Keswick Embroiderers' Guild

We meet on the third Thursday of the month, September to May, 10am -3pm, at the Friends' Meeting House in Keswick. This is in Elliot Park, just beside Booths' carpark. Arrive at 9.45 for coffee and biscuits! We also meet informally during the Winter to work on our own projects.

We are a small and friendly group, meeting to celebrate textiles and stitch.We share between us a wide range of interests and expertise. Visitors and new members are always welcome.

Monday, 20 January 2020

January 2020

January 2020!       

Though we haven't been online for a year (!!!), we have been very busy at Keswick Embroiderers.

Here's a sample of some of the things we've been doing......

Mandy Patullo showed us her lovely  applique technique and we used tiny scraps of fabric on vintage quilt material to stitch pictures of  garden birds .

Keswick member Enid demonstrated silk painting and we painted flowers .... 

Enid led another workshop. This time we used her sun-dyed fabrics as a background for our own embroidery......

Keswick member Val led a crewel work session .A gentle start to 2020......... Work in progress!

Tuesday, 22 January 2019

January 2019! Smocking


For our first meeting of 2019, we borrowed the Smocking folio from the Embroiderers Guild and used it as inspiration for some nostalgic hand-sewing.

We had been supplied with smocking dots before Christmas, and most of us had dutifully done our homework and prepared our fabric for the day.

It was fascinating to see such a variety of smocking styles in the folio, and in the books members brought along for reference.

We spent several very quiet hours concentrating on this technique, and produced some quite different work.  Not complete, but ready to be incorporated into ...................

For most of us, smocking was a new skill, but it sparked memories for nearly all, of pretty dresses and baby clothes.

Wednesday, 16 January 2019

Candles for Christmas

Candles for Christmas

For several years Keswick Embroiderers have taken part in the Christmas Tree festival at The Methodist Church in Keswick. This year the theme we chose was 'Candles', and these are the offerings so far! They were  displayed at the beginning of December.....

before we went on to Lyzzick Hall for a lovely Christmas lunch.

A good time was had by all!

Friday, 9 June 2017

Summer School 2017

Waddow Hall 

Three members enjoyed the weekend stay at Waddow Hall for this year's Regional Summer School.
Kim Thitticai and Nicola Jarvis were the tutors for the course; they must represent the complete opposites of textile work! Nicole's group  developed their skills in delicate soft silk shading, and crewel stitching, working on their choice of Nicola's lovely bird/squirrel kits.

Kim's students painted a new form of bondaweb, tore and ironed, heated and distressed the results, to produce  totally unique pieces of fabric , eventually to be stitched into and mounted.

Both groups were totally absorbed in what they were doing, and had an enjoyable , rewarding few days....... surprisingly tiring, as no-one had  seemed to want to stop!

We had to, though, for the lovely meals (and cake!) provided for us by the staff at Waddow Hall.
Our accommodation was comfortable, and in the very brief moments we took to venture outside, we were able to enjoy the lovely setting and grounds.  

Nicola's inspiring work

Advice and guidance from Kim

Painted, torn, ironed, ready for stitch.....

Pat's work in progress.....

Paint, print, gilding flake, etc.....

Another Pat's work...........

Work from Nicola's group

It was a rewarding and inspiring weekend; the organisation was good, and we were kept busy until the moment we left on Sunday. Both tutors were generous with materials and their time, and supportive of a wide range of abilities.

Thanks to all who were involved !

Monday, 22 May 2017

North West Regional day

Keswick's visit to the Regional Day 2017

Four of us had such a good day at the EG Northwest  Regional  Day last month. We set off for a short hop down theM6 and arrived just in time for coffee in a smart new building on the campus of Cumbria University. Having registered and bought our raffle tickets, we found the  display area of the Lancaster group and then the traders' stands in a huge hall at the end of a very long corridor.
There were lots of lovely, reasonably-priced goodies for sale. Little packets of beads, buttons, threads, etc. and lots of lovely books-all very tempting, and the traders were very helpful, too. The competition pieces were well-displayed and we all made our choice. We then walked back to the Lecture hall where we had the business meeting and soon it was time for lunch-good food in a lovely canteen on the top floor of the new building, with fabulous views over Morecambe Bay.
The afternoon lecture was great.
Nicola Jarvis explained her career path, including her apprenticeship in The Royal School of Needlework, her interest in the patterns of William Morris, and finally her discovery of the use of his patterns within bird shapes, which had created attention in various Arts and Crafts houses and museums. Once finished, the prize-winners were presented with their awards by Nicola, who showed great interest in their pieces. 
after the final goodbyes by the team, who deserve a lot pf praise for their organisation of a good day, we set off back north, still in bright sunshine and very satisfied with a good day-especially me, because I won one of the raffle prizes!
Lovely stuff.

Pat Knifton, Keswick Branch

Monday, 24 April 2017

No Scissors Needed......Joanna O'Neill

April Meeting        Faux Applique

These stunning wall-hangings are the work of Joanna O'Neill, who led our April workshop.


They are incredibly detailed and beautiful, and we were intrigued to learn how Joanna achieves these results.

Markal paintstiks are used with stencils, to produce images on fabric, and we spent the morning learning how to do this, with freezer paper. Joanna's way of working enables lovely shading, and there was virtual silence as we practised! We had been provided with a range of motifs to try, and it was fascinating to see the varying effects we could achieve by working on different-coloured fabrics.

Lots of examples of Joanna's work were available for us to see, and be inspired by.......

Journal quilts showing Joanna's faux applique technique.......

After lunch, we were shown how to stitch the stencilled images, after they have been left to 'cure' for a few days, and then iron-fixed. When worked into, either by machine or by hand, this technique does very closely resemble applique.

It was a lovely, rewarding workshop, and already several members want to have another session to practise what we learned. 

Joanna's web contacts

Now for something completely different, as they say..........

Two of our members, sitting next to one another, had their thread collections ready for action......

Which is more like yours?




Both these members produce lovely, creative embroidery!

Wednesday, 29 March 2017

Fabulous fragments

Shelley Rhodes

Most of us were catapulted way out of our comfort zone at the beginning of our March meeting. Shelley Rhodes'own work was beautiful, and impressive; the process of learning how to achieve similar results took some time!

We tore, and layered, and distressed, drew with a variety of media and tools, colour-washed, and gradually began to feel more at home.

 Shelley is patient and calm with her pupils, and by the end of the day, we had produced work we were pleased with. The sort of workshop we'd like to do again, because we'd explored new ideas, and can put them into practice in our own ways.