hello? is there anybody in there?

It’s been a while, well yes you know that.


I’ve been listening to Pink Floyd on the TV, so it sort of seemed apt.  Also while out in the car this week with one of my sons he had Comfortably Numb on the radio.

Right, where were we?

York was a blast as usual, there were less of us than in some years, and so we all socialised together in one group more than we did when the group was larger.  Nice comfy room and bed, and good food, and great knitting, spinning, and even more talking.

It was a wonderful weekend, and made even better when Andrew and I had a couple of days to wander round York and see things we’d not seen before, or revisit.

It did rain a great deal, and is still doing here in the UK and the River Ouse which runs under Lendal Bridge in the centre of York was well up and looked like it was flowing strongly with lots of wood debris floating in it.  I should imagine two weeks later and it’s even more in spate than it was.

While we were at York we went to a gallery in Wakefield, the Hepworth Gallery.  Stunning pieces of work by Barbara Hepworth on display, but what I’d really gone to see was a collection of pots collected over many years by Bill Ismay.

Bill (William) Ismay was a gentleman who lived in a two up two down terraced house in Yorkshire, and his house was filled with pots.  And when I say filled, I really mean filled.  The exhibition is 700 pots that were found in his kitchen/dining room area of his house.  No that is not a typo, yes 700 pots.

His house contained 3,600 pots, and he bequeathed them to the York Museum.  The York Museum is closed for a major overhaul, so the pots have been on a little outing.

I took lots and lots of photographs, unfortunately they are all on husbands new camera, I will bore delight you with them at a later date when I’ve got them from the camera.

We finally went to Bettys at York, and had a lovely omelette and tea, and a jam and cream scone, well worth a trip though it is quieter out of season and during the week.

I came back from York with a gorgeous cold, that attached itself on my chest for the next week, and I took to my bed almost as soon as we got home.  It really was a nasty little bug, and now Andrew has it, and it’s looking like it’s working its way round the house hold.

I was poorly enough and spend most of a week in bed, but Andrew has been really poorly and has had almost a full week off work, which is unheard of.

So plans for Unravel, which is in less than a fortnight now, went some what awry, and I won’t have as much big items with me as I’d planned.  I will have plenty of buttons, and coasters, and small bowls, some drinking beakers (I am practising handles for mugs), and hopefully some yarn bowls.

I wasn’t happy with my throwing, so went to a potting friend and she just walked me though what I was doing and just made slight adjustments to my stance as I was throwing, and it was amazing, just two inches clock wise with my hands made lots of difference.

I’ve been a couple of times, and we’ve come up with the design of the yarn bowls that I have, she is a knitter as well as a potter.

Potters, as with lots of crafts people often spend much of their time alone in their sheds, or studios or where ever just working away.  And then sometimes you get a negative thought in your head and it just sticks, and becomes a small mountain range.

This had happened with my throwing, it’s hardly surprising as I’ve not thrown properly since leaving university in 2006, so it was little wonder that I was lacking confidence.  So getting together for a few hours with someone who speaks the same language, has similar problems, has over come ways of working, knows what the whole job feels like is like a huge breath of fresh air.  Sylvia was at University the same time I was, though in a different year, and it’s been good to talk about the people we knew, and things that happened.

One thing I had never done was a technique called pulling handles.  I knew in theory what to do and I think I’d had a go a few times, but the finer points of the technique I’d never been taught.  So I’ve been pulling handles for mugs.  And with every new technique it needs practice, so my handles are not quite as I would want them yet, and I think we’ll be using all the slightly skew wift ones at home.

So I’ve been on in forced rest, and I’ve been busy, and busy is how it’s staying for the next week or so as I have work to finish and fire, glaze, fire, and decal, and fire again before the event at Farnham.


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