I cannot believe it has been two weeks since my last post but there it is - I am another two weeks older. I had a really great time at the Contemporary Textile Fair at Teddington - it was great to see such a variety of work of astounding quality - I did not buy much, a couple of multi-ribbon necklaces which will be great with scoop necked jumpers as I feel the cold round my neck, and a fat quarter of hand dyed and discharged cotton.
However on Thursday I went to the NEC to the Sewing for Pleasure/Fashion, Embroidery & Stitch/Hobby Crafts show. Joanne, Jan and I decided we would go by train from Milton Keynes, and by buying bargain train tickets on-line it only cost us £10 return straight to Birmingham International Train Station. It was quite an adventure for us, as none of us had been there by train before. I did have to get up at 6.30 which is unheard of for me. I had to practice going to bed early for a few days as we are usually night owls here. But it did mean I was ready for the clocks going back last night. The show was terrific with lots of familiar names about. I did take my little point and shoot camera, but I completely forgot about it until I was too tired to walk round again. However this Victorian quilt was on display near the restaurant where we were about to have our umpteenth cuppa. It reminded me of one that had been on Antiques Road Show very recently (it wasn't the same one). I just love the details.
It was interesting to compare it with this piece of contemporary work by Susan Chapman. All of this endeared me further to working with textiles myself.
I also took the opportunity to spend a bit on supplies. So I bought some silk thread from Oliver Twists for dyeing and a few reels of coloured thread from their bargain basket. I also got some bundles of sari ribbon and thread plus a lovely mixture of fancy threads from Stef Francis. I also got a bundle of pieces of Egyptian cotton, which I washed ready for dyeing - it is hanging on the line behind the threads. (Which are just there for show)
I also bought some 'Hot Spots' and foil from Kim Thittichai and loved Jenny Langley's work - thank goodness for the internet and the show guide to help remind me what I saw.
My feet held out well, but this weekend my back is giving me a great deal of trouble, so this is being written in short bursts, interrupted with walks round the garden and 10 minutes or so of ironing, which is fine
The garden is crying out for some maintenance and the lawn needs cutting, but it will just have to wait. However the containers of bulbs I planted up in the autumn were well worth it. These little botanic tulips are a beautiful intense pink.
Lastly, at the show they had a display of costumes from Downton Abbey.
These looked as wonderful in real life as they do on the screen and in no way looked like 'props', but authentic period outfits. The costume designers used altered antique garments and vintage textiles and trimmings where possible.
My favourite had to be Lady Sybil's harem pants in beautiful shades of georgette over turquoise silk.
Hopefully I will get around to posting some more of my work before too long.
Do have a good week and I shall aim to visit your blog too.