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Creative Handstitch Workshop Programme: *Summer at Trumpet Corner* *Autumn at Trumpet Corner* *The Sewcial*

Tuesday, 15 July 2014


Thread worn neutrals & couched outlines. Work on a sample which doesn't want to behave..

Saturday, 31 May 2014

Stand by my side

A little something we've been working on this week; a love token to be given by a bride-to-be to her new husband to keep in his pocket...

Tuesday, 27 May 2014

A Little Wooden Stake

Regular visitors to this website will be aware that we offer a workshop called The Sewcial. It's for more experienced stitchers and often involves a challenge which is only revealed to the participants when they arrive at the workshop venue. At this month's Sewcial participants were presented with two pieces of hessian, a set of leaf templates and a small, pointed willow stick from Romania. We're pleased to say that no one ran from the room at this point!

KM's pre-prepared example
'The Constance Howard Book of Stitches'
The original inspiration for giving the group this set of materials came from the sticks; left over pegging stakes for the willow hut made for the production of 'Billie Killer' which we were involved with earlier this year. The sticks have been hanging up in the Applewood workshop for a few months and have been crying out for ribbons or wools to be bound to them. Coupled with a rainy afternoon's browse through the embroidery design books from the 1960's & 70's by stitch icons, Constance Howard & Kathleen Whyte, the challenge took shape  - to create a small, contemporary hanging, taking texture from nature as a theme, using the materials presented to them as a base.  

In addition to boxes of textured threads & wools, the group had access to 'luxurious' fabrics, such as velvet, taffeta, organza, which make a great contrast to the dull, rough surface of hessian.    

The group set to, auditioning fabrics and 'oohing & ahhing' over jewel bright yarns. They rose to the challenge with gusto. Here's a flavour of how they got on...
Wools & velvet scraps trapped with chunky stitch
Making hanging ribbons from contrasting fabrics

Good example of layering. Ric-rac attached in two ways

Ta-dah! A complete patch.
Teasing out fibres to create frayed edges

KM's pre-prepared sample
If you like the idea of facing a stitch challenge why not sign up for the next Sewcial
Our next session will take place in August.

Wednesday, 14 May 2014


Doing what shy Populi do best - peeping.
Silva Populi Vulpini brooch in progress

Monday, 12 May 2014

Such Marvellous Machines!

"It is a well known fact that all inventors get their first ideas on the back of an envelope. I take slight exception to this, I use the front so that I can include the stamp and then the design is already half done.'" Rowland Emett

The Applewood trio decided to take a Sunday jaunt to the Big City to visit the newly opened exhibition, 'Marvellous Machines: The Wonderful World of Rowland Emett'. This fabulous show is being held at Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery's Gas Hall  from now until 21st September 2014.
Rowland Emett (1906-1990) was an English artist and inventor of whimsical 'contraptions' which wouldn't look out of place next to the creations of Norman Hunter's Professor Branestorm. This exhibition is the largest ever display of Emett's work and includes not only his amazing automata pieces, such as those created for the Chitty Chitty Bang Bang film, but also an impressive display of his pen & ink work for publications such as Punch and America's Life magazine. 
Bean was beside himself as pieces of automata lit up and sprang into action, whirring and spinning into life, including the superbly named, 'Featherstone Kite Openwork Basketweave Gentleman's MK11 Flying Machine', which comes complete with a seat for a cat.  The more you look at a piece, the more there is to see; from pastry cutter eyes to broom head moustaches. It is all an absolute delight to behold - we'd thoroughly recommend a visit!
Here's a taster of what's on show...

Follow this link and you'll find a BBC news report which is dripping with more photo's to whet your appetite

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