Hand Embroidery Samples 1 …. Fly Stitch

Last year I started a Hand Embroidery course. Having dabbled in embroidery over the years (mainly self taught), I thought it was time I learned how to embroider ‘properly’.
My main reason for taking part, was that the course encouraged students to experiment with lots of different fabrics and threads – think outside the box – and decide for themselves the pros and cons of each in their own work. Which means lots of playing for me!
For each stitch, I completed one of more experimental samples.

Experimental Sample – Fly Stitch on hand dyed wool blanket

In addition to these samples I created more refined samples, using Irish Linen, for a lovely journal of needlework I am compiling (from Pink Pig in Huddersfield) – I love their books!  Here is the first journal sample – Fly Stitch – created using threads including hand dyed linen, DMC stranded embroidery thread, imitation silk, Appleton Crewel wool and hand dyed extra fine silk.

Fly Stitch on Irish Linen for Journal

Experimental pieces below were completed on a Silk woven fabric. The threads used included hemp, wool, DMC stranded Embroidery thread and Sylko 50 weight sewing thread. I thoroughly enjoyed being given ‘permission’ to mess about with fabric and thread and learnt a great deal in the process.
Experimental Sample – Fly Stitch on woven silk
Fly Stitch on woven silk

Each finished sample has been stitched onto Elephant Dung paper from Frogmore Paper Mill and annotated with any comments I have about the sample – threads and fabric used; what I liked and disliked about them; any conclusions; what I found out.


Experimental sample is stitch mounted onto the Elephant Dung Paper

The Mister Finch Exhibition, London

Following the launch of his very first book earlier this year, the fairy tale-inspired world of Mister Finch has touched down – for a very short time – in the beautiful Anthropologie shop on the Kings Road in London, where it will be on display until January 4th 2015. The bay fronted shop is crammed full of huge vintage books, curiosities and  beautifully-crafted fabric creatures.

Inspired by the Parisian taxidermy
shop Deyrolle, the show comprises 15 pieces of soft sculpture: a crowned swan,
suitcase- carrying toadstool and seven-foot fox, among other creatures.

Here are some of the pieces from the collection and they are much larger than I thought they would be.  Sit back and enjoy.


Fabulous pin cushion crown


Over-sized Textile Moths



This piece is for sale for £1,800



A closer look at the spider
The shop windows are a magical delight.
A panoramic picture of the exhibition space.

Kaffe Fassett Exhibition 2014 at the American Museum, Bath

The colourful collections of Kaffe Fassett have been on exhibition at the American Museum in Bath all summer, in a detached building set away from the main museum at Claverton Manor.
When I visited in early autumn, the building was partly hidden behind a large tree covered in textile ‘lanterns’ and shrouded in mist. It was a mystical treasure waiting to be discovered.
Entering the building I felt an immediate assault on my senses of COLOUR!
The main theme running through the entire exhibition was colour, colour and more colour detailing the knitting, needlework and patchwork of Kaffe. His mind must be in a constant whirlwind of colour.
Although I found his large pieces stunning and the level of stitch and design involved in their creation fascinating, some of my favourite pieces were his mood board displays, detailing his journey of ideas, from initial inspiration through to the final designs and collections.
Here are some of the photos from the day.