Wonderful Workshops

As I haven’t yet started any new projects for 2014 I thought I would continue to post some previous projects to give an idea of the different kinds of work I do.

I have been lucky enough to attend some excellent workshops with the Edinburgh branch of the Embroiderer’s Guild so here are some of my favourites with samples of some of the work I’ve completed as a result.

Susie Wilson – Book Artist


‘An introduction to artists’ books’ with Susie Wilson –  we were shown a whole host of different artists’ books some by Susie herself and some from her collection, it was so interesting to see the variety of shape, form and subject matter. Following this introduction to the subject we made a variety of simple books from folding and cutting a single sheet of paper; a single stitched signature book and then a folded spine book with board covers and stitched signatures.

This is my folded spine book –

Folded spine book made on a workshop with Susie Wilson


Folded spine book


Folded spine book showing the exposed spine

This is such a useful skill to have as the construction methods can be combined with any textile techniques to make beautiful covered books and journals.

Ruth Issett –  Textile Artist


This 2 day workshop using procion dyes was a real treat as I’ve been a fan of Ruth’s work for a long time.

On day 1 we used procion dyes to paint directly onto a A3 size pieces of fabric – I chose a variety including cotton muslin, cotton poplin, silk habotai, silk noil and a silk linen mix as well as some threads. We shaded each fabric from one colour to another or created marks and patterns before rolling the painted fabric up in the plastic sheet it lay on in order to transport them all home where they were rinsed and dried.

On day 2 we were shown how to create small units combining cut or torn pieces of fabric and stitch that could then be further combined or added to in order to create larger pieces of work.

This is my collection of procion dyed fabrics and threads rinsed and dried.

Procion dyed fabrics done on a workshop with Ruth Issett

It was a real joy to see examples of Ruth’s work and to be allowed to look through her sketchbooks and samples; she was incredibly generous with her knowledge and expertise and shared so much information with us.

Sample book made with procion dyed fabrics

Using the skills taught by Susie Wilson I made this book using my procion dyed fabrics for the cover and containing a sample of all the fabrics and threads I dyed on the workshop with Ruth Issett.

Threads dyed with procion dyes

Inside sample book of procion dyed fabrics & threads

Dyed stitched pieces X2 Ruth Issett Workshop

Layered fabrics with hand embroidery

I have continued to dye my own fabrics and threads using procion dyes and I find these useful for small embroideries where the different fabrics are layered and stitched. It’s great to take small projects like this when travelling and I usually have at least one on the go that I can pick up when I only have a few minutes to spare.

These samples use hand dyed fabrics and threads, hand embroidery and shisha mirrors.

Margaret Beal – Textile Artist


I would credit Margaret with being the reason why I started exploring more experimental techniques and materials in embroidery; she was demonstrating the use of the soldering iron with fabrics at the first Creative Stitches exhibition I attended in Glasgow and from that moment I was hooked.

Until the workshop with Margaret last year I had only really tried the most basic techniques shown in her book – Fusing Fabric ISBN 0-7134-8956-1. Now I have a whole host of techniques at my fingertips!

Samples made on workshop with Margaret Beal; synthetic fabrics and soldering iron techniques

More samples from Margaret Beal workshop

Another sample from Margaret Beal workshop

It really is amazing what you can achieve with synthetic fabrics and a soldering iron!


One thought on “Wonderful Workshops

  1. Pingback: Work in Progress | Stitched Notions

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