A few weeks ago, over 100 Stitchtopia guests joined us at Yarnfield Park in Staffordshire for our biggest craft event of 2019 – The Stitchtopia Festival! With 24 different workshops hosted by eight of our most popular experts, it was set to be a jam-packed weekend of creativity… and it certainly was!
From Log Cabins with Japanese attitude to Crochet mandalas, the selection of workshops were fantastic & many people signed up for extra during the weekend! It was so lovely to see people trying something new or learning some tips & tricks from the experts.
The weekend was also a great opportunity to chat, meet new people and spend quality time with friends, as well as to do some shopping with our resident retailers. On the Friday evening we enjoyed a lighthearted sewing & knitting quiz (with a few unexpected questions on the county of Staffordshire!) Before dinner on Saturday evening, Mandy Shaw shared some of her photographs and a very personal account of her trip to India with Stitchtopia, back in March 2017. Her fond memories of the trip were lovely to hear and inspired many to consider joining us on our return trip to India in January 2020.
After dinner we welcomed Heather Russell from the Staffordshire Patchworkers and Quilters group who talked to us about the interesting work that she does for Project Linus UK. We all came away knowing so much more about the important work that this charity does. If you would like to know more, or to get involved, more information can be found here. Heather and her group also loaned us some of their lovely quilts that decorated, and were admired, in the public areas of the venue throughout the weekend.
On Sunday afternoon Pat Archibald gave a very informative talk on how her travels around the world have inspired her own quilting. It was so interesting to learn about how Pat leads her quilts through a journey – from an initial experience which influences a piece of work, all the way through to the carefully considered final touches on the quilt itself.
On Sunday evening, we welcomed Jessica Aldred as our speaker. Trained at the Royal School of Needlework, Jessica has had an exciting and varied career that had everyone enthralled. She even shared secrets of her time working on the most famous wedding dress of the Century which was absoloutely fascinating to hear!
The weekend ended with music from Nick Dadd’s Retro Roadshow (and a choreographed dance routine courtesy of Mandy Shaw!) – the perfect opportunity for everyone to let their hair down and dance the night away!
After a busy few days of crafting, we were eager to see what everyone had been working on – well we weren’t disappointed! Here’s just a few examples…
A Message From Alison
I’d like to extend a personal thank you to everyone that worked so hard to make the weekend so enjoyable, particularly all our fantastic experts, our speakers and the rest of the Stitchtopia team. As soon as we start plans for our next event, you’ll be the first to know! – Alison, Head of Craft Product