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Fri, 16 Sept


La Vecchia Scuola

Stitch Summer School, Italy

Draw with a needle, paint with thread in the beautiful region of Abruzzo, central Italy.

Stitch Summer School, Italy
Stitch Summer School, Italy

Time & Location

16 Sept 2022, 14:40 – 21 Sept 2022, 09:25

La Vecchia Scuola, 66046 Colle Case CH, Italy

About the event

This Creative Summer School will have a strong stitch bias running alongside location based research and information gathering. You’ll discover experimental approaches to Free Machine Embroidery and discover tips and tricks to help your sewing always run smoothly!  

I'm best known for my expressive and adventurous machine stitch techniques.  I shall show you a range of techniques to ensure you have a broad tool kit of machine mark making possibilites.

This summer school provides you with the opportunity to explore in an inspiring atmosphere with a highly experienced tutor. You’ll leave with a bundle of experiments and ideas which will inspire and full further projects for many moons to come…not to mention great memories of a fantastic creative adventure in this wonderful region of Italy.  It's a workshop & holiday combined, a true creative adventure.

“Dionne’s Summer School has been a great success and an amazing experience visiting stunning locations with lovely companions and following a creative programme which inspired, motivated and challenged in equal measures . Dionne is a brilliant teacher and skilled communicator and this week has enabled me to develop an exciting repertoire for future work . I just can’t wait to return to continue this creative journey. Many thanks to Dionne and the friends I made at La Vecchia Scuola”

Read more reviews here

You could also take a look at some of my Italian inspired pieces

I appreicate that given the last few years of restricted travel that you may like to have a chat about this summer school before you book.  Please feel free to get in touch, I can talk it through with you and offer you the reassurance that you need. +44 (0) 7974747080 

The workshop only price is £600 : This includes 4 days of the workshop, materials and equipment, lunches and refreshments on the workshop days, workshop transport, excursions and welcome meal. 

You are responsible for booking flights [approx £180 return at the time of writing] and accommodation at Hotel Al Duca [£250 – £360, paid on arrival], airport transfer 50 euros [payable locally]. 6/8 students per week.  

Example itinerary:

Arrival day – I will be there to greet you on arrival at Pescara Airport. It's a 1 hour transfer to Atessa and Hotel Al Duca, once you have freshened up everyone is invited to a welcome meal at the hotel.

Each day of the workshop I will pick you up at 9.30am at Hotel Al Duca and return you there for 5.30pm after a full day of creativity & just in time for aperitivi!  Evenings are free time for you to enjoy…

Day one 

Morning – Researching and collecting visual information.  The Abrussese coast line is dotted with spectacular ‘Trabocchi’ [wooden fishing platforms] – they are a truly special feature of the Abruzzo region & perfect visual stimuli! We shall enjoy lunch at a local restaurant near the beach.

Afternoon – Back at La Vecchia Scuola I shall introduce a technique to help you develop the images collected that morning.

Day two

Morning – Researching and collecting visual information.  We shall venture into the mountains and work ‘en plein air’ to capture the amazing vistas and landscapes of the Appeninnes: followed by a  traditional mountain lunch at a local Agriturismo.

Afternoon – Back at La Vecchia Scuola, I’ll demonstrate another new technique useful for developing that mornings images and incorporate yesterdays ideas and techniques.

Day three

Morning – Tornareccio, the nearest village, is known for its honey and its mosaics – we shall spend the morning investigating the latter through the small alleys, streets and piazzas of this pleasant hillside village: then its lunch at the local restaurant: Meditteraneo

Afternoon – Back at La Vecchia Scuola we shall look at incorporating further techniques into your new repertoire and discuss how you might move forward with your work.

Day four

Morning – Developing and resolving images and ideas…

Local lunch…

Afternoon – This is a great time to consider different methods of finishing/mounting/presentation pieces. You’ll have time to complete your work as well as review and evaluate [individually and with the group]…sadly its time to say goodbye….

 Departure day. 10am pick up from the hotel with an excursion and lunch en route to the airport in Pescara.

What workshop supplies will you need to bring? 

Drawing/sketching media – coloured pencils are ideal [sometimes watercolour pencils can be a little softer and give stronger colour] 

A hard back sketchbook minimum A4 size  - I like wire bound Pink Pig books.


Bear in mind it may be very warm – you may like a hat/suncream & a refillable water bottle…

What supplies/materials/equipment will be provided for you at La Vecchia Scuola? 

Papers, basic fabrics, threads, scissors and of course sewing machines.

Getting there

The nearest airport is Pescara there are regular flights from Stansted, UK and other European airports.  I will co-ordination collection from the main Stansted flight.

Reccomended flight : London Stansted/Pescara return  with Ryanair

Outward on Friday 16th Sept 2022 - leaves Stansted 11.20am - arrives Pescara 2.40pm local time 

Return on Wednesday 21st Sept 2022 - leaves Pescara 11.25am - arrives Stansted 12.55pm local time

Some students find it easier to fly to Rome – there is a bus that connects from right outside the terminal [of both the Roman airports] to Pescara [approx 2.5 hours €27 bookable online] Prontobus If you aim to arrive to coincide with airport collections/drop offs, I can whizz by the bus station to collect you as well 🙂


Hotel Al Duca in Atessa  : Antonio is lovely and incredibly ammenable.  Al Duca is well placed in the centre of Atessa where there are a range of bars and restaurants all in strolling distance.

I know this hotel well and it is perfect: its a small, well run hotel which has been recently re-modelled.  Its exceptionally clean and the restaurant is well regarded in the area – there’s free wifi and access to the local public swimming pool a short walk away.

If partners or family would like to join you after you've completed the workshop, I could recommend that you extend your stay at Casa Pietra : a delightful self catering Farmhouse in a beautiful spot, there are 4 double ensuite rooms in the main house and the Casetta sleeps 2 to 4 guests.  Robert, the English speaking owner can offer suggestions for further activities and places to visit.  

If you have a group of like minded friends and would like a tailor-made workshop in Abruzzo, please get in touch and we can make some plans.

Please see the FAQ and get in touch if you have any queries...


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