That's was the theme of our S.T.A.R.T. (teacher training) this past weekend. And it delivered in spades. The committee did an amazing job on everything, from the selection of the venue to all the invaluable content in the lectures and the hands-on training.
The first picture above shows the project that I designed and started - a laptop case for my little ibook. I opted for the "wide cut" Crewel, which meant larger, simpler motifs than some of the people who chose to do "fine cut". The front and back will be mirror images of the same design, with a hooked bottom and hopefully, a simple assembly....
The second picture shows the group. This picture was taken by one of the hubbies in attendance. It's not often we get as many as we did this time, but I think the venue, the prospect of golf and some boating nearby was quite attractive to them. They turned out to be extremely helpful, not only to their significant others, but to the rest of the group as well.
All the dyeing that I did for the class got incorporated, other than my 6-value swatches (which I will use elsewhere, I'm sure) and I only had to buy a piece of red and some goldy-brown for my little owl, so I got away lightly in the purchasing department.
We arrived on Friday afternoon, after stopping in Picton for a wonderful lunch and a trip to their fabulous yarn shop Rose Haven. Elaine bought some amazing sky blue silk and wool roving and I managed to resist the urge to buy anything (I guess I realized that the 4 big projects on the needles already are enough for a while).
A hop, skip and a jump and we were in Gananoque. We found the resort without overshooting it - a first for us in many trips. The resort was lovely. An older one, with lots of charm, overlooking several of the thousand islands. A good number of us were all accommodated in a one-story, motel-like section of the resort, which made the cocktail hour lots of fun.
Beginning Friday night, we assembled in the classroom and started the course with a brief history of Crewel embroidery (way back to 1066) and its application in rug hooking. Each of us had received an envelope full of traditional Crewel motifs which we could use to create our original designs. There was a table full of reference books, so there was no shortage of inspiration for our projects.
The teaching and learning continued throughout the weekend. Design theory. Colour theory. Colour planning for light and dark backgrounds. Helpful hints for decorative stitches and hooking with dip dyed wool.
A long day Saturday had most people with their designs on their backings and many of us hooking. And the eager beavers all returned to the classroom after dinner Saturday night. A more adventurous group headed to the Casino for an hour and when we pondered who the big winner would be, we all speculated it would be the Casino. And we were right!
Sunday morning, after an amazing breakfast of custom omelettes or crepes/waffles, we were back in the classroom for a dip dye demo and a bit more Crewel content. As previously mentioned, the committee did an excellent job. Our takeaway notes and binders will more than prepare us to teach a class in Crewel. Having served on a committee before, I know the amount of work there is - it does take a full year to get ready. And this particular group had some serious geography issues as well - with committee members from Coburg to London among them. Makes getting together a bit of a challenge.
But congrats to all of them. It was a blast. And like every rug hooking weekend, you can yak non-stop about this without anyone rolling their eyes or leaving the room.
It was definitely Crewelicious! And I can't wait for next year.