Greenwood Crafts

Full title: Greenwood Crafts – A Comprehensive Guide

240 pages
24.6 x 18.9 cm

Britain has a long and rich tradition of woodcrafts and what, since about the 1970s, have been called the ‘greenwood crafts’. Greenwood crafts use wood that contains sap and is easy to work with simple hand tools to produce beautiful and useful products.

This book: discusses all you need to know to get started, including tools, workshops, sourcing wood, making some of your own devices and the characteristics of the various woods; covers a wide variety of turned and carved items for the house and garden; examines a wide range of greenwood chairs, describes how they are made and highlights the talent and creativity of a number of expert craftspeople in the field; examines a number of basket-making techniques involving a range of raw materials; considers a range of items for garden and agricultural use such as rustic furniture, wood store, shakes, shelters, fences and basic timber framing; explores the future of greenwood working, takes a look at some of the new ideas emerging from the sector and includes handy hints on running a greenwood business.

Brilliant English Gardens

The Great Dixter Journal 2024

The Great Dixter Journal 2024

Coppicing and Coppice Crafts

Full title: Coppicing & Coppice Crafts – A Comprehensive Guide

192 pages
24.6 x 18.9 cm

Coppicing is an ancient method of enhancing woodland biodiversity, and coppice woodlands are to be found all over Britain and parts of Europe. The key to successful coppicing is to nurture the new coppice shoots. In return, a coppice will provide an endless supply of wood for a wide range of articles and the authors present detailed instruction on how to produce many kinds of woodland products from besom brooms, firewood and charcoal to more challenging items such as hazel hurdles and coracles. This book is a comprehensive guide to the art of coppicing woodland.

Derek Jarman’s Garden

144 pages
Thames and Hudson

Derek Jarman created his own garden in the flat, bleak expanse of shingle that faces the nuclear power station in Dungeness, Kent. A passionate gardener from childhood, he combined his painter’s eye, his horticultural expertise and his ecological convictions to produce a landscape which mixed the flint, shells and driftwood of Dungeness; sculptures made from stones; the area’s indigenous plants; and shrubs and flowers introduced by Jarman himself. This book, the last he ever wrote, is his own record of how this garden evolved, from its beginnings in 1985 to the day of his death in 1994.

Furniture of Rupert Williamson

Full title: The Furniture of Rupert Williamson
Hardback; 184 pages
25 x 29 cm

Rupert Williamson is one of the foremost designer-craftsmen of furniture working today. In this extensively illustrated book, he surveys his work from 1962 up to date; his early education at High Wycombe College of Art and Technology and the Royal College of Art and the influences he absorbed, and dividing his work into the various themes or styles which have emerged, explains in detail how his work evolves – developing from sketches, model, CAD, or a combination of these; the choice of materials and the methods of construction.The fully illustrated catalogue of his entire work included here shows its extraordinary range. In all this gives a fascinating insight into the life and work of a furniture designer and maker of rare talent, supporting the view that his work bridges the division between crafts and art.

Christopher Lloyd commissioned a number of pieces of furniture by Rupert Williamson that can be seen at Great Dixter, some of which are discussed and pictured in this fascinating book.

Gardeners Choice

256 pages
Persephone Books
First published in 1937

Persephone Book no.114 is Gardeners’ Choice by Evelyn Dunbar and Charles Mahoney:

The authors of Gardeners’ Choice had first collaborated on a mural at a school in Brockley and in 1936 were asked to write ‘a really new book’ about gardening. Cyril (always called Charles) Mahoney had taught Evelyn Dunbar at the Royal College of Art and she was asked by him to work at Brockley. When they did the book together it did not occur to either of them to sign their drawings, with the result that we have no idea apart from intuitive appraisal who drew what. In the same way we do not know if the text is Charles’s or Evelyn’s.

The writing is quite serious and is for the truly dedicated gardener – there are detailed descriptions of the plants that the two devoted gardeners would ideally choose for a garden. But the main delight of the book is the drawings – black and white illustrations that have never been reproduced since their first publication in 1937. The reason for reissuing it now is that two years ago a cache of 500 of Evelyn Dunbar drawings and paintings were discovered in a house in Kent: someone had brought a Dunbar work to the Antiques Roadshow and seeing it had prompted the owner of the archive to get it down from the attic. An exhibition at the Pallant Gallery in Chichester is the result (it runs from October until February 14th 2016).

Grow Fruit and Veg in Pots

Full title: Grow Fruit & Vegetables in Pots: Planting Advice & Recipes from Great Dixter

240 pages
Phaidon Press

Grow Fruit & Vegetables in Pots provides clear, practical information on growing fruit and vegetables in containers, whether that be a window box or a terracotta pot on a balcony.

Great Dixter’s vegetable gardener, Aaron Bertelsen guides you through what to grow, which pots to use, gives personal tips on varieties to choose and advice on cultivation and care. Featuring more than 50 delicious recipes, Aaron shows that lack of space is no barrier to growing what you want to eat, and proves that harvesting and cooking food you have grown yourself is a total pleasure, with dishes that showcase a few perfectly chosen – and personally grown – ingredients.

Copies are signed by the author.

Hortus Spring 2006

The most beautifully put together horticultural periodical that money can buy. Keep it in an overcoat pocket and dip into it now and again or tear open the packaging and read it from beginning to end.

Back issue. Includes: Christopher Lloyd remembered by Beth Chatto, Tom Cooper, Graham Gough, Erica Hunningher, Andrew Lawson, Pip Morrison, Tim Richardson, Liz Robinson, Tony Schilling, and Wayne Winterrowd.

How To Run Your Home

Full Title: How To Run Your Home Without Help

224 pages
Persephone Books
First published in 1949

Persephone Book no.62 is How To Run Your Home Without Help by Kay Smallshaw:

‘Some of the smartest lessons in how we live now are to be found not in government speeches or fashionable film releases, but in the small grey covered books published by Persephone Books,’ wrote Andrew O’Hagan in the Daily Telegraph. ‘The volumes are usually lost classics of female writing; they promote the notion that understanding the past is a reasonable way to go about identifying the present and I have been looking at their newest release as a way of getting a handle on the idea of British domestic bliss.’

The book he was looking at was How To Run Your Home Without Help (1949) which, as its title implies, is a book about housework, republished because it is useful, it is a fascinating historical document, and, sixty years on, it is a funny and at times extraordinary bulletin from a vanished world. This book tells the newly servantless housewife what to do and is perfect for the newly-wed in need of some guidance or the son or daughter who has just left home.