Outings and Residential Workshops

Alston Hall

Alston Hall Residential Weekend 2012

We are delighted to announce that our residential weekend for next year will be held at Alston Hall on the 5th, 6th & 7th October 2012. 
Alston Hall is a Victorian country house overlooking the beautiful Ribble Valley, about 6 miles east of Preston. Although in an idyllic rural location, junction 31A of the M6 is only a few miles away.

There will be two tutors for the weekend, whose details and course information are listed below. We have places for 28 people, 16 for the Ruth Issett course and 12 for the Susan Briscoe course.

A board will be available for members to book their places for this residential weekend at our January meeting. 
These courses have already aroused a lot of interest, so please do sign up at the January meeting. A deposit of £30 will be required for immediate payment, and a further two payments will be required to be paid in April and July.

Costs will be £162 per person for a shared room and £180 per person for a single room. All meals are inclusive of these figures, so as you can all see, this will not only be a fun filled weekend, but also comes at an amazing price!

Latest News - This course is now full!

Ruth Issett


For those interested in extending their experience of stitch, print and dye!
A fascinating course starting with uncoloured fabric, thread, some print and stitch.  Add the magic ingredient of dye to create colourful and glorious stitched textiles.
An experimental course using natural (cotton, linen, silk, rayon/viscose, jute and hemp) fabrics and threads, stitch, printing and dyeing.
Use simple print techniques to give pattern and resists to fabrics that can then be further embellished with stitch and dye.
Add hand and machine stitch to white and natural fabrics to create textural surfaces.
Experience the tingle of adding colour to beautiful printed and stitched surface texture and achieve a stunning result as well as understanding how dyes affect different fabrics.

Requirements List

This workshop will include some printing, dye painting and various forms of hand and / or simple machine stitch. In order to cover a range of techniques and ideas in the time, we will work on a small piece initially and then a more substantial piece as the course progresses.

Please bring the following items, as this will help the smooth running of this busy workshop.


It will be helpful if some are smooth faced and close woven, as well as having some that are more open weave for easy hand stitch.
Please bring a selection of the following white or cream natural fabrics. Make sure the fabrics are not synthetic or wool.

·      Cotton: calico, muslin, scrim, cheesecloth, organdie and poplin.
·      Silk: habotai, chiffon, georgette, noil and satin.
·      Rayon/Viscose: any you can find if possible.
·      Linen: evenweave, scrim or anything you can find.
·      Mixtures: you may have some unusual combinations or weaves, which might give interesting effects.
You may have some smaller pieces of fabric that will be useful to bring.

Threads: White or Cream natural Fibres – Not Wool

Please bring a variety of weights. I will bring a variety of different yarns so don’t buy large quantities of expensive threads.

·      Heavier weight threads for surface stitchery or couching such as cotton perle, undyed silk slub, crochet cotton.
·      Fine sewing threads such as stranded cotton, sewing cotton or fine silk.
·      White machine thread, must be cotton, rayon or viscose, or silk.
·      Look for unusual knitting yarns such as bamboo and silk, linen and silk – they all dye well.

Equipment: Everything on this list is essential, please bring all of it!

·      Apron, protective gloves, roll of kitchen towels, small pack of wet wipes or similar. Newspaper.
·      Plastic sheet to cover your work area and to place dyed fabrics to dry on. (at least three pieces about 24 ins / 60 cms square). White bin liners work well.
·      At least 6 sponge brushes any size.
·      A deep welled palette to place your dyes in or about six small plastic tubs or old yoghurt pots in a tray.
·      Sewing Equipment with a variety of needles both large and small, plus a sewing machine if you wish. A machine is not essential but some folk cannot live without theirs!
·      Small sharp scissors.
·      Small Embroidery frame / hoop if you prefer to stitch with one.
·      Sketch book or notebook to document work as it progresses.

There will be a small additional charge for dyes / print / media payable to the tutor at the end of the course - £8.00.