Preparation is all important.
The night before.
Make new bag:tick
Train schedule with all important reference number for retrieving tickets from worrying self service machine:tick
Paracetamol:tick (EDIT: For Americans! Paracetamol=painkillers)
Lipstick for meeting blogger friends: tick
Sandwich ingredients at the ready, and an early night with very little sleep and that which I had was filled with many bad dreams of not being able to input correct number on ticket machine at Preston station and friend getting fed up and going home.
At 5 am I jumped out of bed, showered and rushed down to make aforementioned sandwich. I had prepared the ingredients but forgot we had no bread other than a frozen unsliced loaf and some frozen rolls which I managed to saw in half.
We caught the Virgin train at 7am and two and a bit hours later we country mice arrived at Euston. We cleverly managed to get to Alexandra Palace, I must have had retained a little tube memory from my 6 years living in Twickenham, can it really be 40 years ago?
The Knitting and Stitching show, of course,was spectacular.
but by far the best bits of the day were when I met fellow bloggers, Gina, Gill, and their friend,Val, and Carol, and Lynda.
I was recognised by my bag by Sandy from Dangling by a thread.
What an absolute pleasure it was to get together and chat with my imaginary friends!
I'm sure there were a lot more bloggers there who I didn't get to meet.
My preparations had as you all know if you read the last post, included research into eating places.
For the sake of convenience we decided on Carluccio's on St Pancras Station. My friend cleverly realised we didn't need to change trains to get there from Wood Green and as it was only one station away from Euston it seemed the best option. The food was lovely especially the panna cotta.
We had a touristy photo taken with this gentleman..I am the one on his right who bears an uncanny physical resemblance. Dishevelled, portly, with a big square..... bag..I am glad I wore my scarf so you can distinguish between us.
Our return journey was first class so we could relax in the lounge at Euston, and if I hadn't eaten so much Italian I could have availed myself of allsorts of lovely stuff.
The day was a great acheivement for me.
Having become rather sedentary lately I was wondering if I could manage a whole day ..a very long day.. wandering around but I didn't feel tired at all.
I am so lucky to have a friend like the one I went with because we instinctively like the same things so enjoy going to shows and exhibitions together.
There were one or two really beautiful pieces or artists we enjoyed. In the Pfaff embroidery challenge we loved the pieces by Barbara Lee Smith and Jean Littlejohn.
Janice Gunner's beautiful selective stitchings on Indigo dyed fabrics were subtle and understated and underlined the 'less is more' theme we began to feel as we walked around.
We enjoyed Tom Lundbergs glorious little pieces of embroidery. He must have been working for ages and we didn't even know it.
Of course the graduate Showcases were entertaining but one in particular appealed to me. She had large printed textiles but had made some very small pieces with animals illustrated on fabric with just a little stitching. A fox in particular caught my eye with the tiniest ever sequins across the top of its head.
Anyone who saw them couldn't fail to be impressed with Kerry Mosleys amazing knitted and stitched portraits.
There was a lot more to see but I didn't get the feeling of wanting to rush home and try something.
We both felt that ultimately stitch, fabrics, threads, are like paint, and its what you do with them that matters. Someone can use the simplest of materials and techniques and put them together in such a way as to delight.
Now here's something you don't see on my blog very often...
Good grief!! I'll be making bunting next!!
But how could I resist them?
I also spent an inordinate amount of money on 'things to hand pendants from'. What else would you call them?
I am intending to hang some of my felty pieces and silk hearts from them.
Now I'm back with my very small new stash working with my very limited techniques and doing my own very limited thing.
This is a 'Little and large' order for an American gentleman.
I had some very helpful and kind comments on my last post (not counting the Japanese one and they were not helping with dress patterns) so thank you for saying lovely things.