Thursday, 29 September 2016

old hat, new caps

lovely new/old hat arrived last Sunday in a bin-bag full of clothes, Autumn is good like this, generous with nuts and fruits, and clothes it would seem; as soon as I walked by the studio GhostBird called out to me: 'hi there, nice hat, d'ya think you could make something for me as well?' 'like what?' 'like that oak leave twig you brought back with you this morning, how 'bout sticking some pretty feathers in there as well!' He looks very fine indeed and can carry off anything I think

 Upon which many other gang members wanted a hat as well, 'Fancy Dress, hurray Saskia, oh yes let's!' So I fiddled with these tiny acorn caps and fine feathers and tried to find heads and hats to match; I'm afraid I didn't have enough to go round, and some heads were just too small....however they enjoy admiring each other just as much as having a hat themselves; here's a picture of some of them..... getting all of them together and then sit still was quite a challenge...perhaps another day
Found a pair of legs in the garden the other day, I thought the OBK might want to use them, but he said No. He said he was now so used to his stick body he wouldn't be able to walk about on legs anymore, better give them to somebody who can still use them he said. We will wait and see who arrives on our doorstep then.

Sunday, 25 September 2016


GhostBird, a portrait

funny object friend J. found in De Geefwinkel  inspiring the middle block in piece below  'a dog for all seasons'

Saturday, 17 September 2016

such a bountiful day, and hours left yet

 one of the treasures I brought back with me from our trip to the UK  'The Serendipity Foundation' by Sam Smit; I bought it at Heffers Bookshop, where I found myself so overwhelmed by the abundance of books, new titles and unheard-of writers, I chose safely, i.e. either authors I already knew and was sure I would enjoy, or had at least at some point in time read a book review about (even if I couldn't remember whether it had been positive or not, the name had for some reason stuck in my mind)
One bookcover caught my eye, and even though I had never heard of the author I decided it was worth the risk, the risk being several pounds, so no big deal really. I have since googled his name and discovered his book was published by Unbound, how serendipitous, as I've recently plegded towards the funding of Sylvia Linstaedt & Rima Staines Tatterdemalion also to be published by Unbound - in Cambridge I was completely unaware such a publisher existed, and now not only do I own one of their beautiful books, soon another will arrive and as some of you may know Rima Staines and her amazing, beautiful artwork, you can guess how excited I am by this prospect. What's so special about this publishing initiative is that the authors get to keep half of the proceeds profits, which makes for a much better deal for the actual creators.

from the link The Serendipity Foundation. Unbound  this excerpt:

Sam Smit grew up in The Lost Gardens of Heligan as it was being restored, and around the dinner table where The Eden Project was dreamed up. It was a youth of watching people come together and achieve amazing things.
And then he left to the world of International Development in South Asia, and the grip of cynicism started to take its hold.
The Serendipity Foundation attempts to broker a meaningful dialogue between these two extremes. Whether hope or cynicism wins is likely to depend on whether his book gets funded.   
I guess we can say, hope won. Having just gotten started I can't tell much about the book, but after all this I have to admit to being very intrigued.

 we went for our morning walk and were greeted by this tiny frog, at first he kept leaping away from us, but once he'd sussed we meant no harm he agreed to sit still and let me get a close-up shot; he's very, very small, hardly bigger than the acorn you see in the picture below, just as green though;
 treasures collected on the walk

 just before we left the house, friend A. rang: 'are you interested in some wooden tiles, 6.5 square meteres to be precise?' 'Yes, of course I am, even though I haven't the foggiest what to do with them as yet' 
so here are the stacks, friend A., who's an architect, suggested I might use them in the middle part of the studio floor and use straight wooden planks along the edges, how ingenious is that, plus very classy indeed! Another Autumn project has transpired.

our eldest said: 'what if we stuck the root parts of our store-bought spring onions into the earth, would they take root and grow?'
the answer is YES!

also from friend A. a fruitjuicer; in the glass my first home-made fresh apple/pear juice, from fruits freshly picked an hour before, the taste is incredible, absolutely incredible.

Friday, 16 September 2016

slices of an indian summer life

 apart from disturbing the slow-sex-slug couples* in the field, I've been following Django on our daily walks in the woods and fields nearby; the walls of wood are impressive and will bring warmth to our houses: renewable energy! As mentioned in the previous post, the light shining through and new vistas throughout the woods are a pleasure to behold.
the woodchoppers leave spray-painted messages for each other 'beware of the wasps!' 'big' 'fibre' numbers in circles on different stacks, abbreviations from which I deduce they refer to the respective new owners

* or as my friend M.M. on facebook commented: 'tantric little creatures aren't they'

 In some places I follow him across the canals and in other spots I join him in the water: we swim in the river the Linge just across the road, which is also a dike

 am also over-dyeing and stitching clothes, this silk blouse was turning from a black-bean grey-toned beauty into a lacklustre piece, so I dipped it into the copper pot in an avocado/onion/walnut mix; I then forgot about it, time & heat did their best: the subtle results a greenish/pinkish layering, very hard to capture on camera!

in the dyepot once again thise intriguing critters with the long tails, what are they?

addendum on the creepy crawlies: have done a little more 'research' on internet and have discovered the larvae are probably from the blinde bij, a kind of zweefvlieg or hoverfly Eristalis tenax;
it's is called a rattenstaartlarve or rat-tailed maggot

 finally managing to get a grip on these two blouses which are very slowly becoming dresses, if I don't hurry up it will be too cold to wear them! the top one is very thin and light, I'm aiming to make the skirt-part* as hip-huggingly tight as possible, thereby enabling the top part to billow out a little and stay weightless, if you know what I mean

* a cut-off from the Larger Cloth, a.k.a. MyWorld, nice to be wearing a bit of my world on my hips, ha

 this one will be a lot straighter and longsleeved as the shirt (it is in fact a boy's shirt) has sleeves, with the skirt-part lined with another piece of thin fabric as it's a bit too see-through at the moment, this will also give it sturdiness; I like the fact I'm resusing the pocket from yet another blouse

Sunday, 11 September 2016

how unrelated occurences collide and morph into something meaningful

 they have been chopping trees faster than you can say Timber! in the nearby woods and though I was feeling kind of opposed to begin with, I have to admit I am surprised by the pleasant changes; especially where the light comes shining through, magically almost, in hitherto nondescript spots; the woods have evolved into a New Place for me to wander and get lost in.... Anyway, whatever my thoughts or feelings on the matter, it has happened and I try to make the most of it in a practical manner as well: I collect small bits of wood and bark*, along with the feathers, pebbles and rusty objects I find, they accompany us back home and often find a new use

* I keep meaning to take a rucksack with me next time I go for a walk so I can collect more; I also keep forgetting to do so, which is pretty annoying, what to do?

 She, I find myself referring to the Doll as a 'she', has made a bed for herself from this bit of bark, the perfect length for her. She is, in an instant, a reclining figure, very statuesque.

I cannot remember if I have mentioned this before, but I used to play with dolls a lot in my childhood. I even had a pair of baby twins, a boy and a girl, anatomically correct, both had blond hair, which was okay as I did too and being their mother that made sense; their brown eyes could be attributed to my childhood sweetheart who therefore must the father. Conception had no secrets for us, egg-semen-womb were involved, even if we didn't fully understand how relations between partners actually worked.

 'if She gets to lie back and relax, so do I'  he says to himself.

our eldest son was back home for a night and I was eager to show him the StrangeDoll, as I value his opinion on all that matters to me; he liked it very much, especially with the bed: 'a veritable piece of art mum' is what he said. 

I want to make more

Sunday, 4 September 2016


listened to this video of W.S. Merwin over and over again this afternoon, whilst snipping, cutting and sewing; lots of interesting stuff, very much related to what I'm up to I think; it's well worth a listen  

 tried capturing the large spider on camera in his web by our back door, as soon as he noticed my presence he made a run for it! he's the blurry bit on the left below; we tend not to use the back door for entering and leaving the house, so he's usually undisturbed enabling him to catch all the insects he can muster, an eco-friendly way of keeping the mosquitoes out of the house

 some might recognize this bit of sewn cloth, a detail with a dog and two small birds from the Larger Cloth; yepski I have started to cut it up.....

not to worry, the snippets of fabric are not from the larger cloth, but rather the result of my handiwork with the scissors this afternoon: lots of scraps torn and cut into small squares for a soft filling; all for the Strange Doll

She/He is the woman/man bit also from the larger cloth (aka MyWorld)
whilst stuffing the Doll a spider attacking a mosquito fell from the ceiling, ha! more violence on the studio table, as I had just cut my finger and was bleeding on all those rags; blood, sweat and tears have gone into this doll

 first impression of the Strange Doll, the light is bad as it's evening and I am too tired to try and make a better photo; more details-in-stitch are required such as eyes for her and a mouth at the very least for him