Armageddon Cake

Where: 7 McLarty Place Geelong

When: Thursday to Saturday 7pm to 11pm

Web: www.facebook.com/pages/Armageddon-Cake

What more can we say….CAKE….CAKE…and more CAKE. We just had to go and try this little gem of a place our selves as we had heard so much about it. And we didn’t try it just once, I went back the next week and did it again. Yes, that’s just how much we like CAKE. Nat is a huge sweet tooth, me, I love a bit of sweet and sour and I was not disappointed.

First time around we had the boys in tow, so we opted for the tasting plates, well we ordered two, as we just had to try everything on the menu. And not only that, it came with a plate of equally delicious sweet sauces and condiments to go with it. I could have eaten a whole bowl of the special lemon curd, but decided to restrain myself and have it on all of my cakes.

The menu at Armageddon is short and sweet, well it is CAKE. With 6 staples to select from plus a few weekly specials there is something to tempt everyone. With a cheesecake, decadent chocolate brownie and an apple pie, there are also cakes for the vegans and gluten free diners as well, along with the weekly pudding, there is something for everyone. The tasting plates offer you a half serve of each cake you select or you can go for a very generous full serve that is perfect to share as well. I think the cheesecake rocks, but the brownie is pretty decadent too, especially when you slather it in house made raspberry sauce and vanilla bean ice cream. Yum!

Armageddon Cake

To find Armageddon look for the electrified blue bike and head down the lane, a little world of sweet delights await you along with speciality tea and coffee. It’s a great place to head out to for a sweet bite to eat, to sit and relax and to catch up with friends for a chat. The inviting atmosphere and friendly staff make you feel very welcome. Quirky vintage decor and fun walls give you plenty to look at or pick up a book and have a laugh. If you can’t stay you can grab your cake to go. Takeaway can be arranged or you can phone through an order. But if you are after something special for an event, Armageddon can organise an amazing cake for you. Just ask.

We really love Armageddon and i’m sure you will too. Who doesn’t love to eat CAKE…

A Piece of Cloth + Textile Treasures

Who: Jen Hyland AKA ‘A Piece of Cloth’ & Rachel Hine Textile Treasures

Where: Studio 9/100 Lower Paper Mill Road, Fyansford

When: Studio open Wednesday to Saturday 10am to 4pm

Web: www.apieceofcloth.com.au  and  whereisrachelhine.blogspot.com.au

Shop: At the studio and Online here and here

There is something magical that happens after an encounter with people who have passion, fire and drive. These encounters inject you with energy and spark and help you to see the world in new and interesting ways. Oh! Hello Geelong recently had the pleasure of spending time with two super amazing and inspiring women. Jen Hyland and Rachel Hine were lovely enough to welcome us into their newly opened Fyansford studio where they run A Piece of Cloth and Rachel Hine Textile Treasures.

The space is part studio and part shop,  and  if all goes to plan, this gorgeous space will also house a cafe and textile/printing/diy  + crafty workshops in the near future too – how exciting! Anyhoo, before we begin telling you about the wonderful adventure it was to visit Jen and Rachel, just a little disclaimer: there are so many details about this two-woman operation that are worthy of their own individual posts, so this is really just a taste! Enjoy…we certainly did!

Cloth + textile treasures…

For many people a piece of cloth is, well…just a piece of cloth; right? Well not for us two textile + pattern lovers and definitely not for Jen Hyland , who lives and breathes fabric, this is certainly not the case! A Piece of Cloth is Jen’s textile design and vintage textiles business, which sources and creates and sells fabrics that are not so easy to find, especially here in Australia. Jen’s collection includes original American fabrics dating back to the 1860s (so much history) right up to more recent decades. Jen also has a selection of vintage American quilts; some have been loving repaired while others are as they were when they were wrapped around the shoulders of the last owner!

Whilst American fabrics form the majority of Jen’s collection, she also has some Australian and European pieces as well as fabrics from Africa, India, Indonesia, Japan and Vietnam (to list just a few)! Jen has travelled to the US and across the world in search of the best fabrics and most stunning prints to add to her collection, which is beautifully displayed in the Fyansford studio (more of that later, very exciting!).

For Jen, what makes a truly great fabric is a good, strong and interesting print and something that has colour! Jen is also attracted to fabrics that have historical significance. One style of fabric that particularly caught Oh! Hello Geelong’s attention was the American feedsack fabrics. Feedsacks started life as a sack holding basic foodstuffs such as flour and sugar and were later used by women to make dresses and other textile items – so resourceful! These fabrics are soft and pretty and considered collectors’ items! If you’re interested in learning more about the history behind some of these fabrics, Jen has an encyclopaedic knowledge of this field and shares this with others from her studio, on her blog and at public speaking events such as the Australian Quilters Association.

Jen also creates a stunning collection of her own cushions and quilts, all hand quilted and seriously divine.  They are available from some fab stores including Ballyhoo and of course at the new studio shop.

Rachel Hine is the endearingly quirky and lovely lady who works out of her little studio nook in the wonderful space of A Piece Of Cloth. Her background is in Tapestry – she has a fine arts degree in tapestry weaving and her studio is littered with gorgeous weaving works in progress, embroidered floor rugs and the sweetest tiny tapestries. Rachel, also a textile lover / collector makes the most adorable little fabric fox friends and jewellery. Her works are beautifully detailed with intricate embroidery a mix of lovely colourful vintage and new fabrics and lot’s of sweet personality. Also a talented illustrator, Rachel has illustrated and designed some beautiful fabrics of her own, she is one busy lady, with two little ones she still manages to make and sell her works at markets such as Moriac Makers and Growers  +  Bay and Beyond Market as well as online in her Etsy store, Ballyhoo in Geelong and in the studio, of course.

As well as falling completely in love with Jen and Rachel’s collections, Oh! Hello Geelong has developed a slight obsession about the girls’ Fyansford studio. The building is heritage listed and started life in 1876 as a paper mill (the studio itself being the boiler room), later becoming an ice factory and then an explosives factory during the war (pretty awesome!).

What makes this building extra special is that it still has many of its original features including stunning beams and old machinery and the girls have done a great job preserving the historical feel of space through simple and tasteful styling. Oh! Hello Geelong loved Jen’s custom made tables, bentwood chairs, fruit boxes used for displays and her stunning quilts and vintage flags hanging on display giving a warm and cosy log cabin feel. In many ways, a visit to the studio is like taking a step back in time; it’s like our own G-town time machine! For more information about the historical significance of the space check out Jen’s blog.

A bright future…

Oh! Hello Geelong feels very privileged to be one of the first visitors to this little piece of textile heaven. Jen and Rachel have all the ingredients to make this Fyansford studio a destination that locals and non-locals alike will travel far and wide to visit. We are just so glad to see such a special old building placed in the hands of two inspiring and very special ladies! The future looks bright for this old paper mill!

Thank you Jen and Rachel for sharing your time with us x

PS: if you ever get to the studio (which you absolutely must), ask Jen and Rachel about Button Hill (such a cute story!) And if you’re lucky you might even get to sneak a peak at the precious vintage photo albums they discovered on site! They are full to the brim with amazing old photos of Geelong folk and images of how this ole’ town once looked.

Love Laura + Penny

The Mill Markets (North Geelong)

The Mill Markets (North Geelong)

Where: 3 Mackey Street, North Geelong

When: 7 days a week 10am – 6pm

Web: www.millmarkets.com.au

We recently enjoyed yet another visit to The Mill Markets’ North Geelong site. And as always, Oh! Hello Geelong came down with a severe case of feverish excitement & hyperventilation. For many folks in Geelong, The Mill Markets have become somewhat of an institution, an amazing drawcard for this old town & the perfect way to entice our super savvy vintage shopping Melbournite friends to visit us here in our adopted home town. And for those who are yet to venture to this vintage recycled industrial furniture and objects melting pot, be prepared to be completely overwhelmed, the scale of the North Geelong site is nothing short of epic.

A G-Town institution…

Since its birth in 1985, The Mill Markets has grown from one lone site in Geelong West to a business that is located in Newcomb, the Geelong Waterfront, North Geelong, Ballarat, Warnambool and Daylesford. Each site houses a seriously massive and fabulous range of unique collectables, antiques and vintage clothing which is put together by individual stall holders who have an eagle eye for discovering fabulous treasures from the past.

North Side: the best of the best…

For Oh! Hello Geelong, whilst we love all The Mill Markets sites, we have a pretty big soft spot for the North Geelong site. Sadly we didn’t catch The Mill Markets’ man himself Ian Ballis however we were greeted by the friendly vintage enthusiast Nathan who allowed us to explore, snap pictures and adore to our hearts’ content.

What makes the North Geelong site even more special and fun to visit is the recent opening of a second store right next door to the original building! The new space follows the traditional Mill Markets concept; a multiple range of individual stalls offering an eclectic range of vintage clothing, antiques and collectables, including a very awesome juke box! The old space offers an immense range of industrial furniture + machinery and quirky vintage collectables, all from Ian’s own collection.

Here is a short list of the goods we thought were pretty fantastic:

Antique ladders, pigeonholes / cube shelving, massive work benches, trestle tables and display cabinets, old school desks, big wooden and plastic alphabet letters, wooden crates, glass jars, kitschy kitchen goods, suitcases, industrial pendant lights, vintage gig posters and art by David Bromley (which is scattered everywhere throughout both buildings).

Also there are loads of Mantiques (man + antiques): an old traffic light, rope ladders, golf clubs and tennis racquets, tool boxes & printing machines.

Industrial collectables: an endless number of vintage tin signage, industrial washing machine and ironing board, an old weaving contraption and theatre lights.

One-offs: an old church alter (we’re not lying), a pianola and a hot air balloon basket!

The Mill Markets are something really special (the people from The Block definitely think so) and we are proud as punch that we can tell everyone that it all started in our new hometown! And pretty chuffed that we can visit them any time we like too – hooray!

Love Penny + Laura

Oktoberdee & Herman’s Cousin Harriet.

Herman’s Cousin Harriet (& Oktoberdee studio)

Where: 171 Moorabool Street, Geelong

When: Mon to Fri 10 to 5 & Sat 10 – 3

Ph: 5222 1598

Web: Oktoberdee & Hermans Cousin Harriet

You know that daggy old adage, “good things come in small packages”? Weelll,  for Oh! Hello Geelong this saying definitely came to mind during our adventure to meet the super clever lady behind fab local brand Oktoberdee and her oh so adorable store Herman’s Cousin Harriet. For such a teeny tiny space, this sweet little gift store and vintage boutique is overflowing with precious pieces for people we love (and for us too!) as well as a fab selection of gorgeous Oktoberdee bags and accessories. While being small makes this Geelong gem a little harder to find than others…for us it’s the geography which makes us love this store  / studio all the more.

OKTOBERDEE

A stitch in time…

When you visit Herman’s Cousin Harriet you’re going to meet the store’s owner Lauren Ferry, a woman who lives and breathes her dreams; so inspiring. Lauren is a Geelong lass who spent her uni days studying Industrial Design at RMIT. After learning her trade, Lauren began creating jewellery and neckwear under the fun name Oktoberdee . Whilst making her early Oktoberdee creations, Lauren discovered she loved working with leather and vintage scarves and had a flair for “up-cycling”. From this Lauren started making some truly unique pieces including the wonderful Cravelle (which is a fabulous cravat style leather/scarf design for women – we were wowed). However, the real jewel in the Oktoberdee crown is Lauren’s range of leather and fabric handbags and purses that are a treat for the eyes and so so lovely to touch!

So with a collection of pieces that needed to be showcased, Lauren decided to open up her Moorabool Street studio and created a store of her own. And so six years ago Herman’s Cousin Harriet was born!

What is really amazing about Lauren’s story is that for the first four years of Herman’s Cousin Harriet’s life when she was also producing her designs for Oktoberdee, Lauren was ALSO managing a nightclub in town; move over Wonder Woman! What Lauren came to realise though is that she was feeling too exhausted to be creative and decided she needed to hang up her disco boots and focus her energies on her designs and the store.

Oktoberdee and lots lots more…

Of course the Oktoberdee collection has a strong presence in Herman’s Cousin Harriet, you can even see into Lauren’s design studio which is tucked away at the back of the store. Her newest bag collection Whimsy is just so beautiful and much pieces in the the accessory range have been added to our list of wants! How adorable is this brooch !…..Anyhoo, as well as Oktoberdee, you can find Victoria Mason Jewellery,  Emily Green necklaces, Bison Book Binding journals, An April Idea stationary, Darling Clementine woodland cushions and Adventure Soap Sticks. The store also has a range of quirky and unique glass jewellery and gift pieces by Mount Martha glassblower Sarah Dingwall. Lauren’s range is thoughtfully selected and includes items she loves and would love to buy for herself and her friends.

While we loved the stationery and Oktoberdee treasures, Oh! Hello Geelong also fell in love with Lauren’s collection of vintage clothing and shoes for gals and gents. Each piece is in great condition and beautifully displayed, especially the shoes (you’ll know what we mean when you go in). Lauren spends many days and hours travelling the countryside in search of perfect vintage pieces to add to her collection, what a fun job! If only those flouro orange shoes were in our size! Gah!

We also went slightly mad over Lauren’s feature wall, which to the naked eye is just an old brick wall but is actually wallpaper, very cool!

OKTOBERDEE

Making its mark on the world…

We at Oh! Hello Geelong are certainly not the first people to recognise how special Herman’s Cousin Harriet and Oktoberdee (and most importantly Lauren) really are. The store and Lauren made it to the pages of (our beloved) Frankie magazine back in 2008 when it featured in the “I love my shop” section. Meanwhile the Oktoberdee range, which is available for sale online, has 35 stockists nationwide and has even made its way to New Zealand. Lauren has also done collaborations with designers Leah Duncan and Marisa Redondo which pretty fabulous! And just when you thought she would have no time to sleep, Lauren can also be found selling her designs at markets across the state! We are so glad that this small little hive of activity and joy is creating big waves here in Geelong and beyond! We love Oktoberdee and Herman’s Cousin Harriet!!!

PS: Thanks for a fun lunchtime Lauren xx

PPS: If like us your navigation skills aren’t fabulous; you can find Herman’s Cousin Harriet by walking up Moorabool Street (not far from from frank & dolly’s) and walking through the arcade!!! Keep your eye out for the ridiculously cute store sign out the front.

PPPS. We must not forget to mention that the business / store frontage and studio space of Herman’s Cousin Harriet is up for sale (so that Lauren can focus her energies on the future empire that is Oktoberdee!) We have every crossable crossed that someone equally as special and passionate about beautiful things buys this gem of a business and keeps this quirky little place alive!

Love Penny + Laura