Wednesday 11 March 2015

Poldark, Talisman progress and impulse purchase

So ladies - what do we think? I watched the new series of Poldark on Sunday with mixed feelings. Cornwall looks amazing and I suspect it will be virtually impossible to find a hotel room there this summer. The new Ross has the looks the camera loves and he smoulders enough but I thought he was a bit lightweight compared to the original. Am I being harsh? Has distance lent enchantment? The first series was much slower paced but I preferred that. It gave the story and characters time to develop. The new version races along at a fierce pace, packing so much into each episode. I'm keeping an open mind though and will certainly be watching every week - maybe I'll be won over! Trouble is, when you have been a fan first time round you can't avoid making comparisons.

We're whizzing along with the Talisman installation for the Through our Hands exhibition in Bilston. I've had a fun session waxing images of family members as well as things that have personal significance to us both. These waxed papers will be folded and stitched or fastened with eyelets to make the pockets.

Here's my mom and dad in 1949 with my grandmother when she was just eighteen.

My grandmother was born in the late 1800s in Victorian London. It's hard to believe the changes she witnessed in her 96 years of life! We only have a few photographs of her but most show her wearing lace. I guess in those days you'd don your finest for a formal portrait. It's interesting because the other side of our family were actually lacemakers in Nottingham. They moved to Calais in France before finally emigrating to Australia in search of gold. Don't think they found any though as they ended up sheep farming!

Grandmother's sister, my great aunt, never married but spent many years in service as a ladies companion. Wasn't she a beauty? I have memories of her in later life when she retired and came to live with my grandmother. I think her privileged position in a grand household made her feel somewhat superior to the rest of the family. She was very prim and proper and always corseted into a most unnatural shape. Her posture was impressive but I suspect she couldn't actually bend with all that whalebone! As children we were in awe!

Although we are as busy as ever, it was sale time at the local auction house this week and we had our eyes on a few lots. Unfortunately the old dresser I fancied for my workroom fetched more than three times its estimate - I always pick the good stuff! Disappointed but not wishing to come home empty handed I couldn't resist this lovely C19th knife box. Perfect place to organise some of my pencils and so much nicer than plastic!

Bye for now - Linda x


  1. Looking at the eyes of that great-aunt, Linda, and seeing yours...and Laura's...and even wee Amelie's! Clearly beauty runs in the family. Thankfully -- not the Victorian tendency to prim and grim! ;-)

  2. I was struck by the family resemblance as well. I also saw you in the first photo of your grandmother. Isn't it interesting what we remember? I have my Great Grandmother's lace wedding blouse. It is the only clothing (save some slips) that remain from her trip to America from England around 1900. She was also in service, but downstairs. Her sisters went to Australia, too. I just wonder at the courage it took to pack it all up and move to a country far away. Not like today where if you change your mind, you just hop on the next jet home. The knife box is a keeper! I have a weakness for wood, as is evidence by the natural museum I have going on in the house. :)

  3. Thank you Margaret - that's a lovely compliment!

  4. Hi Jeannie,
    I know just what you mean about how difficult the journey would have been in those days. A few years ago we were contacted by an Australian gentleman who was a distant relation. He had researched the family story and written a book. Some of the photographs gave us goosebumps as we could all recognise family likenesses. The sepia photos of girls in tightly waisted long skirts in the heat and dust of the outback were like something from another world but somehow we felt a connection across the years.

  5. lovely photos and I love the knife box.

  6. Thanks Liza! I couldn't resist the knife box even though I already have another one which is quite similar!

  7. I have to be careful what I wish for... about 20 years ago, I put a dollar (that I'd won in the lottery) into the weavers guild treasury and declared it the beginning of our "building fund." Well, we added to it and finally a year or so ago, we leased a space and enjoyed it so much, we moved into a larger space where we can all meet and display our library and hold classes and workshops. It's a dream come true - see it here: