Just a quick pick for today, a vase of ‘Velvet Queen’ sunflowers, the first time they have been cut for a vase this year, aided and abetted by a step ladder (hint: needed for one of The Projects) that happened to be at an appropriate end of the garden. This regal sunflower has performed well in the cutting beds and has been blooming for around three months, with branching stems producing a number of blooms in a range of sizes. I have also grown the dwarf sunflower Dwarf Sunspot again, which grows to about 18″, but the flowers only lasted two or three weeks. In a sunflower trial/demonstration at RHS Harlow Carr this weekend a middling-height sunflower named Santa Lucia caught my eye and I shall be looking out for this one though.
As I plonked the velvety monarch with just a mere hint of artistry in an unmarked vintage green earthenware vase, I had in mind a piece of ‘crazy patchwork’ created with richly coloured and randomly shaped velvet pieces, that I thought I had tucked away with other quilts, bought during a textile-buying period when we first began to have some disposable income after renovating the house and building the extension. Most are stuffed into an open-fronted cupboard on a landing so it should have been easy to find.
Sadly, that was not to be, so whether it was just a figment of my imagination after all I cannot say, and we have instead an alternative piece of patchwork as prop, created not from velvet but patterned and textured silks with a few hexagons of a fine woollen fabric. From
the nature of the patterns I have always considered it was likely to date from the late Regency or early Victorian period, but I could be completely wrong. As with many quilts, each hexagon was stitched together on a paper template and in some cases, as with this one, the paper was never removed so a bit of sleuthing might turn up a fragment of dated newspaper. However, the fabric is delicate and fraying in parts so I shall not be attempting an exercise in detection.
Do join with us today on IAVOM and share a vase or container of blooms or other material from your garden or found locally – thinking out of the box is always encouraged! As other contributors already know, it will bring you much pleasure during the coming week, and if you would like to share that pleasure with us just leave links to and from this post.