Monday, 22 December 2008

Greetings to Everyone,

We have now come to the end of the first year IDFAIG has been in existence and I thought it would be a useful opportunity for a retrospective on the work done this year, since the groups inception. And what a tremendous amount of work has been done!

On the 30th March the Blog was launched by MoAS Jahanarabanu Vivana with permission from the Kingdom MoAS and Their Majesties of the day, Svein and Jovi. Artisans of ID were quick to sign up and show support. The following are highlights taken from entries and activities to date.

- Lord Gilbere is obviously one to keep an eye out for good supplies as he posted several times with information regarding good sources for fibre and dyes. Lady Jenny of Cranbrook was also on hand with period references on dyes and their origins as was THL Jahanarabanu. In fact Lady Jenny hosted a Dyeing weekend in July.

- Lady Estrid made herself available several times to give good advice on weaving glitches that people were facing. Most of us have seen the wonderful gown made from fabric that she herself had woven. She also gave classes at Kingdom University along with the Lady Rose. Lady Julian also showed us some of her dyed and hand-spun work as well as some wonderful Bayeux-style embroidery done by Lord Maredudd. Lady Julian has also set up her own hobby website and has posted instructions on drop spinning there.

- A Challenge was issued at the beginning of the summer, for artisans to make some form of regalia for ID. THL Jahanara kept us up to date with her Principality cloaks which have progressed quite far. The painted Heraldic banners which were created with the help of the talented people from the Shire of Thamesreach, were on display in the Hall at June Coronation which was held in ID. It also seems as if our good Lady MoAS has been kept busy non-stop creating wonderful tablet woven prizes for A&S competitions. She has catalogued several such projects.

- So many people in ID must be wandering around with wonderfully embroidered sleeves and cloaks and necklines. We were privileged to be able to observe the progress of these projects that were truly awe-inspiring even before being finished. The skill with which they were executed was a truly great testament to the talent in these Isles. The great cloak project being undertaken by Baroness Siubhan will be a really wonderful piece of textile art once it is finished.

- IDFAIG held its first display at Raglan Castle at the beginning of September. We were privileged to be able to display projects made by most of our members, namely (as extracted from the report by THL Jahanara):
Lady Estrid for her time at the tent and her incredibly clever weaving sampler, cunningly made from project cut offs!
HE Mary Frost for her time at the tent
HE Sagadis for displaying her woven cloth, spinning and knitting
Lady Marian for her time at the tent hand spun and naturally dyed balls of yarn and her spinning demonstrations and teaching!
THL Genevieve for displaying her wonderful knitting, based on Eleanor of Toledo's stockings. These were admired by many members of the populace.
Lady Alice for her naturally dyed yarns and time at the tent
Duchess Alessandra Melusine for her braids and braiding demonstration
HE Siubhan for displaying her wonderfully embroidered sleeves

Not only did this display impress fellow subjects of ID and the wider kingdom, but also passing members of the public spent some time admiring the handiworks displayed. Well done all round for proving what a talented bunch you all are!

Things to Look forward to in the New Year.

- Tapestry-weaving weekend at the Newmarket home of the ID MoAS Jahanarabanu Vivana, on the 30th Jan – 1st February. This has a 7-student limit, so please contact her as early as possible to book your slot.

- The first ID University will be held at Protectors in the Spring. Don’t miss your chance to teach a class at this historic event. You all have a skill that you can teach others, so that by our combined effort, ID can retain its reputation for fine artisanship in the Fibre Arts.

- Work on Projects for the Kingdom Pennsic Gift Basket. Mistress Katheryn Hebenstreitz has issued a call for small items to be made for the Kingdom gift basket. This gift basket will be exchanged with another Kingdom’s at Pennsic War next summer. The gifts must be small for transportation reasons. All donations will be gratefully received.

New Year’s resolutions.

With long nights and short days, the winter months are an ideal opportunity to tuck yourself up somewhere warm and work hard on using all the wonderful fabric and fibre that everyone has been making or accumulating over the summer, or to work on embroidering that plain gown you have had your eye on, or generally work towards projects that inevitably fall by the wayside in the glut of summer events.

I therefore look forward to seeing progress reports on all the wonderful work that everyone is doing. And if you want to make a New Year’s resolution – please let it be to post, post and post lots of lovely entries on the IDFAIG blog and allow us to gasp at your skill.

I hope you all have a wonderful festive Christmas holiday and a great start to 2009, and I will hopefully see you sometime in the New Year.

Best wishes to all,

Melisende Fitzwalter
IDFAIG Group Leader

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