For me, a trip to Olney is a treat. A lovely market town about 20 mins drive from us, with a plethora of craft and gift shops, a traditional toy shop hidden away down a snicket. Shamefully, though I have never been to the local museum there! It is the world famous (?) Cowper and Newton Museum famous for lots of good things, too many to mention but you can check it out for yourself. There is also a great collection of local traditional bobbin lace there and as my daughter has been making lace at school for the last 3 years, I thought she might me interested but just never managed to steel her away - until this day!
The museum had asked me to take some of my work to potentially sell in their shop, I went on thursday and they duely loved my work and we negotiated a price for quite alot of stock - how exciting!!
I then decided to drag my lot over to see how things were going and have a look around the museum. The lovely ladies in the office were also interested in what my boys (6 and 8) would enjoy during the visit - so was I.
So here we are, famous for lace making and an annual Shrove Tuesday Pancake race!
Inside the museum garden, some boxing hares - the famous owner of the house kept three hares as pets, so there are alot of references around the museum. Lots of inspiration me thinks!
I didn't find out what or where this next piece had been, I saw a spinning wheel and some lace bobbins carved, but had no idea of the 'thing' in the middle, we hoped all would be revealed when we went inside. It was.
I was a bit blow away by the samples of lace, there were dozens and amazing to imagine that they were all made by hand. Evie did say that she thought that the swan she is making at school was tricky, but this!!
Hurray, there was some lovely applique. Cowper's bedspread - worked by Mrs King in 1781.
So there we have it, a quick guide to Cowper and Newton, the museum gardens were lovely and just about to burst into their spring blossoms. I will need another trip over to see for myself I think.
The boys? - well they were interested in fossils and rocks, the display of Slavery items (Newton was famous for working for the abolishment of Slavery in the late 1700's)
Surprisingly Noah, who is an adamant boy, enjoyed dressing up as a young lady complete with big pink dress and wig, I will find this photo and put it up soon!
So we had a great afternoon, the sun shone down and the children didn't scrap or sulk too much. I now have lots of inspiration for work and new projects.......