Wednesday, 5 February 2014


There is so much I want to talk to you about at the moment
but I decided that this had to go to the top of the list.

The wonderful Mr T (my other half) and I went along the coast
 to Great Yarmouth
yesterday to the Time and Tide museum where there is an
exhibition being put on by the Norfolk Museum service. 
It's called Frayed and looks at work done by people who
have used Textiles as a form of  Occupational Therapy.

As this is something I have done I was really interested.

As you arrive the first thing you see is this four poster bed
completely covered in patchwork, not only the counterpane 
but the hangings as well are all hand stitched.

They were made by a lady called Anna Margaretta Brereton between 1801-1805.
This lady had 10 children, 4 of which died as infants but it was when 
her eldest son died suddenly, aged 14, that she immersed herself in her
stitching and created this beautiful work which survives to this day.

Next to it is a collection of samplers sewn by quite young girls.
They have the tiniest stitches I have ever seen. 

This looks like me in the mornings.

They also had a couple of pieces from the Fine Cell Works group.
These are men who have been taught to sew in prison
and then make pieces like the one below which 
are sold to the public so they can make more. 

There were a lot of other pieces there, even one by Tracey Emin
but the highlight of the exhibition for me was the
"letters" by Lorina Bulwer.

Watchers of the Antiques Roadshow would have seen one 
of these on there last year but this is the first time
both letters have been exhibited together.

They are about 3 metres long and I personally would call them journals
as they are the ramblings of a lady who was in a lunatic asylum
and stitched everything that went on around her and the names of everyone 
involved. Very little of it makes much sense but the care she has taken is incredible.
The colour of the thread changes so that it shows up on the different fabrics all of which
are the same width and bound down the sides.
They have been able to trace some of the named people 
through historical documents as well which I think is wonderful.

She even made pot holders and other items with
wonderful figures appliqued on them.
She was in the asylum for a number of years so 
there is quite possibly more of her work out there somewhere.
If you live within travelling distance then I throughly recommend it.

If you want to find out more then here is the link to the blog.

The rest of the museum is also really worth a visit as it 
one of the most child friendly museums I have ever been to.

with a mock up of an old street where you can go into each shop or house
to see what it was really like.

I love these wonderful stencils for the boxes.

The history of the fishing industry in the area
and how they smoked all the herring that was caught.
 The whole museum is
set up in an old smoke house

The women used to put about 8,000 fish a day
onto wooden sticks ready to be hung like this 
in the smoke rooms.

They even have a film of a fishing boat on a stormy sea
with a commentary of the captain in the headphones.
This was Mr T favourite part.

There is a lot more to see and it took us 2/3 hours to wander around
before having a very nice lunch in the cafe which
strangely enough was full of women talking about quilting.



  1. Very interesting exhibits, thank you so sharing!

  2. Wow! I just love museums, and this one looks so interesting. Thank-you for sharing your experience!

  3. Thanks for taking us along! It looks fab!

  4. The first couple of pictures are just amazing - absolutely beautiful sewing.
    Liz @ Shortbread & Ginger

  5. Thanks hun Can't wait to see this!
    may have to feature it in the mag even?
    We'll have to meet up soon for that cuppa
    Tilly x

  6. Wow what a great museum, so much to see. I loved it all. 8,000 fish a day? Can you imagine the smell?

  7. Oh, man - JEALIOUS!!! I would LOVE to be able to visit this museum...I would probably have to make it an all day event - I adore history. Love the "letters" - will be reading more on their maker - great post...thank you, this fine Wednesday morning. Tanya

  8. Very interesting read, next time I'm in Norfolk I will have to visit the museum

  9. How interesting, I do love wandering through museums when we go on vacation

  10. Wow - This is an amazing post. Firstly - thank you for visiting again and commenting! I'm a tad mind-blown that this post is kind of on the same lines as my recent one. Cool coincidence!!
    So many people sneer at art/craft therapy, but I've seen it pull people back from the very brink. I did see that Antiques Roadshow and I so envy you for having been able to see that piece in person. I find it fascinating.
    You've a real gift for story-telling. Thank you for sharing your awesome museum visits with the rest of us! Now I'm back on track I'll visit more often, but in the meantime - mahoosive hugs to you from Shroo:)xxx

  11. What a lovely interesting post
    Julie xxxxxxxxx

  12. Gill you have given me the "poke" I needed! My friend and I have been talking about going to this ever since we saw the brochure at the Rag Rug studio we belong to...last year!!! It does look a fascinating exhibition and we MUST make the effort! Thank you for posting this! Lx

  13. It looks wonderful, such a shame I don't live nearer.....

  14. What an interesting exhibition and a lovely post too! Very I formative and great pics ...

    Thanks for your lovely comments over at mine, they make my day!

    Love clair xx

  15. Can't even spell my own name!

    Love Claire! Xx

  16. What an amazing place, I would love to visit!