Val Toombes – May 2019

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Our speaker this month was Val Toombes.  She enjoyed drawing and needlework classes as a teenager and made her own clothes at the age of 12. 

In the early days whilst working aboard, Val’s husband bought her a knitting machine and she went on to design patterns.  In 1992 she did a machine embroidery course at Farnham College where she became a Bernina fan.  She then graduated on to the City & Guilds course at Godalming.


Val’s main interest is silk and she uses it to make paper, scarves, dresses, jackets as well as 3D vessels.  She explained that she learnt to dye 10 different colourways for use in her work and loves strong vibrant colours. 

Val brought along a selection of her work on display mannequins and passed smaller items around the room for members to look at. 
Val enjoys exhibiting her work enters competitions regularly all over the world.  She talked about a recent exciting occasion when her work was chosen to be shown in the World of Wearable Art in Wellington, New Zealand.  Val also mentioned exhibiting at Ramster Hall near Chiddingfold in Surrey.

A group of members will attend a workshop given by Val so watch out for the posting.

Report and photos by Ros

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