This book offers insights into the working processes, creative choices, and range of techniques used by renowned embroiderer and costume designer, Michele Carragher.
Inspiration is drawn from history and rich in symbolism, but the backbone of this book has to be breathtakingly detailed photography.
Michele has chosen to create three artifacts, weaving a narrative for each that becomes the basis for the formation of each piece, along with further concept development.
And it’s this comprehensive insight that guides us into her complex world from the initial idea, through to the finished piece, exploring a diversity of themes.
Each chapter begins with an artifact, and an Artifact Insight, along with fairly detailed Working Insights, all supported by stunning photography.
The three artifacts chosen include The Hand – a highly jeweled and embroidered glove, reminiscent of the Elizabethan era, showcasing the detail and skill in the decorative aspects of work from this ‘Golden Age.’ From that work, another work develops – a stunning marten’s head.
The second artifact alludes to the heart – an 18th-century stomacher suggesting the decadent French court of that time. This piece also leads to further development.
The final artifact is based on a Japanese hairpin from the late 19th century.
Trace is about that that is left behind – the artifacts and the narratives interpreted and encapsulated by Michele to inform her embroidery.
What this book shows is an acute awareness and perception for storytelling in stitch.
This is concept embroidery at its very best.
Michele Carragher has worked in the film and TV industry for a number of years and is best known as Costume Designer for Game of Thrones, The Crown, and Elizabeth I.
Published by Search Press, Kent, 2021, Trace is also available on Kindle.
Visit her website here.