17 December 2016


Danish wooden clog sole,
with Merry Christmas greens from Shaw Island
Anno seventeen December 2016.
Clipping from unknown publication.
Click image to enlarge. 

01 December 2016


Angel's Violas
cosy beneath low hanging branches of Western Red Cedar
Shaw Island, WA. 

December 2016.

"I love to receive a bunch of flowers. Who does not? And when the bunch is small enough to sit on my dressing table so that I wake in the morning with its clear scent in my room, it is a double bonus. We were puzzled by this bunch, though [a bunch in an English garden.] Were they wild violets or cultivated Parma violets? They seemed to be a cross between the two, but in any case, why were they in full flower now, in early December, when they should be quiescent, waiting in the woods for springtime? I have them before me with their deep purple flowers drooping over the rim of their small container. They are not as large as the Parma violets I once grew in a frame but they are in every way as sweetly scented and the question is, how had they arrived in the wood beside my friends' house? Several years ago my friends had transplanted patches of wild violets to grow under their beech trees and had watched the patches grow wider and wider, making drifts of purple. Could they possibly be a cross between the wildlings and their superior Parma relations? We remembered how Parma violets had once been grown in frames in the walled garden of the neighbouring park. The garden boy picked and bunched buttonholes for the ladies to wear in the lapels of their elegant side-saddle coats on hunting days. All through history violets have held a special place for their scent, their use and romance. The Greeks picked them for garlands and chaplets; the Romans made violet wine and fried them with slices of orange and lemon; the romantic poet Fortunas, Bishop of Poitiers, sent gifts of violets to St. Radegunde as decoration for her church. Perhaps best of all, the beautiful Empress Josephine embroidered her wedding dress with violets, after which they were a signature of love between her and Napoleon. No other flower so small has been held in such high esteem as Violet odorata." Words from A Countrywomans's Year, Rosemary Verey. Little Brown and Co. 1989.