Yesterday morning I traveled to Cardiff to see the Creative Stitches & Hobbycrafts exhibition. My cousin who is very much in to textile design and embroidery, wanted to go and asked if I would be her tag-a-long. so off we went.
I didn't really know what to expect as this is the first sewing exhibition I've been too, I knew there would be lots of stalls, talks and demonstrations but surprisingly there was also lots products for sale, exhibitors, mini workshops and craft supplies for sale.
The exhibition area was much larger that I expected and we spent a good 3 hours wandering around, talking to stall holders, watching demonstrations and being inspired by the exhibition displays.
one feature that I did know about and one of the main attractions was the 'Dressed For Downtown' exhibit. There were 6 costumes from the period drama Downtown Abbey on display. They all looked as wonderful in real life as they do on screen, the costumes included the ones worn by Cora,Countess of Grantham, Violet, Dowager countess of Grantham, Isobel Crawley, Lady Mary Crawley, Lady Edith Crawley, and Lady Sybil Crawley.
The was a large display dedicated to the ancient art of lace making. It was lovely to find out how lace is made and the many techniques. The lace makers circle was also there hard at work hand making lace, though I never realised how skilled you have to be (and patient) to make hand made lace. I don't think I could do it, they use so many wooden bobbins that if I tried it I'd end up in a right tangle!!
I was amazed by the textile art, which ranged from quilting to hand and machine embroidery to needle work and applique, some of the pieces were quite a size. The colours used were breathtaking-ly vivid, and some piece honestly looked like paintings until you got up close and seen all the stitches, fabrics and yarn used to create it - like painting but using fabrics instead.
knitting and wool craft was also in abundance at this exhibition. One display that caught my attention was an exhibit called above and below the waves (click on the link for pictures.) this knitting project was genuinely outstanding. The exhibit was a 3D feature with a beach landscape complete with sand, sea and cliffs adorned with sailors, pirates boats and land sea life with the opportunity to walk inside and see the aquatic sea-life, seaweed, and jelly fish all genuinely knitted.
The felt making stall was also generating a crowd, run by local self taught felt maker Rachel Williams. I've been interested in felt making since a student teacher explained it to me a few years ago but up until yesterday I'd forgotten about it!! soon as I seen the demonstration (and got my hands all mucky by having a go too!!) it got me hooked again, and best of all the the stall was selling felt-making kits for £5 so I had to have one!! Rachel was also selling her makes which included adorable sheep along with flower brooches, scarfs and bags.
The felt making kit also came with instructions
I also took the opportunity to buy some discounted wool
All in all a very enjoyable and fun day it cost £7 to enter and there was lots to see and do I thought it was well worth the money and has opened my eyes up to attending sewing/craft exhibitions.