A few weeks ago we started a stitching group at Leith Library (Thursdays 2.00pm to 4.00pm). We also do a 'Stitch and Chat' on a Monday morning (10:30am to 12:30pm) in the Bethany Shop in Duke Street,
(Sorry, I had to get the advert in there.)
The idea behind it was to stitch in a public place and encourage people of all skill levels, and none, to stop by. We advertised it as a free 'Self help' group, inviting anyone who stitches, or who wants to learn, to come along. There are two experienced crafters (that would be Sarah and me) in attendance, to provide advice or to help novices get started with embroidery, crochet and knitting.
It's been a slow start, but we now have a movable group of half a dozen ladies (and me), though they don't all come every week. I've still not managed to rope in any other men, but I'm working on it.
|The group, Sarah is the lady in the blue headband, Hannah is taking the picture.|
Anyway, as I said, I blame Hannah for this project.
"It would be really good if there was something people could try out at the Leith Gala," she suggested. At least I'm sure it was her. "I'm sure Jonathan can design something," Sarah dropped me in it.
I didn't dare to refuse.
Our groups are run under the heading of Inspiring Leith, and Leith inspired me (Sorry, bad pun) with this design.
I suppose it was the 'spire' part that struck a chord. Leith has many churches, and many church towers, but I can only think of one that has a proper spire. So it had to be there.
The design also had to be accessible and simple. The ground rules were straightforward. I would take it, along with a selection of yarns and flosses, to Leith Gala, and we would invite people to chose a colour and a letter and try needlepoint embroidery. The very brave also had the option of choosing different stitches.
The choosers did not have to consider what other colours had been used, they just had to choose their favourite. They would then start the letter and I would finish it later. I made another rule, which was that no matter how bad the stitching was, I was not going to rip it out.
When the colours have been chosen and the letters started, it's my job to come up with a background that brings it all together. No pressure then!
|Hannah hiding from the rain.|
They're an adventurous lot in Leith. So far we've had Basketweave, Cross-Stitch, Satin Stitch, Upright Cross and a simple Fan Stitch. (Maybe I should have kept the stitch dictionary hidden?)
I have agreed to bring "Inspiring Leith" to the groups and find new victims, so I'll post progress reports.