Tuesday 10 December 2019

Weaving and tiles in Marrakech

More images from Linda's recent visit to Marrakech.

This time, she visited a local textile business run by Faissal who took her to see his workshop in the city. He is the third generation of his family to carry on the family’s weaving business. 

The family weave a range of scarves and shawls in plain or twill weaves in wool or cotton. They use yarns in irresistable soft and subtle colours - and a few have been bought over Linda's visits!

Note the wonderful tiles and decoration on the walls and ceiling. The young man winding bobbins is sporting an amazing T-shirt which somehow compliments the traditional tiles behind him!!

Linda Babb

Sunday 24 November 2019

Prehistoric rock art

I'm using the opportunity of a mixed media sketchbook class at theyard:ARTspace in Cheltenham with Sue Brown to play with ideas for a future BBs exhibition on the theme of Inhabit.

Here, I’ve been looking at prehistoric British rock art and exploring the marks, possibly symbolic, to be found. 

The plan is to develop some of these into stitched samples & see where that leads.

Corrine Renow-Clarke

Wednesday 20 November 2019

Visiting Marrakech

Wandering the souks of Marrakech (a favourite haunt of hers) yesterday afternoon, Linda found these exquisitely embroidered textiles.

A close look reveals the simplicity of the stitches used, cross stitch on one and chain stitch on the other - timeless and without boundaries both of them.

It just shows, you don't have to be complicated technically or break dramatically new ground to make an impact!

Linda Babb

Tuesday 19 November 2019


Brunel Broderers will be taking their Bloom exhibition to Illminster in the autumn of next year, augmented with some new work.

I'm continuing to develop the work previously shown in Cheltenham and to replace some pieces which sold. Currently, I'm completing one piece I was working on before the exhibition opened but didn't have time to complete.

45 cm square when mounted and framed

It feels as if the next step now is to try out all sorts of other ideas using the same core images but with a different approach since I want all these pieces to relate to one another and to be part of a developing series. In Photoshop Elements, I've been manipulating the big rose tree shapes, working on them in black and white and then colorising, distorting, and layering them and playing with opacity levels.

So far, these have materialised ... but I'm right at the beginning of this whole idea!

And, I suspect there is much more to come before decide on which path to take and begin work in earnest ...

Margaret Robbie

Moving On

 'Bloom' has been put away until it is shown again next year in Ilminster  [details given nearer the time]. So now to move on with ideas for a new collection of pieces with the word 'Inhabit' in mind.
After a busy year making large scale work including a commission for St. James Church Chipping Campden Liz is trying to refocus, still with the images of Gothic churches in her head. Too early to come up with any plans the way forward seems to be to simply stitch, and enjoy the process, but on a small scale.

Thinking of the colours of medieval stained glass seen in the rich tracery of church windows simple blocks of colours are used with the addition of machined lines carve the shapes in the surface.
One thought leads to another and the reading of a magazine article suggests the use of a rather neglected Embellisher to indent colour in and through the surface.

Lets see where this might lead!

Liz Harding

Friday 6 September 2019

Bloom in Cheltenham

Our BLOOM exhibition is now up and running in the Gardens Gallery in Cheltenham and will be open for viewing until Tuesday 10th September.

Shown here is a snapshot of the work by all six members of Brunel Broderers on show in this lovely gallery. So far, we have had good footfall and fascinating conversations with visitors. We will be stewarding every day and would very much welcome anyone who is close enough to pay us a visit. 

Full details are given in the poster in the sidebar of this blog and on the Gardens Gallery website. 

Margaret Robbie 

Wednesday 21 August 2019

Chenonceau Gardens and Bloom

Much work is ongoing to finish my submission for Bloom. Seen here, is part of a piece 1 metre long which develops studies of the planting in the formal gardens of the Chateau at Chenonceau seen during a recent visit to the Loire region of France.

The image was printed onto fine cotton and then cut out and applied to a length of a white damask table cloth before stitching began. It is as yet unfinished and therefore unstretched.

Further details about the thinking behind this piece and others in the series are to be found here and details of  the Bloom exhibition are given in the sidebar of this blog.

Margaret Robbie

Saturday 17 August 2019


Work for Bloom, our exhibition in the Gardens Gallery, Cheltenham, is almost complete. This is a reminder that the exhibition can be viewed from Wednesday 4th to Tuesday 10th September.

Full details are given below and in the sidebar of this blog.

We will be stewarding throughout the week and look forward to welcoming those of our followers who live close enough to come.

Margaret Robbie

Tuesday 13 August 2019

Is this a Book?

Is this a book? If so it may be the most surprising you've ever seen!

You can answer the question when you visit Bloom at The Gardens Gallery Cheltenham from 4th to 10 September. 

Full details of the exhibition are given in the sidebar of this blog. 

Carolyn Sibbald

Monday 5 August 2019

New work for Bloom

Recently finished work for Bloom, our upcoming exhibition in the Gardens Gallery, Cheltenham from 4 to 11 September.

Pot plant - a small turned edge appliqué piece.

Corinne Renow-Clarke

Thursday 25 July 2019

Mini Garden

 A mini garden of paper flowers ...

... no watering required!

Linda Babb

Wednesday 17 July 2019

Mind Map of Bloom

Some time ago the Brunel Broderers went to look around the Gardens Gallery in Cheltenham for our exhibition in September. Lovely exhibition space but I realised that I couldn't hang my flowers as I wanted them. I decided I would revisit our theme of 'Bloom' and began doodling, daydreaming in my sketchbook. I made a thread mind map. 

Thinking about the words of J. Krishnamurti from ' The Awakening  of Intelligence', " To reach the unconscious you have to have an action which doesn't  directly appeal to the conscious,' I realised that Bloom could be an Ocean bloom. 

Hurrah. I was on my way.

Carla Mines

Sunday 7 July 2019

Poppies in the garden

These photos of brilliant red poppies were taken in Linda's garden. These, like all, are delicate and striking. Spot the hover fly enjoying the bounty!

It seems there are many more poppies around this year in hedgerows, gardens and fields. They are notable here in Gloucestershire and North Wiltshire. It appears from this link that this feeling may be true.

Linda Babb

Monday 24 June 2019

Looking at Work

At yesterday's meeting most of the time was spent looking at work and continuing planning for BLOOM in September

and solving problems relating to the Blog!!
Liz Harding

Wednesday 19 June 2019


Walking the coastal path in Dorset.

Casrolyn Sibbald

Wednesday 12 June 2019


Some of the bindings I have been doing.

Carolyn Sibbald

Friday 7 June 2019

A Garden in Bloom

Staying in Aberdeenshire, Scotland, right now as we often do, we visited Crathes Castle near Banchory on a beautiful sunny day. The early summer flowers were at their best.

With a view to Bloom, these red and yellow poppies caught my eye.

Margaret Robbie

A gathered book

The theme for Stroud Artist’s Books this month was gather which made me think of smocking. 

After various different attempts at stitching the page sections together this is how it ended up. Sage green cotton rag handmade Khadi paper, linen thread, dark grey linen to cover boards, & dotty paper for the endpapers.

Corinne Renow-Clarke 

Friday 31 May 2019

in Focus Stitching

In Focus Stitching in Swindon Museum and Art Gallery is now up and open for viewing. The whole exhibition features work completed by Great Western Embroiderers (of which I am a member) following exploration of the museum's archive of photographs dating from the early days of photography.

The archive reveals much about the history of Swindon. I found investigating the possibilities of the photographs fascinating and developed a body of work that explored the gender and social class differences of the time and the nature of people's daily lives.

The work shown below was developed from this single photograph of a street in Railway Village
which was built to provide accommodation for railway workers in the 19th century. Of interest to me were the tall chimneys and the lines of washing in the front gardens - thought-provoking for what they suggested about the lives of women of the time. I manipulated the image digitally, selecting, cutting and overlaying, and playing with colour and opacity to produce 8 small pieces, two of which are shown below.

All eight were then mounted onto panels and hung from a structure made by my husband so that they were suspended away from the wall to reference washing hanging on the line. 

Full details of the exhibition which runs in the community galleries of the museum until Saturday 7 September can be found in the earlier post here dated 4th May. More about my work for the exhibition can be found on my personal blog, https://charltonstitcher.blogspot.com/

Margaret Robbie

Tuesday 21 May 2019

Flower of Makarrech

This wonderful flower was photographed in Marrakech on a recent visit. Its name is unfortunately unknown - but perhaps that's not surprising as it was found in the city's Secret Garden!

Linda Babb

Saturday 18 May 2019

The Sense of a Place

Details of the final piece of work for "Fresh Air" at Quenington next month.

Made with cotton organdie with acrylic colour and hand and machine stitch. Liz will soon have more time to complete her pieces for the "Bloom" exhibition in September.