Tuesday, 30 September 2014


Friday afternoon saw the start of Thread at Farnham Maltings.  Thread is a sewing event, held in the same place as Unravel.  My initial feeling was that it was not as vibrant as Unravel; it wasn't as busy, but then I was there on the Friday and there were not as many sellers.  The stalls that were there were full of tempting delights and the displays were beautiful.  This was only the second time this event has been held and I suspect that as word gets around it will get bigger and bigger.
On arrival I headed down into the Cellar Bar, stopping first to admire this silk kimono, "Yellow Shell" tate kasuri by Nao Fukumoto.
In the cellar local guilds had set up some beautiful displays.  The stitch work on the Basingstoke Embroiderers' Guild stand was stunning!  I particularly loved these embroideries of the calendar months

and the use of colour on this panel.
Also in the cellar were the West Surrey Guild of Weavers, Spinners and Dyers
and the Farnham Quilters.
There were several free workshops running throughout the event and I participated in the Introduction to Quilting Workshop, where we each machine-stitched a nine patch.  The lady who taught us had been quilting for 17 years and whilst we were stitching she imparted a lot of useful information to help get us started in quilting.  Maybe I will manage to make that quilt for our bed that I have been planning for so long after all! :)
I then went upstairs to the Barley Room and Tannery to look at the exhibits there.

This display was part of What Delilah Did and featured projects from the Stitch the Halls book.  I particularly liked the felt chain
and the cross-stitched bunting.
Back downstairs and the market place was situated in the Great Hall.
Pretty dresses on the Ray Stitch stand.
 Having previously stated that there were not a large amount of sellers at Thread, I still managed to spend out! :)
I love anything to do with toadstools so this fabric was a must-buy.  I plan to make a cushion with it and I bought the linen thread to make a crocheted decoration for the cushion.  I made a slight error and picked up one 3-ply instead of all 5-ply, but I'm sure I can work it out.  I don't always read everything properly nowadays - a sure sign of age!! ;)
I can't resist anything fox or cat related.  The bottom two fabrics are for a project bag and the top fox fabric is for another planned cushion.  I don't know what the cat fabric is for yet.
Another project bag maybe?  I love seedheads!
I would like to make some woodland critters out of felt and this bundle looks just perfect for that.
I bought this for the wooden bobbin, from an unknown mill, but the thread included on it was a bargain at £2.
And of course there had to be buttons!  These wooden and mother of pearl ones were from Ray Stitch.  There were so many to choose from, but bearing in mind that I have quite a button collection I tried to be restrained this time. ;)

Wednesday, 24 September 2014

The Handmade Fair

Last Saturday I was up bright and early, as I was due to attend The Handmade Fair at Hampton Court Palace.  I arrived at the beginning of the day and walked through the palace gardens to the fair.

The first thing I saw were the pompoms.  This was only a small section of them.
They were part of Kirstie Allsopp's attempt at smashing the Guinness World Record for the longest chain of pompoms in aid of the charity Sense.  
I walked around the fair to get my bearings
and popped into the Rowan tent.

I loved this crocheted blanket!
My ticket included a needle felting class with Jayne Emerson at 11am.  This is the first time that I have attempted this craft and I will definitely be doing more of it.  The general consensus of the ladies I spoke to was that this was an easy to do craft with quick rewards and I have to agree.
My robin still needs a little trimming, but I am really happy with how he turned out.  My mind is now racing away with ideas for more needle felting projects! :)
After the hour long class I wandered around the shopping village.  It was very easy to be overwhelmed by the sheer amount of beautiful crafts and supplies on offer.  These are some of the displays and goods that caught my eye:-
The beautiful embroidered pictures on the Rowandean Embroidery stand.  There was the opportunity to sit and embroider here, which I would have liked to do if I had had more time.
This Advent Calendar Quilt, displayed by Cowslip Workshops was so full of detail!
These Liberty fabrics were tempting, but I managed to resist.  :)
I was rather taken with this autumn wreath on Blooming Felt's exhibit.
I had booked a ticket to see Kirstie Allsopp talking to Kaffe Fassett in the Grand Theatre at 1pm.
What an interesting man!  The talk was very relaxed and amusing and was over far too quickly!  I could have listened to Kaffe Fassett speak all day.
They discussed his fabulous use of colour and the history behind his work.
This needlepoint had to be my favourite piece there.
When asked how he chooses his colours, he replied that he picked some colours, then added 20 more!

Kirstie was rocking a floral headband and pompoms on her shoes.  She totally got away with it!
After the talk I managed to walk to the stage for a close up of the gorgeous quilts. 

Back outside I stopped at the Spin City stand in the Etsy tent.  I tried my hand at spinning with a drop spindle
and decided to take the plunge and try again at home.  I made an attempt this morning and I have to say it didn't go as well as it did on Saturday!  I might need lessons! :)
There were two main shopping tents, both a feast for the eyes.
This beautiful redwork quilt was on display at Dandelion Designs.
I liked this pretty tin on another stand
and these lovely blankets too.
These adorable ceramic buttons are by Kate Holliday.
I just had to buy these ones!
These large buttons could have been made for me!  They are just like my Ella, Maurice and late Pippa.
They are machine washable, but I would be scared to put them inside my washing-machine!  They are going to decorate something special, like a crocheted brooch or a bag.
I was pleased to see several yarn sellers in the tents.  I bought this hank of baby alpaca 4-ply by Watercolours & Lace, in the colourway Summer Garden.
My final purchase of the day was this novelty tape measure. Well, I had to didn't I? :)
I had signed up for the World Pomination class towards the end of my day at the fair.
Previously I had made 30 pompoms for the attempt at the Guinness World Record for the longest chain of pompoms.  The record was smashed as 7200 pompoms were made by the end of the fair! 
All too soon it was time to leave, but I have noticed that the Fair is going to be held again next year! :)