Just this morning, as I was watering in the garden, I noticed a bud of Haemanthus coccineus had appeared. Last autumn I had divided an overgrown pot of this plant, given to me by a neighbour. I planted three bulbs in the ground and two in pots. I am looking forward to seeing how or if the rest of them will have survived the move. The snails love the leaves. I am hoping the rough eucalyptus mulch will deter them.

At the beginning of the week the Sogetsu branch held its AGM and first meeting/workshop for the year. The workshop was lead by Toula and Betty Karanikolopoulos. The subject was to make a sculptural form using wire and panty hose. I have not done this exercise before, though I was assured by more senior ikebanists that they had done the exercise some years ago. 

Many of us used coat-hangers as the most readily available wire in most households. After a preliminary failed trial, I wound my coat-hanger wire around a ceramic cylinder and then stretched it out to make a  helical spiral. I had bought some 'knee-high' black stockings and threaded them over two spirals.

As this sculptural form was created from obviously man-made material, I decided to use agapanthus flower heads with the seeds removed. They seemed to be more in keeping with the sculptural form I had made. However I was not happy with the result and thought it looked quite awkward.

I re-worked the arrangement at home in a different vase with an improved result. The result is really a 'basic upright' arrangement from the Sogetsu curriculum.

Below is one of the demonstration examples from the workshop. It was done by Toula and she has cleverly inverted the obvious way of managing this exercise. She created a wire spiral and then, after putting her nylon stocking tube within it, has attached it to the wire with fine threads. The result was very beautiful and created a delicate interplay of colour and layers of translucence.


Above is a close-up view looking through the pink stocking tube.

In this image you can see a side-on view of a tube of stocking that Toula said she '...painted with faux alcohol inks...(she made)...scribbles with permanent markers (Sharpies) and then...brushed methylated spirits on the scribbles to get the water colour effect.'.

Now you know what to do with those old stockings!!

See further images from the Sogetsu meeting workshop.

Greetings from Christopher
25th February 2017

1 comment:

  1. A happy hello from Berlin, Germany to Australia,
    I am very enthusiastic about your sock Ikebana and would like to tell you that we Ikebana teachers in Berlin very much like to see your blog and even inspiration.
    Very warm greetings from Renate Murawski (