Saturday, 30 January 2010
Friday, 29 January 2010
"Just a suggestion; if you haven't visited the exhibition of stitched pictures by Lalla Ward at the National Theatre, I can recommend it. They are mostly machine-stitched embroidery pictures of the flora and fauna of exotic places. Really worth a visit..."
Wednesday, 27 January 2010
The owner says it was a present, bought in Accessorize. Elaborate beading and embroidery. Am buying Arabic tapes to listen to in the car, as am spending a great deal of time on the road, driving from place to place on meetings for I Packed This Myself. And am trying to learn Arabic, just to exercise the brain...
Monday, 25 January 2010
Friday, 22 January 2010
Margaret no longer at the IGRS but copies of the journal on the seminar are still available and Gill very kindly gives me one.
Interested to read Liedeka Plate and Ells Rommes' paper on the ways people negotiate cities - and their ideas of what the city is. They talk about the things carry in their bags. This is what got me thinking about I Packed This Myself and the idea of travelling suitcases reflecting the background of migrant workers.
"The things we do or do not carry with us - money, bus tickets, condoms, something to eat, nappies, a pocket-knofe, a map, a camera - all these things attest as much to who we are and how we identify ourselves as to what we think we may need in negotiating the city..."
Thursday, 21 January 2010
Monday, 18 January 2010
Later a meeting in Shepherds Bush in the Old Library with David Hampshire from Hammersmith and Fulham library service about bringing the show to the Borough. And possibly the British Saris too.
Friday, 15 January 2010
Having never been v interested in rococo, try and find out more.
I confess - up to now, I had always thought rococo was stuffy, overpowering and hard to warm to. But the spiralling curves and mirrors of this oval room lift the spirits.
National Archives. In the bookshop discover that there was an exhibition - some years ago now - of swatches of Marie Antoinette's dress fabric. Only a postcard left as a reminder. Though the book (with images of the patterns) is still available on Amazon, it seems... Gazette des atours de Marie-Antoinette, Queen's wardrobe 1782.
She was beheaded in 1793.
Thursday, 14 January 2010
Have gone to talk about Stitch and to gauge interest in embroidery demonstrations - and possibly classes.
But the highlight of the morning is meeting an old friend, Stella, who I have not had a chance to talk to properly for years. Had not realised that she had moved from her old house. Her new flat is full of embroidery she has collected over the years. Cushions arrayed on the sofa with a variety of histories..... A tapestry kit bought at a French stately home some years ago...
A cushion won at a Royal School of Needlework raffle
Another bought in Austria, with eidelweiss in each corner
Embroidered and beaded cushions bought in Malta when visiting her sister
A tapestry of a canal scene, worked by her sister.
The star of the show (not pictured) is one of Stella's most prized possessions. A Christmas bauble worked by Ruth Chamberlin, who lives in Rutland. Exquisite gold work, beading and applique - the star of Bethlehem and the Rose of Sharon. Ruth Chamberlin is going to embroider the new vestments at Holy Innocents' Church, Hammersmith, which is where I met Stella.
Wednesday, 13 January 2010
The Many Faces behind the Veil.
Reminds me of the origins of the Stitch project - one of the the initial aims was to demystify the hijab.
Monday, 11 January 2010
Mor Thunder, the curator at the V&A who helped with the project last spring, has emailed to say that it is all right to reveal her identity - as the previously anonymous visitor who was so complimentary about the Stitch exhibition at York Gardens Libray, Battersea. Am delighted that Mor liked the show so much, as her input was invaluable when Restart 50+ and the Asian Women's Group visited the V&A and looked at printed patterns for muslin with her help..
And she has sent some images of embroidery in the V&A's collection, that she referred to in her comments. In case anyone is interested in going along to see. (I think I will, certainly.). All photos © Victoria and Albert Museum, London
Friday, 8 January 2010
The roads pleasantly clear because of the snow, still throwing the country into chaos.
But the weather has hammered home something I was thinking about earlier in the week - the loneliness and isolation of so many older people in modern Britain and their too often insular- if not imprisoned - lives in residential homes.
Many are literally stopped from venturing out at the moment by icy pavements.
Read the Baring Foundation's report Aging Artfully on older people taking part in arts projects (Stitch is mentioned). A lot of interesting observations generally on aging. Notably that isolation is now known to have adverse effects on health. And an explanation of the terms 'Third Age' and 'Fourth Age'.
And finally - a record-breaking performance, surely, from the Royal Mail. A delightful Christmas card arrives from Margaret Andrews of the Institute for Germanic and Romance Studies, thanking me for inviting her to the launch of the British Sari Story in Brent in October 2007. (I first met Helen Scalway, a key partner in the British Sari Story at the IGRS at a conference organised by Margaret). It takes me a while to work out what has happened - but the post mark reveals all. Margarget posted the card on 22 December 2007. It has taken just over two years to arrive....
Thursday, 7 January 2010
People become flat and depressed through isolation. Classes - like the embroidery classes we are planning - could provide much needed interest and also be something to look forward to every week. They would help to forge new friendships. More stimulus and also another way of engaging with people who need to be looked after and cared for.
Am shocked to think that this large, insular, community is on my doorstep and that I have such little contact with it.
Monday, 4 January 2010
But maybe this would be a quicker alternative. Embellishing and embroidering the pastoral scenes already printed...
Sunday, 3 January 2010
Lesage, with its illustrious 150 years plus of history, has been frequently mentioned during the Stitch project. We have no equivalent to Lesage in the UK now. An interesting article in the Wall Street Journal in October 2009 shows that even the great French couture industry is feeling the pinch....Lesage was one of several companies recently bought up by Chanel.
Without ateliers like Lesage, Chanel couldn't make its most elaborate clothes. "This is not an act of charity," Bruno Pavlovsky, president of fashion at Chanel told the Wall Street Journal.
The companies Chanel bought are allowed to do business with other high-end fashion brands, even though Chanel requires that its own products are all sourced in France.
Francois Lesage, creative director of Lesage, says that while all his designs are created in Paris, he has been outsourcing about 15% of the ready-to-wear orders the company gets to Madras, India, since the late 1990s. "Does the master chef peel the vegetables?" asks the 80-year-old Mr. Lesage.
Wall Street Journal
Saturday, 2 January 2010
Friday, 1 January 2010