Tuesday, 14 December 2010

Happy Christmas to Everyone

At least the snow provided time to create this little chap. Seasons greetings and hope you all have a Happy Christmas and a brilliant New Year!!

Sunday, 12 December 2010


It is with sadness that we have to advise that Margaret Downes, a very experienced and talented embroiderer, and a member of the Harrogate branch of The Embroiderers' Guild has died recently. She was a delightful person, always willing to join in with whatever we were doing, and a regular visitor to the Stitch and Chat sessions at West Park URC each month.

The photograph above was taken at the branches 30th birthday party in 2009 and the inset piece of embroidery is a Ruskin Lace needlecase made by Margaret.

We will all miss her very much.

Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Christmas Star Turn

The snowy weather did not deter those who turned out for coffee and scones on Tuesday. Pre-hanging nerves were put to rest as there were plenty of stars to hang on the tree. The stars are to be sold by West Park URC to raise much needed funds at a sum of not less than £1.00 each.

If you have any completed stars, or just want to pop in to see the tree, why not visit the coffee shop between 10.30 am and 12.00 noon on the days that it is open. You can add your star(s) to the tree whilst you are there.

There are still some of the Irene Angel cards left if you would like to purchase them. They cost £1.00 each or a pack of 5 costs just £4.50.

Thank you to everyone for making the Christmas Tree Stars such a success.

Tuesday, 16 November 2010

TRACY RETREAT @ The Quilt Museum


The choice was freestyle or a traditional flower using various techniques

Crewel Work
Here a choice of two designs resulted in very different pieces of work by everyone

What a fabulous time we all had over the weekend of 13/14 November at The Quilt Museum with Tracy Franklin. A Retreat Weekend, including a sandwich lunch with one day of Crewel work and one day of Goldwork. You all missed a treat. We also got the chance to view the "Freedom To Stitch" exhibition in the main gallery which was an added bonus and, of course, there was a bit of retail therapy in their excellent shop.

Wednesday, 10 November 2010


Both Nidderdale branch and the City of York branch have recently started blogs and there are links included on our blog to enable you to have a look at what they have been up to. Nidderdale blog is called Loose Threads which is also the name of their newsletter.

Wednesday, 27 October 2010


In October the talk given by Janet Taylor on the work based on the Luttrell Psalter created by the Lincoln Bailgate Branch of the Embroiderers' Guild proved to be as exciting and interesting as anticipated. The examples of pieces from their exhibition which she had brought along to illustrate her talk were wonderful. We were introduced to all the fantastic beasts that had inspired the stitchers and it was revealed that these creatures had all been given nicknames.

The Luttrell Psalter contains an interesting record of everyday rural life as well as beautiful illumination on all the pages.

Members were not surprised to learn that the Luttrell Psalter contained so much inspirational material within it that a lifetime of work could be generated from it. Janet hinted that, although this prospect was very tempting, they were actually planning another similar project but based on different local source material.

Thursday, 5 August 2010

Gawthorpe Hall

Ohhhhh .... what a day out you all missed.

Ten members visited Gawthorpe Hall, at Padiham near Burnley on Wednesday, 4 August and spent a fantastic day looking through boxes of embroidery. We had requested metal thread and surface stitchery, but could not have guessed at the quality and beauty of the work we would be allowed to handle and see.

On arrival we all eyed up the boxes with eager anticipation, particularly as we had spyed the name Beryl Dean on one of them, but after lunch further surprises awaited us when more boxes were introduced with whitework, samplers and Elizabethan pieces. Information overload became a problem and we all want to visit again to focus on our own particular areas of interest.

Tracy Gill, our host for the day, kept the best to last. She introduced us to a magnifying glass attached to a laptop computer which enabled us to look at the embroidery in great detail. Most members decided they could never achieve the level of expertise required to produce such fine pieces of work as the samples we saw.

The whole outing was a huge success from start to end and the wet weather did nothing to dampen our spirits.

Hearts, Tarts and Rascals

This is what your chairman gets up to when you are not keeping an eye on her!

Bettys very kindly treated Irene Angel to afternoon tea after seeing the delightful picture she embroidered of Bettys Harlow Carr. As many of you will know Irene celebrated her 95th birthday recently and can actually only sit and embroider for very short periods at a time. She always takes up whatever challenge we dream up for you all and it was a great pleasure to be able to take her to Bettys tea rooms at Harlow Carr to enjoy both the scenery and the food.

Saturday, 17 July 2010

Leeds Tapestry Blog

A picture of the embroidered panel created by members of Harrogate Branch of the Embroiderers' Guild has been posted on the blog for the Leeds Tapestry. They are asking if we know why it was made, who made it and what methods were used. Can anyone help? A link has been added to the blog on our list below and you can log onto it and add a comment.

Monday, 12 July 2010

Residential Summer School July 2010

Thought you might like to see some of the pieces of work from the Maggie Smith "Get Stuffed" Workshop created at the Residential Summer School at Bishop Burton College. This brightly coloured example above is not from a Harrogate member, but the colours were so exciting the picture just had to be included.

Work in progress, there is stitching still to complete in the upper part

An invented stitch appeared on this example 'Mag Stitch' ... Can you spot it?

Cones with spots everywhere. These ones did not get painted.

Sunday, 4 July 2010

Harrogate Photographic Society

There were 12 pieces of work completed for the exhibition based on the photographs obtained from the Harrogate Photographic Society during the past year.

Having now seen what we can do with their images they are eager to work with us on our theme for next year which is the United Nations Year of the Forest title "Under the Canopy".

I am sure all the members of the Harrogate branch having seen this year's work will be queuing up for copies of photographs to be used as inspiration for their embroidery and textile pieces for next year.


Everyone who has visited must agree that we have had a wonderful response to our 'Bettys' theme .... the most exciting piece of work is the picture of Bettys Harlow Carr by our oldest member, Irene Angel. A photograph will be posted shortly - we need to take the glass off the front to be able to do it justice.

The fabric and knitted cakes and chocolates are sumptuous and look good enough to eat. No calories there girls!!

Thursday, 17 June 2010


There is a Stitch & Chat on the first day of our Exhibition at West Park URC, on Tuesday, 29 June so do come along between 10.30 am and 12.00 Noon. Enjoy a cup of tea or coffee and have a look at the exhibition too.

Sunday, 30 May 2010


At long last I have found time to put the photographs up onto the Blog that I was given by Maggie. Anyone recognise themselves? The choice of workshop was - either playing with Painted Bondaweb, Angelina or Walnut Ink, with an additional choice of creating a cake hanging to be assembled by Wendy using the samples made by members in shades of yellow and pink. Our exhibition in June/July will reveal the results.

Several members are also involved in stitching pieces based on inspiration taken from several photographs we have obtained from the Harrogate Photographic Society ready for our joint exhibition at West Park United Reformed Church. We aim to 'join up' in the middle of the exhibition with examples of their photographs and our embroidery based on these pictures. They may be in for a surprise!!!

Saturday, 1 May 2010


Oh what bliss .... a whole day to play

The Carol Coleman workshop was just what was needed after a few hectic weeks. Above you can see Carol's demonstration piece showing how to make a cord with a toggle on the end, and also how to create various edgings and dangling bits on dissolvable fabric.

Irene tried her best not to use her favourite colours and, inspired by some photographs of rock formations obtained from a member of the Harrogate Photographic Society, this is what she came up with.

Typical of Carol's work, the piece above is heavily stitched and is enhanced with pieces of metal and semi precious stones to great effect.

A newcomer to the Guild meetings and also a City & Guilds 1st Year student at Harrogate College, Jackie created this very decorative piece that may become a brooch or something similar. The shiny background is due to the fact that the dissolvable film had not yet been washed away. Beads are to be added before this happens. Everyone had a terrific day with Carol proving to be an excellent choice of tutor.

Saturday, 17 April 2010

A Stitch in Time

Samplers from the Dales, Past and Present
Swaledale Museum, Reeth
29 May - 13 June 2010 10.30 am - 5.00 pm daily

Accomplished and inspiring works from the Richmond and Leyburn Embroiderers' Guild, set in the context of historic samplers from all over Swaledale, on public show for the first time. This exhibition is one of a programme of events to celebrate the 30th Swaledale Festival.

Admission to the Museum: £3 Adults, Children free


27 - 29 May - 10 am - 4 pm
Sunday 30 May - 11 am - 4 pm

St Paul's Church, Ashby High Street, Scunthorpe

Scunthorpe and District branch of the Embroiderers' Guild stage an exhibition featuring members embroidery from the last ten years, including a new body of work created especially for 2010 entitled 'Windows'. There will be additional exhibits by members of the branch and church.

Admission is free and refreshments will be available.

If you visit on Saturday 29 May the branch will be hosting a Stitch Club in the morning and a Practical Session in the afternoon in the adjacent church hall. Visitors are welcome to look, join in and sample the stalls and demonstrations.

Sunday, 11 April 2010


Minute parasols, shoes, stockings, costumes and cakes, to itemise just a few of the spectacular pieces of work that Serena Partridge brought along with her to illustrate her talk and slide show. An excellent afternoon.
Serena is currently Textile Artist in Residence at The Mercer Art Gallery in Harrogate and her work will be included in the "Inspired by Heritage" exhibition from 12 June - 18 July at the gallery.

In addition there is an opportunity to participate in a "Mini Paper Shoes" workshop withh Serena 10 am - 4 pm on Tuesday, 6 July at a cost of £15.00. If you are interested please contact the Museum direct.

Friday, 9 April 2010

STORY SACKS (the continuing saga .....)

"The Night Pirates" provided these two scenes .....

Would you believe "Giraffes Can't Dance"?

We have another five Story Sacks to hand over to Harrogate Children's Library for Story Telling sessions. They are fantastic and just show what talent we have among our members. Above we have one of the characters from "Aliens Love Underpants".

Sunday, 4 April 2010

Royal Maundy Celebrations

It was wet and cold, however, several members braved the unwelcoming weather and put on a display of information and examples of work connected with medieval embroidery in the grounds of Knaresborough Castle on Saturday 3 April.

Chairman, Jacqui, came up trumps with some boards from her City & Guilds studies and also created two pieces to be worked in the style of the Bayeaux Tapestry based on the Maundy ceremony with King John presenting the people of Knaresborough with Maundy money. The late Dr Arnold Kellet discovered that Knaresborough was the location of the first prsentation of Royal Maundy money 800 years ago.

It was encouraging to be able to demonstrate some simple stitches to children who were accompanied by their parents and grandparents all of whom were keen to go home and continue stitching! Also extremely interesting was chatting to the enactment people who were using a lucet, demonstrating tablet weaving and cooking food from the period.

Wednesday, 31 March 2010


Something to inspire you - no calories, but tasty. What delights can you whisk up in time for our exhibition? It does not have to be a cup cake, just think about all things Bettys.

Go on spoil yourself .........

Saturday, 27 March 2010


2.00 pm Saturday, 15 May
"Secrets of an Historical Seamstress"
Church Hall, Birstwith

You have all been invited to the May meeting of Nidderdale Branch of the EG. The speaker is Gillian Stapleton . The talk is from the stable of the people who do the "Undressing Mr Darcy" series. It promises to be very good. The description says:

"A fascinating account of how costume historian Gillian Stapleton researches and creates the lovely replica corsets, costumes and bonnets of the History Wardrobe."

There is a small charge of £2 and you will receive a cup of tea and a biscuit at the end. If anyone would like to go and needs a lift please speak to a committee member.

Sunday, 28 February 2010


Jacqui, our Chairman, taking time with her collage onto Tyvek.

14 members of the branch had a load of messy and dirty fun on Saturday, 27 February. Dawn Turner kindly stepped in at short notice to fill the gap when Sandra Kedzlie was unfortunately unable to be with us. Everyone took home 3 or 4 background pieces of work and all thoroughly enjoyed themselves. Just what was needed to cheer us up after all this glum weather we have been having.

Jo concentrating hard to get her crumpled tissue paper onto the collaged Tyvek background.

Definitely RED .... painted crumpled tissue paper over collaged scraps on a Tyvek base

Before .... and .... after - just a slight difference .... now where is that acrylic wax so that I can get this made into a book cover?

Thursday, 25 February 2010


Can you believe that using the same foundation pieced pattern two pincushions can come out different sizes? Well they did! These are just one of the delights we have in store for Members Day on Saturday, 12 March. Bettys cakes in fabric, more small sketchbook covers and one or two other surprises are awaiting members. Just bring a sewing kit and plenty of enthusiasm and you will have an enjoyable day.


Some stitching actually went on at West Park in February and there was an excellent turn out of members, although the weather was still pretty chilly. Margaret Downes and Chris Staniforth have a combined membership of around 60 years between them!! Something to be very proud of. The knowledge and expertise that long term members of the branch pass on to others is invaluable, particularly as we have several new members who are eager to learn.

The volunteer staff at West Park always make us very welcome, in addition to free biscuits there are always scones, sometimes cakes and always a top up of tea and coffee after your first cup. So with the weather improving get along to our next Coffee and Stitch and enjoy the company.

Friday, 19 February 2010

Managed to get to the ULITA exhibition in Leeds which included a selection of work from the Yorkshire Branch @ Leeds which celebrated 75 years in 2009. It was very difficult to photograph as everything was in glass cases, but the above gives some idea of the range of work on display from the very early days up to some of the competition entries by members in 2009. Unfortunately the exhibition ends shortly, but there will then be other textile pieces from the ULITA archive on display.

Wednesday, 13 January 2010

Duttons for Buttons

We were so lucky with our choice of speaker for January - not only did Michelle Horton live within walking distance of Russell Sergeant House, but she also gave a fantastic talk with lots of buttons and books to look at. Considering the snow, we had a very good turn out of members and visitors.

Michelle gave the first of two talks about the history of buttons. Everyone is now eager to get her back to give the second talk.

Unfortunately, Sandra Kedzlie has had to cancel her February workshop due to ongoing health problems. We are endeavouring to find an alternative tutor and will keep you informed.

Sunday, 3 January 2010


Although the weather was decidely cold and snowy, with some people busy over the Christmas period and others ill, we still had several people at West Park on Tuesday, 29 December.

We have been advised that there will be a change of opening time for the 2010 Stitch and Coffee sessions at West Park United Reformed Church. We will now start at the later time of

10.30 am until 12.00 noon

Tuesday, 26 January
Tuesday, 23 February
Tuesday, 30 March

Hope to see lots of you there - weather willing.