Thursday, 6 April 2017

Gardening in a Polytunnel 2.....Making raised beds

I am delighted with my polytunnel being able to work in all weathers is wonderful.

Like many gardeners I have back problems so high level beds are essential. 
And if you build them yourself you can get them tailored to your needs.

I started with the front and back supports, these were buried in the earth. Then I added cross pieces to hold them upright and to support the 'shelf'.

I then added the wood slats running the full length of the tunnel.

Wide boards, fixed at the corners, made up the boxes.  

Divisions fixed again at the corners were put in every 92 cms. the first box filled with soil.

An empty box with seeds sown in pots.

On the other side of the tunnel I only did the staging half way and left the end to grow tall vegetables like runner beans and peas.

The bottom of the staging being filled with soil ready to plant out courgettes, squash and brassicas.

That's all for now, watch out for Gardening in a Polytunnel 3!

Tuesday, 28 February 2017

Gardening in a polytunnel in Ireland ... The beginning

Gardening in any weather!

After last years very poor yield in my garden in south east Ireland I decided to order a polytunnel in January, so hopefully this year I shall have vegetables and herbs in abundance.
I decided to get a 10' x 16' from Colin Warren polytunnels
The first job was to level the site...part of which was my original vegetable garden.

The site which I had covered with plastic to kill back some of the grass.

The site then had to be levelled with extra room at the front so that the door could open outwards.

The van arrived with all the kit and two men to construct my tunnel. The hoops and the door frames were inserted into holes and concreted in place. 

The cross braces were put into position and the frames for the doors. Heavy wood battens were fixed all around the base.

Next  the plastic went on over the frame and was stretched taut and fixed around wood battens at the base, which were then secured to the wood already in place. It was then pleated and fixed around the door frames front and back

A stout door was fixed in place.

And a net screen on the back, which also had a roll down plastic door inside for the colder weather.

Watch out for the next part where I shall be planning and building the raised beds inside!

Sunday, 19 June 2016

Corsets, Crinolines and Codpieces 8...The Eyes have it!

Shape Changing......Make up for the eyes

From historical records it seems that Kohl or a substitute may have been first used as a aid to deflect the sun from the eyes.  Modern cosmetic 'kohl' does not have these benefits.
Ancient Egyptian  Queen Nefrit ....3,300 year old painted stucco coated limestone
Queen Nefetari, a painting in her tomb, XIX th Dynasty......the eye as depicted here is very similar to the symbol for the Eye of Horus depicted below
The Eye of Horus is an ancient Egyptian symbol of protection, royal power and good health
I was told recently that men in Morocco rim their eyes with kohl to keep out the sun, sand and dust in the desert.

Amazigh Berber nomad, Sahara desert

It seems that Kohl was worn in countries where the sun was stronger,  there does not seem to be any historical records of it being worn in northern countries until it became a fashionable make up feature in modern times.

Portrait of a young lady by Petrus Christus 1465 - 70

Minoan Lady about 1400 BC originally from Knossos
Eye make up and lip colouring

Queen Elizabeth 1580 artist unknown
again eyes are not emphasized

The traditional make up of the Keisha

and a western parody of it

False eyelashes are added for more emphasis

Alice Prin a flapper

... and Twiggy, eyelashes are painted on the skin 
People whom you are used to seeing with eye make up look almost undressed with out it.
And to finish some steam punk make art form in itself....

 I have not been able to credit some of the photos...but thank you ...

Sunday, 29 May 2016

Ethnic design in my Etsy Shop

Ethnic design Necklace and Earrings

Cat's Cradle € 45

Cat's Cradle
I worked directly onto a model for this piece; I wanted to make sure that the pattern I had envisaged would sit properly when worn. I really enjoyed this new approach to designing and I hope you enjoy the results! I started the design with these amazing Peruvian seed pods
(if you would like to know more about them go to this site 
To go with them I choose undyed hemp string, knotted and threaded with orange wood beads and African amber recycled glass beads. The necklace was finished with an antique gold chain with a matching lobster clasp and extension chain.
The necklace measures on the inside 42cms (16.5 inches) and outer measure approx. 68 cms (27 inches, this can be extended by 6 cms ( 2.5 inches)
The earrings are made from African amber recycled glass beads, orange wood beads and knotted natural hemp string. The hook is antique gold colour and is nickle free.
Length from hook 4.5 cms.

This set is so unusual it is sure to get compliments. 


Wednesday, 25 May 2016

In my Etsy Shop Bracelet and Earrings

 Bracelet and Earrings for the Summer

Acid Stripes €45

Acid Stripes 
Fresh colours, bold stripes. I teamed these yellow turquoise and lime acrylic beads with small wood beads in similar colours. I put sets of three beads onto silver plated wire and joined each set with a silver ring. I fastened the bracelet with a silver plated toggle and attached a chain ending in three wood beads to add an element of fun.
Length 22.5 cms. 9 inches
I used three striped acrylic beads and threaded each one onto a silver plated wire. I top and tailed each one with a wood bead picking out the colours of the stripes. I joined the three dangles together with silver rings and finished the earrings with silver plated ear wires.
Length from hook 4cms 1.50 inches

Great summery colours, turquoise, lime and sunny yellow stripes.

Tuesday, 17 May 2016

In my Etsy Shop....another Jewellery set for your wedding

Silver Spray Necklace and Earrings Set
...another beautiful set for your wedding available in my Etsy Shop today

In my Etsy Shop
€ 60 plus Shipping

Silver Spray 
Pewter crystal faceted beads, crystal and opal fire polished glass beads, threaded on supple silver Beadalon wire, hang in a collar shape from white satin cord.
I love these bold pewter crystal glass beads and used them as the main feature. I added milky white and opal glass beads and silvery balls. I threaded them all onto satin silver Beadalon wire so that they took on a subtle shape and sparkled as they moved. I threaded the seven dangles onto white satin cord and closed the necklace with a pretty silver plated rose clasp enhanced with a central rhinestone. 
The necklace measures 
From end to end... 43 cms. (17 inches) , 
The centre dangles 10.5cms. (4.25 inches) in depth.

Gorgeous sparkly drop earrings made from white and pewter faceted crystal glass beads. I love these bold pewter crystal glass beads and used them as the main feature. I added a milky white, a crystal and a silvery glass bead and threaded them all onto silver plated wire; I completed the earring with a silver plated ear wire.
Length: from hook 4 cms. (1.5 inches)

Sunday, 15 May 2016