Last month I went over to the UK to visit my daughter and whilst there took the opportunity to run two days of workshops which were held at St. Matthews conference center in Westminster, London. St Matthews is a little church very near to Westminster Abbey – the area of Westminster is breathtaking with its’ plethora of beautiful historic architecture as seen below. St Matthews hire out rooms for conference venues, it is a central location in London and it was here where the classes were hosted. Just off the classroom was a lovely little courtyard with English roses and tubs of flowers where we had teas and lunches. I did not have my lovely daughter with me to take photos so was only able to take a few with my iphone and I am not known for my talents as a photographer – I normally cut off peoples’ heads but managed to keep those on just this once!
Although the events co-ordinator, Enver was so kind and helpful with the pre-arrangements I was not sure what to expect as the whole event was organized via email from Cape Town. I had to rely on Enver to cater for lunch and teas and because they had a prior conference on was not able to visit the premises until the day of the class. The day before the classes began it was announced on the media that they were experiencing an unexpected heatwave of 38 degrees. Anyone that is familiar with these old church buildings will know that they have double glazed windows (to keep the street noise out) that do not open, so I was naturally concerned that it would be less than ideal conditions for stitching! When I arrived early that morning, Enver had placed fans around the room and plenty of cold water was available for the students throughout the day, so it was fine, we soldiered on and there was lots of chatter and laughter, despite the circumstances.
Over the two days, students arrived from various parts of UK. We had Annie Penin from France, and Natalie Marais from South Africa. Eleanor Roome came from the Isle of Man for both days and was a great help to me in setting up the classes, thanks Eleanore. I was so interested to meet Kay Dennis, teacher and author of several stumpwork books – it is always good to compare notes and learn things from other designers. It was wonderful to meet so many talented ladies and have them in my classes – they were such a joy to teach and so appreciative of everything. I was thrilled to receive, on my return, pictures of some of your finished nuthatch birds and the lovely feedback. Thanks to all of you for attending – I know that many of you had to arrange accommodation in London over the busiest time of the year when Wimbledon was on and catch trains home at midnight, your efforts are appreciated. I do hope we can repeat the experience at some time in the future? Next time I will make sure it is in cooler months!
Next time I would like to share with you the next part of our strip to Edinburgh Scotland where I got to view the Mary Queen Of Scotts embroideries at Holyrood Palace. Meantime, wherever you are in the world, remember “Embroidery forever, housework whenever!” Keep smiling and happy stitching! Trish