Summer school smiles

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Upholstery workshop student Katrina Gray (left) and tutor Nigel Cook.

Mount Hutt College was a hive of activity last week as the annual Methven Summer School took over the campus.

Paint, staples, chopped veges, smiles and laughter were in abundance as over 120 people used the opportunity to learn a new skill or craft.

With around 15 courses there was plenty of variety on offer including painting, upholstery, cooking, stone carving, basket weaving and photography.

Methven Summer School committee member Judith Sommerville said the courses went really well, and was grateful for Mount Hutt College’s support in allowing the summer school to use the buildings.

“The summer school is run by volunteers with the tutors being paid for their time, most of the tutors are local with some coming from around the South Island,” she said.

There was a delicious aroma coming from the artisan pastries, pies and treats class where students were serving up freshly made Cornish style pasties.

Class tutor Jill Milburn said the secret to a perfect Cornish pasty is to have a good pastry to start with.

“It’s artisan so they have done everything by hand, we’ve got a quiche to come, we’re doing scottish style shortbread and strawberry tarts.”

Artisan pastries, pies and treats student Mitzi Hawker with her Cornish pasties.

Cooking student Mitzi Hawker said the course had been great.

“I have never made my own pastry before, this is the first time ever, I always think it is quick and cheaper to buy, but the look and the flavour of this is fantastic,” she said.

Staples and laughter were flying around the upholstery class where old chairs were being transformed into stylish contemporary furniture.

Upholstery workshop student Sandra Wright at work on her chair.

Upholstery student Sandra Wright was busy stapling colourful new fabric to a pre-loved chair.

“Why was this chair chosen? because it was so ugly nobody wanted it in their bedroom,” she said.

This was her first try at upholstery and she was keen to continue using her new skills when the course finished.

Pastels workshop student Karen Strijbis (left) and tutor Mike Glover.

In the pastels workshop there was an air of concentration as the students used their fingers to manipulate the pastels into a unique landscape.

Landscapes were also the theme in the watercolour wellness class with the students creating quality artwork under the watchful eye of tutor Susie Millichamp.

Watercolour wellness class. Back row from left Anthea Reith, Millie Reed, Lynne Barr, front row from left Christine Knight, tutor Susie Millichamp, Alison Fleetwood and Janet Cuttle.

~By Daniel Tobin