Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Warm and Woolly

I love woollen blankets. I think it stems from my childhood when I would visit my Nan and we would get to stay up late watching ‘Magnum PI’ under her dark blue and forest green tartan woollen blanket eating fantails (a type of Australian sweet). She would store it in a camphor wood chest by her front door so it always smelt of camphor laurel. I wish I had asked if I could have had that blanket when she passed away, but I think I was too young to appreciate its value.

My other ‘warm’ memory of wool is when my Mum would come in and tuck me in at night in winter. We had bright orange, satin trimmed woollen blankets (well it was the 70s). Mum would tuck me in very tightly and you could snuggle down under the blanket and flannelette sheets, safe and warm. We lived in a 1930s wooden house in Queensland and they are built to keep you cool in summer not warm in winter. Although Queensland is in the sub-tropics it could still get below 0*C some nights.
At least I now live in a country that warrants such a collection. In Australia we were only able to use them for around three months of the year. I have now taken the blankets off all the beds; they have been freshly washed in wool mix and sun dried ready for storage until next autumn. I miss the lovely eucalyptus wool mix I used to use in Australia; it smells like home.

I bought some blankets in Australian car boot sales, some on Ebay, some in charity shops and one in the Blarney Woollen Mills in Ireland. I paid £19.95 for the blue and green Blarney tartan one some 13 years ago; that was a large amount of money in Australian dollars to a backpacker in those days. It was carted around Ireland, the Isle of Man, Scotland, England, France, Italy, Greece and Hong Kong before it reached its final destination back in Aus. I can not claim the carting credit however, as though I did carry it for some of the way, my boyfriend ended up carrying it once he met up with me. He can’t really complain as he reaps the benefits now, snuggling up under it with me in winter.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Gillian, lovely blog !! I found a fabulous idea in a quilt book recently and have a woollen blanket ready for the treatment. Let me know if you are interested in hearing about it. Autumn has hit Brisbane and we are enjoying cooler nights (last night I was cold!) and I can vouch for the -0 temps, last year had to take my son to work at 5am and there was ice on my car! I took photos as it doesn't happen too often. I hope you are all feeling better soon and the "bugs" leave you alone.

    See you again in Target ;)

    x L