22 February 2009

Visit to Leeds

Nothing special about going to Leeds as I go to work there! Where I'm working heads away from the city centre and I don't get a lunchbreak to be able to explore the city itself, so today as DH was working overtime I had the opportunity to use my season ticket and go there to wander. Another reason for my visit was to see the Vintage Fashion Fair at the Town Hall which took place today. A fascinating mix of clothes, accessories, jewellry, old knitting and sewing patterns and haberdashery. Some women went there dressed in vintage clothing looking to add to their wardrobes. What was really fascinating was the building itself. Very grand Victorian architecture and the colours on the walls and ceilings it was all I could do not to stare at the ceiling.

This is the outside of the Town Hall. As you can see a lovely clear blue sky.

Below is a pic of the very ornate organ pipesAnd below looking towards the circle at the back of the hall. It was so light with the lighting and the sun shining in there was no need for using flash.

After there was a visit to the Art Gallery just next door to the Town Hall. Outside was this Reclining Woman sculpture by Henry Moore, who was a Yorkshire born sculptor. She wouldn't have looked this relaxed over a week ago with the cold weather and snow!

I had lunch in the Tiled Gallery coffee shop before going to see the exhibits in this Victorian building with a modern extenstion. There's more info about the gallery here. Janet has put some more pictures of the Tiled Gallery on her blog after her visit to the Gallery earlier this week (and she's taken better photo's of the cafe than me!).

Above is the wall with it's montage of tiles and below is one of the arched ceilings with hexagon tiles. There is a patch where some have been damaged, but otherwise a very impressive ceiling.Pictures above and below are of the stained glass windows in the library in the old part of the galleryAfter being at the gallery I had a chance to see some shops, went to Borders (I love that bookshop) and came away from that with a quilting magazine, Fabrications, to read on the train home. They have quite a few craft books, but I resisted the temptation.

14 February 2009

Got a job and visit to Royal Amouries

I've now got a little less time for sewing as I have a job! This is temporary and could lead to a permanent job, which I will have to think about. It's in Leeds city centre, so I have to leave the car at home and DH gives me a lift to the local station and I join all the other commuters at the ridiculously early hour of 7.30 am! He does a day's work and still has time to collect me from the station in the evening so it's a long day. But I should be grateful - it is work - I was hoping for a better work/life balance may be that will come later.

This Saturday, after much mucking about in the afternoon we went to the Royal Armouries in Leeds. DH has been wanting to visit here for a while. It is big and really want a whole day here, but this is what we've managed to see while here.

This wonderful staircase which has swords, pistols, daggers and armour on the inside of the staircase. The pic above shows up to the skylight at the top.
This pic is taken from the fourth floor looking out to one of the porthole windows. There are more on the outside of the staircase.
In the oriental collection was this Indian elephant with its amour. There are little flower and elephant patterns in the squares of the armour.
And this pic shows the front.
This pic shows a replica of a Chinese soldier with his horse.

The Royal Armouries are in a development called Clarence Dock which has a canal basin off the Calder and Aire Canal which runs through Leeds and there were windows in the museum to get views across the city. As I said it does need quite a bit of time to see all of the museum so a chance to go again. We'd also been to Pizza Express there, so I was taken for a meal for Valentines Day, though it was hardly romantic!

I hope that tomorrow I'll have a chance to stitch so I may have something of a sewing nature to show then.

03 February 2009


After the weekend in Richmond, I got in the car awkwardly and have got a bad back, ouch! My lower back is very sore and am getting a pain in the hip and down my right leg to the knee. Have had it checked out and am now taking ibuprofen and told to keep moving. Awkward to sit for very long, bit of a pain. I was looking forward to a weekend away in Devon this weekend, but have had to call it off as I can't drive for very long.

Meanwhile the story in the news yesterday was this...

Lots of snow. There were snow showers during the day yesterday and this was the view from the back bedroom window. 30cm of snow was expected yesterday night but it didn't materialise here.
Somewhere under there is my car! Today was a lot better; the sun came out and it's starting to thaw. The temperatures will drop tonight so will be very icy. Don't like the sound of that.
So yesterday I spent in hibernation. Stayed in and done some creative stuff. Above is my attempt at mixed media. This is my version of an item in Stitch magazine by Angie Hughes, but I had to improvise as I didn't have some of the items listed. The pink part is some scrim Bondawebbed onto a PVA'd calico base with strips of daisies on it. The blue bit is scrunched up tissue Bondawebbed onto the same base, with some slubby yarn zig-zagged on top. After painting some embossing powder was sprinkled on while the paint was slightly damp and I used a heat gun on that.

Also made was the BQL Calendar quilt challenge for February, with flip and sew strips. I used a variety of blue strips from my scrap bag, plus what remained of some blue bamboo print fabric that I had. I noticed that a couple of the fabrics used had frogs on, so they had to be included. So I named this little quilt "Frogs for February".

This is the back of the quilt on which I've used some of my hand-dyed fabric. I hadn't found a use for this and wouldn't use on the front of the quilt but is made ideal backing. Being virtuous and using up what fabric I've got, did it make any difference to my stash? None whatsoever!