Royal School of Needlework Day Classes USA 2009

Royal School of Needlework Day Classes USA 2009 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel San Francisco Airport

In May 2009 the RSN will run Day Classes in a variety of hand embroidery techniques. The One Day Classes will give you an introductory taster to each technique. The Two Day classes will help you to further develop your skills.

RSN small-group Day Classes are friendly, relaxed and fun with a maximum of fourteen students in each class. The classes are designed to teach you sound traditional technique and help you explore how you can move on to develop and use your embroidery skills in diverse ways.

All our RSN tutors are graduates of the RSN apprenticeship and they are highly-skilled technical embroiderers with a wealth of teaching and professional working experience.

The Tutors
Lucy Barter is one of the most talented designer/embroiderers of her generation. She gained a BA Honours in Fashion Design specialising in children's wear. After several years living in San Francisco and designing for established children's fashion labels in both England and America including the Gap, Gymboree and Pottery Barn Kids Lucy discovered the RSN and became aware of the versatility of embroidery as a functional and exciting decorative art form. The appeal of the RSN's history, teaching methods and surroundings enticed Lucy back from the States to enrol onto the apprenticeship in 2003.She graduated in August 2006 with Distinction and after staying at the RSN for a short while to teach, returned to San Francisco, California, where she now lives with her husband.

Owen Davies is the only man to have graduated from the RSN Apprenticeship. He worked for two years in the Studio as embroiderer/ tutor and on leaving the RSN he began a freelance career as a textile artist teaching at venues all over Britain.He also became the Needlework Consultant for the John Lewis Partnership. He has always had a passion for gardening and created the Embroidered Knot Gardens course teaching needlework to like-minded enthusiasts. Owen co- wrote the best-selling book " Embroidered Knot Gardens " book published by Anova in 2006.

Helen McCook graduated from the RSN in 2003 having previously gained a BA in Printed and Dyed Textiles. She was Head of Textiles and Costume at Bonham's Auction House for three years and then spent a year as production manager for the embroidery company Hand & Lock. Helen is a specialist in 17th & 18th century costume and embroidery and she now pursues a career as a freelance teacher and lecturer.

Here is a brief description of the classes

  • Jacobean Crewel Work – this decorative technique is one of the earliest forms of surface embroidery traditionally worked in crewel wool on linen twill. The term Jacobean refers to the traditional designs that evolved from the Indian chintz patterns imported to England during the seventeenth century.

    Jacobean Classes
    Friday May 01 - A Day of Jacobean Crewel work with Owen Davies.
    Sunday May 10 - A Day of Jacobean Crewel work with Helen McCook.

  • Goldwork – a sumptuous technique which has been valued for many centuries as a sign of status and wealth. Working with metal thread on silk or velvet this traditional technique adapts well to contemporary designs. Learn the elements of padding for preparation and how to handle and couch down a variety of metal threads.

    Goldwork Classes
    Saturday May 02 – A Day of Goldwork with Lucy Barter
    Friday May 08 - A Day of Goldwork with Owen Davies

  • Canvas Stitches – master the technique of a variety of canvas stitches and discover how the use of different stitches can enhance your design. Explore the use of a variety of textured threads for traditional pieces or contemporary designs.

    Canvas Painting – Learn how to paint an image onto canvas for you to stitch.

    Embroidered Knot Gardens – Create your own three-dimensional garden on a canvas base. Use textured stitches in a variety of threads to create flower beds, topiary hedges and water features.

  • Canvaswork Classes
    Sunday May 03 – A Day of Canvas Stitches with Helen McCook.
    Tuesday May 12 – Canvas painting with Lucy Barter.
    Wednesday May 13 & Thursday May 14 – Embroidered Knot Gardens with Owen Davies.

  • Silk Shading – a beautiful technique worked with one strand of cotton or silk thread and known as "painting with a needle". Learn how to blend colours and stitches to create a very natural effect.

    Silk Shading Class
    Monday May 04 – A Day of Silk Shading with Helen McCook.

  • Blackwork -- A counted thread technique said to have been introduced into England by Catherine of Aragon, first wife of Henry VIII. The stitches form geometric patterns which give stunning effects especially with architectural themes or portraits.

    Blackwork Class
    Friday May 08 – A Day of Blackwork with Helen McCook.

  • Whitework -- Embroidery worked in white thread on a white background covering a wide variety of delicate techniques suitable for babywear, bridal wear and table linen. The traditional stitches of whitework can also be adapted to create stunning contemporary designs.

    Whitework Classes
    Saturday May 09 – A Day of Whitework with Lucy Barter
    Sunday May 10 & Monday May 11 – Contemporary Whitework with Owen Davies.

  • Stumpwork A delightful technique of miniature raised embroidery originating in the seventeenth century. With stumpwork you can create charming images of animals, insects, flowers and miniature portraits.

    Stumpwork Class
    Wednesday May 13 & Thursday May 14 Stumpwork with Lucy Barter

  • An Introduction to Embroidery Class
    Thursday May 07 with Helen McCook – A Day of Introduction to Stitches - and how to use them to best advantage. This day will be perfect for anyone who is new to embroidery or who needs a refresher to get started again.

  • Decorative Tassels Class
    Tuesday May 05 and Wednesday May 06 with Helen McCook – Have fun for two days creating fabulous tassels on wooden moulds.

  • Exploring Historic Stitches
    Saturday May 09 with Helen McCook – A special day devoted to examining stitches frequently used during the 17th, 18th & 19th centuries which are seldom seen today. Discover how these stitches were used in the context of their time and how some have evolved into stitches we use today.

General Information
All classes run from 10.00am to 4.00pm with a one hour lunch break.

Class Fees:
One Day Class £90.00 sterling. Two Day Class £170.00 sterling.

Payments in sterling by Visa, MasterCard or Direct Bank Transfer to RSN please.

Fees include the materials required for the class.

To book a class please contact:
Gill Holdsworth Email Gill.Holdsworth@... or Tel +44 (0)20 3166 6937

Available at the Hyatt Regency Hotel San Francisco Airport with special rates for RSN students. Single or Double Occupancy $145.00 dollars per night. Triple Occupancy $170.00 dollars per night. Quadruple occupancy $195.00 dollars per night. (These rates are exclusive of state & local taxes & tourism fee.)

For hotel bookings please contact the Hyatt Regency San Francisco Airport direct:

Online: Go to and search for the specific property ( San Francisco Airport ). Put it your dates and in the box labelled Group/ Corporate# input the code "G-RSNN" and it will bring up the special group rate for you.

Telephone: 800-233-1234.. Just let the reservation agent know you would like to book a room under the Royal School of Needlework room block.