Ipsden altar frontal: the everlasting pea

Just a short post today.

Ipsden altar frontal: the everlasting pea (hand embroidered by Mary Addison)

We are but 10 days away from moving house and while my head is still filled with the new baby, the new baby’s wardrobe, the intricacies of Roman blind making for Daughter No 1’s bedrooms (and sundry other comparatively frivolous things), my dutiful and beloved husband has been molelike in his determined passage through the labyrinthine online world of house rental contracts.  Too often I would return from the newborn’s house to find him hunched over his computer in a semi darkened room as he tried to download yet another document, or attempted to enter data into text boxes visibly resistant to data entry (and had been trying to do so for hours). Who knew a the cat needed a whole contract just for herself? But we are – dare I say it –  almost through that now and June will find the caravan unpacking in Cheltenham.

Ipsden altar frontal: the everlasting pea (hand embroidered by Mary Addison)

I chose this wild looking flowering pea for the altar frontal because I regarded the wonderfully scented and heavily domesticated sweet pea as being too much the product of human interference. I thought this rampant hedgerow climber was the real thing – natural, native and untainted. And if you see such a plant with narrow leaves and a dull pink-purple colouration it is indeed the Narrow -leaved everlasting-pea (L. sylvestris) a plant indigenous to old woodland and ancient hedges. But I was thinking of a plant with a much brighter flower and even a hint of irridesence and this it seems is the Broad-leaved everlasting-pea (L. latifolius), a Southern European pea now naturalised.  In both these peas the scent is absent and when I consider the pleasure the sweet pea’s fragrance gives (no summer wedding can do without them) I now think I should have embroidered this much loved long standing immigrant (L. odoratus originally from Sicily, Cyprus and the Aegean) instead.

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  1. Posted May 21, 2017 at 9:33 am | Permalink

    The sweet pea is beautifully worked – well done.

    I do hope the UnEnding Domestic Upheavals come to an end soon!

    • Mary Addison
      Posted May 24, 2017 at 8:19 am | Permalink

      Glad you liked the little pea flowers.
      Kind thoughts about our move – I’m working on the principle of ‘let’s not think about it’ too much!

  2. Anne Hill
    Posted May 23, 2017 at 1:42 pm | Permalink

    The colours in the sweet pea are gorgeous and, as usual, your embroidery is amazing. I hope the move goes smoothly and that you will be in a less urban setting. Perhaps a garden ?

    • Mary Addison
      Posted May 24, 2017 at 8:24 am | Permalink

      Thank you Anne.
      Cheltenham (in fact Cheltenham Spa as its origins lie in its water supply) has an elegant Georgian heart and lots of green spaces. Our garden will be a pocket handkerchief, as it is here, so it will be gardening in big pots…but with so many other things to do, pots are probably as much as I can cope with!

      • Sue
        Posted May 24, 2017 at 4:20 pm | Permalink

        I live just outside Cheltenham. We have beautiful parks and countryside in and around town, a lovely lido, leafy streets and is a thriving cultural hub. Good restaurants, good coffee shops and ample, varied shops. Having read your blog for some time, I sense you could be quite happy here, even with a little piece of garden…good luck with your move! Sue.

        • Mary Addison
          Posted May 24, 2017 at 9:57 pm | Permalink

          How nice to hear from you Sue and thank you for highlighting the joys of Cheltenham. For 8 years my husband was director of the Art Gallery and Museum (now known as The Wilson, as I’m sure you know) so for him it is a return while for me it will be a new chapter. I don’t particularly enjoy periods of change, so thank you for suggesting you sense that Cheltenham will suit me.

          • Sue
            Posted May 26, 2017 at 7:55 pm | Permalink

            I was at The Wilson just yesterday, sitting outside with good friends, coffee and knitting…bliss.
            We also meet for a ‘drop in’ art group there for the over 60’s once or twice a month and are being treated to some lovely workshops. It is a wonderful space.
            Please feel free to make contact if you need a companion for a coffee/tea, it’s always nice to feel welcomed and this sometimes makes settling a bit easier.
            Enjoy the Bank Holiday! Sue.

          • Mary Addison
            Posted May 28, 2017 at 10:24 am | Permalink

            How kind, Sue. I will certainly take up your offer to meet for coffee – though in a few week’s time as I shall be back and forth to London for half a week every week as daughter no 1 goes back to her Sunday work. Many thanks, I’m really looking forward to this.

  3. Lydia
    Posted May 27, 2017 at 7:52 pm | Permalink

    My cousin worked at the Cheltenham spa, and my uncle and his family live not too far in Princes Risborough. I so love this area although it has been some time since I have had a chance to visit from the US.

    • Mary Addison
      Posted May 28, 2017 at 10:28 am | Permalink

      How interesting to hear about your Cheltenham connections, Lydia – thank you for telling me. I hope some of my future posts will bring back memories.
      Once we’re settled I’m looking forward to getting out and about both in and around Cheltenham as there are so many wonderful places to visit.

      • Lydia
        Posted May 29, 2017 at 9:58 pm | Permalink

        It is a lovely area, I know you will enjoy it, and I do look forward to reading of your adventures.

        • Mary Addison
          Posted May 29, 2017 at 10:55 pm | Permalink

          Thank you Lydia, I hope I won’t disappoint you.

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