I have always loved the Toile de Jouy. These monochrome prints of bucolic, mythological or exotic scenes have always captured my imagination. No doubt this is the effect they had on the French at the time they started being produced. It was the age of exploration and the wood block prints making their way from India at some stage were banned, leading to the development in 1760 of the famous factory in the town of Jouy by Christophe - Phillipe Oberkampf.
Enough with the history! Seeing I will be making my first appearance at a craft market this Saturday (Primrose Fair at Toorak College, Mt Eliza) I thought it would be good to have a series of totes for sale. Although they are all the same shape, they are still one- of-a-kind! There is not a one with the same print and the straps are of varying lengths.....
Well, it has been a long time between visits to the garden, and even more between time dedicated to working there.... Oh well, sometimes one just has to go with the flow. On a personal note, I am trying to curb my desire to be constantly productive and trying to take is easy. Taking time to smell the roses, as they say. Even if the roses are not so fragrant broccoli flowers at the moment.
I adore long walks along the beach. Although I am usually powering away, trying to burn some calories (it would be great to think that is of no consequence to me...) I do actually take note of my surroundings. They change every day and you could say, every minute. There is the movement of the clouds, the water, the birds, and there are also wafts of sea scents of all kinds. I always think to myself that if I were an artist, this is where I would get my inspiration. I find the walks invigorating and have never thought they actually inspire me in a literal sort of way until I was looking through these photos. What do you think?
The "Rain" bag features a shoulder strap as well as short handles for wearing versatility. Never mind the crocs (they weren't supposed to make the shoot).
I believe it is best to enclose seed heads in some way to prevent the seeds falling to the ground and germinating. I thought I would give it a go. These must be well and truly dry by now.
Aren't these the cutest little mushrooms you have ever seen? They are popping up all round the place.
It has been a busy day in my sadly neglected, yet surprisingly productive garden today. Lots of cleaning up to be done in the intermittent rain- pulling out the spent tomato plants, the weeds and the vines that will no longer ripen. Case in point, the rockmelons. I am fairly certain these came from the compost. Loads of self seeded seedlings coming up - rocket, Queen Anne's Lace (already!), coriander, and broccolini amongst other things. Harvested today: silverbeet, rocket (Italian and French), two stray cucumbers, parsnips I practically had to excavate, some sad looking baby beets, the last of my yellow pear tomaotoes, loads of parsley and a bunch of young cavolo nero.
I had been thinking of sowing a green manure but there are simply too many goodies coming up. My sort of gardening...
handiwork from my god-daughter. This time a very useful pincushion made out of Japanese summer yukata fabric. The firework design that wasn't able to be centred actually ended up looking like a shell. A perfect fit for my urchin shell collection.
Trying to get my fledgling business off the ground and learning every day has meant that I have been too busy to attend to the garden this summer. It is my favourite sort of surprise, however, when I visit to go to harvest and find something I hadn't intentionally sown there. This is the biggest of the melons that self seeded. The taste of melons I have grown in the past hasn't been particularly good. Let's see with this one.
Well, the last apple, actually. God only knows how this one failed to grab the attention of the ravenous birds. I suspect it was because it was nestled between the net and the post. Now that the net has been removed, I am sure it won't make it to the weekend. I'm prepared to bet on that one.
Connecting with nature is vital to our mental and emotional health argues Richard Louv, whom I recently heard interviewed on Radio National. He coined the term "nature deficit disorder" and talks about the importance for children especially to play outdoors and get to know the natural world. Witnessing the abundant wildlife on our property always brings a smile to my face. The day I took this photo in the vegetable garden I also saw two tiny frogs, loads of birds, rabbits and wallabies. Ok - I do sometimes curse the rabbits and wallabies.....
When I am not busy sewing down at our island retreat, I love spending time in my organic edible garden or in the kitchen.