Some of my really favourite things to do are gathering with other creative people; connecting, making, sharing, collaborating, learning, teaching, delving deeply into new ideas. Laughing. Drinking tea and eating cake. And making - stitching, dyeing, weaving… it doesn't always matter what the making is. Mostly it's about the connecting. Gather create connect.
18 months ago I was so so lucky to bring a group of people together, alongside my sister-friend Leah, and share in a similar day Gather Create : Unfurl. I see people even now and we talk about that day. How amazing it was. How beautiful and connective and sharing and creative. How fantastic the food was. There aren't many photos from that day, which is testament to how deeply everyone was actually immersed in the day - not looking from the outside and taking photos, but being involved in being there.
Due to…ummm - having a baby - I wasn't able to organise one last year, but it's been in my mind, heart and soul…. and I've been waiting waiting for the right time. And now I'm so pleased that it's happening again. Oh golly. I can't even begin to imagine how good - truly truly good - this day will be.
This time we'll be gathering along the banks of a creek, set in the rainforest. At my neighbour's home & (new) cooking school - Jean, of Artisan Wholefoods. This will be the first gathering event for her place, which is a little bit exciting, don't you think. Jean teaches workshops in nourishing foods, the whole food journey being paramount to her recipes, but highly delicious. Jean's food isn't about trends or fads, but about real food that is good for your body and soul, while making your eyes water, your mouth smile and your tummy grumble (you'll probably want to get out your camera too - cause her food is beautiful as well as delicious - seriously win win win when you're being fed by Jean).
Our day will begin with a morning tea cake table - uh huh…. a cake table. Oh my. Can you imagine it…. All natural whole real foods (no refined sugar or horrible fake colourings). And water kefirs as well as organic tea and freshly brewed coffee. We'll gather and fill our tummys and talk and connect - we plan on an informal talk about finding your creativity, sharing on social media (mainly Instagram), and staying honest and true to yourself throughout it all.
Jean will give a hands-on cooking demonstration of our lunch - a wholegrain pastry recipe for a Summer's Harvest tart. You'll learn how to make this at home, to nourish your family and impress your friends. There's be lots of hands-on photography time during this session, so you foodies will be able to explore the light and beauty with your camera.
While lunch is being prepared, we'll slip outside to the back deck and garden to create some magic in the dye pots. Using all hand harvested botanical dyes - from this region - we'll make colour on fabric and yarn. Zoe and I will share all our experience, tips and how-tos at the dye pot… and you'll get your hands colourful and be delighted with the results. While our materials are dyeing we'll devour the lunch that Jean has prepared and linger over it while chatting and exploring the creek nearby.
And then slowly slowly we'll do some stitch work - using assorted fabrics (some pre-dyed by me, some vintage & special pieces from my collection, some we dye on the day) we'll hand stitch a piece for you to take home, to keep working on, to create in your moments of time. There'll be a few projects available - a hand stitched scarf, notebook cover, drawstring pouch or small pillow case… or you can simply stitch samples to eventually sew into a quilt cover. If by any chance you're still hungry there'll be cakes and biscuits from morning tea, endless cups of tea, coffee or water kefir - or just beautiful fresh from the forest creek water. And we'll spend the afternoon settled into the beautiful stillness of creating and stitching, conversing and connecting.
This day is about more than just a regular workshop. It's a feeling, an emotion, a time to reconnect with yourself, with your creativity, with your inner quiet and slow… while also meeting other people in the area, in your creative fields. We truly can't wait to share this day with you - to experience a community of connectedness, a sharing of experience and skills, and whole lot of delicious cake and natural dye magic.
All the details and booking info is on my website, but please, if you have any questions at all - don't hesitate to ask me via email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or through Instagram.
Saturday 12th March, 2016. 9.30am - 4pm (Day light saving time)
Full price tickets $225, early bird tickets $180 - still available until Valentine's Day.
And if you can't come along, but want to share in the stitch-natural dye experience I have Gather Create stitch kits that will have the fabric and projects as well as some special tea so you can share with us. Available here.
* outdoor photos by Jean Martinez Artisan Wholefoods.