mind maps

“the map eliminates all trace of the practices that produced it, creating the impression that the structure of the map springs directly from the structure of the world” Tim Ingold, Lines (2007) Top to bottom: 1. Astrological map showing the position of the heavens at the moment of Prince Iskandar’s birth on 25th April 1384.…

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treasure

Last weekend I had another successful bid at the Glasgow Auction (which is rapidly becoming my new obsession). The item that had caught my eye was this – a wonderful 1950s walnut sewing cabinet. I am very keen on these cabinets, and have been on the look-out for a nice mid-century one for a while.…

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A chat with Tom of Holland

I am sure that many of you may be familiar with the work of my good friend and woolly comrade Tom van Deijnen, also known as Tom of Holland. Tom is perhaps best known for his expertise in, and celebration of, darning, which he puts into practice in his classes and workshops, as well as…

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of handkerchiefs

I have a terrible cold. When one is sniffling and snuffling and generally feeling lousy, there’s nothing more comforting than a nice handkerchief, of which, it occurred to me this morning, I possess quite a few. So I took some photographs of the ones that aren’t in use or in the wash. Some of them…

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three sweaters

I thought I’d show you my three new sweaters! First up is this lovely Fairisle yoke (bought for £16 on eBay). This is a garment of a kind that is still being made in Shetland, and that you can find in Lerwick today in shops like The Spider’s Web. I think its a lovely example.…

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forty things

Yesterday an ancient wooden trunk turned up at my house. This was what I found inside. Now, you may (or may not) remember that I turned forty a wee while ago. At the time I told my family and friends not to get me anything: I am not one for birthdays, plus at that time…

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pompoms in Balfron

After some exciting developments on the relocation front, Tom and I went to view a house just outside Balfron yesterday. As we drove about the outskirts, I began to notice a few pompoms hanging from the trees and bushes outside people’s houses….then I spotted a whole jolly array of them along a hedge by the…

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Islay inspiration

I love camping: I suppose there is just something about taking the time to simply be in the outdoors that allows the world to insinuate itself upon you in the most pleasing way. And I find Islay a particularly inspiring landscape. I like to potter about just looking at stuff, and always come home with…

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a pod of one’s own

We live in a typical, late-Victorian, Edinburgh tenement. It has high ceilings, and the rooms are reasonably sized, but there are not many of them. Most of the other flats in our building have an extra room which has been created by the division of the kitchen into two. But we kept the large kitchen,…

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protective clothing – can you help?

I am writing a feature about the history of protective clothing. As part of this, I’m conducting a series of short interviews with people who wear such garments as part of the work that they do. Does your job involve wearing a pair of dungarees or overalls, an apron, a tabard, a hi-vis vest, or…

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a gathering

The gloves were still there when I passed by earlier, but had been joined by a wee stripey companion. . . Happily, I was able to stop Bruce before he made off with the gathering. Perhaps folk are abandoning their winter accessories willy-nilly – it certainly feels like Spring today.

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