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Horse chestnut: Elaine’s Botanicals

Another of the more subtle designs from Elaine’s Botanicals, but also one of the designs more suited to the more experienced embroidery stitcher.  Stem stitch, french knots, double running stitch and pistol stitch are all featured in the Horse chestnut design.  There is a layering to the application of the stitches that looks deceptively easy.

Up until the purchase of Victoria House Needlecraft, my most enduring memory of the Horse chestnut tree was a saucy reference to its aroma in a passage of text from that notorious literary bad boy, The Marquis de Sade.

There is also, as I look at the green spikey casings, a very vague (maybe I was about 6 years old) recollection of making a swan (I think it was a swan) from the casing.  The spikey bi-valve casing formed the wings of the swan.  Does anyone else remember anything like that?

The garden at Victoria House has a very old tree that fruits prolifically every year.  Luckily it is a beautiful looking tree with lovely flowers.  Last year after watching Jamie Oliver cook chestnuts in a billy can over an open fire, Craig and I tried out his recipe.  It had orange peel, a bay leaf and a few other herbs and spices.  They were horrible!  They were also horrible when we tried roasting them in the oven.  Not sure what we are doing wrong, got any suggestions?

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