Recently I was fortunate to be able to go on a stitching fest. Imagine that! A whole weekend of stitching heaven! I went with the North Wales Embroiderers Guild to a beautiful Mansion called Plas Tan Y Bwlch. This C18 country mansion is now The Snowdonia National Park Centre and offers Accommodation and courses throughout the year. Each year The North Wales Embroiderers Guild hire the whole building, engage 3 specialist tutors and off we go!
I was so taken with the location that I took Hubs back for lunch in the tea room with the most spectacular views. Many other courses are on offer throughout the year including photography, walking in Snowdonia, art, Welsh history and much more.
I will tell you more about my slow stitching weekend ( and I am slow!)in the next blog. See you then!!
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!
In an attempt to trawl through old photographs to make a scrap book of ” items that I have made” I have come across a few gems. Most can be filed under Vintage and many can be filed under ” did I REALLY wear that?”and
There are a few gems and including this Clothkits jacket that I made for my daughter in about 1986. This was a quilted jacket with a zoo theme. There was even mini stuffed animals in the pockets. Clothkits still exists as a company but with a slightly different format. The garment was printed onto the fabric and it was a matter of just cutting it out and sewing. I loved this jacket and Darling Daughter still remembers it with fondness.
Whilst my trip to India was a wonderful adventure, I was extremely disappointed to find on arrival in Delhi that the block printing section had been removed from the itinerary ( as were most other people on the tour) The travel company “Colouriscious” had removed that leg of the holiday and no one realised until we arrived in Delhi. The remaining elements of the adventure however, were amazingly good.
We did see a small example of block printing when attending other workshops.
Used blocks covered in Indigo paint.
Cloth printed and partially embroidered. This fabric is destined to become a sari. When the embroidery is complete it will be washed in the river ( Which didn’t look too clean!) and dried in the sun. The washing removes the indigo print and leaves the white embroidery. It will become a beautiful, very white sari.
Bear with me! Only one more Textile Adventure blog to go!
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.
There was men weaving on “pit looms” the most exquisite silk saris. Their sons would often sit with them to learn the trade. The homes where this takes place, were frequently poorly lit. Interestingly they were also listening to cricket on the radio ( and India was winning!)This lady attempted to show us how to work Chiken stitch a traditional shadow stitch often worked on saris and pashminas. I tried hard but failed miserably!Market stalls were piled high with traditional textiles in eye popping colours.
Traditional crafts were apparent in the maintenance of buildings, contrasting with the poverty on the roadsides and city streets.
on my recent “Textile Treasure Hunt” to India I saw many people working long hours in often, difficult conditions. They were invariably pleasant, smiley and happy.
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?.
Making fishing nets , the whole family involved
Still working! This time assembling packets for sale Could be a knit and natter group
The Village water supply
This scarf is currently on my needles. It is the Hitchiker scarf by Martina Behm and this will be the third time that I’ve knit this asymmetrical scarf.
This is the current project-
The yarn is a 4ply which is hand dyed and hand spun by a friend from my Craft Group and is coming together very well.
Here is The original attempt-
I did knit another one for my daughter last Christmas but forgot to take a picture! For Darling Daughter I used a soft white yarn and sewed a pearl a each point. It worked out very well.
What are you Knitting?
We took the local bus from Mayrhofen toHintertux. Hintertux is a local ski mountain where you can ski 365 days of the year. We were not skiing but walking. The lift to the top is in three stages but we hoped off after the first stage and walked down into the town. Now I like walking down! We started off in full cloud but walked down into hot sunshine ☀️
The walks are extremely well signposted so route finding is easy. We crossed bridges, admired the spring flowers and dodged cows. The cows all wear typical cow bells which you can hear from way off ( the purpose of the bells I suppose)
Apparently the better the milker the cow is the bigger the bell. Now I think that this is extremely mean. Not only does the poor girl have to carry a great big udder but a great big bell as well!
Last weekend Hubs and I had a sneaky weekend away in the Lake District. As you know dear reader we love the Lake District, Cumbria. We snook away without Benji dog ( he had a holiday with Grand Children) and went without Damnvan1 who is awaiting a service and minor surgery.
We stayed in a pub which served great food and a fine pint of real ale!
The weather was unexpectedly kind to us especially on the Sunday morning which was cool, crisp, misty and perfect walking weather. We walked across the fields to Hawkeshead village and enjoyed the delights of a good coffee shop (and bakery, but don’t tell anyone about the pastries!)
On the way home we crossed Derwentwater on the very old chain car ferry. It’s a slow but efficient ferry that saves miles of road driving. It’s always exciting driving onto a ferry, requiring breath holding as I head down the “gang plank”
We waited for the ferry to return to us as it appeared from the other side of Derwentwater through the mist.
We returned home to warm up our lovely stone cottage. This property loves to be lived in! It gets really cold when empty but the stone retains heat when warmed up. Log burner lit, dog collected, wine poured, bliss!