ARTISTS PROFILE: stitchpickings with . . .
STITCHBUSINESS Student of the Year 2017
I have always loved to stitch and I well remember receiving a child’s sewing machine as a present. My grandmother made clothes for herself and I would look forward to her visits as she always brought a bag of scraps with which I made clothes for my dolls using the machine. I also remember using money received for my 10th birthday to purchase the Golden Hands Encyclopedia of Embroidery which I still possess.
While I would complete embroidery kits and make my own clothes for years, I knew that it was only when I retired that I would have the time to really pursue my passion for stitching. Investigating the City and Guilds courses online, I realised that there was nowhere in my home town of Edinburgh offering the opportunity to study these and the nearest place was Stitchbusiness in Durham which offered distance learning.
Not knowing where my enthusiastic amateur status stood in the overall scheme of things, I started with Level 1 and over the next 4 years quickly progressed through Level 2, and Level 3 Certificate. Being able to study and work at my own pace with regular trips to Durham both for classes and distance learner weekends has been ideal for me. The support and advice I have received from Julia and Tracy has been fundamental in my progression and being able to chat to and admire the work of other students has been inspirational.
As someone with a mathematical and scientific background, I felt somewhat daunted by the design elements of the course but completing sketchbooks on line, colour, shape, form and texture helped enormously.
I am currently almost a year into the Level 3 Diploma and the depth and breadth of the course is fantastic enabling me to use and apply all the techniques that I have learned in the previous courses. I don’t know where my stitching will take me when I have finished the Diploma but I do know that it will never cease to fascinate and enthral me.
All images worked by Fiona Greenwood.