Wednesday, 25 July 2012


Today was my birthday!
Amongst some special things including 2 Natalie Bray Pattern cutting books, I also got some of these...
wireless headphones

and a CD of one of my favourite groups.

So, now I can carry on listening when someone in the lounge is trying to watch something.

and I can listen to my audio books from the computer and the sound of the machine won't drown them out! Perhaps cancelling out the sound of the Singing Troubadour next door on his karoke machine. cross fingers

We went to Woking to see Snow White and the Hunter and had dinner at Cafe Rouge. then came home to some of my husband's new gastronomical interests - ice cream from his new ice cream machine - £9.99 on sale at Aldi! we have had a new kind of ice cream every night this week. My idea of wonderful!

Monday, 23 July 2012

first official day off

Due to increasing difficulties with recovering from a mere 2 1/2 hours teaching per week, I took the decision to stop teaching... at least for now. I do have a few late units remaining to mark, but after that, no more travelling back and forth to Reading.
I had a lovely group of students this year. The majority are excelling in all the aspects of the work for the City and Guilds Fashion courses. I will post more about their work tomorrow when I can. (EDIT: I've been form filling today/Tuesday - end of course tutor evaluations - and was nearly done at about 10pm when it all went poof and dissappeared. so glad dearest clever man is a computer expert and found all but 15 minutes of it.)

So today, I worked all day on the Stretching Art piece. I just need to finish stitching down the hanging sleeve tomorrow.

It is late, so I will just leave you with this photo of a work of art that was in the building where the graduation photos were being taken. (photos mentioned yesterday) I don't know the name of the artist.

The photo is very skewed because of the angle I was sitting (too many photograph crowds below it.)I thought the colours and the shapes were fascinating.

Here is another version using the perspective tool on Paint Shop Pro. Not sure if it truely resembles the original as seen from a different point of view, as I didn't get a different look.

Sunday, 22 July 2012

photography in the 1600's - or not

So, last week after the graduation, we waited for our son to have his official graduation photo taken. My husband said...Founded in 1689? they hadn't even thought of photography then!

So, I took a photo, like you do.

Then whilst cropping it to post here so you could join in the humour, I thought, well, maybe they made frames in 1689 and it progressed from there.

So I thought I would look it up. Oh! robes. Okay, this company has moved with the times haven't they! They provide robes to hire AND with hiring a robe, you can also pay to get your photo taken in the robe. Win Win.

Saturday, 21 July 2012

sewing going on

In spite of the series of posts about things that happened at the beginning of June, there has actually been sewing going on around here.

sewing buttonholes
Oh! unsewing buttonholes and redoing them on the right side.
Don't use crepe if you want to see if the pattern is right at last. It ends up sagging so much that it feels way too big.

I started this dress, but realised it was way too in your face for wearing to the graduation.
I will finish it this week for going on holiday instead. I had in mind the hope of summer when I saw the fabric. but in reality that colour green is not so great for me. So, I am going to bind the neck with white. The buttons are just stuck on with pins at the moment to see what I think.

I sent off the Tin mine piece for the Festival of Quilts. Wow. It has been nice to not be frantically stitching to the last minute. and it is not even due til next week! Makes a change to be early.

And then today I have been working on a piece I was putting off. You know how strange it is when you begin to fear a piece, but when you start working it is quite easy? Well, that's what this had become.
It is a piece for the Stretching Art exhibition at PNQE - Pennsylvania National Quilt Exposition. The theme this time is Fountations. So this one is Sewing 101: Seams. I need to finish the edges in some way and see what else it wants. Next week I will do a companion piece. And then they will be on their way  - early again! What fun!

Thursday, 19 July 2012

Lingering Question

We got to Guildford Catherdral for the graduation ceremony early, so while waiting, I looked around a bit more.

The burning question, though, had to be...

What must it have been like to make the curtain on the wall of the Cathedral?

To put it in perspective...the small arches near the lower corners of the photo?

They are doorways.


Wednesday, 18 July 2012

graduation day

A few photos of yesterday the BIG day for a Certain Young Man

Much Ceremony
 Being Announced - he was the only graduate for the Physics with Finance degree

Being greeted by the Pro-Chancellor

Happy graduate

Two long legged men...Loved the billowing cloak - just like in the films

In all his finery

And with the Stag

Graduation present - secondhand I hasten to add!
All in all a lovely day.
And in case you thought you recognised the Pro-Chancellor, you probably did.
She is also a Deputy Lieutenant of Surrey.
She was very lovely with each of the students, greeting them as if she was ever so proud of them. Beaming with her signature smile.
If they had won an award, she actually had a little conversation and then proudly watched them walk over to receive it.
For our son, she asked him if it was rather lonely being the only one doing his degree. He replied that there had been one other person doing it as well.

Tuesday, 17 July 2012

Guildford - 4

So, this post is scheduled for Tuesday. My son is graduating from the University of Surrey - Guildford today. The ceremony will take place in the Cathedral. We visited and looked around the inside when we went to Guildford with my sister.
I showed the doors previously.

The Cathedral, as I mentioned, is a more modern Cathedral. The building itself doesn't strike you as Cathedral-like, in fact it has sometimes has been discribed as more factory-like! But, it was the first Anglican cathedral to be built on a new site in the south of England since the Reformation. Construction had to be halted during WWII, and it was finally finished and consecrated in 1961. You can read more about the process of constucting the building here.

While the exterior of the building does look mid- 20th century, there are sculptures which have been done in a modern style, but do make you think of the sculptures from churches in the middle ages. For instance, you wonder if in 100 or more years, time will have softened the angles on Charles Gurrey's carvings like this one.

But then some things have been done in an older style, too.

And there is a beautiful gold angel at the top which can be seen from a distance as you approach. I also spotted this cockerel at the top of another part of the building.

Inside, it looks and feels like a 'normal' cathedral. The stone used gives it a lightness and even perhaps joy that you don't feel in older buildings.

There is a mixture of decoration that give the feeling of age combined with other items that have a definite modern feel, like this altar.

this stag in the floor under the crossing.
It marks the summit of Stag Hill, the hill on which the cathedral stands.

and these traditional looking pieces of needlework.

There is a Regimental Chapel to the left side (as you look towards the altar).
the Chapel altar

decoration over one of the entrances to the chapel

I thought the arrangement of these organ pipes in the Cathedral look like a modern sculpture themselves!

I seem to have gone on a bit, but it is such a contrast from what you normally see with centuries old churches and cathedrals in England.

I will see what other photos I might be able to get today during the Graduation Ceremony. but mostly I will be celebrating a Certain Young Man with a Degree in Physics with Finance.

Monday, 16 July 2012

Guildford - 3

I seem to be attracted to doors and other possible 'portals'. Perhaps connected with my enjoyment of stories set in alternate realities where people from here end up going there.
at any rate, here are a few doors and portals of interest on our day in Guildford.

Use your imagination and think about where you might go if you went through this portal.

or knocked on this door
who lives behind this knocker?

I showed this already, but somehow these type of arches say 'entry way to somewhere' to me.

This is one of the Cathedral doors.
and another that was open
detail of left side
detail of right side

I will show more of the Cathedral another day, but I think it is fascinating how they have so many visual links to ancient cathedrals while doing it in a modern style.

Sunday, 15 July 2012

Guildford - 2

One of the interesting sites in Guildford is the Castle set on one of the prominant points in the town.
Just a few photos of the outside. We decided not to pay to go inside.

about the castle palace
about the arch

There were some wonderful gardens surrounding the castle. I am not sure when this feature was added and the background, but it really draws you to go and see.
and then you discover you'd like to go see where this leads.
Well you would if two long legged men weren't waiting for you to get on with catching up!

The landscaping was wonderful

Themed beds for the events for 2012

sorry, I tried to sort the fuzz on this.

and the story about the garden

Go see it if you are near Guildford. Prepare to walk up vertical paths.