Monday, 21 October 2013

Playing with the big boys!

So from 10th to 13th October I had my own stand at The Knitting and Stitching Show Alexandra Palace - it really was rather grown up!
I really enjoyed myself and met so many people all with stories to tell - more on this later.

Being a tapestry designer is quite a lonely road so it was brilliant to meet Emily Peacock who has been ploughing the furrow for quite a while.  I love Emilys bold designs she really is the Queen of Font!  Take a look at her website here and revel!  A big thanks to Emily for making me feel so welcome, I think the carpet between my stand and hers was well and truly worn in!

As you will know from previous blogs I want to exhibit the art side of my business alongside the kits and patterns, one person at the show who is doing just this is Suraya Rina Hossian. Suraya runs Mahliqa Knitted Wire Jewellery and you can buy one of her pieces direct or follow her instructions and buy a kit to knit your own. I saw one woman walking past my stand admiring the kit she had just bought from Mahliqa she was very happy and told me she was wondering which outfit it would go with best!  It was great to see Surayas smiling face every day!

Finally it was great to meet up with Kim Thitticai, Kim is probably the main reason I have got myself into this textiles game. It was by attending one of her courses that I managed to get into Morley College and complete my textiles foundation. Kim was working on the Vilene stand showing people how to use this fantastic product for more than just stiffening a collar.  Take a look at her blog and be inspired here.

As well as the stand holders it was great to meet so many stitchers and artists.  It's not often you get to meet an ecclesiastical stitcher, a hand weaver and a dialysis community worker all in the same place yet alone in the same hour.  I really enjoyed listening to peoples stories of stitching and all the memories that seeing tapestry evoked.  I spoke to Heather Magill who informed me that she had stitched a tapestry of grand masters, small tapestrys of famous paintings.  "Is it from a kit" I asked, "no I just knocked it up myself" she replied.  Well here is a picture of her improvised tapestry which is spectacular a true work of art. Thanks Heather from one artist to another!
Photo courtesy Heather Magill

I will be in Harrogate in November for the Knitting and Stitching show there and am so looking forward to meeting more artists and seeing their work!

Thursday, 3 October 2013

One week to go!

So in one weeks time you will be able to come and see me at Knitting and Stitching Show Alexandra Palace.  The show runs from 10th October to 13th October and is a great place to see news ideas and visit old favourites. Alongside the sellers there are exhibitions from individuals and groups which provide even more inspiration.  
I am really looking forward to seeing Mandy Patullo who works with secondhand fabrics collaging them with other materials to make really poignant art pieces. I will enjoy talking to her about all things second hand or pre-loved.
The second exhibition that interests me is Sewing for Survival: Arctic Stitchery which will show examples of Inuit stitching from Canada.  I like the title because I expect that along with making garments and home-wares to keep warm and survive that the stitching also forms a community which is as important to survival as warmth.
Sticking with the Canadian Arctic and moving to the Australian outback Dorothy Caldwells Exhibition In Place looks like a great way to travel the globe via the medium of texture and print.  I like the size of the work and think it will have a great impact on the viewer.
Finally the queens of texture and colour will be exhibiting again. Jan Beaney and Jean Littlejohn always inspire I like how a collaboration has lasted over time, their exhibition this year takes a more personal theme and involves looking closely and then at the whole be sure to check out Rhythms and Counter Rhythms when you visit.

There are many other exhibitions and of course the stands and the classes, so if you have time after all that please pop by and see me in the Textile Gallery TGC5!