Saturday, 26 November 2011

The weeks fly by

I cannot believe how quickly the last couple of weeks have flown by. I seem to have been very busy doing nothing, with a few productive days thrown in.  
Last week I visited Hertford where my friend Sally was having an exhibition at the YumYum cafe.  This was not only a good opportunity to support Sally, but to also have rather nostalgic moment or two.  I was a student in Hertford.  I went to the memorably named Balls Park Teacher Training College. Although I went to a college re-union a few years ago, I don't think I have visited the town since I left in 1971!  I didn't have long, but the town centre is compact so I soon found my way around. I had forgotten what an attractive place it was - or perhaps I didn't notice in my youth.  
The Yum Yum cafe is in this old building which I must have walked past many times when I lived in this rather elegant Georgian terrace in my second year - I think we lived in the far end - at the bottom of Port Hill on the road to Bengeo (what a great name).  

The River Lea runs through Hertford along with several other small rivers.

I must have also crossed this bridge many times.

The brewery looked rather resplendent in the late afternoon sun. I do remember the smell of hops, which I found rather unpleasant wafting over the town.

I seem to remember spending many evenings here in the White Hart - a half a lager and lime and one vodka and lime was the most I could afford at a time!

Graveson's brought back many memories - it was a favourite for buying fabric - I made a lot of my own clothes as a student.

Over-looking the car park was this wall with plaster decorations - pargetting - a local feature which I remember learning about when we had to do a local study. Can't remember much else!

...and at Courtyard Arts I found a textile exhibition including some pieces by Marian Murphy.  These small hands were captivating.  Marian ran the first machine embroidery workshop I went too, which leads me nicely onto Gina Ferrari's workshop last Wednesday at Art Van Go.
I had a great day learning some new stitches and ways with my sewing machine which I would never have dreamt of.
Some fellow embroiders awestruck at Gina's demo.

We learned how to do 'cable stitch' which involves hand winding bobbins and by-passing bobbin tension - very frightening!!! That's my multicoloured sample along with a rather rigid and damp sample of fringe sewn on water-soluble film - another first for me. It was a treat working with Gina, who was great fun and an excellent teacher, I'm sorry I missed her earlier sessions at AVG.  
I've got lots to do the week ahead including taking Marvin the cat to the vet for a tooth clean and possible extractions! But I hope to fit in a bit of creative work too.
Have a great week.


Joanna said...

What an interesting post, Jill.

Hope all goes well for Marvin (that's such a cool name!).


JoZart said...

Really interesting post which must be so nostalgic for you. lovely photos of the buildings too. Pleased you enjoyed a special time.

Menopausalmusing said...

A lovely, newsy, mixed bag of a post. "Pargetting" is a new word to me........ always a good thing! I shall, of course, be Googling it. Your workshop with Gina sounds like it was fun. Does Marvin know what's ahead of him?

Gina said...

That was a lovely tour of Hertford. I'm glad you enjoyed the workshop.

Printed Material said...

Jill, my teacher training was in Barry Island and I've never been tempted back! How lovely that some of the shops you remember are still there. Not a common thing these days. I'm waiting for Gina's dvd to teach me the mysteries of machine embroidery. I shall have to try and get up to speed via the pause and repeat function on my remote control! I envy you that class. You all look so intent on what Gina is doing. Great post. Good luck at the vets.

Eileen said...

Time does, indeed, slip by very quickly. Soudns like a very nostalgic trip - so glad all went well. Your new embroidery work looks interesting also - hope to see you develop it. Best of luck to you, Marvin and Mr. T.

thekathrynwheel said...

Great photos - those hands look fab! The new embroidery technique sounds very interesting. Bypassing the tension?! What?! Hope Marvin is OK at the vets :-)

Heloise said...

Lovely photographs. I once went to your old college for a job interview, just as I was leaving college. Got there after going via Derbyshire only to be told the interviews had been the week before! [they put wrong date on letter] I've not really thought about it since then but it came back into mind after reading your post.

Glad you like your Mac.

Jenny Woolf said...

I didn't know Hertford at all when I visited it recently, but I was surprised at how attractive it was. (I don't know why I didn't expect it to be, but I didn't. )