Hill Top Queenie by Nicola Jarvis for the Spring Residential Retreat 2019
Nicola Jarvis is well-known in the needlework community for her beautiful designs featuring animals, birds and flora. You may remember her Dove Cottage Sampler from the 2018 Spring Residential, the theme of which was the life of William Wordsworth, or have even stitched one of her iconic bird designs, which showcase her immaculate and creative modern crewel work.
Nicola trained at the Royal School of Needlework before spending 10 years working in the British fashion industry as a sample embroiderer for many big high street brands.
With her fellow Spring Residential tutor Jenny Adin-Christie, Nicola is proud to have been one of the team members who created the lace for the Duchess of Cambridge’s wedding dress for her wedding to Prince William on 29 April, 2011.
Nicola is a world-class designer and embroidery tutor, which is why she is a regular tutor at our Residential Retreats each year. Phillipa explains: “Only the best tutors are invited to lead our workshops on our tours and retreats. Nicola is a talented and experienced professional hand embroiderer, a world class expert who is popular with our guests. Her charisma encourages everyone to achieve their best and her exceptional embroidery provides the high standard for them to aim for. Together, Nicola and Jenny deliver the top notch workshops year after year."
During the lunch break at the Retreat, we asked Nicola about her 2019 design Hill Top Queenie.
- What was your inspiration for this design?
The inspiration for my modern crewel work project was Beatrix Potter’s later years as a farmer on the high fells of the Lake District and her passion for breeding and conserving the indigenous Herdwick sheep.
- What materials and stitches did you use for the design and why?
- What level of stitcher is this design suitable for?
- How long did it take to complete the finished piece and did you encounter any difficulties along the way?
It is almost impossible to quantify the amount of hours invested in this particular piece, but the actual stitching of the A3 size embroidery took approximately two weeks to complete. The shading of the foxglove flowers are rather intricate and require a painterly approach with the Long and Short Stitch.
- Will the kit be available to people who didn't attend the retreat?
We have prepared 20 kits to be available to our mailing list to be released soon. You can sign up to the mailing list here. Then at the end of April the kit will be available on Nicola's website. 5% of all sales will go to the Herdwick Breeders Association.
Nicola will be teaching again for Lady Anne’s Needlework Retreats next year during the Stratford-Upon-Avon Residential Retreat, in 2020 during the 4 Nations Tour, and also during the Lady Anne’s Needlework Festival in 2021. Sign up here to express an interest in our festival and other retreats.
Nicola's Hill Top Queenie Sampler was created exclusively for Lady Anne's Retreats.