Sunday, 6 December 2009

Felting and disasters

I have been felting again and it is such fun when it all goes right, this was supposed to be a shrug but it shrunk too much so I will see if my Ma would wear it as a bed jacket,it is lovely and warm.Above is the back of the shrug I was sewing it together at a quiz night and a friend male said it reminded of the inside of his hoover bag! Male naturally, and a bit sad if you have time to examine the inside of hoover bags I shall have to get him a nice little hobby.
I also made this top with instructions from "Felting Fashion" it is a great book on nuno felting very instructive with tips that really help,this is more mauve than the photo and it is wearable but rather short for a plump middle like mine.It did not shrink sideways but really shrank longways which was down the grain,which I thought was a bit odd.

The colour combinations are glorious and she shows you how to add godets and pockets and get the felt into a shape.

This is called the poppy coat.

Met up with some friends and one of them inspired by an enlarged photo of a seed head had made this piece using a technique from June Barnes¬ book she had sew the wool into circles cut them out and dyed them then mounted them onto a textured background,it was inspirational and one of the " oh I wish I had done that things" I have seen in a long time.

So I decided to have a go, I sewed circles like mad into an old blanket rushed out and bought some acid dyes only to find that the cotton was still white.So out again to buy the right colour green cotton , more sewing and dyeing,started to sew it together and found out I needed twice as many as I had done so back to the machine.I decided to sew the circlkes together so that they were convex, for some reason this tended to flatten them,and I have ended up with a large lumpy unattractive mess which looks a bit like a dinosaur egg.

And it doesnt matter which angle you take the photo from it still looks as bad.
I might hang it off a tree in the garden and pretend it just grew.

Tuesday, 24 November 2009

temples at last

Your first view of Ankor Wat is stunning, it is surrounded by a square moat, it has 5 lotus like towers rising 65 meters from ground level,you walk across a causeway to the entrance, even in the rain it was more impressive than I had imagined.It was built by Suryavarman II in the Mid. 12th century it was dedicated to the Hindu God Vishnu, but later to Buddha.

This is one of the "libraries"

I loved the pert bottoms on these lion statues but all had missing tails.

The inner most tower at Ankor wat,you are no longer allowed to climb up as the steps are very worn,not to mention narrow. A bias relief of temple dancers,all of which are well endowed in the bust department.

The windows are decorated with these lovely pillars

These statues guard the bridge to Angkor Thom a 3km walled and moated royal city the builing was started in 1181 by Jayavarman as his new capital.

One of the five gates to the city each have four faces.

Bayon is one of the temples in this complex and my favourite, all the massive stone Buddha faces are very impressive,there are 37 standing towers most of them with four faces.

Elephant terrace, many of them are damaged it is 300 meters long with the terrace of the leper King at the north end.

Ta Prohm built by Jayavarman VII and dedicated to his mother,the jungle really encroaches into this temple.

The children have such beautiful ,happy faces even in the rain.

This is Ta Prohm, massive fig and cotton trees grow out from the stones it is very atmospheric and the tree bark is a golden colour, this temple is where the film Tomb Raider was filmed.

The trunks look very fluid as they flow over the stones.

This is the path on the way out,it was knee deep in places, but at least warm.

Sunday, 8 November 2009


A Brahman cow and calf making use of the waste water. We flew into Cambodia to Siem Reap and it poured and poured but we still had a great time I was going to post the photos of Angkor Wat but blogger is playing up so will post them later. The typhoon which hit Manila came on through to Cambodia a lot of the roads in Siem Reap were under water, this is a small hotel.

Life carried on much the same they still rode their bikes and everyone worked so hard at clearing up, even though some of them had flooded houses and nowhere to sleep and they were still smiling.

The water buffalo have very regal faces.

We flew back into Vietnam to Hoian which had had 2 days before water 3 meters deep, some of the hotels had to close due to damage and down by the river it was still wet and muddy, our hotel had some damage to the roof.Health and Safety would have a hissy fit here ,they were repairing the tiles no hard hats no safety harness nothing, but they sure got on with it.

This is My Som a temple complex just outside of Hoian, quite a few of them were deliberately bombed my the Americans, they are made of brick.

This is part of the gateway to a Buddist temple at Cham Island.

We did a cookery course, which was great as we found out the ingredients for the fantastic food we had been eating, it is very fresh and clean tasting they use a lot of coriander and different types of basil.The tutor spoke superb English and we made spring rolls, Wassabi soup, tofu balls,stuffed cabbage rolls ,chicken and shitaki and banana flower salad it was all delicious,I came home with a suitcase full of dried shitaki, and a great gadget for doing julienne strips.

We even managed to make tomato roses.

We went on a sailing trip for 2 nights around Halong bay, on a boat like the one below.The bay has masses of small outcrops of rock, some of these are small some have caves which you can kayak into [you get to realise your age getting in and out of a kayak!] and some have fantastic grotto`s with stalactites.

People live on floating villages the photo below is of the school

and the village

One of the grotto's from the sea.

The islands are stunning but it was always misty and my camera is only a basic one so you do not see the masses of islands disappearing into the distance,it would make a great textile piece with organza.