2020/02/06: Low Tide Workshop

Thursday 6th February 2020
Tutor Gail Lawther
Duration 10am till 4pm

As the tide recedes, the wild shoreline takes on a variety of colours and textures – decorated with pebbles, large and small. Create a restful water’s-edge scene using a combination of simple appliqué, quilting and embellishing techniques.

2 places available

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As the tide recedes, the wild shoreline takes on a variety of colours and textures – decorated with pebbles, large and small. These restful scenes use some of the lovely space-dyed batiks that are currently on the market; layers of coloured net add depth, then you can add texture and visual interest with your own mixture of simple quilting and embroidery, worked either by hand or machine (or a mixture). The pebbles are outlined using my ‘scribbling’ or ‘doodling’ technique of machine-quilting – don’t worry if you’ve never tried this before: it’s very easy, and very effective.

As well as the things below, you’ll need your usual sewing kit of small and large scissors, pins etc. For adding the borders, and for the scribble quilting, you will need your sewing machine; if you’re new to your machine, or not quite sure of all the things it can do, bring the manual too. And don’t forget to bring everything that goes with your machine – foot pedal, leads, knee lift if you have one, and all the feet and other bits that go with it – then we can choose the best foot etc to use on the day! For the doodling/scribbling, you need a free machining foot (sometimes called an open embroidery foot, or a darning foot) to do the quilting; if you’re not sure whether you’ve got one, talk to your local sewing machine shop, or go online and check out your make and model of machine.

If you find it difficult to track down the space-dyed fabric for the main background, I’ll have some pieces with me on the day, in a variety of colours and cut to the size that I’ve used; they cost £3 each. Or, if you prefer, you can create the shaded background by piecing strips of different-coloured fabric. 

Finished size; all my designs are roughly 34 x 22in (86 x 56cm), and the dimensions I’ve given below relate to that size. However, you can make your design any shape and size that you like – smaller; square; long instead of wide: the choice is yours. Just cut your background piece, borders, backing and wadding to suit.

Cotton fabrics as follows:

  • shaded background, 28 x 16in (70 x 40cm); make sure that the ‘stripes’ of the background piece are horizontal
  • scraps of different marbled/shaded/batik cotton fabrics in neutral colours for the pebbles; choose fabrics that show up well against the background – either darker or lighter, or a mixture
  • for the border: two strips 28 x 3½in (70 x 9cm), and two strips 24 x 3in (60 x 9cm). If the fabric has a directional print, make sure that the design on all the strips is going the way you want it to.
  • backing fabric 36 x 24in (92 x 60cm)
  • 3½yd (3.5m) binding strip (I used a single binding cut 2¼in/6cm wide)
  • scraps of sheer fabrics/nets in colours that tie in with the background piece (I’ll have a bag of scraps of sheer fabric in various that you can dig into, if you don't have any in your stash)

Other items:

  • flat wadding, 36 x 24in (92 x 60cm)
  • Bondaweb or Steam-a-Seam for the pebbles (don’t use Heat ‘n’ Bond or Fuse-a-Web); ½m will be more than enough
  • sewing thread to match the binding, plus your choice of machine-quilting threads (bring any plain/variegated machine threads that tone well with your background fabric)
  • black or other dark-coloured thread for outlining the pebbles
  • pencil
  • non-stick ironing sheet or greaseproof paper/baking parchment; use this to protect the iron and ironing board whenever you’re working with the bonding web
  • or embellishing your project: beads, shells, charms, buttons, textured yarn, lace scraps, lace flowers, hand-embroidery threads, fabric paint/crayons etc – the embellishment can be done at home, or at the workshop if you've got on well with creating your design!

If you have any questions or queries about these requirements, or any other aspect of the workshop, feel free to e-mail me (thelawthers@ntlworld.com, or via the website www.gaillawther.co.uk), or drop me a note at 100 Wiston Avenue, Worthing, West Sussex BN14 7PS.

For most classes and workshops, you will need to bring your own supplies and equipment; a list of specific requirements can be see above. When materials are included or supplied by the tutor, this will be stated in the class description.

All workshops and classes must be paid for in full. We are sorry, but sometimes we have to cancel a class due to circumstances beyond our control. If this arises we aim to give you 10 days' notice and a full refund. If you need to cancel your class booking, we require a minimum of 10 days' notice in order for you to receive a refund (less £3 administration charge). No refund can be given if less than 10 days' notice is given.