Wednesday, 26 April 2017

Calm During the Storm

This touring exhibition is now showing at Ashton-under-Lyne Central Gallery until 1 July 2017.  The theme of the exhibition is wartime and embroidery and it illustrates the role of needlework as a calming influence in troubled times.

The exhibition covers both World Wars with small embroideries from the Guild's collection such as postcards stitched with silk, and handkerchiefs as well as pincushions worked by disabled servicemen.  

The Gallery is open from 10am -12 noon and 1pm - 4pm on Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday, and 10am -1pm on Saturday.

Representatives of Glossop branch will be at the Gallery this Saturday, 29 April, running several stitching activities, and would love to see you there.

April meeting - Sreepur Village

Ruby Porter - a member of Merseyside EG branch - returned to Glossop to let us know about the progress being made at Sreepur village in Bangladesh.  Ruby's first visit to Sreepur was in 1990, she has since become a Trustee, and she has now made an astonishing 47 trips.

The village provides a safe haven for destitute women and their children, and Ruby's work focuses on a range of embroidery and textile projects.  She brought along some of the women's work for us to admire:-

Here are some close-up views of the beautiful stitching:-

Ruby also brought along an excellent selection of hand-worked cards, ecologically dyed and hand woven scarves and other hand-made items.  We feel very privileged to have learned about the work undertaken at Sreepur and thank Ruby very much for her visit today.

Tuesday, 25 April 2017

North West Regional Day

The annual North West Regional Day took place last Saturday, 22 April, at the University of Cumbria and was hosted by Lancaster Branch.  On a beautifully sunny morning a group of Glossop members set out to enjoy themselves:

Lancaster and North Lonsdale branches mounted admirable displays of their work from workshops, technique sessions and various challenges.

We admired some beautiful stitching based on illuminated letters,

and there was an impressive display of hand-made books:

We took a break for lunch, and even had this fabulous view to enjoy:

The afternoon speaker was Nicola Jarvis, who is teaching at this year's summer school. Take a look at the work on her website:

We all had a very enjoyable and memorable day and are already looking forward to next year's Regional Day!

Saturday, 15 April 2017

2017 AGM

The Guild's Annual General Meeting (AGM) was held on 1 April at Surgeons' Hall, Edinburgh.  Glossop branch was well represented and all those who attended greatly enjoyed the meeting and events.  There were two speakers:-
(1)  Ylva Dhansjo, Head of Collections Conservation Services, National Trust for Scotland, and
(2)  Jean Draper, a well known textile artist and member of both The 62 Group and the Textile Study Group

If you scroll down on your computer screen and look in the right-hand column, there is a list of groups and textile artists listed under the heading 'Textile Arts'.  Just clicking on any of these names will take you straight to their web page.  If you would like any other textile artist or group to be added, just speak with Judi Brown.

Here are some of the textile works which were on display at the meeting:



This last piece was designed and stitched by Glossop's Secretary - Liz Smith.

Friday, 31 March 2017

'House Style' - Exhibition at Chatsworth House

This exhibition has only just opened, exploring five centuries of fashion at Chatsworth House.  Not all of you will be interested in wearable fashion but the exhibition does include some fabulous textiles and embroidery.

There is a display of exquisite wedding dresses worn by ladies of the Cavendish family, and all the dresses were created by well known designers.

The items on display range from clothing worn by Bess of Hardwick to items worn by two of the Mitford sisters: Deborah Devonshire and her sister Nancy.  The late Duke's embroidered jumpers are also on display, including one embroidered with the motto: 'Never marry a Mitford'.

Here is a dress worn by a lady when attending a costumed ball at Chatsworth in the 19th century - look at the size of her waist!!!  And here are a couple of close-ups of some of the embroidery:

With such heavy embroidery, including pearls, sequins and glass, the dresses must have been very heavy to wear.

This is a beautifully embroidered lady's dress, adorned with slips worked in satin stitch. 

Slips have existed for centuries - the design generally represents a plant, usually flowers or fruit on a stem.  The design would be sewn onto a fabric, then cut out and applied to a garment.

When the garment is no longer worn the slips are removed and appliqued to a different garment.  Recycling!

You will notice the butterflies at each cuff - inspiration for a piece of work for our National Day of Stitch in August?

Combining this exhibition with a visit to Chatsworth's Carriage House restaurant, where Glossop's Capability Brown exhibition is on display, would make an excellent day out.

Thursday, 30 March 2017

March meeting: Consequences

A busy, friendly meeting with a range of activities and interests to choose from.

'Consequences' describes a way of starting to stitch on blank fabric.  We were all given a piece of hand-dyed fabric with six squares drawn on to it.  We had 15 mins (yes, fifteen minutes!) to work chain stitch into the first square.  Fifteen minutes isn't very long when you are having trouble in threading your needle .....

Then the alarm rang and we were instructed to work blanket stitch or buttonhole stitch into the second square - the member in the photo above has used this stitch as an opportunity to add a shisha mirror.  After fifteen minutes the alarm rang again.

We were then given fifteen minutes to work fly stitch into the next square, changing to herringbone stitch for the fourth square, leaving the remaining two squares to be worked at home.

In the work in the right-hand photograph, chain stitch has been worked in the shape of a flower.

Members also brought in their embroideries for the Harry Ousey collective work - they all looked very impressive, even before they are stitched together as in the original painting.

Those members who attended the recent Felting workshop also brought in their completed felts, and there was a good selection of Travelling Books to choose from - for those who wished to contribute there was a good range of subjects.

Tuesday, 14 March 2017

Felting Workshop at The Sewing Box

Last week Liz Smith held an amazing wet felting workshop in the workroom at The Sewing Box in Glossop.  She explained how the felting process works and then helped everyone to lay the felt tops and work them into a felted piece.

Here is some of the work:-


After the lunch break, whilst the felts were drying, Liz demonstrated how to make felted beads from wool tops, so look out for members wearing felted bead jewellery at the next meeting!