Inspiring Quilters, Stitch by Stitch
We are delighted to offer you this unique opportunity to join Karin Hellaby on our first textile holiday to magical Burma (now known as Myanmar).
This special tour will introduce you to an array of textures, rich colours and the cultural treasures of this quite remarkable country. Wondrous sights include glittering pagodas, vast plains, ancient Buddhas and the beauty of Inle Lake. Along the way we’ll meet weavers and local artisans and engage with these skilled craftspeople in their workshops. There will be plenty of opportunities to browse in the vibrant markets and purchase traditional fabrics and other local handicrafts too.
We’ll visit cotton and cane weaving villages on the banks of the Irrawaddy River and traditional tapestry and puppet making workshops in Mandalay. We’ll also enjoy a visit to a silk weaving shop, renowned for some of the finest “longyi”, a sarong like garment which is integral to the Burmese national dress and worn by women and men. On Lake Inle we’ll discover rural workshops that specialise in traditional paper and unique umbrellas. We’ll also discover the delicate art of lotus flower weaving and visit silversmiths and traditional canoe makers. There will also be the opportunity to engage with young students studying textiles and the fashion industry in Yangon.
Also included are two workshops led by Karin, giving you the opportunity to get creative after being inspired by the many wonderful sights you have seen.
Our Burmese textile adventure begins with a visit to the incredible Shwedagon Pagoda which dominates the skyline of Yangon. Other highlights of the capital, formerly known as Rangoon include the Royal Lake, Kandawgyi Park and the 72 metre reclining Buddah. No visit to the city would be complete without a visit to Scott Market with its bustling atmosphere and tempting wares.
Known as the "city of four thousand pagodas” nothing prepares you for the splendid sight of the Bagan plains and the sheer number of temples that dot the vast landscape. There will be plenty of time to explore and experience this wondrous sight and we’ll also get a taste of river and rural life too with a cruise on the Irawaddy River and visits to local communities, farms and villages.
Immortalised by Rudyard Kipling in his famous poem ‘The Road to Mandalay’ this iconic city is a showcase of architecture and art and also the location for many monasteries and convents. We’ll join nuns for lunch and spend time amidst the serene surroundings of the Shwenandaw Monastery. After climbing Mandalay Hill we will be rewarded with fine views of the city and a stroll across the historic teakwood U Bein Bridge at sunset will be the perfect conclusion to a wonderful day.
Stilt-house villages and glittering Buddhist temples rise above the marsh fringed waters of 13.5 mile long and 7 mile wide Inle Lake. This is where we will encounter the Intha fishermen who propel their boats with their unique technique of leg-rowing. Surrounding the lake are the Shan Hills, home to the minorities who travel from their villages to the markets that take place around the region on a five-day cycle. During our stay we will explore many aspects of life on the lake and learn more about this unique water world and the magical floating gardens.