Life at Kerjacob .

Life at Kerjacob .

Tuesday, 30 August 2011

The pardon at St Gilles Vieux Marche.

File:Saint Giles closeup.jpg

Last Sunday was our village pardon.
This is a very old traditional event especially celebrated in Western Brittany.
The day starts with a special mass at the church, then a procession through the village carrying the statue of St Gilles. The procession passes the fountain ( a source of spring water ) and then onto a big field.
In the field is a huge bonfire. The centre of the fire holds a simple wooden cross which eventually burns.
The statue of the saint and religious banners are held facing the fire.
many believe the origins of the fire go back to pagan times.

St Gilles lived the life of a hermit his only companion being a hind who many believed sustained him with her milk.

st giles

One day the king and his hunters went into the forest and aimed an arrow at the deer but St Gilles protected the hind and the arrow pierced him instead . The deer was saved and stayed with the saint. St Gilles is recognised as a saint for cripples, lepers and nursing mothers.

The village then enjoys a four course meal together, family and relatives come back to their village on this day and there is a real party atmosphere of young and old, friends meeting annually on this special day.

After the meal there is an auction of hens, chickens and rabbits.
All the animals are alive and the children often urge family to bid, or bids themselves.
The rabbits are especially popular as they really appeal to the children ( not to eat of course !!!)

This year the afternoon ended with dancing to Breton music.
We were lucky this year to have a lovely sunny day  enjoyed by young and old.

Mr P joins in the dancing.

Monday, 29 August 2011

The harvest continues.

On Saturday I picked all the broad beans that haven't been harvested.
Now they are away in the freezer to enjoy eating over the winter months.
The lavender is also ready to be picked and dried ready to be used in lavender bags.

Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Three Little Fishes.

When I'm not working in the garden, especially now with the vegetables, or in the house I try to get some time to make my bags.

You will all understand the kind of balance that I'm talking about.
A big old house and garden like this, especially one still being renovated, takes a lot of time.

Somehow I do make time and this is the latest bag finished, I'm not sure where the fishes came from but I am pleased with them complete with their little pearl button eyes.

The blue checked fabric on the outside is from the 1930's and the  beige is linen.
The bags are lined with a Manuel Canovas cotton.
I'm always on the look out for fabrics when I go to brocantes.

This little sailor is a tiny money box.

I use two names on my pieces of work.
When we lived in England I sold many of my handmade cards to galleries and used the name ' Pilgrim Trading ' when we came here I wanted to carry that on but decided also to have a French name. So there is ' La Lune et Le Lievre ', I have always loved hares and we are lucky to have some in the countryside here and of course they are always associated with the moon.

At the moment whenever the weather is a bit overcast or wet I'm busy, when I have the time, dyeing some old chanvre ( hemp ) with an idigo colour. I'm pleased with the results so far and soon I'll show you the results.

Just to add a little note.
A few months ago I did a post about my friends at Manoir Kerledan .
The French press has been writing about them and their manoir with great interest - I am so delighted for them as they work so very hard and are a wonderful couple.

Wednesday, 17 August 2011

Pie, Tortue and the onion harvest !

 At the weekend we had lovely sunny weather which continues now.

Out in the vegetable garden Mr P and I began to harvest the onions and shallots.

He lifted and I laid them out in the sunshine to dry before I begin to make them into onion ropes, a skill I learnt last year.

I don't know whether Pie and Tortue really liked the smell of the onions or that they decided to 'guard '   
the harvest I'm not sure but Tortue settled down to sleep beneath the table and Pie sat on the table amongst them. 

Saturday, 13 August 2011

Bags of delight.

 So this is the second of four bags I've now made.
I've sewn them all by hand and have used linen and cotton with stitched detail in linen thread and red pearl cotton.

The linings are made out of a 1930's cotton that I found at a brocante.
All the mother of pearl buttons are old and so each bag is different in its own way.

The handles on three of the four include some old linen striped braid.
The measurements are approximately 30cm by 20cm all with a long strap to go over your shoulder .

They are £25 ( 29€ - 41 $ ) each so let me know if you're interested in buying one, I'd be delighted to get one in the post to you.

Hope you have some sunshine this weekend - its in short supply here today so I'm getting on with more sewing and making more bags .

One bag sold now and off to NW France.

Wednesday, 10 August 2011

An Imago moment.

Last year I was staying with an elderly friend, she has lost her sight so I was helping her with a crossword.
The word imago came up and I'd no idea what the word meant but she did.

An imago is the last stage in the life of an insect.

It is surprising how many people who like me didn't know the meaning of the word.

So yesterday when Mr P told me he had something to show me, there it was the imago of a dragonfly.
Luckily we were able to take a couple of photos of it as it let the sunshine warm its body and wings
Today all that is left is the empty case of its former nymph body - the transformation is a beautiful one.

Sunday, 7 August 2011

So this is what I've been doing !

I've spent a very busy last two weeks working away in the vegetable garden.
Mr P had to go back to England as sadly he had lost his father so I was on my own.
So there's five big wooden boxes of potatoes in the barn and I'm browner than before !

But when I wasn't in the garden, getting up normally by six o'clock , I was busy making some new bags.

I'll tell you more next week, but thought you'd like a little peek.