Posted on

The Mermaid of Zennor

One fine Sunday morning in Zennor church, perched on the cliffs of Penwith, the choir and congregation were ready for service when through the church door came a strange lady of unearthly beauty.  Her green eyes looked back calmly at the villagers, who were staring, for newcomers were rare in that far-flung parish; her tawny-gold hair flowed down over her back, wild and untrained; the long dress she wore swept the ground like a bride’s train, and was made of some material that no one there had ever seen, for it shimmered like the sea on a sunny day.  She sat near the door in a pew on her own, away from other people.

In the choir were some fine singers, but none finer than Mathy Trewhella, a handsome young man who sang a clear high tenor:  his voice could be heard all over Zennor Churchtown when he wished.  As the choristers sang their hymns and psalms Mathy became aware of the stranger staring at him with those emerald-green mysterious eyes; when he looked at her it seemed to him that a queer faint smile hovered on her face.  After the service she was the first to leave the church, and those who went out after her thought it strange how rapidly she had disappeared, as they could not see her anywhere outside.

Five or six times this unknown lady came to Zennor church, always on a fine day, and always she sat far apart from the congregation, watching Mathy and listening to every note he sang.  Her eyes seemed to look right through him, and her gaze somehow reminded him of the dim light in caves under sea.  He determined that somehow he would find out who she was.

The next time she appeared in church he was ready.  Before the end of the service, as the parson gave the benediction, Mathy slipped from the choir stalls and let himself out of the little side door of the church.  And so, as soon as the lady emerged, first as usual from the main door, he was at her side.  She smiled as if she had been expected him, and took his arm; and thus they left the churchyard together.  People coming after them saw them take the winding path that led down the valley towards the sea.

That was the last Zennor saw of Mathy Trewhella.  His old mother was heartbroken for a long time, but at least she had other grown children to comfort her.  The story of how Mathy disappeared with the stranger was a great mystery, often talked about, and unsolved for many years; in fact two generations had been born and grew up in the village, and old Mrs Trehwella was in her grave before news came of him.

A ship bound for Penzance, and captained by a man who knew Zennor well, came by one day and anchored off Pendower Cove; she put out a boat to get some water from the shore.  Soon a woman’s voice was heard calling urgently, “Ship!  Ship ahoy!” and the watch, looking overboard, saw a mermaid with green eyes and tawny-gold hair swimming beside them.  “Tell your captain to haul up your anchor,” she cried.  “For ‘tis lodged against the door of my home on the sea-bed, and I can’t get in to my Mathy and children.”

At this the captain came to the side and questioned her.  “Excuse me, ma’am, but did you say your Mathy?  Mathy who, may I ask?”  Sailors are always very respectful to mermaids, who have powers to cause shipwrecks and disaster, and often use them if they are annoyed.

“Mathy Trewhella, my husband, of course,” she said.  “Now haul away, if you please.”  The captain did not stay to argue, but brought up the anchor immediately.  And with a swish from her long gleaming tail she was gone, diving down to the sea-bed and her family.

So Zennor heard the news, and learned Mathy’s fate.  Neither he nor the mermaid has ever been since, but in Zennor church now is a bench end carved to show what she looked like:  long flowing hair, a sea-siren’s face, and a curved scaly tail.  And for all we know, Mathy is still down there on the ocean floor, singing sweetly to his mermaid wife and their children.
Extract from Cornish Heritage Trust.

We love a Cornish folktale to inspire us & who doesn’t love a tale about mermaids!  Shell We Dance is a gorgeous range of “mermaid” themed fabrics by Lewis & Irene, perfect for a “Mermaid project”

Posted on

How Batik Fabric is Made

Batik is an Indonesian technique of wax-resist dyeing applied to the whole cloth. This technique originated from the island of Java, Indonesia.

The artist uses wax to prevent dye from penetrating the cloth, leaving “blank” areas in the dyed fabric. The process, wax resist then dye, can be repeated over and over to create complex multicolored designs. Batik is made either by drawing dots and lines of the resist with a spouted tool called a canting, or by printing the resist with a copper stamp called a cap.

Posted on

NEW ARRIVAL – Noel

We have fallen in love with the New Arrival – Noel – from Lewis and Irene

With traditional festive colours of Reds, Greens, and Light Taupe this collection also has a little sparkle with accents of metallic gold running through the prints. We love this collection for the adorable winter characters and illustrations in the feature fabric.

Our Mary is an incredibly skilled crafter and she has designed a beautiful Painted Flowers Cushion using the Somerset Patchwork technique to create a really interesting texture. We think this cushion would look absolutely gorgeous in the Noel collection . . . especially with the sparkles!

 

 

Posted on

Liberty Mid-Summer Collection

Liberties Fabrics are internationally recognised as a leader in print design and textiles. They have created original and inspiring designs since 1875, and each season the Liberty’s studio designs new original prints, adding to their vast collection of iconic florals, paisleys, graphic geometrics and colourful conersationals. This season is no different with their stunning NEW RELEASE, Mid-Summer Flower Show Collection.

With classic Liberty florals the Mid-Summer Collection is filled with beautiful roses and posies, poppies and daisies. It is a real celebration of sunshine and garden flowers, and we just love the Pinks, Blues, Greens and Creams that pour through this range. We have available Bundles, Fat 1/4s, Fabric on the bolt as well as the accompanying Wiltshire Shadow basics.

We’re really excited by this collection and have a couple of pattern projects that would be perfect for this fabric range:

For the love of tea – A sweet little wall hanging by Hatched & Patched, with 12 stitcheries to create with tea in mind, such as Early Grey, Tea with honey, and Billy Tea, along with a tea bag and spoon.

Bunny Garden – Mrs Bunny has made friends with the prettiest of butterflies while the other naughty bunny has found a big juicy carrot to nibble on! Finished size approx. 12” x 13”