Monday, August 4, 2014

Rose crafting

 

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This very fragrant rose grows like a boss beside my back door.  No amount of pruning deters its vigorously clawing growth, and from inside each blossom you can hear the murmurings of a furious and territorial bumblebee.  The stems are encased in millions of venomous needles.  You can hack at this rosebush, to try and create a safe path of egress, but you will not defeat it, and just for laughs, it will grab your hat as you make your feeble attempt.  I might consider moving it, but for that I’d need a suit of chain mail.  This rosebush is large and in charge.  It smells great though.  Inspired by The Girl Who Married a Bear, I decided to see if I could harness some of this, its one good quality, so I put on long sleeves and my most serious pair of leather work gloves and took my life into my own hands in order to harvest a jar full of the incredible, richly scented petals.  The bees were extremely annoyed, I can tell you.  Once safely indoors, I poured sweet almond oil over the petals to cover them, put a lid on it, and set the jar in a sunny window, where it will steep for a week or so, making the oil a rosy pink infusion of fragrant loveliness.  I will strain the petals out, bottle it, dab it upon and massage it into my wrinkly face over the next few months, and I’m sure I’ll be passing for [insert name of somebody young, famous, and beautiful here, because I am so unhip I can’t think of anybody—is Lindsay Lohan still young?]

Also, I am cleaning the garage like a mad freak.  No spider-filled corner is safe from my broom, no mildewy box uninspected.  I have found no evidence (thank goodness!) of the snake, who, it appears, has hightailed it.  I am organizing the screwdrivers.  I hung a lace curtain in the window, so I don’t have to see the extension ladder from the yard anymore.  Making it pretty, wherever I can.  It’s been kind of compelling and, dare I say, fun?  I do not know what’s come over me.  My mother will be so proud/confused.  Actually, I think it has something to do with a general sense of upheaval and my need to impose order somewhere, anywhere.  Both kids (and the cat) are moving out in the next few weeks, and my mind reels with trying to imagine a quiet, clean, post-nuclear-family life. If I can’t boss them around anymore, I’m turning my attention to the dust bunnies. The teensy cozy things cottage will suddenly seem huge, and echoing.  

24 comments:

  1. I collected some rose petals and then, in the end, didn't really know what to do with them. So they're on the compost heap. Maybe I'll try again.

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  2. Some almond rose scented oil sounds lovely. Send some to Lindsay Lohan when it's ready, that girl needs help.
    I had a brief few months of empty nesting and my house was so clean I didn't know what to do with myself. Then they flew back home again just when I started to get used to it. Here we go again.

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  3. Hi, Rose infused oil sounds lovely! :) I noticed you changed your banner, earlier I was reading some older posts to catch up and now - suddenly it was different! I just wanted to say, how much I like the look of the green purple crochet blanket in the photo! (Is there a link to it on your blog? How easy and quick is that stitch? Does it take a lot of yarn? Did you use different colours or a variegated yarn?) Sorry about all these questions! I have been reading your blog for a few months now and I enjoy it very much!

    Ingrid xx

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    1. Hi Ingrid, thanks very much! Yes, you can read all about that blanket here: http://cozymadethings.blogspot.com/2011/10/woodstock-blanket.html. :)

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    2. Hi Kristen, thanks very much for your link! (turns out I had already saved the corresponding ravelry link, haha!)

      Wow, you did use quite a lot of different colours, how marvellous! It really is amazing! You should be proud! :)

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  4. I can just imagine you battling with the roses, you paint such a vivid picture! It sounds a lovely idea, and reminds me of trying to make rose petal perfume when little, picking up the fallen petals and steeping them in a jam jar of water to make perfume for my Mum. I'm sure she was thrilled!
    I hope you don't mind Kristen but I have linked to your blog on a post of mine on the Creative Blog Hop. I didn't want to bother you with asking you to join is as i know you've been relishing this time with your family and enjoying the summer weather, but as you inspire me with your creativity I wanted to link to you. If you would like to join in then feel free - do a post answering the four questions and pass it on to some that inspire you!
    Gill xx

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  5. I am glad that you have not had any snake encounters!! xx

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  6. Lovely post, I'm straight on the rose petal almond oil thing. Thanks for the tip. I too love the groovy crochet blanket, but I have soooo many projects at the moment, I MUST NOT start another.

    Jean x

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  7. The cat is leaving?? Well done for organising the screw drivers, that's above and beyond. Don't s'pose you could pop round and do my garage too when you have a minute? It's in dire need. CJ xx

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  8. Lovely!

    (I hate to break it to you about Lindsey Lohan...)

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  9. You are busy Kristen!!! It really makes me feel rather lazy as I know I should be fighting the dust in my place. I laugh when they say holidays ...holidays to paint,clean and put in order !!! Although its lovely to sit back and contemplate once it looks all nice. I was fascinated with your battle with the rose bush ...you describe it so well. I do like the sound of your perfumed oils though.

    keep well

    Amanda x

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  10. I too turn to housework and decluttering when life is throwing changes my way! Knock yourself out cos when it's all over you'll be exhausted but very very happy!!! xxx ps Did that particular rose not feature in Sleeping Beauty perchance.....?

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  11. Kristen, I have just popped over from Gillyflower to take a look at you. I enjoyed scrolling down and reading your posts very much. I really enjoy the way you write, as well as all your lovely projects.I loved your approach to making a large quilt from small squares...very inspiring indeed.If the rose potion works, you could make money from the beast! Love Linda x

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  12. Ah, yes, cleaning to impose a sense of order on a chaotic world--I know it well.

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  13. Have been admiring the green to purple afghan on your masthead for a few days. Do you know what that pattern is called? I think I'd like to try making it. Thanks

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    1. Yes, you can read about that blanket and find a link to the pattern here: http://cozymadethings.blogspot.com/2011/10/woodstock-blanket.html. :)

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  14. I've always wanted to try that but I thought the rose petals would turn black and maybe decompose in the oil. I think it's a wonderful idea if it works. I've been very sparingly using the same small bottle of tea rose essential oil for about twenty years and I'd love to have an easy and cheap source for more!

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    1. So far, so good--still pink and pretty. I don't think it will really be "essential oil" in the end, most likely it'll just be almond oil that's been stained pink and is lightly scented. I'll store it in the refrigerator, and it might last six months or so. Updates to follow! :)

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  15. As children we also collected rose petals and steeped them in water to make 'perfume'. Smelled lovely the first day, but evil the second! :)
    www.thequietstitcher.com

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  16. This is such a lovely idea. I must try it soon. Loving the colour of your jar! cheers Wendy

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  17. Mary

    I love the afghan in your header. What brand of yarn did you use? What is the fiber content? Wool, Cotton, a blend?

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    1. Hi Mary, thanks! That was a scrappy blanket, made of leftovers--mostly Berocco Vintage worsted, which is a wool/acrylic blend. It's lovely for a blanket, very soft and drapey, but washable too. Win/win! :)

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  18. Your Rose Oil sounds heavenly. How about using the rose petals in cooking? In cakes, hmm. If you haven't sprayed them in any way (fertilizer or pesticides) they should impart their flavor to cooked items. Helen

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