6 days into the instagram #100dayproject, a “quilt as you go “project, inspired by a beautiful faded vintage quilt I bought last year. Having a 100 day deadline and the fact I have to make a block each day means I will have to achieve my target of 81 squares (!) by the 10 July (the remaining 19 days will be spent joining the quilt together and finishing it off !)Read More
Having just returned from my first Slow Textiles Retreat in Morocco for 2019, I am delighted to share the details of the next one, which will be held 12-22 October. Once again the retreat is based in three locations, offering time in the city, coast and countryside of this wonderful country. Book online
Saturday 12 October
fly to Marrakech (Ryanair from Stansted or via Amsterdam from Norwich)
You will be met at the airport and driven by private taxi to your home in the heart of Essaouira (3 hr transfer)
Welcome drinks and traditional Moroccan dinner in the house.
Sunday 13 October
We start the day with an early morning visit to the local Sunday flea market ‘Joutiya’ and visit Naif artists’ studios, then return to the Medina for an orientation walk while we shop for dyes and locally spun wool. Enjoy a lazy afternoon exploring the winding streets, meeting artisans and being inspired by the colour and energy of the old town
Evening beach walk and sunset dinner at beach cafe
Monday 14 October
Morning - drawing and photography - inspiration in the medina.
Afternoon - fabric block print workshop at a rooftop studio
Dinner at a local restaurant
Tuesday 15 October
Transfer to Lalla Abouch, an organic Argan farm 20km south of Essaouira
Natural Dye Workshop 1 - dyeing hand spun wool with local plant dyes to create a palette of ‘colours of the sun’ for your weave workshop on Friday.
Wednesday 16 October
Natural Dye Workshop 2 - dyeing with indigo - learn how to create pattern in cloth with resist techniques and over dye the colours from yesterday to make secondary shades
Thursday 17 October
Visit the local village to buy produce at the weekly souk, then return to the farm for your Berber cookery class where you will learn how to grind barley from the farm to bake bread and make couscous to accompany the delicious Tajine you will enjoy for lunch.
Friday 18 October
After an introduction to using a simple loom, spend a leisurely day weaving a unique textile using the wool you have dyed.
Saturday 19 October
A day to relax, swim, explore the local countryside or book a trip to the nearby coast with a hike to a waterfall
Sunday 20 October
Transfer to Marrakech by private taxi, check into your beautiful riad Dar Attajmil , and enjoy a delicious sunset dinner on the roof terrace
Monday 21 October
In the morning your local guide will show you round the vibrant medina of Marrakech, visiting the souks, Secret Garden and a private collection of stunning textiles and objet d’art from North Africa. Afternoon is yours to explore further or enjoy a pampering session with hamman and massage back at the riad. Optional evening local music concert followed by dinner in a traditional restaurant.
Tuesday 22 October
transfer by private taxi to Marrakech Airport to fly back to the UK
I’ve just spent a week in ‘admin mode’ catching up on accounts, updating my website and organising things for my trip to Morocco next week. Lots of time spent on the computer, lots achieved but feeling a bit jaded and in need of some creative stimulation!
Taking a break from the screen, I booked myself onto the Book Arts Workshop with Art Pocket, part of the Norwich Makers Festival which has been running at The Forum this month. I went in with a ‘beginners mind’ looking forward to having a chance to learn some new skills and think outside the ‘textiles’ box for a change.
This week was the ‘super snow moon’ the brightest full moon of the year - and I based my folded book on the journey of the moon across the sky over my garden, experimenting with different types of papers, gelli printing (what fun, always wondered what that was about!) and working with cut outs, windows and layers. The 2.5 hour workshop was extremely well run by Hannelore and Becky and I left feeling inspired to experiment further.
I realise how important it is to break away from our safe space sometimes and just ‘play’. It is so easy to get caught up in the day to day tasks and rush to meet deadlines, we forget to just stop for a while and try something new!