Emily Jo Gibbs – workshop, June 2017

Illustrative pictures using silk organza and hand stitch

It took me about 18 months to decide to join the Embroiderers Guild, because I was intimidated by the amazing work I saw on line. However, when a friend showed me the pieces she had made at a workshop I realised I was missing opportunities to learn and improve. Now I sign up for as many workshops as I can, so that I can broaden my repertoire and gain confidence in my own ability.  

When I first read the description for the Emily Jo Gibbs workshop, my doubts came back, because I cannot draw, and that seemed to be fundamental for this workshop. By the next meeting I had changed my mind – I realised that it didn’t matter if I didn’t produce a masterpiece, and I might learn despite that.

On the day of the workshop, as I looked at Emily’s beautiful work, my heart sank. Her portraits, made from layers of silk organza embellished with simple stitches, are stunning, and their apparent simplicity belies the artistic skill that goes into making them. I knew I couldn’t ever come close to making something similar.  Then I saw a geometric piece and I relaxed, because I knew I could do that.
 Emily’s teaching style is relaxed and generous, and she doesn’t hesitate in sharing her techniques to help everyone achieve something they can be proud of. She took us through the stages of creating our own pieces, starting with the geometric piece. We could then move on to something more complex (except for me, I chickened out and stayed within my comfort zone). Emily is undoubtedly a gifted teacher, and her gentle encouragement made us all very happy with what we achieved (even me), and I loved seeing everyone’s work at the end of the day, and admiring the skill within the group. 
I won’t be winning any prizes for my piece, but that doesn’t matter because I got to spend the day with a lovely group of warm, generous and supportive women, and I went home wearing a smile. Great value for £30!

​Thank you so much Tricia J for sharing your thoughts and comments about the workshop.

Thank you Vernice for the photos.


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