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Cnr Anslow & Collier Sts, Woodend, Victoria 03 5427 3772

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Spring tries again......

Our beautiful tree waking up after winter, and the warm breeze and smell of fresh cut grass wafting in through the door of New Leaves this morning, are all helping to keep my mind off the 8 hours of bookkeeping I did yesterday, only to have the file corrupt and disappear!

Never mind. The tax department can wait. Spring is in the air again, and there are 'New Leaves' everywhere.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Summer Dreaming.

Well it seems a jaunt to India is not enough for this bookseller. Winter is fighting back today, and I am dreaming of exotic destinations. Ordering wonderful travel books and stunning books of Australian and International aerial photography has my feet itching for summer again. We've had some fantastic rain, so perhaps a weekend (or a Monday) in the garden will cure me! See you next week.

Image: Scott Douglas Media

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Back to Work!!

India was FABULOUS - as it always is. Down south this time to Kerala, where I have never been. A trip to the tea plantations where my sweetheart's father used to work. A relaxing night or two on the backwaters, floating by rice fields and water buffalo, and a wonderful time catching up with my sweetheart's brother and seeing where he began his life.

And finally, to celebrate my birthday, a (not so) surprise bottle of Champagne which my sweetheart remembered to pick up at the Duty Free Shop, 2 weeks early! That's love.

Check out the company cghEarth, who are the leaders in sustainable travel experiences in India. Their establishments are all run responsibly on solar power, and sustainable energy, they have rainwater collection and recycling systems, they will shortly be able to recycle and responsibly process 100% of their own waste, and their philosophy is strongly rooted in the ancient Ayurvedic tradition. www.cghearth.com Definitely worth a moment of your time. Enjoy!

Images (until I can extract the camera from my sweetheart), Wikipedia & CGHEarth.com

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Mad for India

My forthcoming trip to India, to stay with the brother of my sweetheart, is quickly approaching. In my excitement to get back to this brilliant, crazy, exciting, mad, thoughtful place, I have been re-examining some of the Indian reference books I have in stock. Not to mention the Lonely Planet, whose latest edition of 'India', comes out in the first week of October.

1 & 2. Ganges: Along Sacred Waters. Pavan (Thames & Hudson)
3. Indian Wisdom: 365 Days. Follmi (Thames & Hudson)
4. India Panorama. Steiner (EditionPanorama)
5, 6 & 7. Made In India. Winata & Darmon (Chronicle)

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Sweet Spring

Spring has arrived in Woodend - and I for one am hoping it sticks around. The breeze is gentle, and the sweet smell of blossom is in the air. Here's a branch my sweetheart salvaged for me this morning.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Father's Day

Need some ideas for Father's Day? How about one of the following. A bloke's cookbook, a BBQ special, or a new, fantastic breakfast recipe book to liven up your family weekends? How about an activity book - 'Things to Do With Dad' for little kids (and big ones!). Or the history of Flight, Daft Cars, or the sinking and final discovery of the HMAS Sydney. Dad can even create his own cars and trucks with our Car, Truck and Emergency Vehicle Origami Set. Go on! Keep him entertained.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Faraway Tree

So what have I been up to over the last few days? Apart from receiving a huge amount of fabulous new books, I have also received some fabulous games, puzzles and crafty toys from my favourite French Company, which I will blog about soon. Not to mention some great eco-friendly fun outdoor games for adults and kids alike. Watch this space!

But most importantly (for me), its my godson's 4th birthday in a week or so, and he is absolutely crazy about the Faraway Tree series at the moment. At the end of last week I got a cry for help from his mum, who needed cake decorations for the party.

She (he) requested Moonface, Silky, Saucepan Man and the Angry Pixie.

So the scissors, glue, cardboard and textas came out, and I set to work.

And here is the result. All packaged up on Tuesday and sent to England where I hope my godson will be happy to receive them. Perhaps Enid Blyton could have done better.... what do you think?

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Our First Author!

It was our pleasure to have Dee White at New Leaves this morning to chat with us about her latest book 'Letters to Leonardo'. It was a real privilege to be able to find out more about Dee's process when writing the book, and learn about the many years of work it takes to reach the final product. We also discussed the difficult themes of the book, and how the main character Matt deals with finding out the truth about his mentally ill mother, whom he had thought dead.

Dee also read excerpts from the book, and no one could wait to start reading their own copies - which Dee kindly signed.

There are still a few signed copies of the book at New Leaves. So if you missed the talk, why not drop in and see what its all about. Or better still, if you want Dee to visit your school, or organisation, she can be reached through us at New Leaves.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Letters to Leonardo

Letters to Leonardo - by Dee White

On his fifteenth birthday, Matt receives a card from his mother - the mother he grew up believing was deceased. Feeling betrayed by both his parents, Matt's identity is in disarray and he begins writing letters to Leonardo da Vinci as a way to sort out the 'mess' in his head. Through the connections he makes between his own life and that of Leonardo, Matt unravels the mystery that his life has become and discovers his mother's secrets and the reasons behind his abandonment.

Tomorrow - Saturday, at 11am Dee White will be at New Leaves to read from her new young adult novel. She'll tell us about the process involved in writing the book, and even sign copies! Come and join us for our first Author event.

Hope to see you here!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Beauty from the Kitchen?

Here's our latest delivery. Gregory Landsman is a beauty advisor to some of the world's best known Supermodels. In this invaluable little tome, he gives us his secret formulas - all made from things you would find in your kitchen!
Cheap, easy and natural - ingredients such as milk, yoghurt, honey, eggs, are all used to create effective equivalents of expensive branded cleansers, toners and scrubs. Couldn't we all do with a secret weapon that won't cost the earth, or the Earth? Just $7.95 girls (plus the cost of your groceries).

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Post Salvation

Over the weekend I discovered these beautiful solid wood photo frames, and quickly snapped them up for New Leaves. They are made from recycled fence posts, and the workmanship is just superb. They are beautifully finished with natural oils, avoiding nasty chemicals and stains. This allows the beauty of the wood to really stand out, and its better for you, and the planet!

Each one is unique and there are various woods available. They come in all the standard photo sizes, and some not-so-standard sizes for your tricky images. They are supplied with a stand which allows vertical or horizontal display, and they are also equipped to hang on a wall, in either portrait or landscape style. Also, the backing on the glass section is acid-free professional framing quality card, so your photos won't deteriorate or become damaged.

My favourite ones hint at their utilitarian past, with old nail holes and railing joins still visible. Others are completely flawless. I am SO happy with the price too! Compared to some frames, crafted SO MUCH LESS responsibly, with new materials, in factories, imported from far away dragging, dragging heavily on the earth, these are amazingly reasonable, and so much more beautiful!

Prices start at $28, with the frame for a standard photo around $38-$40 depending on the width of the wood used. A very wide frame for a 6x4 (standard) photo would be around $60, and the stunning stunning wide frames for an 8x10 or A4 photo are between $90 and $99. So you can avoid IKEA, and get beautiful, solid, unique frames for $28, $99 or anywhere in between.

What a beautiful way to reduce waste, and create new from old! We could always post them to you if you don't live nearby!

Friday, July 31, 2009


I am so excited to have in stock Journals made by Rebound Books! They are handmade using the covers of old hardcover books. What a delight to discover pages from the original titles interspersed throughout! The new blank pages within the journals are 100% TREE FREE - made from recycled denim.

Do yourself and the earth a favour and let your creative energies flow in one of these beautiful light-on-the-planet journals.

No waste, no waste! Rebound Books craft the spines of their hard cover books into these classic bookmarks.

And to top off their beautiful eco-friendly range, are these funky, retro gift cards. handmade from recycled record covers, and presented with hand-made envelopes crafted from old sheet music. All wrapped up in biodegradable packaging!

We'll also be stocking the Rebound Books 2010 diaries when they hit the shelves in October. Check out their website at www.reboundbooks.net

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Sweet Dreams

Well after a weekend of hard work, I finished my first sewing project since high school. A surprise doona cover for our bedroom. But with no consultation with my sweetheart who was away - would the pink be too much for him? What a risk!!

The beginnings of the front cut and matched on the floor.

The 'safer' reverse of the cover, for emergency 'blokey' relief (HARDLY blokey, but at least not so much pink!). I am secretly hoping we don't have to revert to this side, which, like the front, is edged in a light khaki green to match our curtains.

A Relief!! He loves it. This was taken this morning - and there's no full shot because he is still in it! Fast asleep, where I left him to come to the bookshop.

So what possessed me? Well, owning a bookshop can be a dangerous exercise. Inspiration is everywhere. I had no idea there were so many beautiful sewing and crafting books around these days.
(image French General Home Sewn by Kaari Meng)

Kaari Meng's French General brand have a few books on the market. This beautiful 'Home Sewn' above is full of stunning French inspired home decor and soft furnishings. The emphasis is on beautiful florals and vintage linens. Stunning.

With a few on my fabulous customers in mind, including the girls from RicRacSew who do my gift cards, and often visit New Leaves with their latest creations, I searched through Kathy Doughty and Sarah Fielke's 'Material Obsession Two', which is full of stunning stunning quilt designs, tips, and patterns. Perfect for the quilting beginner AND the experienced professional in need of some fresh inspiration.

(images Material Obsession Two by Kathy Doughty & Sarah Fielke)

With all this inspiration on the shelves around me, and an old sewing machine left to me by my Granny, how could I resist?

What's next......................?

Well there's always Amy Butler's Wide Leg Lounge Pants in that old Thomas the Tank Engine Doona Cover I found at the Op Shop for $3.
Or this bedside organiser - also by Amy Butler.

(images Amy Butler's In Stitches by Amy Butler)

I could try Lotta Jansdotter's Simple Sewing, Sew and Stow, or either of Lotta, or Amy's books on sewing for babies and toddlers - equally gorgeous. And then there's Anna Maria Horner's 'Seams to Me'. The list is endless!

Or, for Winter Woodend mornings, which are sure to continue for a while yet, perhaps I should learn to crochet.

Cup of soup anyone?

(image The Crochet Dude's Designs for Guys by Drew Emborsky)

What are you crafting? And which books are your favourite places for inspiration?

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

New Stock - Great Prices!!

I have been lucky enough to find over my weekend (meaning Monday) a fantastic new supplier. I have hand picked my first delivery of stock from the warehouse and am unpacking it into the store today. The prices are AMAZING, and I just wanted to share a few images with you.

Feeding my desire for all things Scandinavian, and even vaguely 70's, this beautiful paperback interior/design title usually retails in The States and so by the time we get it here. we can expect to pay around $50. And we are lucky to have it at less than half that - $24

(images Scandinavian Modern by Magnus Englund & Chrystina Schmidt)

More on interiors - this great hardback on one hundred great treatments for vertical surfaces. There are magical painting ideas - wild patterns and even fabric and other options. The instructions are step-by-step and detail what you need, and how to go about your plans.....
There are heaps of new ideas - beautiful kids wonderlands, serene adult hideaways and even suggestions and inspiration for creating walls and screens where there were none before.

Between $50 and $60, you might think, but we have it for $35!

(images Wall to Wall by Linda Barker)

(image A Light History of Hot Air by Peter Doherty)
For the history buffs and those interested in something a little quirky, there's Peter Doherty's 'A Light History of Hot Air'. This beautiful hardback retails for $32.95 but you can get it here for just $18.

(image Once Upon a Time in the North by Philip Pullman)

Kids - and the more grown up Philip Pullman fans? This stunning little hardback is another episode from the universe of the His Dark Materials trilogy. It includes as part of the story, the very first meeting between great friends Lee Scoresby, the Texan balloonist, and Iorek Byrison, the armoured bear. Also inside, is a board game - Peril of the Pole - to play along with the story.
The beautiful cloth bound, collectible volume is usually $29.95, but we have it for $16.

There's HEAPS more in this delivery. From cooking to knitting, travel to classic fiction, ideas for a sustainable future - and thoughts from the Dalai Lama.

Feeling SO lucky here at New Leaves to be able to share some of these titles with you at such GREAT prices. What a fab weekends work!

And meanwhile, back at the range, my Tuesday deliveries just arrived, so there's 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, SEVEN more boxes of goodies and August releases to get my hands on.

Every time I get a delivery, it feels like Christmas (and that's almost daily). What do you hope to find in your parcels when they arrive?

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Its been a while ladies and gentlemen, between.... I mean posts of course.
Here's me promising to try harder.

The shop has changed quite a bit over the last few months - keeping it interesting and eclectic, with some gorgeous new stock.
So here's a sneak preview.

The sideboard and the mirror here are soon to go and live with one of my regular customers - I'll be very sorry to see them go...... but they will make way for something new and FABULOUS!!
Stay tuned.

The cooking section.... to whet your appetites.
Vietnamese, Spanish, Italian, Moroccan, Turkish, Sri Lankan, Sicilian.
Anyone Hungry?

Some gorgeous Leroy bookends sure to entice any young reader to choose a story from his book selection.

The girls at ricracsew make these beautiful cards out of scraps of stunning fabric. Florals, Ginghams, and even Alphabet Fabrics. Check out their blog at http://ricracsew.blogspot.com

My current favourite. I often gaze at this one imagining my retreat by the seaside, or in the rainforest - where all my days are spend designing, reading and learning. BLISS!

(Image couresty of Shed Chic by Sally Coulthard)

Enjoy the rest of your weekends! Mine will be spend sewing a beautiful doona cover to make my home a little more 'Shed Chic'.
Photos next week!