Cultivate Simple Podcast in iTunes Chiot's Run on Facebook Chiot's Run on Twitter Chiot's Run on Pinterest Chiot's Run on Flickr RSS Feed StumbleUpon

Bad Art Day: Batik

July 25th, 2017

A few friends and I started a Bad Art Club, we get together (hopefully once a month) and have a good time making art. We call it the bad art club so that no one is intimidated by feeling the need to make beautiful things. In reality, all art and creative pursuits are beautiful and the process is part of the joy and fun of it. On Sunday, we got together for our big day  of batik. It was long (10 hours of hard work), but it was so much fun.












What new creative pursuits have you been embarking on recently?

Learning New Crafts

July 11th, 2017

I’ve been wanting to learn how to dye with indigo for quite awhile. In fact, I was signed up for a class last summer, but it was cancelled at the last minute. When I saw that Halcyon Yarn had a class this summer I signed up. The class was taught by Jackie from Forage Color, it turns out she lives not far from me. Here are a few of the items I made during class:


Our class included four cotton napkins and one silk scarf, we were also able to take a few items of our to dip into the vat. I took an old white skirt that had a stain, a white tank top, and a white swiss dot sheet that I got at the thrift store.

The skirt turned out beautiful, I’m excited to once again be able to wear it as it’s one of my favorites (you can see my post about how much I love this skirt here).



I’ve been buying white sheets at the local thrift store for a few years now, my plan was originally to make white curtains for the back porch. Now I’m thinking indigo curtains might be a fun project. I won’t have time to do it until fall, gardening takes up way too much of my summer time. It’s always fun to learn something new, especially a new creative endeavor.

What new creative things are you pursuing at the moment? Or what have you always wanted to learn how to do when you get a little more time in your schedule?

Quote of the Day: Rosemary Verey

July 2nd, 2017

“Although I arrived here more than fifty years ago, I constantly try to see the garden with new eyes. This is the wonderful thing about gardening; trees are ever growing taller, shrubs developing, ground cover taking over. Then scene changes and every year has its own character, influenced by frost, rainfall, and sunshine – elements over which we have no control; but we can aim to pan so that each season has its moments of interest, with winter scent, spring blossoms and bulbs, summer exuberance and autumn color.”

Rosemary Verey in Making of a Garden

I’ve read this book several times and had it in my shopping cart at Amazon. This past weekend I was lucky enough to score it (and a few other gems) at the local library sale. Amazingly, I paid only $1 for it.

Gardening books are something I read over and over again, they never collect dust around here. I’m always happy to add a few new volumes to my library, especially when I can get them at such a great price. I especially love books like this one that document the making of a garden and follow that garden throughout the years. Too often we see gardens at their height and their best, and not during the seasons, when young, as they grow and change.

What’s your favorite gardening book at the moment?

Flowers for all Occasions

June 22nd, 2017

This time of year I always take a vintage mason jar full of flowers for the garden when invited to someone’s house. The vintage jar is a gift, as are the flowers. People are always excited about a jar full of flowers and I’m happy to share the loveliness from my garden. Yesterday we celebrated a friend’s birthday.

Flowers make such a nice addition to the table too. For our celebration I made a tiny bouquet for the cheese platter and put tiny black violets in the jar around the tea light.

Vegetable also make nice gifts, I find myself often harvesting a nice head of lettuce or packaging up some eggs to take as gifts. I’m a huge fan of gifting items that can be enjoyed and then they are gone.

What’s your favorite thing to take as a hostess gift?

Quote of the Day: Joy Larkcom

June 18th, 2017

“There will be disappointments (when gardening). The glorious visions that are conjured up when sowing or planting don’t always materialize and the painful memories of failures lurk in my written records: ‘chamomile path engulfed by chickweed; cat scratched up lettuce seedlings; first cabbage lost to pigeons; drought causing slow pumpkin growth; ‘Treviso’ chicory disappeared. There are bound to be highs and lows: no garden can be beautiful all the time.”

Joy Larkcom in Creative Vegetable Gardening

For two years I have had a vision of what I wanted to create in the garden area below the living room windows. A mass planting of ‘Walkers Low’ catmint with lovely purple allium globes towering above it. I had seen a photo at one time of this and found it stunning.


Clearly my alliums are not towering above the catmint, in fact one is being smothered by it. The flowers are also the same color, which wasn’t the plan either. Perhaps the photo I saw used a lower catmint, the version that grows only a foot tall or so. Or perhaps the alliums grew to their normal height. My ‘Globemaster’ alliums are definitely not as tall as others I have seen, in fast they’re a full 8-12 inches shorter than the others I have seen. All-in-all, this ended up being a gardening disappointment.

The one on the edge is pretty tall, this is more what I was going for, but the other two aren’t even close to being tall enough. The one closer in is being swallowed up by the catmint (as you can see in the first photo of the post). In my opinion this is a waste of alliums. Alliums should be showstoppers in the garden, they’re so graphic and bold.

I’m certainly glad I didn’t buy a lot of alliums, I purchased only 3 bulbs to give it a try first. I may try a different type of allium in, one that has smaller flowers and one that is a different color of purple. These alliums won’t be lost, I love them, just not here. The bulbs will be fed, dug up, and then moved to a new spot in the garden where they can shine and be the showstopper they should be.

What gardening fails have you had this year? 

Reading & Watching
Resources

Shop through these links and I get a few cents each time. It's not much, but it allows me to buy a new cookbook or new gardening book every couple months. I appreciate your support!

About

This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

Blogroll
Admin