Thursday, 8 June 2017

Zen Stitching : Embroidery as Textile Art

Few of us have the luxury these days to idly sit and contemplate, dwelling within the present whilst being creative with our hands. Zen Stitching aims to provide some space and time where we can learn the traditional techniques of embroidery whilst at the same time allowing ourselves to slow down. 

Sampler of some of the techniques covered in the workshop

I have just completed a 2 day weekend workshop at the NSCCD where we explored a number of stitches (running stitch, back stitch, chain stitch, stem stitch, blanket stitch, satin stitch, leaf stitch and french knots to name a few!) 

The reverse side of the embroidery is just as interesting as the front

One of the participants asked how to cover the reverse side of the embroidery when using the hoop to display the embroidery. As a textile artist, I am just as fascinated by the reverse side of the material and when observing textile pieces in a gallery will try to peek behind it to see the back. Quite often this will reveal how a piece is put together - and it is just as interesting, although in a slightly different and messy way. In some senses I can relate this to life (and particularly on social media these days) how we present ourselves to the world, can quite often be the reverse on the inside. 

Being fortunate to have grown up in a family where embroidery was taught at an early age, it is an art form I return to periodically. Having just dedicated the time to share these techniques at the workshop I now have the bug to continue working on my sampler / cloth journal and create a bit of Zen magic. 

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