For longer than I care to remember I have been promising to go and see the lovely ladies at Art and Stitch in Peterborough but never seem to have managed it with everything that was going on last year. Happily today, on a beautiful sunny winter's day, I gathered my sewing things and hopped on a train for the short journey to Peterborough.
Since I last went Angela and Pam who run Art and Stitch had moved premises in a bid to confuse me but their efforts were in vain and I tracked them down. I was greeted with a very warm welcome and a cup of tea! What more could you want?
The main shop includes the workshop area and as you can see is a wonderful space to work in. (The blinds were closed against the brightness of the sun during the morning as it was blinding the ladies).
This is the view from the other end of the room. Thursday is social sewing day and it certainly was a very sociable experience. The ladies made me very welcome and I am going to try and go on a bit more regular basis if I can - at least more regularly than once a year!
I took some hand sewing with me and made really good progress. I am going to add some kantha style stitching to the background and will probably finish the edge with satin stitch.
This piece is 8" square and is on a theme of the English Country Garden. As you can probably tell it is made with some beautiful embroideries from cushion covers and doillies that I found in Grace's house. It seemed sacrilege to cut them up but then again they will only sit in a drawer otherwise and I don't think Grace would object too much if she was alive. She always encouraged me in all my arting and probably knew her textiles would take on new identities once I got near them lol. I have to admit to this being inspired by the work of Susan Lenz whose blog I have followed for a number of years and who I have met when she came to Nottingham. Susan does a lot of work with re-purposed textiles and has made some beautiful pieces with textiles like these including 'Anonymous'.
If I can get this piece finished and in the post over the weekend it may become part of a larger exhibition piece with the Contemporary Quilt Group at the Quilt Museum in York later this year. Nothing like leaving things to the last minute!
If you live anywhere within reach of Peterborough I can heartily recommend Art and Stitch for shopping, classes in all sorts of stitch related topics, friendly people to chat to and a warm welcome, not to mention some raucous laughter!
All topped off by a sunny train ride home.