Sunday, November 24, 2013

The Retro Rumble

Another market was on the agenda today. This time, it was the OnWilliam Retro Rumble held at Russell Square in Northbridge. Today's market was probably one of the best I've been to. Not just because of the cool things for sale, but the experience itself was great. My friend and I took the time to have a chat to most of the stall vendors and ended up hearing a lot of their background stories and had plenty of laughs in between. 

Such a beautiful day for some market fun.
Since when was there a park at Russell Square?

Normally I'll just post up photos of everything I saw, but because some of the sellers had such interesting stories behind their items, I thought I might do a bit of show and tell. 

One of the first stalls we went to was for The 100 Loyal Faces Project, run by a lovely lady named Peta Santoro. Peta is in the dog photography business and uses a lot of the images to make products such as calendars, cards, canvases and she even had home-made doggie treats for sale. Too cute. Peta isn't in this business just for herself. No, no. What I liked about The 100 Loyal Faces Project (aside from the gorgeous name of the foundation) was that profits from the sales go towards FOUR different animal organisations. I think it's so lovely that Peta is passionate about so many different organisations that she contributes to as many as she can. Sometimes you can't pick and choose, so you have to have them all... and this is a wonderful example of just that. Check out more of Peta and her amazing work at

I love the quirkiness and bizarreness of things for sale at markets. For example, I found this brooch of the real life lab mouse experiment where they grew a human ear on the poor thing. It kind of creeps me out, but at the end of the day my opinion doesn't matter because people like to express their own ideas and creative genius in their own way. And that's what I like to see :)

One of my favourite stalls from today was from Enid Twiglet, an embroidery artist. Yes, she was a total artist! She stitches her own design and then together with her hubby scans them and put them onto products such as glassware, jewellery, wood, plates and heaps more. These two cute gingers (Enid and her husband that is) are quite the team. She does all the embroidering and he turns it into other amazing items. He stitched together wallets, carved out and made cool pencil boxes, and that's just to name a few. My friend and I loved all the embroidery she did of various body parts, and when we asked her about it, she said that each one was relevant to something that had happened to her. For example, she had pneumonia once and thereafter became quite intrigued by lungs. Another piece of embroidery was of a rib which she had done because she broke hers, and she had done a coccyx because her back always gives her problems. I loved hearing about the little stories behind everything. You'll never know if you don't ask!

There is honestly so much that I could ramble on about but I will make special mention of a cool craft called wet felting. We saw a bunch of stuffed felt toys, but upon closer examination we noticed that there was no continuous seam line around the toy. I was so perplexed as to how the shape was made! we asked the lady who had made the toys and she explained to us the process of using a fluffy/fibrous type of material called merino wool/roving. The roving is soaked with water and a bit of soap. This process is done a few times with layers added on top. Then the wet felt can be placed on a mould. In this case, the lady made moulds in the shape of things like dogs, dinosaurs and other animals. The felt is then placed onto the mould and left to dry. She then stuffed them with some fluff and hey presto, super cute toys! My favourite was the shrimp :)

Here are some of the other cools things we saw for sale :)

We saw a few dresses with comic designs on them!
These are rings which are made from cross sections of wood with pictures of animals hand-painted onto them. Check out
See more of these cool pixel key chains from Pixel Closet.

When it comes to market food, I'm generally pretty lucky with finding a vegan option. Today was definitely another success story. There was a food cart called La Cucaracha which sold banh mi (which technically is Vietnamese) and some Mexican drinks. I was so happy to see that they had a veg option which substituted beans in for the pork. I got them to hold the mayo, and there you have it, a delicious Vietnamese-Mexican fusion. I also got the horchata which is an authentic Mexican drink. It can be made from a few different ingredients such as ground almonds, barley, sesame or rice. This one was made from rice. It was fresh with a bit of a sweetness to it. A nice accompaniment to the Mexican banh mi :)

There were also quite a few popsicle stalls around the square which was great for a nice sunny day like today (although it did end up raining a bit later in the afternoon). By far the best popsicle flavour I saw was the salted coconut and mango. Unfortunately it was not vegan, but I am determined to make my own version one day. 

From start to finish, the day out at the markets was pure awesome. Mark it in your diary for next year. But in all honesty, any event can be an awesome one. It pays to show interest in other people and what they are passionate about :)

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