Thursday Thoughts – The English Garden in Kivik

I learned there was an English Garden in Kivik, about 100 kilometers from here…and I just had to go.

Late in the season, but to savour the last beauties…
Dotted
Aren’t they just glorious?
Very tempted to sit down here, but we were eager to see the 3000m2 – a small but lovely garden.

One of my favourites, the Rudbeckia in all its autumn glory.

And more!

Who can resist this?

Not me.

Thursday Thoughts – The walk to Grenen, Skagen

A two hours’ walk to reach the top end of Denmark, where the two seas meet – The North Sea and The Baltic.

The Skagen lighthouse – looking back when we started walking. We hoped to reach Grenen before sundown.
We could see the land’s end from our starting point, but as usual, the eyes do not tell the truth about the distance…

Tough winds and soft sand made the walk feel even longer. But the play of light and shadow over land and sea had me intensely occupied.

Sand finds its way in if you don’t wear the right clothes.

Finally there – some people running to get to the last tiny spot of land… and some even braved the waves for a photo.

A tough walk for small children – happy to have a strong dad at hand! And, we all made it just before sunset.

Thursday Thoughts – The Iceberg

Aarhus again, and the Iceberg Building area. Fascinating architecture.

From the pictures I had seen before, it looked gorgeous, innovative and a must see.
As we passed the first building, we admired the apartements close to the water.
A modern Venice?

On reaching the Iceberg, we realised it clearly is best seen from the sea.

But, I just have to post on some of the area anyway.

No easy angles here… and I was a bit disappointed that they were building a high tower right next to this complex – see this in the first photo.

The area is well worth a visit – and I enjoyed walking there for an hour or two.

Thursday Thoughts – Papirsclip

We visited the Museum for Paper Art in Blokhus, Denmark. We hadn’t planned to, as we didn’t know it was there – but it opened in 2018 and is the only one of its kind in Scandinavia. Who can resist it? I have made so many paperclips over the years – as a child, and then with my own children too. I hope they will pass it on to new generations too.

The main exhibition was from the art of Bit Vejle – a famous psaligrapher with exhibitions all over the world. Right now she is in the US with a Chinese Dragon show.

She cuts everything by hand, with a pair of sharp scissors. The big oval with the tree measures 3×2 meters – the details are amazing. There was also a workshop for those who wanted to let their inner paper artist loose!

Bit Vejle is based in Norway, but was born in Denmark. She and her daughter were the founders of the museum.

In the header you see a paper theatre – a much loved art form in Denmark. Even the Danish Queen has made backdrops for some theatres, and she has played herself as well. She is a very talented woman, who, among other things, writes books and paints.

Thursday Thoughts

I am sending you a gallery of interesting artwork in wood, bronze, sand and more, from an outdoor exhibition in Denmark. You might recognize some fantasy figures, and Erik Röde, HC Andersen and The Pied Piper of Hamelin. The exhibition was really nice, and we were allowed to watch the skilled artists at work. Earplugs were handed out!

The beautiful painted wall was indoors, and decorated for a party. In the header, another hall decorated for a wedding.

Thursday Thoughts – Läckö Castle

We visited yet another castle on our tour to old friends some weeks ago. Läckö Castle, once voted the most beautiful Castle in Sweden.

I must confess I did not find it as interesting as Tjolöholm, but of course the looks of Läckö is maybe more of a castle with a princess waiting inside.

First we had a lecture in the King’s Hall, about the history of the castle, and then we were left to read ourselves and walk the tour on our own. There was not much of the original furniture left, but I did find a Narnia cupboard …

In the 17th century Sweden was a country of great power, so many of the paintings were from famous battles. Not my kind of art.

I found the floors to be an absolute dream though. They were laid like no other floors I have seen, and in fact this type of fitting the boards is called Läckö after the name of the castle.

There was a lovely walled garden too, and more of Miss Willmott’s Ghost (Thank you, Jude), a plant I have already ordered for my own garden next season. I just love this extravagant flower, and the story of the lady Willmott too – secretly dropping seeds of this flower in other people’s gardens…

The last picture shows a piece from the treasury at Läckö – the decorative vases used for single flowers in those days.

Thursday Thoughts – The Castle Garden, and…

Back at Tjolöholm this Thursday again – for some more treasures. Surely you would want to visit with me again?

Before a walk in the garden, a short overview of the unusual and impressive lamps in the castle. All ordered by the lady of the house, Blanche, and all from Osler in London. My favourite is the first one, looking like underwear laundry…

The garden had the same Swedish architect as the house – but I guess Blanche had her say about things as well –

The Tudor style and the plants worked so well in harmony with the stone colours – everything was a treat.

Plants in every corner, colours and textures – how I envied the people who got the opportunity to work here.

Of course there must always be roses, always…

…and little children rambling on their own.

And, finally – I give you: The vacuumcleaner!

Thursday Thoughts – A Swedish Tudor Castle

Tjolöholm Castle is in many respects a fairytale castle. The castle was built 1898-1904 by James Fredrik and Blanche Dickson. In fact it was Blanche who finished it, as her husband died shortly after the plans were ready.

The young architect, Lars Israel Wahlman, combined the Tudor style with modernities from the turn of the century such as showers with circularly flowing water, electricity, central heating, and a vaccuum cleaner (so big and heavy that it had to be drawn by horses). The intention was to create a home that was both comfortable and dignified.

Parts of the castle were being renovated when we visited, which of course made it more difficult to take decent photos.

Some of the most impressive ideas and rooms were the bathrooms with the special showers. All ordered from Liberty in London – the worksmen as well!

I also loved the fashion exhibition, grand royal 19th century, Queen Victoria and Prince Albert depicted from majestic festivities to the family’s private sphere. The Dickson family had moved from England and bought Tjolöholm to build a new home. The style is Arts and Crafts, and the whole interior is intact. A very unusual thing – rather fantastic. The furniture, tapestery and almost everything indoors was bought from Liberty in London – a company that still exists.

The lady’s riding costume certainly makes for the side saddle…

Rooms I really loved seeing were the children’s rooms and the flower arranging room.

Then…rooms with very special things in them or special thoughts guiding their interior decoration.

I especially want you to look at the green carpet room. The entrance to the room was meant to lead the eye along the (very) green broadloom (?) and through the window, out in the green of the garden. To create a feeling of wholeness – indoors and outdoors nature. The player piano or pianola in the last picture, is one of the last existing, working pianolas. The many boxes on top of it contains pieces of music for the instrument. The lady, one of the guides, offered to play the pianola for us. It worked perfectly well!

There is much more to be seen in this charming Tudor castle, so I suggest you visit yourself someday.

There will be one more post from me on the Castle – and the beautiful castle garden. Hope you enjoyed a piece of the cake – I enjoyed your coming along with me!

Thursday Thoughts – Sleep Tight in a B&B

We went for a three day trip to dear friends, and had to stay the first night at a B&B.

And I fell in love…

We stayed in a grand old house, where the upper apartment with four rooms had been converted into a B&B. Our lovely hostess told us she had finally left her career in Stockholm and started a B&B – an old dream of hers. Originally thought for Spain or Italy, but they had settled for the southern part of Sweden instead. (At least it was in the south…she laughed.)

The house was finally ready in 2019 – then came the pandemic. As so many other small businesses they have had a hard time now – so it felt good we had chosen their place. We will certainly recommend it to our friends.

From here, we visited two famous Swedish castles. Maybe I will post on them later.