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Reg's Renditions July 2019
I have been ambushed into making a few comments to accompany our new programme and newsletter. So here goes:
I remember my father once advising me not to look back as you cannot influence the past, you may, however, be able to exert some control over the future.
Whilst understanding the sentiment it is impossible not to sometimes think "what if?" With this in mind I was reflecting recently that it is now 18 months since we moved from Loughborough to our new home in East Leake. At that time we were all excited but a little apprehensive. I believe we all agree it was the right move at the right time.
One thing that has impressed me is the community spirit among the Traders, Businesses and Residents which is so evident in the village.
We hope we have, in some small way added to the diversity of the village and can play our part in ensuring that the various events continue to thrive.
One of the reasons for our move was the need for more space which has been more than fulfilled by our present premises as we now have two teaching areas for the range of workshops that we run (take a look at our current programme) We are delighted that so many of our cstomers from Loughborough still attend and equally that many from the village and surrounding area have joined us. We like to think that as well as learning a new skill or perfecting interests you already have, there is a strong social aspect.
I'll finish as i used to with a bit of nonsense (no comments please)
Question: What is a Harrier?
Answer: Someone who is more like Harry than Harry.
Till next time
Taking Care of your Soul through Stitching
Looking after your Mental Health – a blog about taking care of your soul.
Mental health is so hot in the press at the moment, and is being covered in the soaps, with coronation street dealing with male suicide amongst others.
I don’t know about you, but I have found it really hard to watch, but yet I am so pleased they use the platform they have to address such vital issues that are a reality for too many families. Story lines like this get me thinking, about my own wellbeing, the health of my children, family and friends. I think its so important to talk. Open up to someone, anyone. I do think this is easier said than done though, for so many people isolation becomes their best friend and yet their worst enemy. I am no doctor, but I am human and have struggled. Practising mindfulness seems to be a fashionable thing to do now and whilst I think it is an amazing tool, it is hard to master (trust me I try) but to tell an anxious mind to be quiet is like telling a two year old to stop having a tantrum in the middle of Tesco! – it takes patience and more patience, something an anxious mind doesn’t always have heaps of, so persevere with it.
There are so many practical things you can do, which focuses your mind on a task in hand, therefore not asking you to focus on the now with breath but achieves the same result with focus. Sewing is one of them it takes you away from your thoughts, from the dark, from the anxious grip. I find hand sewing works well, so I always have a red work piece on the go, nice and simple – following lines with a running stitch, I’m not asking my brain to tackle hard patterns or intricate designs at a time I’m trying to get it to rest, nor am I having to concentrate too hard. After a few minutes it has got my attention and I can feel everything calming down, after half an hour or so the adrenaline stops coursing through at the speed of lightening and I can breathe again. The logical part of my brain starts to work again, and yes, I feel calmer (and I’ve achieved something).
I can write about my anxiety and share it with people in blog form, as the writing in itself is calming, you ask me to discuss it in person the embarrassment kicks in, god knows why, as I certainly wouldn’t be embarrassed if I had broken my leg, or hurt myself in an accidental fashion, but for some reason my brain not quite being in zen with the rest of my body is something to be ashamed of, the confident, stubborn woman in me wants to be different to that, I want to be the person that stands up for what’s right and tell people there is no shame in struggle, because there isn’t. But like anyone I have my hang up’s and this is one of them, I wish it wasn’t. However, it is manageable and there is so much you can do to help yourself, even when you feel you can’t reach out to talk to someone, learn to sew, knit or crochet – after all what’s the worst that can happen? You might not make a master piece in your own eyes the first time you try but you’ll have got through another hard half an hour and your body will thank you for it.
I have realised through the years, there is only so much bleach a bathroom can take, only so many times you can mop a floor in a day to distract yourself from your feelings, and equally there is only so many times you can temporarily hide under your duvet before it starts to feel too comfortable under there, that in itself is a scary place to be.
‘Sewing mends the Soul’ A quote I heard the other day, that resonated with me in so many ways. When I look back over some of my work I know I did from a difficult period its empowering as I’ve turned it around, into a small achievement of some description.
Our First Exhibition in East Leake!
OUR FIRST EXHIBITION IN EAST LEAKE!
We are now relaxing slightly after our charity exhibition which took place over the last weekend in October, we were a little apprehensive having always held it at the Parsih Church in Loughborough, and hoped that people would support us in our new venue, and thankfully, it was a success. Wen we moved to East Leake, we wanted to become part of the village community and therefore holding the exhibition at The Academy on Lantern Lane, made perfect sense. We were able to hire a huge hall and there was plenty of free parking. In addition, we hoped that it would bring several hundred people into the village and we were not disappointed. We had three lovely days and despite torrential rain on the Saturday, we still had lots of visitors who were encouraged to have a walkabout as we had a quilt trail with several shops displaying quilts in their windows. We raised £2346.89 with the profits being divided between Asthma & Allergy Research charities, a £750 donation to the ELPFC, East Leake Playing Fields Charity. A HUGE Thank you to everyone who helped make the occasion such a triumph!
The Festive season is upon us....
With Christmas round the corner, everyone seems to be stitching like mad to get all those promised presents finished in time for the big day. Children are counting the sleeps down, and if you are as mad as me you have an naughty elf on the shelf to remember to move every evening! With all of this and shopping to do as well, it certainly is a busy time of year. I'm lucky enough to still have young children at home who remind me of the magic of the festive season, and though it's exhausting repeating the answer to the 'how many sleeps is it mummy!' lots of times through any given day, it reminds me what Christmas is all about in our house. I am sewing like crazy trying to finish four Christmas stockings and Santa and Rudolph mats for the children and we have had a mad rush on our Christmas kits, patterns and panels as others do the same. There is still time!! I sew in the evenings mainly, and find a glass of wine helps with the late nights stitching (My applique Santa might be on the wonky side due to the wine though!).
Unfortunatly this year, politics is definately taking the edge off the Christmas spirit as we frantically decide which party to vote for to get the best outcome for our children, family and country. I sit handstitching the binding on a table runner that should have been finished last week! Watching the debates and the news hoping for a lightbulb moment, instead i feel i will have to vote with my gut instinct and keep everything crossed for a brighter future in the years to come. I hope none of you feel as utterly confused as i do.
The last few weeks here at QCC have seen an influx of Christmas kits being made and sold and we love seeing your creations! There are going to be some amazingly dressed tables this Christmas day. We hope your families love your handmade quilts and more, I always love a handmade gift as it is made with such love. We still have a few Christmas kits left in the shop for table runners, quilts and more as well as some felt kits that the children can help make for decorations. So pop in, there is still time to create a master piece for someone you love, or to add to the festive decor in your own home. The kits also make wonderful gifts, as they are beautifully packaged in boxes with ribbon.
We know Christmas can be a very hard time of year for a lot of people and they can hopefully find comfort with their families, friends or hobbies. We think of you all, and all of the staff here would like to wish you a very happy Christmas and a Peaceful New Year.
We recently asked, via Facebook, for anyone who wished, to drop off their Christmas cards as we were doing a recycling project. Our message was shared on the village website and the response has been fantastic! We will have enough cards to help Una do a Christmas craft with the children from the village in the Autumn which is fabulous so, a huge Thank you to everyone who took the time to drop their cards into us. They are being put to very good use and pictues will be on our facebook page very soon.
What's New?? January 2020
We began our season of workshops and courses on 4th January, as always, it is lovely to welcome friends, old and new. As usual, fabric has been arriving, and we always gt so excited unpacking the boxes. We have just taken delivery of the new collection of 'Guess How Much I Love You', plus Stilletto from Moda in shaes of grey, black, cream and tan. We also hae 'Memoirs' from Thee Sisters, also Moda, and of course, we cannot forget the little ones; there is a nursery collection, 'Sweet Dreams' depicting cute sheep in lovely colours. Any day now we should receive a beautfiul Japanese inspired collection, 'Norum', 'Sunny Bee' which depicts sunflowers and bumble bees and a new collection from Tilda. These are just some of the many collections winging their way here over the net few weeks, culminating in the new designs from Liberty, 'Winterbourne', which is Liberty Fabrics latest quilting collection. Winterbourne House, draws inspiration from the Arts and Crafts movement - a creative period from c. 1860-1910 when English designers led a return to high quality, hadcrafted pieces, creating elegantly stylised interpretations of botanical and historic motifs. Inspired by an exquisite Arts and Crafts period house, the collection draws upon the interior and the family who once lived there. Traditionally screen printed onto Lasenby cotton 'The Winterbourne Collection' is available in three complimentary colour ways, offering subtle hues of pinks, greens and neutrals to contrast rich berry and navy, ready for you to craft your own master works, and there will be kits and patterns to give you inspiration.