As most of you know I’m predominantly a one person business doing all the designing and printing, with one precious machinist to assemble the garments and one precious husband to assist me with heavy lifting, laying out and machine cutting of fabric rolls when required.
In order to restore and refresh, I’ve decided to take a complete month or more away from my business during May into June. So for the first time ever I will shut down the Shop component of the website until my return.
I am here on deck right through April ready to fill orders and working on new designs for later in the year. So if you need anything before mid-June-ish when the Shop will reopen, please go ahead and order now through April before Shop closes on May 1st.
The image at the top of this post is one of a set of three ‘Postcards from Gabo’ – small hanging pieces that I created for an exhibition in our local Mallacoota Art Space called ‘Text in Art’. That was four years ago and I have always intended creating a Shy Albatross design from this original piece so am currently working on a design that will feature food sources rather than threats from longline fishing. The Shy Albatross is Australia’s only endemic albatross and they breed on three remote islands off the Tasmanian coast. We see them here in the S-E corner, around Gabo Island and offshore.
I look forward to filling any orders you might have before I go and will post another back-on-deck blog here in June when the webshop is restored.
Through Covid and rolling lockdowns, I’ve been head down, printing. There are more new designs lurking but ‘Royal Spoonbill’ is the first one I’ve been able to resolve, print and stock.
New designs are very labour intensive. I’m thinking maybe I should just put myself in voluntary design boot-camp lockdown to get more done!
NEW FABRIC COLOURS:
Time for some new colours! I have had Maroon,Silver Grey and Pale Peach specially dyed. Most of my colours are dyed to match colour samples I provide to the fabric manufacturer, which is why they are unique to my range.
The designs below are now on these new colours (Palm Cockatoo and Cicada Flower on maroon; Dragonfly on pale peach and Superb Blue Wren on silver grey …and of course, the new design, Royal Spoonbill) all available in Adult’s and Ladies Fitted styles.
NEW DESIGN ‘Royal Spoonbill’:
Watching the large flock of Royal Spoonbills feeding in the inlet below me has inspired this new design. They use their amazingly adapted spoon-shaped bills to sift and filter the shallow waters for fish, aquatic insects, crustaceans, molluscs and some plant material. Watching them feed is mesmerising but so too is the eccentric wind swept plumes of the breeding males – like some fabulous feathered headdress. I adore the little patch of curved yellow above the eyes, the red eye and matching flick of red at the top of the head.
There are 2 colourways – Silver Grey and Jungle Green – each with a slightly different configuration of the design.
The Silver Grey background colour is one of the new colours specially dyed by my Melbourne fabric supplier. That back design of the male Spoonbill shouted out to be featured on a darker colour so I’ve created a slightly different version on Jungle Green. Clicking on the images below will take you directly to the ADULT T-SHIRTS page where they appear and the LADIES FITTED T-SHIRTS page.
TABLE RUNNERS / ROD HANGINGS:
My Table Runners sell well in our local art gallery – Mallacoota Art Space – so I’ve been encouraged to expand the range of designs and also supply hanging rods. This enables the buyer to hang them as a long, slender Rod Hanging instead of using as a Table Runner, if they prefer.
When you buy one in the Shopping Cart, you’ll be asked if you want your Runner supplied with or without hanging rods.
When Covid arrived and we all went into lockdown, I gathered all my remnant fabric to make masks for my local community as there weren’t any reuseable ones available. Eventually the local sewing group organised to make masks using donated fabric so I gave them fabric and returned to printing. I have since made more but this time for my regular website go-ers. There is a small selection now on my website on Page 1 of Adult T-shirts.
Don’t forget to check out the Specials page as I add discontinued designs throughout the year.
When Covid hit, I spent the initial lockdown time making masks for my community out of leftover printed fabric pieces that I’d kept over the years. Then when they were able to gather again, the local sewing group had mask workshops and I gave them fabric and got back to work.
As Covid and mask wearing seem to be our new normal for a while, I’ve bespoke made some masks to sell on the website.
They appear on page 3 of Adult T-shirts HERE.
Amidst these covid times of uncertainty, I hope I can adorn you in a little visual joy with an original design reborn and more things moved into Specials.
Black-winged Stilt (Himantopus himantopus): Originally printed on a Jacaranda Blue background and discontinued, I have just reintroduced this design to the range on a deeper Ocean Blue background. View this new colourHERE.
Spring Specials: Specials now span two pages on the website. It’s where I move designs that I’m discontinuing. I have to keep making room for new things! Check out all Specials HERE.
A New Colour Design to celebrate 3 years in Mallacoota – a great move both personally and workwise. The photo above was us preparing to head out of Wallaby Gully 3 years ago today – June 19 – to a new start in Mallacoota. Some new customers have only known me as a Mallacoota local but I worked for 25+ wonderful years in the big red shed in Wallaby Gully in the Hunter Valley. It was three times the space but I have easily adapted to my smaller studio space here and happily producing the same amount of work.
There is a fabulous Mallacoota local who only wears black. He loves my designs and enthusiastically encouraged me to try the Wedge-tailed Eagle design on black. So I did…and here it is.
Wedge-tailed Eagle is still also available on light brown, the original colour.
Clicking on the design name below images above will take you directly to page 4 of Adult T-shirts.
Last newsletter I shared our survival through a catastrophic bushfire that ravaged Mallacoota at the end of 2019 into 2020. Now all of us are dealing with a worldwide pandemic and restrictions pertaining to Covid19. 2020 is definitely NOT the year we all anticipated but somehow we must stay safe, make the best of it and hope jobs and the economy are restored.
Mallacoota was just beginning to rise from the ashes to reclaim all that visitation and tourism attention we are so blessed with at holiday times. Folks were planning to flock to our wilderness-rich corner of Victoria for school holidays and Easter, ready to spend much-needed $$$ in our beautiful town. In fact, the campground on the edge of the inlet was already totally full with folks who had arrived early! The 2nd ever Wild Harvest Seafood Festival was planned for this very weekend that I am writing to you. The organisers were hoping to build on last year’s inaugural success and begin to heal some of the town’s wounds of fire affected businesses.
Then Covid19 struck and travel restrictions were imposed. The campground closed and all visitors were asked to leave. The Seafood Festival is now postphoned until September. Mallacoota is quiet now with locals staying inside between essential journeys for food, business and exercise. We check up on each other and deliver to those self-isolating.
With the enforced lack of visitation, the natural environment seems to be taking a huge deep breath. Trees are resprouting, slowly wildlife is returning post-fire. Everything took a hammering in the fire but signs of recovery are everywhere. The removal of destroyed houses that once were homes but now look like flat packs, is underway. We all hope Covid restrictions don’t hold up this process. People who lost their homes need to feel they are moving forward.
Having a home-based workshop means it is business as usual for Alison Green Designs. I am busy printing, catching up on stock and filling orders. Post offices remain open as essential services so orders are going out as usual.
My heartfelt wish is that you all stay safe through 2020. Cheers, Alison
I ended my Christmas newsletter sending heartfelt thoughts to all in fire ravaged areas, little knowing that it was to be Mallacoota’s turn on Tuesday Dec 31! Our New Year became a blur of property protection and chaos. Then we faced a similar fear on Saturday Jan 4 when the sky again turned black, then red, as smoke from other East Gippsland fires swept through on a wind change.
Our house and workshop emerged unscathed, twice! Not much ember attack in this part of town but areas backing onto bush were badly impacted and houses were lost – around 100.
In the collage of images at the top of this email…starting from the left: 1. Checking messages and emergency app with fire gear on waiting for fire to hit. 2. Broken water bowl at my friends’ garden. They lost their house but birds are still visiting the bowls of water we’ve put out amidst the devastation. 3. We got some sleep overnight and woke to a brief dawn that turned quickly and progressively to pitch blackness as thick smoke and ash descended. At 7am it was like nighttime, as the fire devastated houses on the edge of town. 4. The sign outside ‘Salt’, a shop in town owned by Courtney and Mark, who lost their Banksia Mudbrick Units and home. 5. Don the magnificent! Not only does he love my Sooty Owl T-shirt but he used to be props manager for Opera Victoria and has been running the evacuation/relief centre at the community hall, co-ordinating sound, set-up, supplies and aid. When Max and I turned up to help, he said “We are the glue! We just connect people to people, services and goods”. Onya Don, it was a privilege to work beside you for 2 weeks. 6. At the relief centre post-fire, we suddenly realised the sun had emerged! First time thick smoke had dispersed since the fire. Was blissful to feel the sun and breathe clean air again!
We lost power for 2 weeks but electricity has been restored via generators until the road is open from Melbourne for big trucks to replace power poles. Alison Green Designs is up and running again – business as usual. Thank you to everyone who has ordered and have been waiting patiently for Aust Post to restore service, which is not far off.
Please note that any orders received now will be packed straight away but may take a bit longer than usual to arrive. Things are slowly returning to normal and I expect to be able to post in a week’s time.
A recovery committee is forming that will involve a cross-section of community members to facilitate the rebuild and resurrection of Mallacoota, which will emerge stronger than ever. Love this community. Loved it before but totally love the resilience and kindness I have witnessed since the fire. The People’s Republic of Mallacoota salutes you!
Cheers and good wishes for 2020 (the year of good vision!) Alison
National Bird Week 2018 will take place between Monday 22 October and Sunday 28 October 2018.
The celebration of National Bird Week has its origins back in the early 1900s when 28 October was first designated the first ‘Bird Day’. BirdLife Australia organises and promotes Bird Week with the goal of inspiring Australians to take action and get involved in bird conservation efforts.
To recognise and contribute to the work being done by Birdlife Australia towards recovery of endangered bird populations, Alison Green Designs will make double donations from sales of endangered species bird design T-shirts during Bird Week from $3 to $6.
Double donation applies to all T-shirts on the Endangered Species Page of the website and offer expires midnight Sunday Oct 28th.