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Cash Palace Emporium in Leichhardt is closing down, and everything is 50% off the marked price. If you’re a lover of ethnic and vintage textiles, I highly recommend that you race over there as fast as you can. The small store is packed full of treasures, carefully selected by legendary owner, Elaine Townshend.

You might recall that I bought my kantha quilt coat there last year. It’s made from a vintage Indian quilt, which in turn had been handstitched from reclaimed sari fabric. It’s the ultimate in upcycling and I wore it constantly last winter…

There is a wide selection of clothing and semi-precious jewellery on offer…

One-off carpet bags, each constructed from hand quilted fabric…

I bought a vintage 1920’s formal kimono in stunning condition and turned it into a jacket and shawl…

In the back room there are fabrics, cushion covers, bedspreads, quilts, wall-hangings, shawls and more. I may have lost my head a little over these Japanese prints…

I’ve been sewing furoshiki cloths…

…and practising tying them. It’s an indulgent but joyous way to use up scrap vintage kimono silk…

I’ve had a run on juggling balls, so I’ve been sewing squillions more. I adore my friends – they’re always enthusiastic about anything I throw at them (no pun intended)…

Here’s my own personal set – fat origami cherubs made with scrap salvaged from a vintage child’s silk kimono…

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Cash Palace will be open for another eight weeks, so if you’re in the area, do pop in and go treasure hunting. It’s a true family affair – Elaine’s son Luke and daughter Fleur are running the shop while she’s in India, and her granddaughters are often there helping out as well. Say hi for me if you pop in, I’ve been haunting the place!

Cash Palace Emporium
139 Catherine St
Leichhardt NSW
(02) 9569 5977

I know, I know…making juggling balls isn’t your usual Easter craft project, but I’ve had so much fun that I thought I’d share them with you anyway.

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Start with three pieces of scrap fabric, each 10cm wide by 18cm long. Woven or jersey cottons work well.

Fold one piece of fabric in half, right sides together, and stitch along both sides to form a small bag…

Turn it right side out and poke out the corners…

Fill with 75g of rice, lentils or small beans…

Bring the seam lines together at the top to close…

Fold under a small seam allowance and pin…

Now either handstitch the opening closed with a small slip stitch OR carefully machine it closed, making sure not to run over any of the filling (a narrow machine foot helps here, as does making the bag from stretch fabric)…

Make a big bowl of these little pyramid sacks and leave them on the table for folks to play with. Small people love them and they’re relatively painless on impact (I’ve been throwing them at the boys to check).

There’s a lot of research to suggest that learning to juggle is good for your brain – I’m a bit rusty at the moment, but I’ve been practising hard!

Here’s my earlier post on juggling, and my video from 2014…

Have a fun Easter break!

I wrote my original hot cross buns post in April 2009.

Over the past eight years, it’s become one of the most used recipes on our blog. Since that time, we’ve simplified the methodology (ie. I’ve gotten lazier), so that it can now be made by hand with very little kneading, or in a large stand mixer. Two tips: buy a fresh box of yeast before you start, and don’t rush the second rise. And remember, as my friend Jay says, there’s no such thing as too much glaze!

I’ve now updated our old post and hope you’ll give these a go for Easter! ♥

Fig Jam and Lime Cordial Yeasted Hot Cross Buns

One of the things they tell you in a guided meditation is that each breath is unique and if you pay attention, you can learn to notice it. I haven’t quite got there yet.

What I have noticed on my morning walks is that the water in the Iron Cove Bay looks different on every single day. The colours change, the movement of the tides vary, the reflections shift from one moment to the next.

Big Boy and I watch the light bouncing off the waves and marvel at how different it is compared to the previous day, week and month. The very texture of the water can appear to change noticeably over the course of our walk; sometimes the sun will pass over and produce a magical effect that will last mere minutes.

Today (and all the photos in this post are from this morning), the drizzly skies produced light blues and greys…

…and magical sky mirrors…

…and perfect rainbows, both in the clouds and the water…

…and amazing glass-like silver tones…

After more than six months of walking this route, it continues to bring me enormous joy and a blessed sense of calm. It’s the perfect exercise, because it never feels like a chore.

And as I watch people jogging past us, plugged into their headphones, I have to fight the urge to stop them and say “Don’t miss this! It will never look exactly the same again!” ♥

In my kitchen…

…are Amedei 70% dark chocolate medallions, made with the Syrian ma’moul moulds I bought from Harkola. The Amedei tempers better than any other chocolate I’ve ever used, but it’s very expensive. I buy it through lovely Tania at Lario International

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In my kitchen…

…are a set of beautiful blue plates, a gift from my friend Therese…

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In my kitchen…

…is a branch of curry leaves from Maude’s place…

I traded her for sage from our garden. We’ve had an abundant crop this year and have dried a bag’s worth for winter…

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In my kitchen…

…was Korean chigae for dinner, made using our now tried and tested recipe from Adam Liaw’s Asian After Work cookbook…

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In my kitchen…

…is a new Swarovski crystal bracelet, which I made as a “souvenir” of our daily walks by the water…

I wanted to capture the colours in this photo that I took a few weeks ago, but I’m rubbish with paints…

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In my kitchen…

…are hot sauces. I bought a discount pack from Fireworks Foods, but I’m not sure we’ll actually be able to use them all. The scorpion sauce is a bit terrifying…

Somewhat hilariously, the Devil’s Bitch Hot Sauce is the most delicious one we’ve tried to date…

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In my kitchen…

…was a delicious twenty year old Australian Hunter Valley Semillon. The perfect end to a long week…

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In my kitchen…

…was the latest sock pick up from Richard the podiatrist (story here in case you missed it). After Napisan-ing, hot water washing and tumble drying, forty pairs were delivered to the Mustard Seed Op Shop in Ultimo for handing out to the homeless. I kept a few pairs for my own feet and sock monkeys…

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In my kitchen…

…is buffalo scamorza – smoked buffalo mozzarella. It’s the best and most indulgent pizza cheese ever…

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Tell me, what’s happening in your kitchen?

If you’d like to write an In My Kitchen post, please do so by the 10th April and send your link to Liz of Bizzy Lizzy’s Good Things. Thanks for hosting Liz! x

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