Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Balcony garden curtains, ikebana and cord fasteners by Sayaka the Day-WWOOFer

Sayaka the fabric designer:
Holy interlude with roses and needlework

Because I sometimes run out of spare guest bedrooms, but never run out of lovely things to create, I host day-wwoofers - dreamy creatives like myself when I was young, often traveling the world to learn new skills, eat interesting lunches, and add to their ideas bank of domestic possibilities and impossibilities. Then go home till next time.

The day lovely Sayaka came to visit, I happened to have a bunch of fragrant roses my mother dropped off from the countryside. The first thing Sayaka did was an ikebana arrangement, which showed off a beauty Ive never seen in roses - look how the full-blooms arch around the young ones, protecting them, proudly showing them off. And the unruly baby ones just spring out joyfully. "Yes! Its a REAL designer come to visit" - Gazing at what she did to those roses sure made me happy.

Next, she did an analysis on what was wrong with my cord wrapping systems, then designed and created a batch of these. The flower fastener has three functions - since this is after all a Permaculture creation day. For how and why cord fasteners improve your quality of life, see the story at at my Intimate Permaculture blog - Balcony gardens are an excellent place for neat laptops and lamplights but on an edible gardening blog the connection is tenuous.

Lunch under the balcony, the front courtyard, brought to you by Trays.

If you wonder why you don't eat on your balcony or veranda as much as you could, I bet you just don't have trays. Because Aussie shops don't sell trays. The answer to getting the most out of life is often a simple cheap bit of missing hardware. When you visit Tokyo, stock up, distribute them to your balcony gardening friends.

The day was hot, the ceilings high, the curtains long.
The furniture moved, the floor clean and inviting, the work low, focused and mind-chatter quelling.
That's the story of this picture with Cecilia and Sayaka.

I've finally replaced my adequate, factory-made roman blinds my with creamy-lush, tailor made spilling-to-the-floor damask. Invisible hand stiching takes a couple of extra hours, but if you do it with a mate, it becomes two hours of absorbing entertainment. I get though the stitching like a racing car driver. I go near-dizzy with my pace, hypnotized by my steady rhythm. Its a little embarrassing that after all the effort I put into living life, my most dazzling skill is such a maidenly, Victorian-style accomplishment as needlework.

The neighbours kitty is usually quite partial to a nap on my balcony, but hot days require a different stratagy. Here he is enjoying a nap with maximum surface area evaporative cooling posture. Right where my new, heavily-insulated curtains are about to be hung.

Balcony Garden curtains cannot have a seamy side.

Which gets me thinking - that's what Permaculture is all about. About creating a life where there is no embarrassing side to hide. You've just composted it, designed around it, made the arduous fun and friendly, and made it all small enough to manage with yourself and people you like.

Thank-you Sayaka, what a team.

1 comment:

Antigonum Cajan said...

What a nice couple the two of you are.
But short on the gardening, horticultural, environmental, biodiversity I practice on my humble
Good luck....