Wednesday, 30 September 2009


At the beginning of September the Rainbow Squares from all over the North West Region were on showat the Manchester Central exhibition centre – see if you can find yours in the green strips – I have found 2 of mine so I know they are all there.



Thanks to Monica Selway for providing the photographs – unfortunately I could not attend but they look a pretty amazing display to me – well done everyone who took part.

DON’T FORGET – they will be on show again at Quarry Bank Mill 10th and 11th October, together with part of the World’s Longest Embroidery to celebrate the Big Draw event.  Do try to go along.


Sue Tyldesley has sent me this article on her holiday to visit her daughter in Africa – an amazing experience by the sound of it.

Swazi Secrets

Whilst browsing through ’Contact’ magazine , I noticed the Embroiderers’ Guild trip to Swaziland and South Africa.-just where I was heading this summer to visit my daughter.

I mentioned it to her and it turned out that the group the EG were to visit was one her friend has been helping to support! They would be delighted to have a visitor , so with my husband and brother in tow , we arranged to visit.

The group was set up by Kathy who found herself living in Swaziland and liked embroidery. She’s tried to combine pictures of traditional Swazi life with traditional embroidery stitches to create pieces which can be made up into bags, cushions , glasses cases etc. Her office is above ‘Swazi Secrets ‘ another small business which makes soap and beauty products from the nut of the local Maruba tree. We had a trip round that too , having a go at pressing nuts !

Kathy took us out to meet some of the ladies who do the sewing (EG Swazi style !) See below. This took place in a local community room and the children came too -not always assisting the process! Each person involved has to buy a piece of fabric with a picture traced on and some threads (cost about 40p) and then goes away to embroider. When the work is complete they bring it back to the meeting , Kathy checks it and makes a note of it as the ladies get paid when the piece is sold ( each piece is sold with a label on with the name of the embroiderer who did it). It’s been hard work for Kathy teaching the stitches , but the women do some lovely work . It is to a very high standard and the business had been doing well. The recession has hit there like everywhere else though and they’ve a lot of stock at present . They’ve grown to the stage where they employ staff to manage /help with finances and Kathy was feeling a bit anxious.

If you would like to see their work try I’ll bring a bag along to the October meeting for you to see.



Thank you Sue - how wonderful it must have been to see the project ‘in action’ – do contact us if you were one of the EG members on the trip.

Tuesday, 8 September 2009


Hope you have all had good holidays - the weather has not been great so maybe you have had more time to stitch?
I can't be at the next meeting as I have a family wedding to attend, but I have actually been busy sewing for it - a small fabric and paper book to be passed around at the reception for the guests to sign - based on the colours and flowers that have been chosen. Just hope they appreciate 'modern art embroidery' or it might be consigned to a drawer somewhere - let's hope not.

Anyway, to business. This is just to let you know that the new branch programme is now on our branch web page, listing all twelve month's meetings and four full day workshops - all looks very interesting.

The monthly colour raffle is a great tradition in the branch and this year is based on Coral Reefs and their Inhabitants - this month's subject being 'The Leafy Sea Dragon' whose colours are gold, red and white and our Chairmen (yes - there are 2 of them sharing the workload) have suggested that the winner of the basket of goodies, also be given a picture of this 'creature' so that they can perhaps design and make a piece of work using the fabrics and threads that have been donated.
I'm looking forward to seeing how many winners will do this - when and if you do please bring it to a meeting and I will put a picture on the blog. HAVE FUN!!!!!!!!!!!

A picture of this creature is shown below, though the colours are not too clear.