Yesterday , I enjoyed an interesting couple of talks at Quilters Guild London and Middlesex Regional Day, both of them concerned with the people behind the textile:in Indonesia and in Mongolia. A bit of retail therapy was also in order from Textile Techniques ( some natural and indigo hemp from Thailand and 'Batik Transitions' book). I've bought several things from them in the past, including this old block printed 'selendang' (carrying scarf) from Java. I'd bought it 10 years ago thinking of wave/sand patterns but I haven't yet plucked up the courage to cut it.
Diane Gaffney also showed examples of finely pleated skirts by the Miao hilltribes of the 'Golden Triangle' in Indochina, intricately embroidered and appliqued. Some of these had been made into jackets - far more wearable. I'd bought this rather plainer example at a Knit and Stitch show- the indigo dyeing and batik is lovely and subtle. I'm wondering now whether I should unpick it, wash it and use it rather than it being stuffed in a box. It is in 2 sections so I could retain 1 pleated section. After the regional day, I used the opportunity of being in the area to go the the V&A , my favourite museum. They'd just opened a new bookshop and I browsed the extensive textile sections. Poring over the books in the sculpture section was .....Antony Gormley(instantly recognisable from using his own body as the basis for so many of his pieces). Didn't see him buy anything tho' despite a 10% discount but then neither did I.