Lots of people are yet to discover the joys of the stitch and we want to show them that it can be fun, simple and rewarding not to mention healing!
We really don't believe that embroidery has to be done solely by gifted, nor by a medieval bands of merry men or super skilled individuals because if someone wants to do it but can't quite get to grips with the discipline then... who are we to say that the way you're doing it is wrong?!
Forgive me ladies of the Embroiderer's Guild if I make you weep and shriek when you see my embroidery work: "That's not how you embroider! " because frankly I don't care!!! You can call me the punk of embroidery and that's fine by me. I really love embroidery and though I can still hear my nana's words ringing in my ears as she tried to explain to me that cross stitch should be the same in the reverse as it is on the front of my work I completely ignored her as I continued to do as I pleased. She tried yet from a very early age rebellion was strong in me!
So we'd like to put out a plea... we're after embroidery works which express sentiments of love based on the Portuguese "Lençinhos dos Namorados" (Boyfriend Hankies/ Lovers' Hankies or Wish Hankies) which were once hand embroidered by semi illiterate women as token of love which were gifted to the objects of their affections!
Apparently they go back to the 17th century when peoples' wishes were embroidered onto a small piece of fabric in order to conquest their hearts' desire. They were later taken up by women and popularised into this form we now love and know.
Canny retailers have even gone on to screen print inspired motifs on textiles, home furnishings and clothing created for the tourist market. And you can certainly find at least one of these modern adaptations in a form of a table cloth or tea towel in almost every Portuguese home. That's how popular it's become.
Plus this project is all about liberating, letting go and putting ghosts to rest as you'll be able to offer a homage to anything you miss but still burn a torch for... or if you're in love and want to celebrate that then that's great too! So as I mentioned before it can be healing too if you wish it to be and not just a way of practising and honing your embroidery skills.
The deadline is January 2015 so you have plenty of time... The show is in the summer but we'll need them early to ready them for the exhibit in the 2015 E17 Art Trail and possibly for a few other international shows.
If you're interested please down load the document HERE which has all details including the criteria and a brief history about the work.
So get ready to embroider a token, a wish or a homage to anything you want... a piece of cake, a pet, a husband, a child, a secret love, a book, a city, a place you adore... anything which makes your heart beat that little bit faster!!!