“Important encounters are planned by the souls long before the bodies see each other” – Paulo Coelho
I think I’ve said this many many times before, but the best thing about my online creative journey has, by far and away, been the folk that it’s brought into my life. Bright, intelligent, kind, creative and inspiring people, both online & offscreen.
But all too often, the only opportunity to meet up is at an event, and though they’re great and all that, (and don’t get me wrong, I appreciate them in their way); they’re more about whatever you’re there to hear about, and always far too brief. The dash home for the train pulling us back to our homes and families all too soon, before there’s been any chance for the conversation to drift and wander any deeper.
Last year, as the months were slowly turning cool and mellow and the Summer was drifting into Autumn, I expressed this frustration to Lou, and with my thoughts drifting too, to the warmth of the following year, I talked dreamily of my plans for camps and gatherings…
So you can imagine my delight when an invite for Sisterhood camp – a whole weekend of days spent under the wide open skies of North Devon – popped into my inbox earlier this year; proper time with wonderful womenfolk…time spent making & talking of our real lives, sharing plans & dreams, feasting & sleeping under the stars – a no brainer really…
And so it was at the end of May, that I arrived, nervous and excited, at Loveland Farm with my roadtrip sisters – Melanie, Karen & Caroline, to join Jeska, Hannah, Xanthe, Heather, Katy, Alexis, Kerry, Emma, Laura, Sara, Francesca, Emma, Hannah, Louise, Kat, Camilla, Bethan, Flora, Hels, Amy, and of course, the star that brought us all together in sisterhood, Lou.
It really all felt like a dream. One that had me floating and unable to focus for days after we returned home. I needed that break away, and really the most wonderful thing was the conversation and laughter…the feeling of bonds being strengthened and begun, the meeting of souls…and of knowing that so many of us were pushing ourselves out of our comfort zones to be there, but we were, and it was worth it.
Other highlights of Sisterhood camp included:
\\ watching Xanthe capture the inner beauty of these women in the glow of the Golden Hour
\\ a little escape to the lighthouse with Caroline
\\ learning Shibori techniques & dyeing with Bethan & Heather
\\ the clifftop picnic, with the serendipitous arrival of folk duo, Woof & Wilde
\\ walking & talking our way to the waterfall with Flora, Alexis, Camilla & Melanie (I wish I’d had my swimsuit…I will go back!)
\\ gathering in style thanks to Hannah (and helpers), and the most delicious Moroccan feast from Two Birds Kitchen
The weekend was made beautiful in decor by Lights4fun, Linen Me and Church Park Flowers (who also ran the flower crown making workshop). A huge thanks to TOAST who provided beautiful props & gifts; to Loveland Farm for hosting us in their wonderful eco-pods; and also to Emma of Silverpebble, who sent us the most perfect foragers necklaces. Thanks to Golden Bear Belts who ran the Leather workshop (which I sadly missed), and to Devon Woodcraft who built the hot tub which resulted in squeals and peels of laughter ringing across the darkened fields of Devon ;0) And, most of all, thank you to Lou, for making my dreams come true.
My only regret was that I didn’t take many photos. It has been good for me to put the lens down in the moment of late, but equally, it is on my return that I wish I had captured more than what lies in my phone. Yet, so it is that I leave you with my Sisterhood camp iPhonography tale from StellerStories, and a few of my favourite captures by the immense photographic talent of Xanthe Berkley (you can also catch up on IG with our shares at #sisterhoodwithtoast & #sisterhoodatloveland)…