For centuries women have used cloth as a tool of comfort and as an expression of beauty within their homes. Creating cloth for warmth, cloth for shelter, our female predecessors embellished these linens with hand stitch using laborious and time consuming techniques thereby enhancing the functional beauty of objects which enveloped and protected their families. Inspired by these women I hope my creations pay tribute to and recognise the devotion expressed in cloth by our female ancestors .







''the use of traditional often time consuming process alludes to the devotion of a mother''. c K. A. Ruane 2007







Monday, January 2, 2012

mirrors....



Mirrors, mirrors on silk with web stitches and French knots, the next stage of my ''fiddly'' sampler. Don't ask me how big this will be when it's finished, haven't a clue. For now I'm just having fun!
If you have been reading this rambling of mine for a while you will know that my main focus, my obsession is ''traditional'' and ''English'' embroidery. So where do mirrors fit into that.....well, (and it is a tenuous link) BUT in  Sixteenth and Seventeenth Century England a mineral called ''mica'' was used regularly as an embellishment in opulent needlework. In the Indian Subcontinent, prior to the arrival of mirrors from Europe, ''mica'' was used in traditional mirror work. Does that do it?? Are you convinced? Aside form that I have just been browsing a beautiful book , 'World Textiles' and in there is a glorious Whitework robe from Afghanistan with....mirrors.......that's good enough for me....


16 comments:

Miss 376 said...

The main thing is, you're having fun. Interesting to know the background though

Heather Woollove said...

Gorgeous, Karen!! I've always wanted to do a felted piece with mirrors, but the embroidery needed to hold them fast put me off, and they're a bit too tiny to 'felt in'. :(

Joanna said...

I like it! You do something and then work out a tenuous link to it - sounds like me with my embroidery course that I did. I was always working backwards to the way I should work

Elizabeth said...

Oh to bad that this is the explanation. I already made one up for myself but I'm not gonna tell you since it is a silly one. I'm just glad that you are having fun making sampler since I love stopping by and gaze at you work.

Rachel said...

I don't know that you really needed a reason, but I'm enjoying seeing what you are doing with it!

Coach Tina said...

Love the mirrors and the stitches used to sew the mirrors down-very elegant and beautiful.

Thhanks for sharing. I love reading your blog!

fabriquefantastique said...

Look forward to following along for another year.

Postcards from Wildwood said...

No need for an explanation... Just go with the flow! :)

jill said...

wowsers, this is beautiful

jill said...

oh, ye, just off to check out my world textiles book

Beacee said...

Love it!

Carol Q said...

seems like a perfect combination to me. glad you were able to come up for a reasonable solution to include them into your traditional English embroidery too! lol

Jacky said...

Luscious...I love the addition of the mirrors and that little story. Must have a look for that book, that picture sounds wonderful.

Jacky xox

MosaicMagpie said...

Do we need a reason??? What ever you do, we love it! So don't worry about giving us a reason, just keep stitching and show us the results!
Deb

Tammie said...

old world techniques with your new world art is stunning!

Magpie's Mumblings said...

I think mirrors add a subtle sparkle amongst the white. Think of how sunlight sparkles on snow!