Saturday, 15 June 2013


Dear readers,

Summer is waiting in the wings with costume changes, stage whispers, and bouquets.  There is a spectacular, spine-tingling show of colour everywhere with, after the rainiest spring on record, a backdrop made up of a million green leaves unfurled.  I would gladly call this paradise but there is something almost brazen or burlesque about this show the flowers are staging.  If they could move they would probably strut and who could blame them?  I am quite distracted by their beauty and as I stop and stare (and talk) at them I am reminded of the flowers of my childhood garden: snapdragons, columbines, phlox, marigolds, candytuft, canterbury bells, wallflowers, roses.  The list of flowers my mother grew - and still grows - is gloriously long and I'm pretty sure that each one of those blooms had a face and a personality too.  Snapdragons really do snap ferociously when you pinch their lower jaws and whilst some admire the lantern-shaped petals of the exotic two-toned fuchsia I see a graceful ballerina dancing.
One early morning this week, made bold by the perky call of the cuckoo,  Mickaël, Héloïse and I took the well-worn path, flanked with fluttering tall grasses, into the vineyards.  It was a grey day and the sulky sky even managed to rob Héloïse's hair of its usual coppery glint.  My mind has been filled with flamboyant colour, and flowers, these past days and I have found myself knitting in shades I would not usually favour; the violet and bright pink of a fuchsia.  It turns out, I feel, that the clouds offered the perfect backdrop to this glorious riot of colour.

Vintage Bouquetby Dani Sunshine, is a beautiful pattern.  I first fell for its charms when it was first published in May on one of my favourite knitting blogs, here and, having already enjoyed two of Dani's previous knits (you can see them here and here), I knew I was in for a good time knitting-wise!  It's a flawless and simple pattern which offers the perfect dose of excitment with its flower petal-shaped lace and helpful notes on blocking too.
Should you be interested my notes, as always, are on Ravelry.
If you had been with us that morning in the vines you would have caught sight of Héloïse, bleary with sleep but brightly dressed in her last dance performance costume.  And look at the pictures we took of her a year ago to the day!
Please wish HéloIse luck for the 18th and 19th June when she will be sitting the first part of her Baccalauréat exams in French and History.
I have so many things to share with you over the next few weeks but in the meantime I have just completed a summery mouse who is wearing very different colours to my daughter and who should be making an appearance over at Madame Millefeuilles this weekend!
Edit:  Mademoiselle Linden Flower has just been whisked away from her Linden tree lined Parisian gardens.  Here is picture of her in her 1950s silk dress with 1900 vintage lace-trimmed tulle pantaloons and silky wrap:
Once again I feel compelled to thank you all from the bottom of my heart for your generous, kind comments left on my previous post.  You give me so much joy!
A bientôt,
ps I know Héloïse is a slender young lady but, my goodness, you should see how much she eats!


  1. Hi Stephanie!
    This is a nice way to start my day, seeing your pretty creation on beautiful Héloïse and the bright fuchsia flower. I so admire how you can whip out a knitted pattern in what seems like no time.

    I find fuchsia's hard to keep alive through our sweltering summers, but I do love seeing them. When she was little, my daughter would excitedly call them the "popping flowers" just as you've described, and beg me to buy them at the garden store.

    Best of luck to Héloïse on her exams. She looks so very pretty in her red dress. My oldest daughter who is 9 seems to consume more food than I do most days yet she also stays as slim as a rail. The blessings of youth.. :)

    Have a great weekend,

  2. What a beautiful young lady and her dress and shawl make her look like the fuchsia fairy! Candytuft now that's a flower you don't often see these days but how I loved it way back when along with Virginia stocks - similar pastel shades. Lovely post.

  3. Oh my Stephanie how stunning does Héloïse look in your last photo, so beautiful. I send her my best wishes for her exams, I'm sure she will do brilliantly!!!
    Your shawl is simply gorgeous, I just love that pretty edging.
    How I wish I could walk through those vineyards with you!
    Can't wait to see Mademoiselle Mouse. :)
    V xxx

  4. Your daughter is so lovely, to have that much grace, oh my. My son who is a swimmer consumes so much food it amazes me, but they burn so many calories during their workouts. Love your shawl, so beautiful and graceful just like your daughter. Wishing her luck on her exams.

  5. Heloise is such a beautiful, elegant young woman. She is just made to be a dancer. I wish her all the luck in the world for her baccalaureat. We put our young people through so much stress, don't we?
    Hope all is well with you, Stephanie. I shall look forward to seeing your latest creation.
    Love, Sue x

  6. Your Heloise reminds me of my Alice Stephanie, especially seeing her putting her point ballet shoes on. Alice is doing Grade 5 ballet at present and has started point work which she loves, she is such a slim thing too and looks like she is on stilts when she is up on her points! Heloise is beautiful and definitely poises and holds herself in a confident ballerina way, your shawl that you knitted is just too beautiful Stephanie, worn even more beautifully by your daughter. Here's wishing her all the very best in her up and coming exams, gosh I have all that to come ! xox love and hugs, Penny

  7. I love the fushia flower...but that shaw is spectacular! And modelled so beautifully.

  8. Stephanie, thank you so much for taking us along on the walk to the vineyard. The colors in the dancing fuchsia blossom are quite inspiring. This is so clear in that lovely striped and lace-edged shawl. The proportion and drape of the shawl are very good. Like you, I would have wondered about using a sock yarn with some nylon fibre in its mix, but it does seem to have turned so very well.

    I send all best wishes to Heloise on those upcoming exams. She is already a very accomplished young lady, and is bound to do very well on this next challenge.


  9. I am in love with your fuchsia flower juxtapose beautiful Héloïse. Such an artistic way of presenting your poetic post. Wishing her well in her baccalaureat, it is such a stressful period for young people.

  10. Good morning my dear friend.

    First of all, I think your garden and my garden have decided to stage the same production of RAIN RAIN RAIN! We too have had it rain buckets....il tombe des cordes ici! But the results are a lush beauty and bright chorus line of colors too hard to believe that exist. Their performance however, deems them credible and worth it all!

    How I dream of having one of your mice, but you are all sold OUT! Wishing you and your gorgeous daughter the best of success and joy WHEN she passes her examens!


  11. love the colours of your shawl!!!!!
    xxxxx Ale

  12. Invitation - F
    Je suis brésilien.
    Passé à lire ici, et visiter son blog.
    J'ai aussi une, seulement beaucoup plus simple.
    'm vous invite à me rendre visite, et si possible suivre ensemble pour eux et avec eux. J'ai toujours aimé écrire, d'exposer et de partager mes idées avec les gens, sans distinction de classe sociale, la croyance religieuse, l'orientation sexuelle, ou de l'ethnicité.
    Pour moi, ce sera notre intérêt est un échange d'idées, et, pensées.
    'm il ya dans mon espace Bêta, vous attend.
    Et je suis déjà à la suite de votre blog.
    Force, la paix, l'amitié et le bonheur
    Pour vous, un câlin du Brésil.

  13. Beautiful flower, beautiful shawl and beautiful daughter! Wishing her good luck for her exams! :) x

  14. Best of all possible luck to your daughter, maybe she should wear that gorgeous wrap to the exams for luck?

  15. Dear Stephanie,
    I send good luck wishes and love for your beautiful daughter!!
    I LOVE the beautiful shawl you've knitted, it's divine and the colours are exquisite. And Your new summery mouse is totally adorable, I love your creations!!
    Hugs and happy summer
    Vicky xxxx

  16. What lovely photos! You chose wonderful colours for that shawl!
    Heloise is so beautiful - stunning, infact! Good luck to her in her exams.....

  17. What a beautiful shawl, the model is lovely too. I have always adored fuchsias
    and at my previous house had many in the garden. Perhaps that is something to plant this spring in my newly cleared shady corner garden.

  18. Lovely colours, perfect for Summer, we too have had unseasonal weather with a thunderstorm last week in the middle of winter its was very odd indeed! Good luck to Heloise in her exams. My daughter Eloise starts her IBD this September so we have it all in front of us.

  19. A simply beautiful post! And "Bon chance" to Heloise for her Bacc exams.

  20. No apologies for your slender miss. I have a daughter like that too. I am just jealous at being the opposite end of the scale. Good luck to Heloise, she looks very beautiful in your latest creation. I love those colours together.

  21. oh, Stephanie! Lovely flowers, lovely shawl (I would cast on for this one immediately if I were home!!!!!), cute little mousie.......but your daughter! Oh, my---she's is gorgeous! She most definitely has that elegant look of a prima ballerina! Hope her exams go well.

  22. Such an adorable shawl ... and beatiful summery photos ...
    I love visiting ittybitty too, for years now

    Barbara x

  23. Dear Stephanie,

    I have been taking the same joy in the season here - the wildflowers are blazing with colour against their green, green backdrop of fields and woods. We've had lots of rain too - and plenty of those "sulky skies" you so well describe!

    How lovely and elegant Héloïse looks in her red dancing dress and that beautiful shawl. (She looks more mature, somehow, than in the photos of a year ago. She is growing up!) Good luck to her in her exams.

    Mlle. Linden Flower is as charming as all her sisters, and her little shawl / bolero is delighful.

    Hoping that you continue to enjoy to the fullest summer's unfolding pageant. :)

  24. Dear Stephanie,
    I am sending Heloise, all the very best of wishes for her forth coming exams *****. Such a beautiful elegant young lady and such a stressful time ahead. I truly wish her well. You brought back summers of old to me with your beautiful writings....Wall flowers, Snap dragons Dahlia's the flowers from my child hood! I LOVE the charming bolero and just how it was modelled on here...this is some thing I would be most happy to own. And of course little Miss mouse is simply divine....I love the colour of her wonderful dress..Wishing you a week full of loveliness, Stephanie....hugs Maria x

  25. dearest Stephanie, another beautifully crafted post. i so enjoy reading you! heloise looks amazing in your shawl, simply beautiful. i remember snap dragons from my own childhood, back when summer days stretched out forever!

  26. Many good wishes to Heloise for her exams over the next few days. She is beautiful, as is your shawl. I so enjoyed your descriptions of the flower's personalities.

    Gillian x

  27. Liebe Stephanie,
    ich habe mich sehr gefreut, von Dir zu hören. Ich weiß, wie das ist, ich lese auch jeden Deiner wundervollen Posts, schaffe es aber leider auch nicht immer, ein paar Worte zu hinterlassen, vor allem jetzt im Sommer...
    Die Farbkombination Rot und Violett ist wirklich extravagant, aber manchmal muss es einfach etwas Ausgefallenes, Farbenfrohes sein! Das Tuch sieht zu dem Ballettkleid Deiner Tochter umwerfend aus! Héloise sieht wie eine richtige Primaballerina aus, und ihre Figur...schwelg...sie ist so grazil! Ich liebe das Ballett, hatte selbst 20 Jahre Ballettunterricht. Ich wünsche ihr alles Gute für die Abiturprüfungen!

    Ganz liebe Grüße, Bärbel

  28. Love the shawl and I've saved it on ravelry for those times when you wonder 'what should I knit next'. Heloise is quite the beauty and so talented!

  29. Your sweet Heloise is beautiful! I wish her the very best wishes in her dance examination.
    The wrap is ever so lovely...a perfect reflection of the splendid bloom!
    Wishing you much joy dear Stephanie...

  30. love the purple red shawl and the lovely photo of youre dauther in the lovely red tutu a beautful picture the new mouse mademoiselle linden flower is great lovely color green! a good luck for your dauthers exams have a lovely day leon10

  31. What stunning colours to go with Héloïse's red dress. And that's another knitting pattern to go on my list to knit one day!
    As for Mademoiselle Linden Flower's dress - it's in my favourite colour... I need a dress that colour!

  32. The shawl is so beautiful. I hope Heloise's exams go well. xx

  33. Wonderful words and beautiful images. So good to have notes on blocking with this kind of pattern as it makes all the difference to the final finish. Hope all goes well with the exams.

  34. She is a gorgeous young woman.And the scarf is just devine.I wish I could knit.I've seen some of the most beautiful things of late.
    The Fushsia is just to devine also.I love the color.We cannot grow them down here.Its just to hot and humid.I've tried several times.Even in the shade.
    Thank you for another wonderful post.
    XXOO Marie Antoinette

  35. Stephanie, I am always in awe at your writing. You write so beautifully. I finally read your About Me and no wonder you talked about gardens a lot, LOL ^^. I was totally enchanted by your first paragraph, especially by the following: "I would gladly call this paradise but there is something almost brazen or burlesque about this show the flowers are staging. If they could move they would probably strut and who could blame them?"
    Your daughter is so beautiful. Good luck to her on her final exams. I am sure without a doubt she will perform well!
    The shawl is absolutely wonderful. Your love for this designer's patterns is really apparent. And your sewn creatures are just magnificent!

  36. I feel the call of bright pink in June too! Your wrap is lovely as is your daughter! enjoy the summer, Heather x

  37. Dear Stephanie,
    how beautiful, graceful is Heloise!... and beautifully clad in fushia colours. I wish her sucess for her exams.
    Mademoiselle Linden Flower is absolutely charming, one of my favourite Mademoiselles (though I realize each and every one is).
    I hope your garden and surrounding have not been touched too badly touched by the hailstorms and heavy rain around,
    Enjoy the last spring days,

  38. Dear Stephanie,
    How lucky I am that you stumbled upon my blog and when I returned the favour I found all your beautiful things... words, photos, the comparison between the flower and your shawl is stunning, as is your daughter! Please wish her luck in her exams. I also adore Mademoiselle Linden Flower. With best wishes from your newest follower. Julie x

  39. Dear Stephanie,

    I have a big smile on my face after reading your beautiful words. I love that you have embraced the Flamboyance you see in your garden right now, the colours of your gorgeous shawl are a slight departure from your usual muted palette but equally beautiful. We have lots of Fuchsias here in Tasmania. Heloise would have finished her exams now and I'm wondering how she went?! She is absolutely stunning and you must be so proud. I adore your Mademoiselle Linden Flower an especially her green silk dress.

    Have a lovely weekend!


  40. Hello Stephanie, I do believe Mademoiselle Linden Flower is my absolute favourite so far, her costume is gorgeous. I'm absolutely certain that Héloïse did exceptionally well on her exams, but I am sending well wishes anyway!
    Take care,
    Janine xo

  41. Somehow I missed your post. I do all went well for the beautiful Héloïse.

    The shawl is perfect (I must pop across to look at the pattern), and the delightful Mademoiselle Linden Flower is as elegant as your lovely daughter :)

  42. i am missing them too stephanie, and so confused. i am signed to follow and yet have not had any notification of your new posts, agg! please forgive me.

    what a beautiful gorgeous post. your girl is stunning, your knitting too. i am too late to wish her luck, but i am sure she didn't need it. i hope you are enjoying the beginning of summer.

    oh the mouse!

  43. I see how fuschia's look like dancing ballerina's, I've thought the same! I used to love the snapdragons when I was a child, I was astonished at how they were created in such an unusual shape and we would put our thumb and forefinger inside and make them come to life, a little like a puppet! My columbines have gone over now but I shall be collecting seeds and donating them to my daughter's garden in London. I love to think afer a year or so they will populate all the London back gardens!
    Lovely shawl by the way, and good luck to Héloïse!xx

  44. Dear Stephanie, What a beautiful post and such an elegant daughter, I hope her exams went well. Please don't stop making these lovely hares and mice because I would very much like to order one some day...they are so exquisitely made and always have a story to them. Have a lovely weekend. Sharon

  45. Good luck Héloïse! I love the the violet and the bright pink shawl, a rival to any flower.

  46. Good evening Stephanie...Such a wonderful post...Your shawl is so pretty and even more so as it's being worn by your beautiful Héloïse! I do hope all went well on the exam front...they seem to be endless, don't they? Ashley has finished and will be home in a few days but Leah is completing her second year studying medicine and her exams don't even begin until next week...we're definitely going to enjoy the Summer break!
    I'm in love with delicate Mademoiselle Linden Flower...she's exquisite..I'd love to have tea with her!
    Susan x

  47. Merci beaucoup ça fais plaisir de voir que cette page resteras très bien lisible, et bien expliqué. Merci de votre rapidité.
    Bonne journée a vous...
    voyance gratuite par mail rapide

  48. You clearly know so much about the subject, you’ve covered so many bases.


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