Sunday, 11 November 2007

August Outing 2007

Throughout the month of August we do not have a guild meeting, mainly because most members take their annual holiday during this time. But we do arrange a guild outing and this year we went to the Yorkshire Sculpture Park to see the Andy Goldsworthy exhibition.

This is on from 31st March 2007 through to 6th January 2008 and well worth a visit.
The weather was kind to us and after a foggy start to the day
we had bright sunshine into the late afternoon for our walk round the sculpture park and woodlands.
We visited the Garden Gallery, the Underground Gallery and the Longside Gallery.Here is a photograph from inside the Longside Gallery. The windows are obscured with Cow dung on the glass.

Andy Goldsworthy aims to make the viewers consider the fact that the green landscape beyond would be very different without
the impact of centuries of animal and crop farming.

Some of the outdoor sculptures needed some explanation to them like those in the Longside Gallery, but the views were great.

The Underground Gallery for me was the most amazing. The foyer is dominated by a huge sculpture called 'Stacked Oak'. This is large oak branches woven together in a cone shape. The work is entirely self-supporting, a real feat of engineering. We could not take photographs of the work in the Underground Gallery. But for this work alone it's worth a visit.

Guild at play in the Garden Gallery, sculpture of the Running Man.
We had an excellent meal in the Gallery Restaurant and the day was rounded off with a visit to Wingham Wools.

Melting Pot Day

The 'Melting Pot' workshop has turned into an annual event that all guild members look forward to. Everyone brings along all their unused fibres, from fleece, silk waste to man-made, dyed or undyed. The only stipulation is that all fleece is washed clean of grease. These are mixed up on the table where 4 drum carders have been bolted on, one at each corner and we all get down to the business of some serious carding for most of the morning.
The result is, apart from a good workout, a vast array of coloured carded bats all ready for spinning. These are handed out to each guild member. This year we carded enough fibres for everyone at the workshop to have 5 large bats each. There is no choosing the best colours, what you're given is what you get, just to make it fair. But to be fair, all the bats were lovely so no one was disappointed. The afternoon was spent spinning and delighting in the surprise results of the colours as they blend into yarn. Over the next few months these yarns will be knitted, woven or crochet into who knows what. We will have to wait and see.

Make a hat and scarf in a day

October's Saturday workshop was led by Janet Phillips of the Threshing Barn and her helper Audrey. Twenty guild members attended plus two visitor. We all had a very enjoyable day knitting and felting hats using very chunky funky yarns and circular needles.

Janet demonstrated how to make a quick and effective scarf using a large lucet and crochet hook and another using needle felting. Janet also brought along her sales table full of goodies from the threshing barn. By the end of the day most guild members had made themselves a very stylish and colourful hat and scarf set. Thanks go out to Janet and Audrey for a very fun workshop!

Masham Sheep Fair

On the 29th and 30th of September it was the Masham Sheep Fair - but it was a sheep fair without sheep due to 'Foot & Mouth' and 'Blue Tongue'.
The event is held in Masham Town Hall and despite the lack of sheep it was a successful event. They hold a handspun wool competition with categories in Spinning, dyeing, weaving, knitting & crochet and felt making.
Four of our guild members visited the fair and three entered the competition with pleasing results. Ann Jones won a 1st for her beautiful handspun, hand knitted lace jacked. Helen Livesey took a 2nd with her hand dyed, hand knitted bag and Anne Urquhart came 3rd with her lovely hanks of fancy handspun yarns.
Well do ladies! But that's not all, Maxine's little dog Rosie came 3rd in the small dog class, winning a yellow ribbon and dog chews.

Sunday, 15 July 2007

Woolfest 2007

Wonderful Woolfest - here are the pictures, write-up to follow......
I hope a kind guild member will help me out with this as I am off to Malta to be birthing partner to my daughter. It's her first baby and our third grandchild.
Well, I am sorry to say no one came through for me with a write-up on Woolfest!
The guild members that made it up to Cumbria for the event all had a great time. We did wonder if Woolfest would go ahead because of all the rain and flooding we had. But up there they missed out on all the bad floods and although it did rain on and off over the two days, it did not put us off enjoying the whole Woolfest event.
For me it was a special trip because I went up to buy a new spinning wheel. I am now the proud owner of a brand new Lendrum (seen here in the top left photograph). It's the lovely white looking wheel and I have my mum to thank for it. A very special birthday present for me from my lovely mum. As for the rest of the Woolfest experience, the Friday night Spin-in had a great atmosphere. So many different types of spinning wheels and drop spindles in action. All whirling away to a buzz of chatter as people discuss the goodies they had purchases that day or where going to buy the next day. For our guild members the whole thing was rounded off with a get-together on the Saturday night for an excellent meal before embarking back to the midlands on the Sunday morning.

Derby County Show

All Wheels a spinning!
Was this Elvaston or Glastonbury?
In any event the Derby County Show on the 24th June was a complete mud bath. There were furrows in the field from before the 8am start-up time. Then a couple of hours later when it rained in earnest a river started running through the craft marquee. Straw had to be brought in to help with the water and mud problem. Then in the afternoon the temperature and the humidity in the marquee were nearly unbearable. In spite of this there was a high turnout of be-wellied visitors to the show. Duckboards were put down round the site, with tractors, vans and pushchair pushing parents juggling for position on them. Most of the beautiful polished tractors in the exhibition area had to be pressed into service tugging cars out of ruts and horseboxes across the fields.
Maxine, Frances and Mary turned out for the Guild to demonstrate their spinning skills. Frances braved the rain and cycled from her home in central Derby to Elvaston bearing her Louet wheel and Jacob fleece. Maybe Frances had the right idea cycling, because despite listening carefully to instructions Mary got stuck in the mud for an hour on leaving the show (car wheels a spinning) and had to be pulled out by tractor.

Sunday, 17 June 2007

Dyes with a Heart

Alison Daykin led a Dyeing workshop for 16 of our guild members. We all had a great day working with Alison's New range of Natural Pure Tictoria powdered dyes. They are very easy to use and give a lovely range of colours. We each went home with yarn samples made up into a comprehensive shade card showing the full range of colours Alison has on offer.
The only preparation we had to do was mordent our fibres the day before. Alison supplied everything else. We had great fun modifying the dyed yarns with iron water and copper warter with some surprising results.

Two New Banners

The Guild has two new banners!
Our old guild sign was stolen along with all our exhibition stuff, all the guild members beautiful works, a spinning wheel, wheel chair and the camper van it was all packed into ready for the Broomfield show last year 2006. The police think the van was stolen to order. But that's all past now and we have moved on and all our guild members have worked hard to replace the items we lost that day and our bright new PVC banners hang well at all the events the guild attends.

Tuesday, 12 June 2007

Broomfiield Open Day

Sunday 10th June - Broomfield Hall Open Day
This is a great day out for all the family and it proved to be a busy one for Maxine and Anne.
The open day was well attended, the weather was kind to us and the event was busy right up to closing time.
We had queues of children who were fascinated with our spinning wheels and eager to try their hands at spinning. Younger ones just had a go at treadling the wheel. But the older boys and girls were keen to spin a length of yarn.
Maxine and I must have been the most photographed demonstrators of the day, as proud parents took snaps of their little ones spinning with us.
In the pen area next to our stand was the sheep shearing demonstration so the children could follow the process through from fleece to finished product.

Making Silk Bowls

9th June 2007 - Guild Saturday workshop at Hazelwood village hall.
Jean Groom (our chairman) demonstrated how to make silk bowls using silk caps and throwsters silk waste. Layers of silk fibres were paste onto a balloon using a paint brush and PVA glue (watered down). You build up the layers and trap things between them. For example, skeleton leaves or interesting textured fibres. You leave the glued fibres to dry completely before removing from the balloon. The result is a beautiful delicate silk bowl.
A tip from Mary Hawkins, don't use a balloon with print on it. This comes off onto the silk. Mary's bowl now has the word England (in reverse) and the George Cross on the inside of her bowl.

Jean demonstrating the technique, Anne getting all stuck-up and silk-cap balloons drying out in the sun. Here is the finished result of my bowl from that days workshop. It's a project I will try again. And, here is my other half wearing a 'silk cap'..........well what can I say.

Woolfest 2006

As promised here are photographs of last years woolfest exhibition. Just to give you an idea of what it's all about, lets start with the live stock. Angora goats, Gotland sheep, Leicester Longwool and many more.
The exhibition had a large and interesting variety of stands with all types of textile crafts represented. Last year there was a strong emphasis on felt making with exibits from small pots to a full sized Yurt and demonstrations on how to make Nuno felt.
There were lots of beautiful natural fibres to choose from as well as a wide range of exciting modern yarns. There were dyes, books and equipment in abundance, just about everything you could possibly want for any textile project. Looking forward to Woolfest 2007!

Shows & Events

Broomfield Open Day - Sunday 10th June 2007 held at Broomfield Hall, Morley, Ilkeston, Derbyshire. Open to the public from 11am to 5pm. The Derbyshire Guild of Weavers Spinners & Dyers will be demonstrating there. It's a great day out for all the family, lots for the kids to see and do. Both educational and fun events, animals, craft stalls, B.B.Q. and more!

Derbyshire County Show - Sunday 24th June 2007 held at the Showground, Elvaston, Derbyshire. Open to the public from 10am to 5pm. Members of The Derbyshire Guild of Weavers Spinners & Dyers will be there demonstrating their crafts to the public.

Woolfest 2007 - Friday 29th & Saturday 30th June. Held at the Mitchell's Lakeland Livestock Centre, Cockermouth, Cumbria. Open to the public 10am to 5pm. Tickets £5 each per day. Accompanied Children free. This is a great two day exhibition. If you are into textiles of any kind you will enjoy this. Most of the Derbyshire Guild will be going along. I will post photographs of the 2006 Woolfest so that you can get the flavour of what it's all about.

The Wool Experience - Saturday 7th July 2007 held at Blaze Farm, Wildboarclough, Buxton, Derbyshire. Open to the public from 10am. Demonstrations of Sheep Shearing, Spinning, Weaving, Felt Making, KNitting, Dyeing and other crafts. Crafts on sale and produce from the mini farmers market. Entrance fee £1 for adults 50p for children.

Inspireation 21 - 7th to 22nd July 2007 Exhibition of creative textiles and mixed media held at the Hardwick Park Visitors Centre, Doe Lea, Chesterfield, Derbyshire. Open daily from 11am to4pm.

Masham Sheep Fair - 29th & 30th September 2007 held at Masham Town Hall. They are running a Handspun Wool Competition, entries for this must be in by 8th September. Categories are Spinning, Dyeing, Weaving, Knitting or Crochat, Felt making and Sundry (any other item using handspun yarns).

Knitting & Stitching Show - 22nd to 25th November 2007 at Harrogate

Thursday, 31 May 2007

Calke Abbey Craft Show

On May 5th, 6th, & 7th guild members were demonstrating
the crafts of spinning and weaving at the Calke Abbey show. There was great interest from the public particularly from the children, who had the opportunity to try their hand at spinning and weaving. Maxine brought along a giant-sized pair of knitting needles for anyone who wanted to try them out and knit a few rows.

Guild Open Day

Saturday 12th May was the Derbyshire Guild open day.
It was held at the Haven Christian Centre, Littleover,
Derby. Scottish Fibres, Pure Tinctoria Natural Dyes
and Michael Williams wood turner were in attendance.
We had visitors from Birmingham, Stafford, Alsager,
Walsall, York and Nottingham guilds. A very successful
day that everyone enjoyed immensely.

Locker Hooking

Friday 27th April meeting at Mickleover -
Locker Hooking led by Helen Livesey
Helen brought along some beautiful examples of her locker hooking projects.
Inspiring textured rugs and wall hangings hooked using colourful
shredded sari fabrics tempting us all to try our hand at this craft.
We each had a small piece of canvas and a locker hook and with
Helen's help and guidance produced a small sampler.
Our thanks to Helen for an interesting and enjoyable
Friday evening meeting.