Friday, 15 November 2013

Now in Dundee

I drove up to Dundee on Tuesday and got here rather late. Wednesday was spent walking the dogs and applying paper to fabric. I am running a class on Japanese style bookbinding on Sunday and have to back the fabric for 13 students. It is a bigger class than I like but that is due to pressure at this end rather than my wishes. I did six pieces on Wednesday, took them off the boards this morning and did another eight. Now I have just discovered there are 14 students and have to stop this. I just have not brought enough materials for 14.

Yesterday Dorothy and I went into Edinburgh and visited two exhibitions. The first was in the National Library of Scotland. It was on miniature books. One of them was less than one mm square!! They supplied magnifying glasses. A beautiful little bookcase with tiny books each containing a Shakespeare play. Some are bound in leather. No photos were allowed but I managed to buy a poster which is very informative. After that we visited a Kabuki print exhibition at Museum. This did have an illustrated catalogue to buy.

All these prints have NEVER been published. I did not know that the Scottish Museum has a very large collection of Japanese prints. I must return and look into this. After that, we had a first rate Indian meal and then went to see Don Giovanni done by Scottish Opera. Very good.

This was all in the vicinity of the Old Quad which is the heart of the University. So I inspected the site of the Mathematics Department, now Geography. And I was so taken by all of this that I persuaded Dorothy to take a small diversion and check on the Natural Philosophy Department (Physics to non-Scots). The building is still there and still part of the University but that department has moved out of town. It is a dark grey large building in Scottish baronial style built as a fever hospital. Robert Louis Stevenson had a stay there before he did Travels with a Donkey. All very full of memories. It is sixty years exactly since I went up to University. I did enjoy my years there. The pavement between the Nat Phil Dept and the Old Quad has a groove in it where I trekked back and forth to the caff.

The other thing that has happened is that I am now kitted out for the family game of Murder Mystery at New Year. We went round to an antiques centre and I bought a velvet wrap, a black beaded clutch bag, a 1920 s bandeau in blue velvet and a cigarette box. Everything 1920s. Very satisfactory - especially since I can see me using the velvet wrap a lot.

Tomorrow I am lecturing on Far Eastern Textiles. Not very restful.

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About Me

I am weaver and - -. I dye my yarns with acid dyes, I paint my warps, put fabric collages and stencils on my weaving. I have three looms, a 12 inch wide, 12 shaft Meyer for demos and courses, a 30 inch Louet Kombo which is nominally portable but has a stand, two extra beams and a home-made device containing a fan reed. And last a 32 shaft Louet Megado which is computer controlled, has a sectional warp and a second warp beam and I am the proud owner of an AVL warping wheel which I love to bits and started by drilling holes in. I inserted a device for putting a cross in. I have just acquired an inkle loom and had a lesson from an expert so I can watch TV and weave at the same time. I am interested in weaving with silk mostly 60/2 although I do quite a bit with 90/2 silk. I also count myself as a bookbinder with a special interest in Coptic binding.