Thursday, 5 September 2013

Purple Haze

Last weekend here marked the (official) start to spring, and there are bursting buds, bright blossoms and beautiful bulbs everywhere I look.
These golden beauties are on the verge alongside the footpath in Sherbrooke - our favourite walk. 

Hubby and I took a trip out to a local lavender farm with the excuse (on my part) to buy some dried buds. But honestly, it was such a pretty day, that no excuse was needed to take a drive up and over the mountain.

It's a month too early for the lavender field to be in full bloom, but I was happy to find one row flowering, with bees busily buzzing among the scented bushes.

It was hard to get a clear close up image, as the wind tickled the spikes amid a blur of bees. But here, one Mr. Beezly graciously posed long enough to be captured.

We ordered a pot of home made lavender tea under the old pepper tree. The liquid ambrosia, best taken black to appreciate the subtle, yet undeniable flavour.

Then, we ambled for a while and chatted away on this lazy day, as I snapped some images around the property.

Next month, we'll return to experience the haze of soft purple hues as these wonderful plants put on a show.

This Saturday is going to be a big one.

A three event day.

It will be my dear hubby's birthday. And, it'll be a very early start - the poor man has, once again, been roped into being by my side for the first of the large Spring Craft Markets. 
Our son has promised him a couple of beers and a meal at our lovely local pub at the other end of the day. So, that should give him something to look forward to as we drive in the pre-dawn darkness to our destination, unload, set up, mingle, chat with, and sell to, our customers.
Then, break it all down again and drive back home.
I'm eternally grateful for hubby's help on market days. He's now a wiz at wrapping and packaging too :)

These markets herald a, "full steam ahead" for me from now on until Christmas and beyond into the new year, when many holiday makers come to the area, all in holiday and (hopefully) spending mode.

Saturday is also the day of the Australian Federal Election. Ugh. I don't think anyone I've spoken to is excited about it. There's not much confidence with either party, nor does anyone seem very clear on which to vote for.
What a mess. And, I won't go into the arduous political hoopla on here. But, we must do our duty, as it is compulsory to vote here in Australia.
So, we'll toddle off to the local polling place once we're back from the markets in the afternoon and be the up-standing citizens we're meant to be ;)

On a much nicer note, I want to thank you all for your good wishes that the latest glaze firing went successfully, after the previous non-event.
And, it did! I have a lovely batch of clocks, incense holders, jewellery and ornaments to grace my stall. Phew! :)

Not to mention, I now have a small assortment of lavender bags and sachets to trial as well.

It has been the loveliest of tasks, creating them. The past few days, I've been entranced by an array of soft textures and the gentle humming of my machine, as I sewed away contentedly.
The bags and most of the sachets are made from the beautiful natural European flax linen that I wrote about a few posts ago. And some are made from a small stash of dyed linen remnants from England that I've been keeping, "for just the right project".
Tiny textile scraps and many, many snippets of cotton threads from fringed edges, strewn all over the floor.
Creative chaos in action :)

And, the aroma, oh! What a joy it's been, working in a cloud of lavender.

A tiny crystal rainbow kisses the tip of a dragonfly's wing.

There is a clay connection too - clay gift tags. Made with a smooth reverse, so that a personal message can be written in an artline or gel pen. Sweet little keepsakes from a loved one.

So, what do you think?

I would appreciate your creative, constructive comments on how I can improve them.
How do you feel about the natural jute twine as ties for the bags?
I considered ribbon, but wanted to keep a more "rustic", handmade feel to them. It somehow seems more suited to the homespun textures.

I welcome your thoughts and will keep them in mind when I make more in the coming weeks.

I wish I could magically send the scented goodness through the computer to you, it really is divine and very soothing.
Now, I have the perfect source to return to whenever I'm feeling, "manic market induced stress".

I think this sums it up...

Ahhh, relax, breathe and carry on.


  1. i would not change a thing.
    they are so beautiful v.
    they are YOU! they really are.
    i am just astounded by your sheer productivity.
    you're like a little village unto yourself!
    i will be holding wondrous good thoughts this saturday for your success. they're foolish if they don't buy up everything you offer!
    and that 'dear hubby' goes with you? what a man.
    he loves you so.
    as do i.

    1. Thank you Tam, you always say the sweetest things :)
      But, I'm sure there's some room for improvement, always.

      I am very grateful to be married to someone who enjoys markets as much as I do. I don't know how I'd do without his support.

      Sending warm wishes and good thoughts to you my dear. xxx

  2. Ahhhh lavender, has there ever been a more wonderful herb?! I have a small eye pillow filled with lavender that I use for yoga during my cool down. It's said that using an eye pillow for yoga meditation while in the corpse pose keeps your eyelids from fluttering and distracting you from your breathing. I love it for the aroma while I cool down. Yours are very wonderful, and the tags are just perfect!
    Good for hubby for hanging with you at the market, sometimes it's nice to have the company when there are few customers, which I hope will NOT be the case for you!

    1. Thanks Tracey. I appreciate your kind words :)

      Lavender truly is wonderful. I wish I could grow it here at our place, but it is way too shaded and the soil is heavy clay. But, I'm so grateful to have the lavender farm not too far away.

      And, hubby will definitely be looking forward to a couple of beers after the markets!

  3. Oh, Mr Beazly, we do love you. Thank you for your work.

    That picture of the lavender in the bowl gave me the strongest feeling when I saw it. It made me want to cry, but in a happy way. In a way like Michael Leunig said, a "happiness mixed with a mysterious sadness." But not a sad sadness. A nice sadness. A happy sadness. I simply cannot explain!

    The sachets and the gift tags are just gorgeous. What a lovely combination. I like the jute too, the rusticness of it. But then again, a very subtly coloured jute could be a really lovely addition, too.

    So glad the kiln has behaved itself and you are full of productivity. How lovely! :)

    1. I so know that feeling, Sue. It's oddly indescribable, yet, well-known, to me. Mr Leunig knows too :)

      It's interesting that the bowl of lavender evoked something in you. Images can do that, and so often without warning. It's more than deja vu, but something like that. Happens often with me. Hits me in the solar plexus and radiates out. Weird.
      I get it when I hear the lovely song of the Blackbird.

      We are such layered, complex creatures.

      Thanks for your lovely comment about my sachets and the jute. I think I get your drift - a softly coloured/stained jute perhaps? Nice.

      So far, so good with the kiln. Here's hoping it stays that way throughout this coming season :)

  4. I am not at all surprised to find another Leunig fan. His sister is usually too dark for me, but he very often moves me.

    I love your sachets - and would certainly stay with the jute. And the tags are a delight, something to cherish.

    And I am thrilled that the next firing was a success.

    I voted today. Done and dusted despite being very sad at the whole sad process. I believe our major parties have been competing (very equally) for who can plunge to the bottom quickest...

    1. Thanks for your thoughts EC, I like the jute too :)

      Yes, I think Leunig has a place in many hearts. The characters in his world, sometimes just, "hit home" on so many levels.

      The parties have been lobbying so equally. And plunge, it seems, they will - taking us all with them. I try not to think about it too much. Makes one feel damn helpless.

  5. I LOVE the lavender bags and sachets, the old linens are perfect for them and the twine too, I never would have thought of that. I like the rainbow kiss on the dragonfly.
    I really need to get some lavender into my drawers and wardrobe, they're a bit musty smelling, stale I suppose since a lot of my clothes are old.
    Herbal teas are always best taken black, milk just ruins the delicate flavour.

  6. Replies
    1. Thank you River. Glad you like :)
      Try giving your clothes (after washing) a spritz with the lavender water formula I mentioned a few posts ago. That should freshen them up. And a bag or two hung in the wardrobe wouldn't go astray. Keeps the moths and silverfish at bay too.
      I agree. Herbal teas are best taken black. It really is the only way to appreciate the subtle notes - huh, I sound like a wine geek! :)

      Happy sadness. I don't think of it as melancholia. To me, that's more a deeper, long lasting sadness or "pall" that can hang over a person.
      I see it more like, bittersweet. It's hard to describe. A little akin to one's child growing up and leaving home to enter the big wide world. You're happy for them, but also sad that your baby's all grown up.
      Something that's close to my heart, as we just have the one child.

    2. Wistful is probably the word I was trying to think of. Bittersweet is close too.

  7. Such JOY! LOVE seeing all the lavender... *swoon*... It is wonderful to see all this as things are winding down from summer here. I'll be so happy to visit you here during winter to get tastes of summer! :o) Hope you have a great weekend for sales & fun, Vicki! So glad your latest fire went well--HOORAY! And Happy Birthday to your hubby! (Here's to hubbies who help out too--HOORAY!) Monday is election day here, and a new Prime Minister may be elected. I'm rather tired of all the voting propaganda everywhere and look forward to the finish... LOL! Your lavender bags are GORGEOUS! I am loving the ones with vintage feel... especially the butterflies (one of my power animals, what can I say?! ;o) Those fringy edges... *swoon*...I like the rustic flavor--with the linen, the cotton, the twine--it's so pleasing to the senses along with the lavender scent! You've done such a beautiful job with these. And these are going to sell! I love the clay tags too... they are wonderful! I like that they can be personalized with a pen--brilliant! Wow--you've been busy! Seeing all this really inspires me! LOVE the photos--so well done, such pretty arrangements. And love the rainbow-kissed dragonfly. :o) Best of luck this weekend with your ware... Let us know how the response to all your lavender goodies was! ((LOVE & HUGS))

    1. Thanks Tracy! It's nice to be able to inspire YOU for a change, lol! You're my go-too when I feel disenchanted with creating - I just remember how much you achieve.

      Haha, "hooray for hubbies". Should be a bumper sticker :)

      Yeah, we're over the political BS too. Saturday night will be good, celebrating the end of it all for a while.

      So glad you like the new lavender goodies - a big compliment coming from you, sewing goddess :D

      I didn't even notice the tiny rainbow on the dragonfly until I saw the picture. I love it. Gives me hope that they will sell :)

  8. They are all so lovely. They must feel so nice in hand and wonderfully scented. Linen, twine, cotton and the ceramic tags--perfection. What sweet, aromatic gifts to give (or keep!) with the ability to personalized. All thoughtfully done. They will be a hit for sure...
    Best wishes for a successful market, Vicki...

    1. They do feel and smell wonderful, Charlene.
      Thank you for your good wishes for the markets tomorrow.
      I hope you have a lovely weekend :)

  9. Vicki, wish your husband a 'Happy Birthday (early)' for me!

    I hate voting season, too. I don't really approve of either political party here anymore, and so many people get so upset and argumentative when election time rolls around. I think when the next presidential election comes up I'll vote for Mrs. Rose or one of my cats, ha.

    I could nearly smell the lavender in that bowl! I love your gorgeous lavender bags and beautiful clay tags. I think the natural jute suits them perfectly; ribbon would, I think, clash a bit with the natural feeling they have.

    I'm so glad your second firing went well, and I hope you sell lots and lots of things at the craft market tomorrow...umm, today? It's 5:30 Thursday evening here, so I'm guessing it might be 10:30 a.m. Friday morning there? OK, I've been sitting here mulling this over for several minutes and now I'm throughly confused...but I'm sending lots of 'good sales' vibes to you, trusting their sense of time is better than mine!



    1. Thank you for your lovely comments on my lavender bags, Victoria. I agree, I think ribbon - unless it was "aged" - would be a little out of place.

      Oh yes, Mrs Rose and friends in parliament - I'd vote for them hands down!

      I'll pass on your birthday wishes to hubby, he'll be so chuffed that he's getting mentioned :)

      Have a lovely mountain weekend, with, hopefully, a good dash of rain to make it even better :)

  10. Hi Vicki, I think they are gorgeous, tres french! Tres Bon! I think the jute ties are perfect with the linen. I really love the ceramic tags too. I think people will really go for them because not only will they be gorgeous AS tags for gifts, people will want to hang them around their homes too. I'm glad your firing was a success - isn't it just the most amazing feeling as you open it up??

    Have a beautiful week.

    Sarah xxx PS Happy Birthday to your nice husband. I hope you all enjoyed your pub dinner (and beer)

    1. Aww, thank you Sarah. Given the stunningly lovely work that you create with art & textiles, I appreciate such praise :)

      I'll pass on the birthday wishes to hubby. We had a great end to the day at the pub. And, seeing as we don't get to do it very often, it was special.

      See you soon xx


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