This has been a bit of a hectic week but I couldn't pass up the opportunity to meet up with the very talented Jackie who makes the most beautiful pieces in velvet and tweed amongst other things. Wendy and I travelled down to Ely as Jackie had come down from Lancashire for a few days and Ely was a good central point for us all. It also had a textile exhibition on! Well, how could we resist?
First port of call was Babylon Gallery for an exhibition by stitch-links.
This is the first exhibition staged by stitch-links, (follow the link for their website and better images of their work) a newly formed group of established artists from London and East Anglia and it was a very exciting experience. The exhibition space at Babylon is airy and interesting and the gallery has a friendly atmosphere. Stitch-links had based their exhibition on the area round Docklands in London and the different interpretations gave the show a great diversity.
The work varies through sculptural pieces to variations on quilts and this piece above is by Maria-Theresa Fernandes whose work I have seen at one of the big Shows last year. Her work is felted and is rich with stitch.
I was particularly struck by the work of Sheila Cahn whose work is very close to my heart and who works in layers.
This piece has beautiful sparkling blue organza which hints of reflections on water.
My photo doesn't do this piece justice but it has a wonderful flow of colour throughout and beautiful delicate slashings of sheer fabrics surrounded by hand stitching.
The artists had provided boards with samples showing some of their processes and thought connections in preparing this exhibition and it was interesting to see some of their preparatory work. In addition as the gallery is a charity it had set up a flower tree and a table so that you could make your flower and add it to the tree in exchange for a small donation. The whole thing gave the gallery a lovely friendly and welcoming atmosphere and I will definitely keep an eye out for any future exhibitions. This exhibition continues until June 13th so if you live near enough you still have time to visit. Ely is well worth the trip.
I'm not sure whether this was an exhibit or not but the railings outside carried this adornment which made me think of Clootie trees that I have seen in Scotland. I'm pleased to say that Wendy has blogged about our day out too and is showing different parts of the exhibition on her blog so do pop over and have a look if you'd like to see more.
Needless to say, after a journey and viewing the exhibition we were all well ready for a cup of tea and adjourned to the adjacent Peacocks Tearooms who have a national reputation. We had a lovely lunch and were joined by Emma who had been delayed but finally made it in time for tea and cake,
Yum! I can still taste that gorgeous chocolate cake! Everything was served on lovely delicate china and the Tearoom has a big display of teacups.
The difference being that they will actually sell you a teacup if it takes your fancy! The very pretty yellow cup in the middle at the top left in the company of Emma :o)
Isn't it funny how time flashes by when you are in good company and having a lovely chat? All too soon it was time to leave to return to projects (Emma), a visit to the cathedral (Jackie) and home via a very tempting shop on Ely station (Wendy and I). I have to admit to making a postcard each for the girls on a whim yesterday from the scraps from a quilt I'm working on,
and I brought home some lovely gifts and postcards to remind me of a stimulating exhibition
not to mention a piece of rusty something that caught my eye and I just had to pick up! (Can't take me anywhere! lol)
I always enjoy meeting the real people behind my favourite blogs and today was no exception. Jackie and Emma are both lovely ladies and we had a really enjoyable day. Wendy is always good company too and I bless blogging for bringing such gifts of friendship into my life. I'm lucky to have a lovely husband too who not only likes me having these days out but cooks my tea for me when I get back. I am spoilt! But I like it! ;o)