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A Cultural Exchange to Slovenia with Bella Peralta

A Cultural Exchange to Slovenia with Bella Peralta

Guild member and weaver Bella Peralta took part in a cultural exchange to Skofia Loka in Slovenia this Spring.

We asked her to share her highlights from the trip.

I was contacted back in the depths of the deep dark winter by Chloe Darling who used to work with the Guild some years ago.

Chloe introduced me to the Arts & Crafts Centre in Skofja Loka, Slovenia, who invited me and my longtime colleague Dr.George Blake to visit as they were interested in our work. George is a renowned Hupa artist and craftsman from Northern California and recipient of the Nation Heritage Award.

They arranged a fabulous cultural exchange between us and the most prominent craftspeople of the area.

We brought some samples of work to share and they were most welcoming, taking us to their Studios and workshops and showing us around their country, just beautiful.

There was a wonderful exhibition of hand-spun, handwoven Slovenian linen at the Arts and Crafts Centre.

We visited the textile studios sharing recipes for dyes, colour making, varnish, and so much more along with delicious food. Here I am, raising a glass, third from the right with the Crafts Centre Director, Kati, George and a tapestry weaver, a felt maker, a quilter and a textile artist.

We also visited a knife maker, a hat maker and a violin maker!

I spent a day with the Costume Makers of Slovenia who are wonderful seamstresses. Pictured is a traditional costume and an example of beautiful embroidery in silver.

Thank you to Marija and Kati, our hosts at the Arts and Crafts Centre in Skofja Loka.

They hope to arrange a return exchange to Cheltenham soon.



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