The excitement may be more than I can bear.
I’d heard about the opening of the new premises of the National Needlework Archive, which used to be in Southampton but is now in Newbury, so we thought we’d take a look. [So great is my antipathy to driving in Southampton that I would far rather go to Newbury.]
So we pottered up there – and arrived in the middle of a power cut. However there was enough light to see by, so we had a good look round. The exhibition space is not enormous – the building was previously the chapel for Greenham Airforce base – but there were some interesting textiles, old and new, and a couple of sewing machines as well.
There is a wonderful irony in an exhibition of ‘women’s work’ in a place that was once famous for its efforts to keep women out. And, like their suffragette predecessors, those women used textiles to publicise their cause.
On the way home we popped into Whitchurch Silk Mill again. If you Gift Aid your entrance fee, you get free entry for a year, which is quite a bargain. Wensleydale always enjoys the technology, and their little exhibitions are usually interesting – at the moment there is one about scagliola, and another about wooden printing blocks. [I’m sure you know that silk is used in making scagliola. And of course you know what scagliola is, like I do – now.]