This time last year my Mum’s embroiders’ group asked me to take a session for them, I had just finished my silk shading piece for the RSN and so they were interested in that technique.
As it was autumn I was inspired by the poppy flower and designed a piece for them to stitch.
I tried to keep it fairly simple as this was a mixed ability group. Some were very experienced stitchers though so I wanted something that wouldn’t bore them. I went for a few petals and chose 5 shades of red, three of green and a touch of brown. For comparison my RSN piece had about 30 different shades in it!
So I was all ready to go in February and it snowed! I couldn’t get up to Yorkshire for the group and I had 38 pieces of silk with my design copied on to it. Luckily they rescheduled and in October I was invited back.
On the night 32 ladies turned up – my Mum does great PR- and I had 2 hours of teaching. It was a daunting prospect especially as smoke had known me as a child. I had taken some examples of my work so had a good place to start and after a brief intro got down to the Poppy.
With the help of a detailed handout I took half the group and demonstrated how to start as soon as I sat down to start stitching I was away – it was great fun and amazing to see a room full of ladies stitching something I had designed from scratch! Especially as some had chosen different colours, so there were orange , pink & red poppies being stitched.
I got great feedback afterwards and the best being that when my Mum went back to the group a couple of weeks later a few ladies were still working on their poppies. One even told her that she had previously given up on sulk shading as something she’d never be able to do and something I had said cracked it for her and she had finished the piece.
This was great experience for me and I fully enjoyed it.
I had a long time to prepare and am glad in a way as it gave me time to research and plan.
I see myself goals for the evening: I wanted a few ladies to get to the end of the first petal – we only had 2 hours after all.
I had the image transferred in advance so no preparation had to be done in the class.
Finally, I made my hand out as comprehensive as I could so that people could continue working at home.
I would love to do more teaching now!