North East Region

Embroiderers' Guild

~ Sharing opportunities for creativity and discovery ~

Regional Competitions

All members of the Region’s branches are invited and encouraged to enter a piece work on a given theme for a specific competition. Each of the pieces have been uniquely designed and stitched by an individual member of the Guild, or as a group collaboration for a set competition.

The Embroiders' Guild have introduced guidelines for members to follow when using images that belong to someone else. Pleae ensure you read the Copyright Guidelines before thinking about downloading, copying, pasting, forwarding etc any image from the internet or other published source.

View the Embroiderers' Guild Guidelines and Information on Copyright here.

Two major judged competitions are held annually at the Regional Day in May, each is based on a given theme. There is the Members’ Challenge in which any technique or combination of techniques may be used but a strong element of stitch is required. The second competition is usually a Named Award which has more specific criteria and is an award in recognition of the work done by highly regarded members. Occasionally the Regional Committee will set a Branch Challenge to encourage collaborative working.

From 2019, a third Regional Competition will run at the Regional AGM in October. Guidelines set out the criteria and judging.

Regional AGM (October 2019) - A new competition for Branch members was announced recently. The aim of the competion is to encourage us to use those inspiration bags that we just love to purchase...

Please submit an entry form by the due date, and take (or send with someone else) your work to the Regional AGM. There are two categories and two prizes of £25 each. You can enter either or both categories. 'Best Useful item' and 'Best Decorative Item'

Here you can view and print the Competition Guildelines and entry form

You will need two forms if you are entering both categories.


For 2019, the Olga Stokes Award was suspended in lieu of the Branch Challenge "Wallpaper for the Web".

All images reproduced with permissison of the owner/maker and are copyright. Please do not copy without permission.

Competition Guidelines are available below.


Regional Day Members’ Competition Awards

The named awards are held in alternate years:

x1. The Olga Stokes Award

In the early days this competition was set for a particular article of Christian church furnishings, for example a burse & veil, or a pulpit fall. However, more recently this was felt unlikely to attract many entries and to encourage the celebration of many faiths we have been more general in our titles and expectations.

In this competition the judges look for 'Quality of design and the ability to demonstrate technical skill with a clear religious link'. In the past there have been items which have fallen into the description of 'for a religious purpose' which could include Jewish, Muslim or other faiths etc. Entrants are expected to attach a short description of how the article is related to a faith.

There are no restrictions on technique. The only 'rules' are (a) that it should have been completed since the previous Olga Stokes award (i.e. usually within the last two years), and (b) that only one entry per member is allowed.

2. The Margaret Howe Award

This award is for a piece of ‘traditional hand embroidery’. Usually there is no restriction as far as size or technique goes, but Margaret was fond of good traditional stitching and that is what is required. Again, items should have been completed within the preceding two years and only one entry per member is allowed.

Regional Day Competition Awards 2018

There was a magnificent display of work from all round the Region, with a great variety of twinchies. A tough decision for the Judges!

The winners from left to right below: 'Twinchies Squared' Lesley W from Durham City. 'Single Twinchie' (the Margaret Howe Award) Ann C from Richmond & Leyburn. Members' Choice (and runner up in Twinchies Squared) Melita B who is a joint member of Durham Branch and Richmond & Leyburn Branch.


Regional Day Competition Awards 2017

xThe Regional Day judges were spoilt for choice when they looked at the entries for the Members’ CHallenge ‘Contrasts’. Ione D (from Richmond & Leyburn) won the first prize and the two runners-up were Lesley W (from Durham City) and Elaine D (from Richmond & Leyburn, who also won the Members’ Vote).

The Olga Stokes competition ‘Darkness & Light’ was won by Hazel McE (from Newcastle Branch) which is shown above.


This gallery page contains a selection of entries for both of these competitions.