Course Start Dates
Course dates are flexible; please get in touch for the next available date.
About the Course
In this fun and inspiring workshop you will learn how to really make the most of a sewing machine, using it to 'draw' and create a set of unique stitched samples. You have the choice of working from your own images (drawings and/or photos) or from some of mine. As the course is run for no more than 2 people at a time, it can be tailored very much to individual needs and requirements.
By the end of the day you will have:
- Learnt how to set up a sewing machine for free machining
- Learnt how to prepare images and fabrics for free machining
- Studied a range of samples for inspiration and understanding
- Watched a range of demonstrations
- Experimented with different ways to add colour to your images: threads, dyes, inks
- Experimented with free machined cording techniques
- Experimented with reverse applique
- Understood health and safety issues when free machining
- Created a set of sample images to take home with you
- Eaten a lot of home made (sometimes home grown!) food
- Received a set of technical handouts to support your day's learning
The workshop is run for groups of 2 people on a day negotiated with me (can be weekdays or weekend), and is held in my comfortable and cosy garden studio close to Richmond Park and Kingston town centre. The session costs £65 each, or if you want to do the course on your own it will cost £110.
I have 28 years experience teaching art, textiles, printmaking and illustration in further and adult education, in colleges and privately too, so you can be certain of well structured, well paced and inspiring teaching and learning.
Alongside my teaching, I have been a practicing artist and designer for 30 years, exhibiting nationwide and working commercially within the fields of textiles and illustration.
If booking with a CraftCourses voucher for part or all of the course fee, please fill in the contact form above. Your voucher code must be provided at the point of booking.
What's included in the price?
Costs include all materials,refreshments and lunch. You can use my Pfaff sewing machines, or bring your own if you feel more comfortable with a machine that's familiar. If you are bringing your own, you just need to check beforehand that you can drop the feed and bring an embroidery foot that fits your machine.
I attended Ruth’s workshop on free hand machine embroidery, and can’t praise it enough. Ruth was very patient and encouraging, whilst making sure we understood and learnt all the techniques she introduced us too. I’ll definitely be returning to learn more.
I am now much more confident when using my sewing machine for embroidery.
Ruth - - #29257
Ruth managed to squeeze the three of us into her lovely studio. Ruth was a wonderful and patient teacher. We achieved so much in a day, far more than I expected! Really inspiring and we can't wait to start using our new found skills on our own projects.
Emma - - #27965
Challenging but at the same time very achievable thanks to the great tutoring by Ruth Blackford.
Sewing queen - - #27062
I had an excellent and highly enjoyable day learning lots of new sewing techniques. Ruth was very flexible and happy to tailor the course to any desired technique. Ruth's garden studio is charming and she is a very warm and patient teacher with lots of teaching experience, making it all in all a great experience! Highly recommend.
Anna Pamphilon - - #27061
How can I tell you how much I enjoyed this day course?! Ruth was an excellent teacher and got us using so many different stitches and effects. She has a delightful warm personality and she is a first rate textile artist and inspirational as an instructor.
I classed myself a fairly good seamstress, having made men’s suits but I didn’t know any of the embroidery effects that Ruth taught us. I learnt so much, it was a truly enjoyable day.
Elaine Pamphilon - - #27060
This was an excellent day. Ruth was a wonderful and patient teacher. As a beginner, I achieved so much more than I expected! I’m very inspired by what I learned.
Sue Norgrove-Moore - - #26680
What a lovely day! Ruth was a fantastic host and teacher. My friend and I learned so much in just one day and feel very inspired to go on with projects of our own. Definitely recommend this course.
Anne - - #25694
I just spent a perfect Sunday with my best friend being creative in Ruth’s lovely home. The course allows a total beginner to feel the buzz of creating something totally unique and I now feel confident and inspired to go on machine embroidering in my spare time. I would thoroughly recommend this course! Thank you Ruth x
louise McElhinney - - #24622
A really excellent course, very enjoyable, Ruth was great to work with and provided a perfectly paced introduction of several techniques, with time to explore them. I was really pleased with what I learnt and the progress I made in the day (although I was an absolute beginner).
As there are a maximum of two on the course, loads of personal attention made the course particularly effective. A lovely lunch too!
Would highly recommend any courses with Ruth and will certainly be planning to return soon. Thank you Ruth
Erica Whalley - - #24294
A great course in a lovely setting. Learnt so much in just one day .
Fran Stevens - - #24228
I thoroughly enjoyed my one day course learning free machine embroidery. There is nothing more fulfilling than learning a new skill and discovering a passion for something new! Ruth showed me so many techniques, and she has such a wealth of knowledge and so many examples, that I genuinely came away inspired to continue to build upon what I had learnt. Ruth's studio was a great place to learn in; it was both relaxing and had a beautiful outlook, and I enjoyed so much delicious homemade food.
All in all, the workshop experience was a real treat!
Sarah Coles - - #23081
This course was just what I had hoped it would be. Ruth is such a lovely person. Her relaxed manner enabled me to learn with ease. It's amazing how much my machine can do. Without the expertise of Ruth I would never have realised what it, and I, am capable of.
Lunch and cake were a nice bonus.
I’d certainly return for another day course to learn more.
Jane worrall - - #21577
I had a splendid day with Ruth. I have a project that I needed help with and she sorted out my layout, then we got to the sewing bit, whereupon I found I could do all sorts of things on my machine that I didn't know I could, though it became apparent that I need to practise....
My project is well on its way. In the course of the day Ruth gave me all sorts of hints tips and tricks that I just hope I'll remember, and handouts to help.
Lunch and cake was good too!
Lesley Alexander - - #21094
Had a wonderful day, so nice to take some time out to learn a new skill and create something. Ruth is a great teacher , very patient and encouraging. Her studio is a lovely place to work in. The whole day was really inspiring !
Frances - - #20287
Just attended a fabulous one to one day course with Ruth Blackford - Textiles/Machine Embroidery. Ruth made the day fun and gave me lots of ideas and helped me to develop my ideas. She made me very welcome. Would thoroughly recommend Ruth as a Textile teacher.
Carole - - #19325
A thoroughly enjoyable course and so much packed into one day. Leaves me wanting to attend another course by Ruth Blackford.
Embroidery fan - - #17886
Course dates are flexible; please get in touch for the next available date.
This craft course provider has been awarded Gold status for receiving 10 or more 5 star ratings from previous students.
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They also allow tutors to gain valuable feedback on their courses and for new students to find the course that's right for them.