From The Grounds of Stormont to the Olympic Games, Rio 2016

An exciting announcement was made at our AGM,  Joy McCormick’s grandson, Patrick Huston  had just been selected to represent Team GB in Archery at Rio 2016 Olympic Games.

NOTTINGHAM, ENGLAND - MAY 29: Patrick Huston of Britain shoots during the Men's Recurve Gold medal team match at the European Archery Championship on May 29, 2016 in Nottingham, England. (Photo by Nigel Roddis/Getty Images)
NOTTINGHAM, ENGLAND – MAY 29: Patrick Huston of Britain shoots during the Men’s Recurve Gold medal team match at the European Archery Championship on May 29, 2016 in Nottingham, England. (Photo by Nigel Roddis/Getty Images)

Patrick, born in Belfast, attended Campbell College and was a founding member of  the East Belfast Archery Club.  He  now lives in Shropshire where he coaches while training full time with the Olympic Squad at Lilleshall National Sports Centre. Patrick began archery in 2004 and made his international debut in 2012. [For those who know about these things, he is right handed and his arrows are 29.25″ long and his draw weight is 50 lbs.]

PatrickClick here for a BBC interview with Patrick made just after he had qualified for Rio, in which Patrick describes his achievement as ‘amazing’. He also admits to being a bit of a “show off”.

However, we think that he’s entitled to be that and more.

 

As if being  three time world champion archer at junior level wasn’t enough,  he’s a former Festival of Quilts prize winner, ca 2006. 

Here’s what his proud Granny says:

“In his younger days he enjoyed sewing – was quite good on the sewing machine. I am attaching two photos of a quilt he and I worked on together which was exhibited at the NIPG summer exhibition at the Folk Museum, in the days when they used to mount a craft exhibition.

Sewing with his Granny
Patrick aged 7 concentrating on his quilting.

One is of young Patrick hand- piecing the quilt. The other is of the quilt hanging at Cultra with him, his older brother and myself. I see by my PC they are dated 2003, so Patrick would have been 7.

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I believe it was in 2006, when he turned 10 that he made a small wall-hanging which I put into the junior competition at the Festival of Quilts in Birmingham. The topic was “The Northwest Passage”. Patrick created his hanging out of re-cycled materials. It won second prize. 

2006 Patrick Huston (aged 10) 2nd Prize Festival of Quilts Birmingham. Made from recycled materials.
2006 Patrick Huston (aged 10) 2nd Prize, Festival of Quilts Birmingham. Made from recycled materials.

Patrick came home to see his parents just after our AGM, as he trains full-time in England. I told him I had mentioned his early career as a quilter at the Patchwork Guild. He was really amused  to hear his achievements had been mentioned at the NIPG meeting and  laughed.

In fact he was trying to bully me into making him an “Olympic” quilt to celebrate his getting an Olympic place.

NO PRESSURE! “

When asked if Patrick would mind us writing about his quilting career and posting photos of him quilting, Joy said:

“I know Patrick won’t mind. He has had to put up with his mother putting on Facebook a photo of him aged about 4 trying his hand at archery at a fun day in Stormont grounds.”

In the Stella McCartney Outfit
Patrick wearing the Stella McCartney Olympic Uniform Tshirt. 29/06/2016

“Yesterday (Wednesday 29th June),  he was kitted out with his Stella McCartney designer gear to wear in Rio. Three suitcases full!  This photo is hot off the press”  Joy McCormick, June 2016.

Patrick, we’ll all be glued to the television, supporting you and willing you on. Most importantly, enjoy every second of the experience.

Here’s a wee bit about the sport of archery, taken from the official Rio spectator guide.

UNDERSTANDING HOW THE SPORT OF ARCHERY  BEGAN

Considering that hunting is an activity strongly connected to the beginning of our civilisation, archery can be considered one of the oldest sports in history. The practice was made official in the 16th century with the organisation of tournaments in England. Its debut in the Olympic programme was in Paris 1900. In St. Louis 1904, the sport became one of the first to allow women to participate.

ABOUT THE COMPETITION The distance between the archer and the target (1.22m of diameter) is 70m. The target score varies from 1 to 10, according to the proximity to the inner circle. The archer has 40 seconds to shoot each of their six arrows. In the finals, the archer has 20 seconds to shoot each of their three arrows. In the air, the arrow can travel at more than 240km per hour. In the knockout system, any mistake can rule the athlete out of the competition. In individual events, archers with the best results after five series of three arrows go through to the next phase. The same rule applies to team events, but the best teams after four series of six arrows go through.

 

Fabric Creation and Manipulation with Irene MacWilliam

  • imageIrene MacWilliam – Quilter and embroiderer – freelance lecturer and teacher – talented artist and invaluable member of the Northern Ireland Patchwork Guild, which is only one of the many groups Irene belongs and contributes to.

****  Updating this post to highlight Irene’s ‘new’ website. ****

Her website showcases some of her work and talents. Irene created and ran our website for ten years, providing a forum for NIPG to share events and showcase some of the exceptional work produced by NIPG members.

Irene MacWilliam with Margaret McCrory

Irene MacWilliam with Margaret McCrory

The NIPG is indeed fortunate to have someone with her international reputation on our doorstep. Her work has been exhibited all over the world.

In addition to delivering a talk at the October Meeting, Irene delivered an afternoon workshop on ‘Making Your Own Fabric’.  This was great fun, as Irene’s classes invariably are –  lots to learn combined with a few laughs on the way. Irene is a great teacher, delivering clear instructions with infinite patience, making  difficult techniques seem straightforward.

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All samples on this page have been made by Irene.

On Sunday there was a superb workshop on manipulated fabrics. This is such a fun technique, consisting of folded patchwork. The possibilities with this technique are endless and and could be a fun way of using up those pesky scraps which are much to lovely to throw out.

Here’s just a few samples of what is possible.

 Maybe those who attended and by all accounts thoroughly enjoyed the workshops, could send in some photos of finished objects. 

 

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Open the box and out pops a sewing machine!

            NIPG 2015–16 Season Kicks off with …

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Image from Quilting Treasures. (http://www.quiltingtreasures.com/shop/product/church-ladies-quilt/)

here-come-the-girls-25th-birthday-bonanza-lst160266

Last year we opened our 2014-15 season with our very own members. Our Guild is packed with industrious and talented people  and we wanted an opportunity to highlight some of our members’ pieces. We left it entirely up to each speaker as to what they want to ‘share’  within a ten to fifteen minute slot.

‘Here come the girls’, this year’s theme…. intriguing!

Last year it was “Favourite Things”.  The four people who stepped up were Esme Edwards, Anne James, Paula Ellis and Helen Heron. It was absolutely fantastic, one of our  best meetings!

Esme Edward's Treasured Machine with Box
Esme Edward’s Treasured Machine with the Magical Box in the background.

Esme Edwards, began by placing  a funny wee black box on the table, puzzling us all at what it contained. What was her favourite thing? Having started her talk by revealing some of her history with sewing and in particular patchwork, we were wondering what could be in this little box. To our delight, she opened the box to reveal the most gorgeous sewing machine. One which she has until recently, used regularly.

How to follow Esme’s opening? Anne James, our present Chairperson, bravely stood forth and enchanted everyone with her manipulated fabric piece, which she had constructed for her City and Guilds.

Manipulated Fabric Piece by Anne James
Detail of Manipulated Fabric by Anne James

We were on a roll – how could our meeting get any better?

Paula Ellis Commissioned Piece
Paula Ellis’s Cushion, depicting Lucky, a special commission.

However, Paula Ellis captivated everyone before she even spoke with her gorgeous cushions.  The variety and skill which she used to create them, had everyone listening to every word and trying to take it all in to replicate at home. The cushion which had been commissioned by proud pet owners, was beautiful.

[After the meeting there were demands that Paula give us a workshop on creating these adorable cushions.

You asked, we answered!

Paula is taking an all day workshop on Sunday 8th November.

Launch of exhibition in Linen Hall
Helen Heron and Michael Longley at the Linen Hall Library for the launch of Helen’s exhibition.

Lastly, and by no means least, Helen Heron treated everyone to a riveting talk, on how she came to create her  piece which celebrating renowned poet, Michael Longley’s poem ‘The Leveret’ written for his grandson.

Helen Heron
Helen Heron’s piece based on Michael Longley’s ‘The Leveret’. With Brenda Powers, Anne James and Angela McCormick
Helen Heron
Helen Heron’s piece based on Michael Longley’s ‘The Leveret’. With Angela McCormick, Helen Heron and Adrienne
Helen Heron
Helen Heron’s piece based on Michael Longley’s ‘The Leveret’.
Hand pieced and hand quilted by Helen Heron

Helen Heron's handpieced appliqued cushion

Helen Heron’s handpieced appliqued cushion

That was a glimpse into last year….

This year is a mystery, so you’ve got to be there to experience it.