The 2016 AAVS Lacey Green has kicked off, and I’ve been joined at Grymsdyke Farm by Fernando, Hazma, Julia, Areeba, Ed & Ghaina. With support from Jack Chivers, Alex Dickie, Guan and Nigel we’ll be designing and making a set of furniture for the music pavilion at St. John’s over the course of the next two weeks. The first blog post has been written by Ed, an architecture graduate of Kingston University who’s currently working as a graphic designer at the Conran Shop in London.

We started the day with an introduction to the workshop, learning how to safely use some of the tools we will be working with in the next few weeks. After that we learnt and played with steam bending. Using strips of bamboo that had been cooking in a steam box for around an hour, we bent pulled snapped and twisted them into any shape we could. the experience was new, interesting and fun.

We then set of to Eric Gill’s former house and studio, Piggotts, but before we got there we had a pleasant walk through the English countryside enjoying the summer warmth, scenery and vibrant greens this day had to offer.

Piggotts was an interesting place owned by an interesting man, now a music camp which was putting on an impressively large opera that was hard if not impossible not to be the thing that was left in my mind as we left. The tour was highly interesting, mostly about music with the occasional small artefacts of Eric Gill’s works and a few stories of his inspiring and somewhat mischievous past.

After walking back from Piggots we took a small break before we steam-bent some oak into arch shapes almost like the back of a windsor chair, this was a much greater success than the bamboo test we had tried earlier in the day.