Tag Archives: Friends

Desert, Dunes and Townships

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Today was a day of contrasts. We arrived in Namibia in Walvis Bay . This is situated between the Namib and Khalarari deserts. It appears to be a land of sand dunes, diamonds and Townships. Very much a contrast between the haves and the have nots ( as many countries) I took a tour and visited Dune 7 the largest sand dune in the World.

We moved on to look at a Township. I felt very sad and upset as they stopped the coach to look and I wasn’t sure if we were watching a zoo or those outside were watching us in a zoo!

We ended the tour at an up market beach resort ( what a contrast) I had a very belated breakfast here and finally rang hubs at home. Travel and absence certainly makes the heart grow fonder.

Crafting at Sea

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Many people ask me what I do. Well, apart from being very happily retired, I do crafts! Multiple crafts, some old, up-cyclingn, some new and some for fun. This love of crafts has led me to teach my art on board cruise ships! Simply put I am cruising the oceans sharing my love of crafts. I do not profess to being a qualified teacher but what I am good at is creating a group of people bonded by craft projects. I like to think that I inspire people to “have a go”

I cater for around 30 people per project and have to take all materials with me. There’s little opportunity to shop for glue or yarn off the coast of Africa! (Where I am at the moment) This is an onerous task and involves lots of “arguments ” with suit cases.

The really hard work is in the prep. Deciding what projects to offer and how much fabric will be need to be bought. The reward is seeing someone struggle with a project and being delighted with the result.

Crafting as we Cruise towards Namibia

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Another busy day crafting at sea as we head across the South Atlantic towards Namibia. Our craft group is packed with people of mixed abilities all working hard on individual projects. They’re also brilliant at helping each other. Interestingly we provide the initial ideas, lots of craft supplies and away we go.

Today “inspiration Textile packs”were the name of the game. As the name suggests we have put together these packs designed to inspire the imagination. I will show you some end results very soon.

Storm Hannah and Prosecco

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Storm Hannah hit the coast here in Cardigan bay rocking the caravan and sending us to sleep ( eventually). We enjoyed a lazy day with an amble along Llanbedrog beach, hunting sea glass, drift wood and the usual detritus following a storm. We settled in with a chick flick and Prosecco.

Tonight we are out to dinner in a lovely coastal restaurant. Nothing better than a girls weekend despite Storm Hannah and Prosecco!

Scrap Booking

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Scrap booking is not a craft that I normally indulge in, but my recent Indian adventure inspired me to make a record of it. I had printed off a selection of my many photographs, bought some glue and off I went. I had purchased a beautiful note book whilst in India which is what I have used.

I collected waste silk from the dying process, ephemera from the hotels and Textile workshops and of course, photographs. All these have been added to the scrap book. I’m not quite finished because there has been much more work than I anticipated. Hubs is keen to reclaim the dining room table so complete I will. May be I could do another one on crafts??

There is a dining room table under here somewhere!

Shopping in India

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Surajkund International Craft Fair reputed to be one of the largest in the World! It was huge! There was a great atmosphere with all ages visiting the annual fair. It felt completely safe with much friendly banter. We were the only white faces to be seen and obviously a spectacle of interest. We were constantly asked for permission for the locals to take selfies with us. I felt like a celebrity when even three policemen asked could they pose with me!

There was music everywhere, dance troupes at every corner and street food of every description.

I learned to barter which doesn’t sit easily with my shopping habit! I did, however buy pashminas, scarves and cushion covers!

It was the hottest day of the holiday but that added to the atmosphere of a never to be forgotten experience, in India.

The People of India

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I recently had a holiday to India when I visited Delhi, Varanasi, Lucknow and Agra. It was a fantastic trip aimed at learning about Indian textiles. The experience was wonderful, enhanced by the many people that I met en route. How do they do this?.

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IMG_2478Making fishing nets , the whole family involved

IMG_2498Still working! This time assembling packets for sale Could be a knit and natter group

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The Village water supply

Taj Mahal

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Memorable visit to Taj Mahal today in this wonderful, amazing land of contrasts.The poverty is difficult to swallow but the culture is immersive. I love love love the textiles and crafts. I am with a specialist textile company called Colouricious who have taken us to hidden gems. Whilst I am devastated that we have not had a block printing workshop ( my reason for coming) I am loving the other textiles. I am learning as much from my travel companions as we are all like minded.Marble inlaid with semi precious stones

Only a few more days to go before home.

No Room At The Inn?

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I recently visited Chester Cathedral with the intention of seeing a knitting exhibition. There was a display of knitted Bible stories, Hand crafted and lovely.

There was a “side” show of knitting hats and scarves for the homeless. Very admirable and kind idea.

The cathedral is a beautiful, large church, warm and cosy. What I couldn’t understand was why ?

Why Heat the lovely space to such an extent when all the visitors are warmly wrapped up in scarves and good coats?

Why have such a large attractive space open to the public when some of the public are homeless ( for whatever reason) and sleeping rough in doorways?

Why close the doors at night to keep the Church warm when some are shivering with no bed to sleep in?

I know that the homeless is a complex issue. Many people do help and do their best. Maybe I’m doing Churches in the UK a disservice . Maybe they do open their doors at night. Just maybe a little more could be done?

I must give full credit to the Chester shareshop and all their hard work for the homeless people of Chester and elsewhere. When I shop in Chester I always buy myself a coffee. It costs me only a little to buy another coffee for someone out there.