At the end of July I was fortunate enough to go on an embroidery weekend with the Yorkshire region at Bishop Burton College. It was so lovely to chat and stitch with friends -all in a COVID friendly way of course!
I spent the weekend being tutored by Florence Daisy Collingwood who both inspired me and taught me new skills. I had taken my Celtic/Viking sketch book with me and worked on two bird designs taken from that period.
As Florence had experience working at the Royal School of Needlework she shared new stitches and techniques which stretched my abilities. I am really pleased with my finished pieces of work ,my only disappointment is Florence lives so far away I can not go to more of her workshops. I will however endeavour to grow my skills and as I have started going to the Airedale Stitchers’ Group I hope to take guidance from more experienced embroiderers there.
Here are my two embroidered pieces.
This is the Celtic bird design made into a book cover ,appropriately for my sketch book .
This piece I have mounted and framed, the Viking bird design has been used to learn linear knot stitches.
Thank you for new friends I made at the weekend , Pauline Heywood for organising the weekend and Florence for her inspiration. .
In the past month I have been busy working on the workshop content for the York and Ilkley Workshops, hence the lack of posts on my own work. I have also been on an embroidery weekend which was excellent led by Florence Daisy Collingwood and when I have finished my Celtic embroidered pieces -hopefully this month, I will share them on my blog.
I am tutoring the hand embroidery and hand quilting classes including ‘Stitching in the Dales’ classes, looking at Vintage embroidery, English Paper piecing, North Country quilting patterns and Gold work.
Along side these are ‘World Embroidery’ workshops once a month starting with Indian mirror work, Indian kantha work, Vietnamese stitching and Japanese Sashiko work.
Our first class was a taster session , sampling applique, embroidery and quilting which was very enjoyable and samples of lovely work were completed.
If you would like to book or look at the complete selection of workshops take a look at the Dutton’s link below
If you have any questions please get in touch , it would be lovely to see you and to share my love of textiles with you.
Over the last month I have been working on my Textiles hanging , using chainstitch and embroidery stitches along side quilting the patterns I studied on the strippy quilts. I have also added sequins, buttons and beads to add detail and focus. I enjoy the variety of techniques and spending time working out the exact colour and thickness of thread I want to use to create the right balance in the composition, although it has led to some unpicking when I’m not quite sure. Next month it should be ready for hanging and display which will be a great accomplishment.
My aim for the Amy Emm’s Bursary was to gain knowledge of the linear designs of the strppy quilts made in Northern England. By studying these quilts and doing extensive reading I have definitely extended my knowledge, although with this knowledge comes more questions !
I have created a collection of samples to be shared with the Quilters’ Guild Museum Collection. (which is recorded in previous blogs ) The curator Heather Audin has just posted an article about the work. http://www.quiltmuseum.org.uk/blog/quilt-history-articles/01493.html
I am very grateful to her support and can’t wait to be able to go to the museum again to study the quilts, photographs are of an excellent quality nowadays but it is not the same as the real thing .
Now to the next part of my project , to create a contemporary wall hanging using these designs. Where to start ?
I wanted to use strips of patchwork as my base fabric, I had in mind a pretty colour scheme of pinks with greens, reds and yellows as the pink and white strippy is popular in the North of England. I also wanted a rose theme, as I have seen rose printed fabric and quilted rose flowers used on the quilts.
Starting stitching is like starting a new sketch book, daunting. I decided to draw a strippy design with a single chain I had been sketching, but spent a while getting round to it!
The single chain is yet to be stitched, I am not sure on the colour to make it stand out but not dominate .
Meanwhile I am planning the other designs
As you can see I work with a background then build up the quilting and embellishment as I would do when I am painting .
I am still recording and researching strippy quilts so if you have any to share I would love to see them.
February and March seems to have gone so fast . I went to visit my son Sean and his new family, Valeria and baby daughter Camila. I took with me a piece of embroidery for Camila – her own Costa Rican Mandela . A mandala based on the ox cart wheels that are decorated in Costa Rica .
The beautifully painted ox cart wheels .
Camila’s embroidered mandala to enjoy as she grows up .
Back home I am now working on my North Country ( Durham ) quilting – photos to follow .
Stay safe and enjoy your embroidery and quilting .
A new year and lots to do. I’m working on new workshops and have regular classes at The Sewing Shed in Ilkley , Dutton’s for Buttons in York and Oh Sew Sweet in Barnsley . At the end of January I am doing a workshop for the Embroiderers Guild looking at Indian mirror work , and it has been lovely looking back at my visits to India and getting all my Indian fabrics out as I prepare for it.
I am also continuing my research and work on Durham/North Country quilting and have just finished an embroidered central design from a whole cloth quilt.
This quilted piece completed in December is using colourful thread to show off the amazing designs of the Northern quilts.
This year I will continue to study these beautiful quilts from our rich heritage and celebrate the intricate folk designs.
Happy Sewing and Quilting for 2020
While I am enjoying the last of the Summer sun walking and sketching it seems the Summer has gone so fast. Preparing and teaching classes has gone on along side gardening and visiting friends.
As we were holidaying in Crete I decided to learn Cretan stitch . Here are my first attempts
On our visit to folk museums we saw some beautiful work and met some lovely people. This was taken at a convent near Chania.
This was a piece of delicate embroidery in Cretan stitch in Chania folk museum.
Sitting on the balcony having our afternoon siesta I completed a simple design in Cretan stitch.
I-really enjoyed it and it is definitely a stitch which will be integrated into my own work.
I am looking forward to workshops planned this Autumn at The Sewing Shed, Ilkley, Dutton’s for Buttons, York and Ryedale Embroiderers Guild.
Follow my Instagram to see work in progress and the beautiful work done on my workshops- helenbarnestextileartist
The month started off with the Ilkley Art Trail , after preparing work and printing cards I turned my front room into a gallery . I had lots of lovely visitors and thoroughly enjoyed it .
A trip to the V&A to see the Christian Dior exhibition was a welcome relaxation . My favourite piece was a skirt and top, I think I will have a go at making it in the autumn.
Finally I have been teaching a variety of workshops including a successful day workshop on visual mending at Dutton’s for Buttons , York .
I am now preparing for my holidays to Crete and selecting some Cretan embroidery to work on . I’ll post a picture of the finished piece next month.
Enjoy the summer and Festival of Quilts .
Kantha article in Stitch magazine
I am very honoured to have an article in this months Stitch magazine,the two page spread is an in depth look at the history and techniques of Kantha embroidery and some of the work I have done from it. I hope you enjoy the article and it will inspire you to find out more.
I am tutoring at Oh Sew Sweet in Barnsley on Sunday Sept 1st if you would like to have a go. https://www.ohsewsweetshop.co.uk