It's been about two weeks since Seminar in Winnipeg and I have quickly gotten back into the routine of work. It now feels like I was never away. However, I did have a wonderful time. Every year I can't wait to get there and by Saturday, I can't wait to get home. It is very intense and staying up late most nights and chatting with all my friends isn't conducive to getting rest. However, it is so totally different from my job that I come back refreshed, even if I am tired when I go back to work.

This year, I took "Off the Beaten Path" with Carolyn Mitchell. Two days of canvaswork was very enjoyable and rewarding. I love working all the different stitches in this piece and can't wait to see it completed. I also took "Try a Little TLC" with Janice Routley and learning how to take care of embroideries and how to store them safely was really great. Some of the class brought old embroideries and we discussed if they should be cleaned or fixed, how to clean them, and how to store them. My last two days were spent working the "Goldwork Lion" with Tanja Berlin. This was the piece that prevented me from taking Gail Washington's "Waterfall", a four day class. I really wanted the Lion and I'm glad I took this class. Even half finished, the Lion is absolutely gorgeous.

I always enjoy the banquet on Saturday night. It's a time to start winding down and seeing who won the Leonida Leatherdale Award and the Seminar Theme Award. Because this was EAC's 40th anniversary Seminar, Carolyn Mitchell did a wonderful presentation of the Members' Exhibits from past Seminars.

I was sitting at the back of the banquet hall and was watching the presentation between two pillars. One of the pieces caught my eye and I was wondering where I'd seen that embroidery before. I looked at it more closely and it suddenly dawned on me that it was my Bamboo Challenge Dragon from the Members' Exhibit at Seminar 2008 in Kelowna. I was so excited and couldn't believe my eyes. So, I bought the presentation DVD. Thank you, Carolyn, for donating the proceeds from the sale of the DVDs to benefit our Youth members.

The Seminar Committee provided a wonderful, memorable Seminar and I thank them for all their hard work and creativity. I think this Seminar will go down in EAC history as one of the best!

Linda Brenner

Now that I am freshly home from Seminar... time to send this along. (only a few days late.. ops) For those who have attended Seminar, you are familiar with the life of its own that the event takes on… including providing those attending a perfect opportunity to ‘step off the world’ and live in a parallel time. (for me.. no news programs… oh what.. oh what was happening in the world?.. I guess it would be fair to say, I did not miss much… because the stories are being regurgitated over and over…. )
I find the stepping off the world and stepping into the world of Seminar to be relaxing, although tiring .. but in a good way. There is also the renewed excitement for stitching, not only to complete the pieces started at Seminar but my many works in progress.

I was surprised to see that many of the classrooms did not have screens on the windows. Amazingly there were no flying creatures that came in. However… on the first day of class one of the ladies placed some of the instructional pages on the window ledge and the wind blew them out onto the rooftop patio below… where a Mother Goose was sitting on her nest. (I wonder if anyone saw the pages.. or did Mother Goose add them to the ‘fabric’ of her nest?)… but… those pages are not all that went flying out windows on the winds of Winnipeg…  on the same day, in a different room, (still overlooking the same patio) one stitcher in Gale Washington’s class lost her entire kit of threads! There was a good ending to this, one of the university staff accompanied her down to the access to the patio and went out to retrieve the bag with all the threads.  The attached photo show the Mother Goose and the bag of threads just waiting for retrieval.

A new feature this year were the two ‘Stitching with the Stars’ evenings. I attended the first one and enjoyed hearing how both Alison Cole and Gale Washington got to where they are in their stitching lives.

Most, if not all, left Seminar with more work to be done on their pieces. (there were a few in Janice Routley’s ‘Trees of the North’ class who were able to complete one piece during the two days of the class.. imagine leaving Seminar with a piece Finished!!) Most of us come home with a fair bit of work remaining.. and the challenge is to stay focused and keep stitching to completion. 

How many of you have no unfinished pieces from previous Seminars? Why not share with the rest of us how you keep yourself focused.

All for now…  Happy Stitching
Marie Cron

What a wonderful, wonderful experience I had at the EAC Seminar in Winnipeg.  Everything was so well organized, the teachers were terrific and everyone was so very friendly.  It was truly a memorable and absolutely delightful 5 days. 

Windy October taught by Sylvia Murariu was the 1st of my 2 days classes.  It was a Brazilian Embroidery technique class and I had a lot to learn.  We began by padding the tree trunk and covering it with stem stitches.  We also learned how to pad, stitch and cover with bullions a small hedgehog.  The Ed Mar rayon embroidery threads were wonderful to work with and have such a nice sheen to them.

The Windy October design by Sylvia Murariu.

Me diligently stitching away.

A group photo of our class.

Sylvia Murariu also teaches Roumanian Point Lace and gave us a bit of a demonstration on how it is done.  It's absolutely beautiful work.  I purchased one of her beginner Roumanian Point Lace books as well as a kit :)

On the Friday of Seminar I had booked to take a 5 hour city tour.  Our first stop was seeing Louis Riel's grave site and the St. Boniface Cathedral.

We also had a very informative tour of the Manitoba Legislative Building and here is a picture of the famous Golden Boy aka Hermes atop the dome as well as a photo of the beautifully designed and painted dome ceiling from the inside.

At the banquet on Saturday evening everyone received a wonderful gift of an engraved pair of sewing scissors, a scissor case and a pencil from the Ottawa Guild for Seminar 2014.  The meal was delicious, awards for amazing designs and stitching were given and Carolyn Mitchell gave an interesting and well-done presentation and slide show on past Seminars.  It was such a lovely evening!

My other 2-day class was Tanja Berlin's Goldwork Lion which was also a first for me.  Tanja had sent us the pre-work to do before Seminar which was transferring the design to the 25 count black Lugana.  This was my first experience with using all the different gold and copper Kreinik threads used in the face as well as working with gold pearl purl.

I still have much to do with both of my wonderful pieces and I'll definitely post pictures of them in later EAC posts!

A huge thank you to the Winnipeg Embroiderer's Guild for all the hard work they did in hosting this wonderful and most enjoyable Seminar.

Jeannette Luther

Imagine an embroidery project that begins with an envelope filled with treasures:
small brown speckled feathers, l-o-n-g blue bugle beads, green ribbon, a cheesecloth strip,  six inches of wool roving, a large brown button and a shisha mirror, white cotton stuffing, variegated brown and pink thread, ½” wide strip of white interfacing fabric….

And, only two rules for the embroidery- follow the theme and the finished width must be 10 inches, length was up to the designer.  There would be no frame.

The special interest design group of the Embroiderers’ Guild of Victoria – the Rapt Threads - gave themselves a challenge last fall.  We were to stitch a design of our own with the theme of “a river runs through”, meaning the river must run from side to side in the design.  And our embroidery must include some of each of the “ingredients” found in the envelope. We each had an envelope with our name on it and each person participating contributed one item to each of the envelopes.

We had a mini work session- out on the lawn one summer afternoon – making silk fusion or silk paper.  Some of us used the silk paper as a background for our design or as a part of the design.  We painted background fabric, dyed cheese cloth, appliqu├ęd bits and pieces, cut up other tidbits and tucked them under tulle or netting for texture, and of course, added stitches by hand and by machine to our creations. 
The pieces were finished and the arrangement of them all was organized so that the river truly did run through the whole collection.  And you will see them hanging at Seminar! 

After the exhibition at Seminar, we will post them on the blog so you can see how each person used the envelope of treasures.

But just to remind you that spring is really coming, soon we hope, to your area, here is a picture of a garden in Victoria – with the Saskatoon bushes just starting to bloom!

Or maybe this field of tulips in bloom will inspire you to stitch your own field of flowers!!

Find out more at the Embroiderers' Association of Canada website.
EAC is not responsible for content at external links provided within this blog.

About EAC

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The Embroiderers' Association of Canada (EAC) is a national non-profit educational organization whose purpose is to have a fellowship of persons who enjoy needlework and wish to learn and share their knowledge; and thereby to work towards maintaining higher standards of design, colour and workmanship.

Our aim is to preserve traditional techniques and promote new challenges in the Art of Embroidery through education and networking.

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