First, I need your help. The die is cast here. My recent visit to a specialist has revealed I am asthmatic - I had strongly suspect this since my bronchitis in October - and that consequently it would be unwise to replace our dear Sakura with another cat. There have been tears from younger members of the family but I believe good must come from this disappointment. My instinct is veering strongly towards owning a dog and my doctor has agreed to this possibility. So please, any advice from you canine lovers would be simply wonderful. Which breed do you love? I have a soft spot for King Charles Spaniel because I know they are gentle with children but my husband Mickaël needs a little convincing!
Second, I received a truly inspirational gift while I was away on holiday. Wonderful Annie's amazing giveaway present arrived against the odds just before Christmas and was smuggled in our present stash and transported to our winter destination. I should add that I knew nothing about the aforementionned arrival and smuggling so when I ripped open the Knitsofacto parcel on Christmas Day I was heard making a number of highpitched noises denoting both astonishment and pleasure. Yes indeed. These days the book, Vintage Flowers by Vic Brotherson, has not left the sofa and I marvel at it each and every day. I have decided to use it as a regular inspiration prop here in this space of mine as I would very much like to share its colour celebration with you all. So relish the few pictures below and rest assured there will be more to follow soon with a creative theme woven in. Thank you so much Annie for filling my winter with colour.
Now all those who know Knitsofacto will agree it is an inspiring blog indeed. When Annie decided to commit to a Ravelry project to knit twelve shawls in 2012 it got me thinking. I do not have Annie's knitting experience but I felt all fired up. The result? I am now part of the 12 Sweaters in 2012 on Ravelry. If any of you would like to join I would be thrilled to see you there! Let me know, ok?
Last but not least, I would like to thank Louise from Tea At Weasel's
for generously offering Millefeuilles a Liebster Blog Award. It has really touched me and I will be mulling over who I should be passing this special award on to.
I think some of you will be disappointed to learn we did not opt for the fairytale roulotte in the snow scene. I am so sorry Melissa! Will you forgive me? We have merely postponed the dream to more clement springtime. Yippee! This family of ours is becoming more earnest about owning our own gipsy caravan when we will finally have a house of our own; a project I hope to share with you on this blog in the future.
We spent a week in Le Cantal, near Salers, a dramatic, austere region which is both stunningly beautiful and isolated. Most villages are filled with houses with firmly closed shutters. Many of these are family homes which are now seldom visited for this region does not boast a high employment rate. The thing which struck me the most - and I hope I have conveyed this in the pictures below - is the perfect harmony between the natural landscape and the local architecture.
Take a look:
Browns, greys, and greens were the stars of the show in the valley...
with a generous sprinkling of snow on the mountain.
This region is a walker's paradise regardless of the season.
One thing I learned to do here was to look at vegetation in detail particularly growing on the stone walls.
I LOVE the varied colours of lichen and moss and could quite happily knit in these shades for a long, long time.
According to Katherine Swift in a January extract of The Morville Year, "lichens are extremely sensitive indictators of environmental pollution: a rich bloom of lichen means clean air. They also grow infinitesimally slowly - half a millimetre a year is fast - so lichen growth is also an inicator of age. Many lichens will be as old as the tombstones and walls on which they live".
The trees, knotted and gnarled and somewhat reminiscent of Arthur Rackham's fairytale illustrations, were also coated with lichen and moss.
Yes indeed, Mrs Swift; judging from the lichens I saw the air in Le Cantal is very pure indeed.
Speaking of walls, moss, and browns ...
Here is my eldest daughter, Héloïse wearing her Tea Leaves for the very first time.
She's a wonderful girl...
and willing to pander to our strange whims.
Thank you Héloïse!
This Tea Leaves will be the first cardigan to join the 12 Sweater in 2012 over on Ravelry! I'll be putting up the details on my profile Ornamentation.
Thank you so much for bearing with me in this green, brown, grey, and white post.
I wish you a beautiful week.
ps There is a giveaway being planned here so watch this space.