Wednesday, 12 May 2010

Dawn Bibby's Residential Weekend

Well, I'm just getting back to normal after Dawn Bibby's Residential Weekend .... I was pretty worn out when I arrived back home Sunday night after a whirlwind two days.  I'd been invited at short notice to attend the weekend as one of the tutors for the "make and take" tables on the Sunday afternoon, plus (at even shorter notice) to help with demonstrating in the shop on the Sunday morning.  So I arrived at Topaz Crafts on Saturday morning, not quite knowing what was in store for me, as it was all going to be a new experience.

I met lovely Rena (Dawn's sister) in the shop, checked the supplies for my "make and take", then her husband Stephen drove me over to the Dunkenhalgh Hotel, Blackburn, where the residential was being held. 

Everything was in full swing - Dawn was giving instructions out via a mike to the 70+ ladies who were attending the residential and each table of eight or so ladies had a helper with them to make sure everyone knew what they were doing (card and box making).  I joined Lindsay helping on her table for the rest of the day, Dawn kept everyone working at a rapid pace, but I think everyone enjoyed having a go and came away with some lovely pieces.

In the evening we had dinner, Bingo and a DJ/music at the hotel and didn't leave until well after midnight ....... the food was delicious, the games were fun and everyone really let their hair down dancing the night away, as you can see from the photos .......

Dawn really let her hair down and was on the dance floor for most of the night - wish I had as much energy (and less inhibitions)!!!

Lindsay Mason (my sister) with Paula Pascual (they were both tutoring over the weekend)

Dawn Bibby, Stephen, Rena and Amy (Dawn's niece)

The next day we were all up early (well, some of us were! ... the rest overslept, they shall remain nameless *LOL*) and down at the shop ready to set up the demonstration tables and await all the ladies arriving in a relay of coaches from 9am onwards so that they could indulge in some retail therapy and watch the various demos that were going on - I was working with alcohol inks and glitter so you can imagine the state of my fingers by the time we finished at lunchtime and headed back to the hotel to set up our tables for the afternoon "make and take" sessions!

There was hardly a moment to think, time for a quick lunch and begin to set up my table and then the ladies all poured in, eager to have a go at all the different projects available to do on the "make and take" tables.  Once again, it was a very busy few hours.  The project I was doing was a Beaded Dragonfly from my book.  Although not complicated, it was quite fiddly and we had a bit of a hiccup at the beginning when I realised the very tiny beads used in the project had too narrow a hole to allow the wire through (there can be a real variation in the hole size/shape of beads even if they are all listed as the same size), so I had to quickly swap them for a slightly larger bead and we started again .... after that, things went more smoothly and I hope that all the ladies who had a go at making dragonflies enjoyed themselves, they seemed to, and all planned to go home and create more of them.

Here are some pics of the dragonfly samples I had on display ......





The day ended at about 5.30pm and all that remained was to pack up, sit and relax with a drink for a short while, then catch my train home to Blackpool.  All in all, it had been quite an experience for me (but a positive one) ...... it was all new to me but turned out not to be quite so scarey as I thought it might be.  Big thanks to everyone for making me feel welcome and part of the "team" for the weekend!


  1. Heather, I am thrilled to bits for you. I just knew you could do demos and workshops and told Lindsay so. Crafters are the most amazing set of folk I have ever come across and you were bound to enjoy yourself. This sister act may just go solo eh? will email you when I get home next week 'cos I will join your swap this month. xx X Mia

  2. Thank you, Joanne, I did take a bit of persuading and it was definitely a case of jumping into the deep end! But a little less traumatic than I'd imagined! *LOL* As to future workshops, don't know - we'll have to wait & see. Glad you're joining the bird swap - will add you to my list. Heather x (Enjoy the rest of your hols).

  3. Oh Heather, I'm thrilled to bits for you. I hope you will be doing workshops. Love the Dragonfly samples, they are gorgeous. Love S x