I have now reached the stage in my life where looking round gardens (preferably with the chance of a cup of tea and even cake) seems like a very nice thing to spend my time doing .

This weekend was the Marsden Open Gardens day so myself and friend Sharon from knitting spent a lovely afternoon sampling the delights of our green fingered fellow residents.

There were some really stunning gardens and it is hard to pick a favourite, it was amazing to see what people had done, particularly as a few were transformations of fields or rough ground and done with such great imagination.

This was the first one and perhaps will have to be my favourite because of the medieval theme, look at that little tower with the fabulous door (and the very cute ginger cat!).

Marsden Open gardens 1

Marsden Open gardens 2

Marsden Open gardens 3

Marsden Open gardens 4

Marsden Open gardens 5

Marsden Open gardens 6

However this one over the road – a transformation from field as in the top picture of next door to Japanese garden with a little hideaway complete with amazing views comes a close second.

Marsden Open gardens 9

Marsden Open gardens 7

Marsden Open gardens 8

Marsden Open gardens 10

Marsden Open gardens 11

Marsden Open gardens 12

Marsden Open gardens 13

Marsden Open gardens 14

There were some very stunning plants and cute garden seating as well.

Marsden Open gardens 15

Marsden Open gardens 16

Marsden Open gardens 17

Marsden Open gardens 18

Marsden Open gardens 19

Marsden Open gardens 20

Marsden Open gardens 21

Marsden Open gardens 22

Marsden Open gardens 23

And more beautiful views, I loved this garden on one of the roads out of the village which backs onto the moors.

Marsden Open gardens 24

Marsden Open gardens 25

Marsden Open gardens 26

Marsden Open gardens 27

This is one I see regularly as it is next to my bus stop.

Marsden Open gardens 28

And this beautiful Japanese style one is next to the river where I often go walking.

Marsden Open gardens 29

 

An excellent afternoon out, I am so lucky to live here.

I never get tired of how beautiful the countryside is around us and it was lovely to see some of the other beauty here and admire all the hard work of the proud garden owners, thanks to everyone who was kind enough to let us visit.

I will be away this weekend at another event (yippee!!!) helping some friends with their show at a local country fair so am hoping for very lovely weather for that.

Hope you have nice things planned for your free time and thanks for visiting.

 

 

 

 

Hello there, hope you are having a nice weekend, am about to go out to an open garden afternoon here in the village but before I do wanted to share some of the Tudor costume we have seen recently as Ellie and I had a little trip out to Nostell Priory  this week.

Ellie has been there before for a training course (she gets to go to some fab venues for her staff development!) and wanted to go back as a visitor.

The house dates from the 1800s but the family were related to Tudor notables including Elizabeth Woodville and so there were quite a few portraits of costume that were brilliant to see.

This blackwork jacket belonged to a Duchess and the detail on the painting was very good.

Nostell Priory blackwork portrait

Nostell Priory balckwork portrait 2

The best thing was just before we left which was this amazing portrait of Thomas More  (he who sadly failed in his attempts to get Henry 8th his divorce from Catherine of Aragon) and his family.

There was such brilliant detail in the pictures of the costumes so I took some close up shots for me and for my friend Kat who makes such fantastic Tudor costume as well as medieval period things.

Nostell Priory Moore pic whole

Nostell Priory Moore pic

Nostell Priory Moore pic 2

The blackwork embroidery on this shift is very detailed and there also appears to be similar embroidery on the edge of the dress.

Nostell Priory Moore pic 3

It was interesting to see that two of the sisters had shared two of the fabrics, using it alternately for sleeves and bodice.

Nostell Priory Moore pic 4

Nostell Priory Moore pic 5

I have some very good news to share with you as well as Ellie is going to be staying at Hardwick permanently – her contract which was due to run out next March has been extended and she will be there for there for the foreseeable future :-) We are all very pleased not least Kerry as she was going to miss her cinema buddy!

One of the things that I keep meaning to post about is the National Trust Collections web site that details all of their artefacts, Ellie uses this a lot for her blog so you may find it useful if you are interested in more detail about their collections.

Will be back later with some more textile loveliness from Nostell, meanwhile take care and thanks for visiting.

We are very lucky and we get to camp in some amazing places, castles and historic venues and this weekend we had an event at Peveril Castle in the Peak District. The views were amazing and well worth the very long climb (with tents and lots of kit!) to the top of the hill.

Peveril the castle 2

Peveril view

Peveril the gorge

Peveril tent and view

Due to the nature of the site we only took modern tents rather than authentic as we had to take the tents down each morning as well. The picture below shows Mark and Shane climbing up on Saturday morning with their kit, it was a long steep hill!

Peveril Castle

But this picture just sums up everything I love about re-enactment, breakfast (bacon butties of course!) in the sunshine outside the tent.

Peveril Castle

The weather was brilliant – despite my fears that this might be a very wet weekend, it was actually a little too hot on the Saturday, we girls were ok in the shade down by the entrance to the castle doing our head dress talks but the boys were sweltering at the top and did a brilliant job of running the events in that heat.

Thanks to Wendy, Kevin, Philip and Daniel for these pictures that they posted to our group Facebook site.

Peveril show

Luke had a new cotehardie to show off – he looks brilliant and I love this picture.

Peveril event

I also really love this one of the girls looking at the view.

Peveril the sisters

Peveril Me and Ellie

Here are Luke and Jamie doing a dagger display.

Peveril Luke and Jamie

This is the arena from the top of the castle.

Peveril event

And here am I with Luke’s very impressive horned helm.

Pevril me and view

Pevril Sisters

Peveril Luke and Mark

Peveril Paul and Jamie

Pevril me and king

Peveril end of show

We were all so tired that after a trip down to a pub at the bottom of the hill for a very nice meal Saturday evening we only had a little sit round the campfire before bed.

A really excellent weekend and a great way to finish the Swords of Mercia events for this year. The Sisters still have a few events left before the tents go away for winter :-(

Ellie is now here for a week’s holiday so we may do some days out later in the week, we do have a trip planned to a textile museum en route to moving Jake into a new flat in Middlesbrough.

Hope you have all had a good weekend and thanks for visiting.

Hello and I hope you are having good weather – we are having a minor heat wave here which is very nice.

Hope it continues for the weekend as we have our first ever show at Peveril Castle and we are not going to have much shelter as it is right on top of a hill so the tents will be miles away!

Spent last weekend at home so decided to have a ‘ Christmas in July ‘ afternoon with friends from my knitting group here in sunny Marsden.

Sue, Sharon and Sammy (other people with names not beginning with S were invited but couldn’t make it) all came round for a few hours of crafty loveliness and a bit of light refreshment ;-)

I showed them how to do the lovely baubles from Springwood House Designs and my little stocking designs and we were away playing with fabric.

Xmas in July Sharon

Xmas in July Sue

Xmas in July Sharon and Sue

They were very talented, Sue made a beautiful blue and silver bauble and Sharon proved herself to be the fastest bauble maker in the West (Yorkshire) with two produced that you can see on the left here, one traditional holly patterned and another Scandi style burgundy one.

Sammy’s is the red and gold bauble on the right and I stuck to my good old traditional colours for the one at the back – I do love a bit of red, green and gold!

Xmas in July Ornaments

We had a little seasonal feast as well with mince pies, ginger and chocolate cupcakes , rocky road and crispy cakes and pigs in blankets accompanied by Prosecco and mulled wine (which tastes very good cold!)

Xmas in July

A lovely afternoon and one we will repeat a bit nearer the actual festive season as we have lots of things to make for friends, family and fund raising at craft stalls.

Thanks for visiting and will be back next week with hopefully some pictures of a lovely sunny re-enactment event!

On our recent trip to Spain we visited the little mountain town of Novelda again – I have posted before about going to Casa Modernista and we went back to show that to Ellie and my Aunt Maureen.

The church was open this time as they were having a fiesta so I got to take some photos of the wonderful inside, like many Spanish churches it has a tiled blue roof and some restoration had been done on the stonework with new inserts into the pillars which were beautifully carved.

Spain June 2014 Novelda Church

Spain June 2014 Novelda Church 2

Spain June 2014 Novelda Church 3

Spain June 2014 Novelda Church 4

Spain June 2014 Novelda Church 5

Spain June 2014 Novelda Church 6

The rest of the town was very pretty as well with an unusual tower on the town hall and gorgeous Art Deco benches.

Spain June 2014 Novelda

Spain June 2014 Novelda 2

Spain June 2014 Novelda 3

Spain June 2014 Novelda 4

We also went to visit a small local museum where they store the Moors and Christians costumes for the re-enactments of the Reconquista that are held all over Spain.

Spain June 2014 Novelda costume

Spain June 2014 Novelda costume 2

Spain June 2014 Novelda costume 3

Spain June 2014 Novelda goldwork

A fab time as always, I do so love Spain, the people buildings and lifestyle, I am very lucky to be able to go so often and can never wait to return.

Thanks for visiting and see you soon.

Hello again

Just a quick post to show you the second of my Little Cotton Rabbits  knitted elephants.

Bonnie elephant Spain

Meet Bonnie – short for Bonita as she was completed in Spain which is why she is posing among the bougainvilleas at my house. She has been sent to live with Becky, Ellie’s best friend from University, who loves elephants.

Am now on with the third elephant – have done 9 bunnies so far – I love knitting these just as much as people like receiving them!

Thanks for visiting.

Apologies for the lack of posts recently. A very hot and relaxing holiday in Spain followed by one of the best Tewkesbury weekends ever means that blogging time has been severely curtailed.

Anyway here I am with some costume stuff to share and battle pictures courtesy of Pat Patrick who does such a fab job at all events.

Firstly here are the fruits of the sewing weekend we had in Feb. You may remember this being cut out, well it turned into the outfit below that Kerry on the right is wearing.

Tewks -Ellie and Kerry

The one that Ellie wears is a dress Kerry made some years ago. Apologies for the very non-authentic background, my Photoshop skills are not good enough to replace it!

They looked splendid walking round the market in the morning, even though it was very hot they made a sterling effort to look cool and elegant.

We had our newest member Sadie with us and she really enjoyed the battle. We spent a lot of time pointing out to her all the exciting bits, literally as Pat has captured!

You can just see us at the back of these photos – Sadie in green, Ellie in burgundy. me in blue and Kerry in brown, pointing out where our boys are fighting.

Even though it was really hot all day there was quite a rainstorm during the battle but the boys in armour never felt a thing! Here is the King and his retinue – look at that goldwork!

Tewks - battle in rain

Tewks - battle in rain 3

Tewks - battle in rain

A very excellent time and can’t wait for more events. Now on with some further kit making, in the week before Tewkesbury I managed to make a shirt and brais and mend some hose and an arming jack, now on with an arming waistcoat and then I am going to make some kit for me!

Take care and thanks for visiting.

Hello everyone

Hope that you have been enjoying the fantastic weather we have had this week in the UK, I was very glad that the high temperatures we had last week during the working part continued for the fun bit that was Tatton Medieval Festival.

I love this show, it is one of my all time faves for so many reasons, the venue is beautiful and only one hour from home and it is small enough to be friendly and be able to see everyone to say hello but large enough to have a nice market and beer tent and battle – essentials for a good re-enactment weekend ;-)

I bought some new mugs from Jim the potter, am saving the rest of my spends for the big market at Tewkesbury where a new belt and pouch are on the list.

Tatton Pottery

Tatton Pottery 3

We took my latest tent for its first outing, this is a new (bargain) that I bought at the end of last season.

Tatton new tent

I seem to buy new tents in response to extreme weather, the first (new to me) tent last year was after the icy hail storm at Rufford so we had somewhere to all shelter and this one was in response to the 38 degrees at Tewkesbury so we have some shade!

It worked very well, it is a great size tent for just me and Ellie as there is plenty of space for kit and room to stand up and get dressed in. And at only £40 almost brand new it was a great find – it had to be repaired due to a broken zip after it was first bought so Outdoor World were selling it cheap.

It was a really lovely weekend and not only that thanks to Jamie and Sam I have lots of photos to show you as Jamie very kindly posed for some costume pictures and Sam took lots of the battle.

Tatton Jamie soft kit

Tatton Jamie soft kit 2

Tatton Jamie soft kit 3

Jamie is wearing his very smart tunic showing the dagging on the sleeves, dagging was extra material to show how rich you were and was often lobed like this or oak leaf-shaped. He is also wearing his black hood or chaperon over the topic of the tunic and a bicocket hat. The tunic was made by Jackie from Cloak’d and Dagger’d.

As we were taking these pictures along came another very well dressed gent in later period costume (don’t know his real name but he was playing De Massey in the battle).

Tatton Jamie and De Massey

He is wearing a more fitted doublet with puffed sleeves and the later version of the chaperon when it evolved into a hat, complete with dagging and liripipe or tail. This style of outfit is around mid 1400s whereas Jamie’s is mid 1300s.

Here are the battle pics, love the one of Ellie in the smoke and the last couple that Jamie has put some filters on.

Tatton battle 2014

Tatton battle smoke

Andy and Rhys at Tatton

Ellie at Tatton battle

We are off to Spain this weekend – yippee more sun! Have loads more photos to post from various things which I may get chance to do before I go if not will have to have a serious blog update when I get back!

Have fun and thanks for visiting.

The first house on our recent tour was the very impressive Kingston Lacy. The house  dates from the 1600s but was remodelled in the Palladian style later.

NT Holiday June 2014 - House  KL

NT Holiday June 2014 - House 3 KL

NT Holiday June 2014 - House KL

It boasts the first plate-glass windows ever to be used in a public house and its owner used them to good effect to give the Italian style he was looking for.

NT Holiday June 2014 - view 1 KL

NT Holiday June 2014 - view 2 KL
These views reminded me of our trip to villas on Lake Como a couple of years ago.

In the drawing-room was this beautiful embroidered piano cover with a little sewing box on display at the other side of the room. I don’t know what the date was for this piece or who worked it, as is often sadly the case no information was known about it.

NT Holiday June 2014 -  KL

NT Holiday June 2014 - piano cover KL

NT Holiday June 2014 - sewing box KL

The owners enjoyed collecting pieces and architecture from their travels, a pair of doors had come from the Vatican and this ceiling had been brought from Spain.

NT Holiday June 2014 - Ceilings KL

There was another beautiful painted ceiling in another vaulted room.

NT Holiday June 2014 - Ceiling 2 KL

All very stunning and well worth a visit. I think the National Trust is fantastic value for money (I am not just saying that as Ellie works for them as I have been a member for years).

It only costs £58 for a year and not only do I get the pleasure of seeing all this amazing art and architecture I feel happy that I am helping in a small way to preserve and protect it.

Thanks for visiting and see you soon for more Trust loveliness!

Hello there

I am very excited to have just finished the first of many of Julie’s fabulous elephants, available from her web site  along with all the bunnies and the fox pattern (will have to knit one of those next).

She is a very lucky girl as she has 3 pretty dresses and the cutest little tail.

Eva elephant

Eva elephant 2

Eva elephant 4

Eva elephant 3

Eva elephant 5

Eva has gone to live with my cousin’s daughter where she will meet up with my first ever bunny Florence who is very much loved by her elder sister so hopefully they can play together.

Now on to my second elephant – one day I might knit something else but these are too cute to stop!

Thanks for visiting.

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