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All Posts by Gartmore House

Outlander Film Locations in Scotland

In recent years Scotland has proven a popular location for lots of different films and TV series, most notably Outlander.  Some of Outlander’s film locations are very close to us here at Gartmore House – not more than half an hour away by car!  Visit Scotland has even created an interactive Outlander map so you can find your way around this ‘living film set’!
 
 
The Outlander locations closest to Gartmore are as follows:

  • Loch Katrine (season 2) – this pretty loch is just a 25 mins drive away. You can cruise on the water, hire a bike or take a walk. There are a couple of good cafes where you can relax and enjoy the views. Day trips to Loch Katrine are included on all craft & activity holidays of 5 nights or more.
  • Deanston Distillery (season 2) – one of our favourite local whisky distilleries, it’s just a 30 mins drive away.
  • Doune Castle (season 1) – just 30 mins away,  Doune Castle turns into the fictional Castle Leoch – 18th century home to Colum MacKenzie and his clan. It also features in the 20th century episode when Claire and Frank visit the ruined castle on a day trip. Doune Castle is also used in Game of Thrones as ‘Winterfell’.

The interactive map features an incredible 36 Scottish Outlander film locations! You can even download a FREE OUTLANDER FILM LOCATIONS MAP from Visit Scotland’s website.
If you’d like to plan your visit to Gartmore House or book your craft and activity holiday, take a look at  www.gartmorehouse.com or just give us a call on 01877 382991, and we’ll be happy to help.

  • March 13, 2019
  • News
Loch Katrine Cruise

Your (included*) Loch Katrine Day Trip

[et_pb_section fb_built=”1″ admin_label=”section” _builder_version=”3.0.47″][et_pb_row admin_label=”row” _builder_version=”3.0.48″ background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″ _builder_version=”3.0.47″][et_pb_text admin_label=”Text” _builder_version=”3.20.2″ background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat”]Here at Gartmore House we’re lucky to have some truly stunning lochs on our doorstep.  Loch Katrine is one of Scotland’s hidden gems, and a visit there (with a one hour cruise on the water) is a real highlight of your holiday.  *We include a trip there in all craft and activity holidays of 5 nights or more. The trip is usually after lunch on Wednesdays (sometimes a packed lunch is included instead of a sit-down lunch in the restaurant – dependent on the time of the sailing that day).
Loch Katrine Cruise

Loch Katrine Cruise

You’ll sail on either the world-famous steamship Sir Walter Scott or the more modern MV Lady of the Lake. Both have indoor covered seating as well as outdoor seating, and hot drinks and snacks are available (at extra cost) on board. We include return transportation from Gartmore House (approx. 25 mins each way, by minibus), and the cruise itself is around an hour.  Find out more about the different vessels.
Loch Katrine has a fascinating history of supplying water to the people of Glasgow for over 160 years through a sytem of pipes and viaducts. It was opened by Queen Victoria in October 1859 and is still going strong!  Scottish Water (who are currently doing refurbishment work) have unearthed some amazing Victorian-era pictures. If you’ve ever visited Loch Katrine then you’ll no doubt be interested to take a look!   Watch the video about the recent discovery of these historic images on Scottish Water’s YouTube Channel.

Loch Katrine Loch Katrine is also the setting for some of Sir Walter Scott’s most beloved poems, and is linked with legendary outlaw Rob Roy MacGregor.  Queen Victoria ordered a cottage and jetty be built for her on the loch, however she never stayed there as the windows were all shattered by the 21-gun salute to Her Royal Highness!
For further information about your cruise on Loch Katrine, visit Loch Katrine Cruises’ website, watch their video, or contact our friendly team in the Gartmore House office![/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]
  • March 13, 2019
  • News
Calico

NEW for 2019! Art Cloth Doll Making Courses at Gartmore House

Art Cloth Doll Making is a new course for 2019 here at Gartmore House. Tutor Angela explains more about this fast-growing popular craft and how the 5-night course will pan out:
Hi! I’m excited about my first course next month at Gartmore and would like to introduce you to my art doll family.

Jeremiah Terra-Fawkes

Jeremiah Terra-Fawkes

When our class starts on Monday morning we will all have a chance to look at books, patterns and other artists’ work together – this is the really exciting bit. I’ll help each of you fine tune your own ideas into a manageable project, so that you have your own art doll by the end of the week.
Calico

Calico

Each day I will take you through the next step, demonstrating to the group and also individually as required. Don’t be embarrassed if it takes a couple of times before you quite “get it”. I will always be available for questions and will be checking in with everyone throughout the day. I am confident that even beginners can achieve a great result.
Demonstrations are supported by full, easy to follow, instruction sheets to take away.

Demonstrations are supported by full, easy to follow, instruction sheets to take away.

The list of techniques covered is long, but many are using skills with which you may already be familiar – drawing round pattern templates, basic sewing machine stitching, stuffing limbs, wiring fingers, ladder stitching openings, sewing button joints, needle sculpting faces, drawing, painting or stitching faces, making a basic doll’s wig, making clothes & shoes.
So it will be quite a busy few days. You may even choose to do “homework” (gasp!) – stuffing is laborious and takes time but can easily be done while chatting or watching TV.

Two of the puppets made by Year 2 Art Class at St Machar Academy, Aberdeen

I have used this workshop with 2nd year high school pupils, most of whom had never done any sewing, on machine or by hand. They had fantastic ideas which I helped them realise and they were all delighted with their finished dolls/puppets.
Finishing a puppet's chainmail buzz cut.

Finishing a puppet’s chainmail buzz cut

You can even work in pairs on one art doll if you like! Sharing out the tasks to suit. I’ve previously led a group containing 2 pairs of Mum’s & their 9 years olds – each pair making lovely dolls. The youngsters “drove” the sewing machines as if they were racing cars!!

Mum helping Skye (age 9) finish her doll’s elbow

This class is great fun and will provide plenty of laughs as the dolls begin to take on a character and life of their own, telling you how they want their hair and what clothes they want to wear! I’m looking forward to bringing doll making to Gartmore. See you soon!
Angela – Doll Making Course Tutor
Tutor Angela

Tutor Angela

Take a look at Angela’s Pinterest page for inspiration
If you’d like to join an Art Cloth Doll Making course at Gartmore House, visit our website or call us on 01877 382991 or email mail@gartmorehouse.com #gartmoreexperience

  • February 20, 2019
  • News
Seminole Quilt

Seminole Patchwork – NEW for 2019/20 Patchwork & Quilting Courses

Seminole Quilt

Seminole Quilt

Well the weather outside is freezing and grey so working with the bright vibrant colours of traditional Seminole Patchwork is warming and cheering!
Seminole Patchwork was developed by the Seminole Indians in Florida when sewing machines first became available and is a strip piecing technique  which was  used initially to decorate clothing. It’s a very flexible technique with a great variety of designs – some very suitable for beginners and some more challenging for the more experienced. The designs can be used not just for quilts but for runners, hangings, bags,cushions and more…
Here is a picture of my Seminole Quilt – a lovely project for 2019!
Happy Quilting
Clare
Tutor – Gartmore House

 
Find out more about our Patchwork & Quilting courses (dates, prices and what’s included) – click here >>
Find out more about projects and techniques on Patchwork & Quilting Courses – click here >> (downloadable pdf)
Download our Craft & Activity Holidays brochure – click here >>
#gartmoreexperience
www.gartmoreestate.com 
Tel: 01877 382991
Email: mail@gartmorehouse.com

Patchwork & Quilting – Tutor Clare Workman talks about course projects for 2019/20

Hi everyone! My name’s Clare and I’m the Tutor for the Patchwork and Quilting holidays here at Gartmore House – and this is my first blog post!…..so here goes…..
When teaching I like to offer a choice of projects, so you can choose what you’d like to create and techniques you’d like to learn. Many of my students have attended my courses before, so it’s good for them to know they can learn new skills and work on different projects.  Right now, I’m continuing to develop new projects for 2019/20 holidays which is always a lot of fun – I make sure there are lots of design and technique options so everyone can choose their own personal favourite to work on – we don’t all have to do the same thing!
I make sure there’s a good choice for complete beginners – and also to challenge and extend the skills of the more experienced. Sampler blocks, strips and borders will be options – they offer so much scope to learn a new technique fast and can be made up into quilts,cushions, runners, bags and more besides.
Quilting will be explored in more detail for those who want to try free machine quilting or discover what can be achieved with a walking foot and a bit of imagination – full guidance given…..playtime!! We keep class sizes small so everyone gets a lot of individual attention. It’s an ideal opportunity to build skills.
I am also extending the range of Bargello designs from traditional to contemporary and art designs – lovely landscapes in Bargello! Abstract is the new buzz word!
Patchwork and Quilting Holidays at Gartmore House
New for 2019/20 will be lots of smaller projects so students can sample different techniques and finish several smaller items during their holiday. I’m on a mission to reduce my ‘stash’ and these projects will be ideal… So, if you have a mountain or a molehill of fabric waiting to be used, bring it along and achieve that satisfied glow of putting all that fabric to very good use! A good clear-out does however make room for more possibly…!
I’m going to be posting some pictures of new works as we go along and am also working on a Guests’ Gallery which will showcase the delicious diversity of work we do here on our holidays! From complete beginner to experienced stitcher, all are welcome and there really is something for everyone to enjoy. Patchwork and quilting without fear – if you’ve always wanted to try it,come and join us for relaxed creative fun – you’ll be amazed at what you can achieve!
More details are on the Patchwork & Quilting Course webpage…. and more will follow on this blog…..
See you soon at Gartmore!
 

Lace Making for Christmas – tutor Jean Leader's festive ideas

Christmas is coming… Lace making tutor Jean Leader shares some of her festive crafty ideas…
Although Christmas is nearly three months away, I’ve already been asked about suitably festive patterns for bobbin lace to hang on the tree or use on cards. It’s a long time since I made my first lace ornament for our tree — a little green Christmas tree decorated with coloured beads inside a ring. At a lace course I was given an anonymous page with three patterns, one for the tree and two others for a candle and a star. I made all three and when they were finished attached each one to a bangle ready to hang on our tree (the original tree in a ring went missing a few years ago and for its replacement I used fabric stiffener to give it more body instead of a ring).

Tree, candle, star lace patterns

Tree, candle, star lace patterns

Since then I have built up quite a collection of Christmas patterns, some I’ve found in magazine or books, and others I have designed myself. I try to come up with at least one new pattern every year but I’m still thinking about something for this year and I still have plenty of time!
snowflakes lace

snowflakes lace

rings lace

rings lace

festive lace creations

festive lace creations

If you’ve never made bobbin lace you may be wondering if you’d be able to make any of these. The answer is a very definite YES. The twisted spirals can be made by complete beginners and even the little tree would be possible — it’s made with finer thread which means there are more stitches (think 2-ply versus double knitting) but they are the same stitches. In case you’re wondering the spirals are made flat, then wound round a pencil wrapped in cling film (to keep the pencil clean) and painted with stiffener. Once they’re dry take out the pencil and hang them on the tree!
spiral lace

spiral lace

If you’re new to bobbin lace making I can bring what you’ll need to get going (pillow, bobbins, thread etc) — please just let the folk at Gartmore House know in advance.
On the other hand if you’d prefer to work on something other than Christmas decorations then please also get in touch. I’ll be happy to help if you have any questions.
For further information on lace making courses, see our website or simply pick up the phone and give us a call on 01877 382991. Our next course before Christmas starts 9 November 2018.   Find out more about tutor Jean Leader, visit https://www.jeanleader.net/

Q&A with Photography Tutor Ewan Barry

Edinburgh-based Photographer Ewan Barry runs our popular Photography courses here at Gartmore House. We grabbed him in between shoots for a few questions over a quick cuppa and piece of cake…

Photography Courses at Gartmore House

Photography Courses at Gartmore House

Q: Give us your top 3 take-away tips for great photos
A:
1. Get to know your equipment, whether it’s a phone or old school film camera – if you don’t know what the buttons do you won’t be in control of the way your image looks.
2. Regular practice – if you only get your camera out on the odd occasion, on holiday for example, the technical side of things will never become second nature.
3. Don’t try to fit everything into an image, try to remove as much as you can.
Tutor - Ewan Barry

Tutor – Ewan Barry

Q: What’s your favourite thing to shoot and why?
A: I don’t have a single favourite subject. I think variety keeps things interesting and there’s often crossover – I’ll learn something on one type of shoot that I can apply to another at a later date.
Q: Who is the course at Gartmore House aimed at?
A: Anyone who enjoys the outdoors and landscape photography in particular. I can help identify subject matter, help with composition and I offer technical advice along the way.
A selection of photos from September's course

A selection of photos from September’s course

Q: What level/type of experience do most people on the course have?
A: Generally, I’d say beginners to intermediate level although more experienced photographers would still benefit from visiting the locations we use and enjoy the evening discussions we often have on the artistic side of things.
Q: What kind of cameras do most people bring/use on the course?
A: All kinds, but you’ll get more from the course as well as better photographs if your camera has manual control settings.
Q: What’s the best thing about learning photography in Scotland?
A: If the weather and/or light conditions aren’t inspiring you at any given time, you won’t have to wait long for it to change.
Find out more about photography courses at Gartmore House, or give us a call on 01877 382991.

  • October 2, 2018
  • News

Which sewing course is for me? Tutor Gill McBride talks through the different options

Sewing Patterns

Sewing Patterns

Sewing holidays are quite new at Gartmore House, but everyone who has come so far has loved them! Its such a treat to come to a wonderful place, be able to sew all day for 4 full days, be fed and treated as very special guests and not have to make the beds, think about dinner, or walk the dogs!
Our sewing holidays suit most sewers and will especially suit you if you are confident about using your sewing machine. You will pick up wee sewing tips as you go through each day and you will learn new techniques as well.
On the ‘Understanding and Fitting Patterns’ holiday, we spend a lot of time actually finding out all about the pattern – what’s in it and what information it is giving us. It’s amazing how much we don’t know about the pattern and even the pattern envelope. You’ll also learn how to take body measurements and then choose the correct size of pattern to cut before you even begin sewing. Everyone agrees that this is incredibly useful and informative.
By the end of the holiday, you should have made a toile or a practice dress/top in calico or some other practice material that you bring along, learned all about fitting it on you – with the help of everyone else on the course – and made your pattern adjustments. Many of you will manage to finish sewing your final dress/top before you leave.
Trousers

Trousers

The ‘Trousers’ week is great! How many times do we wish we could get a perfectly fitting pair of trousers and better still, MAKE the perfect pair of trousers. This is the holiday for you! You’ll get to grips with the pattern and hopefully really understand all about fitting those trousers. Crotch depths and crotch rise and all the terms used about trousers can be so confusing but we get them sorted out during this week, having lots of fun and laughs whilst we do it!
Speed tailoring a jacket

Speed tailoring a jacket

Other holidays that are planned include Speed Tailoring a Jacket. This holiday will suit intermediate and confident sewers to get the best from the holiday. It takes 3 full days to make a wonderful jacket for an experienced sewer but this course will get you to the point where you can take your jacket home and finish your hems and buttonholes etc. Its amazingly satisfying to fit and make your own jackets!
Each workshop will accommodate everyone who comes and Gill will work with all of you individually, ensuring that you get the best of attention and help when you need it. You will learn lots of sewing tips from Gill and from each other and your sewing knowledge and confidence will grow considerably. Hopefully you will go home ready to start a new project knowing that you will be able to finish it and be proud to wear it!  Other sewing topics can be included in a holiday – just get in touch and let us know what you want to learn.
Learn to sew at Gartmore House

Learn to sew at Gartmore House

For further information about our sewing courses, see our website, or simply pick up the phone and give us a call on 01877 382991. We look forward to hearing from you!
Sew Your Own Courses
Learn to Sew
Understanding Sewing Patterns

  • October 2, 2018
  • Sewing

Our Knitting & Crochet Breaks – Get the low-down from tutor Samira Hill

Knitting and Crochet breaks are one of the most popular crafting holidays here at Gartmore House.  Tutor Samira Hill explains a bit more about what you can expect from a rewarding escape to rural Scotland, where you’ll get to grips with knitting needles and crochet hooks:
Our retreats are the perfect choice for a relaxing, creative and inspiring holiday, based around your favourite hobby! Have you got a project that has been hiding in your bag for ages, but you can’t find the time to finish it? Have you a pattern that you would love to get on with, but need help with it? Or are you a complete beginner who would you like to learn something new?
If so, you’ll find a wide selection of knitting and crochet workshops available, and you’ll choose which of these to work on ahead of your break (see course info for example workshops).  During your time at Gartmore House you’ll be working on your chosen topic with me, Samira. The activities and workshops are designed to suit absolutely everyone, encompassing all abilities and levels of experience; there is no prior knowledge of a technique or topic required for those who would like to learn to knit, crochet, and learn Tunisian Crochet. For those with some experience in knitting, there are a lot of new techniques to explore, such as Brioche knitting, Entrelac knitting, Fair Isle, sock knitting, cables etc… For those with some knowledge of crochet, there are also some fun techniques to practice colour work stitches, texture stitches and crochet cables… As well as Tunisian Crochet!

Brioche Knitting

Brioche Knitting

I’ve designed each of the workshops so that by the end of your crafting holiday, you will have one or a few finished items to show off the new skills you have learnt. What’s more, you will have acquired a strong understanding of your new techniques, so that you can carry on exploring further on your own with confidence.
The workshops are suggestions only; I’m always on hand to help you with any topic or project that you would like to work on! The activity weeks are a great opportunity to relax, explore the peaceful surroundings of  Gartmore Estate, indulge in the delicious food on offer, and enjoy friendly and inspiring crafty chats by the fire… and naturally the simple pleasure of working with your hands – knitting and crocheting all day of course!
Entrelac Knitting

Entrelac Knitting

We look forward to seeing you on a Knitting and Crochet course soon!
  • September 18, 2018
  • News

Come Dancing and enjoy lots of health benefits!

Want to learn to waltz like they do on Strictly? Instead of just admiring the dancers on the telly, why not join them! Studies show that dancing is so good for you. Here are some of the benefits (in case you needed reminding why all those Strictly contestants look so happy and fit!).

  1. Dancing can help you lose weight – you can burn around 400 calories an hour!
  2. Dancing improves the condition of your heart and lungs.
  3. Dancing increases muscular tone and strength
  4. Dancing reduces stress and can significantly improve your mood.
  5. Dancing helps you with your coordination and agility.
  6. Plus, you’re bound to make lots of new friends!

Come to Gartmore House and take your first steps in learning to dance on a couples dancing weekend (if you don’t have a dance partner, don’t worry – you don’t need one to attend!). All levels welcome. All you need is a pair of dance shoes and a willingness to give it a go!  Your dance tutor is the lovely Teresa Mcclymont from Dance Time Scotland – she will take you through the steps to learn ballroom dancing, swing, country and modern Jive.Stay in a historic house in Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park, with accommodation and full board included. Have a look at https://bit.ly/dancingweekends for dates and more info on courses or give us a call on 01877 382 991.

Keep dancing!

  • September 11, 2018
  • News