Monday, 30 June 2014

... sweet Julie A ...

How quickly our days with Julie Arkell seem to pass.  As usual we had a full house of enthusiastic stitchers from all walks of life and art, and although there was the occasional drop of warm rain, the weather was generally fine and the level of energy high!

Julie busy with some last minute preparations for the workshop in her little room above LSA's shop

On arrival at Angouleme train station or Bergerac airport we normally hand out name labels so we can tell at a glance which person is roomed where (but also to reduce everyones' stress level trying t remember each other's names over the first couple of days).  However, this year, Carol, our nominated transport manager, had the bright idea of suggesting that each participant make their own in advance of arrival.  Little did we think that they would see this as a creative challenge and the results were 100% more interesting than ours!

Home made name badges

Julie waiting for the crowds to appear

Torhild sharing her "creature"

whilst her beautiful little bird sat and waited

Toni, Kaye and Glenda discussing work in progress

The finished items

Vanessa Burroughs, one of Julie's students this year wearing her little girl

A drink at the local bar before.....

... a meal out with Asphyxia centre stage

Comparing items bought from the brocante

Time to go home but already looking forward to next year's workshop

Monday, 16 June 2014

.... following on...

It's OK to blow someone else's trumpet so we'd really like to share what Becky Dawson from Canada wrote about her experience here last year at Rosalind Wyatt's five day event:

"Rosalind is an excellent teacher!! I so loved her workshop. I cherish all my projects. Sign up for a brilliant visual and tactile class. Rosalind is so positive and inspiring!! What are you waiting for - she is the best!!"

Thanks, Becky, we really enjoyed your joyful participation and hope to see you again soon.

If you're inspired by exquisite hand-stitched calligraphy then you might like to join Rosalind's group here at the end of September, Grafted Words.  The event looks all set to be another  cracker so now is the time to sign up as we have only two places remaining.  

At first glance, Jessie Chorley's equally beautiful stitch work might look similar to Rosalind's but on closer inspection it is obvious that her style is less formal and more folksy.  If your taste is for edible vintage linens and personal ephemera, then her second workshop with us, Usable Treasures, later this summer might be right up your street.  Again, don't leave it too late to book as travel to and from this part of France becomes harder to organise for late August and early September.  If you need any help organising this, do get back to us and we may be able to help.

Here is a photograph of the fantabulous RenĂ©e Perle, muse of photographer Jacques Henri Lartigue (1894 –1986) and wearing what looks like it could have been one of Jessie's very own finished outfits!!  

Lartigue took the photograph that we used on our last newsletter of the girls walking on the beach in the wind, and here is a wonderful quote of his that we have snatched from Rosalind Wyatt's website: 
"There is within me a spectator who looks on without worrying about any contingency, without knowing if what is happening is serious, sad, important, funny, or not.  A sort of being come from another planet just to enjoy the show.  A spectator, for whom everything is a puppet show, even – and especially – me!"

Wednesday, 11 June 2014

....Janet Bolton been and gone...

We have just had the most wonderful workshop with the eternally creative Janet Bolton;  a full house of enthusiastic stitchers were given her undivided attention for five fabulous days and some of the results can be seen below. 

We always enjoy hosting our workshops, but Janet takes the whole experience up a notch, sharing her experience and offcuts of fabrics with equal generosity.  We are already planning a return visit from her in May next year, so do let us know if you would like to add your name to the waiting list.

At the end of September, the lovely Rosalind Wyatt will be returning to give her second stitched calligraphy workshop with us, GRAFTED WORDS.  In the most recent issue of   Crafts Magazine Ros was asked to give her advice to would-be artists and crafters:

"Don't be too precious about your work.  People are going to copy you but actually that's OK, just stay ahead of them.  I believe that if your work is good and you keep developing, those copiers will be left behind.  I see it as a compliment rather than being threatened by it. The other thing I've discovered is not to force you creativity.  You have to work really hard and be committed, but be holistic in your approach because, for me anyway, it's alive path.  Often being creative means not being creative but just downing tools and resting.  If that means gong for a walk when things aren't happening, do that.  I meditate daily because I find it's a good way of clearing the slate and I go on retreat every year."

If you're a regular blog reader you might be interested in popping over to Nancy Edmunds' Hen House Studio from time to time.   Nancy lives on a farm in Oregon, USA and her regular posts are full of colour and general stitchery.  Through her we are offering a 10% discount if you book for Rosalind's workshop - we only have two places left, so don't delay!