Under African Skies

‘Under African Skies’, the second exhibition, is the story of one quilter’s 10-year journey to source African fabrics. Magie Relph often spends up to eight weeks each year ‘on the road in Africa riding crowded buses and the occasional horse-drawn cart visiting suppliers and sourcing new artisan producers. What started as a hobby has developed into a small fair trade business, supplying those British quilters and textile artists who also have a fascination with unusual fabrics.

‘When I started selling a few fat quarters of African fabric out of a suitcase to my quilt group,’ recalls Magie, ‘I had no idea that ten years later I would be seeing so many wonderful creations made using African fabrics.’ Fabrics sourced by Magie include hand-dyed batiks, resist dyed Indigo, Kola nut and Indigo and traditional mud cloth as well as wax prints and Shwe Shwe Indigo.The exhibition will include a selection of quilts made with African fabrics and also displays of the fabrics themselves and information about their provenance and makers.