No lederhosen in my digs…*

image(* see Caroline’ bells Facebook post!)

well  have arrived at the K & S again this year .. You couldn’t make my day up..,,,what with teaching a class of eight year olds in the morning , ( asking me if I’m a real artist…yes dear reader I ask my self that question sometimes too… remember the mantra.. yes I am yes I am yes I am..)!…..juggling sorting out accommodation for students in Harrogate (not quite sure how I ended up doing that one but there you go) …. nearly missing my early train,  losing my purse (think it’s an age thing.. ( well i am 39 and three quarters now ) .. dont  panic it did get handed in…but  I have no money now which will make things interesting for a day or so.. here’s to selling lot of post cards over the next couple of days…..and then I got delayed on the train when a vehicle in front struck  a bridge..told you, you couldn’t make it up.

Anyhow had the most wonderful taxi driver from Bounds Green ….my old stomping ground… who helped me out with getting free access to cash ….I flipping hate those machines where they charge you for getting your own flippin money out… arrived to set up at Ally Pally.  I do love  that view From Ally a pally as you drive up the hill.. Note to seLf make time to get out over the next 5 days ( yes 5!) and sketch it….

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Though didn’t manage to get everything out.. I did hang everything that I could … Sadly no space for big Instagram but it is acrylic and ink so probably  a bit of a push for the knit and stitch any way.. Here it is now tho…., sorry I love it!!!! It talks to me!!!

Back tomorrow  well later today to set out the rest….one of my pictures got damaged in transit so had to do a bit of emergency surgery but all tickety boo now.

I am at the Graduate Showcase, exhibiting on the Embroiderers guild stand .. .as Education Scholar….look  out for the red stuff. Also there is all the fabulous work that Anthea Godfery did with Cornelia Parker on ‘the Magna Carta (an embroidery)’ .. Am lusting after one of the beautiful books that have been produced to go with the project…..very .. what’s the word lovely to look at and lovely to touch.. Is it esoteric?? I still haven’t seen the real thing.. The Magna Carta an embroidery… It’s in Manchester now…there are also exhibits from EG  members and Young Embroiderers.. So lots to see as well as information on the more stitching in schools project that I am involved in…  And of course all the other work by the other scholars and graduates.  Please come and say hello!

Had a very lovely evening  evening in north London being very spoilt .. staying again with the lovely Anthea … who is a fabulous host and so pleased to see her friends again , the marvellous Diane Bates ….,who has a stand and is demonstrating again.. definately worth going to see, you will laugh (a lot) as well as find out some interesting things to do with some very unusual materials….   and  her lovely friends from Chichester,  John and Marilyn (Cushions by Design .. rather lovely … you should take a peak!) http://Cushions once I’ve finished setting  up I am looking forward to taking a peek around the rest if the show…wonder what will ‘get’ me this year?

Meanwhile, I am desperate to get to Romsey Abbey to see if my labels  are on my work ..,,,OK  I have an obsession with people understandings the story behind my work.. I know I need to get over it…but I want them to know about the mills and boon message and refugees welcome cos I think they are important!!!!

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anyway time to get up…looking forward to a first day at Ally P… Hoping all my pictures have stayed up.. If they have then there’ll be a picture here…..  if not there’ll be a picture of me .

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P.S. See you tomorrow Sarah! X

PPS didn’t come up,with the mad Canadian this year as she’s a bit busy setting up her just giving Facebook page to help refugees from Syria…check it out!  Facebook page   Petersfield Action for Refugees…..and

Crowd fundingjustgiving


It sure is grand…

Caroline, Barry Flanagan hare and me...Dublin
Caroline, Barry Flanagan hare and me…Dublin

Having an amazing time at the RDS in Dublin. Caroline has picked a great hotel in Sandymount. Went to the National Gallery, after set up,to soak up some art and get inspired.

The little green fields Gerard Dillon
The little green fields Gerard Dillon


Peasant wedding Pieter Brueghel the younger
Peasant wedding Pieter Brueghel the younger
nano's dream Gerard Dillon
nano’s dream Gerard Dillon







Liked this exhibition, lots to see. Having a good think about I might use this work to inspire my work. Liked the Yeats…now why didn’t I buy a post card of his work?)



Meanwhile my son has been exhibiting at the Tate in London…

Live at the Tate modern Nathan Dowdeswell
Live at the Tate modern Nathan Dowdeswell







Also really liking that you can buy a sarnie and a cake at the spar and then sit outside said shop in a rather nice seating area and really have your cake and eat it so to speak…no extra charge! Much better than the pot noodles I was expecting.

Lovely speaking  to lots of people and seeing all the other graduates work. If you go to the knitting and stitching show gallery my work is on the website! Fantastic! Fame at last!

Georgina is trying to persuade us to take in some drum and bass tomorrow. If it starts at 6pm and I can be tucked up in bed by 8pm I’m in!

Nearly sold a book! X

N.B to Gary (or as Margo Ledbetter would have said nota bene) yes I do actually know what drum and bass is and when I u-tubed the band it sounded a bit more like jazz reminiscent of Camberwell Jazz club circa 1990’s rather than Pendulum.)

The future is bright the future is textile art

I cannot believe I only have 12 hours left of the magic that is the knitting and stitching show.  If you see one thing you must see Renate Keeping ‘s work. I have never been so moved by a piece a of work, it is totally unbelievably beautiful, touching and moving.  Why had I never heard of this wonderful lady and her husband, Charles , although I know his illustrations from childhood.  My ignorance embarrasses me.  Something is wrong somewhere in the world when more people don’t get the opportunity to experience this wonderful art work. In fact textile art needs to be out there so much more.

Je t’aime  Anthea Godfrey,  Diane Bates,  Diana Springall.

Gorgeous gold work...Godfrey is god!
Gorgeous gold work…Godfrey is god!
Me t'adore Diane, AKA the Mistress of Stitch
Je t’adore Diane, AKA the Mistress of Stitch


Dig Diana
Dig Diana

You are missing out if you don’t know about these incredible women. There are a whole lot more.


Goodness this is tiring but all rather lovely!
Goodness this is tiring but all rather lovely!

My mission, which I have chosen to accept is to raise the profile of textile art…two years oops  sorry I mean  13 years left to win the Turner Prize! X

ps this should have been posted this morning but being rather technically challenged I didn’t do it! So it’s now. Later…Sarah x


The artist formerly known as Dowdeswell…

Just make things clear to my many, many followers out there I have two names.  I have the one that I was born with Helen Amanda Sill, and boy did I hate that when I was little, evidently everyone is the hospital  ward was Helen Louise …shall we do a straw poll of all those 37 year old Helens out there…are you all called Louise or what?

Anyway I digress,  and the one I signed up to accidentally by ticking the wrong box on my marriage certificate, which incidentally I am very happy with but you know, I didn’t really think about it  and was suffering from baby brain at the time.  So I use the Sill one when exhibiting  cos that’s me and I am my art and the Dowdeswell one is  for everything else.  I bet Grayson doesn’t have these problems when he turns up as Clare.  Anyway I’m sure you are all, the many,many of you,  absolutely so pleased that I shared, and I’m off , here’s some more nice pictures to look at…… Knit  & Stitch here I come ready or not….been creating and drawing in an attempt to have a few things to sell try to help fund my trips around the country and overseas….

imageimage I give up! Still can’t download any new pictures! Total pain! You’ll just have to come to my show to see everything I have been doing! Aargh technology! Give me a sewing machine any day!  Here’s some old pictures to keep you happy!

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My mate Abi

Having total crisis of confidence.  Got all my boxes out on shelves and plinths in my gallery space/ studio aka the kitchen, just watched the summer show for the RA on catch up so feeling pretty inadequate as an artist anyway.  Abi turns up.  Everything makes sense!  She lets me babble on about what I am trying to say with my work and how I want people see it.  Start to move boxes around and it finally really starts to come together.  I think I need a chair though too.  Sorry Sue!imageimageimage