Friday, 22 November 2013

Ellesmere Port and the canal boat crafts.

When I was over in England a few weeks ago I went to the National Waterways Museum at Ellesmere Port. We're always walking along the Lagan towpath here in NI, reminiscing, but the canal boats are long gone.
It was a great day out. I thought I was just going to look at canal boats, not realising I would also see all the associated canal boat crafts.

There was so much going on.  I thought,  'I could really get in to this!'
There's a Waterways Craft Guild where you can learn all the traditional crafts and gain accreditation.
Boat building, painting and sign writing. Decorative and giftware painting. Costume, crochet, cabin lace and rag-rug making. Ropework and fender making.
It was a Sunday and, in the museum, these volunteers were demonstrating their various skills.

There was a lady working on a peg loom making blankets.

                                              You needed a steady hand for the painting.


                                                          This lady was rag - rugging.

Her design came from this picture  below  of the Atlas mountains in Morocco.
I was really interested in this as my research & design work for City & Guilds was all based on Morocco.
I think it's a photo taken from space.

                                                        Then there was the costume.

             This lady, Mary Parry, was a Master in Costume and wearing her Boatwoman's Bonnet.

I bought a bookmark kit at her stall.
The 'Spider's Web' is the traditional stitch used for the Boatman's belt shown below.

There was also lovely patchwork and these pieces in the tins were cut from old clothing.

The right side of the quilt.

                                                                   And the wrong side.

Knot tying for beginners.

                                                        And advanced knots for the canal boats.

 This is what I bought for the Christmas Tree!


crazydazy said...

hope all is well with you, love the texture of those rag rugs!

snoopysgranny said...

Yes, all ok thanks, but not much time for blogging and creativity with all the 'family stuff' going on.
Congrats on the hat win!