Thursday, October 15, 2009


Today I had to make a short journey by train.  The carriage was sparsely populated, but the seats behind me were occupied by two young girls with very loud voices.  I didn't want to hear their conversation, but I had no option.  Here is a snippet..

'I hate sleeping with a new man.  He might see my feet'

You don't need to hear the rest of the coversation....

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Would you believe it..........?

I've mentioned Talking Threads a few times on this blog.  Well, tomorrow is the start of the series.  At 7pm you will be able to tune in to either Sky Channel 171 or pop over and view it on the internet at The Country Channel.   I have visions of stitchers all around the country huddled around the TV or computer enjoying a half hour of inspiration. 

Well, guess what....

I won't be able to join you!  We have a long standing invitation to sell in Salisbury, and that's where we'll be!  Inspire Stitchers, here we come.

However, (and I'm sure it must be just for my benefit) the stream on the internet will be live when we get home, so that means that I can watch it, even at midnight if I want to!

Tomorrow's programme is about Jill Kennedy.  She is a silk painter par excellence, so enjoy the episode.  If you can't wait you can see a short taster here

By the way, I was surprised to find a selection of other interesting textile related programmes at the Country Channel, so have a good look around.  You may have to change channels, but that's easy when you find the buttons at the bottom of the screen.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Rust Dyeing Workshop

There are two places left on the workshop taking place next week, so I thought I'd give you a gentle reminder.

Wednesday 21st October in Aldershot, Hampshire. It will be a fun day, and a delicious lunch is included.

I would like to have inserted a picture here, but Blogger is playing funny games today so here is a link instead

You can read more about rust and workshops here, and here,

Hope to see you there

Thursday, October 08, 2009

National Poetry Day

Today is National Poetry Day in the UK.  Here's one of my favourites. It never fails to bring a tear to my eye, and although I don't know exactly when it was written I do know the author, and believe me, she fits into the theme of heroes and heroines.  Please feel able to leave a comment, I'd love to pass those on.

Well, Lord,
It's now four years since I first knew the sweetness of Your Presence.
You rescued me from a life that was not worth living.
A life shared with another, but full of emptiness.
No real sharing with him,,
No pleasing him,
No love from him,
No meaning to any relationship.

Then suddenly,
When desperation came,
When there was no way out except the wrong way -
There You were.
Your arms were open, and You were walking towards me.
I didn't need to hunt for You -
You found me.

"Follow Me."
Just two words. That's all you said.
You showed me how.
You opened doors.
You led me every step of the way,
And You are still leading me.

It's still hard to share with him.
I hardly ever please him.
He still doesn't show his love very often,
But You have shown me that there is meaning in all relationships.
You have given me the grace to take all hurts,
Knowing that now You suffer with me.

The grief that I feel now is not all mine.
I know that You grieve too.
My circumstances may not have changed,
Outward appearances may say that they have worsened,
But inside I am slowly being made whole.

The day that I knew You had forgiven me I was able to forgive him.
Not just for the hurts that he inflicted deliberately,
But for those of which he is unaware.
The ones that are part of his background,
The ones from which he needs that deep healing.

You are so gentle' Lord.
You alone know how fast we can go.
Our human side often makes mistakes as we try to hurry Your work along.
You have shown me that You can perform many miracles,
But the biggest of all must be to turn a life around
Without changing the circumstances.

Others condemn,
But You never do.
Others cast sideways glances and mutter under their breath,
But You just keep on loving.
Although the flesh may be weak the heart is willing;
That You alone know, and that is all that matters.

Thank you, Lord, for giving me a glimpse of heaven on earth.
Thank you, Lord, for being so close nothing else matters.
Thank you, Lord, that though I may not see You footprints
They are surely there,
And You are guiding my feet along a path
That You have especially mapped out for me.
Thank you, Lord, for making me special.

Sunday, October 04, 2009

What do you keep in yours?

We take so much of everyday life for granted. Fancy a cold drink? Open the refrigerator. Keep your vegetables fresh? Open the refrigerator. You get the message. Where would we be without this wonderful invention? However, it hasn't always been this easy. I can remember a time when we stored food without a 'fridge. I remember cheese wrapped in greaseproof paper that became soggy during a warm spell, and butter that never set during summer time, soft and almost oily even though it was stored in the larder. I was only a child, so didn't really understand the problems that this caused but I'm sure that some of you will have similar memories.

The area in which we currently live is full of history and rich in artefacts. Food storage has been a problem for 'ever', and one answer is illustrated very well in this area. Ice Houses were apparently 'invented' many many years ago. This article talks about the history etc, however, it is much more graphic to actually see one. Only the very wealthy would be able to have one of their own, and of course it would be contructed and maintained by 'staff' for the benefit of impressing visitors and rivals. Imagine having to cut chunks of ice from the pond during the winter months then pack them quickly into an especially contructed underground chamber, padding it with straw etc. All this for a landowner who probably didn't even know of your existence!

This wonderful photograph illustrates the roof of one such construction. You can find the original here with more information. Aren't the colours amazing? I think it could well inspire a piece of stitching at some point. There are also other examples around, some of them restored and converted into exhibition spaces. One day I would love to do a tour of the UK and view as many as possible. Maybe when I retire? In the meantime - anyone fancy a gin and tonic?