May 19, 2011
A Stitch in Time

On April 29, 2011, eleven people from across the state gathered at Indiana Humanities’ Meredith Nicholson House in Indianapolis to participate in a one-day workshop titled “Stitch: the Third Dimension.” Jointly sponsored by the Indiana chapters of the Studio Art Quilt Associates and the Surface Design Association, the workshop was facilitated by artist and teacher Bob Adams, who led participants in an exploration of thread as a drawing tool in the creation of textile art.

The Meredith Nicolson House provided a convenient and centralized location for the workshop.  The space comfortably accommodated eleven participants, along with their sewing machines and other supplies.  Also appreciative of the opportunity to enjoy lunch together, participants were generous in their praise of Indiana Humanities’ hospitality.

The workshop began with a sequence of drawing exercises using a variety of mark-making tools, which enabled participants to experience some of the various expressions and effects possible in simple line compositions.  Adams then led the group in exercises that explored the effects of various thread colors and patterns on warm, cool, and neutral-colored backgrounds.  The exercises demonstrated how improvisational machine stitching can be employed to add depth, dimension, and texture; create nuanced color shifts; and incorporate additional design elements in creating textile art.  Participantsleft the workshop with an enhanced vision of how they might use thread and stitch more effectively in their work own work.

Adams creates stunning textile art, much of which incorporate fabrics from which he selectively removes (“discharges”) the dyes and then over-dyes them with other colors.  He also makes innovative use of large-scale, hand crafted stamps and machine stitching. Click here to visit his website.

The Surface Design Association is an international, member-supported community of creators, educators, collectors, and curators dedicated to the art and practice of surface design. The organization’s mission is to educate members and the public about the innovative manipulation and embellishment of textile surfaces.  To explore membership in the Surface Design Association, contact Indiana Area Representative Linda Witte Henke Linda Witte Henke.

The Studio Art Quilt Associates, Inc. is a non-profit organization whose mission is to promote the art quilt through education, exhibitions, professional development, and documentation.  The organization’s 2,700 members from around the globe include artists, teachers, collectors, gallery owners, museum curators, and corporate sponsors.  To explore membership in the Studio Art Quilt Associates,  contact Indiana Representative Daren Pitts Redman.

Created with Admarket’s flickrSLiDR.

Linda Witte Henke specializes in the creation of spiritually expressive and/or liturgically purposed textile art.  She is also the author of two books and a variety of magazine and journal articles.  Learn more about her at

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