A few years ago I saw Anne Hellyer’s work displayed at the West of England Quilting and Textile Show at the UWE (University of the West of England) in Bristol so when I had the opportunity to go on a two day workshop I was keen to put my name down.
Anne’s distinctive “Painting the Town” designs incorporate hand painted textiles and free machine embroidery.
We started the day by choosing a design, winter townscape, snowy townscape or an individual choice. The hand painted fabric is ironed onto a background and then starts the fun of adding the doors, windows, plants and trees. Finally a backing is added and ribbons to enable you stand your finished work up with a night light in the centre.
Anne was extremely generous sharing her ideas and techniques and the two days of stitch, stitch, stitching went so quickly. The end results were so individual with each person choosing different coloured fabrics and adding their own special ideas including Rosemary's super black cat.
Thank you Anne for a great workshop.
Anne’s kits can be bought on her website: http://www.paintingthetown.org.uk/
Please note - all the designs are Anne's copyright
Report and photos by Ros
The day after Jennifer's talk to the branch she kindly led a workshop entitled "Inspired by Chinese Ethnic Embroidery". This was a hand stitch workshop using folded pieces of fabric which were stitched into the form of a bird, fish or animal.
To start the day Jennifer showed us some samples which she and her friends had worked especially for this workshop.
Jennifer had also prepared outline shapes to act as a guide for our design.
During the day Jennifer demonstrated a number of different stitches which were included on the traditional Chinese embroidery - pulling stitch, various forms of chain stitch and she showed us how to make a flat braid which was often used to outline the design.
We left at the end of the day with some lovely samples, well under way and knowledge of some great stitches which were new to a number of us.
Thank you Jennifer for a most enjoyable day.
Report by Ros
Photos by Ros and Jennifer
Our day started with a demonstration from Jenny on how working herringbone stitch on the back of white organza could produce some wonderful effects. The group had a choice of three designs which had been drawn on the organza by Jenny prior to the workshop. The choices were a rose, a violet or a monogram.
Once everyone was happy with their Shadow Work technique on flowers and monograms Jenny showed the group the first embellishment to their work. This was how to create and sew eyelets. Every design had possibilities for eyelets. Then some people started to do the stems of their flowers.
The group then learnt how to attach a wide ribbon with a feather design. They were reminded by Jenny’s demonstrations how to attach using feather stitch, pin stitch and thorn stitch. Then it was time for lunch.
In the afternoon Jenny demonstrated further embellishments like how to attach a bobbin paper, sequins and stamps. The group were shown every process that they would need and the beautifully illustrated instruction books will be very useful. It was a wonderful day!
Here is the link to Jenny's website: www.jennyadin-christieembroidery.co.uk
Report and photos Jane S
Thank you Jane, Ros
We started the day with Val Toombes explaining the 4 undyed silks in our packs - mulberry which was white, tussah not as white as mulberry, gum silk, and throw silk which was curly, soft, and shiny. We made silk sheets by thinly placing the 4 silk layers between 2 layers of bridal net, then wetted with water and after that textile medium. This was put to dry.
We then used a variety of dyed silks placed again between 2 layers of bridal net, wetted as above the put to dry. Some very interesting and colourful designs were achieved!
In the afternoon we blew up a balloon and after coating it with textile medium we made bowls by placing silks in layers across and around it resembling bad hair day wigs! We then took these home to dry and pop.
An enjoyable day for everyone!
Report by Diana K and photos by Jackie B
Thank you both for sharing your day with everyone.
On her table Judy showed us many variations of the "covered box". So many sizes, shapes, functions and colours. She set the bar high and certainly gave us all so much to strive for.
Judy gave us lots of instruction (collective and individual) and encouragement and slowly box construction progressed. Some boxes were almost complete by the close of play.
It was a thoroughly informative and enjoyable day. Well done and thank you Judy.
Report and photos by Linda W
Thank you Linda, Ros.
Linda Miller spent two days with branch members in early October teaching her technique of free machine embroidery. Here are some photos taken by Vernice during the event.
Here are some of the wonderful results.
Photos by Vernice and Ros
We were offered a wonderful selection of Thai Ikat silk, cottons and hemp to use for our Thai bags. To start the workshop Jennifer explained the technique of reverse applique, gave us a detailed handout and suggested various designs we could consider for our bags.
Although we were using the same technique, each person had chosen their own design and different coloured materials so it was interesting to see the varied results.
Jennifer also showed us how to create braids and different types of prairie points to decorate our bags.
To end the day Jennifer showed us how to finish our bag with a lining and how to attach the braids.
Jennifer was a most generous and patient teacher and we thank you for a most enjoyable day.
Report and photos by Ros
As I love hand stitching I was particularly looking forward to this workshop with Kathleen.
She started by showing us work from four different textile artists who used hand stitching. One was well known to us, Emily Jo Gibbs but the other three were new names - Magdalena Godowa, Kimika Hara and Natasza Niedziolka. Below you will see details of their websites.
Before us on the table Kathleen had displayed various fruit and vegetables which she had cut open to show their insides and we were asked to choose one. The challenge was then to replicate the fruit either adding appliqued materials or just hand stitch. Below you will see the amazing results.
Kathleen has another interesting sideline which she told us about briefly at the end of the day. She makes truly amazing little people under the name of Murgatroyd & Bean. I know my grandchildren would adore to hear the tales and to see these people so I do hope she publishes the stories one day.
Thank you to Kathleen and her friend for a most enjoyable day.
Report & photos by Ros
On Monday we had an “in house” printing workshop led by Ann Smith.
Ann started the day with a demonstration of preparing acetate sheets and gelli plates with acrylic paint ready for printing. We started printing on paper and in the afternoon we printed on various fabrics - cottons, linen, silk and organza. We used stencils and various mark making tools to make patterns on the printing plates and some people even added their own glitz to bring sparkle to their designs and some started collage.
Ann was very generous by letting us use her materials which gave us the opportunity of experimenting with different tools and techniques.
The day went very quickly and Ann concluded by giving everybody a couple of luggage labels for printing and we were asked to finish them at home ready for our exhibition in the summer.
For the last 10 minutes we all went round to look at each other’s work and it was interesting to see the choice of colours, some very pale and subtle while others were very bold and bright. When discussing the individual designs Ann used a card mount to identify sections which could be developed further. This was a very useful tip which I am sure we will use in the future.
It was fun day - we came hope with loads of paper and fabric designs and we thank Ann very much for leading the day and sharing her knowledge.
Report and photos by Ros
A group of MDEG members recently spent a most enjoyable two days taking part in Alexandra's workshop.
She introduced the workshop by showing us some of her own stunning bags and cushions. Day one involved creating a multilayered piece of fabric which we then machine embroidered with up to three different thread colours. Alexandra demonstrated each stage, then allowed us time to complete it before showing us the next stage of construction.
Many of us choose to buy a bag making kit containing fabric layers, template and bag clasp. Other students chose to make a fabric sample for a cushion, or to embellish a project of their own. Alex brought along a dazzling array of decorative fabrics for us to dip into. The hard art was deciding which to choose!
We appreciated that Alex spent time with each of us, advising on fabrics and colour combinations, plus offering ample help for those new to machine embroidery. We all progressed well on the day one and by the end of the day, most students were well on their way to completing a decorated fabric square.
With many workshops, embroidery techniques are tried out, yet the samples can end up confined in a drawer once they are taken home. However on day two, Alex carefully guided us through the stages of cutting, sewing and constructing a bag. By the end of the day we had all completed a beautiful bag, or a stunning panel of our own. The bags were each unique, colourful and stunning. Thank you Alex for such an enjoyable workshop. I'm sure that we will all have a go at making more bags in the future.
Report and photos by Jackie Bagg.
Thank you so much Jackie - your help is much appreciated and your photos were great! Ros
Information in this blog is provided by branch members who have attended the meeting, workshop or event.
Marlborough & District Branch is a member of the Embroiderers' Guild, the UK's leading crafts association
* The Embroiderers' Guild website -https://embroiderersguild.com/
* The Guild Facebook page - https://www.facebook.com/embroiderersguild/
* The Guild Pinterest pages - https://uk.pinterest.com/theembroiderers/
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