More Travels

When I decided to write a blog and tell the World exactly what I am up to all the time I realised that everyone knows when I am working hard and when I am on holiday etc.

I am so lucky to be able to travel extensively for my work, i go to some amazing places and meet some lovely people, but in between I have to be very organised and work really hard so that I can take the time off.

May has been so busy – I have boxes and boxes of teaching materials that have not been put away and my studio is in chaos.
I have masses of emails to answer whilst i am away, so maybe you would like to picture where I am writing this from.

It is dark and I can hear the crashing of the waves of the sea, in between the beat of some awful Asian music. There are insects crawling all over my screen. I am hot and sweaty even though it is 10pm.

I am in Sri Lanka, with my daughter and son. We are back packing for 10 days. My son is travelling the World and we have come to meet up with him, and have spent a week travelling across Sri Lanka – we are now on the East Coast and enjoying a few days of sun sea and sand.
We are staying in very basic accommodation and travelling by public transport etc.

It is rare for me to take a holiday and it not be for Textile research but I knew there would not be any spectacular textiles for me to see here, but hoped I would get some inspiration for making some new quilts.
I have lots of ideas and some fabulous photos.

My holiday is almost at an end.

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New work and a little holiday

This week as always I seem to have been very busy. I wanted to finish a couple of quilts before I had a little holiday, and have taught a few classes at the Quilt Cabin in Hebden Bridge.

I finished my May Journal Quilt – this one is inspired by Sonia Delaunay. I have been experimenting with felt inlay techniques and it is all hand stitched.

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I finished another of my counterchange flower quilts and have started on a large “pots” quilt inspired by the pots in the Utensil Museum in Ahmedabad in India.

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Making up new kits can take hours of time just checking the correct sizes of fabric etc. I dyed some of the fabric that arrived from India and started stitching it – just to check it all works. Lots more sampling needed.

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I’ve just returned from a few days cycling in Belgium with some friends. So in 3 days we cycled 300kms with one very very windy day and another day with fabulous sunshine.

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After a day of cycling so far into a head wind we stopped for bananas and cake.

Cycling along is just such a fabulous way to see a country and you can see some unusual sights off the usual tourist trails.

We cycled past a bird singing competition. The people in a long line and recording the bird song – the bird in the box that sings the most is the winner.

Most bizarre!

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Here are just a few pictures of Bruges, Ghent and Ypres

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Not much stitching!

Not much stitching happening at the moment. For all those that thought being a textile artist was all about stitching – it’s not.

The emails take up lots of time, but this week I have done quite a bit of teaching. I have spent time collecting all the images together for my new book, designed  a new kit, redrawn the patterns, assembled together some other kits and teaching samples, phoned loads of suppliers to get some prices for stencils for my jumper kits and a load of other jobs that don’t sound very worthwhile.

And I don’t think I have done any stitching or printing.

We have had some fun as the Tour de Yorkshire cycle race came past our house and we have had another party – not as big as last year but just some time with some lovely good friends and lots of good food and drink.

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All my non textile friends know what I do for a living, but I’m not sure that they really understand what that means, so today I gave them a tour of my studio that unfortunately looked a terrible mess.

I think ( I know) they were surprised at what is involved – not the quilts, but the kits, the patterns, the equipment etc.

Tired tonight….and I wonder if it is all worth it but tomorrow morning I am sure I will feel proud of all that happens in my studio.

Harrogate

I have been in Harrogate for the weekend teaching and speaking at the Quilters Guild Conference. I have never been to a Quilters Guild Conference and was very uncertain what to expect.

Harrogate looked lovely in the early morning sunshine and it has some lovely shops to waste an hour or so.

It was a good opportunity to catch up with various quilting friends meet up and have tea in a trendy cafe.

Giving a presentation to a few hundred people was scary, especially as there were 2 enormous screens for everyone to see my photos. My many bunches of flowers were displayed on the stage, Susan Briscoe has put some pictures of her speaking on the stage on her blog and my Sunflowers really looked great. The first presentation was about my work and then the talk on Saturday was to talk about India and how I spent the bursary i was awarded.

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There were 6 separate screens at the second presentation – just as scary.

I didn’t go to the dinner on the Saturday but had a very pleasant evening with Angie Hughes. Time spent with other tutors can be so special and so good for us.

The worksop I ran on Sunday had to be well organised as we only had 3 hours to make an Indian Lady panel. They were a lovely group of students, they worked hard and here are their results.

The photos are awful, my new phone should arrive soon so I am hoping for some better photos in the future

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I attended the AGM, I thought I’ll just go to see what it was like, and happily stayed to listen to all that the Trustees had to say, and enjoyed the question forum.

The Quilt Museum will close – this we all knew. Everyone was so positive and I really feel that the Guild is being very well run by the Trustees and I am sure they will make the best decisions in the future. They have my full support in whatever decisions they make. It almost made me feel that I wanted to help, but I know I can’t take anything more on – maybe the Education Committee one day…

 

 

Today i have spent all day doing essential admin. I have sorted out a supplier for the stencils for my new kits, spent ages sorting some professional photos and had a really good meeting with the graphic designers. These photos/pages show only the first draft of my new book.

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They really are only first drafts

 

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So much work to do to get it ready for the Festival of Quilts, and to get the kits sorted

London

I’ve been an admirer of the work of Robert and Sonia Delaunay so I just had to go to the new exhibition of the work of Sonia Delaunay at the Tate Modern.

So with some cheap train tickets I went with a friend to see the exhibition and went to a couple of others as well. yesterday we walked 12.5miles and the day before 7miles (we only arrived at 2.30).

My first stop was to the Horniman museum to see the Romanian Exhibition.

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London looked fabulous in the sunshineIMG_2573

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The Sonia Delaunay exhibition is well worth a visit and it was great to see worked that I have only looked at in books. The first time i saw her work was in the late 70’s when i went to an exhibition at the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam.

I just had to buy a catalogue as soon as I came home (I just didn’t want to carry it around all day) so will have to be patient.

Here are a few images from my books that I already have.

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The British Museum had an exhibition showing Bark Cloth from the Pacific. these designs could so easily be translated into quilts

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We walked through Shoreditch to the Geffrey Museum.

I just love the graphics on the leaflets and spent some money buying more paint and paper from PaintWorks and Cowling and Willcox

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And just had to make a visit to a couple of favourite shops

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Here is the Covent garden Leaflet

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My two new books arrived.

New ideas for a new quilt!

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Holidays and a little teaching

I have been away for a few days so here are a few photos. Can you guess where I have been from the photos?

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Another clue?

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Here are a few more photos

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With such fabulous weather the Aran islands in County Clare Ireland looked amazing.

More photos from Bunratty, Doollin, Adare, Newbridge and Avoca Mills in Wicklow

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And finally the lovely ladies from Limerick and the flowers we made at the workshop on Saturday

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Hockney Exhibition

 

Today it felt like Spring has finally arrived and I have been out with my camera.

i woke up to sunshine so went out early up the hills.

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I love to see the mist in the valley below.

On Wednesday I took Chantal to see the Hockney exhibition at Salts Mill.

The building itself is fabulous (so is the bookshop)

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Here are just some of the Hockney ipad drawings

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This afternoon whilst out walking I took these photos – perhaps I could make them ipad drawings? His look so simple but are so clever. I think i need hours and hours of practice first.IMG_1845

IMG_1843 IMG_1844I love this photo of a washing line, especially the reflections

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