'If you make happiness your goal, then you're not going to get to it… The goal should be an interesting life."

Dorothy Rowe

Wednesday 1 June 2011

Other people…

come to the Yorkshire Dales to walk in the wonderful countryside.

We come and look at textiles. [OK, we do a bit of walking as well, but not walking, if you know what I mean.]

On Tuesday we went to Bankfield Museum in Halifax, which has a couple of textile-y exhibitions on at the moment, as well as one about sweeties. Some beautifully executed embroidery but it didn’t really grab me, although the costume galleries are always good.

Today we went to East Riddlesden Hall, firstly to have lunch in their excellent cafe [Yorkshire Ploughman's is recommended] but also to revisit the house and take a look at the garden, which we didn’t manage to see last time.

When we got to the Hall we discovered an exhibition about rag rugs [I can detect a textile exhibition from miles away]. Now rag rugs are not something I've ever really thought about, although I did try locker hooking once and got very exasperated with it as I couldn’t get into a rhythm. However this was a very well presented exhibition which made me think I'd like to have a go – so watch this space. And I’d forgotten that East Riddlesden has some excellent embroideries – I was pleased to see that they now have photos of the inside of their little stumpwork box on display, so perhaps my campaign to persuade the National Trust that their customers might be interested in textiles is paying off.

After lunch we moved on  to Cliffe Castle Museum in Keighley, because I’d seen an article in Embroidery magazine about ‘Between the Lines’, an exhibition of work by Naseem Darbey. Now regular readers will now that machine embroidery is not my favourite medium – but Darbey’s work uses FME in ways which would be impossible with hand stitch. The pieces are beautifully made and beautifully displayed - the photos don’t really do them justice because you can’t see the shadows – and I have a thing about shadows. I also loved her use of writing in the pieces. I won’t go into the thinking behind them, but there are details on her website.

There is another textile exhibition there too, of work by the Flax textile group, so Cliffe Castle is well worth a visit at the moment – and the building itself is gob-smacking!

Probably no more textiles before we go home – but there may well be some walking, and a bit of retail therapy…

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