Category Archives: Craft

Painting with stitches?

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‘Love is the flower of life, and blossoms unexpectedly and without law, and must be plucked where it is found, and enjoyed for the brief hour of its duration.’ Quote by D H Lawrence.

Stunning embroidery by renowned artist Alison Holt. Take a look at her website, really interesting work.

Her work is a marvel, at first I thought this recently acquired piece was a painting, but it is in fact stitched. So clever, such talent. Alison’s work is sold for thousands of pounds.

I have this fabulous garden embroidery by her for sale in my shop.

This is a rare, collector’s item, and won’t be around long. I’m very tempted to keep it.

What do you think?

Alison Holt:

“Each piece is a combination of silk painting and stitch. The painting creates depth, perspective and richness to the work and combines effectively with stitch to give detail and texture

I started to explore my love of the countryside, flowers and gardens through the medium of embroidery finding it the perfect vehicle to express the colours, textures and shapes I find so fascinating. I try to combine in my compositions a sense of light and an interesting juxtaposition of colour, shape and texture. I aim to capture moments in time as an artist who has colour, line and texture to play with. I consider myself a painter that uses threads, an artist that draws with a sewing machine.”

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Filed under blossoms, collecting, Craft, fine art, flowers, Gardening, Interior Design, Knitting, life, Lifestyle, love, Musings, painting, Textiles, Vintage

The Fish

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The Fish

I caught a tremendous fish
and held him beside the boat
half out of water, with my hook
fast in a corner of his mouth.
He didn’t fight.
He hadn’t fought at all.
He hung a grunting weight,
battered and venerable
and homely. Here and there
his brown skin hung in strips
like ancient wallpaper,
and its pattern of darker brown
was like wallpaper:
shapes like full-blown roses
stained and lost through age.
He was speckled with barnacles,
fine rosettes of lime,
and infested
with tiny white sea-lice,
and underneath two or three
rags of green weed hung down.
While his gills were breathing in
the terrible oxygen
—the frightening gills,
fresh and crisp with blood,
that can cut so badly—
I thought of the coarse white flesh
packed in like feathers,
the big bones and the little bones,
the dramatic reds and blacks
of his shiny entrails,
and the pink swim-bladder
like a big peony.
I looked into his eyes
which were far larger than mine
but shallower, and yellowed,
the irises backed and packed
with tarnished tinfoil
seen through the lenses
of old scratched isinglass.
They shifted a little, but not
to return my stare.
—It was more like the tipping
of an object toward the light.
I admired his sullen face,
the mechanism of his jaw,
and then I saw
that from his lower lip
—if you could call it a lip—
grim, wet, and weaponlike,
hung five old pieces of fish-line,
or four and a wire leader
with the swivel still attached,
with all their five big hooks
grown firmly in his mouth.
A green line, frayed at the end
where he broke it, two heavier lines,
and a fine black thread
still crimped from the strain and snap
when it broke and he got away.
Like medals with their ribbons
frayed and wavering,
a five-haired beard of wisdom
trailing from his aching jaw.
I stared and stared
and victory filled up
the little rented boat,
from the pool of bilge
where oil had spread a rainbow
around the rusted engine
to the bailer rusted orange,
the sun-cracked thwarts,
the oarlocks on their strings,
the gunnels—until everything
was rainbow, rainbow, rainbow!
And I let the fish go.

Elizabeth Bishop, 1911 – 1979

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Filed under Craft, Interior Design, Poetry

Kashmir Shawl sewn with Chinar Leaves

Kashmir Shawl sewn Chinar Leafs

This amazing Kashmir Shawl is huge.

It is pure wool. And it is beautifully embroidered.

With Chinar Leaves.

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The fire of the Chinar is reknowned in Kashmir.

Myths and legends abound in its branches, weave through its roots, whisper and waft to the tips of its twigs.

Platanus Orientalis. Flame orange, scarlet, crimson.

Read  this fascinating piece in The Free Press Kashmir here.

This is a very important tree. It symbolises so much for the Kashmiri nation.

And if you want to look fabulous, and feel warm, and wear wisdom.

Then Treat Yourself here.

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April 27, 2014 · 9:25 pm

Under Starter’s Orders (SOLD)

Under Starter's Orders

This is a Harris Tweed handbag darlings.

Perfect for a day at The Races.

It’s the Grand National this week. My 50p each way’s on TeaForThree.

The bag is elegant with super quality brown leather finish, and practical; Harris Tweed is waterproof, so whether you’re hunting, shooting, fishing, or just dashing out to Tesco’s this is the perfect bag for you, and it’s only two clicks away!

Harris Tweed, or Clo Mor (The Big Cloth) is the only fabric in the world governed by its own Act of Parliament.

From start to finish the cloth is in the hands of skilled and experienced artisans who oversee every stage of production utilising generations of knowledge to produce a product worthy of the name Harris Tweed.

Furthermore a 1993 Act of Parliament underpins the unique status of Harris Tweed and decrees that genuine Harris Tweed must be made from pure virgin wool which has been dyed and spun on the islands and handwoven at the home of the weaver in the Outer Hebrides of Scotland.

Harris Tweed is about quality and style, history and heritage. It is the fabric of choice for many of the world’s leading designers as well as their most discerning clients. When you buy Harris Tweed you are guaranteed the best, safe in the knowledge that the Orb secures a perfect cloth for years of use.

Protection: The Harris Tweed Act 1993 enshrines in law that every meter of Harris Tweed will conform to exacting standards and adhere to the legal definition of Harris Tweed. Where you see the Orb Mark, you are guaranteed the cloth is authentically produced in the Outer Hebrides as outlined by the Act.

History: For well over a century Harris Tweed has been woven with skill and care by crofters in their own homes just as it is today. From the gentry of early 20th century high living to the catwalks and couturiers of today, Harris Tweed has long been the choice of the discerning.

Indigenous: By law all Harris Tweed must be produced in the Outer Hebrides and nowhere else. Each inch of wool is dyed and spun in an island mill and every yard is handwoven in the home of a Harris Tweed weaver. These skills are passed down from generation to generation of the island’s community with pride.

Natural: Low-impact production and reliance on natural materials throughout, Harris Tweed is a truly ecologically sound textile. Biodegradable, VOC absorbent, non-allergenic, energy efficient manufacture…Harris Tweed is truly a fabric for the 21st century.

Provenance: Made of 100% Pure New Wool, Harris Tweed is dyed, blended, carded, spun, warped, woven, finished, examined and stamped only in the Scottish Outer Hebrides by local crofters and artisans.

Practicality: Harris Tweed is warm in winter and cool in summer. It resists water and wear and tear with ease, cleans easily and can be repaired with the simplest of tools.

Longevity: You may pay a little more for your Harris Tweed but it pays you back by standing the test of time. The cloth never goes out of style and simply gets better with age.

Artisanal: Woven on treadle powered looms, Harris Tweed is crafted by hand without the aid of automation or electricity. Weaver’s skills take months to learn and years to master and every step of the Harris Tweed process is in the hands of skilled islanders, from dyeing to delivery.

Beauty: Harris Tweed is literally dyed in the wool, with separate pigments of wool carefully blended to special “recipes” before being spun. Just one single yarn can contain several different colours in order to obtain the perfect tone or hue, each reflecting some aspect of our natural surroundings. Heathers, mosses, lochs, mountains and sky, all entwined to make beautiful Harris Tweed.

Style: The world’s best designers, fashion houses and artists have embraced Harris Tweed, showing their appreciation through their wonderful creations with every passing season. And Harris Tweed is not just restricted to catwalks and couture, bespoke interiors from household soft furnishings to five star hotels are also enjoying that rare touch of luxury only Harris Tweed can bring.

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April 3, 2014 · 9:30 am

Extreme knitting!

That's not knitting!

That’s not knitting!

Back to the Artisan market on Sunday. Who knew Altrincham had such allure?

Busy and buzzy, some fabulous produce, Troffel truffles were to die for, Farmer’s Wife was dishing out amazing looking hot dogs, and we couldn’t resist the hot cider and calvados stall – no wonder these two are smiling, the fumes alone could knock you out at 40 paces:

Hot Cider

Hot Cider

 

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Filed under Artisan, Cheshire, Craft, Knitting, Textiles