Pick Up Stix

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Slim Paley photo

So much for Spring coming in like a lamb…more like The Big Bad Wolf, huffing and puffing and blowing one of our 18 year old willow trees down.  Of course in comparison to the catastrophic global events of this past month we certainly can’t complain about our weather in Southern California.  We were sad to see our beautiful tree prostrate across the drive like a great fallen beast, but Madame Nature…She’s like Bette Davis -the dame takes no prisoners.  ‘Twas but a stick in the wind…

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Mehmet Ali Uysal, Belgium

If only we had a few of these to pin down our trees in bad weather 🙁

 

Alas,  we pick up the “sticks”,

Slim Paley Photo

The neighbourhood sings with the melody of wood chipper & chainsaw,

and as willows do not make good firewood,  I lament having never taken the ‘Basket Weaving’ class at summer camp. (Probably too busy wrapping rival tents in T.P. )

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Rattan Tea Set by artist Anna Zarith, England

If I’d only been more industrious…

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I did learn how to make those coloured plastic lanyards at camp though!

 

 

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Reclaimed wooden lighting fixtures made from Oak barrel staves.

STAVE Luminary

 

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Willow branches

Coco lashings

Both from Nettletonhollow.com

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Vintage Wall Paper Printing Lamps from Jean Brown Antiques, Kings Rd. London

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Wooden chair Natura

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Amanyara Turks & Caicos

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Japanese architect Kengo Kuma’s Bamboo House

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Ming glasses of bamboo from Yii Collection

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Wood Hammock Adam Cornish for Flex

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Hermes  make a most unusual and bold statement with sticks in their newest premises in Paris

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Hermes Paris

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I’m increasingly drawn to the interesting juxtaposition between the very old & the new in architecture, but that’s another post…

The Bridge School in Xiashi, China is a perfect example of what I’m referring to.  Designed by architect Li Xiaodong it received the Aga Khan Architecture Award in 2010.

It’s a beautiful modern structure that successfully blends into the landscape with the use of local materials (bamboo) while ‘bridging’ two historic structures.  The linear, lightweight form appears to float over the river below.

The structure and courtyard not only serve as a school, but also a gathering place for the entire local community.

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.Slim Paley photo

Boats, Cambodia

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To attract a partner, the male Bowerbird builds and decorates an elaborate nest, which can take weeks to assemble. The bower — a structure woven around a sapling that looks almost like a wooden tent — is carpeted with moss and decorated with flowers, colorful insects, fungi or even dung, depending on each bird’s design sensibilities.

This bird has not only an eye for design, but also an ear for song. This crooner is able to mimic a number of sounds from its surrounding habit and use them to weave together complex arias.

(Excerpt from Discoverynews.com)

I dunno- Is it just me, or does anyone else suspect this little guy could also be looking for another fella??

Just saying… that’s some pretty awesome decorating for a bird…

I don’t want to go all “Mutual of Omaha” on you, but if you have a minute, read this short article; “Bowerbirds Trick Mates with Optical Illusions” (NatureNews.com) They are something else!

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Plywood “Egg Chairs” by designer Emma Selzer, Melbourne, Australia

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From “The Giacometti Variations”, an elongated version of a Giacometti-inspired figured clothed by artist John Baldessari for the Prada Foundation, Milan

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Basket light fixtures from South of Market

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Australian Vogue Living

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Wooden boat bath by Dutch designer Weiki Somers

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Hermes

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Aomori Nebuta House is a 65,000 sq. ft. Museum and Cultural Centre in Northern Japan. The 39′ high ribbons are actually made of steel.

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The Nogg Chicken Coop. For the chicken who values his privacy.

Bowerbirds need not apply.

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Slim Paley photo

Giant Bamboo fishing net, Cambodia

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Jolyon Yates chair

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Slim Paley photo

sticks & pearls don’t hurt my bones

 

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Have you hugged a tree today?! 🙂

 

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29 Comments

  1. Gosh, Slim, you always come up with the most fascinating, eclectic, and stimulating mix based on a theme! You are a true artist, and I’m envious of your talent!

  2. Fantastic, awesome,ever so stunning post Slim. I love every shot, some even bringing tears to my eyes, such talent and beauty. It’s been a sad time and we all need to enjoy the beauty of our wonderful world.
    Thanks Slim ox

  3. incredible Slim….so interesting…I love the old and the new as well, it reminded me of our fave….Devi Garh.
    I remember you from GS camp however and you were good at basketweaving too….
    enough already….x

  4. Colin Cowie is not a bird but could be if he wanted to–amazing person. I see him more as a peacock though.

  5. So sorry to hear about your willow…we lost three trees last year (all Bradford pears) and
    it was so barren in our yard! We re-planted in the Fall. I can’t wait to see the pale pink
    flowers on the new apple tree.
    Your postings are always so varied and clever, and inspiring! Thanks for sharing
    things that I wouldn’t otherwise run across.
    -Susan

  6. May your willow RIP in a lovely new form. I did take the willow-weaving class back in the day, so send me the sticks and I’ll send you a basket-bed………….or something!

    Am inspired to travel to Cambodia by your boat and net photos; loved the Australian Vogue cover and looking forward even more to our 3-month stay there next Fall; the Victorian-styled basket dress on the Giacometti-syle…..brilliant!

    And, constantly amazed at what man makes out of nature and how a woman named Slim puts it together to share with us, her humble and lucky followers.
    Thanks, yet again!

  7. OMG, such images, must book flights to China and Belgium (and Paris – Hermes – WOW – what an interior). Adore the creativity and use of nature for design. Great images as always, and such a wonderful reminder of the power of people and animals to create. Needed given the news of the day – radiation, rapes, civil unrest. Thank you for another great post!

    ps. I think the Bowerbird is simply a smart guy who knows what the ladies like. I’m sure once he’s got his woman that he totally lets his design input go to seed (so to speak).

    • Ha ha- that’s pretty funny- so you figure the Bowerbird turns into Al Bundy once he snares his mate?!

      I just can’t get over the whole “Optical illusion, tunnel” thing…who knew birds were that clever?!

  8. That figure with the rather round behind? Yeah, they used me as a model. 🙂 Didn’t you just lose a tree last Christmas?

  9. Another incredibly imaginative assemblage of beautiful objects. All quite wonderful but the Japanese bamboo house and Chinese bamboo school top favorites for me. But I weep for at your loss of one of your glorious willow trees. So beautiful! The only time I’ve ever lost it and gone crazy non-stop bidding for anything at an auction was for a pair of delicate white satin mourning slippers for bound feet beautifully embroidered with tiny weeping willow trees. I sometimes hold them in palm of my hand and try to visualize the woman who created them and wonder for whom she wept…………

  10. I just love those bamboo glasses! So sorry about your tree. Thank you for organizing sunny weather for my stay in Santa Barbara. I just got home last night, and believe me, if you want to experience a delayed Spring, please come to the PNW.

    On another note, since tomorrow is April Fool’s Day, I had to release my annual post of practical pranks to keep you laughing all day long, stop by the market for some ideas.

  11. In keeping with your theme, Trader Joe’s is featuring Honey Wheat Pretzel Sticks, a low calorie nutritious snack! I ate them in my car after my 5 HOUR HOME INSPECTION, it didn’t go so well, now don’t know what to do, I really love the house. Anyway, I don’t work for Trader Joe’s either, but here’s the thing, if you don’t want them to discontinue one of your favorites, you’ve got to get people to buy it: so please try the sweet potato gnocchi – soooo yummy!

  12. all this makes me want to travel, head to Japan, check out those museums and houses and bridges. Or maybe I will just have to go to Turks and Caicos…

Would love to hear from you!