We went a wandering...
Hello Wandering Crafters!
We cannot believe it has already been a month since our Spring in the Scottish Borders and English Lake District retreat. Our event was everything we had hoped it would be, and more! Twelve amazing, inspiring women gathered with us to explore and go within, find themselves and reconnect with their artistic souls in this incredible landscape. We thought you'd like to see a few moments from this very special week...
The Wandering Crafters at Hilltop Farm, Near Sawrey, Cumbria
Danielle Donaldson was our Feature Artist, showing us how to translate the verdant hills, gardens and cute critters of Beatrix Potter's world into our own modern illustrations. Her sense of humor, generous teaching style and team spirit shine through everything she does; we felt so lucky to share this special week with her.
Danielle researched a special palette of top quality watercolors reminiscent of the shades Beatrix herself would have used, and taught us how to use them. She shared color theory, practical techniques, and step-by-step instruction.
We think what sets a Wandering Craft Retreat apart is our combination of perfect accommodations, amazing meals, touring, and art instruction. None exemplifies this more than our home base in the Lake District - Hause Hall, a stunning 18th century farm converted to expansive family estate near Ullswater. Its cozy nooks invited conversations far into the evening, as new friendships were made. Quiet contemplation was the order of the day too, whilst sipping a glass of wine and watching the sun setting over the hills. Our Wandering Hostess Valarie cooked savory hearty meals on the AGA (that's a traditional English stove prized by many for their ability to heat a home from the spring chill) that made everything just a little more perfect.
Nobody could forget our nearest neighbors, the gentle 'Sheeping Tom's' who popped their wooly heads into people's window frames as though posing for photos!
Our tour guide Brian was taken aback at how excited a group of artists can get over some colored pencils! We stopped by the colorful world of Derwent (did you know that all their pencils are made right in the Lake District?) and smelled the roses at the quintessentially English gardens and woodland strolls of Hutton in the Forest. We danced around the ancient standing stones of Castlerigg Stone Circle on a soaring sunny day, spirits flying high as the birds swooped in circles overhead - airy and free. We walked along the 2,000 year old Hadrian's Wall on yet another sunny, gorgeous day. Cherry blossoms rained pink petals over bowered paths at Alnwick Castle gardens. Drinks by the river as the sun set over the bucolic River Tweed in the Scottish Borders - all happy memories that we shared - so many memories. It's actually hard to write this and not put in all the details because there was so much!
In the end though, the prevailing memory that we take away from it was the friendships and the connections made. In the words of one of our guests, “..above all, spending time together, meeting people, and connecting was one of the most special things I took from this incredible week.”
If this all sounds like your cup of tea, we still have a few spaces for our next retreat this October in the Scottish Highlands with featured teacher The Pale Rook. Visit our retreats page for more details.
The Wandering Crafters,
Jane and Summer