Caro Higgs – Blooming
‘Twas the last rose of summer
This year I am going to try and make all 6 of my pieces have the same general theme while incorporating the subjects that have been chosen. The theme is the coast, I am really enjoying walking along the coastline and often take photographs as I go, the changing light and nature area real inspiration, time will tell if I manage my own personal challenge as well as the group challenge! I have to admit that I am finding the subjects this year difficult so they are a real challenge for me.
The inspiration for Blooming was a quote from a poem by Thomas Moore (1779 – 1852):
‘Twas the last rose of summer,
Left blooming alone,
All her lovely companions
Are faded and gone.
These words fitted perfectly with an old damask napkin that I found lurking among my white fabrics; along the low cliffs where I live there is plenty of plant life and I used a poetic license to imagine dog roses along the cliff top. The ‘carrelets’, fishing huts on stilts, line the coastline which itself is stony and on the horizon is either the region of the Vendée the other side of the bay or the Ile de Ré in the other direction.
I painted to fabric with fabric paints and then stitched the outline of the roses on the damask with a variegated cotton thread to give them a muted look as if they had faded away. The water and sky have little stitching, with a polyester thread to give sheen, because I wanted to make sure that the focus was on the plants. The ‘carrelets’ are appliquéd and the blooming rose and grass added by hand at the end using the same cotton variegated threads.
Working the damask was not easy because it is well used and creased very easily, it was beautifully soft to stitch but it also tended to shift a little so squaring it was not easy.
Close up views: