Sunday, August 02, 2009

Exhibitions and textiles.

Well, I have been to a couple of exhibitions in the last two or three weeks. The first of these was in the Town Hall in Macclesfield. This dreadful photo above was all I could take of the beautiful installation by Claire de Ruiter. It was so delightful to see a very accurate dry stone wall (there are so many of these in the hills above Macclesfield) with a tree - made entirely of felt. For a more accurate photo, please go to Claire de Ruiter's website.

It is only with hindsight that I realise what had inspired me to go ahead with "Tree". Of course, it was the tree standing alongside the drystone wall in the same installation.

This is where I have got up to so far. I have added some leaves using fabric scraps and free machine embroidery. I have been posting about the progress of this piece on my page in Stitchin Fingers. (My name there is Mandy.)

As I have mentioned before, the felt is my own - made from scraps of merino fleece. I had had these bits and pieces left over after I had done feltmaking with my class at school. Taking inspiration from the way the children had used the colours, I had decided to just have a go myself and not worry too much about putting colours together. This piece of felt was one of the results.

Then I visited a building from my past. I used to live opposite Christ Church in Macclesfield, leaving there at the age of twenty in 1974. How time passes! I had parked my car nearby and seen that the Church was open - sadly, it is no longer being used as a church, but is a venue for concerts. The ten bells are still in regular use by a team of bell-ringers.
Inside, the building looked much as I had known it. The choir stalls are no longer there, having been replaced by a stage.
There was a small exhibition in some of the pews of work by the "Goodwin Weavers". An American company, sadly no longer in existence, although it later continued as "Buffalo Creek Weavers" until recent years. The exhibition showed some of their woven throws.
The family firm had originally been founded in Macclesfield in 1812. The pews chosen for the exhibition had been those used by the very same Goodwin family, before James Cash Goodwin decided to emigrate to the USA in 1837.
From the small amount of research I have done, it sounds as if Buffalo Creek Weavers itself no longer exists. However, here are two further articles I was able to find.

I have been getting on with knitting again. This time it is a white cardigan with lace panels. I first knitted this in 1987! The pattern really hasn't dated and is such a useful and comfortable shape. It even has pockets!

It knits up quickly too.
Well, I must get on. It looks as if we are going to have a better day today, at least as far as the weather goes. I am determined to get out and about.


Margaret said...

Your tree is wonderful. The colours are stunning. I hope you plant to frame it in some way and put it up in your home. It makes me smile and I'm sure it will brighten any gray day.

Mandy said...

Thanks Margaret.

donnac1968 said...

Thanks for the advice about the red Drops cardigan, the buttonholes are rather large but I may go for toggles! Or maybe not! We'll see.

Your tree is fabulous. How clever.

Mandy said...

Good idea Donna, mind if I copy the idea when I restart the same jacket?