LooLoo's Box Banner

LooLoo's Box Banner
LooLoo's Box Handcrafted Jewelry: Artisan Jewelry, from Sterling to Steampunk

Friday, June 15, 2012

Everything's Coming Up Roses, Part Two

After an embarrassingly long delay, I am finally taking you on a tour of the back yard.  We practically live out here when the weather cooperates; even simple meals taste stupendous when you are sounded by the heady aroma of hundreds of rose blooms.

'Constance Spry'; English Rose Climber, 1961

'Radiance'; Hybrid Tea, 1908

'Seagull'; 1907

Seagull, in Italian Prune tree

Foreground: 'Francesca', 1922 and 'Danae', 1913.  The pink rose in the center back is 'Applejack', 1973

Climbers: 'RĂªve d'Or', 1869 and 'Sombreuil', c. 1880.

Once-Bloomers, L-R: 'Gloire de France', 1828; 'Belle de Crecy, <1836; 'Bella Donna', <1848; 'Mme. Plantier', 1835; 'Mme. Antoine Mari', <1890.

A riot of roses.

Foreground: 'Lady Hillingdon', 1910

Upper Left to Lower Right: 'Sombreuil', c. 1880; "Portland from Glendora", found rose; 'Mme. Joseph Schwartz', 1880; 'Marchesa Boccella', 1842; 'Baby Love' (yellow) 1992

'Buff Beauty', 1939

~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~

Here are a couple photos I took today.

Baby roses (gallon size) in the greenhouse.  We were going to have a sale but did a jewelry show instead.  We have got to have a sale in July and find these babies homes!

We're eating right here just about every day that the weather allows.  it sure smells good...

This arbor is the path to the chicken coop, behind the garage.  :-)
Well, that's enough for now.  I hope you enjoyed visiting my rosy corner of the world!

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Everything's Coming Up Roses, Part One

Crepuscule rose
'Crepuscule' (1904), front arbor;
Click to view in all her glory
My blog post for yesterday's blog hop generated a lot of comments about my garden.  I grow over 200 varieties of roses, from merely 'old' to truly ancient.  I grow some roses that predate Christianity.  I love everything about them, but mostly their rich history.  They have stories.  And they smell really really REALLY good.  :-)

It's early yet for garden pics, so I thought I'd share some of my favorite rose garden photos, this time looking at it through my artist's eye. Inspiration strikes when it chooses, but it certainly helps to invite it in.  

I've posted my reference diagram for those who like this sort of thing. Most of these photos were taken in June of 2009, with a few from 2007. There have been a few changes since then; roses added, some deaths, some moved, but the overall effect is the same.  When first flush (May - July) is on you can smell my garden from blocks away, and everybody under the sun walks their dogs past my house.  I feel honored every time someone stops to smell the roses.

In the interest of loading times, I am splitting this tour into two blog posts - Front and Back.

We begin in the front, including the front parking strip and corner and down the sides - in short, everything that is outside of the fenced back yard.

Largely accurate, with a few additions, deaths and relocations.
I really need to update this.
The best shot I have, although it is older, before the new paint.
Those upper windows are my workroom.
From the kitty-corner neighbor's yard
Down the side; that second story window is our bedroom
'Mutabilis' dominates the corner
Closeup of 'Mutabilis', aka 'The Butterfly Rose'.
'Aloha' and 'Abraham Darby' against the front porch
'Aloha' & 'Abraham Darby' against porch; 'Golden Wings' front R.
The red was in a pot; I think it is 'Zulu Queen'.
Between the house and the front sidewalk, left side.
'Graham Thomas' (yellow), with 'Coupe d'Hebe' (pink) to the right
Front parking strip; 'Pat Austin'
Between front porch and sidewalk
To the left of the front steps; 'Eden' (aka 'Pierre de Ronsard')
Front arbor; 'Crepuscule' (foreground) & 'Jaune Desprez'

Front arbor: 'Crepuscule' on left, 'Jaune Desprez' on the right.
Front parking strip, Golden Chain tree in full bloom
Golden Chain tree
Headed down the side - the pink rose is 'Bewitched'
The side patch in 2005 - the red climber is 'Don Juan'
The same bed in 2009.  Yikes!!!
The pink rose is 'Zepherine Drouhin'
An old musk rose propagated from a cutting I snitched from
a historical garden in Port Townsend, WA (The Rothschild House).
'Roseraie de l'Hay', my most ambitious rose rescue to date.  It's a great story and I took lots of photos; perhaps I'll blog about it one day.

My next blog post, in a day or two, will be of the back garden retreat.  We eat out there as often as not during the summer; food and wine are even better when enveloped in the heady aroma of heirloom roses.

Until next time,

Robin Delargy
LooLoos Box

Friday, April 27, 2012

It's a Messy Workshop Blog Hop!

Messy WorkshopOne of my favorite suppliers, B'Sue Boutiques, has coordinated this fun Blog hop where a bunch of us jewelry artists 'come clean' (pun intended) and show just how messy our workshops can be; it's your chance to get a behind-the-scenes look at where I and my fellow artists make our magic by hopping from blog to blog and seeing the pictures, videos and stories we have shared. At the bottom is the list of all the participants with the link to their blog; simply click on the one below mine to hop to the next, and so on. Please feel free to leave comments on our blogs; just don't be too hard on us, OK?

Myself, I create in the eye of a hurricane and it shows.  When the rubble gets so bad I cannot carve out a square foot of clear space, I stop working and start putting things away.  However, what usually happens is that in handling my bits & pieces something will spark an idea and I'm off and running, and once again 'making' instead of 'cleaning'.  My workshop is rarely ever really 'clean'.

So without further ado, here's a tour of my Messy Workshop! Click to enlarge the photos... if you dare.  ;-)

From the street one would never imagine the chaos within.

The house was built in 1912; we're throwing it a birthday party this summer.
Those upper front windows are my workroom.

Or would you?  That's a pretty unruly garden, with over 200 varieties of old and antique roses; I am not the 'lawn & shrubberies' type.

My workroom is on the second floor, but let's start downstairs where I have (yet again) taken over the dining room.

Dining Room BEFORE
Yes, it really morphed into THIS.
Sigh... this is what happens when Neal and I decide to play with my stuff; it all starts to gravitate downstairs.  It will probably stay there until we have a dinner party and need the table back.

Time to head upstairs.  Now before we enter my workroom, I have to warn you to prepare your eyes for extreme ugliness.  The wallpaper was old and decrepit when I bought the house 22 years ago, and it has been the domicile for two teenage boys (stepson and my son, in turn).  Both picked at the wallpaper.  The house is 100 years old and the walls are the original lathe & plaster - both boys tried to hang pictures by hammering nails into the walls... which broke the plaster.  As a result, this room looks like a French bordello that has been bombed by the Nazis.  Don't say I didn't I warn you.

From the left of the door, clockwise:

This lovely wallpaper is flocked... as if the red & gold weren't bad enough.

The door leads to a walk-in closet; that just a bunch of random crap on the old daybed.

Chain hangs on the back and end of these little shelves.
Yes, that is a clamp-on shop light at the top of a 2x4. The ceiling fixture is broken.

There's always at least one coffee cup.  Hmmm... I see I was working on this!
L to R: Wire & Chain, stones & beads, shipping envelopes & gift boxes in the dresser, metal beads, filigrees, etc. and door into photo room
My small photo tent; there's a larger on on a big metal desk to the right.
I see I was photographing an ArachneMachina 'Pectus' spider pin.
At least I have lots of space and when we are done it will be an efficient workroom, with work surface on all four walls and dedicated areas for tasks like resin work & soldering.  Most will be set up to work standing, to save my back (with seated areas for a few tasks) with storage beneath and pegboard on the walls to hang tools, chain, spools of wire and such.


Despite the chaos, there is an underlying organization and I am able to create beautiful things here.  I work in the eye of the storm, where it is calm.  When I am creating, I couldn't care less about peeling wallpaper; the vision in my mind's eye is all I can see.  And I am OK with that.  :-)

Here's a few of my latest creations!

ArachneMachina 'Jugulus' RoboSpider Necklace
'The Dark Heart of Steampunk' (I made this one for myself)
ArachneMachina 'Auris' Steampunk Spider Earrings Sold, but there's more...
Flora & Fauna Brooch - Sold
Flora & Fauna Cuff - On Etsy

 Yes, lots of bugs.  I'm going through a phase that I hope never ends.  :-)

----- ~ * ~ -----

Messy Workshop Blog Hop Links

Brenda Sue Lansdowne, B'sue Boutiques

Robin Delargy, LooLoo's Box <------ You are here

Kim at CianciBlue

Jennifer Jazwick-Smith, Hudathots

Mary Shannon Hicks

Tracy Swartz

Jacqueline Marchant

Lynnea Perry Bennett

Terry Matusyk

Laurel Steven

Dr. Brassy Steamington

Pamela Takeshige

Kris Lanae Binsfeld

Outre Art

Linzi Alford

Deb Davis

Tamara Jones

Harry Wood

Gerry Nickerson

Elizabeth Owens-Dwy

Georgene Lockwood

Charisa Sloper

Jennifer Justman


Mary Deis

Cheri Reed

Sondra Kolner

Sonya Ingersoll-Stille

Lori Anderson

Sandra McGriff

Shelly Joyce

Joan Williams

Kashmira Patel

Deb Beechy

Ginger Bishop

Kelli Jacobson

Natalie McKenna

Andrew Thornton

Mary Govaars

Kate Mulligan

Lisa Lodge

Tami Luchini

Monique Lula

Lee Koopman

Jayne Capps

Susan Lloyd

Cynthia Wainscott

Stephanie Amanti

Alicia Marinache

Sam Hamp

Lennis Carrier

The Milo, my ever-present Workshop Assistant