Sunday, November 22, 2015

Driving to England, Day 4 - Part 2

A very beautiful site - Bowes Castle
So after our mind-bending stop at Aukland Castle, we drove a bit down the road to Bowes Castle for lunch and a viewing.  Bowes is a French chateau built by a couple who filled it with treasures as a museum.  We had a special lunch in a private dining room and then went around the museum.  They had a very popular Yves St. Laurent exhibit which had been extended and was in its last week.  The lines were huge - but we had tickets set aside a year before.  The textile gallery have many treasures in it in a series of glass cases that had the fashions inter dispersed around them.  We may
Yum!  A lunch ready for us
have been the only ones not looking as much at the fashions but gasping at the historic embroideries.

EMB 390 - St. Peter, Bowes Castle Museum (17th century)
One, a stumpwork relief of St. Peter really made our heads spin.  The dimension was like sculpture.  The entire piece was worked in couched gold threads, but the threads were worked diagonally over the pairs of threads to add a more painterly look as well as direction to the fabrics.

One of the highlights of the Bowes Museum is the animatronic Silver Swan from the 18th century.  It moves at 2pm every day and our group quickly downed their lunch so they could run out and watch the swan move.
Close view of EMB 390 - St Peter, Bowes Castle
The water moves and little fish swim, the swan bends its neck around and bends down to catch a fish.  All in silver.
After catching more looks at the lace collection and a piece of stumpwork that was displayed, we started the rest of our trip to York, England where we would stay for the weekend.

EMB570 Stumpwork, Bowes Castle
Many of us had reserved dinner at the famous Betty's Tea Room for the evening and we had an hour or so to wander York before meeting up.  While on my stroll, I kept running into Pirates.  Yes, full blown, better dressed that Johnny Depp ones.  After my 20th or more pirate, I was thinking something was up.  I had seen them in drug stores, restaurants, on the street, taking tourists hostage, etc.  Finally I gave up and became a hostage myself with a great group and asked where the Pirate Brethren Court was.  I found out that this group has pirate meet-ups in towns all over the UK every year and they gave me a schedule card for 2016.  York was that night and they generally wander around dressed up and enjoy dinner and pubs for the evening.  Sounded like fun!  There must have been at least 100 pirates in town that night.  I resisted the urge to ask them to storm our gathering at the proper Betty's Tea Room.  It would have been so much fun and would have made great pictures!

1 comment:

  1. The stumpwork of the metal threads is mind boggling. I have to ask, is the foundation base carved wood, like we saw on the caskets in the Boston Museum last fall? I'm referring to the ones where the (possibly) sleeven silk covering has worn away - anyway, they are finely carved 3/4 view wood bases...The face on the Peter reminds me of those faces in its style and form.