Hand Stitching for Texture and Touch

Explore the possibilities of adding texture, depth, pattern and excitement to your work with stitching. Working by hand with a variety of stitches and threads, discover the numerous ways in which layering with threads can add richness and mystery to your textile pieces. We will explore and study mark and pattern images by artists and groups from around the world. By also seeing actual examples you can touch and study work up close. By the end of the 3 relaxed days, you will have a working knowledge of numerous stitches and threads, a “book” of stitches for future reference, and a larger optional piece of your own stitched work

Supply List


1.    FABRICS: 10 pieces of cotton fabric 10" x 10". These should be a firm weight cotton in solid black, gray, white or other neutrals. These will be used to make a beautiful little fabric 'book' of different stitches to keep as a reference.


As well as these, you may choose to bring a variety of other fabrics to experiment on such as linen, sheers, velvets, brocade, silk, satin, corduroy, lame etc. These could be solids, stripes, patterned, printed or hand-dyed in a variety of colors and weights to which you can add color and texture with stitches.


2. NEEDLES: A variety of hand sewing needles from very fine, beading needles, to thick tapestry needles, both with sharp and rounded points to accommodate your variety of threads.


3. THREADS: As big a variety of weights and thicknesses as you can find from ultra fine metallics and machine threads to heavy hand stitch threads. Include stranded threads and perle threads. There is a large variety available including wool, rayon, polyester, raffia, chenille, string etc and you may choose to bring anything you think could make an interesting texture. You may bring a variety of colors of your choice but make sure you include blacks, whites and neutrals of different weights for your sample book as we will be experimenting primarily with texture. Alternately you may choose to work only in black, white and neutrals on simple solid cotton fabric.

4. Sharp hand embroidery scissors.

5. Optional: embroidery hoop, about 10 - 12 "

6.         Optional: found objects you may want to include with your stitching, eg old


keys or other metal pieces, bottle tops, feathers, bones, small sticks, stones etc.

7 Decent-sized journal or notebook, pen and pencil.


You may choose to bring fabric marking tools for light and dark fabrics although I do not usually mark my fabric. There are various chalk markers available

(like Clover) and slim-line Sew Fine markers, and one for marking dark fabrics. These are not essential but may help make you feel secure!



Look at TEXTURE and STITCHED TEXTILES everywhere. Look around your home, food, clothes, jewelry, garden, beach, stones, shells, leaves, feathers, streets, buildings. Find books or images that relate to texture and

stitching and bring them to class. Think hard, soft, shiny, bumpy, matte, fluffly, spiky, rough, smooth. FEEL everything around you and prepare for 5 relaxed but exciting days stitching and stitching and stitching.....