PICTURED: Tracy Chevalier unfurls the secrets of quilts at Bexley's Danson House

News Shopper: PICTURED: Tracy Chevalier unfurls the secrets of quilts PICTURED: Tracy Chevalier unfurls the secrets of quilts

Blood, sweat and sex are not things you might associate with quilting but world-famous author Tracy Chevalier has uncovered the craft's racy side in a new exhibition at Danson House in Bexleyheath.

Things we Do in Bed spans a human’s lifetime with a different room dedicated to birth, sleep, sex, illness, death.

News Shopper: PICTURED: Tracy Chevalier unfurls the secrets of quilts

The exhibition was curated by the author of Girl with a Pearl Earring and includes work from cross-dressing artist Grayson Perry, cot quilts dating back hundreds of years, and a piece made by prisoners.

American-born Tracy discovered the joy of quilting through research for a book.

She said: "I got into it because I like my characters to have something to do with their hands and many women did it in the 19th century, when my book The Last Runaway, was set.

"It also allows you to reminisce – I’m currently making a quilt out of an old hippy dress I used to wear as a teenager and it brings back the memories of wearing it."

News Shopper: PICTURED: Tracy Chevalier unfurls the secrets of quilts

The north London resident enjoyed getting to know Bexley's cultural scene.

She said: "I was so impressed with Danson House, I’d never been there before because I live in north London.

"I was amazed by this beautiful mansion house in the middle of the park. Bexley residents are so lucky to have that and Hall Place."

Things we do in Bed runs until October 31.

Tracy is giving a lecture on Things we Do in Bed on Wednesday April 2 at 11am. Tickets cost £12.

Visit bexleyheritagetrust.org.uk/dansonhouse

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