I lived on Lygon Street on Carlton for the first 25 years of my life. It was a great place to grow up as it had a wonderful variety of small businesses run by people of assorted nationalities. The Lebansese barber shop on Elgin street, FuLu's Chinese restaurant on Rathdowne street and I particularly remember the Continental (Italian) Milk Bar, run by the Greco family on Lygon street.
My mum would shop there at least once a week and I remember Mr Greco, his wife and children coming around from the counter to pick me up and say hi. I would get a scoop of vanilla ice cream on a cone and that's all I remember, but the hospitality is still very clear in my mind (so is the crush I had on Mr Greco's son Luciano in the early 1980's, I thought he was very Simon Le Bon).
Bluebird Espresso at 134 Johnston Street in Collingwood has been open for 3 months or so now and is gaining a loyal following. The welcoming nature of the staff there reminds me of an old Lygon street cafe, where the owner would sit down for a chat during quieter times.
The coffee is amazing and the menu is simple yet delicious. My buddy and I went there today and I had the Ricotta & Honey on toasted Turkish bread, it was perfection on a plate. The ricotta was fresh, the texture was perfect and the honey tasted like it came straight from a farm, not factory.
My buddy had a toasted sandwich, made with Turkish bread filled with fresh tomato, bocconcini and ham that looked so good even I was tempted to try it! (I don't eat pork or pork products).
Bluebird Espresso is open from 8am to 4pm Tuesday to Saturday and is only a short walk from Victoria Park train station.
When you do pop in, tell the handsome owner/barista that Peta Pledger sent you.
The reason this blog post bears this title, is because I was pleasantly surprised that my client for this garment, Juanita chose to wear the dress with minimal jewellery and minimal tizz. The result? Perfect for the occasion it was made for!
Juanita supplied the shot blue/purple 100% pure silk for this dress. Upon advice from the retailer she bought it from, I did not pre-shrink the fabric and I did not use any water or steam during the construction and pressing process.
I lined the bodice in blue 100% Viscose for comfort and the skirt in a matching bemsilk lining.
After alot of consideration and discussions with other dressmakers, I decided not to bone the bodice as I wanted to avoid that bridesmaid/1980's party frock look. The bodice is fused in a medium weight iron on (I can hear some of you gasp at that) interfacing and the invisible zip is in the centre back.
We agreed on a rounded 'collar' around the top of the dress and decided against a matching belt.
The Paper Plane sterling silver necklace is by Australian jewellery designer and maker, Victoria Mason. Please check out her site, her work is delightful.