Tag Archives: Recycled

Profile: Vintage Creations

A few weeks ago in my post Idyllic Canberra Sunday, I mentioned that I found a stall at the Old Bus Depot Markets that makes bags from recycled leather jackets – Vintage Creations. The bags cans be worn 6 different ways, which is really cool!

The following weekend I purchased one of these beautiful bags as a birthday present to myself. Leisa the designer, made me a bag, specifically designed to carry my laptop and an A4 folder. This is because I wanted a bag that was suitable for work as well as a bag that would be versatile when we travel.

There is something special about having a bag that is hand-made from recycled materials, eco aware and designed especially for you. The bags are really practical which I love – lined with waterproof material, so you can carry a water bottle, and lots of pockets so you can organise your gear.

I was really happy with the result, and as you can see from the pictures, the bag is very versatile, offering many ways to wear if differently. The front cloth panel is also interchangeable, so you can completely change the look of the bag so it can complement your wardrobe.

When we were at the stall, a number of people already with Vintage Creation bags, dropped in with friends, who then bought a bag for themselves. My colleagues at work have also been admiring my new bag, and seeing we are a tribe of sustainability fans, I am sure I will see some of my team mates sporting new bags soon.

Leisa also gave me a discount in return for writing about her bags, which I am more than happy to do for products and services that I support.


Twilight Markets at New Acton

It is not often I venture to the New Acton precinct on the weekend, as I work there during the week. What seems to be evolving in this architecturally designed, trendy urban locale is an eco savvy, fashion conscious and foodie vibe. New Acton is situated close to the Australian National University, the National Museum of Australia and the National Film and Sound Archive, making it a handy place to visit while seeing some of the capitals cultural and educational centres. The Nishi Building also hosts the Palace Cinema, which screens many international and art house  films. All in all, New Acton is a pretty groovy place to hang out.

This weekend two markets were on at New Acton – Forage and Hustle and Scout.

The Forage was held  through the paths and grassy areas of the John Avery Gardens and Kendall Lane. (behind A-Baker and The Parlour Wine Room). Their website states that the goal of the forage is “to create a unique, fun, and community vibe where everyone feels welcome. Aesthetics that reflect a raw and earthy feel with a rustic edge will differentiate the forage from any other food market or event in Canberra.”  This was the first event for the forage and plans will see them popping up at different locations around Canberra.

There were a few stalls with organic baked goods, mainly sweets, some selections of wines and a large group of people were queued for pork belly rolls. We didn’t try any of the fare at forage as our main objective was to check out the fashion and jewellery at Hustle and Scout. Perhaps at the next forage we will focus on the gastronomic goodies.

Hustle and Scout was fun and fabulous with lots of designers, sustainable and eco-fashion, recycled and up-cycled fashion and a broad selection of jewellery. There was also models mingling in the crowd, which made the event seem very accessible. Ordinarily fashion is not really my domain (beyond shoes, handbags and jewellery) , but my love for recycled and up-cycled products is slowly revealing a eco-fashion diva. What was also really nice about this event, was that the fashion and accessories were not just for young people, there was a wealth of options for the not so young fashionistas.

Some of my favourites included:

  • Honey Bee had some stunning jewellery made from etched stainless steel. the designs have been influenced from a range of cultures and retro styles. I particularly loved some of the earrings that incorporated Arabic patterns and design. Also the material is very light so wearing large, dangly earrings won’t weigh heavily on your ear lobes, a nice feature of these pieces.
  • Pure Pod has emerged as one of Australia’s largest ethical fashion brands and is considered to be a pioneer in the ‘Eco & Sustainable’ fashion industry. Pure Pod’s ethos focuses on sustainability, ethics, caring for the environment and humanity. They pride themselves on using talented Australian crafts people and keeping local fashion industry thriving. Even better, their products are 100% ethically Australian Made. I fell in love with the “Wise Old Owl” design and will be talking to Kelli soon about ordering one of these fab frocks made from organic cotton blend.
  • Middlemost had some wonderful quirky items – have a look at the image above. I bought the cutest handmade card with a picture and come cat earrings. They specialise in creating clothing, accessories and cards made using vintage and recycled fabrics, with each piece being a handmade original.
  • The Darling Sisters specialise in gorgeous retro chic – they also have a shop called “Darling Central” in Gold Creek Village, near the George Harcourt Inn and the Cockington Green miniature village. At the markets, they had some lovely books on hair styling and makeup, I nearly bought the hair styling book and then remembered that I am completely lazy when it comes to hairdos.

This is just a small sample of the fabulousness at the Hustle and Scout market. I look forward to seeing what happens next with this wonderful event.

Idyllic Canberra Sunday

Today was pretty much my idea of a perfect Sunday in Canberra. After sleeping in just a little and catching up on some household chores, we headed off to the Old Bus Depot Markets and Fyshwick Markets. After we stocked up, we then went to my favourite cafe in Belconnen, Ricardo’s Cafe for coffee and Portuguese Tarts. After we dropped off the groceries, we enjoyed a lovely walk up Mt Painter.

EveryTrail Map of Pt Painter walk
EveryTrail Map of Mt Painter walk

Mt Painter Walk at EveryTrail
EveryTrail – Find hiking trails in California and beyond

Organic Markets
One thing I really love about Canberra is the quality of food that is organic and/or locally grown and made. There are a number of markets where you can buy really good organic food. For example, the Fyshwick Markets has the Fyshwick Gourmet Organic butcher who sells free range and organic meats, as well as game meat like venison and kangaroo.  For your organic fruit and veggies, you can usually find a good variety at Wiffins, if you get there early. The prices are also reasonable, last week I paid $18.99 for a kilo for apples at the Organic Energy Foods at Griffith, Wiffins had two varieties for $12.99. I never save money though, as I just seem to buy more apples to make up the difference. In defence of Organic Energy Foods, their shop is beautifully presented the produce is always excellent quality and they home deliver.

Other places you can find organic produce in Canberra, include the Capital Region Farmers Market (7.30am to 11.30am on Saturday mornings at Exhibition Park), the Southside Farmer’s Market  (Sunday afternoons at the Woden CIT Campus) and the new Northside Farmers Market at the University of Canberra Campus (2.30-5.30pm, Kirinari Street, in front of Building 10).  You can also go to Choku Bai Jo at the North Lyneham and Curtin shops. Choko Bai Jo also lists the road miles that produce have travelled, to help customers make informed decisions.

Old Bus Depot Markets
The Old Bus Depot markets are always a treat. Located in a couple of old industrial buildings along the Kingston Foreshore, you can find all sorts of wonderful treasure: antiques and collectibles; art and craft; fine food (especially olives, cheeses and breads); and, usually some live music. The markets are situated next door to the Canberra Glassworks which is also worth a visit, as the artists often have demonstrations of glass blowing. I managed not to spend too much money, though we did indulge and share a delicious chocolate brownie with pecans. However, I was very taken with some bags from Vintage Creation made from recycled leather jackets that can be worn 6 ways, I think I will be putting in an order with the designer as they are just gorgeous and I cannot resist a beautiful and practical bag.

Portuguese tarts at Jammo
After enjoying the markets, we went to our favourite cafe in the Belconnen region – Ricardo’s Cafe at the Jamison Plaza (affectionately known as Jammo). Their coffee is always reliable – I am a self admitted coffee snob so this is very important, the food is good and the service is friendly and prompt. We have been going there for years and we are never left waiting for our coffee or our food. They have also consistently won ACT Restaurant and Catering awards over the years. The highlight for us though is a sticky sweet little treat – the Portuguese Tart, made on the premises and absolutely magnificent washed down with a coffee. We have noticed recently that they are getting very busy, so if you have a group, it might be an idea to book a table in advance.

Mt Painter
After offloading the groceries, it was time to get out for a walk, today we stayed close to home, walking up Mt Painter. The views of the Molonglo Valley and the mountains were magnificent, such a great way to end a busy weekend. I will leave you with this view of Mt Stromlo and surrounding areas.

Mt Painter views, photo by Tracey Benson
Mt Painter views, photo by Tracey Benson