…… since I last posted my blog, but I have been away on holiday for the first time in many years – not counting the course I went on earlier this year. I have just had a wonderful time in St Ives, Cornwall, visiting galleries, spending time sketching, going to the Lost Gardens of Heligan and eating cream teas ! This was the stunning view from our apartment ….. ……oh, I’m missing it now. Anyway, back in Yorkshire, lots happening as usual. One of our younger clients, Ellie, decided she would like to have a ‘RaggedyAnnie Birthday Party’ at the studio. She and 14 of her friends made rag dolls and ate party food and generally had a fun time !…… Kev and I had stands at the Masham Sheep Fair last month – it is a lovely event and we got to meet lots of people – some of my old friends from Farndale too ! It is interesting to see all the different breeds of sheep, and to see the owners ‘polishing’ them before the judges come round. The dancing sheep are always quite entertaining too ! (Yes, really !). I ran a day course on ‘Stumpwork Flowers’ at The Fabbadashery recently. This is a very precise technique to create individual wired organza petals which we beaded and then stitched on to a silk background on which we had embroidered the stem and bud. These pictures are some of the flowers in progress ……. ….. all beautiful, but by bedtime Lynne was emailing me with a picture of her completed flower ! Quite an achievement, and absolutely stunning !!! ….. I love the berries too ! Believe it or not this was Lynne’s first venture into stumpwork and embroidery ! One of my regular groups of girls have been for a couple of visits since my last blog entry. Maxine has been continuing to work on her very finely stitched crewelwork piece. She is embroidering this with just one strand of embroidery silk rather than the usual crewel wool. It is an exceptional piece of work. She is now starting to pad the hillocks in the foreground, these will be worked in needlelace over the felt padding. Jackie, another talented needlewoman, always sets me a challenge ! She decided to make a piece of figurative stumpwork based on a piece she had seen worked by a RSN student. Initially she worked on the body, forming the limbs and torso from padded felt …. …. and she is now adding a turned applique skirt, leather boots and an exquisitely made needlelace jacket ….. ….. so, still quite a few areas to be worked, these two never go for the easy option ! Their friend Carol came with them too and decided to stitch a butterfly. She is new to embroidery, but I think this piece will look really good. Her plan is to fill areas of the butterfly with blocks of satin stitch ….. And finally, we had a Crazy Patchwork day at the shop. This is one of my favourite techniques. I enjoy the piecing stage, choosing all the fabrics and applying them to the foundation fabric. I then enjoy the embellishment stage, adding braids and trims along with lots of embroidery and the addition of buttons and charms ! These are all works in progress, but already looking fab ! ……..