Branch News

Bristol Branch - Public Stitching Event at the Red Lodge Museum in Bristol

The Bristol Embroiderers' Guild took part in the Elizabethan Day event at the Red Lodge Museum on December 2nd. We were following the Elizabethan theme and stitched lavender bags with members of the public, both children and adults. People who had never stitched before joined in. We are hoping to gain some new members as a result of this event. You can see photos at:

Worcester Branch - Christmas Tree Festival

9th December 2017 - 4th January 2018 at Worcester Cathedral, College Yard, Worcester WR1 2LA

Worcester Gingerbread peopleWorcester Embroiderers Guild is taking part for the third time in the Daisychain Benevolent Fund Festival of Christmas Trees held at Worcester Cathedral. The aim of Daisychain Benevolent Fund Trust is the Preservation of Health and the Relief of Sickness for children and young adults in the Community. Over 80 twinkling trees uniquely decorated by national and local companies, charities and community organisations will line the cloisters of Worcester Cathedral. Our members stitch and decorate the tree with the current theme. Previous years have seen us decorate the tree with purple and silver stars and then red and gold baubles. This year the members have let their imaginations and skills loose on gingerbread people and as you can see from the photograph they have had some fun, we even had a punk rocker!!

Eastern Region Branches of the Embroiderers' Guild and a Guinness World Record

Suffolk Puff Making Stringing the Puffs
Making Suffolk Puffs Stringing the Puffs

In conjunction with the Museum of East Anglian Life and four branches from the Eastern Region - Suffolk East, Suffolk West, Colne & Colchester, and Waveney - an exhibition was held at the museum in Stowmarket. Running alongside all summer was a project for a Giant Caterpillar made from Suffolk Puffs, organised by Sue Cranwell, Madelaine Nightingale and Linda Elmy, hoping to make the Guiness Book of Records for the longest Suffolk Puff Caterpillar. Workshops were run during the summer schools, and the Women's Institute, craft and sewing groups as well as the branches attended.

The verification took place on Monday 23rd October and two independent witnesses counted the puffs and a professional architect measured the length. It was photographed and video recorded. The verification took place in Abbots Hall Barn and the caterpillar was three and a half lengths of the barn - 90 metres 38cm long. Counting the puffs took just under two hours and there were 5864 puffs!

The branches are now awaiting the verification from the Guinness Book of Records and the caterpillar will be on display at the museum next season.

Getting Ready for puff count Guinness World Record Day
Getting ready for the count Guinness World Record Day

Fun Palace in Cheltenham

Fun Palace CheltenhamFor the 2017 Stitch Day Cotswold branch went to both Cheltenham and Gloucester main libraries to stitch and talk to members of the public. As a result, Cheltenham library invited us to participate in their first Fun Palace on Saturday 7th October. Four of our members went along to support this venture armed with pieces of our work to display, leaflets to give out and plenty of prepared felt leaves and bookmarks to be stitched.

We were positioned just inside the main door so that we would be seen by everyone as they came in and were able to show off our branch banner which drew people over to us. It was a bit quiet to start with but as the morning progressed we had a steady flow of adults and families continuing for the rest of the day. We were kept busy by enquiries from adults who were interested in our branch, and families with children who wanted to come and stitch with us – mostly bookmarks. Some had not sewn before, and others were able to 'do their own thing'. One little girl even wrote me a 'thank you' note for helping her while she did both a bookmark and a leaf.

There was an interesting mix of activities to sample elsewhere in the library including safe cracking, robot programming, wildlife Jenga, spaghetti towers as well as children's authors and poets giving readings. There were also a couple of ladies from the County Council Adult Education service who were offering silk painting – it was interesting to learn about their service, and in turn they took away some leaflets to give out to their participants – a useful networking opportunity. We came away feeling that our time had been very well spent.

You can find out more about Fun Palaces here:

Following this event I received the following email from the library:

Just a quick email to say a big thank you to the Embroiderers' Guild for attending the Cheltenham Library Fun Palace on Saturday.

The Embroiderers' Guild had such beautiful works on show it was a huge draw for people entering the library and it was wonderful to have an activity where participants could sit and relax in a tranquil zone after/avoiding the mania in the Children's Library.

Comments to me from participants raved about the activity and some said they wanted to take up knitting and/or embroidery in the future (your activity was the only event I had comments from people who felt actively inspired to take the craft up post-event).

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