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It's a Take-over!

Melinda has decided to hand the Blog over to me today for some reason - so hello! I'm Emma, the other half of Larkswold and I'm going to fill you in with what we've been up to and what we have going on.


Most importantly I think we have to talk about going to Highgrove don't you? Have you been? We hadn't and were thrilled to be invited by our good friend and colleague Tracy from Cotswold Hipster to accompany her and her husband Mark to run a Leather Card Holder Workshop there for some of the Royal Correspondents.

What a beautiful place - sadly we didn't get a tour, but the room we were in had a lovely view over a courtyard garden and the shop was a delight & afternoon tea was just stunning. We had a hilarious chat with a lovely lady from Hello magazine & got to know Hannah Mansfield who runs an amazing Embroidery Course (in conjunction with Chanel) at the Kings Foundation on-site. Hannah was running a mini session alongside us for the correspondents to make a beaded bug brooch, which I totally fell in love with and we are hoping Hannah will run a workshop for us in the studio later this year.

Having worked my way through the entire Afternoon Tea after the workshop the journey back to Stow was a little uncomfortable - that'll teach me!


So, Leather Card Holders were a success, and although we were fans of leather before, we are now starting to get a bit obsessed as our next off-site session came hot on the heels of Highgrove with a corporate booking at Thyme for the Mars Petcare group to make dog collars and leads! Honestly, this is one of the most beautiful venues I've ever been to - definitely somewhere to go for a special celebration.

Our guests had a full day of meetings and training, and then joined us in the beautiful 'Cookery School' area for their leather workshop.

Things were going well, no one had glued or stitched their fingers together but it was also getting darker in the room by the minute. Melinda ventured off to see if a staff member could assist by getting some further lights turned on, and low and behold not 2 minutes later the lights were mostly turned off! Not ideal when you are in the middle of a bit of sewing! It turns out there had been a 'Lost in Translation' moment as the staff member thought that was what Melinda was asking for... anyway, sometime later lights were back on plus the additional lighting! We don't think anyone noticed (well, they didn't seem to mind as it gave them a chance to have a drink and chill for a bit!)

Everyone happily completed their collars and leads and tootled off to the pub for dinner (also part of Thyme and located 'nextdoor') while we tidied up and took the opportunity to have a look around. I don't really have the words to describe how stunning this place is. It definitely had Daylesford-vibes, but much more chilled and quieter. Really lovely. Can I go back please?

Winchcombe Steam Railway Station

On a slightly different note today Melinda is kicking off Easter crafting at Winchcombe Steam Railway Station. We've been lucky enough to run activities there for a couple of years and we always have a lot of fun there with families enjoying a day out. Winchcombe station is on the route from Broadway to Cheltenham and is keen for families to get off at their beloved station, enjoy the cafe, do a treasure hunt and spend time doing some crafting (which is included in your ticket price - no hidden extras!)

I love it as the whole station is very 'retro' with knitted tea-cosies on the teapots etc and is predominently manned by the most enthusiastic & knowledgable volunteers you'll find anywhere! If you haven't taken a steam train ride along this route then get yourself booked in!

Studio Life

So that has been our off-site adventuring, but we've also had fun in the studio with our first Ceramic Hare Workshop last weekend, which went really well! We had a full house and Robyn from The Yard Pottery Painting Co made sure everyone made a super ceramic hare! The hares hung out with us in the studio for a couple of days before she transported them back to her studio to fully dry out, which will take another week or so before glazing and firing.

It appears that pottery is very popular and we are welcoming a 50th Birthday Party to the studio at the weekend who have also chosen to make hares... I think Robyn is going to be a busy lady!

We also enjoyed a Willow Basket Workshop, Silversmithing Rings & Bangles and Glass Fusing in the studio and we hosted our second Brush Party!

New Workshop Courses

Looking ahead we are always seeking out new workshops to offer, and as such we had a good chat with experienced crocheter Holly who is developing a crochet course that runs over 3 weeks. By the end you will have mastered 3 basic crochet stitches and made your own cactus planter... suitable for those new to crochet and those who have a little experience (maybe your Grandmother taught you or you tried to learn in Lockdown but need a guiding hand)

This is likely to be in September, but watch this space!

Another exciting new workshop is a Stained Glass course, running over 2 days - we are trialing this next month (exciting!) and will likely run it in the summer.

Our Silver Metal Clay tutor Anna is developing a course that will probably run over 6 weeks, kicking off in September. This is a chance to really get absorbed in this brilliant craft.

More on all of these once we've nailed the details down but if you are interested then please let us know by filling in our 'Contact Us' form here and we'll let you know once bookings are open!

The Larkswold Kitchen

Did you see on our Facebook or Instagram accounts that we have made-over our kitchen? It was a pretty big project to empty it all out, tidy it up, paint it and reinstall 'new' industrial kitchen units & relocate basically everything, but with a little help from Mr Larkswold (ie Melinda's husband Phil) we got it all done in time for our Food Hygiene inspection. Happily it went very well and we are delighted with our 5* rating. Hurrah!

Flock Update

I'm not so involved in the flock activities you may, or may not be glad to hear! What I do know is that:

1) Spring has Sprung and the male ducks in particular are taking it very seriously

2) The ladies have started laying again

3) Both ducks and chickens have sadly diminished in numbers recently as we think either a fox or otters have been helping themselves. Not cool. But surprisingly the duck we both call 'Poorly Girl' has survived another day and is obviously stronger than she looks.

4) The ducks are probably the only members of the Larkswold team that are absolutely loving all this rain. The river burst it's banks overnight and they are in their element!

Happy Easter to you, have a lovely weekend.


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