Congratulations to Lindsay and Nikki who entered the recent inspiring Madeira Embroidery Competition at the NEC.

Vernice kindly took them up in her car and it sounds like they all had a great day out.


After reading Alison Holt’s ‘Machine Embroidered Seascapes’ I was inspired to create something that included breaking waves and water movement. 
Alison suggests a background of varying tones of blue with lines of machine stitching in various shades of blue which, as they blend together, show the shadows in the breaking waves.
Longstone lighthouse is intriguing as, at high tide, it is barely 1 metre above sea-level. 
Incidentally, my embroidery depicts a relatively calm day! In a storm it would only be the lighthouse itself that would be visible!
Write up and photos by Lindsay Sherwood 
Alison’s website
Alison’s book – Machine Embroidered Seascapes
Lindsay lighthouse main

The Island of Maritius

After 2 years of waiting because of the pandemic the Madeira Stitch competition took place at the NEC in March. The theme was Islands.  My work was inspired by the Island of Mauritius. 

The jacket is on a mannequin which I hand painted the Island with sea and beach.  It is made from a recycled coffee bean sack.  There is a stitch stumped Dodo on the back as the last Dodo was killed on the Island by Spanish sailors in 1662.

On the front is the Spanish Galleon. Palm trees made from green lace, raffia and  green plastic strapping from a delivery parcel.  The bottom of the jacket the sea and sand is made from different strips of fabric free machined.

Nikki Island jacket 2 rotated

The hat has been made from scratch using sinamay, free machining with pipe cleaners for palm trees and free machined.   Stitched coloured tights for the red flower, machined stitched wool for the grasses and stitch raffia round a cotton reel for the hut. The sea is hand painted and stitched.

I titled the piece Greta Thumberg Island to reflect the fact that if we don’t look after the planet we will end up like the Dodo.

In 2018 I was fortunate to be the overall winner of this competition and this year was awarded Highly Commended and the piece will tour the country over the next year.  Although it took nearly a year to make it was fun and challenging to make!

Thank you Lindsay and Nikki for sharing your amazing work with us.


Therapy Puppets


Just prior to the start of the Pandemic I was due to collect the last of these Puppets, but the meeting was cancelled.

I now have all 21 Puppets we have made and will be sending them off to the Organisation who distribute them to Therapists all over the Country.

These Puppets are used in Therapy with children, giving them “safe distance” as they may be unwilling to speak directly to the Therapist but will tell their problems or worries to a Puppet.

Thank you to the following members who joined me in making these Puppets:

BARBARA BARR – HAZEL PARTRIDGE – ROBINA ORCHARD – JULIE BURCHETT AND “One Other” who did not give me her name but left her Puppet on the workshop table.

To find out more take a look at the website:


Report and photo thanks to Vernice C

Therapy puppets

Jean Freakley – April 2021

Jean Freakley 1
Jean Freakley
Jean was a member of the M&DEG since 2012.
At our meetings she was always ready with a friendly smile and happy to chat about anything and everything.
She loved the natural world, the countryside, wildlife and changing seasons and she would depict these often in her textile and embroidery work.
She was enthusiastic about textiles and embroidery and always keen to learn new skills. She enjoyed attending the workshops and  took part in the Design to Stitch courses and the Creative Textiles courses.
She also participated in the Take-A-Line and Circles exhibitions at UWE with her pieces The House on the Hill (Take a Line) and Maytime (Circles)
Thank you to Lindsay S and Julie B for your write up
Thank you to Lindsay S and Jean’s family for the photos


National Stitch Day – Saturday 22 June 2019

On Saturday 22 June our branch celebrated National Stitch Day in St Peter’s Church, Marlborough and in the Library at Calne.  The four photos below are taken in Marlborough – Clare R, Ann S, Maria F & Vernice C.
The photo below is taken in the Library at Calne.  Clockwise: Chris C, Linda W, Christine H, Lindsay S & Ann K
Thank you to Christine H and Vernice C for the photos.

Flags of Thanks

Flags of Thanks is a project to reflect gratitude and support for the Armed Forces Community and is open to all members of the Embroiderers’ Guild. Neil Stace the “Sewing Soldier” from the BBC TV programme “The Sewing Bee”, is spearheading the project. He is asking the nation to create customised quilted flags that reflect their gratitude and support for the Armed Forces Community, for those currently serving and for veterans. All the flags will be displayed in a public exhibition in St Thomas’ Church, Salisbury from 24 – 30th June as part of the Armed Forces Day celebrations. 
After the display, his plan is to join the flags together to make something useful like quilts. As a gesture of support these will be gifted to veterans who are or have previously been homeless. The quilt is symbolic of having a home and the making of quilts has been a part of the Armed forces, dating back to the Crimean War. Neil believes that receiving such gifts that have been personally made will have a considerable positive impact on the individuals. His target is a 1000 flags! The design can be patchwork, applique, embroidered, drawn or painted with washable fabric ink and should have a military theme or a message of thanks. 

The following members of Marlborough and District Embroiderers Guild made flags for this event:  Vernice C, Ann S, Christine H,  Celia B, Maria F and two of her grandchildren.

Report:  Maria F and photos: Vernice C
Thank you Maria & Vernice, Ros

Embroiderers Guild Annual Trustees Award – 2019

The Trustees Award is an annual event to celebrate five Embroiderers’ Guild members nominated for their acknowledged support of their branch and local community in the name of stitch. 

This year, 2019 two nominations were put forward independently for Marlborough & District Embroiderers Guild, both of whom were successful in receiving an award. The committee and membership would like to congratulate both Yvonne Miles and Vernice Church on this outstanding achievement. 

​Yvonne, nominated by the Marlborough & District Embroiderers Guild Committee, has been a branch member since 1995, during which time she has been active on the committee. Her roles have included programme organiser, branch secretary and branch chair between 2008 and 2013.
​Vernice, nominated by branch member Nikki Vesey Williams, joined the Guild about 20 years ago. She is a member of both the Windsor and the Marlborough branches. Since becoming a committee member in 2014 she has scheduled interesting and varied speakers and workshops.
Text taken from newsletter, thank you Maria
​Photos Ros

2019 Madeira Competition

Congratulations from us all, Lindsay!

​On Sunday at the Fashion and Embroidery Show at the NEC, branch member Lindsay S was the Visitors’ Choice winner in the 2019 Madeira competition. 

​This year the challenge was entitled GLIMPSES OF ROYALTY and entrants were asked to create a rich embroidered piece inspired by royals throughout history – they could choose to capture Harry and Meghan’s romance, the grandeur of Queen Elizabeth, or even a Pharaoh of Ancient Egypt! With thousands of years of history to explore, there was a great choice and a wonderful selection of prizes to be won. It was supported by Stitch magazine with the Embroiderers’ Guild.

On behalf of all M&DEG members, congratulations Lindsay.  You, and your work are amazing and a great inspiration to us all.

Nikki VW and Linda W also entered this competition and below is an image of Nikki’s crown using recycled materials.
Thanks to Ann K and Nikki VW for photos

Jacqui Melhuish – November 2017


Our planned speaker had to cancel her visit but a local illustrator and ceramicist kindly agreed to step in and talk to us at our November meeting.

Jacqui Melhuish has her own workshop and gallery with other artists in Wagon’s Yard, Marlborough. Jacqui started by explaining that drawing had been her favourite subject at school and she subsequently went on to become an illustrator. With a young family she enrolled on a foundation course at Swindon College and subsequently took a BA Hon in Illustration. Jacqui started incorporating illustrations in her ceramics and went on to teach pottery at Swindon and Marlborough Colleges.  


Inspiration for her work comes from a happy family upbringing and Jacqui uses childhood memories and sayings of relations, holidays and books to illustrate her work. There is no doubt Jacqui is a very talented lady being accomplished as an illustrator and ceramicist but she told us she prefers to work with clay now and her favourite piece is what she calls an ancestry totem.


It was interesting for us as textile artists to hear how Jacqui collects her clay direct from the supplier and loves to make large scale upright vessels. She explained how she constructs a frame out of cardboard tubes and the like, onto which she can rest the slabs of clay and allow them to dry rather than using the coil pot method.  Just look at the pieces of old lace which Jacqui has pressed into the clay before firing.

Jacqui’s enthusiasm for her subject became apparent when she explained that every new idea had to be practised and she really enjoyed the challenges of working with clay and the surprise results when doing raku firing. Exhibiting at Open Studios she was fortunate to sell a lot of her work but with her teaching commitments she finds time for her own creations limited. Hopefully in the new year after her Christmas Exhibition she will be able to restock her cupboards.
Report and some photos by Ros.  
Some photos thanks to Jacqui
Jacqui’s website is:
Gallery website:

Marion Rowland

Sadly Marion Rowland has decided to step down from the Committee.  Over the years she has been both Treasurer and Membership Secretary. 

At the monthly meeting on Monday, Ann Smith presented Marion with a bouquet of flowers to show our appreciation of all the work she has done for the branch.

Report by Ros

Colour Studies Folio – Email from Terry Murphy

Below is an email received by Yvonne Miles from Terry Murphy, the CEO of the Embroidery Guild:

Hello Yvonne,
I duly delivered the folio you gave me into the hands of the folio team of volunteers here at EGH. They were more than delighted when they saw the
contents  and thought and care that members of Marlborough Branch had  contributed to the  refurbishment. It easily matched the highest standard of  renovation work received in the last 18 months.
Nita Bailey, who heads the folio team, has just handed me a note asking me to include her thanks on behalf of the team to members in Marlborough for, and I  quote, ‘their time and expertise spent renovating and enhancing this lovely resource’.
Best wishes