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Constance Howard – The Influencer With Green Hair

Constance Howard – The Influencer With Green Hair

Constance Howard, the British embroiderer, often best remembered for her green hair, had a colossal influence on contemporary embroidery at a time when it was deemed to be a comparatively minor craft, setting a pathway that's probably helped lead to the expansion of...

Book Review:  The Pocket

Book Review: The Pocket

Who would think a simple, commonplace pocket could be the holder of such a scope of fascinating research? Obviously, the authors, Barbara Burman - an independent scholar, and Ariane Fennetaux - associate professor of eighteenth-century history at Université de Paris,...

Tie-On Pockets – A Hidden World

Tie-On Pockets – A Hidden World

Tie-on pockets made use of recycled fabrics, were used as teaching tools, and were transmitters of design while reinforcing the familial and friendship networks between women, connecting women’s inner and outer worlds – a world of politics and protest to that of a humble worker making a living.

Maison Lesage

Maison Lesage

Welcome to the stunningly beautiful, elegantly innovative, seductively alluring world of French Haute Couture and the dynastic family of Lesage. The House of Lesage became the doyen of French Haute Couture embroidery collaborating with the world's elite designers...

Book Review: Maison Lesage Haute Couture Embroidery

Book Review: Maison Lesage Haute Couture Embroidery

Maison Lesage is a dynastic house of haute couture embroidery that worked with the who's who of the fashion industry - Vionnet, Schiaparelli, Balenciaga, Dior, Yves Saint Laurent, Givenchy, and Chanel. This book draws the link from the very inception of Maison Lesage...

Book Review: The Hunt of the Unicorn

Book Review: The Hunt of the Unicorn

Though not embroidery, the magnificently woven medieval tapestries making up the set known as The Unicorn Tapestries, provide a wonderful vehicle for this richly imaginative work of fiction. No one knows for whom the Tapestries were made or what they mean or...

Book Review:  The Girl Who Wrote In Silk

Book Review: The Girl Who Wrote In Silk

Imagine finding an intricately embroidered sleeve while exploring a relative's deceased estate. Inara Erickson unearths this long-forgotten treasure, knowing that she has found something quite special and unique. With no knowledge of embroidery, Inara looks for help...

Book Review:  The Quick and the Thread

Book Review: The Quick and the Thread

A cozy mystery full of red herrings, misdirection, and intrigue set in a newly opened embroidery store aptly named The Seven-Year Stitch, where the heroine teaches embroidery and solves the mystery of the body in the storeroom.

Mexican Otomi Embroidery

Mexican Otomi Embroidery

This is one time where embroidery defines the textile – not the cloth, not the weave, and not the dyes used, but the actual process of hand stitching the brightly coloured designs into complex and lively textiles that have become a major source of fascination and income.

Book Review:  A Single Thread

Book Review: A Single Thread

This gentle, yet powerful story is so easily relatable – who of us hasn’t felt gut-wrenching loss, and been nervous about making unprecedented life changes?

Beetle Elytra: Nature’s Ornament

Beetle Elytra: Nature’s Ornament

So are the beetle wings ethically harvested?  The beetles used for beetle wing embroidery have a very short lifespan of 3-4 weeks in their adult stage, so to avoid killing the beetles, only those that die naturally are collected.

Book Review:  The Tenth Gift

Book Review: The Tenth Gift

Jane Johnson is a prolific writer of books for both adults and children as well as being a fiction book editor. A trip to North Africa in 2005 investigating a long-buried family legend about the abduction of a family from a Cornish church by Barbary pirates in 1625,...

Embroidered Dragon Robes

Embroidered Dragon Robes

Close your eyes and imagine the sound a cascading silk garment makes in movement. Imagine the feel of exquisite embroidery - the silken smoothness of the long, colourful threads and the unmistakable texture of couched gold and silver, pearls, and other rich...

East Asian Silk Embroidery

East Asian Silk Embroidery

East Asian Silk embroidery is a stunningly beautiful art form emerging from China - the ancient masters of sericulture - migrating to Korea, Vietnam, and Japan, with each adding their own cultural and stylistic design stamp to form this unmistakable aesthetic. Silk...

Book Review:  The Gown

Book Review: The Gown

Cleverly entitled The Gown, this historical novel will almost certainly appeal to anyone interested in the making of one of the most famous wedding gowns of the 20th century – that of Queen Elizabeth II.

Medieval Craftsmen Embroiderers

Medieval Craftsmen Embroiderers

Kay Staniland is an English author and embroiderer, with five other titles to her name. This small book, published by British Museum Press, London, in 1991 is a well-researched introduction into the somewhat hazy and indefinite world of medieval embroiderers - the...

Embroidery is the Art of the Needle

Embroidery is the Art of the Needle

But embroidery needed the invention of some very basic tools before that first stitch could be taken and that began a long, long time ago. With Stitch Safari, I'm trying to chronicle embroidery's beginnings as well as its relationship with society and culture,...

Book Review:  Threads of Life

Book Review: Threads of Life

Author Clare Hunter was a finalist for the Aesthetica Creative Writing Award, with a story published in its 2017 Annual, a recipient of a Creative Scotland Award in 2016 and winner of the Saltire First Book Award for Threads of Life.  Clare is also a sewer, banner...

Book Review:  English Medieval Embroidery Opus Anglicanum

Book Review: English Medieval Embroidery Opus Anglicanum

English Medieval Embroidery, Opus Anglicanum was published in association with the Victoria and Albert Museum, to accompany a major exhibition held in 2017. Edited by Clare Browne, Curator of European Textiles, pre-1800, V&A London, Glynn Davies, Curator of...

Introducing Stitch Safari: The Rationale

Introducing Stitch Safari: The Rationale

I've now been recording Stitch Safari Podcasts since May of 2020 - and with the fullness of time, I believe I finally have my head around what I'm actually doing.  Yes, it's taken me a while - I'm a slow learner, but it's proving popular with just over 3,500 downloads...

Writing a Podcast

Writing a Podcast

What on earth drove me to create this podcast? Passion, pure and simple.  I've always enjoyed stitching, and I find history utterly fascinating - I simply married the two together, so the entire ethos for the Stitch Safari podcasts will always revolve around history...

Book Review: A Needle in the Right Hand of God

Book Review: A Needle in the Right Hand of God

The Bayeux Tapestry is a visual record of the Conquest of England, but more importantly, it’s a powerful visual representation of cultural memory from a time when literacy wasn’t markedly evident.

Book Review:  The Subversive Stitch

Book Review: The Subversive Stitch

Waxing lyrical about books is sort of my thing.  I love books, so when a book actually takes me on a journey or makes me think - that's special. And that's what Subversive Stitch by Rozsika Parker did for me.  To date, my interest in Feminism has been minimal. ...

String & Cloth

String & Cloth

Cloth - that much used and overlooked everyday item we wear, sit upon, walk on or sleep between.  It's simply there in our ready-made shirts, dresses, bespoke suits and household textiles, but how did cloth-making, come about?  It's a story spanning eons. And it all...

Book Review: Guo Pei – Couture Beyond

Book Review: Guo Pei – Couture Beyond

Guo Pei, the first Chinese designer invited to join the prestigious Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture combines tradition, history and mythology producing unconventional and otherworldly designs – a reflection of her oeuvre.  With a reverence for China’s imperial past and beauty, her aspiration is to bring that heritage into a reflection of today’s modern fashion currency.  

The Wearable Cloth

The Wearable Cloth

Cloth envelops us from morning to night; we slumber between it, we use it to make our homes more comfortable and appealing, and according to statistics, a large percentage of people worldwide, work with it in the textile industry.

Book Review: The Golden Thread

Book Review: The Golden Thread

The Golden Thread, How Fabric Changed History, written by Kassia St Clair, Published by John Murray Publishers, 2018. This is the sort of book I would read again and again.  It’s an easy read, and extremely informative.  Filled with craftily woven stories that bring...