Sunday, 29 September 2013

Sunday is for meditating, or something resembling a mindful attitude

the 'front': grid piece with the woven square on kitchen floor (I have to find a better title) basted with the grid lines up and down, definitely more stitching needed, but at least it's hanging together safely now
detail 'front'
white threadbeads surrounding lower half of the dark moon, there will be more of those, I will want them to 'meet''  the blue woolen verticals of running stitch, reaching up from the blanket

 detail 'back'
to begin with, as I was very much in grid-mode, I thought the woolen endings would be sewn in in straight running stitch horizontals, but when I dropped the square in the empty middle, all the threads spidered out and I saw: that is how they have to be, with a kind of movement

looking through: held up against the morning light, the banana-peel print and the flowery fabric merge, I like this effect a lot.

I woke up early, for a Sunday morning, listening in bed to the wind blowing and it dawned on me (ha) that this breeze might just be blowing the walnuts out of the trees. I decided to get up, by now it was 7:30-ish so I would probably be the first one out there gathering nuts, sounds a bit nutty I know. Tungsten was very happy to see me and after we'd both had breakfast off we went. To my dismay the harvest was rather meagre! It would seem this year is not a good walnut year, not here at least. There are of course more up there dangling temptingly, but not many on the ground. I remember other years when you'ld literally trip over them and carry bags filled to the brim back home with you. Anyway, it was a good excuse to rise early and now there's more time to enjoy the September sun while it lasts. I hope you can have a happy Sunday too, where ever you are.

p.s. have 'clamped' a few fabrics and dunked them into the walnut/black bean dye, which btw smells awful
p.p.s. have removed one of the bits of cloth and have two small suns; the other bit has gone back in, refolded and reclamped for more colour, I hope.



fruits from our own garden of eden: apples from the tree our eldest received as a eight-month old baby from two friends; whilst picking the apples I remembered one of them died a couple of years ago in a freak sailing accident, leaving behind a wife and two young daughters, I think of him and with a whoosh in my stomach startle at the frailty of life

who has an easy recipe for medlars?  I love the tree, the blossom and the fruit is strangely beautiful, but I have never used them for cooking or preserving. It was already here when we moved in so I don't feel too guilty about not using it, for the birds and insects is what I say to self

last one: I'm sitting outside on the verandah enjoying the glorious September weather, I listen to the thud-thud of sweet chestnuts as they're falling onto the light, new roof; I look up and feel so happy to be here basking in the sun in this harvest season, the heavenly fruits landing in our laps

20 comments:

jan said...

I like this very much Saskia; your grid piece. And your photo through your new roof! Nice!

jude said...

i love this

Velma Bolyard said...

i'm here because jude said go. look. wow. a wonderful post, and fine work. i'll return.

Julierose said...

Lovely piece...and post; stepped over from Jude's post today...julierose

henrietta (aka ani aka zani) said...

like velma, i too came here because jude mentioned quiet and this is a restful place. i will also return to find a spot to ponder

saskia said...

OH WOW, thank you Jude, your mention has directed many over this way; welcome to you who have commented and also to those who looked and held their peace, ha

it feels wonderful to be part of a community

Lizzi said...

Jude sent me too. Fabulous post.

shiborigirl said...

medlars...so that's what those are. i wondered as i saw so many yesterday hanging from nearly leafless trees along the roadside returning home from Yosemite. i would have stopped to gather a few but not knowing what they were i didn't want to collect. my car was filled with other gathered things. this time, cattails. and as both velma and jude know, there is a difference between collecting and gathering.

Els said...

Wat een prachtig lapje wordt het !!!!
Mooi hoe de eindjes van het grove weefsel door de stof ernaast kruipen ;-)

Deb G said...

I still love how it seems as if you captured shadows. There are recipes for Medlar gravy and jelly in Nigel Slater's book Ripe. I've never tried them so I don't know. Let me know if you want them. Sounds like a beautiful day... :)

nemo-ignorat said...

Medlars are a bit work intensive to prepare but they are worth it. You have to quarter them, remove bud and stem, remove the seeds and the skin around the core too. Wear gloves if you don't want yellowed hands afterwards. Then you can use them for jam, chutney (spicy with chilli and some cinnamon) or you can use them in your meal a bit like quince.
They are best after the first frost when they start to get soft. Much like rosehips. But you can harvest them before as well. Store them in a dry, cold place. Then they get ripe and soft after 2-3 weeks. Their best taste though is developed after the first frost when some kind of fermentations process is kicked on. When they got frost, you can make liqueur from them as well. Fill clean, ripe medlars in a jar together with sugar, cinnamon and a bottle of schnaps (but it should be good one, not the cheap kind) and let it stand in the dark for - oh - well over 2 months.
Love the cloth btw and Jude says hi ;o)
Ulrike aka nemo ignorat

Heather said...

The square centres it all, i look forward to seeing how it develops. And you can make a fruit butter or leather with the medlars - quarter them and cook them up with some water until soft, then put them through a sieve to get out all the skin and pips. Then further cook down the sauce with some sugar and cinnamon if you like until it is very thick. And boy, that recipe from Ulrike for schnapps sounds awesome!

grace Forrest~Maestas said...

this, hung in a morning window would
make a perfect focal point for
meditation practice.

it couldn't be more wonderful....
the square is so sure of itself

Diana Trout {Nan.DT@verizon.net} said...

o my. What a lovely read I've had. I came here via Jude Hill (she says Hi). The cloth piece is poetry I love the wandering lines. I'll wander here more often. Black walnuts are scarce? Wait a week or two. And of all the things in the dyepot, those are the worst smellers.

Marti said...

Center woven square speaks to me so strongly of land bordered with sky lines, beautiful cloth. Re walnut dyeing: thanks to grace I am happily getting stained fingers and hands from the walnut dye, so elemental, so basic to just about every cloth I make. The varied hues from deep rich dirt color to lighter shades, all from the type of cloth used, the length of time in the dye pot, this is alchemy at its best. I started naturally dyeing three years ago and foraging for walnuts was one of my favorite experiences but when I got to New Mexico and then had to leave shortly after for California, I didn't know where to go to get walnuts...but grace was keeping watch for me, knowing how much I need to have the browns of walnut in my work, had a pot going for me so now, it truly feels like autumn for me and my fingers show it as I don't like to wear gloves and do like having stained hands...

saskia said...

thanks to the 'Jude-effect' many have wandered over here and there are more comments than I'm used to!

I'l try and answer each and everyone:
Jan, you were here first and I know you come regularly and I am as always grateful for your;
Jude: again a BIG thank you, not just for the mention, but all of your lessons and pretty much everything you share with us;
Velma: so nice you visited, I have checked in at your place from time to time, will go back for more;
Julierose and Henrietta: I think the two of you are in WhatIf diaries as well and must have seen your work over in class....will go see later! btw thanks for the kind comments;
Lizzi: duly noted;-)
Shiborigirl: collecting and gathering are different?! as in collections gather dust and what you gather is used....
Els: dank je wel!
Deb G: oh yes, those shadows...I always love how the changing light influences a piece;
Ulrike and Heather: oh all of these recipes sound really nice, I particularly like the alcohol idea and the cooking one as those two would seem to yield maximum result with the least effort! I have once tasted medlar jelly and that was a treat; I too wonder where this piece will go....always a bit scary, continuing when something is starting to look good and you don't want to spoil it;
Grace: a square that's sure of itself, ha, I like the way you phrase that, it is also incredibly soft, being angora goats'wool;
Diana: hi, I do believe you are the first here I have not yet encountered in blog-world, welcome to you and I hope we'll stay in touch like this;
Marti: yes it does have a landscape-feel to it, not just because of the colours, I suppose I'm very much an earth-person; oh and the dyeing with the walnuts...I've just remembered I still have a few bits I want to take out and see what has happened, I love the excitement of the dyeing....Oh and brown hands, good for you in letting them develop, as I still have to be in the office a couple of days a week, I'm more careful and try and keep them as clean-looking as possible



ArtPropelled said...

Jude sent me :-) and I'm glad she did. Lovely peaceful post. I love your kitchen floor piece .... and the back detail. I know that "whoosh" feeling in the stomach when startled by the frailty of life. You describe it well.

saskia said...

Hi Robyn, I went to your blog and site to discover your name, I am glad you came and I'm glad I popped over to your place: your sculptures are breathtaking, truly beautiful.

Blue Sky Dreaming said...

New to your site and so enjoyed seeing your work in progress. The grid is lovely. I will enjoy returning.

saskia said...

welcome Mary Ann! I do hope you will return; have visited your blog and notice you're into mixing your media as well and experimenting with different methods so I'll be sure to return there as well