Saturday, 6 March 2010

Cherry Blossom Blanket, by Meg Nakagawa

My mother, who lives in Yokohama, Japan, hates the winter and the cold. She tolerates it, just, until the Christmas and New Year holiday, but after the grandchildren resume their normal lives, her days are spent, among other things, planning flower blossom trips around Tokyo and beyond. (Flower blossom viewing is a centuries-old national pastime there.) In January, there are the winter peonies at Kamakura Shrine; February/March, plums; March/April cherry blossoms; May, irises and wisterias; June, hydrangeas, and so on, and so on all year round.

Having booked my first planned trip in nine years, (three trips in between were emergencies,) I thought to weave her something reminding her of the coming spring during the worst of the of the winter, when I'd be home. Since I was born in early April, and because they are my favorite, I wanted to weave a blanket inspired by Japanese cherry blossoms.

Here, you see the tentative pink and the white petals, along with the gray, cold sky, and some darker petals - they are the multiple-petaled blossoms. Cherry flowers last anywhere between a few days to a week, their petals often blown away in the spring wind, (sometimes called "petal blizzard",) , or washed away in the cold rain. By the time the yellow-green baby leaves come out, the flowers are over for another year.

I got this blanket off the loom just in time to take home with me in January, and fringed and wet-finished it in my mother's bath tub.

(That's Dad wondering how many more pics I need before he could get the blanket back.)

by Meg Nakagawa


Dianne Dudfield said...

It looks lush and cuddly. Are you planning one for your Dad now?

Meg in Nelson said...

No, I didn't but I suppose I could. It would have to be mid to dark green - which he calls New Zealand Green!