Strawberries, Isis, Ship Street, Fairy Rings

A little embroidery on the corner of some tea towels for Daughter.
Let me take you back to the New Year in Oxford as the weather hasn’t changed much. This area is Grandpont (Big Bridge) so called because in the Medieval times it was a mess of about 7 streams to the south of the then walled town of Oxford. The River Thames is called the River Isis while in Oxford.
A big bridge was eventually built over the area to replace the several small ones.
This is the later current bridge. Shall we go for a coffee?
Let me take you up into Oxford city centre. It has been pedestrianised but when I was little buses came along this road. The late Anglo Saxon tower you see is St Michael’s at the North Gate. It once formed part of the gateway to the North road out of the town. The lowest “window” is actually a doorway which led to the cell room over the road (now gone). Sir Walter Raleigh is said to have stayed there after some drunken fighting with the townies.
The rest of the church is younger. See above link for details.
It is on Ship Street which was probably originally called Sheep Street as the bones from slaughtered sheep were used like cobbles to stop so much mud being churned up by the animals being brought in to the market. Back then a town had to have a royal charter to hold a market. They were a good money making enterprise for everyone including the king who got some of the taxes.
Just opposite the church is this timber framed building. When I was little this was plastered over like most of the others in Oxford. I had no idea it was so much older.
Let’s have a look inside. You can see the old timbers and where some new ones have been used to replace the old. It is a coffee shop now but I remember it being a Laura Ashley shop in the days when long flowing floral semi fitted cotton dresses were fashionable.
Upstairs there were some interesting features.
Close up.
Looking down the stairs you can see modern stonework with the older made to look like how they think it may have looked originally.
Looking up the wall is a replacement wooden carved window frame.
It matches the older one on the wall to the right of it. I’ll share more of Oxford another time.
Here is a pic of the latest eclipse taken by Daughter.
These are “Fairy Ring” pincushions made mainly from felt.
Hand applique and back stitch to do the details. No the mushroom doorstep wasn’t couched- that was all tiny back stitches too.
Tiny buttons make flower centres, with butterflies and mushrooms round the edge of the circle. Eventually the “hill” will flatten so the sides will be less wrinkly. I’ve weighted them with cat litter like the doorstop, then put stuffing around so they feel soft.
A ric rac path leads to a tiny mushroom house.
It has 2 windows and flowers all round.
A few felt flowers with button centres on the lawn.
I’d love this as my front door.
A gate on the side will hold small scissors.
So that is the end for now of my mushroom projects. I’m looking forward to Spring now. I even put in a few Snowdrop bulbs so I would know for sure when Spring was coming.

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