Textile Art Summer Schools, Abruzzo, Italy

Duration: 1 week

Price: £495

Run by: Dionne
at Dionne Swift: Textile Artist

07974 747080

La Vecchia Scuola
Colle Case 15
CH 66046

Contact course provider

About the Course

Textile Art Summer School in Italy : “Dionne’s Summer School has been a great success and an amazing experience visiting stunning locations with lovely companions and following a creative programme which inspired, motivated and challenged in equal measures . Dionne is a brilliant teacher and skilled communicator and this week has enabled me to develop an exciting repertoire for future work . I just can’t wait to return to continue this creative journey. Many thanks to Dionne , Mark and the friends I made at La Vecchia Scuola”

The price quoted is for the workshop only, you are responsible for booking flights [approx £60 – £200 return] and accommodation [£250 – £360], airport transfer 50 euros [payable locally]. 6 students per week.

NEW: you can now pay in 2 easy instalments of £260. Please select the appropriate option [the second payment is due approx. 10 wks before the workshop]

If you have a group of friends and would like me to develop a specific workshop week/weekend just for you then please get in touch and we can make plans!! 🙂

There are further images from recent Italian summer schools on my Facebook page which you can find via my website (link above)

Sunday arrival – you’ll be collected from Pescara [the UK flight arrives at 5/6pm.] Its a 1 hour transfer to Atessa and your hotel, once you have freshened up everyone is invited to a welcome meal at the hotel. Return back to the airport the following Saturday for the afternoon flight home.

“A fabulous week in a truly lovely part of Italy. Dionne worked so hard to make it run smoothly along with help from Mark. From meeting us at the airport on our arrival, to a very special farewell meal and finally taking us to the airport I enjoyed every moment.
We were made so welcome by the inhabitants of Atessa that we felt like locals by the time we left.
Thank you to everyone in the group for making it such a lovely and creative experience.
Thank you Dionne, it was a privilege to take part in one of your Italian Summer schools!”

This 5 day summer school provides you with the opportunity to explore drawing, design, textiles print and stitch in an inspiring atmosphere with a highly experienced tutor. You’ll leave with a bundle of experiments and ideas which will inspire and full further projects for many moons to come…not to mention great memories of a fantastic creative adventure in this wonderful region of Italy.

28th May – 1st June 2018: EXPLORING SKETCHBOOKS This workshop will be specifically directed towards sketchbook development and playful experimentation to explore design ideas on paper and on cloth. Plenty of drawing, collage, sketchbook making & mark making using the local area as our inspiration.

18th June – 22nd June 2018: COLOURING CLOTH – observing colours and marks, recording them and responding with dyes and print back in the studio. I’m interested in considering a broad range of experimental print techniques in combination with each other: there will be Devore, discharge, painting and printing with procion dyes…you’ll create a great collection of cloths with wonderful effects…each one perfect as a scarf!!

10th September – 14th September 2018: DRAWING &. MARK MAKING: observing and responding, being bold and taking a risk. I couldn’t create any of my stitched pieces without drawing a composition first: this workshop is the backbone of all of the rest of the creative processes & should be your first port of call. I know drawing can be a dirty word to some, but I make accessible, understandable, enjoyable and totally achievable 🙂

24th September – 28th Septemeber 2018: STITCH [sorry FULL] This workshop will have a strong stitch bias running alongside location based research and information gathering. You’ll discover experimental approaches to Free Machine Embroidery and discover tips and tricks to help your sewing always run smoothly!

Each day of the workshop I will pick you up at 9.30am at Hotel Al Duca and return you there for 5.30pm after a full day of creativity! Evenings are free time for you to enjoy…

“I’m going to try to articulate just how magical an experience Dionne’s Italian Summer school was. I feel unable to do justice. My experience of sewing is limited. I have fiddled and self taught sewing creatively for the last two years with an occasional day course, (also with Dionne which was amazing). Italy was incredible. The food; the location; the hotel; the hospitality; the smells; the warmth; the atmosphere; the mountains; the beach; the Trabocchi; the gelato; the scenery; the fantastic company, the beautiful alleyways and vistas beyond but above all else the amazing teaching. Dionne has opened my eyes to a fresh way of looking and sketching. She has shown me processes to expand my creative work and generated added spark and excitement to my work. Dionne does this in such a skilled and accessible way that you often don’t notice, such is her mastery of empowering you creatively. I was reduced to joyous tears twice on this course due to being overwhelmed with such incredible company and new discoveries. Utterly, utterly wonderful. I have started a new love affair with Italy and cannot wait to return. Thank you Dionne.x”

Day one
Morning – Researching and collecting visual information. The Abrussese coast line is dotted with spectacular ‘Trabocchi’ [wooden fishing platforms] – they are a truly special feature of the Abruzzo region & perfect visual stimuli! We shall enjoy lunch at a local restaurant near the beach.

Afternoon – Back at La Vecchia Scuola I shall introduce a technique to help you develop the images collected that morning.

Day two
Morning – Researching and collecting visual information. We shall venture into the mountains and work ‘en plein air’ to capture the amazing vistas and landscapes of the Appeninnes: followed by a traditional mountain lunch at a local Agriturismo.

Afternoon – Back at La Vecchia Scuola, I’ll demonstrate another new technique useful for developing that mornings images and incorporate yesterdays ideas and techniques.

Evening- Enjoy an aperitif at La Vecchio Scuola whilst listening to an informative talk about my work and career.

Day three
Morning – Tornareccio, the nearest village, is known for its honey and its mosaics – we shall spend the morning investigating the latter through the small alleys, streets and piazzas of this pleasant hillside village: then its lunch at the local restaurant: Meditteraneo

Afternoon – Back at La Vecchia Scuola we shall look at incorporating further techniques into your new repertoire and discuss how you might move forward with your work.

Day four
Morning – Its market day in Atessa…. we shall make a late start so you can absorb the sights and sounds of the local town: There are numerous amazing Baroque churches, beautiful cobble streets and ancient arches & doorways to explore: you can enjoy lunch in one of the numerous restaurants and bars of Atessa

Afternoon – Time for some individual development and 1:1 discussion to help clarify your ideas

Day five
Morning – Developing and resolving images and ideas…

Local lunch…

Afternoon – This is a great time to consider different methods of finishing/mounting/presentation pieces. You’ll have time to complete your work as well as review and evaluate [individually and with the group]…sadly its time to say goodbye….

Saturday departure. We can collect you from the hotel in the afternoon for a departure from Pescara airport returning to Stansted

I’m sure you’ll have plenty of questions…please do not hesitate to get in touch 🙂

If booking with a CraftCourses voucher for part or all of the course fee, please fill in the contact form above or telephone us. Your voucher code must be provided at the point of booking.

What's included in the price?

The following supplies/materials/equipment will be provided for you at La Vecchio Scuola:
- Sewing machines [suitable for free machine embroidery]
- Threads and embroidery hoops
- Silk Screens, dyes and supplies
- Basic range of fabrics for print and stitch
- Basic auxiliary fabrics [ e.g. water soluble]

You will need to bring along the following:
- A hardback sketchbook – ideally ring bound A4 [or larger if you prefer]…something to draw in and collect information in when we are out and about.
- Drawing/sketching media – pencils, graphite sticks, charcoal – whatever your prefer.
- Something water-soluble would be most beneficial – coloured Caran D’ache type pastels are ideal.
- Small water container &/or refillable brush
- Some means to carry the above whilst we are out and about.
- Bear in mind it may be very warm – you may like a hat & suncream…

Getting there
The nearest airport is Pescara, there are regular flights from Stansted, UK with Ryanair. Arrive on the Sunday afternoon flight, depart on the Saturday evening flight [to coincide with transfers/pick ups] or extend you stay in this wonderful region.

Some students find it easier to fly to Rome – there is a bus that connects from right outside the terminal [of both the Roman airports] to Pescara [approx 2.5 hours €27 bookable online] Prontobus http://www.prontobusitalia.it If you aim to arrive to coincide with airport collections/drop offs, I can whizz by the bus station to collect you as well 🙂

Hotel Al Duca in Atessa: Antonio is lovely and has agreed to offer a 10% discount on his B&B rates for my students [you would need to book directly with him via his email address: info@hotelalduca.it rather than via some of the online booking agencies]. I can help you connect with Antonio: he’s a bit slow at responding to emails, but I drop in to see him when I’m in the area to check all is well & it always is 🙂

I have had a tour of this hotel and it is perfect: its a small, well run hotel which has been recently re-modelled. Its exceptionally clean and the restaurant is well regarded in the area – there’s free wifi and access to the local swimming pool a short walk away. For guests, Antonio will also offer a set price dinner for 15 euros.

Rooms 201, 202 & 203 have balconies and view across the town to the sea in the distance. 302/303/304/402 also have views but no balcony. 403 has mountain views.

There are good reviews on Trip Advisor that are worth reading & I have a small flyer that I can send to you if you like. [their website is currently being updated – but other booking sites have imagery]
Single room 40/45 euros [less 10%]
Double 65 euros [less 10%][twin beds]
Double 65 euros [less 10%][double bed – ask for ‘matrimonial’]
Agriturismo Montagnola has a cottage to rent – it would be ideal for families or couples…you would definitely need a car!

Casa Pietra is delightful self catering Farmhouse in a beautiful spot: there are 4 double ensuite rooms in the main house and the Casetta sleeps 2 to 4 guests. Robert, the English speaking owner can help you get out an about and will even cook for you if you would like a night off!

La Fontana Tornareccio : A boutique B&B in the local village – you would need a car to get about.

Independent travellers may wish to hire a car – Abruzzo is a rural area, the roads aren’t as busy as in other Italian locations, but a Sat Nav or Google Maps is extremely useful.
Car hire is available form the Airport and the Railway station: we often use Firefly [car hire can be booked via Ryanair when purchasing flights]

We can collect students from Pescara Airport on Sunday afternoon and return the following weekend in time for the Saturday afternoon flight back to Stansted [please let me know if you would like to be collected/returned from/to the airport = 50 euros] – transfer of this nature is only feasible if your are staying at Al Duca in Atessa our suggested accommodation.

We will collect students daily from Al Duca for the workshop excursions: Al Duca is well placed in the centre of Atessa where there are a range of bars and restaurants all in strolling distance.

“I have never been involved in a workshop of this nature before but what a wonderful, inspiring experience it proved to be, I’m so pleased I took the plunge. It exceeded my expectation in every way. A comfortable, super clean Hotel with a charming owner who pulled out all the stops to make us feel at home. Atessa, great! Locals, super friendly .The scenery, stunning! And the cherry on the cake, a gifted artist/teacher who opened up so much for me in just one week. I returned home absolutely buzzing with fresh inspiration and direction, heck I’m even going to buy a new machine!!!!
Thank you Dionne for all your hard work and for sharing your passion in such away that even a bit of a novice like me came away enriched.
Thanks also to Mark, Dionne’s husband for all his help too, a lovely friendly chap.”

Non participating guests and partners are welcome to join in on meals and ‘extras’ yet would need to make their own transport arrangements. [Advance notice and payment would be appreciated]
We can suggest a range of activities and excursions to suit their interests: mountain walks and cycling are very popular…yet also a quick search in Trip Advisor for activities in the area will highlight many opportunities.

Please get in touch if you have any queries.

Want to review this course?

I just loved everything about this course. From the moment Dionne met me at the airport to getting the flight home it was fun, friendly, creative, relaxing, energising, challenging and inspirational. Dionne had organised everything superbly, she is such an excellent tutor and great fun to be with. The hotel, the food the wine and the gelato could not be improved on. I cannot recommend this workshop holiday highly enough, I sincerly hope to go again another year. If you are thinking of going then just book it, you will not regret it. xxx

- - #13483

Dionne did a brilliant job of tailoring the course to the needs and skill levels of the participants whilst inspiring confidence and encouraging us to try new techniques. What was particularly good was that everything that we did could be done at home with minimal outlay, no fancy or expensive equipment and materials required.
Atessa, Torrareccio, Abruzzo and the coastline were delightful and inspirational. Just when you thought that the week could not get any better - it did, with fantastic food, local wines and such a warm welcome from the locals.
I shouldn’t be writing such a glowing review as there may not be space when I want to go again, it’s so good. Just go, you will not regret it for an instant.

- - #13232

I can’t recommend enough attending any of Dionnes classes or summer schools. She devotes so much time and attention on ensuring you get the best out of your experience. Italy was stunningly inspiring because Dionne made it so utterly accessible and with meticulous attention to detail, from the travel arrangements to the hotel the itinerary. It was magical and spellbinding and you come away with a head full of ideas armed with new skills and confidence, and a promise to return. The food, the company, the coursework, the visual delights. Dionne could inspire anyone - even on a wet November day sitting on soggy cardboard. When you add Abruzzo to the mix it’s heady and addictive. Don’t miss it. Just wonderful xxxx

- - #13205

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Course Start Dates

Monday 10th September 2018
Monday 24th September 2018

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