Friday, 25 December 2015

Hello all,

Finding time to write this post has been difficult at this crazy time of year but I wanted the opportunity to wish you  all a very happy and safe festive season, in whichever way you're celebrating it.

As for us, our plans were right on track to have nearly fifty people for a buffet lunch featuring a lamb on the spit. However, the total fire ban, which was announced for tomorrow has ruined our plans and we are scrambling around for a plan 'b'. I'm sure we will manage and that no one will go home hungry but this extreme heat will make things much harder. So, I'm writing this post after midnight hoping to publish before Christmas Day.

Some time ago I was about to throw out this unremarkable object, a rack from an old dishwasher, when Lucy came up with an idea for its use. She suggested we each take turns making an arrangement using the rack as unconventional material. So I put it to the girls, some of whom managed to make one.

Lucy Papas

Margaret Wilson

Janette Fonda

Helen Novic
Bredenia Raquel

Vicky Kalokathis

Emily Karanikolopoulos

At our last Sogetsu workshop, which was conducted by Lara Telford, we were to do an arrangement along the style of one of the Iemotos. I chose Sofu Teshigahara because I particularly like the way he used 'mass' in  his arrangements.

I leave you with this arrangement that looks like it's about to take flight. The flowers of this strelitzia reginae grow as tall as two metres and the heads are so large and heavy that they bend down creating these interesting shapes.

I wish every one of you a very happy New Year.

Tuesday, 1 December 2015

It would not be spring without my Japanese iris.Their perfection must be enjoyed in
 an ikebana arrangement.
I made this container many years ago. The surface at the bottom is made from
crushed green and blue glass

Hello all,

My apologies for my lengthy absence from this blog and, I confess, the reason I'm writing now is because we have a power failure and I can't do the things I had planned for tonight. I will spare you the details of my hectic life with one notable exception - the Baptism of my little granddaughter, Althea, which took place yesterday.

I was heavily involved in the preparations of the baptism with the cake, the flowers and making dresses for the girls as well as my own outfit.
Our princess with her very proud papou!
And here she is modeling

The Christening cake
This large arrangement was placed at the entry of the restaurant

So now, back to ikebana.

Two lessons ago I set the theme 'glass containers' and below are three examples I made. It was just coincidence that I have used two containers in each one.

Loquat branches and Siberian iris in large containers

The vases have holes through which the stems of the
osage oranges pass

Squiggly grass and Siberian iris

For the last two classes with Elizabeth, we were to do an arrangement 'with leaves and roses' and an arrangement 'in an ordinary household item', respectively. Below are my two pieces.
Dorianthus palmeri leaf, fish bone fern, spuria iris leaf
and rose (Mr Lincoln)

This dogwood was given to me as a seedling by my friend Hazel McNaught, whom we lost
many years ago. Her dogwood is now a small tree and much loved.

And for my last lesson of the year we all did 'a celebratory arrangement'. We had quite a lot of fun with this and I'm including most of the arrangements made.
Helen Novic
Margaret Wilson
Robyn Unglik
Nicole McDonald
Soo Mei Leong (Book 1)
Vicky Kalokathis

Bredenia Raquel

The next three arrangements are by Lucy Papas, who is quite prolific.

And the next five arrangements are by me. OK, so I went a little overboard!

I would like to leave you with a piece I call 'the embarrassment of riches', in which I used three of my giant strelitzia nicolai flowers and monstera leaves.

Bye for now.