Spring comes late to Shetland as these daffodils in the garden at Ferncliff, my home in Gutcher, Yell, show.
It is still cold in the Far North and sleety showers interspersed with bright blue skies are the order of the day. The birds are lustily singing and at the moment there are larks and oystercatchers, whimbrel and blackbirds along with the ravens, crows and gulls that are unbiquitous in the isles. Ah yes! It is good to be back!
The time spent away has provided time away from work to re-evaluate and plan for the future. As readers of the blog may know, we are going to move to New Zealand sometime in the next couple of years and that means tours are not going to be possible any longer. Touring has been an excellent way to learn and promote Shetland's textiles, but now I shall leave it to others to continue to offer those activities.
As for the studio, we are planning some changes to allow people to come to Shetland to stay and work and this will allow me to come back to visit too. The studio will be altered to add accommodation in the long-run and I hope that we will get weavers to make use of the space and equipment to learn and teach. I am also working on an exchange programme to allow skills to be transferred and to share expertise. This is one of the exciting changes we are contemplating and it will give me an opportunity to continue to work with the islands, where I have lived for twenty years!
The blog will continue too. Each week I learn new things and it is lovely to share them with you all. Thank you for your continued support and enthusiasm, along with the correspondence that comes in each week. It is a privilege to be a small part of so many lives around the world.