Let me introduce you to Maggie Hannaford a fairly recent addition to my garden and a bit late to the party flowering but I’m not complaining – isn’t ‘she’ a beauty!
There are enough blooms this year for me to pick for my botanical art and still have some in the garden to admire.
I’m joining Cathy from Rambling in the Garden for In A Vase On Monday albiet with one I arranged on Saturday night as it’s raining this morning.
It’s been raining on and off for the last four days – not that I’m complaining because the garden needs it and it’s the perfect excuse as the mornings get darker to pull the quilt up tighter and ignore the alarm clock for a few minutes more.
I love this time of year when summer gives way to autumn, it feels like life slows a little and reminds you to take a moment to just breathe and be still – which is funny really because as the days get shorter you would think it woud bring a sense of urgency that you have less time to do all that needs to be done!
The hydrangeas have just about finished for the season but their late season faded colours are a favourite of mine and I’ve been leaving them to dry in vases around the house.
On Saturday evening after a day of grey skies and rain I decided to add a bit of autumn style to the mantle piece by filling a large cylindrical glass vase with dried hydrangea heads intertwinded with fairy lights.
Want to try making your own ‘Flower Lamp’ vase? This is what you’ll need.
I have used Down To The Woods battery operated LED string lights that are on malleable wire that can be twisted and scrunched. The small battery box can be neatly tucked out of sight behind the vase so you can easily turn it off and on when you want!
I love the soft cozy effect the twinkling vase creates and I’m now keen to try out the idea with autumn leaves.
I must confess I had to google Galentine’s Day to know what exactly it was when it started popping up in my instagram feed and on the artwork of fellow card designers.
Was it a fancy pants way of saying Valentine’s Day? a Galician or Gaelic tradition?!
Having never watched the television show Parks and Recreation I was in the dark to the 16th episode of the second season (first aired in 2010). Amy Poehler‘s character Leslie throws her annual “Galentine’s Day” party for her female friends, celebrated the day before Valentine’s Day.
Like so many things Galentine’s Day has apparently transcended from the television screen into everyday culture. While it started out with the character Leslie going to brunch with her female friends, the unofficial holiday is now not just celebrated by fans of the show, it has turned into an optimistic celebration of friendship to be celebrated on the 13th February.
Yesterday I received a Valentine’s card in the mail from an admirer – a fabulous female friend, I doubt she’d heard of Galentine’s Day either and I love that over the years we’ve found our own ways to celebrate friendship with no popular culture prompts needed.
So happy days of love and friendship to you, whether you’re choosing to partake in old traditions or new or blissfully ignoring them!
Designed with the lovely Cécile Brünner roses from our garden there are currently four designs in the Love Letters Collection and three are available as signed giclée prints.
I’ve written before about this pretty rose, it’s a favourite of mine, and I chose to pick sprays of them to combine with ‘Naked Ladies’ (amaryllis belladonna), snow berries and camellia leaves for a sophisticated elegance… and let’s pretend just out of view is a ‘Schiaparelli’ pink velvet chaise longue, a gorgeous art deco ice bucket with champagne chilling and French doors with a view of the Seine.
I discovered this postcard amongst some things at my mother’s house last year.
Sent to my grandfather when he was five, it’s postmarked December 23rd 1917 and the handwritten greeting from an aunt is delightful.
With good intentions of letting those playful kittens deliver a Christmas greeting again I photographed the card so it could arrive in a very different type of mailbox via this blog – 100 years after it was first sent!
I pondered where one of our petal & pins greeting cards may turn up a century on from now and thought it was the perfect example of why a handwritten card will always be so much more meaningful than tapping out a text.
So my apologies for it being belated – I hope you had a jolly Christmas and Best Wishes for 2018!
Two of the highlights of my year have been about collaboration.
In April Lisa Britzman, a ceramic artist and sustainable boutique farmer in the Huon Valley of Tasmania got in touch to see if I would be interested in having some of her autumn blooming saffron flowers to design my minature botanical couture with.
Mr Petal & Pins and I drove down to Campo de Flori Farm which is picturesquely located high in the hills. It was facinating to see saffron growing and Lisa showed us how it is harvested. I brought a basketful of the striking purple flowers home and designed a mini collection of dresses that has kicked off the Farmgate Project by petal & pins.
Recently we went back to the farm for olive blossoms and culinary lavender – and of course we were only too happy to come home with some freshly baked lavender shortbread biscuits too!
The other wonderful collaboration began in the Spring of 2016 when Carolyn Turgeon editor-in-chief of Faerie Magazine interviewed me by skype for the The Faeirie Handbook – ‘an enchanting compendium of Literature, Lore, Art, Recipes and Projects’.
In winter this year I got a sneek peek at the proofs for the pages featuring my Garden Fairy’s Wardrobe® and the beautiful cover featuring Euphaeidae from the Wonderland series by Kirsty Mitchell Photography but of course had to keep it a secret until its release.
The book launched in November and I was very excited when my copy from publisher Harper Collins New York office arrived!
It’s an exquisite hardback book with silver edged pages and I couldn’t be more proud to be featured within it.
There’s something for everyone who loves a bit of whimsy and magic of any age with chapters on Flora & Fauna, Fashion & Beauty, Arts & Culture and Home, Food & Entertaining.
So let me know if you see The Faerie Handbook in your local bookstore…or if you have a suggestion for a collaboration why not get in touch!
The Faerie Handbook is available from bookshops worldwide and online through Amazon, Booktopia, Dymocks and the Faerie Magazine online store.
In November Mr Petal & Pins and I headed to Adelaide to do our 4th Bowerbird Design Market.
We love this event for all sorts of reasons – and although it’s work it’s also lots of fun, although not so much the 4am start to catch our flights (2) to get to Adelaide in time to set up!
We get to share our story and products directly to consumers and chat with other designers and makers from all around the country running creative businesses just like us.
And then there is the food…our favourite this time was from The Seasonal Garden Cafe. Their endeavour is to celebrate seasonal produce serving simple, peasant food that is guided by what is available from their cafe garden and from the gardens of local growers – and they certainly delivered that in a very delicous way!
Equally impressive was their stand display so I took some photos to share with you.