Friday, 11 July 2014

Pin cushions



One of my favourite perennial plants is Astrantia.  It has a number of common names, among them being Masterwort, Melancholy Gentleman and Hattie's Pin Cushions, but I know them as Granny's Pin Cushions, which seems the perfect way to describe these beautiful little flower heads.



They've gone over now and I won't see them for another year.  So too have the Alliums and Nigella, but these are as beautiful as seed heads as they are as flowers and are, well, sort of pin cushiony too.






Due to an ongoing injury (golfer's elbow apparently) I am unable to crochet at the moment, but I'm not to be defeated and so will be doing some very left-handed sewing instead.  It's a bit frustrating, but the upside is that, after a bit of practise, I will be an ambidextrous needlewoman, stitching with whatever hand takes my fancy!


This little old cotton reel is one of my favourite things.  Why don't they make them like this anymore? 


Thank you to all who sent birthday wishes a couple of weeks ago.

Hope all is well out there ...
Jane x

18 comments:

  1. Dear Jane,

    I am delighted you left such a lovely comment on my blog as now I have discovered yours. It is truly a treat to read your latest posts. I am quite certain we have many things in common and I look forward to following your future posts.

    Stephanie, your latest follower.

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    1. Thank you Stephanie and welcome.
      Jane x

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  2. I love everything on this post Jane, especially the astrantia flowers, and the way you set up your pics with your lovely pincushions interspersed with the plants - the love-in-a-mist is such a pretty bloom too, isn't it. I have to agree with you regarding the old wooden spools - 'purns' we used to call them in Scotland when I was a wee bairn :) - as with lots of commodities these days it's now a plastic affair and a bit sad I think! Sorry to hear your injury is causing some trouble and wishing you the very best with your left-handed stitching - I am left-handed and think I'd be pretty useless sewing with my right hand but then I suppose when needs must, we have to get on with it. Good for you! Happy weekend, xoJoy

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    1. Thank you Joy. I love the name 'purns', I've never heard that before and yes, I think the plastic ones are a bit sad too - they're certainly not as tactile. Jane x

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  3. I hope your elbow recovers soon for you to start crafting with more ease. A lot of the plants for my garden were picked for their name! Hatties Pin cushion being one of them. I love looking through old gardening books for the names given.

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    1. Thank you Joanne. I have to say I'm drawn by names too - one of my most recent purchases is Agastache 'Blackadder', always good for a giggle so couldn't resist. Jane x

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  4. Hi Jane,

    Lovely photo's and what a lovely idea with the pin cushions. I am intrigued though what is the lovely flower at the bottom of your post the one before you the last two photo's of your pin cushions and cotton reel I don't think I've ever seen this one and I'm thinking I may just have to find a spot in the garden here at the Willows for such a plant as this.

    Hope the golfers elbow doesn't last for too long.

    Mitzi

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    1. Hi Mitzi, it's the seed capsule of the Nigella flower in the photo above it. I think these seed capsules are every bit as lovely as the flower that comes before them. Happy Sunday! Jxx

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  5. I love your cotton reel! I have some old wooden ones still with thread loaded on them but I don't want to use the thread or take it off, I wonder if they look like yours on the inside! I never knew that Astrantia had the name of Grannys pincushion, but it is a great description isn't it! I love the flowers too, but find them frustrating, I have had a plant for years, it comes up every year and has lots of leaves and produces one flower a year - yes, reliably one flower!! I will have to stop by and look at yours instead!! xx

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    1. I don't use the thread on my old wooden reel either, I'm worried about spoiling it! Shame your Astrantia doesn't produce many flowers, perhaps you could try moving it to a different spot? I do it all the time as some plants don't like my heavy clay soil, which is worse in some parts of the garden than others. Failing that, you are welcome to stop by anytime! Jx

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  6. Gorgeous flowers and pin cushions. Hope your elbow is better soon and good luck with the sewing!
    Marianne x

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  7. I really like the way you scattered the pincushions in amongst those beautiful photos of flowers! It's lovely to see nature recreated in crafty pursuits. I do hope your elbow gets better soon so that you can enjoy some crochet again. x

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    1. Thank you Gillian, I like to match the two whenever I can - one of my most satisfying makes was inspired by a plant in my garden. Jx

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  8. Lovely post Jane, and I like your new look blog too!
    They are beautiful flowers, I love the old-fashioned common names that are always so descriptive. The alliums and nigella look lovely both in flower and when gone to seed.
    Hope the elbow is improving Jane, look forward to seeing you tomorrow - actually, make that later today! Better get to bed!
    Gill xx

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  9. Thank you Gill, glad you like the new look - I felt it needed a bit of de-cluttering, not sure it makes my posts any more interesting though! Jxx

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  10. I love all your pincushions, both the real and the flowery ones! I hope your arm gets better soon, Jane.
    Helen xox

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  11. Having unplugged for a little while I'm only just catching up with everyone. I do like your new look here. I've given knitsofacto a make over too. Must be something in the air!

    I'm also an Astrantia fan, but I didn't know the pin cushion names ... what fun!

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