Tuesday, 17 November 2015

Victorian Postbox

There are one or two nice postboxes in Malvern and this is one of them and it appears to be from the Victorian era.  It is outside Malvern Community Hospital, which is somewhere I have been rather a lot over the past week or so!!  The lovely neighbour I take shopping each week tripped and fell and has ended up in hospital until she gets back on her feet so I have been visiting her as often as I can as she has only a few friends and relatives around to do so.  It means I am not getting much done at home which is disappointing.

The other frustrating thing this past week is, that for some unknown reason, the computer has been playing up and some of the Adobe Creative Suite software has stopped working, mainly Photoshop and Illustrator. I am going to have to take the hard drive to a man to fix it as it is beyond me.  I think it is probably one of the updates from Microsoft that has caused the glitch.

A Day Out in Birmingham

Met a friend from 'Up North' in Birmingham today and we had a jolly time.  She showed me the 'Custard Factory' and we went around the 'Rag Market', followed by a quick shop in the new John Lewis which was fabulous.  I came back with a new King Size Quilt and a couple of towels, plus some bits of fabric and some leather cords which I will use in bookbinding when I get round to it.

Wednesday, 11 November 2015

More on the Fungi

Having looked at the Internet I think our fungi are either Meadow Waxcaps (hygrocybe pratensis) or Scarlet Waxcaps (hygrocybe coccinea).  We have certainly got a lot of them on the front lawn.

Tuesday, 10 November 2015

Autumnal Feast

Our front lawn is covered in strange fungi.  We usually get lots over in the Dell on the other side of the stream as there is lots of dead wood and tree stumps, but these are something new.

I am not sure whether these last ones are the same type.  They were situated some distance from the others - of which there are lots.

Thursday, 5 November 2015

More Felt Sculptures

Several of the trees at Rydal had been 'Felt Bombed' at least that is my interpretation of them.  Felt had been made to wrap around their trunks.  The one above had slate buttons stitched onto it.

 The trunk below had a crocheted fringe which looked like lichen.

This blue piece below (ignore the strange circles which are rain drops on my camera as it was pouring down at the time) was located close to the Ice House footpath and had wrapped rods attached to it, which featured in quite a few of the sculptures.  Unfortunately I have had to discard several of my photographs from the morning it was raining as I must have knocked the dial on my camera and they have all come out virtually black.

Wednesday, 4 November 2015

More Spoons

Whilst away I found time to produce a couple more watercolour sketches of teaspoons to which I collaged sections of a page from an old cookery book.  They both need some more work doing to them.  Scanning them has really drawn my attention to the errors in my drawing and painting which is quite helpful.

Rydal Retreat

Whilst I did not get to do the work I had planned whilst at Rydal Hall I did start a small concertina book about my visit.  This is 'Work in Progress' I am afraid and I have lots of ideas of further pieces to include in the blank spaces.

I started off by bringing in some leaves and moss from the sculpture trail with felted work by Dianne Standen which was to the side of the Hall.  I then made a couple of drawn and painted leaves from part of the watercolour paper I had cut off when joining an extra sheet to the book.  The real leaves were pressed and then glued and stitched onto the pages.

The yurts in the grounds inspired me to cut a hole through one of the pages behind which I pasted a piece of an OS map showing the location of Rydal Hall.

A surprise on the other side of the yurt cut out were the pine needles I had slashed into the paper with my craft knife.  A quick sketch of one of the eco pods with my new water soluble graphite pencils filled a small gap on the next page.

Members of the group were asked to suggest words that reflected their stay at Rydal Hall.  Those who know me will know why 'Wot-Sits' got on there.  It probably should have been joined by 'Thingamybobs' too.  I ripped up a free tourist map of Grasmere to use the trees depicted on it.

A walk to Grasmere influenced the cut out piece about Heaton Cooper, showing lots of running water.  The sketches of cones were done from the pocket full I brought in from the woods when we visited the Rydal Hall sculpture trail.

Finally, the last page has a wrapper from the fantastic ice cream two of us enjoyed prior to setting off back on the walk from Grasmere to Rydal Hall along the Coffin Path.  The flavour had some wonderous name which I cannot recall at the moment, but had cinder toffee in it.  The receipt is for the map I bought to chop up and use in the book.

Sunday, 1 November 2015


 The trees were phenomenal but too many people!!

Out of focus but I still like it

Stable Window

Church Door Handle

Lakeland Retreat

 We saw some of these ....

 and lots of this .... particularly as it rained for 3 of the days

The waterfall near the gardens became more and more spectacular as the week progressed, however, best of all were the felted sculptures interspersed throughout the woodland near the side of Rydal Hall.

There were lots of these around

Detail from above
We did also do some creative work ourselves and this was work in progress by one of the more experienced members of the group made mainly from a 50p book purchased from a secondhand book stall at Farfield Mill, Sedbergh where we had been to see the Kutch to Kantha Exhibition on our way to Rydal.