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Thanks also to Mary of Mary's Mixes for doing all the work on the blog's heading. You are great, Mary!


Wednesday, 21 January 2015

Winter and some lace

Yes, winter has arrived!  We had the first snow a few days ago, and it is cold with a capital C-O-L and D!  Daytime temperatures are around 0 - 2 degrees Celsius,  the low 30s Fahrenheit, and while I know it’s not as cold as it is in America for example, for us it is pretty cold.  I went to West Linton the other day, not too far away, and stopped to take a photo on the way over and another on the way home.  The countryside is just so pretty, as long as the roads are clear!IMG_3552IMG_3557 

The light was beginning to go on my journey back so my car headlights were on, as you can tell from the photo on the right.

IMG_3551We don’t get temperatures as low as they used to be when I was a child.  Our local duckpond was always frozen over sufficiently for it to be used for skating.  The ice had to be at least 8 inches deep all over before anyone was allowed on the ice.  I came across this photo of a game of curling on the frozen river Tweed, that was taken probably in the 1950s.  A few years ago there was ice beginning to form on the river but nothing like this has happened for several decades.

Anyway, I haven’t had a chance to show you pictures of some of the lace on display at the Edinburgh Lace Day way back in October.  The Edinburgh Lacemakers hold an Open Day, mainly for other lacemakers, every October, and as well as stalls selling lace threads, bobbins, books etc, there is always a display of the lace made by the club members.  I took photos of several of the pieces on display, demonstrating the different styles of lace that is worked by the group.  Everyone has their favourite style, whether it be one of the four styles of English lace to the European countries’ styles.P1100211

It is extremely hard to make those little leaves, and they say you have to make 200 of them before you can call yourself a lacemaker.  Well, a lacemaker made this, that’s for sure.  These are beautiful.  Actually I have the feeling that this just could be my sister’s work!, though I could be wrong.

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This one is a sampler.   I started this pattern myself years ago but never finished it!  This is excellent!

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So is this piece.  I’d say this is quite complicated to work, but it’s beautiful.

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I just adore this piece.  I first saw the pattern in a lace magazine and it was in colour.  Oh how much I wanted to make it myself!  However there were various techniques I had never tried before and I knew I night need a lot of help, certainly at the beginning, so I never even got started with it!  Here’s a closer look at the flower.

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So far all of these pieces have been worked in white, a very traditional colour, along with an off-white called Ecru, but there were also pieces in colour which can really make a pattern zing!P1100217

This motif inspired a bookmark and a decorative edging  for a runner, while the next piece could well have been dyed with its lace edging already in situ.

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This purple design was stunning, and again, look at the petals of the flower.  Worked in the same way the leaves were in the first picture, these flowers are “something else”!

I believe it was actually a  neclace design. .  Perfectly beautiful!         Yes, here is the complete necklace.P1100236

 

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this was one piece out of a set, the hairpiece/hat in black and red, accompanied by the  shoe accessories and the handbag.P1100224  Someone  P1100225worked hard on these.

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Here’s another piece of traditional white lace, a bookmark, perhaps.  It’s another quite complicated piece.

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and this is part of a wallhanging, worked in a variety of styles and patterns.

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Years ago, when I was a member of the Edinburgh Lace Club, everyone made a circular piece of lace with their name attached, to be part of a club project, for a table cover for special occasiions.  P1100228This was my effort, and this next one, my sister’s.  It was nice to see the cloth still used, and our lace displayed.

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this is a piece of Carrickmacross lace, worked as two layers, hand stitched  round the central and outside white sections then one  layer in berween cut away to leave the net as a contrast to the design.

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This was an amusing and clever little picture of some spiders, with two spiders seemingly escaping from the picture.  I did like it!

There were a few others I took photos off , but I hope the lacekaers will   understand   that I can’t upload every shot I took!    I hope you have enjoyed seeing these ones.

Talk again soon.

Friday, 26 December 2014

Thank you.

card

 

Thank you to all my readers for sticking with me throughout the year.  We’ve just celebrated a winter Christmas, but some of you will be celebrating in the warmth of summer, and it won’t necessarily be Christmas.

 

 

 

 

Talk again soon.

Saturday, 13 December 2014

An autumn walk along the Swale

Before we get too far into the winter season, I must show you some photos of a river walk, not along Tweed this time, but along the Swale in Yorkshire.  When I lived in Yorkshire for a few years my house was about 100 yards from the upper reaches of the river Swale, but this walk was further downstream, from easby abbeyEasby Abbey up to Richmond and back – a round trip.  http://where2walk.co.uk/yorkshire_dales/walks_through_history/easby-abbey-from-richmond/

It was a beautiful day as we drove up from CB’s house to Easby, on my last visit.  As we came down through Abbey wood, there were the ruins of the 12th century Easby Abbey, a sizeable group of buildings, destroyed in the 16th century after the dissolution of the monasteries by Henry VIII.

P1100656St Agatha's houseWe parked in the Abbey car park and began our walk along a little lane, leaving it further on, to walk down a field, past St Agatha’s House then  through the gate onto the riverside path through the trees. the gate

Buster, the collie dog, came with us, and he had fun chasing the sticks we threw for him, while we walked and talked along the way.the dog

the wet dog

 

 

 

 

 

P1100674P1100669The trees were beautiful, beginning to turn to autumn browns and yellows, a bit behind the trees further north at homethe riverbank.

 

 

 

 

the roots

There has been a fair amount of erosion along the path nearer to Richmond and we found these exposed tree roots, hanging on to the banking.st mary's richmond

Soon we were approaching Richmond and could see the old  church of St Mary’s ahead.  When I was little, and we were staying with Richmond friends of my mother’s, Dad often used to take time to travel into Darlington by train to make calls to certain booksellers who sold some of his firm’s publications, such as ready reckoners, contour road books, and even a couple of astronomy books.  I was eventually allowed to walk with Dad from where we stayed, down through St Mary’s churchyard and on to the station, to wave goodbye to him as he left on the train for the day in some “shadowy big town far away”.  Well, if you were going by train it had to be far away.

the stationThe train doesn’t run between Darlington and Richmond any more, the line closing in 1969 and the station with listed building status became a garden centre.  A swimming pool was built in one of the railway buildings and nowadays the Station is a sort of an Arts Centre, with two cinemas, a restaurant, various rather lovely retail outlets, a brewery, a cheese maker’s, a heritage centre and art gallery.

P1100690near RichmondBefore we reached the station though we still had a bit to walk, under the old Station Bridge  (We are looking back at the bridge here, at the side which was washed away by storms some years ago.  It’s repaired now and looking as good as ever).and up to where the Gas works used to be, past the falls the falls from the gas worksand on a bit further to visit some friends who live beside the Swale.

After a pleasant visit with Mike and Ruth, we came back to the Falls, and made our way to the Station, having crossed the bridge,  the old railway bedwhere the next section of our walk was along the old railway bed.

Dad would have had some nice views from the train all those years ago. easby from old railway We saw Easby Abbey with Easby Hall behind it across the river but had to walk further along to another bridge P1100729then double back to where we had parked the car.Easby hall zm 

I think Easby Hall is a guest house or Boutique hotel these days. Nice looking building. 

 

So there we were!  Back in the car it was only a short drive back home again.  I’m enjoying being able to walk greater distances than recently!  I wonder where the next walk will be!

Talk again soon.

Thursday, 11 December 2014

Hurworth, a village of brick

I’d never been to the village of Hurworth before in my life!  In the years I lived in Yorkshire, and since moving back north and visiting CB, I had never had cause to go there, but on Saturday I found myself driving there as the Spar shop was the nearest place to Paddock Farm where I could get cash to spend at their Christmas craft fair.

Hurworth SparI followed instructions to reach the Spar shop, a little supermarket at the top of the village, and as I approached it I could see more of the village stretching out beyond.  Mainly built in red brick it looked so pretty.  Georgian style architecture!  I love it!

Let me show you some of the views I took photos of, and where I can I’ll tell you more about it.  Apparently just a bit beyond the end of the village there was once a brickworks that obviously provided local builders with their materials.  Nearly all the buildings are brick built.  hurworth blind laneOn the right of the photo is a stone building, the old church school in Blind Lane, and in the middle of the road junction is what I at first took to be the war memorial, but no… that’s in the churchyard further down the village.  This is a water trough fountain thing, erected by two sisters to commemorate the accession of King George V in 1911.

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This is the War Memorial, of course recently decorated with wreaths and poppies on Remembrance Day.hurworth church tower

A church probably existed on the same spot as far back as the 15th century with the present church of All Saints being rebuilt twice in the 19th century.   In the churchyard is the grave of one William Emerson, mathematician and teacher, one of Hurworth’s better known sons. 

hurworth lychgate2To a Scot, such as myself, the ornamental gates to the churchyard are very unfamiliar.  They are lych gates, which seem to always have a bench seat beneath the roof.  I am under the impression that the bench was used to rest a coffin on while the vicar conducted part of the funeral service before burial..

Hurworth churchesThere is another church in the village too, which I presume is that of the Methodists.  You can see both churches in this photo.

hurworth e,arms etcThe Inn at the foot of the village bears the name, the Emerson Arms, named for  the above-mentioned William Emerson.  There may well have been several inns and pubs in the village in years gone by, but “The Fish and Otter” and “the Bay Horse” are the only others today.hurworth bay horse

 

 

 

hurworth green

There seem to be several open grassy areas that could be called the Green, but I think this area suits it best.  The cream hurworth old house c1450coloured building on the left has a plaque over the front door that seems to indicate that the house’s origins are back in the 15th century and that it was restored in the 1930s. hurworth green2

 

 

 

hurworth big house2Alongside the cottages there are several rather large houses in the village .  hurworth big house3Normally there would be only one “big house”  belonging to the chief family, normally the land owners, but here there is a mansion and several other big houses in extensive grounds.hurworth mansion house

This is the mansion, possibly older than the other two.  Ihurworth tree stump2n the grounds I found the most amazing sculpted tree stump.  Not sure what to make of it, but I didn’t like it, despite the detailed work that has gone into it!hurworth big house6

This is another large house, though sitting alongside the village street rather than behind a wall or fence.hurworth big house4

and another that looks like it has been added to several times in its life.hurworth freeholds

The plaque above the doors of this pair of cottages states that they are freehold houses from 1715.  Most of the village would belong to the local landowner and the houses in the village would have been built on land leased from the landowner.  If the piece of land  belonged to the housebuilder, that land would be freehold, so there would be no rent to pay for the land or house.  Well, that’s how I understand it, having bought a house on a freehold when I was in Yorkshire.

Most of the buildings are from the Georgian era, possibly rebuilt from earlier buildings. IMG_3272 A plaque on one house says that William Emerson lived in a house on the site of the present Georgian house.  Of course building has gone on since, through Victorianhurwort victorian house…..

 

 

… to the 20th century.  I have to say I was surprised to see some uPVC windows and doors.  hurworth uPVChurworth the gablesAt least these newer houses were intended to fit in with the old  brick buildings.

There’s nothing to beat the solid wooden hurworth front doordoors of the Georgian/Victorian eras.hurworth front doors

 

hurworth phys dent

It was interesting to see the physiotherapist’s premises with its pretty bow window, and next door the dentist’s surgery with wisteria growing up its walls.

Altogether an interesting village.

Talk again soon.