October meeting: Felted pictures with the Crafty Crew

Back in the summer the Crafty Crew tried picture felting which proved so popular with the rest of Pewsham Belles when they saw the results on Facebook, they asked for it to be the next activity led by the Crew. Little did we know at the time that we'd be Crew-lite for the actual evening, but thanks to meticulous preparation beforehand by Steph and great leadership on the night, especially from Diane, a most enjoyable evening was had by all. The results are fab-u-lous! It was also our charity fundraising night, with plenty of cake gorgeousness supplied by our willing volunteer bakers. Those unable to attend were sad to miss out, especially when they saw Kim's cherry bakewell! We're delighted

The art of Kusudama

Little did Michelle know when she spotted these sheet music flowers in a posh interior design shop in Bath that she was looking at the next project for Crafty Crew! A little light googling later and she'd discovered that the art of making them had an unusual and surprising name, kusudama aka 'medicine ball'. The name reflects the Japanese way of using this origami craft to produce a ball of flowers. Diane researched further and once again she cleverly managed to simplify the online guidance she found to demonstrate how to fold her papers into a pretty flower on Monday. Each flower requires 5 squares each folded into a cone and then glued together.Twelve flowers are needed to make a 'medici

The Hardenhuish Circular

This is a versatile walk for anyone who lives in the Cepen Park North, Bristol Road, or central Chippenham areas which has plenty of greenery even though the walk itself takes place within the town's boundaries. It's also a good option for muddy days as the walk is paved throughout. There are a number of entry points depending on where you live. In this instance the mapped walk starts at the railway station to take advantage of the Hungry Hare cafe for a group walk and meeting point. It could also start at Morrison's, or the car park by the Donkey Field/football ground. As you can see, there is plenty of autumn colour to explore, though of course this is a walk for all seasons. We took a

Out and About

What a busy few weeks we've had seeing what our local area has to offer! The Theatre Group had their first taste of opera and songs from the shows with the Autumn Gold performance at The Cause, which contrasted greatly with the Dick Whittington adult panto at the Neeld! Both were enjoyed and next up is a trip to the Tivoli cinema in Bath to see the screening of Matthew Bourne's Romeo and Juliet. The Peacock Arts trail proved popular at various times, both in Chippenham and Corsham. Some of the Crafty Crew also took in various workshops provided by glass artist Mary Quarmby in her studio; the enjoyable tile workshop at the museum; plus block printing, notebook making and silk painting wor

October Book Club: Old Baggage

We had a great evening at The Three Crowns with the Book Club, where we discussed Old Baggage by Lissa Evans. For once we were nearly all in agreement about this book, unfortunately we found it was a bit of a disappointment. The story didn't really go anywhere and it didn't do justice to what looked like a strong, interesting central character at the outset. Overall we only scored it 5 out of 10. We also had lots of interesting chat about the Wiltshire Library eread, The Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared, which will be reviewed at the library on Thursday. Jonas Jonasson's quirky and amusing novel proved a more enjoyable read for those taking part. It'll be interesting to see

Along the railway path

After more than two months of rain in a fortnight it was with some relief the day dawned sunny and fair for our latest walk on Sunday. There was a 'use it or lose it' flavour to the day as we took the railway path to Calne (threatened with closure earlier in the year, but mercifully saved for the time being), and opted to use the regular 55 bus service back to Chippenham as a nod to the WI's rural bus campaign. Five intrepid walkers set off from the entrance to Monkton Park, later joined by Diane who met us where her route from Pewsham along Hardens Lane meets the railway path at New Leaze Farm. We took the path to the right of the River Avon in Monkton Park (facing away from the High Stre

When crime does pay!

They say crime doesn't pay, but in the case of Judith Cranswick it does, because she makes a living as a crime writer. She gave an insight into how she manages it at this week's John Aubrey Group Meeting. Like most authors she reads a lot - particularly psychological and crime fiction - and from those she drew out her first key piece of advice for any aspiring writer, write about what you know. Unlike John Grisham and law, or Dick Francis and horse racing, her starting points were Swindon and further education! From there came her first two published books, both psychological thrillers. Her agent then advised her to start a series as this is usually a better way to gain an income. It's d

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