Friday, December 23, 2011

christmas cheer

as we wind down our 2011 year, sarah and I extend to you our warmest wishes for the forthcoming christmas season.
so many, many thanks for embracing our new venture in sydney with such enthusiasm, and so much gratitude to all of our loyal perth girls who make us smile with their cheery visits.

Our sincerest thanks also go to our counter girls who have become our extended 'calico' family...perth-side, lynnie, suzie, jane, jen (just retired), anthea, kim, danielle, sally and sydney-side donna, sue, kim and sam.  you all shine brighter than the sparkliest christmas ornament, and support us without reservation... there are none better.  
thanks also to all the girls who have shared their talents and time to teach with so much enthusiasm within our walls.

we are super excited with our ongoing plans for each store as we refine and expand our collections of all things we have learned you truly love. 

finally, a little personal indulgence as I express my appreciation to sarah for her advice, support, strength and friendship for the longest time now. Sarah you are truly a very special person who juggles our balmain baby with your family daily, and for that I offer thanks and love to you, and your beautiful family.

love, hugs and happy christmas... deb and sarah

Sunday, December 18, 2011

christmas crafting

We are keeping it busy here this beautiful Sunday afternoon.  I have my grand kiddies visiting and all they need for amusement are many pieces of paper and lots of coloured pens.  Too easy.

I have a few (10 actually) stockings to finish for the family...

...getting there, these are the last three.

Christmas trading hours:

 BALMAIN: close 5pm, Saturday 24th December
re-open 10am Thursday 5th January

MOSMAN PARK: close 5pm, Saturday 24th December
re-open 9.30am Thursday 5th January

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Friday, December 2, 2011

prints charming

 How very exciting that Prints Charmings latest fabric range, Daisy Chain has landed in the Balmain store (& soon to be Mosman Park too)!

Join the girls, Cath & Kirsten, to celebrate this exciting range with a glass of champagne & to see 
 the wonderful wares that the girls have made that will truly inspire you.

Saturday, 10th December, 3pm - 5pm,
10 Birchgrove Rd,

Thursday, December 1, 2011

sophie digard in blue

Both Mosman Park & Balmain have lots of lovely new Sophie Digard pieces to choose from.  Here are some snaps from yesterday. In blue.

                                                Blue is a sapphire sky, 
                                                          On a hot summer's day, 
                                                          It stimulates the senses, 
                                                          And lets you melt away. 

                                                               Blue is the ocean, 
                                                           Deep and crystal clear, 
                                                   It draws you in and reminds you, 
                                                         Of what you hold so dear.

                                                                   Blue is a bird, 
                                                              As wild and as free, 
                                                          It never fails to give you, 
                                                        The comfort that you need.

                                                             Blue is a forget me not, 
                                                               Blowing in the wind, 
                                                            It heals and protects you, 
                                                        Even when the lights are dim.

                                                             excerpt by Mary

Sunday, November 27, 2011


here are some of the inoui scarves that we have in both stores.  french & totally gorgeous, of course. perfect for summer. give someone a hint you'd love one for Christmas.

Monday, October 31, 2011

dotti angel

i am a huge fan of dear dotti angel.

anyone who can create an alter ego with such flourish, and consistently thrill with her imaginings has my vote.  i am the ultimate daydreamer tapping into my imagination at whim, and encourage it at all times for those around me.

imagination has been gifted to us all, tiff fussell and her dotti truly encourage us all to explore that path.

calico & ivy both in mosman park and balmain have stock of the dotti angel book.  it also sits on our website for those not close enough to venture in, but do try and visit as we hope our shop environments will enable your imaginings, and bring out the little fun person within your souls also.

a great gift idea for the chrissy season ahead, or just treat yourself to the most delightful read of the year.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

minxy vintage afternoon tea

This afternoon we held the Minxy Vintage book launch & afternoon tea that I blogged about a few weeks ago.  What a delight it was!

I could continue holding events with Kelly purely just to see which exquisite outfit she turns up in.  Seriously.  This girl has style & a beautiful array of vintage clothing pieces to accompany this.

 Minxy Vintage is Kelly's latest release book, and can I just say, it causes insomnia, in a good way.   It is such an inspiring book that encourages you to fix and alter vintage and retro garments, to give them new life and inject some individuality into your wardrobe.  My head is swimming with the possiblities, hence the insomnia.

Big thanks to Kelly for imparting fabulous hints and tips and encouraging us all with her passion & sheer gift of reworking vintage.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

inspiration....nathalie lete

This is the very talented artist Nathalie Lete.  So inspirational in so many ways.  Her works are becoming well known around the globe.  Known for her playful, whimsy, naive pieces in many different mediums, they are sure to have you smiling a smile that transports you right back to being a child.

These scarves we have in both stores - Perth & Balmain.  The top ones are cotton scarves perfect for our long hot summers.  Tie one around the neck or pop one into your handbag and elegantly mop your brow when necessary.  They make awesome presents, so stock up for Christmas (yes, scary, it's just around the corner!).  The silk scarfs are simply stunning. Be sure to check them out when in our stores.

Bric a Brac is one of Nathalie's hard to find books, that we have in our stores.  So delightful and inspirational.  Flicking through it, makes me just want to go and create.  Her great use of colour is a great resource too.  Plenty of beautiful colour combinations that are begging to be the inspiration of many quilts.  The little dresser above houses Nathalie's treasured "heroes" that she has often rescued (thrifted) and star in many of her creations.

So, what's inspiring you lately?


Thursday, September 22, 2011

Minxy Vintage

Do you browse through vintage or retro clothes at flea markets and wish you had the knack to breathe new life into the dated frocks, skirts and smocks? Kelly Doust’s Minxy Vintage will help you transform these items – and indeed any item in your wardrobe, ripe for reinvention. In Minxy Vintage, Kelly combines her love of fashion with creativity, transforming more than 50 damaged, ill-fitting and past-it clothes into modern, wearable pieces.

Join us for an afternoon tea party and practical advice session with Kelly, and bring along some of your own items for advice on how to update them. Enjoy a glass of champagne while she shares her top shopping hints, tips and ideas for seeing the wonderful possibilities for updating all old clothes, and how to look fabulous doing so, no matter what your age, location or budget.


 Kelly Doust introduces readers to her wonderful world of reviving and customizing vintage pieces, while bringing a modern and unique twist to wearing vintage clothes.
- Dita Von Teese

A vintage vixen’s guidebook for the chic: just read, shop, recreate, and repeat. You can’t help but get inspired by her vintage acumen. - Janie Bryant, Award-Winning Costume Designer, Mad Men

Bookings essential.  Please call the shop on 02 9555 9909 to confirm your place.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

washing day

I love nothing better than a handmade lace find at the markets, a little worse for wear, a little grimey and in need of a new home and some loving, some appreciation.

These pieces washed up wonderfully & were nothing short of beautiful in the spring sunshine, worth sharing I thought. Sarah

Monday, August 29, 2011

one of a kind

In the Balmain store, we have these amazing one off pieces by Dowry.  They are handmade in Australia, in a wonderful collaboration between mother & daughter from country NSW.  They design unique pieces utilizing vintage fabrics and discarded textiles, creating what can only be described as breathtaking, covetable pieces.   We also have a wonderful collection of tapestry cushions and some wonderful pieces of their special clothing - of which I will blog about when we receive more.

Above are the two remaining tapestry bags, which I've placed in our online store .
                                                                                                            -  Sarah

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

our perth crochet diva...

Danielle is our Perth crocheter extraordinaire.  Danielle teaches our beginners and goes on to teach flowers and hexagons to our crochet ravenous participants

A new blanket pattern is now available on our website to entice

crocheted in debbie bliss baby cashmerino

Danielle also brought in this lovely hexagon quilt, all stitched in Liberty fabrics - her favourite

Pop in store and add your name to our list for one of Danielle's classes

Monday, August 22, 2011

my hidden post

I am in Sydney enjoying the Balmain shop and all the joy that comes with it.

Sarah and I indulged in a weekend road trip, collecting a bundle of goodies for the shop, and for me soaking in the beauty of NSW's south coast for the first time...  as a result another love is added to my list...

These pictures are everywhere, but this particular one was on the climb into Kangaroo Valley.

I dream on...

Milton was a fine stop for breakfast...

and after a couple of huge days, back to my digs in Balmain.

This visit my accommodation is a not so attractive 70's apartment block with very recent renovations.  Very minimalist, contemporary and a little soulless, but great facilities, and central to it all here, so I added some flowers and the sweetest bird vase found in Milton...

and voila...

feels like home - just for a week.

Hidden post?  Hubbie doesn't visit the blog (I think), so I can prattle on about my Sydney passion to my heart's content, without him feeling uneasy about where my heart is lying...

Sunday, August 7, 2011

sources of inspiration

In a recent Japanese magazine featuring Liberty of London fabrics, Sania Pell featured with some beautiful little bottles that she had decorated with pieces of Liberty.  So inspired I was by her little collection, I couldn't help but make some myself for the Balmain store. 

I found some old sheet music at the markets on Saturday morning and was able to whip these up in the afternoon.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011


Today has been very much a 'catch up' day for me over here in Perth.  Following on from the effort of establishing the Balmain store, I am now slowly putting all the pieces of life back together here at home so it all functions efficiently (well sort of).
Paperwork is one foe... but I am attempting to make it more pleasurable by organising the room that we allocated in the house to be my office into a snug and efficient (and neat) environment.
I am documenting the room in it's present state as an incentive to keep it as such.  The only clutter onwards will be the addition of more treasures, but all paperwork must now find a hidden home.

Incredible order - but for how long?
I fancy the idea of a random inspiration board, but decided a whole wall suited me better!

a tentative beginning - I love using the fabric tape we have in the Mosman Park shop here,
and some snippets...
now to keep it that way...