Newsletters 2017


Hello Everyone,

Gosh, where do the months go,? Here we are on the cusp of yet another Christmas Social and I’m happy to report one of your committee Pamela W has been busy organising a beautiful spread for our luncheon. And I am stepping forward to bring our dessert this year to give Kathryn a break from her Vanilla Mouse. I am producing a Nigella Lawson Italian Trifle.!!   I’ll say no more and leave it with you to taste and give me your verdicts. ! It is going to be one very busy 4 hours ladies.  So I would like to ask for all your cooperation in helping with it’s smooth running. We are having to use a timed schedule to fit everything in.

Order of events as follows :-

1). Arrive at 12 noon for 12.30pm Lunch (prompt).
    PLEASE SIGN IN at the Table and buy one each of the three Raffle Tickets on sale.!

   One for our usual monthly Colour Raffle, this month it is “Natural”,
   One for Entering The Bursary Award 2018 of £50.00 for 2 Winners and
   One for Kathryn’s Fun “Christmas Wrapped Parcel Game”.

    Place your Wrapped Christmas Parcel on Table provided for Kathryn’s
    Fun Game later in the afternoon.

    The Winners of the 2 Bursary Awards of £50.00 each will have 12 months each to
     create a piece of work of their choice and will be expected to give a short talk on   
     how the original idea of their creation was born and how they have worked it. This
     will take place at our 2018 Christmas🎄Social.

2). Following Lunch, we have 2 presentations, both recipient will be surprised.!! 😊
     and any announcements necessary to our membership

3).  2pm Val’s Christmas decoration takes place, so don’t forget your plastic bottle
     tops and Christmas fabric, thread, needle, ✂️
, ribbon for hanging and any
     embellishments you wish to “Jazz Up” your decoration.

4). 2.45pm - Last Years 2 Bursary Winners Presentation from Glen Purchase and
    Sue Sissling. They will give a short talk on their inspiration for their pieces and will
    display them close by for members to view.
    This will be immediately followed by the 2018 Bursary Award Raffle Draw.

5). 3.00pm Kathryn will then give her usual  “Fun Game” of opening our Wrapped
    Christmas parcels” this time with an added twist to the game.!!

The close of our day will be busy so if I may ask each of you  to help clear away, returning your chair to where it belongs and offering further help before you leave. Thanks to you all, in advance.

Further topics of interest:-

We have Meg Starkey our Area Representative coming to join us on the 4th and I would like us all to offer her a really warm welcome. Her last visit was memorable to her, she stated it was the friendliest branch she’d ever visited.! Quite a welcomed remark I think.!
I have extended an invite to a past valued member to join us at our Christmas Social. Lots of members know her and some are still in touch with her. She is Pat H and circumstances in her life have changed, making Membership of our branch difficult. She has a chauffeur in Patricia B, thank you Patricia.

Lots of you will know we have had a recent Bag Making Workshop, in actual fact 2, run by Kathryn. We had it booked in for the 14th October but unfortunately it didn’t materialise as it wasn’t booked in. A long story but all came out well in the end. We took the original participants and gave them the choice of 2 dates, the last one took place last Saturday the 25th and the previous one Wednesday the 15th.

Now there is a reason for telling you this, some bags were not quite finished and Kathryn offered to bring her specialised equipment to our Christmas Social to help finish those members unfinished bags.! So there will be a table in the top corner where it will take place. Didn’t want you wondering what was going on.!! Hopefully there will be lots of members hand/machined made bags for you to look at. Those who took part in the “Make a Better Bag” and finished them please bring them with you, I would like to take a photo of all completed Bags for our “Blog Spot”.  Needless to say we all had fun making them and Kathryn did us proud, her patience seems endless.! Is it Kathryn.?

Now a few facts that are normally included in our News Letter.

Attendance October meeting 22 members.         November 18 members.

Sales Table October = £62.60.                              Sales Table = £60.90

Raffle October.          = £16.00.                              Raffle = £16.00 ?

Look forward to seeing you Ladies on Monday December 4th and let’s have a great Christmas Social together.

Sue, Chair Pendle Branch

October / November

Hello everyone, here is your “Fresh Voice” (that Joan eluded to in her last News Letter of July/August last), that of your Chairman. Wish me well as this is a learning curve for me.! I cannot boast I have got 66 such Letters under my belt, !  but over the following months I promise to try and give you interesting Newsy ones, with as many facts as possible. Joan will be a hard act to follow as I’m sure you will all appreciate.

For those of you Members who were at our September’s AGM, will remember when it came to voting in new Officers it was somewhat unclear who was taking on the various duties Joan had automatically done. In committee meetings prior to the AGM we had decided we must take on these tasks as no other person had come forward to shadow Joan over her last 12 months. It was pointed out to us by a long term EG member that some other branches ran their branches in a more simpler way, and this idea was taken up as the way forward for our Pendle Branch, so has been adopted.

Common sense will tell you all this is a new venture for some of us and will naturally take time to bed in, and I would ask you all to understand and be patient whilst we all settle in to what we hope will be a satisfactory new method for our happy branch.


October 2nd Peg meeting.
Proved a very lively affair with plenty going on. We had a lady Jennifer Douglas visit us with her late mother’s Stash of materials, she had several tables with these on and did a good trade with those of you present. I had negotiated that she gives our branch 20% of her takings and this amounted to £30.00. Brenda and Eileen were very pleased and in no way distracted from their excellent days takings as several members had brought in goods to sell on for our Sales Table Display.

In the afternoon we had The Golden Hind company to Talk to us, Sarah Rackstraw represented the company on behalf of her mother who was taken ill on the day. She gave an interesting talk with lots of wonderful examples of Gold Work that was stunning and many threads etc for sale on side tables. We all had an enjoyable albeit a shorter than normal afternoon, because we had to finish earlier due to the Hall being needed  by another hirer for A Wake of a well thought of local resident of the Village who’d sadly past on.  So we were rather rushed to close our days proceedings.

Our Sales Table and Raffle takings would normally be publish here, but Wendy our Treasurer was not able to be with us and both Brenda and Patricia had to take these funds home with them.  I will publish these figures in next months News Letter after Wendy has banked them following next months November meeting. Certainly this meeting was an usually stressful one for your committee and really hope none of you were put out by our early closure on the day.

Later in the month we experienced a most unfortunate episode. That of having to postpone Kathryn’s “Make a Better Bag” Workshop on the 14th. Apparently it had not been booked in by the Hall’s management.!  A long story and one that can only be put down to experience, our paperwork drawn up by Joan in May to the booking clerk was in order I can confirm. After much time we have now got 2 replacement workshops for this event, one on the Wednesday the 15th November the other on the Saturday the 25th November, and both are now fully booked, very good news.!  So all ends well as the saying goes.! To those who were involved in this unfortunate happening thank you so much for your patience and bearing with Kathryn and I and hope this in one way distracts from your enjoyment of your booked workshop, Enjoy.

Our November gathering looks as if we can expect a fun afternoon with Jaqueline Smith who explains the “Struggle of a Modern Day Textile Artist”, we all struggle at times with our individual projects so one can imagine that of an artist who has to rely on her creative self to make a living.!  This months Raffle is “Natural”, I’m sure you all have loads of these lovely textural fabrics so do have a rummage. But do keep some in reserve for a project I will be telling you about on the 6th November, that has materialised out of NWRegional AGM of the 21st last.!! I shall be looking for support ladies.

Our Regions AGM took part last Saturday the 21st October in a hotel in Garstang just outside Preston. It was a great success, I was there with Joan and Patricia to support our Pendle branch and be there to see our very own Val C do her last duties as our Regional Chairmanship, she looked fab in her attire and freshly tweeted pink hair high lights that matched her dress,!, Good on you Val, you are an inspiration, you closed on a high as our new chair took her place on top Table.
During the proceedings we learnt details I shall speak of to you all as Pendle have been called to join with Parbold  branch at next April 21st Regional Day. We got chance to meet up with some of their members who were very friendly and we look forward to simply chatting to EG members wearing sachets across our chests.! Simple, that’s an easy peasy task and no doubt a good day out.

I would like to tell you all that our Christmas Social is taking shape nicely and will prove yet again to be a fun filled day, more on this in next months News Letter.  Just a hint, please can I ask you to squirrel away milk/fruit juice carton plastic caps, you’ll be needing a few.!,

So look forward to seeing you all on the 6th November around 12 noon. Be there to share your day with friends.



Our July meeting seems a long time ago, and now we are coming up to the first meeting of the new Branch year. Hope you have all enjoyed the break, although we could have done with some rather more summer-like weather to enjoy. Our last meeting, the Summer Social was a great occasion once again. We enjoyed another delicious buffet and there was plenty of time to chat and look at the Bell Trophy entries for our competition Land and Sea. There was a dead heat in the voting between two equally attractive pieces by Carole  and Patricia, but after the second vote the trophy was awarded to Carole. Well done everyone who entered, there were some lovely pieces on display, and what a shame there were not two trophies!

There were 21 members at the meeting, plus Jennifer for her third visit – we hope to welcome her as a permanent member in September. A slimmed down Sales Table nevertheless took £9.45. The RAINBOW raffle was well supported and raised £20 and Alison, Lesley and Jennifer were the lucky winners. Sue S had kindly donated a lovely book by Diana Springall to be raffled; it raised £15 and was borne away by a delighted Alison.

Once more Kathryn had organized an Everyone for Themselves raffle which resulted in much laughter as prizes were opened and we attempted to shield our loot from covetous eyes. Jenny drew the last ticket and there was much indecision as she debated between her prize and two others, but then her dilemma was solved when one of her “victims” she said she would rather like the book Jenny had won, so the transaction was done and we all breathed a sight of relief!

We were also delighted to present Jenny with a chrysanthemum plant in appreciation for all her cheerful help over the year. Lots of pictures of the day on the website.

The list for Kathryn's Build a Better Bag workshop on Saturday, 14th October opened and closed again immediately with a full membership. If you booked, please bring your money next time or to the October meeting (2nd October) at the latest.

Our next meeting is the AGM on 4th September. I am sending out the Agenda and 2016 Minutes with this Newsletter. If you are unable to attend, please send me your apologies, and also the names any volunteers or nominees (with their permission of course) for the Committee to either Sue S or myself.

Also attached is a letter from headquarters offering a £2 discount on their fee for 2017/18 if subscriptions are paid before 30th September, bringing the full subs down to £56. If you can bring your money / cheques to the AGM please do so, but otherwise send a cheque direct to Wendy – her address is on the letter. If Pendle is not your main Branch you should get this discount through them and just pay your £23 Pendle subs. There is also a facility to pay by BACS, but I don't think that will trouble any of us, but please let Wendy know if that is what you have done.

Well, this is my very last Newsletter – the 66th I have written. I have enjoyed doing it over the years, but it is time for a fresh voice. I look forward to joining you as an ordinary member now.

See you on 4th September


We welcomed Harriet Lawton to our meeting in May. Harriet was involved with the Cataloguing Gawthorpe project last year which culminated in an exhibition at the Hall. Strangely, her work loosely echoed Katie Chaplin's talk in May, as her early pieces were inspired by kintsugi which is the centuries old Japanese art of repairing broken ceramics with a special lacquer dusted with powdered gold. She encapsulated the broken pieces in thin fabric and stitched gold thread between the shards. From there she went on to explore water-jet cutting, cutting motifs from ceramic plates, and then replicating china using silkscreen printing.

There were 23 members at the meeting, and Jennifer paid her second visit; together we raised £18 with the Mauve raffle (won by Nan) and £47.65 from the Sales Table. The raffle colour for July is a free-for-all - RAINBOW.

Sue outlined some of the changes that will take place from September when I step down from the post of Secretary, but there are still details to be sorted out and I know she still hopes to hear from more of you about how you can help.

Ten of us enjoyed the lovely Calico Gardens workshop last Saturday, producing our own pale imitations of Angie Burt's exquisite work. She was so cheerful and helpful and we had a thoroughly enjoyable day. You can see pictures on our website. Our next workshop is on Saturday, 14th October with our own Kathryn Thompson, and is entitled Build a Better Bag. The workshop list will open at the July meeting.

Val collected the Capability Brown work for the exhibition at Fairfield Mill in Sedbergh – it started on 17th June and will run until 30th July. If you are planning a day out it should be very interesting, with work from branches all over the North West.

July is our special Summer Social and we have treats in store. Following the success of the Christmas meeting we will begin with a buffet lunch (at around 1.15 p.m.), once again paid for by the Branch, so no need to bring anything. The Summer Competition, Land and Sea, will be judged. with the winner holding the Bell Trophy for a year as well as claiming a prize. We will also be holding another of the most enjoyable “everyone for themselves” raffles. To take part just bring a gift wrapped prize (embroidery related) and buy a ticket for £1. I think Kathryn might have another surprise up her sleeve as well, so it should be a busy and enjoyable afternoon to send us off on our summer break.

See you on 3rd July.

Katie Chaplain gave 19 members and a visitor an entertaining talk about mottainai at our May meeting. This is the Japanese concept of regret at waste and we were shown wonderful examples of the way in which clothes and other household textiles are repaired and recycled until it is hard to say which was the original material. She ended with a demonstration of furoshiki – the wrapping of gifts in a silk scarf. I was particularly impressed by the bottle carrier that emerged!

The Bronze/Copper raffle raised £16 for Branch funds and was won by Val and our visitor, Jennifer. The colour in June is MAUVE. The sales table raised £23.10 – thank you everyone. Don't forget, Brenda is always looking for good quality items for the table, which is such an important contributor to our Branch income.

The are still places on the Calico Gardens workshop on Saturday 17th June. Angie will be supplying kits at £5 so there is no long list of requirements to worry about – just bring an 8” embroidery ring, your scissors and thimble, and your lunch of course.

Fairfield Mill in Sedbergh has expressed an interest in hosting an exhibition of the Capability Brown work from various regions in the North and Val has asked for those who exhibited at Gawthorpe to loan their work again for this event. She has a very limited time to put it all in place so please bring your Capability Brown pieces to the June meeting – thank you.

IMPORTANT: Sue and members of the committee are having a special get together before the main June meeting to discuss how to manage the post of Secretary, which becomes vacant in September. It is important that the committee then discuss their conclusions with as many of the membership as possible and she has asked that you please arrive no later than 1 p.m to allow time for a full discussion before the speaker arrives.

There are a few days left of the exhibition by Ribble Creative Stitchers, A Kaleidoscope of Stitch, at Howarth Art Gallery in Accrington which runs until 4th June. Opening times are Tuesday to Friday 12 noon – 4.45 p.m. Saturday and Sunday 12 noon – 4.15 p.m.

Finally, our speaker is Harriet Lawton who was the artist leading the Cataloguing Padiham project at Gawthorpe in 2016. Her talk is entitled Cataloguing Gawthorpe.

See you on 5th June

Another lovely turn-out for our April meeting – 23 members, and we were visited by Christine Poole and her husband David. David has presented us with a disc containing photographs of the exhibitions they have attended over the year – something we can all enjoy during a meeting in the new season perhaps.

Val gave us a brief account of the Guild AGM in Edinburgh. 120 members attended and we were all complimented on the Capability Brown exhibitions, of which there were more than 40 over the year. The Guild is still struggling financially, and the subscription will be raised to £35 for 2017/2018,but the move to Bucks County Museum, Aylesbury will save money in the future. Keeping the collection at Hampton Court cost £75,000 per annum, £35,000 in Richmond and this will now reduce to £15,000 per annum when the set-up is complete, as well as giving the Guild a much more public face.

The list has opened for our next workshop, Calico Gardens with Angie Burt on Saturday 17th June. There are still places and the list will be available at the May meeting. If you have already put your name down but not yet paid, please bring your money to the meeting.

Once again Brenda and Eileen did us proud on the Sales Table and raised £66.60. The Yellow raffle raised £16 and was won by Glen and Jenny. May's raffle is BRONZE/COPPER – a nice one to win!

After all the business we settled down to enjoy a most entertaining talk by Gillian Roberts on The Corset Unlaced. Her illustrated talk had us alternately laughing and gasping in horror – how lucky we are to be able to “let it all hang out” these days! It was bad enough to think of ladies of leisure being so tightly confined, but the idea of doing your housework in one of those instruments of torture was extraordinary. Then she showed us diagrams of the effects of so-called “tight lacing”, and pictures of people who still practise this as a fetish – OMG!! Enough of the horrors – we also got to enjoy Gillian's own beautiful work close up. If you want to see more, her website is and shows her exquisite embroidery in great detail.

Don't forget the deadline for your contribution to the table fall is the July meeting, and that is also the day for judging our annual competition – Land and Sea. So get your needles busy.

The May speaker is Katie Chaplin who will be talking to us about Mottainai and doing a demonstration of Furoshiki, which I believe is wrapping with fabric. I looked up mottainai and found it is the concept of regret at waste – so we shall see; intriguing!

There were 27 of us at the March meeting, including new member Fiona and old friend Sue Bartlett visiting from Blackpool. It was particularly good to welcome Dianne back after her long stay in Australia.

We then settled down for Priscilla Jones' talk My Work. It looked for a while as though technology was going to win as we struggled to get the laptop and the memory stick to talk to each other, but with Sue B's help it ended up with Technology 0 Humans 1 in extra time! We were then able to enjoy Priscilla's presentation of her lovely work, from her earliest college pieces to the present day. There was also a fascinating display of her more recent work – collages and wire sculptures of cups, spoons, pieces of cake, birds etc. It was interesting to hear how she achieves her delicately coloured collages using calico, paint, gesso and appliqué techniques.

There was a fine display of Fabulous Fish and Mini Masterpieces – thank you to everyone who brought theirs in for us to admire – Sue T's fine fish swimming about on its illuminated stand was a particular favourite! Our next workshop, Calico Gardens with Angie Burt, is on Saturday 17th June and the list will be opening at the April meeting.

We thought the Sales Table did well last month, but Brenda and Eileen excelled themselves in March with an amazing £110.66 raised! The Black/White raffle made £20 and was won by Christine and Louise W. The April raffle is YELLOW.

Higham are holding their annual Fair over the Spring Bank Holiday, 29th and 30th April and
1st May, in a change to their usual Easter formula and have invited us to take part. Sue S has been recruiting members to man a stall in the school on the Sunday and Monday. Rather than an exhibition, the idea this year is to sit and sew and display a few items of your own work. She would like to hear from you if you are willing to come along for a few hours.

At the meeting I made another plea for someone to shadow me so that I can step down as Secretary in September. I have done this job since the branch was formed and I am proud to have been able to make a contribution to its success, but it is time for a change. To keep our Branch growing and lively we need fresh enthusiasm and new ideas. To make the job more manageable I have analysed everything I do and divided it into three distinct new roles; Secretary, Membership Secretary and Assistant Treasurer (to assist Wendy and, hopefully, to eventually take over the Treasurer's role). Job descriptions were handed out, but if you were not at the meeting and would like to consider taking one of these roles I will have some copies available at the April meeting. This is an excellent opportunity to learn what's involved before taking over completely. So please do consider taking on one of these jobs and making a valuable contribution to the continued success of our branch.

Gillian Roberts is our speaker on 3rd April with her talk, The Corset Unlaced. Sounds intriguing and I shall look forward to it and to seeing you all.

After what seemed like an endless gap between December's and February's meetings,
March is already upon us. The first meeting of the New Year was very lively with 24 members and a visitor taking part in Kathryn's What will you do with what you have been given workshop. Lots of time to catch up with friends and work Mini Masterpieces on tea bags – apparently it is A Thing! Thank you Kathryn for putting in so much effort for us and judging by the volume of chat everyone enjoyed themselves. We had no time for a show and tell, so although Sue T sent me a picture of hers for the blog, it would be lovely if you could bring your finished masterpiece with you on 6th March for us all to admire.

We did very well with fundraising too. The Green raffle raised £23 and was won by Lesley and Louise B. The March raffle is Black/White. The Sales Table excelled itself – everyone must have been in need of retail therapy – and raised a magnificent £61.70. Brenda and Eileen, you are stars. In addition we did a re-run of the Book Auction which this time raised £34. So thanks to all of you and to Nan for donating the books. The committee discussed the success of the Christmas social and with our healthy bank balance we agreed there could well be another delicious finger buffet coming along in July.

The Fabulous Fish workshop took place on Saturday and everyone had a great time. I will be putting lots of pictures on the blog shortly, but it would be so nice to see all the sea life in person, so please could any participants bring theirs along on 6th March? Our next workshop isn't until June but should be another goodie – Calico Gardens with Angie Burt.

A couple of reminders and prompts – The Table Fall: This project has taken rather a back seat, and we would very much like to get it finished. Kathryn has set a deadline for the squares to be brought to the JULY MEETING. Just to refresh your memories, we are looking for 10” squares with a 6” central embroidery on cream or off-white calico. You can do anything that is pertinent to where you live in the area. We already have some local landmarks, witches etc. and others from more distant members. Kathryn has volunteered to make the cloth and mount these squares and also work “Pendle Embroiderers” on it. Please do have a go.

Second prompt is a reminder of the Summer Competition: Land and Sea to be awarded at the July Social. Any technique, any item, just what inspires you from the title. There is a prize for the winner!

Our March meeting will a time to relax and listen to Priscilla Jones talking about My Work. You may be familiar with her work as she has exhibited at The Platform Gallery in Clitheroe on a number of occasions. If you Google Priscilla Jones Embroidery you will find lots of images of her quirky collages and 3D mixed media wire sculptures of domestic items – should be fun.

It seems a long, long time since our December meeting and even Christmas and New Year are becoming a distant memory, but I hope you all had a happy time. Our December meeting was a great success and a lot of fun. 26 members, including new member Tori and a visitor enjoyed the buffet and Stephen Watson's entertaining talk and demonstration. His wonderful display of origami was amazing, way above our expertise of course, but at least we can all fold our t-shirts neatly now!

The Everyone for Themselves raffle was once again a great success. We raised £26 and I hope not too many beautiful friendships were ruined as the prizes swapped hands! The Blue raffle raised £13 and there were enough goodies to award three prizes, which were won by Glen, Beryl and Christine. The February raffle colour is Green.

The was our first year awarding bursaries and the two lucky winners were Sue S and Glen. Congratulations to them and we shall look forward to hearing how they spent their £50 at the Christmas 2017 meeting.

There are still places available for Fabulous Fish, the February Workshop (Saturday, 25th February) with Nikki Parmenter. Please let me know if you want to come along. Will those of you who have already booked but not paid, please be sure to bring your fees to the February meeting.

Brenda has asked for more quality goodies for the Sales Table, so do please think of her when you are sorting through your stash. Magazines are always very popular. Please bear in mind though that we have very limited storage space and we will be asking anyone who brings a large amount of fabric or quantities of books or magazines to take home anything that is unsold on the day – so little and often should perhaps be the rule.

Tickets for the Regional Day in Lancaster on 22nd April are now available to order and I will be collecting names at the February meeting. Tickets are £25 to include refreshments and lunch. I will also be taking names for copies of the North West Region Journal. This is always full of information and pictures of what is going on in our Region and at £1 is an excellent bargain.

Our February meeting is the practical with Kathryn “What Will You Do With What You Are Given?” which was postponed from last November. She asks that you bring the usual sewing kit with small scissors and selection of hand sewing needles. And, if you want to, but it is by no means essential, a tiny charm or button or other focal feature but tiny really does mean tiny! Kathryn will bring plenty of everything in the way of threads and other stuff as well as mini canvases and easels to buy for £1.

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