Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Inspired by Reading: February 2017

This month's book was a collection of short stories by Susanna Clarke titled "The Ladies of Grace Adieu and other short stories". I read the story about Mary Queen of Scots and Queen Elizabeth called 'Antickes and Frets'. Along the way I stumbled upon a review written by another of our book club authors, Ursula K. Le Guin, and quoted it here...
"Not all the tales are so self-destructive. “Antickes and Frets,” for example, is a neat bit of fancy-work on the grim web fate wove for Mary Queen of Scots. Told of magic worked by embroidery, Mary in her captivity undertakes to assassinate Queen Elizabeth by sending her a skirt embroidered with little pink flowers, and sure enough the pink pustules of the pox break out on Elizabeth’s skin. Then the magic is turned upon Mary herself, and the tale takes another turn. The metaphor of stitching the future into place is a striking one, well used."
A VERY abbreviated summary of the family feud between Elizabeth and her cousin Mary by Katy Steinmetz:
"Scotland and England have been frenemies for centuries as Mary Queen of Scots knew well. Mary became Queen of Scotland as a babe and was next in line for the English throne after her older cousin Elizabeth I. Elizabeth, however, refused to acknowledge Mary as her heiress and was threatened by the Roman Catholics who saw Mary as the true queen. So when Mary foolishly ran to Elizabeth for help, following some poor political and personal decisions, the ever cunning Elizabeth did not come to her aid. Instead she had her cousin locked away for the next 18 years of her life and, after an assassination plot was revealed, ordered Mary's execution at the age of 44. Thankfully, beheadings don't factor into most family rivalries these days."

I chose to highlight this tumultuous royal relationship with a heart pendant that has nails embedded in it. The pendant is by Maku Raku and you can find others at Allegory Gallery. I decided to make a two strand necklace to show the two family lines of the Tudors and the Stuart's and used purple to showcase the royalty.

I had a blast at bookclub meet up and can't wait for the next book! Thanks to Andrew and William for hosting us every month! Check out our Facebook page for Inspired by Reading and Allegory Gallery's website.



  1. Gorgeous Alison! Love the colours!

  2. Wow! Great combination of shapes and colors, and that pendant just perfectly captures the spirit of the story!