Sunday, 12 March 2017

Spring Knitting & Stitching Show

Isn't this chap marvellous? Such an imposing, almighty figure, towering above us mere mortals. If you haven't recognised him (I didn't), he is a White Walker, a mythical creature from the fantasy TV drama series, Game of Thrones. Apparently, a White Walker kills everything in his path and brings blizzards and freezing temperatures with him (probably why he looks so grumpy- I would be too if I was in an endless blizzard). He was made by various regions of the Embroiderer's Guild, along with groups from the Royal School of Needlework, Hand & Lock and Fine Cell Work, and the whole piece (including the background) is five metres wide by four metres tall! There is a little bit about the conception of the idea and the making of this particular White Walker on this website.

The Mother and I traveled up to London by special coach last Sunday to visit the Spring Knitting & Stitching Show at Olympia, Kensington. We went there last year (see here) and loved it, so this time we invited along some friends to share the experience, and it was rather nice to also see the same sellers there again this year and re-visit favourite stalls.
Along with the super scary White Walker, there were some much prettier displays of talent such as this gorgeous garden knitted/crocheted by some very dedicated ladies to raise funds for the Louise Hamilton Trust. They have called it a butterfly garden and it has been specifically created to help  raise £3million to build a 10 bed hospice unit in the grounds of the James Paget Hospital in Norfolk. As quoted from their facebook page, 'the hospice beds will drastically change the end-of-life care currently available locally, giving people more options such as receiving the right pain medication before they can go home to spend their final days with loved ones.' 

'This amazing garden is the result of a two year knitting project by the Louise Hamilton knit and yarn group with the help of the Norfolk Knitters and Stitchers. The ladies meet on a Friday afternoon, and between laughter, chatter, and of course, tea and cake, they put their varying skills to work. The project was carefully planned but it just seemed to grow and grow into a fairy like spectacle.'

If you would like to donate anything to this fantastic cause, then click here to go to their Just Giving page.

It's amazing, there are so many little details to look at! I wonder how many stitches there are in the garden?

It's obviously a good garden as the caterpillars are enormous! Watch out, they're heading for those cabbages!

I spent a LOT of pennies at this event! Although, in my mind, it was totally worth it because I clearly need more fat quarters.... and I am now the proud owner of 40 more fat quarters in the most scrumptious colours and patterns, as well as a beautiful bowl in a rainbow of colours, some fabulous different sized ric racs and a tube of honey coloured beads.

Isn't that just a glorious sight!?! Some of these have come from my favourite stalls such as Stitch Witch, Solstitch, Higgs & Higgs and Puddleducks as well as some new stalls whose names I should have taken down but didn't. I tried to be more varied in my colour choices, as well as going for some more unusual patterns such as the crashing waves print, the orangey/purple sunset print, the clocks print (love that!) and the strange dried grasses print. Others I looked at and thought that they would make a brilliant background fabric due to the dots or spots or other little shapes. Big prints don't always work so well in my Stitchscapes I've discovered, and these were very much in my mind as I rifled through the drool-worthy baskets of fat quarters.

These beauties (above) came from another of my favourite stalls who I remember from last year, Japan Crafts. These fabrics have come directly from Japan and have rich colours and outlines of gold sparkling at the edges of the petals and fan shapes. I bought some fabric at this stall last year although haven't been able to cut into them yet, they are just too beautiful!

Isn't that fabric stunning?! I have no idea what I would specifically use it for; it reminds me a little of the Northern Lights (could that be put into a stitchscape?), but as soon as I saw it I knew I just had to have it! And it was the same with the beautifully presented star of batik fabrics from Stitch Witch. The combination of colours was mind boggling and the pack just sort of popped into pile....that had formed for me to buy. (Addiction is not the word!)

This bowl! Words cannot describe how much I love this bowl. I think the lady at BasketBasket said that they came from Morocco and have been made out of straw and raffia, with each one a unique design. I know exactly where this bowl is going to live, but for now it is quite happy holding my purchases. We will definitely have to go back again next year for another top up!

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