Tuesday, 17 April 2018

Springy yellow benches for spring

Suddenly it's spring and the yellow benches are so sunny that you feel you can really push the boat out.

my photo, Dartmouth, Devon

After a long, cold winter, spring is very welcome here in Fribble-under-Par.


Everything is springing to life. That includes trees, of course . . . 


. . . and tulips . . . 


. . . and benches.


People are out enjoying the sunshine in their spring finery.


Here's Unwin, Lord Brassica's butler. He has just ironed the newspaper and is having a quiet read on a bench in the village. 

Next thing you know, Miggy's mum is there too.

Lady Jessica Brassica, who is helping me with this post: I thought this was about yellow benches. So far we haven't seen any yellow benches.

What's that, Lady B? I can't read what you're saying. The yellow type is very difficult to read.

Lady Brassica: I said  I thought this was about yellow benches. So far we haven't seen any yellow benches.

I think you're saying you like yellow benches and this is you in a 1950s bathing suit? 


Lady Brassica: No, I said  I thought this was about yellow benches. So far we haven't seen any yellow benches.

OK, never mind. We'll move on with the yellow benches.

By afternoon the benches are chock-a-block with people enjoying the sun.


There's blossom everywhere.


And yellow benches.


Next thing you know, the dandelions will appear.


With the early morning light, energy starts to return.

Lord Brassica is up with the chickens.

He's planning how many gardeners he will need for Drizzly Manor's gardens this year. 

The potting gardener has already made a good start.


Lord Brassica knows he's going to have to spring into action to get those seed potatoes in by Good Friday.


Ah. Too late this year, Lord B. 

Here's Hood-D getting into shape for the Fribble Marathon.

He runs along the seafront where there are some very cheerful yellow benches.

This morning a spring tide washed all the stones up from the beach. 

photo by Jenny Warner

And speaking of wash, spring cleaning is going on too.

John V Keogh @ www.jv21.com

Miggy got the vacuum cleaner out to clean up the yellow sofa.


Down the back she found another yellow sofa.

And down the sides she found some yellow benches which had apparently been there for a long time.

Of course spring is a time for fresh starts.

Drida, our local Mexican artist, is unveiling her new still-life this week. And some residents of Fribble and Drizzly are trying to get fit by bench pressing in the park with Rawl, who is a personal trainer. 

I don't think Lady Brassica will mind me saying that she put on a bit of weight over the winter. One morning in March she looked in the mirror and decided to make some changes for spring.

There's something fishy going on here though.


Lady Brassica has hired Rawl to do some bench pressing for her so that she can lose weight.

After his bench pressing, Rawl runs through the park, burning off calories for Lady B.

Now everything is starting to look sunny again.


Lady Brassica of Drizzly: I thought this was going to be about yellow. I have a passion this for yellow this time of year.

Could you say that again, Lady B? It's written in yellow and it's really hard to read.

Lady Brassica of Drizzly: I said I have a passion for yellow this time of year.

I've had to put the type in pink though, I hope you don't mind.

Lady Brassica: My understanding was that this was going to be about yellow.

Well it is, yes, but yellow type just doesn't work. Pink will have to do.

Lady Brassica: I don't care for pink. It's the kind of colour my daughter-in-law favours. It reminds me of babies and immaturity.

Tamsin: Ohhhh, I love babies! Here's my son Isambard wearing a yellow nappy. 

Lady Brassica: Forgive me if I don't ooooo and ahhh. I hate babies. The little yellow chap is jolly though. 

It's great to see everyone out of their heavy winter coats and into their spring finery. 

Here is Tamsin's yellow bench on the porch of her yellow-roofed house.

Tamsin: I know you told me to wear yellow but I thought blue would do. It's kind of like yellow.

OK, Tamsin, whatever.

April is age six. She and her parallel selves, May and June, are out on their yellow benches enjoying the garden.

Here they are with Isambard and Squeezy, their pet lemon.

Lady B: There is something odd about Squeezy.

I agree with you, Lady B. As pet lemons go, Squeezy looks a bit sinister.

Lady B: I think perhaps it's the hat: wrong colour for a lemon complexion.

Innocent is Lady Brassica's daughter-in-law. She looks innocent as an Easter bunny in her yellow dress.

Lady Brassica: You see what I mean by immaturity? That fluff of pink at the neckline makes her look like an Easter bunny. Not in a good way.

Lady Brassica, on the other hand, got ready for Easter by dressing like a spring chicken.

Lady B: I bought this outfit for arranging flowers at St. Asphyxia's. I don't actually arrange the flowers, you understand, but I like to lend moral support to the villagers by being smartly dressed.  

Lady B. explains that she bought this outfit on a trip to Russia where, coincidentally, she saw a lovely yellow bench.


Lady B: I'm partial to yellow benches and a very sweet man I met in Vladikavkaz left a flower outside my door every morning.

Tamsin: I wonder if he was on his way out when he left the flower?

Not our business, Tamsin. Let's move on.

We can't talk about spring without mentioning flowers, can we?

Lady Brassica: A friend of mine brought me a bouquet like this last April.

Tamsin: Was that one of your young male friends, Lady B?

Lady B: It was. A Young Male Reader in fact. He used to read to me on the bench in the orchard.


Lady B: I got frightfully fed up with all that pink stuff clinging to my cashmere so I asked my husband to get rid of the trees. 

That seems a shame, Lady B. The trees are beautiful.

Lady B: He replaced them with a Japanese garden which I'm rather fond of.


Tamsin: I remember those Japanese girls we had here last spring. 

They brought all kinds of benches over from . . . where was it?


The winds of change have blown in now though.This year our newest residents are Drida and Friego from Mexico City. 

Their constant fiestas down at La Casa Amarilla are causing quite a stir. 

By the way, Lady B. Did you know that amarillo means yellow? Here's a great yellow bench.


Lady B: Very amusing, though it's rather modern for my taste. 

What about this one then?


Lady B: I could see this working with a certain decor. Not necessarily mine. I tend towards the Louis Quinze.


If that's Louis Quinze I'll eat my Easter bonnet. 

So far Drida and Friego have celebrated Cinco de Mayo all through March, and April. No doubt they'll still be celebrating when it finally gets to May. 

Tamsin: The parties are brilliant! Garcon and I are down there almost every night with Isambard.  

In fact most of Fribble is down there every night. Even Miggy and Mungo.

Even old Noah.

I'm getting really sick of Miggy going on and on about the great fiestas down at La Casa. She's my best imaginary friend, Miggy, but she looks ridiculous in that Tehuana dress.

Lady B: And as for Mungo, you really must get his tailor to talk to him about that jacket. It's not a good look.

Tamsin: But we're all having a great time! We eat frijoles and drink tequila and then Innocent and Friego do a mean tango . . .

Lady B: The noise is quite irritating. I can hear it in my sauna at Drizzly Manor. 

A couple of weeks ago Lord Brassica took legal action to stop the parties but, after a lot of twists and turns, the court case against Drida and Friego reached a dead end.


Tonight Lord Brassica is trying a different tactic: he's going to La Casa Amarilla and try to convert Drida and Friego away from their tequila to the delights of English tea.

Lady B: Oh, it's the Tetley Tea wagon charm offensive is it? 

Tamsin: Looks like Lord Brassica has got there too late to save Root. He's already passed out under a sombrero. 

And now it's starting to rain.

Lady B: I have a Young Male Runner coming to do a marathon for me so I must be going now. I'm hoping to lose another kilo.  

Many thanks for helping out, Lady B. Here are some daffodils for you.

Lady B: It's a sweet thought but I have sixteen acres of wild woodland daffodils and twenty-one acres of tulips. I have no use for your little supermarket bouquet. Goodbye.

Tamsin: I am sooooo glad she didn't end up as my mother-in-law. 

Yes, and I think it's just as well I didn't show her my favourite yellow bench.


It's what Miggy would call rustico. Or possibly rustica.

Down at La Casa Amarilla everyone is celebrating.

Innocent got the party started by bringing along a couple of friends from Easter Island.

La Semana Santa! Friego cried with delight, though whether it was the holidays or the dress which delighted him we'll never know.

Meanwhile, Drida unveiled her new still-life. It's called Watermelon Plate with Lime, Avocado and Tabasco Bottle or, alternatively Viva Mexico con Banco.

Root woke up just long enough to down the bottle of Tabasco and stagger to a bench on the river where he'll spend the rest of the noche.

By four a.m. no one has drunk the tea but Lord Brassica is still there.

He has his arms around Friego and is swigging tequila and singing Godsh Shave the Queen to the Mexican flag. 


I photographed the sunny yellow bench and the boat full of tulips on a street in Dartmouth, Devon in May 2016. Oh, it was gloriously sunny that day!

Welcome Spring is a welcoming bench pillow cover from Chelsea and Charlie at Pink Door Fabrics in Colorado. They sell scrumptious modern quilting and craft fabrics, including new arrivals like Fox Field by Tula Pink, Maisie and Clementine by Blend Fabrics, Wee Wander by Sarah Jane, Littlest by Art Gallery, Sweet as Honey, April Showers Precuts, Mirabelle precuts, Helen's Garden by Tamara Kate. I could go on and on but I won't. You can see their shop at  https://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/PinkDoorFabrics

Photommo describes himself as a number checker in Philadelphia. He took the spring blossom at Tyler Arboretum in Media, Pennsylvania in 2011. His photostream is packed with very high quality photos of natural things - landscapes, animals, plants, national parks - at  https://www.flickr.com/photos/photommo/

Jennifer de Graaf is monkeybutt1969,  a landscape architect, knitter, quilter, gardening enthusiast, and watercolor (and urban planning) student. She took the lovely photo of the yellow tulips beside a bench  https://www.flickr.com/photos/21160250@N04/ 

I saw quite a few springy benches. The red one is in Neustadt an der Weinstrasse and comes from an ex-pat American who has travelled from the Midwest to Southwest Germany, and everywhere inbetween.  She recounts her adventures, observations, and tips for living, visiting, and enjoying Kaiserslautern, Germany.  http://aroundthewherever.blogspot.co.uk/2013/11/a-bit-of-neustadt-der-weinstrasses.html

At Easter 2015 we were eggstatic when we celebrated with some sprightly Spring Chicken benches  http://benchsite.blogspot.co.uk/2015/04/no-spring-chicken-benches.html

Lord Brassica is the Fifth Earl of Drizzly and Unwin is Lord Brassica's long-suffering butler. Amongst Unwin's most unsavoury tasks is standing away from Lord Brassica's picnic with raspberry jam on his head. Why does he do this? Read all about it on Lord Brassica's guide to picnic benches. For more about who's who and what's what on Paradise Island see http://benchsite.blogspot.co.uk/2013/03/whos-who-in-fribble-under-par.html

Lady Jessica Brassica is well known for her glamorous style, her sauna, her throne, her skimpy outfits, and her replica mall in the basement of Drizzly Manor. Most of all, she's known for her shopping expeditions and for her Young Male Readers/Runners/Dancers/etc. As long as they're young and they're male, she can find a use for them. I tried to use her on the Orange Bench post but she let me down when she got distracted by a Young Male in Southern California. And by the way, here are 50 shades of pink (and grey) benches.

The woman in a 1950s bathing suit is not Lady Brassica. It's from the photostream of genibee, who has an eye for vintage fashion, though she claims that she's just on Flickr for the cheap thrills. She has downloaded old Sears and Spiegel catalogues and scanned a good selection of magazines going back to the 1920s. This makes for a fascinating photostream. https://www.flickr.com/photos/21233184@N02/

Jan Fidler from Prague loves making photos. His photostream includes some amazing portraits of people, including the elderly people crowded onto a bench in the sun.  https://www.flickr.com/photos/hypotekyfidler/

Samuel Yoo is originally from Brazil but now lives in Seoul. He took Spring's Invitation, the white bench amid lots of blossom,  at Extrema Minas Gerais in Brazil.  https://www.flickr.com/photos/samuelyoo/    He seems to speak English, Spanish and Portuguese, and is an eternal stranger in all these places  http://eternoestrangeiro.wordpress.com/

Michael Fraley from San Francisco photographed the yellow bench which looks a bit like leaves.  He has a truly eclectic photostream, including, among many other things, his vacations, visits to zoos, marine life, an Armenian festival, the Summer of Love, and a pet cemetery.  https://www.flickr.com/photos/mrfraley/

The beautiful Dandelion Bench is a metal work by Sally Bridge in Wakefield, Rhode Island. Previously a fashion designer, Sally makes amazing furniture from metal. Her Rustic Modern Living collection is inspired by her home in Umbria in Italy, where she lives and works part of the year. She uses reclaimed, recycled and new metal for her pieces and works with local craftsmen. Sally describes her style as a culmination of the following elements: edge (which is undefininable), a sculptural aspect, graphic detail and boldness, a little 50′s, and a well traveled mind.
Her website is at www.sallybridgemetal.com

The calm chickens under a bench are in Russia. The photograph is by Pite at
https://www.flickr.com/photos/pite/12613724153/  The only thing I know about Pite is that he has two nipples, and a photostream divided into sets called East, West, Balkans, Mediterranean, Scandinavia, Cuba and analog. That's probably all you want to know. 

Argus Minis is the world in one twelfth scale. It's created and run by Margaret from Wyong in Australia. https://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/ArgusMinis   Margaret loves making items which are individual, not mass-produced, and not available in shops, likes the repotting garden bench shown in the story. She adores French and Gustavian style furniture, as well as early Australian furniture which has been painted and repurposed. Cushions, paintings, artwork, furnishings - the exquisite detail of Argus Minis is amazing. 

Sarah Salway showed the springy bench on her lovely bench blog  A Quiet Sit Down. The bench is in West Dean.  http://aquietsitdown.blogspot.co.uk/  Sarah is an author, blogger, and journalist in the UK. She has several novels including a bench-centred one called Tell Me Everything  http://www.sarahsalway.net/

Hood-D is a more interesting character than he looks. For a start, although he's a member of the Fribble Agro gang and spends most of his time hanging out with losers like Root and Biff and Sk8T, Hood-D actually has an MA degree in Fine Arts. This is why he was able to offer sophisticated cultural criticism on my bus stop benches.   

Jenny Warner took the lovely photo of the yellow bench sea shelter in Southsea this spring. The stones washed up from the beach were common in the turbulent winter/spring we had in southern England this year.

The bright yellow washing machines and bench were photographed by John Keogh at Jalpa's Laundrette. 
https://www.flickr.com/photos/jvk/13093928475/   John is from London. He describes himself as a very silly person who likes books, Hawkwind, art, dark chocolate, sf, Marmite, beer, media, purple, music, photography, cinema, film, Apple Macs, coffee, culture, actresses, cheese and lists. 

The brilliant yellow sofa with two hearts is in the Netherlands. It's made by Guusje Beverdam, who specialises in ceramics which are durable, low maintenance, vandal-proof and frost resistant. I have admired her work ever since Mungo and I spent a summer holiday cycling in Overijssel and came across what I still call The Enschede Sofa. Guusje calls it a loveseat.  It's made of clay and fired at 1160 degrees and then glazed in her characteristic bright colours. What a treat to find street furniture like this!  She was Arts Woman of Overijssel in 2012 and no wonder. You can watch videos of her working on her website at www.guusjebeverdam.nl  For more brilliant Dutch design see

The yellow sofa found inside the other yellow sofa was photographed in Winslow, New Jersey by Kevin Vertucio. Kevin is from Yardley, Pennsylvania. He describes himself as equal parts dad, designer, developer, diver, photographer, casual gamer, tinkerer and fpv pilot. His photostream reflects all these interests  https://www.flickr.com/photos/kevinv033/

The three rusty benches found down the sides of Miggy's sofa were actually in Zwolle in the Netherlands in 2005. They were photographed by Rutger Smit, who is a web developer in Utrecht. His photostream is at https://www.flickr.com/photos/rutgersmit/with/5365013352/

Rawl is our recently arrived personal trainer and life coach. He was formerly a high-powered barrister in London. Does he miss the Inner Temple? And what does he think of the new bench law that came in on April 1, 2014? Rawl will be your guide to legal benches

The yellow Troon fish-shaped bench is by Duncan C, who is from London. He photographs life in London, including cemeteries, events, and lots and lots of street art. https://www.flickr.com/photos/duncan/

The yellow bench in Shivajo Park is in the city of  Visakhapatnam, also known as Vizag,  a port city in the southeast of India.   http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Bench_at_Shivaji_Park_in_Vizag.JPG? The photographer is N. Aditya Madhav, a freelance 3D compositor and VFX artist  from Hyderabad City, Andhra Pradesh, India. I am a Freelance 3D Compositor and VFX artist. 

Isambard Kevin Pink is the son of Tamsin, Queen of Cute. Oh, she's a lovely girl, Tamsin. She has helped me with several posts, including her unique take on large and small benches. Isambard's parentage is somewhat strange, having been delivered (probably) by a stork on Tamsin's wedding day last summer. He remained nameless until the Benchsite Bridge blog where Tamsin discovered the lovely name of Isambard, as in Kingdom, as in Brunel. 

Drida Kiviera and Friego Rahlo are artists who befriended me in Mexico City and showed me around all the amazing benches of Mexico. Then, for some reason, they moved themselves to La Casa Amarilla where they have never stopped celebrating Cinco de Mayo. Paradise Island residents love them, with the exception of Lord Brassica, who took them to court recently. But now maybe he's had enough tequila to appreciate their ways? 

Innocent is the daughter-in-law of Lord and Lady Brassica, married to their hapless son Root, who is known for getting drunk and sleeping on benches. Innocent has emerged from her convent nursing dress into something of a fashion icon, usurping her more famous mother-in-law and causing uproar on the fashion forums. But just how innocent is Innocent? Is turning up to a party in rabbit ears a bit of fun or a careful strategy to unnerve the Easter Bunny? And then why is Innocent dressed as a Mexican flag? Could it be that she has Acapulco or Cancun in her sights? 

The yellow bench against city buildings is in Sabyrdzinady Prospekt in Vladikavkaz in Russia. It was photographed by Amikeco, aka Slavic Ivanov in March, 2008.     http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Sabyrdzinady_prospekt_032008.jpg?uselang=en-gb

The yellow bench with a flower on it was in Klarenbeek, Middelburg, Zeeland in 2009. It was photographed by Andreas Fasbender, who is from Aachen in Germany. Andreas has a photostream which includes carnivals, landscapes, travel, and lots of pictures of people on benches.  https://www.flickr.com/photos/mrbeany/3823844048/

The beautiful tulips were photographed by William Murphy on April 12, 2009 at the Irish National Botanic Gardens near Dublin.  http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Easter_Sunday_2009_-_Botanic_Gardens.jpg?uselang=en-gb  His Flickr photostream has a whole set of gorgeous photos from the botanic gardens at  https://www.flickr.com/photos/80824546@N00

Cyndy Sims Parr is very widely travelled. Her photostream includes places like Panama, Egypt, Alabama, India, Australia, and the Isle of Wight. There are benches in soooo many of these places, just waiting to be photographed, like the bench in pink blossom at https://www.flickr.com/photos/cyanocorax/

Lady Brassica's Japanese garden amid the azaleas actually is in Japan. It was photographed by Mitsu from Tokyo, who has a photostream full of lovely photos of things you'd expect to see in Japan, like flowers, buildings, sky, trees, and benches.  https://www.flickr.com/photos/8mitsu/

The yellow Japanese subway benches in Yokohoma were designed by Sori Yanagi  in 1973 and photographed by Dddeco in 2007. 
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Sori_Yanagi_Bench.JPG?uselang=en-gb  And if you want to see some amazing Japanese benches, look at what the Japanese girls brought us last spring. 

Henrik is from Malmo, Sweden and his photostream includes lots of pictures of places and local events. He took the photo of the modern yellow bench, which is in a playground where Henrik sips coffee while his children play. He says the bench is comfortable. https://www.flickr.com/photos/28386073@N03/

The pretty yellow patchwork bench is by Doruk Kubilay in Istanbul. His shop, patchwork4home,  makes unique fabrics in brilliant colours and different forms, including lampshades, stools, cushions and yes, of course - benches.   https://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/patchwork4home

The bench referred to as Louis Quinze is of course not Louis Quinze at all. It was made in 1903 by Austrian graphic artist Koloman Moser (1868-1918). Postage stamps, landscapes, advertising posters, portraits - his work is instantly recognisable.  http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Koloman_Moser   Entwurfszeichnung für das Frühstückszimmer der Wohnung Eisler von Terramare: Proportionsstudie der Sitzbank  Bleistift, Deckfarben, Tusche auf kariertem Papier    http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Kolo_Moser_-_M%C3%B6bel-Entwurf3_-_1903.jpeg

Punktoad is a visual artist living in Oakland. http://punktoad.org/  The yellow bench twisting around and disappearing into the ground is at the Virginia B. Fairbanks Art & Nature Park, Indianapolis Art Museum in Indiana. I'm pretty sure it's one of the many benches from Danish designer Jeppe Hein, who appears in an earlier Benchsite post about social and anti-social benches. This bench is in Punktoad's photostream at    https://www.flickr.com/photos/punktoad/   

Vera Viola from Stillwater, Oklahoma sells my favourite handmade wooden yellow bench in her etsy shop at https://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/veraviola The shop sells oddities, vintage signs, architectural salvage, shop displays, flea market finds, movie props, estate fine jewelry, primitives, medical and apothecary collectibles, industrial antiques, vintage Halloween, vernacular photos, real photo postcards, antique ephemera, curiosities, vintage jewelry presentation boxes, Bakelite, cottage style, old buttons and sewing notions, vintage clothing, fashion accessories, illustrated sheet music, art deco, art nouveau, and more. How much more, I can't imagine. 

Karina from Pennsylvania has Bunches and Bits of stuff on her photostream, including a little girl with an umbrella jumping on a bench. I suspect that might be her daughter, with whom Karina shares a love of photography. They do lots of Bench Mondays and have been on Benchsite before with a lovely shopping bag bench.  https://www.flickr.com/photos/bunchesandbits/

Old Noah is very old indeed. Think animals. Think ark. See which animal benches he chose for the ark for World Animals Day back in October. And then get Noah's views on the Julian calendar for September. You won't believe what goes on in September. 

If yellow isn't your favourite colour of bench, we have other choices here on Benchsite. For example, romantic white benches. And red ones. And orange ones. And even some blue ones. And if yellow isn't sunny enough for you, we have sunny ones If you're in a holiday mood, how about  black benches for Black FridayPretty purple benches? No problem. There are  sparkly gold and silver benches for parties and 50 shades of grey and pink benches to coincide with the release of That film. For more uplifting, upcycled benches see the green ones at http://benchsite.blogspot.co.uk/2015/11/recycled-upcycled-repurposed-benches.html  Somewhere there must be a colour you like!

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