Despite the most determined efforts of the fluey cold that has been attacking hubby and me for the last two weeks to keep me away, I joined the coach to the Sewing For Pleasure/ Fashion Embroidery & Stitch Show at the NEC in Birmingham yesterday. We made excellent time and arrived at the NEC before 10.30 so started the day at a fairly relaxed pace.
I really like this show as, although it combines three shows (including Hobbycraft) there are less exhibitions to get round and you can see most of it without getting stressed. Unless, of course, you are looking to shop till you drop too!
So, let's get the shopping confession out of the way first. I took only money I was prepared to spend and didn't flex the plastic AND I came home with cash!
So this is my total haul! Did you spot the cicular paper? I got it from Stephanie Redfern and I'm looking forward to having a play, especially as it's khadi paper and will take stitch. My first port of call was Hilary Beattie and Jenny Rolfe's stand and their exhibition of The Shape of Nature. Hilary is prolific and you will easily find images if you google her name in google images and her blog is overflowing with her dynamic work. Several of Jenny's pieces in the exhibit can be seen in her gallery if you follow the link. Hilary and Jenny did not want photographs taken and I was happy to support Hilary as a friend and local artist so I bought the catalogue.
The other catalogue I bought was for ByDesign's exhibit 'Marginal - on the edge.' The quilts arose out of two starter pieces made on an agreed theme by each individual artist. 'One of these two 'starters' is passed on by lot to another group member, together with explanatory notes about the idea. She then works on this starter piece, contributing her own responses to the maker's original idea....' The only proviso is that nothing may be discarded. Two more exchanges by lot are made before the piece comes back to its originator to be finished. Of course, now I've tempted you I realise I didn't take any photos on this stand either. Duh! The second of the original pieces is worked up into a full size piece by each individual artist so that you can see the individual against the group interpretations. If you look in the gallery on the ByDesign site you can see some earlier collaborations.
One stand that I did take photos on was Gathered Memories comprising work by Jeryl Church, Lisa Earley, Elizabeth Saunders, Consuelo Simpson and Ann Smith. Their profiles are here together with details of the central piece. I particularly liked the work of Consuelo Simpson.
I was so excited by this work that I forgot to note the Consuelo's commentary. I blame the cough, it's addled my brain!
This joyous quilt by Gilli Theokritoff caught my eye too. Her explanation is below.
This evocative quilt by Sarah Showers also appealled to me for its blend of surface design and stitch. I am increasingly fascinated by Bletchley Park since we visited there some time ago.
I liked this little piece of embroidery on the Embroiderers' Guild stand. The waters' edge is so richly described by the couched embroidery.
I met several fellow contemporary quilters who I have only ever known as an online presence including the lovely Hilary Grayson who blogs as Living to Work, Working to Live.
Last week we took our cold germs off to Suffolk for a few days in the hope the sea breezes would rid us of the germs. It didn't work but we had a lovely time. I leave you with a beautiful Suffolk sky.