Friday, 3 July 2009

Hungry for Hungary

Quick quick quick!
I need a sewing post ..I'm slipping down the 'Big list of Sewing blogs' and no wonder. I've been chunnering on about all sorts of non sewing stuff for a few posts and I really can't blame you for getting bored, distracted, not reading.....

So I thought I'd do another ' blast from the past'
My Hungarian embroidery project from my City and Guilds days.
Here it is.
I chose Hungarian embroidery and I didn't realize why at the time. It seemed to be 'in me' to be interested in Hungary.

I investigated Hungarian costume and made a book that was long and narrow,I wanted it to look like the long embroidered ribbons in Hungarian costume like these.

So here it is.
Pre PC days so a lot of work.
Colouring, drawing, stencil, print..

I hand stitched it in the Matyo Rose style.

Hand embroidery for the most part so why is some of it machine embroidered?
I will enlighten you later.

At the bottom of every page I illustrated it with something from Hungary.

I used lots of books for resources.
Remember, no internet then.

Fortunately Chorley is twinned with Szekesfehervar so there were brochures to chop up.

But look a little more closely.

Whats that little round impression on the corner of the pages?

This woman's embroidery is a bit more pierced than it should be.

The beautiful braid I made for the binding is considerably shorter than it oughter

I'll tell you.
This was thirteen years ago.
Regular readers my be able to work out who was a puppy thirteen years ago.
Our dear darling departed doggy ate my Hungarian embroidery project!
THAT is why the hand embroidered cover had to be hastily re constructed with machine embroidery, and the braid trimmed to neaten it, and the little round holes?
Puppy teeth.
By the way, you may be interested in My other blog to see dog related thoughts update.

Now here's why I think I was immediately drawn to the Hungarian option.
When I was 12 I discovered this book.

And this.

Kate Seredy was an artist and illustrator born in Hungary and moved to the USA later.
These books are stories of her Hungarian Plains childhood and captivated me from the word go.

The beautiful illustrations depict the deep memories and character of her homeland.

They do 'contain attitudes prevalent at the time' so are slightly non-PC but they were written in the 1940s so I can accommodate that.

I was in love with the rural community she grew up in.
Men in national noble somehow.

Of course women were a bit hamstrung!

But the warmth and affection of her drawings and descriptions tugged at my adolescent heartstrings.
I remember with some embarassment, the last day before the school library closed for the summer, sitting in the library until way after everyone else had gone home so I could finish the book before having to hand it back for the 6 weeks holiday.
I sat there so long my bladder gave out and there was a puddle on the library floor.
Thats the first time I've admitted that to anyone!
And I finished the book.

I read everything of hers I could find.

Later she moved to the USA and these two books reflect that phase of her life.

The one on the left is set on an American farm.

Talking of America.

So I think thats why I had Hungary in my heart.

Now another Hungarian connection.
I was tagged by Corryna , a Hungarian textile artist,a few days ago
I have to tell you 7 facts about myself.
Well you just got one I didn't intend.

I have one other that I have thought long and hard about sharing becasue its a very personal thing.
Here it is.

Since I was 13 I have had Primary Lymphoedema in my legs and feet.One day I went out and my feet swelled up.
I hate it .
I hate how my feet look and photographs of beautifully painted toenails all over blogs don't help.
But, my feet work, I can walk so if its all I have to contend with then I can accept and live with it.
I only mention it because about 10 years ago I discovered the lymphoedema service at my local hospice.
It changed my life.
I still have it, but its now managed, and although its a horrible ugly condition I feel a lot better about it and about myself since I discovered the service, and I just want to encourage people to seek treatment if they have the condition, and if the service is available in their area.
I know I am a bit overweight now but my legs were just as bad when I was 7 stone. Of course in this weather, wearing 'compression hose' is essential but very very hot.

I did a '7 fact' post quite some time ago so you can read it here.
I don't usually do it but I have discovered some new blogs lately so I am going to tag some other bloggers who can ignore it if they want. There are lots more in my list at the side but I can't do you all.
Here goes:
  1. Chris from the Shady Grove, just look st her teeny weeny patchwork jewellery. Its exquisite.
  2. Cat at The Raggy Rat who is such an artist.
  3. Kirsten from Fleur de Boheme vintage fabulousness
  4. Judy Martin from Judy's blog . Fabulous artwork.
  5. The Wild Somerset Child who writes and blogs about her beautiful house and garden.
  6. Joanna May and her fairy illustration blog.
  7. Chris Gray who has just blogged a fabulous collection of work for her exhibition.
I don't usually pass tags on but its only fair to give a bit of publicity to a few other blogs.

If you want to join in, link back to me, write 7 facts about yourself that we wouldn't know from your blog and then tag 7 more bloggers.

And finally...
Here's what you do when its pouring down and you don't really want to go out.

Sit here for hours.


Menopausal musing said...

Jackie, don't you DARE ever give up blogging.... I came home from work all grumpy and am sitting smiling now :O)..... OH, the Hungarian embroidery absolutely lovely, and (of course) your funny take on cat photography. About to look at your recommended blogs. x

Heather said...

What a lovely post Jackie - your Hungarian Embroidered book is absolutely beautiful. Hope your tutor saw it pre-puppy distressing!I always wanted to have a pair of red leather boots like the Hungarian dancers wore. They'd be no use to me now as I too have swollen feet and legs - I hate them and hide them by wearing trousers, but like you I'm grateful that they work. I just love the photo of the cat looking out of the catflap. Our son had a dog who did that - they couldn't understand how he'd got his head all wet one evening!!

whitney-anne said...

The Hungarian embroidery is just beautiful, I admire your ability and PATIENCE for that kind of thing. And thank you for sharing such lovely books/illustrations.
Love Jeanette Appleton by the way!

Gina said...

Wonderful post Jackie. Loved seeing your Hungarian project.

Lyn said...

Oh cute- I wish I could sit and pop my head through a cat flap all day too! I love your Hungarian embroidery, beautiful.

Fleur de Boheme said...

Oh thanks for tagging me - I´ll pass it on soon, are just very busy at the moment as I opened my summer gallery and vintage shop last thursday and only have come home after putting my work up for an exhibition in an art gallery nearby....

Love the pictures with your embroidery! And - regarding the dog that you´re considering - remember what they say about horses: a good horse has no colour!!! This doggy sounds like a creature who needs a stable and loving home and after a couple of month you will LOVE the liver colour, I´m sure ;-)

Bye Kirsten

lilylovekin said...

Loved the picture of the cat in the door. That is how I've rather spent my day, looking and looking but just not getting anything done!!!

Victoria said...

What a delightful post, Jackie.
Beautiful, funny and touching...
You are a gift!

connie said...

What a wonderful post. Thank you so much for sharing, I love your blog. Your Hungarian embroidery is so nice, great inspiration. Oh, I love the idea of just poking your head out and watching the world go by or the rain come down. Have a wonderful weekend.

Jude said...

Yes, you make me smile. Love the project and the added marks, bless!
There are still similarities with the work you do now.
Chris Daly's work is beautiful, I agree.
Still can't get myself together enough to write a post. I've been working..and the heat...poof! I might just lie down again!

Robyn said...

That cat peering through the flap for hours has made my day. Aren't they so funny?

kay susan said...

Hi Jackie. You give up blogging I'll never speak to you again!
I did hungarian embroidery for my C&G too. I liked the colours and shapes. Your work is beautiful and the damage doesn't show! I blogged about it too, in the very early days, here's the link to my post:
p.s. my daughter has a cat flap, the cat doesn't use it but the naughty toddlers do!

cocoa and blankets said...

I love the cat picture....we are thinking of doing a cat flap for Alfie, but the last time we had one someone broke in and stole both our cars...mine was my firt ever new car, my handbag and a basket of crisps....then the books and the embroidery...facinating...just lovely...and Jackie...the compliments about my hearts....i am still trying to decide...will need help there are thre I love...have a nice one seems to be visiting my blog...I must be getting H

Kayla coo said...

Hello Jackie,
Your Hungarian embroidery is so beautiful and the book is so decorative.
My husbands father is Hungarian.x

karen said...

your Hungarian book really took me back! I did Sweden for mine and have handed it on to my Swedish niece in the hope she will treasure it. I still have so much stuff from back then that I can't part with, too many memories!

Joei Rhode Island said...

Love the post Jackie. The embroidery from Hungry is stunning, isn't it? And yours lives up to the challenge.
Got your little notebook...was such a treat to see your work *in person*

Julie said...

What a packed and interesting blog. Your Hungarian book is beautiful. Weren't those old books beautifully illustrated? Your photograph of your cat is very sweet. Aren't they funny?

Don't tell anyone but I had a similar 'waiting too long' accident at school during an exam when I was too scared to ask to leave the room until I had finished the paper. Oops! Left it too late! VERY embarrassing.

Lynne said...

Yes, I loved those books too when I was a child and I always remember the number of petticoats she wore on a special day and the egg painting at Easter. Your book looks beautiful.

Lady Hopwood said...

I adore your Hungarian Embroidery! I also have to ask... where do you come from? Chorley is very close to me.....

Mermaid's Purse said...

I think Willow did you a favour with the Hungarian book - the combination of hand and machine looks really good!

Jan said...

Your Hungarian post is lovely, you are only getting better at your passion for creativity. But it was your link to your Tales from the Home blog that got to me. Today is the anniversary of the day that my sweet dog Sierra was discovered to be ill. I have been trying to be cheerful today (Independence Day here in the USA) but it has been a day of remembering all that was going on last year. So reading your other blog was very moving. Sierra passed away in November, he was only 9 years old. But I still have his brother Rocky! Rocky is a dear fellow and I am grateful to have him. I hope you find your next dog soon, and that it turns out to be such a wonderful friend that will help you to recover from your loss of Willow.

Pamela Terry and Edward said...

A friend once made me the most gorgeous handmade book, and the dog ate it. Not Edward, of course...he wouldn't dream of such a thing. But a previous dog. I am always fearful my friend is going to ask to see it sometime!

I do love the Hungarian embroidery. Beautiful!

molly jean said...

The Hungarian embroidery is so beautiful. I love seeing your sketches and swatches! I also loved reading the posts and seeing pictures of Marrakech.

Corinna Nitschmann said...

Wow, that was a great work with the hungarian puppy...ehhm,no. The hungarian embroidery of course. And the puppy story is funny.
Thanx for the 7 things!

Best wishes from the rainy Hungary

Jenny said...

This is really lovely embroidery, and I think its good to revisit work. Whilst Im busy moving location I have unearthed all sorts of bits of work, some finished, some work in progress(although many years old!)and its refired my interest in embroidery.

konnykards .. Musings of a Senior Citizen said...

I just love the Hungarian project - many years ago I did one with a group of Primary school children, in a craft club - not C&G standard but lovely and bright and everyone enjoyed it!
My QA mag was late arriving so I have just seen your article there - congrats, it's fab, Connie, x

Anonymous said...

Hi Jackie
Your Hungarian book is STUNNING ,You have so much patience and Talent to create such a beautiful Book .

So sorry to hear you have this condition its horrible ,my poor Mum has a swollen arm after having had breast Cancer .Its really hard for her to get clothes to fit . although like you seems to take it in her stride.

The Cat is really Funny ,What a great way to get fresh air on a rainy day LOL!

Digital Gran is going to be doing a course at Tan Y Bwlch ,I would love to see you do one too .
I cant go to DG though you need an embellish-er and I don't have one .
I met her last we we talk and we said that the 3 of us should meet up in Aberkhan some time .

I think maybe in September ,I love to go then just before winter to get shed load of supplies .And my Bella will be going to School full time .

Love from sesga xx

Mary said...

Those books look wonderful! Mark and I went to Budapest 13 years ago (ack! time zooms by!). It was a fabulous trip. I bought many many beautiful things from porcelain to textiles. And that cat is very funny!

Threadspider said...

What a wonderful, varied and fascinating post Jackie. Like opening a box of delights. Thank you.

Mad Aunt Bernard said...

I love the book, Jackie, and the project is beautiful - such wonderful colours. I also love the cat photo!

Marienkäfer said...

Dear Jackie,
I'm very happy to see Hungarian embroidery on your blog. I'm Hungarian, and my grandmother made so beautiful table-covers, aprons and a lot of other clothes with these traditional motifs. We learnt a lot from her.

Best wishes from Budapest:

Amie Soto Blossom said...

Actually I often sit by the cat flap and look out............

x x x

B.T.Bear (esq.) said...

Me an Mummy just sat an red all throo this post an it waz wunderful! So mutch talent!

Mummy waz tellin me abowt the dark ages befor compewters. WOW!

She sed that projects for exams an colledge stuff took longer but yu lernt mor cos yu had to spend mor time on it an mor ov yorself was put into it.

ENyway, wen it raynes Fluffy an Scooter look owt the flap like that. Then they go to the frunt dor insted cos they just don't get that if it's rayning owt the bak it will be owt the frunt as well.

Nice to see yor puppy's teeth. Mummy haz an old handbag that she won't part wiv cos it has clor marks that her old cat Figs left on it.


Jeanette, Mistress of Longears said...

I have a theory about why dog owners go out and get a new dog after losing one....they have forgotten the puppy trials! :-) My house contains reminders of all 3 of our "pups".

st of my pictures can be enlarged by clicking on them.

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