March at Bodnant Garden, Wales ~ follow this link for more photos and garden history.
Over at Lost In Translation, one of Paula’s recurrent themes is the conversion of a colour image to monochrome. It’s always interesting discovering what will or will not work; which details become more or less significant. Sometimes there are quite striking and unexpected differences in mood. All of which is to say, I’m not sure why I even thought of converting this first photo to monochrome. As an indoor, night-time shot with too many light sources, I wasn’t expecting it to work at all. But then I found I rather liked the monochrome version. It somehow has a more formal or stately feel about it. It was taken in the hall-drawing room of St. Bride’s Castle.
Coming up is the front entrance. I don’t think the conversion does much for the image here:
This next exterior shot perhaps works better: austere geometrical silhouette against active clouds:
And I do rather like this clump of monochromed daffodils found in the castle grounds:
More about St. Bride’s HERE
In which Six Go Potty In Pembroke With Cockapoo Puppy – holiday snaps #10
Childhood summer holidays: the cottage stay near a Welsh beach and the much wearing a brown gabardine mac; endless search for places that might offer shelter and diversion from wet and gloomy weather; the Welsh Crafts Shop that, if we’re lucky, will have a cafe.
Back then, to my young 1960s’ eyes, Welsh tweed seemed very old hat. It had all the charm of the post-war-geometric-abstract-chemical coloured fabrics that my parents had taken to (fabrics which are now very popular again in vintage shops). I found the designs and colour palette distasteful then – too hectic for one thing – and I still do, though I can see they were meant to cheer everyone up after years of rationing and austerity; inspire a spirit of hopeful busyness and productivity.
So where does that leave my views on Welsh tweed now?
Well, it’s always good to revisit old dislikes and appraise the situation with fresh eyes. For a start there is no denying the fabulous quality of the product. This is reflected in the price. However, it really does NOT still need to be used to cover bags, purses or to be made into unfortunately shaped waistcoats. On the other hand, deployed as rugs and furnishing fabric, then we’re on to something. In fact Welsh tweed has been acquiring cachet in quite discerning quarters. And although I forgot to take a photo, the stair runners are perhaps the finest things the mill produces, especially the red ones. You can see some in situ HERE.
As for the reversible rugs with their traditional ‘portcullis’ designs, I’m suddenly finding I like them too – at least to the extent of buying four place mats in spring green for the kitchen table. I like the ‘cottage industry’ simplicity and well-made-ness, in much the same way that I like the 1960s pale oak ercol furniture (now being reprised) – just so long as it doesn’t come with its original overdone upholstery and cushions which often obscure the pleasing frames. So I’m also thinking that if anyone needs to replace original fabric on a piece of vintage ercol, then Welsh tweed could be just the thing – a refreshed ‘Arts & Crafts’ look. A little googling also reveals that another Pembrokeshire Mill has already thought of this. See what you think.
Solva Mill, as the sign proclaims, has been in operation since 1907. The workers’ clocking on clock is still in the old workshop foyer. For those who like wheels and gears, there is old weaving equipment all over the place, inside and out. You can read a bit more about the history of the mill HERE. Its situation is blissful, in a little valley up in the hills above Solva village. The overshot watermill that once powered the mill was restored in 2007 as part of the works’ centenary celebration, and there are hopes to get the whole system revamped to produce electricity. In return for free left over plastic yarn cones (see below), you can make a donation to the project. This meant that Super Puppy was able to leave the premises with a very satisfactory toy. A good morning out all round.
March Square #27 Becky’s March Square extravaganza is nearly over, so with this post I’m probably putting all my squares and circles in one basket. I think it’s safe to say there are more here than anyone can possibly count.
In which Six Go Potty In Pembroke With Cockapoo Puppy – holiday snaps #8
copyright 2018 Tish Farrell
This was a heartening find outside our High Street florists on Wednesday. I love the blue of hyacinths, though their scent can be overpowering indoors. Anyway, it made me think how lucky we are in our very small and ancient town to have so many independent shops. As I may well have mentioned before, our traders’ roll call even includes two book stores. Also extraordinarily, we have a vicars’ outfitters where men of the cloth can have their cloth, well, customized. Who’d’ve thought…
I’m thinking I may feature more of Wenlock in squares over the next few days. I shall have to schedule same as we’re about to go to the dark side. That is to say, changing our internet provider. The last time we did that we were worldwidewebless for nearly a fortnight. So if you don’t hear from me over the next few days, do not be surprised.
March Square Pop over to Becky’s to get square with this squares and circles lark.
At least this morning we have bright sunshine, although even before I looked out of the window I could tell from the clarity of light there would be frost too. There is. Indoors, I keep peering at my tomato seedlings and thinking, ‘why did I start you off so soon?’ They say they don’t know either. Ah well, when it comes to gardening, as with much else, all one can do is travel hopefully. Meanwhile, fingers crossed, we’ve seen the back of these wintry scenes. You can click on an image to also see these in carousel format.
Sheep posing in Much Wenlock’s former Priory parkland
Thursday’s Special: Pick A Word in March Ovine is only one of Paula’s word prompts this month. Pop over to her place to see the rest and be inspired. You have a week to post your own interpretations.
Yesterday the wind was whistling into Shropshire through the Cheshire Gap, and despite the apparent stillness and bright sunshine in this photograph, it was one big icy blast up on Windmill Hill. I did not stay long. But in the shelter of the woods, lower down the hill, I did stop to catch these mossy tree roots:
And then among the fallen leaves I found this very strange fungus:
This week at Thursday’s Special Paula has given us five word prompts to choose from. My choice for these photos is protuberant. Pop over to Paula’s to join in.
…the hesperantha in the garden is STILL flowering – albeit translucently and only at her stem tips. She has been buried under a foot of snow for nearly a week, frozen and defrosted, and refrozen. Then we’ve had downpours and mighty windstorms. I don’t really know what to make of her, other than to give her a big round of applause. She’s been flowering continuously since August.
Actually, despite knowing where we all are calendar-wise, I’m feeling most disorientated just now, and it’s got nothing to do with too much Prosecco. It seems as if the whole year has rolled by without my being wholly present. Where did it go? Perhaps I was too busy trying to bury my head in the proverbial sand, for although all was well in the Farrell household (for which we are truly grateful), there was too much happening in the rest of the world that was deeply tragic, or infuriating, or just plain bonkers. It makes me want to re-wind the year and start again with all our grownup brains switched on. Ah, well. A new year. A fresh start. So let’s aim to do our best in 2018. In the meantime here’s a sample of this year’s seasonal ponderings – over the garden fence – a favourite displacement activity for this writer on the Edge:
Happy New Year!