Thursday, January 10, 2013

An Ode to the Hot Air Balloon

I never realized how much I enjoyed hot air balloons until recently. I was sifting through some images and I stumbled upon some pictures I had taken at the Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta in 2011. Shortly after that, I found an image of a hot air balloon in my inspiration file. After that, it seemed that hot air balloons just kept popping up, so I decided to do a little research... and some stitching.

After reading up a bit on hot air balloons, I came to find that 2013 marks the 230th anniversary of the first flight of the hot air balloon created by the French brothers, Joseph and Jacques Montgolfier. Their initial test of a hot air balloon carrying a sheep, a duck, and a rooster floated and landed safely after a few minutes. 

A few months after their test run, the Montgolfier brothers had some human volunteers, Francois Laurent and Pilatre de Rozier, who boarded the hot air balloon and rode it for about half an hour. They rose more than 500 feet and floated over Paris, before landing in a field. The farmers had no idea what was headed toward their field, and approached the balloon with pitch forks. In order to make peace, Laurent and de Rozier offered them a bottle of champagne, which is where the tradition of having a glass of champagne after a balloon ride comes from. Incidentally, the term pilot, comes from Pilatre de Rozier's name. Which I found totally fascinating. 

After reading about hot air balloons, I decided to turn an image of a hot air balloon that I have into an embroidery pattern. Now, I don't know where this image came from, but if you do, please let me know so I can give credit to its creator. 

The funny thing about all of this, though, is that I have never taken a hot air balloon ride. I am a little too wary of taking my feet off the ground that way. 

Have you ever taken a hot air balloon ride?

Until next time.



Liz said...

Very nice! I love your embroidery of the hot air balloon and the colors you used for it! Liz

8)(8 said...

Love it!

My daughter likes them too. We have been to ABQ when the balloon festival is going on. Pretty amazing.

We use to see them all the time, but then we moved 40 miles.

Auntie Bliss said...

Look how easily you transfer an image and make your own stitchery...that is so cool!
I am smitten with them too...I'd love to take that ride over the Eiffel Tower in one.
I love the history you shared! I'm putting it on FB!

cb said...

What a great post and learned a bit too! 230th year anniversary, wow! Thats cool. Your embroidery is beautiful, i love it. Where im from on a nice morning there are tons of hot air ballons but i have never been in one either!xo

Kim said...

Wonderful post! Really interesting to know the history and I love the embroidery you did!!

Jennifer said...

Your embroidery is the prettiest hot air balloon I ever did see! I grew up with hot air balloons because my aunt married a man who operated them. So wonderful to see a plethora of them in the sky!

Gerushia's New World said...

Oh wow! What an amazing embroidery pattern! You are such a fabulous stitcher. I just adore looking at your work.

I love hot air balloons too. I was lucky to go up in one a few years back. It is an amazing ride. When the flame is on, it's super loud. But when the flame is off, it's absolutely silent up there. I have never experienced anything quite like it. ♥

Gerushia's New World