DIY & Crafts

Great read: The Paper Garden

Canadian Living
DIY & Crafts

Great read: The Paper Garden

Friends, I'm enjoying my new book so much that I had to share it with you here. The Paper Garden: Mrs. Delany Begins Her Life's Work at 72, by Molly Peacock, is delightful. Mrs. Delany was born in 1700 and lived through a tumultuous age of English history. Her life is fascinating (trained for a position in the royal court, she was instead married off at age 17 to a man more than three times her age; later in life her social circle included Jonathan Swift and Handel) and her art is astounding – each chapter is accompanied by a full-page, full-colour reproduction of one of her cut-paper flowers. They're simply beautiful – but closer inspection reveals that there's nothing simple about them. As an upper-class woman of the eighteenth century, Mary Delany's days would have been filled with the sort of "work" that we engage in as hobbies. Her needlework includes embroidery and designing clothes; she draws, paints and cuts paper; there are even shell crafts! I love reading about her life – so very, very different to mine – and knowing that if we sat down together over canvas and floss, we'd find common ground. I haven't finished it yet, but if you like history, drama, art, crafts, romance, intrigue, poetry, memoir...you should pick it up. It's rare that I read something a bit at a time these days – I'm a binge-reader, now – but this one I intend to enjoy for as long as possible. (If you want to know more, here's a book reviewer's book review.)  
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DIY & Crafts

Great read: The Paper Garden

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