Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Inspiration from Ethnic Textiles

As some of you may know, I just started running a workshop at The National Needlework Archive based at Greenham Common. The plan has been that over five weeks we will use my collection of Ethnic Textiles as inspiration to design an embroidered panel. The idea has not been to copy the textiles, including mud cloths, Kantha pieces and Indian hangings, but rather to use them as a jumping off point for original designs.

I have worked alongside the participants, and started with a small counted thread piece which I brought back from Dubrovnik.

Initially each person chose a textile, used words to describe them before making some quick sketches.

We then worked with twigs, sponges, feathers etc. making marks using Indian Ink.

The next session was used to colour varied papers, such as brown paper, greaseproof, magazine pages etc... We then looked at ways of making stamps to transfer the designs from the initial doodles and mark making.
This is my final design.

In one session we looked at working with Shisha both in traditional and non traditional ways. I decided to incorporate my working examples in the stitched piece.

This is how far I have progressed. The course has two more weeks to go, and all being well I would like to offer it again in the Spring.


  1. wonderful! thanks for sharing the process.

  2. Jumping off, indeed... enjoyable + interesting to see it develop...

  3. Loved your method of working, works so well, a joy to behold especially the finished piece. Thanks for sharing. Tricia

  4. Love that mark making & what it turned into. I'm running for my sketchbook!

  5. I love seeing your sketches for your piece. What a great bit of information.

    I have to teach about mudcloth every year, and so I'd be interested in seeing what happens when you try that.

    Thanks for the tip on the videos on journal making. I'll check that out.


  6. This is so very fascinating. I am intrigued with the process. Sounds like an amazing class!

  7. I like the way you work, it is so visual.thanks for sharing the process in detail

  8. Thank you for sharing your lessons with us. I would be signed up in a minute if I lived near by. Great results!

  9. A fantastic project! WOW.


Comments are always much appreciated. Thank you.

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