Saturday, 29 October 2011

PAIR UP with our FESTIVE FAYRE



Our winter sale started yesterday and will run through to the 28th November. It may be a little early to be calling this a Christmas sale and with it not running into December, this sale is our way to celebrate the closing of 2011 and the beginning of our 2012 collection's production period.

We have selected various products and divided them into two groups. Whether you are looking to treat someone special or spoil yourself, all you need to do is PAIR UP any item from each group for the fixed price of £70.00. That is a great saving that could save you between £16 to £49 depending on your selection.

With our recent change to shipping rates, where all UK orders over £60 will be delivered free of charge, our FESTIVE FAYRE is covered and no shipping fee is needed. To view our FESTIVE FAYRE page, please follow this link:
(This sale has now ended. Many thanks!)

The following images will give you an idea of some of the selected products included in the sale.

HarVest

Picnic Bag

Natural Backpack

Natural Dye Raw Silk Shawl




Monday, 24 October 2011

5 New Pendants From Stone Dance

Today's new product upload is another fine selection of 5 stone pendants that have been carefully selected and ornately encased and corded by STONE DANCE.


Created in 1999, Oren & Mami produce beautiful gemstone jewellery under the name of STONE DANCE.

Oren (Israel) and Mami (Japan) carefully source all the gemstones themselves in India and personally create individual pendants using various macrame techniques. This ancient technique and the fact that these stones are a snapshot of living history offer a timeless feel to each piece.

Based in Gunma, Japan, they make the most of the Japanese festival's off season to travel India in search of precious and semi-precious stones. In 2004, Stone Dance started working with Nepalese gold and silversmiths to provide alternative creations with gemstones.


The husband and wife team feel that each stone holds its own natural beauty and power, dictating how each stone is to be presented. They believe there is a special stone for everyone, a stone that will shine, glow and grow with its owner. Through their indepth knowledge of stones and clear explanations to customers, they hope the fascination of stones, nature and earth will be kept alive through their craftwork to maintain a connection with the crafts of our ancients.
 To view these and other products from Stone Dance, just click on the following link.


INCA ROSE

RED JASPER

SERAPHINITE

TURQUOISE

AMETHYST




Tuesday, 18 October 2011

The Natural Beauty Of Iceland

After a busy festival season, we took a long weekend break to South West Iceland. Offering a vast amount of untouched natural beauty unlike any other country we have experienced, we were amazed by dramatic landscapes and the ways in which humans have adapted and colonized these barren lands.

Iceland has a total area of 103,000 square kilometres and a population of around 320,000. Like Australia, the majority of its inhabitants live in close proximity to the coast. The interior is mainly made up of uninhabitable plateaus, mountains and glaciers.

 This European island country has a vast amount of untouched natural beauty and is very active, both volcanically and geologically. There is a large reindeer population (of which 10% is culled each year) and a large population of domesticated Icelandic sheep and horses. It is of no surprise that there is a strong traditional history of spinning, weaving and knitting wool. Undyed wools range in colour from white through grey to black and also various browns. Today's farming of sheep is primarily for meat with the fleeces being a valuable bi-product. 

The large glaciers lying within Iceland's interior provide powerful rivers flowing to the ocean. Hydropower is a real option for sustainable energy as is the use of natural steam provided by the volcanic energy. You will find trees dotted around, but this is a far cry from the Iceland of the 12th century where it would have been covered with forests of Northern Birch, Aspen, Rowan and Common Juniper. Exploitation for firewood and building materials has led to loss of critical topsoil, now making the re-planting of trees difficult.

A delight to witness were the intermittent explosions of boiling water from Iceland's Strokkur geyser. This phenomenon exists in only a few places on Earth, usually located near active volcanic areas. The water is heated by hot rocks many hundreds of metres below ground where it expands until the pressure forces its way to the surface. We witnessed the geyser's eruptions with intervals of between 5 and 7 minutes and to heights in excess of 30m.

Lakes and glaciers cover almost 15% of the entire country and around 23% is vegetated. Large areas of lava rock is covered by a beautiful thick layer of moss. This moss appears to be the most abundant form of plant life surviving the elements on the rugged porous rock. In time the moss will develop into soil that will allow other species of flora a chance to take root.

The expansive old lava flows are very difficult to cross on foot as it is extremely rugged and made more dangerous by the layers of thick sponge-like moss covering gaps and loose footings. These areas are best, (if not only) enjoyed from the roads that carve through them. It was an educational trip that highlighted the delicate balance of nature and also the possibilities of sustainable energy production.

If you fancy a break with a difference, I would recommend Iceland. The terrain is as spectacular as it is different. You would be wise to pack very warm clothing, waterproofs and a camera. If you are lucky, you may also be treated to a dazzling display by the Aurora Borealis in the Northern sky.



Tuesday, 11 October 2011

5 New Pendants From Stone Dance

Today's new product upload is a set of 5 stone pendants that have been carefully selected and ornately encased and corded by STONE DANCE


Created in 1999, Oren & Mami produce beautiful gemstone jewellery under the name of STONE DANCE.

Oren (Israel) and Mami (Japan) carefully source all the gemstones themselves in India and personally create individual pendants using various macrame techniques. This ancient technique and the fact that these stones are a snapshot of living history offer a timeless feel to each piece.

Based in Gunma, Japan, they make the most of the Japanese festival's off season to travel India in search of precious and semi-precious stones. In 2004, Stone Dance started working with Nepalese gold and silversmiths to provide alternative creations with gemstones.


The husband and wife team feel that each stone holds its own natural beauty and power, dictating how each stone is to be presented. They believe there is a special stone for everyone, a stone that will shine, glow and grow with its owner. Through their indepth knowledge of stones and clear explanations to customers, they hope the fascination of stones, nature and earth will be kept alive through their craftwork to maintain a connection with the crafts of our ancients.
 To view the product page for these pendants, just click on the name of each design below the photos.


Rose Quartz


Rose Quartz


Charoite


Malachite


Ocean Jasper


To view more of Stone Dance's work, click the link!



Wednesday, 5 October 2011

The Eden Project

In August we at Sorazora managed to take a quick break between events in our busy festival season and headed on down to Cornwall for a flying visit. We only had a couple of days before driving back to Devon for our next event. With limited time and many things on our must-see list, we knew we could only scrape the surface of what's on offer in beautiful Cornwall.

The first port of call was the Eden Project near St. Austell. This was an attraction I had heard people talk about, but knew little about. At Sorazora we are passionate about all aspects of the environment and rely on plants for our natural fibre clothing and also for our natural dye techniques. This was the deciding factor that put the Eden Project at the top of our must-see list whilst in Cornwall.

These large connecting domes (called Biomes) were built in a 160 year old disused clay mine to mark the year 2000. The conservatories are not only the biggest, but also home to the worlds' largest captive rainforest. The Eden Project is a unique organisation as it is not just a tourist attraction, but also an educational charity and social enterprise.

There are many ongoing conservation research projects both local and global with key issues such as tackling waste, sustainable construction and ethical buying. The project plays a large role in  environmental education and has a lot to capture the attention and imagination of both school groups and general visitors.

I was amazed to see a tropical rainforest of such a size here in the UK and totally blown away by the engineering feat behind it all. How do you even begin to develop a conservatory that will house around a million plants from nearly 4000 species?

The plants and trees in the tropical Biome require not just humidity, heat and lots of water, but also a rich and organic soil that can hold all the water needed for such rapid growth. The Project did not want to deprive anyone of soil, so they made 83,000 tonnes by collecting minerals from local mine waste, sand and clay from clay works and combining it all with composted bark for the organic matter.

The humidity is quite something and I imagine many a native from these shores would not feel comfortable spending too long in the tropical biome. The humidity is all automated by misters that maintain 90% humidity at night and around 60% during the day. Rainwater draining into the disused quarry provides almost half of the project's water needs.

If you are ever in the area, I strongly recommend that you allow a few hours to check out this amazing place. For a whole wealth of information about The Eden Project, please click on the following link which will take you to the official website.



New Pendants From Green Glass Tokyo

Today's new product upload is a set of four new glass pendants that have been beautifully crafted by Masaya Kuribayashi of Green Glass Tokyo. Based in Shibuya, Masaya uses various different techniques to achieve different distinctive results from fine glass.

This is our third year at Sorazora to be introducing our customers in the UK to Green Glass Tokyo's intricate work. We have seen many talented glass workers based in the UK, but we have yet to find anything quite like this and we look forward to maintaining a steady flow of Masaya's work. To view the product page for these pendants, just click on the name of each design below the photos.

Wokan (kinoko technique)






To view more of Masaya Kuribayashi's work, click the link! http://sorazora.com/shop/TokyoCraft/TokyoCraftGreenGlass.html


Saturday, 1 October 2011

New Pendants From STONE DANCE

Today's new product upload is a set of 6 stone pendants that have been carefully selected and ornately encased and corded by STONE DANCE

Created in 1999, Oren & Mami produce beautiful gemstone jewellery under the name of STONE DANCE.

Oren (Israel) and Mami (Japan) carefully source all the gemstones themselves in India and personally create individual pendants using various macrame techniques. This ancient technique and the fact that these stones are a snapshot of living history offer a timeless feel to each piece.

Based in Gunma, Japan, they make the most of the Japanese festival's off season to travel India in search of precious and semi-precious stones. In 2004, Stone Dance started working with Nepalese gold and silversmiths to provide alternative creations with gemstones.

The husband and wife team feel that each stone holds its own natural beauty and power, dictating how each stone is to be presented. They believe there is a special stone for everyone, a stone that will shine, glow and grow with its owner. Through their indepth knowledge of stones and clear explanations to customers, they hope the fascination of stones, nature and earth will be kept alive through their craftwork to maintain a connection with the crafts of our ancients.

Three shades of Moonstone








Labradorite




To view the product pages for these pendants just click on the name under each photo.


OUT OF THE ORDINARY 2011

 The weather in Sussex through the weekend of 23rd to 25th of September was what all festival goers dream of. Clear skies allowing the sun to shine from sunrise to sunset were very well appreciated. Cold misty evenings and morning condensation were a small price to pay to be able to see people enjoy this festival.

This was our third year at this festival, one of just a few that has seen us return each year since moving to the UK. The festival now uses an adjacent field as I believe a go-kart track has now found its home on the previous site. This year the increase in size was noticeable and so too were the number of cafes and food stalls.

We had the great pleasure of being sited next to Nobu and his Japanese food stall "Muu". We became good friends with Nobu and his crew back in 2009 at this festival and it is always nice when we are at the same event. For more info about Muu and its menu, please check out the following link : muujapanesefood.co.uk

Improvements to festival security were quite obvious as too were the lack of compost toilets. Portable chemical toilets have now taken over, this seems a little strange for an event that claims to be environmentally founded. OOTO was a good chance to catch up with some old friends and to make new friends.

Like many other stallholders, OOTO is an end of season treat where we can relax. The focus is more on chilling out than it has been at any of the sixteen previous events of the festival season.

A nice end to the last day of the last festival of 2011 was the setting sun. It is usually hidden behind cloud cover throughout the season. OOTO has changed over the past three years and we always welcome changes, growth and improvement, lets hope the original spirit of this small festival remains a constant.






Royal Berkshire County Show 2011

September 17th and 18th were the dates for this year's Royal Berkshire County Show. It was our fourth County Show and our first at the Newbury Showground. A quick glance at the first photo will give you an idea of what the weather was up to. This was the 102nd show in Chieveley and saw a record number of livestock. The occasional downpour and economic climate would have made sure visitor numbers didn't reach any records.

Although this show was not as large as The South Of England Show, it felt larger and easier to walk around due to more pathways. It had all the usual stalls and exhibitions one would expect to see at this type of event and was fairly well attended considering the miserable weather.

Breaks in the grey cloud cover reminded us what a summer should feel like and as we were not particularly busy, we both had the chance to wander around and see what was happening in other corners of the showground. An amazing display of bonsai were on show in the Horticulture Marquee and the ladies promoting British wool were an absolute pleasure to meet.

Towering above the showground was a huge 40ft wicker man (woman?) designed and built by schoolchildren to help raise funds for cancer care centres. The rural crafts included bushcraft, thatching, pottery and basket making.

Hunters with their packs of bloodhounds even took to the stage. I had never really paid much attention to fox hunting as I am not from the ranks of the upper class nor do I condemn pest control. What interested me the most was the announcer who continued to praise these groups for adapting their "sport" so as to remain within the realms of legality. This got me wondering about what the laws actually are!

A separate blog with my findings can be found through the following link : Fox Hunting

Further details of this Show can be found through this link : Newbury Showground