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For fans of textile art, craft and design, there’s only one place to be in October (5th – 8th) and that’s London’s iconic Alexandra Palace for The Knitting & Stitching Show.

The UK’s biggest textile event brings a riot of colour, fabulous fabrics and superb stitchery – and we’re not just talking about visitors’ outfits! The Knitting & Stitching Show’s legendary Learning Curve workshop programme offers hundreds of hands-on classes led by top tutors. Whether you’re a pro or a complete beginner, there are classes and crafts for everyone, from crochet, punch needling and Christmas makes to goldwork, patchwork and knitted postbox toppers.

Passionate about making your own clothes? Dressmaking tutors Claire Tyler, Mark Francis and Lawratu Patton are just some of the experts that will be sharing their skills at The Dressmaking Studio by Brother and the Baby Lock Overlocker Studio. At the Creative Living Theatre, Clive Bruder and members of the Boys Sew Too contemporary dressmaking community will be hosting an inspiring catwalk fashion show of recycled and upcycled garments (sponsored by Aurifil, Saturday only).  

New for 2023 is Pom Pom magazine’s support of The Knitting Lounge, where a daily line-up of well-known knit and crochet designers will be dropping in to share tips, advice and friendly chat about their latest projects. Knit and stitch experts will also be leading free daily demonstrations at The Creative Living Theatre, with sessions like Wonderful Woad with Angela Daymond (Thursday), Modern Macrame with Isabella Strambio (Friday), Shaun the Sheep needle felting with Steffi Stern from The Makerss (Saturday), and Bargello Basics with Nerrisa Pratt (Sunday).                 

The Knitting & Stitching Show offers a craft shopping experience like no other, with hundreds of specialist exhibitors under one roof. Stitch Lane is the place for cross-stitch shopping, and at The Yarn Village, artisan makers and retailers will be showcasing the finest quality yarn and accessories. After all that browsing and shopping, the show’s Prosecco Bar, food and drink outlets, picnic spaces and seating provide plenty of spots to take a break or catch up with craft pals.  

Taking centre stage at Alexandra Palace’s spectacular Palm Court is The Domestic Dusters Project, a collaborative, global art project curated over the last ten years by UK textile artist and academic, Vanessa Marr. The exhibition features more than 100 yellow household dusters on which women from all over the world have embroidered their domestic perspectives, experiences, complaints and celebrations.

The Knitting & Stitching Show has long been a champion of contemporary textile art. This year’s galleries feature work by artists from Art Textiles: Made in Britain (Bethan Ash, Louise Baldwin, Jessica Grady, Cas Holmes, Rosie James, Edwina Mackinnon, Sandra Meech, Sylvia Paul, Stephanie Redfern, Christine Restall and Sarah Waters), Jan Beaney and Jean Littlejohn, Selby Hurst Inglefield, Nneka Jones, Sabine Kaner and Batool Showghi.

The Fine Art Textiles Award gallery will feature the 2023 winning entry, The Terrible Sight of Right and Wrong, a portrait by Dr. Ian Nigel Hurlstone combining photography, digital print and machine embroidery. Also on display will be Interlaced and Fly Stitched Estuary by Isobel Currie, a 3D embroidery piece awarded Most Innovative Use of Textiles, alongside other shortlisted award entries. The Fine Art Textiles Award is an international juried exhibition open to all amateur and practising artists using textiles as their primary medium, and is supported by the Surface Design Association. The award recognises the creative talents and skills of a broad community of high-calibre artists, including quilters, and celebrates textiles’ rightful place amongst high art. The winner is announced each year at The Festival of Quilts. 

The Embroiderers’ Guild will mark the thirtieth anniversary of its Graduate & Scholar Showcase at The Knitting & Stitching Show with a celebratory Retrospective. The exhibition charts graduates’ and scholars’ inspirational stories from selection in 1993 to today.   

Standard adult tickets for The Knitting & Stitching Show at Alexandra Palace are £19.50 (concessions £17.00, children under 18 £9). VIP ticket packages start from £40.00. Ticket prices increase on 2nd October.  Transaction fee applies. Full ticket information is available at The Knitting & Stitching Show website www.theknittingandstitchingshow.com. Visitors are encouraged to book in advance to avoid disappointment.

Free shuttle buses run from Wood Green and Alexandra Palace train stations every 20-30 minutes.


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