The Friendship Cloth, celebrating 50 years of friendship

The cloth was made by all DEWI members between September and December 2013 and unveiled in January 2014 in time for DEWI's fiftieth birthday party in February 2014.

In November 2015, our retiring President, Joy Greasley, presented DEWI with a photo book to record the making of the Friendship Cloth.  You can view the book by clicking on the picture below.  Once you are in the photo book, click on the bottom right-hand corner of the book to turn the page.


 

The hexagons depict just about anything.  Some have a special meaning, and some are just pretty.  They have been embroidered, machined, glued, or ironed on.  Several have been hand-painted by our talented members, and one has been hand-made by our lace-maker.  They are made of buttons, a photo transferred to fabric, ribbon, an iron-on motif, knitting, or anything else that can be attached to a small piece of fabric.

Work in progress
 
   
     
 
 
 




 
   
     
 
 

 
 
     
     
     
     
     
 

     
     
     
     
     
     


 
     

   
     
     

   
 
 

 

 
 
     
     




The Making of the Friendship Cloth
The design evolved from many conversations.  The object was to produce something to commemorate our fiftieth anniversary and which symbolised the special friendships which have been engendered in Dormans Evening WI over the past fifty years.  We wanted it to be modern and original.

Finding a suitable cloth proved to be a long and challenging job.  They all seemed to be the wrong size, texture or colour.  We visited all the best shops and spent hours on internet.  Eventually we found just the right cloth on a visit to Holland, slightly too large, but perfect when it was cut down to size. 

Many multicoloured patchwork pieces were purchased, laundered several times until no colour came out, then a hexagon was marked out in the centre of the cloth.

Every member took away a small piece of coloured cotton fabric and made their own design, some with the assistance of fellow members.  It allowed for imaginative interpretation by our members with diverse talents, but also encompassed simple yet effective designs made with such items as iron-on motives or buttons. 

Members were given from June to September 2013 to complete their work.

We had very little idea about the design of the cloth until all the squares were in and turned into hexagons, then, as seems to happen in  DEWI, everything just fell into place.  There were exactly the right number of hexagons to make a circle of friendship, with a small block for motives representing the bigger picture of WI, and another block to symbolise our many clubs and activities within DEWI.

The embroidery for the word "Welcome" was copied from our cherry table cloth, and the smaller lettering was measured up and marked with a blue water-soluble pen, which was then embroidered over.  Oh, dear, there were a few sleepless nights when the blue pen refused to wash out as promised in the instructions.  Each time we dampened it, it moved across the cloth until it was a mess of blue blobs all over the place.  However, persistence won and the blue blobs got fainter each time the cloth was dampened, and eventually disappeared.

When being sewn on, the hexagons developed a life of their own, creeping across the cloth when they weren't supposed to. 

Despite the worries of "Where can we find a suitable cloth?", "Will our members like the idea?", "Will they manage to get their work back in time?", "Will there be the right number of hexagons?" and "What do we do if the blue ink doesn't wash out?" the finished cloth is an heirloom of which all our members can all be justly proud.