Tuesday, 12 July 2011

Penshurst Place...Is it Haunted?

Could this be the grave of one of the ghosts?

I'm sniffing lavender in case you were wondering...


Apparently this is supposed to be a porcupine.

Dag and me

Lord of the Manor

The Union Jack Garden

Yes it is haunted!
This post is a bit outdated because it was over a week ago that we treated our friend Dagmara to a day out at Penshurst Place (for her birthday) but it's only just now I have had the time to sort out my images from that day. Penshurst Place is a medieval manor house with vast grounds and gardens, built in 1341, located in Kent. They never let you take pictures inside the house which is why all the pics are of the garden...which was beautiful...and magical. We try to go to as many stately homes as possible and oogle over all the old stuff. I get caught up in the romance of it all and can literally transport myself back in time and picture what it must have been like and it gives me butterflies in my stomach. Wayne likes to admire the old furniture and try to guess how much he could get for it on Ebay. We always have a chuckle when we think that the rich, dead aristocracy of these old places must be turning in their graves knowing that now, a few hundred years later, their gorgeous castles are open to the public and crawling with peasants!

I'm not a 'ghosty' person. I do believe in them but I can take them or leave them. I'm not particularly drawn to that kind of stuff and I'm definitely not a medium or psychic or anything. I don't look into whether these places are haunted before I go to them...partly because I don't really care but mostly because I just assume a house that old must have some spirits rattling around in them. I've been to lots of old houses and castles...never saw or felt anything. But Penshurst Place definitely had some 'ghostly' stuff going on...a cold, tingly, angry energy that I felt through to my bones and back up my spine again. Even Wayne felt something (that he described as an electric, buzzing feeling) and he's a total sceptic.  The Tapestry Room and the Nether Room were the worst for me. I felt angry and cold and I couldn't wait to get out of there. There was a painting that I swear was watching me and I kept getting whiffs of woodsmoke and frankincense. Neither Wayne or Dag could smell it. I even asked the lady who worked there if she smelled it and she said no. I asked her if the place was haunted. She said no. Below are the two rooms that I am talking about. I didn't take these pics...I got them off of a Google Image search so I don't know who took them...so apologies for not properly crediting them.

I also want to say that I have dreamt of these rooms...and the long hallways of Penshurst Place...many times over the years...way before I even moved to England. They were always scary dreams...and full of ghosts and evil stuff. I decided to read up on it and it turns out, Penshurst is haunted by many ghosts. Not only that, one of them apparently smells of woodsmoke! I'm certain I was smelling him when I was there. Anyways...if you like ghosts and chilly vibes...go to Penshurst, it's got all of it going on...and wear something warm, it feels like death froze over in there!

The day was truly lovely though. I bought some sweet peanuts and strawberry bons bons in the gift shop and we came home pleasantly tired and had some freshly brewed tea and gluten free chocolate birthday cake with a mocha cream frosting...(I made it)......heeeeee!


Sunday, 10 July 2011

Beautiful Dungeness

Today we went to the closest thing in England to an American desert.

The weather was perfect.

Amazing, eerie, inspiring, beautiful, haunting, minimal, harsh, dead, alive, magnetic, strange, mystical, radioactive, romantic...and one of my most favorite places on this planet.

Dungeness. The farthest tip of land at the most southern part of Kent. Four miles out to sea.

It's like nothing else anywhere.

More pics here on my Flickr.


Tuesday, 28 June 2011

Going Nuts Over Porcelain Flowers

 1.Valeria Nascimento  2. Far4  3. John Whitehead  4. MaaP Studio  5. Studio Klimenkoff   6. Elizabeth Prince  7. Melissa Gamwell  8. Source Unknown  9. Source Unknown

I should be working right now but instead I have spent hours trawling the Internet looking at porcelain flowers. I love them. The ornate, delicate white ones make my heart skip a beat. I almost can't bear it. White porcelain just seriously does it for me. I can feel another obsession coming on. How much I wish I knew how to work with ceramics...and wasn't so clumsy handed...I'd love to be able to make some of these. These are just a few I found to be particularly lovely but there are tons more out there waiting to be seen and adored.


Monday, 27 June 2011

Making Millinery Flowers

My passion with flowers doesn't stop in the garden. I have also been harboring a serious millinery flower obsession for as long as I can remember. As a child, I used to go to the dime store and buy all sorts of velvet flowers, fruits and berries. It was the 1970s and things like that were in abundance. Sadly millinery flowers that have the kind of quality of yester-year are very, very scarce. In fact the whole artificial flower business is quite elusive. Most artificial flowers that are readily available are mass produced in the Far East and are made from cheap polyester and come in garish colors. There are places that sell good quality millinery flowers, but they are so traditional. I want something unique, funky and kinda quirky. When I do find some old millinery flower stock though, I find it very hard to part with it.

Lately I have been busying myself with trying to make some of my own. These are some of my first attempts. Try not to laugh. They are 'flat' and 'new' looking and aren't really 'there' for me. I think I will try to dye some of my own fabrics next. I am also ordering a set of heat flower presses which will hopefully give future flowers that I make a more 3-D appearance. I want my 'new' flowers to look old and vintage...so onward and upwards with experimenting!

Meanwhile...these flowers may just end up on a fascinator base with some other embellishments...so stay tuned.


Sunday, 19 June 2011

Summer Wedding Fascinators

Wedding season is here and I have been busy making fascinators. Both of these were made with vintage flowers and bits so they are one-offs....but I have also been very busy making some repro flowers too. I have been studying vintage millinery flower techniques and although I'm still in the experimenting phase, I hope to have some fabulous ones (with a funky, modern twist) made up and in my shop very soon. I'm not really a hat person but I can't seem to resist floral fascinators...or huge flowers in hair! I can probably trace that obsession back to the day I fell in love with Frida Khalo. I spend most days alone in my studio so I never have a reason to put my hair in bunches and festoon it out with huge blossoms, but I am going to a big bridal fair on Thursday...so maybe it will be as good an excuse as any to stick flowers in my hair!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...