Markets and Multiculturalism in Melbourne

How was your weekend? Did you celebrate Earth Hour? I did, by hanging out with the cool crowd at Lou‘s place… at least I think it was the cool crowd. For all I know they could have been wearing polar fleece, as it was a bit hard to see in the candlelight! I took this pic before I left the house – I wore a green jacket in honour of the event (and to make up my Me-Made-March quota).

After hanging out in the dark on Saturday, it was time for some sunshine today, and Melbourne really put on a beautiful show. How could I resist heading out?
First stop was the Finders Keepers market at Docklands (yes, that means lots of photos for you!!). I usually hate Docklands because it’s nearly always windy and my non-existent orientation skills inevitably get me lost, but I checked the map a zillion times before going and there was just a light breeze, although you can’t tell that from this picture!!

I’m wearing a Mexican dress I remade,
with ancient Tsumori Chisato boots that my friend once described as formal gumboots.

As I’d expected, the Finders Keepers market was packed! We were too late for the musical performances but I did like this cheery origami installation over the stage area.

There were, of course, many lovely crafty creative things to gawk at, like these adorable baby shoes by a brand called “all about Heidi”. I’ll definitely keep them in mind the next time I need baby presents.

These cute cup-and-saucer bird feeders attach to poles that you can stick into your garden bed. I don’t think they’d be quite sturdy enough (or large enough) for the naughty birds that I know, but dainty little seed-nibblers might like them. Both the shoes and the bird feeders will be available on this site in a little while.

These lampshades are all made from vintage fabric. The one on the very bottom left is a Very Hungry Caterpillar lamp!

Some cool new ways of wearing crochet, which you can see more of here.

Some cute animal brooches… it looks like the foxes are after the rabbits…

While I’m inclined to think the craft world is going through owl overkill at the moment, these glazed ones are really very charming.

The foxes, rabbits, owls and more are all for sale here.

If I needed cool Australian souvenirs, these pillow cases with a kangaroo and a cockatoo print would fairly much top my list. In fact I was sorely tempted to buy them for myself.

They’re by Madeleine Stamer.

And in case you still thought macrame was an ugly 70s craft…

Yes, you may want to reconsider that notion.

Aren’t these super cool?

I particularly like the green bracelet with the silver beads, but they’re all fairly fantastic.

They’re by a brand called Sollis. Enter the website at your credit card’s peril.

Amazingly, I managed to show self-restraint and walked away from the market with nothing but a handful of business cards from all the lovely ladies who I’ve featured here. My friend Jun and I walked and trammed to Federation Square to catch the Viva multicultural festival. Before we’d even set foot into the main part of the square we were stopped by a film crew from channel 31 who were asking people what they thought of the festival and multiculturalism in Melbourne.

I suppose that walking along wearing a Mexican dress, shoes by a Japanese designer, carrying an army coat I bought in Paris (5 Euro!!), gabbing away in Japanese and being half Asian myself, I was kind of the ideal candidate to comment… except for the fact that I had not actually been to the festival yet. Details, details…

Anyway, channel 31, if you happen to be reading this, we did indeed enjoy the festival! After all, with performances, market stalls, food and drink all on offer under a sunny sky, how could we have had a bad time?