Saturday 1 November 2014

November meeting - Karen Parry

The talk today was by Karen Parry who works for Entaco which of course, most of us hadn't heard of, but when she explained that it was also John James, sewing needles and Aero and Millward knitting needles, then we knew where she was coming from!

Karen gave us a quick history of the manufacture of sewing needles, how the business had grown from a cottage industry based in and around Redditch to an international company that now exports to over 50 countries. The process has remained largely unchanged for over 100 years.

The needle making process, as detailed on the John James website

She talked us through all the different sorts of hand sewing needles which were available, and when to use substitutes to get better results. There was lots more interesting detail about the difficulties in making needles, especially beading needles. Open heart surgery got a mention unexpectedly! And best of all Karen brought goody bags full of information about all the different types of needles available - and the opportunity to undertake some retail therapy if we desired. A very interesting talk where we learned that the needle isn't such a humble thing after all.

Other things

Suggestions are still wanted for a destination for the proposed Branch Outing next summer. This should be related to stitch in some way.

Young Embroiderers met over two mornings last week. The results were impressive - little bags made from sequin waste. A request was put out for volunteers to help at the sessions. They run during four school holidays - February half term, Easter, Summer and October half term - for a Wednesday and Thursday morning each time. If you could offer your help please contact Diane or Judith.

Questionnaires about the direction the branch should take in the future were available for completion to be given back at the next meeting. Opinions on what format the bursary should take in future are also still sought and should be sent to Kath.

The library is back in business, though it has moved to the other side of the room! Next month (December meeting) it will be possible to return books, in fact there is a plea to return books if you have been 'looking after them' while the library situation was resolved. The library will be open as usual for borrowing books at the January meeting.

June Exhibition:

  • Shirley has opened her list of Children's book titles to be turned into book covers for visitors to guess at the exhibition.
  • A request was made for about 20 volunteers, each prepared to do something towards helping with the organisation of the exhibition. Stevie is collecting names!

At the Regional AGM last month the Leeds branch won the competition. Our seaside themed piece will be part of next summer's exhibition. Additions to it are welcome before then.

The following events were announced, each one involving some of our members. (Click on the links for more details)
Carol and Sandra at Ryedale Folk Museum
Decora at the Blue Light Gallery in Masham
Hippystitch having a Christmas Extravaganza and being part of York Makers Fair.

And Finally.... The next meeting is the Christmas meeting.
We will be having a guest tutor. Please bring the usual sewing kit including scissors.
A gift for the Bran Tub (wrapped and sewing related) would be welcome. There will be a raffle with the prizes provided by members of the committee.
The competition theme is 'Round Robin'.
Stitch club will proceed as usual in the morning but lunch will be at the slightly earlier time of 12.00 and the afternoon meeting will start at 1.30 (rather than the usual 2.00). There will be a tea and cake break during the afternoon session.
I'm hoping that covers everything.