Snowing for Pleasure.

Sorry, I meant Sewing for Pleasure. The fact that it’s snowing here, and in many parts of the country, thickly, and inappropriately, forced me into a little word play. The Sewing for Pleasure and Embroidery and Fashion show is on at the NEC here in Birmingham, and I visited yesterday with my friend Hilary. It was busy, which was good, as the weather forecast was poor, but I hope the numbers are good today too, as the weather is much worse. Sorry to anyone outside the UK, but our national obsession is the weather. It is said we have weather here but not a climate, but I wonder if we are developing a climate, which is mostly very cold and often snowy in winter, [ 8 months of the year ] and mostly not that hot but almost certainly frequent torrential rain in summer [ the remaining 4 months]. We’ll see.

The show was good, with lots to see, and it was excellent to catch up with friends; much talking was done.

I had some quilts on the Bernina stand, which was organised by my local Bernina supplier, Frank Nutt. I bought my machine from Frank and Claire Nutt last year, and was thrilled to be asked to supply some pieces for the stand. Here area few poor images, you know what show lighting is like; that’s my excuse at least.

IMG_0234 - Version 2The Secret Jungle, with some of Claire’s work. Claire is an established textile artist and teacher.

IMG_0235Pearlessence. This was named Pearlessence as it was in the Quilters’ Guild Challenge a couple of years ago. I must re name it, it’s not my sort of title at all.

IMG_0237Blue Monkey, with some of Angela Attwood’s  work. Angela is a designer and artist who is part of the team.

IMG_0236 - Version 2Sea Lily, the most awkward piece to photograph at the best of times.

The day before we went to the show Hilary and I had met at the Bramble Patch; we delivered our work there for the Six and Friends Orientation show which starts today and runs for two weeks. We then visited Charlcote Park and house, which I have visited a few times before but was new to Hils as she resides in the North.

It’s a huge and wonderful Elizabethan house with Victorian adjustments. I love the gardens but it was very cold, so we stayed indoors on the whole, which was a poor decision as that was possibly colder. I think the house had just opened for the season and not warmed up. Here are a few images.

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IMG_0214 - Version 2This, and below, is the upmarket version of a child’s playhouse. It’s not in it’s original state outside, where birds and animals were kept in cages, thankfully no longer, but it is exquisite inside. You have to peer through the windows though, they don’t let you in.

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IMG_0219 - Version 2And a few shots of things that inspire me. I love a pile of twigs and branches, and with the walls, pots, rake, slabs and down pipe there are some very good shapes indeed to work with.

IMG_0224 - Version 2A view into the roof space in the brewery. This property has a lot of interesting outbuildings and the River Avon flowing through the grounds.

IMG_0227 - Version 2Look at these tools, brilliant. The kitchen was wonderful too, with many inspirational objects to base work upon.

IMG_0232And an interestingly shaped gate on wheels. I would make a piece of work based on this entire image. I know it’s not beautiful, but I take many working images, this is one such picture; I would use the gates, pallets, tree, cobbles and gravel as well as the shapes they make, and the side of the building, in a composition.

Back soon with progress on the small Coast book and some new work.

4 thoughts on “Snowing for Pleasure.

  1. Steph – I braved the weather and made it to the Bramble Patch yesterday (my second ‘Orientation’, as it were since I came to Redditch as well) As before, I was blown away. Their space makes such a good gallery. I’ll blog about it later.

    Currently I am considering the chance of getting to Birmingham to go to this show on it’s final day. I want to go but will I get there? It’s supposed to be Spring. These sorts of decisions should be in the past. Your work looks lovely by the way.

    Hilary (the other one – just too many Hilarys in the textile world. Otherwise known as Living to Work etc.)

  2. Thanks for going to the Orientation show Hilary. Anne and her team worked really hard to put it up, I’m glad I didn’t have to do it!
    Sorry I picked this up too late to advise you re travel to Birmingham. We have a lot of snow, but the main routes are fine. Not that that is at all useful to you now…

  3. Steph, that’s the second time in recent days that I’ve read about or seen Charlcote Park mentioned but I can’t for the life remember where the other mention was. It does look well worth a visit, as does the NEC, yet I’m sorry to say I have never, ever been there either.. Good luck with the Orientation exhibition. I hope the weather improves and does not deter enough visitors to reward everyone’s hard work. Whilst it is bitter cold down here I have to tell you we are bathed in sunshine, quite different from the forecast. We have been horrified at the amount of snow some people have had to contend with. There are days when living on the edge of the world has its compensations, although if we were a bit further inland I could sample some of the places you treat us to!

  4. I saw your fantastic pictures Lesley, of your day on the coast; Pembrokeshire is gorgeous. I can’t quite believe we have snow again, and more than at any time during the winter; great long icicles too. I am usually sorting the garden and planting seeds at this time of year, not getting the snow boots out again!

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