Are any of you interested in the programmes on ITV about storms and storm chasers? My husband can't understand the fascination with storms, the sense behind the people who chase or follow them and often find themselves in quite scarey situations. But I can... storms fascinate me, not so much the hurricanes they are showing this week, but the twisters of last week I found incredible to watch. And a good lightning storm is something else isn't it?
Vanessa on her blog, had been talking about a ladies afternoon club who had been knitting buildings in their village, and it reminded me of this little terrace I knitted decades ago. Of nowhere at all, just a jumbly of little houses, knitted separately then stitched onto a piece of fabric, and mounted onto a piece of plywood. It has moved house with us about five times I think. In the same year, I must have had a thing about knitting things like this because I also knitted a wallhanging for a friend, of her back garden, as seen from above... rows of veggies, beds of flowers, a tree or two, a shed as well. And I did one of a landscape too... grey slatey wall in the foreground, then fields of different colours, hills, sky, with clouds and the odd bird embroidered on after. I haven't done anything in this 'creative' line since then though.
At the moment I seem to have a thing about knitted bags and this is the third I have made, a fourth is under construction as well as one in a chevron pattern. This is in a tweedy wool, and as you can see from the photo below, is lined as well. It's not big, measuring about ten inches across by eight, plus handles, and obviously not one of these capacious ones you can stuff all but the kitchen sink into. No, this is a more genteel size, the sort of bag I would take with me on one of our mooching about, let's go down here and see where it goes, type of days out. When we pack up the picnic basket and just go.... inside I will have a small purse, handmade in Chinese silk and given to me by an old friend, and just big enough for a bit of loose change and a credit card, a small pack of tissues and not much else. What else do I need?
It was on one of our days out we decided to investigate some of the tiny hamlets around this part of Norfolk. They consist usually of nothing more than a few houses, maybe a large farmhouse, sometimes a small shop or pub, but more often than not, not the latter! Babingley is one such place, on the Sandringham estate, and consisting of a handful of pretty old cottages and a fabulous social club, a big old log cabin of a building which always has gorgeous hanging baskets on the verandah, and sits nestled amongst pine trees. These are on the main road, and then tucked away down a side road opposite is the church of St Felix, along with a few large houses.
The church is built of corrugated iron.. I first wrote about it in 'Suffolk and Norfolk Life' back in the 1990s, when it was undergoing restoration. Up to that point, it is fair to say it was a sad and sorry sight, despite still being used as a church. The outside was peeling, thatch was green or missing altogether in places, window frames rotten. But then money was found for restoration, and the picture above is the result. Often called 'Tin Tabernacles' these little churches used to be found in many places around the country, but as you can imagine, time and weather takes its toll if the fabric of the building isn't looked after, and often it isn't, through nobody's fault really. By the mid-19th Century galvanized corrugated iron sheeting was developed, strong, long-lasting, easily moved to where it was needed and easy to use for buildings. There were even catalogues of buildings that could be bought, like flat-packed furniture... you could buy a chapel seating 150 for about £150, double the number of souls to be seated and it would set you back about £500, and by the end of the 19th Century, there were hundreds of these iron churches. This one is beautiful, it has a wonderfully rustic simplicity about it, and inside, like all churches, it has that certain something, that special feel.
Flowers... who amongst us doesn't appreciate a bunch of flowers, and a bargain. When the two come together, magic!! This is a couple of bunches of sweet williams, sold as a BOGOF at my local Tesco's, and as I love the flowers, I couldn't resist. Well, I could have, but as someone famous said, I can resist anything but temptation.... who was it? Did someone say it or have I made it up? Anyway, they are beautiful, sitting on the hearth in the sitting room, whilst the gorgeous peonies below, from the garden, along with some lime green alchemilla and white nigella, sits on the dining table in the conservatory, where I can see them from the kitchen and from my chair in the sitting room. They are just gorgeous, next year I hope to have more, of a different colour to this deep carminey pinky red, which the camera and light didn't do justice to. Much like myself really...