A May Day

It’s suddenly got cold with the start of May and while I’ve loved the lengthy warm Autumn days, it’s nice to have had some rain.  There are a number of interesting local profiles I’m hoping to put up soon and it’s great that new businesses in the local area are enjoying very busy times.  It’s a sign that our local economy is in good shape and there is latent demand for products and services for local people, by local people.  Speaking of which, former local fashion maven Estelle Michaelides closed her bricks and mortar shop, Micky in the Van, in Ivanhoe a while ago but her bespoke and very ladylike womenswear is now online, with small runs made to order.  I’m currently in love with her Jack Jack Sweater in Kyoto Night.

Image via Micky in the Van

Another sign of a good community is the amount of volunteering that takes place and there are many opportunities to give back by way of children’s sports, kinder and school parents associations, local council committees and local not-for-profit organisations and op shops.  I’ve seen a call out for volunteers at the Diamond Valley Community Support Op-Shop in Diamond Creek and have family and friends who have worked for the CPS Op Shop Rosanna (which has a new manager) and St George’s Anglican Church Op Shop in Ivanhoe East.

Image via CPS Op Shop Rosanna

As for me, in the past 10 years I’ve volunteered for the Winston Hills Pre-School committee, Banyule Arts & Cultural Advisory Committee, in Visitor Services at Heide Museum of Modern Art and will step down later this month when my two-year Board membership ends at Bundoora Homestead Art Centre,  All in all, it’s been a really rewarding experience that has given me opportunities to develop myself personally and professionally, as well as put me in touch with lots of different people in the area and been a good thing to do both in between jobs and in conjunction with paid employment.

It’s perhaps a weekend to head indoors but the Nillumbik Artists Open Studios is on both Saturday and Sunday if you feel like a car trip.  Melbourne Farmers Markets on this weekend include Alphington, Carlton and Coburg.


Art for the heart

I’ve been out on the road today helping Bundoora Homestead Art Centre recruit new staff.  The Homestead is run by Darebin Council and it was lovely to get a peek inside one of their other heritage buildings known as the Darebin North East Community Hub behind the thriving Polaris 3083 development.  You can see it in the background of my picture below – I love the little playground out the back with the coloured pencils made all the more striking against the cloudy skies today.


From there I met my good friend Rina Chia from Fash Forward for lunch in Preston which continues to surprise me with its diversity.  Being the sucker for beautiful food packaging that I am, I couldn’t resist going into Abla’s Patisserie at 260 High Street and buying some of their specialty baklava and Turkish delight.  This award-winning Patisserie feels like a Middle Eastern Brunetti and I love that it’s next door to MKS Spices’nThings supermarket that caters to Indian, Sri Lankan and Islander people – a little bit of everything!  Perhaps that’s what Melbourne now is.img_7011.jpg

A few things to mention today – if you have babies and toddlers in your family – the Banyule Kindergarten Open Day is on tomorrow and it’s a great opportunity to think about feeder kinders into primary schools, which are feeder primary schools into high schools from a long-term perspective.  It’s also interesting to know the closest kinder to you may actually be in an area you hadn’t considered.  My children both went to Winston Hills Pre-School in Viewbank and the bonus of sending them there was not having to travel down Rosanna or Lower Plenty Roads but the back streets of Rosanna and Viewbank.

Image via Facebook

The Eltham Jazz , Food and Wine Festival is also on tomorrow and I hope the rain stays away for this event – at any rate, it will still be pretty warm!  If you are an art lover like me, the Brunswick Studio Walk – an afternoon of art and strolling – is also on tomorrow between 12 – 5 pm.  It sounds like a very civilised way to spend the day.  Enjoy!

Nb. Miss Rosanna is a current Bundoora Homestead Art Centre Board Member