Reconnect to Nature with Seasonally Inspired things to Make, Learn & Do.

What is Snapdragon Life?

jane lindsey of Snapdragon

In our fast paced consumerist society, where people seem to be valued by what they buy rather than who they are, it is very easy to lose track of our roots, to become disconnected from the natural world around us.

It certainly happened to me.

In my 20s I worked as an art gallery curator at the University of Glasgow - my office was in a windowless basement, I rarely knew what the weather was like outside. In the Scottish winter, where the days shrink, I often only saw daylight at the weekends. I regularly felt anxious, overwhelmed, as though I didn't quite belong.

It wasn't until my 30s, when I became ill with a chronic auto immune disease that forced me to slow my life right down, that I learned to live with the rhythm of the natural seasons and connect to the natural world. I got back in touch with my joy in creativity, in living seasonally. I knew I was home.

Snapdragon Life is about helping you do the same - to learn about the natural world around you, to eat delicious and simple seasonal food, to grow flowers and vegetables, to reconnect with your creativity.

I would love for you to join me - you can sign up to my Friday Letters and join my free Facebook Group.

Snapdragon Studio, my membership community, is opening its doors to new members in late September - if you would like to join the waitlist you can sign up here.

Snapdragon social

I took my spring flowers out of the press to make way for summer ones.⁠⠀
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I intend to make ones for each season if I can and then frame them as a set - sweet peas and nasturtiums went in yesterday.⁠⠀
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To press flowers all you need is strong boards and absorbent paper - though you can use paper interleaved in heavy books the result is better if you are pressing down evenly rather than like a hinge. ⁠⠀
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I would therefore use the books either side of the paper, chopping boards work well (if you have any you aren't using).⁠⠀
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You can even put the sheets of paper with their interleaved flowers under a heavy rug. ⠀
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Celebrating the seasons. ⠀
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The garden and meadow are full of circles at the moment - beautiful flowering heads of teasels and globe thistles. ⁠⠀
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They are covered in bees which go round and round visiting each tiny flower, working steadily, following the rows.⁠⠀
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I love this season - the sun a little lower, the evenings a little warmer, the long shadows and sweet hum of the insects. ⁠⠀
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Poised before harvest. ⁠⠀
It is tansy time again.⁠⠀
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For me the wonderful thing about seasons is that they go round and around.  They may move onto something new but I always know that they will come around again.⁠⠀
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A lot of what I have been working on for the past few years is learning how to settle myself exactly where I am, in the place where I am, in the season I am in. ⁠⠀
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To resist looking backwards or hurrying forward - to just be where I am.⁠⠀
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And where I am at the moment is in tansy time.  It marks a year since I began experimenting with using natural dyes.  A time of bright yellow alpaca socks and bags and yarn.
Hattie's pincushion.⁠⠀
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I love the common names of plants. ⠀
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Astrantia grows so happily in amongst the grasses of the Studio Meadow - it has been flowering since May and seems full of intentions to carry on.⁠⠀
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It is probably not surprising really as it grows wild in the sloping meadows at the foot of mountains in Central Europe.⁠⠀
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The perfect plant for a textile obsessed person.
It is the time of year when you can pick sweet peas every day.⁠⠀
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I love my sweet peas best with light and space - like a flock of butterflies caught mid-air.⁠⠀
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These are 'Mrs Collier' - presumably a woman known to the breeders Dobie (or Dobbie) & Sons back in Edwardian Edinburgh. ⁠⠀
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You would think that having a popular sweet pea named after you would guarantee immortality, but seemingly not.  I couldn't find out who she was.⁠⠀
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So as these fill the studio with sweet perfume, I am imagining Mrs Collier into life.⁠⠀
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If anyone has hard facts on her please let me know!
Each month or so, as part of Snapdragon Studio Membership, I put together an e-course.  It is a different topic every time and the lessons go out each Tuesday.⁠⠀
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The idea is to encourage people to try new things.  This month's course is about decorative mending - and this week I am designing a project that will form the last couple of lessons.⁠⠀
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It is a pocket patch, embroidered and appliquéd from scraps of linen and cotton. ⁠⠀
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It has been a new thing for me to try too - a project to use all the precious scraps I have been squirrelling away, not quite sure how to use them.⁠⠀
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The base is a 1950s tray cloth with holes in it, the appliqués from a tattered nightdress, the bag that it will go onto is one I dyed with dock flowers.⁠⠀
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Membership is closed at the moment - but I shall be opening the doors back up for the last week of September. If you want to be the first to know sign up to my newsletter list.
Years ago, actually maybe just last year, I saw a display of ferns in glass laboratory bottles. ⁠⠀
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It may have been at Jupiter Art Land, it may have been somewhere else *. ⁠⠀
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This is my homage. ⁠⠀
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*I think my brain may be broken, so many things seem to have fallen out the side.⁠⠀
Boxes and boxes of A Seasonal Way magazine arrived yesterday and are sitting in the hall here. 
That means that it is the last day to get it at the pre-order price of £8. 

I had this all ready to go to the printers in the second week of March but pulled it - and have then worked for the past few months to make it better. 

It feels good that I can begin packing up Studio Members copies on the day that shielding stops in Scotland.
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About Snapdragon Life

At Snapdragon Life I gently guide you through bringing the changing seasons into your daily life, helping you slow down, so that you can experience increased well being, calm and creativity.

Through my communities, both free and paid for, through my writing on the blog, through carefully hand crafted activity kits, and through my online and in-person workshops I aim to bring people back in touch with the rhythms of a seasonal life.

Learn more about why here

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