Friday, 31 August 2012

Heaven at Holt Farm

Yesterday we visited Holt Organic Gardens, open Thursdays, near Blagdon in North Somerset, where Yeo Valley Yogurt is made. It was heaven, I took loads of pictures so a few each day. I visit lots of gardens for inspiration and steal ideas but I am not usually envious of other peoples gardens, in this case I was.
Annual coreopsis
 A whole field of coreopsis, a variation on wildflower meadows stunning and unexpected as this is the first wild bit after the formal garden rooms.
 The next images are from the gravel garden
Verbena bonariensis


sedum and others
 which features a pond and an amazing view.
view from garden
Today is my birthday so we went to the Cove Restaurant in Weston-super-Mare, its right on the beach with lovely views across the channel. We had a huge bowl of Cornish mussels a lovely white wine and  blueberry cheesecake with blueberry compote.
And beautiful weather on both days. I've had some lovely presents including a pocket sized camera so no more missed opportunities.
Over the weekend I am taking part in a workshop run by Dail Behennah so couldn't wish for a better few days oh apart from missing out on India Flint's workshops in the UK.

Wednesday, 29 August 2012

Dyed yarns

Spaced dyed yarns
I forgot to upload the pictures of the yarns I dyed at the workshop, I may actually take up stitching and couch these on to my pieces of fabric. These are cotton, silk and nettle yarns

Shibori workshop

Spaced dyed silk
 These are the results of my the dying workshop I attended taught by Liz Hewitt. I'm quite pleased as this is the first dying I've done since my tie dye days of the eighties.
Shibori dyed cotton folded and pegged

These were only dyed with one colour but I put two cloths together while they were still wet, hence the cross colouring.
Shibori dyed cotton pleated and bound with elastic bands

I especially like this one

Spaced dyed cotton

Shiboro dyed mud cloth about 4ft x 4inches running stitches done with linen thread

Pebbles stitched in

My favourite pieces are the ones above. I will be adding small pieces of weaving to this piece.

Saturday, 25 August 2012

Food from the garden

On a more cheerful note the gardens are beginning to do their thing.  We have two small to medium? size gardens that feed between five and seven people, one mainly growing vegetables and one mainly flowers with a small area of veg and soft fruit.

 This cucumber is 14 inches long its the second I've picked from my two outdoor cucumber plants. The first was even larger but we ate it before I took a photo, there are about nine more to come.

We are also digging potatoes, picking flat, french and runner beans, carrots, beetroot, courgettes, spinach, lettuce and salad leaves. Also raspberries, blueberries, blackberries and wild strawberries. We arn't yet producing enough soft fruit to feed all of us.

On the down side the apple and pear trees, which are admittedly only about three years old have very little fruit and the tomatoes are disappointing for the second year running. We have no greenhouse so everything is grown outside and there just hasn't been enough sun to ripen the tomatoes. I may be making green tomato chutney this year.


Well today was not good, low visitors numbers, heavy showers and no sales. Oh well tomorrow is another day.

I did have my most 'interesting' visitor so far, he was apparently from our local asylum for the criminally insane and informed me he was being detained under the anti terrorist law. He did have a minder but I guess he wasn't that criminal or that insane if he's allowed to visit local art exhibitions.
He did seem a bit manic and asked loads of questions about how, what and where and was very interested in what type of sewing machine I had and whether I sold needles!

Friday, 24 August 2012

Pictures from an Exhibition

Louise Bailey
A selection of the artwork from my new exhibition, artists name beneath each piece. The photos unfortunately don't do the work justice.
John Bailey

Karen Young

Karen Young
 The funny angles are to try and avoid reflections
John Bailey

Louise Bailey

Thursday, 23 August 2012

Exhibition set up

I have been setting up the exhibition that will be open over the weekend at my studio. The three invited artists have brought a lovely selection of work, most of it of The Somerset Levels and a couple of the Quantocks amongst an eclectic selection of animals, views and flowers. I do hope we will get lots of visitors it can be a little disheartening when you put in so much effort and so little comes out of it. I will post a couple pictures tomorrow when the light is better.

On Wednesday I went to a Shibori dyeing workshop at Heart Space studio in Bristol, had a great day, hope to post some of my work tomorrow.

Saturday, 18 August 2012

Materials for some experimental weaving

Kozo cloth

Bark cloth (actually darker than this)
 These are some purchases I have made over the last few months. I am hoping when I have finished all the exhibitions for this year to do some experimental weaving over the winter using the bark cloths as backgrounds for woven additions.
Throwster's silk

Crimped hemp

Beaten Kozo

Photo taken in New Zealand of some dried foliage
The beaten Kozo would be ideal for the weaving material for this image. Its very stiff and brittle at present but I think I can work with it damp and then it dries stiff again.

Monday, 13 August 2012

Closing Ceremony

Wow what an amazing closing ceremony for the Olympics, a hard act to follow me thinks.

Saturday, 11 August 2012


Summer is hinting once again of what could be.

The butterflies are making an appearance at last.
 Why are they called butterflies, do they have a penchant for butter? I think flutterbys is more expressive its what they do especially when you are trying to take photos of them, they are quite camera shy, especially the peacocks, wouldn't you think they would want to show off.

This little fellow is actually bright blue but the scabious is pretty anyway
I think the little blue butterfly is a Holly Blue

 About ten snaps to get one peacock butterfly with its wings open.
Small tortoiseshell

I have spent the whole day in the garden just trying to play catch up with the weeds which are growing faster than anything else. I am also digging a new small flower bed which will be silver and white. I've only got room to dig one more bed after that. I'd like to dig the whole lawn up but I'm having trouble coping with the garden already. But at least then the other half wouldn't have to mow round lots of island beds full of plants trying to escape onto the grass.

Tuesday, 7 August 2012


Just a quick post to say welcome to my newest follower, thanks for joining my blog.

Monday, 6 August 2012

Do you remember when

This photo was taken during our one hot sunny week of summer. Two people and a dog on the sand
bank between two areas of mud, love it.

 Since then we've had a fair amount of very heavy rain. When places upriver from us get flooded we get lots of wood. This trunk is about 40 foot long and covered in ivy. Unfortunately the ivy is very green and not useable hopefully the sea will leave it on the beach and I can saw some of the ivy off later.

 Lovely marks on another trunk.

 The trunk in the picture on the right is also very large, its difficult to portray the size in the photos. Its old gnarled and knobbly.
 You can just see the top of our yellow open top bus.
A natural still life.

Friday, 3 August 2012

Anthony Gormley

Went to Barrington Court yesterday, it rained all the way there and all the way back but was sunny and hot while we were there. No photos I'm afraid, hoping to get small lightweight camera for my birthday, the gardens were looking great. However our main object for visiting was to see Anthony Gormley's Field of the British Isles, my second visit,  they are in three different rooms, the first time the installation has been separated, still very strong imagery, the figures look so imploring you just want to gather them up and give them a great big hug. I watched the video this time narrated by the man himself,  he comes across as a very spiritual person. I love his work and have been to quite a few of his exhibitions and to Crosby Beach were his men are spread across the beach and is quite haunting. Also of course The Angel of the North which towers over the landscape and is truly anchored to the earth despite the huge wings.

Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Any excuse

Oh dear, oh dear, my last post was the last time I did any weaving and here we are a week later, what happens to the time. My excuse is my daughter was staying then the Olympics started, K Spoering is weaving and watching,  I couldn't do that. I thought the opening ceremony was brilliant, my son was part of Danny Boyle's team, did I already say that, well I'm a proud Mum.

Now my aunt is staying with my Mum who lives just round the corner so I'm spending time with them,
next week I MUST SPEND THE WHOLE WEEK WEAVING. I have a lot of projects piling up and its all going to catch up with me soon.