The season for changes..

I thought I would give you a rest from dress up dates (It’s still being made at the tailors- grr!) to give you a travel tour update.

Well we have been away for almost 6 months now, I think we have made the most of every scrap of time here so far, had lovely holidays etc… & lets not forget missed a WHOLE winter! However from here on in the school holidays are all used up & the thought of waking the children every day at 6am for the same old routine in eyeball meltingly hot weather was making me/some of us feel a bit like ‘it’s been fun but…’ & a bit gloomy, so when I was told that there might be a chance of us (me & the children) just doing the 6 months contract & going back early it seemed the best of all worlds- a winter in sunny South East Asia then back home to Cornwall for a lovely summer ūüôā Lets do it!!

We are not going back to Gorran Haven straight away (sorry lovely friends in Gorran, although we will visit as soon as we are back) we are going to have a bit of a travel about first, see some friends & family (visit babies born but not yet seen- apart from on skype). Which brings me to the reason for this post (apart from to warn friends to get nice drinks on ice in preparation) IMG_3632

I like the idea of sort of ‘singing for my supper’ as we make our way down through the country so I thought I would offer felting workshops as I go. The workshops will be ¬£25 per person for a day (bring¬†a packed lunch to share) all materials will be included, I would like to keep the groups¬†quite small & relaxed so everyone can have a chance to make something they want to make- think tea cosies made from local wools, slippers for those crisp spring mornings, felted picture artworks, bags, purses… etc you get the picture, ¬†something for everyone & it should then be really good fun!

The locations we will be visiting are Holmfirth in West Yorkshire, if you live around there & would like to take part let me know? Wales near Monmouth & we could possibly fit in a workshop around Stroud way or The Forest of Dean if you fancy? then we will head back to Cornwall for the beginning of May for the workshops at the Bedruthan Steps Hotel. (I can let you know the dates individually)

The plan then is to be around West Penwith in Marazion for the summer with plenty of time for workshops. IMG_3633

Please let me know if you would be interested in attending any of these courses & please share these events with people locally if it is possible? I really look forward to meeting some of you that I feel I already know from on here & my facebook page & meeting some new people as well.

Best wishes,

Lou

More dress decisions- nearly there?

IMG_3428IMG_3499dress10 Ok ignoring the batik designs (I wish there was a plain linen cloth here to try) which looks better?

Style 1? Style 2? Or Style 3 (My tailor got a bit creative with no 3 & changed the measurements so not only has she¬†taken out¬†the pleat & made the skirt fuller on my request she has also raised the waist- maybe it looks better, it doesn’t feel as comfortable…?)

I know they are only smallish changes but they will be more noticable on the wool fabric, do i need to try once more with the fuller skirt but with the waist a bit lower where it was meant to be or does the skirt look better with the pleat in style 2???

dress1¬†The original design- I think no 2 is the closest to the design but does it look the best? I think¬†I might feel really relieved when this bit is done, the fabric has come & is made into a dress¬†&¬†I can get on with my bit of drawing all over it with lovely wools ūüôā

Dress take 2

Slightly trimmed shoulder straps, a bit narrower on the hips & shorter in length- better?

IMG_3499 IMG_3500 I’ve given you a close-up shot of¬†my lovely henna hand as well.

Dress making.

I mentioned on my facebook page last week that I have been selected to take part in an exhibition with a number of other makers. We were asked to design piece to be shown as part of a collection at the Wonderwool Wales Event for 2013 http://www.wonderwoolwales.co.uk/exhibitors-list.html. April 27th-28th April.

The aim of this project is to champion the possibilities for organic wool. They want to create a talking point, a think piece, a chance to raise the debate about the value of organic, locally produced, sustainable wool. As you know this is a topic I’m passionate about (www.cornishwoolproject.wordpress.com) but also it’s a little bit of a dream come true….

As a little girl I spent hours drawing dresses that I was going to one day get made, it was my very favourite hobby (& the favourite thing to do for my little girl now, this is her design picture).dress

I’ve made clothes myself in the past & even did it for work for a while but always from a pattern, not from one of my drawings, I’m not a nature dressmaker I’m not a perfectionist in any way! so the process of drawing a design, having it agreed as a good one & actually getting it made was so exciting. I decided that once the wool fabric is sent to me I will take it to one of the tailors here who could whip together something beautiful as a base which I could then needle felt the details onto with my inspiration coming from the British hedgerow.

This is my designdress1

HOWEVER terrified by the thought of ruining the wonderful organic wool cloth being sent to me I thought it would be good to do an experiment first & get another dress made just to see how it turned out. Finding fabric out here was a bit of a challenge, most of the fabric shops were a sea of polyester- not my thing until I came up with the idea of making it out of Batik sarongs (the only cotton or natural fibre material to be found for miles) it took two sarongs to make up my pattern & I chose a quite earthy blue & russet tone. dress2.2

Next I found my tailors, a nice couple working in a little workshop, they were happy to take my scribbles & turn it into something real, their workshop was full of wonderful old trustworthy looking machines.dress3dress4 dress5 dress8 dress9.9

A few measurements & notes later & my design was ready to be made.

dress9

This was all 2 weeks ago & I got to collect my dress today, I had to take in the sides a little & I was expecting it to be more flared at the bottom but apparently there wasn’t enough fabric to do this so I might have to try once more before the real thing (I’m enjoying the dresses I’m getting out of this ūüėČ )

IMG_3440 IMG_3441 IMG_3428The photos were taken by my children so don’t expect them to actually be in focus but I’m very happy with it so far. I can’t wait until the real dress happens!

This project has been organised by Organic Wool Wales, Llynfi textiles & Ystrad Farm Organics http://www.organicwoolwales.org.uk/

The fabric being sent to me to use is GOTS certified, Welsh Wool Fabric.