2006 Brazilian Dimensional Embroidery International Guild Seminar

Rita Ellison Goff 2006

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I was privileged to attend my sixth Brazilian Dimensional Embroidery International Guild (BDEIG) Seminar this June in Portland, Oregon. Six days of needle art adventures featuring the best certified teachers and their newest designs. This was the third consecutive year for this event to be held at Concordia University. Our theme was "Critters in My Garden" and the Flower for the year was the Sweet Pea.

As many of you realize, Brazilian Dimensional Embroidery (BDE) and Crazy Quilting go together like cake and ice cream. It enhances the embellishing of all my CQ projects. Like all other embroidery, BDE uses stitches that have been used for hundreds of years. Most of this needle work uses Z twisted rayon threads that are dyed in bright and variegated colors, however, any thread can be used. The rayon threads have a beautiful sheen and their smoothness creates gorgeous bullions. The producer of these threads in the USA is the Edmar Company.

Let me tell you a bit about this years events. I arrived on Monday night because I had volunteered to teach a class Tuesday morning on a project we started this year. The Make It and Take It class was offered free of charge to anyone that signed up. We had 37 students wanting to learn more about this dimensional stitching. Six teachers, each taking 6 or 7 students, guided these adventurous gals in completing the little flower. Materials for this were donated by several members of the guild. Class was from 9am to 12 noon. They learned to do the stem stitch, the leaf stitch, couching, the bullion and cast on stitch and the pistil. Our object was to expose BDE to these eager students in hopes they would be as in love with it as we are, and several of the gals signed up for classes, and joined BDEIG. A lot of fun for all and a huge success! This will be repeated next year in our effort to spread the word of this beautiful needle work.

The Seminar began Tuesday with registration, receiving our "goodie bag" (a tote bag full of BDE items donated by many merchants that carry BDE supplies, satellite chapters, and some of the teachers). Next it was off to get settled in our dorm rooms. These accommodations come as single or double rooms, sharing a bathroom, and there are a couple of four bedroom suites that have two baths, a full kitchen and a living area. I was fortunate to share a suite with my friend from Seattle, Carol "Froggie" Anfinson and two Canadian stitching friends, Mary Kurbis and Pat Carefoot.

Tuesday evening many of us gathered in the lounge area for stitching and chatting, catching up on the year gone by.

Classes began Wednesday morning. There are eight classes offered in all, a morning class from 9 am to 12 noon and an afternoon class held from 2 pm to 5 pm daily. Here we learn new and exciting BDE stitches and techniques. Each class is defined as to the level of skill the design requires and the intensity of the class. No more than 15 students per class are assigned.

Of course, there are many activities between and after classes. A typical day begins with breakfast served in the cafeteria from 7:30 am to 8:30 am, morning class, lunch, shopping at Merchant's Mall, Oh!, I haven't told you about that yet.... be patient, I will get around to it...lol, afternoon class, supper, Merchant's Mall again and then the gathering in the lounge to discuss what we learned. Many of the teachers join us here to further answer questions and just gab... Announcements are made at lunch time....not many skip meals..lol. On one of the evenings we have our Fashion Show...anyone is welcome to model clothing items they have made using BDE. Another evening we have the Show and Share. Here anyone can enter their project for judging. First, second and third ribbons are awarded. Several categories are judged: My First BDE Project, Novice, Intermediate, Master and Professional. Best of Show and the President's Choice are also chosen. Other than the President's Choice, attendees vote on the winners.

Now to explain Merchant's Mall....several vendors of BDE supplies set up areas displaying their goods, (threads, designs, notions, books, charms, beads, etc). This is a great opportunity for gals that don't have access to shops carrying BDE supplies to shop for items, seeing them in person instead of blindly ordering over the internet. Here, too, they display many of their finished projects. I have to say I dropped several coins at these sites! And one night we had guest merchants come in, featuring their special items, lamp work beads, and the most heavenly chocolate covered hazelnuts.

To learn more about the BDEIG go to our web site:www.brazilian-dimensional-embroidery.org

There you will find out all about our Guild, free patterns and a form should you wish to join. With membership you will receive quarterly issues of our BE Wrap Up....a newsletter full of useful information, free patterns, a list of vendors, news of different chapter's activities and so much more.

I must warn you, BDE is a VERY addictive form of needle art.

See you at Seminar 2007.


Edmar Co.

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