Open Day Review!

Well we did have the special celebration needlepoint exhibition here last week and many thanks to those of you who came but a extra special thanks to those who lent me their beautiful pieces.

My aim for holding the event – besides of course catching up with students past and present – was to display some of the most exciting uses that my needlepoint designs have been put to.  Many people chose a cushion for their first ‘proper’ project but after a while they become over-cushioned and are keen to stitch something else but for it to still have a practical purpose.

To make the show as self-explanatory as possible there were areas linking to various aspects. 

One was some of the pieces worked during our annual trips to Italy;  we have often had a ‘theme’,    Themes give people a starting point but not a fixed project that has be followed slavishly.   Thus there were two lovey Elephant pieces, Lilly on midnight blue canvas and another worked in ‘carnival colours’ both exciting but so, so different.   
Another theme popular with many has been bags and clothing – so again there was a good display of  pieces adorned with charms, buttons along with exciting stitchery and a jacket to inspire.

Presents for children have always been popular, the initial of a new born, favourite animal such as ‘Victoria’s Elephant; and new kits both a Boy and Girl Bear.  None take too long to complete and for a young girl with a modicum of help a perfect project to start a new hobby.

While we are off again very soon for our 9th visit to the same Italian village we are also, for the first time going  to Tuscany to a beautiful borghetto close to Florence – so the project that is offered there excited interest – an interpretation of a del Robbia panel, the trade symbol of the wool merchants of Florence.

Another area showed what importance we put on good professional finishing for all our pieces – in fact I never design something without knowing a good person to finish it – you the stitcher has spent many hours working the piece so why not do it justice and have it made up  perfectly.   One cushion showed a very personal message embroidered on the back – in the giver’s own hand-writing.  
Trays, (with the needlepoint sealed safely against spillage); picture frames, fire screens and one table that tips up into a fire screen when an occasional table is not needed- all were on display to inspire.

Carolyn and Shelagh from All Stitched Up came along with many of the designs I have done in the past together with some new ones;  they also brought a really useful selection of accessories – scissors  magnets and much else.

However I plan to make the whole year one of celebration;  needlepoint has changed my life, the people I have met, the places I have been and not to be overlooked, the way I have been taught to look at everyday objects as well as historical and architectural detail.

Already this year with the help of social media and LUCK! I have reconnected with dear friends in California, New Orleans and Washington;  it is wonderful to hear their news and that they are still stitching and enjoying it!  
Here  in London  I caught up with past students whom I hadn’t seen for many years;  I should love to hear from anyone that I have met, if you or friends who have enjoyed classes or done my designs please, please do drop me a line. 

My Autumn class programme is available by here, together with a special 3 morning class in July – a perfect introduction to needlepoint and many of the lovely stitches one can do!



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