Stitch Safari Podcast

Embroidery and Textile Artist’s Websites

In my online research, I come across the good, the bad and the just plain ugly when it comes to websites.

So when I land on a website that’s uplifting, easy to navigate and provides what I’m looking for, I’m happy to list them.

As a textile artist, I look at my websites as my window to the world.  It’s my brand and my name on the line here, so a little research and due diligence go a long way to making a website work as it should.

It’s time-wasting to visit an interesting artist’s website only to find everything is tired and dated.  Regular updates can work wonders.

So if you’re thinking of building and designing a website, or if your website needs an overhaul, perhaps some of the following websites will give you some fresh ideas to help you fulfil your tech dreams.

I visit myriad websites, so let’s turn our attention to the professional embroidery and textile artist website that attracts interest, followers, customers, interaction and community.

Let’s find out why.

  1. Liz Payne from Sydney Australia offers an experience on her website, writing in her bio that her vibrant and distinctive work explores abstraction through colour, shape and form with a combination of mediums including paint, embroidery and beading – and that’s exactly what you land on with her Home page.  The colours, textures and embroideries are delicious.  There’s a good amount of white space, and the images don’t look cramped, but most of all Liz’s website oozes colour and abstraction and that’s exactly what her work’s about.  Visit lizlpayne.com
  2. After something completely different?  Take a look at Alexandra Drenth from the Netherlands who offers an eerily simple landing page featuring one stunning image of her work entitled ‘Dream Catcher 2024′ with the caption ’embroideries made with medieval patience’.  Now that’s exactly what Alexandra exemplifies throughout her website – and using that one image creates power.  The website is not overloaded with text, the images are good plus there’s a compilation of still images into a movie which is a nice touch.  Visit zachtewereld.nl

  3. Emily Sladen, a Sustainable Textile Designer from the UK has yet another approach to her website.  Even though her home page has outdated promotions, the layout of her website, with consistent headers featuring her name and footers featuring a simple yet up-market logo is pleasing.  It looks professional and offers consistency.  The vibrant imagery reflects her home, offering a soft, sunny inviting website.  Visit emilysladentextiles.wixsite.com/emilysladentextiles

  4. Now Shelley Rhodes wrote the book Sketchbook Explorations for Mixed-Media and Textile Artists – a fabulous book, so I expected her website to be just as good – and it doesn’t disappoint.  Her home page is relatively simple, but the website uses soft, fresh colours and simple fonts throughout, reflecting Shelley’s aesthetic, with mages that are consistently the same size – something I like to see.  Visit shelleyrhodes.co.uk

  5. I love the work of South African embroiderer and artist, Danielle Clough.  This website reflects the artist’s personality through the vibrancy of her stitching.  It’s a busy, full-on approach with a landing page bursting with images – click on each image and be taken even further.  It just works reflecting Danielle’s aesthetic perfectly.  If you’re into visual overload, like me, you’ll love this website.  Visit danielleclough.com

  6. Travel now across America to Bisa Butler’s website.  This award-winning African American textile artist is known for her vibrant, larger-than-life quilted portraits that captivate worldwide attention.  What’s unusual is that Bisa juxtaposes black and white backgrounds for her pages – and I find that unusual and eye-catching.  Her landing page features one work overlaid with an image of Bisa, providing a powerful statement for viewers.  Bisa, a high-school art teacher also offers an Educator’s Corner which is something unique.  Visit bisabutler.com

  7. Want a classy, elegant website offering?  You can’t go past Australian Visual Artist and teacher, Meredith Woolnough.  Before entering this website you’re greeted by a still-image movie – it’s colourful and interesting.  One thing Meredith does well is to feature newsletter sign-ups and free offerings for viewers, but you can also buy, sign up for an online course or read her blog for good measure. I expect this professionalism from a talented, internationally acclaimed artist.  Visit meredithwoolnough.com.au

  8. Another captivating website is that of Ana Falceta, Watercolourist and Embroiderer from Ontario, Canada, who explores abstraction, contrast, layering and texture.  This is a professional, artistic website, with some works shown in domestic settings and it delivers everything promised.  Also refreshing to see the landing page as a Welcome page with Ana’s logo adding continuity across the entire website.  A polished production.  Visit anafalceta.com

  9. Mojo and Muse – aka Manoela Grigorova, who adores colour and texture – that’s what you get on her easy-to-navigate website.  A lot going on within this website, but the work is Manoela and Manoela is the work.  This is a confident website.  Visit mojoandmuse.co.uk

  10. I’ll finish with a website by UK Contemporary Embroidery Artist, Sam Owen Hull, who provides a simple yet elegant view of her work.  Her speedy, gestural, painterly marks contrast with the slow precision of hand embroidery to create uniquely contemporary work. It’s simple and crisp but has everything needed for a website. Visit samowenhull.co.uk

Why did I choose these websites?

  • Cohesiveness and consistency across the entire website
  • Clean space where images and text can breathe
  • Colour – this is an opportunity to use colour to advantage to express you and your brand
  • Well-lit, professional-quality images
  • Simplicity – even though some featured myriad images, they did not overload
  • Easy navigation that makes sense
  • A regular, up-to-date blog that you’d want to read because it offers something for free – information, images, links etc
  • A website that’s kept up-to-date
  • I was looking for different offerings and features such as video presentations, terms for commissions, kits, books and policies at the point of purchase, and lastly
  • A positive experience having spent time on that particular website – it may be I learned something, admired the layout or simply the colours and images

What I wasn’t looking forward to seeing:

  • Text overload using different fonts and written in different voices
  • Unnecessary text – too many words that take up valuable space
  • Images that were different sizes and placed all over the place
  • Navigation that had no meaning to me
  • Dark, heavy colours that weighed everything down
  • Information and blogs that were out of date – although that did happen on a couple I chose

Is it worth having a website?

Definitely.

If it’s professional, polished, easy to use and reflects the artist’s work, then yes.

But it does require consistent commitment and new content.

A website can become an extension of the artist and creator.

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