Braids and teaching and lots of good news

I had an unreasonably early start this morning to get out to Basingstoke for the course I am teaching every Saturday this month. Its a family fashion workshop and today was good fun, and I managed to stay awake throughout! I taught the group how to work with felt to make corsages and do cut-work designs like these (which are my teaching samples- I foolishly forgot my camera again. I blame the early start) and a bit of fabric painting and lots of applique with Bondaweb which went down pretty well with all ages.

On the rather endless train journey home I got chance to delve into this book, which two of my friends (and comrades in braid research) have just published. Its all about a set of 15th century braiding instructions and has modern English versions of all the instructions. This has been planned for several years so its wonderful to see it finished. Now I have no excuse not to learn all the 40 braids in there…

I’ve been making silk braids like these for years, and have recently been torturing my poor fingers making them in gold thread. Real gold thread, which is silk core wrapped in a tiny ribbon of gilded metal. Its wonderful stuff and enormously hard to work with. This necklace was selected for an exhibition at Black Swan Arts earlier in the year.

Talking of selection for shows, I have just heard today that I have been selected to show in the New Makers showcase at Origin, the London Craft Fair (which is what Chelsea Craft Fair has become) organised by the Crafts Council. This is top-notch for UK designer makers and is selected by sector experts, so I am really pleased! I’m on the reserve list for the main show too, so will definitely be there in October in some capacity.

Its been a good week all round, I have been in a major newspaper, been invited to exhibit at a gallery in Stafford (more once I know what that will be!), asked to supply a new shop and asked to supply another gallery in the New Forest, just along the coast from here. And I just found myself on Whip Up, what an honour!

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