news, we’re now home safe from a glorious week in beautiful Burgundy (more tomorrow, I promise). Oh, and Australia has a new Prime Minister…

Oh la la Liberty Bunting by Ravenhill

New Fabrics

Liberty Fabrics

With Spring upon us, I’m preparing to launch some new designs at MavisandFrank. If there is ever a time to celebrate florals, its now! With this in mind I’ve been anxiously awaiting the arrival of some new fabric from Liberty of London. Today the lovely Deustche Post lady delivered my long-awaited parcel. Here’s a sneak preview of the contents…

Fairy Clock in silver/grey


Edenham, dark blue

Poppy and Daisy

Now, what to do with each… Suggestions anyone?

To Liberty, at last

Two exciting things happened for MavisandFrank this week. Firstly, the lovely Emily from Timeless Paper featured me on her beautiful blog. And secondly, a bracelet was featured here in an Etsy treasury. Bring on Spring, I say! Florals are back in at last. I’ve often wondered why I am so attracted to Liberty fabrics. The answer, I feel, is their connection with childhood. My mother was part of an industrious patchwork quilting group (the hand quilting kind). Squares and scraps of Liberty’s classic florals were highly prized treasures. My sister and I grew up wearing handmade party dresses with smocking and peter pan collars, made with Tana Lawn. In fact, for a while in the late 80s it was fashionable in my mother’s set to wear drop-waisted dresses in Liberty florals. How I wish she’d kept them. I think its for this reason that I find so much nostalgia in the fabrics I use for my jewellery. It would be hard to pull off the drop-waisted floral look in these days of clean lines, muted colours and high waists. But maybe, just maybe, a necklace or a bracelet in the brilliant green of ‘Betsy’ or the cranberry-pink of ‘Wiltshire’ is enough to add a splash of colour, even nostalgia, to the most demure ensemble.

At this point I can go no longer without telling you of my recent visit to the Liberty store in London.  As a seller of items inspired by and made from the timeless fabrics, it felt like a pilgrimage I must make for my own creative integrity. After all, it was educational! A research trip, a staff development day, for the self-employed crafter. I was not disappointed. We  met Keren at the Great Marlborough Street entrance. While the rain began to fall and Tony pushed Rose back and fourth, I made my way through shelves of teapots, cushions and notebooks. I needed a treasure, a souvenir. But what? The answer was of course, a scarf! A Liberty scarf is the ultimate accessory. At a cost of around a hundred a twenty-five pounds, however, a scarf was not an option. Enter, my clever and stylish friend Keren. There, in a small corner of the third floor, she found a box of Liberty handkerchiefs. At seven pounds, these were (almost) affordable. Shaped into an elegant strip and tried around the neck, a handkerchief was indistinguishable from a scarf. Buoyed by our thriftiness and nonconformity, we headed for the mock-Tudor staircase and the rain outside,  just as Rose gave one last exasperated outburst.

Tony enjoying the cream tea with rose petal jam

Please don’t be worried if you don’t hear from us for a few days. We’re hitting the autobahn in our new VW and heading south to Lake Como, Italy. In appreciation for her travelling half way round the world to be with us, we asked Lesley if there was a part of Europe she’d especially like to see. Italy was her choice, and thither we must go. The things you do for you Mother-in-law. Viva Italia!

About Me

A girl with a camera, a toddler and a sewing machine. Making sense of Germany... and life in general.

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I Make…

Handmade Baby Shorts in Liberty's 'Cordelia'

Handmade Necklace in 'Fairford' $21

Handmade Bead Necklace in 'Wiltshire' $21

Handmade Bracelet in 'Fairford' $15

I Took The Handmade Pledge!