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Workshop Descriptions & Pictures
"I have always loved teaching
and sharing beading techniques and inspirations with others!
These are the workshops I currently teach."
Robin Atkins, bead artist
If you have an interest in taking one of my workshops, you may want to go to my current workshop schedule, where you can see what and where I will be teaching in the near future. I've included contact information for the sponsoring agency of each workshop. You may also see pictures and read about my slide presentations by going to slide shows.
If you have an interest in organizing a workshop in your area, please contact me for further information. I am often sponsored by Art Schools, Bead Societies, Quilt (or other Guilds), Festivals or Conferences, Bead (and other) Shops, as well as by private individuals. I enjoy working with all students - from those who have never beaded previously to those who are already quite experienced. I am happy to tailor any of my workshops to the specific needs and experience levels of the participants.
|Techniques of Bead Embroidery - 1 day workshop
In just one day, learn all of the basic techniques there are for sewing beads on fabric, including high relief and textural variations. Also learn several edging stitches and fringing techniques. Practice each of the stitches, and make a stitch sampler, similar to the one shown on the right. Using your sampler and class handouts for reference, you will have the skills you need to embellish many beautiful creations with bead embroidery.
See also The Complete Photo Guide to Beading, a book by Robin Atkins, published 2013, which includes full step-by-step photos and instructions for making a stitch sampler like the one pictured here.
|Improvisational Bead Embroidery- 2 day workshop
Learn all of the basic techniques for sewing beads on fabric, including high relief and textural variations, edging stitches and fringing techniques. Practice each of the stitches, and make a stitch sampler, similar to the one shown above for the 1 day techniques class. Then, begin to work on a small piece of bead embroidery, which can be made into a pouch, appliqued on a large bag, framed, sewn into a quilt, or one of many other possibilities. Throughout the two days, I will be teaching how to work improvisationally, without a plan or drawing, in a way that is fun and very empowering!
See also One Bead at a Time, a book about beading intuitively or improvisationally by Robin Atkins, published 2000, which is currently available as a free download.
|Beaded Buttons - 1/2 day workshop
During this workshop you will learn some basic bead embroidery techniques, practicing them on fabric. At the end of the workshop, you will cover a metal button form with your bead embroidery to create a special and unique button. Almost all students finish their buttons in class. As a bonus, the techniques learned are very applicable to other bead embroidery projects.
|Beaded Fringe Techniques - 1/2 day workshop
Fringing adds movement, texture, and an opportunity to showcase specialty beads to almost anything. Learn basic fringing techniques and variations, plus some special and unusual fringes. Make a "fringe sampler" to go with the handout for future reference.
|Bead Embellished "Spirit Doll" - 1 day workshop
"Spirit dolls" bring luck, joy, love, good health, and prosperity to their owners. During this workshop, you will make your own "spirit doll" to hang in your car, give to a friend, celebrate an occassion, display on your Christmas tree, or guide you through a current issue in your life. In the process you will learn several edge, fringe, and bead embroidery techniques, plus some basics of doll construction. Doll patterns provided.
See also Spirit Dolls, book by Robin Atkins, published 2005.
|Beads, Books & Paint! - 5 day workshop
Make a beautiful hand-bound book with painted covers, bead embroidery inset into the front cover, and painted signature covers. Learn four basic bead embroidery stitches and several variations, creating a small beaded piece to inset into your book cover. Learn basic techniques for painting, glazing, stenciling and stamping decorative papers, which you will use for the book and signature covers. Learn a beautiful, yet easy and professional, book binding method. A few guided writing sessions will give you some "models" for personal writing. All of the beading, painting, and bookmaking techniques are easy to learn and require minimal supplies. It will not be difficult for you to continue making these wonderful, personal journals for yourself, or for a very special gift. To view a few painted papers, such as used for the cover and signature covers of your book, see What's New.
|Woven Treasure Necklace - 2 day workshop
Learn a wonderful, flexible technique for making necklaces and bracelets using a figure-eight, finger-weaving technique for the foundation. It's a fabulous showcase for one-of-a-kind beads, charms, bits and pieces - treasures in your collection. In addition to the basic weaving techniques, you will learn many methods for attaching beads and other treasures to achieve the look you want, be it contemporary, ethnic, even high fashion. Although most students who choose to make a necklace probably won't complete their project, excellent finishing instructions are included in the handout and will be demonstrated as well. You can easily complete a bracelet in this two day workshop.
See also Beaded Treasures, book by Robin Atkins, published 2006.
|Woven Treasure Tassel - 1 day workshop
Learn a multi-purpose technique for making decorative tassels using figure-eight, finger-weaving for the foundation. It's a fabulous showcase for one-of-a-kind beads, charms, bits and pieces - treasures in your collection - and can be made with almost any size cord or thread. In addition to the basic weaving techniques, you will learn methods for attaching beads and other treasures to achieve the look you want. These versatile techniques may also be used to make beaded bands, hangers, and jewelry.
See also Beaded Treasures, book by Robin Atkins, published 2006.
|Getting Out of the Box: Designing From Your Heart! -
1 day workshop
What is it that makes one piece of art clearly stand out from all the rest - perhaps win a competition, get accepted in a show, or sell more easily than others? We will explore some of the answers this question. A series of fun exercises may prove you know more about visual communication than you thought, and give you some new tools to make more unique, inspired and personal creations. The design principles and exercises covered in this workshop should be useful for bead artists, as well as quilters, book makers, collage, fiber, and multi-media artists - especially anyone who feels they are "stuck in the box" with their art work.
|Wire Working - 2 day workshop
Drawing on my previous metalworking training and experience, I teach students how to fabricate with precious metal wire (sterling silver and gold-filled), using appropriate hand tools. Learn about the properties of wire, and get tips for buying the best tools. During the first day, you will make three pairs of earrings, each designed to teach specific techniques of wire working. During the second day, you will design and construct a beaded fibula pin and a beaded chain bracelet (or necklace) with decorative wire elements. This is not an assembly class using manufactured components; students will learn to fabricate their own ear wires, clasps, etc.
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