Monday, 15 June 2015

Garden flower bouquet and a Monday finish

I love this time of year. The sun is shining and the garden is looking beautiful. This is the result of of all Mike's hard work, but under my direction, of course. The best thing is that there is plenty of choice to fill a vase for the house.
Today's choice is a mix of pink shrub roses, late flowering honeysuckle and Sambucus Nigra "Black Lace". The last is a version of the wild elderberry that we planted in the quarry garden years ago. I'm afraid that part of the garden is a bit of a mess but this bush is a towering display of tiers of pale pink blooms.

Last year our bees made a bee-line for our chimney for the winter. Unfortunately they died out early in the New Year. We were lucky enough to be offered a swarm of bees last week and we are thrilled to have honeybees in the garden again.

 Half of the bees were tipped gently into the top of the hive and the rest were left on a sloping board to make their own way into the hive. They instinctively walk upwards to the opening.

The hive is right down at the bottom of the garden and the bees seem to have settled well. They have been  drawing out the comb from the foundation and are busy bringing nectar and pollen back. Hopefully, the queen will start laying this week.

So to my finish. Ta dah!.....

It is the finished foundation pieced table runner. I have appliquéd the centre flower with whipped buttonhole stitch.

The glass bottles are all Victorian in origin. Mike rescued them when he excavated the ice house here on the farm. They are a mix of seltzer, medicine and poison bottles! We found a dozen Victorian champagne bottles too. The ice house must have become redundant and was then used a a dump. I think the bottles look just right with the colours of the table runner .

I have spent the afternoon preparing for tomorrow's masterclass by Harriet Hargrave on invisible machine appliqué. Bags now packed, machine checked and all the class requirements ticked off. I think I'll need my brain in gear tomorrow so I will be having an early night.

I will be linking to several of the link parties (see the right hand margin for the links)

Hope the sun is shining on you too today.



  1. The runner and bottle combination is a lovely one and it makes a great display doesn't it. I love the bouquet of flowers from your garden! xx

  2. Beautiful flowers, bottles and an amazing finish. The combination of the bottles and the runner is very special.
    Interesting to read about the bees. Hope you have a lot of honey and a nice summer with a lot of flowers.

  3. Love the runner with all the those bottles! Our JRT is allergic to bees - ate one once and puffed up all over! I try to have lavender and bee friendly flowers out the front.

  4. Congratulations on a lovely finish Catherine, hope the class went well

  5. The runner with those bottles is just a perfect match - really lovely :-)

  6. The runner is perfect and matches the bottles so well. Nice you have some bees again. Good luck with the class!

  7. What a beautiful runner and such a lovely post, I'm so please you have bees again, I miss mine, but have enough on my plate with chickens and cats right now! I hope the class went well too......Karen

  8. Hi Catherine,

    I am visiting you from Amy at Love Made my Home, and have recently joined in with her Five on Friday. Your flower display is beautiful, and I love your foundation pieced table runner.

    It's so nice to see your bees and the hives. Our immediate neighbours used to have bee hives and at that time we made a concerted effort to plant more early flowering plants to help their bees earlier in the year. Our lovely neighbours were obviously planting with the bees in mind too and bought so many plants they gave some to us for our garden. We try to do our little bit for the bees with our plants and bug house. See my post

    How intriguing that you have discovered an ice house on your property. I trust you are planning to preserve it. I find that sort of thing really interesting, especially as it was filled with old bottles and jars. What is the history of the area, was there a Manor House nearby and obviously there must have been an adjacent lake or pond in order to fill it. Do you know the history of the area, was it within the grounds of a Manor House? Or stately home? One doesn't see them very often, they are a real piece of history and they are quite amazing to visit. We were lucky enough to visit one in the Dorking area, during a "Heritage" weekend, which was brilliant to see, especially as at the time I had recently finished reading a murder/mystery involving an ice house. We have also seen the remnants of one on a walk in Dormansland.

    I'd love to know more about your ice house if possible. Barbara xx


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