I love stitching! There is something so satisfying about adding to the thickness of a material with stitching. As with many textile crafts, stitching also is rhythmic and that is relaxing and centering. As far as creative expression goes, stitches are like brush strokes or pencil lines and the personality of the embroiderer shapes the character of the work. I particularly love hand stitching because it soothes me and makes me slow down and as I centre, I feel inwardly my energy begins to flow. So, for me, hand embroidery is healing and even spiritual.
I am drawn to hand stitching therapeutically as psychologically there is something stabilising about lots of stitches adding structure and substance to fabric. In fact the above photo shows fibres entirely held together by stitches and the diaphanous and ethereal quality of the fibres is combined with strength and durability. In relation to my current project I am finding that lots of small stitching speaks also of mending and darning, again emphasising repair and healing.
Here, stitches are added to materials of different thicknesses creating an organic texture reminiscent of tree bark.
Stitches on ‘barely there’ organza.
I continued exploring the combination of stitch and fabric by experimenting with machine stitching to hold scraps of fabric, yarn and thread together. Again I think that it is interesting to create different thicknesses through layering and the use of different materials. In places the fabric is thick and unyielding, almost like cardboard and then the ‘fabric’ disintegrates to reveal shaky lines of stitching, floating between the edges of the material.
When the machine-stitched fabric is melted with a heat gun, the look of deterioration is emphasised and also the impression of fragility.
For my next blog I intend to investigate other methods of utilising stitch with recycled fabric and other textile remains. I may even try to incorporate some crochet as I think it would also be appropriate as a method to create organic and weathered textures.