Follow by Email

Monday, 24 November 2014

Solo Exhibition

Road Trip. Eco-printed silk hand stitched with silk/cotton and metallic thread.

This Friday night I'll be ticking a thing off my bucket list as my first solo exhibition of textile artwork opens! "Unravelling" is a representation of my best work to date, created over nine years of practice. As I look over the pieces chronologically, I see how my work has developed and evolved as I've discovered new techniques and materials, not to mention developing  a more relaxed approach to mark making and finishing. Below are some detailed images of the featured work. If you are in Melbourne and happen to catch the show I would love to hear your comments and feedback.

For enquiries about purchasing or commissions, contact me at

Opens 28 Nov at 6pm.
Runs to 3pm,11Dec 2014
322 Brunswick St, Fitzroy. Cnr Argyle St
Hrs Tue to Fri 10am-8pm
Sat to Sun10am-6pm
Ph: 0399 423141

I Wish You Love. My first commission! 

Peach 2. Eco-printed cotton hand featuring vintage beads.

Untitled 2. Eco-printed silk, hand stitched with silk thread.

Digital Tree. Tiny squares of recycled fabric sewn to re-create a pixelated image of a tree.

Deconstructed Flower. Vintage and recycled fabric from my Nan's stash.

Monday, 17 November 2014


Over the last few months I've been busy developing new products and working on new textile artwork for my up-coming solo show, but more about that in my next post!
One of the new lines I've developed is a range of eco-dyed, hand stitched silk and organza fascinators. We are coming into the wedding/formal season here in Australia and these pieces work perfectly with a romantic, boho, woodland theme. With both a clip and pin fastening, they can be worn as a headpiece or as a brooch. These pieces are available in the Etsy store but feel free to contact me directly if you'd like something similar made for you in your choice of fabric or colours.

Here are some pics of the process…
Raw silk and organza cut into lengths ready for the dye bath.

This dye bath of loquat leaves made a grey dye. 

Bundles and tied lengths.

Grey and turmeric yellow results.
A sea of silk and organza on my work table!
Rubber bands created an interesting resist on these fabrics which were then manipulated into floral shapes and sewn together.

Saturday, 14 June 2014

Updated product lines

These new scarves and cushion covers are finally listed in my Etsy shop and featured on my website gallery

And a newsletter is coming! Shoot me an email if you'd like to subscribe…

Sunday, 25 May 2014

New Scarves!

The scarves pictured in an earlier post now have happy new owners, so last weekend I worked on a large new batch with some great results! Here just a few of them which I photographed today.
They will be listed on my Etsy shop soon!

A peak at my balcony photographic studio!

Thursday, 22 May 2014


My blog has had 3000 visitors. Hi everyone!

So......I'm curious.... who are you all? I see that most of you are my fellow Aussies (probably my friends and family, thanks for visiting guys!) but many of you are from the United States, New Zealand and Russia, and others from The United Kingdom, South America, the Middle East, Asia and Europe.


I'd love to hear more from you all and learn something about you; what city you're from, are you a crafter yourself? What were you looking for when you found me, are you enjoying your time here and what else would you like to see?

Your feedback is most appreciated, but more than that, it would be so wonderful to connect with some of my readers.

Looking forward to hearing from you!


In the meantime, here's an image of my favourite piece from my scarf dyeing frenzy last weekend.

Saturday, 26 April 2014

Winter Scarves

The chilly weather is definitely creeping in! I always love the turning of the seasons and seeing the changing colours of leaves, even the way the air feels in the morning brings a sense of excitement, like something new is coming.... a new season!
I've adapted my range accordingly with these silky merino knit scarves. They're soft, warm, durable and easy to wear. And they were my most popular item at the recent NEW CRAFT @ Queen Victoria Market. 
I'll be back there again with more scarves next Sunday (and in fact the 1st Sunday of every month till the end of the year)

Hope to see you there!

PS. By the way, you can now follow me for a behind the scenes peek on Instagram @ ahomefortandy
...... as well as FaceBook, Twitter and Pinterest

Sunday, 20 April 2014

Happy Easter!

Easter weekend is always a lovely time to involve the little ones in the family in some Easter related activities, and this year we spent time with my sister who's family now includes a four year old and a new born. As well as home-made hot cross buns and an Easter egg hunt, we tried our hands at decorating eggs. These coloured and patterned eggs, dyed in onion skins and garden leaves are a natural alternative to the usual blue and pink food dyed versions I remember doing as a kid. (I'm not sure Master Four was as enthralled through the entire process as I was!)
This is India Flint's method as described in her inspiring book Eco Colour.

I do hope you've all enjoyed some Easter family time too.

A few simple ingredients.

Wrapped up, ready for the dye bath.
The lovely results!

Sunday, 6 April 2014

Lots to report...

The good woman herself, India Flint.

Beautiful bundles emerging from the dye bath.

My silky merino dress dyed with eucalyptus, beetroot and assorted leaves.

Dress detail.

Of course the internet goes down when I'm bursting with news! Anyway, we're back in 2014 so let me update you....

First of all, I attended a three day eco-dyeing workshop with India Flint, the guru of the technique on which I base all my work these days.  India has a very practical and good humoured approach to her work and embraces the beauty in imperfection. That said, everything she produces looks like perfection to me! She had us designing, hand-stitching and dyeing a garment of our own using a gorgeous silk/merino knit fabric which I've since stocked up on and used in my recent dyeing sessions. Needless to say, I emerged with a head full of ideas and inspiration, plus a new dress to add to my wardrobe!

It all happened just in time for my first market which happened today. Craft Victoria has curated a market to be held at the Queen Victoria Markets, Melbourne on the first Sunday of every month. Today was a great success for A Home For Tandy in so many ways. It was lovely to chat to the public (i.e not just my friends!) and gauge their reaction to my work. Many had great suggestions and positive feedback and I feel I'm on my way to building a presence in the hand-made market place.

Another big plus was collecting a mailing list to which I can send my new quarterly newsletter. This will include all  A Home For Tandy's news as well as interesting information about eco-dyeing etc. If you'd like to be added to the mailing list, simply send an email to I look forward to hearing from you!

Wednesday, 19 March 2014

India Flint Workshop

I'm not usually one to get star-struck, but I have to say I'm super excited to be meeting this lady. India Flint is the guru of natural dyeing techniques, has written beautiful books on the subject and holds highly popular work-shops around the world..... and I'm participating in one this weekend!

The three day "Second Skin" workshop to be held at Beautiful Silks store in Fitzroy is an event I've been looking forward to since I booked nearly a year ago (that's how popular they are) and now it's almost upon us. I just can't wait to see for myself, not just read it from a book, how this woman gets such amazing prints and colours on cloth using nothing but natural/organic materials. I'm hoping what I learn will lend new ideas and direction to my own work.

And of course it will be a pleasure to be surrounded by like-minded folk, swanning around being creative for three whole days!

Here's a link to India Flint's beautiful blog

Monday, 10 March 2014

Scarves for sale!

Today was a bit of a sad day as I packed up my studio and moved everything home. I feel a little like a young adult who's had a stint of independence in a share house, only to return to the family nest soon after because for whatever reason, things didn't work out. Oh well....
The home set-up will happen in stages; the dining room will become work room in the next week (after we've had one last dinner party!) But the dyeing station is already set to go and I've cleared space in the study for storage and shipping bits and pieces.

Just in time really, because I've finally listed some of my very popular scarves in my Etsy shop. These gorgeous silk squares can be worn around the neck or as a head scarf. In fact I was inspired to do these when a friend of mine requested a gift for her mother-in-law who was going through chemotherapy and was looking for something cool and comfortable to cover her head with.

Check them out here...

Saturday, 1 March 2014

A Home For Tandy is homeless!

Well after a very short stint feeling like a real professional artisan with a "studio",  I find myself having to move out of the set-up I been working from since October last year. It's a bit of a blow as this space was perfect beyond description for all my processes, was not too far from my home and cost me almost nothing! Interestingly, my first reaction to the news was a fairly calm one, "something will turn up, it'll all work out, just trust the Universe" I said to myself. After all, I had three months to come up with something and I was maybe a little distracted with starting a new day job.... Now that I have a few short weeks before eviction, that trusting of the Universe has turned to panic, grappling for a solution and a total re-evaluation of what I should even be making!

While there are many studios available to rent in Melbourne, and believe me I have spent many hours online looking at them, two main factors have emerged:

The first is of course, the cost. Even figures that appear reasonable are double what I have been paying, and for an emerging business still yet to pay for itself, it seems difficult to justify.

The second is convenience. I need to find something in a location I'll be happy to travel to and from after work on public transport on week nights and then to drive (and be able to park all day) on weekends. Nothing fitting that description is available.

For a while we looked into building a studio in the backyard. That seemed to be a perfect solution until we realised the cost (way above what would be justifiable, given we don't plan to stay in this house many more years) which brought me back to consideration No 1.

The idea of bringing my whole operation home again was not appealing when I though back to how I was doing things originally. Dyeing on the kitchen stove, rinsing (all those leaves going everywhere) in the laundry, cutting and stitching on the glass-top dining table, threads, fabric, pins and scissors all over the piano.... Not ideal at all!
But what if I changed the home set-up? Dyeing on portable hot-plates on the balcony? Hooking up an outside rinsing area? Replacing the dining furniture with studio cutting table and some storage shelves? Ok so dinner gatherings will have to be bowl meals on the couch or outside in nice weather. And yes, there'll be a textiles studio in our open living/dining area. But that's just the temporary compromise I (and unfortunately my family) will have to make in order to solve the problems of cost and convenience (and maybe I'll be more productive and motivated with my work right there in front of me rather than 20kms away?)

The only thing that will be impossible to do at home is my queen size quilts, which is unfortunate because my whole concept started with that one product idea. But there are many other things I can make with eco-dyed silk, and I can always go back to big quilts in the future when I can justify a studio large enough for my big quilting table. "Adapt and overcome" is a motto often used at my workplace and it's resonating loudly with me right now!

In the meantime, I have a new batch of scarves to launch in the coming weeks...
Here's what happens when you try to photograph silk scarves on slow shutter speed outside on a windy day..... (proper pics to follow)