Friday, July 23, 2010



I'm still obsessing over the Bees, but the Bees themselves are currently obsessing over the teasels, to the point where they're pretty much covered in pollen. Quite honestly, from even the most disinterested garden design standpoint, the teasels are a disaster. They're biennial so I've not had them in the garden before now, and it's been a long wait. But they're too huge in this compact London space, and currently choking out more delicate things. I'm still slightly in love with the prehistoric gigantic nature of the beasts, but it's a pleasure I'm going to have to put off for a grander scheme than this. Currently my dilemma is whether to yank them out after the Bees have done with them, or leave them so the Birds get some seed.... hmmmm. Opinions?


Thursday, July 22, 2010

Small things I made


Back in June, whilst there was no gardening or knitting to speak of, I did manage to find half an hour to make these lanterns and decorations for our winter honeysuckle. The strange bits of dangly ceramic were bought in a charity shop for not very much. Not sure what they were originally, but I fashioned some largish hooks out of heavy gauge wire and now they sit in the tree. While I was at it, I finally got round to adding handles to our old jars so they could hang in the tree too. Not exactly glamourous, but pretty enough at dusk.


Of course the reason everything was so quiet was that all my energy was going into producing another thing entirely. That thing I made was my thesis. It was finally printed on Friday, bound on Monday and submitted on Tuesday. I'd like to think aspects of it were aesthetically pleasing, but a fair-isle sweater or well maintained veg-patch it is not. This is the start of a strange new world for me to be without it.

Thursday, July 15, 2010



The first week of July I spent on conference in Amsterdam. I'd never been to Amsterdam before, had very few expectations and left feeling pleased with the place and wishing to spend more time there. It felt very familiar and easy, as well as peaceful and relaxing. The virtual complete lack of cars rendered an otherwise dynamic and exciting city, particularly easy to loll about it - especially along by the canals whilst drinking white beer. I spent most of my time here, in the RAI conference centre:


...but it was Amsterdam, so there were a few floral delights to be had amongst other more serious things. I was most enthralled by the streets giving birth to an impressive range of Hollyhocks that were seemingly growing straight out of the pavement.

IMG_3185 IMG_3186

I made it to the flower market too, but honestly I was underwhelmed. It felt sterile and lifeless. I know I'm a spoilt rotten Londoner with my regular visits to Columbia Road Flower Market, which is a heady (and costly) experience any Sunday of the year. Yet, plant fetishist that I am (and particular lover of bulbs) I left Amsterdam without a purchase. The varieties of tulips on offer were dull and uninspiring, and everything else had 'Do not touch' signs on it. Half the pleasure of a trip to the market (or garden centre) is fondling the foliage and stroking the petals.... I'm not even giving space to the market photos, they can live together in this montage and be done with:

Created with flickr slideshow from softsea.

Anyway, regardless of what was a minor dissappointment, here's to a pretty city, and to dreams of going back (still need to check out the Van Gogh museum at the very least, if only for the Dr Who geekery of it all). And if I can entice you further, here's a city guide from 6 music's Laverne show. Just to be ultra obnoxious, I got to go to a pretty cool party at Melkweg whilst in Amsterdam, it really is a cool place...


Thursday, July 1, 2010

Poor you

Early June Garden

Poor blog, you are neglected. Just one post for the whole of June - you deserve better! Well consider this a resolution to make time for you in July. I think we've passed through the worst storms of work related woe that came in with June, and time will be made for all things garden and creative once more. On the plus side, there is a whole stock of photos from June just waiting in the wings for you - July will be better I'm sure of it.