Friday 12 October 2018

The stitching and knitting show.

Every autumn there's a stitching and knitting show at Alexandra Palace in London and almost every year I go to feast my eyes on the fabrics and yarns, the quilts and amazing fabric art and of course to spend some money on supplies I desperately need. Usually John comes with me and we turn it into a treat day, having danish pastries with our morning coffee and enjoying a leisurely lunch in the restaurant. I took today off work as I have to take part in an open day tomorrow, so we headed to the show. It's open for 4 days, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday. It's always better to visit on the weekday as the weekends are so crowded. There were several school trips in and it was lovely watching the teenagers interact with the staff on the stands and enjoying the fabric and yarns.John and I enjoyed a slow stroll round the show and I picked up loads of ideas for projects. I bought some neutrals to add to my stash and some micro buttons for use with my hand stitching projects.

There were lots of lovely quilts on display but what caught my interest were some pictures by Jenni Dutton of her mum who had dementia.  You can find out more information about Jenni and these pictures here

The pictures are very powerful and thought provoking.  The first one was of her mother as a young girl.

The early pictures were created from photos from her mother's photo album. 

I love these early pictures. They are all made with the same technique but it has been executed slightly differently from picture to picture.

Obviously at the time the early photos were taken the artists mum was fit and healthy and enjoying life but as the series progresses she starts to show signs that all is not well. The pictures also record the process of ageing very well

There is an amazing amount of detail in each picture and it has all been achieved using thread in a whole range of different colours. The effect is stunning.

The following pictures show the ageing  process very well. The colours used and how they are positioned next to each other gives the skin a fragile look with the blood vessels showing through.

The later pictures in the series made people cry as they witnessed the decline as the dementia took over .

Jenni's mum died peacefully on 27th September 2015. 

When I'm next teaching the students about dementia I'm going to use these pictures to  demonstrate the effects of the illness.  Although the pictures were thought provoking and some people cried as they looked at them, I also found them joyful because Jenni had captured the person behind the eyes.

John and I had a fun day at the show and this year I didn't over spend. I saw an embroidery I liked and john bought it for my birthday, which means I have to wait until December before I can have it, but that gives me time to finish one of my other projects. By the time we got home I was tired and this evening I didn't even have the energy to do any hand stitching. Maybe I'll get some sewing done tomorrow evening.



  1. What an amazing exhibit. Thank you for sharing. I am so happy you had such a lovely day.

  2. Wow...very powerful. Thank you for sharing. I would love to see this in person.

  3. Amazing images. Yes, folks can see the progression that disease so well in her images. Thanks for sharing!