Saturday, 23 July 2011

How to take the head off a Barbie doll

Maybe you are a Mum needing to mend Barbie after a "haircut". Maybe you are a fastidious collector wanting to make yourcollector doll pristine again. Or maybe you just need to replace Barbie's head with a lizard head. You will need to get Barbie's head off first, and it's not that easy. This post is for you!

Here's the photo you need - it shows what's going on inside the neck attachment. As you can see, we have a round base, then a "T" shaped hook. Barbie's head fits very snugly over these, and to get the head off intact, you will need to ease it over both obstacles.

The trick is to boil Barbie's head! Dunk the whole head into hot water to soften the plastic, and you will find it has just enough give to get it off. You could also try a warm hair dryer, especially if you don't want to spoil Barbie's 'do'. This should result in an intact head and a body. Special note - apparently Ken's head it quite differently attached, and this method won't work. That's gotta be a metaphor.

Once you have Barbie's head off, you can do fun stuff like this!

Friday, 15 July 2011

Nice day for a Drop Day

It's the end of the school holidays, and I've challenged the kids to a Drop Day. That's like a Drop Night, something they do at Scouts (or at least, at Venturers, the older age group).

Here's how a Drop Night works. A leader drives you to an unknown location, an
d you have to make your way back to the scout hall. Where a delicious supper is usually waiting, of course. The participants use public transport, navigation skills, any maps they can find, and their general charm to complete the task.

Drop Day is similar, but 1. It happens in the day 2. Your mum drops you off 3. She picks somewhere nice.

It was a chilly, chilly morning when
we set out, but we weren't bothered. The forecast promised 15 degrees and sunny, which is an excellent winter day.

Jonathan (red) and Thomas (black) try to puzzle out where they are. Hint:
it's Prahran Market. Other hint: they'd heard a train whistle before I'd parked the car, so the transport will be no mystery.

Things we didn't know about Drop Day - we didn't think it would include ice cream! Fritz Gelato at Prahran Market has a terrific range. Catriona smugly enjoys her pre-Drop treat.

Mum's Drop Day treat - Cointreau and chocolate macaron. Lovely coffee, but the mac - oh my, it's hollow and dry inside. Try harder, bakers.

"So can we go now?" ask the boys. Off they went. They raced home, and made it in around an hour. Catriona took way longer, travelled to the city, browsed at Melbourne Central, and had Lord of the Fries for lunch.

I stayed and enjoyed the market. I met a pastrychef who used to work at Laduree in Paris (this is why you must say hello to everyone you meet!). He told me how to fix my flaky macaron lids - put some water UNDER the baking paper. Whoa. And tap the tray to get the bubbles out, but not one big bang for the whole tray, it needs to be more personal.

Thursday, 7 July 2011

Fashion in Paris 2011

I'm often asked "So, Pauline, since you have been to Paris, what are the fashion looks we must be ready for?".

Actually, no, people tend not to come to me for fashion advice.

But here's some anyway! I did take a few fashion photos, and I can tell you just what you will be needing this summer.

First of all, awesome printed fabrics. This cool skirt has tigers on it!

Cardigans are hot (we always knew they were cosy...)

Unmatching pieces seem to go together just fine this year...

This peacock pattern is another obvious "awesome fabric".

Orange is really big... even I bought an orange shirt.

Those awful bubble skirts are back, but only on pretty women who look great in them.

Beige is in... beige beige beige...

Men are wearing spectacularly effeminate gear, and getting away with it, but that's not so likely to take of here.

Children are in. As fashion accessories, and as excuses to redecorate your home. Saw some terribly well dressed kids, still managing to run and giggle like normal kids.

And here's another excellent fabric. This green is my favourite colour, so I do see it everywhere.

And as for shoes ... yes, they are in. I made Jeff very happy when we visited Printemps (that's David Jones) and I walked right past the wonderland of shoes, to get to the toys!