Traditions in the Making – 1st and 2nd April 2023


Members of The Woolly Umbrella will be demonstrating at Traditions in the Making at the One Garden in Stanmer Park, Brighton. Organised by the Stanmer Preservation Society, the weekend will highlight traditional making of textiles and textile related crafts.

Read about the first day

See heritage textile-making tools in use, not just for display

Both Allan Brown’s Nettle Dress and Barbara Keal’s Coat of Hopes will all be on display in the listed barn throughout the whole weekend. There will be demonstrations of the wonderful heritage skills of weaving, spinning, knitting, crochet, bobbin lacemaking, embroidery and darning with more displays and fleece preparation and spinning in the shepherd’s hut.

The Coat of Hopes on its way to COP 26 in 2021

Times of formal demonstrations

Sat 1st April    

10.30-12.30 Flax/nettle and wool processing with Allan Brown.

14.00-16.00   Meet the Coat of Hopes and the artist Barbara Keal 

Sun  2nd April  

10.30-12.30   Sock knitting on the Stanmer Preservation Society’s early Twentieth century circular knitting machine 

14.00-16.00   An introduction to bobbin lacemaking from the Southwick Lace Group

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How to get there:

The #78 bus from central Brighton brings passengers to Stanmer village itself. From there it is a very short walk to the One Garden.The #23,#25, #25X. #28 and #29 buses run to the entrance of the park, and then a pleasant walk through the park will bring you to the One Garden. Brighton bus information is here.

You can take the train to Falmer and walk through the park to the One Garden.

Cyclists can use the Lewes Road cycle lanes from the centre of town.

There is paid parking at the entrance of the park and also close to the One Garden. This costs from £1.50 for an hour up to £6.50 for the day. Pay by card of phone only.


Our Story…


In through the front door
Once around the back
Peek through the window
And off jumps Jack!

Traditional knitting rhyme

This is a work-in-progress website, new content will be added in due course as we start meeting again. Meanwhile there are some photos from past events shown below.

All content remains copyright of the creator. Please use the contact form to seek permission to re-use any material.

Traditions in the Making and April 2023

Another monster day! We had 400 visitors today, so with the 200 from yesterday that is an amazing 600 people through the door!

I think most of them took something away from the day; and everyone was so interested and supportive of the idea of a Heritage Craft Centre being established at Stanmer Park. Thank you to all those who came along and the passionate volunteers who made it all happen.

The Coat of Hopes being tried on by a visitor

Stanmer Park Heritage textiles

In the good weather some members of Wooly Umbrella join in with others to make textiles in Stanmer Park Barn but the One Garden.

People meet there every first Friday of the month. This was July 2022, sunny and glorious.

Bentley Wood Fair 2022

Woolly Umbrella members had a presence at the Bentley Wood fair. As usual the site was in the beautiful woods and visitors who explored found exciting textile activities centring around dyeing.

Dyeing over an open fire.
Time for a break
Chopping wood for the fire
Tie dyed cloth

Local Eco- conscious workshop – looks interesting


There is a Shibori dyeing course in December.
The gallery is open for the month of December and all the artists are eco- conscious and using recycled and upcycled materials. See more and folllow on Instagram

and Facebook.

At the Lammas Celebration

Woolly Umbrella was invited to join the Lammas Celebration on 1st August at the Stanmer Earthship today. It was our first community event, or even the opportunity to meet up since March 2020, so was extra special.

The weather was warm but a bit showery, but just being there was lovely. The atmosphere was gentle and benevolent. Thank you Ali for inviting us.

Lammas is celebrated on 1st August. It originates from the Anglo-Saxon ‘hlaf-mass’, (loaf-mass) which involved bringing a loaf of bread made from the new wheat crop to the church for a blessing.

Not knowing this beforehand, I coincidentally took a slice of my home-made sourdough rye loaf for my lunch. I now know I was on the right track and prompted to do this. I had even considered taking several sourdough starters along to give away, and now regret not getting it together to do so!

Neither are likely to have been made from wheat from the new harvest, but still a nice thought.