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I ahve some more pics of the stitching at Tatton to share with you. There are also some more pics of the armour and battle.

Stitching first! The Old Hall was occupied continuously from the 15th Century so the display reflect this as various rooms are decorated in period style. Upstairs all the earlier rooms have been restored and this room is typical of the Jacobean period complete with reproduction crewel work bed curtains.

Crewel bed hangings

Crewel bed hangings

Detail of the hangings

Detail of the hangings

This is a typical tree of life design and is beautifully worked. The volunteer looking after the room didn’t know anything about crewel work so I was telling him about various aspects of the design – hopefully he found it useful!

Downstairs there were Victorian rooms with some beautiful whitework laid out on one of the beds.

Whitework garments and pillow covers

Whitework garments and pillow covers

I find it incredible that such fine work was done on everyday garments – one of the items on display was a child’s pinafore which had obviously been well used judging by the stains on it!

Whitework detail on the nightgown

Whitework detail on the nightgown

We also watched the firearms and cannon display by The Company of Ordnance, there are usually these weapons on the battlefield but we are the other side of the field from them for safety reasons during the battle so it is nice to see them close up.

This is Bucket lighting the cannon – pity we don’t have sound cos it’s very loud! Bucket is a very talented embroiderer as well as making things go bang – you can just see the blue bag hanging from his belt with a heraldic horse on it.

Bucket making the cannon go BOOM!

Bucket making the cannon go BOOM!

Esme, one the kids, was taking pics on the Sun so we got some really good photos. Here is one of the guys all ready for battle.

All ready for battle

All ready for battle

Ellie and I on the battlefield

Ellie and I on the battlefield

Keith after the battle

Keith after the battle

 I think this is a great shot – very atmospheric!

One of the battle flags

One of the battle flags

And finally a pic that sums up what I love about reenactment – sitting round the camp fire late at night just mellowing!
The campfire

The campfire

 Hope you all have a good week!

Yesterday we went to Ellie’s college for the Fashion Show and Art, Textiles and Graphics Shows. Ellie has just finished her A levels – she did Art, Medieval History and Classics so now eagerly awaits her results in August!

The standard of work was fantastic – much of it at the same standard as the degree shows I have been to at the University here – there are some very talented kids out there!

These pics are of two of Ellie’s final pieces – they do not photograph that well being 3D pieces but hopefully you can get a flavour of what she has done.

Seven Deadly Sins

Seven Deadly Sins

This is a collage piece with images representing the seven deadly sins – there are matchboxes on the piece for each sin with small artifacts in that represent lust, gluttony, envy etc.

The history of film
The history of film

This piece has lots of tiny slides that she has decorated and themed to represent important  moments in film history. They are difficult to see but she has lots of lovely detail – my favourite is the ‘Saving Private Ryan’ one which has a surround made of film wrapped with barbed wire.

The following are some pics of other students’ work from Textiles and Graphics. Well done to all of you and every success for your future careers!

3D Textile development piece

3D Textile development piece

Fabulous machine stiching on an evening dress

Fabulous machine stitching on an evening dress

Corsets were very popular - this is a really pretty one

Corsets were very popular - this is a really pretty one

A development piece with machine stitching and applique

A development piece with machine stitching and applique

A beautiful development piece with a variety of textures

A beautiful development piece with a variety of textures

Development work on soft toys

Development work on soft toys

Hugo the mouse

Hugo the mouse

The last two pics are work from Ellie’s incredibly talented friend Sarah who quite rightly was awarded best in show for her work making toys for seriously and terminally ill children. Not only did she make the toys but extra clothes for them and little books with illustrated stories about them – wonderful stuff. She is going on to University to do a degree in illustration and I am sure she will be very successful. Her work reminded me very much of one of my favourite blogs,  Little Cotton Rabbits.

Am having a quiet weekend after a very busy week which will be nice – have done no stitching this week due to late nights for various reasons so am looking forward to getting back to normal next week!

We always really look forward to June as we have two family birthdays – Jake’s first followed by one of our favourite events then my birthday at the end of June.

Jake was fifteen last week – luckily the scanner is not connected to this PC since I had my switch round so he is spared the embarrassment of a baby photo ( he was very cute!) but here he is looking very grown up with some of his pressies.

My very gown up (and very tall!) son

My very lovely (and very tall!) son

We went to Tatton Hall near Manchester this last weekend – this is a really good venue for an event,  there is a very nice 15th C Old Hall and we camp near a copse of trees in the deer park with beautiful views of the parkland. It is also the nearest event we do which is a bonus!
It was a little bit wet on Sat and for our pack up – tent hanging in the garage drying again – but not too bad and it stayed fine for the battle both days. Here are the boys in our camp all ready for battle on the Sat.
The boys from OFK and Team Falchion ready for battle

The boys from OFK and Team Falchion ready for battle

These are our friends Stan, Denise and Carl from Companions of the Crow looking very scary.

The Crows

The Crows

Lady Bardolph was again looking very lovely in a cream and blue outfit.

Lord and Lady Bardolph

Lord and Lady Bardolph

Me and the kids stayed over till Monday and had a nice evening on Sun relaxing in the camp, playing cards and watching the sun go down…
Kids mellowing in the tent

Kids mellowing in the tent

Another brill weekend!

This weekend we were camping again but here in Yorkshire. Some friends, Jane and Patch, who live locally have a beautiful barn conversion which used to be an old mill complete with large mill pond – see pic below.

The mill pond

The mill pond

They host a little gathering every year where we all go and camp, bbq, have a bit of a sing song round the campfire etc. in the field attached to their house. This year we were entertained as well by friends who have band called Stringfellows.

Stringfellows band

Stringfellows band

Ellie and Jake chilling out to the band

Ellie and Jake chilling out to the band

 We had a really lovely time and it was nice to catch up with a  few people I have not seen recently.

Our little weekend away tent

Our little weekend away tent

Last year I downsized a bit and bought a smaller tent that I could take more easily on the train – the pic above shows us in it this weekend. It is a Vango 500 and is a great tent for a couple of nights away with plenty of space for sleeping, kit storage and cooking if the weather is not good. It has its first outing in on a clifftop in Cornwall last year when we did the Tintagel event and survived a very windy pitching and a few heavy rainstorms which is a very good test of any tent.

We still have the very large tunnel tent (nicknamed the aircraft hangar) which I will use again when I get a car, two small two man tents (one of which is Ellie’s) and a medieval tent. I love tents – could quite happily own loads and loads and love spending time when camping going round and looking at other people’s tents!

The weather was fab – apart from a short but heavy shower about 10pm Sat night there was sunshine all round. It has been really hot today as well so after we got home and cleaned, sorted and re-packed the tent ready for the event next weekend (hurrah more camping!!!) I did a bit of a garden tidy up.

I have also finally put together the new bike I bought myself a while ago – it was a winter sale bargain but it has been in its box waiting to be fettled. Being a well trained girlie I was able to put it together with a bit of help from Ellie keeping it steady as I sorted the brake calipers. Just need to get a new bike pump and I can be off!

My new pink bike!

My new pink bike!

Had another bbq for tea tonight – must be the 7th one so far which is a bit of a record for this time of year – weather has just been so nice we need to make the most of it and I love cooking outdoors.

Have had a busy week costume making – have completed a new peasant dress for Ellie and three pairs of brais (trousers) for Jake and two of the boys in the group. Am off tomorrow to a goldwork day workshop at my Embroiderers’ Guild so am really looking forward to that. Will post some pics of what I do later.

Saturday was my very last day of teaching for this year and Ellie has now finished all her A level exams so we are looking forward to a very mellow summer of camping, stitching and generally chilling out. Life is very good!!!

It has cooled down a bit in the last few days sadly but we have been having some really fab weather here recently! Apologies for the lack of posts but what with work and general busyness have not had time to do much. However today was the last teaching session of the year so apart from the huge piles of marking I have to do things will be a little quieter from now till Sept!

We had a wonderful show at Ashby de La Zouche Castle the last May Bank Holiday. Traditionally this is a very wet event which we packed lots of warm gear for but it was so sunny that lots of us got burnt on the Sunday (it was actually a little bit warm for being in armour but can’t complain!). A brill weekend and I have some pics to share with you of the event.

Our little medieval tent in the evening sunshine

Our little medieval tent in the evening sunshine

Jake relaxing in the evening

Jake relaxing in the evening

Round the fire with our lovely friend Keith

Round the fire with our lovely friend Keith

Our headress display

Our headress display

I finally managed to give the girls their scissor keeps which they were all very pleased with – this is a pic of them displaying their gifts!

The scissor keeps with their owners

The scissor keeps with their owners

Over the years I have made them various blackwork and needlepoint gifts for them and Tracy and Bev had some of theirs with them so I got a chance to take some pics as pre-blogging I didn’t keep a record of my stitching.

Decorated initial in needlepoint as a pin box made for Tracy in one of her earlier medieval roles

Decorated initial in needlepoint as a pin box made for Tracy in one of her earlier medieval roles

Bev's pin box - a decorated M

Bev's pin box - a decorated M

Bev also had the blackwork pin box I had made for her as the start of the set – last year I made needlebooks – of which there are pictures in the Finishes 2007 link above if you are interested. Bev’s motif is an oak leaf so I have used this or acorns in all her gifts.

Bev;s blackwork pin box

Bev's blackwork pin box

We have had wonderful weather here at home – last weekend was gorgeous which was lucky as I have had miles of hedges to cut and lawn and general garden stuff to do. We had 3 barbecues in four days which was lovely and ate outside for all our other meals as well – it was fab!

Jake waiting for his sausages to be cooked

Jake waiting for his sausages to be cooked

Ellie revising in the sun

Ellie revising in the sun

There now follows a whole string of event and holiday weekends, only got a couple where we are not busy between now and September so lets hope for more lovely weather! Are off camping at a friends’ place this weekend so more prawns on the barbie and beers in the cooler – it is a very nice life indeed!!!

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