Being in Germany in the run-up to Christmas is, I think, the best time to visit, so I was thrilled to be asked to be part of the Kuchenliebe exhibition in Bremen last month.
The exhibition was being held in the Ova Arena, across a rather windy concourse behind Bremen railway station. Once inside, and out of the biting wind, it felt like a real treat was in store. Everything looked so inviting and welcoming. I think this was partially due to the lighting, the hall was lit only by a myriad of fairy lights and patterned lanterns – magical!
The exhibition was beautifully presented with numerous winter and Christmas tableau’s dotted around, just waiting to surprise and delight. My favourite had to be the winter geese, an unusual and very atmospheric scene of flying birds plus a young family of geese in a winter landscape. Unfortunately, my photos didn’t do it justice, so below is a different festive scene! Another feature I thoroughly enjoyed was the beautiful live piano music, that seemed to drift around the exhibition like fairy dust. For me, the music made the whole experience extra special.
A Christmas exhibition would not be festive without stands selling Christmas ornaments and trinkets. These I found in abundance. Glass Christmas baubles originated in Germany in the mid 19th century, so it was delightful to see such a wonderful array on display. I must admit, however, despite the myriad of shapes and sizes, when it comes to shape I much prefer the traditional round bauble, do you too?
Being an International Guest
You might be wondering how I was involved…I was at the exhibition to teach and demonstrating my craft along with Alani Jasmin form Hong-Kong, another talented international guest. Saturday for me was a full-on teaching day. My students were enthusiastic and willing to learn. It’s on these occasions that I wish I could speak lots of different languages including German. My students were wonderfully animated and I would have so loved to have joined in their conversations.
Sunday, my demonstration day on the KUCHENLIEBE brightly lit stage. I always love an audience, so it was delightful to see lots of people watching from their seats and from the standing room around the stage. The ladies in the front row told me that they had come to the exhibition especially to see me and they were going home happy to have learnt so much. It’s receiving comments like these that make me content, knowing I have done my job well. Sharing and inspiring is so rewarding.
My demo, not surprisingly, had a Christmas theme too. I was showing my audience techniques for decorating a Christmas tree cake. Including the extremely popular technique of making gelatin baubles and patterned stencilled stars, as shown below.
Prize giving – all in a day’s work!
My final task before the close of the exhibition was to help the judging team. I was to present all the competition certificates and prizes, a huge honour. Apparently, I was given a glowing introduction…just wish I could have understood what was being said.
Best in Show – Gingerbread House
It was thrilling to see a gingerbread house winning ‘best in show’. It seemed highly appropriate that the exhibition should close with this fabulous traditional German piece of art winning this most prestigious award. I hope it inspires you to be more creative with your gingerbread this Christmas.
Wishing you a very contented Christmas and good cheer for the New Year.
If you’d like me to visit in your corner of the globe next year, simply get in touch to see what’s possible.
International guest at the Kuchenliebe exhibition