Thursday, 28 April 2016

Why do people go to workshops

Over the last few years I have run workshops on a variety of textile and craft related subjects, most of which are things that people can learn from books or do by themselves at home so why do they feel the need to come to workshops?

After thinking about this and talking to the people at my workshops, it seems to be for the following reasons:

Being in the company of like-minded people
Not feeling confident to tackle a new subject on their own
Finding it difficult at home to put aside the time to do something for themselves
Enjoying having some time purely for themselves
Taking their mind off any problems they may have
Making new friends
Having fun and laughter
Wanting to try new subjects without having to buy lots of materials and equipment

So looking at all the above it seems to me that in a time when more people seem to be suffering from stress and anxiety than has perhaps been the case in the past, going to workshops can be good for mental health, as well as learning new skills.

I also feel that it is important for adults to have the opportunity to “play”, especially if they have jobs where they have to be seen to be professional and may be dealing with difficult situations and problems.

The above is, of course, purely my observations and I would welcome any thoughts you may have on the subject.

Saturday, 9 May 2015

Crow Day


Thought I would share with you something my friend Carolyn Saxby and I started on our Crow Day last week. I placed a viewfinder on an area of a collage I had made previously and working from the image within the viewfind used a few different mediums - pencil crayons, Markal sticks, watercolour pencils and collage  to recreate the picture, the photos below are of some of the results.  This sketchbook will be part of our exhibition "The Crow Show" which will be on in St. Ives Arts Club from 31st October to 13th November.

Next part of the process coming soon!

Sunday, 9 February 2014


At the end of January I headed up to Westpoint Arena, Exeter to the Craft4Crafters Show where I had a stand.  As well as selling my textile goodies I also ran some mini Crazy Patchwork Heart Workshops which were attended by some lovely people and you can see the photos below.

I also reconnected with Kim Thittichai who now has hair extensions as well as flashes of colour in her hair and I met Ingrid Wagner who was an inspiration not just for her big knitting but also her amazing tights and footwear and I look forward to meeting her again.

The lady winding the wool is Jenny who was my lovely assistant on Saturday and who I am grateful to for helping on what was probably the busiest day.

Monday, 27 January 2014

Waterstones Craft Group

Once a month I get together with a lovely group of people for what I sometimes refer to as "playgroup for adults".  We meet in the cafe in Waterstones in Truro from 6.30 p.m to 8.30 p.m. and I show them a variety of textile/craft techniques.  This month we made paper beads and you can see from the photos how the beads varied from person to person

Next month we are meeting on Thursday 27th February when there is a choice between Weaving a Bag or Knitting with more than wool.

New members are always welcome.  If interested in joining our happy throng please let me know.

Monday, 20 January 2014


Hello and slightly late Happy New Year to you all.  Thought I would restart my blog with a piece about a workshop I ran yesterday in a new venue in St. Ives called Barnoon Workshops.  This building used to be toilets in Barnoon Car Park but about a year ago Pete and Zoe from Cafe Art managed to buy it from Cornwall Council.  They have done a superb job of transforming it into an excellent venue for running workshops and as it is in Barnoon Car Park, parking to attend should be a bit easier most of the year.

So yesterday I ran a Rag Rug workshop teaching people how to turn unwanted fabric or clothes into textile art and am now looking forward to seeing Vicky and Sharon's pictures complete and Zoe's rug (I think that may take a little longer!).

I am hoping to run more workshops there and possibly my Creative Textile course there as well, so will post more information when details have been worked out.  In the meantime here are some photos from yesterday's workshop. (Still trying to get the hang of getting the photos where I want them!)