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Celebrating  the  50th Anniversaries  of  EAC  and of WEG

Each year the Embroiderers’ Association of Canada (EAC) holds a week-long national teaching seminar. This event is hosted in different cities across the country by member guilds, and in 2023 that honour fell to the Winnipeg Embroiderers’ Guild. WEG did not disappoint, and a great time was had by all!


Intense planning for Seminar 2023 began in 2020. WEG members were soon immersed (more like consumed!) in all things Seminar starting in 2020, from volunteering to serve on one or more of the many committees to making favours as Seminar gifts to volunteering on-site during Seminar itself. Three Co-Chairs led the Planning Committee: Lorraine Iverach, Sharon Etsell, and Isla Marsh.

Fund-raisers were a huge hit. A wide variety of kits and patterns were developed by WEG members, some first time designers. Way to go!


EAC Seminar 2023 was held from June 6-11 at the Victoria Inn Hotel and Conference Centre near Winnipeg’s airport and included over 200 participants and teachers from across the globe. Seminar 2023 also celebrated the 50th anniversaries of both the founding of EAC and of the Winnipeg Embroiderers’ Guild (WEG).  Efforts focused on providing an overall top-notch experience: A-One instructors teaching a wide variety of superb classes;  tempting fund-raisers and Market Night wares;  daily raffle and sales opportunities at Seminar Central;  and memorable Seminar souvenirs at the three major Special Events:  the Opening Reception, the EAC Luncheon, and the Closing Banquet.  Not to be missed was the spectacular Members’ Show featuring over 40 tables of items for exhibition and competition. What a hard choice to vote for the winners from among so many beautiful pieces! The Group Project category, first awarded in 2017, has continued to grow in popularity and 2023 boasted the most entries of any Seminar to date with thirteen guilds submitting entries.


Registration for both in-person and virtual classes were offered for Seminar 2023. It was decided to include some on- line or virtual classes in case Covid-19 presented itself again with enforced gathering restrictions. At least some form of Seminar could occur to celebrate the 50th Anniversary.  Both in-person and virtual classes were taught by national and international instructors and included a wide variety of stitching techniques and skill levels.

Instead of taking a one-day class on Options Day,  activities included a choice between two fantastic tours with lunch included:  a visit to the Assiniboine Park Leaf/Botanical Garden and Journey to Churchill Zoo exhibit or a tour of the Human Rights Museum and shopping at The Forks.  So much to choose from!


A highlight of the participant gifts included the two Banquet favours:   hand-blown glass laying tools made by a Winnipeg artist and hand-embroidered three-dimensional polar bears. A total of 250 hand-embroidered polar bears— each unique—were created by fifty-two volunteers, including eight stitchers from Brandon. The pattern was sourced from EAC files. Almost all the bears were given away at the Banquet; the remaining handful were sold the next day at Seminar Central. They all found new homes by the end of Seminar! (Before being bagged up as banquet gifts, 192 of the bears had been entered as WEG’s Group Project entry in the Members’ Show. They won second prize!)


Attending an EAC Seminar should be on every member’s Bucket List.  It’s a chance to immerse yourself in colours, threads, patterns, and stitches, to learn new embroidery and design techniques, to stretch your abilities, and to increase your confidence.  Enjoy conversations with like-minded individuals and make new friends. Attending one Seminar can prove addictive: you’ll want to go again and again! You won’t regret the experience!  Hope to see you there!

EAC Seminar 2023 Co-Chairs: 

Sharon Etsell,

Lorraine Iverach,

and Isla Marsh

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