Monday, 4 August 2014

Two day bobbin lace course

The Guild of St Clare has block booked a lace training course at The Fibreworks, Oxford
 on the 9th and 16th August, 10am to 2pm. Places are limited but we do have two spare at the time of writing! The Fibreworks' expert tutor, Liz Baker, will be introducing us to this intricate art, and we will use perle cottons to make a lace bookmark. The cost is £40 per person for both days. The Fibreworks is located on the Cowley Road, Oxford - details on where to park are here. Please email for more details or to book a place.

Saturday, 24 May 2014

Latin Mass Society conference

The Guild of St Clare has a stall at today's conference! The line up of speakers includes Joseph Pearce, and Bishop Schneider.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Thursday, 22 May 2014

Another forthcoming event!

I'm delighted to announce that we will be holding another embroidery training day with Jacqui Macdonald, the RSN tutor.

On Saturday, 11th October she will be coming to Oxford to teach us silk shading embroidery. This is widely used in church needlework, and indeed in many other contexts. Please email me at if you would like to know more, or to book a place on the course. The price is £45. Space is limited so please don't delay!

This is an example of silk shading, where long and short stitch is used to create an effect reminiscent of painting

Jacqui came to Oxford in February 2013 and taught the Guild group a variety of techniques including stumpwork and whitework. It was a wonderful day and we all learnt a lot, although we all remember it most as the day Pope Benedict's resignation was announced which saddened us a great deal.

Saturday, 1 March 2014

Children's Guild meetings resume

The Guild of St Clare's junior branch in Oxford has resumed its meetings, now under the hospitable roof of the Oxford Homeschooling Group which takes place once a month at the Oxford Oratory. The children are working on a sampler, in order to learn basic techniques which will enable them to take on more sophisticated projects.

The sewing sampler book which the children will make

Dorothea embroidering the front cover of her sampler

Frances tackling running stitch

Margaret and Hannah with their samplers

Lines of machine sewing and a button with machine-sewn buttonhole on the pages of the sampler: the children will go on to do these when they have mastered the basics of sewing by hand
First page of the sampler: a line of running stitch in progress
Agnes hard at work with me supervising

Thursday, 27 February 2014

Project Finishing Day!

Following the success of our training days, we are starting a new kind of meeting which we hope will interest all needleworkers! If you're like us, you have at least 10 (or maybe more like 100) unfinished projects languishing in a cupboard taking up space and giving you pangs of guilt every time you open the door and see them.

Could do with a bit more work.
 Join us on our project finishing day! We will meet at 10am on Saturday, 28th June 2014 at the church hall of St Anthony of Padua, Headington, Oxford OX3 7SS.

There will be people there with a wide range of skills and experience to help and advise you; it will be the ideal opportunity to make progress on your neglected work, whether it's hand embroidery, dressmaking, quilting or something more exotic!

To book, email Lucy Shaw at . Places cost £15 each - all ages are welcome.

Monday, 24 February 2014

Goldwork Training Day with Golden Hinde

On 22nd February we had our Goldwork Training Day, led by Sarah Rakestraw and Sue Hinde from Golden Hinde goldwork supplies.

Clare, Lucy, Amanda and Marie tacking their designs on to silk mounted in embroidery frames

Hard at work.

 We all chose a design, originally created by Sarah, and used different techniques to outline and fill in.

This is the design I chose - a simple flower. The design is marked on tracing paper, then tacked on to silk dupion which has been mounted on to an embroidery frame. Then the tracing paper is carefully removed, leaving the tacking stitches behind.

We learnt beginner's goldwork techniques: couching, leather work and beading. However these are staple techniques for goldwork: most of the more advanced techniques simply build on them.

Sue demonstrating couching. The stitches which overlay the gold threads, holding them to the fabric, form a pattern which are part of the design.

By the end of the day I'd made a bit more progress

 If I apply myself, I should manage to complete my design so that it looks like this:

Sarah's flower design
We are planning to hold further goldwork courses later in the year, when we will tackle different techniques. Watch this space!

Wednesday, 27 November 2013

New Pall

The Guild of St Clare was commissioned to make a new black pall for use with a small catafalque at Requiems. This was completed just in time for the Traditional Sung Requiem for deceased members of St Benet's Hall, Oxford, the Benedictine house of study, which is now an annual event.

The new pall in use in the small chapel of St Benet's. The celebrant is Fr Edward Van den Bergh, of the London Oratory and also an alumnus of the Hall.

The pall was made with silk dupion from Beckford Silk and trimmed with brocade from Vanpoulles. More photos can be viewed on Joseph Shaw's Flickr page.