The Write Stuff



Some of my collection of letters and cards from special people who have touched my heart and soul


RUDE’S vintage beauty case with our wedding certificate, other wedding memorabilia, anniversary and birthday cards

Sending a handwritten letter is becoming such an anomaly. It’s disappearing. My mom is the only one who still writes me letters. And there’s something visceral about opening a letter – I see her on the page. I see her in her handwriting.

Steve Carell

RUDE Girl recently read and posted on our Facebook blog at Rude Record, an article about how Richard Branson from Virgin Airlines was lamenting the demise of penmanship and letter writing.

I posted a comment about how a person in his 30s had made a comment about quaintness, when he saw that I was writing his mobile phone number down in a little notebook.  I am guessing his expectation was that I would add his number directly into my Smartphone.  A bit difficult when I do not own a Smartphone.

After reading the Branson article, I immediately knew this week’s blog post would be about my fountain pens and writing paraphernalia.  Of course everything is recycled, having been saved from landfill fate.

I also felt like sharing some of my personal collection of cards and letters [x2 photos above]

Here is the link to the little video I made about my writing stuff.  Enjoy taking a peek at my writing paraphernalia.

Wordpress has just notified Rude Record that we have been blogging for two years.  That’s pretty cool.  Thank you to all of you who have been following us.  We love sharing our frugal lifestyle with you.  A weekly blog post keeps us true to our mission and your comments inspire us to keep sharing the joy of frugality.

Beat The [Tech] Man and refuse to let the art of penmanship and letter writing fade away.  Write a letter to someone special today!

PS  As I am writing this Australia Post [AP] has announced it will be raising the cost of a stamp from 70 cents to $1.00 in January 2016.  According to AP  the lack of snail mail has contributed to this cost rise.  RUDE tends to think the incredibly monstrous salary of its CEO may also be a factor.

Yestermorrow Yearnings


The Yestermorrow Clothes Book: How to Remodel Secondhand Clothes by Diana Funaro 1976


When you can’t remember what day something happened, because you’ve been awake for too many consecutive days.

Person 1: Remember that party yesterday… wait, or was that this morning?

Person 2: I don’t even remember anymore, it was yestermorrow.
Source:  On-line Urban Dictionary

RUDE Girl stumbled upon The Yestermorrow Clothes Book a couple of years ago in a library search for garment re-fashioning texts.

I made a request for my local library to track down the book but unfortunately the book was not available in Australia.  RUDE Boy searched on-line, and found plenty of copies in the USA.  But postage and handling charges, to have it shipped to Australia were, in our opinion,  too expensive.

This year sometime, I recommended the book to my refashioning colleague Bunny in Oregon, USA.  You may remember her from the guest post on Rude Record here

Bunny immediately, and with enthusiasm [and cheaply!] bought the book on-line.  And she promised to share some of its pages with me.

Well true to her word she sent me her chatty style blog post featuring the book, making mention of how RUDE Girl is now part of her yestermorrow book and blog story.

Check out Bunny’s cool book review on The Yestermorrow Clothes Book on this link to her blog which is titled after her feline friend Curious Orange Cat.

The Yestermorrow Clothes Book may be bit dated as stated here but it has all the basics required to refashion garments.  I did try to find out about its author Diana Funaro but no luck.  

Beat the Man and share knowledge on-line across the miles!
images book

Tatters and Leaves


A woman weaves a beautiful basket during discussions between SE Gration and women at the Abu Shouk Women’s Center. Source: Sudan Envoy


This is the shape of basket RUDE Girl is weaving. Source: Flickr


The weaving on my cardboard loom featured in last week’s post is on hold.  Why?

This week RUDE Girl attended her first basket weaving workshop at the local community centre.  Traditional Sudanese Basket Weaving is the style.  I will be attending another workshop next week for a couple of hours.  The course is sponsored by the City of Melton which is a bonus.

I have seen the Sudanese style of basket weaving before, as the city where I live, has an established Sudanese community.  These days it would appear the Sudanese women use acrylic and plastic yarn mostly.  Traditionally they would have used the local leaves and grasses only.  There does not appear to be much written about the topic on the internet.

Plastic coated sugar and rice sacks, stripped into yarn to weave into baskets, is a great way to recycle them.  The acrylic knitting yarn is not appealing to my rude aesthetic.  Therefore you will see in the video what I am using.  It may be that I will start a new trend in Sudanese basket weaving a la Scavenger [Aussie] Style.

Check out my Sudanese basket weaving here.

Beat The Man by not putting all your eggs in one basket.  And if you do put all your eggs in one basket, watch the basket!

Rags to Britches and Riches

RUDE Boy loves these very old Wavezone shorts.  I do imagine any other guy wearing them for two summers, and then using the fabric as rags.  Or more than likely, discarding the shorts into the recycling bin because they were no longer ‘on trend’.

RUDE Girl even made a movie of these shorts this year.  It was sent it to Mr Wu CEO Wavezone in China.  The movie did not attract a response.  Never mind, it was not expected that I would get a reply.  I only hope it received a reaction of incredulous disbelief.

You can watch the first video here which was created for Fashion Revolution Day 2015.

RUDE Boy wears these shorts A LOT!!  Since the first video was made, he has worn more holes through the thinning fabric and previous patches.  For RUDE Girl, it has become like a quest to keep these shorts wearable, and out of the rag-bag.  I work at creating layers for durability and strength.  My inspiration comes from sashiko method of patching and stitching.

Here is the second video in the life of RUDE Boys Wavezone raggedy britches.  It explains how I have mended and patched them for the third time.

RUDE Boy, go Beat The Man [Mr Wu from Wavezone] and keep rockin saggy britches a la scavenger style! 


RUDE Boy loves his raggedy and rude britches

Weave Waste

A Navajo blanket weaver. 1905. Photo by Edward S. Curits. Source – National Anthropological Archives.

“You see, when weaving a blanket, an Indian woman leaves a flaw in the weaving of that blanket to let the soul out”  Martha Graham ~ Dancer / Choreographer

This photo above, was RUDE Girl’s inspiration to give weaving a go.  I could make my own wooden loom but that takes time away from other things that I enjoy more.  I therefore decided to start my over and under weaving journey , by making a RUDE cardboard loom.  It measures 54 cm W x 115 cm L, which is the length of my studio table – photo below.


Recycled cardboard box upcycled into a weaving loom by RUDE Girl

Whilst it may look very rude, it gave me great satisfaction crafting it to my specifications from a cardboard box.  It did not take too long to make the loom.  It cost zilch.  And best of all, it reflects back at me what I am seeing in this blog post’s top photo.  Something makeshift, something so simple, yet effective,  and something that defies rampant consumerism and instant gratification.


An end of the cardboard loom showing the warp threads passing through the 2cm spaced slits. The slits we cut to a depth of 3cms.

I am not an avid knitter and have a large bag of wool to reuse.  I am going to use some of it in creating my fabric.  For what intended use?  I am not sure yet.  Actually, it’s just therapeutic being in the flow and not thinking too hard about what I am creating the fabric for.  It’s simply wonderful to be engaging in this craft for the very first time.


The recycled woollen yarn that has been collected over the years.

RUDE Boy was a bit amazed when he realised what I had been talking about doing for the past few weeks.  And that I had made my own loom from cardboard!  Gosh, it’s nothing new to many, I know, but to him it was.  He had never seen the likes of it.  At the end of the day, just before we went to sleep, he praised my first-time weaving efforts, and resourceful loom making skills.

Weaving Woollen Waste

“Each person has his own safe place – running, painting, swimming, fishing, weaving, gardening.  The activity itself is less important than the act of drawing on your own resources”  Barbara Gordon ~ Author

Beat The Man and weave your own path through life!

Some Kind of Beautiful


RUDE Girl was a bit sidetracked last week with her activism related to textiles.  I am passionate about keeping textiles and garments out of landfill.

Many of you followed my making of a bath mat from tee-shirt yarn over on our Facebook page.  You have to be very keen to rummage through dirty and smelly clothes at landfill, to find  tee shirts to make yarn.  And before you make the yarn you have to soak, wash and dry the tee-shirts!


Knitted bath mat by RUDE Girl made with recycled tee-shirts sourced from landfill.

To make this tee-shirt bath mat took about 22 tee-shirts and was very labour intensive.  It would have been cheaper and quicker to simply go and buy a bath mat from a department store.

I therefore continue to lobby my municipality for rags and poor quality clothes, to be free of charge, as opposed to them not selling, and then being dumped into landfill.


Soiled, worn and unsorted textiles, mostly poor quality synthetics at City of Melton’s TIP SHOP, Melbourne, Australia.

Anyway we have been having an issue with our local municipality, namely the Rags’ Ruckus.  The issue looks like it will all be resolved by the end of the week.  We want to thank Councillor Lara Carli for stepping up on our behalf, and really listening to our story.  If she did not know much about the municipality’s Tip Shop, and the health, safety and pricing issues, she does now.

And Bowerbirds Journal member Jacqui for your very empathetic post, particularly your words as follows:

“You have my sympathy, but I know you’ll fight back with logic, evidence and good humour.”

Last week, as support,  I was sent this little highlight from a blog follower.  It’s from the movie Some Kind of Beautiful with Pierce Brosnan.  She urged me to listen to my own advice about The Man.  You will get where she was coming from, when you see the video clip. Here is the link

Rags’ Ruckus


RUDE Girl and RUDE Boy are talking openly and reaching out to our followers today. We are asking for your support.

We at Rude Record are eco-warriors.  We are fighting back over textile waste and inappropriate and unfair processes at our local Tip Shop [dump, recycling facility].  For a bit of juicy gossip my local council has personally threatened me. 

Why?  We have  been asking questions of council’s waste management department, and making suggestions for many years.  It likes to do things its way, and appears not to appreciate feedback.   But in our experience,  it hankers for all your innovative ideas, and will drop you when it gets what it wants.

It appears our council does not embrace constructive criticism, and will attempt to undermine you with false allegations.  And because we keep up the momentum, and have not gone away, it would appear R.J. MItte with his quote may be on to something.

“People don’t want someone that fights back.”  R.J. Mitte ~ Actor

The waste management sector has always been recognised as lacking in transparency.  There are books written on the phenomenon.  It’s not peculiar to where RUDE lives.  It is a global waste management issue.

“There is wealth in waste and riches in rubbish.”  Karen Ellis ~ Recycling Activist

And yes, there is wealth in waste and the sector does not want anyone to get too clued up about it.  There is also a lot of shonky practices in the sector.

This ‘rags’ ruckus’ by RUDE’S council was initiated because I refused to pay $2 for four rags, and haggled a payment of $1 [yes, I did a video featuring the rags as evidence of the utter absurdity]

When you can buy a quality item like a chair for $1, I was definitely not going to pay $2 for four rags.  It was my time to take a stand against The Man.  However, it is not without mental anguish when The Man comes firing his big guns in the form of a letter from council’s legal department.

That’s why we are reaching out to you, our followers on World Mental Health Day.  We are staying connected to get your cyber support.

RUDE hopes that by exposing what is going on, that systems and processes will improve.  In the meantime, we managed to temporarily perk up, and find the humour in the absurdity.

Just like John Oliver would, stick it to The Man and fight back with a funny video.  Enjoy!