Saturday, 29 March 2014

The Flowers that Bloom in the Spring and all that Jazz

Wow, but it is lovely weather. Haven't had the central heating on properly for ages - just a quick blast in the morning and the log fire at night. Good stuff.

Blogger is being very unhelpful and won't show me my comments from last time, so apologies for that.

I went with my stitchy mates on a retreat to the Kingcombe Centrea week or so ago and finished lots of stuff for the cutting book - including all the centres for the garlands.

Since I have been home I have wrapped miles and miles of thread for the poles. It doesn't show much but I know it is there.

I have some fine tuning to do as the flowery bits are pinned to the poles at present but most of it is there.

At the Kingcombe centre (which belongs to the Dorset Wildlife Trust) they have a cabinet containing a 19th century butterfly collection. I hate the idea of the poor things trapped in there (I know they're not really but you know what I mean) and think I might do a piece on 'Beauty Caged'. Quite excited and have borrowed a butterfly cutter from my granddaughter and made a start. Looked at the shapes of some of the exhibits..........

........ and got a bit creative. It turned into an article for the June issue of Workshop on the Web so I shan't show the result yet.

I have already confessed on Facebook that my time at Kingcombe had an ignominious end when, having been on a fairly strict diet and not had sugar for ages, I succumbed to the wonderful cream meringues at the final dinner and was ill all night. Entirely self inflicted! Clive had to come and rescue me. However my splitting headache turned out to be caffeine withdrawal and I was fine after a coffee. I don't drink a lot of coffee but do like it strong and black. Just shows what a powerful drug it is.


Monday, 10 March 2014

Home again - briefly

Just back from a great trip to Jersey, courtesy of the Harbour Gallery's Jersey Textile Showcase. I went over to judge some of the competitions and it was a very hard task as the standard was so high.  Here are some of the winners - not great photos because of the reflection but you will see how high the standard was..

Naomi Renouf has written for Workshop on the Web in the past and her work is as good as ever.  Endlessly fascinated by the landscape of her island, she still manages to produce something different every time.

Lisa Bloomer's work was a winner under the Mixed Media category. She screen prints most successfully on everything from silk paper to brown wrapping paper. I love this one which uses minimal stitch but makes that stitch such an important part.

Also - these lively dog studies - the one on silk paper was lovely, but I didn't get a close up - durrr.

This very interesting piece came from Victoria Goddard. When you look at the detail you will see why I chose her for the stitching award.

So many different techniques, skilfully applied so that each piece fitted and the overall effect was not 'bitty'.

After the Gala dinner - an excellent meal and luckily served in the hotel where I was staying as it was a very foggy night - a wonderful sunrise to greet. This was the view from my room.

Then it was off to judge the open competition in a local church. Some of the entries from schools were very good. This entry won the category for imaginative display. We  done L'abbe school.

This one really captured the essence of the theme - Festivals - as it looked at the Rio carnival. I didn't catch the name of the school but will try to come back and correct that.

It was such a lovely couple of days and even the flights were fun. Going over, I sat in the midst of a netball team and they were lovely girls. We had a real laugh. Coming back I bonded over a take-off fruit pastille (it was hard on the ears) with a very glam lady who worked for the teenage cancer trust. She was so committed and told me all the great initiatives they had in progress. Especially building units in hospitals for young cancer patients to avoid them going in the children's ward. If you are looking for a good cause, that is certainly a winner. Must think what we could do on WoW. We had a book challenge once for the tsunami victims - perhaps a sketchbook challenge could work for us.

I am now packing to go to Kingcombe with Textiles 21 for a relaxing few days of chatting, eating and stitching. Poor Clive will be abandoned again.